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Painlord's page

RPG Superstar 2013 Star Voter, 2014 Dedicated Voter. FullStarFullStarFullStar Pathfinder Society GM. 1,361 posts (15,145 including aliases). 1 review. 1 list. No wishlists. 9 Pathfinder Society characters. 16 aliases.


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Male Humanoidish Yahoo 4/Painlord 6/Punk 2/Cleric of Happiness & Sunshine 1

Still working on my that a chaos element has been introduced...uh, things have changed. I need to plan differently...

...which is fine because we have more time than I thought to work through all this. I keep kicking around ideas.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Male Humanoidish Yahoo 4/Painlord 6/Punk 2/Cleric of Happiness & Sunshine 1

Uhm...what are the construction requirements?

15 pt buy
Core races

Starting Gold?
Third party products? (you know my heart is totally set on a psionisist gunslinger who pulling up some feats from the Book of Nine Swords and some 1e stuff I have...that's okay, right?)
Advanced Class Playtest?
How many traits?
Magic Item creation?

* * *

GM Kyshkumen wrote:
Also how is that guide to PbP GMing going?

Hmm...see, I dunno that I can write one until I actually do more PbP GMing. And yes, I probably should do that, but mostly I suck too much right now to get on that. But Andi has been pushing...and you can only say no to Andi for so long before you give in.

I ponder.


Male Humanoidish Yahoo 4/Painlord 6/Punk 2/Cleric of Happiness & Sunshine 1
GM Kyshkumen wrote:
I would also like you to post your characters here when they are finished. I expect Painlord will want some special exception.

To be fair, I'll post my character here no problem. I'll happy post what I look like, my personality, my internal motivations, and some back history. If anyone is interested in some shared backstory and has some ideas, please PM me.

I'm happy to share my build with the GM. I don't want to know your builds...I want you to play whatever you want without any expectations or conditions.

GM Kyshkumen wrote:
Some recommended reading for the new players.

Oh, I see how it link to that PbP Gude, but not the other one?

Uh's going to be like that, eh GM Kyshkumen?

* * *
I should have a preliminary yahoo sketched and up here tomorrow night. I'm still going over concepts and what not. Not sure yet what will be the defining aspects of his personality nor his backstory.

Please forgive the delay.

I'm excited for this.

If we need any extra good players, I can help recruit good PbPers that I know.


Nebten wrote:
Do we want to try to carry on, or just try for next Online Gameday?

Painlord shifts on his rock as if he had just received unwelcome news.

"That is disappointing, but likely the proper call. I shall end my vigil...and so ends my dreams of playing with Ziz," Painlord grumbles.

"Let us hope this online gameday inspires more and better attendance in the next."

Painlord stands and kicks the rock into the aether, preparing to leave himself.

"Nebten, you have been a good host. Curaigh, another time, mayhaps."


Painlord continues to sit on his rock, pondering his options.

He lights a dark pipe off Pavanna's channeled energies, leaves of unknown origin smoldering.

He waits for more voices to enjoin, hoping that the promise of this endeavor is met.


Male Humanoidish Yahoo 4/Painlord 6/Punk 2/Cleric of Happiness & Sunshine 1

Give me 6 months and I should/could have 3 full campaigns done via PbP: Council of Thieves, Shackled City, and Curse of the Crimson Throne.

And I'm with Motte for two other strong campaigns. Those are a ways off...but feel good about them.




"I tear the aether asunder and will myself into this plane!" Painlord intones, stepping through a rip in time and space and into the recruitment thread. He looks around slowly, divining the true nature of those therein.

"Ziz? Is that your form? And Curaigh?" Painlord utters, surprised. "I am impressed, Nebten. You have acquired some talent. Perhaps me or one of my many forms will embark in this as well."

Painlord walks around the recruitment thread, surveying the area.

He reaches back into the aether to draw forth a large sitting stone.

"I shall ponder my existence here...and which form my mighty attendance will take.," Painlord says, moving to sit upon the stone.

I believe I have a lvl 3 or lvl 7, both fun characters to enjoin. Save my spot.


Commissar Kip wrote:

I just received this from the account "Caprain Greg"

"I am Captain Greg Schneider, American soldier I will be glad if you if you can add me.
Capt. Greg Schneider"

Me too. Got a similar message.



+1 to this issue.

Not staying focused for more than 10 minutes or so.

It's like me in grade sch--...SQUIRREL!!!!


A half-orc enters the thread, looking around. She puts her hands on her hips, demanding response. Her mighty tusks flare with every nostril's intake.

"Who sent me this dang note? And what happened to the Professor!?" Baer says, with a clenched wad of paper in her mighty hands.

"Someone, answer me! I didn't come all this way to be ignored!"

Baer's long brown hair curls around her shoulders. She carries a quarterstaff that thumps on the ground of this recruitment thread. Her eyes look left and right, seeking an answer.

* * *

Allow me to introduce you to Baer Mytr, former student and friend to the Professor. She, a magus, has been removed from Ustalav for a while, having fled to the outskirts after several years of schooling with the Professor.

She currently makes her way as a shepherd (hard to incur her sizable anger when she is alone...with livestock), but has a variety of training in other areas: arcana, history, the planes.

Baer is young, sometimes reckless, but her energy and rambunctious behavior was well-focused by the Professor...which is why she loved him so. He saw the potential and good in her and that made her believe in herself. She knows this and will always be in debt to the Professor. She seeks a path toward further education and enlightenment.

