Arnistolientar Popswicker

Dr. Fraz Finkleton's page

11 posts. Organized Play character for Kyle Baird.

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With all the data compiled for every scenario from every season, I present to you this. Thanks to everyone who helped!

Top 20 Scenarios (min 10 reviews)

4.75 2-03 The Rebel's Ransom
4.64 4-03 The Golemworks Incident
4.59 4-19 The Night March of Kalkamedes
4.58 3-02 Sewer Dragons of Absalom
4.55 3-01 The Frostfur Captives
4.52 5-08 The Confirmation
4.50 4-08 Cultist's Kiss
4.47 35 Voice in the Void
4.40 5-07 Port Godless
4.38 3-03 The Ghenett Manor Gauntlet
4.35 3-20 The Rats of Round Mountain—Part I: The Sundered Path
4.35 2-01 Before the Dawn—Part I: The Bloodcove Disguise
4.30 3-21 The Temple of Empyreal Enlightenment
4.29 5-13 Weapon in the Rift
4.24 4-09 The Blakros Matrimony
4.23 1 Silent Tide
4.20 52 The City of Strangers—Part I: The Shadow Gambit
4.20 2-21 The Dalsine Affair
4.15 3-I1 First Steps—Part I: In Service to Lore
4.14 39 The Citadel of Flame

Bottom 10 Scenarios (min 10 reviews)

2.61 4-23 Rivalry's End
2.55 5-22 Scars of the Third Crusade
2.55 3-14 Wonders in the Weave—Part II: Snakes in the Fold
2.50 30 The Devil We Know—Part II: Cassomir's Locker
2.47 14 The Many Fortunes of Grandmaster Torch
2.45 15 The Asmodeus Mirage
2.43 6-01 Trial by Machine
2.42 5-20 The Sealed Gate
2.39 5-24 Assault on the Wound
2.20 3-I3 First Steps—Part III: A Vision of Betrayal
2.14 2-19 Shades of Ice—Part III: Keep of the Huscarl King
1.83 2-23 Shadow's Last Stand—Part I: At Shadow's Door

Polarizing Index (PI): Compares what % of reviews are either 1-star or 5-stars, how balanced it is between 1-star and 5-stars, and weights number of reviews (more reviews = more potential to be polarizing/controversial).

Top 10 PFS Authors (min 2 credits/low PI)
4.36 Michael Kortes
4.20 Jim Groves
3.96 Matthew Goodall
3.94 Alex Greenshields
3.93 Dennis Baker
3.93 Crystal Frasier
3.89 Tom Phillips
3.81 Adam Daigle
3.70 Craig Shackleton
3.68 Mike Shel

Season/Cumulative Avg/PI
0 3.49 0.6
1 3.63 0.3
2 3.55 0.6
3 3.85 0.4
4 3.62 1.1
5 3.44 1.8

Top 10 Most Polarizing Scenarios

5-05 The Elven Entanglement
4-26 The Waking Rune
2-13 Murder on the Throaty Mermaid
4-02 In Wrath's Shadow
5-11 Library of the Lion
5-24 Assault on the Wound
47 The Darkest Vengeance
5-19 The Horn of Aroden
11 The Third Riddle
4-07 Severing Ties

Top 10 Most Polarizing Authors

Ryan Costello, Jr.
Kyle Elliot
Nicholas Herold
Kyle Baird
Thurston Hillman
Ron Lundeen
Steven Robert
Russ Taylor
Jonathan H. Keith
Tim Hitchcock


Being a data driven nerd, I've compiled all the reviews through today for seasons 4 through 6 for all the PFS scenarios.

The raw data can be found here. If you have the time, feel free to add seasons 0 through 3! ;-)

Top 5 Season 4-6 Scenarios

4.75 #4-25: Glories of the Past–Part III: The Secrets of Stones Keep
4.64 #4-03: The Golemworks Incident
4.59 #4-19: The Night March of Kalkamedes
4.52 #5-08: The Confirmation
4.50 #4-08: Cultist's Kiss

*note that the top two scenarios are both by Larry Wilhelm!

Bottom 5 Season 4-6 Scenarios

2.44 #4-23: Rivalry's End
2.39 #5-24: Assault on the Wound
2.38 #6-01: Trial by Machine
2.35 #5-20: The Sealed Gate
1.88 #4-22: Glories of the Past–Part I: Halls of Dwarven Lore

Most Reviews:

32 #5-11 Library of the Lion
28 #4-19 The Night March of Kalkamedes
28 #4-07 Severing Ties
28 #4-02 In Wrath's Shadow
26 #4-11 The Disappeared

Have a favorite or least favorite scenario? Be sure to write a (constructive) review!

Grand Lodge 5/5

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Congratulations to the Demon Lord, Walter Sheppard, for sending the soul of our Future King of Zog to the Boneyard to be judged!

Sovereign Court

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Germany or Argentina?

p.s. What do the PFS players in the winning country get?


Thursday, August 14
Slot 1 (0800-1300): #5-08: The Confirmation (1-2)
Slot 2 (1300-1800): #6-03: The Technic Siege (5-9)
Slot 3 (1900-2400): OPEN

Friday, August 15
Slot 4 (0800-1300): #5-08: The Confirmation (1-2)
Slot 5 (1300-1800): #6-03: The Technic Siege (5-9)
Slot 6 (1900-2400): OPEN

Saturday, August 16
Slot 7 (0800-1300): #5-08: The Confirmation (1-2)
Slot 8 (1300-1800): #6-03: The Technic Siege (5-9)
Slot 9 (1900-2400): OPEN

Sunday, August 17
Slot 10 (0900-1400): #5-08: The Confirmation (1-2)

So much prep work! ;-)


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Being the data nerd that I am, I wanted to see the state of the messageboards throughout this last year and compare it to previous years. So I crunched some numbers regarding threads over 200 posts:

Year Count Avg Days Avg Post/Day
2008 2 363.0 0.9
2009 4 363.3 2.6
2010 5 281.0 3.9
2011 15 126.5 12.6
2012 29 142.4 16.6
2013 42 52.3 34.1

so what's this show? There's been a rapid growth rate in large threads since "the early days." The "Average Days" a megathread is active is shrinking, which correlates with the average posts per day in these types of threads.

