Gamemastery Guide is the best book evar!!!


Pathfinder Second Edition General Discussion

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Pathfinder Maps, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Bag of weasels. Nuff said.

Horizon Hunters

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Man, I can't wait til I get my (PDF) copy... Hard to get dead tree version in New Zealand in a timely or affordable manner.


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Pathfinder Maps, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

As someone with a severe hearing disability, I can't tell you how much I appreciate the Gamematery Guide for having the following:

SENSORY DIFFERENCES
Players may have differences in the way that they process sensory information, as well as which senses they use. For players who are hard of hearing or who struggle to process large amounts of sensory information at once, selecting a quiet gaming venue and establishing ground rules about table talk (such as asking players not to interrupt each other) can make the game more accessible. Such players can also often benefit from handouts they can consult during the session. Keep in mind the way your players perceive the world when describing locations. For example, if you have a blind or visually impaired player at the table, instead of simply describing what a location looks like, describe how it sounds and smells, the temperature of the room, the feeling of the breeze, and other aspects of the scene that they can identify with.


New rules + crunch or is it more about soft skills?


Please don't start this kind of threads, waiting is hard enough as it is T_T

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

As a person with slightly impaired hearing and a damaged inner ear, I highly appreciate this.


I waaannnt it already


puksone wrote:
New rules + crunch or is it more about soft skills?

Don't worry, there are tons of new (optional) rules. Someone on reddit hosted an AMA about it not long ago.


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

The point buy system is the exact one from PF1. heh
I was excited for tons of NPC stat blocks. Once I got thru perusing those, I said, "There's other stuff in the book too!"
I'm pretty excited that my long wait is over. Now to start the wait for APG and Bestiary 2.

Sovereign Court

I especially like the Victory Point chapter, it gives a lot of insight into how all kinds of minigames are intended, and how to build your own.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

awww man, here I am still waiting for the PDF. Feels like it is taking forever since I got the email that they will ship my sub in the next 10 days or whatever.


All this waiting is gonna make me perish.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
Ched Greyfell wrote:
The point buy system is the exact one from PF1. heh

Huh?

It’s not the the same at all.


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Man, my card got cancelled due to a fraud attempt and I forgot to update it so on the day it should have shipped instead my card got declined and I have to wait more.

T_T


Pathfinder Maps, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
MaxAstro wrote:

Man, my card got cancelled due to a fraud attempt and I forgot to update it so on the day it should have shipped instead my card got declined and I have to wait more.

T_T

I was in that very same situation while waiting for my 2e Core Rulebook to arrive.


Appletree wrote:
All this waiting is gonna make me perish.

I feel that on a spiritual level


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

Finally got my copy! Yay!

I’ve read through the variants chapter. I think I’m going to see what my players think of the ability and skill points ones. Those are things they’ve liked in the past or we’ve done before (I used a similar point-buy house rule back in PF1 to replace ability score increases). I feel less excited about the other variant rules, but that’s okay.

I poked around the subsystems. The world building stuff looks great at first glance. I can see the leadership subsystem being useful for e.g., classifying enemy gangs and factions my PCs are encountering. Hexploration isn’t what I want in an exploration subsystem, but that’s not surprising, and there are a few things I’m definitely going to take for my exploration procedure.

I’m looking forward to spending some time with the rest of the book. :D


Pathfinder Maps, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
kenada wrote:
Finally got my copy! Yay!

Awesome! Here's a nice, protective bag to put it in when you're not reading it. *Hands kenada a bag of weasels*


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

I’ll just zap the weasels with my wand! Why is everyone on fire now? XD


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Pathfinder Maps, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
kenada wrote:
I’ll just zap the weasels with my wand! Why is everyone on fire now? XD

So much for protecting your new book. So sorry man.


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Rysky wrote:
Ched Greyfell wrote:
The point buy system is the exact one from PF1. heh

Huh?

It’s not the the same at all.

Except that it is. I'm looking at them side by side.

A 10 costs 0, an 11 costs 1, a 12 costs 2..
It's the same chart, minus being able to drop scores to 7.

Leveling up is obviously different. But for character creation, it's the same points to buy scores.


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

Interestingly, though, you get point buy point at levels, instead of flat boosts at 5, 10, etc.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
Ched Greyfell wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Ched Greyfell wrote:
The point buy system is the exact one from PF1. heh

Huh?

It’s not the the same at all.

Except that it is. I'm looking at them side by side.

A 10 costs 0, an 11 costs 1, a 12 costs 2..
It's the same chart, minus being able to drop scores to 7.

Leveling up is obviously different. But for character creation, it's the same points to buy scores.

