Ditto. I just reported my first PFS2 event. I emphasized to all the players that it was important to their rewards to legibly fill out the reporting sheet, only to realize it was nearly impossible to put in most players' character number in a legible manner. Come on guys! This is the most important field for reporting and there isn't enough room on the form for it?
1. Because Organized Play means you will likely be playing with a variety of people and characters, in a variety of locations, with a variety of different styles of adventures, and a variety of GMs, players need to show flexibility.
2. A player who would stops playing PFS because he/she is not able to play the EXACT character concept they want is representing a very rigid mind set that is not conducive to the type of flexibility and cooperative play that is required for Organized Play.
I realize that it can be hard to fill seats sometimes. I frequently have this problem. But pandering to highly demanding people just makes them more demanding, not just of the campaign in general, but of the GMs and players. Which, in turn, puts off GMs and the more cooperative players. In my experience, pandering to overly demanding players is more likely to drive off more players and GMs than are represented by the overly demanding player base.
I am not personally accusing you of suggesting this. It just seemed a direction this conversation might be headed towards and I wanted to steer it away from that.
I will make an additional observation here. Due to the nature of TTRPG role-playing and organized play in particular, it can be difficult to stand out much as a role-player by playing subtle characters. Usually, this means playing characters with exaggerated characteristics that can sometimes feed into stereotypes. Not trying to justify anything, just making an observation into the nature of the game we all play.
I agree. But this should be handled like every other individual who behaves badly at the table and punish that individual for that behavior rather than limit the entire player base because of a few bad eggs. We should be punishing people for maliciously offensive role-playing, not role-playing in general.
Creating awareness of offensive stereotypes and that intentionally offensive role-playing in unacceptable is a good idea. Creating a rule, official or otherwise, that requires people to not role-play outside their own gender identity is a bad idea.
Isn't the entire point of a role-playing game to play someone you are not? Would not trying to put yourself in the shoes of someone you are not create greater understanding towards those that are in those shoes? Is it possible that when you put yourself in someone else's shoes you may occasionally trip on the shoestrings? Yes. But that is how you learn to tie the shoes properly.
Wei Ji the Learner wrote:
I don't know why it took them so long to do this, but they have finally gotten the print feature to essentially print PDF character sheets that look just like the character sheets printed by the offline version of Hero Lab, including breaking it down into Character Sheet, Abilities, Spells, etc. This is a major improvement that makes it much easier to use this on a device when you have no online connection as you can at least pull up a readable character sheet on your device if exported the print file while you had access. Though, again, I don't know why it took them over a year to do this.
Bob Jonquet wrote:
I knew when I saw that Ninja Division had a booth that it would come up in this thread. I think most of us feel the same way towards them at the moment, but maybe stopping by their booth and asking for an update will help to mend some of the heartache. I just don't want this thread to disintegrate into a ND-hate fest. The hope is that people will share their knowledge of some lesser known exhibitors and give us a reason to stop at their booth to check it out. Its so busy in the exhibitor's hall that its easy to overlook companies you are not specifically looking for.
You are very prescient, Bob.
It's very complicated. As far as I have been able to piece together, the Starfinder minis you can find on the shelf were a separate deal from the Starfinder Kickstarter Paizo allowed Ninja Division to do. Short answer is that Ninja Division had lost big money on a previous kickstarter and had been borrowing money from future kickstarters to pay their debts. Even though the Starfinder Kickstarter exceeded its stretch goals, this 'robbing Peter to pay Paul' finally caught up with them and the company actually doing the manufacturing, Archon, stopped shipping product because Ninja Division wasn't paying their bills (and may actually destroy what remaining product they have in storage to avoid paying taxes on it). This means, of course, that not only are the Kickstarter supporters probably out their money, but, except for the small number of Starfinder minis Ninja Division did get released (8 months?) late, we won't start seeing a full line of Starfinder minis until sometime in 2020 when the WizKids Starfinder line comes out, i.e. 3 years after Starfinder was first released. Paizo, to their credit, is still trying to work with Ninja Division to get this sorted out and get the minis actually delivered, but Ninja Division has a history of being long on promises and short on delivery.
