I am new to this, looking to adapt


GM Discussion


My name is Joe,
I have been an avid gamer since 1982. I have started with the original revamped red box of D&D back then after the Pamphlets and when TSR was running the show. I have over the years played Shadowrun, Paranoia, Starwars, Cyberpunk and of course pretty much many campaigns of D&D from the Advanced, 2nd Edition, through 3.5. I briefly stopped at 4.0 because I did not like the new direction it was going.
I have run a campaign for over 10 years. I did try Pathfinder back in 2012 as a player character at a friends house that was ok. However when I attended the 2014 Gen Con I tried a Society Game not knowing what I was getting into. Was not prepared that once you die that was it.
However I am now in a position with a close friend that would like me to create a Pathfinder adventure to test my DM or in your Case GM abilities. He would like to to try to configure it for a possible society application, looking for about 1-7th level.
My big question is this, how easy is it for old DM's such as myself and can I get involved in GM'ing with this?

Mystal the Illusionist

4/5 5/5

Mystal wrote:
My big question is this, how easy is it for old DM's such as myself and can I get involved in GM'ing with this?

Of course you can GM! I'm probably several years older than you (or, at least, started gaming several years before you) and it was easy for me to make the transition from both the "old" RPGs to Pathfinder and from homebrew games to organized play.

Mystal wrote:
I am now in a position with a close friend that would like me to create a Pathfinder adventure to test my DM or in your Case GM abilities. He would like to to try to configure it for a possible society application, looking for about 1-7th level.

However, if you're asking how easy it is to create and run your own adventures for Pathfinder Society Organized Play, the answer would have to be, "You can't." Unless, of course, you've been contracted by Paizo to author a scenario, module or adventure path.

To GM a game for PFS, you need a sanctioned adventure and a table of 3-6 additional players, all with PFS-legal characters of a level appropriate for said adventure.

Grand Lodge 4/5

Mystal wrote:
However when I attended the 2014 Gen Con I tried a Society Game not knowing what I was getting into. Was not prepared that once you die that was it.

Well, that's it for that character number. If you wanted to continue, you could start character -2, with the same character sheet if you like.

GM'ing for PFS has few requirements, just reading the campaign guide, which you should as a player anyway, and knowing the Pathfinder core rules - players must supply the text for anything wacky that they use and scenarios reprint anything that's not in the online rules reference. The published material and campaign organisation provide a good amount of support.

5/5 5/55/55/5

Guide for newbies

The only requirement to run pfs is a PFS number.

there's no tests for dming (otherwise how did i get in here...) but it's a very good idea to have played a few society games no matter what you background in pathfinder is: there's enough fiddly bits to society play that picking them up all out of the guide is pretty hard.

Half the group here still refers to it as DM :). Its one of those tastes great less filling arguments.

90% of dming 3.5 will carry over , but pathfinder was a little different when it split off of 3.5 and its evolved some funny things since. Combat manuvers are now 1 roll by the attacker against a static combat manuver defense/combat manuver armor class , grapple isn't AS debilitating, and there's a new system of archtypes that lets people customize their classes from level 1 rather than having to wait for prestige classes at level 6. Sneak attack immune monsters aren't quite so ubiquitous. Those sorts of things.


"However, if you're asking how easy it is to create and run your own adventures for Pathfinder Society Organized Play, the answer would have to be, "You can't." Unless, of course, you've been contracted by Paizo to author a scenario, module or adventure path."

So I cannot create my own adventure(say like from my own old campaign), or use one of their modules as a template to use that format, to make something similar for any type of play? It was my understanding that the society send out these people to search for old artifacts and ancient power. So what your saying is I am limited to their core books and campaign world, you cannot go beyond that? I take it you would have to get with the company itself and as you said be authored to make one of these? Interesting......

Mystal

Silver Crusade 1/5

That kinda depends what you mean by "core books".