Baer stands 5'9" tall, weighs 180lbs, but carries herself like someone who has something to prove.

Draft Build:

Baer Mytr
Half-Orc Magus (Staff Magus) 1
NG Medium humanoid (human, orc)
Init +1; Senses darkvision 60 ft.; Perception +2
AC 14, touch 11, flat-footed 13 (+3 armor, +1 Dex)
hp 14 (1d8+6)
Fort +4, Ref +1, Will +2
Speed 30 ft.
Melee dagger +3 (1d4+3/19-20) and
. . quarterstaff -1 (1d6+3/1d6+1)
Ranged javelin +1 (1d6+3)
Magus (Staff Magus) Spells Prepared (CL 1st; concentration +4):
1st—grease (DC 14), shield
0 (at will)—dancing lights, detect magic, read magic
Str 16, Dex 12, Con 14, Int 16, Wis 10, Cha 8
Base Atk +0; CMB +3; CMD 14
Feats Quarterstaff Master, Toughness
Traits reckless, teacher's pet
Skills Acrobatics +2, Climb +3, Knowledge (arcana) +7, Knowledge (planes) +7, Knowledge (religion) +9, Perception +2, Profession (shepherd) +4, Spellcraft +7; Racial Modifiers +1 Acrobatics, +1 Climb, +2 Perception
Languages Abyssal, Common, Draconic, Giant, Orc
SQ arcane pool, orc blood, weapon familiarity, spell combat
Other Gear studded leather, dagger, javelin (2), quarterstaff, 113 gp
Special Abilities
Arcane Pool (+1) (4/day) (Su) Infuse own power into a held weapon, granting enhancement bonus or selected item powers.
Darkvision (60 feet) You can see in the dark (black and white vision only).
Orc Blood Half-orcs count as both humans and orcs for any effect related to race.
Quarterstaff Master Use a quarterstaff one-handed
Spell Combat (Ex) Use a weapon with one hand at -2 and cast a spell with the other.
Teacher's Pet (Knowledge [religion]) Professor Lorrimor traveled the Inner Sea region lecturing and teaching at universities in locations as far-flung as Manaket and Magnimar, and as different in scope as the bardic colleges of Taldor and the battle colleges of the River Kingdoms.

* * *

About me, Painlord:

Uh...hi! I'm Painlord. I'm an avid PbPer and roleplayer. As you can see from my aliases, I've been in more than a few successful PbPs and I know how to roleplay. My focus is on having fun and putting together a great, collaborative story.

If you have any questions about me or Baer, please let me know.

Qadira ***

Congrats, DougDoug! You have always lead the way with selfless giving and promotion of the good of PFS.

You rock.


/me returns to the Demiplane of Pain

Qadira ***

Dear VC Caubo--

For the love of whatever gods I pray to, can you use your VO powers to see about getting the pre-gens (Ezren 1, Kyra 1, etc.) into an easily copyable/paste-able format for creating PbP aliases?

It would really help to have them someplace in BBcode, by level, so that new PbP PFSers could easily create and play.

Loves and backstabs,


Qadira ***

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Kyle Baird wrote:

Speaking of which, there are 97 of these threads, and 9 people have started more than one of them:

Author Mega-Threads Started
Painlord 2

In my defense, I *could* have more threads over 200 if more people cared about uninteresting crap that no one cared about.


Nebdel Melfcane wrote:
Maybe word it a bit nicer.


What are you trying to say, Mortal?


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Kydeem de'Morcaine wrote:
I am trying to not be too negative, but come on people.

Lol. No explanation is necessary...bad players make it harder on the GM. When even a single player fails, that makes it harder for the GM to maintain momentum.

I, for one, think GMs are way too lenient with bad/rude players. In all truths, a good PbP GM is worth 20 players. And if a GM has a player that isn't pulling his RP weight, they should be quick to try to resolve the issue quickly/quietly (a personal message usually works) and, if that fails, find another player.

GMs don't have to put with bad players within Paizo PbP...there are many more players than good GMs. A GM should be able to find people who fit his playstyle and run an awesome game.

Let's look at this from the GM side. What makes PbP harder than in real life?

  • No immediate feedback. When there is a problem or a mistake, it can take hours/days to find and fix.
  • A GM cannot read facial expression of players. Hugely important. Some things are easier in person. But it's easier to identify points of confusion in real life.
  • Not knowing when to push, pacing is harder. This is the single hardest thing for a new GM to figure out. It's hard to know when to let RP flow and when to push sagging action. A GM will occasionally 'herd cats' to get the party back on happens in every group.
  • Online map work. This is another issue: figuring out how to give strong and fair mapped combats. Sure, Rolld20, Googledocs, pic hosting all work, but what best fits your skillset? Which one are you trained in and feel comfortable with? It's a bigger issue than you think.
  • Having to read and respond to everything. A real life GM (usually) gets questions one at a time and can focus and prioritize how and what to answer. In PbP, it requires reading every post and seeing each post for what needs to be responded to. Kydeem touches on it above: it's very frustrating as a player to have to ask the same question post after post. It's easy for a GM to miss things in PbP that normally wouldn't be missed in face2face.
  • Difficulty in describing your story/action/environment. Hand gestures, intonation, inflection all matter in communication...but are much more difficult in PbP. A map with two or three dimensions is a lot of PbP work...a clarification on a map might be two quick pen strokes to fix and explain in real life, but take a lot of map time to fix in PbP. In PbP, you need to be able to explain story and setting via the written word. That can be much harder in PbP for some people (some people are not strong writers, or English is not their first language). Some people are better storytellers via the spoken word.
  • Focus. The good DM must be more focused than the players, more on top of the game, more energetic - everyday for years. If the DM falters, the whole game falters - much more severely than when a single player drifts for a bit.

