What Impressed Me Most About GenCon PFS


Pathfinder Society

Dark Archive 5/5 Regional Venture-Coordinator, Midwest

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I have been attending GenCon for 4 years each as a Tier 1 GM. Out of the 40 slots of games for those years, I believe I have done 36 of them (I could be wrong, my memory is a little shoddy atm...). Watching PFS grow over the course of these years, I am EXTREMELY happy to see how many female gamers and kids were at the event. I don't recall seeing this high a percentage of gamer girls/children in previous years.

Not only should Mike and John be given kudos to how well the games went (and they went well) or how many PFS tables were sat (holy crap there were a lot!) they should be given kudos for fostering a solid and safe community for gamers of all types. It was really awesome to see!

Liberty's Edge

Cheers to that! Four out of my five tables had at least 1 female.


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Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

One thing I will say what I really liked about this year was the noise level was MUCH better! The tables were spaced further apart in general, and I didn't have to really lean towards the GM to actually hear him.

There was only one scenario I had some trouble, but I think it was more because the GM was a bit soft spoken.

I was worried with the higher ceiling of the Sagamore Ballroom, the sounds would echo more. However, I didn't find it to be the case at all.

I hope PFS remains in that room for good!

Liberty's Edge 1/5

Todd Morgan wrote:


Not only should Mike and John be given kudos to how well the games went (and they went well) or how many PFS tables were sat (holy crap there were a lot!) they should be given kudos for fostering a solid and safe community for gamers of all types. It was really awesome to see!

I had a great time playing all weekend with my buddy and our school-aged sons. It was a well organized event.

My only complaint is we came across more than one game with a weird S&M subplot (Severing Ties and the Disappeared). It was probably just a coincidence but it seemed like every other secret room of the weekend led to an illicit bondage nest. The GMs tried to message the content to make it more kid friendly. I just found it strange that this theme happened to keep coming up. I got to be a running joke between me and the other dad.

The Exchange 5/5 Venture-Captain, Washington D.C. aka Grolick

Well, in all honesty, the cult of Lisalla is kinda like that.

Silver Crusade

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It's a running "gag" for the chelish faction leader.

Grand Lodge RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Daniel Luckett wrote:
It's a running "gag" for the chelish faction leader.

I see what you did there.

Shadow Lodge 5/5

*facepalm*

The Exchange 5/5 Venture-Captain, Washington D.C. aka Grolick

3 people marked this as a favorite.
Daniel Luckett wrote:
It's a running "gag" for the chelish faction leader.

Yeah, she has a ball with it.


AAAANnnnnnnnnnndddddddddddd

how about that seasonally appropriate local sports team!!! Didn't they do great during that one moment during the thingie!!????

Liberty's Edge 1/5

Trevor Burroughs wrote:
Well, in all honesty, the cult of Lisalla is kinda like that.

I am sure that its appropriate for the setting. But the original post was about promoting new kid players. I just wanted point out that the adventures could be a bit kid-friendlier if the goal was to have more young recruits.


I did want to echo what Todd said, as I do think it's an important part of the society.

We had a ton of women volunteers -- both HQ and GMs, we had a ton of kids playing and it was a welcoming environment to come into the PFS room and not feel like you were the odd-girl in the room.

Sovereign Court 5/5 Venture-Lieutenant, Missouri—Cape Girardeau

But Thea, you are an odd girl. And that is why we love you. :)


Tim Statler wrote:

But Thea, you are an odd girl. And that is why we love you. :)

Shhhhh don't let them all know that sheesh

Grand Lodge RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Purple Fluffy CatBunnyGnome wrote:
Tim Statler wrote:
But Thea, you are an odd girl.
Shhhhh don't let them all know that sheesh

But don't worry; once you hit 8th you can be an even girl and finally have your girl mod go up.


