PaizoCon 2012 Announced!

We are very proud to announce PaizoCon 2012, our annual gathering of Paizo staff, special guests, Pathfinder RPG players, and members of our message board community! 2012’s event will take place on July 6–8 at the Marriot Redmond Town Center hotel in Redmond, Washington. In addition to the regular annual festivities, PaizoCon 2012 is a celebration of Paizo’s 10th anniversary, as well as 5 years of the Pathfinder Adventure Path! The entire Paizo staff as well as a community of Pathfinder gamers, artists, and designers will be on hand with special events created just for the show. If you’ve never had a chance to visit PaizoCon, 2012 is definitely the best year to start. And if you have been to the show before, we look forward to seeing you again!

You can order your $40 three-day convention badge today. While you’re at it, be sure to pick up a ticket to the highly anticipated Pathfinder Preview Banquet, where we show off upcoming products and reveal secrets you won’t be able to learn anywhere else! The banquet has sold out every year we’ve held it, so it’s a good idea to pick up a ticket as soon as you’re sure you can make it to the convention.

This year we are pleased to announce a new location for PaizoCon: The Marriot Redmond Town Center hotel, a great facility situated along an outdoor shopping center with plenty of excellent options for local dining and quality shopping (including a game store and comic shop!). The hotel features more space for games and seminars than our previous location, an on-site bar and restaurant, and more rooms for attendees. The Marriott has extended a special offer of $85 per night for PaizoCon guests, available until June 13th. Make your hotel reservation by calling 1-425-498-4000, and don’t forget to mention PaizoCon to get the special room rate!

Stay tuned to the Paizo Blog in the coming weeks for more announcements about our Guests of Honor, special game industry guests, and events. In the meantime, please check out the PaizoCon FAQ, which answers a lot of commonly asked questions about the convention.

Please also visit paizo.com/paizocon, the official homepage of the convention, where we’ll post additional details as they become available.

We’re delighted to host this convention again, and to celebrate 10 successful years in game publishing! Please help us celebrate in July by attending PaizoCon 2012. We can’t wait to game with you!

Erik Mona
Paizo Publisher

Beginner Bash Box

Heard of the new Beginner Box coming out from Paizo? It’s the newest addition to the Pathfinder RPG line that’s focusing on introducing Pathfinder to new players. It comes with simpler character sheets, simpler rules, and a whole lot of fun! It comes out on October 26th, and we’ve decided to open up the Beginner Box with a big Bash!

We’ll be running four short delves at six different locations across Atlanta and Macon on October 29th. Each delve takes between 45 – 75 minutes, and uses the pregens and rules from the new Beginner Box. While this doesn’t give credit for a PFS character, if you complete all four delves you’ll receive a super secret boon that is probably the best boon outside of the Eyes of the Ten series. I guarantee that all of you would love to have this boon.

So what do you need to do? Come join us at one of our five locations below and make sure to bring a friend who’s never played Pathfinder or even a tabletop RPG before. Every location is running games from noon to five, so make sure to come!

Galactic Quest Comics in Lawrenceville
481 West Pike Street
Lawrenceville GA, 30045

Galactic Quest Comics in Buford
4264 Sudderth Road
Buford, GA 30518

Hobbytown USA in Kennesaw
840 Ernest W Barrett NW # 650
Kennesaw, GA 30144

FCB Games in Alpharetta
9850 Nesbit Ferry Road, Suite 21
Alpharetta, GA

Treefort Games in Fayetteville
150 Banks Xing, Hwy 85
Fayetteville, GA 30214

Golden Bough in Macon
371 Cotton Avenue
Macon, Georgia 31201

P.S. This is also the first game day down in Macon. Join Nani and I at the Golden Bough for their first game day!

Paizo News: Paizo Announces New Venture Captains!

On Thursday of last week, Paizo announced the hiring of Mike Brock as the new Pathfinder Society Campaign Coordinator. Mike has been one of the campaign’s most prolific and successful regional coordinators in Atlanta, Georgia since the venture-captain program was launched a year ago, and we’re all excited to see what great new innovations he can bring to the Pathfinder Society Organized Play campaign as a whole. Mike won’t start for another few weeks, as moving from Atlanta to Seattle is quite an endeavor, so hold off on asking for rules clarifications and the like, but feel free to congratulate him and wish him the best of luck here or on the existing congratulations thread.

