ETA on New changes?


Pathfinder Society

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Liberty's Edge 5/5 Venture-Lieutenant, Maryland— Baltimore aka Qstor

I don't know if anyone saw Mike Brock's Fb posts but I wanted to know the the ETA was for the new changes in PFS. Hope it makes the campaign for the better.

Mike

Grand Lodge 2/5

You could be awesome and link to or copy/paste whatever ur us you're taking about...

Liberty's Edge 5/5 Venture-Lieutenant, Maryland— Baltimore aka Qstor

From his Fb page:

"Mike Brock, Global Organized Play Coordinator
7 hours ago · Edited
Almost six hours but everything is crossed off. There are 5-6 changes coming to PFS that should renew interest overall, and even more that will make factions more interesting and come back to a reasonable place in the campaign, more content coming, and a bunch of other great things. Now, time for beer!"

Grand Lodge 2/5

Interesting, I wonder when we'll get to know what those changes are.

5/5

8 people marked this as a favorite.

Here's what I heard*: New factions: Aspis and Red Mantis. New V-Cs: Grandmaster Torch, the Whispering Tyrant, and C-3P0. Every PC gets a free pair of double-barrel pistols on weapons cords. No more missions from V-C, it's just faction missions, most of which will be mutually exclusive. Bonus prestige for PvP. You know, just the stuff everyone on the forums has asked for.

:) :) :)

* (heard from the tiny man who lives inside my thumb and whispers to me behind the GM screen)

Dark Archive 5/5 Venture-Captain, Massachusetts—North Shore aka LackofFocus

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You forgot the Most important change EVER, All Characters have to be Adepts, Aristocrats, Commoners, Experts and Warriors no more Core or Base Classes.**

**I am just making this up, I have no clue what the changes are, but I am home sick so the boredom is setting in.

Shadow Lodge 5/5

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I'm pretty sure I heard you dont get a choice of classes, everyone's a gestalt commoner/expert/adept/aristocrat/warrior from here on out. But only limited rebuilds.

Liberty's Edge 5/5 Venture-Lieutenant, Maryland— Baltimore aka Qstor

You forgot...kobolds are a playable race and Kyle Baird is taking over development! :)

Mike

Dark Archive 5/5 Venture-Captain, Massachusetts—North Shore aka LackofFocus

Qstor wrote:

You forgot...kobolds are a playable race and Kyle Baird is taking over development! :)

Mike

No Kyle is write Every Scenario Next Season it is the "Year of the Fun Sponge"

Grand Lodge 5/5 Global Organized Play Coordinator

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First, let me say that a lot of time and effort were put into improving PFS in this meeting. Both Lisa and Erik were in the meeting most of the Five hours and forty minutes. They are both as dedicated as anyone to see PFS become better. John, Mark Moreland, Mark Seifter, and I were part of the team as well.

There are quite a few changes and adjustments coming down the pipe. These could start as early as January but others may not go into effect until Gen Con 2015. Some changes willbe very prevelant and noticeable (and definitely highlighted with a Monday blog).

Others will not be seen by the player base at large. One such change that you want really see happening but will notice the affects is that we are building a product review team with the VOs. They will assist John and I in deciding what should and shouldn't make it in to PFS. That may delay update of additional resources from the last week of the month to a week to 10 days later. But, it will be a better system so we don't rush to get things added to the campaign and let something broken slip through the cracks.

Other notes of interest that I'm not ready to talk about in depth yet but do want to give some ideas to the playerbase what was covered.

We have come up with some ideas that we think can bring factions back to the forefront so they regain a good bit of their flavor and importance in the campaign. Note that this doesn't sacrifice the secondary success conditions that were implemented to make it feel like a "pathfinder society first" type of feel. It adds some things that make factions more personal, and at the same time more visible at the game table among the players. This should happen sooner rather than later.

We've come up with an idea that we think can address limited replay. For those worried about replay destroying the campaign, don't worry. We are very cognizant of that. I believe every VO can attest to my vehemence against replay on the VO message board. However, an idea has been presented that I think could work very well, that changed my vehement opposition against replay into a very excited positive, and would open up replay in a way we think the player base will like and appreciate, but at the same time won't destroy the campaign or the play experiences of people sitting down to play the game with someone who is replaying.

The entire team is in agreement we need more play content for the awesome player base. Once we have all of our goblins in a row, you will see more content. This will be in both more scenarios and more quests. However, this is going to take months to happen and not something you see immediately.