I'm sure there are more reasons why GMing is harder in PbP, but the real point is that, as a player, you need to help make the GM's job easier by being clear about what you are doing and being responsible for timely posting.

Qadira ***


I thought I had stopped wanting to respond to things like this, but I love me the Ryan B something fierce.

After the awesome table of Eyes of the Ten at PaizoCon 2013* I thought I'd be done admiring him...but no, this thread exists.

Congrats Ryan upgrade in slankiness, indeed.


*=I'm pretty sure this was among the top 3 runs of Eyes that have ever happened or will ever happen. Of course, I can't prove it, but will nonetheless believe it and it will be axiom in the Demiplane of Pain from hence forth.


Kyle Baird wrote:
Tickets booked.

Baird is going?

Well, despite that, I've bought my tix as well. It'll still be fun.


DM Tadpole wrote:
DM Tadpole wrote:

Alagor wrote:

These are noble sentiments, but I think this particularly piece of PbP etiquette is counterproductive to the health of the game. If the regular posters slow down their contributions to account for the tardy ones, the entire pace of the game suffers. It's much better to stick to the general rule of a post-a-day as much as possible.

That way the other players look at the increasing post count and think "oh s&%&, I'd better get involved" rather than "oh well, things are going slowly here, I'll make a post tomorrow". From the DM's point of view, I can pull back on the reins at the moments when it's necessary to give everyone an opportunity to contribute. Also, if players missed a particular interaction that is relevant to their character we can always cover it with spoilered 'flexitime'.

+1 to what Alagor wrote, pretty much.

I'm very much pro-momentum, but recognize that there are combat/timed replies and then there is just open, free RP times. During combat times, I pretty much wait for my turn to do actual stuff, but will occasionally post in-between my turns if there is something worth responding to (a cheer for a crit, a quick answer to a question, snark, etc).

However, outside of combat, I say to go and run with things. Sure, keep in mind your other players, but if you and a few others want to RP or do something, I think you should go for it. Like Alagor said: 1) The GM can slow you down, roll you back and 2) the other player(s) can RP in retrospect.


I asked a GM why this stuff is important:

Painlord: "Do hooks and pushing and social stuff makes things easier for the GM?"

Awesome GM: "Yes, it does make things tons easier for the GM.
Everything that you do is something I don't have to worry about doing quite so much.
I'm a fairly creative person, but working in a vacuum sucks. You make sure I don't have to.

Yay for hooks because it gives me something to grab onto... yay for pushing so I don't have to do it all, and yay for social stuff because well, social stuff is what takes the game from good to great."

DM Alexander Kilcoyne wrote:
I recently read Painlord's Building a Better Doomed Hero topic, which is a guide to PbP built off the truly excellent topic made by Doomed Hero (Link). His anecdote Always be Pushing strikes particularly true; its not purely down to the DM to be giving the game momentum. We're all in this together :).

+1 to this. Another premium GM chimes in on how to be a better player.

You, as a player, can make your game better.

Push. Hook. React. Socialize.


dunebugg wrote:
Dylos wrote:
Can the Shaman learn Witch Hexes, or only the hexes mentioned in their spirit?

Their Hex ability reads: ...At 2nd level, a shaman learns one hex, chosen from those available from her spirit...

So, pretty clear just the ones given to them by their Spirit, and then the Wandering Hex can obviously be chosen from between their Spirit or Wandering Spirit.

I think this could be better clarified. I agree that at 2nd level you get to choose from amongst your spirits hexes.

However, at level 3 and you can take Extra Hex as a feat, what allows or prevents you from selecting from available/legal witch hexes? I'm not arguing for or against, but that it needs clarity and certainly will affect how witchy the Shaman class can feel.


Jiggy wrote:
Well, I've gone and joined a WotR game; my first PbP, my first AP, and my first mythic game. *gulp* Wish me luck!

Why would you need luck? If you follow this guide, you will have something far better: skill. ;)

I think issues might arise with other players not responding as often or as well as they could, or the GM being unable to keep the commitment, but if you and your fellow players do what you can to make it a fun, pushed game, you'll not need luck. ;)


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Aubrey the Malformed wrote:

Whether you get burned out will depend on a few things: most important for me, is the adventure compelling? Given you will be in its company for years, you need to like it, and you might find you don't. I started a Kingmaker campaign and discovered I didn't really like the AP, so in the end I ended it. I find a self-penned thing is very rewarding in PbP, especially as it gives you time to think.

Next, the players. I'm lucky in having had a good troop of committed PbP players, all of whom I met by simply recruiting here. They've made it a lot of fun and rewarding, and have given me ideas for campaign arcs which have lasted years. As mentioned above, roleplaying in PbP is brilliant. But I also had a campaign effectively wither away because the players didn't get into it or post much, and again I got a bit bored waiting for them and it folded. That's luck of the draw, but in general the players lacking real commitment will probably filter themselves out. Player churn is inevitable in something that lasts for years. It's a shame when a good players goes, but others will come to replace them.

And you may find that other stuff in your life dims your enthusiasm for sitting alone at your computer desk and pounding away. But I find that's a temporary thing, and if you have good players it's fun to get online and try and surprise them.


All this.

If you're a player, you should read this and read it again.

