Changes

Thursday, September 3, 2020

Meleeka drops into a ready stance. Legs spread slightly more than shoulder-width apart, left knee touching the ground, the ball of her right foot raised and poised to launch her in any direction at a moment’s notice. She begins slowly sweeping her arms in broad, circular movements, fingers curled like grasping talons as she channels her rage and negative emotions out of her body, giving them shape as flickering flames shrouding her hands.

The soft clap from outside the training area is all the signal she needs. Meleeka launches herself off her right foot, throwing her body into a twisting spin to add momentum to her first blow, shattering a wooden training dummy into shards of smoking wood. Landing on her left foot, she kicks off the ground immediately, throwing herself into a backflip that takes her over the next nearest training dummy. Coiling her hands together into a hammer of fire, she reduces that target to shards as well. Eyeing the last target, a stone statue known to the initiated as One-Who-Waits, Meleeka charges forward, flames shrouding her feet and giving her extra momentum for her final leap. Arms outstretched, body turning from a vertical whirl to a horizontal spin, she latches onto the statue with her fingers, using her strength and momentum to sweep the heavy stone off the ground, overhead, and bringing it crashing back down in a fiery explosion.

Looking at the wreckage, Meleeka is surprised to find that, unlike a few months previously, the fires had not stoked the anger in her heart, but consumed it, leaving her with a relaxed sense of peace that was entirely unfamiliar to the young and very talented martial artist.

“You are ready.” The words come from one Rashmivati Melipdra, a jovial but imposing woman who had taken Meleeka under her wing, untwisting the young woman’s spirit while teaching her discipline and friendship. “You may not see it, but I do. I have no need for an apprentice who has learned all I have to teach.” Rashmivati says the words with an empathetic smile, her pride in her protégé plainly written on her face. “The rest of what you have to learn, you must learn for yourself.”

“Where shall I go?” Meleeka asks.

“Absalom first,” Rashmivati replies. “You should meet Ambrus, and Sorrina, and all the rest. In the Grand Lodge, you will encounter many people who see the world through eyes different from your own. Learn from them, and let their wisdom show you the next path in your journey.” Rashmivati pauses for a moment in pleasant reflection before continuing. “And tell my brother Shristi that it has been too long since he last visited home. Tell him he is missed, and that I trained you as a disciple. He may have more to teach you!” Rashmivati takes the young woman in a hug as she finishes. Meleeka’s body stiffens for a moment, still unused to Rashmivati’s displays of affection, before melting into the older woman’s arms.

“What shall I do?” Meleeka whispers into the silken scarves covering her mentor’s shoulders.

“Whatever you wish my child. Go, and make this world your own.”

Maleeka Sanvara, a fire monk crouched with her arms outstretched and fire at her fingertips

Illustration by Riccardo Moscatello

Hey everyone, Michael Sayre here! It’s with a mixture of sadness and excitement that I announce my departure from the Organized Play team. I’ve accepted a new position here at Paizo that will take my career in a direction I’ve always wanted to go and I’m excited about this new opportunity. But I will miss planning, outlining, and developing these adventures that we’ve all shared over the last two years! I’ve learned a lot from Linda, Tonya, John, Thursty, James, Alex, and everyone else who’s been a part of the Organized Play family during my time in this department. But don’t worry! I’m leaving you all in excellent hands, and Linda will be following up in a bit to let you know about the rest of the changes to the team.

Thanks so much for allowing me to be part of this community, and hopefully I still have many more opportunities to join you all at a table in the years to come. You’re all awesome. And just in case this is the last time I get to say it…

Explore! Report! Cooperate!

Michael Sayre

More Paizo Blog.
Tags: Organized Play Paizo Staff Pathfinder Society
1/5

4 people marked this as a favorite.

Wow!
Congratulations and best wishes in your new role. You will definitely be missed in the Org Play team.

Thanks for the wonderful fiction as your departure gift.

3/5 5/55/5 Contributor

7 people marked this as a favorite.

It's been an absolute pleasure working with you in your Org Play capacity, and I look forward to seeing what your new role is!

I'm also personally delighted that your send-off from Org Play included an NPC I created!


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Good luck in your new position!


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Good luck (can't wait to see what the new position is!), and thank you for the opportunity with Org Play!

Contributor

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Congrats and best of luck in your new position!

