Printing out ALL pregens?


GM Discussion

Liberty's Edge

The various guides for GMs (GM101, 201, and the GM part of the PFS guide) say you should have pregens at the table in case players don't have characters, in tier, or otherwise. Does this mean you have to have ALL of the pregens printed, or can you print a selection of them--enough to give 4-7 players a choice, if necessary--and not worry about the rest? Printing out all of them if I don't need all of them at once is a drain on my ink and paper supplies at home, even though I'd only be doing it once, since there are so many of them.

Silver Crusade 4/5 Venture-Captain, Pennsylvania—Pittsburgh aka Terminalmancer

I wouldn't worry about having all of them. The Core Rulebook pregens are kind of nice to have so long as you have a balance of roles filled out, and maybe double up on Kyra in case the next table over needs their own Healbot 9000.

If you want to go beyond that, the ACG pregens tend to be very well-built and can be a lot of fun to play.

Silver Crusade 3/5

Yeah, just go with the simple ones (for low-tier tables with newbies) and maybe a few of the more efficient ones for those kinda unlikely cases you need a high-level one. Apparently Crowe (the bloodrager) is very well-built, at least, and usually no one says no to having Kyra in the party (unless there's already a healer).

Silver Crusade 5/5 5/55/5 Venture-Captain, Germany—Bavaria

Crow, the destroyer of low level enemies ...

I have a binder with all of the pregens (laminated, it helps), but some pregens I just don't offer the new players unless they ask for them. Mostly the ones that do not perform very well at level 1 or those that are very complicated.

I noticed that some players like the option of playing a pregen that matches their gender, but that doesn't seem to be an issue for most players (which is a very good thing in my book).

Grand Lodge 4/5 Premier Event Coordinator

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Typically for GameDays we organize, we have [nearly]all the pregens printed and laminated. It can be problematic for a few in the Occult series because they take three pages, so we tend to ignore those. The player uses a wet erase pen on the laminate and then returns the copy when the session is over. Sure this is a bit expensive initially, but pays for itself in the long run assuming you organize regular games.

for conventions, we bring a printer for HQ, use the laminated ones like a "menu" and print the selected pregen on demand. That way we don't need to guess which one/s the player wants and don't run out of something. Certainly saves on ink/toner.

Liberty's Edge

Bob Jonquet wrote:

Typically for GameDays we organize, we have [nearly]all the pregens printed and laminated. It can be problematic for a few in the Occult series because they take three pages, so we tend to ignore those. The player uses a wet erase pen on the laminate and then returns the copy when the session is over. Sure this is a bit expensive initially, but pays for itself in the long run assuming you organize regular games.

for conventions, we bring a printer for HQ, use the laminated ones like a "menu" and print the selected pregen on demand. That way we don't need to guess which one/s the player wants and don't run out of something. Certainly saves on ink/toner.

I put all of my character sheets in sheet protectors, with chronicle sheets between the first and last pages, for that same reason. I also put the 6 or 8 pregens I printed myself in sheet protectors in my organized play binder, so I'd have at least those.

I just play at a gaming store weekly, and the region's Venture Captain said that, as a GM, I have to have all of them, but this was after I'd been to a GM101 (in the region where I used to live) and read the GM201 guide, so I wasn't sure if "you must have ALL pregens available at all times when acting as GM" was the official interpretation of the suggestion to have pregens available or not.

Usually, there are just one to three tables on Wednesday nights at that store, and the highest number of pregens I've seen used at one table was two, and I was running a 5-9, which those two players didn't have high enough characters for.

So, my thought was to print out enough for a full legal table, plus a couple extra, so that the last player to the table wouldn't get stuck with the pregen no one else wanted. I do have all of them on PDF, of course, but as I said in my original post, printing them all is not cost effective for me.

Grand Lodge 4/5 Premier Event Coordinator

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Ezdorell Ex-Elven wrote:
I just play at a gaming store weekly, and the region's Venture Captain said that, as a GM, I have to have all of them, but this was after I'd been to a GM101 (in the region where I used to live) and read the GM201 guide, so I wasn't sure if "you must have ALL pregens available at all times when acting as GM" was the official interpretation of the suggestion to have pregens available or not.

