Paizo Top Nav Branding
  • Hello, Guest! |
  • Sign In |
  • My Account |
  • Shopping Cart |
  • Help/FAQ
About Paizo Messageboards News Paizo Blog Help/FAQ
Pathfinder Roleplaying Game
Pathfinder Society

Pathfinder Beginner Box

Pathfinder Adventure Card Game

Pathfinder Comics

Pathfinder Legends

Open Call Revisited

Thursday, August 2, 2012

As some have noticed, when we launched the new Pathfinder Society Organized Play homepage here on paizo.com, we removed the Write for Pathfinder Society page. This is mainly because the Open Call as it existed wasn’t working as intended and we were in the process of changing it. Well, that process is now complete, and aspiring authors and game designers can now find the revised guidelines on the Get Involved! page.

In short, for the last few years, we’d been asking for brief adventure proposals for Pathfinder Society Scenarios, while at the same time increasing the amount of plotting that went into each successive season. The result of this was that even when we got an outline for an amazing adventure we wanted to publish, finding a way to fit it into the season’s metaplot or product schedule between other scenarios became untenable. Additionally, we found that asking for a few hundred words of prose didn’t give us a good sense of how an author would actually perform when tasked with writing encounters, designing stat blocks, and mapping, all of which are vital skills any freelancer needs to possess. The end result was that we weren’t getting submissions we could easily use, and the already difficult task of getting one’s foot in the door as one of Paizo’s writers became even more challenging for those submitting queries.

The solution we’ve now implemented is this: instead of asking for an adventure proposal, we’re now soliciting Pathfinder Society Quests—2,000-word mini-adventures containing one or two tiered encounters and using GameMastery Map Packs and Flip-Mat lines. This format allows authors to show us they have a grasp of the rules, can write an adventure on a small scale, and can tell a story using encounters as the primary mode of imparting plot and character to players and GMs. And, to top it all off, a submission we like is something we can immediately use with very little development. Whether we publish an accepted Quest on paizo.com, use it as a Pathfinder RPG demo at conventions or game stores, or promote the campaign by putting the adventure in another medium like Kobold Quarterly, authors whose work we like can get paid for their effort and see the fruits of their labor in print much faster.

You can now download our first Pathfinder Society Quest, the Tier 1–5 Ambush in Absalom (written last spring by yours truly). We’ll let everyone know when we have more available and where you can find them.

I look forward to seeing what great ideas the community has to offer!

Mark Moreland
Developer

More Paizo Blog.
Tags: Open Call Pathfinder Society
Andoran *****

Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber

Looking forward to seeing new authors take you up on this.

**** Venture-Lieutenant, Pennsylvania—Allentown & Bethlehem

It makes sense as a way to try out new writers and will be a nice way to add more material for PFS demos and people who want some PFS goodness but only have a little time. Though it does mean my efforts on sceanario ideas to pitch for Season 4 are mostly writing exercises now. Oh well, time to come up with some Quest ideas!

**** Venture-Lieutenant, Pennsylvania—Allentown & Bethlehem

It's clear from the chronicle that Quests give no experience or gold. I am assuming that no prestige is awarded either. Is that correct?

Paizo Employee ** Developer

Correct.

Silver Crusade ****

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Wish we could get at least some gold. Oh well.

Question: Will all future published quests be PFS Sanctioned? It's a great way to teach players how to play Pathfinder Society and not have to worry about GP and XP until it's time for a real Society game.

*

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Going to try to get this idea organized into a submission. Wish me luck.

Cheliax *

I'm just another hopeful trying to give serious and constructive advice. Take it or leave it. All is said with the best intentions and respect for your work.

Your idea itself is nearly 700 words. It sounds like a tall order to get that many acts cut down into a 2000 word complete adventure (especially when including stat lines). Start by trying to cut fat off of the adventure itself. If anything could simply be narrated or is redundant, make the appropriate changes. Although if you can pull it off... more power to you.

Qadira *

Ahhh, that's what Quests are for. Bravo! A fantastic way of beating new talent out from the bushes.

As others commented above - also a good way to introduce new players. I'm going to run this tomorrow for just that purpose.

Grand Lodge **** Venture-Lieutenant, Australia—Melbourne aka KestlerGunner

I ran 'Ambush' at Unicon last year and it was a great way to keep players fighting while waiting for the other tables to finish their modules. Players loved the boon, but I think they were a bit hesitant to risk their characters for no experience or prestige.

In the future, perhaps there could be a system like 5 Quests = 1 completed module gold + exp reward? Would be good for evening gaming tables and convention casual slots.

Paizo Employee ** Developer

When we have more of them being offered, that might be something we consider. Thanks for the suggestion!

Grand Lodge ****

1 person marked this as a favorite.

With the GM core assumption expanding to include the PRD, do we need to place the statblock of a Bestiary 2 or Bestiary 3 creature in our submissions, or simply reference the relevant page of the relevant book?


Kelly Youngblood wrote:
With the GM core assumption expanding to include the PRD, do we need to place the statblock of a Bestiary 2 or Bestiary 3 creature in our submissions, or simply reference the relevant page of the relevant book?

Related to this, do you have to have the book to use a creature in a submission (because you need the book for the page number) or can you use the PRD and put the statblock in instead?

Paizo Employee ** Developer

If you use content from a source on the PRD, you can use short statblocks consistent with our established style. If including a monster, feat, spell, or piece of equipment from a non-PRD source, it must be presented in its entirety.

I'm not going to reject an otherwise great submission because the author didn't reference a page number in a short statblock, but if that's combined with other variations from our established style, I'm likely to interpret it as a lack of attention to detail. I don't want to mandate that anyone submitting something must own one or more products from us, but it is expected that if we hire someone to write an adventure for us that they have what they need to turn over a manuscript that adheres to our style guidelines (which includes page references).

