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Potential Overhaul of Con Boons


Pathfinder Society® General Discussion

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Shadow Lodge * Contributor, RPG Superstar 2010 Top 8

Crazy thought--but what about creating some new content for boons?

People already mentioned spells, but what about archetypes, feats, etc, stuff that's not in any books anywhere?

I think a custom Pathfinder-themed archetype that you could apply to a new character or multiclass into with an existing character would certainly draw people to conventions as much as a race would.

Downside: It would cost Paizo time and money to make them (which race boons don't, currently).

***** Venture-Lieutenant, Illinois—Carbondale aka Disturbed1

nosig wrote:
Seth Gipson wrote:
TwoWolves wrote:


The example above was a Headband of Wisdom +2 that is also a Phylactery of Positve Energy (or whatever it's called).

1. A slotted item (the headband) + a slotless item (the phylactery) would probably = a slotted item (headband + phylactery), which basically gives you no benefit that the separate items dont.

2. I would be stunned (for 1d20 minutes, lol) if they ever approve a 'create a magic item' boon.

hate to say this, but a phylactery is a sloted item. It goes in the same slot as a headband.

Dont hate to say it. I'm thanksful for the correction. I guess I assumed that since it was a wondrous item that it was slotless for some reason. My dwarven cleric is very disapointed now, though at least I hadnt bought the phylactery yet, considering I'm already wearing the headband. :/

Shadow Lodge ***** Venture-Captain, Washington—Eastern Washington aka WalterGM

nosig wrote:

To many really negitive posts on here for me to respond. I had hoped to hear something new here, and to see some new ideas, but what I find is mostly... heck, it's making me negitive, and I don't want to be part of the problem.

Time to just go away for a while I guess... I'll go haunt other threads now, check back in a few hours and see if we are still gitting people posting "attack response" posts...

But what about my post Nosig? I thought you'd be onboard with the semi "nosig's toolkit" boon I suggested :P

Silver Crusade ****

@Nosig
I've written out huge paragraphs two or three times now to shoot one idea or another down and then deleted them because I felt they were too negative for the intent of this thread. I'm trying to restrain myself. :)

*** Venture-Captain, Georgia—Athens aka Pharothan

This is sort OOC but:

"Lucky trinket- Player can choose another object that can be use in place of a faction shirt for a " shirt reroll" for this particular character. This would still only allow one reroll per session. Describe it in detail below."

I understand that this would discourage shirt purchase, but it is only for one character, and it encourages Con attendance, so I think it is a fair trade.

Personally, I would love to have a "lucky" coin prop to flip at the table that would actually have some game effect. Or a hat I could always wear to the table that would "announce" that I was playing a particular character. Or even a stuffed animal that represented your familiar. :)

Shadow Lodge ***

1 person marked this as a favorite.

I feel like people are going about this the wrong way. While direct improvements to characters might be desired they create both an arms race in power and a real imbalance between people with and without them.

At the moment the racial boons ooze with flavor, I find people tend to use them to make something with more theme/flavor than normal. While a Tiefling is probably better for any int casting class that doesn't care about cha than any core race, they aren't better for everything.

Replacing racial boons with direct power up boons could be fun, however I think it would be detrimental to both the extra flavor that I tend to see from people when they build something special and the enjoyment of optimizers who may now feel that they need the extra +whatever boon.

I think the replacement to racial boons would have to be equally flavorful without providing a direct and obvious mechanical advantage.

Also many people say PFS is too easy, do we want to make it easier by giving people more free stuff?

Andoran ***** Venture-Lieutenant, Minnesota—Anoka

Pirate Rob wrote:

I feel like people are going about this the wrong way. While direct improvements to characters might be desired they create both an arms race in power and a real imbalance between people with and without them.

At the moment the racial boons ooze with flavor, I find people tend to use them to make something with more theme/flavor than normal. While a Tiefling is probably better for any int casting class that doesn't care about cha than any core race, they aren't better for everything.

Replacing racial boons with direct power up boons could be fun, however I think it would be detrimental to both the extra flavor that I tend to see from people when they build something special and the enjoyment of optomizers who may now feel that they need the extra +whatever boon.

I agree. Tried to say this, and I think Kyle Baird tried to say this, but nobody is listening.

Grand Lodge ** RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

For what it's worth, Andy, I actually thought you were concerned about the power level of some individual ideas (as opposed to having issues with the concept of power-ups in general), and I thought Kyle was just offering additional suggestions.

In any case, it's a valid point. Perhaps my +1 stat boons were less of a good idea than I thought.

Cheliax ****

What about a boon that brought back the old heirloom weapon trait? I know a lot of builds that would appreciate something like that.

**

1 person marked this as a favorite.