For a more in-depth answer, check here.
GM: The mine cart rolls down the tracks with your quarry onboard. Everyone of the tracks, give me a Reflex save.
Me: I rolled a ‘1.’
GM: Okay, everyone else jumps out of the way but the mine cart slams full force into you at the end of its movement this round, doing *large amount* of damage, it throws you against the wall of the mine, doing *more damage* and knocking you prone.
Me: (realizing I only have 1 HP left) Ouch!
GM: It’s your turn and you’re prone. The mine cart is still hurtling down the tracks with your quarry in it. It is heading straight towards you but the track curves just before they get to you, so you don’t need to worry about the cart running you over.
Me: Well, we can’t let this guy get away. I pull out a Sticky Bomb Grenade and throw it at the wheels of the mine cart. I get an ‘21’ to hit.
GM: Okay. The front of the mine cart comes to a sudden halt causing it to flip into the air. The guy in it manages to make his Reflex save and jumps out, but the mine cart is now flying straight towards you. Make a Reflex save.
Me: I get an ’18.’
GM. The mine cart flips into the air and lands upside down on top of you, covering you but doing no damage.
Me: (in a meek voice echoing from inside the flipped over mine cart) I’m…I’m okay, guys. It’s alright. Just get the bad guy.
In my experience, Ashes of Discovery, especially the Starship fight, was far easier than Fugitive of the Red Planet. When playing Fugative, my wife's Ysoki Technomancer came within 2 HP of outright dying from going negative her HP value from the Shobhab's mind thrust, and my Envoy got nailed against the wall by the mine cart. When I ran it, the Soldier and Mechanic's drone both went down and two others were severely damaged in the boss fight. Never came close to anything like that the 3 times I played/GMed Ashes of Discovery
John "Trace" Taylor wrote:
Yes. I would love to see more encounters like this where Sniper characters actually get to Snipe, and having a long ranged weapon actually matters.
Sebastian Hirsch wrote:
I think you may be misreading the Tier. The Tier is 1-12, not 11-12. That means you don't need to have any 12th level characters at all to play it. It's just like the Scoured Stars Invasion. You can play it with brand new first levels if you like. You just have to have enough people in the right level band(s) to make enough tables. I can see where you would be concerned otherwise, though.
Year of a Thousand Bites: So all of the Ysoki are going to get infested with space fleas that carry the plague? Got it!
Starfinder Society #2–01: Pact World Warriors Since this is a -01 I will assume it is going to be a 1-4. That's a shame since my Zo! loving, vid-gamer icon is level 8 now. But I suppose my Skittermander Slapdancer with the Rabid Fanbase boon could use a little publicity.
April 30th deadline Speaking of my 8th-level, Second Seeker, vid-gamer icon Envoy, I am 1 adventure away from having enough reputation to get the capstone boon. The bad news is it is hard to find people locally that can play high level SFS mods with. The good news is I am going to a Con in 2 weeks that is offering some. Here is hoping for the new Second Seeker PewPewFry!!!
Ditto on this. Even a high level character can go from healthy to disabled/incapacitated for the rest of the adventure, or even dead, in just a few rounds if attacked by multiple creatures with poison.
Fire Extinguisher L1 ¢15 SCRB: Removes one Burning condition.
Sure, that may seem like a complete waste when you are taking 1d4 fire damage every round from a laser pistol crit, but wait till you get hit with 4 incendiary grenades from mooks in one round and discover that the Burning condition stacks in Starfinder.
Called Weapon Fusion L1 ¢varies SCRB: Teleport a weapon up to 100 ft. away to you as a swift action.
