Organized Play: Pathfinder & Starfinder Interactive Preview

Thursday, July 22nd, 2021

It all started when Starfinder launched and John Compton (lead of Organized Play development at the time) kept threatening me with a “Time Capsule Boon” where he’d let Pathfinder Society Characters transition into Starfinder Society. It was something of the atomic bomb equivalent of threats to be uttered in the office. The idea of crossing the streams between the campaigns was ludicrous. LUDICROUS, I SAY!

Cut to a few years later: John had moved on to join the Starfinder team (ha, irony!), and the new Pathfinder Society developer, Michael Sayre, approached me with the historic line of “Hey, wanna do a crossover interactive?” Thus the idea of doing a crossover interactive between Pathfinder Society and Starfinder Society was truly born!

A few months later, during one of my in-person visits to the Seattle office, Michael and I got to deliver our pitch to both James Jacobs and Rob McCreary (the Creative Directors for both Pathfinder and Starfinder, respectively). Michael and I finished a whirlwind pitch that talked about time travel, navigating the Gap, and using the Maze of the Open Road to travel to far-off lands.

In the ensuing seconds, you could have heard a pin drop. The only real sound in the room was the formation of sweat on the respective brows of Michael and I, as our ridiculous pitch was hurled at our company’s two creative visionaries.

Then, with wide smiles, the two of them both joined in on the scheming! Dimension of Time, Hounds of Tindalos, Chronomancy and more were thrown at the wall as possible reasons and storyline elements for this outlandish plan, and the Organized Play Team had full buy-in from Paizo’s Creative Directors.

Of course, Michael Sayre would go on to great deeds in his current role as a designer for Pathfinder. That meant that a new lead would need to step in and help, which brings Jenny Jarzabski into the fold. Jenny heard the wild plan of a crossover special and she immediately took the figurative football and ran with it, deciding to tackle the story on her end!

So let’s listen to her explain what happened next...

A dark skinned humanoid with short red hair, stands in a teal jumpsuit with their hands on their hips, and their blaster holstered Artist Przemyslaw Golab. A yellow bi-pedal dragon in a teal jumpsuit holding a large axe

Both illustrations by Przemyslaw Golab.

I’ve been tagged in! As Thursty said, this idea started before I joined the team, but I took over the narrative planning, and of course the development on the Starfinder side.

Obviously, this special is going to feel different from the ones you’ve played in the past. First of all, this is an epic crossover event that spans time, space, and two different rules systems and settings! That’s pretty darn exciting by itself, right? But that’s not all! When our unholy trinity—John Compton, Thursty, and myself—got together to talk shop and brainstorm ideas for how to make this special, well, special, we came to a unified decision. Almost all of our previous interactives have been world-shattering events where the PCs play big damn heroes trying to save the whole world. It’s a pretty cool way to frame an event, but after years of this, the devs were engaged in a race against ourselves to make each year’s special bigger and the stakes higher than the last. This is not a sustainable cycle. Quickly, we found ourselves (and many of the players!) burning out and feeling fatigue from saving the world year after year.

That’s why this year’s special won’t be about saving the world. This time, it’s personal. Based on notes from our brainstorm sesh, I crafted a heartwarming (or heartbreaking?) narrative in which the PCs can save a group of lost explorers. In order to experience the full story, you should play both the Pathfinder and Starfinder versions of the event. Now, if you’re not sold on the smaller-scale event, don’t worry. This plotline is epic—it involves a crossover between the Societies with both sides time traveling and battling extraplanar horrors, after all!

Telling you any more would bring us firmly into spoiler territory, but I look forward to the results of your efforts to delve into mysterious ruins across two timelines and save maybe not the world, but someone’s world. Well, maybe you’ll save the world, too. Multitasking.

Thurston Hillman
Digital Adventures Developer

Jenny Jarzabski
Starfinder Society Developer

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Tags: Organized Play Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Pathfinder Second Edition Pathfinder Society Pathfinder Society Scenarios Starfinder Roleplaying Game Starfinder Society Starfinder Society Scenarios
Scarab Sages 5/5 5/5 *** Venture-Captain, Netherlands

7 people marked this as a favorite.
Jenny wrote:
When our unholy trinity—John Compton, Thursty, and myself—

oh no

1/5 5/55/5 **

1 person marked this as a favorite.

I am very much looking forward to these adventures and watching how various groups tackle the challenges they present.

My sincere thanks to all involved for making them a reality, even a time-warped reality.

Dark Archive 4/5 *** Venture-Agent, Finland—Tampere

6 people marked this as a favorite.

I don't know about saving the world, I had just gotten sick of multi table species always ending and starting the metaplot meaning I would for years miss context of metaplot just because nobody wants to spoil the special and I missed a con :'D

But yeah I'm super curious of how this crossover works and what its like :O

Radiant Oath ****

a "Tenet" style plot, with pathfinders going <forward> and starfinders going <backwards>?

1/5 5/55/55/55/5 **

1 person marked this as a favorite.

I'm excited to see how they handle the mechanical explanation (as much as might be necessary) for this. There are so many cool ways of viewing time and the implications of traversing it, and I can't wait to see where they take it!