In Summary:
Page One

Spoiler:
Each faction has it's own set of X unique chronicles.
• The chronicle is two-fold: It requires the PC to do something in a scenario that aligns with the goals of their faction. It provides either its own small boon (+1 to a certain skill perhaps) and/or it provides a piece to a much larger boon that aligns with the faction growing in influence (perhaps a permanent PP or Fame boost). The larger boon is only gained after X-Y successful unique chronicles.
• 1) Extra PP, or even Fame, say PP to replace some already spent.
• 2) Or a Family Connection? (My adopted father's sister's step son's wife is the sister of a Venture Captain.)
• 3) The ability to take a level of an NPC class. This would not be overpowering (some would say it's a lose of power) and very unique. And very noticable - "How'd you get to be an Expert?" "Con Boon".
• 4) A boon to allow a PC to be in two factions... the bridge character between two factions. He get's faction missions for either/both and gains Fame/Vanities in both?
• Premature access to a vanity (I know at least one player who is saving prestige just to get one of the vanities for their character)
• Faction Boons
• Taldor - Noble bearing. +4 on diplomacy with Taldor nobility, +2 on intimidate with peseants. (likely needs to be stronger)
• Cheliax - Legal tongue. +2 on Sense Motive, +2 on bluff vs humaniods.
• Andoran - Inspiring Freedom. +1 compentence bonus on skill checks, saves and to hit rolls when dealing with known slavers.
• Lantern Lodge - Serene mein. +2 on concentration checks.
• Shadow Lodge - Both sides of the fence. You may complete Shadow Lodgeor Grand Lodge missions for prestige (still maximum 2 per scenario).
-Deity Boons
• Cayden's Blessing- As a follower of Cayden you gain a +2 sacred bonus vs injested toxins and halve the hardness for sunder attempts for cell doors, chains or anything else the GM feels pertains to restraints.
• Caliistra's Blessing- As a follower of the Savoured Sting, you gain a +1 sacred bonus on all saves vs poison, and can do lethal damage with a whip.
• Exceptional Recruit Apply this boon to a brand-new PC. That PC gains 3XP, 4 Prestige/Fame, and 1,100gp.
• Boon permitting exceptional use of PP/Fame (I can't keep the two straight).
• Permanent +1 to CON
• Permanent +1 to physical stat of choice
• Permanent +1 to mental stat of choice
• Permanent +1 to stat of choice
• X/day quickened true strike SLA
• Give a brand new PC a free jump to 2nd level (3XP, 4PP/Fame, 1,100-ish gp)
• +1 to a stat.
• pretty much any SLA
• the ability to purchase scroll s at higher than minimum caster level.
• access to an otherwise unavailable item (like Celestial Plate or a Staff of Mithral Might)
• More advanced guns would bring me to a con
• Maybe allowing a combination item, such as a +WIS Headband/Phylactery of Positive Channeling, following the item creation rule of base item price + (1.5 x secondary ability price)
• Or allowing an upgrade to a named item (+3 Oathbow, anyone?)
• take the template instead of a level when you would otherwise level up an existing character.
• Adding an Advanced Simple or Celestial or Fiendish template might be cool though
• Darkvision 60ft (or increase existing darkvision by 30ft)
• Bonus feat (but can't be a combat feat, maybe?)
• X/day SLAs of comprehend languages or other utility spells
• A cool idea might be for a boon that say only 10 people ever will get (drawing at Gen Con?) like the ability to work with Mike Brock and Mark Moreland to craft a custom magic item (or race?--no, stop throwing things at me!) or whatever.
• Completely custom item would be cool. Maybe access to a custom spell. A spell you could even pass around and spread the love (and your creativity)

Page Two
Spoiler:

• A free Race trait instead of a swapout might be an option.
• My suggestion is a 10% discount on all purchases in a specific region (Andoran, Ustalav, w/e), but not Absalom...
• These could either a) correlate with scenarios being offered or b) have parts of Golarion assigned to the real world.
• The thought here is that by going to a convention in a certain region OR going to a convention with specific scenarios offered (depending on which way the idea is fleshed out), grants a special boon.
• This could be done in character as well. Much like the chronicle I mentioned before, have a chronicle with 20 regions of Golarion on it. Each time your character goes to that region, check it off. After you check off every region, you get a powerful boon (with the assumption your character would be late in their career).
• Use CHA instead of WIS for will saves
• - You character gets a unique, non combatant follower. Heralds and porters are cool, but can I get someone to do the talking for me? Maybe a translator. He has common and four languages. Pathfinders go all over the globe, maybe you have someone with ranks in know. geography or local at like a +2. Nothing too fancy.
• - Your character gains a flaw with in game mechanics and a benefit. From your ordeal fighting off all those undead, you get a +2 to identify undead in the future. However, the battle left you scarred and you suffer a -2 on diplomacy checks with nobility. Etc, etc.
• - Your character imparts some knowledge to a fellow pathfinder. After the game, your ranger shows that noisy, gorram fighter how to freaking stealth. Pick a skill that you have one or more ranks in, and a player that has no ranks in that skill. You train that player in that skill, granting them a number of ranks equal to 1/2 their level, minimum one. Maybe that skill even becomes a class skill. Whatever, doesn't matter.
• - You character learns how to pack their gear better. Your carrying capacity increases as if your strength score was 2 higher than it actually is. Pseudo muleback cords.
• - Your character takes an advanced course in adventuring at the Grand Lodge in Absalom. As a result, you've learned to keep even the oddest of tools in your pack. In game mechanic is that once per session you can pull a single item of value 50gp or less out of your pack, as it was something that you purchased because you thought it might be useful but had forgotten about. You have to pay for the item you retrieve at the end of the session, recording it on your chronicle sheet.
• A boon that provides the ability to retrain (one time) something regarding your character.
• Maybe the traits you chose at level 1 but now dont like.
• Maybe a feat/ multiple feats.
• Maybe spells learned.
• Maybe the ability to redistribute your stat points.
• Maybe skill points.
• Maybe favored class bonuses.
• Maybe racial features (considering we have the ARG coming out).
• Maybe class features that you have options for (Rage Powers, Cleric Domains, Rogue Talents, etc).
page three
Spoiler:

• What about being able to make a new PC with a higher point buy?
• When you make a new PC using a race that has an ability penalty (like dwarves with CHA, elves with CON, etc), remove that penalty.
• Oh! Another, similar idea: alternate stats for Core races:
• Make a dwarf PC with +2 STR, +2 CON, -2 DEX instead of the normal adjustments.
• Make an elf with +2 DEX, +2 CHA, -2 CON .
• For Spont casters, an extra spell known of their highest level.
• Osiron - A permanent +2 on a knowlege skill, and that skill becomes a class skill. Gain a small earth or air elemental as a companion.
• Grand Lodge - Re-roll a failed saving throw once a session, Add either Knowlege (Geography) or Knowlege (History) as a class skill and get a free skill focus.
• Lantern Lodge - Meridian strike on every crit, or even every hit.
• Qadria, gain a horse animal companion.
• RPG Superstar magic items. Advertises the contest,
• Any boon that is awarded to a XXXX-1 character (as in first time PLAYER) not to first time characters :)
• A chance to win a room at [next big con] (sure you may have to share it with one of those 5th tier GMs, but why not :)
• Boons for season 4 Rune boons. You could do a tattoo/amulet the character has/wears with a benefit corresponding to the approriate rune.
• A slotted item (the headband) + a slotless item (the phylactery) would probably = a slotted item (headband + phylactery), which basically gives you no benefit that the separate items dont.
• For GMs, have games GMed at Authorized Conventions count just like Modules towards GM Stars.
• A Boon that opens up selected Feat/Prestige Class/Archetype/etc. from a third party product.
• A Boon that opens up some of the stuff not allowed in additional resources (Example all the Gun archetypes for other classes in UC)
• Fast Healing 1
• Ferocity
• * DR 3/Cold Iron
• * Amphibious Subtype
• * Blindsense 15 ft
• * Spell Resistance 5+HD
• * Telepathy
• Alkenstar Adept. Your character is familiar with the Mana Wastes and Alkenstar. You may have X archtypes.
• Numerian prospector. In your travels you were able to find a piece of technology from a shard of the silver mount that calved off, or from the mount itself. You may start with an advanced firearm.
Page Four
Spoiler:

• a boon that (temporarily) granted your teamwork feat to another PF
• I think a custom Pathfinder-themed archetype that you could apply to a new character or multiclass into with an existing character would certainly draw people to conventions as much as a race would.
• Lucky trinket- Player can choose another object that can be use in place of a faction shirt for a " shirt reroll" for this particular character. This would still only allow one reroll per session. Describe it in detail below."
• What about a boon that brought back the old heirloom weapon trait?

Shadow Lodge ***** Venture-Captain, Washington—Eastern Washington aka WalterGM

Thanks for the summary Curaigh!

Shadow Lodge ***

1 person marked this as a favorite.

One that allows banned or adventure path traits (Professor Lorimer wrote me a letter of introduction to the PFS!)such as magical knack.

All the best,

Kerney

*** RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32, 2010 Top 8

Thanks for the summary Curaigh,

@Pirate Rob,
I understand your concern about power creep. Of course you have some arguing the boons are racial boons are 'more powerful' so there's already the boon = power creep argument.

Part of my brainstorming was trying to find 'thematic' boons as well. Faction boons, boons tied in with the season they were issued in, etc.

One advantage of faction boons I could see would be a way to 'balance' the factions If Andoran is ahead in the game, then you don't need as many Andoran faction boons. But if Cheliax comes in last then making 4 Cheliax boons available for every Andoran boon encourages the creation of new Chelish characters, or augments existing Chelish charaters.

Overall it's also a way to bring factions front and center. For new players it bonds them to a faction even more.

With my Rune boon example, it would be have the advantage of being thematic *and* visual, if the chronicle sheet has the rune on it, and if it's a brand/tattoo on the character as well.

Grand Lodge ***

How about this:
Double Agent: You may have an evil-aligned character as one of your Pathfinder Society characters. As you are trying to inflitrate the Pathfinder Society on behalf of an evil organization, you must still act like a neutral or good-aligned character.
This could open up antipaladins and evil-only PrCs, like Red Mantis Assassins, which I'm sure a lot of PFS players want to play.

