Structure of the Roleplaying Guild Guide


Pathfinder Society Playtest

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Paizo Employee 5/5 Organized Play Manager

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This thread is for the discussion of the roleplaying guild guide and suggestions for changes for Pathfinder Society in 2019.

For more context to this thread, visit Pathfinder Playtest and Pathfinder Society FAQ.

5/5 ⦵⦵⦵

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It would be helpful if the guide we hand new players didn't dive right into the minutia and expect people to determine the state of the forest from that description of.. well I would say trees but the guide sometimes gets bogged down at the leaf level.

If the first 4 pages have to be a light intro and the last 28 pages a technical manual so be it.

Scarab Sages 5/5

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Keep a Glossary of Terms! That's the best thing I contributed to PFS, and it would be a shame if it didn't stick around.

Sovereign Court 5/5

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This is something I have wanted for a long time is the guide to be the definitive place for some one to get answers on questions on how to do basic things like how to determine your animal companions hit points, how a wizard, witch, classes with a spell book like thing can pay for access to spells in the guide. All these things are in the faq or the forums, but should be placed in the guide to make it easier to find. When a ruling that effects how to build or level a character is made, those rulings should eventually be put in to the guide.

Sovereign Court 3/5 Venture-Lieutenant, Georgia—Savannah aka KitsuneWarlock

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0. Changelog: Each version of the guild guide after 1.0 should have a changelog, maybe as a seperate text file in a zip folder you can download. I understand there is one usually compiled in the forum, but I didn't know about it until after my first two seasons of play.

1. Print: Sell a printed guide, especially if it has as many mechanics in it as Starfinder.

2. Fewer Mechanics: If traits are going to be in core, we don't really need them in the guild guide, right?

3. Lite and Comprehensive: I might be taking BigNorseWolf's suggestion too far. Have a lite guide for new players. It doesn't need stuff like how to report games, etc... Just a link in it to download the comprehensive guide. The comprehensive guide includes GM information, faction journal cards, faction traits, prestige/fame awards, a printable "after the scenario" sheet with stuff like prestige point costs and downtime charts.

4/5

Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path Subscriber

Have a conversion guide so that first edition characters can play in second edition society play. I read in FAQ this was not going to be an option and that is a shame because of what so many players have earned from adventures like eyes of the ten, adventure paths and cool story lines.

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

Tallow wrote:
Keep a Glossary of Terms! That's the best thing I contributed to PFS, and it would be a shame if it didn't stick around.

Very much a fan of the glossary as well.

And Dusting Knight's suggestion of a changelog will help a lot of players and GMs.

Lantern Lodge 4/5

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My favourite guide is the season 7. The only thing I constantly refer to it for is the day job gold table. Of course I even more prefer the starfinder way where gold is directly proportional to your skill, rather than exponentially better with higher checks.

Dark Archive 5/5 Venture-Agent, Ohio—Columbus aka Cirithiel

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BigNorseWolf wrote:

It would be helpful if the guide we hand new players didn't dive right into the minutia and expect people to determine the state of the forest from that description of.. well I would say trees but the guide sometimes gets bogged down at the leaf level.

If the first 4 pages have to be a light intro and the last 28 pages a technical manual so be it.

Very much this. One of the things I really do not like about the current guide is that character creation rules are buried in an appendix. Basic info needs to be in the first chapter. The most important thing a new player needs to see is how to make a legal character, not minutiae about how much gold your PC has to contribute if a pregen dies during an adventure.

Sovereign Court 4/5 Venture-Lieutenant, Netherlands—Leiden aka Ascalaphus

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A clear division of labor between the PFS FAQ, Clarifications, Additional Resources and Guide. My ideal one would look like this:

1) The Guide sets out the basic concepts and general rules for PFS. It contains the most important rules and rules that apply to many characters. Niche rules go into the Clarifications.

2) Additional Resources describes what stuff beyond the CRB you can bring to the table. It uses a proper version control system allowing for easy deployment (once a change has been signed off on, it can be published immediately instead of waiting for IT to handcraft it) and GMs can look up its history to see when an option became (il)legal. People can subscribe to a newsletter that notifies them of changes. Any item in AR that has a Clarification gets a hyperlink to it.