Grand Lodge 3/5 5/55/55/55/5 ****

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Dimension! Of! Time! Dimension! Of! Time! Dimension! Of! Time!

I can't wait.

Dataphiles 2/5

5 people marked this as a favorite.

"Oh, boy..." — Dr. Sam Beckett

Vigilant Seal **

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I'm quite surprised they were tossing around all of those ideas for a cross-over event when the simplest way actually lies within.. The Mwangi Expanse.

Seriously would anyone in the Starfinder universe even blink at a Goloma, a Shisk, or even a Conrasu? I think not.

Wayfinders 4/5

Here we go again!

Liberty's Edge 1/5 **

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
Jenny Jarzabski wrote:
That’s why this year’s special won’t be about saving the world. This time, it’s personal. Based on notes from our brainstorm sesh, I crafted a heartwarming (or heartbreaking?) narrative in which the PCs can save a group of lost explorers. In order to experience the full story, you should play both the Pathfinder and Starfinder versions of the event.

When this special first got mentioned I will admit, I was very hesitant. In fact, it was specifically because of feeling like we were going to hit the issues I had with video games like WoW with scope/scale.

This right here? This legitimately made me feel like my feelings were both valid *and* being addressed.

I am hype AF now. :D

Envoy's Alliance 1/5 5/5

"I just hope like heck I don't get wrapped up in this. Going to a fae/demonic demiplane was bad enough."

Seamus is probably gonna get wrapped up in this. The Duke of Thunder needs his Scry-Per-View fix. :P

Manifold Host 1/5 5/5

"This wouldn't be the WORST expansion to experience. Who knows, I might even get some new fashion design ideas!"

Wayfinders 1/5 5/5

"All I know is that I'll probably end up having to clean up the mess, because only the BEST custodians can clean up after a time-barf."

4/5 5/55/55/5 **** Venture-Lieutenant, Minnesota—Minneapolis

2 people marked this as a favorite.

So given that Jenny is planning it, will there be a group of NPC magical girls involved?

Guess we get to find out if the Starfinder and Pathfinder world has the equivalent of time cops.

Grand Lodge 4/5

Pathfinder Adventure, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I believe that might be in the jurisdiction of inevitables.

Scarab Sages 4/5 5/55/55/5 *** Venture-Captain, Australia—NSW—Greater West

So, is there are specific order you have to play in if you are planning to capture both? Inquiring minds wish to know.

Paizo Employee 5/55/5 * Organized Play Associate

Sandra Wilkinson wrote:
So, is there are specific order you have to play in if you are planning to capture both? Inquiring minds wish to know.

We're recommending that the Pathfinder special be run prior to the Starfinder special, and that's how we'll be running them at our major cons (Gen Con has PF on Friday and SF on Saturday).

1/5 * RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 16

1 person marked this as a favorite.

I wouldn't mind a Time Capsule boon.

Heck, I wouldn't mind a Time Capsule boon between Pathfinder 1st Edition and 2nd Edition.

Horizon Hunters **

My Time Domain Cleric of Casandalee is here for this.

Second Seekers (Jadnura) 5/55/55/55/5

Sounds pretty epic!

Dark Archive 4/5 5/5 ****

I am looking forward to them!

Grand Archive 4/5 ****

Cyrad wrote:

I wouldn't mind a Time Capsule boon.

Heck, I wouldn't mind a Time Capsule boon between Pathfinder 1st Edition and 2nd Edition.

One of my PFS2 characters is a student of one of my PFS1 characters.

I gave her his pathfinder chronicles. (So Pathfinder Chronicles, +1 to any knowledge check relating to a mission 842-1 went on.)

It came in very handy when pathfinders were called back to Cassomir, to handle a situation that had its roots in a situation that was created in PFS1, season 1.

Scarab Sages 1/5 ** Venture-Lieutenant, Virginia—Richmond

Jared Thaler - Personal Opinion wrote:
Cyrad wrote:

I wouldn't mind a Time Capsule boon.

Heck, I wouldn't mind a Time Capsule boon between Pathfinder 1st Edition and 2nd Edition.

One of my PFS2 characters is a student of one of my PFS1 characters.

I gave her his pathfinder chronicles. (So Pathfinder Chronicles, +1 to any knowledge check relating to a mission 842-1 went on.)

It came in very handy when pathfinders were called back to Cassomir, to handle a situation that had its roots in a situation that was created in PFS1, season 1.

Which PFS1 scenario ties back to Doom of Cassomir?

4/5 ****

1 person marked this as a favorite.

The Devil We Know series

3/5 **

Very interesting.

The Exchange 3/5 * Venture-Agent, Texas—Houston

This adventure sounds perfect for my character, Admiral Beef Testosterone, time-traveling space gnome rockstar.

I've created (mostly) the same character in Starfinder Society and in Pathfinder Society, with the idea that he time-travels between the different campaigns.

5/5 5/55/55/5

2 people marked this as a favorite.

Before planning multi table specials no one needed to know the plural of apocalypse...

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