*

I don't think that antipaladins in PFS is a good idea...

Silver Crusade **

A boon that allows a restricted archetype would be awesome. Spellslinger, for one.

Access to a rare familiar? Such as an elemental, etc.

A unique trait, that lets you do something fun once per day (such as a watchman being able to gain a +5 on a diplomacy check with guards once per session).

A unique ioun stone?

Shadow Lodge ** Venture-Lieutenant, California—Silicon Valley aka JohnF

Walter Sheppard wrote:

Boons that may be cool:

- You character gets a unique, non combatant follower.

Nice fluff around a "+2 to skill check" (or similar)

Walter Sheppard wrote:
- Your character imparts some knowledge to a fellow pathfinder.

I'm not sure about this one. It's not a reward for the player who went to the con - it's a reward to be handed out to somebody else.

Walter Sheppard wrote:
- You character learns how to pack their gear better. Your carrying capacity increases as if your strength score was 2 higher than it actually is.

Or even just a +1 ?

Walter Sheppard wrote:
- Your character takes an advanced course in adventuring at the Grand Lodge in Absalom. As a result, you've learned to keep even the oddest of tools in your pack.

This one I really like, though.

Cheliax ****

I really like the idea for alternative racial modifier races. A dwarf with strength instead of constitution, or a halfling who gains intelligence over charisma would both be quite nice.

Actually, I would love an elven sorcerer too, but the racial modifiers make me cry a bit.

Andoran ****

How about some new archetypes that have never been released in any books. This would certainly raise a lot of buzz about the new shiny. People would talk a great deal about how cool my new X version of the fighter is and look at all my cool new abilities.

EDIT: Just saw a few people mentioned this already. Great minds think alike.

Andoran ****

With the new PrC book coming out - another interesting idea might be to tie boons to these upcoming PrCs.

Lantern Lodge

Just allow new races a few at a time while having others be added to the boon list, so there are always new races on the boon list but the races allowed keeps growing as well.

Besides some races should not be stated as rare anyway, since when are kobalds rare? I play those all the time even though they are 1-2 levels behind everyone else power-wise(at early levels anyway) so the argument of them being too powerful does not always apply and with certain required traits(like the fiendish trait that gimps tieflings) could be part of the normal allowance of the race but the boon allows one to go for the full power version.

edit; some argued that they should be special, but PCs are the rare individuals in the game world, PCs are the special characters already.

note; I skipped the middle of this thread having read most of the one that spawned this. sorry if stating something redundant.

Cheliax *

Just throwing some things out. Back in Greyhawk during battle inter actives and core specials at conventions, unique named items could be found. These would normally be named items that Could be upgraded into better versions of themselves with money and the like. That would be really cool to have for con run specials like cypher age / blood under absolom. Even if at big cons or at respectable well run cons with paizo staff, it would be an incentive to travel.
I once for exAmple won a cloak of charisma +2 that acted as a level one sorcerer pearl of power as well, and could be upgraded to plus six. It was an amazing boon, super cool and a lot of fun to have.
The other would be rare familiar or mount or animal. Companion booms. Even if you aren't the class from what I understand most booms can be attached to whatever character you want too, so it would give incentive to make a new. Character and well play play play.
Food for thought.
Skip

Cheliax *

Ps. On my iPad from Origins. Sorry for grammar

Andoran ****

Since the idea of the special archetype has been bounced around by a couple of people, maybe these could come out of the RPG Superstar competition. My thinking is that it would raise the attention of two key pieces of what makes Pathfinder such a community based game product.

*

I pretty much think the current boon system is ok. If any of you have played the current scenarios, you'd know the current boons are quite powerful.

I hope this talk of boons doesn't distract from more important things we could be doing with Mike Brock's time tbh. Do players really need boons to have a good time? Really?

Right now I rarely see any PCs who either aren't Humans or Dwarfs (I've rarely seen races played for roleplaying reasons tbh). I've seen one guy play a boon race. And I go to the big conventions and local ones too.

Everyone wants these unique snowflake PCs, but they forget they aren't unique if everyone has them. I would really hate to see an army of Tieflings, Aasimars, Serpentfolk, Ratfolk, and Dhampirs in the next season. That would be ridiculous and would strain credibility and believability in my mind. If that's going to happen, we might as well have a "Planescape" season that explains the stupidity of the Pathfinder Society being overrun by non-humans. /rolls eyes

Shadow Lodge ** Venture-Lieutenant, California—Silicon Valley aka JohnF

Jason S wrote:
Right now I rarely see any PCs who either aren't Humans or Dwarfs (I've rarely seen races played for roleplaying reasons tbh). I've seen one guy play a boon race. And I go to the big conventions and local ones too.

