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What do you do when a player shows up with nothing filled out on their Chronical Sheets?


Pathfinder Society® General Discussion

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Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

They have all their sheets but nothing purchased, no tracking of anything. While I've seen some GMs spend the time to full audit a character personally that's not my cup-of-tea.


Call me harsh, but that sounds like a character that is not table legal. Pregens are (almost) always an option until the paperwork problem is fixed.

*****

I haven't had this happen to me yet, though I know of a player locally that was doing this. Luckily another player spent a couple hours helping him go through it and fix it all.

Were this to happen to me, I would let them play once, then tell them that they need to correct the problem before their next game. There's no need to do a full audit in this situation, it is the player's responsibility to have his stuff in order. If he doesn't, you can ask him to sit out until he has corrected the situation. I would also let other local GMs know so they can make sure the problem has been corrected.

***

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Unfortunately, I believe the rules are clear that an audit should be done on his sheet. If I was gming I would have to do that before I could let him play.

Grand Lodge ***

I'm actually guilty of this myself, at least on my very first character. I just never bothered to write things down on the chronicle sheets, but instead just bought new equipment on my character sheet. I didn't even realize this was a bad thing until after a few months of playing. As it is, I still don't remember when I bought everything and so just haven't played the character.

Silver Crusade **

1 person marked this as a favorite.

I would do a quick "logic check". Are the items he has level appropriate? Does he seem to be inside the WBL curve? If so, I would ask that the player get it all straightened out, but I would still let him play.

If, on the other hand, the character has items that seem to be outside the PA limits and has more GP worth of items than you find believable, then do an audit.

In general, I focus less on the paperwork and more on the gameplay.

**

I've had to do what Katie Gonzales has suggested. The player in question was just sloppy in her record keeping.

I agree with Alexander Damocles; I'm only going to audit somebody if their character is so grossly over-powered that it disrupts other players' fun.

*****

Mahtobedis wrote:
Unfortunately, I believe the rules are clear that an audit should be done on his sheet. If I was gming I would have to do that before I could let him play.

I tend to give a little leeway in the case of players that may not know better because they are new. IMHO there's no need to do an audit (and spend precious table time on it) as you already know there is something wrong with the character, instead probably the best thing to do is tell them to play a pregen in this situation and let them know they have to fix it before they can play again. I am just a softie and would probably let them play as long as it didn't seem like they were way off wealth by level and with the understanding that they had to fix it before they can play that character again.

Btw, a good shorthand for checking this sort of thing is just asking to see their most recent chronicle. If everything isn't filled out then you might need to go digging a little deeper...

***** Venture-Lieutenant, Georgia—Atlanta aka CRobledo

I had to deal with this on my table once, for a level 3-ish player. When I talked to him, it was due to noone explaining to him what he had to do with the sheets after he got them. He was tracking everything (including mundane arrows and wand charges) on loose sheets of paper, so I had every reason to believe it was NOT malicious, just a new player needing some help. So we sat for like 5 minutes to get them in order, and problem solved.

Andoran *

I ran into this with 3 players (2 lvl 3's, 1 lvl 4) at the same table during Carnage by the Lake 15 at Lake Morey, Fairlee VT. I was a player at the table not a DM. I helped each in turn while we played to get there stuff straight. The DM at first wasn't going to let them play. But i convinced the DM that i would have all of it done by the end of the game and wouldn't let it interfere with the game play. The 3 players had a good time, and there sheets got done. It ended up that my PC was pretty much worthless in the mod.

No one had ever shown them how to fill in the chronicles, and one of the level 3's character sheet wasn't even completely filled out. He was running off the 1st lvl pre-gen sheet that was over a year old.

Sometimes it is best for fellow players to help out to keep the table going.

Cheliax ****

I'm sometimes guilty of this with my heavy GM credit characters. It's really easy to upgrade your character's stuff right after the game when you're playing, but GMing just makes it slip my mind because I don't have my character sheet in front of me.

One more thing to work on! :)

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Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I know this might be a silly question, but are their PFS introduction Videos on YouTube anywhere?

Seems like if someone created these intro videos Pazio could just link them to the Pathfinder Society pages.

Qadira ****

Here's a weird aside on that. Lets say you have a character that is pure GM credit, how do you fill out the original chronicle sheets? You don't need to have stats or anything really planned for the fella, would you just buy everything and list starting gold? or would you just spend your starting gold, then deal with magic items on sheets?

