Want More Adventure Card Game? We've Got That.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Attendees at this year's GAMA Trade Show and PAX East conventions got a sneak peak at some Pathfinder Adventure Card Game goodness that Paizo's got planned for later this year. Though the final details are still being worked out, I want to share the basic concepts with our loyal blog readers.

Class Decks

In August, we're debuting a new type of PACG accessory: Pathfinder Adventure Card Game Class Decks. The initial offerings will include seven 109-card decks that each contain all the cards one character needs to play an entire PACG Adventure Path from start to finish. Each deck contains four playable characters of the same character class, and each character will have two unique roles to choose from. Meet Olenjack, a new character from the Rogue Class Deck:


Illustration by Maichol Quinto

Olenjack is the master of a guild of... merchants. He rarely feels the need to use the pair of long-handled daggers in his belt, but when he does, the wounds they leave behind are invariably fatal. Olenjack's ties to a variety of less savory communities hint at complex schemes and delicate manipulations. (Pathfinder RPG fans may recognize Olenjack—and many of his Class Deck compatriots—from the NPC Codex.)

The seven Class Decks premiering in August will showcase the bard, the cleric, the fighter, the ranger, the rogue, the sorcerer, and the wizard. Each deck will feature a mix of familiar and new cards, and can be used in your home games or in our new organized play program!

Organizing Your Play

With an amazing segue like that, who wouldn't want to find out more about the organized play program we'll be debuting at Gen Con ? Details are still being worked out, but here are the basics.

Season 0, as we're calling it internally, will consist of around 30 weekly scenarios that will be made available in PDF form. Scenarios will initially be offered exclusively to major conventions and retailers participating in the organized play program. Each month, the previous month's scenarios will then be bundled together and offered for sale to all paizo.com customers.

Season 0 will feature themes and stories inspired by the Skull & Shackles Base Set. To play, each participant will need to have a Class Deck and a Pathfinder Society number, and each table will need a copy of the Skull & Shackles Base Set plus all of the Skull & Shackles adventure decks released to that point. Play will be similar to the game you've already come to love, but when the time comes to improve your character deck, you'll do it with cards from your Class Deck. After the game, participants can report the results online to keep track of what you've played and how you've done.

If you're interested in helping coordinate or run the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game at a store or convention near you, please contact your local Pathfinder Society Venture Officer. We'd love to have you aboard. We're not quite ready for retailers to sign up for the program yet, but we'll have an announcement about that very soon.

There will be a variety of other fun things to share with you as we firm up details and dream up new concepts, but I can't get into specifics now. I can say that players who already participate in the Pathfinder Society organized play program might find the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game OP program worth checking out.

We'll be back with more information on both the Class Decks and the organized play program as a whole as August draws nearer.

Until then, go play some games!

Tanis O'Connor
Adventure Card Game Designer

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Tags: Maichol Quinto Pathfinder Adventure Card Game
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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook Subscriber

This is an interesting development.

Are these decks going to be tied into the subscription? or is it too early to consider such things?

Organized play for the card game may be interesting as well, especially if you're looking for a game to play at a con in between other things, instead of committing 4 hours to a RP slot.


This is super interesting. I've got a lot of card players at my FLGS.

Pathfinder Adventure Card Game Designer

5 people marked this as a favorite.

Tanis has said some good things about this awesome effort. Let me tell you some good things about how we got here, and also about Tanis.

When I met Tanis at the National Puzzlers League convention over a decade ago, I discovered she was a major card game and RPG player. A key element of this was her devotion to the RPGA, Wizards of the Coast's organized play program for D&D. If there were 16 slots of official RPG sessions at a convention, I knew how many Tanis would be playing: 17. That is, she would also play "slot 0," the pre-show session for the con organizers, and then all 16 sessions thereafter.

I knew something about this behavior, because that was me more than a decade earlier. In the dawn of the RPGA, I helped create the scenario structure and became one of the leading judges in the organization. One other person was right there with me: Lisa Stevens. She and I helped make the RPGA what it became, and solidified the importance of organized play in our lives. When Paizo launched its Pathfinder Society, I knew it would be successful, because Lisa already knew how such a thing functioned on the inside.

When I started working on the Pathfinder ACG, we needed someone like that, but Tanis wasn't available. She was an editor on Dungeons & Dragons, the game whose 3rd Edition I helped direct. But as soon as she left WotC, I drew her into the PACG design team. I knew even then that having a sharp editor on the design side made Vic's actual editing job a whole lot easier.