I've seen a few elves or half-elves, a gnome or two, and the occasional half-orc. And halflings, of course. I've yet to see a boon race in PFS play. That will probably change once the Advanced Race Guide hits the shelves, though - both my wife and I just accquired boons at KublaCon, and so did quite a few other players.

These boons can only be applied to new characters as the first chronicle sheet, so it will take a while for them to trickle up through the tiers.

But at least some of the local GMs will get to see tables with multiple boon races present (or at least multiple boon-race characters); even if none of the other players with boons show up around here, my wife and I have a pair of boons for the same race, and we will probably end up building two shared-backstory characters that will often work together.

Shadow Lodge ***** Venture-Captain, Michigan—Alma

Jason S wrote:
Right now I rarely see any PCs who either aren't Humans or Dwarfs (I've rarely seen races played for roleplaying reasons tbh). I've seen one guy play a boon race. And I go to the big conventions and local ones too.

LOL. One of the groups I organize for started with 3 gnomes and 2 elves. :D I think only one of them have played a human in the group yet and we've been playing for about 8 months.

*

Eric Clingenpeel wrote:
LOL. One of the groups I organize for started with 3 gnomes and 2 elves. :D I think only one of them have played a human in the group yet and we've been playing for about 8 months.

Of course there's variation, there are 20K+ players out there. I'm talking about what I've seen at 30+ convention sessions, not your home game. This weekend I played in a table with 3 gnomes and a halfling, it's still not typical (first gnomes I've seen. Those people weren't optimizers either, maybe anti-optimizers). In my experience, the vast majority of people pick races because of crunch reasons, not fluff. If that wasn't true, I'd see more variation in even the human races (Shoanti, Mwangi) but I never do.

Andoran *****

Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber

We just had a game with a Tengu, Aasimar and a Elf.

There was a Human, but that was the Pregen.

*

Someone also raised the point a few pages ago that Summoners are less common than most of the non-core races, but I often wind up at tables with multiple summoners, so your argument about "special snowflakes" doesn;t really hold water.

Remember that there are literally entire countries of Tengu, Aasimar and Nagaji.

Lantern Lodge

Jason S wrote:
Eric Clingenpeel wrote:
LOL. One of the groups I organize for started with 3 gnomes and 2 elves. :D I think only one of them have played a human in the group yet and we've been playing for about 8 months.

Of course there's variation, there are 20K+ players out there. I'm talking about what I've seen at 30+ convention sessions, not your home game. This weekend I played in a table with 3 gnomes and a halfling, it's still not typical (first gnomes I've seen. Those people weren't optimizers either, maybe anti-optimizers). In my experience, the vast majority of people pick races because of crunch reasons, not fluff. If that wasn't true, I'd see more variation in even the human races (Shoanti, Mwangi) but I never do.

Yep, its sad. Computer games are ruining everything. :(

Separate fluff from mechanics and that might change though.

Worse, it is hard to even find a decent GM that doesn't need prewritten adventures to run a good game.

I am not worried about players being special characters because being special is what makes them PCs, so they are special anyways, so who cares if they are other races?

They said they want incentives to go to cons, there is not a single boon they could hand out to make me more inclined to go to a con. Besides the best way to make both sides happy is to allow gimped versions of the planers and such and allow the weaklings(goblins, kobalds, etc) then the boons can allow the full power planers, lycanthropes(natural type), other templated creatures, etc or even allow a custom point build race from the ARG when it comes out(A 20 point custom race would be an awesome boon, and promote fluff and flavor as well(In world explanation could be "experiment done by evil wizard cult created you", etc))

Andoran **** Venture-Captain, Missouri—Cape Girardeau aka Arnim Thayer

Saint Caleth wrote:
Completely custom item would be cool. Maybe access to a custom spell. A spell you could even pass around and spread the love (and your creativity).

Example:

Alchemist's Stone

You can permenantly change the material component of one of your items (weapons, armor, etc) by paying the material cost.

Not too broken would be the ability to change the material of an item that someone already has by purchasing the material price.

The ability to turn your +3 sword that you bought as merely masterwork and started enchanting to a +3 adamantine sword simply by having the Boon and paying the material price might be worthwhile.

Qadira ***

Michael VonHasseln wrote:
Saint Caleth wrote:
Completely custom item would be cool. Maybe access to a custom spell. A spell you could even pass around and spread the love (and your creativity).

Example:

Alchemist's Stone

You can permenantly change the material component of one of your items (weapons, armor, etc) by paying the material cost.

Not too broken would be the ability to change the material of an item that someone already has by purchasing the material price.

The ability to turn your +3 sword that you bought as merely masterwork and started enchanting to a +3 adamantine sword simply by having the Boon and paying the material price might be worthwhile.

wouldn't you want someone to pay the DIFFERENCE in the costs? so changing a masterwork longsword to a Masterwork Cold Iron longsword would be only +15 gp, but changing a +1 longsword from to a +1 Cold Iron Longsword would be +2015 gp...

Shadow Lodge ***

Jason S wrote:

Right now I rarely see any PCs who either aren't Humans or Dwarfs (I've rarely seen races played for roleplaying reasons tbh). I've seen one guy play a boon race. And I go to the big conventions and local ones too.