Cheap way to make your weapons magic at low levels, don't need to worry about getting disarmed, stow a weapon in a nearby location to quickly arm yourself when you aren't supposed to be armed (a near-by vehicle, that crate you delivered, the party Ysoki's cheek pouch, etc), can re-use thrown weapons, and is great for action economy for mobile characters that often swap out weapons in combat.
Bob Jonquet wrote:
The problem is you are trying to decide how to adjudicate a rule that isn’t even published yet. We don’t know what changes, if any, the designers implemented after the Playtest so voicing our concerns at this point is wildly speculative and unproductive. There has already been extensive discussion about anathema in the Playtest feedback, especially how it will affect organized play and since we have not seen the campaign rules for PFS2 yet, we have no way of knowing what, if any, adjustments have been made. It is possible this concern has already been resolved either with custom rules for OPF or the designers modifying/clarifying how it is intended to work in the CRB. Seems like this topic is just headed towards arguments for arguments sake.
I am hoping that the arguments here are strong enough that, if sufficient changes have not already been made, they will be. Once the rules are released, it's too late.
ANY SUBJECTIVE, RIGID, BUT VAGUELY DEFINED PC BEHAVIORAL CODES ARE ANATHEMA TO ORGANIZED PLAY!!!
Seriously. I mean that. The Paladin's Code has been one of the biggest sources of Player/GM conflict I have ever seen in Organized Play in the nearly 2 decades I have been involved. In fact, many people either don't like playing Paladins or don't like playing with Paladins because of this. And now Paizo wants to expand this issue with Anathemas? We play this game to have fun. Not to have morality arguments. Why did anyone think this was a good idea?
Even outside of organized play I have seen it cause major table conflicts, much unfun, and a bias against the Paladin class. Does anyone seriously think anathemas actually add fun to the game? When GMs go from being rules and story adjudicators to morality adjudicators, everyone loses.
A long time ago, my wife hand made me something like this out of card stock and balsa wood, for the 3.0 campaign I was running at the time. It eventually fell apart and I have been looking for a good replacement ever since then. I have seen some similar products from other sources at various Cons over the years, but none of them were quite what I was looking for. The Falling Star has almost everything I could ask for. And now I want to try it out on my PFS players.
So...like...every time I hear Billy Joel sing
She's Always a Woman:
She's Always a Woman
She can kill with a smile, she can wound with her eyes
Oh, she takes care of herself, she can wait if she wants
And she'll promise you more than the garden of Eden
Oh, she takes care of herself, she can wait if she wants
She is frequently kind and she's suddenly cruel
I want my Bard to have an encounter with a charismatic medusa rogue/shadowdancer with bleeding attack so I can sing about it.
While I am currently running Dead Suns and am up to book 5, I decided I was having too much fun with my primary to power level her into retirement by applying AP boons to her. Unfortunately, there aren't a lot of high level SFS games that get run around here, so she has been stuck at 1 XP away from 8th for a while. I really only get to play her during Con season.
Gnoll Leader: What sort of strange creatures are you? We have never seen anything like you before. You are not the Ghost, you are not a Shaggy One, you are not a Watcher. Are you Orcs. We have heard of Orcs.
Party: No, we are not Orcs. (gives party introduction)
Party: (Explains need for Gnolls to cooperate with the party)
Gnoll Leader: You're words sound wise, but this is not a decision I can make alone. The entire community must discuss this. You will be taken to a local home and given food and a chance to rest while I gather everyone and discuss this.
(Party is given a place to rest and given food. Gnolls check on them periodically to make sure they are doing okay. Several hours pass. Another meal is brought. More hours pass. Finally the Gnoll leader shows back up.)
Gnoll Leader: We have come to a decision.
Gnoll Leader: You are not Orcs.
Unless, of course, there is another Lashunta Ace Pilot at the table and that's all you can do*. Then maybe you want the boon anyway.