What's all this mean? Not much really. One could posit that activity overall on the messageboards is up, but proving that would require analyizing the number of posts for every thread on these boards, and then also looking at individual posters vs. number of posts to really know if activity is up or if it's only a certain number highly active users. Speaking of which, there are 97 of these threads, and 9 people have started more than one of them:

Author Mega-Threads Started
Michael Brock 6
Joshua J. Frost 5
Jiggy 3
Arnim Thayer 3
Rogue Eidolon 2
RainyDayNinja 2
Patrick Harris @ MU 2
Painlord 2
Howie23 2
Dysfunction 2
Drogon 2
Benn Roe 2

Not surprisingly Mike and Josh have the lion's share here as their FAQ and Blog Posts account for a significant number of megathreads.

Here's the full list of 200+ post megathreads in their entirity. Statistically significant? Not really, but I found them interesting and I hope you do too. I got a big chuckle out of the number of "PFS is too hard/easy" type of threads.


Purpose: To encourage PFS players to travel to new regions to play PFS.

Proposal: Starting at a point in the year where it would have least impact on non-exclusive regions do the following:

  • Divide the world into 12 popular regions of Golarion based number of tables being reported (include 1 region for online play).
  • Each month, the higher level scenario released is only released in one specific region (on an annual rotating basis).
  • After three months, that scenario is released to the remaining 11 regions.

After two months time, every region would see two 'new' releases per month. At any given time, there would be two regions of the world that would have exclusive rights to offer a scenario that can not be played anywhere else.

Q: Why do we care if or want PFS players to have to travel to new areas to play PFS?

A: This is best discussed in another thread, but many players enjoy traveling to new areas to play with new people. Experiencing PFS with new players and GMs makes us all better and conventions increase the exposure of the campaign.
Q: How are the scenarios going to be restricted exactly?

A: No idea. Perhaps it's as simple as including a note on the chronicle that it isn't valid outside of Region X until Date Y?


Inspired by the threads over there years that ask people to list their favorite scenarios, I want to flip the question:

Have you ever walked away from a table and thought of the scenario as one of your favorites despite having a *bad* GM and/or *bad* players at the table?

e.g. I've played at a table with great players and a bad GM before. While I certainly enjoyed myself, my thoughts on the scenario remain very indifferent since I haven't run or played it since.

I'm sure there's examples of going back and GMing or replaying and enjoying a scenario, but what I want to know is if you really hated the GM and/or the players at the table, have you ever walked away thinking, "wow, that was a great scenario!"

I'm admittedly weak when it comes to Gunslingers and maximizing their potential and am looking to you fine people to lend a hand.

I've been tossing the idea of a sneaky type of character that pops out of stealth/invis and shoots someone in the face (and then promptly runs for cover). Beyond that, I like having some social skills and knowledge skills, but not looking for too much of it with this character.

Basic Idea:

Race: Vishkanya
Classes: Gunslinger (Mysterious Stranger) and Ninja
Feats: Sleep Poison from the ARG.
Tricks: Vanishing Trick (would be great to have Invisible Blade, but probably not sticking around for 10 levels of Ninja)
Weapon: Double-barrel something. Using two pitted bullets for an opening volley, hopefully staggering and potentially putting the victim to sleep.
Stats: +2 Dex, +2 Cha, -2 Wis, +2 Anything.
Proposed Stats: 8, 16, 14, 12, 8, 18 and then +2 somewhere. (Poison DC 12+ 1/2 HD)

So what feats am I looking for? Preferred level breakdown?

I must be going blind or I've been staring at too many special rules lately. Where does it say what happens if you fail an acrobatics check to move across a narrow surface? Acrobatics talks about failure to move through an opponents square and failure to jump, but does it actually say anything about failing the check to move across a narrow surface?

I was expecting to find something like: Fail by 4 or less, stop moving, fail by 5 or more fall.


Looking for an Eyes of the Ten table in the midwest? Come to the first annual GameHole Con in Madison, Wisconsin on November 1. I'll be running Part 1 on Friday afternoon til midnight and running the rest of the series throughout Saturday. For anyone interested, it'll be my 5th time running it and it'll be the best one yet!


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This is just until we can get something official from Paizo.


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Come join us at Scotty's to celebrate the tapping of Dogslicer Ale on Wednesday, August 14, at 6pm!

Does a Feral Gnasher (Goblin Archetype) using his Lockjaw ability via his bite attack suffer a -4 penalty if both hands aren't free?

Grapple wrote:
Humanoid creatures without two free hands attempting to grapple a foe take a –4 penalty on the combat maneuver roll.
Feral Gnasher wrote:

Lockjaw (Ex): At 3rd level, a feral gnasher gains the grab ability with her bite attack. A feral gnasher can use this ability on a creature up to one size category larger than she is. This replaces trap sense +1.

Improved Lockjaw (Ex): At 6th level, as long as a feral gnasher is controlling the grapple with her lockjaw attack, she does not gain the grappled condition, but is unable to move or use her mouth for anything other than grappling. This ability replaces trap sense +2.

Seems that by the letter of the law he would, however, given that it's clearly his mouth that's responsible for the grab attack, it doesn't make a lot of sense. Thoughts?