3) FAQ and Clarifications are merged to be a single document. We remove the distinction between FAQ and a Clarification; the first chapter is for cross-book rules and the rest is clarification on single-book items.

This becomes the only document to record rulings. It is set up again with version control/easy publication so that if Tonya/John/Linda make a ruling on an issue, they can easily add it to the Clarifications to preserve it forever. Any decision made on the forum or published in a blog only serves as notice; the Clarifications is the only binding source, and all rulings go in there. People don't have to dig through the forum for half-remembered rulings by since-resigned campaign leaders.

The whole thing functions as a single document, so you can Control-F through it looking for keywords.

It contains both rulings on individual abilities, and other rules too niche to put in the Guide.

And again, there's a mailing list to notify people of changes.

---

For this system to be successful it's really important from the outset to ensure that IT delivers something that's easy to use for Tonya/John/Linda. The intent is to make documentation better by making it easier to make.

Venture-Agent, Online—PbP aka Elinnea

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I also find it very strange that the character creation rules and faction information are off in appendices. I just started with PFS in the last year, and I went to the guide excited to build my first character. So I started reading at the beginning, and before I knew it I was in the weeds of how to apply pregen credit, how to adapt a game from season 0, how to fill in a chronicle sheet, whatever that was... I started guiltily flipping past the rest of the guide, wondering Is it ok for me to skip all this? Do I need to know it? before I finally found my step-by-step instructions for making a new character.

I'm pretty sure a newcomer is the only one who's going to try to read through the guide in order - now that I know more what I'm doing, I just pop in to whatever section I need to refer to.

Sovereign Court 3/5

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Card Game, Companion, Lost Omens, Pathfinder Accessories, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

I like character creation in an appendix. Those are rules you use once per character, rather than reference several times over a career. It does need to be more accessible, though. Make clear references to the Appendices in the Welcome and Introduction texts.

Scarab Sages 5/5

Elinnea wrote:

I also find it very strange that the character creation rules and faction information are off in appendices. I just started with PFS in the last year, and I went to the guide excited to build my first character. So I started reading at the beginning, and before I knew it I was in the weeds of how to apply pregen credit, how to adapt a game from season 0, how to fill in a chronicle sheet, whatever that was... I started guiltily flipping past the rest of the guide, wondering Is it ok for me to skip all this? Do I need to know it? before I finally found my step-by-step instructions for making a new character.

I'm pretty sure a newcomer is the only one who's going to try to read through the guide in order - now that I know more what I'm doing, I just pop in to whatever section I need to refer to.

The intention was that an organizer or GM can print just a single appendix (or a player could) and hand it to the player without having to make them read the entire guide.

In previous guides, character creation information was spread throughout the guide and it got consolidated into one appendix.

It would be nice though, if that appendix were re-labeled Chapter 1 and put more forward facing in the guide. Or at the very least have a "how to use this guide" page/paragraph at the beginning that tells a new player to go to Appendix 1: Character Creation to start.

That being said, its important to note that some things like the Community Policy and some of the very specific rules of play are necessary for new players to read before they just start creating a character.

Grand Lodge 4/5 Venture-Agent, Texas—Houston North

Wayne Stubbs wrote:

Suggested guide layout.

1) The Pathfinder Society (in game) - "You get to be Indiana Jones"
2) Organized Play - "Play anywhere in the world with people you don't know"
3) Advanced Player Rules - "You don't need to read this until after your first few games."
4) GM stuff
5) Organizer stuff

In short - make it 100% New Player Friendly. Grognards and cheeseweasels will look after themselves.

I like this idea alot. Right off the bat it explains what is going on, great way to start out and even remind veteran players about what is going on. Then you get the meat and potatoes of what is going on. What needs to be done for your character in Society. Plain simple and straight forward and not interspersed between 4 or 5 other sections. Then you get into the advanced stuff and this is helpful now because you have a firm grasps of the basics from the previous section. The only hic-up I see is where to put your section on Factions. It needs to be in with the basic stuff, but it is a large bit of information. Probably include it at the end of that section and use it as a lead into the more advanced stuff might work out. Then of course you get into stuff for GMs then organizers and at the end a nice long glossery of terms, indexs with page numbers, and all the other needed information along with new character sheets. Simple straight forward and easy to reference. I would be happy with a book like that.

