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Starfinder Society, Paizo's Newest Organized Play Program

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Immediately after the announcement of the Starfinder Roleplaying Game last PaizoCon, our community started speculating about an organized play program to support the new game. We spent the ensuing months looking at workflow and charting out a course that would enable us to have both Starfinder and Pathfinder organized play programs. It delights me to end speculation and announce the launch of Starfinder Society at Gen Con 50!

Introducing the Starfinder Society logo, designed by the talented Sarah Robinson!

Before the questions flood in, I want to note that we are still in the active planning phase, and may not have answers to everything yet. Over the next few months, the team will release more information via blog, podcast, and forum posts. If you have questions, please put yours in the comments section, and we will work to get them answered.

Who is working on Starfinder Society?

The structure is very similar to the Pathfinder Society Roleplaying Guild. Tonya Woldridge will oversee the program, with John Compton taking on the role of lead developer of both the Pathfinder and Starfinder organized play campaigns. Developer Linda Zayas-Palmer will continue to focus on Pathfinder Society. We've added Thurston Hillman to the team as the dedicated developer for Starfinder Society. Thurston has been a part of Pathfinder Society since Season 1, when he authored Pathfinder Society Scenario #55:The Infernal Vault. Since then, he's both contributed many scenarios (and special events) to the Pathfinder Society as well as writing regularly for various other Pathfinder RPG lines. Thurston brings his depth of experience to the team, along with a bit of zany humor.

Is it going to be called "Starfinder Society?"

The official name is Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild, or SFSRPG for short. The Starfinder game takes place in the distant future of the Pathfinder world, and while much has changed (or been forgotten), the Starfinder Society traces its mysterious history back to the Pathfinder Society of present day. The campaign's official name reflects this connection.

Are you making two separate organized play programs?

Yes. Although many similarities exist in structure and format, including a shared volunteer team, they are two separate campaigns with different rules, documentation, and characters.

Do I get to keep my same Pathfinder Society number?

Yes. What was your Pathfinder Society number will now be your number for all three of the Paizo-operated organized play programs: Pathfinder Society Roleplaying Guild, Pathfinder Society Adventure Card Guild, and Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild. Starfinder character numbers will have a unique starting number, most likely 700, making your first Starfinder character XXX-701. The number 700 works really well for this, not only because it leaves space for plenty of Pathfinder Society roleplaying characters, but also because the PZO number (the number we assign to each of our products) begins with 7. Who knows, this bit of trivia may make it in to the PaizoCon quiz.

How much is staying the same from Pathfinder Society Roleplaying Guild?

We still have quests and scenarios with Chronicle sheets. Adventures will be broken into tiers, grant XP, and provide other rewards. Three experience points (XP) grant a level. There are fairly cooperative factions within the Starfinder Society, based on their worldview and goals. We will reveal more information about the campaign as we get closer to its launch in August 2017.

Illustration by Sebastien Hue

If all that is the same, what is different?

Starship combat!

On a more serious note, we made a couple major changes for Starfinder Society. The first is the tier system. We are closing the gap between subtiers that resulted in so much confusion and consternation with calculating average party level (APL). Starfinder scenarios will include the following tiers: Tier 1-2, Tier 1-4, Tier 3-6, Tier 5-8, Tier 7-10, and Tier 9-12—perhaps more as higher-level play grows in popularity.

The second most noticeable change is that characters have a means of belonging to more than one faction at a time. Unlike the current Pathfinder Society faction rules, Starfinder Society characters will be able to gain favor with multiple groups, choosing which they want to champion on a scenario-by-scenario basis. But just like multiclassing, focusing on several groups won't see the same benefits as focusing on a primary faction. These changes to the faction system tie in with another issue that we are addressing: the handling of boons. One of our goals is developing a way to make the boons on Chronicles more relevant, and not just a stack of paper player's stick in the back of their folder. We'll reveal more about these changes in... the future (see what I did there?)

What is the release schedule?

The Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild launches with 3 scenarios, 1 pre-generated character special, and 1 quest pack at Gen Con. From there, we will publish one scenario a month. Moving to a slower release schedule allows us to spin up the program and settle into the groove of running three organized play programs. During this time, we will solicit feedback and assess the rate of publication for 2018 and beyond.

When can I start playing Starfinder Society?

The fun begins Thursday, August 17th, at 8:00 AM Pacific time in the Sagamore Ballroom at Gen Con. After Thursday morning, anyone, anytime, anywhere, may schedule Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild events.

