Lini

Alison-Cybe's page

Pathfinder Starfinder Society Subscriber. ** Starfinder Society GM. 79 posts (96 including aliases). No reviews. No lists. No wishlists. 8 Organized Play characters.


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Just a question for the OP; have you tried any other org play scenarios since your post, or with another GM? I am curious to see your feelings and if they've changed at all.


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One piece of advice I'll offer, which seems very obvious, but...

Prep your adventure. Read it thoroughly beforehand, preferably a few times. Don't 'skim' it; read it. There's nothing that brings a player out of a game is pausing everything so the GM can read the adventure.


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BigNorseWolf wrote:
Anyone know if this is actual starship combat or just a skill challenge thing?

The starship encounter was removed from the final version of the adventure.


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So I... do not understand at all.

Could I publish fiction set in PF/SF settings on Infinite? Can that be my question one, because that seems to be the easiest.

For question two, could I publish game material such as new enemies or new classes for PF/SF on Infinite? Because I already have done so, using the editions of the game current as of one year ago.

If I was to do the above in two weeks' time, would that material need to be in the new ORC-based mechanics system? Because my (admitably very not-understanding understanding of the post) is that such would not be possible?

For question 3, could I create the above new enemies or new classes for a setting other than PF/SF, such as a homebrew, on Infinite? If so, would it need to be done under new system, or previous system? Or not permissible at all?

Next question - same, but for adventures? If I create an adventure set in Golarion, using PF2 mechanics, can that be released on Infinite? What about post-ORC mechanics? What about an adventure using either PF2 or post-ORC PF2 mechanics but NOT set on Golarion?

Next question - spells. Some of the spells have changed under ORC. Does material CURRENTLY published on Infinite which reference spells need to be changed?

I've been holding off on working on publishing more material on Infinite until ORC was established, set up and had this in place, so I have been watching for this post but I've really tried and I really just don't grasp any of this at all. Sorry!


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As I'm sure folks will eventually notice and point out, I feel it's worth mentioning that this scenario does include a subplot in which the PCs encounter and aid a transgender character in pursuit of achieving gender affirmation. I know this because I, as a trans person, wrote it. There's been a question as to whether this was included to meet some kind of quota; in actuality, it was included because it's a subplot I asked to be able to write and create, because it matters to me. If there's any quota to be met, it's an amount of 'some; because we exist, and are valid, and deserve to be seen'.


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One piece of advice I would like to offer with this scenario;

This adventure is intended to be run as a very chaotic and frantic action-focused experience. Pacing is therefore very important, and it's generally intended to keep the action going every second, with heavy descriptions of the unfolding battle. It's very important to avoid long pauses or moments when the game may drag, and to minimize double-checking for rule clarifications, so I really encourage the GMs to ensure they do as much prep work as possible.


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My character calls her patron 'Daddy'.

Other Pathfinders find it a little uncomfortable...


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The lottery system looks like it might be very problematic. Let's say 10 people sign up for a 6-seater game. Each of those 10 players has to then take time out of their lives for that game, preventing them from signing up for any other games scheduled at that time. Four of those players would be guaranteed not to get in, and there doesn't seem to be anything in place to allocate those players to another game instead. With games that fill up fast, at very least those players who miss out could then find alternative games to play at that time instead. That makes it an 'either you get the game you gambled on, or get no game', which really doesn't appeal to me, so I'll personally not be choosing to put my name down for any lottery-based games.


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I found myself wondering how this thread could have descended to folks being really snippy at each other so quickly. But then like, I don't think it was going to be positive anyway. I only have my kitsune character for SFS because I had a bunch of PF2 sitting around doing nothing, and now that I have her, with pretty much the UK scene having moved away from org play post-lockdown for a variety of reasons... she's just kinda sitting around doing nothing too. I... think yeah, I don't think this cross-promotion works for what it's trying to do.


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Tim Emrick wrote:
I'm aware that there are some players (regardless of system) who will always gravitate to the more exotic races, but in my opinion, they are missing out on a wealth of fun, meaty character options possible with just the core races.