Grand Lodge

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I would love to see a more organized list of errata and Society specific changes. As it stands you almost have to look up every class feature, spell, item and ability separately to find out if it has changed or has a ruling on it.

I wouldn't want it in the main document, but a list of errata and rulings would be really nice, especially one sorted different ways. What I would really like is a PRD of such rulings, where I can go to the "Wizard" page and see that "Craft Scroll" had a ruling and the spells "Haste", "Make Masterwork", and others also had rulings. Being able to click on those and see the official ruling would just be a great bonus.

5/5 ⦵⦵⦵

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the tone is completely off for an official product but the info i try to give new players

2/5 Venture-Agent, United Kingdom—England—London aka waynemarkstubbs

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I have a little speil that I give newbies to explain the concept in about 30 seconds. It goes something like:

"On the world of Golarion, the Pathfinder Society is an international academic organization dedicated to recovering and publishing the lost secrets of the past, because civilization has risen and fallen several times on this world. So they employ lots of archaeologists, scholars and the like. But they also emplooy people like you - Pathfinder Agents. People who are not afraid to go out into the field and get their hands dirty or face danger. Because the ancient artifact you want to recover may not be in the hands of someone who wants to give it up, or the lost ruin you want to explore may be inhabited by someone who isn't friendly. So they need people like you with more practical talents. But whatever your particular focus, you are expected to respect your fellow agents and the three tenets of the Society - Report. Explore. Co-operate."

Tells them everything they need to know to enjoy a game within the space of one attention span.

3/5

One thing I would like to see (which does not have much to do with the new edition, but if you are restructuring anyway...) is gather all the ways you can end up with a chronicle sheet in one place (maybe an appendix) and explicitly lay out the similarities and differences between them. Something like this...

Spoiler:
There are a number of ways you can get a chronicle sheet apart from playing the adventure with one of your PFS characters:

* GM the adventure.
* Play the adventure with a pregererated character.
* Play the adventure in campaign mode (for adventure paths and sanctioned modules that support it)

In such a case, you receive a chronicle sheet for the adventure as you normally would, and choose a character within or below the level tier of the adventure to assign it to. Specifically, you can:

* Assign and immediately apply the chronicle sheet to a character that is in tier for the adventure.
* Assign the adventure to a character that is below the tier for the adventure, and apply the chronicle sheet to the character when the character reaches an appropriate level for the adventure. You fill in the names and character number, and the GM fills in their bits, when you assign the chronicle sheet. Fill in the remainder of the sheet when you apply it.
* For an adventure whose tier does not include 1st level, assign and immediately apply the chronicle sheet to a first level character, with reduced gold (X for an adventure that grants 1 XP, Y for an adventure that grants 3 XP).

In all cases, the character does make a dayjob check or receive any other downtime benefits.

...and then go on to spell out the nuances of the various cases. Which I might have some suggestions about tomorrow, but for now it is almost bedtime.

_
glass.


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Elinnea wrote:

I also find it very strange that the character creation rules and faction information are off in appendices. ...

I'm pretty sure a newcomer is the only one who's going to try to read through the guide in order - now that I know more what I'm doing, I just pop in to whatever section I need to refer to.

THIS x1000000!

Sovereign Court 2/5 RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32

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The guide is WAY too long. It is easily three or four times longer than is necessary.

Furthermore, there should not be both a PFS FAQ and a PFS Clarifications document, as these serve the exact same purpose and you shouldn't require players to look in both documents. This also means that errata or clarifications or rules changes should NOT be in the additional resources document NOR should it be in the PFS guide.

Keep all documents focused and to the point, and they'll be much more accessible.

Shadow Lodge

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Every year there's newbies who don't understand exactly what the items on the chronicle sheet means, but there's a very simple way to explain it:

The items on your chronicle sheet get added to your list of "Always Available" items for your character, forever.

