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Trueshots
February 8th, 2013, 20:59
Why Everyone should GM: How to Manipulate the System

Ok, we are lacking GM's for PFS games, this became very apparent when a dozen people signed up for my game in less than 24 hours after posting it. So with this post I am encouraging other to GM and I'm going to tell you why you should.

When GM'ing a game you get credit for the game as if you were a player. This allows you to play every PFS scenario 2 times instead of only 1 time. Meaning you can advance twice as far as your buddies.

But here is the real kicker for me. PAY ATTENTION!
*Assume we are playing a level 1-5 scenario
*Pretend you have a level 4 or 5 character(must not be 1-3 or this won't work).
*No matter what tier the game is played on (either 1-2 or 4-5) you automatically get loot for the (t 4-5 game).

So what does this mean? It means that if you take some level ones and two through a dungeon on subtier 1-2 and they receive their 1- 2pp, 450-500ish gold, and 1xp as a reward. What would you get? you would get 2pp, max gold for the tier 4-5 scenario, 1 xp, and No chance at death! This would most likely be2.5-2k gold maybe even more

All this info can be found on page 39-40 of the PFS players guide.

So what's my plan? I personally will take characters to level 4 and then only apply GM credits for the next 6 games to them. This insures me that I will get max gold for 6 games, thus being one step closer to my financial goals with my character and even more important one step ahead of my buddies :)

Some call me OCD about these things, I call myself, well, OCD about these things :)

Cheers Bloody Mate! (Skellans voice inserted here)

Trenloe
February 9th, 2013, 08:13
More reasons to be a PFS GM given is this thread: http://www.fantasygrounds.com/forums/showthread.php?t=17109

Trueshots
February 9th, 2013, 08:29
More reasons to be a PFS GM given is this thread: http://www.fantasygrounds.com/forums/showthread.php?t=17109

Yes, all great reasons, I was trying to hit on everyone's selfish nerve :) It is true this community here is really great. I haven't run into anyone here that has been harsh or unhelpful. But I do have concerns.
I myself am going to try to do a game every 7-10 days. I honestly don't care much for GMing, I only like building the module in FG's. I have an extremely hectic schedule which I'm sure most people do this day and age. My wife and I are both in school and we have 3 kids that we've schooled from home for years. This alone zaps my time.
The problem I've seen is there are really just a couple GM's for PFS games and the bulk (i'd say 80% at least) are Gm'd by one person, the beloved Skellan. The problem with this is I'm afraid he will wear out after a while, if so were going to be faced with a huge problem.
My problem is, because of my obsessive behavior, I spend way too much time preparing for a single scenario, so for me to be a big time GM most likely isn't going to happen. I wish there was a way to share modules built within FG's with other GM's without doing wrong to Paizo.
I'm not sure if anyone has answers, but I'm up for listening!

lachancery
February 9th, 2013, 15:08
Personally, what's putting a speed bump on how often I GM in PFS (which is none at all nowadays) is the conversion of the PDF module required into FG. I am chronically short for time, so I tend to lose motivation somewhere between reading through the scenario to master it and make it enjoyable for the players and converting it to FG... :o

Bloodlust
February 9th, 2013, 15:26
Yeah I wouldn't mind giving it a go but I've not GM'ed before so it's a lot of work converting scenarios AND learning the GM stuff on FG.

If someone had them all set on FG ready to go, I'd give it a shot.

Trueshots
February 9th, 2013, 18:58
Personally, what's putting a speed bump on how often I GM in PFS (which is none at all nowadays) is the conversion of the PDF module required into FG. I am chronically short for time, so I tend to lose motivation somewhere between reading through the scenario to master it and make it enjoyable for the players and converting it to FG... :o
Yea this is the exact reason no one GMs. You spend about 6-8 hours preping and entering info in FG'S. double that for me. The another hour or two with managing the game ( help others, answering questions, forums, etc). Then it takes 5-6 hours to run it. Then an hour or so for chronicles afterwards and entering on Paizo site. Bottom line you have 15-20 hours involved in a single game. Plus because of policy it's pointless to run a game twice, so all the work you did has just gone to waste.
If we're allowed to share file we could have say 5 GMs build 5 different games in a week. But that would produce 25 games a week making availability for 150 players to play. It's simple math if you ask me. And it's a no brainer, we'd have much more fun on this site if we did so!