Jiggy wrote:
Purple Fluffy CatBunnyGnome wrote:
Tim Statler wrote:
But Thea, you are an odd girl.
Shhhhh don't let them all know that sheesh
But don't worry; once you hit 8th you can be an even girl and finally have your girl mod go up.

lol

Silver Crusade

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Purple Fluffy CatBunnyGnome wrote:

AAAANnnnnnnnnnndddddddddddd

how about that seasonally appropriate local sports team!!! Didn't they do great during that one moment during the thingie!!????

So that's what a natural 1 on a bluff check looks like. Thanks for demonstrating. LOL

On the topic of female gamers, that's actually something that struck me since returning to RPGs 2 years ago after a 20ish year hiatus. Back when I was in high school, there were no female gamers. RPGs were the domain of the nerd boys. Yes, I'm calling myself a nerd.

Nowadays, I see women at every event, and at least one at most of the tables I play at. In fact, my regular group down in Florida had a 50/50 gender split before we broke up a year ago. Side note: Most epic RPG group breakup ever. After playing together in southern Florida almost every week for nearly a year, we'll all be at least 1000 miles away from there once everyone's done moving. We now have two of us in Chicago, and the other four leaving for three different continents (one in Asia, one in Europe, and two in Australia).

But back on topic, now that I'm so used to seeing female players, the women playing PFS at GenCon just didn't stand out to me any more, because it's nothing unusual or noteworthy. And really, that's a good thing.

Dark Archive 5/5 Venture-Captain, Florida—Tampa aka Dominick

All four women in my family play. We also have a lot of couples. Fromper, your old crew is SO awesome to have on a table.

I had some great tables this year, one I really liked were a couple plus a sister who I met in the paizo booth purchase line, then they sat on my table I judged and we enjoyed a rocking scenario. The next morning they were at the steak and shake and we had a great breakfast. Good people!

Liberty's Edge 5/5 Venture-Lieutenant, Indiana—Martinsville aka thaX

My most wonderful moment... I Got To Run Black Waters!!

Sovereign Court 5/5 Venture-Lieutenant, Missouri—Cape Girardeau

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thaX wrote:
My most wonderful moment... I Got To Run Black Waters!!

Oh Black Waters keep on rolling,

Mississippi moon won't you keep on shining on me?

Sorry. Everytime I hear that title, I start singing that song.

Silver Crusade

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What impressed me the most was the awesome way newbies were treated at the 232 room. I have never done an RPG table top before and I had what I considered a terrible experience in the DND next event in the main gaming hall. Not sure why I decided to give PF a try but the coordinator was great (especially with the kids) and our tier 1 learn the game GM (Zak from Detroit) was fantastic. My friends and I really had a blast and talked about it nonstop for the 4 hour drive home on Sunday. Great job as I am now hooked and ready to get into PFS.

The Exchange

Yeebin,

What was the terrible experience you had?


Yeebin wrote:
What impressed me the most was the awesome way newbies were treated at the 232 room. I have never done an RPG table top before and I had what I considered a terrible experience in the DND next event in the main gaming hall. Not sure why I decided to give PF a try but the coordinator was great (especially with the kids) and our tier 1 learn the game GM (Zak from Detroit) was fantastic. My friends and I really had a blast and talked about it nonstop for the 4 hour drive home on Sunday. Great job as I am now hooked and ready to get into PFS.

That is awesome and welcome to the wonderful community we like to call PFS. If there are any questions you have please don't hesitate to ask :)

Silver Crusade

Fearless Frazier wrote:

Yeebin,

What was the terrible experience you had?

That should probably be a discussion for another thread.

But I will say that I was pleasantly surprised to see that PFS had more than twice the playing space of D&D. I'm waiting to see what happens when D&D Next kicks into full swing. Isn't it still in playtest mode right now?

Liberty's Edge

Im pretty sure I got an email from Wizards the other day saying that playtest was coming to an end.

I think its very likely they will /or at least coopt a Living campaign for their new system. Its 1 part marketing tool, 1 part building a player base.

Sovereign Court 5/5 Venture-Captain, West Virginia—Charleston aka Netopalis

Fromper: Unfortunately, they had the nicer banner. We had a larger playing area, yes, but at what price? At what price?