*Okay, if you are an Ace Pilot then you would be a good Gunner also, but you get the idea. If you are only good at one starship combat position you might have to compete. I know that has happened to me more than once.
FYI, based on a boon from one of the APs, it appears Paizo is already planning on at least one solution for the Mystic starship combat issue. Namely, the introduction of Hybrid starship weapons, all of which appear to have the property of allowing Wisdom/Mysticism for Gunnery.
I am not sure I will ever fully understand why Paizo elected to not have spells, class abilities, and feats (with one exception) that could have at least some effect in starship combat. No Solarian Photon Revelation they could use to supercharge a beam weapon, or Graviton Revelation they could use to deflect an incoming torpedo; no Technomancer spell that could heal a small amount of hull damage or temporarily enhance the ship's computer; etc. I realize it would be a bit tough as no one would take those options unless they did other things like the Sky Jockey feat. But the lack of these greatly reduces options in starship combat that allow for effective use of characters (unlike normal combat). It drives me nuts that only your skills matter. I can only guess that the starship combat rules were new enough they didn't want to accidentally screw everything up without giving more time to understand potential repercussions, and/or would have made the core rules too big so they decided to save them for a supplement. Well, here's hoping for that supplement.
"Dr." Cupi wrote:
I seem to disagree with most people's sentiments. I can accept this. I clearly get enjoyment out of this game in a different way. I will crawl back into my hovel and disturb your rants no more.
Sorry if I came across as a bit harsh. But I do really believe that if the best tactical choice for a party member is to not participate in a battle, then there is a design flaw.
And to be clear, I am not trying to be too harsh on the designers either. Starship Combat is a completely new element to the system, one I really want to enjoy, and I think there are some true sparks of genius in its concept. But it doesn't have the 19 years of playtesting the standard combat system essentially has had.
"Dr." Cupi wrote:
Grossly inaccurate? How many characters in your play group have higher dex/int than their other stats? I can tell you that a majority of my personal characters do. That makes me fairly unimaginative. The statement of unimaginative is a non-opinion claim. Based on the limited information, I understand x to fall into the definition of.... You can be insulted by that I suppose. I'm not and I directed it at myself, so...
If being 'imaginative' means you have to create an ineffective character, how is that not a design flaw? Why should the players be faulted for choosing to make effective characters instead of imaginative ones? Shouldn't they be able to do both?
How good are you at fixing your own car 100%? How about your electronics? How about your plumbing? How about your....I could go on. No I don't believe it should be all of them. All classes have things that they are good at and things that are unrelated to things they are good at.
If I were 100% effective at real life I wouldn't be playing an escapest Science-Fantasy TTRPG. Real life should not be the issue here. I am talking about player enjoyment, i.e. the reason most people play the game.
Let's look at it this way. If I had a character that sucked at standard combat, I can still shoot a laser for 1d4 or aid another a player. Even though I sucked I would be contributing and participating without hindering the combat effectiveness of the remaining players. But Starship Combat doesn't work quite the same way. Both Enginner and Science Officer require being trained in the skill to even be a secondary Engineer or Science Officer who could aid the primary (assuming you had spare crewmen). And while anyone CAN pilot a ship or shoot a ship's weapon, the positions are too critical to allow someone who can't do them well to do them. So while in standard combat, there is always something the player can do to be helpful, it is actually possible that the best tactical choice in Starship combat is for a player with poor starship skills to do nothing while those that can, do. You can say that's how real life works as much as you want, but that isn't going to make the player who sits out an entire combat twiddling their thumbs any happier. This is, from a game design perspective, why every class should be capable of building an effective starship combat character without having to make large sacrifices.