You will see some changes coming down the pipe that tweak the way scenarios are put together. John is going to start taking a very hard look in how best to help shorten scenarios just a touch so we can bring back play to the four hours they were always meant to be. The five hour slot is also supposed to include time for paperwork and mustering. We are acutely aware of the problems with scenarios running long and John is going to right that ship. In addition, weare aware of how much time some of the newer scenarios are taking to prep, as well as how difficult some scenarios can be for a newer GM to prepare. We are sensitive to all of these issues and I think you will start seeing some positive changes that make playing and GMing scenarios more timely and easier to GM.

There are a good many other things that we covered and changes and adjustments we are making to refocus PFS and make it a better experience. The above is just a few. But, I felt it important to let you in on a little of what was discussed so you all know that changes for the better are coming. Just have patience with us. It takes some time to get some of these things implemented so it won't be changes that happen overnight, or even in the next month. But rest assured, we have heard the complaints and criticisms, we have taken them to heart, and we are working with a renewed enthusiasm to give you the best organized play anywhere on the planet. And yes, please keep your feedback coming. We can always add to changes we want to make, or there may be something we didn't think of. There's alot of moving parts and I don't mind the challenge of having an awesome idea present a necessitated change to PFS. We've got the best volunteer leaders in the VO corp. Weve got the best playerbase. We are looking to continue having the best OP. Thanks for all the feedback over the past few months. It really has helped to make a difference.

On a last note, keep it positive. It can be constructive and positive at the same time. "Take the tech out of my fantasy" is neither. I will advise, don't judge an entire season off a few scenarios. We've got some awesome scenarios coming out in Kaer Maga and Mwangi and other awesome locations.

*EDIT* You are also going to see PFS shift away from a meta plot that revolves around an AP. We are looking at giving PFS it's own meta plot each season. We may have a multi-parter (similar to Destiny of Sands) that touches on the current AP. But, the entire team was in agreement PFS really needs its own Metaplot, similar to Year of the Shadow Lodge.

4/5 Venture-Agent, Maryland—Hagerstown aka Z...D...

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Keep the tech coming. Pathfinders need to adapt and overcome.

Lantern Lodge

I know my interest is piqued to hear what is coming. At this time, would you advise that we should anticipate to learn of these changes as they actually come into play, or will there be a heads up of "here is what to expect in the near future for PFS" sort of announcement?

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

We are ready to kick butt and chew gum.

3/5

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Dominick Trascritti wrote:
We are ready to kick butt and chew gum.

And all out of gum?

Grand Lodge 5/5 Global Organized Play Coordinator

Lormyr wrote:
I know my interest is piqued to hear what is coming. At this time, would you advise that we should anticipate to learn of these changes as they actually come into play, or will there be a heads up of "here is what to expect in the near future for PFS" sort of announcement?

Most will likely be highlights in a Monday blog as they come on line.

Lantern Lodge

Michael Brock wrote:
Most will likely be highlights in a Monday blog as they come on line.

Good deal, thanks for the heads up. Looking forward to seeing what you folks cooked up for us.


Sounds great!

I can't wait to see a 4 hour scenario!

Liberty's Edge 5/5 Venture-Lieutenant, Maryland— Baltimore aka Qstor

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Thanks Mike. Looking forward to hearing what comes next.

I hope that PFS doesn't retire scenarios the way Living Greyhawk did. It helps keep the number of scenarios higher and varied. Plus a lot of the Season 0 and Season 1 scenarios are lower level which gives lower level PCs and newer players in general a greater number of scenarios to play.

Mike


Awesome thanks for the information.

I love the idea of holding back new things so they can be reviewed before a blanket acceptance is made.

I agree with all the suggestions you are working on and think it is a positive direction.

I am going to a con tomorrow and was concerned about changes I may need to make in such a short time. But nothing yet.

Great job!

As a side note on my preferences. I do not care what things(tech, demons, sahdow lodges) you bring into the campaign just tell us a good story and I will be happy.


omg changes that arnt at teh season switch???? /rageqiut

Grand Lodge RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

I have to say I'm intrigued by the replay teaser, and my head is swirling with speculation. Could it be that you can replay low-tier things, but without access to items/boons so that you can't use replays to "farm"? Hmm...

I'm also slightly nervous about the faction thing, as I've been greatly enjoying their reduced presence of late. But you guys have a pretty stellar track record (in my opinion), so I'm gonna trust you on this. :)

Shadow Lodge 5/5

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Michael Brock wrote:
I believe every VO can attest to my vehemence against replay on the VO message board.

We could, if we weren't under an NDA :)


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I really like to hear that you're moving away from tying the plot of the PFS season to the current AP. I know Paizo likes to tie things together, but it does mean for me that if I'm not interested in the current AP, I'm going to have trouble getting interested in the current PFS season as well. I think that's a good change, even though we've really only had three seasons that were strongly tied to an AP. However, two of those I wasn't interested in, so the general experience of tying PFS to an AP has been a negative one for me.


