Tim Schneider 908's page

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber. **** Venture-Agent, Australia—NSW—Newcastle 136 posts. 4 reviews. No lists. No wishlists. 22 Organized Play characters.


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Grand Lodge 4/5 Venture-Agent, Australia—NSW—Newcastle aka Tim Schneider 908

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Online Guide Team Lead - JTT wrote:
It is something we are aware of, and are looking into solutions. In the mean time, as a (unpleasant) work around, the problem seems to resolve if you enlarge the page by 10%.

Seems like the font doesn't like 22px font size while bold - odd quirk, even 1px bigger works. If you have control of the CSS you can just swap the h3 font size to 1.4375rem (23px) rather than 1.375rem (22px) and it works - but I guess if you can't change the font you probably can't change that either yet.

It may have bothered me enough that I set up a local style-sheet to make that adjustment & it works :P

Grand Lodge

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Erez Ben-Aharon wrote:

P2,3,4 - now have to pretend they didn't hear the conversation at all.

If P2,3,4 originally INTENDED to hit that exact square behind the barrels (just because it seemed a logical place), they now can't do it without being suspect of cheating/metagaming by the internetz.

And now we have landed on the problem with metagaming. If a person has meta-knowledge it colors their future actions. And it can be very hard, both for an observer and also for the player themselves, to know if they're acting on that information.

As a GM my response is typically to trust my players. If I think they might be acting on this information I assume it's not intentional and ask them "Are you sure? Remember your character doesn't know where he is...". Sometimes they'll say "Yeah but I think I'd have done that anyway", and on a one-off I'll take them at their word, but more often than not the response is "Oh yeah, good point. There's only really these 3 squares he could be in, so let's say I pick randomly from those? And I might just use a cantrip rather than the disintegrate I said cause my character knows he's blind firing" and I reply "Yeah, that makes sense, cool".

And that honesty from the players & trust from the GM is what makes the game work.

If your players are ones who go "Yeah but screw you I know where he is! Why would I ever waste an action when I can cheat?" then I pity you for your players & I think it's a problem best handled outside game mechanics.

For the record, my players actually reacted to this more closely to "Sweet, now we have a definitive answer of how pointing someone out works mechanically! We don't have to wonder how precisely we could describe it in 6 seconds of free action talking!".

Erez Ben-Aharon wrote:
The alternative solution would be to take P1 to the side and tell him in secret without anyone else knowing ("it is the 3rd square to the left of the barrels"), but that just seem tedious.

Sometimes that can be good. But I treat this less as hiding it from the players so they can't cheat & more to make it easier for them to work out how they'd act without the info (As "which square would I have picked if I didn't know?" can be a very hard question when you didn't decide beforehand)

I do actually sometimes only give a player enough info to make their choices, "It's over behind the barrels" is often enough info for them to act accordingly & I'll give the player the info they need (Essentially running the rest of their turn theater of mind then updating the grid).

Grand Lodge 4/5 Venture-Agent, Australia—NSW—Newcastle aka Tim Schneider 908

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I had a similar instinctive reaction to what you just outlined Bob (It's after the scenario, you don't currently have hero points), and combined with that rule referenced from rituals chapter I think it's pretty clear.

Would be nice to see that get into an official FAQ for PFS, as it is hard to work out the right answer, but I feel like this is enough to know it's correct.

Grand Lodge

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HLO has permanent adjustments that can be used for that kind of thing yeah. Unlike most areas of HLO though I find the UI to be a big step down for this piece (In most areas I prefer the new UI but wish it would run faster - part of that could be Australian latency to the US servers).

The only thing that stands between me and using HeroLab Online is that I really don't like the character sheets it generates. Given it's not 100% reliable to be online (Both from the HLO track record and also internet where I play), if it's going to be how I track my characters I have to be happy to play off it's offline sheet & currently it just has a bit too much clunk to it. I'd love an offline webpage option, and I'd love faster performance, but I can't go without an offline export I'm willing to play off & that's stopping me buying it atm (I tried, but I ended up resorting to rewriting it onto a real character sheet).

Grand Lodge

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Yeah CR is a terrible tool in extremes but a useful yardstick while you're stumbling to grasp the threat yourself. And the happy-stick of 1E basically means if you're not doing a protracted combined combat them they can normally recover as much as they could without an overnight rest.

I'm currently trying to get that grasp of threat in 2E so I can plan things that are challenging yet fair. I feel like I can toy with an encounter to get it "right" for the party, but I've yet to fully grasp the timing between encounters and I figured if someone had a better feel for it than me maybe it'd help me find it.

I know Paizo's yet to weigh in, but I'm curious what other GM's are finding seems "fair". My current feeling in minimal experience is:
- A Low needs about 10 mins to recover.
- A Medium needs about 30 mins to recover.
- A Severe needs about 2 hrs to recover.
- Failed medicine checks can easily throw an extra hour into the party's recovery time on a Medium/Severe.
- If you throw something at them before that time, it's probably about 40XP harder.
- A Severe will probably kill someone if encountered before the party has the recovery time above.
- Continual recovery likely reduces these timings at higher levels.
(Warning: This is top-of-head and probably wrong - I made this thread cause I'm not sure, not to claim expertise :P )

Part of the thing I was hitting was that people weren't treatable after 1 fight cause it was less than an hour since the last where they got treated. A house-rule I'm considering adding to reduce the time delays needed is to say that the 1 per hour limit on Treat Wounds ends if your wounded condition increases (Mechanically if you go down in a fight you probably need to treat wounds so lets save an hour, thematically there is fresh wounds to treat).

