Proposal: Allow Players to access the PRD


Pathfinder Society

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Scarab Sages 1/5

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I was inspired to by a boon I picked up at GenCon to build a witch. Having recently picked up the Ultimate Campaign Guide, I start reading though the background questions and come up with a dark and flavorful back story. While its open I go ahead and pick out my traits. Now I print off a character sheet and start filling in the blanks. As I'm writting down the elf abilities I wonder what options are in the Advanced Race Guide and pull it off the shelf. One seems especially apropos and a quick check of the website verifies that its allowed. Finally I recall that Infernal Healing is a very good low level heal spell and a check of the Inner Sea World Guide shows that it is indeed a witch spell. Now I realize that to play the character I need to bring an extra four hardback books with me.

If I'm just hauling the bag to a local shop for a gameday this isn't end of the world bad, but when going to an event like GenCon or Pax where I wish to do more than just sit in one ballroom rolling dice all day its inconvenient to the point where it distinctiveness playing PFS at all. Especially when the majority of these rules are available on the PRD mobile site with quick access.

I propose that players be allowed to reference the PRD for rules they use.

Note that in the example above I'd still bring my copy of the Inner Sea World guide to the table (or if forgotten at home I'd only be out a single spell). As the current rules stand if I forget my APG the character is entirely unplayable.

Alternately if photo copies of the pages I'm using were allowed this would also alleviate the problem. Each of those books only has a handful of pages I'm referencing, but per the Additional Resources website I am being penalized for not buying the products twice (once in hardback and then again in PDF).

Finally, I strongly dislike the current requirements because they are both easy to circumvent (replacing a watermark on a printout is child's play), and assume a level of dishonesty among the player base which is unhealthy.

5/5

The PRD is not going to be opened up as a legal source because they want people to have to buy the books.

Mind you, I have not seen this spelled out, but that's what it comes down to. PRD material is owned and administered by Paizo. It is as accurate as any rules source can be--moreso than print/PDF, in fact, because errata happens. The only reason to not allow it is if you want people to have to buy their sources.

For the record, I think that's perfectly fine. I have no problem with PFS requiring a buy-in. Others do; there will likely be a lot of debate in this thread on that very topic.

But it's not going to change and I doubt they'll cop to it, so don't expect much movement here.

5/5

While I see merit to the proposal, the problem lies there in that players will rely solely on the PRD and not have the physical copies of the needed resources. What happens when the player doesn't have internet access --- access at Gencon sucked horribly and I was able to get a smidge of access on my phone, but it wasn't great and not usable for long periods of time.

The current rules place a burden of providing the resource documentation on the player. This can be accomplished with an ease of buying the appropriate PDF and printing the pages relevant to the character choices.

Despite the recent threads, honestly I have seen this work the best...

The player has hard copies of the resource documentation should the GM need to see the information and the player has less that they are hauling around but still adhering to the rules of providing the documentation.


I'll just throw my non-PFS experience into the mix.

My home group played Pathfinder for 1 years before we bought $184 of pdf and book material.

Now if my group was required to own all the rules we used to play, we would not have played pathfinder and Paizo would have never received our money.

For PFS the question is would revenue gained from groups similar to ours playing PFS be greater than the revenue lost from people who would not buy the books they didn't need.

Now the revenue lost group is also midigated by people who budget so much for PF expenditures. Instead of buying books on the PRD, they would buy other books that they would have never bought otherwise.

The only time Paizo would lose money is from people who only want PRD material, play PFS, and don't feel like contributing to the hobby that they love or providing any resources to maintain it. Now that group also contains people who have less barriers to editing a pdf they didn't buy.

Liberty's Edge 2/5

I dislike this idea a lot.

If you are that concerned with the carrying capacity and likelihood of being able to physically carry the resources from point A to B around a con, then buy the pdf and not the hardcopy to begin with. Print out what you need for each character. Overcome that natural urge to buy the print copy.

At the end of the day, the campaign is there to help Paizo move stock. Letting a player access an online website (PRD) does not help in moving stock.

Purple Fluffy thought hit the point right on the head. What happens if you are in a location with extremely unreliable interwebs?.. or none at all? A local tower goes into meltdown or other such issues? Then you have nothing.


