[vapourware] Whatever happened to the 4e Freeport Companion?

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[vapourware] Whatever happened to the 4e Freeport Companion?

Postby Big Mac » Sat Sep 16, 2017 2:19 pm

RPG Geek has an entry for Freeport Companion 4e.

This book was supposed to be published in 2010, but never materialised. Here is the blurb that RPG Geek has:
Freeport Companion 4e at RPG Geek wrote:Avast ye scurvy dogs and prepare your game to be boarded by the Freeport Companion compatible with the 4th Edition of Dungeons & Dragons! Complementing the Pirate's Guide to Freeport published by Green Ronin in 2007, this 176 paged tome will make Freeport accessible for 4e campaigns, complete with races, the corsair class, equipment, monsters, an insanity system, magic items and rituals, notable Freeport characters, and an introductory adventure.


Does anyone know what went on here?

How far did the project go? Did Green Ronin get blocked from using 4e for legal (GSL) related reasons? Did it overrun? Was it a failed Kickstarter bid?
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Re: [vapourware] Whatever happened to the 4e Freeport Compan

Postby timemrick » Sat Sep 16, 2017 8:10 pm

Because of the delays in Wizards releasing the details of the 4E license, and the significant restrictions on that license compared to 3E, Green Ronin eventually decided against releasing any products for 4E. The 4E Freeport Companion ended up being produced by Expeditious Retreat Press in 2010, under license from Green Ronin. It doesn't appear to be available for sale from XP's website or DriveThruRPG, but I did find the PDF in the Paizo online store.

I bought it because it was a Freeport product, and because I was still debating at the time whether to use 4E for my next campaign*. My personal dislike of 4E colors my opinion of this book, and makes me less forgiving of some sloppy editing**. Despite my bias, though, I can say that it's an essential resource for any DM who runs 4E and wants to use the Freeport setting with those rules, because it has converted the vast majority of the material found in the [v.3.5] d20 Freeport Companion.

* I eventually decided to pass on ever running any 4E, and instead used v.3.5 (and later Pathfinder) for "Winds of Freeport."

** I'm listed as an editor in the book, but that's solely because I did proofreading for the d20 Freeport Companion. I didn't touch the 4E book until it was in print. My unofficial errata for the book can be found here.
Tim Emrick, Green Ronin Freebooter and Keeper of the Freeport Errata
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Re: [vapourware] Whatever happened to the 4e Freeport Compan

Postby Big Mac » Sun Sep 17, 2017 7:33 am

timemrick wrote:Because of the delays in Wizards releasing the details of the 4E license, and the significant restrictions on that license compared to 3E, Green Ronin eventually decided against releasing any products for 4E. The 4E Freeport Companion ended up being produced by Expeditious Retreat Press in 2010, under license from Green Ronin. It doesn't appear to be available for sale from XP's website or DriveThruRPG, but I did find the PDF in the Paizo online store.


Wow! So RPG Geek is wrong and it was actually published!

That's great (for 4th Edition fans).

timemrick wrote:I bought it because it was a Freeport product, and because I was still debating at the time whether to use 4E for my next campaign*. My personal dislike of 4E colors my opinion of this book, and makes me less forgiving of some sloppy editing**. Despite my bias, though, I can say that it's an essential resource for any DM who runs 4E and wants to use the Freeport setting with those rules, because it has converted the vast majority of the material found in the [v.3.5] d20 Freeport Companion.

* I eventually decided to pass on ever running any 4E, and instead used v.3.5 (and later Pathfinder) for "Winds of Freeport."

** I'm listed as an editor in the book, but that's solely because I did proofreading for the d20 Freeport Companion. I didn't touch the 4E book until it was in print. My unofficial errata for the book can be found here.


It's interesting that you have your name on there, because they grabbed content from the earlier book. It makes me wonder about how many people really worked on the book.

Is there anything new in this book (like some 4e NPCs that were never in the 3e book) or is it pretty much a one-for-one conversion of 3rd Edition rules into 4th Edition rules?
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Re: [vapourware] Whatever happened to the 4e Freeport Compan

Postby timemrick » Sun Sep 17, 2017 8:13 am

Big Mac wrote:It's interesting that you have your name on there, because they grabbed content from the earlier book. It makes me wonder about how many people really worked on the book.