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So Season 5 is almost upon us and the Paizo Staff is hard at work finishing everything up to make this the best Pathfindery Gen Con ever (head to Scotty's if you don't believe me).

Sparked by countless past conversations and more recent forum discussion, I'd like to start an open petition and discussion on changing the layout and functionality of Pathfinder Society Chronicles starting with Season 6 (not 5).

Please review and address the following questions:

  • What features of the current chronicle design to you currently enjoy?
  • What features would you like to see removed?
  • What features would you like to see added?
  • What features would you like to see altered?
  • How could chronicles be changed to make tracking a character's career easier for the player?
  • How could they be changed to make tracking PFS legality easier for a GM?


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This thread was inspired by other threads and personal conversations on a GM's duty to perform character audits before any PFS session begins.


Your Duties as Game Master

As a Pathfinder Society Organized Play Game Master running a session at a convention or an in-store event, you have the following duties.
• Introduce yourself.
• Encourage your players to introduce themselves (and their characters).
Look over each player’s character sheet and previous Chronicle sheets, quickly checking wealth, equipment, calculations, and so on.
• Start playing the session.
• Play for no more than 5 hours. (Note: home games and online games do not necessarily have to follow this
restriction, and some conventions may run longer slots.)
• Give each player an accurate Chronicle sheet for that scenario (see Filling Out a Chronicle Sheet, later in this chapter).
• At conventions, you may also be expected to quickly fill out scenario or module reporting sheets with additional tracking information—these sheets need to be turned in to your coordinator so she can report the results. • When acting as both the Game Master and coordinator for an event, you are expected to report the results of your sessions on in a timely fashion. Failing to do so has negative consequences for Pathfinder Society as a whole (see the sidebar on page 30).

This is not a place to discuss when or why we should do audits, but a place to provide helpful tips to doing so in a quick and unobtrusive manner.

I'll start:

1) Hit points. Hit points should roughly be their level times their hit dice. If it's significantly more or less than this, do a more thorough check for a high or low constitution score, toughness, application of favored class bonus, etc.

ex. Mortika the 3rd level cleric with 12 CON and using his FC bonus for hit points should have 8+2*5+3*1+3=24 hit points. Using the quick formula, level 3 x d8 = 24 hit points.

Peters the 11th level Summoner of dhoom has a 16 con AND her FC bonus for hit points. 8+10*5+11*3+11=102 hit points. Quick formula is 11*8 = 88. That's 14 points less, but a quick scan shows a decent con score and you can quickly ask about FC bonuses.

Morgan the 7th level barbarian with 20 con and toughness and FC hit points. 12+7*6+5*7+7+7=103 hp. The quick math is 7*12 = 84. He's 19 over it, you see toughness and a 20 con, so you know you're close.

Miles the Cheat is playing a 10th level wizard with 14 con and 104 hit points (he's high level, so it should be a high number, right?). Quick math says that he should have about 60 hit points. Long math says 6+4*9+2*11=64 not including a FC or toughness. The difference here is big enough that you can simply ask the player how he got to 104 hit points.

It's not perfect, but it's fast and will show any crazy-wrong numbers. If someone's hit points are off by a few, ask yourself if it really matters in the current situation. (new players, time available, etc)


Thursday, August 15
Slot 1 (0800-1300): #01-46 Eyes of the Ten, Part I
Slot 2 (1300-1800): #01-46 Eyes of the Ten, Part I
Slot 3 (1900-2400): OPEN
Friday, August 16
Slot 4 (0800-1300): #01-54 Eyes of the Ten, Part II
Slot 5 (1300-1800): #02-05 Eyes of the Ten, Part III
Slot 6 (1900-2400): Gen Con Season 5 Special: Siege of Diamond City 12+
Saturday, August 17
Slot 7 (0800-1300): #02-22 Eyes of the Ten, Part IV
Slot 8 (1300-1800): #03-20: Rats of Round Mountain, Part I
Slot 9 (1900-2400): OPEN
Sunday, August 18
Slot 10 (0900-1400): #4-EX: Day of the Demon


I've been meaning to post this for a long time, but I think it's still just as relevant today as it was months ago.

Premise: Some encounters lend themselves to capable of challenging "power gamers" without being considered absolutely "deadly" to the least optimized parties (whether through party composition, experience, etc).

What I need from all of you, are some encounters you've actually run, that you feel are good examples of encounters that give the GM the tools they need to dial in the challenge of the encounter to their table's specific interests. What specifically about the encounter(s) makes it possible to be both deadly and average(?) at the same time depending on who shows up at the table?

I'm hoping there's something common in these types of encounters that we can incorporate into more of them going forward.


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I count five ways of getting a bonus in PFS that don't involve playing a Scenario, Module, or Quest. These have all been discussed individually in the past or are being discussed presently. I wanted to open a discussion on the comparison between them all and talk about what benefits each has to the Pathfinder Society Organized Play Campaign. Keep in mind, all of these benefits cost PFS development time with the exception of the t-shirts and folio.

Presented in order of appearance (I believe..)

Paizo T-shirts
Product Cost: $25
Deliverable: A t-shirt with a logo on it.
Bonus Granted: One d20 re-roll during each scenario.
Benefits to PFS: This may be trivial, but a lot of players really hate "losing" by the roll of a single die. Even if it's really a series of events that lead up to that moment, seeing that natural 1 on saving throw versus an effect that's likely to kill your character is seen as unfun. Having a re-roll helps eliminate that feeling, because if it happens again, well it's the dice's fault, not the game's.
Benefits to Paizo Publishing LLC: Visibility. The sales of the t-shirts likely produce little income (see old faction shirts...). The main draw here is visibility especially at conventions. Anyone at Gen Con this year remembers how many purple shirts they saw walking around the convention.