Scarab Sages 5/5 5/5 Venture-Captain, Washington—Spokane

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Congratulations on your new role!! Good fortune on this path!!

Paizo Employee Pathfinder Society Developer

6 people marked this as a favorite.
GM Numbat wrote:

Wow!

Congratulations and best wishes in your new role. You will definitely be missed in the Org Play team.

Thanks for the wonderful fiction as your departure gift.

Thank you, and of course! Integrating flash fiction into our org play blogs was one of the changes we've made over the last couple years that I was most excited about, and I'm glad Paizo gave us the opportunity to start doing it!

Kate Baker wrote:

It's been an absolute pleasure working with you in your Org Play capacity, and I look forward to seeing what your new role is!

I'm also personally delighted that your send-off from Org Play included an NPC I created!

Rashmivati may be one of my favorite venture-captains! It's been exciting to see her grow beyond org play and start making little cameos in the lore and story of adventure paths and other products beyond just scenarios!

Valantrix1 wrote:
Good luck in your new position!

Thank you!

Jacob W. Michaels wrote:
Good luck (can't wait to see what the new position is!), and thank you for the opportunity with Org Play!

Of course, Jacob! You earned it and deserved it.

Amber_Stewart wrote:
Congrats and best of luck in your new position!

Thanks Amber! It's been a pleasure working with you, hopefully we'll have the opportunity again at some point!

Preston Hudson wrote:
Congratulations on your new role!! Good fortune on this path!!

Thanks Preston! I feel like we've been on this journey together ever since the first time Cody told me I needed to come check out "this Pathfinder Society thing over on the other side of town". How amazing to find myself taking the next step with Paizo and seeing your small community of four players grow into a flourishing region!

1/5

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Congratulations, Michael! Wishing you the best of luck! It's been a pleasure.

Grand Lodge 4/5 Venture-Captain, Missouri—Columbia

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Good luck in your new role, whatever it may be!

Grand Archive

3 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Congrats! And I’m very relieved that it’s moving to another Paizo position and not away! Can’t wait to see how you will continue to help bring us amazing content. :3


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Congratulations!

I've loved following your career, and expect to see a ton more awesome stuff with your name on it. . I guess I should point everyone to Feats of Bravery to celebrate. :)

Envoy's Alliance 1/5

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Give mea heart attack! Thought you were leaving us for a second there!

Thank you for all your contributions and, as with everyone else here, excited to see where you land.

Also loved seeing Meleeka here, mere weeks after finishing playing through that quest myself.

Paizo Employee Pathfinder Society Developer

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Owen KC Stephens wrote:

Congratulations!

I've loved following your career, and expect to see a ton more awesome stuff with your name on it. . I guess I should point everyone to Feats of Bravery to celebrate. :)

The first thing I wrote for you, but not the last! (Also it looked like the URL was funky so I fixed it in my quote to go to the DriveThruRPG page.)

Scarab Sages 5/5 5/5 Venture-Captain, Washington—Spokane

1 person marked this as a favorite.

It definitely has been a journey. I agree that this is amazing seeing you move into a role you were hoping to reach and taking this next step with Paizo while I have taken this area from a small table to a growing region. Honestly, I never thought I would be where I am with the Organized Play Voluinteer team when I was sitting the the SeaTac Marriott back in 2013 during PaizoCon. Who knows what the future holds for either of us! Anyway, I look forward to what you will be involved with in the future.

Preston Hudson wrote:
Congratulations on your new role!! Good fortune on this path!!
Thanks Preston! I feel like we've been on this journey together ever since the first time Cody told me I needed to come check out "this Pathfinder Society thing over on the other side of town". How amazing to find myself taking the next step with Paizo and seeing your small community of four players grow into a flourishing region!

Paizo Employee Pathfinder Society Developer

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Eyeball Tsunami wrote:

Give mea heart attack! Thought you were leaving us for a second there!

Thank you for all your contributions and, as with everyone else here, excited to see where you land.

Thank you! I promise we won't be cagey about what that position is for too much longer :)

Quote:


Also loved seeing Meleeka here, mere weeks after finishing playing through that quest myself.

Meleeka has even more appearances ahead! I mentioned this on a PaizoCon stream, but she appears in Lost Omens Pathfinder Society Guide where she'll be one of the many teachers players can learn new moves and abilities from, and both she and Rashmivati also make an appearance in the upcoming Pathfinder Society Scenario #2-06: The Crashing Wave!