In addition to announcing Mike as the new Campaign Coordinator, it’s also my pleasure to announce another wave of venture-captains! Some of these newly appointed regional coordinators will be working in areas that have long been crying out for a venture-captain, while some will be stepping into the rather large shoes left empty when Mike leaves Atlanta to come work at Paizo HQ. If you’re in one of these venture-captains’ regions, drop them a line to see how you can help grow Pathfinder Society in your area.

Atlanta, GA
Kyle and Nani Pratt
kyle.pratt@georgiapfs.org & nani.o.pratt@georgiapfs.org

Boston, MA
Don Walker
BostonPFS@gmail.com

Dallas/ Ft. Worth, TX
Jon Cary
DFWVentureCaptain@gmail.com

Iowa City, IA
Todd Morgan
PFSIowa@gmail.com

Washington, DC
Dan Simons
pfsventurecaptaindc@gmail.com

Congrats again to Mike and all six of our new venture-captains, and thanks for all your hard work thus far! The Pathfinder Society is in good hands and can only get better from here.

Mark Moreland
Developer

Paizo News: Paizo Names New Organized Play Coordinator

Paizo Names New Organized Play Coordinator

Mike Brock Joins Paizo Publishing

Paizo Publishing has named Mike Brock as Pathfinder Society Campaign Coordinator, overseeing the massive Pathfinder Society Organized Play worldwide shared-world RPG campaign. A former Pathfinder Society regional coordinator from Atlanta, Georgia, Brock brings years of local campaign management experience to the international stage. Brock’s tenure will begin in October of 2011.

“Mike has done a wonderful job managing the Pathfinder Society program in Atlanta,” said Paizo Publisher Erik Mona. “He has a list of ideas as long as a greatsword he’d like to implement to make the campaign even better, and we are thrilled to have him as a member of our adventuring party.”

Mike Brock said, “It is a privilege to have been chosen by Paizo to oversee Pathfinder Society, and I’m very excited about getting started when I arrive in Seattle. I’m looking forward to working with the Paizo staff, venture captain coordinators, and the Pathfinder Society community to help improve and grow.”

Now in its fourth year, Pathfinder Society Organized Play is a massive, worldwide shared-world Pathfinder RPG campaign with more than 10,000 participants. Players create their own characters and run them through sanctioned Pathfinder Society events at game stores, conventions, and in their own homes.

The Pathfinder Roleplaying Game is a fully supported tabletop RPG, with regularly released adventure modules, sourcebooks on the fantastic world of Golarion, and complete campaigns in the form of Pathfinder Adventure Paths like Carrion Crown and The Jade Regent. The Pathfinder RPG is also compatible with the 3.5 edition of the world’s oldest roleplaying game.

Paizo News: Gen Con Pathfinder Society Recap

Gen Con Pathfinder Society Recap

Monday, August 15, 2011

It’s been over a week since Gen Con wrapped up, and a little less than that since we returned to business as usual here at Paizo HQ. But even though we’re back in the swing of deadlines and such, the rush of Pathfinder Society at Gen Con still has me feeling high!

Over the course of four days and ten slots, we seated over 3,000 excited Pathfinders, many of whom played their first Pathfinder Society scenario during the convention. And though we sold out almost every event months before the show, I’m proud to say that nearly everyone who wanted to get into a game with generic tickets was able to do so. We only had to turn people away in two of the ten slots!

Our Friday night special, Blood Under Absalom, was a smashing success, and we were able to get everyone who wanted to play a seat, pulling in extra tables from the hall to ensure that no one was left out. The result was 51 tables (out of a sold-out 45) of Pathfinders of all levels running through the same adventure, GMed by none other than the incomparable Tim Hitchcock.

In addition to the rewards all players get for surviving a Pathfinder Society Scenario, we had additional prizes that players and GMs could try to win by unlocking the Pathfinder Society treasure chest. Inside were signed copies of hardcover rulebooks, free map packs and flip mats, Pathfinder Tales novels, and even exclusive Pathfinder Society boons. Some players walked away with Chronicle sheets granting them access to non-core races like aasimar, tiefling, tengu, and dhampir, and everyone who played a scenario or delve got a Gen Con exclusive boon granting them weapon proficiency with one Eastern weapon from Ultimate Combat. For those Pathfinder Society players and GMs who couldn’t make it to the show, we’ll be trying similar promotions at regional conventions and game stores in the coming months, spearheaded by our invaluable Venture-Captains, so keep an eye out for your chance to get some exclusive Pathfinder Society Chronicles in your area.

