Starfinder Society Class Playtest
Monday, December 3, 2018
With the release of the Starfinder Character Operations Manual Playtest, the Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild is also opening its doors to a limited form of playtest. Since these classes won't be released until late 2019, we're looking at allowing players the chance to try these classes out during the playtest period.
Playtest Period: The availability for these rules runs from the publishing of this post until the end of the playtest period (January 16th, 2019.) Once this period has expired, players can no longer use the Starfinder Character Operations Manual Playtest classes until the publication of the book in late 2019.
How It Works: Given the smaller volume of scenarios that Starfinder Society has compared to Pathfinder Society, we've elected not to force players to choose between playtesting new classes on new characters or ignoring the playtest to continue with existing characters. As a happy medium between these options, we're opening up Society play for the playtest classes via the use of custom created characters that operate much like our pregenerated characters. We believe this should encourage players to test the waters with custom builds, be it with current scenarios or through our growing stable of repeatable options.
Creating a Playtest Character: Prior to playing a scenario in the playtest period, a player can determine if they want to playtest one of the new classes. Depending on the tier of the scenario, the player can then use a 1st-, 4th- or 8th-level character using one of the classes in the Starfinder Character Operations Manual Playtest and created using the following guidelines:
- Classes: The character must have all levels in a single playtest class. Although multiclassing ramifications are important for the playtest as a whole, we're keeping to single classes in the organized play portion of the playtest for simplicity.
- 1st Level: The character can be created using the character creation rules presented in the Starfinder Core Rulebook and Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild Guide.
- 4th Level: This character follows the same rules as above, except it can select one 4th level armor or weapon and one 3rd level armor or weapon. In addition, the player can spend up to 4,000 credits on other available equipment.
- 8th Level: This character follows the same rules as above, except it can select one 8th level armor or weapon and one 7th level armor or weapon. In addition, the player can spend up to 18,000 credits on other available equipment.
Credit: The credit earned for playing a playtest character follows the same rules and guidelines as presented on page 7 of the Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild Guide. This means that you must choose which of your characters will receive the credit at the beginning of the adventure. Credit must be assigned to characters of lower level than the playtest character.
Resolving Conditions: We recognize that players taking the opportunity to playtest these characters are performing a service for the game and campaign. As a result, whenever a player playtests a 4th- or 8th-level version of these characters, the cost to purchase a raise dead is reduced to 6 Fame and subsequent restorations to remove the negative levels are only 1 Fame each. This means that there's still some risk to your established characters, but the penalty for dying as a playtest character is far less onerous than it would be for a normal character or pregenerated character.
Applying Credit: As we want to encourage extra play of the higher-level versions of these classes, we're also going to open up the rules for applying credit when playing a playtest character. A player using a non-1st-level playtest character may choose to apply the earned Chronicle sheet to an existing Organized Play character. To do so, simply replace the credits earned on the Chronicle sheet with credits from the list below that match the level range of the existing player character.
- Levels 1-2: 720 credits (2,160 credits for Adventure Path module)
- Levels 3-4: 1,460 credits (4,380 credits for Adventure Path module)
- Levels 5-6: 4,085 credits (12,255 credits for Adventure Path module)
- Levels 7-8: 5,835 credits (17,505 credits for Adventure Path module)
Shields: As a special note, the availability of shields, as presented with the vanguard class, are available for all playtest characters (biohacker, vanguard and witchwarper) to try out. However, shields cannot be purchased for other organized play characters.
With all this in mind, we encourage our players to take an active part in the playtest, both by sharing your opinions online in the Playtest forums and by completing the playtest surveys. We hope that by opening up the means in which players can create and customize characters for the playtest, that we can see some unique and fun builds using these new classes and that such tests will provide the design team with priceless "field agent" feedback!
I look forward to hearing from each of you about your experiences with the Starfinder Character Operations Manual classes and am even more excited to see these classes join the roster of Starfinder classes officially in late 2019.
Starfinder Society Developer