Sovereign Court 4/5

1 person marked this as a favorite.

You're a fantastic asset and I'm so glad you were able to take advantage of this new opportunity. You were my first Paizo developer and I'm forever grateful for the opportunity to work with you. Here's to many more years of adventures!


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I've loved so much of your 3pp stuff, I've got my fingers extra crossed you're moving to that dev position that was advertised not too long ago.

Liberty's Edge 3/5 5/5 Venture-Captain, Nebraska—Omaha

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Wow! Too short!!

Good luck on the next path.

Paizo Employee Pathfinder Society Developer

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Winkie_Phace wrote:

I've loved so much of your 3pp stuff, I've got my fingers extra crossed you're moving to that dev position that was advertised not too long ago.

This is completely separate from the open call designer position, which we're still accepting applications for, but that doesn't mean we both won't be happy about this change :)

Paizo Employee 5/5 Organized Play Associate

3 people marked this as a favorite.

Thread moved to General Discussion; also, we have an Organized Play General Discussion forum now!

Paizo Employee Pathfinder Society Developer

3 people marked this as a favorite.
Alex Speidel wrote:
Thread moved to General Discussion; also, we have an Organized Play General Discussion forum now!

Yay for Organized Play General Discussion forums!

Paizo Employee 5/5 Organized Play Associate

9 people marked this as a favorite.

Now that Mike is gone we can finally have nice things!

(I am, of course, joking; Mike is a fantastic teammate and while we'll miss him, I can't wait to see what he produces as Paizo's newest [REDACTED])

Venture-Lieutenant, Online—VTT

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Congratulations! I have been amazed to see Michael’s passion for his work. It’s not just the side many of us don’t see, working with the organized team and freelancers, but in nearly every society group I am a part of across the internet he is there! Going above and beyond, working to foster an environment where anyone has a seat at the table, and helping them get there. I very much look forward to finding out the new position and seeing what comes of it. I know the passion behind the work is undeniably present, and great things are to come!
This fiction is also one of my personal favorites so far, as I have felt personal investment in Meleeka’s story for some time now, so much to release an audible gasp when first finding out her to-be part in Golarion will be a story we can all enjoy!
Thank you Michael, and the absolute best of luck!

Liberty's Edge

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Congratulations from your old 3pp buddy. I knew Michael waaay back during the Akashic Mysteries playtest. He keeps moving up!

Sovereign Court 4/5 5/55/55/55/5 Venture-Agent, Georgia—Atlanta

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Congrats on the new role.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Card Game, Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Charter Superscriber

Congrats Michael!

Silver Crusade

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

Gratz, Michael!

1/5 Venture-Agent, Online—PbP

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Congratulations, Michael. I've appreciated the insight and opportunities that you've provided. I wish you the best and look forward to what seeing what the future has to offer from you!

Scarab Sages 2/5 5/55/5

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Aw, I love this resolution to Meleeka's story.

Congrats Michael and best of luck!

Grand Lodge 4/5 5/55/55/55/5

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Alex Speidel wrote:

Now that Mike is gone we can finally have nice things!

(I am, of course, joking; Mike is a fantastic teammate and while we'll miss him, I can't wait to see what he produces as Paizo's newest [REDACTED])

Is that [REDACTED] a state secret? Must we check all the mastheads of new products for a clue?

Anyway, Mike, you have been an amazing member of the OrgPlay Leadership team. We'll miss you here, but I hope that your new opportunities are all that you wish for. You deserve the very best!

Hmm

Scarab Sages 5/5 5/5 Venture-Captain, Netherlands

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Congratulations and good luck Michael!

Paizo Employee Designer

3 people marked this as a favorite.
Hmm wrote:
Alex Speidel wrote:

Now that Mike is gone we can finally have nice things!

(I am, of course, joking; Mike is a fantastic teammate and while we'll miss him, I can't wait to see what he produces as Paizo's newest [REDACTED])

Is that [REDACTED] a state secret? Must we check all the mastheads of new products for a clue?

Anyway, Mike, you have been an amazing member of the OrgPlay Leadership team. We'll miss you here, but I hope that your new opportunities are all that you wish for. You deserve the very best!

Hmm

It's been all officialized in today's web fiction that I've joined the design team as a designer :)

We just wanted to tip-toe around the announcement a bit so we didn't accidentally discourage anyone from applying to the completely unrelated open call designer position that we were still taking applications for when this announcement went up.

