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PFS judges changing scenarios. A polite discussion.


Pathfinder Society® General Discussion

151 to 200 of 336 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | next > last >>
Andoran *

JohnF wrote:
Kyle Baird wrote:
For tables of 6 players, increase all NPC/Monster hit points by 25% rounded up the nearest whole value.

TPK Kyle? Didn't you drop a zero there, and mean to suggest 250% ?

Seriously, though - 25% probably isn't going to be enough. Six players are likely, all things being equal, to be doing around 50% more damage per round. And all things aren't going to be equal; with more PCs around there's more of a chance that there will be somebody not in melee combat who can buff the party, heal the tank, or generally affect the flow more effectively than just adding another damage dealer.

Then there's the likelihood that with six players damage will be spread out a bit more between the PCs. But you can't necessarily crank up the DPS of the chief bad guy without the risk of a critical one-shotting a main front-line PC combatant. Similarly, with six players at the table and no other changes the average use of consumables will be reduced simply by the fact that there are more shoulders to bear the burden.

I'm sure all this, and a whole lot more besides, factored into the decision to spec scenarios for 6 players, with explicit instructions on how to adjust for parties of four. Universal rules to scale an encounter probably don't exist.

Fortunately, we don't need universal rules - we just need rules to deal with the existing scenarios. And it may well be possible to come up with a small number of guidelines that would cover almost all of them.

I never do this in PFS game due to my aversion to making any changes at all in organized play, but in a Rise of the Runelords game I am running with 6 players, I just use the same number of monsters per encounter and use maximum hit points for their hit dice. It gives them the survivability to give the PCs a challenge. Something that could easily be tested by the PFS team.

****

Mark Moreland wrote:

Ok folks, I'm interested in hearing some proposals for what the guidelines should be, specifically, for what a GM should be permitted to change. This means one or two sentences explaining how to adjust an encounter up or down that would apply to all scenarios.

I'd also like for everyone to put your powergamer hats on tight and try to find examples in existing scenarios where the proposed changes could have unforseen or nonstandard effects.

1. GM's are allowed to make the following scenario modifications as they wish, if every player at the table votes for a more challenging game.

2. Weaker creatures may be increased in number by one for every player above four. GM's need not increase numbers the full amount.

3. Solo boss monsters may be reinforced by appropriate weaker creatures at a rate of no more than the number of players minus two.

4. If APL, not including +1 for size, equals or exceeds the top tier allowed (ie 2 in a tier 1-2), more powerful creatures may be assigned the quick rules advanced monster template.

5. If a party is playing down some or all monsters may be assigned full hit points.

6. GMs using these options may have difficulty completing a scenario on time. To compensate lesser "speed bump" combats, or the second half of combats already essentially won by PCs, may be "handwaved" and declared to be finished.

The above proposal gives GMs some leeway. It is similar to what many GMs have been doing before it was made clear that such changes were not legal. It provides a ceiling as to the maximum change allowed, and a mechanism for GMs to complete a scenario on time.

There will be "unforseen or nonstandard effects." How could there not be? Some GMs would screw this up, just like some GMs screw things up without these rules. However I don't see this as a problem, as per #1 above only those who vote for a harder game would be effected.

One positive effect I believe would be less civil disobediance, or "cheating", on the part of GMs who have become accustomed to increasing scenario difficulty.

I understand the logic of using the forum to debate rules changes. I would suggest, however, that the only good test is a playtest. I propose that if a Venture Captain were interested in testing a proposal such as the one above he be allowed to do so for a limited number of games, ten perhaps, and then report back to Mark, with all involved in playing or GMing encouraged to post their opinion on the forum.

Grand Lodge ** RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

It looks like a lot of people are forgetting/ignoring Mark's "just a couple of lines" request.

I'll toss my idea into the ring:

"If the players request an increased challenge, the GM may increase enemies' armor class, saves, attack bonuses and damage bonuses by +1 each. Additionally, she may grant enemies an extra 2 hit points per hit die."

How about that? Simple, clean, low-word count, and is similar to what a lot of GMs say they typically do. Not much room to be botched because we've got numbers in there (so no "bad judgment calls" getting people killed), and it all starts with "if the players request".