Grand Lodge

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While it's interesting to read ideas on how to run random encounters, and likely great advice for newer GM's, it's more the 2E specific element around how long people think the core game assumes is a reasonable time I was looking at here (Both in terms of the first-party adventures and also in terms of the standard difficulty calculations). Tension pool seems cool to me as it gives an option of "You risked a random encounter, but I don't have fun one I want to do so I'll bump up the tension instead", but as useful as it is it's basically just kicked the question down the road to "When is it reasonable to add tension dice".

I feel like it's fairly clear they don't assume a 4 hour delay to fully treat wounds every encounter any more than 1E expected you to go back to town & sleep after each encounter. In 1E a GM has to adapt things if the party starts doing that, I don't know what the line is for "need to adapt for balance" in 2E first-party adventures & the mechanically impacting delays are far more granular at 10 minute intervals. Judging purely off the sheer difficulty they are seem to be assuming at least 10 minutes after each fight.

I've had conversations with players who struggle with working out how long is reasonable even thinking thematically, cause they can see the mechanical obvious need for 10 minutes and start going "wait... but if I can take 10 minutes here surely 20 is safe? 10 minutes is a lot of time... maybe 2E's just balanced around spending a few hours between fights bandaging, cause we don't have our CLW stick anymore...". And to some extent I kinda felt where their pain came from in the balance - the front liners were getting hit for more than they could reasonably bandage at a 10 minute pause per fight by a decent margin, and wounded conditions added up when medicine checks failed. And back-to-back fails, which at 30%+ failure aren't that unexpected - the players started investing in assurance with medicine to auto-pass at level 3 which I think worked nicely but the 2d8 heal per hour started falling further behind the damage output too. It's obviously supplemented by magical healing but my initial assumption of 10 minutes per fight being "reasonable" seemed to be hitting a difficulty curve that was demanding more. And the players, who to their credit didn't want to meta by resting 4-5 hours per fight, were turning to me for what seemed reasonable. & I was at a loss to balance the thematic with the mechanical - hence making this thread.

Answers that talk in vague terms around thematics aren't really helpful to me personally - I'm looking at mechanics here, the part I lack is a "feel" for 2E mechanical difficulty. I've got enough GM experience across other game systems to handle making the thematics match what I need the mechanics to do. As a possible way to cut through the thematic aspect, let's try this rephrasing:
If I was setting up an adventure that had the party in an arena facing 3 Moderate threat encounters followed by 1 Severe threat boss, totally railroaded, how much downtime between encounters do you believe the system assumes when calling them Moderate and Severe? If they take on each with a 4hour break it'll be fairly easy, if they take on all of them with no rest they'd get massacred. What level of rest is implicitly there in calling the next fights "moderate" and "severe" rather than needing further difficulty scaling for the wounded party?

Grand Lodge

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I think at it's core it comes down to the fact they tried a new design & feedback in the playtest was "OMG YES!"... so it stayed into the release.

I for one love the new multi-classing, it's much more beginner-friendly than the old one & still lets me build my non-standard character concepts in ways that feel both mechanically and thematically correct. It actually does a much better job in my view of making that transition gradual and less mechanically spikey than 1E multiclass dips.

Grand Lodge

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Thanks for the suggestions rainzax & John. I think I prefer the more loose base mechanic than the "DC X and it happens" thing. My favorite aspect was that it essentially banked the tension for when the GM actually had a meaningful way to have an encounter, and saying "It happens at X" kinda removes that.

You may be right that the idea of just giving all the time in the world while learning - but with no sign the world reacts it kinda guarantees they'll bandage up and refocus everyone to 100% before each encounter. The phrase from a player of "Well if 20 minutes didn't do anything we may as well spend another 4 hours and get to full health before we do the next room" made me flinch and feel like it was very much a meta choice as a read that the GM didn't want to run a random event here.

I felt simultaneously like I didn't want to encourage this behavior but also I didn't have a fun way for the world to react so I didn't. I use random encounters sometimes, but never the "3 bears arrive, they're cranky" ones & there was no "fun" way to do something here. If I do a random encounter I want it to contribute to the story - and essentially banking the tension for when something can add meaningfully to the story sounds like it could work well.

It seems like the general consensus lies somewhere between 30-60 minutes as a "worthy of some response" levels (And adding a dice is an interesting approach to a response :) )

Grand Lodge

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What kind of guidance can we expect on building enemies and determining enemy levels in here - and also in terms of the "cost" for special powers/abilities and how to balance?

How are the new NPC's going to be? Are they bestiary-style stat creatures as NPC's or are they class-based builds? What's the level/class(or role if no class) spread like on these?

Chase rules are one which evolved & changed over 1E in adventures, from the original split-the-party chases, to group collective chases, to fail-forward style chases, to chases reframed to pursue the players... which of these styles has the GMG aimed for in 2E, or is the system made to handle multiple of these or something new entirely?