2 people marked this as a favorite.

Mike and all the development team thank you for the continued efforts. Alot of what you do is thankless stuff and cat herding but you keep striving to improve pfs and are taking the feedback to heart by having major meeting like this.

Looking forward to more info on the changes to come.

Also ban gunslingers pls

5/5 ⦵⦵⦵

Wooot!

Sovereign Court 5/5 Venture-Captain, Texas—Houston North aka Kageki

Finally this is what we been waiting for. My favorite part is that the factions will be ever present in the scenarios. If you need help to test anything Mike, please feel free to let me know. My players ARE interested in play testing scenarios and pregens.

Thank you also for realizing about the 4 hr slot... That alone will help us more than naught.

The replay idea, I am even more excited about this. Let me know if I can be of service for helping with this or the additional resources page as well.

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

Robert Hetherington wrote:
Michael Brock wrote:
I believe every VO can attest to my vehemence against replay on the VO message board.
We could, if we weren't under an NDA :)

Hush you.


These are all very interesting and encouraging notes! Possible expansion of replay options, stepping up the importance of factions, moving PFS seasons away from Adventure Path ties into their own stories... all good stuff. Looking forward to additional updates.

And if the scenario redesign includes more 'modular' story events or incidents a la optional encounters, it could bump the flexibility for random groups that happen to run fast or run slow, still fitting within the 4-hour timeslot.

4/5

I love the idea of opening limited replay for those of us who can't get enough.

I can't say enough good things about the idea of developing additional content and having PFS specific story arcs. I'm excited to see what is done with factions, but can't really say much more about that until we have a more fleshed out idea.

Making scenarios closer to the 4 hour mark is a great idea, as more recent content has been pushing the 5 hour mark, and my wife likes me home before midnight.

Really excited about all of this.

The Exchange 3/5

Having that beer will still be replayable, right?

Dark Archive 5/5

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Hulking Hurler wrote:
Having that beer will still be replayable, right?

Always.

Also, Hurler, I received a gift from my uncles-in-law that is fantastic. Pics incoming soon.

Liberty's Edge

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Thanks for the update, Mike!

I, too, hope that you don't retire some of the Season 0 scenarios. Silent Tide and Black Waters are two of my favorites to introduce to new players. Hopefully the revised replay rules will enable GMs to re-run level 1-5 scenarios, the Beginners Boxed Set Bash scenarios, and the Quests, and still receive XP and Prestige credit for doing so.

It's very cool that PFS will no longer be tied to the annual AP. Year of the Shadow Lodge was immensely fun and I look forward to more metaplot like that.

The news about factions is intriguing, but I hope we don't bring back faction missions as that would be one way to keep a scenario on-track for just 4 hours. It's good news that the VOs will be looking over the scenarios before they're published. Another thing to keep tabs on are encounters that run longer than an hour (i.e., the first one in Frostfur Captives, which is otherwise one of my favorite scenarios). I prefer that the actions of the players directly impact the future and season metaplot. It makes the world more dynamic and gives players a feeling that their character's actions truly matter. So, please keep the ABCD checkboxes on the reporting sheets.

Speaking of reporting sheets, is there an ETA on when the online reporting system will allow the new factions?


I can easily see why replay would be not allowed normally. What has really bothered me is the insistence that GM's who put in all those hours and money to make PFS a success only get one replay per star per LIFETIME.

I hardly think GM's being able to replay on average a couple scenarios a year would ruin Pathfinder Society. I sincerely hope that was discussed in your meetings and that something will be done about it eventually.

Silver Crusade

I definitely appreciate the fact that Paizo is recognizing that some scenarios can take an extraordinary effort to prepare for and that many of them can run easily beyond 4 hours. Some of the mechanics can be very complex and very difficult to smoothly deal with at a table no matter how prepared you are.


Michael Brock wrote:
That may delay update of additional resources from the last week of the month to a week to 10 days later.

Rough! Tell the Dev team to not drop so many spoilers then:) Seems like a good plan though, hopefully we can get rid of dazing spell then *crosses fingers*

Michael Brock wrote:
We have come up with some ideas that we think can bring factions back to the forefront so they regain a good bit of their flavor and importance in the campaign.

Personally, I like them in the back role and really don't care about the factions or the faction system. I feel overall it contributes very little to the game, but I know others feel the exact opposite of me, so just throwing out my two cents. Perhaps more VC could be faction heads and send us on more "personal" missions. That will allow us to go out and immerse in the faction without taking anything away from the scenario or table as a whole, which is pretty much what factions do currently IMO, though the recent updates have lessened this greatly.