I have played half elves and half orcs for RP reasons, though I did choose classes that worked well for them, summoner and alchemist respectively.

Thing is, in both cases the 'special snowflake' was applied to both characters through character concepts, rather then mechanics; be they a lonely girl isolated because her playmates/friends who consistantly outgrew her and her 'pet', or a half orc trying to become a respectable member of the community and who grew up in a stable loving family (until a mob ran them out of Kaer Magna).

Thing is, based off the 'tiefling' thread, one thing that I was reminded was that many people are not as skilled at using what you have availible race wise to come up with unique character concepts. They then use a exotic race as 'filler' for backstory.

Because of that, I'm thinking of writing a guide (after about four other projects so don't hold your breath) on how to go about coming up with good character concepts. Perhaps some of us could think of other things people might 'want' but on the surface cannot get and could come up with PFS friendly ways to get them.

It is not a 'boon'. But sometimes knowledge is a boon.

All the best,

Kerney

Osirion

How about THIS: Not having to *roll* for a friggin' boon?!!
How about a way to earn or be given a boon, that is set. I went to a Con this weekend, and committed an entire day to being there. I sat at a table from 2:30pm just before the first table started, until 12:30 at night when the last table finished, and all I got was a *CHANCE* to roll a d20. THEN, I had to roll a 15 or better just to get something?

So, even when I take the time to go to a Con to try to get *some* kind of a boon, it's still perfectly random whether anyone even gets a thing or not. I DO NOT think that dice rolls are the way to go for this kind of thing. The only other option for the Con was that I was told that if I played two slots a day, 8 to 10 hours a day, each day for three days straight back-to-back, *THEN* I could have a boon, without having to make a roll. I don't think that's a reasonable expectation in any way, shape, form, or fashion.

Andoran *****

Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber

The current policy for Boon disruption is every event (Scenario) you have a 1 and 10 chance of getting one at a Convention.

How the Organizer does that is up to them.

I had people pull Easter eggs since the Convention I ran was during Easter.

Here is a Post by Mike.

Andoran **** Venture-Captain, Missouri—Cape Girardeau aka Arnim Thayer

nosig wrote:
Wouldn't you want someone to pay the DIFFERENCE in the costs? So changing a masterwork longsword to a Masterwork Cold Iron longsword would be only +15 gp, but changing a +1 longsword from to a +1 Cold Iron Longsword would be +2015 gp...

That is exactly what I meant by only paying the material cost... but I am open to any wording that makes it easier on the players.

*** RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32, 2010 Top 8

Dragnmoon wrote:

The current policy for Boon disruption is every event (Scenario) you have a 1 and 10 chance of getting one at a Convention.

While I'm not a fan of the races being locked forever in boons, even I don't call them disruptive :P

Osirion

Dragnmoon wrote:

The current policy for Boon disruption is every event (Scenario) you have a 1 and 10 chance of getting one at a Convention.

How the Organizer does that is up to them.
I had people pull Easter eggs since the Convention I ran was during Easter.
Here is a Post by Mike.

Okay ... Well, I guess I will have to live with the policy. (sigh) I guess it's not totally unreasonable. I think the VC here in Dallas may've technically given us better odds because we had a 4 in 20 chance ... But, we didn't get an opportunity for a boon for every session. We had to turn in two tokens to get a single chance. There wasn't an option for a boon for playing just once.

Granted, if we played two, we got pretty good odds, but there were guys that were new, and just walked up and played for the very first time and they asked what they should do with the tokens. The response was that they should play another game, give them away to someone that could use them at this Con, or save them for some other time that they go to another Con.

That's just surprising to me. Even a Con-goer only has a 10% chance of having a boon? That's exceedingly rare. But, it is what it is ... I'll go with it.

*

Michael Brock wrote:
Oh, and I also need an answer to give people who complain because they can't get to a con to get a +1 to a stat or an SLA or higher level CR purchase power boon, much like what I am hearing here about people who can't get to a con to get a racial boon. Afterall, the boons you are going to list for me are going to be as good, or better, than the race boons, which means the cries of unfairness will be even louder.

So we need a boon that's better than a race boon so that people still come to cons, but doesn't make people who can't (or don't want to) go to cons jealous.

So how about a strong boon that only works at conventions?

At an official boon-giving con, you can do X cool thing.

People will want to do the cool thing, so they go to cons. People who don't go to cons won't care, because they would have to go to cons in order to use it. This makes the crazy plane-hopping con people happy, and doesn't affect the local store/home game people.

Ideas for the boons, I think, are things that would let you break normal rules.

Boon: Sanctioned Slaughter - While playing a scenario at an official convention, your character gains a +1 Convention bonus on attack rolls.

Boon: Lodge library access - Once per scenario, while playing a scenario at an official convention, your character gains access to the Scribe Scroll feat, and can scribe a number of scrolls with total caster level equal to your caster level. You must pay the normal costs involved with scribing a scroll.