Matthew Pittard wrote:
Letting a player access an online website (PRD) does not help in moving stock.

That is just not true.

Lantern Lodge 5/5 Regional Venture-Coordinator, Asia-Pacific

Book or PDF sales keep a publisher in business. I don't think it an unreasonable request to ask players to purchase the products they use at public games.

Consider the alternative:

Any percentage of players choosing to use the PRD instead of purchasing products will hurt sales, and the company won't be able fund as much product or of the high quality as we're enjoying now.

Allow players to use the PRD at public games, and Paizo would likely have to consider charging a monthly subscription fee to access the PRD to compensate for lost book or PDF sales.

But somehow I don't think that's the outcome you're asking for?

Grand Lodge 4/5 *** Venture-Captain, California—Sacramento

Matthew Pittard wrote:


At the end of the day, the campaign is there to help Paizo move stock. Letting a player access an online website (PRD) does not help in moving stock.

I'll note that many comics have found that the best way to move hard copy is to put the full comic on line, and then sell to the new vastly wider audience they find there. (Phil Folio anyone?)

I wouldn't blanket assume that they would see their sales drop. The increased number of players might mean that they see fewer book sales and more minis.

5/5

FLite wrote:
Matthew Pittard wrote:


At the end of the day, the campaign is there to help Paizo move stock. Letting a player access an online website (PRD) does not help in moving stock.

I'll note that many comics have found that the best way to move hard copy is to put the full comic on line, and then sell to the new vastly wider audience they find there. (Phil Folio anyone?)

I wouldn't blanket assume that they would see their sales drop. The increased number of players might mean that they see fewer book sales and more minis.

In the end, PFS is a marketing tool for Paizo, and their approach to how they choose to market PFS and by extension PF has been very successful. I don't see them changing it.


Pathfinder PF Special Edition Subscriber
Matthew Pittard wrote:


At the end of the day, the campaign is there to help Paizo move stock. Letting a player access an online website (PRD) does not help in moving stock.

I'm going to disagree with you, if only from personal experience. I make thorough use of the online resource for quick referencing of my player's rules, and if anything all it has done is make me want the print versions more. Not necessarily because it's easier, but there are times when it's just nice to have a book, and there are times where I don't want to load up my computer to have to find it.


Purple Fluffy CatBunnyGnome wrote:
FLite wrote:
Matthew Pittard wrote:


At the end of the day, the campaign is there to help Paizo move stock. Letting a player access an online website (PRD) does not help in moving stock.

I'll note that many comics have found that the best way to move hard copy is to put the full comic on line, and then sell to the new vastly wider audience they find there. (Phil Folio anyone?)

I wouldn't blanket assume that they would see their sales drop. The increased number of players might mean that they see fewer book sales and more minis.

In the end, PFS is a marketing tool for Paizo, and their approach to how they choose to market PFS and by extension PF has been very successful. I don't see them changing it.

No. It's not a marketing tool. My friend who vehemently defends PFS's ownership of books requirement would call PFS a service that you buy books to use. He thinks it is silly to call it a marketing tool.

Marketing is when you spend money to raise awareness of your product. PFS is built to be a service that you pay for. PFS is something that would benefit from marketing. It in of itself is not marketing. It is a service.

5/5

Marthkus wrote:
Purple Fluffy CatBunnyGnome wrote:
FLite wrote:
Matthew Pittard wrote:


At the end of the day, the campaign is there to help Paizo move stock. Letting a player access an online website (PRD) does not help in moving stock.

I'll note that many comics have found that the best way to move hard copy is to put the full comic on line, and then sell to the new vastly wider audience they find there. (Phil Folio anyone?)

I wouldn't blanket assume that they would see their sales drop. The increased number of players might mean that they see fewer book sales and more minis.

In the end, PFS is a marketing tool for Paizo, and their approach to how they choose to market PFS and by extension PF has been very successful. I don't see them changing it.

No. It's not a marketing tool. My friend who vehemently defends PFS's ownership of books requirement would call PFS a service that you buy books to use. He thinks it is silly to call it a marketing tool.

Marketing is when you spend money to raise awareness of your product. PFS is built to be a service that you pay for. PFS is something that would benefit from marketing. It in of itself is not marketing. It is a service.

