Tier 1-7 Scenarios omitted from the 'Guide to PFS Organised Play'?


Pathfinder Society

Silver Crusade 5/5 Venture-Agent, United Kingdom—England—Colchester

Hi All,

I've been trying to find the official rules for character levels in a tier 1-7 scenario, and was wondering if someone could point me in the right direction?

From memory, you can play out of subtier, but not by more that 1 subtier, so...

Subtier 1-2: Legal levels 1-4 (someone please correct me if this should be 1-5)
Subtier 3-4: Legal levels 1-7
Subtier 6-7: Legal levels 3-7

I'm just looking to clarify because we are likely to be running one table of Among the Living next Friday with a pretty high level disparity of 5, 5, 3, 3, 2, 1: APL 3

I just wanted to make sure that all of these characters could play at the same table. Also, if one of the players wanted to play a level 6 character, would this be okay?

Sczarni 5/5 ⦵⦵

Starfinder Charter Superscriber

If you're running the 3-4 subtier of a 1-7 everyone from levels 1 to 7 would be able to play.

If you're running the 6-7 subtier of a 1-7 then only levels 3 to 7 would be able to play.

If you're running the 1-2 subtier of a 1-7 then only levels 1 to 5 would be able to play.

Just as if you were running the 1-2 subtier of a 1-5.

Scarab Sages 5/5 Venture-Captain, Washington—Spokane

Jack,

Both situations you mentioned would be APL 3.33 so the table would be able to run regardless because no one would be more than 1 sub tier away. In your example, if your APL was 6, the level 1 and 2 would not be able to play as they would be more than 1 sub tier away. Hope this helps.

Edit: The rule for Tier 1-7 scenarios is on page 32 of the Guide to Pathfinder Society Organized Play.

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

Nefreet, playing in the 3-4 tier, character would be able to play from one or the other, but there can't be a 1st level character and a 7th level character in the same game.

So the character would need to be either from the 1-2 and 3-4 tier, or be from 3-4, 5th level and 6-7 tier.

I just wanted to clarify.

Sczarni 5/5 ⦵⦵

Starfinder Charter Superscriber

It's the disparity between the subtiers that matters, not between the actual characters.

And that makes sense. You don't want a level 7 powering through a subtier 1-2 game, or a level 1 tanking through a subtier 6-7 game.

Silver Crusade 5/5 Venture-Agent, United Kingdom—England—Colchester

Thanks for the feedback :D

I don't suppose someone could point me to the official ruling on this?

Also, just as a curiosity, does anyone know why the tier 1-7 scenarios were discontinued?

Silver Crusade 5/5

Nefreet wrote:

If you're running the 3-4 subtier of a 1-7 everyone from levels 1 to 7 would be able to play.

If you're running the 6-7 subtier of a 1-7 then only levels 3 to 7 would be able to play.

If you're running the 1-2 subtier of a 1-7 then only levels 1 to 5 would be able to play.

Just as if you were running the 1-2 subtier of a 1-5.

I don't think that a level five can play in the 1-2 subtier, since it would be more than one step out of the 1-2 tier.


Jack Amy wrote:

Thanks for the feedback :D

I don't suppose someone could point me to the official ruling on this?

Also, just as a curiosity, does anyone know why the tier 1-7 scenarios were discontinued?

The last clarification on this I remember seeing was back in v4.0 of the PFSOPG. Officially, I don't know why they were discontinued but I imagine much of it had to do with the fact that the available library of play material increased to a point where 1-7s were no longer necessary. They're also a little confusing about determining how to slot properly as players had to play characters within one tier of each other.

Scarab Sages 5/5 Venture-Captain, Netherlands aka Woran

The math everyone is doing in this thread is one of the reasons.
Another one is that with a 1-7, there is always a tier that is a bit too easy, and one that is more deadly, as encounters dont scale properly over such a large level range. If you play it in the sweet spot, its nice, but if you dont, its either boring or too easy to TPK.

Silver Crusade 5/5 Venture-Agent, United Kingdom—England—Colchester

Nefreet wrote:

If you're running the 3-4 subtier of a 1-7 everyone from levels 1 to 7 would be able to play.

If you're running the 6-7 subtier of a 1-7 then only levels 3 to 7 would be able to play.
If you're running the 1-2 subtier of a 1-7 then only levels 1 to 5 would be able to play.
Just as if you were running the 1-2 subtier of a 1-5.
UndeadMitch wrote:
I don't think that a level five can play in the 1-2 subtier, since it would be more than one step out of the 1-2 tier.

My initial thought was the same as UndeadMitch here. It's unlikely to come up, but it would be nice to have some clarity on this.

Tsriel wrote:
The last clarification on this I remember seeing was back in v4.0 of the PFSOPG. Officially, I don't know why they were discontinued but I imagine much of it had to do with the fact that the available library of play material increased to a point where 1-7s were no longer necessary. They're also a little confusing about determining how to slot properly as players had to play characters within one tier of each other.

Is it possible to download a copy of the organised play guide that contained this information?

Woran wrote:

The math everyone is doing in this thread is one of the reasons.

Another one is that with a 1-7, there is always a tier that is a bit too easy, and one that is more deadly, as encounters dont scale properly over such a large level range. If you play it in the sweet spot, its nice, but if you dont, its either boring or too easy to TPK.

