Illustration by Josef Kucera
True to their history, Acquisitives are the most mercenary of the Starfinder Society factions. Their goals often involve promoting the Starfinder Society to the extent that it will increase the personal reputation of all members. They stockpile funds and resources, believing that by maintaining such a treasury, the faction can make itself indispensable to other factions within the Society. Indeed, many Starfinders pledge themselves, to varying degrees, to the Acquisitives faction for access to these assets. This influx of recruits is the direct byproduct of the Acquisitives' existing cache of resources, not to mention their preference of sending Starfinders on missions leading to personal glory and monetary enrichment.
All right. It is time to start dropping some major bombs in these blogs—oddly fitting, because at their core, the Acquisitives are mercenaries who have probably dropped a lot of bombs in their time.
When the Organized Play team started assembling our all-star faction team, we wanted to make sure that the factions catered to a variety of character builds. We wanted to avoid a situation where a player who made a "lawful good paladin" felt compelled to pick one faction over another because that faction was the only right choice. (Note: there are no lawful good paladins in Starfinder). The character themes present in Starfinder lined up perfectly with our intent, and many of our internal talks revolved around asking questions like, "Ok, so this faction is going to be something interesting to Ace Pilots and Priests?" It was an iterative process between all members of the team and helped us create factions where every character should have a place. Perhaps none of our factions better exemplify this design style than our final announced faction: the Acquisitives.
The Acquisitives faction is a direct result of mercenaries and other externally hired operatives recognizing the gains made from an alliance with the Starfinder Society. Several of these "hired hands" came to realize that there were plenty of credits and fame to be had from forming a more permanent contract with the Starfinder Society. So, rather than wait for their contracts to run out once the Society's latest recruitment drive concluded, the Acquisitives faction formed to give any outside contractor a fast track into the Starfinder Society. Basically, the Acquisitives are like a "union" (but NOT of the shadow variety) that promotes Starfinders, effectively creating intergalactic celebrities within the Society. Acquisitives characters are all about gaining personal fame and wealth, while working within the strictures of the Starfinder Society.
Players are going to get a chance to feel what the Acquisitives are about in Starfinder #1-00: Claim to Salvation, written by Pathfinder Society and Pathfinder Adventure Path veteran (as well as notorious knife-fighter—ask me sometime), Larry Wilhelm. This is because Claim to Salvation is a prequel to the events of the Year of Scoured Stars. In this adventure, the players take on the roles of the iconic Starfinder characters, employed as mercenaries by the Starfinder Society. Wait… why does the Starfinder Society need mercenaries? Oh, that's right! Something went terribly wrong in the Scoured Stars system. In order to keep the Starfinder Society together, First Seeker (Luwazi Elsebo) went to some radical lengths to keep things going until a new generation of Starfinders could finish training.
Illustration by Sebastian Rodriguez
Radaszam "The Dealmaker" (N male vesk operative) is the official Acquisitives liaison to the Starfinder Society. He spends equal time managing the Acquisitives as he does operating his own independent mercenary outfit, the Obsidian Spiders. Most of Radaszam's administration focuses on helping Acquisitives become celebrities, both within the Starfinder Society and without. He recognizes the importance of creating modern Starfinder icons for the public to recognize, and knows that such celebrities will only encourage further generations of Starfinders to step forward. Similarly, he recognizes the need for cutting any loss-leads, giving him a somewhat vicious edge when it comes to his administrative decisions. I'm really looking forward to exploring Radaszam, as well as the Obsidian Spiders, in some of our earliest scenarios following the Gen Con release!
Now it's time to talk about some boons (and if you're forgetting the boon types, be sure to look back at our blog about Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild's boon system). One boon type we've yet to highlight is the Starship boon, so how about we show one off?
Abundant Ammunition (Starship Boon)
Your faction provides you with ample starship ammo for important missions.
Prerequisites: Acquisitives: Tier 1
Cost: 1 Fame
Benefit: When this boon is slotted, select one starship weapon with the limited fire special property on the group's starship. The selected weapon increases the value of the limited fire value by half (rounded down). For example, a limited fire 5 weapon would become limited fire 7. This boon can be used to improve weapons gained as a result of other Starship boons.
Special: Multiple copies of this boon can be used on a starship, but each copy must affect a different weapon.
I understand that it's hard to recognize the significance of this boon without seeing the full starship rules. But from the playtests John and I have run, I think it's safe to say that any starship with missiles… well, that starship really likes having more missiles! Also, the Abundant Ammunition boon serves as an appealing low-cost boon for starship customization. Given how many starship boons can only be applied to a starship once, having this boon around is an excellent backup to ensure you can maximize the number of starship boons your ship can bring into battle!
We really wanted to showcase a Starship boon, just to give an example of what players can do to further modify their starship. But why stop there? So, for this final pre-Gen Con faction blog, how about I show off another boon?
Sponsorship (Social Boon)
The Acquisitives have connected you with an organization interested in using you to promote its brand and merchandise.
Prerequisites: Acquisitives: Tier 2
Cost: 2 Fame
Benefit: By slotting this boon, you gain an additional Promotional boon slot. This allows you to slot up to two Promotional boons as long as you meet all the prerequisites for those boons, such as possessing the appropriate product or having the necessary volunteer recognition. You cannot slot the same Promotional boon multiple times, nor can you slot two Promotional boons that offer the same effect (such as two boons that both provide rerolls).
Normal: You can normally only ever have one promotional boon slot.
Ok, so this boon is just fun. The Organized Play team got a good chuckle when we brainstormed several of the boons listed in the guide, but this one was one of our favorites. The immediate thought that comes to mind when a character takes this boon is that of a NASCAR race driver, bedecked in "flair" from corporate sponsors. Another example, closer to my interests, would be something like Captain Amazing from the movie Mystery Men (also bedecked with appropriate "flair"). I bet that some players out there are going to have a ton of fun with the themes behind this boon.
By taking this boon, a character can benefit from multiple Promotional boons by sacrificing his or her Social boon slot. This means that a player coming to the table with a Paizo T-shirt and a Starfinder Character Folio could benefit from both the Promotional boons associated with those items. We're planning on including several different Promotional boons for the launch, including service coins, pins, and even something for the convention crowd. Expect to see a bit more on this when the Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild Guide officially releases.
And that's a wrap on our factions' reveals, but not a wrap on Starfinder Society blogs. Stay tuned for next week, where we provide some more information on two of our exciting Gen Con releases, Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild Quest: Into the Unknown and Starfinder Society Scenario #01-00: Claim to Salvation.
Starfinder Society Developer