GM boons in SFS feeling less valued due to cantina feel


GM Discussion

Dark Archive 4/5 5/5

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I am not sure how best to flag this one so giving it a go, the influx of so many races across the year+ of Starfinder has meant that they are seeming less valued and less of an interest as a GM convention reward.

We have had the chance to get used to the core book, potential of legacy races as standard, chronicle boons unlocking races, play boons for more races and a stack of GM boon convention races (with double choices).

I would like to suggest that for GM con boons would it be possible to do a race and a featured effect instead of the double boon - I know that we are new to the campaign but we really do have a lot of choices with another Alien Archives on the way...

I know there will still be picks people will want to go for and more characters to build into but it does start to feel like we are gaining these faster than we can look up.

5/5 5/55/55/5 Venture-Lieutenant, Online—VTT aka Hels

ShadowsOverScotland wrote:

I am not sure how best to flag this one so giving it a go, the influx of so many races across the year+ of Starfinder has meant that they are seeming less valued and less of an interest as a GM convention reward.

We have had the chance to get used to the core book, potential of legacy races as standard, chronicle boons unlocking races, play boons for more races and a stack of GM boon convention races (with double choices).

I would like to suggest that for GM con boons would it be possible to do a race and a featured effect instead of the double boon - I know that we are new to the campaign but we really do have a lot of choices with another Alien Archives on the way...

I know there will still be picks people will want to go for and more characters to build into but it does start to feel like we are gaining these faster than we can look up.

I think this is a good idea. Based on what I have seen, Player reward boons, with items and utility seems to be quite popular. For example, the Hauler Bot was very much the most popular boon at TPKon recently.

I do love playing various races, but I would love the option for more featured effects :-) A choice instead of two races would be a fabulous idea

Sovereign Court 5/5

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Card Game, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

The GM boon for GenCon was the Manifold Host, which was a really cool alternative to a race boon. More boons like that (especially with the ability to share them with other people as well) would be really appreciated.

Paizo Employee Starfinder Society Developer

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As always, we appreciate getting feedback like this!

Let me state, that boon allocation is a VERY tricky proposition for the Organized Play team. When we started Starfinder Society, we heard loud and clear that people wanted more races and more access to races in a sci-fi setting. We listened, but as is evidenced by this post, this action has created other concerns about what kind of "Special thing" can be used to help entice people to major events and conventions.

The Manifold Host was one such option that we wanted to test in a small scale. It seems to have had a VERY positive outcome, so we'll be looking at perhaps introducing even more options like this in the future. The "trick" from our perspective has to be balancing between the people who feel like they can _NEVER_ get these boons and making them so prevalent that they, as the Original Poster points out, seem like they have less value.

As always, I'm eager to fight this ongoing battle! :D

Sovereign Court 4/5 5/55/55/55/5 Venture-Agent, Georgia—Atlanta aka The Masked Ferret

Personally, my main issue with it is probably that I am waiting to long to have to apply some of these boons... I want my Half-orc to get the +2 to an ability score 14 or under, but I can't do that, really, and play him until he becomes legal via the guide.

Scarab Sages 5/55/55/5 Venture-Agent, Netherlands aka CptJames

I feel this point as well.

I GM a lot for my local guys, we roughly have 10-15 interested players so running tables isn't an issue and there is a nice amount of support for it.

The problem that I have is that due to GM'ing and playing I get Chronicle Race Boons, I did Alien Archive 1 to completion, I did the first GM Race Boon sheet, I'm into my 2nd one right now, I did Skittershot (already completed it once, now the GM is 50% done), GM boons from conventions and with AA 2 coming soon I'm sure that'll be another chronicle sheet for more races.

I am overwhelmed with race boons and the feeling that a) I can't make characters for all of them, and b) the new GM race boon is more of a "oh hey I'm gm'ing let me get it marked off" rather than "I'm GMing a lot specifically for this!" - It just has no excitement for me. Don't get me wrong, I am keen to unlock the race, but it's on a long list of other races already...

I agree it's fun to create races from Boons...but I have so many that adding more races isn't an incentive anymore...it's not an incentive to GM at cons, it's just "turn up and get more races", and I'd really really like it to be something I can look forward to that doesn't lock me into starting another character!

Just my 2 cents on the subject!

Dark Archive 4/5 5/5

Thanks Thursty.. I didn't want to to come across as a complaint but more of a general feel a year down the line.

I have more race boons unused than i have characters so far and still wanting to get to grips with more new and interesting things (so would not want to stop the race stream) but it is getting to be pokemon rather than character concepts...

Loving the idea of Manifold Host and in having other bits and pieces but last con i was more interested in rolling the player boon to pass on to a local than i was to see the GM racial one.