The guide doesn't say this directly though, it uses a more convoluted way to explain the same thing. Why? Always Available items is a PFS-specific term, and newbies always understand what that means. Good, simple wording, matters - across the board.

Shadow Lodge

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The section on Table Variation has never been explained well enough and reading half of it has led a lot of players and GMs to read the section on "run as written" as gospel without reading the rest. This section needs to be cleaned up, probably in dot point form, to talk about what kinds of things need to stick (like the numbers) and what kind of things can be bent, and in what kinds of situations.

It doesn't have to be pure black and white, and it shouldn't be because that's not how GMing works (even in Society), but it should be specific enough about that as well - to the end that people don't think "Run everything 100% as written no matter what" is gospel.

Leaving this open in the guide is creating a never-ending argument akin to the paladin alignment issue.

Shadow Lodge

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If a public game ends early (especially at cons), should GMs be subtracting rewards - even though it's not the player's fault?

The guide doesn't directly mention this at all, and this is table variation that shouldn't exist. The closest thing is Step 7 in filling out a chronicle sheet, but this isn't specific. The next closest is under "Creative Solutions" where "players should find the item elsewhere". This all needs to be simplified and clarified.

Venture-Agent, Online—PbP aka Elinnea

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Tallow wrote:
Elinnea wrote:

I also find it very strange that the character creation rules and faction information are off in appendices. I just started with PFS in the last year, and I went to the guide excited to build my first character. So I started reading at the beginning, and before I knew it I was in the weeds of how to apply pregen credit, how to adapt a game from season 0, how to fill in a chronicle sheet, whatever that was... I started guiltily flipping past the rest of the guide, wondering Is it ok for me to skip all this? Do I need to know it? before I finally found my step-by-step instructions for making a new character.

I'm pretty sure a newcomer is the only one who's going to try to read through the guide in order - now that I know more what I'm doing, I just pop in to whatever section I need to refer to.

The intention was that an organizer or GM can print just a single appendix (or a player could) and hand it to the player without having to make them read the entire guide.

In previous guides, character creation information was spread throughout the guide and it got consolidated into one appendix.

It would be nice though, if that appendix were re-labeled Chapter 1 and put more forward facing in the guide. Or at the very least have a "how to use this guide" page/paragraph at the beginning that tells a new player to go to Appendix 1: Character Creation to start.

That being said, its important to note that some things like the Community Policy and some of the very specific rules of play are necessary for new players to read before they just start creating a character.

Late reply I know, but this is helpful background for me who (obviously) never read the old versions of the guide so I don't know where the layout came from, what decisions have been made over the years, or why. I still think it would be best to have the character creation near the beginning, but I absolutely agree that the text about what organized play is, about playing cooperatively, don't cheat, etc. should stay at the front. For the exact same reason, actually - it's what a newcomer will probably read first.

Liberty's Edge 5/5 Venture-Captain, Missouri—Cape Girardeau aka Arnim Thayer

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Lau Bannenberg wrote:
...Additional Resources describes what stuff beyond the CRB you can bring to the table. It uses a proper version control system allowing for easy deployment (once a change has been signed off on, it can be published immediately instead of waiting for IT to handcraft it) and GMs can look up its history to see when an option became (il)legal. People can subscribe to a newsletter that notifies them of changes. Any item in AR that has a Clarification gets a hyperlink to it.

A little off subject, but can the new Additional Resources have a consistent style? Either list what IS available or NOT, but not both interchangeably. There are sources in the current AR that read as "nothing is allowed but X" which is inconsistent with "everything is allowed but X." I know this problem existed far before the current team, but its one we can make right going forward.

Liberty's Edge 5/5 Venture-Captain, Missouri—Cape Girardeau aka Arnim Thayer

Elinnea wrote:


Late reply I know, but this is helpful background for me who (obviously) never read the old versions of the guide so I don't know where the layout came from, what decisions have been made over the years, or why. I still think it would be best to have the character creation near the beginning, but I absolutely agree that the text about what organized play is, about playing...

I have every version of the Guide archived on my computer since PFS started. O use them at times to research when a change was made, since I failed to archive the Changelogs back when Paizo used to issue them. I often forget that there are some players and GMs that have never seen older versions.