But first things first:
Yes, you are to run all the modules "as written". Meaning: Don't change the orc to a goblin, don't turn the CE guy LE, don't add another wolf to the pack because it'd be more fun.
Little judgments are always there (checks not explicitly stated in the book will vary, for example), and if the PCs do something totally unexpected you should react to that, too - if they decide, for example, to throw a bomb in the middle of a party the party won't just go on just because the scenario did not consider the possibility of the PCs going b*%@@#* crazy.

The idea behind is that this will turn things more even - a player should not die just because the GM was bad and/or misjudged what would be "fun". Not saying you are a bad GM, but there ARE some out there.

Second:

Mystal wrote:
So what your saying is I am limited to their core books and campaign world, you cannot go beyond that?

Well...yes and no.

You (as a GM) are limited to whatever is presented in the scenario. The scenario might utulize CRB and Bestiary 1, Ultimate Intrigue and Bestiary 4 or some rules and monsters unique to the module...basically, everything needed to run a module is found in the module itself or the PRD.

You (as a player) are limited to whatever the Additional Resources allow for, as long as you own it. Some things are forbidden (you may not run, for example, an orc antipaladin even though in your own campaign you could), but a kitsune gunslinger would be fair game - if you own the ARG and UC.

You are free, of course, to use PFS only as a template for your own campaign, using some of the modules but ignoring some of the restrictions given. This is not Pathfinder Society Organized Play anymore, though, and characters who play in this manner cannot "rejoin" PFS later.


ARG...UC? I guess I need to find the page that has all the acronyms.

I will have to see if there are some local games in my area so I can see how others do this.

It seems more to me that your creativity as a DM is being somewhat limited in the name of commercialization and cookie cutter scenario's. Looks like a more book and paper form of playing a MMO online where you are limited in what you can create and play for this society play and at the conventions.

Mystal

5/5 5/55/55/5

Mystal wrote:


So I cannot create my own adventure(say like from my own old campaign), or use one of their modules as a template to use that format, to make something similar for any type of play? It was my understanding that the society send out these people to search for old artifacts and ancient power. So what your saying is I am limited to their core books and campaign world, you cannot go beyond that?

You're limited to pre published adventures. Though there's a lot more room to make them your own than some people think.

There are hundreds of pre published 4ish hour long adventures for pfs pathfinder society scenarios, and 35 and growing 8ish hour long modules with rules for running it as a PFS scenario.

Consider what could happen across thousands of players if you were allowed to write your own scenario. You would write a scenario thats 4 kobolds guarding a treasure chest filled with a million gold pieces and an artifact that turns you into s supersayan, which let's you shoot a fireball that does nine thousand and one points of damage. Your friend could cross the country and come to my friendly local game store and sit down with a level 2 with a million gold pieces worth of gear and fireball the entire dungeon to death while everyone else got bored.

Not saying you'd do that, but you know at least one gamer that would. and another 6 that would merely write normal levels of mony haul into the system....

5/5 5/55/55/5

Mystal wrote:

ARG...UC? I guess I need to find the page that has all the acronyms.

I will have to see if there are some local games in my area so I can see how others do this.

Map of flat rolling surfaces where PFS is played click the markers and you should get a link to their website or contact.

If that doesn't work, try the Coordinators page , try the smallest general area you can first ie, if there's a city use the city, if there's a state use a state

or just say "i'm from this area" and we'll throw a venture critter at you.

Silver Crusade 2/5

Those are acronyms of book titles.
ARG - Advanced Race Guide
UC - Ultimate Combat.

Society Play gives a groundwork for interoperability. You can take a PFS character to another part of the world and sit down and play an appropriate adventure with others you find there.

If you want complete creative control, then make your own situations for your home game. PFS is a great place to find like-minded players and set up a campaign outside the PFS rules.

PFS has been going on for several years; now there are closing on two hundred scenarios, multi-table specials for larger groups, and adaptations for modules and adventure paths. But, yes, there are some limitations to get many people to play on the same sheet of music, as it were.


DesolateHarmony wrote:

Those are acronyms of book titles.

ARG - Advanced Race Guide
UC - Ultimate Combat.

Society Play gives a groundwork for interoperability. You can take a PFS character to another part of the world and sit down and play an appropriate adventure with others you find there.