*

I really like the idea of quests as a time filler. If I find time (ha!) maybe I'll try my hand.

*

Mark Moreland wrote:
If you use content from a source on the PRD, you can use short statblocks consistent with our established style. If including a monster, feat, spell, or piece of equipment from a non-PRD source, it must be presented in its entirety.

So if, for example, we wanted a spellcaster to know Vanish from Ultimate Magic, we would not need to include the statblock because UM is part of the PRD, correct?

Paizo Employee ** Developer

You would simply put a UM after the spell name in the caster's statblock (in superscript), and then a key at the end of the statblock denoting that for all instances of "UM" the reader should "See Pathfinder RPG Ultimate Magic." Now, if you cited UM for vanish, even if you got the style correctly, I would likely note that you cited the wrong source, but that's a different matter (it's from the APG). :-D


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber

Great idea! Looking forward to the future quests.

*

Mark Moreland wrote:
You would simply put a UM after the spell name in the caster's statblock (in superscript), and then a key at the end of the statblock denoting that for all instances of "UM" the reader should "See Pathfinder RPG Ultimate Magic." Now, if you cited UM for vanish, even if you got the style correctly, I would likely note that you cited the wrong source, but that's a different matter (it's from the APG). :-D

Okay, thanks for the clarification(as well as convincing me to go back and check all my sources).

** RPG Superstar 2014 Top 16, RPG Superstar 2013 Top 16

I have a question about the rule on only including creatures with minis or pawns available. I have an idea for an encounter that would include a pig, but the closest pawn available is a boar. Is something like that close enough to get by?

*****

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Why not make the pig a baby boar?


I don't want to bring up old threads, but sometimes nothing else can be quite as charming as a pig. Without knowing the concept, seeing the pawn, or having any authority whatsoever, I'd say yes.


Thanks for clarifying. I can quite see that you need everything in a turnover, not something that's missing bits.


Forget that noise, HerosBackpack. We need more Joe Wood!


Lefty X wrote:
Forget that noise, HerosBackpack. We need more Joe Wood!

I wish. Takes two to make more Joe Wood, so it isn't entirely under my control. Doesn't stop him influencing other things I produce though.

Silver Crusade ** RPG Superstar 2014 Top 16

I don't know if anyone else noticed this little caveat, but in the Open Call document it states that every NPC or enemy that you use has to be represented by an already-existing Pathfinder Mini or Pawn. The issue I have with this is there are several races in the Pathfinder Society world that don't currently have anything close to a mini (for example, Nagaji). Are we restricted from using NPCs and enemies of these races? If so, I think that's a very strong restriction that should be revisited.

***** Venture-Captain, Wisconsin—Madison aka Mat Black

how do we indicate which maps from map packs that we are using? also, how do we indicate starting positions of creatures, or other features that are in the room but may not be indicated by the map illustration? is this all merely done by description in the text?

***** Venture-Captain, Wisconsin—Madison aka Mat Black

also, for creatures that are created using a base creature and a template, both of which are from the core assumption, should we include the creature's complete adjusted stat block, or is referencing both the base creature and the template acceptable? (say, for a completely random example, an owlbear skeleton)

Paizo Employee ** Developer

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Just make a note of what map you planned the encounter around. The text of the adventure should describe not only what creatures there are, but where they are and how they move if and when the PCs show up, so you shouldn't need tags on the map unless you really feel it's vital. In that case, just add notes to one of the free preview images we put up for all our map products and attach it to the submission.

If you're applying a simple template to an otherwise unadjusted creature from a PRD source, you can just use a short statblock in the style we use in our other printed adventures. If you're applying a complex template (meaning not one of the ones called out as being a simple template), you need to build the entire monster.

Shadow Lodge *****

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

*cracks knuckles* alright, moved, mostly unpacked - time to give this a shot :)

Quick question - if an aspiring author has an idea for a "series" of scenarios, and wants their quest-submission to be a sort of "lead in" / example of the sort of thing that might be involved, can that be alluded to in the quest? In other words, if the _____1 that the PCs are seeking might be involved in something later, can ________2 who sets them on their quest from the ________3 Pathfinder lodge mention that _____1 might be important later?

Thanks, and also thank you for having the open call - even if my submission gets shot down, it's really impressive to me that you're opening up to have potential new authors send in their work!

Paizo / Messageboards / Paizo Publishing / Pathfinder® / Pathfinder Society® / Scenario Submission Talk / Paizo Blog: Open Call Revisited All Messageboards

Want to post a reply? Sign in.
Recent threads in Scenario Submission Talk

©2002–2014 Paizo Inc.®. Need help? Email customer.service@paizo.com or call 425-250-0800 during our business hours: Monday–Friday, 10 AM–5 PM Pacific Time. View our privacy policy. Paizo Inc., Paizo, the Paizo golem logo, Pathfinder, the Pathfinder logo, Pathfinder Society, GameMastery, and Planet Stories are registered trademarks of Paizo Inc., and Pathfinder Roleplaying Game, Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Pathfinder Adventure Path, Pathfinder Adventure Card Game, Pathfinder Player Companion, Pathfinder Modules, Pathfinder Tales, Pathfinder Battles, Pathfinder Online, PaizoCon, RPG Superstar, The Golem's Got It, Titanic Games, the Titanic logo, and the Planet Stories planet logo are trademarks of Paizo Inc. Dungeons & Dragons, Dragon, Dungeon, and Polyhedron are registered trademarks of Wizards of the Coast, Inc., a subsidiary of Hasbro, Inc., and have been used by Paizo Inc. under license. Most product names are trademarks owned or used under license by the companies that publish those products; use of such names without mention of trademark status should not be construed as a challenge to such status.