Also a second on the kingdom building discussions, and is the upcoming Kingmaker expansion intended to leverage or expand these or go it's own way (Obviously may be too early to promise, as you may change course depending on feedback once you release it, but current plans)?

Grand Lodge

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Less pessimistic way of seeing it: Success 1/9th more likely than failure!

There's 1 number that's a special case - exactly equal to the DC. You have 9 successes after followed by crit success & 9 failures before followed by crit fail. And in their magnanimity they deemed to give us 11% more chance to succeed!

The intent is incredibly clear here, this isn't really a rules question so much as a complaint about the lack of mathematical symmetry. Personally I think throwing off the symmetrical balance of your number line was a small price to pay to make the math of working out crits use simple round numbers & I'm glad the designers agreed.

Grand Lodge 4/5 Venture-Agent, Australia—NSW—Newcastle aka Tim Schneider 908

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I've noticed my GM'd scenarios are only showing 1 AcP per session on the Sessions list in the My Organised Play page.

Other AcP values all look to match the guide - 4 for played, 1 for played quest & 2 for GM'd quest. But for GM'd scenarios it's giving 1 where guide says it should be 8.

Not really a big deal when there's no way to spend them yet, but figured I'd mention it to make sure it's on someone's radar.

Grand Lodge

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I'd say yes - as it says any level 0 item except armor. Shields aren't armor.

It has the extra clarification to say weapons are allowed, but I don't think that should be taken to exclude Shields any more so than it excludes Adventuring Gear.

Grand Lodge 4/5 Venture-Agent, Australia—NSW—Newcastle aka Tim Schneider 908

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My group almost died on the black pudding splitting it 6 times, but right before the 6 puddings obliterated them Ezren fireballed the whole party to kill them! We got to try out all the dying rules haha.

Whole party walked in stark naked into the final encounter (ooze dissolving gear) where I had them scream that they'd never stop their research and was about to call initiative when a player shou1ted "Wait! We dont want to! We just want the open road book, you can keep the ooze books!"... the players actually thought the ooze research was cool & didn't want to stop them. Plus they did enough research earlier to know they were having no luck selling the open road stuff. After the initial more confusing than threatening entry of the naked party, a few diplomacy checks and a promise to help with the research matters calmed down... and when fumbus and Ezren both crit craft checks to help with their research they made such good friends I decided they were ok with the party making a copy of the ooze research so long as they kept the original.

All in all great fun.

Still trying to work out how downtime checks work for this though... for now I didn't give the players the downtime as giving it at level 5 to a level 1 char seemed broken and anything else seemed house rule. I've promised to fix it up once I know the rules, if anyone can help me here it'd be great.

Grand Lodge 4/5 Venture-Agent, Australia—NSW—Newcastle aka Tim Schneider 908

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How does one do downtime work for this one?

Guide suggests that pregens can do a dayjob, which is fine, but combined with the special allowing you to put it on a level 1... the amount of gold that a level 5 pregen can get on a dayjob is somewhat inappropriate for a level 1 character.

Is this an oversight that shouldn't be allowed, or just a windfall for those who put the special chronicle on a level 1?

Grand Lodge

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New version has just gone out fixing up some of the feedback I've gotten so far:
- Fixed a bug where Basic saving throws weren't showing
- Fixed an issue where cantrips are getting mixed in with level 1 spells when sorted by level.
- Added Earn Income quick reference - seems like it'll come up at the end of every PFS game.
- Allowed searching by duration of spell
- Allowed sorting by number of actions
- Improved the formatting of polymorph and morph spells to more closely reflect the formatting in the rulebook.

Also I've published on a website URL which supports offline mode to allow iPhone/iPad & desktop users to use the app too: https://fyjham-ts.github.io/Pathfinder-2E-Spell-DB/

Thanks all for the very positive & useful feedback that helped me find the above issues to fix :D

Known data issue to fix next release: Spells with afflictions haven't got full detail recorded- Abyssal Plague, Goblin Pox, Purple Worm Sting & Ghoulish Cravings. Will be fixing those next update.

Grand Lodge 4/5 Venture-Agent, Australia—NSW—Newcastle aka Tim Schneider 908

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I assumed the intent was to say you did 1 check per 8 days (or fraction thereof) & this was the result that applied for those days. I had also assumed the DC was based on the task level via the DC charts, not literally the task level (e.g. If you have 3 days downtime you're using to to earn income, 1 check - covers 3 days, 8 days 1 check - covers 8 days, 14 days 2 checks - first one 8 days next one 6 days).

This is the interpretation I used for the Quest I ran - given only 2 days of downtime we were scratching our heads if we were even allowed to do an Earn Income check. As we only had 2 days to earn income I only gave 2 x the daily result from the chart (3x for those who were field-commissioned and got an extra day's downtime).

My biggest question was whether GM's get downtime or not. I had a lot of trouble even finding confirmation that GM's get any credit in the new guide, only found it noted as a side-note on filling in a chronicle and it was quite vague on what a GM got.

I also took the implication that if you were declaring your downtime usage you had to specify # of days earning income in advance to prevent "Oh I fumbled? I'll only use 1 day on earning income".

Grand Lodge

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Yeah, I'm going to keep maintaining it going forward & fleshing it out. Currently have a few things on my list based on some reddit feedback (Mostly around a few minor issues & some formatting and search features).