They might be missing out, but that's still their decision and choice to make, and it's not for anyone else to tell them that they're wrong for what they want.

Even though new players have 80AcP to start off, that's still a barrier. They need to gain this information, access the website, spend and navigate and so on, all from what could otherwise be a choice made at the FIRST moment they play. Turn up at their first game and want to play a tiefling, only to be told "first you need to do this, this and that before you can" is kinda... yeah, I think that if you're wanting to grab players coming to us from D&D, our versions of every D&D ancestry option should be ready to meet them. But that's just me.


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Jonathan Morgantini wrote:
Threw the discord invite behind a spoiler tag for safety.

Thanks! Didn't know it was google searched!


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Yeah, I set up a dedicated and specifically queer-only Discord for Pathfinder/Starfinder players. It came about after realizing just how many queer folks were having 'issues' in the local Pathfinder scene, and realizing that creating a dedicated for-us space. There are games being run, and the community is coming along very nicely! It's over at

Personal information:
https://discord.com/invite/HdxqGeyjDZ


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So this may be a dumb question, but...

I get to the 'tired of cishet nonsense' level really fast nowadays when people rub me the wrong way and some such has led me to start looking at alternatives to org play with total strangers.

Would anyone here be willing (by which I mean eagerly excited, and would be very keen to pitch in to build) in an LGBTQ+ specific org play discord group set up for online play?


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I think the 1st edition org play scenarios were popular enough that if a 1st-2nd edition conversion guide were a thing, they would see a huge surge in play (and sales), if such a product were ever released (HINT HINT!)


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Doug Hahn wrote:
The official length of scenarios should be 3.5-4 hours, not 4-5 hours. Bring back optionals like Jared said or just write shorter scenarios (or… keep the page count up and add more flavor and less crunch).

These are good ideas. I won't lie, I've been GMing for several years and, hand-on-heart honest, I can honestly say I've never run a game that's finished in under 4 hours. I've currently taken an extended break from running online because over-running was making GMing society games too difficult; I was often needing to split an adventure over 2 sessions (I'm UK-based, so for my US players we had to play in what was late evening for me). This made scheduling to get all the same players back for the second part extremely stressful. And, I won't lie to you, us Brits, we love to really get into character with our roleplay - more time on the clock! Typically to get a scenario to fit a 4-hour block, I'd need to cut content for it (usually a combat), which I'm not SUPPOSED to do... I'm currently running some dragon game for my local group, and I note a lot of the premade org games for that one advise a minimum of 3 hours - those scenarios tend to last for 2-3 evenings! But yes, I think including more 'optional encounters' is the way to go. Gives the GMs more agency to adapt to the needs of the players, that's never a bad thing.


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Oceanshieldwolf wrote:

Thanks to Alison Cybe for highlighting the plight of indigenous populations in post-colonial Americas/Australia.

Small correction - “Silent Generation” is incorrect - should be “Stolen Generation/s” - the forced removal of indigenous children from their families by the “welfare” arm of the Australian government.

Good catch! Can we have that edited in?


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Jared Thaler - Personal Opinion wrote:
Alison-Cybe wrote:

And, worth noting...

SFS 3.11 Spoiler: ** spoiler omitted **

** spoiler omitted **

Okay! That's pretty awesome right there!! :D


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And, worth noting...

SFS 3.11 Spoiler:
The Society deliberately sided with the Veskarium military for political reasons, in order to ensure a stable in-road into imperial space and to foster relations with them, by taking part in an attack against the PLF. This led to the death of several Pahtra resistance fighters, which in turn led to the radicalization of other Pahtra, causing an escalation in violence. I know because I wrote that part of the scenario.

SFS 5.03 Spoiler:
Which is something I was SO THRILLED to be able to pay off in THIS scenario, where the PCs not only see the damage their actions caused but are able to seriously discuss themes of imperialist violence and help to take steps towards repaying the harm they've caused.


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I'll aim to make it along next year.