Eh?

Qadira *****

deusvult wrote:
Vinyc Kettlebek wrote:
According to the campaign rules GMs have as much authority to fudge dice rolls as they do making personal adjustments to combat encounters.

I'm with you so far...

Quote:
They don’t have it.
Reference?

I can start with Mike and Mark posting numerous times in various threads to run modules as written and do not cheat.

Now every time you come across any discussion of rolling dice in any of the rulebooks it follows this general progression. Be it for Ability Checks, Skill Checks, Combat, Spell Casting, etc.

1. Roll the appropriate Die/Dice,
2. Add relevant modifiers to find total
3. Compare total to target number(if any) to determine result
4. Apply result

No where does the rules say that you can alter the results of a given die roll as either a GM or a player. A player altering the totals of his rolls is cheating, and a GM who does the same is also cheating.

Now if I missed a paragraph somewhere in the GtPFSOP saying GMs can alter their dice rolls please make a reference to it.

Qadira ***

Jiggy wrote:

It looks like a lot of people are forgetting/ignoring Mark's "just a couple of lines" request.

I'll toss my idea into the ring:

"If the players request an increased challenge, the GM may increase enemies' armor class, saves, attack bonuses and damage bonuses by +1 each. Additionally, she may grant enemies an extra 2 hit points per hit die."

How about that? Simple, clean, low-word count, and is similar to what a lot of GMs say they typically do. Not much room to be botched because we've got numbers in there (so no "bad judgment calls" getting people killed), and it all starts with "if the players request".

Eh?

Jiggy, if I may change your words just slightly

"If the majority of players request an increased challenge, the GM may increase any or all of the following on by +1:
-armor class,
-saves,
-attack bonuses
-damage bonuses
-DCs
Additionally, she may grant enemies up to 2 extra hit points per hit die.
These changes may be made as needed during the running of the adventure, in mid encounter."

how's that?

Grand Lodge ** RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Making it a list like that takes up more space, but otherwise that seems in the same spirit as what I was after. :)


One or two lines? My answer is different now that the assumed table size is 6 and not 4, but here goes:

+1 mook/pc over 4
non-mooks get the advanced simple template (roughly "+2 to everything").

All the changes for the non-mooks can be included in the existing statblock with a slash or in parenthesis, with or without itallics to indicate the change. And just don't allow anymore Solo-BBGs, always include at least one mook so the numbers can be adjusted up from there.

Now that the assumed average party size is 6, I bet 80% of the issues go away on their own. It will become more important to scale down, and in that case, -1 mook per pc less than 6, max of -2. Done.

Qadira ***

Jiggy wrote:
Making it a list like that takes up more space, but otherwise that seems in the same spirit as what I was after. :)

I've found lists like that are easier for some people to re-read - they know the main parts, they just need to check what EXACTLY was on the list.

you did notice the added bold? and the fact that I added DCs to the list? and the fact that modifications "on the fly" are allowed?

Qadira ***

TwoWolves wrote:


One or two lines? My answer is different now that the assumed table size is 6 and not 4, but here goes:

+1 mook/pc over 4
non-mooks get the advanced simple template (roughly "+2 to everything").

All the changes for the non-mooks can be included in the existing statblock with a slash or in parenthesis, with or without itallics to indicate the change. And just don't allow anymore Solo-BBGs, always include at least one mook so the numbers can be adjusted up from there.

Now that the assumed average party size is 6, I bet 80% of the issues go away on their own. It will become more important to scale down, and in that case, -1 mook per pc less than 6, max of -2. Done.

Please define "mook". Would that allow the addition of brown mold to a mummy? Or electric eels to an encounter with a flesh golem?

also, when are these modifications allowed? when the players request them? by encounter? added for one encounter and not for another? Is it an "all or noting modification"?

Cheliax ****

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Nosig, I think he means if there are fights like rogue 1/fighter 1s for the 3-4 table, that's a mook fight and their numbers should be increased so the fight lasts longer than a round.

Single combat advanced simple template sounds great; The Dalsine Affair will kill people even worse though.

Taldor ***

Vinyc Kettlebek wrote:
deusvult wrote:
Vinyc Kettlebek wrote:
According to the campaign rules GMs have as much authority to fudge dice rolls as they do making personal adjustments to combat encounters.

