Howdy, everybody. Paizo Publisher Erik Mona here. I wanted to stop by the blog today to talk about some upcoming changes to our Pathfinder Society and Starfinder Society scenario offerings in the months ahead. Because I spent many years as an active organized play player and GM before my publishing career and often tried to read the tea leaves behind changes just like these, I want to go over the changes carefully to make sure that no one draws the wrong conclusions.
Over the last year, our organized play and editorial teams have taken a very close look at our department’s production cycle, reported player data about how often our scenarios are used, sales of individual scenarios, player feedback, and other information to get a better sense of how we can best focus our editorial efforts. We identified two key data points. One, the organized play team produces over 700,000 words of playable content every year! Two, an adventure does not need to have the Society logos to work well in the Society environment. With this information in mind, we’ve come to some decisions about the path ahead that we’d like to share with you.
Moving forward, we plan to slightly reduce the number of standard scenarios released for both campaigns. Pathfinder Society will release 3 new scenarios for the season launch in August and the standard 2 new scenarios in September, November, and December. In October, we will release 1 new scenario.
For Starfinder Society, we will produce the standard 2 new scenarios per month in August and October, but will release only 1 new scenario in September, November, and December.
Overall, we will see a similar pattern in 2022, with slightly fewer scenarios for both campaigns (but at least 1 new scenario a month for both campaigns, and more than that more often than not). To help our community keep up to date, we will add a section to our monthly update blogs with the upcoming production schedule.
Adjusting the number of scenarios doesn’t mean a huge reduction in overall Society playable content, as it allows us capacity to bring the popular Bounties program of self-contained shorter adventures to the Starfinder Society campaign starting in January of 2022, with six new Starfinder Bounties introduced over the course of next year, as well as publish new four Pathfinder Bounties for level 3 characters over the same period.
Additionally, we are focused on having sanctioning ready at release for our popular new One Shot single-session characters-provided adventures for Pathfinder Society and Starfinder Society play, with a half-dozen One Shots scheduled throughout 2022. Bounties and One Shots provide a different play experience than a standard campaign scenario. They are an important way to bring new players into the game systems and provide a great springboard into the organized play community.
What’s it all mean in the big picture? Is Organized Play in trouble? Are Pathfinder and Starfinder failing?
No. It’s none of that. Both campaigns are doing great and are an important part of Paizo’s present and future. These changes are an attempt to better balance the breakneck pace of our in-house editorial operation to improve quality overall, and to diversify our adventure offerings to provide a wider variety of play experiences, ideally with an eye toward adding more people to the player networks for both games. The more people playing Pathfinder and Starfinder, the cooler stuff we can do to support both games.
We are committed to providing the best, most fun, most inviting and most inclusive organized play environment that we can. From time to time, that’s going to mean shaking up the plan a little bit and adapting to new opportunities. Rather than signs of trouble, these are in fact signs of health, and represent efforts to grow and nurture what we have all created together for these fantastic campaigns.
For an exciting look at some of the upcoming plans for Starfinder Society and Pathfinder Society, check out our landing pages for the Year of the Data Scourge and Year of Shattered Sanctuaries seasons!
Until next time, may all your successes be critical!
Organized Play Schedule Update
Monday, July 26th, 2021