*double checks tables*

Ah, so it is, but the leveling up part is the main thing.


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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

They changed how your ABCs interact with it. In PF1, you got your racial modifier on top of your purchased scores. In PF2, they’re effectively just an offset on the cost in ability points.

If my ancestry gives me +2 Strength, that’s just two more points to spend rather than a modifier I add to e.g., bump a 16 to an 18. That helps balance boosts, so you don’t have to pick certain ancestry or background options to build the character you want.

My only issue, having looked at the effect it would have on my PCs, is characters built this way have lower stats across the board. Point-buy characters never catch up, which makes me wonder about the impact on balance.

Paizo Employee Design Manager

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I'm glad those who were lucky enough to have theirs ship are enjoying the GMG so far! I am obviously extremely biased, but I feel that we put together a GMG that is particularly useful and fun, even when standing next to the other GMG-style books on my shelf. I can't wait to see what kinds of stories people use the GMG rules and advice to tell!...In fact I can't wait so much so that Eleanor (notably for this thread, she is the author of the cursed items section that provoked the OP) and I are going to be on Pathfinder Friday this Friday to talk about variant rules and spitball variants to cover the ideas you guys propose in chat!


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Rysky wrote:

*double checks tables*

Ah, so it is, but the leveling up part is the main thing.

Yea. That's all I was saying, was the table was the same.

Leveling up with point buy is definitely a different mechanic. I'll probably try it out to see how it goes.


Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path Subscriber
kenada wrote:

They changed how your ABCs interact with it. In PF1, you got your racial modifier on top of your purchased scores. In PF2, they’re effectively just an offset on the cost in ability points.

If my ancestry gives me +2 Strength, that’s just two more points to spend rather than a modifier I add to e.g., bump a 16 to an 18. That helps balance boosts, so you don’t have to pick certain ancestry or background options to build the character you want.

Very interesting! I don't have the book yet, but based on what you've said, I really like the intent behind this.

kenada wrote:
My only issue, having looked at the effect it would have on my PCs, is characters built this way have lower stats across the board. Point-buy characters never catch up, which makes me wonder about the impact on balance.

Hmm. That's too bad. I'll be curious to run the numbers on that myself. Can you at least see any place in the book that indicates potentially lowering encounter difficulties across the board to account for that?

Paizo Employee Design Manager

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It's a little more complicated than "lower" or "higher" for point buy because it depends on if you're looking at the overall ability scores or the potential for the highest score. For instance, a level 6 character could have a 20 in their highest ability score (normally level 10 is the earliest in the core system), and a level 11 character could have 22 (normally level 20 in the core system). If they do, though, nothing else is increasing during that time. You could even pull off two 22s by level 20, which you can't do in the core. But in exchange for the increased flexibility and potential to silo into your best attributes, your overall stat modifiers will usually wind up being lower than if you use the core system, which is quite generous overall but in exchange requires splitting up your boosts quite a bit (for instance, the maximally split up character in the core ends with 20, 18, 18, 18, 18, 16 vs 18, 18, 18, 18, 16, 16 with maximally split up point buy character).


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

Thanks for the clarification! :D

The point-buy method in PF1 let you adjust the number of ability points depending on the type of campaign. Would it cause issues to allow more flexible ability points at 1st level? It doesn’t seem like it would. It looks like starting with 20 would turn a 16 into a 17 in the maximally split up array and 25 would turn a 16 into an 18, and it shouldn’t allow you to get a 20 or 22 sooner (nor more than two 22s at 20).

Paizo Employee Design Manager

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kenada wrote:

Thanks for the clarification! :D

The point-buy method in PF1 let you adjust the number of ability points depending on the type of campaign. Would it cause issues to allow more flexible ability points at 1st level? It doesn’t seem like it would. It looks like starting with 20 would turn a 16 into a 17 in the maximally split up array and 25 would turn a 16 into an 18, and it shouldn’t allow you to get a 20 or 22 sooner (nor more than two 22s at 20).

The rule forcing you to spend what you have at 1st level was indeed intended to let you tweak around without allowing faster 20s or 22s.

Grand Lodge

Did this book have any optional variants of the proficiency bonus system?

I think there was talk of having different options such as 1/2 lvl bonus or no bonus to level similar to bounded accuracy and possibly others.

Silver Crusade

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

They have a small section on converting to that yes.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

I like how the new chase rules are party focused rather then individual character focused like in PF1.


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

My party really enjoyed the chase in Fall of Plaguestone. I think the party focused chase with the different skill checks is just a fun way to handle it.