5/5 ⦵⦵⦵

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Avatar-1 wrote:
Leaving this open in the guide is creating a never-ending argument akin to the paladin alignment issue.

Not surprisingly, many people with questionable builds try to argue that RAW (run as written) means that DMs are bound by RAW (rules as written*) in whatever tortured chelaxian word games the player believes they've gotten away with.

Equivocation like that is why they ran into trouble in the first place, but play it as it lies or SOME other an acronym besides a synonym for twisting the rules might save some forum grar and the occasional in person deadpan glare.

*as the rules lawyer reads them

Sovereign Court 3/5 Venture-Lieutenant, Georgia—Savannah aka KitsuneWarlock

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There are three things I would appreciate being included in PFS2.

1. Daggers:
All (Intelligent Humanoid) NPCs should have a dagger in addition to their listed gear. Whether its getting stuck in a pit without a ranged weapon, or being an "experienced soldier and mercenary" who is suddenly denied their longsword and for some reason has no sidearm, it doesn't even make sense in terms of flavor that an adult huamnoid in Golarion wouldn't be carrying a dagger (just as a tool).

2. Creative GM Tactics
I love the GM 101 files and I hope they are updated. I hope they suggestions for tactics monsters can take when enemies do things unexpected. I rarely have problems with it, but I see other GMs struggle mid-game when NPCs are completely locked out of play. I've made a short acronym on what players and NPCs alike can do when they feel they are otherwise unable to contribute to combat. It's probably less relevant given this is going to be an entirely new system, but I do like sharing it.

Spoiler:

Just remember GASP: Gear, Aid, Skills and Prepare.

>GEAR: Remember your items, especially consumables you and your team have looted! Consumable loot is meant to be consumed. Preparing to use gear is critical. Even if its just pulling out a weapon so you provoke or a smoke-pellet in case the battle turns and you gotta tactically retreat.

>AID your allies. Aid Another can be used for attack rolls or to boost AC. Flanking will help more than just rogues. Guidance is arguably more helpful than Acid Splash. Think outside the box, even if that means using a Strength Check to move a box closer to an enemy so the agile fighter can jump atop it and get a high-ground bonus.

>SKILLS should not be overlooked. Knowledge checks are free and should always be attempted. Same with Spellcraft checks when an enemy casts. Intimidate is a fine debuff. Perception can find additional hidden enemies. Stealth can set up a flat-footed attack or Sleight of Hand. Sense Motive can help you predict your opponent's morale or readied actions. Disabling, Rigging, Opening and Closing doors can be critical for tactical retreating or preventing enemies from running for help. Detect Magic during combat is not a waste. And some enemies may even allow you to try to persuade them to back off, but it is rare.

>PREPARE to do something when or if you are able to help. If you can't see an enemy, you can even ready an action to move toward them once you can. Even readying a subpar ranged attack against a spellcaster can save the party. And readying an attack for when an enemy is within range is always useful.

3. Knowledge Known
I joke regularly that I'd love to a book just called "Knowledge Compendium". I'd really love some kind of guideline as to what a PC should know just having attended classes with the three deans. Do I know a Gnome can cast Speak with Animals? Do I know the basic tennants of the ten core pantheons? Do all of these require knowledge? Does my paladin even know the tennants of his relatively obscure deity without ranks in knowledge (religion)? I usually assume most NPCs know most everything you can get (or worship) as a level 1 character from the Core Rulebook...

I almost wish the Bestiary's descriptions of monsters would include knowledge DCs, but I understand there's a limited printing, DCs scale with level, the bestiary isn't setting specific and allowing the GM some leeway on this isn't a bad thing...but a basic guideline of this in the GM 101 files wouldn't be bad.

Sovereign Court 4/5 Venture-Lieutenant, Netherlands—Leiden aka Ascalaphus

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Dustin Knight wrote:

There are three things I would appreciate being included in PFS2.

1. Daggers:
(...)

Agree strongly. Also a backup spell component pouch or holy symbol, just so that disarm/sunder doesn't become a cheat code because NPCs are weak to it because of word count.

