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Mike Brock

Michael Brock's page

Global Organized Play Coordinator. FullStarFullStarFullStarFullStarFullStar Pathfinder Society GM. 4,986 posts (5,022 including aliases). 3 reviews. 1 list. 2 wishlists. 6 Pathfinder Society characters. 2 aliases.


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Paizo Employee ***** Global Organized Play Coordinator

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Please join me in welcoming the newest members to the Venture-Captain staff, Stuart Hibbs. He will be overseeing PFS growth and expansion in and around Durban, South Africa.

Welcome to the team!

Paizo Employee ***** Global Organized Play Coordinator

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Please join me in welcoming the newest members to the Venture-Captain staff, Sergey Nenko. He will be overseeing PFS growth and expansion in and around Kherson, Ukraine.

Welcome to the team!

Paizo Employee ***** Global Organized Play Coordinator

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Please join me in welcoming the newest members to the Venture-Captain staff, Amanda and Christopher Hays. They will be overseeing PFS growth and expansion in and around Quincy, Illinois.

Welcome to the team!

Paizo Employee ***** Global Organized Play Coordinator

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Kurthnaga wrote:
pH unbalanced wrote:
andreww wrote:
Unchained is hitting the download page for subscribers and lots of spoilers are now out there. Is there an ETA on when we might know what will and will not be PFS legal?
It will be the Street Date for the book (April 29th) at the *earliest*.
John actually posted in a different thread that it will either be the 20th or the 27th, in a monday blog. I'm not a subscriber and am planning to pick this up from my FLGS, hopefully I'll be happy with the result as far as PFS is concerned.

The blog for how Unchained will be incorporated into PFS will be on the 27th.

Paizo Employee ***** Global Organized Play Coordinator

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BigNorseWolf wrote:

Something that came up tonight for the grand lodge faction card

Complete six consecutive scenarios in which you completed both the primary and secondary success conditions. Sanctioned
adventures that do not include secondary success conditions neither interrupt not contribute to this goal.
Recover

Do scenarios played before the cards came out count towards that goal?

No, the cards are not retroactive to any play before they were released

Paizo Employee ***** Global Organized Play Coordinator

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Steven Huffstutler wrote:
Michael Brock wrote:
I started working on Guide 7.0 today. I opened this with much anticipation and hope and, after reading just a few replies, am disapponted.
Bacon.

Just had bacon wrapped meatloaf for dinner. It is fantastic with a glass of Malbec!

Paizo Employee ***** Global Organized Play Coordinator

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Jayson MF Kip wrote:
I agree. Ban the True Primitive.

I'm considering it.

Paizo Employee ***** Global Organized Play Coordinator

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I started working on Guide 7.0 today. I opened this with much anticipation and hope and, after reading just a few replies, am disapponted.

Paizo Employee ***** Global Organized Play Coordinator

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DubiousYak wrote:
For Dark Archive, is it safe to assume that an artifact is any magic item we are assigned to procure but don't actually get to keep? This happens a lot in PFS Scenarios and I'm not sure which ones are actually artifacts.

Yes

Paizo Employee ***** Global Organized Play Coordinator

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David_Bross wrote:

Just to be clear, these can also be used the PFS Core campaign?

This was asked earlier but it'd be nice to get an official clarification.

Yes they can

Paizo Employee ***** Global Organized Play Coordinator

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pH unbalanced wrote:
BigNorseWolf wrote:
Tsriel wrote:
BigNorseWolf wrote:
Tsirel wrote:
Just to clarify here, the only reason why I think it's poor timing is because this has been released so late in the season when this was expected back in January. Now it's April, so people realistically only have a few months to really make use of any of this.
Hmmm? You can keep earning on the current card as long as you want.
For as long as you completed an objective on the card prior to Season 7.
I think most players are going to play once in the next 5? months. Most factions have at least 1 low lying fruit to tick off a box.

3 1/2 months, actually. Gencon is the end of July this year.

Don't know that I'll get a chance to apply *all* of my cards before GenCon, but I'm not worried either way.

I am curious about what happens when the new cards come out. Can one character work on both cards simultaneously, or will you only be able to pick up the S7 card if you get rid of the S6 card.

I believe we reached a decision on this but want to make sure I have it right before I give a definitive ruling. Let me chat with John and Linda later today and get back to you.

Paizo Employee ***** Global Organized Play Coordinator

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Avatar-1 wrote:
Dark Archives wrote:
Recover a cursed item during the course of an adventure without succumbing to its curse.