Fah, PFS had many banners. I know I kept hjaving to find different ones for mustering.

Plus is it just appears nicers in a smaller space. Kinda like why your dorm is easier to make messy because it is so small.

Silver Crusade

Fearless Frazier wrote:

Yeebin,

What was the terrible experience you had?

This is sort of a topic for another post but I will briefly say that I stood in line for nearly 2 hours waiting to play the candlekeep thing and then when I finally sat down, the other people I played with (4 of them in particular) were total douchebags and not taking anything seriously and making a mockery of the experience more or less. The DM wasn't very into it and seemed to fumble with all my basic questions. Any of those things by themselves probably wouldn't have been so bad but all combined, I felt like the 2 hour playthrough was largely a waste of time with very little fun to be had.

The PF experience was way different. The DM was amazing and knew everything without looking anything up and explained things over and above, never got frustrated with us newbies, and got into character a bit. All that led to a much better experience for me and my friends.

Liberty's Edge 5/5 Venture-Lieutenant, Indiana—Martinsville aka thaX

I, at one time, was hoping that the new iteration of the brand (D&D) would somehow turn around some of the overall sour reputation that the current edition had given it. From all accounts, it is most likely going to be stepping backwards.

I hope that the eventual "2nd" edition of pathfinder moves forward past all the sacred cows that seem to stick to this game like cheese on the bottom of a skillet.

DEATH TO VANCIAN CASTING!!

...ahem... forgot myself there... carry on then.

Shadow Lodge

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So you think that the best way for Paizo to avoid the missteps WotC made is to repeat those very same missteps? To completely overhaul a system that people specifically chose to stick with, rather than a completely overhauled and rebalanced system released by WotC?

4e is a great system with a bunch of loyal followers, but it doesn't feel like D&D to me. 3.x and Pathfinder feel like D&D to me. Several of the 4e fans I know are upset at the direction 5th is taking, and are acting a lot like I did when 4e was first announced. If/When Paizo announces a second edition, I hope they are wise enough not to make the same mistakes as WotC made before and is making now.

...Unless of course they want to pick up the disgruntled 4e fans. It would be delightfully ironic.

Grand Lodge 4/5 Venture-Agent, Nevada—Las Vegas aka kinevon

All I really want from PFRPG 2E is that someone go through and consolidate all the rules that are split up among sections, because the pieces of the rules came from the PHB and the DMG.

Example:
Brew Potion does not include the information that you can't make potions of Personal spells, that is in the Potions section of the Magic Items chapter. Mainly because the Feat section came mostly from the PHB, and the Potions section mainly came from the DMG.

Sometimes makes it difficult to find all the rules on specific things...

Grand Lodge RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

kinevon wrote:

Example:

Brew Potion does not include the information that you can't make potions of Personal spells, that is in the Potions section of the Magic Items chapter.

Actually, it's not there either. Elsewhere in the same chapter, in the Magic Item Creation section, in the subsection about potions, that's where it lists that restriction. But the general section on potions in the Magic Item chapter doesn't mention it. :/

Shadow Lodge 5/5

Yeebin wrote:
What impressed me the most was the awesome way newbies were treated at the 232 room. I have never done an RPG table top before and I had what I considered a terrible experience in the DND next event in the main gaming hall. Not sure why I decided to give PF a try but the coordinator was great (especially with the kids) and our tier 1 learn the game GM (Zak from Detroit) was fantastic. My friends and I really had a blast and talked about it nonstop for the 4 hour drive home on Sunday. Great job as I am now hooked and ready to get into PFS.

Thanks Yeebin! You guys were a hoot to run for, and I'm really glad you enjoyed it! And most of all, thanks for bearing with me at the beginning, after I was pulled from running Kid's Track.