I'm with you so far...

Quote:
They don’t have it.
Reference?

I can start with Mike and Mark posting numerous times in various threads to run modules as written and do not cheat.

Now every time you come across any discussion of rolling dice in any of the rulebooks it follows this general progression. Be it for Ability Checks, Skill Checks, Combat, Spell Casting, etc.

1. Roll the appropriate Die/Dice,
2. Add relevant modifiers to find total
3. Compare total to target number(if any) to determine result
4. Apply result

No where does the rules say that you can alter the results of a given die roll as either a GM or a player. A player altering the totals of his rolls is cheating, and a GM who does the same is also cheating.

Now if I missed a paragraph somewhere in the GtPFSOP saying GMs can alter their dice rolls please make a reference to it.

The difference we have is that you call fudging a die roll cheating, under any and all circumstances, and cite 'do not cheat' as justification for 'do not fudge die rolls'.

I on the other hand, consider occasional fudges good GMing. And there's plenty of posts I could also cite about making sure you're a good GM.

Let's remove 'cheating' and 'good GMing' from the question and just focus on GMs fudging die rolls in PFSOP.

I submit this thread..

Furthermore, this thread.

Let's not forget page 403 of the CRB. I quote:
"Rolling Dice:
Some GMs prefer to roll all their dice in front of the players, letting the results fall where they may. Others prefer to mask all rolls behind a screen, hiding the results from the PCs so that, if they need to, they can fudge the dice results to make the game do what they want. Neither way is the "correct" way; choose whichever you wish, or even mix and match as feels right for you."

And, since that text is NOT omitted from the PFSOP rules, you have it quite literally in black and white that a GM may fudge dice. You're definately not supposed to over-use the tool, but it's a legitimate tool. Even in PFS.

And in my case, the way I see it is that if I may fudge dice, there's no meaningful difference between that and padding a solo BBEG's HP total, for example. Or even deducting from it, if the case warrants. Just because you deviate from script or fudge a die roll, doesn't mean it's to make it harder on PCs.. sometimes they just deserve a break.

"Oooh, wow.. comes down to this.. the BBEG is gonna finish mopping the floor with you guys unless this spell works..

*clatter*

*ignore*

Huzzah! The BBEG falls under your spell..."

Grand Lodge ** RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

deusvult wrote:
And in my case, the way I see it is that if I may fudge dice, there's no meaningful difference between that and padding a solo BBEG's HP total, for example.

One is (as you cited) allowed by the Core Rules and has (to my knowledge) met no resistance from the Campaign Coordinator.

The other has no such rules support and has been repeatedly expressly forbidden by the Campaign Coordinator.

That's not a meaningful difference?

Andoran ***** Venture-Lieutenant, California—Fresno aka Sarta

One of the tricks I've found for increasing difficulty is to stagger the challenge. So, if as written, the scenario calls for three villains leaping out and attacking, do the following:

Round 1: Run as written.

Round 2: If two or more mooks were killed in round 1, add 3 more.

Round 2: If one mook was killed in round 1, add 2 more.

Round 2: If no nooks were killed, run as written.

The big advantage of this tactic is that you don't have to guess if the party can handle beefing up the encounter.

Simply doubling the number of NPC's and hoping for the best isn't very responsible. The party may not be able to handle fighting all 6 at once, but actually be challenged by fighting 3-4 at a time.

Qadira ***

Jiggy wrote:
deusvult wrote:
And in my case, the way I see it is that if I may fudge dice, there's no meaningful difference between that and padding a solo BBEG's HP total, for example.

One is (as you cited) allowed by the Core Rules and has (to my knowledge) met no resistance from the Campaign Coordinator.

The other has no such rules support and has been repeatedly expressly forbidden by the Campaign Coordinator.

That's not a meaningful difference?

in his eyes Jiggy, no. as he said "the way I see it is".

(additional snarky comments deleted before posting)

Andoran *****

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

I don't like Fudging dice, it makes them all sticky...

Taldor ***

Jiggy wrote:
deusvult wrote:
And in my case, the way I see it is that if I may fudge dice, there's no meaningful difference between that and padding a solo BBEG's HP total, for example.

