Starfinder Society Sanctioning and Schemes!

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

As I write this blog, we're on the road to soon release our twelfth and thirteenth scenarios, which is a pretty great milestone! One thing I've certainly noticed over the course of the Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild's development is a wide array of opinions and thoughts with regards to the tier structure for the campaign. I wanted to take some time to discuss some of our internal thoughts on this, and what players can expect to see going forward.

First off, let me address sanctioning. Everyone loves to see Adventure Path sanctioned right away, and I'm proud to say that we've had a pretty good track record with sanctioning the Dead Suns Adventure Path. So far, the first three adventures are sanctioned. We hit a bit of a snag with the fourth adventure, namely because of convention season creeping up and requiring a lot of attention—seriously, who'd think that an interactive special and three months of early releases for scenarios would take so much effort?! I hope to look at sanctioning for The Ruined Clouds in the coming weeks, but I want players to know that this project has not been forgotten. Now, with that being said, the fourth Dead Suns installment is intended for characters of 7th to 8th level, which currently represents some of the highest-level characters in the campaign. How about we talk about that...

Taking a trip in the "way back when machine", the Organized Play team had a series of meetings to discuss the new Tier structure for the Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild. The idea to condense tiers came from an early brainstorming session sparked by fellow developer, Linda Zayas-Palmer. This led to some future meetings where Organized Play Lead Developer John Compton and I sat down to create a sort of road map for our first season. We've stuck to the roadmap since the campaign started, making necessary adjustments for our change to two scenarios per month, and it's worked out very well. I don't want to spoil all of our upcoming scenario plans, but I do want to give some highlights for things that players and event organizers can expect to see over the coming months.

Following the convention season (post-August), we're going to stick with our general scheme of including more Tier 1-4 content. Expect most months to include a Tier 1-4, with a secondary higher tier scenario filling up the secondary slot.

We remain committed to higher level content, but don't expect to see a new Tier 5-8 every month. We'll be looking to mix up some of our release with a regular offering of Tier 3-6 and some Tier 5-8s.

For the most dedicated players, August looks to be an appropriate time to start up a new character. With Starfinder Adventure Path: The Reach of Empire debuting that month, alongside our other recently announced Starfinder Society scenarios, the future is ripe for new character opportunities.

Faction missions remain something we'll be interspersing throughout our future scenarios. Expect a slight step-back from Second Seekers (Luwazi Elsebo) missions for a bit. There will be more content on that front, but expect a future blog post to further discuss that topic.

Finally, expect to see the campaign start looking towards more high-level opportunities closer to the end of 2019!

Alrighty, those are some of my words of wisdom for our upcoming scenario plans. As always, I love hearing feedback from the community, so please feel free to put any requests or thoughts into the comments below. I know there's a wide variety of play styles, so be respectful of other players when discussing the topic of level ranges for new scenarios. Beyond that, it's time for me to jump back into convention season development!

Thurston Hillman
Starfinder Society Developer

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Tags: Organized Play Starfinder Society
Liberty's Edge **** Venture-Agent, Indiana—Hammond

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I am excited to see more content coming for Starfinder. Locally, we are planning to run more SFS as we have a few new players interested in organized play.

So, is there any plans to have material from the Pact Worlds acceptable for SFS play soon?


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According to this [[http://paizo.com/starfindersociety/additional]] most of the Pact Words book is already sanctioned.

Liberty's Edge *

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Pathfinder Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild Subscriber

I've been loving your choices on tiers. #1-06 (the first tier 3-6) came out perhaps a month early, but most players have at least two PCs now with their primary hitting level 5.

Personally, I'm hoping to see tier 7-10 this Fall.

I think a lot of people are looking forward to Pact Worlds race boons, especially SRO. While I'd like to play an SRO too, I'm much more excited for playing races introduced in first contact scenarios such as Ghibrani and Morlamaw.

The Exchange ⦵⦵

Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Arc Riley wrote:
I think a lot of people are looking forward to Pact Worlds race boons, especially SRO.

I personally hope its never released as a SFS legal race. Immunity to disease and poison is too disruptive when you can't work around it as a GM.

Liberty's Edge *

Pathfinder Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild Subscriber
Shaudius wrote:
Arc Riley wrote:
I think a lot of people are looking forward to Pact Worlds race boons, especially SRO.
I personally hope its never released as a SFS legal race. Immunity to disease and poison is too disruptive when you can't work around it as a GM.

Disease and poison don't come up very often, and I'm not aware of any situation that requires PCs be susceptible to them for the story.

I think this more than balances out those immunities;

Pact Worlds, page 213 wrote:
SROs count as living creatures for the purposes of magic healing effects that work on living creatures, though the number of Hit Points restored in such cases is halved.

So your party healer channels, everyone gets healed for 25HP but your SRO only heals for 12HP. Certainly there's other ways for an SRO to heal, but I'm betting that getting half the benefit of party-wide healing comes up far more often than disease or poison.

Scarab Sages ***** Venture-Captain, Netherlands aka Woran

Thank you Thurston for keeping us informed.


Arc Riley wrote:
Shaudius wrote:
Arc Riley wrote:
I think a lot of people are looking forward to Pact Worlds race boons, especially SRO.
I personally hope its never released as a SFS legal race. Immunity to disease and poison is too disruptive when you can't work around it as a GM.

Disease and poison don't come up very often, and I'm not aware of any situation that requires PCs be susceptible to them for the story.