Argue semantics all you want, myself and others are just letting you know what Paizo has stated.


Purple Fluffy CatBunnyGnome wrote:
Argue semantics all you want, myself and others are just letting you know what Paizo has stated.

You say in a thread, talking about potential changes to the status quo and it's potential downsides and benefits...

5/5

Marthkus wrote:
Purple Fluffy CatBunnyGnome wrote:
Argue semantics all you want, myself and others are just letting you know what Paizo has stated.
You say in a thread, talking about potential changes to the status quo and it's potential downsides and benefits...

What is your point?

1/5

Link to Mike Brock's post concerning this topic

I don't see them allowing the PRD as a player resource. The entire point of requiring the books is to encourage people to buy the additional resources.

Scarab Sages 4/5

This topic is a dead beaten horse that keeps getting reincarnated over and over in different forms. Let me say this once, "Paizo will not change their stance on it no matter how many times or different ways you bring this up so for the love of pete stop bringing it up." There are already other threads that talk about this exact thing that are still active.

Grand Lodge 4/5 *** Venture-Captain, California—Sacramento

Ummm... If any of you really care about making this topic go away, all you have to do is stop posting to it. The topic churn on these boards is massive. If you don't care, flag it as "Wrong Forum" and move on.

As it is you are floating it and inflating the post count on it.


Purple Fluffy CatBunnyGnome wrote:
We've just all realized that PFS isn't going to be the game for you, we're just waiting for you to realize that. It's ok, not everyone enjoys playing in the sandbox.

You are right. PFS is not the game for me at this time.

1/5

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Oh I see Marthkus found the pfs forum

1/5

Marthkus wrote:
Purple Fluffy CatBunnyGnome wrote:
We've just all realized that PFS isn't going to be the game for you, we're just waiting for you to realize that. It's ok, not everyone enjoys playing in the sandbox.
You are right. PFS is not the game for me at this time.

Glad you have finally come to terms with reality.

Paizo is a Business

Grand Lodge 4/5 Pathfinder Society Campaign Coordinator

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Removed a bunch of posts. Even if you win a message board argument it doesn't make you any cooler than you already are. Stop arguing and move on.


Here's my 2cp...

As a GM, someone that is relying just on the PRD isn't as invested as they should be (usually). They are going to make a character and play them how they want, even if it goes against the rules. Someone that buys a book will usually go and read it, get comfortable with it.

To top that off, like what others have said, what if you don't have an internet connection. Now the player has to rely on the fact that a GM would know what Feat X out of UC does. That adds more to a GMs responsibility.

3/5

Here's an analogy to this proposal.

I decide to open a coffee shop.

I decide to provide, for my customers, bins of coffee beans, access to grinders, and use of pots so that they may select, grind, and brew coffees of their choice.

Naturally, I provide seating as well.

I don't really have anything that I can charge them for, because apparently mine is a Magical Free Coffeehouse?

Of course, if it's not actually "magical", it might not last long.

Everyone knows gamers hate paying for anything (there's a high expectation of socialism in gaming), but the truth is that (i) Paizo wants to be profitable, (ii) game development and production actually does cost money (because pesky developers like to be paid), and (iii) making the game "not free" actually does cull an undesirable element from the playerbase. Beyond that, PFS players are customers.

GM's actually are players, too, and while it may seem as though they're spoiled by ability to use the PRD, in fact they usually have considerable expenses in bringing games to the table (my Paizo maps alone cost over $500 in total). The GMs deserve to be able to use the PRD - they've earned it, both in investment in money and time. I have spent literally thousands on PFS (it cost me $50 just to print out scale maps for "Cult of the Ebon Destroyer" - I can only imagine the costs incurred by these GMs who bring 3-D terrains and such.)

(And of course, when the GM plays, he needs, again, to own all relevant materials.)

Really, there's nothing super-special here: as with all things, if you can't afford it, don't play!

(There seems to be a theme of incredible cheapness going on here lately).

Liberty's Edge 2/5

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And I will counteract the incredible cheapness point...

#1 For the vast number of people speaking for PRD access.. they are talking about Convention useage. Where theft runs rampant, time is heavily scheduled, and there is no storage long or short term available. This forces the decision to or not to play on specific days due to risk, time and weight.