Paizo Employee Starfinder Society Developer

Again, thanks everyone for posting here.

Hitting the mark on this is an ever-moving target. When we started SFS there was a clear "We want access to more races!" and I think we hit that mark, but now it's created another issue that we need to dig further into. One of my overall concerns is that I don't want to reach a situation where we start introducing new content and that becomes "the new hotness" and evolves into "oh that's not special anymore."

Sovereign Court 4/5 5/55/55/55/5 Venture-Agent, Georgia—Atlanta aka The Masked Ferret

Thurston Hillman wrote:

Again, thanks everyone for posting here.

Hitting the mark on this is an ever-moving target. When we started SFS there was a clear "We want access to more races!" and I think we hit that mark, but now it's created another issue that we need to dig further into. One of my overall concerns is that I don't want to reach a situation where we start introducing new content and that becomes "the new hotness" and evolves into "oh that's not special anymore."

I agree. This is a very valid concern. On reflection, keeping the core races as the only legal races for the first year was a brilliant idea.

Now, as a thought, we could go ahead and add a 'Core' campaign in right now...

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

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Wanted to add my two credits.

So far I really like all the extra races and all the weirdness it brings. Its a strange galaxy, and its fun!
I like the double GM boon. This ups the chance that there is a race on it that you like.

The alien archive boon was also super cool. I liked working towards the unlocks, and planning games so that others who fell behind got the chance to get at least one unlock.

The race unlocks on the chronicle sheets, while cool, and probably very much appreciated if there are no cons near you, so make it a tad too much. Earning them trough the Alien Archive boon made it feel more worthwhile somehow.

I do currently have more races available to me then characters. I could make more, but then they would sit unplayed.

2/5 5/5

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens Subscriber

This is just my personal feelings, but I still like the race boons. I only get 1-2 conventions per year.

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

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Well, I now have four race boons from conventions, 2 unlocks from scenarios (one of which is double), and a cantina boon. But there's only so many scenarios around, and just finding content to raise a second or third character requires a lot of sudoku.

I really, really like the race boons I got. Ant Princess Dakka, Damien Goreface the Nuar and Dr. Vozconu the Kalo are all characters I'm excited about playing. But I'm at a saturation point for more race boons.

Meanwhile, the 10% chance player boons I've only heard about, and they seem more elusive than race boons. Somehow I never rolled well for them.

Grand Lodge 5/5 5/55/55/5 Venture-Captain, Online—PbP aka Hmm

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I've been thinking a lot about this. I think the abundance of race boons in Starfinder is an awesome thing, but as Lau and Tineke note, there are only so many SFS characters one can feed. When I started, I only had two SFS characters, so that I could split scenarios between GM and Player credit.

How many characters can you reasonably support?

At the moment, I think that most GMs can reasonably support 4-5, especially if you also GM APs. (I'm at 6, but one of those characters is currently mothballed due to an over abundance of Mystics at my venue.) For someone who's just playing, the number may drop down to 2 or 3 -- enough to play in each tier. For someone who GMs repeatables a lot in a very active SFS lodge, the number of characters may be higher -- but they'll still reach a bottleneck when they run out of repeatable content.

Only the boons that sing to me get chosen!

So... I've been only adding new boons when they've completely wowed me with story possibilities (like my Skittermander and my SRO or like Nanananana Bat Elf!)

I have the following list of sad, unplayed boons:

Dwarf
Halfling
Half-Orc
Morlamaw
Copaxi
Ferran / Woikio
Ryphorian
Elebrian (though I never filled out the full paperwork for it because it did not sing to me)
...and a few other race boons from cons that I'll have to look up later.

The GM Con boons I tend to give away to players who make me happy, because really -- how many of these can I honestly play? At GenCon, I bypassed the awesome Bantrid option completely in order to get a second Manifold Host boon. I like earning GM race boons, but more often than not I then turn around and give them away.

As a GM, I would love the option to be able to trade them in at a convention for one of the fantastic SFS player boons that are out there, because like Lau, I never seem to be able to roll for those. On the other hand... I am really glad that the Cantina is abundant, because it means that players get cool races, and I get to GM for them! I've been super-excited to see our players wandering around with interesting and exotic races that they've earned over time.

One of the reasons that I like it is that it makes me feel less guilty that all five of my currently active Starfinder characters have race boons attached! I can tell new players to keep playing, because they'll unlock other cool races that they can try out themselves!

So keep the Cantina going, but maybe give GMs the option of selecting a player boon at cons in lieu of a race boon? That would be lovely.

Hmm

4/5

As said above, maximum number of characters is an issue until we get more scenarios. The only boon race I am currently playing is a dwarf soldier who uses an artillery laser.

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