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keftiu wrote:
Plenty of people don’t “look like” what our backwards society assumes they should for their pronouns - me and my partner are both trans, but not interested in hormones or surgeries, and we’re not exactly dressed as paragons of femininity or androgyny, because we shouldn’t have to be.

The number of times I've had to remind players that my Orc, named Harmony, who wears flowers in her hair and dresses in feminine-assigned clothing attire, and who I've continually refereed to as 'She', shouldn't be addressed as 'he' simply because I'm not wearing my make-up...


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Let me represent myself clearly here. I am not in the habit of maligning any game systems; especially not games which, like in this example, I've been a writer for. Please don't interpret any games I've named anecdotally while describing my history of interacting with the TTRPG hobby and industry as any comment on the game itself. It isn't. I don't do that, and I wouldn't damage my professional standing in the industry to do so. Games differ, game design philosophies differ, how the audiences interact with them differs, and how they interact with games in regards to (or sometimes despite) the game design philosophy differs. So if I'm speaking about my own journey through TTRPG history and how I've experienced the community, and name a game while mentioning the way I've seen gamers interact with it, I'm not maligning that game. I'm discussing player behavior.

Anecdotally (and I'll preference again, ANECDOTALLY) I'm not a fan of PvP content in TTRPGs. I have seen, more times than I like, it result in one or two players having fun, while others either have their fun put on hold or disrupted. I am a big proponent of everybody at a gaming table having fun, inclusively. This means in the TTRPG club which I co-manage, we have a simple and straightforward rule involving such content, which is that it must be enthusiastically approved by all players at the table before and during its inclusion. This ensures consensual enjoyment. It also requires unanimous agreement from all players because its inclusion impacts on all parties involved. The argument of "It's what my character would do" subverts the consensual nature of that agreement; it allows one single player to push for the content against other players, sometimes against their will and consent. I'm not okay with that, and I'm glad it isn't a part of the org play format.


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Quote:
“But it’s what my character would do!” is not justification for mayhem and disrespect.

So I just want to say Alex, thank you VERY much for incorporating this line.

I'd also like to echo it, through a megaphone, for everybody in the back.

I'm a 90s kid and came into TTRPGs via Vampire in that era, which is a game system which gained a following which very heavily emphasized what'd be considered PvP type of play - either by combat or social. A lot of my early interaction with gamers was based on listening to stories about who dicked over who's characters, and when I expanded to other game systems I came to learn about the 'rogue stereotype'; the kind of play style which involved screwing over other people's characters, derailing the game for your own amusement, and generally disrupting the fun of everybody else at the table. "It's what my character would do" was always used as an excuse - and I've seen that excuse not only be treated with genuine recognition and respect in the community over the years, but at times even held up as a shining example of 'good roleplaying'.

It's about damn time that was chucked right in the bin. And the bin set on fire.


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CorvusMask wrote:
I still get uncanny valley from Miyuu's picture. Same kind of uncanniness I got from the rabbit people's art x'D

I can't help with that - perhaps they're keeping the artist on the adventures I write consistent? ;)


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Yqatuba wrote:
Alison-Cybe wrote:

If I could make an AP, what would it be like?

Two words: Time travel.

Oh ya. I love time travel stories. How would it work? I'm guessing someone would invent a time machine. As for why they haven't been invented before, maybe they require some really rare exotic fuel that's only found on one planet.

If we could integrate a Gundam-style military conflict over the source of said fuel, even better.

Now I'm wondering if the Azlanti would have Zakus...


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It does make a lot of thematic sense that a faction whose motto is "We who welcome all" be moved into being a selection to all players, so that's a great move!


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Alex Speidel wrote:
Yeah, where is Royo?

So during the Data Scourge, Royo is consolidating his power in his quest to bring down our beloved techno overlords, all so that he can attack and dethrone Guidance! Confirmed!


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I was recently called 'the penultimate SJW' (among other things) by a group of OSR-loving chaps because my bio includes my pronouns. It's... kinda amazing that people still get so upset about such things. It's also super easy to know the type of people never to game with.