#2 No one asking for the PRD access is saying they are unwilling or has no bought books or pdf's. What there saying is why are we risking them like this to play at a show? Its a valid point and one I make often. I do not carry anything I can't keep underfoot or in my lap to any convention and I do 20+ a year.

#3 As someone who has had every PF book I've ever owned stolen all at once. And then my replacement Core book stolen at a convention (and replaced by Mike Seales a few hours later) shortly after coming back to PFS play. I can say this... This is too much personal cost to ask someone to keep risking for no other reason than "they might be cheating". If someone wants to cheat there going to. No amount of stuff in a backpack on the floor will change that.

#4 This argument is not about being cheap. Its about risk reduction. Its about cost control during a recession. Its about feeling that your hobby supports you as much as you support it. PFS does a good job of all of that and we can assume it will continue to do so in the future. What we all have to consider is that as the books keep flowing and the investment gets bigger and bigger what the greater risk will mean. And how loud this argument will eventually get when everyone has 9 characters and $1,000 dollars of stuff underfoot while surrounded by 1,000+ strangers who knows whats in the bag.

Scarab Sages 1/5

A few thoughts in response to the objections raised:

Patrick Harris @ MU wrote:
The PRD is not going to be opened up as a legal source because they want people to have to buy the books.

If you are not Paizo or a designated spokesperson it seems a bit rude (bordering on slanderous) to declare their desires and intentions. So far as I know the OP guide welcomes feedback on the rules they have set out. I am simply suggesting a change I would like to see happen.

Stephen White wrote:
Any percentage of players choosing to use the PRD instead of purchasing products will hurt sales, and the company won't be able fund as much product or of the high quality as we're enjoying now.

As others have pointed out this statement makes a few assumptions that are not necessarily true. If sales drop slightly on the core books how do you know that that money won't be spent instead on auxiliary products such as The Demon Hunter's Handbook or Inner Sea World Guide that are not included in the PRD.

I know that personally, I have a set budget of RPG books that I will spend each month and would rather spend it on new shines than re-purchasing books I already own in PDF form.

Purple Fluffy CatBunnyGnome wrote:
While I see merit to the proposal, the problem lies there in that players will rely solely on the PRD and not have the physical copies of the needed resources. What happens when the player doesn't have internet access --- access at Gencon sucked horribly and I was able to get a smidge of access on my phone, but it wasn't great and not usable for long periods of time.

I didn't personally have any problems at GenCon this year, but how did GMs relying on PRD sources for prep handle it? If a printout is acceptable for them I see no reason it should be unacceptable on the other side of the screen. As others have pointed out the PRD is often more accurate than whats in the books due to errata.

John W Johnson wrote:
As a GM, someone that is relying just on the PRD isn't as invested as they should be (usually).

At what point did judging a players investment enter into the picture? I assert that any person choosing to spend their free time playing the game is sufficiently invested.

David Haller wrote:

I don't really have anything that I can charge them for, because apparently mine is a Magical Free Coffeehouse?

Of course, if it's not actually "magical", it might not last long.

Your analogy is false. Rather consider a coffeehouse that provided free seating (the core rulebook) and a pitcher of water and wifi (the PRD rules) meanwhile charging a premium for their fine roasted coffee (the players companions) and delicious snacks (the rest of the lines). If you want to see such a magical place I suggest a visit to your local Starbucks.

Grand Lodge 4/5 Venture-Lieutenant, Arizona—Phoenix

However, if I recall correctly they expect you to make a purchase (buy the pdf) if you're going to sit there and use the wifi. (Play PFS.) You can't just come in and use the wifi without purchasing anything.

Grand Lodge 2/5 RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

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Matthew Trent wrote:
I was inspired to by a boon I picked up at GenCon to build a witch. Having recently picked up the Ultimate Campaign Guide, I start reading though the background questions and come up with a dark and flavorful back story. While its open I go ahead and pick out my traits. Now I print off a character sheet and start filling in the blanks. As I'm writting down the elf abilities I wonder what options are in the Advanced Race Guide and pull it off the shelf. One seems especially apropos and a quick check of the website verifies that its allowed. Finally I recall that Infernal Healing is a very good low level heal spell and a check of the Inner Sea World Guide shows that it is indeed a witch spell. Now I realize that to play the character I need to bring an extra four hardback books with me.