I've been wondering that, too, since the credits are pretty much the same as the d20 book, plus a couple of XP staff.

I own copies of some Shadow of the Demon Lord products for a similar reason: I did the v.3.5 revisions for the Freeport Trilogy, so when Rob Schwalb published SotDL versions of them recently, he kept my name on the credits and sent me complimentary copies of the PDFs.
Big Mac wrote:Is there anything new in this book (like some 4e NPCs that were never in the 3e book) or is it pretty much a one-for-one conversion of 3rd Edition rules into 4th Edition rules?

I don't believe there is anything original to the 4E book, just conversions of the 3E material.
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Re: [vapourware] Whatever happened to the 4e Freeport Compan

Postby Zeromaru X » Mon Sep 18, 2017 5:31 am

Well, I was interested in Freeport campaign, just didn't had any "push" to buy its books... But, now...
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Re: [vapourware] Whatever happened to the 4e Freeport Compan

Postby Angel Tarragon » Mon Sep 18, 2017 7:28 am

Interesting that Green Ronin didn't do the 4 Freeport Companion. Cool to know that at least it wasn't vapourware. Definitely need to get this one in my collection.
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Re: [vapourware] Whatever happened to the 4e Freeport Compan

Postby Big Mac » Mon Sep 18, 2017 10:08 pm

timemrick wrote:
Big Mac wrote:It's interesting that you have your name on there, because they grabbed content from the earlier book. It makes me wonder about how many people really worked on the book.

I've been wondering that, too, since the credits are pretty much the same as the d20 book, plus a couple of XP staff.

I own copies of some Shadow of the Demon Lord products for a similar reason: I did the v.3.5 revisions for the Freeport Trilogy, so when Rob Schwalb published SotDL versions of them recently, he kept my name on the credits and sent me complimentary copies of the PDFs.


Maybe it's just the XP staff then. :)

timemrick wrote:
Big Mac wrote:Is there anything new in this book (like some 4e NPCs that were never in the 3e book) or is it pretty much a one-for-one conversion of 3rd Edition rules into 4th Edition rules?

I don't believe there is anything original to the 4E book, just conversions of the 3E material.


Thanks. I guess this isn't the book for me then, but I'm glad it is there for the 4e fans. It's always a shame to see a RPG book fail at the last hurdle. And I'm glad I was wrong about this being vapourware.
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Re: [vapourware] Whatever happened to the 4e Freeport Compan

Postby timemrick » Wed Sep 20, 2017 1:45 am

Big Mac wrote:Thanks. I guess this isn't the book for me then, but I'm glad it is there for the 4e fans. It's always a shame to see a RPG book fail at the last hurdle. And I'm glad I was wrong about this being vapourware.

It's the one 4E book I kept when I sold off the rest of my (handful of) books for that edition, and only because it was Freeport.
Tim Emrick, Green Ronin Freebooter and Keeper of the Freeport Errata
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Re: [vapourware] Whatever happened to the 4e Freeport Compan

Postby Zeromaru X » Wed Sep 20, 2017 4:35 am

A question :) Do I need to buy some other book the use this Companion, or the Companion is all I need to play 4e Freeport?
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Re: [vapourware] Whatever happened to the 4e Freeport Compan

Postby timemrick » Thu Sep 21, 2017 3:41 am

Zeromaru X wrote:A question :) Do I need to buy some other book the use this Companion, or the Companion is all I need to play 4e Freeport?

You'll also want The Pirate's Guide to Freeport, which is a systemless book that details the city's history, characters, and locations. The various Freeport Companions give rules support for those systems, but very little of that crucial context. (The Pirate's Guide is available in print and PDF from the Green Ronin Online Store.)

The most recent setting book, Freeport: The City of Adventure, contains much of the same information as The Pirate's Guide, but moves the timeline ahead 5 years, and is specifically for Pathfinder. It's also massive, and full color, and priced accordingly. If 4E is your system of choice, just stick with the Pirate's Guide.
Tim Emrick, Green Ronin Freebooter and Keeper of the Freeport Errata
Winds of Freeport: My Pathfinder Freeport campaign (2014-2016).
Time of the Tarrasque: My homebrew Pathfinder campaign (2017-).
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