Turns out he’s working on Paizo’s Pathfinder RPG–y’know, the RPG using the 3.5 OGL that many people hope to wash the foul taste of 4th Edition D&D away with. According to the press sheet, Cook is joining the design team, but not much has actually been stated about what he’s doing (besides the introduction, but if I had a dollar for every book he’s written an intro for…). I’m intrigued by the idea of Monte Fisting Cook working on Pathfinder, simply because it’s combining the best of d20 with… well… the best of d20.
May 12, 2008 (BELLEVUE, Wash.) – Paizo Publishing®, LLC today announced that Monte Cook, the co-creator of 3rd Edition Dungeons & Dragons and author of the 3.5 PHB and DMG as well as the Ptolus™ campaign setting and the recent Book of Experimental Might™, has joined the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game team as a Rules Consultant.
“This is going to be a lot of fun,” said Monte Cook. “Pathfinder is a fresh spin on a rules system that I love and the guys at Paizo are great to work with. They produce nothing but the highest quality products.”
So, this should give a lot of gamers wet dreams for the next couple of years: Monte Cook, probably the most popular game designer since E. Gary Gygax himself, is working with Paizo, probably the most popular game company since dirt was new. I’m just glad that he’s giving the “retirement” thing a second thought. No offense to him or anything, but game fiction generally blows, and I’d rather associate the name Monte Cook with the d20 cream of the crop and not for a trainwreck’s worth of fantasy paperbacks.
In other news, it’s looking like Paizo is working hard on replacing WotC as the premier 3.5 game developer. Browsing through their Pathfinder products, you can find three companions, a gazetteer, a monster manual “revising” classic monsters from monotonous stereotypes to become hip and fabulous, a splatbook explaining the pantheon, a lengthy series of location splats, plus the three builds of the RPG and the various lineages and adventure paths. I mean, seriously, they’re pumping out books as fast as WotC, if not faster—hell, if you look away for a few minutes, you’ll find out you’re already months behind in terms of product. By the time the Pathfinder RPG actually gets published, we’ll be so neck-deep in adventure paths and softsplats, I’m not honestly sure where Paizo will be able to take the game while staying on the same world—here’s where some campaign settings would be nice…