Dustin Knight wrote:

ust remember GASP: Gear, Aid, Skills and Prepare.

>GEAR: Remember your items, especially consumables you and your team have looted! Consumable loot is meant to be consumed. Preparing to use gear is critical. Even if its just pulling out a weapon so you provoke or a smoke-pellet in case the battle turns and you gotta tactically retreat.

>AID your allies. Aid Another can be used for attack rolls or to boost AC. Flanking will help more than just rogues. Guidance is arguably more helpful than Acid Splash. Think outside the box, even if that means using a Strength Check to move a box closer to an enemy so the agile fighter can jump atop it and get a high-ground bonus.

>SKILLS should not be overlooked. Knowledge checks are free and should always be attempted. Same with Spellcraft checks when an enemy casts. Intimidate is a fine debuff. Perception can find additional hidden enemies. Stealth can set up a flat-footed attack or Sleight of Hand. Sense Motive can help you predict your opponent's morale or readied actions. Disabling, Rigging, Opening and Closing doors can be critical for tactical retreating or preventing enemies from running for help. Detect Magic during combat is not a waste. And some enemies may even allow you to try to persuade them to back off, but it is rare.

>PREPARE to do something when or if you are able to help. If you can't see an enemy, you can even ready an action to move toward them once you can. Even readying a subpar ranged attack against a spellcaster can save the party. And readying an attack for when an enemy is within range is always useful.

This made my day.

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

Dustin Knight wrote:

There are three things I would appreciate being included in PFS2.

1. Daggers:
All (Intelligent Humanoid) NPCs should have a dagger in addition to their listed gear. Whether its getting stuck in a pit without a ranged weapon, or being an "experienced soldier and mercenary" who is suddenly denied their longsword and for some reason has no sidearm, it doesn't even make sense in terms of flavor that an adult huamnoid in Golarion wouldn't be carrying a dagger (just as a tool).

2. Creative GM Tactics
I love the GM 101 files and I hope they are updated. I hope they suggestions for tactics monsters can take when enemies do things unexpected. I rarely have problems with it, but I see other GMs struggle mid-game when NPCs are completely locked out of play. I've made a short acronym on what players and NPCs alike can do when they feel they are otherwise unable to contribute to combat. It's probably less relevant given this is going to be an entirely new system, but I do like sharing it.

** spoiler omitted **...

There really is no reason for any of this to wait more than a couple of days before implementation (maybe number 3 might need a couple of knowledge check DCs and results).

Particularly the "no backup weapon" and spell component pouch/holy symbol... I am really not a fan of the tactic since players are pretty much immune to it.

Grand Lodge 5/5 Regional Venture-Coordinator, Great Lakes aka TwilightKnight

Sebastian Hirsch wrote:
I am really not a fan of the tactic since players are pretty much immune to it.

I think effective tactics should be equally available to PCs as NPCs. If players find that sundering holy symbols or spell component pouches is a super effective tactic and use it in game, then as a GM I feel it is therefore a tactic I could use as well. Perhaps the NPCs are not built for it like a player may be, but fair is fair. Generally speaking monster tactics are usually focused on what they do at the start, maybe first round of two, but are otherwise fairly open.

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

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Bob Jonquet wrote:
Sebastian Hirsch wrote:
I am really not a fan of the tactic since players are pretty much immune to it.
I think effective tactics should be equally available to PCs as NPCs. If players find that sundering holy symbols or spell component pouches is a super effective tactic and use it in game, then as a GM I feel it is therefore a tactic I could use as well. Perhaps the NPCs are not built for it like a player may be, but fair is fair. Generally speaking monster tactics are usually focused on what they do at the start, maybe first round of two, but are otherwise fairly open.

I agree, but as a player, getting a couple of cheap replacement weapons (like you likely already want for DR etc.) buying ten wooden holy symbols (though I am partial to the tattoo even for non-casters) and a couple of spell component pouches, and players are almost immune to tactics like this.

While you really should not count "every" tactic PCs can use, giving martial characters reasonable backup weapons (e.g. if the main weapon is a +3 greatsword, give the enemy a masterwork longsword + dagger) still means that the tactic had a significant effect, but situations where players steal the enemys weapon and make it pretty impossible to be retrieved, no longer completely trivialize the encounter.