If you want complete creative control, then make your own situations for your home game. PFS is a great place to find like-minded players and set up a campaign outside the PFS rules.

PFS has been going on for several years; now there are closing on two hundred scenarios, multi-table specials for larger groups, and adaptations for modules and adventure paths. But, yes, there are some limitations to get many people to play on the same sheet of music, as it were.

So what your saying then you have one option to run how you want, but if you want to take that specific character into the society you have to make sure that you only have items / classes that are authorized for play in that society rules for the scenario's they are running correct? On the other hand you have one character for your campaign and you create a separate similar more restrictive for the society rules and campaign, right?

5/5 5/55/55/5

Mystal wrote:


So what your saying then you have one option to run how you want, but if you want to take that specific character into the society you have to make sure that you only have items / classes that are authorized for play in that society rules for the scenario's they are running correct?

The character could not port into a PFS game at all, except as a level 1 copy of that character with 150 starting cash. It doesn't matter if Mike's character "Zortath the human quisinart" has been played in your campaign for years, for PFS the only things that matters are the PFS scenarios he's played.

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

I think everyone may be missing some important clarifying questions.

Does your friend want you to create an adventure involving the (in game) pathfinder society? Possibly run using the (in real life) pathfinder societies house rules and clarification?

Or does he want you to run a Pathfinder society game (That is a game run by pathfinder society rules, using a pathfinder society scenario, which awards pathfinder society credit to the character, which can then be taken to any other pathfinder society game anywhere in the world?)

Mystal wrote:
So what your saying then you have one option to run how you want, but if you want to take that specific character into the society you have to make sure that you only have items / classes that are authorized for play in that society rules for the scenario's they are running correct? On the other hand you have one character for your campaign and you create a separate similar more restrictive for the society rules and campaign, right?

What you are describing is actually a third option, available for some Adventure Paths (APs) and Modules.

"Campaign Mode" allow you to take the AP or Module, and run it using whatever rules and characters you want. The *player* (NOT the character) then gets a credit (called a chronicle), that he can apply to a different legal PFS character as if *that* character had played. (The PFS character could be a PFS legal near copy of the character he played, or it could be a completely different character.) The only requirement is that the Adventure has to be run in the same setting, make use of the same (major) NPCs, and tell the same story.


My friend has a series of books out, fantasy based. He was looking to see if I could make an adventure that can run parallel to one of the stories or have it where the characters show up during a major part within one of the books. (example: the attack on the mage arena during a competition). Where they assist and catch a glimpse of maybe one of the main characters in one of the books.

He wanted me to use the Pathfinder system. We are still discussing on if to be used for a society thing, he wanted me to work on it because he wants to have it for Gen Con possibly for this next year as a play test.

Last year when Paizo had the new release of something he was approached about maybe incorporating his world into it. I can't remember what game that was. But people were buying the core books fast right when the exhibit hall opened.

Mystal

Grand Lodge 4/5

Mystal wrote:
He wanted me to use the Pathfinder system. We are still discussing on if to be used for a society thing, he wanted me to work on it because he wants to have it for Gen Con possibly for this next year as a play test.

That seems unlikely, but if you think you have a viable proposal for a Society connection, now would be the time to contact the campaign coordinator directly. You'll note (starting with the top and bottom of this page) that Pathfinder Society is a trademark.

I'm not sure if any requirements apply to announcing a tie-in to his published work as a Pathfinder game. It could be worth looking at the Compatibility License.

Mystal wrote:
Last year when Paizo had the new release of something he was approached about maybe incorporating his world into it. I can't remember what game that was. But people were buying the core books fast right when the exhibit hall opened.

All Pathfinder products use the Open Game License, so he might well have been able to use some of the content when a rulebook came out.

5/5 5/55/55/5

Mystal wrote:
My friend has a series of books out, fantasy based. He was looking to see if I could make an adventure that can run parallel to one of the stories or have it where the characters show up during a major part within one of the books.

That is definitely home game territory.

You can use the pathfinder books for that, I think you can even publish most adventures as long as you don't use any golarion specific lore , but anything you run through that will be completely seperate from a PFS campaign character.

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