Pathfinder Tales
Product Cost: $10
Deliverable: A ~370 page softcover novel.
Bonus Granted: Usually some minor skill bonus in a specific region or a use once minor bonus to a certain race or type of creature. Also usually includes a rather expensive, but unique item available for purchase.
Benefits to PFS: Players who buy the books and play PFS may read the books and learn about a specific region and some notable NPCs in Golarion. This could help them become more emersed in the story elements of the PFS scenarios they play.
Benefits to Paizo Publishing LLC: In theory this helps sell more books, likely by picking up PFS players as subscribers.

Convention Boons
Product Cost: $0*
Deliverable: Nothing other than the boon (unless you count hanging out with friends a deliverable).
Bonus Granted: Races, Skill Bonuses, Traits, Proficiencies, Side Missions, other cool stuff.
Benefits to PFS: Helps organizers draw players to their convention.
Benefits to Paizo Publishing LLC: More players playing Pathfinder at conventions. Also, visibility. Nothing more awesome than looking into the PFS room at Gen Con when all the tables are packed with people playing Pathfinder. Essentially sums up as more people playing, thus more people buying the associated products that are used in PFS.

The product cost is $0 because most of these boons are available at small conventions or large multi-day game days, some of which are free to play. I realize that going to most conventions is expensive. So what's really the cost? How much does it cost to organize a 15 table event? If you can get the space for 5 tables, you can run 3 slots in a single day. There's a lot of effort required here to make it "free." The other end of the spectrum is Wes flying from Australia to Gen Con. I think that costs a couple of dollars or so. Additionally, you're not even guaranteed a boon if you go to a convention, you usually get a CHANCE of getting one.

Character Folio
Product Cost: $10
Deliverable: "16 character-defining pages"
Bonus Granted: One d20 re-roll during each scenario even if your character isn't kept in that folio.
Benefits to PFS: See T-shirts above.
Benefits to Paizo Publishing LLC: Sales of the Character Folio?

Pathfinder Online MMO
Product Cost: $5
Deliverable: Nothing other than the boon.
Bonus Granted: Advanced Template for a scenario or some other permanent benefit to your character.
Benefits to PFS: "MMO players who try out PFS since they have a nifty boon." - A_D
Benefits to Paizo Publishing LLC: Help getting a kickstarter funded for a sister company so they can produce their MMO faster without the need for additional traditional funding.

None of my statements are meant to be definitive or entirely objective. They can't be. I want to explore the benefits further and cost vs. deliverable. Please keep it civil.


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With the release of The Moonscar and Sanctioned Adventure Paths, I present all of the options for your level 12+ PFS Character.

For the sake of this discussion, level X.0 is exactly at a given level, X.1 is 1 XP past level X and X.2 is 2 XP past level X.

Playable at any level 12+

  • Scenarios: Race for the Runecarved Key, Race for the Runecarved Key Part 2 (retired), 2012 Grand Convocation (retired)
  • Modules: None
  • Sanctioned AP: None

Level 13:

Level 18:

*Only playable if the last chronicle you received was for the previous scenario in this series.
**Projected to be legal for these levels.

Improved Lockjaw (Ex) wrote:
At 6th level, as long as a feral gnasher is controlling the grapple with her lockjaw attack, she does not gain the grappled condition, but is unable to move or use her mouth for anything other than grappling. This ability replaces trap sense +2.

I have a question on the syntax above. Is it stating that the feral gnasher can't move its mouth or that it can't move at all?

I know if you're grappled you can't move. The creature controlling the grapple, however, can normally move himself and his victim with a successful check to maintain his grapple. Is this stating that a feral gnasher can't move its opponent after reaching 6th level OR is it just reminding the player it can't just walk around freely now that it no longer has the grappled condition OR is it only stating that the feral gnasher can't talk, use verbal components or potions while using Improved Lockjaw?

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Well done Paizo, well done.


Anyone want to play Eyes of the Ten at my table? If so come to Winter War! That's right, I flipped a coin and decided to go to Winter War of Winter Fantasy, mostly because I've been itching to run Eyes of the Ten for a group of brave adventurers.

Ticket sales will go online soon, so stay tuned. I promise it's one experience you won't want to miss!


3 people marked this as FAQ candidate. Staff response: no reply required. 1 person marked this as a favorite.

As if there weren't enough pregenerated character threads going right now. ;-)

I'm making a proposal. I want all of you to review it and reply with yay or nay. If you're against this proposal, please include reasons so they can be objectively evaluated and weighed. If you're for this proposal and you have any additional support or shared experiences, please add them to your vote.

I believe this is the right time to make this change.

Per Mark, at this exact point in time, a Paizo Developer needs to tweak the new level 1 and level 7 NPC Codex iconics for use for PFS. They also need to develop the level 4 iconics as the book does not include that level.

My proposal:

  • Continue with the plan to tweak the level 1 iconics from the NPC Codex.
  • Scratch development time on the level 7 iconics from the NPC codex.
  • Develop level 5 iconics for PFS play instead of level 4.
  • Release pregens for PFS play for every core class at levels 1 and 5 only.
  • Refer GM's to existing level 7 pregens OR level 7 iconics from the NPC Codex for GM PC's only. Level 7 pregens would not be available to players for use.

My reasons to support changing from level 4 to level 5 are because level 5 gives you:

  • Play subtier 4-5 of a tier 1-5 scenario. Being the of the highest level and strongest you can be at that tier, thus compensating for lack of player investment or knowledge.
  • Play either subtier in a tier 3-7 scenario. Flexibility.
  • Play any subtier in an old tier 1-7 scenario. Flexibility.
  • Play the 5-6 subtier of a tier 5-9 scenario. Not a great option for those wanting to play subtier 8-9, but better than a level 7 playing at 10-11!
  • One more feat than the level 4's.
  • 3rd level spells for clerics, druids, and wizards.
  • Divine Bond for the Paladins.
  • Channel 3d6. Sneak attack 3d6.