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Alex Speidel wrote:
Kishmo wrote:
Yeeeeesssssss, finally, my wanton trash-talking of healthy skepticism towards Guidance has paid off! Looking forwards to this new faction!
You and me both, buddy. I ain't trust that AI for a nanosecond.

Awww, poor Guidey! What'd they ever to to anyone to deserve that?

Aside from, y'know... the things...
I think my first duty as First Seeker will be to rename this faction to 'Evil Luddite Agitators'! Who will vote for me? :D

Nah seriously, love the idea for this faction, can't wait to see how they mesh with the others!


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Hilary Moon Murphy wrote:

Ziggy! I wanna be a Heartlove!

Like, it's everything I want in a faction, and my fave NPC to boot!


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So starting at the top of year 5, I'm going to be running Starfinder Society games online, and I want to throw a special intro to other LGBTQ+ folks in the UK, I know it can be spotty to find a good and safe place to play, so if you'd want to take part let me know.


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I'm a non-binary trans person and I've been in a lot of sections of the TTRPG industry before. Played many many games and been part of many different internal communities. This one's the first one I've ever truly felt to be a real family for me.


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GM Numbat wrote:
Mech tag!

Aww yiss :)


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I can't begin to express how up for this I am!


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This statement is good and nice and all, but after the last month this trans person's going to be continuing my interaction with the forums to what I'm more comfortable with; lurking.


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Watery Soup wrote:
Trans friends: what are some things you wish people (cis or trans but primarily cis) would know/do/be aware of?

Every trans person ever possess a bottomless capacity for sarcasm. It's truly quite disturbing.


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CorvusMask wrote:

I think it is result of author being on twitter like "Hey guys, I want more feedback so I know what worked and what didn't so could you please review this scenario?" and then people who like the author missing the point :'D

Anyway, I did longer review to balance things out though my hype did cool down from release, I did overall still like scenario.

This is the case.


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I am so thrilled. I am so proud!
This is a testament to how hard my friends in Paizo have worked to make this come true! You are the best. Utterly and completely!


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This is so heartwarming :D


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Blake's Tiger wrote:
Another issue is, grasping for a description, check overload. There are too many checks in PFS scenarios, usually. How can that be? This is a game about throwing icosahedral dice! The problem lies in the stakes of the check. Due to multiple factors, one being heterogeneity of authors, another that may or may not still persist on the development side is the desire to “make” knowledge checks meaningful, there are so many checks with stakes ranging from inconsequential to primary success defining. There’s very little indication which is which, so that makes all checks feel crucial.

I think you've pretty much hit the nail on the head here.

In terms of game design philosophy, every time you roll the dice should matter. The inverse of this is also true; if the result of your dice roll wouldn't impact the game, the writer shouldn't necessitate you to make the dice roll in the first place.

This seems counterintuitive at times, but think about it like this:

Example A - Your group need to convince NPC A to do something for you. The writer determines which skill checks are needed, and lists what happens if you succeed. The writer also lists what happens if you fail; you may need to look elsewhere for help.

Example B - Your group need to convince NPC A to do something for you, but this time the adventure requires you to succeed at this roll. You can't get the help anywhere else. Essentially, convincing NPC A to help you is part of the unchangeable linear path of the adventure. If you fail this roll, another NPC (NPC B) comes in and helps the party, to ensure that your group succeed.

In example A, your dice roll matters. In example B, it doesn't.

My way of writing an adventure would be to portray this interaction by means of roleplay; let the players convince NPC A to do what is needed. I may also include a few objects earlier in the story that the players could use to convince NPC A to help them ("Here's a jade statue we found, I heard you like jade statues.") To clarify, I don't mean 'act your heart out or you'll fail at this', that would be pretty dreadful. Not all people at your table will be there to play as an actor, but the general to-and-fro of the scene can still allow for an interaction like this to succeed more often than not.

