Varisian Barbarian

Balkin's page

Goblin Squad Member. FullStarFullStarFullStarFullStarFullStar Venture-Agent, Pennsylvania—York 20 posts. 8 reviews. No lists. No wishlists. 28 Organized Play characters.


Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Agent, Pennsylvania—York aka Balkin

I've got 270+ tables of credit as a GM. No TPK's, but probably a dozen PC deaths. An uncountable number of near deaths though!

It mostly happens with unlucky timing on critical hits, or a staggeringly good roll on damage dice for spells / breath weapons.

Also a notable PC death... Channel negative energy when two players are already unconscious and within range. It was specifically stated in the tactics that one of the three anti-paladins channels negative to harm living every round... And we had a character death.

I don't enjoy killing player characters but it's going to happen occasionally. If you're rolling your dice out in the open there's no helping it. If you roll behind a GM screen, wellllllll... maybe you could fudge a bit for a party that's doing everything right, but just doesn't have luck on their side that day.

Grand Lodge

Same here. At least I'm not crazy...


Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Agent, Pennsylvania—York aka Balkin


In case you couldn't tell I'm a little OCD about reporting.

Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Agent, Pennsylvania—York aka Balkin

So, I ran #9-12 this past Monday (2/5), and when I tried to create the event / report the event it doesn't show up in the drop down list. I also happen to be running #9-13 this coming Monday(2/12), and when I created the event, guess what? They're still not in the drop down list.

Who do we contact to have the events added to the drop down so I can actually make / report them online?


Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Agent, Pennsylvania—York aka Balkin

I GM'd this at my local store right after it was released. It was a full table at the lower tier. I did knock several people unconscious, but they did fairly well.

I played this at GenCon and the GM miscalculated our APL and forced a table of 6's and 7's to play up. Lost one player in the first encounter then another in the second encounter. 4 characters playing up wasn't going to get the job done in the third and 4th encounters so we quit the scenario.

I took it to the head table a couple hours later when I found where he had gone wrong, but unfortunately it was ruled that the chronicle would stand as it was. We did enough for 1 xp, but no prestige, and almost no gold or items on the chronicle.

But I'm not bitter... Nooooo... :-/

Bonus: The GM uses a stamp with his PFS number that is unreadable, and his signature is all squiggles so he's virtually impossible to identify. Can't even track him down to let him know where he went wrong so it doesn't happen to other unfortunate souls.

Aaaaaaand it's one of three events I played that weren't reported online. *sigh*

Grand Lodge

There is a Faith Trait called "Birthmark" that allows you to use your holy symbol shaped birth mark as a divine focus.

It also gives you a couple other benefits that might prove useful.

Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Agent, Pennsylvania—York aka Balkin

I just finished drawing maps for this scenario as I'm running it in a couple weeks... Must admit, the diorama is cool as hell!

Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Agent, Pennsylvania—York aka Balkin

I just ran this Monday night. I decided the compulsion effect was to walk through any remaining wards, item to bypass them or not, and for the PC to subsequently read the text on the floor in A9.

Remember, failing that save... with negative modifiers for however many wards you walked through causes 1d4 rounds of fascination and triggers the Serpent Effigies to attack.

Potential Disaster! Though my players made their saves... *sigh* :-p

Honestly, even at tier 4-5 it wasn't a difficult encounter so I felt no compunction regarding filling in the compulsion effect myself. It seemed a logical next step for a compulsion effect!

Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Agent, Pennsylvania—York aka Balkin

I had the same question regarding the last treasure entry It says specifically that the treasure is rewarded, and that they can only choose one, but they must purchase it...

Rewarded with an item, and having to purchase it are two very different things. I'm running this two hours from now and was hoping we had something solid as far as a ruling on this.

Ah well, I guess I'll be winging it as per usual. :p

Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Agent, Pennsylvania—York aka Balkin

Yeah, I know as long as I have the paper copy I'm good to go. I'm just a little OCD about it. Heh

I guess I'll wait a bit before I try again.

Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Agent, Pennsylvania—York aka Balkin


I have one session that doesn't show up at all. Not even on an incorrect character.

I also have one session that shows up but is not dated so it's at the top of my list instead of chronological.

I sent an email to customer service two weeks ago regarding both these issues and they're still not fixed. I even included a copy of the chronicle sheet from the session that doesn't show up at all to make things easier. Is there someone specific I can send this to or do I need to resubmit to customer service again?

Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Agent, Pennsylvania—York aka Balkin

I was unaware you could run the older specials. No idea why, it just wasn't something I ever really considered. Now I'm going to have to consider it!

Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Agent, Pennsylvania—York aka Balkin

Wish I knew the GM's name from my Saturday afternoon #7-03 Session but the reporting online has no date and no name for the GM! The table was Orange 22.

Anyway, he ran an excellent game all around. I definitely chose the wrong character to play for the scenario but we made it work! No question, the best scenario I played at GenCon!

Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Agent, Pennsylvania—York aka Balkin

Two more Scenarios and I'm 4 stars. Can't wait to run the Aspis special at the local store. :)

Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Agent, Pennsylvania—York aka Balkin

The store I play at closes at 9pm. We play 5-9, and the owner is kind enough to let us stay a bit later to finish up paperwork etc.

The problem is the start time of course. We routinely run two tables and start the minute we have a legal table. Others join in as they arrive, frequently straight from work! It's hectic and a bit crazy sometimes, but it's what we have.

I too fill out as much paperwork as I can in advance. Local culture here is for people to take care of the math and any purchases at home and have it available for a GM to examine at the next session. For us, everything boils down to time, time, and time. We make it work somehow. :)

Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Agent, Pennsylvania—York aka Balkin

Thanks! I appreciate the time it must take to sum up a whole season in a couple paragraphs. Looking forward to seeing the sum up for season six, and the new season seven card!

Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Agent, Pennsylvania—York aka Balkin

Alright, I've been playing PFS since the start of season 4 and I had no idea that little gem was out there! Very nice!

Since we just had our jaunt into the end of season 6 and beginning of season 7, is there any time frame for the file to be updated?

Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Agent, Pennsylvania—York aka Balkin

Alright, GenCon was awesome as usual, and my PFS games overall were good as well. I did have a couple issues though. I played three PFS Scenarios.

My GM for 6-97 on Thursday... Rolled a D6, and that person went first in initiative, then we went around the table clockwise. NOT good. Especially since the guy to my left seemed to be the lucky number. That meant I went last at least half the time. It didn't seem like that big a deal when the GM first announced what he was planning, but by the end of the night I was seriously hacked off about it.

Otherwise, he ran a great game! I have no complaints at all about how he ran the scenario. I don't have his name yet as the scenario seems to have not been reported, not even incorrectly to another of my characters. I do know what table I was at if it matters. Anyway, I should have spoken up immediately. Heck, I could have run initiative for him to help out. Lesson learned.

My 7-00 GM on Friday was... not prepared. I think he got thrust into a higher tier than he was supposed to run, but that wasn't really the problem. He spent a lot of time flipping back and forth through his printed copy of the scenario looking for...? I don't know actually. He ran combat and other encounters just fine so rules knowledge and GM experience weren't a problem.

The whole thing was just super slow paced. We were playing tier 10-11 which is always a bit slower paced due to the complexity of the encounters but, I didn't feel like we accomplished anything, and the final encounter was finished before we had barely started it. I guess I just feel like we made only a token contribution to whatever count that would have gotten us a better final result.

The 7-03 GM Saturday at 1 PM was quite excellent! Rules knowledge, pacing, role play as well as roll play were very good. I definitely played the wrong character as there was a lot more need for various skills than for combat, but we got through it! I'd definitely play with him again!

So, again, overall good experience with a couple hiccups. When it comes to events this size you have to expect some problems. It certainly won't stop me from returning next year!

Grand Lodge

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I must admit, I was stunned when I realized just how bad the spell list has been torn up. From level 0 to level 6, 39 spells have been removed, and SIX new ones added. Another 39'ish spells have been pushed up a level, and SIX of those have been pushed up TWO levels!

For example, "Haste and Slow" used to be available at 4th level (2nd level spells), and in "Unchained" they are not available until 7th level (3rd level spells).

Eidolon's weren't nerfed quite as badly as the spell list, but they're effectiveness is still reduced. I compared my current Eidolon as is to what he would be if I rebuilt him under the new rules. After all is said and done I figure his combat effectiveness would drop 30-40%. That's very quick rough calculations, but it's not good.

That said, the idea of sub-type's of Eidolons is indeed intriguing. I like the large variety of options available in "Unchained". I just don't like how badly they've killed the class in other ways.

Also, for what it's worth, after a quick read through the Barbarian and Rogue rebuilds look solid. I can't speak for the new Monk since I don't play one, but hopefully it's on par with the Barbie and Rogue!

Anyway, I do believe I will continue to use the APG Summoner, thanks.

Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Agent, Pennsylvania—York aka Balkin

This was indeed very informative for me as well. I just ran Feast of Ravenmoor and discovered the society character I applied it to lists only 2 prestige. I had assumed it would be 4PP the same as a player would receive!

Now I know. :)