Grand Lodge 4/5 Venture-Agent, Nevada—Las Vegas aka kinevon

Jiggy wrote:
kinevon wrote:

Example:

Brew Potion does not include the information that you can't make potions of Personal spells, that is in the Potions section of the Magic Items chapter.
Actually, it's not there either. Elsewhere in the same chapter, in the Magic Item Creation section, in the subsection about potions, that's where it lists that restriction. But the general section on potions in the Magic Item chapter doesn't mention it. :/

8-) Just goes further to prove my point.

Oh, for a simple chart of all spells that shows which ones use M or F, which have S, and which have V.

Silence? Any spell noted with a V cannot be cast, except with the Silent metamagic applied.

Spell component pouch sundered? No spell with an M (with no cost listed) can be cast untiul you have a replacement, or unless you have Eschew Materials. (One of my Sorcerers may start wearing [and using] a Spell Component pouch, just to make enemies think he is vulnerable to sunder and disarm for his M spells.)

Wearing armor? S would tell you which of your spells suffer from any ASF you have.

Oh, well, if wishes were fishes....

Liberty's Edge 5/5 Venture-Lieutenant, Indiana—Martinsville aka thaX

Mystic Lemur wrote:

So you think that the best way for Paizo to avoid the missteps WotC made is to repeat those very same missteps? To completely overhaul a system that people specifically chose to stick with, rather than a completely overhauled and rebalanced system released by WotC?

4e is a great system with a bunch of loyal followers, but it doesn't feel like D&D to me. 3.x and Pathfinder feel like D&D to me. Several of the 4e fans I know are upset at the direction 5th is taking, and are acting a lot like I did when 4e was first announced. If/When Paizo announces a second edition, I hope they are wise enough not to make the same mistakes as WotC made before and is making now.

...Unless of course they want to pick up the disgruntled 4e fans. It would be delightfully ironic.

Not exactly.

rant rant rant:

I should clarify that my overall dislike for Vancian Casting was forged long before 4th edition sorta, kinda shifted it aside. Before 3.5 beefed up the Sorcerer, or when the Dragon Blood fever started with another book that came out, somehow equating most caster of the Kobold Kind to being Sorcerers, 3.0 came out. The sorcerer in that PHB was a half class, the lesser Wizard with superior mechanics.

Why? Why have what ended up with 5 different mechanics (and more with other books) with magic when the one could be used universally by all the casters. Why?

I also asked, in no particular order, why Mana Rules wasn't somehow mentioned as an alternative, why Comliness wasn't brought over, and why the Half Orc was back.

The next "edition" of Pathfinder, whenever it is 5 to 10 years down the line, will be without the Open Gaming License, at least in my humble opinion. The one thing that can be done is a reconstruction on how magic is used, imbued on items, and accessed. This includes the killing of the Vancian Casting cow.

Spells can have cool downs, much like some monster abilities have now, instead of having a bunch of record keeping of memorized spells and used forgotten ones. Keep the spellbook, it is a intrigal part of the fantasy trope, but it doesn't need to be an anchor for a wizard, weighing him down so he stays in one spot.

Yes, the next iteration of Pathfinder is going to be much like the game it was before. I think, though, a lot of classes can be combined into a better mechanic for magic rather than a bunch of CHA based equivalent for the same class being strewn about much like the Sorcerer shadowing the Wizard.

Oh, and the overall clarifying and combining like rules and sorting them out so to not have them spread out in several places is something I think the new "edition" would be made for.

I still think the differences with bow damage between Reduce Person and Enlarge Person needs to be looked into before that, myself.

Grand Lodge 4/5

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

thaX, I disagree, I think Paizo will stick with the OGL because it's been such a winner for them and they've always been supportive of the 3PP that produce extra material for their game. They understand that having everyone producing material for their core rules is a great way to sell those core rules, which is what the intent and purpose of the OGL was originally.

WotC lost a lot of support in the community (speaking of the community of publishers) when they came out with the 4E licensing. Paizo's more firmly entrenched in supporting OGL than WotC ever was. It's unlikely they'll change that stance when it's helped catapult them to the top of the RPG market.

However, that's a topic for a different thread.

