Origins, 2013


Pathfinder Society

Sovereign Court ***** RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32, 2010 Top 8

Hey all,

I just wanted to give a brief thanks to everyone I met, played with, GMed for etc, this past week at Origins. It was my first Con in 5 years, and I was surprised how well I handled it, and how well behaved people were. I hope people had as much fun playing at the tables I ran as I did running them.

***** Regional Venture-Coordinator, Northeast aka Shivok

Glad you had a lot of fun Matt. Hope to see you again at Origins next year!

Grand Lodge *****

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

It was definitely a great Origins. As both a player and a GM the I thought it was top notch. I had great players and GMs. Organization was perfect and mustering was fast. Everyone involved did a stellar job. (That includes Shivok who savaged my cleric during the special.)

Dark Archive **

I too have to give a shout out to all of the fellow GM's for doing their best to make Origins a blast! I personally enjoyed meeting everyone as well as the interesting creations other players made. I am now looking forward to the next convention, and perhaps another Bonekeep TPK.

Liberty's Edge **

Is there a website around that lists the goings on at Origins? Like a Diary of a PFS player at Origins? Would make for an interesting read.

Sovereign Court ***** Venture-Captain, West Virginia—Charleston aka Netopalis

I don't have a blog, but I'd be happy to briefly share my experiences.

I arrived on Wednesday evening, and after some difficulty finding a place to park, I finally got my room key and headed up. One of my roommates had already checkeed in, so I dropped my things off and went to browse the con floor. Not much was going on that evfening, but I did get a chance to scout out the PFS area and find out where some other things that I was looking for were being held. That evening, I was able to meet the first of my roommates, a VC and 4-star GM. We chatted for a good bit, then went to bed. While we were asleep, our third roommate showed up.

Things really got started on Thursday. My game didn't start until 1:30, so I had some free time to check the con out. I tried painting a mini at the paint and take, got a great lesson from one of the volunteers there and am pleased to say that I will be painting minis of all of my characters now.

1:30 rolled around for my first game, The Veteran's Vault. I had played it, but never ran it. I was a little bit nervous - this was my first time GMming at a large con - but was pleased that the table generally went well. I developed a fun little routine at the start of the game that just sort of came to me while I was sitting there. I asked everybody where they were from, telling the players that I would grant a very, very, very, very, very minor circumstance bonus for the duration of the scenario to the player who came the furthest. When I had determined who came the furthest, I gave them some ridiculous bonus that would never come up. (Examples - +2 to AC against daggers thrown by Winter Witches of Irrisen while standing on Chelish soil! +1 bonus to Diplomacy while speaking with Taldan nobles in Jalmeray regarding Azlanti culture! +3 bonus to Disable Device against snare traps made by Galtish refugees!)

The Veteran's Vault:
One of the players made my day by having his Darkmantle taxidermized and wearing it as a hat.

This table was also notable because we picked up a new player for my region! Conveniently enough, I realized that one of the players at my table lived in a city that we've been trying to organize for play.

That evening, I was scheduled to run Night March of Kalkamedes, but was shocked when nobody showed up to my table. Conveniently enough, another GM had failed to show for a table of My Enemy's Enemy, so I ran that cold. I had ran it twice before, so I felt pretty confident. This table was a little awkward for me - I was running for an established gaming group that had come to Origins together, and was also the youngest person at the table. Still, we had a good time, and it was the first time that I ran the scenario that didn't end in a horrible death for one of the PCs.

Even later that night, I got to chat with the rest of my roommates, all of whom had finally arrived. Got some terrific advice, swapped some humorous stories and generally had a good time.

The next day, at 1:30, I had another table of Veteran's Vault. This table started out really, really bad. I had 6 players, and from my previous experience with the scenario, I knew it ran short. Therefore, I took time before the scenario began to help people finish up their characters and make sure that they were PFS legal, at the players' request. As I was helping them pick out traits, a player sat down and said, "I'm going to need a pregen." I told him that I'd get him one once I was done helping the others, and that we had plenty of time. He interrupted me again about 5 minutes later telling me that he'd need a pregen. Told him once again that I would get him one before we started, but that there was a whole table of them over at the mustering station. (As an aside, he was supposed to pick one up before sitting down at the table, and all of my other pregen players had.) So, I finished up with the players and asked everybody what they were playing, with the intention of plugging any holes in the party with the pregen. Player smacked the table and said, "Look, I've been sitting here for 10 minutes, I asked you twice for a pregen and you didn't give me one, and I want a refund!" I directed him to Mike Brock, who was seated behind the table at the pregens. Mike stood up for me, telling the player that the pregens were there at the table and that it wasn't my job to get him one. The player left in a huff, but I was very appreciative of Mike's action. I probably should have gotten him a pregen when he asked the second time, but I was a bit focused and I think that his overreaction was entirely unwarranted.