My reasons to remove level 7 pregens from players hands:

  • Players lack investment in pregenerated characters. This is especially deadly to "real" high level characters.
  • Real 7+ characters have spent 90+ hours building and earning their character. It's a (small) slap to the face to play with someone who's playing a character that hasn't earned their seat at the table.
  • Tier 7-11 scenarios are no place for people new to PFRPG. It's complicated and deadly. It often results in the death of the pregen and a loss of interest for that player.
  • Level 5 also suffers from the two above conditions, but to a much lesser degree.

IMPORTANT NOTE: The proposal actually saves some development time up front with the 11 core classes. It would then add time back in to develop the level 5 UC classes at a later date. It would then save time doing the APG classes, as there would only be two levels to develop. Overall, it is a net savings of Paizo's time.


The state of PFS pregenerated characters has me thinking. I know, scary, right? Anyway, I have in my head first-hand and second-hand knowledge of how pregenated characters are used and what their value to our little Society is. I'd like to gather some feedback from different regions around the world from all of you people who play pregens or coordinate game days and hand them out.

I'll get the ball rolling:

The appearance, quality and availability of pregens is often the first impression for someone new to PFRPG. Missing classes, having obvious errors, or being overly ineffective can turn (and have turned) people off from PFS.

Level 1 Pregens:
-Make up >90% of pregens used at small game days.
-Need to be simple for new players to understand.
-Need to have a few neat tricks to grab the attention of players. Something to help the "generic" character stand out.

Level 4 Pregens:
-Are pretty rare in my experience.
-Have the advantage of not being first level, but not so high level that players "wanting to try this game out but don't want to play first level" don't endanger the party.

Level 7 Pregens:
-Are used by players who want to try PFRPG but hate low-level play.
-Get more use at larger conventions.
-Are Kyra >70% of the time.
-Get used as an GM PC too often, usually resulting in bad things.
-No matter how well built, most players using them aren't effective enough at this level and often results in difficulty for "real" characters at the table.


Finally got my shipment notice, downloaded my copy and flipped (electronically) to the last chapter for the iconics. What I found:

  • All 11 core classes.
  • 20-point buy (hence the CR = Class Level)
  • Levels 1, 7, and 12


  • I think it's great that we can now pregens for every core class (once the Additional Resources page is updated).
  • Why the hell did Paizo choose 1, 7 and 12?! I get that this isn't just for PFS, but let's be real. Who is going to get the most use out of this chapter?!?! Not only do we have level 7's (which are imnsho not good for the Society to begin with), but level 12's? I'm assuming those won't be allowed in PFS, period. I can hear it now, "I need a level 4 monk." Sorry, but we only have these 4 core classes at level 4, but if you want a level 7, I've got all 11 classes." As a new player to PFS, I'd raise an eyebrow and question the vision of those behind this organized play thing.

  • 5/5

    Someone had to ask. :-)

    Any thoughts being given on incorporating mythic rules into PFS play at some later date? Maybe just a few mythic monsters? Characters who complete a retirement arc? A special high-level scenario that grants ascension?

    *goes back to drooling over cool new ways to destroy player's hopes and dreams.*


    5 people marked this as FAQ candidate. Answered in the FAQ. 90 people marked this as a favorite.

    This comes up all the time, maybe if I do this right, we can get a sticky for it.

    Guide to Pathfinder Society Organized Play v4.2 pg 24 wrote:
    For ease of play in Pathfinder Society, a masterwork item can always be upgraded to a +1 item without paying for the masterwork cost again. Instead, you pay the difference between the cost of the +1 item and that of the masterwork item. This rule also applies to upgrading from a +1 item to a +2 item and so on—you never have to repay the original cost or sell your current item for half to upgrade to the next step. Note that this only applies to items of the same kind—you can’t, for example, turn your masterwork rapier into a +1 greatsword. A mundane item can not be upgraded to masterwork, nor can nonmagical aspects of equipment be upgraded (such as the strength rating on a composite bow*).

    *Previous campaign coordinators specifically allowed this type of upgrade.

    Q: I have a non-masterwork greatsword (50 gp). Can I upgrade it to a +1 weapon?

    A: Normally no. Items can not be upgraded to masterwork quality unless you pay for a masterwork transformation spell from Ultimate Magic on the item. (pg 26) Please note, you are only allowed to have one item with this spell that carries over from session to session. Once an item has been enchanted to be a +1, it does not count against the one masterwork transformation item allowed per character.

    Q: I have a masterwork greatsword (350 gp). Can I upgrade it to a +1 weapon?

    A: Yes. You can spend 2,000 gp and upgrade your greatsword to a +1 greatsword. Note: You can perform this upgrade regardless of fame.

    Q: I have a +1 greatsword (2350 gp). Can I upgrade it to a +2 weapon?

    A: Yes. You can spend 6,000 more gp if and only if you have enough fame to pay for the final item. In this example, your final item price is 8,350 gp and requires 27 fame to purchase (Table 5-3, pg 26).

    Q: I have a +1 greatsword. Can I upgrade it to a +1 adamantine greatsword?

    A: No. Unless the special material specifically says it can be added to items that already exist, you can not add a special material. If you want to add special material properties to existing weapons, look at weapon blanches from the APG.

    Q: Can I upgrade my headband of vast intelligence +2 into a headband of intellect +4?

    A: Yes. You can spend 12,000 gp to upgrade your headband as long as you have enough fame (31) to purchase the final item price (16,000 gp)

    Q: Can I upgrade my headband of vast intelligence +2 into a headband of mental prowess +2?