Dark mode is a possibility - mostly just a UX thing of fitting in a toggle in for it... possibly in an options screen somewhere.

The next big thing I'm considering trying to find a nice way to track is Vancian casting prep. Main thing stopping me there is I don't want to clutter the UI for spell browsing. Thinking of having it only when viewing a bookmark list flagged for Vancian casting or something.

Quick reference wise I'll likely expand a few PFS lists from the new guides (Like the start of scenario school item availability). Don't want to over-fill it to the point it's not a quick reference so much as a rules catalog, so I'm trying to make sure it's something people actually need to quickly reference in game before I put it in :)

Grand Lodge

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Exact name of app is "Pathfinder 2E Spell DB".

It's starting to show up on searches now. Couldn't find it myself in the store even searching by it's name when I first announced it. I think that's cause I announced it quite quickly after Google approved it to go live & their store takes a while to catch up.

Grand Lodge

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Hey all,

I've made a new Spell Database application for 2nd Edition Pathfinder. Just a little app to search spells & also has a few quick reference sheets for conditions, traits, monster abilities & other things you need at hand GM'ing. Also has a bookmarking feature so you can manage multiple bookmarked spell lists - good for tracking your spells available on different characters or just flagging a spell you're interested in returning to as you're browsing.

The app is available on the Google Play Store for Android. 100% free, no ads, just spells! Made it for my own use, figured I should share.

Big thanks to Archives of Nethys who did most the hard work digitizing all this data. I did some of my own data entry & cleanup, but there's no way I'd have made this app without being able to piggy-back their hard work by pulling some of the spell data from their site!

And also an obvious thanks to Paizo who actually owns all the data & their use of the OGL that lets community content like this exist! I hope this is both in the letter and spirit of your OGL :D

PS: App is open source, so if anyone's curious you can hit it up at the GitHub Repo.
PPS: Working on an offline usable browser version currently to handle iPhones & desktop use. Have shared it with my local group, one issue left to clean up so this shouldn't be too far behind.

Grand Lodge 4/5 Venture-Agent, Australia—NSW—Newcastle aka Tim Schneider 908

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As a GM who runs in tight timeslots I actually love when I see an optional encounter, as it means I don't have to be as stressed about pushing the party to reach the end.

Most my players are actually disappointed they missed an optional encounter, and we normally end up talking about what it would've been and anything cool in it out in the parking lot after the store has closed... so I don't have the same view as some but I can see the argument that they're a net negative to the party if you do them.

Perhaps an optional encounter could throw a few consumables to the party, or an adjustment later. Don't make them part of the treasure for the scenario, cause that punishes slower & more time constrained groups and makes them try to cram it in... but something to compensate the party for the resources they've likely had consumed by the fight. Doesn't have to be huge but a token gesture could be enough to make them feel less punitive to some.

Grand Lodge

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From a rules question stance I think it's pretty clear it works how you're saying.

From a gameplay perspective... I played in a game the other day & I didn't find that last action useless. I used it for a Recall Knowledge check on the monster we were fighting or for repositioning. I imagine I'll find more uses for it as I level up.

Grand Lodge 4/5 Venture-Agent, Australia—NSW—Newcastle aka Tim Schneider 908

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There was also a guy who posted earlier a combined guide in PDF form on the PFS Prep site:
http://www.pfsprep.com/e107_plugins/forum/forum_viewtopic.php?3138.last

Not their official release, and I imagine given wiki form he'll be in for a challenge keeping it accurate as it updates... but handy to have consolidated as a PDF if you play somewhere offline.

Grand Lodge 4/5 Venture-Agent, Australia—NSW—Newcastle aka Tim Schneider 908

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Maybe we're meant to email John for them :P

Hopefully someone will fix the missing link soon.

Grand Lodge 4/5 Venture-Agent, Australia—NSW—Newcastle aka Tim Schneider 908

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Attack DC would actually be 10 + attack bonus not their actual attack roll. I ran it how you said myself but afterwards realised that was probably a mistake.

Playtest has a habit of not having opposed rolls but attack DC is a pretty weird one.

Grand Lodge

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Just wondering if/when we might expect some of the community use packs to see any logos based on the 2E style?

I've got a convention I'm organizing part of in August where we're gonna mix in some 2E content to spark interest & we'll likely be putting some fliers in local game stores soon. It'd be great to be able to use 2E related art in the fliers as it may catch the eye of some people who aren't avid 1E players but might be intrigued by a new system.

Looking at the community use packs it doesn't seem any of the 2E stuff is available? I imagine it's a low priority with everything going on, but is there any ETA's around this or is this something you're holding off for now?

Grand Lodge

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My view on the Vancian casting front is that I want Vancian, Spontaneous, and Arcanist style. Cause it gives us 3 distinct cool ways to distinguish caster classes, giving 3 distinct styles of play & making everyone happy. Wizards don't have to have Arcanist casting - Arcanists can!

I'm a little sad Arcanist casting didn't make the core at all, but I hope it'll show up fairly soon after (Given the class's popularity I don't imagine Paizo will miss that chance). That said the book is already very big, I don't think they'd have wanted to cut any original core classes, and I can understand their argument for Alchemist (needing the most rules support to work how they wanted).