Trenloe
February 9th, 2013, 19:05
Based off the OGL (Open Gaming License) that Pathfinder Society scenarios are released under the only content that can be distributed (as long as you include the complete OGL statement with it) is the base system mechanics - essentially the creature statistics.

So, we are very limited in what we can legally distribute to other players/GMs. This even includes distributing non OGL items between people who have bought the scenario PDF. Things like maps, story entries, faction missions, artwork, etc. are all considered "product identity" and cannot be distributed without breaching copyright. This applies to the few free PFS scenarios and sanctioned modules.

So, only NPC statistics can be distributed. With the creature parser, making the creature statistics within FG takes around 10-15 minutes. This is the only "Stuff" we can distribute under the OGL so we can save a GM 10-15 minutes buy providing NPC modules. This is a time saving, but is not the bulk of work that a GM needs to do to get a game together.

So, unfortunately, we don't have much of an option for sharing PFS scenario data produced by other GMs I'm afraid... :(

Gondrick
February 9th, 2013, 19:07
I´m willing to help out and make modules for season 0 I have all the adventures for that season. I would like to DM but I might need help with DM paizo stuff before because I don´t know exactly what needs to be in chronicles sheet.

Trueshots
February 9th, 2013, 19:14
Based off the OGL (Open Gaming License) that Pathfinder Society scenarios are released under the only content that can be distributed (as long as you include the complete OGL statement with it) is the base system mechanics - essentially the creature statistics.

So, we are very limited in what we can legally distribute to other players/GMs. This even includes distributing non OGL items between people who have bought the scenario PDF. Things like maps, story entries, faction missions, artwork, etc. are all considered "product identity" and cannot be distributed without breaching copyright. This applies to the few free PFS scenarios and sanctioned modules.

So, only NPC statistics can be distributed. With the creature parser, making the creature statistics within FG takes around 10-15 minutes. This is the only "Stuff" we can distribute under the OGL so we can save a GM 10-15 minutes buy providing NPC modules. This is a time saving, but is not the bulk of work that a GM needs to do to get a game together.

So, unfortunately, we don't have much of an option for sharing PFS scenario data produced by other GMs I'm afraid... :(
I completely understand but this is the problem and why we barely have a gm a week running games. In my opinion if both GMs have bought the PDF, I see no reason in the world why they can't share the FG's information literally all it is info copied and pasted from the PDF file from Paizo. Everyone has purchased the exact same info so not sure how this would effect copyright laws. The part in FG's is made by us, and I don't plan on copyrighting my work, yet......

Trenloe
February 9th, 2013, 19:17
Plus because of policy it's pointless to run a game twice, so all the work you did has just gone to waste.
This all depends on what you're looking for when you GM and play.

I very rarely apply GM credit to my characters as I enjoy playing PCs all the way from level 1 up to wherever they reach - I enjoy the journey more than the destination. So, I don't GM PFS scenarios to get a chronicle sheet, I GM because I enjoy it and I want other people to enjoy playing PFS scenarios.

Each of us play/GM for different reasons... It may be pointless for you Trueshots to GM the same scenario more than once - that's completely fine and I thank you for all of your efforts and stepping up to GM PFS games.

But, it has been shown that there are plenty of players out there wanting to play PFS on Fantasy Grounds. So, I would encourage potential and current GMs who don't mind running the same scenario more than once to do just that. There are over 120 and growing PFS scenarios out there - we don't all need to run the same ones, a GM can pick one that hasn't been ran before, prepare it and run it a few times for the community.

This is also a very good approach for a beginning GM - learn from what happened running a scenario the first time, read the rules for situations that occurred in the sessions, perhaps adjust your scenario within Fantasy Grounds and be more prepared for running the same scenario a 2nd/3rd time. Each session will be different than the last - as players will always do something unexpected. You will get to be more comfortable running Pathfinder in FG as a GM if you are running a scenario you have ran before - your confidence will grow and you will enjoy the game more...

Trueshots
February 9th, 2013, 19:18
Iīm willing to help out and make modules for season 0 I have all the adventures for that season. I would like to DM but I might need help with DM paizo stuff before because I donīt know exactly what needs to be in chronicles sheet.
Chronicle sheet is easy. In each of your scenarios look in last page it has a chronicle already filled out . I copy and paste the items and such to my blank master copy, then I add everyone info in separately. It really take no time once you get the hang of it.