    A: Yes. You can spend 6,000 gp to upgrade your headband as long as you have enough fame (27) to purchase the final item price (10,000 gp)

    Q: Can I upgrade my headband of mental prowess +2 into a headband of mental prowess with +4 to intelligence and +2 to charisma?

    A: No. You can not upgrade items into items that don't clearly exist in a legal PFS source.

    Q: Can I upgrade my amulet of natural armor +1 into a amulet of natural armor +2?

    A: Yes. You can spend 6,000 gp to upgrade your amulet as long as you have enough fame (22) to purchase the final item price (8,000 gp)

    Q: Can I upgrade my handy haversack into a bag of holding?

    A: No. While similar they are not the same item (with a better rating). You also may not upgrade a type I bag of holding to a type II bag of holding per the FAQ. This also includes things like bracers of archery and metamagic rods.

    The FAQ states:

    Can I Upgrade a Named Magic Item?
    Named magic items—including specific armor and specific weapons—are not upgradeable. Non-magic specific armor and specific weapons may be upgraded normally. Magic armor and weapons may be upgraded to named versions if they are the same basic material and shape as, and meet but do not exceed the enhancement bonuses of the named versions. Wondrous items whose names include a +X value (such as bracers of armor, headband of vast intelligence, amulet of might fists, etc.) may also be upgraded following the rules for upgrading magical items on page 19 of the Guide to Pathfinder Society Organized Play.

    I'm past the point where I can edit this. Mike can you update my original post with this please?



    Just downloaded the Thornkeep pdf! Looks awesome!

    It's a pain that the flip mat pdf won't be available for a month, but for those of us who want to run this before then, when will the PFS Chronicle(s?) be available?


    I just bumped the thread about who your favorite PFS Game Masters have been. Now how about a wish list of all the GM's tables you haven't had the chance of playing at.

    I'll get things started. GM's tables who I'm actively seeking:

    1) Kyle Pratt - I'm not quite sure how it's been this long without this happening. For the record, he's played at my table and the world didn't implode, so the converse should be safe for everyone. Right?
    2) John Compton - I hope one day that Nani Pratt will introduce me to this legend of a man.
    3) Walter Sheppard - I've heard the rumors of this legendary GM spotted in the deep wilderness in the northwest. I searched for his table at PaizoCon this year, but he was not to be found. I think he's a myth.
    4) Myron Pauls - Welcome to the mountain oh master of terrain.
    5) Joe Caubo - More so because I think he owes me something..
    6) Del Collins - After talking with Del at Gen Con this year and hearing him chime in at GM 101, I'm looking forward to the day I make it down to a SCARAB event.
    7) Thod - If I ever make it across the pond, this is one of the table's I'll definitely seek out.
    8) I'm a forgetting someone.. oh yeah. Mike Brock - I let his 1st level character live at Gen Con 2010. I doubt he'd make the same mistake with mine. I'm willing to bet he'd love the chance to smite my goblin. :D

    *Eric Brittain used to be at the top of this list but I cornered him in the corner of a dark bar at Gen Con this year and made him run a game for me. And it. Was. Awesome. Thanks Eric!


    I spent some time GMing some of season 4's scenarios this weekend for a lot of new-to-PFS players and found myself describing the theme(s) of this season to set the tone for their adventures in Varisia. I spent a fair bit of time describing the common "problems" PFS agents encounter. It all got me thinking about where we've been and what's next. On that note, I wanted to open a discussion about typical Golarion bad guys and how they've fit with PFS organized play. Bare with me, but ultimately, I'm looking for feedback on the types of enemies you most enjoy.

    1) Dragons - There are approximately 4 scenarios that feature dragons to date (if you include RftRK Pt 2). These are perhaps the most iconic of enemies, but also one of the most rare. Should dragons be more frequent? Less frequent? Perhaps a large arc dealing with them (either directly or indirectly).

    2) Goblins - These little boogers have been everywhere. How's the mix been? Who wants MOAR goblin madness? Anyone actually sick of these guys?

    3) Orcs - Can their only place in PFS really be Echoes of the Everwar Part 1? Where else have these guys been? For such a classic monster, they should don't show up much (unless they're cross-bred).

    4) Drow - I think these iconic foes have only been featured in a single scenario thus far. I think they suffer from a mainstream burn-out (Drizz't et al.) I know a lot of people love them and a lot of people love to hate them with equal passion. Thoughts?

    5) Dinosaurs - They've made an appearance a few times, but never in any force. What say you, should we have more focus on our prehistoric cave-woman stealing enemies?

    6) Undead - It seems like one out of every four scenarios includes something that's undead. That's why favored enemy: undead is probably one of the top 3 favored enemy choices (human, evil outsiders). Anyone getting tired of chopping up dead things? Anyone want more dead things? Perhaps there should be more to coincide with the ever growing zombie popularity in mainstream society?

    7) Swarms - Right up there with undead. Every seasoned Pathfinder knows to keep a vial of alchemist's fire or acid handy for these buggers. heh. Buggers. Overdone? Anyone want an all swarm scenario? I kid, I kid!

    8) Outsiders - Outsiders have been included here and there, but never really en masse or with any real lengthy purpose. Most of the time the Society is dealing with more terrestrial threats. Perhaps Season 4 is different (the whole Lissala stuff), but assuming it's not, what say you about dealing with an Outsider-based threat?

    9) Humanoid NPCs - These guys give the biggest variety of foes and often the smartest foes with the most complicated plots. However, sometimes you just want to bash the face in on some freakish monster, you know? Tired of humanoids? Sick of humanoid organizations (Aspis for example)?

    What am I missing? Which of the above did my brain not recollect properly?


    With the soul destroying news that BobBob is leaving his VC post, it got my tiny little brain wondering. How many of the original 13 VCs are left? What steps can the Campaign (read: all of us) do to help prevent a loss of interest in our membership when the pillars of the community step aside?

