Guest Organized Play Blog: Playing Pathfinder Adventure Card Society

Wednesday, August 28, 2019

At PaizoCon last May, Paizo launched a new Core Set for the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game. At the same time, the organized play team updated the Pathfinder Adventure Card Guild into the Pathfinder Adventure Card Society. Three months out, we asked one of our active volunteers to give their impressions of current Society. Without further ado, I’m turning the blog over to our guest author, Jonathan Ng.

Hi, I’m Jonathan and I’m one of the Venture Lieutenants for the Seattle region.  We play weekly at the Mox Boarding House in Bellevue, which is one of the local staple game stores in the region.  We are currently running through the previous Season, Season of Tapestry’s Tides.

We have about 8-9 or so players a week, and often this presents to us a logistical dilemma - how do we balance out our party?  The RPG side of the Pathfinder Society can often have this type of dilemma, but we often need to go through a much longer period of time with the same characters and parties - this could be fatal in higher level scenarios!

Some days, we balance out our party perfectly, with a Strength character at each table, a Dexterity character, some healing, some Arcane… and then some time ago, we had a scenario where we decided to seat people according to when they arrived.  We ended up with a party of Athnul, Hayato, Lirianne, and Seltyiel, and a party of Alahazra, 2 Linis, and Radillo. Guess where most of the high level weapons ended up? The poor weapon users keep telling us to share, and yet this has happened not once, but twice.  Worse yet, this scenario just happens to punish non-magic users. Luckily, the martial table managed to make it through.

One of the things I like the most about the Pathfinder Card Society scenarios is that the developers often use Society scenarios to test out interesting concepts.  The concept of the Defensive Stance in Mummy’s Mask and the siege scenario was actually previewed in Season of the Runelords.  When I first played that scenario, everything about it seemed new and different - I think I played way too many “defeat and corner the villain” scenarios at that point.  Tapestry’s Tides also has a scenario like this:

Instead of having locations, the scenario in question required you to fight on ships, then beat the actual ship to close the location.  Luckily you didn’t actually need to close all 9 locations to win - that would have been a nightmare!

With all the cards we bring every week to host a game, the box runners often have to find creative storage solutions.  One of the box runners brings a set in a card bandoleer. I bring something that looks somewhat like a rounded-off suitcase.  And one of the box runners has an actual, honest-to-goodness Pathfinder Adventure Chest:

I’m very glad for the people in my region who are interested enough in the game to play through these Seasons.  It has been great playing together with them and I hope to do this for a long time.

Come back next week for our monthly Stars, Spotlights, and Convention Blog – which includes an update on Pathfinder (second edition) Society!

Until then – Explore, Report, Cooperate!

Tonya Woldridge
Organized Play Manager

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Tags: Organized Play Pathfinder Adventure Card Game Pathfinder Adventure Card Society
Grand Lodge 5/5 Venture-Captain, Arizona—Phoenix aka TriOmegaZero

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Huzzah!


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

Thanks for sharing. Interesting to see how different groups handle things.


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

Super interesting!

As a complete aside:
You mentioned playing the scenario where you play on Ships rather than locations, a Season 5 scenario that I'm familiar with.

A rules question; how did you actually rule how to close the locations? As-written in the scenario powers, you have to summon and encounter the ship/location to close it; but the scenario explicitly states that you're not on a ship 8/9ths of the time (since your actual 'real' ship is anchored), and if you're not on a ship you're supposed to instantly banish any ship you encounter as per the S&S rulebook (which is not a 'defeat').

Scarab Sages 5/5 Venture-Captain, Texas—Austin aka SetonAlandel

Awesome to see you have multiple tables a night! Does every table play the same scenario each night?

Venture-Agent, Online—ACG aka redeux

Kenneth Fisher wrote:
Awesome to see you have multiple tables a night! Does every table play the same scenario each night?

I'm from a different area, but we typically have 2 tables running. Usually each adventure is 4-5 scenarios long and our group is within the same adventure. One table might be a scenario or two ahead, and then we go back and make sure everyone is caught up before moving onto the next adventure. Unlike the RPG, in the ACG there is no rule against replays so we're able to help out our teammates if they missed a week or failed a scenario to make sure they advance and we can stick together.

Venture-Lieutenant, Washington—Seattle aka zeroth_hour

Race Dorsey wrote:
Kenneth Fisher wrote:
Awesome to see you have multiple tables a night! Does every table play the same scenario each night?
I'm from a different area, but we typically have 2 tables running. Usually each adventure is 4-5 scenarios long and our group is within the same adventure. One table might be a scenario or two ahead, and then we go back and make sure everyone is caught up before moving onto the next adventure. Unlike the RPG, in the ACG there is no rule against replays so we're able to help out our teammates if they missed a week or failed a scenario to make sure they advance and we can stick together.

What Race said; making sure that everyone is at roughly the same place adventure-wise is the best way of having happy players. There are a few exceptions with regards to long trips (one of my players tends to take month-long trips) but even there I make sure he gets caught up.

It took a while for me to get above 1 table. I was at 1 table from 2014 to 2017, and bumped up to 1.5-2 (6ish players) during Season of Plundered Tombs. I got a regular 2 tables during SoFAC. It takes a certain amount of patience to get the players - a lot of players have regular playgroups and will play during conventions when there's a new set, but not at other times.

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