2/5

Michael Sayre wrote:
Hmm wrote:
Alex Speidel wrote:

Now that Mike is gone we can finally have nice things!

(I am, of course, joking; Mike is a fantastic teammate and while we'll miss him, I can't wait to see what he produces as Paizo's newest [REDACTED])

Is that [REDACTED] a state secret? Must we check all the mastheads of new products for a clue?

Anyway, Mike, you have been an amazing member of the OrgPlay Leadership team. We'll miss you here, but I hope that your new opportunities are all that you wish for. You deserve the very best!

Hmm

It's been all officialized in today's web fiction that I've joined the design team as a designer :)

We just wanted to tip-toe around the announcement a bit so we didn't accidentally discourage anyone from applying to the completely unrelated open call designer position that we were still taking applications for when this announcement went up.

Congratulations. But now I also can't help but wonder about your past comments that you're working with the design team to iron out what weapons belong to which cultures. Were you actually talking to someone or was this just a discussion you had with yourself? ;)


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Congratulations!

One thing I've been wondering (and this may just be my incomplete grasp of the english language): what exactly does a designer do compared to a developer? I'm assuming we're not talking art/graphics design, but game/system design here, but what differentiates game design from game development? There must be a difference at Paizo, as they are apparently two different departments, but I cannot figure it out.

Sorry for the off-topic post, but hopefully someone who's a native speaker or who knows about these issues can provide me with just a little enlightenment :).

Paizo Employee Designer

5 people marked this as a favorite.
albadeon wrote:

Congratulations!

One thing I've been wondering (and this may just be my incomplete grasp of the english language): what exactly does a designer do compared to a developer? I'm assuming we're not talking art/graphics design, but game/system design here, but what differentiates game design from game development? There must be a difference at Paizo, as they are apparently two different departments, but I cannot figure it out.

Sorry for the off-topic post, but hopefully someone who's a native speaker or who knows about these issues can provide me with just a little enlightenment :).

Probably the simplest way to put it is that designers create the bones of the game, while developers paint on the muscles and skin.

A designer is focused on the rules of the game. The classes that populate it, the rules and subsystems that are used to play it, etc.

Developers take those rules and frameworks and turn them into adventures, integrating them with stories and the lore of the world.

So, as the Pathfinder Society Developer, my day-to-day work involved planning the season story with my team and then coming up with individual stories to fill out the 37 adventures and end-of-season special that we produce each year. Then each month, I'd outline 2-6 of those adventures, basically one to two pages of text each that says "This adventure is set in this part of the world, here's the relevant background." Then I list out what kinds of encounters and monsters I want appearing in the story, what the story needs to accomplish, what kind of challenges should appear in the story, and what resources would be useful for an author to reference. I then reach out to an author to assign the adventure and guide them through the process of writing it. Once it's done, I take the author's completed work and do a pass on it to clean up any inconsistencies that may have crept in, tidy up any mechanics that need it, drop in boilerplates, art tags, and other formatting elements, and check for anything else that might need adjustments before sending it on to the editing team.

A designer goes through a similar process,but with a few differences. Rather than focusing as much on adventures and lore, they work as a team to say "What kinds of feats and character options do players need? What kinds of rules would help a GM run this game better?" Then they break those rules up into appropriate groupings and create a big outline for a book like the APG, sourcing those ideas for archetypes and feats out to multiple freelancers, while typically creating more complex rules elements like classes and particularly load-bearing subsystems in-house (though some subsystems do get their initial write-up done by freelancers as well). They also work with the other departments in the company to help review rules and subsystems that go into things like adventure path volumes and the Lost Omens books.

Grand Lodge 4/5 5/55/55/55/5

3 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Congratulations on moving to the Pathfinder Design team, Mike! I look forward to seeing all your creations!

Hmm

Paizo Employee 5/5 Organized Play Managing Developer

6 people marked this as a favorite.

Now that where you're going isn't a secret anymore... :)

Congratulations, Mike! Your seemingly endless font of creative ideas, your insights, and your dedication to making the Pathfinder Society program the best it can be have made you a huge asset to the Organized Play team, and an amazing coworker. While I'm sad to see you go, I'm glad that the community will be able to enjoy your work for many years to come. And I know that in your new position on the design team, you'll continue to create things that inspire people's imaginations and spark memorable stories.

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