Thanks to everyone who spent valuable time and money ensuring Gen Con 2011 was the most successful Pathfinder Society convention to date. Without all our Venture-Captains, HQ volunteers, and over 50 GMs per slot, thousands of gamers would have missed out on the launch of the Year of the Ruby Phoenix and hours of fun exploring Golarion! Keep an eye on this blog in the coming months for early information about our plans of next Gen Con, including how you can volunteer to help make Gen Con 2012 an even bigger success!


P.S. Check out this awesome Wayne Reynolds art from the
first two Jade Regent adventure path volumes.
See, Shalelu’s hair is blond!

Paizo News: The Future of Pathfinder Society Organized Play, Part XX: Gen Con Is Here!

The Future of Pathfinder Society Organized Play, Part XX: Gen Con Is Here!

Monday, August 1, 2011

This is it, folks! The 20th installment in the Future of Pathfinder Society Organized Play blog series by yours truly. On this, the first of August, we’re literally just hours from the kickoff of Pathfinder Society’s fourth year, Season 3: The Year of the Ruby Phoenix!

So what can Pathfinders expect from Gen Con this year? Well, for starters, we have an exclusive Chronicle that we’ll give to all players and volunteer GMs who play or run either a scenario or delve event in the Pathfinder Society room (rooms 231–234)—the largest such space we’ve ever had at Gen Con, I might add.


“From ashes of Shadow, the Ruby Phoenix rises.”

Everyone who plays a session of either type of event will get a key (or a coin that can be turned in for multiple keys) to possibly open our HQ Treasure Chest. Inside is a chance to win a number of great prizes including Pathfinder Society branded memorabilia, signed copies of Pathfinder Roleplaying Game hardcovers, GameMastery map products, Pathfinder Tales novels, and 15 different Gen Con boons for use with your Pathfinder Society character!

“But, Mark,” you’re surely saying, “all the Pathfinder Society events at the show are sold out, or nearly so!” Well, yes. That’s true. But we’ll have up to 5 tables of hour-long delve events running through most of the day to give those who can’t get into ticketed games a chance to play Pathfinder and possibly win some of the above-mentioned boons and prizes. So even if you didn’t get a spot in one of the over 400 tables of Pathfinder Society going on at the show, stop by rooms 231–234 to get your Pathfinder on at your convenience!

And Paizo’s presence isn’t just in the organized play rooms, either. We’ll have almost everyone in the company in the booth at one time or another, so stop by and see who you can chat up or have sign your new copy of Ultimate Combat. On Saturday at 3:00 we’ll be having our annual Pathfinder costume party, so if you have an iconic getup or even a costume for your favorite personal Pathfinder character, stop by the booth then for group pictures and a chance to win some great prizes as the fans on paizo.com vote to choose their favorite costumed attendee.

I could write another three pages on all the great stuff we have in store for everyone at Gen Con, but as I leave in less than 24 hours for the fine city of Indianapolis, I’d better cut this short (sic) and get those last few little details ironed out before I pack up my travel toothbrush and prepare for my appointment with the TSA. See you all in Indianapolis!

Mark Moreland
Developer

Paizo News: The Future of Pathfinder Society Organized Play, Part XIX: Retuning the Rules

The Future of Pathfinder Society Organized Play, Part XIX: Retuning the Rules

Monday, July 25, 2011

We’re just over a week away from Gen Con 2011 and the launch of Pathfinder Society Organized Play’s fourth year, dubbed “The Year of the Ruby Phoenix”, and the entire editorial staff seems to be under the permanent effects of haste and insanity. While I’m burning the midnight oil from both ends (sorry ’bout the mixed metaphor, but it’s accurate), I thought I’d make a short post to preview some of the revisions to the campaign rules themselves, as will appear in the newest version of the Guide to Pathfinder Society Organized Play, which we’ll have out shortly.

For full details on these and other changes, you’ll have to wait for the full rules, but here’s a hint at some of what’s in store. Note that none of these rules go into effect until August 4, 2011, when the revised Guide will actually become legal and valid.