Anyway, after that little hiccup, it turned out to be one of my best tables of PFS ever. We had a phenomenal time - the players were energetic and funny, and they really got into that first roleplaying encounter.

The Veteran's Vault:
One player even asked for and received a cutting from the Fungus Leshy's garden, and was given the title "Friend of the Fungi."

That evening was a third table of Veteran's Vault. This one went well, but was mostly uneventful.

The next morning, early in the morning, I had my fourth and final table of Veteran's Vault. Good grief, if I never see that scenario again, I'll be a happy, happy man. It's not a *bad* scenario per se, but having played it once and ran it four times, I think I squeezed every last bit of juice out of it. The players had a good time, although it was another older table, with every player being at least 15 years older than me. They trounced it completely in about an hour and a half, so I also ran Assault on the Kingdom of the Impossible, one of my favorite short scenarios.

That evening, I finally had my Kalkamedes table. It was sensational. The first thing that happened was that one of my previous Veteran's Vault players came to play at my table again, even though he had already played Kalkamedes and even though there were other scenarios at the con that he could play. I was incredibly honored and humbled by this fact, and it really boosted my morale. The table went very, very well, with lots of kooky, creative solutions flying around. Fantastic experience.

The Night March of Kalkamedes:
We had a sleepwalking paladin on a leash with a big rock tied to the end to slow him down. There's a point where the sleepwalker is supposed to walk over a cliff, so the party wizard went to the bottom of the cliff to cast feather fall. Great! Only problem - the rock was coming down too! Luckily, the wizard had multiple targets, so all was well. Had a great time with this one, and I was extremely pleased in the ending. A young woman new to the hobby was playing Amiri, and got to deal the final blow to a dragon on her first PFS scenario. I could tell that she really enjoyed that opportunity. I also had a little bit of fun with a player who was playing The Doctor and the force-fields that trap good-aligned outsiders. Technically, the Doctor wasn't an outsider, but I chatted with him and he let me treat him as such for the purposes of some roleplay. It was an easily fixed condition and a minor event, but I think that it added to my table's enjoyment.

The next day, I packed up and got to play Way of the Kirin with my Lantern Lodge Kitsune magus. It was a fun table, and it's always great to see how other GMs work. My magus one-shotted the final boss, which was great payback for the fact that I had rolled 4 consecutive to-hit rolls under 5 in the previous encounter.

My final table was We Be Goblins. Had a very goblinny table, and I went out of my way to help make their crazy antics work in the game world. They were incredibly lucky on their dice, so I tried to also let that carry over into my descriptions of their activities. It was a great end to the con, and I thoroughly enjoyed it.

Overall, it was a great event. I had a great time, and so did my players. While there was that one encounter with the upset player, I feel that everybody else left my table at least happy with the experiencee I provided, and I think that I learned an awful lot that will help me be a better GM in the future.

Sovereign Court

It was a great time - thanks go out to all of the GMs who put up with my bard Sareif Bladetongue - greatest of all pathfinders!

Scarab Sages **

My impressions were mixed...

I've only played PFS starting this year although I played Living City, big into Living Greyhawk and some LFR.
The regular events were run well, we had good GMs, we had well rounded groups, other players were great, lotsa roleplaying, that was all good.

The specials were completely opposite.

We set up with a table of 6 for the Bonekeep special only to have 2 pulled away to make another legal table. The result was a TPK and we were then told the mod is not scaled for 4 versus 6...that was kinda lame. I didn't think the event was THAT deadly but down 2 people to start ceratinly didn't help. I really enjoy this concept, when presented fairly and the players can win...and I've died before, it's the challenge and I love that.

I went to a big con expecting to play specials and possibly receive some interesting boons...instead I was told they ran out and gave me a paperback book. Not exactly to my expectations. I can get the book anywhere, I drive 4 hours for something special and got nadda.

Lastly, I guess a small spoiler, how does a table of fresh level one characters deal catch a foe that has darkness and invisibility? Talk about ultimate frustration. I meantioned this one to one of the venture captains; he just kinda shook his head and had no comment.

I have tickets for Gencon and I'm actually re-evaluating my pathfinder selections.

Grand Lodge

Played on that awesome constructed model of Bonekeep that someone provided. Even though we didn't get too far, it was such fun, I made sure to sign up for part 2 at Gencon!

