Paizo Top Nav Branding
  • Hello, Guest! |
  • Sign In |
  • My Account |
  • Shopping Cart |
  • Help/FAQ
About Paizo Messageboards News Paizo Blog Help/FAQ
Pathfinder Roleplaying Game
Pathfinder Society

Pathfinder Beginner Box

Pathfinder Adventure Card Game

Pathfinder Comics

Pathfinder Legends

A player's thoughts on GM powers and scenario rewards


Pathfinder Society® General Discussion

***

Ok, I'm new, only 6 scenarios under my belt, but I had a few notions about PFS gameplay I thought I'd share (though I'm sure they've already been beat to death...)

1st, I've noticed a very ho-hum attitude among players about roleplaying and faction quests. Very bare minimum, not in the spirit. I'd recommend giving GM's the ability to award 0.5, 1, or 1.5 XP upon mission completion, depending on how participatory the players/characters were.

2nd, I've yet to not receive full gold. Playing a rogue a couple times, it was disappointing that all my attempts to salvage valuables really just amounted to wasted time at the table. I'd recommend the quest gold being the basis (100%), and reducing or increasing that by up to 50% depending upon how thorough and creative the party was.

Yes, this would mean that characters with the same number of scenarios played might vary widely in power. Tiering would solve the levelling difference, and perhaps wealth could be a consideration in tiering as well (a lvl 6 character with 20% more wealth counting gear and cash might be counted as level 7 for the tiering, for example.)

3rd, In the last scenario I played, 3-09, several faction quests were easy, like if the party kills the ghouls and searches their chamber they find the book somebody needed, while others were impossible (requiring a knowledge Geography check for one faction, and since nobody had it and untrained checks are impossible, completing his mission was impossible) and for me the Andoran after killing the Yeti I had to make a DC20 Diplomacy check, while I was untrained and at -2 from Charisma, so again impossible. Such disparity in difficulty is frustrating. New scenarios should take this into consideration, and if possible old ones revised to correct this. Allowing the GM's to be more flexible with the scenario in these situations would also help.

Couple thoughts, which would involve giving GM's more power, but in my opinion give players more motivation to avoid lazy playing.

Sczarni ***** Venture-Lieutenant, Washington—Pullman aka Coraith

1st Sadly you would find groups of people GMing for each other always awarding 1.5xp, not everyone would do it, but some would.

2nd See above.

3rd The GM is allowed to give conditional modifiers, I know that when someone says something ingenious or in just the right way I throw modifiers on their roll. People are not supposed to always succeed their faction missions, if they made it so that everyone succeeded all the time, there would be no point in having them. Some faction missions are harder than others and some can't be completed without violating oaths or your characters morals.

Silver Crusade **

Lets keep exp equal. I don't want to see that being changed around, I like the simple math.

Extra stuff you do during/after the scenario? That is what your day job is.

Faction missions aren't meant to be completed every time. The characters that do tend to complete them have a range of skills, as befitting a pathfinder society explorer. I see a lot of characters who do nothing but combat, and then wonder why they fail their faction missions. And if GMs are given the ability to alter Faction Missions, then GMs get grief from players if they aren't given their PA. Lets not do that.

*

1) No, that would be a nightmare for so many reasons.

2) No, that would also be a nightmare for so many reasons.

3) There is already flexibility in the solution you come up with. GMs are supposed to allow creative solutions to have a chance. Also, you can always ask other party members for help.

My (9th level) fighter has maximum fame, and it's definitely not because he's skilled, it's because I ask for help. And every table has been really good about it.

Truly lazy players will miss gold and don't get full prestige. That's what lazy players get, and it sounds like you guys are getting it, so I'm not sure what you're saying. Your groups are already being punished.

***

hmmm... yeah, I understand the "nightmare to keep track" bit...

but I understood that it was already within a GM's abilities to award less than maximum gold, yet every game I've played so far has always gotten full gold. I guess I'm saying that it should be harder to get full gold.

And as for the XP tracking issue, isn't it the GM's job to submit the scenario record including all players and results? So shouldn't it be easy to see in the odd case where a group of 6 guys keeps taking turns GMing and awarding 1.5XP?

And yes, I get that working together is part of what helps us get our faction missions done, and I'm not saying the missions should be easy. I'm just saying they should be equally hard for all factions in each scenario, as much as possible. And certainly any character should be able (if the player isn't lazy) to complete their mission, with at least a 25% chance if some DC check is involved. Why would the faction send a character with a mission they knew the character had 0% chance of completing?

And sorry Jason S if you misunderstood, but generally I felt like players were over-rewarded for lazy playing in the scenarios I've played, not punished. Always full gold, and only once, in 3-09, did anybody not get full prestige as well.

But again, I knew before posting that these issued had likely already been beaten to death, but as a new player these are some of the things that have bugged me about my experience so far, and wanted to pass on my complaints along with suggestions to the GMs here. I'm just looking for a great gaming experience.