Here's how it could have gone:

"I was inspired by a boon I picked up at GenCon to build a witch. Having recently picked up the Ultimate Campaign Guide, I start reading though the background questions and come up with a dark and flavorful back story. Being a good player who read the Guide like I'm supposed to, I knew that I'd need to bring my sources with me for whatever I built. Being an adult whose physical comfort is no one else's responsibility but my own, I pick a number of hardcover books that I'm willing to carry, and commit to some self-restraint. I choose options only from books I'm willing to carry, plus Core, which I don't have to carry. Being an adult whose budget is no one else's responsibility but my own, I make thoughtful decisions about whether an additional PC option is worth purchasing a PDF or not. When considering future purchases, I reflect on the creation of this character and weigh my preferences of paper against the convenience of having extra options without the weight. I then make a decision, and take responsibility for my choice's ramifications, both good and bad."

When an adult chooses otherwise, that is not a failing of the campaign.

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

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The problem is simply one of incentive.

If Paizo is not making money from selling the books, they aren't going to be able to produce more books.

If Paizo is not making money from books in the PRD, they aren't going to keep adding books to the PRD.

It's the tragedy of the commons. Paizo is quite generous in offering a lot of stuff for free, but when individuals overuse their free offerings, it puts a strain on the company.

More importantly, there are a lot of things that the PRD pages don't cover. Let's say that you wanted to make a cleric of Shelyn. The PRD doesn't tell you what subdomains Shelyn has.

Let's say that you wanted to take the trait Calistrian Prostitute. The PRD has a different name for it, and doesn't tell you that you need to be a follower of Calistria to take it.

Let's say that there's an unscrupulous player out there who wants to cheat at the game. It's significantly easier to edit a .html file than a published PDF or a printed book.

The PDFs are extremely cheap for the offerings. For $50, you can have a copy of every hardcover book in the line. Since the GM is expected to have the CRB, that's really cut down to $40. If you're not making an Aasimar, Tengu or Tiefling, it's cut down to $30. One of the books is combat-oriented, one is magic-oriented - if you choose to play either a caster or a combat character, you could probably cut that down to $20. If you've got the money to go to a convention and sign up for a bunch of slots, you can afford that.

As far as non-PRD sources go, there are lots and lots of errors in d20PFSRD. I use it for previews, but it's certainly not accurate enough to rely on.

5/5

Matthew Trent wrote:
If you are not Paizo or a designated spokesperson it seems a bit rude (bordering on slanderous) to declare their desires and intentions. So far as I know the OP guide welcomes feedback on the rules they have set out. I am simply suggesting a change I would like to see happen.

First of all, something must be spoken to be considered slanderous. In this (print) medium it would be libelous. Except it wouldn't be, because the statement "a business has the goal of making money" may be painfully obvious, but it isn't damaging to the company's reputation.

Further, if you think that my making an assumption based on observation is rude, I suppose that's your prerogative, but you might want to rethink this whole "using the Internet" thing, because you're going to spend a lot of time upset.

Finally, I understood your intent; I was telling you why you weren't going to see it achieved. I didn't tell you you shouldn't say what you said. I just said not to get your hopes up. Your wounded response doesn't change my advice.

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

There is nothing in Paizo's policies that forbid using the PRD or something simmilar as a tool in PFS sessions. What they do forbid is using the PRD to meet requirements. You want to use the neat asimar and tiefling feats, you have to buy the book and/or PDF. You want to use a certain mechanic, you need to own the materials.

This does NOT exclude using other tools (like Herolab or the PRD) to make the table run faster. What it does mean that the tools do not excuse you from ownership requirements.

1/5

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I like buying books. The physical copies are great for flipping back and forth in, bookmarking, etc.

I do not like buying my books twice. I buy some serieses of book on my Kindle and some in physical form for that reason. I have almost no overlap for a reason, and the overlap that is there is accidental.