This is a top PbP GM explaining what makes their job easy and they expect from their players.

If you want a good game that lasts more than 1000 posts,
If you want an inspired and motivated GM who wants to delight their players,
If you want a campaign that ranks among the best on these boards,
If you want to tell a story worthy of the group you are in,
If you want to create social relationships that will last...'ll read and understand what Aubrey has said.

You get what you put into PbP. Make it easy on the GM.


DM Tadpole wrote:

The hook/push concept is a really important one, and just as valid for DMs as it is for players. I realise I sometimes fall down on this one, and need to be more consistent in providing hooks for my players.

It’s also useful to keep in mind that hooks don’t have to Plot related with a capital P. It can be something incidental or amusing happening in the background that nonetheless prompt your players to react and keep the game moving forward. As you said, I believe posting once a day (as much as possible) is vital in keeping momentum.

I'm glad you like the concept. Not saying I created it, but after looking at my successful PbPs and my less-good ones, the hooks and pushes are the difference. Without hooks and pushes, the GM is dragging everyone along...and it's tiring and tough for everyone.

If you're a PbP player, you need to realize that your job is to make things easier on the GM and other players. And if the GM is doing all the work, the game is going to fail. As such, you *must* make it easier and keep momentum.


Jiggy wrote:
Silbeg wrote:
Agreed, Jiggy... I am definitely interested in trying this out. My only concern is how long a typical scenario would last (since your PFS character would be out of any other action until complete).

Yeah, that's the catch for PFS. On the other hand, maybe a campaign-mode run of Dragon's Demand would be a good candidate? That way an existing PC isn't tied up, and at the end you can pile on (almost) all those chronicles.

But I wonder how long THAT would take. Could I stay committed that long...?

Jiggy, I have no idea why you'd want to sip from trough of PbP PFS when you could dine at the table of a full PbP AP. PFS is a fine, but overall storyless and confined space. Get into a real PbP. Build a character and start creating a rich tapestry with new and old friends. Go build something amazing.

And, for you, I'm sure you'd be more easily committed than most. You practically live on the boards and it'd be easy for you to check you PbP threads often.



DM Rah wrote:
Upon consideration, I think I might give my players two options: 1. Choose Party Leader(s), or 2. Suffer the consequences of Painlord's Rule of Two.

As a player who is unapologetic about liking a fun, quick games, I think this is a good plan.

In the big picture, one of the more annoying things for good players and good GMs is discovering time and reducing dithering. It can take an eternity of slow posts for a group to decide to open a door or choose a path.

Painlord's Rule of Two is designed to end that dithering and give a bit more control/permission to the GM to move things along as well as help players move thing along.

However, in the even bigger picture, let's unpack this:

DM Rah wrote:
I see one potential consequence of this rule, though I am undecided on if it is necessarily a bad consequence. Let's imagine that the first two to post are the most reckless PCs of a PbP group who could care less if the door is trapped or warded. The more cautious PCs might find it annoying if they are getting dragged around without a say. The rule of two doesn't really give them any option to hedge in reckless PCs (though I suppose the GM could give more time for someone else to act if this truly becomes a problem). Now I did say that I wasn't certain this was a bad thing, and I'll address that by saying this: if Pippin hadn't dropped a stone down the well in Moria that would have made for a boring journey.

You're the GM right? And you and your players have some trust built right? And you know the story you want to tell? And you know that the story (and moving it along) are more important than the rules (especially any rule I came up with)?

Dude, I trust you to make rational and intelligent decisions on when to push things forward. Since you're the GM, it's your game and your responsibility to keep things moving (while encouraging others to help). I'm sure you can use this 'rule' to your advantage.



Male Humanoidish Yahoo 4/Painlord 6/Punk 2/Cleric of Happiness & Sunshine 1

Greetings Mortals--

My thoughts on PBP: Painlord's Guide to Advanced PbP.

May you find players you can be friends with.


p.s. Excellent post, Kydeem.


Male Humanoidish Yahoo 4/Painlord 6/Punk 2/Cleric of Happiness & Sunshine 1
D30 wrote:
Stay classy, Painlord.

I'm totally classy.


Painlord's Guide to PbP Play.

Building on what Doomed Hero has done, adding my own thoughts.

Best of luck, PbPers.


Qadira ***

4 people marked this as a favorite.

Greetings Mortals--

You don't like me and I don't like you, but that doesn't mean that we can't rock PbP.

My latest guide: How to Play-by-Post.

Not all is perfectly applicable to PFS, but much will help make you a better player.

Your thoughts and opinions are appreciated.


p.s. Love it up, Caubo. Someday, you and I are going to meet.


59 people marked this as a favorite.

Greetings Mortals--

For those of you who are new to PbP, the format is *THE* best pure Pathfinder experience there is. It allows for a depth in roleplaying and character development that is not possible in a F2F (face to face, aka tabletop) game. In fact, I prefer PbP to my regular games: for the quality of character development and totality of roleplaying combined with the pure strategic/combat geekery that a good, updated map can provide.

This entire post builds on concepts established by Doomed Hero in his epic post: DHs Guide to Play By Post Gaming. Doomed does a great job of outlining conventions and common styles that carry through to most of my PbPs.

I've played in some awfully bad PbPs. Thankfully, I've also been blessed with some *amazing* PbPs. The two biggest factors involved are the strength of the GM and the skill of players. It's tough being a good GM...even tougher to be a good PbP GM.