*

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Frankly, a lot of what you're suggesting is putting a lot of the "awards" for play (XP, GP, Prestige) into the realm of "judgment call" on the part of the GM. That works just fine for home play, but PFS requires a greater degree of structure, and, yes, it takes a lot of that judgment out of the individual GM's hands, for the sake of delivering a more consistent game experience for players. It's the nature of the beast.

rangerjeff wrote:
but I understood that it was already within a GM's abilities to award less than maximum gold, yet every game I've played so far has always gotten full gold. I guess I'm saying that it should be harder to get full gold.

Yes, it's "within the GM's ability", but it's really based on "did the party complete / defeat / accomplish all of the encounters". If you complete an encounter (or succeed in avoiding an encounter due to roleplay, skill use, smart play, etc.), you get the gold associated with that encounter. So, while the GM can award less than "full gold", it's not intended to be a judgment call for the GM.

Gold in PFS is pretty closely tracked to the intended "wealth by level" progression in the Pathfinder core rules. Tinkering with one half of the equation (making it less likely that you get full gold) would require also tinkering with the other half of the equation (tinkering with the amount of gold available in adventures) in order to keep WBL at the right amount.

rangerjeff wrote:
And as for the XP tracking issue, isn't it the GM's job to submit the scenario record including all players and results? So shouldn't it be easy to see in the odd case where a group of 6 guys keeps taking turns GMing and awarding 1.5XP?

If it is possible, it also requires a lot of analysis and sleuthing by whoever's charged with going through said records (probably Mike Brock). IMO, I'd rather have Mike spending his time on other issues. And, there's no ironclad requirement that sessions must be reported, and reported accurately. There's nothing preventing that theoretical group of 6 guys from simply not recording their sessions at all, or recording "normal" XP awards. It's highly unlikely that any "PFS Cop" will ever check the records against their Chronicle stacks.

Silver Crusade ****

Mike Mistele wrote:


rangerjeff wrote:
And as for the XP tracking issue, isn't it the GM's job to submit the scenario record including all players and results? So shouldn't it be easy to see in the odd case where a group of 6 guys keeps taking turns GMing and awarding 1.5XP?
If it is possible, it also requires a lot of analysis and sleuthing by whoever's charged with going through said records (probably Mike Brock). IMO, I'd rather have Mike spending his time on other issues. And, there's no ironclad requirement that sessions must be reported, and reported accurately. There's nothing...

The problem really isn't a group of 6 people consciously cheating. Its already pretty trivial to cheat if you want to.

The problem is more that a group of players will unconsciously fall into a pattern. The new GMs will learn from the existing GMs and people will have a strong tendency to do what their local culture does. The result is that some groups would tend to get more exp and more gold than others because of this "groupthink".

If you read the boards for any length of time its pretty obvious that different areas have significantly different "cultures" in terms of how easy or difficult games are, how rigorously rules are enforced, what is counted as creative, etc etc etc.

*

Yes, it's pretty easy to get max gold if you do all of the encounters. This is what helps keep PC parity.

This isn't Greyhawk, so the idea isn't to waste (game) time literally looting everything or picking everyone's pockets. I personally find that boring, annoying, and a waste of my game time. Even the Greyhawk campaign had a way of abbreviating that gameplay, "I Greyhawk the room". That kind of gameplay is better in a campaign, if that's how the GM wants to run it.

Yes, we get 1 XP per session, which also helps keep PC parity.

Missions probably vary mostly because of plot reasons. Some missions are going to be harder because they need a rare skill. Oh well. Creative solutions still apply, to give you a chance.

Not sure you can do much about lazy players in terms of roleplay, except not play with them. Everything else, it's just a difference in game styles.

Grand Lodge ** RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

1 person marked this as a favorite.

@The OP: Let's also not punish some of our more shy members by requiring that they be more boisterous/engaging in order to keep up on rewards.

Silver Crusade **

I have missed many faction missions as well as missed some loot. It's far from the end of the world, and I like it that the PCs don't always get everything. At least if the DM plays it straight.

*****

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I find this thread funny. I figured most players expect to get -5450 gp, 0 (or -16) PP, and 0 XP* at my table. :-)

*Funny story here. I've handed out 0 XP three times total so far. The most recent was at Dragon*Con where one of the players showed me a chronicle for the character that he was playing. It was one that I had signed earlier in that adventurers life... for 0 XP. He was laughing (thankfully). Those are the only two times I've GM'd for him and 2/3 times I've ever handed out 0 xp. Unreal.

Grand Lodge **** Venture-Captain, Netherlands—Leiden

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

I find this thread funny. I figured most players expect to get -5450 gp, 0 (or -16) PP, and 0 XP* at my table. :-)

*Funny story here. I've handed out 0 XP three times total so far. The most recent was at Dragon*Con where one of the players showed me a chronicle for the character that he was playing. It was one that I had signed earlier in that adventurers life... for 0 XP. He was laughing (thankfully). Those are the only two times I've GM'd for him and 2/3 times I've ever handed out 0 xp. Unreal.