And I had this hunch that we might eventually do an organized play program. If so, we'd need Tanis's expertise on that front. So when Paizo said, essentially, "Which one of you Lone Sharks wants to do organized play design full time?" I was pretty sure it was going to be Tanis. So she jumped over from our team to Paizo, still working with us on defining the key elements of the game. She quickly embraced the task of delving into Paizo's vaults of NPCs and making the coolest characters we can bring you. She's doing an amazing job on it.

And we got Brian Campbell too! I've already waxed poetical on Brian's work with me on Betrayal at House on the Hill and lots of other games. He's the bees knees. He's started building the structure that will make Tanis's job in providing all this org-play content to you.

Plus, y'know, me and Vic and Gaby and Paul and Chad too. Good people.

Anyway, big things ahead. Thanks for listening, and I hope you enjoy our class decks and OP scenarios come August!

Mike

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

1 person marked this as a favorite.
atheral wrote:

This is an interesting development.

Are these decks going to be tied into the subscription? or is it too early to consider such things?

Organized play for the card game may be interesting as well, especially if you're looking for a game to play at a con in between other things, instead of committing 4 hours to a RP slot.

Class Decks will not automatically be shipped to subscribers, but PACG subscribers who preorder Class Decks will receive the standard PACG subscriber discount on them. (Preorders for the first 7 will be up in the not-too-distant future.)


Pathfinder Card Game, Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Charter Superscriber

This is very interesting!!

Shadow Lodge

Can we expect the pathfinder Iconics to be one of the four characters in each class set?

I ask simply because it would be boring to see the same exact versions of them that were part of the Rise of the Runelords sets. Though I would not be opposed to seeing new versions.

Pathfinder ACG Designer

Dylos wrote:

Can we expect the pathfinder Iconics to be one of the four characters in each class set?

I ask simply because it would be boring to see the same exact versions of them that were part of the Rise of the Runelords sets. Though I would not be opposed to seeing new versions.

You'll see iconics, but they won't be the RotR versions.

Silver Crusade

What are you guessing a class deck will run?

Scarab Sages

Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

Well, if it's 109 cards, then I'm willing to bet that it'll be around $20, just like the adventure decks.

This is ridiculously awesome, and really helps expand the game by adding new characters. It also addresses what has been a common request: more options for character classes in various race / class combinations.

Can't wait for this! I'm hoping that I'll be able to spring for all of these class decks. Also, I'm hoping that we'll get some more previews of characters and the cards in these decks...


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

My state (Delaware) has no venture captain. I'm interested in maybe helping coordinate, so who should I contact?

Dark Archive

I am in, this sounds great!


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

Oh, let me also say: Thanks for being awesome, Paizo.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

Hawkmoon269 wrote:
My state (Delaware) has no venture captain. I'm interested in maybe helping coordinate, so who should I contact?

Drop a line to mike.brock@paizo.com!

Sovereign Court

I have a Venture captain right here in my AZ city? Wow, I'm kinda surprised by that one.


So just to clarify, even if we can't get a group going at a retailer, we can still buy the scenarios a month after release, so we won't miss out on anything?


im just a little concerned about the pricepoint of these decks, as im a bit of a completionist... but would love to try organized play...


Yeah 7 20$ deck will be about 100$ with the Paizo Discount. Pretty steep. even more when I cannot participate in the society too much due to my job that ship me 1 month out of 2 in the north.

Could be something cool to do at home though.

Scarab Sages

Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path Subscriber

This is excellent! Excellent :D MORE scenarios!


Will all of the new player options be based on a figure from the npc codex? I've thought about picking it up, with the ROTR box as well, to add additional aspects to my home game but couldn't justify the cost vs the standees I forsee using.

Sovereign Court

Pricewise I don't think it should be much of an issue. While I plan on buying all the class sets (28 extra characters!!), I doubt many people are going to be doing Organized Play with more than one or two characters, and won't need to pick up more than a box or two.


My big question is: Why 109, and not 110 cards? Am I the only one wondering this? :-\


I just hope they have more cards which balance out the lack of skill use in the current rise of the runelords PACG. I would hate to buy the rogue deck and not have any use for the skills of the characters. I.E Currently as it stands: How many stealth checks have you come across when playing? How many monsters have "roll your stealth die" to do something? How many locations can be closed by stealth checks? Hardly any is the answer to all of them. Same thing for the perception skill and the finesse traits which are all things you would hope to be able to use with rogue characters.