There is nothing in the rules that says you must have all the pregens available whether you are a GM, organizer, or even a VO. However, if makes things a lot more difficult to accommodate new players if you have none of them. It is strongly recommended that at least some of them are available at your event. That being said, local/regional differences/expectations can impact that a great deal. Some area leaders might "require" all events offer all the pregens.

My main issue with any requirement is the cost of meeting the expectation. While I am perfectly comfortable providing most/all the pregens to attendees at an event I am organizing, I stop short of requiring that of all organizers in my region and I certainly do not expect the table GMs to have/provide pregens to the players at their table. IMO, that is the responsibility of the organizer. If you want to be in charge, you need to be in charge. Now, if they feel it is better to just provide the CORE pregens, I will support them. If they want all of them to be available, I support that too. I trust my community leaders to know what is in the best interests of their local area as they know it better than I do. If a VO or an organizer passes the responsibility of providing pregens to their table GMs or even the players themselves, I will address that with them directly.

Ezdorell Ex-Elven wrote:
printing them all is not cost effective for me.

I might recommend one of two solutions that seems to work well.

(1) If the store is okay with storing pregens in a box, like a standard comic storage/display box, print out as many as you can handle/afford, but stick to just a few versions, say the CORE pregens. Print a good stack of each, say a few dozen or more. Whatever you can handle. Then, the next week/month, do it again with the next group, maybe the "Ultimate" pregens or the ACG. Over time, you'll build a nice stock of pregens and when one runs low, it'll be cheap and easy to replace them.

(2) print 1-2 of each pregen and have them laminated. Again, this can be done relatively cheap by Staples, or some other print facility. If you cannot afford all of them at once, do them in groups. I recommend starting with the CORE pregens. Whenever someone wants to use one, they can write on it with wet/dry erase marker and return it at the end of the session. If they like the pregen and want a more permanent copy, they can download them from the Paizo website for free. Again, if one comes up missing or is damaged, it will be cheap and easy to replace it.

Grand Lodge 5/5 Venture-Captain, Arizona—Phoenix aka TriOmegaZero

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Generally speaking, I only provide the Core pregens for new players, rather than deal with the complexity of the others. Veterans needing a pregen can grab something else if someone has it, but I don't bring them.

Shadow Lodge 5/5 5/55/5 Venture-Lieutenant, California—San Francisco Bay Area North & East aka thistledown

I try to keep 1 of each on hand (two of kyra). If I was going to skip any, I would skip Harsk (because hes terrible), the medium and the spiritualist (because I don't want to explain classes that I don't understand myself) and the first level shaman (because she's useless. I haven't seen how she does at higher levels).

I do give warnings against the ninja because of the low con, but she's an option.

Shadow Lodge 5/5 5/55/5 Venture-Lieutenant, California—San Francisco Bay Area North & East aka thistledown

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I recommend always having the hunter available, in case someone wants to play an archer. And because she's really well built.

Sovereign Court 4/5 Venture-Lieutenant, Texas—Houston aka Lord Valstaff

I will be picking a few iconics and favorites to get printed and laminated. Just about all of them.... except Harsk.

Sovereign Court 5/5 RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32, 2010 Top 8

I'm rebuilding my 'Konfirmation Kit" )Confirmation/Silverhex and maybe MotFF. I plan to have the core and UC Pregens in it, maybe the APG ones if we ever get them. I even have a laminator. (going to test it on my Bonekeep II maps I printed.) Staying away from the ACG pregens though. And the OA Pregens.

Grand Lodge 4/5 5/5

Offer only Harsk....

but I usually have them all but to new players I try to limit the selection to the easiest pregens to play. If it is a regular who just needs a pregen I then offer them anyone they might want.

Silver Crusade 5/5 5/55/5 Venture-Captain, Germany—Bavaria

Bob Jonquet wrote:

Typically for GameDays we organize, we have [nearly]all the pregens printed and laminated. It can be problematic for a few in the Occult series because they take three pages, so we tend to ignore those. The player uses a wet erase pen on the laminate and then returns the copy when the session is over. Sure this is a bit expensive initially, but pays for itself in the long run assuming you organize regular games.

for conventions, we bring a printer for HQ, use the laminated ones like a "menu" and print the selected pregen on demand. That way we don't need to guess which one/s the player wants and don't run out of something. Certainly saves on ink/toner.