This makes sense. It isn't the 1-7 tier that I particularly like, but being able to run a subtier 3-4 scenario & include that odd level 2 player who missed a session, instead of running a subtier 1-2 scenario for 3 level 3s and a level 2, is certainly handy at times.

5/5

Hillis Mallory III wrote:
there can't be a 1st level character and a 7th level character in the same game.

This is not true RAW, assuming the game is running at subtier 3-4. Of course, it should be avoiding like the PLAGUE, but it is not illegal. The higher-level guy should play a new PC in this case if at all possible.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Jack Amy wrote:

Thanks for the feedback :D

I don't suppose someone could point me to the official ruling on this?

Also, just as a curiosity, does anyone know why the tier 1-7 scenarios were discontinued?

Because it was found more effective to break modules into 1-5 and 7-10 categories.

5/5 Venture-Agent, California—San Francisco Bay Area North & East aka Pirate Rob

There is no need for an old version of the guide. The current version still says

OP Guide wrote:
Some scenarios or special events offer more than two subtiers. In these cases, no PC can play at a subtier more than 1 step away from her character level.

Silver Crusade 5/5 Venture-Agent, United Kingdom—England—Colchester

Aha! Thanks Robert, I must have just failed my perception check.

Sczarni 5/5 ⦵⦵

Starfinder Charter Superscriber

I can see why some ppl may consider "out-of-tier" to be "more than 1 step away from their character level", but honestly, if a 5th level character can play in the 1-2 subtier of a 1-5 scenario, then a 5th level character playing in the 1-2 subtier of a 1-7 scenario should be no different.

5/5 Venture-Agent, California—San Francisco Bay Area North & East aka Pirate Rob

5th level is only 1 subtier away from a 1-2 in a 1-5, but is more than 1 subtier away form 1-2 in a 1-7.

Grand Lodge 5/5

I don't think so...

AFAIK, 5 isn't in a subtier (the subtiers are 1-2, 3-4, and 6-7)

A level 5 character isn't in any of the subtiers, and thus isn't more than 1 away from any of them.

Just my 2 coppers.

Sczarni 5/5 ⦵⦵

Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Robert Hetherington wrote:
5th level is only 1 subtier away from a 1-2 in a 1-5, but is more than 1 subtier away form 1-2 in a 1-7.

I disagree.

It's "out-of-tier".

It can't be more than 1 subtier away when it doesn't even have a subtier of its own.

That'd also mean level 6-7 characters wouldn't be allowed in a subtier 3-4 game, since they'd then be 2 subtiers away.

I hardly think that's intended.

EDIT: Wow! Ninja'd by 1 second!!


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I agree with Nefreet's original post.

Liberty's Edge 5/5

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Not so. Level 5 is out of sub-tier for the 3-4 and 6-7. Which means it is more than one sub-tier away from 1-2.

Sczarni 5/5 ⦵⦵

Starfinder Charter Superscriber

We interpret the meaning of "one subtier" differently, then.

"Out-of-tier" isn't defined as "more than one subtier" anywhere.

It's "out-of-tier".

I think you're adding an extra level that isn't defined anywhere, and it doesn't make any sense to do so.

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

Nefreet wrote:

We interpret the meaning of "one subtier" differently, then.

"Out-of-tier" isn't defined as "more than one subtier" anywhere.

It's "out-of-tier".

I think you're adding an extra level that isn't defined anywhere, and it doesn't make any sense to do so.

Nefreet. Level 5 is out of sub-tier for 3-4 and 6-7, so that both are one step away, yes?

Which also means that 1-2, in a 1-7, is two steps away for that level 5.

Also, for whoever said that 1-7s have a sweet sub-tier? I know of one where all sub-tiers are ugly, and one step away from losing one or more PCs, with a serious potential for TPK.

Level 1-2: Potential for 5d6+ damage in a single hit on a PC, even before you add in the 15% chance of a critical.
Level 3-4: Even higher potential damage, 30% chance of a crit threat.
Level 6-7: Empowered 9d6 fireball, that is, 9d6 before the empowered is taken into account.

That scenario always makes people think the author saved all the XP for that last encounter, and that puts it into an Epic Challenge in CR terms.

And, due to PFS rules, it is entirely possible to get a level 3 PC in the crowd facing that empowered 9d6 fireball. Unless that PC has Evasion, or the dice roll badly for damage, it is likely to be insta-death at that level, especially if not a martial.

Silver Crusade 5/5 Venture-Agent, United Kingdom—England—Colchester

kinevon wrote:
Also, for whoever said that 1-7s have a sweet sub-tier? I know of one where all sub-tiers are ugly, and one step away from losing one or more PCs, with a serious potential for TPK.

kinevon, could you post the name of that scenario in spoiler tags below, or PM it to me? I wouldn't want to run this for a group similar to the one that I mentioned above & have it trip me up.

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

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Don't open:
2-21 The Dalsine Affair.

Scarab Sages 4/5

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I'm going to add a post linking to this thread in the proposed edits to the guide thread, in case Mike or John are still paying attention to that. This is another situation where it should be a simple yes or no answer. Can a level 5 character play in the 1-2 subtier of a 1-7? But, because the language in the guide was written to try to account for specials with multiple subtiers as well, it becomes a table variation issue.

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