Finesse is part of S&S according to Mike, as is Craft.

Pre-made characters have variable skill points and dice; I assume that +2 to Stealth and Divine aren't considered the same when balancing the characters.

If these skills were more important, then there would be lots of nasty situations for parties that didn't have particular characters. It might make the unpopular allies and potions more useful, but then everyone would be loaded down with junk for rare circumstances. (My solo Lini was so happy to finally get fire capability without a Wand of Scorching Ray -- having nothing but that going into 8 locations with 4 Troll Tyrant henchmen was a bit of a challenge.)


I thought of another question after my last post, are these decks a one-time thing, or will there be a new version of the fighter deck with every new base set? Another way to ask this I guess is, can I buy the fighter deck, play one fighter in ROTRL,and use the same deck with a different character for Skull and Shackles, and use the other two in upcoming sets? If they are a one time thing, I would most likely buy them all for the character options, but if there are seven additional decks with each base set, and the character add-on deck, and the scenarios, if each of these character decks run $20 each as was speculated earlier in this thread, that is a total of $320 every six months, and even with my OCD when it comes to these things, I may not be able to afford everything, as much as I might like to. :-( I know it may be early for these kind of questions, and I am very excited, but reality is forcing me to play accountant. Any info on this at your earliest convenience would be greatly appreciated. Love the game btw :-)!


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

First, thank you! I'm really looking forward to having multiple character options for different class options.

Second, it's likely that I will not be able to get involved in organized play, so I'm wondering: how hard would it be to integrate these decks into standard PACG play? Would you just need to take the character cards/roles and play the same otherwise, or do you/can you add their cards to the base set and have more options available? Essentially, I'm trying to figure out how much bang-for-the-buck Non-PS players will get here. (Obviously a lot is stil in the air, I'm sure, but I can't help but get excited)

Thanks again!

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Card Game, Companion, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Character decks ... Need more details ... :)

What would be included with organized play scenarios? Would these be only PDFs or would there be some cards? Would that be 30 scenarios for the entire season and thus 3 or 4 scenarios in a monthly release? Any idea on the price point?


I am also super excited for this, but do not know if I will be able to get to a FLGS to play in the events. So I will need to second the questions about integrating the character decks into standard play. Is it ideal to use just the AP cards, or would you also add in the specific character's deck cards? If the second is the case, then you would end up finding a lot more loot for the character class that you are playing, than anything else, perhaps.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

Supafnk wrote:
Will all of the new player options be based on a figure from the npc codex? I've thought about picking it up, with the ROTR box as well, to add additional aspects to my home game but couldn't justify the cost vs the standees I forsee using.

Each Class Deck will have a new version of the iconic character from the Core Rulebook and three new characters all from the NPC Codex. (At least, that will be true until we start doing Class Decks for classes outside of the core 11, because the NPC Codex only covers the core 11—and no, I'm not sure when we'll be doing Class Decks that fit that description.)

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

vagabondriot wrote:
So just to clarify, even if we can't get a group going at a retailer, we can still buy the scenarios a month after release, so we won't miss out on anything?

Yes.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

1 person marked this as a favorite.
The Pale Grin wrote:
My big question is: Why 109, and not 110 cards? Am I the only one wondering this? :-\

We need a rules card in there.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

CaptainOrlando wrote:
I just hope they have more cards which balance out the lack of skill use in the current rise of the runelords PACG. I would hate to buy the rogue deck and not have any use for the skills of the characters. I.E Currently as it stands: How many stealth checks have you come across when playing? How many monsters have "roll your stealth die" to do something? How many locations can be closed by stealth checks? Hardly any is the answer to all of them. Same thing for the perception skill and the finesse traits which are all things you would hope to be able to use with rogue characters.

Class Decks contain only characters and boons. Challenges come mainly from story cards and banes, so the place you really want to look for new skills to be utilized is in Skull & Shackles. And you will find S&S presents a lot more non-combat skill challenges.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

The Pale Grin wrote:
I thought of another question after my last post, are these decks a one-time thing, or will there be a new version of the fighter deck with every new base set?

These decks are intended to work with any Base Set, and hopefully will sell well enough that we can just keep them in print.

Now, that's not to say we won't *ever* offer a "Fighter Deck 2", but I would prefer to get Class Decks out there for all 31 classes before we start looking at things like that.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

2 people marked this as a favorite.
isaic16 wrote:

First, thank you! I'm really looking forward to having multiple character options for different class options.