Usually a cursed item would be recovered by anyone in the party rather than an individual.

Does the Dark Archives member have to specifically pick it up/be affected to the point where they have to make a save? Or can anyone in the party pick it up?

If anyone in the party can pick it up, does the "don't succumb to its curse" apply to that person instead, and if they fail the save, the Dark Archives members don't qualify to tick it? Or is that a way around it - the party can recover the item and someone else can succumb to the curse?

The "For GMs" section suggests the loophole trick will likely work.

I will chat with John and Linda today and we will decide which way this should happen.

Paizo Employee ***** Global Organized Play Coordinator

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Darrell Impey UK wrote:
Has there been a definitive answer about how these interact with APs played in campaign mode? I'm guessing/hoping that it will work similarly to the Chronicle; as long as the PC the Chronicle applied to is of the appropriate Faction, and the in-AP character performed the act, then you just tick the box.

it is advised in the first sheet of the PDF instructions.

"Once per adventure that grants a Chronicle sheet and at least 1 XP—whether it is a Pathfinder Society scenario, a section of a Pathfinder Module, a Pathfinder Adventure Path volume, or other sanctioned content—you may earn credit toward one of the goals on the back of the card and check one of the boxes that precedes that goal; even if you fulfill multiple objectives, you can only check one box per adventure."

As long as a PC receives a Chronicle sheet applied to the appropriate faction, and the in-AP character performed the act, then you tick the box.

Paizo Employee ***** Global Organized Play Coordinator

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Blackfoot wrote:

I'm not sure what prevents 'cheating' or error here.

A player can't have more boxes checked than they have XP/Scenarios/Chronicles... but otherwise the checks don't reference where they came from in any way.
I would assume these can't be applied retroactively... that all games prior to yesterday 'wouldn't count' toward these cards.

Is the GM really involved in any way with keeping track of these things?

if someone wants to cheat, they will cheat. It's life and it happens. If we put lines for a GM to initial, the person could just initial it himself and no one would be the wiser. The next GM won't know if it is an actual GM's initials or not. We are trying to go with the belief that the majority of people will just play nice and use these in the spirit they have been presented - another way to try to immerse the character into the world through accomplishing goals for their faction.

No, they can't be applied retroactively.

Paizo Employee ***** Global Organized Play Coordinator

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Nohwear wrote:
Just to be clear, these can be used right now?

Yes

Paizo Employee ***** Global Organized Play Coordinator

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Anu em-Ankh wrote:
Can you apply any of these goals retroactively to a PC? At first glance, I'm pretty sure my Scarab Sages PC has fulfilled at least 2-3 of the SS goals.

No you can not apply retroactively.

Paizo Employee ***** Global Organized Play Coordinator

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Renegade Paladin wrote:
Early February was quite awhile ago.

We wanted to wait until the new artwork for the faction symbols was finished so we could use those. Now that we have those, these should be released very soon.

Paizo Employee ***** Global Organized Play Coordinator

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Please join me in congratulating Dominick Trascritti as the newest recipient of the PFS Campaign Service Award.

Dominick has served as a Tampa are Venture-Officer for several years, first as a VL and now as a VC. His efforts have fostered growth and community cohesion in his region. He makes my job easier and I thank him for that. His PFS Work with large regional conventions and local charities places him as a pillar of the community and someone that people can look to as an outstanding person, not only in PFS, but life in general.

He has my highest respect and most sincere thank you for all of his work. Without him, PFS would not be where it is today.

Congratulations Dominick Trascritti. You are now PFS number 719 and one of the pillars that Society is built upon!

Paizo Employee ***** Global Organized Play Coordinator

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There was so much dissent against the "lottery" system that I scrapped the idea.

Paizo Employee ***** Global Organized Play Coordinator

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Meh....is just adds.....nothing. Topic locked.

Paizo Employee ***** Global Organized Play Coordinator

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I've received all three reports from the three VO teams that have made suggestions on how to implement the book into PFS. The PFS team here at Paizo has taken our thoughts, as well as the recommendations of the VO teams, and we have formulated a plan of how we think things should work.

As John mentioned above, we will let you know what the final decision is closer to the release date.

Paizo Employee ***** Global Organized Play Coordinator

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Woran wrote:
...This better not be an aprils fools joke [/paranoid]

Definitely not a joke.

Paizo Employee ***** Global Organized Play Coordinator

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This thread is done and locked.