Thus, I do not buy PDF copies of my gaming books. I've spent well over $300 on Paizo hardcover books, and it is money well spent. I'd rather not re-buy the books I already own, though.

I'm also a very small person. Short, thin, not very strong. I simply cannot easily bring 50+ lbs. of books to a con with me and carry them around, especially a giant convention like GenCon. And since we've already established I don't buy things twice (see above), what options do I have?

1) Build characters from all the resources I already own and hope the GM won't ask to see sources. They usually don't.

2) Build much constrained characters only from the CRB, which is much less fun. I'd probably stop playing PFS altogether if I had to do that.

3) Find a friend who owns the PDFs and print out from that. Or torrent them. Both illegal and, clearly, stealing.

4) Only play home games.

Adding another option "5) Use the PRD resources" is a perfectly reasonable option. Many people using the PRD do buy books; that's why it's out there on the Internet. Furthermore, one of the purposes of cons is to bring in new people. If someone new wants to play an oracle and I don't have the APG on me, I'm not going to tell them nay. That's the opposite of being welcoming and encouraging to new players.

Also, leave off the insults, please. *Looks at Jiggy*. There are plenty of reasons to not allow the PRD. While I think the ones for allowing use of the PRD are stronger, and thus conclude the PRD should be allowed, I acknowledge the valid arguments on all sides. Adults use those arguments, not random insults about maturity that only derail threads and say nothing of any value. Haven't you ever heard the saying "If you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all"?

1/5

melissa, can you give us an idea of how many resources your current PFS character(s) use, in terms of the number of books?


Chris Mullican wrote:
Let me say this once, "Paizo will not change their stance on it no matter how many times or different ways you bring this up so for the love of pete stop bringing it up."

That's not quite true -- Pathfinder Society has changed the Core Assumption (the list of books that you can use without lugging them to every game) on several occasions.

I certainly agree that "everything in the PRD should be in the Core Assumption" is a non-starter, though.

Grand Lodge 4/5 *** Venture-Captain, California—Sacramento

Melissa Litwin wrote:
Haven't you ever heard the saying "If you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all"?

On the internet? Nope, don't think I've heard that one ;)

I think know that the Devs mentioned that they would consider finding a way to issue "certificates of ownership" so that people could leave heave / valuable books at home and just use photocopies / PRD. (I suggest photocopys, so you can write the errata on them, the PRD doesn't get erratad.)

They also said they would consider it after gencon, maybe a gentle reminder would help?

5/5

Melissa Litwin wrote:

I like buying books. The physical copies are great for flipping back and forth in, bookmarking, etc.

I do not like buying my books twice. I buy some serieses of book on my Kindle and some in physical form for that reason. I have almost no overlap for a reason, and the overlap that is there is accidental.

Thus, I do not buy PDF copies of my gaming books. I've spent well over $300 on Paizo hardcover books, and it is money well spent. I'd rather not re-buy the books I already own, though.

I'm also a very small person. Short, thin, not very strong. I simply cannot easily bring 50+ lbs. of books to a con with me and carry them around, especially a giant convention like GenCon. And since we've already established I don't buy things twice (see above), what options do I have?

1) Build characters from all the resources I already own and hope the GM won't ask to see sources. They usually don't.

2) Build much constrained characters only from the CRB, which is much less fun. I'd probably stop playing PFS altogether if I had to do that.

3) Find a friend who owns the PDFs and print out from that. Or torrent them. Both illegal and, clearly, stealing.

4) Only play home games.

Adding another option "5) Use the PRD resources" is a perfectly reasonable option. Many people using the PRD do buy books; that's why it's out there on the Internet. Furthermore, one of the purposes of cons is to bring in new people. If someone new wants to play an oracle and I don't have the APG on me, I'm not going to tell them nay. That's the opposite of being welcoming and encouraging to new players.

Also, leave off the insults, please. *Looks at Jiggy*. There are plenty of reasons to not allow the PRD. While I think the ones for allowing use of the PRD are stronger, and thus conclude the PRD should be allowed, I acknowledge the valid arguments on all sides. Adults use those arguments, not random insults about maturity that only derail threads and say nothing of any value. Haven't you ever heard...

Like you, I like the hardcovers for when I'm searching for character information, and like you I've found it hard to carry the weight of the books. I know my limitations and my attention span for keeping track of things.