Liberty's Edge

Played two sessions. Wednesday evening played an unplanned game due to the generator fire in the convention center. Talking to folks later sounds like our planned game started about an hour late but due to a lack of communication we had no idea what time we would get back in (had even heard rumors it would be the next morning). We played Halls of Dwarven Lore at 8-9 with three level 7 pregens (fighter, cleric, mage), level 8 mage, level 9 ranger, and level 9 life oracle (me). Had a fun time and things went well with no one in true danger of death though a couple of folks did feel some pain. :)

Friday morning did Veteran's Vault with a table of 6 and nopregens. A good time was had and we finished reasonably quickly, at least partialy due to talk/avoiding a couple of the encounters.

Sovereign Court ***** RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32, 2010 Top 8

I saw that Bonekeep model, and it was awesome.

Bonekeep spoilers

Spoiler:
I was likely too tired to play and hopefully didn't come across as whiny. We had four players (including one repeat to make the table) and we avoided a TPK. How? We. Ran. Away. It was frustrating because Ksenia was as useless as an Andoran in a diplomatic function. I (jokingly!) said I hoped I'd get the GM at a table for Nightmarch because 'payback's a b@~@~'.

Amusingly the most fun I had came as a GM. While playing Ksenia always is entertaining. (Gunslinger: "Do you know what the name Jeggedare means?" Ksenia: "Is it Chelaxian for 'peasent?'") I had fun with Nightmarch (playing <redacted> as Marvin the Paranoid Android) and the Beginner's box. (Playing Goblins is fun, and the Saturday night table of seven(!!) players had a blast, even with my 'sales pitch' of the beginner's box, WizKids Minis, Paizo Hardbacks, Q-workshop dice, etc. Erzen's player using my cane to yell to the elves "Get off my Dwarf!" Mersiel lamenting about (non-game affecting) clothing damage from party misses with arrows and acid splash, party bickering. Goblins sounding like Jabba the hut...

And of course, "I have that skill. Because I went to SCHOOL!"

Sovereign Court ***** Venture-Captain, West Virginia—Charleston aka Netopalis

In regards to boons, the easiest way to absolutely, positively ensure that you get one is to GM.

Grand Lodge ***** Pathfinder Society Campaign Coordinator

The 3d Bonekeep model was built by newly minted five star GM and Indiana VL, Michael Costello.

Sovereign Court ***** RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32, 2010 Top 8

Netopalis wrote:
In regards to boons, the easiest way to absolutely, positively ensure that you get one is to GM.

Yup. And it is fun.

OF course not having to work Monday was fun too :-)

Re boon system:

Spoiler:
I was telling people that the non-winning dice were good for one free object to toss at Michael McNerney

Sovereign Court ***** Venture-Captain, West Virginia—Charleston aka Netopalis

Matthew Morris wrote:
Netopalis wrote:
In regards to boons, the easiest way to absolutely, positively ensure that you get one is to GM.

Yup. And it is fun.

OF course not having to work Monday was fun too :-)

Re boon system:
** spoiler omitted **

The non-winning dice worked out well for me. I ended up with five matching orange and black d6s. Fireball, anybody?

Sovereign Court ***** RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32, 2010 Top 8

I'm not sure what I did with all mine. I had another player give me a winning d6 so I have a 3d6 set. (One from before Origins one from Origins and the gift).

Aside, I took my partner's old purple and pink dice and kept them handy as 'dice of shame' if someone forgot their dice. Also glad I had my netbook *and* my kindle handy.

Liberty's Edge ***** Venture-Lieutenant, Alaska—Anchorage aka Dragnmoon

Michael Brock wrote:
The 3d Bonekeep model was built by newly minted five star GM and Indiana VL, Michael Costello.

Yeah I was hoping to Build my First 3d map for Bonekeep at GenCon, but Being in the middle of a house move during the same period will get in the way of that... :(

Liberty's Edge *** Venture-Agent, Ohio—Dayton aka Jocard The Fist

Charon's Little Helper wrote:
It was a great time - thanks go out to all of the GMs who put up with my bard Sareif Bladetongue - greatest of all pathfinders!

I do regret not playing with the famous Sareif Bladetongue, but drinks at Barleys were a ton of fun with you and Curtis (this is Tim btw).

Shadow Lodge Venture-Lieutenant, Ohio—Columbus aka Luke Woods - Columbus

This was my first time enjoying PFS at a convention and it was an absolute blast!

A big thank you to everyone who organized the sessions and the GMs who made it possible. I am sure that dealing with sleep deprived players at 8 in the morning is not always your idea of a good time, but you all handled it well.

Also a big thanks for answering all of my questions regarding scenario prep and tips and tricks for running sessions. It was a big help and I learned a lot.