One is (as you cited) allowed by the Core Rules and has (to my knowledge) met no resistance from the Campaign Coordinator.

The other has no such rules support and has been repeatedly expressly forbidden by the Campaign Coordinator.

That's not a meaningful difference?

In reality? no.

In your choice of how to interpret the priority of M&M's/PFS rules, you have the following where you think the BBEG needs some 'help' being something memorable and/or more than a yawner of a challenge.

It IS legal to make sure the BBEG wins initiative, and always hits for max/near max damage.

It is NOT legal to make sure a mook or two from earlier in the mod ran to the BBEG for protection and be present for the climactic showdown.

Me, I think that the latter is a ton less offensive to the 'integrity' of the scenario/experience. And more in spirit of what M&M would want from me as a GM.

Jiggy, when we play "guess what M&M Means when they say "Don't do anything *I* wouldn't do..", we draw the line in different places. You're not any more wrongbad than I am.

Qadira ***

Will Johnson wrote:

One of the tricks I've found for adding extra challenges is to stagger the challenge. So, if as written, the scenario calls for three villains leaping out and attacking, do the following:

Round 1: Run as written.

Round 2: If two or more mooks were killed in round 1, add 3 more.

Round 2: If one mook was killed in round 1, add 2 more.

Round 2: If no nooks were killed, run as written.

The big advantage of this tactic is that you don't have to guess if the party can handle beefing up the encounter.

Simply doubling the number of NPC's and hoping for the best isn't very responsible. The party may not be able to handle fighting all 6 at once, but actually be challenged by fighting 3-4 at a time.

and realize that some parties are "one shot wonders".

I have a lot of PCs that can drop one guy... but not two. Sometimes even all the bad guys I can see. In one shot. Or if I have two, I'll be out of shots when we get to the final encounter. Several times my PC will have "Cake Walked" the first 2 or 4 encounters due to my gimmicks (spells, expendables, etc.) only to be looking at going into the final Boss fight with just 0 level spells. I'd be a little "put out" to realize that the reason my PC is out of spells, is that she was doing TO GOOD in the first 3 encounters.

Grand Lodge ** RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

deusvult wrote:
Jiggy wrote:
That's not a meaningful difference?
In reality? no.

You see no difference between "explicitly allowed" and "explicitly forbidden"? Then there's nothing else to say to you.

Taldor ***

Jiggy wrote:
deusvult wrote:
Jiggy wrote:
That's not a meaningful difference?
In reality? no.

You see no difference between "explicitly allowed" and "explicitly forbidden"? Then there's nothing else to say to you.

We disagree about what falls under "explicitly forbidden." What I say does not, you say does.


nosig wrote:
TwoWolves wrote:


One or two lines? My answer is different now that the assumed table size is 6 and not 4, but here goes:

+1 mook/pc over 4
non-mooks get the advanced simple template (roughly "+2 to everything").

All the changes for the non-mooks can be included in the existing statblock with a slash or in parenthesis, with or without itallics to indicate the change. And just don't allow anymore Solo-BBGs, always include at least one mook so the numbers can be adjusted up from there.

Now that the assumed average party size is 6, I bet 80% of the issues go away on their own. It will become more important to scale down, and in that case, -1 mook per pc less than 6, max of -2. Done.

Please define "mook". Would that allow the addition of brown mold to a mummy? Or electric eels to an encounter with a flesh golem?

also, when are these modifications allowed? when the players request them? by encounter? added for one encounter and not for another? Is it an "all or noting modification"?

"Mook" is an already existing critter in the scenario. You don't get to add "whatever the hell I want" to an encounter. If the encounter calls for 3 orcs, you have 4 at a 5 party table and 5 at a 6 party table. If the final encounter is an evil cleric, give him the advanced simple ("+2 to everything") template, with stats already incorporated in the standard statblock but differentiated by itallics or parentheses in a standardized fashion, and add one or two "acolytes" or whatever the party has already encountered in the scenario, as in "see page XX", as is already done for many "filler" encounters. Or make sure every big boss fight already has, for example, "Evil Cleric + 2 Evil Acolytes" instead of just "Evil Cleric", and you scale by upping the number of evil acolytes and +2 bumping the cleric.