Boon: Lodge clerk access - Once per scenario, while playing a scenario at an official convention, you may hire a Society spellcaster to cast Permanency and any allowed spell with a cost of up to 7,500 gp, paying the cost in diamond dust as appropriate. This spell is permanent, and continues from chronicle to chronicle until dispelled or otherwise lost. If the spell is lost, mark it in the conditions section of the relevant chronicle sheet.

Boon: Phantom Fingers - while playing a scenario at an official convention, you may force a Venture Captain or Paizo Employee to do a little dance for all to see. Cross out this boon when used.

Boon: Luck of the Gods - while playing a scenario at an official convention, you may force a Game Master, Venture Captain, or Paizo Employee (who is not otherwise occupied) to blow on your dice for luck. Cross out this boon when used.

Boon: Clean Living - while playing a scenario at an official convention, if you have taken a shower in the last 23 hours, you gain a +2 Convention bonus on Diplomacy checks and saving throws against poison and disease.

These are probably bad ideas, but I do kind of like the idea of restricting convention boons to scenario conventions. If someone never goes to a con, and thus has no chance to get one of these boons, he doesn't have it hanging over his head every time his local VC busts out his awesome bird-man character at the local game shop.

*

The point of a con boon is that it can be taken home and shown off. What's the point of getting the boon if it only works when and if you can attend another supported con.

Michael Brock wrote:
Oh, and I also need an answer to give people who complain because they can't get to a con to get a +1 to a stat or an SLA or higher level CR purchase power boon, much like what I am hearing here about people who can't get to a con to get a racial boon. Afterall, the boons you are going to list for me are going to be as good, or better, than the race boons, which means the cries of unfairness will be even louder.

I think that this complaint is a non-starter because there is a big difference between things like races, which are published character options and new, completely exclusive boons. You might call this splitting hairs, but I think that it is a wide difference, even if mostly psychological. It is a well established fact that there is such a thing as con boons, but with the planetouched splatbooks and the ARG there is an ever widening gulf of nominally PFS which cannot be used by most players. This further creates two classes of PFS players, something which should really be curtailed. There is enough implied elitism in the fact that this is a game with a really big system-mastery learning curve.

Unless the point is that racial boons are desirable because they are highly visible character options with their own splatbooks and everything. That might also be the case.

Qadira *** Venture-Captain, Texas—Dallas & Ft. Worth aka Thorkull

W. Kristoph Nolen wrote:
Dragnmoon wrote:

The current policy for Boon disruption is every event (Scenario) you have a 1 and 10 chance of getting one at a Convention.

How the Organizer does that is up to them.
I had people pull Easter eggs since the Convention I ran was during Easter.
Here is a Post by Mike.

Okay ... Well, I guess I will have to live with the policy. (sigh) I guess it's not totally unreasonable. I think the VC here in Dallas may've technically given us better odds because we had a 4 in 20 chance ... But, we didn't get an opportunity for a boon for every session. We had to turn in two tokens to get a single chance. There wasn't an option for a boon for playing just once.

Granted, if we played two, we got pretty good odds, but there were guys that were new, and just walked up and played for the very first time and they asked what they should do with the tokens. The response was that they should play another game, give them away to someone that could use them at this Con, or save them for some other time that they go to another Con.

That's just surprising to me. Even a Con-goer only has a 10% chance of having a boon? That's exceedingly rare. But, it is what it is ... I'll go with it.

Wade, it was actually a 30% chance when you rolled, or a 15% chance per token. Turning in 6 tokens essentially gave you a 100% chance, or 16% per coin. I chose 6 because that's the number of slots I had available. I could have allowed one roll per coin, but then i would hav had to compress the table to have people win on an 18+ instead of a 15+. I didn't feel that most players would be happy looking at a chart that said, "1-17, Try again." 1-14 was bad enough, IMO.

The boons are designed to attract players to the cons and get them to play, play, play. If someone cannot or does not want to spend as much time on this hobby as on other aspects of their life, then they won't get as much out of it.

I've used this example before, but I'll use it again. If I love playing basketball, but for work/family/priority reasons I can only get out on the court once a week for a couple of hours, I'm not going to be as good as the guy that's out there every day for a couple of hours and all day on Saturday (all other factors being equal).

Frankly, the sense of entitlement inherent in some of your comments disheartens me. I enjoyed meeting you in person at A-Kon and I felt like you had a good time based on your comments at the show and afterward.

Andoran *****

Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber
W. Kristoph Nolen wrote:
That's just surprising to me. Even a Con-goer only has a 10% chance of having a boon? That's exceedingly rare. But, it is what it is ... I'll go with it.

Every Con I hav been to, usually there is one, Non racial boon everyone gets. They even did that at GenCon.

*

Kerney wrote:
Jason S wrote:

Right now I rarely see any PCs who either aren't Humans or Dwarfs (I've rarely seen races played for roleplaying reasons tbh). I've seen one guy play a boon race. And I go to the big conventions and local ones too.