I'm already looking forward to Gencon later this summer and Origins next year.

Silver Crusade ***** Venture-Captain, Ohio—Central

I would like to thank all of the GMs and players who came out this year. Without you, we could not have had an awesome Origins! Last year, PFS ran 122 tables. This year we crushed that by running a total of 205 tables. That is an increase of 68% for an additional 83 tables. There was a huge influx of generics necessitating us to use all of our backup GMs. I was happy that we did not have to turn away anyone and had enough GMs to go around. We had plenty of 6 person tables with some 7 person tables scattered in. This means if we recruit more GMs, then we can run even more tables. Should anyone have any questions, concerns, praises, or PFS pictures you would like to share, you can reach me at columbuspathfindersociety@gmail.com.

Here are my highlights:

  • GMs and Players showed up!
  • VCs June Solar and Chris Bonnet came into town early and helped get Origins off to a great start.
  • Playing my Dwarf Paladin in the midnight madness slot of King Xeros of Old Azlant.
  • My Dayton VL in the midnight madness game getting paralyzed, impregnated, and taken away only to be found in the last room. At least he got to take a 3 hour nap and be fresher for the 8am slot then the rest of us.
  • Mike Brock overnighting Player Portfolios for the players.
  • Crowning Michael Costello as a new 5 star GM.
  • Sheila Heidmarch joining us from her Manor in Magnimar.
  • Zak Glade causing a distraction running through the tables shouting "For Lissala!" during Race for the Runecarved Key so that Art Lobdell could assassinate the auctioneer in dramatic fashion. This got a big round of applause.
  • WBG2 table with VOs June Solar, Chris Bonnet, and Michael Costello was ridiculously fun. We had so much fun, other tables stopped to watch us. Poor Kevin Ingle had to put up with our antics. He got his revenge by nearly TPKing us. Unfortunately, Chuffy was unable to be brought back as he was nothing but a blood splatter.

Lastly, I wanted to say a big thank you to VOs June Solar, Chris Bonnet, Michael Costello, and Brent Bowser for running extra tables and helping out HQ during all your slots off.

I look forward to seeing everyone at Origins next year for an even bigger and better show!

Shadow Lodge *****

Me, distracting? You must be mistaken. That was obviously a purple-headed Lissalan ninja.

That said, it was a great con! Thanks to everyone who made that happen! That is to say, everyone!

*****

Something called

TwilightKnight:
Bob Jonquet :)
shared these pics.

Go to 3d terrain.

Both look terrain looks much better in person!!!

*****

Michael McNerney wrote:


WBG2 table with VOs June Solar, Chris Bonnet, and Michael Costello was ridiculously fun. We had so much fun, other tables stopped to watch us. Poor Kevin Ingle had to put up with our antics. He got his revenge by nearly TPKing us. Unfortunately, Chuffy was unable to be brought back as he was nothing but a blood splatter.

This table was one my highlights of the con to be sure. Poor Chuffy, he should have stayed hidden...

It was a blast to GM, even with the oddball quirks you goblins threw into the mix. I'd gladly do it again, ust to see what else you guys could come up with.

****

Origins was fun and I'd like to thank all my GMs. Derek Boobyer for running the Disappeared for my bloat mage, Chris Bonnet for crushing the hopes and dreams of my tower shield fighter in the great 3d map bone keep. Netopalis for running Night March for my bloat mage as well. All three were awesome.

Also I'd love to thank Iammers and all the players at the eyes of ten table. It was probably the best series of adventures I've had in pathfinder. Getting to play at my favorite GMs table was well worth the trip.

All the HQ staff were great and I hope you guys enjoyed the tastycakes. And it was great meeting Mr. Brock even if he is a Falcons fan :-).

Thanks guys.

Sovereign Court ***** Venture-Captain, West Virginia—Charleston aka Netopalis

Jeffrey Fox wrote:

Origins was fun and I'd like to thank all my GMs. Derek Boobyer for running the Disappeared for my bloat mage, Chris Bonnet for crushing the hopes and dreams of my tower shield fighter in the great 3d map bone keep. Netopalis for running Night March for my bloat mage as well. All three were awesome.

Also I'd love to thank Iammers and all the players at the eyes of ten table. It was probably the best series of adventures I've had in pathfinder. Getting to play at my favorite GMs table was well worth the trip.

All the HQ staff were great and I hope you guys enjoyed the tastycakes. And it was great meeting Mr. Brock even if he is a Falcons fan :-).

Thanks guys.

D'aww, thanks! You guys really rocked that table. So many great moments! I'm really glad to hear that you had a good time!

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