Paizo Employee ***** Global Organized Play Coordinator

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Akari Sayuri "Tiger Lily" wrote:
Andrew Christian wrote:
Consider though, that if one of you do this, and I present it, and Mike either responds similarly or not at all, then the discussion should probably turn towards "Whats the best current options for my character?" rather than, "He's ruined I want extended grandfathering or a rebuild!"
I of course can't speak for everyone, but my stance is just that I want some kind of acknowledgement that the extended grandfathering proposal has been considered. They have made a few posts, but none have addressed that aspect. It could just be one word, No, and I'll drop it at that (I won't be very happy about the matter, but that's true anyway, and at least I'll drop it).

We considered it. We decided not to go with that option. Thanks for all the feedback.

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Andrew Christian wrote:

He has already assured me last week that he's read every post in this thread (and probably still is reading).

Yep

Paizo Employee Global Organized Play Coordinator

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Jezza wrote:
Hmmmm. Is this opening to door to kobolds as a playable race in Season 7?

No, I have no plans to sanction kobolds as a playable race at this time.

Paizo Employee ***** Global Organized Play Coordinator

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Andrew Shumate wrote:
Definitely looking forward to these scenarios, and also happy to see us return to Ustalav, a region that I feel is "horrifically" underused.

Wait until we give more info on the new Quests debuting at Gen Con ;-)

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BigNorseWolf wrote:

Any big faction shake ups this time or have those stabalized for now?

Those have stabilized and there are no plans to change them for the foreseeable future. We've done a lot of work to get them to where we think they should be. With the soon to be released Faction Journal Cards, we hope that they take back a very popular and important place for PFS.

Paizo Employee Global Organized Play Coordinator

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cartmanbeck wrote:
I am very excited for this one! Can someone confirm for me that this will debut at this year's GenCon and then will be played at NEXT year's PaizoCon? I'm going to PaizoCon THIS year (in May).

This will debut at Gen Con. However, we will have something new for PaizoCon 2016.

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trik wrote:
Michael Brock wrote:
trik wrote:
Michael Brock wrote:
trik wrote:
As far as rewarding 4 & 5 star GMs, they get a +4 or +5 respectively to their reroll in every game and they get to replay 4 or 5 scenarios (per recharge, which may be a seasonal thing), right? That said, I understand that some scenarios are complicated enough that they should probably only be run by experienced GMs and the star system helps build confidence in the experience of said GMs. Scenarios that fit that bill should probably be limited to 4/5 star GMs just to ensure they are run correctly each and every time (although there will probably still be a few cases where there are errors made).
How often do you think 4 and 5 star GMs play compared to the time they spend GMing? Do you think the bonus to one reroll a game and replay is sufficient reward for someone who has dedicated more than 500 volunteer hours to PFS to give at least 400-600 people entertainment? Or should we strive for providing additional rewards for those folks?

I don't know. I'm not in that position, so it's difficult for me speak with any real insight into the situation of 4/5 GMs. It's a great question to pose to the 4/5 star GMs though. :)

I've always been of the mind that exclusion tends to breed contempt. In this case, I don't particularly care one way or another. I do know that the higher star GMs I play with make liberal use of their bonus to rerolls. As a player that doesn't have that bonus, it looks like a pretty nice reward when I see it used.

Edit: That last part wasn't in there when I replied. If it's the case that 4/5 star GMs want something more, I guess any reward will be exclusionary by nature. I certainly wouldn't want to drive away those that have assisted in building PFS into what it is by not recognizing the efforts they have put in.

And it is a question I have posed to more than 250 four and five star GMs. From feedback I've received, and as a five star GM myself, GM rewards are
...

Can you advise a region that does not have a four or five star GM geographically close by? There are very, very few left that don't have access to a four and/or five star GM. I believe Latvia, Russia, and Israel are three. I checked Singapore, Croatia, and several other small and remote regions and they all have access to four and five star GMs. If you throw in on line play, there is no one who will be excluded.

Additionally, this provides for regional conventions to consider inviting a four and/or five star GM to their convention as a guest to run the exclusives, thus creating an even greater reward for that four or five star GM.

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This question has been answered. To reiterate, you can't reskin a character to look like a drow. You also can not play a character who is descended from a Drow, including a half-elf with drow ancestry. Since this is, unfortunately, not clear, I will make sure it is documented where it needs to be.

Drow are evil. Drow are despised and hated. Drow are essentially kill on sight because they are considered a monster for all intent and purposes. The Society would likely not accept a character that looks like a Drow due to the problems that come with it.