Trenloe
February 9th, 2013, 19:30
In my opinion if both GMs have bought the PDF, I see no reason in the world why they can't share the FG's information literally all it is info copied and pasted from the PDF file from Paizo. Everyone has purchased the exact same info so not sure how this would effect copyright laws.
You have purchased the information in a PDF form and a PDF form only - for your use only. Buying the PDF gives you no right to change/distribute the content. Changing the medium of the data beyond your use only is an infringement of copyright.

I know people all have different views on copyright - but the copyright laws (and specifically the OGL) are very clear on this. People think OGL means I can re-use and distribute stuff under OGL for free - that is not the case at all. OGL for Paizo products: http://paizo.com/pathfinderRPG/prd/openGameLicense.html

This clearly states Product Identity as: "All trademarks, registered trademarks, proper names (characters, deities, etc.), dialogue, plots, storylines, locations, characters, artworks, and trade dress."

Paizo also have a community use policy that is very clear on what Paizo intellectual property can be used by the community for non-profit: http://paizo.com/paizo/about/communityuse

This does not include scenario content, maps, images, etc. that is not listed in the community use policy.

Trueshots
February 9th, 2013, 19:31
Honestly half of those scenarios are worthless to us. The only games we can run are 1-5. I'm even having problems running a subtier 4-5 game when a dozen people signed up. We just don't have enough players. I had 2 guys that played with me last week that I think have moved on because lack of games. This is a huge issue, bigger than its being made out to be. When you are new you want to play everyday cause you "done caught tha fire". If we can't provide that for people then they simply go play on another site. Case in point my game on Sunday all those people wanting to play and 70% will go home empty handed. And I bet half we won't see again. And if we do and the same thing happens on the next game then you can be sure you'll never see the again! Its sad honestly!

Trueshots
February 9th, 2013, 19:40
@trenloe
I fully under stand what you saying but that doesn't negate the truth of what I'm saying either in regards to losing players and GMs. The only option is for FG's to make a more efficient way to enter info from a PDF. You should be able to submit you PDF in FGs and it do everything else. You can afterwards go in an tweet it. I would pay double or triple for the FG's program if that were the case!

Trenloe
February 9th, 2013, 19:42
Honestly half of those scenarios are worthless to us. The only games we can run are 1-5. I'm even having problems running a subtier 4-5 game when a dozen people signed up. We just don't have enough players. I had 2 guys that played with me last week that I think have moved on because lack of games. This is a huge issue, bigger than its being made out to be. When you are new you want to play everyday cause you "done caught tha fire". If we can't provide that for people then they simply go play on another site. Case in point my game on Sunday all those people wanting to play and 70% will go home empty handed. And I bet half we won't see again. And if we do and the same thing happens on the next game then you can be sure you'll never see the again! Its sad honestly!
I understand your enthusiasm Trueshots - it's great.

I'm all for supporting GMs and making it as easy for the to GM games as possible. But, publicly sharing scenario data is out I'm afraid.

The nature of role-playing games is that GMs will always have to do more work than players. For popular role-playing games there will always be more players than GMs. For internet gaming there will always be newbies who want to play and who drift away without playing a game or after playing 1 or 2 games - for all sorts of reasons.

All we can do here is support GMs, players and the community working within the limits of what is legally allowed.

Trenloe
February 9th, 2013, 19:45
@trenloe
I fully under stand what you saying but that doesn't negate the truth of what I'm saying either in regards to losing players and GMs. The only option is for FG's to make a more efficient way to enter info from a PDF. You should be able to submit you PDF in FGs and it do everything else. You can afterwards go in an tweet it. I would pay double or triple for the FG's program if that were the case!
I've looked into this, but there is no fixed standard for Paizo scenario PDFs to be able to do this reliably - even 50% reliably.

The reason why the creature parser works is that Paizo published the creature statblock standard and (generally) adheres to it: http://paizo.com/pathfinderRPG/prd/monsters/introduction.html

There is no such standard for production of PDFs by any manufacturer (not just Paizo). So, even if a PDF parser was written the output would only be partially complete - more likely data in all the wrong places, if the truth be told.

Trueshots
February 9th, 2013, 19:51
It would be nice if Paizo just simply put it in the exact same format every time like the stat blocks.