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A little disappointed with the point buy variant. For me one of the potential appeals was looking for a way to make it easier for players to diversify their points and put less pressure on them to min-max their main attribute, but it sounds like the PB variant does the opposite and reduces their overall stat spread but lets you min-max even more.

Paizo Employee Design Manager

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Squiggit wrote:
A little disappointed with the point buy variant. For me one of the potential appeals was looking for a way to make it easier for players to diversify their points and put less pressure on them to min-max their main attribute, but it sounds like the PB variant does the opposite and reduces their overall stat spread but lets you min-max even more.

The point buy system ultimately also serves as an option to help people who enjoyed PF1 point buy to have a similar experience, which is what causes it not to function quite in this way. It would be possible to create a point buy system that follows your design goal entirely, and it's a worthy goal, but it would need to scale up the cost of higher ability scores at a much faster rate than PF1 did (something like a power of 2 leading to buying a 12 for 1 total point, 14 for 3 total points, 16 for 7 total points, 18 for 15 total points, 20 for 31 total points, 22 for 63 total points, for instance might be a good place to start, but that scales completely differently than PF1 point buy).


Squiggit wrote:
A little disappointed with the point buy variant. For me one of the potential appeals was looking for a way to make it easier for players to diversify their points and put less pressure on them to min-max their main attribute, but it sounds like the PB variant does the opposite and reduces their overall stat spread but lets you min-max even more.

Dunno why your surprised.

You pretty much all of 2e operates on the assumption that your character has optimal stat allocation for your class.


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I almost always tend to build the characters with more spread out and rounded stats. I'd much rather have a 14 and a 16 than a 12 and an 18. Because I already know I can make my 16 an 18 at level 5 if I wish to. And I don't feel like it makes characters less effective in any way.


So excited for this book! I happen to have a session coming up where the PCs will be engaging in naval combat - does there happen to be any section that addresses rules on how to best handle that?


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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Azouth wrote:
I like how the new chase rules are party focused rather then individual character focused like in PF1.

The Victory Point stuff in general is pretty nice. I’m looking at adding a VP-based system for clearing hexes (and fortifying their camp) in my sandbox hexcrawl. I’m a little surprised that they didn’t include one in the hexploration subsystem, though I think hexploration targeting a mode of play with different needs. I also think VP would also be perfect for Leadership, which is handled as written through GM fiat (more or less).


Is there something in the GMG covering surprise situations and ambushes and stuff?


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Pathfinder Maps, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
ograx wrote:
Is there something in the GMG covering surprise situations and ambushes and stuff?

Oh absolutely! Paraphrasing from memory, there is...

"Don't surprise your players with cliche NPC themes that could be hurtful."

"Don't ambush your players with sudden house rules. Involve them in rules discussions."

That sort of thing.

Spoiler:
;P

There's also a full quarter page dedicated to Surprise Attacks, chiefly those made at night while PCs might be sleeping. It basically references page 499 of the Core Rulebook and speaks of using such tactics sparingly.


Just how many hours must I wait to buy that PDF only? Wasn't it this week, am I remembering correctly?
(I'll batch grab the hardcovers only after at least one printing later, for errata inclusion)

Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Lucas Yew wrote:

Just how many hours must I wait to buy that PDF only? Wasn't it this week, am I remembering correctly?

(I'll batch grab the hardcovers only after at least one printing later, for errata inclusion)

Paizo has dropped the "we only reprint with errata once we run out of printings" policy, so you might want to rethink your purchasing pattern - the Core Rulebook has seen already errata but no second printing.

And frankly, the more people hold off from buying, the less chance there even will be a second printing.


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Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I definitely like this better than the PF1 Game Mastery Guide. The character progression without magic item variant and the relic item system were worth the price of admission alone for me. Throw in monster creation and chase rules and we have a great book. Well done!


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Dave2 wrote:
I definitely like this better than the PF1 Game Mastery Guide. The character progression without magic item variant and the relic item system were worth the price of admission alone for me. Throw in monster creation and chase rules and we have a great book. Well done!

The alternative point buy/progression rules, dual class PCs, proficiency without level are all interesting to me. My 50th book on gamemaster basics less so. I'll get to it eventually.

I just wish the cost of postage didn't double the cost of subscription for me.....

Horizon Hunters

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Gortle wrote:
Dave2 wrote:
I definitely like this better than the PF1 Game Mastery Guide. The character progression without magic item variant and the relic item system were worth the price of admission alone for me. Throw in monster creation and chase rules and we have a great book. Well done!

The alternative point buy/progression rules, dual class PCs, proficiency without level are all interesting to me. My 50th book on gamemaster basics less so. I'll get to it eventually.

I just wish the cost of postage didn't double the cost of subscription for me.....