But what I wouldn't do is set this as a skill check, because it'd be unnecessary. It would be asking the PCs to roll the dice without any stakes or any reason; and worse, could result in a wall.

So I mentioned a 'wall'. What do I mean by that?

Basically, in one of my first ever adventures I made back when I was 14 or so, the party had to climb a wall. I think it was to sneak into a garden or something, I can't really remember. The point is, several of the characters couldn't make the skill check. They were unable to climb the wall. Now I was still a total rookie GM at that time, and hadn't made up any repercussions if the PCs were unable to climb that wall. The party just had to try again. We sat there trying to roll dice to get the PCs over that wall for almost half an hour, before my little half-formed lizard brain said "Okay, you all eventually just climb over it."

I bet everyone who's reading this can think of a wall in an adventure for any game they've played. They're fairly common. Walls are the bane of every adventure.


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Wei Ji the Learner wrote:


This is not the first time the experience of "Not being able to do anything" has come up...

I would like to flag up this point here.

We've had a lot of discussion relating to the maths of the dice systems used. We've talked about TPKs and character deaths. We've talked about optimal builds. But I think the heart of the issue is none of these. Players, in general, can still have fun with those. Failing, especially failing forward, can be fun too. Even a character dying can be fun, because it's an event. It's an occurrence in the game.

The point where players don't have fun is when -nothing- happens.

d20 systems are binary, they're a pass-or-fail system. While you can incorporate gradients of success into them, they are still very much based on 'you either do the thing, or you don't'. As long as that failure has a result and causes things to occur, the player still has the potential to remain invested in the game.

However, very often a failure on the roll results in nothing; an absence of event. Rather than succeeding and things happening, or failing and things happening, nothing happens. You've essentially spent your turn doing nothing.

When that happens for an extended period, that's when players want to stop playing. That's when the thumb-twiddling sets in, and they start to ask themselves if there is something else they could be doing.

Let me throw this into the discussion - have you noticed that modern board games don't tend to have situations where a player would miss a turn? There was a time when 'miss a turn' was very common in board games. But nowadays it's kinda got out of fashion. The reason for that is simply due to game designers realizing that, as a mechanic, it's antithetical to board game design. People who buy their games want to play their game, and incorporating systems that limit the player's ability to play.

For regular out-of-combat skill checks, that is 100% something the writer can take onboard, by giving clear results for failing checks. We should avoid checks that serve no purpose (every dice roll should move the story forward), or checks that have the potential to bring the game to a grinding halt if they're not completed (I call this the "You need to climb a wall" check). I try to do my best to make sure they don't crop up in any adventure I write - if you find any in mine, throw a shoe at me!

But once you get into combat, well... I'm out of ideas. But I definitely think comments here are valid and thought is requited to proceed in the best direction.


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John Mangrum wrote:
This is a nifty adventure, but sheesh, I just have to admit that I have totally lost the thread on the state of relations between the Starfinder Society and "the socialite's" family.

It was 'not good'. It is now less 'not good'. You settled the accounts.


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CorvusMask wrote:
On sidenote, I'm seeing the placeholder again ^^; Is cache constantly changing one or two or both images?

Clearly this is because Envar's gone missing, so he's being elusive.


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CorvusMask wrote:
Anyway, now the image has changed to placeholder, but clicking it does bring the bigger version of the cover .-. So I guess, new species? :O

You might be right there, but you'll have to play to find out :)


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Not Guidance! Poor Guidance!!


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I'm really curious how events in the Pathfinder special will impact on Starfinder...


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:D


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So I don't know if this is, like, even an appropriate venue to raise this, but I do manage a queer-focused gaming Discord server. It's kinda a safe space but we would really love to get some other LGBTQ+ people in to run some Society games too. I'll pop a link here - discord.gg/r6Qk6vf


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A working Wayfinder compass? That's got to be do-able!


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Tassada Kor, in SFS 3.11, is a wheelchair-user.

https://paizo.com/community/blog/v5748dyo6shgm?Starfinder-Society-November- Previews#11

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