Trenloe
February 9th, 2013, 19:57
It would be nice if Paizo just simply put it in the exact same format every time like the stat blocks.
Yes, it would be very nice... :)

But, all we can do is work with what we are given...

Trueshots
February 9th, 2013, 20:01
Your a big wig there send em an email and tell em were tired of cheating them out of money but they've tied our hands:)

Bloodlust
February 10th, 2013, 01:52
Yes, I think perhaps an email from our community would be a good idea. Point out our issues and ask them what advice they have.

In all honesty, I've seen GMs rock up and run a module sight-unseen in real life and while that's far from optimal - it's impossible on FG. With my job I just don't have the time to do that.

lachancery
February 10th, 2013, 02:32
On top of buying the PFS scenarios with Paizo, I would eagerly pay to buy the FG conversion here on the SmiteWork's store. I don't know that it would be enough money to be worth someone's trouble to convert scenarios, but it would certainly solve my issue for not GMing more often. I love GMing and my experience thus far with PFS+FG has been quite enjoyable. I just wished the reason I am not contributing more wouldn't be stuck in IP rights legalities.

Gabe Newell, over at Valve, has long been an advocate in favor of changing mindset and laws to remove distribution control issues from impeding consumers' experience. I remember one of his early speech, about 6 years ago when Steam was beginning, where he was putting forth that much piracy were caused by ill-founded control needs around distribution revenues, rather than publishers focusing on increasing players' purchase and playing experiences.

Back then, the Apple store vs Napster was an example of how people would accept to pay for music, if the whole consuming experience was well-thought out. Ahhh, but I digressed off topic. ;)

JohnD
February 10th, 2013, 02:36
I don't know if the thread title is all that accurate.

Preparing a game as DM takes time... that much is certain.

Blackfoot
February 10th, 2013, 19:11
On top of buying the PFS scenarios with Paizo, I would eagerly pay to buy the FG conversion here on the SmiteWork's store. I don't know that it would be enough money to be worth someone's trouble to convert scenarios, but it would certainly solve my issue for not GMing more often. I love GMing and my experience thus far with PFS+FG has been quite enjoyable. I just wished the reason I am not contributing more wouldn't be stuck in IP rights legalities.

Gabe Newell, over at Valve, has long been an advocate in favor of changing mindset and laws to remove distribution control issues from impeding consumers' experience. I remember one of his early speech, about 6 years ago when Steam was beginning, where he was putting forth that much piracy were caused by ill-founded control needs around distribution revenues, rather than publishers focusing on increasing players' purchase and playing experiences.

Back then, the Apple store vs Napster was an example of how people would accept to pay for music, if the whole consuming experience was well-thought out. Ahhh, but I digressed off topic. ;)
The bottom line of this comes down to the guy/gal who did the work to create the product getting paid for the work he/she did by the people who use what he/she created. Seems like if that gets covered... it's all good. Realistically, once you get down to the .pdf price to download from paizo.com plus the cost for Smiteworks to market it, plus the fee to the person who did the conversion... you should be able to come up with a real price to sell this stuff... and then everyone wins... but then Smiteworks has to handle paying both the converter (x amount) and Paizo it's $3.99 per scenario.
Seems like if Smiteworks sold them for $9.99 ... they could pay $3 and make $3... and everyone would win. There's probably a fee for Paypal too... so.. well I'm not sure what kinda cut they get.
I'm not really sure why Paizo wouldn't go for this kind of deal.. it seems like gravy to me.

hawkwind
February 11th, 2013, 10:48
I have the reverse problem iI have gm'ed four PFS. games and have yet to play in one yet, not that I am complaining @in prefer running games to playing in them. I suspect that I may not ever get to play a online game and will turn up at a UK con with a level 8 character which I have never played with before.
As for prep time I just read the module a few times, run the parser and import the maps, I
can do the FG bit in under a hour

Blahness98
February 12th, 2013, 04:07
I seem to have the opposite situation.. I would love to GM more, but due to a weird work schedule (working retail blows, btw), two small kids, and a RP heavy campaign I run my time is pretty much gone.

Oddly though, I have short periods of time at night that I have for myself. During that time, I convert stuff into FG. Because of that, I have almost all of season 4 converted (and several other things D20 and CP2020 related) and am looking at doing three once I complete what I have of 4.

I figured once they are converted I can run them whenever.