Michael Brock wrote:
We've come up with an idea that we think can address limited replay.

This would be amazing, and I in no way shape or form see it destroying the game. I have been at several replay tables and (hopefully) have never spoiled anything, and I've only once or twice seen a player slip something, but you can always tell they didn't mean to.

And on a more personal level, playing PFS has gotten very difficult. I have a very tight schedule, and those rare times I have a slot open now, well I'll be that everything being ran is something I've played, and nothing worth spending a precious golden replay credit on. Even online (where there may be 3 or 4 games at a time I can play) its getting harder and harder. Now obviously having a more limited schedule is partially the culprit, but I almost always have a potential slot or two a week, and pretty much never find a game then.

Michael Brock wrote:
The entire team is in agreement we need more play content for the awesome player base.

Awesome, I like that, but really you all have been doing a great job sanctioning AP's and Mods! More content is more better though.

Michael Brock wrote:
John is going to start taking a very hard look in how best to help shorten scenarios just a touch so we can bring back play to the four hours they were always meant to be.

Nice. I've played a few scenarios that I was thinking would be better served as a module (anyone from the Mwangi Expanse recently may know to what I refer) or be a two parter. I do like some of the more in depth storyline, but making it a mod or multi-parter would be appreciated.

GM Lamplighter wrote:
Here's what I heard*: New factions: Red Mantis.

YES! YES! Thank you god! Please don't let this be one of those internet tro.....

WHAT! It is. AH MAN!

Grand Lodge 2/5

How far in advance do you guys get to look at the materials before they make it into customer hands? What I mean is do you guys get the books in enough time that you can make judgements on the materials before it's released? Or maybe even get to look at it before it's finalized so that more eyes can determine whether or not something is working as intended?

One thing: For scenarios that have unique maps, please figure out a way to provide full-sized maps. Whether that's an additional download in pdf format or whatever. But some maps look awesome when they're only 2"x3". When you blow them up and print them out they don't look awesome anymore.


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claudekennilol wrote:
One thing: For scenarios that have unique maps, please figure out a way to provide full-sized maps. Whether that's an additional download in pdf format or whatever. But some maps look awesome when they're only 2"x3". When you blow them up and print them out they don't look awesome anymore.

While we are on maps, one thing I forgot, and really this needs to go the entire design team, because they are doing it an AP's now too. Stop superimposing the letters/numbers, secret doors etc onto the maps. All the old stuff is over laid on top of a map, so you can easily drag and drop the map into a VTT. The last year or so you'll have gone to having the writing actually be on the map, which is terrible for VTT play, which is where a lot of us play, and several people exclusively get to play there.

5/5 Venture-Captain, New York—Nassau County aka VLTRokktor

Robert Hetherington wrote:
Michael Brock wrote:
I believe every VO can attest to my vehemence against replay on the VO message board.
We could, if we weren't under an NDA :)

Quiet, they will hear you;)

Paizo Employee 5/5 Developer

claudekennilol wrote:
One thing: For scenarios that have unique maps, please figure out a way to provide full-sized maps. Whether that's an additional download in pdf format or whatever. But some maps look awesome when they're only 2"x3". When you blow them up and print them out they don't look awesome anymore.

Getting maps that do what you're asking involves commissioning maps at a much higher resolution, much as we do for Flip-Mats. I don't work on our map products directly save for the custom maps that appear in scenarios, but I'm certain that there's a very significant difference in the production cost.

Grand Lodge 2/5

John Compton wrote:
claudekennilol wrote:
One thing: For scenarios that have unique maps, please figure out a way to provide full-sized maps. Whether that's an additional download in pdf format or whatever. But some maps look awesome when they're only 2"x3". When you blow them up and print them out they don't look awesome anymore.
Getting maps that do what you're asking involves commissioning maps at a much higher resolution, much as we do for Flip-Mats. I don't work on our map products directly save for the custom maps that appear in scenarios, but I'm certain that there's a very significant difference in the production cost.

I see where you're coming from.. But maybe get them to be done in vector graphics at small scale. So that way they'll look as intended small, but when scaled up still won't look horrible. I don't do graphics so I don't really know what the difference is between them (I mean, I know the definition, but don't know what amount of effort is different between it and how it might "normally" be done).

Also, what Under a Bleeding Sun, said, too. If there's a way to not get secrets printed on the map that would be great, too. It's good for a GM to be able to see a map, it's better for the players to also get to see the map.

p.s. I don't know what a VTT is so I'm just going to assume he's right and just nod silently and smile.