I imagine the request to keep all the existing stuff but fit another class without increasing page count may have a few minor conflicts with physics, but aside from that I feel like it's a perfectly reasonable request... :P

Grand Lodge

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In the playtest I felt the game had potential, I could see a lot of design space but there wasn't enough options, there were rough edges, and some of these really limited the game but I still had fun.

For 2E I played 3 delves at paizocon (30 mins, lvl 1) and was lucky enough to get into Mark Seifter's lottery game where I got to play as an Erinyes in a scenario-length longer game with a lot more story and roleplay (Everyone enjoyed themselves thoroughly - though a lot of that is a good story/gm and everyone getting in character).

While none of that is any substitute for laying hands on the rulebook and running a game across multiple levels, my experience is that the 2E I'm seeing has cleaned up all my big issues from the playtest & what I've seen of options (and somewhat based on sheer page count) really fleshed it out & I'm truly excited not just for launch but also the potential I see for the system to expand.

The proof is yet to come - but first impressions are very solid for me :)

Grand Lodge

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I hope we don't see a "plug & play" rune. I would be happy with a master or legendary skill feat for crafting that let you move a rune in the 10 minutes downtime though. Could make for an interesting set of options for a high level crafter being able to shift runes fast, while not making it ubiquitous like the "plug & play" rune would be.

Grand Lodge

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Also was in on the unreality incursion - and that was amazingly fun. Was my first paizocon & I'm not sure if that game or the multitable or just meeting so many awesome people was the highlight but it's up there! Big thanks to Mark for running it & all the other players for making it great :)

The only fears I had left for 2E after playtest & announcements were:
Variety, and the sheer number of pages in the rulebook and the size of the sections has me convinced.
Skill guidance, the amazing spoilers trick at banquet had a card for that (ps: I feel bad for Owen going on stage after that was announced lol)
Flavor, and the spoilers did that too!

Now I just have to go home & convince my local groups :)

Grand Lodge

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Honestly I think the main problem with that lock in DD was that it was a playtest & the first exposure people had to lockpicking and it FELT unfair. I think if it wasn't the first lock people ever saw in the edition they may have gone "Oh, it's too hard for me? Ok...". As it stood it went "A lock! Great, time to try out the new system... what do you mean I failed I specialized in this! /rage"

I think the base system is fine, and the adventure was fine, it just didn't serve well as an introduction to the new mechanic.

Grand Lodge

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My interpretation was the obols are more of a freak accident thing than a "everyone hit gets one" - so likely the number of survivors who got obols will directly relate to how many new PC's I need.

I think the hardest thing for me running this one is going to be explaining the unwillingness of the NPC's to be more helpful. Given they're chilling at a festival it's hard to say they have more important duties. Some of them have ulterior motives, and they're easy to play out in roleplay & not help the PC's too much, but the ones who legitimately would help if convinced... I'm trying to come up with ideas on how to keep them from directly helping the party too much.

Evni & Aylunna are the ones I feel like I'm at high risk of the party leaving me unsure how to in-character have them stay at the festival once they're convinced enough to give them magic items to support their investigations. I'm considering having them roleplay-wise start taking action after just 1 piece of evidence basically pre-fulfilling their "after catastrophe" stuff as a way to preoccupy them & let the PC's know how to contact them rather than staying at the festivities. I should be able to play off the value of mobilizing their assets as higher than anything they could personally do to help the PC's directly.

Grand Lodge

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Very glad I got this one too!

I'd happily put my hand up for a devil. Fighting each-other here seems rather unnecessary, I believe we're all agreed that reality is far superior and more orderly than unreality. While free will has made quite a mess of it, I'm sure the Prince of Darkness can more easily correct that mistake than form order without reality to start with...

Grand Lodge

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So... I've been trying to prepare for this & I'm a bit stumped on one element...

What if a character dies? How can you introduce a new PC?

I can't see any reasonable way to introduce another character into the mix in this book... and the Obols make me worried it won't get easier in later books? Have I missed something, or has anyone come up with any ideas around this?

Grand Lodge

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This is closer to the current design of staffs - charges per day but unlimited total uses.

That said, wands currently are essentially just scrolls with a "Buy 9 get 1 free!" card so making wands a more specialized staff (1 spell, no base bonuses) might actually be more interesting/varied.

Grand Lodge

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I've been a bit disheartened listening to recent podcasts where Jason has been saying that we're really only getting to the relevance of resonance in the higher levels and it hasn't had much impact at low levels.

At my tables low level resonance was a HUGE deal. And the way the surveys asked questions didn't really seem to convey this well as they only cared when people crit-failed trying to keep using it but things like potions have a huge cost on just a fail.

To hear it referenced like it was in those podcasts leaves me very worried that Paizo's designers haven't really seen this impact. I sincerely hope they mean they haven't had a chance to see it with the issues it was designed to combat, which I do understand is very true (And if that's the intended meaning I apologize for misinterpreting/misrepresenting your position & eagerly await the fixes you come up with).

