Pathfinder: Kingmaker is a triple burst of firsts. It's the first CRPG based on the Pathfinder pen and paper system, indie developer Owlcat Games' first release and the first RPG with post-Obsidian Chris Avellone at the designer helm.
Pathfinder: Kingmaker has a lot of things going for it. Based on the Pathfinder pen and paper roleplaying system, Kingmaker alludes to a lot of things traditional concerning CRPGs in general and its venerable Infinity-engine era predecessors in particular.
Owlcat Games, the studio behind the project, are debuting with the title aided by none other than one of the not-so-old grandfathers of the genre - Chris Avellone of Fallout, Planescape: Torment, Icewind Dale and Pillars of Eternity fame.
Kingmaker is set to feature old-school PC adventuring with pausable real-time combat, meaning that it's actually turn based but allows players to dictate the fluidity of brawls. Again, just like back in the Baldur's Gate days.
Another thing many may remember fondly from that era are player strongholds. Telxvi recalls his time liberating the De'Arnise Keep or Planar Sphere from Baldur's Gate II as some of the most exciting and rewarding quests of the game.
Pathfinder: Kingmaker aims to put the kingdom-building aspect of its overall design front and centre, which is sure to delight many who share my unreasonable love for those quest lines. Except that in Kingmaker, players won't just be adventuring for storage space and class-specific services, but an entire kingdom of their own.
A player choice-dependent morality system, plethora of viable party structure permutations, multiple solutions for any given challenge, a reactive world and lengthy stoyline - Pathfinder: Kingmaker aims to push a lot of the right buttons for a certain type of ageing PC gamer crowd.