Next week sees John holding down the fort while I travel to the GAMA Trade Show in Las Vegas to chat with retailers about our organized play programs. The following Wednesday, March 22, at 7 pm PDT, John, Thurston, and I join the Know Direction crew for a Question and Answer session about all things organized play related. If you have topics you wish us to cover, feel free to drop me an email at tonya.woldridge@paizo.com and we will fit as many answers on the show as possible.

Check out the blog next Monday for more exciting organized play news!

Until next time—Explore, Report, Cooperate!

Tonya Woldridge
Organized Play Coordinator

More Paizo Blog.
Tags: Conventions Gen Con Gen Con 2017 Organized Play Sebastien Hue Starfinder Roleplaying Game Starfinder Society
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Silver Crusade

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

Bah, ninja'd by John 30 minutes ago... I should really check before I post!

One of my locals just found that link and sent it to me. We've got a lot of people really excited for SFS here!

Silver Crusade

Nice!!! Can't wait to see them. I hope they bring enough to GenCon. :)

Shadow Lodge

John Compton wrote:


Sorry, somebody asking about Starfinder miniatures?

Give me lead poisoning or give me death!

Shadow Lodge

5 people marked this as a favorite.

*bludgeons BNW with a lead pipe* WHY NOT BOTH?

Silver Crusade

2 people marked this as a favorite.

I actually prefer the prepainted plastic type. They're good for those of us who would rather spend time playing the game (and/or reading the rulebooks and adventures) than prepping the minis.


Painting is lots of fun though. Making the mini look just like I picture my character. I love being able to put a mini down and be able to say, "This is what he looks like." Pre paints are great for monster squads though as I may or may not have time for that depending on how prepped I am for a game. I'm a little surprised that it's Soda pop/ninja division handling these rather than Wizkids.
Soda pops pretty good though, as I said before, I have some of their Relic Knights minis so I know they can handle science fantasy

Shadow Lodge

Fromper wrote:
I actually prefer the prepainted plastic type. They're good for those of us who would rather spend time playing the game (and/or reading the rulebooks and adventures) than prepping the minis.

the pre painted ones look all blobby and drab. When there's 6 of them on the table i can't tell one from another. Your character may not be my raccoon in power armor, but when i say thats the mini no one has any doubt as to which one i need them to move.

Paizo Employee Pathfinder Society Lead Developer

Fromper wrote:
Nice!!! Can't wait to see them. I hope they bring enough to GenCon. :)

I do not know exactly when they are due for release. The press release reference to August 2017 appears to reference the Starfinder game, but it might be referring to the minis as well. I'd rather we hear from someone more involved in the production process before I say anything about these being at Gen Con.

What I can say is that it's cool to have Starfinder miniatures in the works!

Silver Crusade

Yeah, I may have jumped the gun on that one. I saw in their announcement something about being ready for Gen Con, and thought they meant their minis. Now that I double checked, they're talking about the Starfinder game.

Scarab Sages

CanisDirus wrote:

Bah, ninja'd by John 30 minutes ago... I should really check before I post!

One of my locals just found that link and sent it to me. We've got a lot of people really excited for SFS here!

Is it Ironic that the name of the company that's making the mini's has Ninja in it?

Silver Crusade

It depends on the minis they are making, it might be Iconic instead


Will the first season be 0 or 1 ?


3 people marked this as a favorite.

Season is such a planet bound term I vote for Stage One


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Maps, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Especially if people make the mistake of thinking you are talking about Triaxian seasons.

And I guess the Starfinder setting will have to provide a definitive statement as to the current season on Triaxus, right?

Dark Archive

3 people marked this as a favorite.

Space, The Final Frontier. These are the voyages of the Ratship Cheddarprize. Its mission, to boldy go, seek out new fondu - to boldly go where no rat has gone before.
Queue our music!

Liberty's Edge

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Maps, Modules, PFS RPG Subscriber
Sin of Asmodeus wrote:

Space, The Final Frontier. These are the voyages of the Ratship Cheddarprize. Its mission, to boldy go, seek out new fondu - to boldly go where no rat has gone before.

Queue our music!

Our Music


David knott 242 wrote:

Especially if people make the mistake of thinking you are talking about Triaxian seasons.

And I guess the Starfinder setting will have to provide a definitive statement as to the current season on Triaxus, right?

I am almost 90 percent certain that they will declare that one type of triaxian is currently being born and then introduce a plot point that allows players to make the other kind.


Considering that there is a certain period between being born and starting as an adventurer this plot point should be in the past....