Are we alone here? Have other people's gaming experiences been that resonance has truly been un-impactful at level 1 and 4? (I'm not trying to propose we solve the problem here, just asking has it explicitly been a problem for others in actual games as opposed to theory)

More detailed breakdown of my experiences in spoiler:

Spoiler:
Level 1 (2 games of Doomsday Dawn, 1 GM 1 Player, and 1 GM of the PFS scenario): We frequently had more consumables than we had resonance & making decisions about sleeping the night based on inability to drink potions. Every single player was discussing their resonance totals. The biggest impact was the death of a character when he was poisoned and failed his resonance check for a healing potion that would've bought him enough time to likely live (He started with 0 resonance as a dwarf with 8 cha level 1, and not realizing how bad that was had bought 3 healing potions). He didn't die, but someone else did while the druid ran to heal him. It wasn't as big a deal in the PFS scenario, I believe mostly cause the party wasn't pushed as hard.

Level 4 (1 game Doomsday Dawn Player): It was also impactful on our level 4 game. My cleric was the only one impacted really, and that's cause I had a wand and a staff. I actually found it an interesting resource to balance, and felt like it'd truly nailed it's goal for me here. Other players did comment they wouldn't want to manage as many resources as I was juggling (Resonance, Spell Points, Wand Charges, Staff Charges, Channel Pool, Spells Remaining & Hero Points - I had a wide range of tracking counters & dice out :) ), but personally I enjoyed it and felt I caused it with my gear choices so it's an option for those who want to manage resources. Resonance was typically the cause of our resting but it didn't feel too premature.

Grand Lodge

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Leedwashere wrote:

You don't have to make it relevant across all player levels. You only have to make it relevant for its own (item) level, as a function of the others.

In the other thread I posted what those numbers would have to be to make that happen. It's not a hard calculation. It can be tweaked to be more or less generous (I decided to go with nice, round numbers past level 1), but as soon as the higher-level items become worse than the lower-level items in value, your incentive to buy them becomes an incentive not to buy them. (You don't want to die, so you still have an incentive you use them if you find them, but you're literally throwing your money away if you buy it.)

Except that when you lower the price of the higher level items to the price of the lower level items you haven't stopped the problem you've just packaged it in a higher level purchase.

The problem not be addressed is that if healing is going to remain remotely expensive (e.g. Making healing between fights a decision & not just a "Obviously we use all the consumables") you need to be able to set a price on healing which is actually relevant to the players. Health and gold scale at very different rates. Any price you can put on healing for a level 1 character will either be pocket-change to a level 10 character or completely unaffordable for the level 1 unless there's some other cost outside gold. Lowering the price of high level consumables to the same cost per HP or even lower just makes the price of healing even more inconsequential at high levels.

The idea of using resonance as a buff on the heal really doesn't seem to work to me, as if we maintain the current rough economic pricing the second highest potion (lvl 12) charges 4.8g per HP on average. Which is to say the designers while writing felt that was a fair price to keep healing a relevant expense at that level. To lower that to the non-resonance d4 option it has to be lowered to 1.2g per HP which is 1/4 the price... or 1/8th if half it's healing is tied to resonance too. That's very rapidly becoming pocket-change. If a regular healing potion healed even 1 HP without resonance, which would make it uselessly expensive without resonance for a level 1, it'd still be the cheaper option for a level 12 character.

Now you might not consider that a problem - the question of "Is X problematic?" is a lot more subjective than "Does this design prevent X?". If people want cost of healing by consumable to only be a concern for low level characters then the whole point is moot, but if you agree that aspect of the design goals of the original resonance system is a desirable goal then these don't achieve it.

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It's actually not good against high AC enemies though. It's good on a narrow niche of 15 to 18ish to hit (varies slightly by level but it's typically negative or negligible outside this).

It's incredibly rare to find any level appropriate enemy in that range. When I went looking in the bestiary I took a few sample levels and the highest I found was 12 (admittedly didn't check all levels, just a few to sample). This basically means CR+3 enemies, which means only single enemy severe difficulty encounters that happen to also be one of the highest AC enemies & that you can actually work out have such a high AC... Talk about niche!

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I read it but I honestly didn't give it much attention purely on the extra effort necessary to have any idea how much damage everyone in the party has taken since they last got healed by this particular skill feat. Tracking how much damage each person has taken since last heal by this is too much, especially when other types of healing are in-between. It's just too much cognitive load for a single ability to add to the game in my view.

I intentionally avoided specific implementations, but if I was to try to give a solution I'd say a long duration use of medicine that increased it's DC for each prior use that day on that person (e.g. DC 10 first time, each attempt increases DC of next by 5, scale amount healed off proficiency, crit failure blocks further that day). The person with the skill just has to track how many times they used this on that person that day.

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Realistically right now Cleric is in a category of it's own for healing. They have a dedicated pool of heals separate to their combat ability & it's at their max level & they get 3+cha (So proabably 5-6 at low levels) & they can stack buffs onto it with class feats. Other healers (bard/druid/sorcerer) have it competing for their top level spells. Paladin is actually pretty good with Lay on Hands & the right build too.

And for in-combat healing I think that's a great place to be. Clerics are the masters of it, let them be. Other classes can do it at a pinch. In-combat healing with the new action economy feels quite effective as a part of your activities in combat. Consumables can be used to supplement weaker healing options & due to new actions are actually probably more effective than before (At least til you hit the resonance cap).

Where I see the problem is the impact of not having a cleric specifically in the party for out of combat healing.