    Original 13 (current VCs marked with *):
    Art Lobdell*
    Auke Teeninga*
    Dane Pitchford
    Dave Harrison*
    Diego Winterborg
    Douglas Miles
    Eric Brittain*
    Mark Garringer
    Michael Brock
    Michael Griffin-Wade
    Robyn Nixon*
    Russell Akred*
    Stephen White*

    Boo! These should be sold for $100 each. ;-)


    2 people marked this as a favorite.

    Now that I've (mostly) recovered from Gen Con, I wanted to share my thoughts from what, to me, was one of the best ever.

    Wednesday started off with me leaving from my brand new apartment in Milwaukee at 2 a.m. and driving 5 hours to Indy. Definitely one of the low points of the weekend. I guess the benefit here was that traffic in Chicago is nonexistant at 3 in the morning. :)

    The convention officially started off for me at 9 a.m. at Scotty's, sitting on the patio in the shade with a slight breeze. What a perfect day. I got the opportunity to run Rats of Round Mountain Part 1 for some really good players who I all think enjoyed themselves. I apologize to the poor paladin who took 5 attacks in a round.

    The next slot was one of the highlights of the event. I had the opportunity to play Red Harvest with Eric Brittain as the GM. It was a tough scenario with plenty of great roleplaying opportunities. This one session helped me be a better GM all weekend. Eric is that great of a GM and has that big of an impact on his players. Thanks Eric!

    The evening was capped off by running Rebel's Ransom for another group of good players (except a certain Shackleton). The party did pretty good and eventually solved all the puzzles without any help from me. It was only at the end that they struggled. I had a feeling this might happen with a party including an Oracle of Flame and a Elemental (Fire) sorcerer. The party put up a good fight and this was only the second time I've ever resorted to using Firestorm (Su). Unfortunately, half the party perished while defending their newly found treasure. A high price to pay, as the society only pays the adventurers 5461 gp. I guess walking away with 11 gp is better than nothing, right? ;-)

    Thursday was blur. Three straight sessions of Cyphermage Dilema. I can't say that I was looking forward to it, but after it was done, I realized that I actually had some fun. I had forgotten how awesome it was to introduce PFS to new players.

    Epic Story of the Day: Table of 5, a mix of 3's, 4's and a single 1. APL ends up being 3.0. They decide to play up. I inform the level 1 I won't give him his gold for free, so be prepared to get poked. ;)

    Party gets into a fight with an alchemist who does 3d6+3 (avg 12.5). Alchemist comes out, most of the party isn't in sight except a halfing and a human (druid 1). So who's more threatening? The human of course! Bombs away! I roll really well and deal 18 damage (ouch!), but I figure, he's level 1, 18 should him down but not out, right? Nope. He's a Druid with 10 con and 8 hit points. crap. So I ask if he already allocated his favored class bonus. He hadn't. Now he's at -9 and dies next round. The halfling is 5 ft away and the druid dropped his wand of CLW. Rogue comes up in initiative, 5-ft's over, and tries to use UMD. She needs to roll a 12. She rolls an 8. crap. She isn't wearing a shirt, so I ask if she's got a boon on a chronicle that will let her reroll. She played Year of the Shadow Lodge and took the skill reroll! She rolls.. an 11. crap. Then I remember I have a pile of Paizo shirts sitting next to me, so I throw her one of those. She rolls again. 12! Thank the gods! The level 1 lived, but he definitely felt like he earned his gold. I gave the rogue my GM boon for kitsune to make up for her using her YotSL boon and ~30+ charges off her CLW wand on the rest of the party. :)

    Friday was a bit of a blur again, running two more tables of Cyphermage and then losing my voice halfway through the day. The highlight of the night was running Race for the Runecarved Key Part 1 for the Diamond Dust Cowboys. I'll leave the details for this thread. There was definitely something surreal about watching over 500 people play something I helped create. Awesome indeed.

    The night ended with a few drinks with some good friends, including a shot of Patron with my co-author and a few thick shots of 130 proof bourbon that burned my nose hairs. Thanks for that, btw.

    Now this was a fun day. I woke up after 2 1/2 hours of sleep to help run GM 101. There was a small turnout but the people that showed up were great. This was my third time being involved and it was the third time I've walked away learning a few things. If it's ever offered in your area, I can't recommend it highly enough.

    I was an overflow GM for the afternoon and thankfully I ended up getting used at HQ instead of running King of the Storval Stairs (which I had only moderately prepped). I used a little bit of this time to prepare for later that night.. muhuhahaha. ;)

    The evening was Race for the Runecarved Key Part 2. As excited as I was for this, it started off poorly with bad communication with who was mustering it and a few GMs not showing up. I'll leave all the details of this for the "Special" thread, but needless to say I was excited to run this adventure. I got "stuck" with the Diamond Dust Cowboys again. I was very clear with the deadly nature of the scenario and that they had until time was called to get out alive (after Heidmarch tells them this). The party pushed through, managed to kill an ancient dragon (you're a lucky one Kasheed..), and escaped with their lives with about 1 minute before time was called. All of them. Seriously. I know, right? Anyway, they did good, but not good enough to win their subtier. I think they all had fun which is all that really matters.

    We left the special and went to the Omni for some drinks. That's about all I remember. My players started buying me drinks left and right. Something called a Bear Fight (because it feels like two bears fighting in your stomach), twice. Several beers. Who knows what else. I have a vague memory of being held in a classic police arm bar and biting people. And then I remember praying to a porcelain god at some point. Whew, that was rough. Fun, but rough.

    Sunday I woke up at like noon, stumbled to the PFS room, talked to a few people, went and picked up my subscription stuff and then said my good-byes. 5 Hours later I was home!

