Tome of Horrors isn't a valid source
Oh, this really pains me... since ToH isn't a licensed Pathfinder product, it isn't a valid source according to the canon policy. This is really a shame because the Paizo folks almost certainly meant for the fluff form ToH to apply to their version of Jubilex. Before I go ahead and remove the "offending" bits (virtually gutting the article in the process), I'd like to see if anybody else has an opinion that they'd like to share. --Aeakett 01:40, September 10, 2009 (UTC)
- I agree with you, but give it a few days so anyone who disagrees can make their case. -- yoda8myhead 02:10, September 10, 2009 (UTC)
- Actually, the Golarion fluff for the Faceless Lord has some rather clear differences from that given in the Tome of Horrors. While both versions share the same roots, the changes made by Paizo for the Pathfinder CS invalidates roughly half of the information drawn from ToH that's currently included in the article. It's actually a good illustration of why we shouldn't simply add entries from non-CS sources, such as the soon to be released Bestiary. -- Heaven's Agent 02:13, September 10, 2009 (UTC)
- Good call. It's also a good reminder of why clear citations are beneficial, as we can remove individual statements from invalid sources as necessary. Perhaps a blog post on this issue would be helpful to the community? -- yoda8myhead 02:44, September 10, 2009 (UTC)
- Aha. The Tome of Horrors is not a licensed Pathfinder product, since it predates Pathfinder, but has been a source for things in Pathfinder; James Jacobs cites it as the source for Jubilex in the cited blog post. Canon policy consequently doesn't list it as a valid resource, but it is not an invalid resource as fan material. I recall seeing the ToH cited on a few pages; Googling, it appears Hippocampus and Solifugid are the only ones left. Neither of those creatures are listed as being included in the Bestiary or Bonus Bestiary. The illustration of the hippocampus in Guide to Absalom is consistent with the ToH-cited description, I believe.
- It seems reasonable that the ToH could be considered "historical" Tier 4 canon for things that are known to exist in Golarion, but not otherwise detailed. & I believe there are some other older OGL sourcebooks of apocryphal canonicity...? Perhaps this should be clarified in the canon policy, or the associated talk page...?
- Clearly, official Pathfinder publications must trump the ToH description for poor old Jubilex. And I certainly hope that Necro gets cracking on the long-rumored ToH Pathfinder Edition.
- But... we shouldn't add information from the Pathfinder Bestiary...? --Goblin Witchlord 15:45, September 10, 2009 (UTC)
- I would say the information contained in the Bestiary, particularly the fluff, is generally a no-go for this project. Just as the ToH is not written to support the CS, and as such should not be used as a valid source, the Bestiary is written to support the RPG specifically and information contained within the book should not be indiscriminately added to the project. Things like stat blocks, powers, and abilities are probably fine to pull from the Bestiary with regard to critters that are mentioned in CS products, but fluff content should not come from the Bestiary at all; the Pathfinder RPG ≠ the Pathfinder CS, and it's important that this project focuses on the latter of the two.
- As for OGL sourcebooks from other publishers and their canonicity, I'm afraid they have none to speak of. The only cannon material is CS material produced by Paizo or endorsed by them as an official CS product. Anything else from other sources, even if produced using the Pathfinder rules and in support of the Pathfinder RPG, simply has no leg to stand on in this matter. Paizo can take from these sources to flesh out areas of Golarion, but until they add a specific bit of information it has no place in the CS and as such no place within this project. -- Heaven's Agent 16:12, September 10, 2009 (UTC)
- Sorry for coming to this one late guys, but as I said (and linked) in response to the blog post, Erik Mona has said that with very few exceptions, every thing in the bestiary (and in fact all fluff written by Paizo) exists in Golarion, which kind of gives it a leg to stand on.. :) The TOH stuff I agree with, and only used in the Hippocampus and Solifugid after confirming that 1) I was only using visual information and 2) that this visual information could be verified from non-CUP pictures. Cpt kirstov 21:17, September 10, 2009 (UTC)
- This has moved far beyond poor Jubilex. ;)
- I understand why we should no go through the Bestiary and add fluff from each creature one by one: those creatures exist in the RPG game, but may or may not exist in Golarion. The Shadow Mastiff, for example, appears in the Bonus Bestiary, but I don't know that a shadow mastiff has appeared in setting material or an adventure path. However, for those creatures that are known to exist in Golarion, having appearing in an Adventure Path, for example, why would we not reference the Bestiary for basic, background information? Certainly, information from Classic Monsters Revisited is of higher priority, and should supercede the RPG fluff in any conflict, but it's going to be a long time before all the monsters get that kind of treatment. ;)
- I think my confusion has to do not with the canon policy, but with the scope policy. We know that hippocampi exist in Golarion, and it's possible that a reader may not know what they are; lots of monsters in the Bestiary have strange names. As far as providing very basic information, it seems like it would be better to provide a reference or external link to the Bestiary (perhaps at d20pfsrd.org), the ToH, or Wikipedia, in that order. The ToH has no canonical standing, but it may be a more relevant source of information than the Wikipedia page.
- We know that axe beaks exist in Golarion, so what's wrong with citing the Bonus Bestiary for basic information? The article should focus on Golarion-specific information (such as how axe beaks are used in Absalom. And perhaps we should be making greater use of External Links to the d20pfsrd.org Axe Beak page for the general information.
- This should be unclear of a minority of pages, I think. --Goblin Witchlord 21:28, September 10, 2009 (UTC)
Jubilex won't mind; as long as he's free to ooze through his extraplanar sewer complex, he's happy.
Background information from the Bestiary may be a bit much to include. Though it has been confirmed that all the creatures in the Bestiary do exist on Golarion there's no guarantee that their behaviors and habits, as presented in the Bestiary, would be that same in the campaign setting. For example, and hypothetically speaking, the Bestiary may cite that griffons prefer to nest on ocean cliffsides, where their eggs and young are cooled by the winds coming off the water. However, for the purpose of their place in Golarion, they might be terrified of the ocean and refuse to move should they even catch the scent of salt on the air. We simply can't know that the CS and Bestiary information is going to be the same until both sources are made available, at which time discerning which to include is no longer a concern as a cannon source would then be available.
That said, mechanical fluff is probably alright to bring in from the Bestiary. Things like abilities and appearance are not likely to change from the Bestiary to the CS, and these tidbits of information alone should be sufficient to build a basic article on a creature. But, as was mentioned elsewhere, unless a creature is specifically mentioned to exist in Golarion by cannon sources, it probably should not be included; it's easy to see someone coming to our project to learn a little something about a creature they're unfamiliar with that appears on an encounter chart, and we should strive to have information for them to find on that creature. But there's little point in including information on a monster that doesn't appear anywhere in the CS material, even though it may have a full entry in the Bestiary. -- Heaven's Agent 15:15, September 11, 2009 (UTC)