Yeah wet erase pens work amazingly on laminated tables, it somehow really helps new player to scribble on them.

Since my fellow VL Benjamin Falk suggested an affordable laminating device, I ended up printing several sets of double sided pregens for my region. Totally worth it in the long run, since you usually never have to replace them (and it is easier to remove the typical gamer food stains).

EDIT: There is really no shame in holding back various pregens, if you as the GM don't have a firm grip of the rules involved since they don't come up regularly in your region (firearms, various psychic classes) or hold them back when you know, that that pregen is going to have a really bad time in the scenario (fire kineticist where everything is resistant or immune etc.).

Silver Crusade 4/5 Venture-Captain, Pennsylvania—Pittsburgh aka Terminalmancer

So, a related question--if complexity is not an issue, which pregens are worth leaving behind?

Background: I also have a laminator, and I've got everything up to Occult Adventures laminated. But they take up a bunch of room and I'm looking to thin the herd so I can fit some of the occult adventures iconics in.

So far I've pulled out Harsk (ha ha) and Hayato. Who else is so bad they might scare a new player away?

Grand Lodge 4/5 5/5

I usually keep out the Arcanist, and a lot of the new occult classes like the medium, the occultist, and the mesmerist. Partly because I am not as set on their mechanics as I want to be.

But also I feel as though they have more complicated mechanics than most of the other pregens.

If I have someone that is completely new I believe I usually offer them the core classes, the ninja, the brawler, the bloodrager, gunslinger, warpriest, shaman, swashbuckler, and investigator.

Dark Archive 5/5 5/5 Venture-Lieutenant, Indiana—Muncie aka Dubgall

I have a 3" note book with a copy of every pregen in my GM bag. each is in a plastic page cover wet/ dry erase makers on the plastic makes it easy to "right" on the characters sheets.

Scarab Sages 4/5

Every week I would print only 3 each time. Eventually over time I got all the Pregens into a binder. After a while I got about 3 of each and of each level just in case. I have the players return them to the binder for future use for others.

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

I printed every Pregen up to Occult and laminated them. There is always a player on hand to help a newbie pick a class, so they stick to the easier ones.
And when a table collapses or someone shows up on short notice, the higher level and more complicated pregens are there to flesh out a party.

Laminating them makes them more durable, and being able to write on them with a dry erase marker helps the new players a lot, as they can strike out used consumables and make notes on the back.

Dark Archive

My VC had every pregen at every level printed up and spiral bound so he could just let people borrow the book. I thought it was a clever idea when I first saw it, until a few minutes later when my gm just straight out rips one of the Kyra pregens out. He didn't realize they're not meant to be removed.

Liberty's Edge 5/5 5/5 Venture-Agent, United Kingdom—England—Chester aka Paz

Randy Saxon wrote:
My VC had every pregen at every level printed up and spiral bound so he could just let people borrow the book. I thought it was a clever idea when I first saw it, until a few minutes later when my gm just straight out rips one of the Kyra pregens out. He didn't realize they're not meant to be removed.

How does he deal with two players needing pregens?

Silver Crusade

Matt Lewis wrote:
Randy Saxon wrote:
My VC had every pregen at every level printed up and spiral bound so he could just let people borrow the book. I thought it was a clever idea when I first saw it, until a few minutes later when my gm just straight out rips one of the Kyra pregens out. He didn't realize they're not meant to be removed.
How does he deal with two players needing pregens?

That was my first thought, too.

Silver Crusade 5/5

First come first served? There are plenty of pregens, if one is in use pick another.

Silver Crusade

UndeadMitch wrote:
First come first served? There are plenty of pregens, if one is in use pick another.

We were asking about the V-C who has a spiral bound book with all the pregens, where they aren't intended to be taken out, and he lets people borrow the whole book at once. If he's only got one book, how do two players use it at the same time?

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