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Blackfoot
October 7th, 2012, 18:38
This came up for discussion in one of the threads and I thought people might like to bat around the idea a bit.

The only comment I really have to make about the levels... well ok.. it's probably not the ONLY comment.. but one comment anyway.. is that generally these non-First Steps/Tier 1 games are good to run with 2nd level and higher PCs because you can't rerun them as you can with the starter ones.
Just sorta something to keep in mind.

It 'might' be good if we (as a group) decided that while level 1s were welcome in non-tier 1 games... they could not hold a slot over a level 2 character... this is just a suggestion... or the beginnings of an idea anyway.. and really not a part of this game thread.. I should post it elsewhere for discussion... OK.. I'll stop talking now.

I am not sure about this. i think the solution is to run scenarios 3-7 rather than exclude people. I think its always good to get new players joining and ultimately people should be able to play what character they want. i can understand though that its not good to have mutiple character getting to 4th and struggling to get higher. there are lots of scenarios to run.
i will do a higher level one next.
just my thoughts tho, i suppose its up to the gm

Blackfoot
October 7th, 2012, 18:47
We don't have a huge number of higher level PCs available in the group and hopefully those who get to 2nd level will stay with us into higher level games. Obviously we get a lot of 1st levels between people trying out new builds and people checking out what the PFS is all about. We certainly want to encourage that as much as possible.. but if all the slots in higher tier games end up going to folks who can play replayable scenarios there are fewer games to keep people involved in the group on an ongoing basis. So far I've run the first steps series and some of the tier 1 modules several times each. Enough to build a decent number of 2nd level characters within the group. I will happily continue to do so as I did last friday. I encourage EVERYONE to take up the mantle of GMing a few games and be a part of the group. Running games for new players fires us up and gets our group blood growing and flowing.
I also think that newbies should look for THOSE tier 1 scenarios first before taking up slots that are only available to higher level characters.
Not that every tier 1-5 scenario needs to be run at 4-5... certainly they can be run at tier 1-2 with 2nd and 3rds without issue... and I'm not suggesting turning folks away.. unless there are too many level 2 plus characters to fill a non-replayable game.

What do you folks think?

Trenloe
October 7th, 2012, 19:24
Personally I have played the 3 first steps scenarios (tier 1) once only - no reruns. I certainly don't want to play in a game where I've already played (or GM'd) the scenario before - that's no fun for me and it's not what I play PFS for.

So, whereas I know where you're coming from Blackfoot, I don't think prioritising level 2+ PCs over level 1 PCs for non tier 1 scenarios is such a great idea. There are lots and lots of tier 1-5 scenarios out there, so we shouldn't be encouraging levels 1 PCs only to replay first steps (currently the only tier 1 PFS scenarios available) or wait for/replay a level 1 sanctioned module with a 1st level PC (the other time where you can replay a scenario/module with a level 1 PC and get full credit). I have 6 PFS characters who are all level 2+ without replaying tier 1's, so it's not an issue in finding PFS scenarios playable by 1st levels.

The issue we do have as a group is that we *never* seem to be able to run games at a higher subtier than 1-2. Even though we've now been running games for a while (nearly one year off-and-on since the original FG2PFS group was formed) we still have a lot of players who only appear to have level 1 PCs, and a few people with higher levels who want to play those higher level PCS. If we try and mix and match a group with one level 3-4 PC and one/two level 2's and 3 level 1's you really have to play subtier 1-2, the level 3-4 PC is not challenged and owns encounters which is not much fun for them and definitely not much fun for the level 1 players who feel they aren't contributing. So, we really want to try and run adventures with *all* PCs within the subtier if at all possible, and really only 1/2 max +/-1 level outside of the subtier at a push (unless there are 6 level 3's and 2's playing up due to APL +1 in scenarios prior to season 4).

Generally, the community players have been great in swapping higher level PCs out and not playing their preferred characters to keep the game at a more appropriate subtier without over powering it - which is fantastic! However, we do seem to be getting stuck in the subtier 1-2 rut; we should have more PCs above level 1 by now.

Ideas?


Do as Blackfoot mentions - prioritise non level 1 PCs in all scenarios except tier 1 (currently only the first steps series or some level 1 sanctioned modules). This is due to the fact that players can replay the first steps series with a new PC (or a level 1 sanctioned mod with a level 1 PC) and get full rewards.
Run higher level only scenarios. Be this running tier 3-7 scenarios (where a PC must be within the tier level) or running tier 1-5 scenarios as subtier 4-5 only (and restricting PCs to level 3-5). Note: a while ago a GM advertised a tier 3-7 game and it didn't run due to lack of sign ups - perhaps we've moved on from this and have more PCs at higher levels now; but GMS keep in mind that you may not get a full table if you run higher tier adventures at this point.
Do as we do know - leave it up to the GM to run what they want and juggle the PC levels to try and make it a good fit and enjoyable for all.
Any other ideas people can come up with???