A Chronicle with 0XP is like a battlescar. Wear it proudly!

Qadira ****

heck, that's two more scenarios you can play with that guy before retirement. Who needs "Slow Mode"?!

Grand Lodge ***

RE: Awarding xp for RP. I love role-playing, and love playing with other players who RP, and I'm ecstatic when the GM RPs too. But not everybody enjoys this. Some people just want to roll dice and treat PFS as a really complicated board game or a really simple tactical wargame, and they have just as much fun playing this way as I do role-playing. I see no reason to punish those players for not wanting to do what I love doing.

The same goes for looting the bodies. That's just another form of RP. The only reason (officially) you would receive less than full gold for a scenario is if the PCs for whatever reason failed an encounter. What counts as failure may vary from scenario to scenario and even from group to group, but no group, and definitely no individual player, should be penalized just because they didn't want to spend the time to itemize the loot, body by body, during a session which has a limit on the time available to complete.

RE: Faction missions. Meh. Earning PP is just fluff. You don't need it, and should you never earn a single point, you lose little if anything. If you find that you rarely have the ability to complete your faction's goals, feel free to invest a little bit in improving the abilities needed to succeed more often, change to a faction more in line with your character's abilities, or just deal with what you have and try to find more creative solutions.

Silver Crusade **

PP is pretty nice if you need services at low levels. You can save yourself quite a bit of gold with PP as well.

Grand Lodge *****

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Getting Max Gold for the adventure assumes that the party is squeezing every last gold piece out of the adventure. This includes searching everything (and finding it all), divesting every adversary of every last possession, completing every task set before them for a reward.

Frankly if your group is not doing this, they should not be getting max gold.

If you are talking about a Rogue picking pockets, burgling a business or residence, coning a mark out of their gold ... then that is what your Day Job is for. Provided there is time you could ask your GM to roleplay the Day Job a bit more, though the result is still fully dependent on your roll.

Andoran ***** Venture-Captain, Washington D.C. aka Thamius

nosig wrote:

heck, that's two more scenarios you can play with that guy before retirement. Who needs "Slow Mode"?!

In Baird's world, retirement = death! Or is it the other way around?

Silver Crusade **

1 person marked this as a favorite.

At the same time, though, making characters pay full price for magic items already severely limits the power of the PCs. There is no reason to unnecessarily skimp on monetary rewards when item creation is already off the table.

Grand Lodge ** RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

David Bowles wrote:
At the same time, though, making characters pay full price for magic items already severely limits the power of the PCs.

Um, the game is designed around paying full price. The point of crafting is to have MORE wealth than normal, not to reach parity. There's even a FAQ about that.

Silver Crusade **

Why did they need to FAQ feats that they outlawed? It's just the way it is. And I still contend compared to homebrew games I am used to playing, PFS PCs are severely limited by paying full price. Which is fine, because it makes it easier to design encounters.

Grand Lodge ** RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

David Bowles wrote:
Why did they need to FAQ feats that they outlawed?

Sorry, I meant a general FAQ, not a PFS FAQ.

Silver Crusade **

Where is the general FAQ? I'm curious as to their thoughts about this.

Grand Lodge ** RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Top-right of every page. There's a list of FAQs by book/topic.

Silver Crusade **

I found the FAQ; thanks. I still feel very under-equipped without access to item creation feats. But again, that makes the scenarios easier to write.

*****

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

It has nothing to do with writing the scenarios, it has to do with character wealth by level and the understanding required and the variations (and headaches) that item creation causes. If you really want to craft stuff, play an alchemist and craft some alchemical stuff.

Silver Crusade **

Nah, I'll just leave crafting to homebrews. It's not a big deal.

Paizo / Messageboards / Paizo Publishing / Pathfinder® / Pathfinder Society® / General Discussion / A player's thoughts on GM powers and scenario rewards All Messageboards

Want to post a reply? Sign in.

©2002–2014 Paizo Inc.®. Need help? Email customer.service@paizo.com or call 425-250-0800 during our business hours: Monday–Friday, 10 AM–5 PM Pacific Time. View our privacy policy. Paizo Inc., Paizo, the Paizo golem logo, Pathfinder, the Pathfinder logo, Pathfinder Society, GameMastery, and Planet Stories are registered trademarks of Paizo Inc., and Pathfinder Roleplaying Game, Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Pathfinder Adventure Path, Pathfinder Adventure Card Game, Pathfinder Player Companion, Pathfinder Modules, Pathfinder Tales, Pathfinder Battles, Pathfinder Online, PaizoCon, RPG Superstar, The Golem's Got It, Titanic Games, the Titanic logo, and the Planet Stories planet logo are trademarks of Paizo Inc. Dungeons & Dragons, Dragon, Dungeon, and Polyhedron are registered trademarks of Wizards of the Coast, Inc., a subsidiary of Hasbro, Inc., and have been used by Paizo Inc. under license. Most product names are trademarks owned or used under license by the companies that publish those products; use of such names without mention of trademark status should not be construed as a challenge to such status.