Some of the "basics" stuff is actually fairly insightful even for more experienced GMs, I think.

Paizo Employee Design Manager

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DomHeroEllis wrote:
Gortle wrote:
Dave2 wrote:
I definitely like this better than the PF1 Game Mastery Guide. The character progression without magic item variant and the relic item system were worth the price of admission alone for me. Throw in monster creation and chase rules and we have a great book. Well done!

The alternative point buy/progression rules, dual class PCs, proficiency without level are all interesting to me. My 50th book on gamemaster basics less so. I'll get to it eventually.

I just wish the cost of postage didn't double the cost of subscription for me.....

Some of the "basics" stuff is actually fairly insightful even for more experienced GMs, I think.

You are right about that, the chapter is not even close to being about the basics (if anything, the opposite title of "Advanced Gamemastering" would be more appropriate, though neither is quite right). The chapter title is a misnomer that cropped up late in the book's process somehow. It's about 50 pages full of useful things like a giant table for if you want to treasure by encounter, advanced encounter design, recipes to design adventures of every subgenre, ways to mod the rarity system to create wildly different settings, detailed suggestions and tables for downtime "special events" that are only touched on in the CRB and left to the GM, and more. The actual gamemastering basics are in the Core Rulebook, not here.


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Mark Seifter wrote:
DomHeroEllis wrote:
Gortle wrote:
Dave2 wrote:
I definitely like this better than the PF1 Game Mastery Guide. The character progression without magic item variant and the relic item system were worth the price of admission alone for me. Throw in monster creation and chase rules and we have a great book. Well done!

The alternative point buy/progression rules, dual class PCs, proficiency without level are all interesting to me. My 50th book on gamemaster basics less so. I'll get to it eventually.

I just wish the cost of postage didn't double the cost of subscription for me.....

Some of the "basics" stuff is actually fairly insightful even for more experienced GMs, I think.
You are right about that, the chapter is not even close to being about the basics (if anything, the opposite title of "Advanced Gamemastering" would be more appropriate, though neither is quite right). The chapter title is a misnomer that cropped up late in the book's process somehow. It's about 50 pages full of useful things like a giant table for if you want to treasure by encounter, advanced encounter design, recipes to design adventures of every subgenre, ways to mod the rarity system to create wildly different settings, detailed suggestions and tables for downtime "special events" that are only touched on in the CRB and left to the GM, and more. The actual gamemastering basics are in the Core Rulebook, not here.

Hey Mark, if you wouldn't mind me directing a question at you about the book-

What rule variants if any would you want to treat as on in your personal default when GMing or (assuming it was up to you) play?

I ask because I can say I'm eyeing the free archetype thing as an always on variant when the APG drops and we get more archetypes.

Paizo Employee Design Manager

10 people marked this as a favorite.
The-Magic-Sword wrote:
Mark Seifter wrote:
DomHeroEllis wrote:
Gortle wrote:
Dave2 wrote:
I definitely like this better than the PF1 Game Mastery Guide. The character progression without magic item variant and the relic item system were worth the price of admission alone for me. Throw in monster creation and chase rules and we have a great book. Well done!

The alternative point buy/progression rules, dual class PCs, proficiency without level are all interesting to me. My 50th book on gamemaster basics less so. I'll get to it eventually.

I just wish the cost of postage didn't double the cost of subscription for me.....

Some of the "basics" stuff is actually fairly insightful even for more experienced GMs, I think.
You are right about that, the chapter is not even close to being about the basics (if anything, the opposite title of "Advanced Gamemastering" would be more appropriate, though neither is quite right). The chapter title is a misnomer that cropped up late in the book's process somehow. It's about 50 pages full of useful things like a giant table for if you want to treasure by encounter, advanced encounter design, recipes to design adventures of every subgenre, ways to mod the rarity system to create wildly different settings, detailed suggestions and tables for downtime "special events" that are only touched on in the CRB and left to the GM, and more. The actual gamemastering basics are in the Core Rulebook, not here.

Hey Mark, if you wouldn't mind me directing a question at you about the book-

What rule variants if any would you want to treat as on in your personal default when GMing or (assuming it was up to you) play?

I ask because I can say I'm eyeing the free archetype thing as an always on variant when the APG drops and we get more archetypes.

Probably none by default because as the Design Manager, I like to play and GM with our core assumptions so I have a good sense of how new options play in a standard environment. If I got used to playing with free archetypes, for instance, it could give me a bad sense of how valuable a resource you normally need to spend to get an archetype feat. That said, none of them would be off the table for my more experimental games, and I will probably do things more extreme than some of the options presented in the GMG too!

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