If you want to use a disguise kit or a hat of disguise or whatever to try to look like a Drow, then it is an option. However, the reactions of NPCs will likely cause grief for the other characters and the GM is well within his or her rights to have NPCs act accordingly if they fail their perception and think the character is a Drow.

This topic is now closed.

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trik wrote:
As far as rewarding 4 & 5 star GMs, they get a +4 or +5 respectively to their reroll in every game and they get to replay 4 or 5 scenarios (per recharge, which may be a seasonal thing), right? That said, I understand that some scenarios are complicated enough that they should probably only be run by experienced GMs and the star system helps build confidence in the experience of said GMs. Scenarios that fit that bill should probably be limited to 4/5 star GMs just to ensure they are run correctly each and every time (although there will probably still be a few cases where there are errors made).

How often do you think 4 and 5 star GMs play compared to the time they spend GMing? Do you think the bonus to one reroll a game and replay is sufficient reward for someone who has dedicated more than 500 volunteer hours to PFS to give at least 400-600 people entertainment? Or should we strive for providing additional rewards for those folks?

In my experience, most 4 and 5 star GMs run games because they take great pride and pleasure in doing so, often more than they like playing. Shouldn't we provide rewards that fuel into that passion?

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graywulfe wrote:

Mike,

Is there a plan for the 4 and 5 star exclusives from this year to move out of Exclusive status next year like other exclusives have?

I haven't made that decision yet. I like the idea of having a library of 4 and 5 star exclusives because it gives some value to earning stars.

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Tsriel wrote:
Kyshkumen wrote:
I see this complaint a lot still and I do not really see it as a valid one anymore. There is a very strong online community with 4 and 5 star gms and online conventions for both VTT and PbP, they even give out boons. The games are there you just need to look a little harder. Try reaching out to one of the Online VOs (yes there are specific VOs just for online play) who would love to show you how to get started.
That's a fair statement to make. However, not every online convention gets Paizo support. To further complicate matters, those conventions are still held to a standard that's expected for RL conventions in order to qualify being able to run special events. Speaking from experience, that's rather extraordinary for it to occur.

That is false. every online convention that the online VOs have submitted a request for has received support, including PDFs for GMs and prize suppor in the form of product PDFs and boons.

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6-97 and 6-98 essentially give you both sides of the same story. So, playing them in either order is fine. They work in conjunction to help close out Season 6.

6-99 is essentially a stand alone story.

7-00 kicks off the new season.

I haven't made a final decision as to whether non-4/5 star VOs will be able to run the exclusives.

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You can't reskin a character to look like a drow. You also can not play a character who is descended from a Drow, including a half-elf with drow ancestry. Since this is, unfortunately, not clear, I will make sure it is documented where it needs to be.

Drow are evil. Drow are despised and hated. Drow are essentially kill on sight because they are considered a monster for all intent and purposes. The Society would likely not accept a character that looks like a Drow due to the problems that come with it.

If you want to use a disguise kit or a hat of disguise or whatever to try to look like a Drow, then it is an option. However, the reactions of NPCs will likely cause grief for the other characters and the GM is well within his or her rights to have NPCs act accordingly if they fail their perception and think the character is a Drow.

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6-98 and 6-99 are single table, pregenerated character scenarios. One will convert to a 4 star GM exclusive and the other to a 5 star GM exclusive after Gen Con.

6-97 and 6-98 are debuting at PaizoCon. The other two are debuting at Gen Con.

6-97 and 7-00 can be run at any large game day or convention that can hosts the required minimum number of concurrent tables.

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I am going to have to have a talk with some people about the continuing effort to steal away my VOs ;-) Welcome to the team!

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#6 Black Waters. Throw in ambient music from the "Spooky" soundset of Syrinscape, add some roleplaying at the dinner, and a very fun scenario.

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Grim Gravelskull wrote:

So no more regular Society games in Sacramento now?

After looking on Warhorn it looks to be pretty much core.

Did you email your VC to see what was going on or if regular games can be scheduled? I just did. Did you volunteer to GM a normal mode game? VOs can only work with what people volunteer to GM.

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We have already advised that there will be no free retraining option.

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John and I discussed grandfathering at length. As John and I both advised in the first thread, this is the decision that the PFS team has made and is what we are going with.

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thaX wrote:
Then why get a Wayfinder?

Because they are the symbol of being a Pathfinder agent and are rewarded for successful completion of The Confirmation (though generally not a field commission)? Sometimes an item is more than just the numbers it represents.

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