To be honest, I am not sure if players who use this tactic are even aware that scenarios sometimes have this weakness.


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Pathfinder Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

The guide needs a SERIOUS REVISION. It is WAY TO BIG. A lot of the information can be condens and clearly rewritten for clarity.

I am all for writing them like Military Manuals. They are EASY TO READ, maybe a bit dry, but they do their jobs. Break everything down to be as SIMPLE AS POSSIBLE. The guide I feel should be played out similar to:

1. Intro (what is the society general information like that)
2. Character creation (EASY STEP BY STEP) Doesn't need to be paragraphs long.
3. Player rules
4. GM Basics
5. Other relevant information. Notable Links
6. FAQ (maybe)
7. Glossary (seems to be a very popular topic)
8. Change Log.

Could even add FAQ, that relates to Society.

Each section should be condensed to 2 pages at most or shorter. Maybe 3 pages at most.

I would love to be able to write the guide myself.

Grand Lodge 5/5 Regional Venture-Coordinator, Great Lakes aka TwilightKnight

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The size of the Guide is a direct result of us the players and GMs, asking repeated questions and asking for clarifications regarding what the RAI are vs RAW. The original Guide was quite small, relatively speaking, for an instructional/introduction document. For those of us who are experienced with OP and know all the answers, a much less wordy document would be fine. For the multitude who are not that experienced, a more thorough and detailed Guide is required. A team of writers, VOs, and organizers worked very hard for a long time to take previous versions and condense them as much as possible without losing the integrity of the information. While I'm sure there are those who think they can do it better, I think that team did an excellent job despite the challenges. While I think there are some aspects that I would like to see changed, the document is not about ME, its about what's best for everyone. You cannot please all the people all the time is a topic that comes up a lot in OP when I/you/we are trying to make something that will appeal to the widest possible audience. Generally, speaking I think they accomplished that. Personally, I don't want it to read like a military manual or a textbook, but that is just my opinion. YMMV

Liberty's Edge 4/5 Venture-Agent, Indiana—Hammond

A glossary and a good index should be considered important items for the roleplaying guild guide. Also, maybe early on in the document, have a reference to where to find the character creation rules if they are in an appendix.

Grand Lodge 5/5 Regional Venture-Coordinator, Great Lakes aka TwilightKnight

Michael Smith, your post expresses quite a bit of hubris considering a team of writers (many published) with advisors plus the contributions of Tonya, and John, and the Paizo editing team all had a hand in producing the document we have now.


Pathfinder Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Also my name is MichEAl not MichAEl.

Don't get me wrong I am not saying that it is a bad document. But I don't feel it is the best it is. This is a huge COMPLAINT I have with Paizo, especially with paid content. When I pay for a product I EXPECT, I MEAN I EXPECT nothing short of perfection. If I remember correctly in order to be an editor for Paizo you must have a Bachelors in English or something along those lines, and then to have customers pay for something with simple grammar mistakes, contradictions is really not except-able. I will be the first to admit I don't have the greatest grammar, and if I find these errors we have an issue. ESPECIALLY if they have a BACHELORS.

Let me reclassify my earlier post, seems people can't read between the lines or anything. What I meant was I can clean a lot of this up and make it easier to read and understand. Now for the grammar and all that jazz, oh no I can't do that.

5/5 Venture-Lieutenant, Online aka Magabeus

2 people marked this as a favorite.

You might have noted that the guide is a free product...

More on topic: I would prefer it if the guide was a more condensed document that gives an overview of what society is and where to find the exact rules that govern society play. So it would point to additional resources and another document that contains both campaign clarifications and specific society rules (downtime, lvl 1 rebuilds etc).

Scarab Sages 5/5

William Ronald wrote:
A glossary and a good index should be considered important items for the roleplaying guild guide. Also, maybe early on in the document, have a reference to where to find the character creation rules if they are in an appendix.

The guide has had a glossary since season 8.

4/5 Venture-Agent, Minnesota—St. Louis Park aka BretI

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We need a very short Quick Start to PFS.