Second, it's likely that I will not be able to get involved in organized play, so I'm wondering: how hard would it be to integrate these decks into standard PACG play? Would you just need to take the character cards/roles and play the same otherwise, or do you/can you add their cards to the base set and have more options available? Essentially, I'm trying to figure out how much bang-for-the-buck Non-PS players will get here. (Obviously a lot is stil in the air, I'm sure, but I can't help but get excited)

Thanks again!

These decks are very much designed for use outside of the OP program. The rules card I mentioned a couple of posts above will tell you exactly what to do, but basically, each card in the Class Deck has an adventure deck number, just like any other card, and when you add a new Adventure Deck into your box, you'll also add all of the cards from your Character Decks that have the same adventure deck number.

Liberty's Edge

Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

I am very much looking forward to the Organized Aspect of the Card Game, and will most likely coordinate it locally.

I have one worry though; I am hoping you will not be using your current Resources for PFS RPG play since they are behind as it is with what they have.

I am very much hoping this will be run fully separate from PFS RPG Org Play.

If not I hope you give them more help.


Just wanted to say thanks for the quick responses to my questions, and the answers clarified a lot! :-)


Man... Eventually 33 class decks? We're going to be able to have so much variety with this game. It keeps getting better and better and better. :)

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

1970Zombie wrote:

Character decks ... Need more details ... :)

What would be included with organized play scenarios? Would these be only PDFs or would there be some cards? Would that be 30 scenarios for the entire season and thus 3 or 4 scenarios in a monthly release? Any idea on the price point?

Just PDFs. These scenarios will use the existing banes, boons, locations, and ships from Skull & Shackles in new ways. (Also, because the PDFs do not need to be card-sized, we can do things in OP that we can't do in the main line...)

We'll be releasing them to retailers weekly; each month there will be 4 or 5 scenarios (depending on the number of weeks between Adventure Deck releases). And then we'll bundle up that month's scenarios for purchase on paizo.com. I'm not sure of pricing yet, but they will be pretty inexpensive.)

Sovereign Court

JBiggs78 wrote:
Man... Eventually 33 class decks? We're going to be able to have so much variety with this game. It keeps getting better and better and better. :)

And with 4 characters each... 132 characters plus 11 per Adv Path (assuming they keep doing 7 Base Set +4 Addon)? Daunting, but awesome!!!

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

Dragnmoon wrote:

I am very much looking forward to the Organized Aspect of the Card Game, and will most likely coordinate it locally.

I have one worry though; I am hoping you will not be using your current Resources for PFS RPG play since they are behind as it is with what they have.

I am very much hoping this will be run fully separate from PFS RPG Org Play.

If not I hope you give them more help.

Are you asking about the resources dedicated to creating PFS Scenarios for the RPG and resources dedicated to creating scenarios for card game organized play? Tanis will be doing scenario design, I'll be doing what I usually do (which is somewhere between development and editing), and Brian will be editing. None of us work on PFS Scenarios. Art and layout will be done by the art team who does *everything* for Paizo, including PFS scenarios. But they did just recently gain a new member, largely because of expansion to the card game line.


Just hoping it gets staggered enough that I can keep up. It'll be a challenge I'm happy to accept and I'm sure many others will as well.


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

As someone who knows quite a few avid puzzlers in the Redmond community (I don't do them often enough to be considered a part of the community) that community is awesome and I'm glad to see them working on this game :)

I know how hard editing can be, since I've been one before (a long time ago.)

Tanis et al, I have a few questions:

1) I take it this means you won't add any of the S&S scenario cards to the class deck after a session, correct?
2) Are scenario replays possible? RPG PFS doesn't allow them because it's possible to totally roll over a scenario with a bit of knowledge beforehand but it's less likely to happen in PACG. Of course, PACG Society credit might look different...
3) Hm, sleeved play is going to be interesting. I'm going to keep extra sleeves on hand since everyone's supposed to bring their own deck.
4) What if someone doesn't have a deck and there is a multi-part scenario (I assume there are going to be some)? Is there "pre-generation" allowed?

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

1. You will never take cards from the box and add them to your deck. Instead, there will be a method for using the cards from the box that you would have gained, and using them to "unlock" cards from your Class Deck.

2. You can replay a scenario as long as you're playing a character of the appropriate level, but no character can gain the reward from a particular scenario more than once. (You *may* be able to improve your deck slightly, though.)