  • The nearly out-of-print Seekers of Secrets will be removed from the Core Assumption, replaced with the brand-new Pathfinder Society Field Guide, releasing at Gen Con. This book includes new Prestige Awards unique to each of the 10 factions, new archetypes, spells, equipment, and a section on vanities, which are purchasable with Prestige Points and allow you to own a business or a manor house, have minions and servants to provide you bonuses, and grant you membership into exclusive clubs like thieves’ guilds and hunting lodges.
  • Day Jobs are being simplified, and will now be a single Craft, Perform, or Profession check, with all relevant modifiers. Some vanities or Prestige Awards will allow you to use different skills for such checks, including the much requested Sleight of Hand.
  • Characters will be able to switch factions by paying Prestige Points to represent the fewer favors their new faction owes them. All PCs will receive one free faction change beginning on August 4 that must be used before the first session played in Season 3. If you don’t play any Pathfinder Society during Season 3, you’ll have to pay to change factions in Season 4.
  • New PCs will no longer be restricted from purchasing magic items at character creation. They will still be limited by having only 150 gp to spend on such items, and can’t buy anything not on the Always Available list, but now you can start with a scroll or a potion if you’ve got the money for one!
  • Characters of new factions playing old scenarios will do a faction mission from one of the original five, earning prestige as if that mission had been tied to your faction all along. The pairings will be: Grand Lodge > Osirion; Lantern Lodge > Qadira; Sczarni > Taldor; Shadow Lodge > Cheliax; and Silver Crusade > Andoran.
  • Since Season 3 will feature only one faction mission per scenario, with a second Prestige Point tied to the completion of the overall scenario, Season 0 scenarios with 1 Prestige Point available can be run as written, while scenarios from Seasons 1 and 2 will treat one faction mission as the overall objective and the other as the faction specific objective to maintain the same 2 Prestige Points per scenario.
  • The Guide will also include rules for rebuilding elements of characters using open playtest rules, or when an errata or FAQ of an existing rule causes it to work significantly differently than before.

I guess that’s about all I have time for at the moment, because I still have to get the guide polished off and ready to go, not to mention our four new scenarios and Gen Con special, Blood Under Absalom. (The art you’re seeing here is a sample of what players in these new adventures have in store, by the way.) Oh, and revised pregens. Yeah, those are finally coming out, as well.

Next week, in the twentieth and final installment of the Future of Pathfinder Society Organized Play blog series, I’ll talk a little about some of the exciting gaming opportunities we have planned for Gen Con and reveal the heretofore unmentioned exclusive prizes players in Pathfinder Society and Pathfinder Roleplaying Game delve events will have a chance to win at the show!

Illustrations by Michele Chang

Paizo News: The Future of Pathfinder Society Organized Play Part XVIII: Ensure the Decemvirate doesn’t take advantage of Pathfinder agents.

The Future of Pathfinder Society Organized Play Part XVIII: Ensure the Decemvirate doesn’t take advantage of Pathfinder agents.

Monday, July 18, 2011

For decades, a growing segment of the Pathfinder Society’s membership has become disillusioned with the Decemvirate. Whether they hold personal grudges against the masked leaders of the Society for slights they feel were never remedied or watched too many of their friends suffer for the good of a Society that seemed to thank them very little, these rebels’ numbers have surged in recent years, swelling the Shadow Lodge’s membership. In 4710 AR, several fringe cells of the underground resistance movement broke off from the main body of the Shadow Lodge, and began a series of open attacks on the Grand Lodge and those loyal to it. The Decemvirate, recognizing that there was a real problem to be addressed, quelled the rebellion by bringing the Shadow Lodge back into the fold, acquiescing to some of their demands, and sending strike forces to hunt down and eliminate remaining cells of radical Shadow Lodge agents. Many still feel the Decemvirate has further to go to remedy the injustices carried out in the Society’s name, though they are glad to be in good standing with the Society once again—even if many also believe they were brought back into the Grand Lodge so the Ten could keep a closer eye on them.