Pathfinder, like life, is a skill, and you can become better at playing. As we become better players, it allows our GMs to present a better game. Good Pathfinder play is a series of skills and the more you play, the more opportunities you have to improve those skills. Some of these skills are shared with F2F and tabletop, but others are unique to PbP. In order, consider the following when you're trying to be the best PbPer you can be:

#1: Become a Master of the Push and of the Hook:

Always Be Pushing. (ABP!) A, Always. B, Be. P, Pushing. Always be pushing. This is the most important thing you can do as a PbP player. It's not about posting often or quickly, it's about doing stuff when you post. It's about pushing your character's involvement in the story forward. Whenever you can, push the action, push the direction, push the party along. PbP is already a slow format, so try to make it better by pushing while giving others a chance to respond, of course. To reiterate: it's not the frequency of your posts, but what actions you take through them.

Examples of good push posts:

Good push post #1.

Good push post #2.

Good players push...rarely leaving a post that doesn't move things along or offer a hook. That momentum will make it easier for the GM and other players to act and react as necessary. It's easier for a GM to slow things down if necessary, rather than create something from nothing. Do this because it can make your GM's job easier.

Embrace hooks: leave them everywhere. In PbP terms, a hook is a call to action, a point of interest, a *something* that someone else can react. It's hard to react in a vacuum, much easier to react to what others are doing and what else is happening. So try to have a hook in every post!

Compare the following two posts and pretend you're next to post:

Post #1: Hektir enters the room and looks around. 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (12) + 4 = 16 Perception

Post #2: Hektir enters the room, spits, and looks around. "Smells like goblin farts in here," Hektir says, sniffing the air. 1d20 + 4 ⇒ (7) + 4 = 11 Perception

Which post would you rather respond to? The second sets up a few more opportunities, if ever so slight. You might react to the spit on the ground, noticing it only when you make (or fail) your perception check. Or you might ask how Hektir knows what goblin farts smell like. Or comment on Hektir sniffing. When you reply, you should try to leave a hook (or 2) of your own.

Always look for other people's hooks when you're setting up your own. Try to respond to them in a way that can both encourage their character to elaborate while expounding on yours. An excellent Play-by-Post isn't simply the combats, with each characters' stories bordering it like a frame- it is a rich tapestry of a thousand threads, woven together to create the beautiful whole.

Embrace the Important Soft Push/Hook: There are times when you are just waiting for the GM or the other players to post, but 24 hours have passed. That's the time for the Soft Push/Hook- a post that doesn't do anything but bump your interest in the thread and what's happening. They are important to show that you're still alive, engaged and helping others stay engaged by giving them something to react.

Good soft push/hook post #1.

Good soft push/hook post #2.

#2: Social Skills: Acknowledge & React:

Pathfinder is a social game. Pathfinder involves interactive social skills whether it's around a table or over the Intratoobz. Your ability to work with others, create trust, and thank others will go a long way towards making your game better. These skills apply in real life, but tend to show up differently in PbP.

Acknowledge & Thank Awesomeness: When someone does something awesome, acknowledge it. Great roleplaying? Say so. Something make you laugh? You blew coffee all over your keyboard? Put in an LOL! or LOL@<name> into your next post. Use the "favorite this post" to show your appreciation. It matters. You'll know when you start getting them, and you'll feel inspired to create better posts. Start today, by thanking and acknowledging good posts in your PbPs. Others will feel it too...and reciprocate.

React: There is a static and boring trope about being stonyfaced and unreacting when things happen. Well, it's boring in PbP. Good stuff happens when people react to things that are happening. Reacting gives others hooks and creates interest. Reacting ties your character to other characters. Find ways to react. Find ways to interact. Interaction is part of the social nature of this game.

Socialize, dammit!: Remember that you and your fellow players are people that have come together to play. Find ways to talk to others outside the IC and OOC threads. In most of my current games, I have connection with players via GoogleChat (via Trillian) or a Facebook Private Group that we can about in-game and out-of-game stuff. Getting to know the other players has only enhanced my connections to their characters and to the roleplaying.

#3: Roleplay with no limits:

Character Tips:

  • Embrace the depth of your backstory even if no one else will read it: In F2F, it can be hard and time consuming to explain how one's childhood and upbringing lead to the creation of the character before you. In PbP, you can explore those experiences and expound on them, drawing upon them when needed. Some of your players will read it, some won't...but that's neither here nor there. What matters is how much background and color you want to add. Stick your long history in spoiler or on your alias.
  • Be 'humanly' wrong sometimes: Be humanly imperfect (even if you're not playing a human). Imperfect characters draw in the reader and create a connection that is common amongst us all. Imperfection is relate-able and you can use those imperfections in your roleplaying. Be an elf chauvinist pig. Or a deeply narrow-minded religious yahoo. Or a salty sea elf. Take the gloves off and be something.
  • People aren't perfectly static: Neither are good characters. The PbP format is a perfect chance to establish a narrative that shows change over time. (You can go from good to bad or bad to good, but do something!)
  • Find motivation: Having 'real' motivation for your character is extremely important- the answer to the question: "Why are you here risking your life?" I want to play with characters who truly believe that they need to save the Princess/World/McGuffin based on strong motivations for wanting to do so...and they should be interesting and relevant.