Clerics are currently the only class who gets enough healing to manage out of combat healing over a decent length adventuring day (3-4 encounters) without having to dedicate almost all their spell slots to it, and consumables have been made prohibitive by resonance (Either by sheer lack of it at low levels or cost of consumables higher). Multi-class cleric doesn't even give that much healing power, though if enough did it it'd definitely chip away. Expanded health pools and resonance have made using consumables prohibitively expensive as a primary out of combat healing method.

My preference would be to add more out of combat healing options outside clerics specifically. Leave them their niche, it's pretty cool, but give more options. A bard song of rest, a druid coaxing natural healing at an accelerated rate, using skill in medicine to treat wounds in a slow methodical way. Don't hurt the cleric's combat niche but give some options to lengthen the adventuring day for a party without a cleric.

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Happy to hear that, all the abbreviation/heading options seem like they'll make it far more confusing.

You're probably all over this already, but if you do add a "Basic Saving Throw" as a concept, make sure to add it to the index so it's easier for first timers to work out what it means - both under "Basic Saving Throws" and "Saving Throws". Also capitalize so it's clear Basic has a rule meaning & isn't just the literal meaning of the word.

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I actually like the more clear language on saves that has come from including it in the text not the header. For the more complicated ones in 1E often the header-save is misleading or open to interpretation. I'd hate to see that go away, but the space saving of not having it on every spell is hard to say no to... so I'll just throw out please don't make it part of the standard template like some are asking.

The "Depending on" phrasing reads badly to me - I'd prefer we just add "Basic" to the existing words.
EG: "A burst of fire explodes, dealing 6d6 fire damage to creatures in the area. Creatures in the area must attempt a Basic reflex save."

Also, can we make sure that the definition of "Basic" makes clear how it interacts with non-damage aspects of a spell? My suggestion would be to say Basic saves only effect damage & any other aspect of the spell isn't affected.

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I think more ancestry feats at 1st level is the best option. I don't think you need more trickling in later, but maybe something as simple as getting 2-3 ancestry feats at level 1.

Or even better make the number you get part of your race - this would open a bit of design space so they can include more baseline in an ancestry if they give you less feats up front.

Because of adoption & other ways to access other ancestries, all the feats have to roughly balance (so that we don't get everyone adopted by the OP race) which currently means all race baselines have to roughly balance (As they have the same number of roughly equal feats). This could help give designers one more variable they can use if they want to add some flair to a new base ancestry (Like a swim speed etc).

It would mean trying to add some more ancestries to some races though, currently a lot of races really have ancestry feats that are very specialized (Like goblin which has a ton that suit either rogue or alchemist, but nothing for anyone else) and need a few more well-rounded ancestry options that could apply to any class.

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I dislike assurance because:
1) For it's intended purpose it is terrible. If you have assurance in something you're good at, choosing to use it is choosing to fail any check except ones the book says the GM shouldn't even make you roll anyway.

2) At some levels you're actually "Taking" a negative result. Level 14 is the first where it's actually explicitly negative even assuming:
- You've max'd out the rank ups for the skill (It's worse if you don't)
- You've got a +4 in the relevant stat (You probably have better, making it worse)
- You have no item or circumstance bonuses (You probably do, making this worse).

3) Ignoring conditional modifiers is very vague, because it's unclear normally if the DC should be higher or a conditional penalty should apply. Many of the examples in the book suggesting why a DC may be higher are circumstances that could apply a conditional penalty... so this rule probably only exists to remove your own bonuses and penalties.

4) The only spot I've found where it's effective is covering your penalties. Armor check penalty for things like stealth. Though it also gets silly in that if you're sneaking past someone you can be good but if they're looking for you then you go back to being clunky (Assurance can help with your stealth check, but not DC to spot you). Thematically this feels wrong for what Assurance is meant to be.

5) One last spot is combat maneuvers to hide your multiple attack penalty... which strikes me as an abuse rather than an intended way to use it.

6) The old "Should I take 10? I'm not sure if it succeeds" is back, but even worse. As the GM quietly hides the difficulty of a check despite the fact your character should be able to assess how hard it is.

7) Feats that require assurance first essentially have a feat tax on them with the uselessness of assurance.

I'd like to either see assurance gone, or have it replaced by something where you roll but if you get below X, you get X. Even if you made it that without changing the numbers I think it'd be balanced. Though I'd probably make sure the ACP and multiple attack penalty apply even with assurance either way, as they already seem open to abuse.

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I agree with the premise here. I have found myself looking at my skills to increase & not seeing much gain from becoming an expert, just a +1 which just lacks "wow factor".

This may just be a "more content" issue. I'd love to see a greater range of Skill Feats with proficiency prerequisites for each skill. They seem to have filled "Legendary" but not really given much love to trained/expert/master on many skills. Some skills have a good range of options, but others seem lacking and being a Master of those skills really just gives you +1.

I hope to see more options in the final rulebook on this, as currently skill advancements are very lacklustre unless you pick one of the skills that is actually fleshed out. For example Athletics and Deception both have a respectable set of core options. I'm sure splat-books will add more later but it'd be really good if every skill at least had 1-2 options at each tier.

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I was just making a character & decided he was a noble so I jumped to the noble background, and found a rather confusing result.

It grants the skill Nobility Lore - seems sensible enough on it's own.

It then grants the "Courtly Graces" feat - a feat that allows you to use Society in place of Nobility Lore for Recall Knowledge...