Variable numbers of cannon fodder foes helps even the action inequality that comes from larger tables, and it also shifts players away from single-target-pile-on tactics to some consideration for area control. Fighters who take Cleave and Wizards who take Fireball want to be able to use these spells effectively sometimes too.

Qadira ***

deusvult wrote:
Jiggy wrote:
deusvult wrote:
And in my case, the way I see it is that if I may fudge dice, there's no meaningful difference between that and padding a solo BBEG's HP total, for example.

One is (as you cited) allowed by the Core Rules and has (to my knowledge) met no resistance from the Campaign Coordinator.

The other has no such rules support and has been repeatedly expressly forbidden by the Campaign Coordinator.

That's not a meaningful difference?

In reality? no.

In your choice of how to interpret the priority of M&M's/PFS rules, you have the following where you think the BBEG needs some 'help' being something memorable and/or more than a yawner of a challenge.

It IS legal to make sure the BBEG wins initiative, and always hits for max/near max damage.

It is NOT legal to make sure a mook or two from earlier in the mod ran to the BBEG for protection and be present for the climactic showdown.

Me, I think that the latter is a ton less offensive to the 'integrity' of the scenario/experience. And more in spirit of what M&M would want from me as a GM.

Jiggy, when we play "guess what M&M Means when they say "Don't do anything *I* wouldn't do..", we draw the line in different places. You're not any more wrongbad than I am.

wow... you hit a hot button for me. I had to walk away and I've had to type this twice.

and the worst part is I am sure you mean it.

This line:
"It IS legal to make sure the BBEG wins initiative, and always hits for max/near max damage."

let me see if I can clearly type a response.
I have a character who is all about going first. He goes in the surprize round, even when he's surprized. and he's something like +16 Init (at 6th level) I guess I should never run him at your table then... scrap the character concept.
I guess I wasted Traits, Feats, Spells, Magic Items and a level dip in wizard just to have the judge say... "sorry, I'll go first now."

and that's not even speaking about the parts:
"always hits"
and
"for max/near max damage."

I'm going to go away now and eat lunch now.

wow - I still can't get over...
"It IS legal to make sure the BBEG wins initiative, and always hits for max/near max damage."

goodness - where did I miss this in the rules?

Taldor ***

nosig wrote:

wow - I still can't get over...

"It IS legal to make sure the BBEG wins initiative, and always hits for max/near max damage."

goodness - where did I miss this in the rules?

Nosig, my point was that *I* don't like that option either, and I prefer the option which has a legality that Jiggy and I disagree on.

Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Captain, Illinois—Decatur aka TwilightKnight

Well this is certainly developing into a length thread now isn't it...who would have expect that? [/sarcasm]

I was/am one in the camp of giving GM's more freedom to adjudicate the scenario to account for table variations, however, that options does not seem to be shared by Mike and Mark. That's fine, so I'll support the rules. I consider myself a good GM and capable of making the scenario interesting and fun within the RAW guidelines, and I expect the vast majority of our GM's do too. However, let me share this little interesting snippet that seems to have gotten missed...GM's already have a rule that suggests you can do a lot more than what is printed in the scenario, under a certain condition.

That condition is home games.

GtPFSOP p.25 in the Your Duties as a Game Master section wrote:
"Depending on how you play with your home group, you may take your time playing through the scenario and allow PC's to follow up on interesting sideline details or personal goals of their characters as you see fit"

*emphasis mine

This suggests giving the GM an enormous amount of power to change/add/adjust aspects of the scenario, with the caveat it is a home-game venue. Now, I have no idea what qualifies as a "home-game" and I expect that will vary greatly from player to player, nor do I know what is/not considered a "side detail" or "personal goal," but if more GM freedom is what you require, it appears there is an option for you.

That being said, I am willing to see what affect, if any, targeting six player tables (instead of four) will have on this issue. If it largely solves the problem (if one even exists), then perhaps over time, the previous season encounters will be updated. Or maybe we just start retiring more old stuff knowing that it is sub-optimal for the society. If it doesn't work, then maybe we need to readdress the GM freedom issue. Until then, I encourage everyone to follow the rules as they exist. We all choose to play this game and with that choice comes the expectation that you will follow the guidelines set forth to govern it.