As another example, I recently played a mod with starship combat with an all first level party of 5. I was playing my Solarian who I purpose built to be good at the one position he could be good at, Captain. But the Envoy was better at it even though I had been purpose built for it. And since you can have only 1 Captain, I got bumped out of the one thing I could do well. Science Officer and Engineer were out because I didn't want to put any of my piddling skill points in non-class skills that I would have sucked at anyway. And with only a +1 to piloting from Dex, that left me out as Pilot, as well. The only reason I even got to take a gunner position was because my chance to hit with a single weapon was the same as the primary gunner's chance to hit firing 2 weapons. Had that not been the case, the most effective thing I could have done with my character would have been NOTHING. Could that sort of thing happen in real life? Absolutely! Does that make for a fun game? Nope.
"Dr." Cupi wrote:
Your statement exemplifies the point you seem to be completely missing. Yes. Almost every SF class can be effective in Starship combat without even trying. The ‘almost’ is the problem. Mystics and Weapon Solarians actually HAVE to try and they usually have to try more than just a little.
All of that said, I would venture to say that, though starship combat plays a part, it is unimaginative optimizers that causes the similarity in builds.
I find this statement to be grossly inaccurate and insulting.
Players whose desire to "win" supersedes their desire for a creative or unique character.
You say “desire to win.” I say, “desire to be an effective contributor to the party.”
"Solarian's are cool in concept but because Cha is a key stat and Cha means nothing in combat, they are just too MAD." Those players.
Have you ever built a Solarian? They get 4 skill points per level, have no use for Int outside of skills, and the only class skills they have that can be used in starship combat are Diplomacy & Intimidate, i.e. Captain only. This means, at the very least, they would have to take a Background that gave them a more useful starship combat class skill to be even useful in a non-Captain position. Sure, if I tried, I COULD build a Solarian that could be useful in starship combat. But he will never be as useful an Engineer as a Mechanic that didn’t try; never as useful a Science Officer as a Technomancer that didn’t try; never as useful a Pilot, Engineer, Science Officer or Gunner as an Operative that didn’t try; never as good a Gunner as a ranged based Soldier that didn’t try; and only on par as Captain with an Envoy that didn’t try. And all this would come at the cost of effectiveness in standard combat so that he would never be as useful as a Soldier, Mechanic or Operative that didn’t try. So, sure, I could build a character that would NEVER get a chance to shine at the table because every other class could outshine him, but why? Just so I can live up to some notion of being ‘more imaginative?’As an aside, thanks to the Soulfire Weapon Fusion, Charisma does actually matter for weapon Solarians in combat now.
To be clear, I am not saying that such players are playing incorrectly.
You may not be saying it, but you are definitely implying it.
People can play how they want to. But if there is a complaint that builds are bland, or too common. You need only look to the builders.
Sorry, but I 100% disagree. This is a design problem. Five out of the seven classes can be effective at starship combat without trying very hard. But why only five? Shouldn't that be true for all of them?
P.S. Maybe it is just my play group that noticed this, but the penalty of losing starship combat is never death. There have been a couple times when the players just said, "We surrender, let's move on."
I don’t disagree with this point, but PFS players have been programmed with the idea that all combats SHOULD be winnable, so if they lose, it is a failing on their part. And in most cases, it would be incorrect to make your assumption from an RP stand point. This discourages the type of metagame thinking you are suggesting. As a case in point:
On the Trail of History:
Our group was good, but not great, at starship combat. But we were totally outclassed by the enemy here. This appeared to be by design and the author no doubt fully expected a fair number of people to lose and gave an out for it if they did and the only penalty was not getting a boon on the chronicle sheet. Fair enough. Except that we, as players, didn’t understand that until afterwards. As a result, we tried our darndist to win, because we thought we were supposed to. So, we burned several boons to fight a 3+ hour grueling and ultimately depressing starship combat that, had we understood the pointlessness of it, we could have ended in ½ an hour without the pain, suffering and resource expenditure.
I was seriously flummoxed that my Ysoki Soldier could not use one of these. His cheek pouches are already full of grenades.
Or maybe they were just making up for the fact that Core sniper weapons were underpowered.