Before I got a tablet, when I had to lug the books around with me. I one of these though I found buying it in the store cheaper than the prices they are advertising online. It has enough pockets to carry everything I needed to GM as well as to have a couple of characters with me.

I eventually streamlined as I realized that I was not going to be able to carry the duffel with me everywhere I went -- in particularly flying makes it harder. I took the option to get PDFs of the books and go with a tablet as it's easier, faster and doesn't break into my personal ADD of needing to keep track of something. I also got a bag of holding as I didn't have to carry around quite so much with me and it was easier.

While I have empathy because I've been there, not being willing to change and adapts limits that empathy. There are options available, refusing to take them is a personal choice and shouldn't garner a massive change in how the requirements are listed out.

Liberty's Edge 5/5

Marthkus wrote:
Purple Fluffy CatBunnyGnome wrote:
FLite wrote:
Matthew Pittard wrote:


At the end of the day, the campaign is there to help Paizo move stock. Letting a player access an online website (PRD) does not help in moving stock.

I'll note that many comics have found that the best way to move hard copy is to put the full comic on line, and then sell to the new vastly wider audience they find there. (Phil Folio anyone?)

I wouldn't blanket assume that they would see their sales drop. The increased number of players might mean that they see fewer book sales and more minis.

In the end, PFS is a marketing tool for Paizo, and their approach to how they choose to market PFS and by extension PF has been very successful. I don't see them changing it.

No. It's not a marketing tool. My friend who vehemently defends PFS's ownership of books requirement would call PFS a service that you buy books to use. He thinks it is silly to call it a marketing tool.

Marketing is when you spend money to raise awareness of your product. PFS is built to be a service that you pay for. PFS is something that would benefit from marketing. It in of itself is not marketing. It is a service.

Uh... PFS is not a service. Its a Marketing Tool. The intent of the game is to promote and advertise Pathfinder.

And they do spend money on PFS. Where do you think the salary for Mike Brock and John Compton come from? Where do you think the money for 26 scenarios and a Special come from every year?

Paizo pays for those things out of their marketing budget.

The Exchange 5/5 RPG Superstar 2010 Top 16

It is telling that, for the first several years, the person in charge of the Pathfinder Society campaign was on the company's marketing staff.

Sovereign Court

1 person marked this as a favorite.

I understand the need for the requirement to buy books/PDFs, and I have no problem with it. I ended up buying PDFs myself, so that I don't have to bring out several books to various PFS games.

Of course, there are some people who prefer books to plain PDFs. And these are the people I feel sympathetic to. The need to have to carry around the books all over the place.

While I understand photocopied books are not allowed, and understand the reasons why, I wonder if a compromise can be reached in that area? Something along the lines of bringing the book along with photocopied pages from said book to a game, and having the GM sign said copies? In the end it might not be practible, and may or may not have come up in the past, just figured I'd throw that out there.


Andrew Christian wrote:
Marthkus wrote:
Purple Fluffy CatBunnyGnome wrote:
FLite wrote:
Matthew Pittard wrote:


At the end of the day, the campaign is there to help Paizo move stock. Letting a player access an online website (PRD) does not help in moving stock.

I'll note that many comics have found that the best way to move hard copy is to put the full comic on line, and then sell to the new vastly wider audience they find there. (Phil Folio anyone?)

I wouldn't blanket assume that they would see their sales drop. The increased number of players might mean that they see fewer book sales and more minis.

In the end, PFS is a marketing tool for Paizo, and their approach to how they choose to market PFS and by extension PF has been very successful. I don't see them changing it.

No. It's not a marketing tool. My friend who vehemently defends PFS's ownership of books requirement would call PFS a service that you buy books to use. He thinks it is silly to call it a marketing tool.

Marketing is when you spend money to raise awareness of your product. PFS is built to be a service that you pay for. PFS is something that would benefit from marketing. It in of itself is not marketing. It is a service.

Uh... PFS is not a service. Its a Marketing Tool. The intent of the game is to promote and advertise Pathfinder.

And they do spend money on PFS. Where do you think the salary for Mike Brock and John Compton come from? Where do you think the money for 26 scenarios and a Special come from every year?