So the background both grants you a Lore, then immediately undercuts it by granting you a feat who's primary purpose is to let you use a different skill instead of having to be trained in that lore?

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I think at level 1 charisma is just too big a part & the fact a potion is wasted if you try to overspend means for a low-charisma or worse negative charisma level 1 character they often can't even drink potions.

I think it works fine by 4th level - the pool is big enough that low cha is an inconvenience not a lockout. Perhaps just a few extra points to make low level low cha hurt less? Even 2, which would be irrelevantly small at high level, would ease the low level pain. A toughness style approach would work but may be unnecessarily complex.

Alternatively give an option to those characters - it was a very "feels bad" moment when my party's dwarf realised his healing potions only worked 50% of the time and were used up regardless.

Grand Lodge 4/5 Venture-Agent, Australia—NSW—Newcastle aka Tim Schneider 908

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Only downside to me about PFSv1 going "Wild West" is from an explaining perspective. It's nice to let the guys who work at our FLGS know that we're running PFS and it's open to everyone so if they have people come in looking for rolelplay they can point them our way. Most our new players come to us via referral from the stores we play in.

Having to say "It's kinda PFS but it's not really PFS cause we break these rules..." makes that a lot more complex & probably makes them go "Uhuh... so I can remember all that or I could just point them at Adventurers League".

Admittedly we'll probably point new players to our second edition games once it's a thing, but having a nice banner we can say "We do this" is what separates PFS from the home-games in the store & if it takes a period for our games to move from 1E to 2E it'd be kinda nice to keep the banner.

That's the only thing I think we'll lose locally if the call is "No replay" - I'm 99% sure all nearby conventions will be dropping 1E so our 1E would just fall off the PFS map into home-game with suspiciously PFS-like rules.

Grand Lodge 4/5 Venture-Agent, Australia—NSW—Newcastle aka Tim Schneider 908

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Having thought about this one for a bit I really like it.


  • It encourages GM'ing while not locking all the rewards behind a GM barrier.
  • Successfully alleviates scheduling problems. As a GM I can go "I'm scheduling X. I know you've played it but you can have one of my replays if you want" - if we have our stars worth of those per season that's a lot of pressure relieved.
  • It firmly gives replay-permission to the GM's and in a way where people can't really complain if you say no (Unlike just "If GM says yes" this is actually a cost to the GM to give you a replay).

I kinda want to restrict using it on the same scenario repeatedly, but that does add a paperwork overhead.

As far as the regular paperwork goes, I'd just put tickboxes on the "expanded expanded narrative" sheet. Tick them as you give them out & write it on the chronicle (We already just write "GM Star" or "GM Credit", so "Gift Replay" or similar wouldn't be hard). Or just let the GM keep track of it themselves (Possibly by drawing their own boxes on their chronicle - that's what I already do for the GM ones).

Grand Lodge 4/5 Venture-Agent, Australia—NSW—Newcastle aka Tim Schneider 908

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Well I wrote up a post but I just deleted it cause HMM said it all & better. Assuming others agree about the types of replay that are good & bad (I certainly do) then we can start asking what will encourage the good ones while reducing the bad ones.

The issue I'd see with the 1 season per year approach is that I feel like Paizo's quality of scenarios has improved over PFS's lifespan. While there's certainly gems in the old ones I think a lot of the stuff people would love us to re-run in our local lodge are from the later seasons and it'd be years before they were available. I like the idea, but I hope we can get something better.

Possible suggestion is a PFS 1E public download boon for replays released when 2E comes out with the following restrictions designed to reduce the problems:

  • Limited number of replays (5?) per person per year (Similar to expanded narrative - no GM star component though)
    Capped amount to help with BNW's point about re-players filling all the slots. Once per year since the campaign won't be getting new scenarios. Reasonably low number so existing GM replay rewards aren't invalidated.

  • Downloads with a generic chronicle which you earn when you do the replay instead of the actual chronicle (Same layout as a multi-table with gold amounts per tier).
    Help with HMM's "bad" scenario of boon farming

  • Can only be used to replay a scenario you have not replayed before via any mechanism.
    Hopefully helps with HMM's ugly "phoning it in" scenario - in my experience the more replays of a single scenario the more potential for it to fall into this problem.

  • Can only be used during the year it's for
    To encourage actually using them to let tables run rather than banking them up for some hypothetical future game like a lot of GM's do with stars.

  • Grand Lodge 4/5 Venture-Agent, Australia—NSW—Newcastle aka Tim Schneider 908

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    I agree with BNW on the overlapping played games, this is very common for my local lodge. We are close enough to a neighboring lodge that we schedule our events on the same warhorn and have some events at a half-way point & we have a very travel-happy group that goes to a lot of conventions in other cities. Combined with new & old players & some more casual than others we have a serious spread in played scenarios. Especially when it comes to the lore-heavy ones where people got excited to play them at conventions.

    I'm all on board for the "generic chronicle" approach, if it alleviates concerns about power-gaming & lets the rest of us get on with having a fun game without excluding anyone then it sounds like a fine compromise. If that allows a slightly more liberal (Even if not 100%) replay policy to be done it sounds good to me.

    I don't think regional variance is a good idea, mostly for the reasons Sebastian gave & also because it makes it feel less like one campaign and more like a pile of separate ones.

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