It assumes people are familiar with the Pathfinder rules, but have no experience with PFS. It covers the very basics of what people need to know when starting. It tells them where the detailed rules for that are. It is enough for someone to get started without reading the whole guide.

I have seen volunteer documents that come very close to that for PFS v1. Here is a document we give out locally that does some of this.

High points:
* Character creation (what stat generation methods from CRB, how much starting money, any variances from normal starting goods). Current campaign it would state 20 point buy purchase (see CRB pg. 15-16), 150 gp, no item crafting. No scroll scribing. See Appendix 1 for full rules.
* Description of the three main documents: Roleplaying Guild Guide, Additional Resources, Campaign Clarifications.
* Chronicles, what they are and how they are used
* Quick intro to loot. Chronicles indicate what loot you can buy. Most mundane items can always be bought. For the full rules, please see Appendix 4, Step 6.

If this is at at the start of the normal Roleplaying Guild Guide, that is great.

I would really like it if the player section of the Roleplaying Guild Guide gave a description of chronicles and how they are used. This wouldn't be part of the Quick Start mentioned above. It should include information about special boons -- including that they are not for sale and beware of fakes. Assuming that they use something similar to the recent boons, talk about correct way to note a boon transfer.

3/5

No product is perfect, whether you pay for it or not.

2/5

I believe that the Roleplaying Guild Guide currently tries to do too much in a single document. This could be addressed if it were set up as a Wiki to make it easy to find specific information, but unfortunately the Guide is often needed at conventions and game stores, at both of which I have often experienced problems with internet access. Therefore, I think that it needs to be a downloadable document purely because of access issues.

There needs to be a short Quick Start Guide is focused on how to play PFS:
creating a character,
how to interact with other players,
that you will get a chronicle sheet from each adventure,
a glossary, and
how to find out more about PFS.
This Quick Start Guide needs to be something that can be easily downloaded (with no need to register) or printed out and made available to new players.

There needs to be comprehensive guide to playing characters, which would include the information from the Quick Start Guide, factions, after game activities, character rebuilds, etc., and the related FAQ.

There needs to be a guide on organizing and GMing games. Most players have no need to deal with this in trying to understand how to create and play characters.

Additional Resources and the PFS Clarifications are (for PF1) extremely long documents, and I have no idea why they are separate -- making us search two documents. These could be combined into a single Wiki-style document with a separate page for each Paizo book -- players who use an item, spell, or feat from a book could just bring a copy of that one page, establishing that the item, etc. is available and whether the rules have changed from what is printed.

Grand Lodge 5/5 Regional Venture-Coordinator, Great Lakes aka TwilightKnight

Greymist wrote:
Additional Resources and the PFS Clarifications are (for PF1) extremely long documents, and I have no idea why they are separate -- making us search two documents. These could be combined into a single Wiki-style document with a separate page for each Paizo book -- players who use an item, spell, or feat from a book could just bring a copy of that one page, establishing that the item, etc. is available and whether the rules have changed from what is printed.

I disagree with this part. IMO the clarification document and the AR serve different purposes and therefore should be separate items. If we combine them then one or the other should be eliminated, the materials incorporated into the other, and the purpose of the newly created tool be redefined. YMMV

5/5

2 people marked this as a favorite.

When I completed the survey, I indicated that there should be a Quick Start guide, but I indicated that it should not be part of the Roleplaying Guild Guide. I think that for a Quick Start Guide to be useful, it should be a standalone document that can be printed and given to new players who inquire about the campaign when checking out events at a store or convention. Something that can give a new player the basics they need to know to get started. The RPGG would then be a comprehensive document that would cover all of the rules in detail. I agree with the suggestions that it would be good to have some parts available in printable format (.pdf) so that they can be accessed offline (FAQs and Additional Resources, for example).

Grand Lodge 5/5 Regional Venture-Coordinator, Great Lakes aka TwilightKnight

If we added a chapter (maybe at the end) that summarized or “quick started” the basic rules, and we provided both a complete version of the Guide and a by chapter version, it would serve the needs of [nearly] everyone I would think

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