Play Tips:

  • Painlord's PbP First Rule: Post something everyday (unless it's a known hiatus). Even if it's a null post, put something up. Remind others that someone is waiting on someone. Keep your momentum going and your thoughts on what's happening. I sometimes fail at this, but I try. Everyday.
  • Painlord's PbP Rule of Two: Designed to reduce dithering, this rule suggests that after one character has suggested an action (or course of action) and it is seconded, that's what the party does and the GM should go along those lines. The other players are still welcome to post other actions, but the GM may assume that the seconded action is where/what the party is going/doing. This helps keep momentum moving AND reduces the stress on the GM on knowing when to proceed.
  • RAW vs. RAI (hat tip: GM Evilan): My GM has this statement and it's a wonderful one: "As a rule I play the rules as intended rather than strictly as written. There will be exceptions of course and we can’t always tell what RAI is supposed to be. More importantly I may change a rule now and again for the story. The story is what is important - the story the players and I are writing together. If that story conflicts with a rule now and then, I’m likely to ignore or modify the rule for that instance. However, the rules are there so we all know what to expect out of the environment, so it will not happen with any frequency.""
  • Give detailed actions when you post in combat: Don't make the GM (or your fellow players) guess at what your are doing. When attacking, you should have your location marked and both your standard and move actions accounted for. Your attack strings should have all the modifiers laid out so that it's clear how you are getting your conditional modifiers.

    Two good combats posts in a row.
    Good combat post.

    The point is that you want to make this easy on your GM. You want to be great at PbP? Make it easy for others to play with you.

Create trust by giving trust:
Trust is like the rope bridge across the chasm; it really doesn't matter all that much who goes first, but if no one does, the group doesn't get anywhere. Someone HAS to go first, so it might as well be you. The other players, including the GM, are most likely there for the same reason you are- to have a good time! Just like you, they're going to do their best, and just like you, they're going to screw up once in awhile. And all of that is OK because the real secret to Play-by-Post fun is that the story is more important than the rules!

A Play-by-Post will survive bad rolls, bad calls, and bad builds, but mistrust can suck the life right out of the game. Most GMs are open to questions, but extended arguing slows an already slow process and shuts down trust. Trust the GM to listen to what you have to say, then let them make the decision. Trust the other players to play honestly. Trust yourself to be able to roll or role with whatever comes out of it.

Roleplaying doesn't work if your fellow players don't trust you...and if you don't trust your fellow players. A *huge* part of roleplaying is trusting your fellow players to respond in kind, not take in-character things too seriously, and understand that this is a game.

Part of me believes that overcoming fear of failure is essential to roleplaying. Personally, I would rather fail in my task/mission than fail to act in-character. I have to trust that things will work out in the end...and if my character would do X (within reason), he should probably do it and rejoice the earned outcome rather than metagame towards what will earn his 'reward'.

PbP-The Bug is a Feature:

Of course, there are some "negatives" to PbP play, but how you handle them is more a function of you as a person than anything else. Some players see the slow play as a negative: always waiting for someone else to post. I see slow play as opportunity to craft a better response or focus on next actions. Down times and slow periods are opportunities rather than problems. Use downtime to ponder your responses or open up other avenues of RP. Or just be patient. PbP isn't an immediate gratification's a long con that you're writing with others.

As always, your thoughts and thoughtful disagreements are welcome.


p.s. Thanks to GM Angry Ankheg and GM Evilan for their help with this. Also, thanks to The Rat for his chitterings.


Male Humanoidish Yahoo 4/Painlord 6/Punk 2/Cleric of Happiness & Sunshine 1
Seelah of Iomedae wrote:
"...cure moderate wounds wand, I am not able to carry my end of the Pathfinder Society expectations. "


I am not used to seeing things like this.

Qadira ***

Andi, aka GM Angry Ankheg, rockifies all that there is to rock.

Congrats, Andi. You're one of the best I've ever met playing PFS.



Male Humanoidish Yahoo 4/Painlord 6/Punk 2/Cleric of Happiness & Sunshine 1

WTF?! Lamplighter and Ziz and Sloth...and I'm not invited?!

Sheesh. Consider me jealous and if there is another opening, let me in (I think you have another on the waitlist to go first.)

Hey Zizarat, hope things are well.

Please forgive the intrusion, I was raised in a demiplane without any rules whatsoever.


w00t! This looks awesome.

Congrats Motte!


Seeketh here as well, Azixirad. There are LOTS of games around you.


Qadira ***

Kyle Baird wrote:
One of these years I'm going to make it out there for this.

Sorry, dude. We got standards out here. Not sure you're going to make the cut. Maybe when you understand the format better we'll take another look at your application.

Also, no Gobbos allowed.


I saw it this morning. It was pretty okay.

I don't think it was really based on a true story. Thus, I think they used some CGI or claymation or something for the effects.

Also, when we get the tech for robots? They should use them to land on Mars or something useful. (Not that fighting the aliens isn't important.)

Qadira ***

Matthew Pittard wrote:
Just noticed there were 266 posts last year in the 2012 thread for Paizocon and only 166 this year. Thats 100 posts of much needed information that we are missing out on! I said above, the Hotel internet sucked. Sadly, we'll be at the same location next year (so they say) so we might have the same suckage unless Paizo opens up the hotel conference internet for all (I don't now how wired the hotel is for tech conferences).

In the past, I'd have a chat or learn a thing and do a quick post about it on my computer. This year, I was decked to do more (iPad+easy keyboard), but the wifi failed.

Matthew Pittard wrote:
Perhaps there needs to be a thread in the gms area then for Paizocon bloggry.. so spoilers could be fired at will

What the heck do you have against Will? Sure he's from freakin' Fresno, but he's still a good guy.

