How does PFS work?


Pathfinder Society

Dark Archive

So, I'm attending a con where there will be gaming. There are some PFS games going on, and I was wondering how does that work?

Do I make a character at level 1 and work my way up? Can I not join in in any games that are at a higher level than that?

I haven't done PFS before, so I'm kind of floundering?


You can register on this website and get a PFS id number. At the end of each scenario you get a piece of paper (a "chronicle sheet") that says how much money/xp/and whatnot you gained during the scenario and those sheets stay with your character's id #. That's how you level up.

If you don't have time to make a first level character, or want to play in a scenario and don't have a character of sufficient level there are pregenerated characters you can play (levels 1, 4, or 7 for almost every class).

The document you want to look at is here:
http://paizo.com/products/btpy84k4

It covers all the ways PFS differs from a home game.

Scarab Sages

Hi! see if this helps. Flutters guide for newbies

If you make a character you have to play him from level 1 up.

If you play a higher level you'll have to use a pregenerated character.

As another note if it's at all feisible to play at least one game before the con (either in person or online) I would try to do that, as conventions can be a little hectic.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Welcome, Roto!

I hope you enjoy your first PFS game. You start with a level 1 character, but you can join in higher level games if you play a pregenerated character. The con should have a folder of these to choose from.

Really, you can just come and play and try it out. Do you have a Pathfinder number yet?

Don't worry about being confused. We were all there, once.

Hmm

PS Flutter will be by any minute with his guide for newbies.

EDIT: Ninja'd by Flutter!

Dark Archive

Flutter wrote:

Hi! see if this helps. Flutters guide for newbies

If you make a character you have to play him from level 1 up.

If you play a higher level you'll have to use a pregenerated character.

As another note if it's at all feisible to play at least one game before the con (either in person or online) I would try to do that, as conventions can be a little hectic.

Where do I find the full list of banned classes/archetypes/prestige classes etc?


Roto wrote:


Where do I find the full list of banned classes/archetypes/prestige classes etc?

You don't find what's banned you find what's allowed. The doc shows you how to check archives of nethys for legality. Or you can just ask And i'll look for you.

Its annoying to do as a player but maintaining the list from the organized play perspective would be a nightmare.

Dark Archive

BigNorseWolf wrote:
Roto wrote:


Where do I find the full list of banned classes/archetypes/prestige classes etc?

You don't find what's banned you find what's allowed. The doc shows you how to check archives of nethys for legality. Or you can just ask And i'll look for you.

Its annoying to do as a player but maintaining the list from the organized play perspective would be a nightmare.

Is the Dark Tapestry spirit for Shaman legal for PFS play? It's not on the site yet.


What book is the Dark tapestry spirit out of?

Dark Archive

BigNorseWolf wrote:

What book is the Dark tapestry spirit out of?

Horror Realms. Just came out.

Sczarni

Probably won't know for a few weeks, at least.

Takes some time to vet new material.


Roto wrote:
BigNorseWolf wrote:

What book is the Dark tapestry spirit out of?

Horror Realms. Just came out.

Not legal yet. Takes them a little while to take a look at it.

Your character is an infinitely malleable ball of protoplasm until they're played at second level, so you won't miss out on that option unless you level to 2 and then play him.

Dark Archive

BigNorseWolf wrote:
Roto wrote:
BigNorseWolf wrote:

What book is the Dark tapestry spirit out of?

Horror Realms. Just came out.

Not legal yet. Takes them a little while to take a look at it.

Your character is an infinitely malleable ball of protoplasm until they're played at second level, so you won't miss out on that option unless you level to 2 and then play him.

Do you have any idea if it'll be made legal or illegal? I rather liked it and the con is this coming weekend?

Dark Archive

What about races such as Tiefling? Nethys says I can't use them, but http://paizo.com/pathfinderSociety/additionalResources says that they're legal?


Pathfinder Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

It is unlikely that there will be an update to Additional Resources, which is the document that defines what is allowed outside of the Core Rule Book (CRB).

On the other hand, you could get started on the character as a different Shaman. Provided you didn't play so much that he became second level during the convention, you could change the spirit later.

The Role Playing Guild Guide defines the rules for PFS. It specifically allows a player to rework their character until it is played at second level.

Role Playing Guild Guide, pg. 35:
ADDENDUM: CHARACTER REVISION
Level 1 characters may be rebuilt per the rules in Appendix 1: Character Creation. This is not a necessary step to completing a Chronicle sheet after an adventure, but a Chronicle sheet is required in order to confirm the changes.

As for Tieflings, you need a special boon to play them now.

The races you can currently create without anything special are all the races from the CRB plus ifrit, kitsune, nagaji, oread, sylph, tengu, undine, and wayang if you have a book that describes that race.

Sczarni

The Guide that others have linked is a pretty streamlined document. If you skim over it you'll find answers to most of your questions.

For questions of legality, check out the Additional Resources document (or the third party site, archivesofnethys).

For additional answers, check out the FAQ (linked at the top of this page).

That should get you off to a good start. Plus, you can pick the brain of your first GM, as well as your fellow Convention goers.

Dark Archive

BretI wrote:

It is unlikely that there will be an update to Additional Resources, which is the document that defines what is allowed outside of the Core Rule Book (CRB).

On the other hand, you could get started on the character as a different Shaman. Provided you didn't play so much that he became second level during the convention, you could change the spirit later.

The Role Playing Guild Guide defines the rules for PFS. It specifically allows a player to rework their character until it is played at second level.