3. You're on your own there.

4. We will likely provide a way to quickly build a character of the appropriate level from a Class Deck... but somebody will need to have a Class Deck to lend that guy!


Given that we will be waiting till at least August for much of this to show up, that will give me time to prepare for that. I'll probably pick up a couple of the class decks and chip in for the S&S base set. I might even be able to arrange some things at a local store.

Very nice.

Sovereign Court

I'm planning on sleeving my Organized Play base set and adventures (gotta have an extra one, I've seen how some locals handle cards!), and will likely just keep an extra set of sleeves in my OP base set for the other players (assuming it's the same size box as ROTR like someone said, the BrokenToken dividers will work nicely for that). I plan to run the Organized Play for my area, and as I see it, if someone is going to sleeve the cards, it'd be my responsibility (of course, I won't sleeve them at all if the group doesn't want to sleeve theirs).

Liberty's Edge

Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Vic Wertz wrote:
Are you asking about the resources dedicated to creating PFS Scenarios for the RPG and resources dedicated to creating scenarios for card game organized play? Tanis will be doing scenario design, I'll be doing what I usually do (which is somewhere between development and editing), and Brian will be editing. None of us work on PFS Scenarios. Art and layout will be done by the art team who does *everything* for Paizo, including PFS scenarios. But they did just recently gain a new member, largely because of expansion to the card game line.

Good to know. I was worried about John Compton doing editing and developing. He is already Busy bugger from what we can see from the outside.

Paizo Employee

As for sleeving cards, it sounds like you'd only need to concern yourself with your own cards. Base set is for setting up the scenarios / locations, while you use your deck to play your character. When you acquire a card from a location you pull the equivalent from your OWN set to add to your hand/deck. Since you're never actually mixing anyone's cards together, there can be a variety of sleeved/unsleeved sets without having to figure out how to separate them afterward. If that's the case I'll be using distinctive sleeves for mine so I can quickly tell the difference.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Vic Wertz wrote:
1. You will never take cards from the box and add them to your deck. Instead, there will be a method for using the cards from the box that you would have gained, and using them to "unlock" cards from your Class Deck.

Interesting. So the characters will never acquire boons outside of the deck you buy?

The Exchange

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Travel, cons, loaning, long term play, no insert... Time to consider branded sleeves so I can throw buckets of money at you Vic? Please? I really want to give you guys a lot of money, please let me....


Pathfinder Card Game, Maps, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Elvis Aron Manypockets wrote:
As for sleeving cards, it sounds like you'd only need to concern yourself with your own cards. Base set is for setting up the scenarios / locations, while you use your deck to play your character. When you acquire a card from a location you pull the equivalent from your OWN set to add to your hand/deck. Since you're never actually mixing anyone's cards together, there can be a variety of sleeved/unsleeved sets without having to figure out how to separate them afterward. If that's the case I'll be using distinctive sleeves for mine so I can quickly tell the difference.

It may be that during the game, you will take the boon you acquired from the deck into your hand, and use during the scenario. If so, after the scenario you'd put all the boons back in the box and "unlock" boons from your deck That's how I'd expect it to work, at any rate.

Also, the 'give a card to another player at your location' would require temporary unsleeving, but that doesn't come up very often so it probably wouldn't be a big deal.


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber
Elvis Aron Manypockets wrote:
As for sleeving cards, it sounds like you'd only need to concern yourself with your own cards. Base set is for setting up the scenarios / locations, while you use your deck to play your character. When you acquire a card from a location you pull the equivalent from your OWN set to add to your hand/deck. Since you're never actually mixing anyone's cards together, there can be a variety of sleeved/unsleeved sets without having to figure out how to separate them afterward. If that's the case I'll be using distinctive sleeves for mine so I can quickly tell the difference.

I don't think you simply pull the equivalent from your deck. Vic said you "unlock" cards you in your deck somehow, but he didn't say how. There will be way to many boons in the Base Set to have a copy of each in the character decks. So there is probably some system that says you can trade in a certain card or cards and get a card from your character deck box instead. But we don't know if that is something you can do right away when you acquire something, or will be something you only do when you rebuild your deck at the end of the scenario.

But either way, you'd potentially have two problems with only some cards being sleeved: 1. If you give a card to another character. 2. If you don't unlock until the end of the scenario, then you'd be playing with a mix of sleeved cards you started with and unsleeved cards you acquired.

EDIT: Looks like First World Bard was thinking along the same lines as me.

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