I think this more than balances out those immunities;

Pact Worlds, page 213 wrote:
SROs count as living creatures for the purposes of magic healing effects that work on living creatures, though the number of Hit Points restored in such cases is halved.
So your party healer channels, everyone gets healed for 25HP but your SRO only heals for 12HP. Certainly there's other ways for an SRO to heal, but I'm betting that getting half the benefit of party-wide healing comes up far more often than disease or poison.

SRO can benefit though from construct mending/healing spells fully though so Technomancers are their friends. But it definitely is a limitation but they do pack a lot of immunities so it probably balances out. Also if you have an envoy make sure you give the SRO in your group a stam bump once per fight if you have that ability to lessen the HP damage they take.

Sczarni *****

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Starfinder Charter Superscriber

I'll be GMing the 4th book of Dead Suns soon, and my –701 is currently 6th level, so I'd certainly like to see some 5-8s and 7-10s coming soon.

And, I know I'm a broken record when it comes to this, but when you're drafting up scenarios that follow up on Boons or NPCs from previous scenarios, please please please make the follow up one Tier higher.

I keep missing out on fun storyline connections because I have to play them with different characters.

The Exchange ⦵⦵

Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Arc Riley wrote:
...and I'm not aware of any situation that requires PCs be susceptible to them for the story.

I'm not sure why that's at all relevant, there's practically no situation where you being susceptible to damage would be required for the story that doesn't mean that a creature with natural DR 75/- would be balanced.

If you don't want poison or disease to ever come up, make SROs legal, because such immunity in the player community completely changes the meta of design space.

I mean I've personally experienced it in Dead Suns with GMs specifically disallowing non-humanoid races because of their immunity to something there (although SROs are somehow subject to these effects although with a bonus.)

Dark Archive *

Shaudius wrote:
Arc Riley wrote:
...and I'm not aware of any situation that requires PCs be susceptible to them for the story.

I'm not sure why that's at all relevant, there's practically no situation where you being susceptible to damage would be required for the story that doesn't mean that a creature with natural DR 75/- would be balanced.

If you don't want poison or disease to ever come up, make SROs legal, because such immunity in the player community completely changes the meta of design space.

I mean I've personally experienced it in Dead Suns with GMs specifically disallowing non-humanoid races because of their immunity to something there (although SROs are somehow subject to these effects although with a bonus.)

So because a race is immune to something it can never be used? That is utter nonsense. The only time it would matter is if the scenario "requires" the players to be poisoned or diseased. Even if that did happen all that it requires to still work is "this poison is not affected by immunity or resistance.

With your logic, every race but human should be banned because they all could invalidate something. Oh, androids don't have to breathe, well that mechanics worthless. Oh, vesk are always armed, guess no ambushes.

* Starfinder Society Developer

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Hey folks, I know that people are very passionate about SROs and the other races in Pact Worlds (bantrids FTW!) But that being said, can we save this conversation for another thread? :)

Liberty's Edge *

Pathfinder Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild Subscriber
Shaudius wrote:
Arc Riley wrote:
...and I'm not aware of any situation that requires PCs be susceptible to them for the story.
If you don't want poison or disease to ever come up, make SROs legal, because such immunity in the player community completely changes the meta of design space.

Details about Quests: Into the Unknown:

I just started my Morlamaw Solarian, played him for the first time in Quests: Into the Unknown at a con. In Boarding, there's the effect that anyone ending their turn adjacent to a wall containing an active necromantic generator takes 1 point of cold damage. At first level, getting stuck in combat while additionally taking 1 damage per round is pretty tough. I've seen near TPKs after the skeletal crew flanked the party in a charged corridor.

Morlamaws have a racial cold resistance 5 so he was completely unaffected by supernatural cold and just bounded down the center corridor. The skeletal crew attempting to flank the party were blocked and all 3 were destroyed by 2d6 fire damage when he went supernova. The Morlamaw laughs maniacally as they turn to ash.

The other 5 PCs were easily able to dispatch the 3 skeletal crew going down the side corridor where the necromantic generators were shut off.

I've run Quests many times, I've never seen this encounter go so easily. An SRO would be very much affected by the cold damage here, but there will certainly be some encounters where their immunities allow them to kick ass.

And that's OK, the writers for Starfinder Society include a wide variety of challenges in each scenario such that a single skill, power, resistance, or immunity doesn't break a whole session.


Stupid question, but: Can you include scenarios into larger Adventure Paths? I've gotten the complaint that the Dead Suns AP is "Boring as all Hell" from some folks, including my group, and I'm wanting to spice things up a bit.


@Deranged - They're not designed to fit into the APs, but there are some that you could probably work in. For Society play, you're expected to run the scenarios and APs as-is, but in your home games, it would be _very_ easy to borrow liberally from them.

As an example, after the PCs become minor celebrities in Incident at Absalom Station, maybe then they get invited to be the crew that handles Live Exploration Extreme! Or you could even combine Zo! and his camera crew with the trip to the Temple of the Twelve, making it a long-term show where the highlights are regularly broadcast to the audience. Survivor: Ukulam Edition!

Even for Society play, we're starting to see more of the scenarios that are follow-ons to prior adventures, so while you don't get a full-on AP out of it, you do have continuous story elements and recurring NPCs.

Grand Lodge ** Venture-Agent, Washington—Tacoma aka Pakishi

Thursty, thanks for the info. I know that Starfinder has garnered a huge following in my area. Mostly due to the great content, but I think that my enthusiasm may have player a part in some small way. I dove into Starfinder head first and didn't even check to see if there was water in the pool (thankfully, there was).

Keep up the great work!

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