Qadira ***

hay wow Bob... you gave me a great idea.

It would be cool to re-issue the old mods - re-written and "re-fer-bushed-ed" as the gobbos would say. Kind of ala Tide of Morning/Tide of Twilight only more of an exact re-write. As on is "retired" it could be "re-tired"/retreaded and re-issued.
Silent Tide for example would be really cool written under current rules/guidelines (nice mod now, but would be even better with Grandmaster Torch now a faction head). We could get the old author to do it, or even get a co-author to do the re-write.

just a wild idea.

(Heck - I'd even be willing to re-write one myself!)

Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Captain, Illinois—Decatur aka TwilightKnight

That sounds a little more ambitious than what the Guide is suggesting. I don't think the intent (RAI) is that you can re-write the scenario, just make some tweaks to customize it for your players...but only for a home game.

Mark has said before that updating older scenarios, whether from v3.5 to PFRPG, or otherwise, is a major undertaking with very little financial gain from Paizo's perspective. They are not likely to be receptive to unannounced/unapproved submissions of old scenario rewrites, nor are we empowered to officially run any rewrites for credit.

Andoran *****

Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber
Bob Jonquet wrote:
That sounds a little more ambitious than what the Guide is suggesting. I don't think the intent (RAI) is that you can re-write the scenario, just make some tweaks to customize it for your players...but only for a home game.

I actually think the idea for that section is to allow more Interaction with the PC and the world since you have so much more time with a Home game.

Quote:
allow PC's to follow up on interesting sideline details or personal goals of their characters

I don't think it allows you to make mechanical adjustments to the scenario, what it does allow you to do is add rolepaying situations into the scenario that is not normally there to allow for interesting sideline details or personal goals of their characters.

Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Captain, Illinois—Decatur aka TwilightKnight

Dragnmoon wrote:
I don't think it allows you to make mechanical adjustments to the scenario, what it does allow you to do is add rolepaying situations into the scenario that is not normally there to allow for interesting sideline details or personal goals of their characters.

I don't know, either way, but it sure is suggestive.

Qadira ***

sorry Bob. I realize that it would be a waste of time. I just would hate to see some of the old ones retired. Perhaps I was reading to much into your statement:

"...perhaps over time, the previous season encounters will be updated. Or maybe we just start retiring more old stuff knowing that it is sub-optimal for the society."

and I was not suggesting to send in "unannounced/unapproved submissions of old scenario rewrites" - in fact I would rather see the old adventures done by the original authors, or at the least in close colaberation with them.

But it was just a brain-storming idea. Not ment to be taken in any way as official policy - from a noted non-official source (that would be me!).

;)

**

Mark Moreland wrote:
Swiftbrook, note that this is a method to scale up one specific encounter. This sort of alteration is likely how we will handle scaling down to 4-person tables in season 4. What I'm looking for is a single rule a few sentences long that could appear in the Guide to Pathfinder Society Organized Play to cover as many possible situations in which a GM might wish to alter the statistics of an encounter.

I don't think you can, but I hope you come close.

There are just too many different things going on. I ran Year of the Shadow Lodge recently and I added an extra goblin to the market to adjust for a larger party. The bad guys got one more action for the PCs two extra actions. It worked out fine ... this time. How do you put that into one short line (rule)? I think this is/was in the spirit of what you're trying to do. That said, I've heard of GMs making changes and adding stuff way out of line.

I guess it comes down to can you trust the GMs. For every 10 GMs that do it right and make a equally fair but better experience there is one GM who blows it (intentional or not). The six players at that table take offense and complain to Mike & Mark, so that's what they're hearing and more importantly, that's what they're having to deal with. Allowing GMs a little leeway is much more work for VCs, Mike and Mark.

Understand, I want a little leeway. I'd love guidelines and suggestions. I just understand that it is very hard two write good guidelines for GMs especially when GMs are making their own changes and causing problems.

Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Captain, Illinois—Decatur aka TwilightKnight

What do *you* think about adjusting the maps? Some are just too small to accommodate a normal sized group of PCs plus the enemies. Or what if I have some really cool 3D terrain that I want to use to enhance the visual play experience, but it doesn't quite match the author's map? If I redraw the map at a larger scale, etc. is that too much GM caveat?

**

Bob Jonquet wrote:
What do *you* think about adjusting the maps? Some are just too small to accommodate a normal sized group of PCs plus the enemies. Or what if I have some really cool 3D terrain that I want to use to enhance the visual play experience, but it doesn't quite match the author's map? If I redraw the map at a larger scale, etc. is that too much GM caveat?

Does it change the dynamics of the encounter (tactics, area of effects) significantly?

Changing a 5' wide hall to a 10' wide hall where there is a Wizards at the end with a want of lightning bolts ... big change ... a no no.

Changing a 60' x 80' to a 65' x 80' room, not so much of a problem.

Drew the map so it's a 25' x 40' room instead of a 20' x 40' room, probably not a problem.

(put on sarcasm hat)
Changing a 5' x 100' flat map to a 30' x 30' dwarven forge model ... cool!

Cheliax ****

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Bob Jonquet wrote:
What do *you* think about adjusting the maps? Some are just too small to accommodate a normal sized group of PCs plus the enemies. Or what if I have some really cool 3D terrain that I want to use to enhance the visual play experience, but it doesn't quite match the author's map? If I redraw the map at a larger scale, etc. is that too much GM caveat?

On the subject of maps, sometimes they make the map too big for a flipmat; sometimes a single room is too big for a flipmat. At this point, my only recourse is to shorten a staircase here, move in a wall there, just so I can fit it on a table.

Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Captain, Illinois—Decatur aka TwilightKnight

My personal reason for asking is that I am preparing a scenario that I will be running three times at PaizoCon, 3-4 times at GenCom, and probably a few times locally and I want to create some really cool 3D terrain using Fat Dragon Games. The scenes I can create are going to be somewhat different from the printed scenario maps. IMO, not appreciably and it should enrich the play experience, but I wonder if (1) I would offend anyone for not following strict RAW, or (2) encourage other GM's to deviate from RAW and cause a problem for the community.

Qadira *****

deusvult wrote:
Jiggy wrote:
deusvult wrote:
Jiggy wrote:
That's not a meaningful difference?
In reality? no.

You see no difference between "explicitly allowed" and "explicitly forbidden"? Then there's nothing else to say to you.

We disagree about what falls under "explicitly forbidden." What I say does not, you say does.

It seems like you will ignore any rule(s) you want from the tone of some of your posts, and then justify it because you are doing it to advance an abstract concept of “creating more fun.”

With your gaming philosophy you should probably stick to home games instead of Organized Play campaigns. Where you can be in complete control on how everything plays out during a game.

Grand Lodge ** RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

I'd personally never thought about maps when pondering the "run as written" directive. Interesting...

**

Bob Jonquet wrote:
My personal reason for asking is that I am preparing a scenario that I will be running three times at PaizoCon, 3-4 times at GenCom, and probably a few times locally and I want to create some really cool 3D terrain using Fat Dragon Games. The scenes I can create are going to be somewhat different from the printed scenario maps. IMO, not appreciably and it should enrich the play experience, but I wonder if (1) I would offend anyone for not following strict RAW, or (2) encourage other GM's to deviate from RAW and cause a problem for the community.

Great, no problem, go for it! .... now I've got to plan my schedule so I can play at Bob's tables ... Oh, and an extra Pathfinder mini for a bribe for the Muster Marshal.

Looks like that would be Slot 3 #3-EX: The Cyphermage Dilemma (1-5) check ... My dwarf and I will be there.

(End off topic fun)

Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Captain, Illinois—Decatur aka TwilightKnight

Swiftbrook wrote:
Looks like that would be Slot 3 #3-EX: The Cyphermage Dilemma (1-5) check

Stop reading between my lines. Nothing to see here. Moving along. ;-)

Cheliax ***

Simple fix: For season 0-3 scenarios the maximum legal table size is 5 players if playing in sub-tier and 6 players if playing up.

**

ZomB wrote:
Simple fix: For season 0-3 scenarios the maximum legal table size is 5 players if playing in sub-tier and 6 players if playing up.