Grand Lodge

John Compton wrote:
Fromper wrote:
Nice!!! Can't wait to see them. I hope they bring enough to GenCon. :)

I do not know exactly when they are due for release. The press release reference to August 2017 appears to reference the Starfinder game, but it might be referring to the minis as well. I'd rather we hear from someone more involved in the production process before I say anything about these being at Gen Con.

What I can say is that it's cool to have Starfinder miniatures in the works!

I do have some info from reliable sources showing the will begin releasing minis in June 2017 starting with some of the Pathfinder race/class/gender combinations (eg human/rogue/female) and will be a reasonable cost with a duo pack containing a low-level and a high level of the same race/class/gender.

Other information states they are planning to release 5-12 combos a month.

Pre-primed with Acrylicos Vallejo primer.

That is about all I know at the moment.

The detail on the production models are amazing.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Gary, what you've heard about are WizKids' Pathfinder Battles Deep Cuts Minis (which were actually released starting this month).

WizKids will not be doing Starfinder minis—Ninja Division will.

Grand Lodge

Vic Wertz wrote:

Gary, what you've heard about are WizKids' Pathfinder Battles Deep Cuts Minis (which were actually released starting this month).

WizKids will not be doing Starfinder minis—Ninja Division will.

O wow my bad thank you for the correction. I must have been multitasking poorly again ;)

Thank you Vic


Alright, I need to keep an eye on this so I can volunteer to GM this as soon as possible here in Philadelphia.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Kodyax wrote:
Alright, I need to keep an eye on this so I can volunteer to GM this as soon as possible here in Philadelphia.

Or you can go to your VA and plan for some sessions late August / September.

I already planned five sessions into Warhorn (using Starfinder Placeholder as the scenario) for the scenarios that are to be released in August and September.

Silver Crusade

We know there will be three scenarios at Gen Con and an additional one published every month. So your placeholders could be "Starfinder Scenario 1", "Starfinder Scenario 2", etc.

I'm hoping at least one of those first three at Gen Con is a tier 1-2 evergreen.


A scenario with pregens will also be availabe at Gencon (my guess: the RPGday scenario). I assume the normal scenario's are all playable
for tier 1-2

Shadow Lodge

Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Card Game, Cards, Class Deck, Companion, Maps, Pawns, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Gary Pepper wrote:

Pre-primed with Acrylicos Vallejo primer.

That is about all I know at the moment.

The detail on the production models are amazing.

Have you seen real production models?

I'm pretty sure that the illustrations we can see on the Paizo website for the WizKids' Pathfinder Battles Deep Cuts Minis are digital sculpts, not from the actual minis.


Magabeus wrote:
A scenario with pregens will also be availabe at Gencon (my guess: the RPGday scenario).

I think the Free RPG Day offering this year is a preview bestiary, not a scenario.

Scarab Sages

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Modules Subscriber
Landon Winkler wrote:
Magabeus wrote:
A scenario with pregens will also be availabe at Gencon (my guess: the RPGday scenario).
I think the Free RPG Day offering this year is a preview bestiary, not a scenario.

Correct.


Darn, I must have completely botched my linguistics check there.

Grand Lodge

You weren't the only one who messed it up. Even native speakers missed that it was a bestiary and not a game!

Hmm

Scarab Sages

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Companion, Maps, Modules Subscriber

I am hoping the guide to organised play is available before Gencon...it would be nice to not have to absorb the guide along with the rule book on that weekend. I am planning on running the pregen scenario that weekend and it would be good to get info in chunks.

Liberty's Edge

Can you say anything about how this will be handled in other countries, for me specifically in Germany?

Sovereign Court

I'm eager to maybe Gm some game in my area, Montreal. Even, if I have an interest to be a venture-agent, I think my schedule of life won't let me.

Paizo Employee Pathfinder Society Lead Developer

Alarith wrote:
Can you say anything about how this will be handled in other countries, for me specifically in Germany?

I would expect the campaign to operate in Germany approximately the same way that Pathfinder Society Roleplaying Guild does. If you have any questions about what to expect for your region, you can always contact your local venture-officers; as Tonya noted earlier, the venture-officers support the organized play programs in general.

This blog gives some broad concepts of how the campaign will operate, but there are more details yet to come. As a result, don't be surprised if your venture-captain's response discusses the region's tentative approach, pending more released details.

Paizo Employee Pathfinder Society Lead Developer

As a reminder, tonight's the night the Starfinder Society team will be on Know Direction to talk more about the campaign and answer your questions. See the link for details.

Grand Lodge

I'll be GMing then! Wish that I could be there to pepper you with questions and cheer you on. The KD guys are lovely hosts, I hope that you have a great interview, John!

Hmm

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