Liberty's Edge 5/5 Venture-Lieutenant, Indiana—Martinsville aka thaX

Agreed, it is for a different thread.

Did I mention that I got to run Black Waters at Gen Con?

...

...

...

I got to run Black Waters at Gen Con!!!

Grand Lodge RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

kinevon wrote:
Spell component pouch sundered? No spell with an M (with no cost listed) can be cast untiul you have a replacement, or unless you have Eschew Materials. (One of my Sorcerers may start wearing [and using] a Spell Component pouch, just to make enemies think he is vulnerable to sunder and disarm for his M spells.)

Don't forget that your pouch is where your F components are kept as well, and Eschew Materials doesn't cover that. So a sorcerer without a SpellComPouch can't cast read magic, mage armor, silent image, etc.

Shadow Lodge 5/5 ⦵⦵ Venture-Lieutenant, California—San Francisco Bay Area North & East aka thistledown

Jiggy wrote:
kinevon wrote:
Spell component pouch sundered? No spell with an M (with no cost listed) can be cast untiul you have a replacement, or unless you have Eschew Materials. (One of my Sorcerers may start wearing [and using] a Spell Component pouch, just to make enemies think he is vulnerable to sunder and disarm for his M spells.)
Don't forget that your pouch is where your F components are kept as well, and Eschew Materials doesn't cover that. So a sorcerer without a SpellComPouch can't cast read magic, mage armor, silent image, etc.

Buy the pouch, then take your focus out of it and put it elsewhere. Also helps for the 1st level caster with only 2 spells and an 8 strength - take the 2 components you need out, put them in your pocket, and save yourself the 2 pounds of junk by putting it on your pack animal.

Grand Lodge RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

thistledown wrote:
Jiggy wrote:
kinevon wrote:
Spell component pouch sundered? No spell with an M (with no cost listed) can be cast untiul you have a replacement, or unless you have Eschew Materials. (One of my Sorcerers may start wearing [and using] a Spell Component pouch, just to make enemies think he is vulnerable to sunder and disarm for his M spells.)
Don't forget that your pouch is where your F components are kept as well, and Eschew Materials doesn't cover that. So a sorcerer without a SpellComPouch can't cast read magic, mage armor, silent image, etc.
Buy the pouch, then take your focus out of it and put it elsewhere. Also helps for the 1st level caster with only 2 spells and an 8 strength - take the 2 components you need out, put them in your pocket, and save yourself the 2 pounds of junk by putting it on your pack animal.

Just don't assume that the GM will let you retrieve a focus from your pocket for the same action cost as you could retrieve it from a proper pouch.

Grand Lodge 4/5

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
Jiggy wrote:
Just don't assume that the GM will let you retrieve a focus from your pocket for the same action cost as you could retrieve it from a proper pouch.

Not to taint this with realism or anything, but after a couple of years of dressing up for renaissance festivals, I can say with a fair degree of certainty that I can much more easily pull something out of my pocket than any pouch I ever had.

Venture-Agent, Canada—Ontario—Ottawa aka Mistwalker

Jiggy wrote:
Don't forget that your pouch is where your F components are kept as well, and Eschew Materials doesn't cover that. So a sorcerer without a SpellComPouch can't cast read magic, mage armor, silent image, etc.

For Mage Armor: Wouldn't any piece of cured leather work, as in say a belt, a boot, backpack straps, etc...?

For Read Magic: Could I wear an earing with a prism and have it double as the focus?

For Silent Image: Would a backpack strap liner or dangly braided into hair work?

Or could a necklace with them all on it work?

Yes, I am playing devil's advocate a bit here, but I also don't think that anyone who has taken Eschew Materials (either free for sorcerers or other casters who have used a feat to get it) should be penalized due to a bit of wording difference (material component 1 gp or less vs focus component 1 gp or less).

Hmmm, maybe it is time for a thread in the main part of the forums to ask for that change...


Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Interestingly in my 8 years of stage experience I have always found it easier to retrieve a prop from a pouch with the costume than any pockets with the costume.

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