In the end however, it is completely up to the GM what they run. We do not have the luxury of having lots of GMs and lots of games being ran every week so we kinda have to try and pitch scenarios that are popular to the GM and that get a full deck of players. Also, as GM's on Fantasy Grounds it takes a while to prepare a scenario so we like to run it a few times so we end up in a viscous circle where we initially run subtier 1-5 games and so that what we keep running.

I don't think there is a 100% great solution - until we have games being run frequently with a player base with PCs covering a broad span of levels. But, perhaps we're getting towards that point... I have been thinking for a while to run a few tier 1-5 games specifically at subtier 4-5. I just haven't had the time with my travels but, I should have some time to do that soon. That will give us an indication of demand for higher level games... I'll also post a limited time vote on this on the forum.

So, we have a few options on the table - what do the community think about how to approach this?

Blackfoot
October 7th, 2012, 19:27
The Tier 1 modules can all be rerun as well.. so it's not just the first steps.
Godsmouth Heresy
Master of the Fallen Fortress
We Be Goblins!
Crypt of the Everflame...

Blackfoot
October 7th, 2012, 19:29
I'm also sorta suggesting giving a perk to folks who stick with us and something for newbie players to aspire to.

Trenloe
October 7th, 2012, 19:40
The Tier 1 modules can all be rerun as well.. so it's not just the first steps.
Godsmouth Heresy
Master of the Fallen Fortress
We Be Goblins!
Crypt of the Everflame...
Thanks for the reminder. :) I've updated the list in my post to reflect this.

Blackfoot
October 7th, 2012, 20:21
The big thing about this whole idea is that the 'rules' for play are a little different for level 1s... and definitely we are finding they are more abundant than other levels. We want to encourage new players but we also don't want to make it impossible for older players to find slots in games. I suspect it could be particularly difficult for level 2s & 3s if all the low tier slots are being sucked up by 1s who are testing the waters.

I suppose the best solution is for us just to have more games running!

Trenloe
October 7th, 2012, 20:26
The big thing about this whole idea is that the 'rules' for play are a little different for level 1s... and definitely we are finding they are more abundant than other levels. We want to encourage new players but we also don't want to make it impossible for older players to find slots in games. I suspect it could be particularly difficult for level 2s & 3s if all the low tier slots are being sucked up by 1s who are testing the waters.
It's certainly a quandary - and may be a vicious circle too: perhaps we don't have many level 2+ PCs signing up for games because older players have stopped looking for those games???


I suppose the best solution is for us just to have more games running!
Absolutely! :) One thing to keep in mind is that quite a few of our GMs are new to running Pathfinder *and* running it on Fantasy Grounds so they automatically want to run low tier games too as these take less preparation and need less in-depth knowledge of the rules.

Up to us more experienced Pathfinder/FG GMs to step up and run something a little higher?

Bloodlust
October 22nd, 2012, 14:33
I've had to start two new characters due to the unavailabilty of games when those characters get to level 4. Playing with level 1-2s is no fun at all and the goldyou get puts you well behind the growth curve so that when you do get to start playing in a tier 6-7 you get creamed because you don't have the required equipment (haven't been able to afford it playing down so much). This happened in the only game where I have lost a character.

With the many re-usable scenarios out there and Blackfoot (for one) running them regularly, I don't see why people who have been playing for a while are being "held down" or "missing out" to people playing first level characters.

I see some people who have a great many characters of low level. I'm not sure if that is just wanting to try out new stuff or the lack of higher tier games. I hope that we can get some higher tier games supported.

Blackfoot
October 22nd, 2012, 14:52
Well.. there are 2 pieces to this.
Scenarios for tier 1-2 must be run in order to get low levels up to level 4... if the only low level games that are running are 'Tier 1' then players can never advance beyond level 2. If we encourage level 1s not to play the 'Tier 1-2' scenarios and to level up with the 'first steps' or other replayable scenarios... then that leaves more room in Tier 1-2 games for level 2 and 3 players.

Players who find themselves stymied by level advances do have the option of running a few lower level games to help encourage a large base of higher level players for the games they would like to play. Until such time as we have a broad base with a variety of levels available... some level ranges are going to be short on games.

I have recently made a point of running a couple of First Steps games for newbies to help give them an alternative to running in tier 1-2 (non-replayable) scenarios.

Bloodlust
October 22nd, 2012, 14:59
Yes, I agree with you that people with first level characters should be encouraged to play the tier 1 scenarios and modules.

Then again, if it is a brand spanking new character and you play a pre-gen of whatever level you can immediately claim the xp and gold (only 500, but that's better than any first steps scenario!)

This way we can get more characters up to level 4 and those who are at level 4 can be aided by new players who gain just as much (if not more) benefit by playing a pre-gen in higher tier scenarios.