    I want to thank everyone I ran into. There were so many people I wish I could have hung out with longer. So many new faces I met for the first time. If I ever felt like I was short with you, I'm sorry, we'll get more time next year!


    1 person marked this as a favorite.

    Wanted to break the news that those who won part 2 of the Special got a boon to play a....



    One week from now, nearly 500 Pathfinders will gather in Magnimar to help Venture-Captain Sheila Heidmarch acquire a fabled Lissalan artifact and cement The Society's presence in Varisia's fastest growing city. Which of Golarion's greatest adventurers will claim a place in history by laying their hands upon the Runecarved Key?

    Pathfinders, sound off!

    Ifrit's favored class option:

    Oracle: Add +1/2 to the oracle's level for the purpose of determining the effects of one revelation.

    Can I choose to apply this bonus to a revelation I have yet to take?


    If someone GM'd #2-EX and then runs #3-16, can they claim GM credit twice since the chronicle sheets are in fact different scenarios and have different rewards?

    That opens up the question of replay. Can a player play both #2-EX and #3-16? How about #3-EX and #4-16(?).


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    The maximum level in PFS gets bounced around a bit, but it always varies based on opinion. Figured I break it down so everyone can just refer to it later.

    This will be as of Gen Con the absolute theoretical maximum:

    Finish your normal career at 12.0
    Complete Eyes of the Ten at 13.2
    Complete Academae of Secrets at 14.2
    Complete Tomb of the Iron Medusa at 15.2
    Complete The Grand Convocation at PaizoCon or PaizoCon UK at 16.0
    Complete Race for the Runecarved Key at 16.1
    Complete Moonscar at 17.1
    Complete Witchwar Legacy at 18.1

    Of course no one at The GC was 15.2 (the highest I saw was 14.2). So depending on whether or not they had played AoS or TotIM to get to 14th level, determines their max level at 17.1 or 18.1.

    Finish your normal career at 12.0
    Complete Eyes of the Ten at 13.2
    Complete Academae of Secrets or Tomb of the Iron Medusa at 14.2
    Complete The Grand Convocation at 15.0
    Complete Race for the Runecarved Key 15.1
    Complete Tomb of the Iron Medusa or Moonscar at 16.1
    Complete Moonscar or Witchwar at 17.1
    Complete Witchwar or nothing at 18.1

    I'll be arriving around noon tomorrow. Where is the best place to go watch some fireworks?

    I'm trying to decide on a PC for the Grand Convocation. A 14th level skill deprived heal-bot cleric (who's fun to RP, but has spent 14 skill points..) or my 7th level skill heavy archaeologist who's fun to RP and has the skills to back it up, but, uh, runs from most combats.

    I haven't done one of these things before. Any thoughts?

    Playing all weekend, no GMing at all!

    Friday, July 6
    08:00 AM – 10:00 AM Sammamish Room Pathfinder Society GM 101 (Part 1): Pathfinder GM Basics
    10:00 AM – 01:00 PM Sammamish Room Pathfinder Society GM 101 (Part 2): Practice Makes Perfect
    01:00 PM – 06:00 PM Banquet Room #3-12: Wonders of the Weave, Part 1 (5-9)
    07:00 PM – 12:00 AM Banquet Room Grand Convocation

    Saturday, July 7
    08:00 AM – 01:00 PM Banquet Room #3-14: Wonders of the Weave, Part 2 (5-9)
    01:00 PM – 06:00 PM Banquet Room #3-20: Rats of Round Mountain, Part 1 (7-11)
    07:00 PM – 10:00 PM Banquet Room PaizoCon 2012 Preview Banquet

    Sunday, July 8
    09:00 AM – 02:00 PM Banquet Room #3-22: Rats of Round Mountain, Part 2 (7-11)


    If your wizard a wizard is crazy enough to sell their starting spellbook (perhaps they bought a Blessed Book and paid to transfer the spells over), what value can they sell it for if any?


    1) Can't sell it because they started with the spellbook for free.
    2) Per the CRB: "spellbooks can be sold for an amount equal to half
    the cost of purchasing and inscribing the spells within"
    3) Can sell it, but aren't paid for the cost of the empty book (15 gp) or the spells which were gained for free at each level.


    The melee attacks for the "Worshipper" in Act 2 part B should probably have been written like:

    Subtier 7-8:
    mwk short sword +12/+7 (1d6+4/19–20), mwk short sword +12/+7 (1d6+4/19–20)

    Subtier 10-11
    +1 short sword +14/+9 (1d6+5/17–20), +1 short sword +14/+9 (1d6+5/17–20)

    Sorry for the confusion over TWF in the stat block. Happy stabbing! :)


    More sparkly and shiny. Congrats! Just a few more scenarios and the will get even better! :)


    If you used to play or GM Pathfinder Society games, but don't now, why? Please try to be as specific and detailed as possible.

    I'll start! I used to GM a fair bit, but since June of last year, I've only run a handful of games and have only played about the same. Reasons I stopped:

    • My work life changed quite a bit, requiring more of my free time.
    • I started focusing on getting healthy and losing weight (which takes up a lot more free time than I wish it did)
    • After running 100+ games, I simply needed a break.
    • I got tired of the local player base. It seemed like the worst players at game days scared away the better players, and much like Idiocracy, the worst players multiplied.
    • The person who got me into PFS, who pushed me to be a better GM, and who I shared a lot of road trips with quit playing.


    So Mike's has a personal vendetta against me and won't let me GM at PaizoCon this year (something about not signing up early enough... pfft)

    Luckily he doesn't control the days leading up to PaizoCon (yet).

    I'll be in Seattle Wednesday night and will be free all day Thursday. Anyone out there have a death wish for their character and want to play some PFS? :-)

    1 person marked this as a favorite.

    171 days. That is all.

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