So what do you do when six players sit down at your table play at the top of the tier already? Six 5th level PC playing a 1-5 tier adventure?

Cheliax ****

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Swiftbrook wrote:
ZomB wrote:
Simple fix: For season 0-3 scenarios the maximum legal table size is 5 players if playing in sub-tier and 6 players if playing up.
So what do you do when six players sit down at your table play at the top of the tier already? Six 5th level PC playing a 1-5 tier adventure?

Have two of them put down.

Qadira ***

Mergy wrote:
Swiftbrook wrote:
ZomB wrote:
Simple fix: For season 0-3 scenarios the maximum legal table size is 5 players if playing in sub-tier and 6 players if playing up.
So what do you do when six players sit down at your table play at the top of the tier already? Six 5th level PC playing a 1-5 tier adventure?
Have two of them put down.

ooohhh.... "chrickets chirping"

(Edited) wait - what are the rule on how to pick which two?

Cheliax ****

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Roll off, what else?

Qadira ***

Mergy wrote:
Roll off, what else?

ha! easy stuff then. I'll take 10... wait, am I under pressure?

;)

Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Captain, Illinois—Decatur aka TwilightKnight

nosig wrote:
wait, am I under pressure?

I'm poking you with a pointy stick does that count?

Cheliax ***

Swiftbrook wrote:
So what do you do when six players sit down at your table play at the top of the tier already? Six 5th level PC playing a 1-5 tier adventure?

You only advertise for 5 in the first place. A sixth player doesn't sit down at all.

Or you advertise/pre-arrange for a 6 player play-up table. Special case.

Or if you want it really simple: For season 0-3 scenarios the maximum legal table size is 5 players.

Shadow Lodge *****

nosig wrote:
Mergy wrote:
Roll off, what else?

ha! easy stuff then. I'll take 10... wait, am I under pressure?

;)

It's at my table. You tell me.

****

Jiggy wrote:

It looks like a lot of people are forgetting/ignoring Mark's "just a couple of lines" request.

I'll toss my idea into the ring:

"If the players request an increased challenge, the GM may increase enemies' armor class, saves, attack bonuses and damage bonuses by +1 each. Additionally, she may grant enemies an extra 2 hit points per hit die."

How about that? Simple, clean, low-word count, and is similar to what a lot of GMs say they typically do. Not much room to be botched because we've got numbers in there (so no "bad judgment calls" getting people killed), and it all starts with "if the players request".

Eh?

Jiggy, I would suggest the following amended version:

If all players vote for an increased challenge, the GM may increase an enemies' armor class, saves, attack bonuses and damage bonuses by +1 or +2 each, and increase hit points by an extra +2 or +4 per hit die. In addition the number of low level monsters in an encounter may be increased by up to +1 for every player over four.

Still two sentences, allows for a few extra mooks which can make all the difference in a scenario.

I still prefer my original version with six two sentence rules, and I think a change of this nature justifies the expenditure of more than two sentences. I thought what Mark meant was a set of guidelines, each expressed succinctly. But in any case it can by done as you have already demonstrated in two sentences.

Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Captain, Illinois—Decatur aka TwilightKnight

ZomB wrote:
A sixth player doesn't sit down at all

Denying a 6th player would technically be, IMO, violating the RAW, but then again, to each his own. An argument could be made that the rules only indicated that a legal table is up to six player and may not imply the right to play at a table less than that.

ZomB wrote:
the maximum legal table size is 5 players

That creates multiple rules for the same part of the game. We don't want that.

BTW, nice avatar name :-)

*****

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Why would the bad guys need to hit harder or save better if there's more PCs? That doesn't make any sense. The only thing they need is more actions. This is accomplished in two ways, more bad guys or more rounds of life. Since encounters and bad guys vary so much in both quantity, quality, and terrain, always adding additional bad guys is very hard to implement. Adding hit points is much simpler and buys the bad guys more action(s).

I must say that I like the chart ideas posted up thread (if encounter has X bad guys, at 6 player tables use Y bad guys. It would probably be very complicated to pick the right numbers, but warrants looking into.


Offhand, I'd say "because he'll (potentially) be making more saves, and will have to spread his damage around to more targets".

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