I have been doing the latter, but it's certainly more annoying to do the math on all the sheets lol.

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1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I wish Herolab would just have an transaction output that I could just attach to my Chronical sheets.

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Benrislove wrote:

Here's a weird aside on that. Lets say you have a character that is pure GM credit, how do you fill out the original chronicle sheets? You don't need to have stats or anything really planned for the fella, would you just buy everything and list starting gold? or would you just spend your starting gold, then deal with magic items on sheets?

I have been doing the latter, but it's certainly more annoying to do the math on all the sheets lol.

A lot of times people just assign these to a PFS number that doesn't have a real character for it. So I would say that you could retroactively fill them out once you actually create the character.

Qadira ****

yeah you can do that easily. I just want to do everything in hero lab and the first time I play the character just write their "starting" gold being whatever it's at to that point lol.

Edit: Really I'm just spoiled by herolab and am a lazy a** lol

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

I've had to explain to GMs in my area that this is a failure on their part. When I have a level 5 or 6 character show up at a table and they have nothing on their Chronicles, it's because no other GM has looked at them. I've started a policy personally, and badgered my local GMs to get them to do the same, where I do not sign a chronicle for a player until I see their previous Chronicle completely filled out -- including all the relevant information copied over to the "starting" fields.

If you do this every time a Chronicle is handed out, it should never be necessary to do a full audit, and only takes a few seconds per player.

Note: the first time I had to do a full audit like this, we discovered 4,000 gp the player had been missing. It's not always a negative thing to go over a poorly-recorded character's Chronicles.

Shadow Lodge ***

Probably (or probably not) going against the grain, I actually think this is a pretty broken system of trying to keep records of items bought, money spent, items sold, etc.

The problem is you have to do everything in two places - on your character sheet and on your chronicle sheets, and it gets very cluttered the more you play.

The problem is made worse if you play online, because editing those PDFs - after you find a way to export and edit them - is an absolute pain. Then you mix up the online ones with the paper ones and keep them together and all the rest, it becomes a lot of work.

At the end of the day, there should be a better way of keeping these records, or there needs to be a lot of leniency if players don't show up with perfectly itemised chronicles.

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

Benrislove wrote:

Here's a weird aside on that. Lets say you have a character that is pure GM credit, how do you fill out the original chronicle sheets? You don't need to have stats or anything really planned for the fella, would you just buy everything and list starting gold? or would you just spend your starting gold, then deal with magic items on sheets?

I have been doing the latter, but it's certainly more annoying to do the math on all the sheets lol.

I have a bunch of characters that are mostly GM credit. I don't buy anything until I know I"m going to be playing them. Then I list everything on the back of his last chronicle with a note to see back for items. Since nothing has been finalized until you actually play him, there is no need to buy anything until that point either. They're amorphous blobs until then.

Shadow Lodge **

check that the items are in a reasonable WBL, make plans to sort it out in between sessions/while eating pizza between events and move on. Its 99% likely that the person isn't cheating. They didn't know how to fill out the forms, or at the very worst thought that one long sheet of paper was a better way of doing it than an IRS tax form spread out accross a binder.

The game is supposed to be about fun. Ruining the fun for the individual looking to play will be a far greater loss than whatever loss of fun is experienced by the other players from playing with a cheater in the unlikely event that someone is cheating.

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I have seen this issue as well. My opinion is that it is a combination of the player not considering it important (they already track money and magic items and level on their character sheet) and the GMs at where ever they play not enforcing it. In the end it is up to the GMs to prevent this by auditing their player base and expressing the importance of following all the PFS Guide rules.

As far as dealing with a player with this issue who would still like to play then and their. Take a quick look at their items and if they seem ok let them play. However, I would tell them that they need to have their chronicles filled out by the next time and make a notation on the chronicle you give them for that scenario. Your job is to encourage them to get back in line with the rules, not ostracize them.

***

I've been guilty of not policing chronicle sheets or insisting that they are kept up to date. My players always bring their chronicle sheets to games but many of them have not done any record keeping besides keeping up with GP. It hasn't been a problem because I'm generally the only GM, and I'm familiar with the characters.

However, as our player/GM base grows, I can see potential for issues. So, it will be my job to correct the situation. I'll spend a few minutes before upcoming games helping folks get their paperwork in order. I certainly don't want anyone getting turned away from a con game because I didn't do my job of making sure players' chronicle sheets are in order.

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