Qadira ***

Mattastrophic wrote:
Ryan Blomquist, VC from Minnesota, deserves the highest praise for his GMing us through Eyes. He devoted every hour of the con except the banquet and the special to Eyes and our table. If he hasn't earned his fifth star yet, his devotion, endurance, and ability shown during our odyssey are what makes him deserve it.

+1. That guy, aka the good Ryan B from Minn, is ridiculous.

Qadira ***

Sunday Morning - Hall of Dwarven Lore

GM Krupal Desai (Local WA)

Des C. (Reno) - Scorch
GM Chris (Bay Area, CA) - Seeker
Miles (Oregon) - Oslin D
Elizabeth (Oregon) - Katsue
Greg (Local WA) - Maglock
Painlord (Demiplane of Pain)- Princess Isis & Bast

Krupal gives a good GM intro about his GM style, something I really appreciate. He even offered water & pens to the party. It is infinitely loud in the gameroom and it is difficult to hear the GM.

Plot points happen, knowledge rolls are made, but the results are lost in the chaos and noise of the room. I get a quick recap, but it is still difficult to get full flavor. This is a recurring theme and difficulty in planning large conventions. On one hand, organizers want to minimize costs by packing in tables while working with the hotel's available space. That is weighed against issues of noise, smell, and space between tables that affects the players and play experience. Having tables too close together also enhances interruptions as people and chairs get bumped as players move from table to table.

Krupal has a good clean style, very playful and is just easy to play with.

As my yahoo (Princess Isis) can sometimes be useless in combat (more out of laziness than lack of things to do...a character defect that few understand), I spend the first combat looking around and watching other tables play.

A great PFS skill:

Is being willing to and knowing when to do nothing. Sometimes there are combats that don't need your help and knowing when to sit and do nothing is the right (role)play. Let the other yahoos shine and rock and be ready to help, but otherwise be comfortable with yourself and trust others to understand what you're doing and when.

Your reality may vary.

Across the way, the new VC of New Orleans (Mike D.) puts on a show for his table. He's lively and animated everyone has a smile on their face.

We crawled our way through this, had a good game.


TOZ wrote:
Sadly, no. There is kitsune AND kaiju. Not kitsune kaiju.

What he said. Also, beer. It's all beer's fault.

Qadira ***

Pain Game Sat 1 to 5:

Saturday 1 to 5pm: Fortress of the Nail

GM Joanna Gore (VL San Diego)

Mark (Bremerton, WA): Tyran
GM Chris: Timmy
Saltyone (Jason F ): Kreigar
wakedown (Mike R): Throgan the Steady
Balodek (Bryan): Meloric (Played with Meloric at GrandConvo last year)
Painlord: Aroden Reborn

I've said a lot of nice things about Eric B, the VC of San Diego, and it's because they have a great community down there. They find and train great GMs in their community. Joanna is definitely one of them. Immediately, she's take charge (she kicked *me* *ME!* out my seat because she wanted her back to the awesome is that?) and very good about setting tone. I'm already a fan. Obv, she RPs like a pro.

Already this party is challenging her in all different directions, but she's bouncing and rebounding all over the place, keeping us on task. I love how she delivered faction missions, tailoring the approach to each PC. It's clear she prepped the heck of this mod.

Our party had fun and completely the railroady scenario with little difficulty. The gunslinger pulled out every cartridge to pretty much mangle the combats we had.

Aroden Reborne now has a noted convert on his Chronicle. #5, I believe. (I appreciate that Joanna added this conversion on the Chron. Nice touch.)


Male Humanoidish Yahoo 4/Painlord 6/Punk 2/Cleric of Happiness & Sunshine 1
GM_Chris wrote:
I want to start up again this afternoon or tonight, but it might be tomorrow.

We had a Toffitt-brother sighting. Finn & Chris had meets and greets too.

He's funny and likeable...hard to be believe there is relation. :)

Qadira ***

Mazlith wrote:
ut alas, she was torn appart my a manticore. Gar! The final battle was between a simple polar bear and a bullette. The bear was no match for the land shark.

I love those pictures, Mazlith.


Odraude wrote:
Cheapy wrote:

They said there'd be six.

Okay, just making sure. Painlord's list only had five so I wasn't sure if one was getting cut.

Painlord's chubby fingers are not to be trusted. Forgive any omissions.

Also, I blame beer.


My Banquet recap.

Qadira ***

Aeshuura wrote:
I am particularly interested in hearing a Paizo Gamespace update. ^_^ That and future AP updates!

Aeshuura, in case you missed it, Gamespace Update.

See the post above for AP updates. My work is done.

Qadira ***

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PaizoCon 2013 Banquet - Saturday 7pm to Pain

John Compton (our Paizo Special Guest...every table has one. We got stuck with him.)
Rogue Eidolon (Mark S...Boston)
Linda (Rogue's awesome sig other)
Enlightened Bystand (Peter from UK)
Josh Foster
Kyle & Nani Pratt

I ate too much...let's leave it at that. The room has 3 screens set up...there isn't a bad seat in the house.

Banquet started at 7pmish, Lisa & Erik started the presentation at 7:50.

Erik Mona reminds everyone that the best way to kill hyperactive min-maxxed characters is to have them kill each other. Paizo did a recognition of all their staff.