Otherwise what we may find is people seeing FG as a good place to try out a new character concept but you'll never get past level 4 there.

Blackfoot
October 22nd, 2012, 15:02
Honestly? Why should any player be ENCOURAGED to run a pregen? I mean, that's absurd. Play your own character, that is the point of the whole thing.
Running a pregen is for players who have no idea how to build a character and have never played before, not as an option for 'filling games'. IMO, NOT a good option.

Blackfoot
October 22nd, 2012, 15:05
If we have so few games running that we can't support the community of players, perhaps some of the players should reassess their role in the community.

Bloodlust
October 22nd, 2012, 15:15
Hence why I said a "brand spanking new character". Sorry perhaps I should have said "player/character" to save confusion. Then again I've run a pre-gen before to make up table numbers and I'm not a new player. Running a pre-gen helps the table run and you get the benefits of playing (without any real risk to your character, which is kind of a bonus, thought not as much fun as playing your own sure).

As for roles in the community, not everyone wants to be a DM. I personally don't have the time required or any desire at all to DM. People shouldn't be made to feel like they are "lesser" parts of the community because they do not want to DM.

We have that locally and what we are finding is that the DM group has grown a little and the player base is disappearing.

At the end of the day, when it comes down to it, a person with only level 4 characters can't really "play down" for any meaningful enjoyment for the whole group (or themselves) in a tier 1-2, whereas a player without a level 4+ character CAN gain the benefit of playing a pre-gen either immediately on a new character or when their favourite character levels.

As I say, I've done it myself to help tables run.

deepdivinbloke
October 24th, 2012, 11:34
Hi there,

I am newish to fantasy grounds but old hand to DMing generally. I would be happy to DM a higher level scenario, especially as you old hands would be able to help with the technical side of things. Coul someone tell me what I would need to buy to do it as the expense may well be the main hindrance.

Also I am in the uk so timings could be an issue, but other than that am willing to help. Also would mean that the regular DMs could have a play.

Trenloe
October 24th, 2012, 12:23
Hi there,

I am newish to fantasy grounds but old hand to DMing generally. I would be happy to DM a higher level scenario, especially as you old hands would be able to help with the technical side of things. Coul someone tell me what I would need to buy to do it as the expense may well be the main hindrance.

Also I am in the uk so timings could be an issue, but other than that am willing to help. Also would mean that the regular DMs could have a play.
Hi there - and welcome to Pathfinder Society on Fantasy Grounds! :)

Thanks so much for offering to GM a higher level scenario.

The minimum you will need is a Full license for Fantasy Grounds - this will allow those with Ultimate, Full or Lite licences to play, only unregistered licenses won't be able to play in your game.

Then, purchase a PFS scenario PDF (or use one of the free ones, but these usually aren't higher level) and convert it to Fantasy Grounds - guidelines in this thread: http://www.fantasygrounds.com/forums/showthread.php?t=17108

Ask any questions you may have - we're a pretty friendly and helpful bunch here.

Skellan
October 24th, 2012, 14:22
Awesome mate. Just l et me know if i can help with anything. i have done quite a few now

Blackfoot
October 24th, 2012, 14:54
Welcome aboard.

My advice would be that running one of the 'free' ones, like first steps, is usually good for a test run on things. There is usually a decent sized group of folks who are looking to play in them. That should give you an idea of what you are getting involved with. After that.. most of the scenarios cost about $5 US.. (not sure how that converts for you) so the expense isn't huge. As long as you have a Full version of FG.. you should be good to go.

Skellan
October 24th, 2012, 16:53
It works out at about 3 for the pdfs. I think hey are great value

JohnD
October 27th, 2012, 13:00
Well, I've never played Pathfinder or the Society approach so I'd love some adventures that I can go in with a L1 PC and hopefully build up.

Bloodlust
October 27th, 2012, 13:06
There is a game on tomorrow night, thought it is for level 4-5 characters.

You can still play a pre-generated character though and apply the credit for that directly to your new character.

The forum link for tomorrow's game is: http://www.fantasygrounds.com/forums/showthread.php?t=17509

You need to sign up on the calendar to secure your place.
http://www.fantasygrounds.com/calendar/?id=908

Down the bottom you'll see the list of players and it will say (on the right), "Apply as player". Click on that and it will refresh the screen and you will be added to that list. Then you click on "edit" and add your character details such as character name and level, etc.

Next, go to http://www.fantasygrounds.com/downloads/

Fantasy Grounds II

Download the installer here. Running the installer requires an active internet connection to complete. Note that the installer is the same for all versions (Full, Lite, Ultimate and Unregistered.)

Download now: All licenses (50 MB)

Trenloe
October 30th, 2012, 00:15
Moved posts relating to building adventures on a MAC to a new thread: http://www.fantasygrounds.com/forums/showthread.php?t=17600