Thing is, based off the 'tiefling' thread, one thing that I was reminded was that many people are not as skilled at using what you have availible race wise to come up with unique character concepts. They then use a exotic race as 'filler' for backstory.

Kerney

I'd be careful about painting with such a broad brush there. While I will agree with you that the rare race can be the defining character feature for some player less RP inclined there are many of us that can come up with unique stories to support our Grippli, Damphir and Catgirl concepts.

The other point I wish to make is that Fantasy has grown beyond the tired old Toklienian fantasy concepts. Look around you the next time you go to a Con and you'll see the big influence on fantasy is now coming from Anime and its related material. Everything from the costumes this new generation wears to the fantasy books these kids buy is going to be influenced by this. We shouldn't try to confine them to the fantasy model of the older generation by restricting them only to the races we feel comfortable with. I remember from that other, now locked thread, about how people were concerned that the opening up of races would lead to a menagerie.

*Gasp* you mean my elf might have to sit next to a Orc???? Who do these Grippli think they are claiming the same magic items as my Dwarf!?!?!

I joke but there is an underling point Im making. If we as a hobby dont take into account the changing definitions of fantasy by the young generation then our favorite games will suffer in the long run.

**

I've really only skimmed the thread, so forgive me if this has been covered, but what we really need to do is come up with something that when another player looks at your character and goes "Aw, that's awesome, you when to a convention huh?" I don't even think it would have to be a mechanics thing. Just something to make the character unique (or somewhat so). I bet if you used the exact write up of the elf changed the weapon profs, changed what they looked like and called them álfar, people would be happy. When they descibed their character, everyone would get that "aw" feeling.

Another thing I thought of was a boon that gave you "special mention" by the GM. For example before the game starts you hand the GM your boon sheet. The sheet has a blurb the GM introduces into the scenario where the GM sees fit. Like when the Venture Captain is handing out the orders, he address the PC by name and says "I want to personally thank you again for your heroic efforts during the Azlanti Scandel".

I also like the level up idea, I think that would be huge. I would even take it so far as 3rd level, or maybe even 1 level lower than your highest level PFS character.

*

Saint Caleth wrote:
The point of a con boon is that it can be taken home and shown off.

If this is the case, then the current restrictions on races are probably the best system. I had assumed people were doing this for a fun con experience, not to prove how much better they are than the folks that don't do cons.

Shadow Lodge **

I think the boons should:
- be easy for Paizo staff to create
- avoid power creep
- feel special
- be rare

In a perfect world rare would not mean just at conventions, but handing them out at FLGS would be hard for Paizo to manage I think.

Tweaking a character is nice (+2 to a skill, +1 to a save, a language), racial boons are a great staple (keeps alt-races rare), and I even like some of the more outrageous suggestions (xp bonus to help with the lvl 1 and lvl 6 pain or a free trait).

I've earned two boons in over a year of PFS, but both at the same con (Kubla). One I got on the random roll, and the other I got for, er, services rendered (DMing and helping organize the con). Two in a year is nice and rare. :)

*

I think the idea some have mentioned of opening various archetypes is interesting. Combining that idea with PFS specific material might also inspire people to go to the Cons.

If racial boons are still going to be the method going forward, perhaps opening up older ones for general play while unlocking more new ones each year should continue the stirring up of interest while making people without Con access and the ARG happy. Again perhaps PFS original material like some of those alien races mentioned? That would really raise eyebrows and garner attention while building upon the success of the Distant Worlds book.

I also like that idea about offering the boon to build your own race with 20 point of whatever is a fair equivalent from the ARG.

Shadow Lodge ***

Lass wrote:
Kerney wrote:
Jason S wrote:

Right now I rarely see any PCs who either aren't Humans or Dwarfs (I've rarely seen races played for roleplaying reasons tbh). I've seen one guy play a boon race. And I go to the big conventions and local ones too.

Thing is, based off the 'tiefling' thread, one thing that I was reminded was that many people are not as skilled at using what you have availible race wise to come up with unique character concepts. They then use a exotic race as 'filler' for backstory.

Kerney

I'd be careful about painting with such a broad brush there. While I will agree with you that the rare race can be the defining character feature for some player less RP inclined there are many of us that can come up with unique stories to support our Grippli, Damphir and Catgirl concepts.

My question to you is, can you take a Grippli, Damphir or Catgirl and represent them with feats, traits, class selection and perhaps a mild bit of reskining. I think you can (and have helped with a half elven 'cat girl' for my niece).

In that case, what is the need for a spelled out cat girl race? I don't mind one cat girl in a game, with her being explained as a magical experiment or a curse. But on the other hand....a whole table of 'unique' Drizit clones can be off putting also.

I realize there no completely satisfying answer to this, but I do believe you can do a lot more with what we have availible then we are using.

Qadira ***

to steal a race from Star Wars...

just think of sitting down to judge a table and finding you have 4 or 5 JarJar Binks Gungans at the table. Kill me now....

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