2013 Key Releases: Ripnugget is a Iconic?

Release spoilers:
Jason Bulmahn takes the mic. Holds up a copy of Mythic Adventures.
- Tells the story of superheroes. Son of god type stuff. You punch dinosaurs in the face.
- Mythic path...not too different from playtest, but more than doubled the number of options.
- In the art, all of the iconics got buffed in Mythich Adventures.
- Archmage, Hierophant, Guardian, Marshal, Trickster.
- Sections on feats and spells.
- A section how to tell a mythic story.
- A section on mythic magic items.
- Legendary Items - items that scale up in level with you.
- Mythic Monsters. Mythic versions of existing monsters.
- Includes an adventure, sample.

Bestiary 4
-Clockwork Dragon.
-Tooth Fairy.
-Kaiju Reptile. Kitsune.
-Cthulhu. Geezo. Nani just fainted.

Strategy Guide (Spring 2014)
- Wolfgang Baur & John Compton.

Erik back to the mic.
Pathfinder Adventure Card Game (August 2013).
- Emulates RPG game, cooperative. One box = 500 cards.
- Rise of the Runelords based.
- Wrath of the Righteous Adventure Path (Mythic rules).
- NEXT AP: February 2014:
Mummy's Mask (Osirian)
-pyramids and mummies and aliens
- Visions of War (Art of Wayne Reynolds)
- Munchkin Pathfinder
- Pathfinder: Goblins (Comic books) 5 issues, monthly.
- Inner Sea Gods (March 2014)! 300 pages on gods of Golarion...prestige classes, subdomains, feats, traits, magic items, unlock the power of gods. Nani: Squee!
- Whiz Kids - More minis. October 2013: Pathfinder Battles Legends of Golarion.
- Gargantuan Green Dragon

Mike Brock to the mic.
- VCs/VLs get recognized.
- 5 star GMs. Rogue Eidolon, Josh Foster, & FloozieBunny (yes, wearing bunny ears)
- Campaign Service Volunteers - 9 exist.
- Paizo Volunteer of the Year Award: Kyle Elliott (totally awesome)

Paizo Gamespace (Gary Teter)
- Access granted right now.
- If you attended banquet this year or next, you have access. Email forthcoming.

Pathfinder Online: Ryan Dancey
- Unity engine (PC & Mac versions)
- 6 or 7 quarterly milestones
- Showed video.

Trivia Contest:

Host Justin Riddler.

Forgive any spelling and grammatical errors...Josh Foster is not unlike a Gibbering Mouther in the confusing state he causes.


Round 1: Paizo Lore & Staff
1) Name the current staff member who was finalist in RPG Superstar? Rob McCreary
2) What Paizo staff member met future spouse at Gencon 2009? SKR
3) Put the following the Paizo staffer in order of hiring first to last: Sara Maria Teter, Jessica Price, Jeff Alravez, Wes Schneider. Jeff, Wes, Sara, Jessica.
4) What is the Paizo significance to the date November 8th. Erik Mona Day.
5) What Paizo's staff member completes this board alias: "Blame ..... for all your problems here?" Cosmo.

Round 2: Rules Question
1) What is the only creature in Bestiary 3 that are armed with pistols? Pale Stranger.
2) Name of the two races in Advanced Race Guide: Caithling, Stryx - Gatherian Wyveran, Trox, Wyrwood...ah geez...sorry...
3) What feat bonus does a familiar grant a wizard as long as it is arms reach? Alertness.
4) What is the hit die type for a commoner? d6
5) In town, your character goes to a baker and buys a baker's dozen loaves of bread. How much does that way? 6.5 lbs.

Round 3: Adventure Paths & Modules
1) How many points on a sihedron? 7
2) Skull & Shackles ship that PCs get shanghai'd to?: Wyrmwood
3) Name 3 of the planets that Reign of Winter path :Earth, Golarion, Triaxis
4) Husband and Wife team that runs the Pathfinder Lodge in Magnimar: Shiela Heidmarch & Sir Conavan Heidmarch
5) Which freelancer has written a piece of every AP so far: Greg A. Vaughn

Round 4: Campaign Setting
1) The Mana Waste separate which two states? Geb & Nex
2) In what nation/region is the town of Thornkeep: River Kingdoms/The Crusader Road
3) Name any one age that happened before Earthfall: Age of Serpents (Age of Creation, Age of Legend)
4) How many of Golarions Gods have ascended by taking the test of the Starstone? 3
5) Name any one of the pre-generated characters from We Be Goblins: Mogmurch (Rita Bigbad, Poog of blahblah)

Round 5: Pathfinder Characters
1) Who is leading the charge on the cover of Ultimate Campaign? Seelah
2) In the novel Pirate's Honor, what kind of creature is the navigator? Lunar Naga
3) What is the name of the now famous pig in We Be Goblins? Squealy Nord
4) What country is the iconic is the iconic Oracle from? Rahadoum
5) What breed of dog is Arnascent? Ustalavic Wolfhound

Not PFS Legal wins: Justin Sluder, Rogue Eidolon, Linda, Peter (Enlightened Bystand, Josh Foster, Kyle&Nani Pratt & Matt Goodall. Painlord blogged.

I'm outta here.

Qadira ***

Drogon wrote:
I know. Paizo isn't posting anything on their blog, either. Did everyone pass out into a food coma?

The internet in the hotel is gawd-awful. Now in hotel bar posting.

Qadira ***

Jiggy wrote:
Fascinating wealth solution! Didn't see that coming. Can't wait to hear the details; sounds promising, though!

I look forward to a spirited discussion on the changes to wealth in another thread...when some helpful person starts it...::hint hint::

Playing Fortress of the Nail now.

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