** spoiler omitted **

As for Tieflings, you need a special boon to play them now.

The races you can currently create without anything special are all the races from the CRB plus ifrit, kitsune, nagaji, oread, sylph, tengu, undine, and wayang if you have a book that describes that race.

What's the likelihood of leveling up after the first session?

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure, Lost Omens, Pawns, Rulebook Subscriber
Roto wrote:
What's the likelihood of leveling up after the first session?

That would only happen if you were playing a full module at the convention, which normally takes longer than a single session or convention slot. Regular scenarios offer 1/3rd the advancement needed to level.


To clarify, PFS does not use the standard XP award system.

You get 1 XP for every scenario you play, which run 4-5 hours. Modules award 3 XP but typically run longer than scenarios, anywhere from 8-15 hours usually broken up into 2-3 sessions.

You level up every time you earn 3 XP. So once every three scenarios or one module.

-k

Dark Archive

Quick question. I saw that starting characters get 150gp. Do starting characters also get an outfit worth 10gp or less? Or do I have to buy all outfits?


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You do indeed get a free outfit for 10 gp or less. I highly recommend one. Any one. Don't be like the pregens (none of whom have outfits listed).

Sczarni

You get one for free, cost wise, but still have to count its weight (which apparently a lot of people think is also "free").


"why is that kitsune not wearing pants?

"5 strength.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
BigNorseWolf wrote:

"why is that kitsune not wearing pants?

"5 strength.

On the subject of outfits... Is there a penalty for fighting without undergarments?

(I asked my local VC. He said that the penalty is automatic failure on every Diplomacy check. I had no arguments for that one.)

Sczarni

2 people marked this as a favorite.

It'll be an automatic success with at least a few people.


Maybe it would work with the charming trait?

Dark Archive

Nefreet wrote:
You get one for free, cost wise, but still have to count its weight (which apparently a lot of people think is also "free").

Which is kind of stupid IMO. My ability to lift stuff doesn't really change based on my outfit. I mean, My outfit I'm wearing right now weighs around 10-15 pounds and it'd be no different than if I was wearing shorts and a shirt instead or if I was wearing full battle rattle weighing at 50ish lbs.

Dark Archive

Roto wrote:
Nefreet wrote:
You get one for free, cost wise, but still have to count its weight (which apparently a lot of people think is also "free").
Which is kind of stupid IMO. My ability to lift stuff doesn't really change based on my outfit. I mean, My outfit I'm wearing right now weighs around 10-15 pounds and it'd be no different than if I was wearing shorts and a shirt instead or if I was wearing full battle rattle weighing at 50ish lbs.

You'd be surprised. I mean on a hot and humid summer day, it is like I have Lead Drawers cast on me, no save. I can barely lift my beer they is so heavy.


3 people marked this as a favorite.
Roto wrote:
Nefreet wrote:
You get one for free, cost wise, but still have to count its weight (which apparently a lot of people think is also "free").
Which is kind of stupid IMO. My ability to lift stuff doesn't really change based on my outfit. I mean, My outfit I'm wearing right now weighs around 10-15 pounds and it'd be no different than if I was wearing shorts and a shirt instead or if I was wearing full battle rattle weighing at 50ish lbs.

As a resident of the far north. I found my mobility quite hampered in my 'cold weather outfit', especially when I could not afford a masterwork version. I've noticed it also has a more drastic effect on small characters (less than 3' tall).

Dark Archive

DM Livgin wrote:
Roto wrote:
Nefreet wrote:
You get one for free, cost wise, but still have to count its weight (which apparently a lot of people think is also "free").
Which is kind of stupid IMO. My ability to lift stuff doesn't really change based on my outfit. I mean, My outfit I'm wearing right now weighs around 10-15 pounds and it'd be no different than if I was wearing shorts and a shirt instead or if I was wearing full battle rattle weighing at 50ish lbs.
As a resident of the far north. I found my mobility quite hampered in my 'cold weather outfit', especially when I could not afford a masterwork version. I've noticed it also has a more drastic effect on small characters (less than 3' tall).

Mobility certainly, but that's not really because of the weight of the outfit but instead of the layers. Making it, imo, more of a dex negative than a str one.

Encumberence is broken in general. Looking at what I typically have to push, pull, lift, or carry on a near daily basis and comparing it to the encumberence chart puts my RL str around 18 to 23 which just isn't true.

Scarab Sages

I'm not sure I buy it. You're effectively saying you can carry another person without having that affect your movement in any way. Even if that is true, that certainly puts you in the upper margins of strength

Dark Archive

niconorsk wrote:
I'm not sure I buy it. You're effectively saying you can carry another person without having that affect your movement in any way. Even if that is true, that certainly puts you in the upper margins of strength

And I'm not.. believe you me.

But I routinely have to push 2000 lb equipment around. Now, if you take the PF encumbrance rules into account, you can push 5 times your max load, which would put me at str 23.. and if you consider 'favorable conditions' that would put me at str 18. Either way those are high numbers that don't make sense in regards to reality.

Silver Crusade

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Are there wheels?


Pushing a favorable, 2000# weight would be STR 15. Max load of 200. Times 5 for pushing. Times 2 for favorable.

I'd consider that something like a reasonably balanced load, with a smooth-ish bottom on something like indoor concrete. I'd give a further boost for wheeled on that surface, even if that's not strictly RAW.

Without favored it would be STR 20. Max load uses the high end of the heavy encumbrance column.


yeah pushing equipment that's designed to be pushed is a whole different ball game then pushing a great big block.

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