Grand Lodge 5/5 Global Organized Play Coordinator

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casiel wrote:

Thanks for the update, Mike!

I, too, hope that you don't retire some of the Season 0 scenarios. Silent Tide and Black Waters are two of my favorites to introduce to new players.

Mine too! And I still have this idea in the back of my head that the girl from Black Waters should become a serial killer that hunts down Pathfinders. Just saying....

Grand Lodge

GM Lamplighter wrote:
* (heard from the tiny man who lives inside my thumb and whispers to me behind the GM screen)

Are you Fozzie the Bear in Muppet Treasure Island now?

Grand Lodge RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

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Seth Gipson wrote:
GM Lamplighter wrote:
* (heard from the tiny man who lives inside my thumb and whispers to me behind the GM screen)
Are you Fozzie the Bear in Muppet Treasure Island now?

Phew, glad I'm not the only one; I was afraid to admit I thought of that.

Silver Crusade

Michael Brock wrote:
casiel wrote:

Thanks for the update, Mike!

I, too, hope that you don't retire some of the Season 0 scenarios. Silent Tide and Black Waters are two of my favorites to introduce to new players.

Mine too! And I still have this idea in the back of my head that the girl from Black Waters should become a serial killer that hunts down Pathfinders. Just saying....

Any chance of seeing Yargos Gill anytime soon? Or has he just given up on reading all together? ;)

5/5 Venture-Agent, Massachusetts—Boston

I am actually hoping for more stuff with the Deckland family. Running into one of them randomly with one of my characters after the infernal vaults was sort of awkward ICly.

Sovereign Court

Ever since the launch of Pathfinder Society Organized Play I've yearned for appendices make an appearance in the scenarios. These appendices would contain feats and spells not provided by the core assumption, reducing preparation time, and making it easier to check the wording. And as far as I've understood, these appendices could be an extra, not something that is required from the writer (as the appendices would be merely pasted text from PRD), thus still keeping the same word count.

An alternative would be to create hyperlinks to certain feats, spells, monsters, and special rules (e.g. environmental hazards). While not useful to those running a printed out scenario, it would make preparation easier. If you demand an example, the NPCs laid out in NPC Codex are becoming a norm in scenario design, and there's only the page number. You need to plow through the PRD's NPC Codex or use the Search option – if you don't own a copy – since you don't necessarily even know, what class the Con Artist NPC is.

Something that's has been a topic for ages is revisiting Season 0 scenarios and updating them. From my perspective it would be a rather tedious yet quick task (unless you want to update the visual appearance as well). I can't imagine the job taking more than a week's worth of work hours from one designer.

What else I've been wondering are the chronicle sheets. I don't know whether you've heard, but "Items Found" is almost always a useless section unless it has unique items listed. Fame can be acquired quite easily, and even then you rarely need to resort to chronicle items.

Michael Brock wrote:
casiel wrote:

Thanks for the update, Mike!

I, too, hope that you don't retire some of the Season 0 scenarios. Silent Tide and Black Waters are two of my favorites to introduce to new players.
Mine too! And I still have this idea in the back of my head that the girl from Black Waters should become a serial killer that hunts down Pathfinders. Just saying....

You're such a tease...

3/5

Updates are always appreciated.

-TimD


claudekennilol wrote:

Also, what Under a Bleeding Sun, said, too. If there's a way to not get secrets printed on the map that would be great, too. It's good for a GM to be able to see a map, it's better for the players to also get to see the map.

p.s. I don't know what a VTT is so I'm just going to assume he's right and just nod silently and smile.

Sorry, virtual table top (ie. online play usually). I know they can do this because everything pre 2013 (maybe even pre-2014) was made this way. The first AP I saw it in was ROW, and I don't remember seeing it in any Season 4 I prepped. It was really nice.

Now if I don't want the players to see the A-B-C, traps and secret doors I have to photo shop it myself. I am way too busy to do that, so instead they just see the floor with the giant T on it, or know to take 20 in this room with the sides of the S coming out of the vision blocking.

It IS actually nice for the world maps though.

Edit: Alright, I lied. They started sometime in Season 3 (3-16 isn't superimposed but 3-25 is), so its been a few years already.

Silver Crusade 5/5

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Since we're talking about maps:

Please, please, please ALWAYS have North be the top of the map.

Whenever remotely possible, make sure maps
1) are just vertical and horizontal, not on angles
2) are on a 5 ft scale
3) fit onto a flip mat
4) have enough room to fight on.

Yes, I recognize that 3 and 4 sometimes conflict

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