Paizo pays for those things out of their marketing budget.

You buy the books to be able to play the game. As a consumer it would be a service that I must purchase material to have access to.

Marketing generally cannot benefit from marketing for the marketing. PFS could benefit from marketing, but PFS is not marketing in of itself.

PFS does help grow the game, but so does Paizo making new pathfinder books, and making miniatures.

Paizo is free to call it marketing, but that is doesn't make it so.

Calling PFS marketing is like calling the NFL marketing to sell football equipment, or a better analogy, calling television shows marketing to sell TVs.

5/5

Marthkus wrote:
Andrew Christian wrote:
Marthkus wrote:
Purple Fluffy CatBunnyGnome wrote:
FLite wrote:
Matthew Pittard wrote:


At the end of the day, the campaign is there to help Paizo move stock. Letting a player access an online website (PRD) does not help in moving stock.

I'll note that many comics have found that the best way to move hard copy is to put the full comic on line, and then sell to the new vastly wider audience they find there. (Phil Folio anyone?)

I wouldn't blanket assume that they would see their sales drop. The increased number of players might mean that they see fewer book sales and more minis.

In the end, PFS is a marketing tool for Paizo, and their approach to how they choose to market PFS and by extension PF has been very successful. I don't see them changing it.

No. It's not a marketing tool. My friend who vehemently defends PFS's ownership of books requirement would call PFS a service that you buy books to use. He thinks it is silly to call it a marketing tool.

Marketing is when you spend money to raise awareness of your product. PFS is built to be a service that you pay for. PFS is something that would benefit from marketing. It in of itself is not marketing. It is a service.

Uh... PFS is not a service. Its a Marketing Tool. The intent of the game is to promote and advertise Pathfinder.

And they do spend money on PFS. Where do you think the salary for Mike Brock and John Compton come from? Where do you think the money for 26 scenarios and a Special come from every year?

Paizo pays for those things out of their marketing budget.

You buy the books to be able to play the game. As a consumer it would be a service that I must purchase material to have access to.

Marketing generally cannot benefit from marketing for the marketing. PFS could benefit from marketing, but PFS is not marketing in of itself.

PFS does help grow the game, but so does Paizo making new pathfinder books, and making miniatures.

Paizo...

Since you seem so intent on arguing semantics....

The following definition was approved by the American Marketing Association Board of Directors:

Marketing:

Marketing is the activity, set of institutions, and processes for creating, communicating, delivering, and exchanging offerings that have value for customers, clients, partners, and society at large. (Approved October 2007)

As I see it ... Paizo

has created a product for us to buy
has communicated with us that they have a product for us to buy and if we buy said product we can play PFS
has delivered said product
and with us paying for it, we have exchanged offerings with paizo

ergo ... ipso facto .... MARKETING


Entilzha wrote:

I understand the need for the requirement to buy books/PDFs, and I have no problem with it. I ended up buying PDFs myself, so that I don't have to bring out several books to various PFS games.

Of course, there are some people who prefer books to plain PDFs. And these are the people I feel sympathetic to. The need to have to carry around the books all over the place.

While I understand photocopied books are not allowed, and understand the reasons why, I wonder if a compromise can be reached in that area? Something along the lines of bringing the book along with photocopied pages from said book to a game, and having the GM sign said copies? In the end it might not be practible, and may or may not have come up in the past, just figured I'd throw that out there.

How about book ID keys that you bring with you to prove ownership without actually having the book with you? Maybe little cards that come with the book.

Lantern Lodge 3/5

There appears to be so much vitriol and a general "all or nothing" attitude permeating both sides of this conversation that it's no wonder Mike, Jessica, and others keep having to remove posts.

Can we all just take a moment to consider that this issue does not have to be black and white? Having a preference does not make one right or wrong.

Standing fast with Paizo on what they consider to be legitimate source is not right or wrong.

Having amassed a huge collection of physical books with no PDFs among them , and greatly preferring to limit your encumbrance in order to take part in your hobby in the way you most enjoy without having to re-purchase product you already own in a different format is not right or wrong.

Rather than blitz into each other for differing personal preference, how about we continue to discuss ideas that make effort to meet those preferences in middle ground?

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