Well, folks, here we are. Just over two weeks left before Gen Con and only two Pathfinder Society Season 3 preview blogs left before the Year of the Ruby Phoenix kicks off. That means we’re up to the last of the 10 factions from which players may choose their PCs’ allegiance. Since the Year of the Shadow Lodge began, a not-insignificant portion of the players in the Pathfinder Society campaign have asked, “How do I join the Shadow Lodge?” In two weeks, they can do so easily.

The Shadow Lodge began as a clear villain organization who wanted to use the Pathfinder Society’s resources for their own gain. But over time, as more and more people expressed dissatisfaction with how the Decemvirate treated the body of their organization, the more we at campaign HQ started to wonder ourselves what the implication would be to have PCs working for the Shadow Lodge.

In the end, we realized that the villains the Shadow Lodge represented would need to evolve to better fit the campaign. Luckily for us, we made this decision in plenty of time to get that evolution to take place over the course of Season 2 such that now, looking back on the Year of the Shadow Lodge, someone can follow the metaplot and watch how the organization went from evil mustache-twirling villains to Pathfinders with legitimate complaints against their leadership. By Season 2′s conclusion, those playing all the scenarios over the course of the season can see that some of the Shadow Lodge’s agents were too easily manipulated and misguided by influential members of the group into initiating open hostility with the Grand Lodge in hopes of destabilizing it.

Now, however, everything’s been smoothed over, at least for the most part. Both the Shadow Lodge and the Decemvirate have a way to go before they trust one another fully, and both sides now must follow through on their ends of the bargain. As the first sign of the Society’s willingness to do so, a new service has been added to those which may be purchased with Prestige. Beginning in Season 3, a PC may pay 5 PP to have her body recovered by a rescue team. This means you no longer have to worry about being left in a sealed tomb or abandoned on another plane of existence. As long as your body still exists (meaning no disintegration), you can get out!

Members of the Shadow Lodge, for their part, must now help the Pathfinders quell any remaining rebel cells that may exist throughout the Inner Sea region, including any featured in Season 2 scenarios that a new player or someone catching up on missed scenarios may play a year or two down the line.

So there you have it: the 10 factions available for play in Season 3 of Pathfinder Society Organized Play! Next week, we’ll take a look at the revised Guide to Pathfinder Society Organized Play and go over a few of the more notable rules changes or clarifications you can expect to find within. See ya next Monday!

Mark Moreland
Developer

Paizo News: The Future of Pathfinder Society Organized Play, Part XVII: Use the Pathfinder Society’s Resources To Do Good in the World

The Future of Pathfinder Society Organized Play, Part XVII: Use the Pathfinder Society’s Resources To Do Good in the World

Monday, July 11, 2011

When the existence of so many factions within the Pathfinder Society began to become apparent, many were dismayed, especially those who took umbrage at the Society’s resources being used for ethically questionable purposes or personal gain. Unable to eliminate such elements as the Shadow Lodge from the ranks of the organization, an influential group of Pathfinder clerics, paladins, and servants of good-aligned deities banded together to form their own faction—the Silver Crusade—as an answer to these undesirable offshoots of the Society. While a crusade in name only, the Silver Crusade models itself after the staunchly good silver dragon, making a valiant effort to use the Society’s influence, reach, and resources to do good throughout the Inner Sea region and beyond.

If there’s one thing the faction system has taught us since Pathfinder Society Organized Play began just a little less than three years ago, it’s that players want to be good guys. Until now, that means most people have been playing Andoren Pathfinders who fight against tyranny, oppression, and slavery. But what about those paladins who don’t want to be asked to act against the law or clerics who are less concerned with politics than they are healing the sick and helping the downtrodden?

The answer, of course, is the focus of this week’s blog, the fourth of five new factions and one I expect to be very popular among players currently in Andoran only because of lack of other “good” options. This faction is the Silver Crusade, led by Sarenite paladin Ollysta Zadrian, an ex-Pathfinder with countless connections within the organization. While the faction’s name may bring to mind knights in shining armor and religious zealotry, it’s less a traditional campaign or holy war than a crusade of the mind and motivations—a group of like-minded Pathfinders set on helping one another spread the word and good will of their respective faiths wherever the Decemvirate may send them.

Continuing our previews of Pathfinder Society tie-in content in the forthcoming Pathfinder Society Field Guide, here’s a look at one of the faction-specific prestige awards members of the Silver Crusade can purchase with their Prestige Points once they’ve earned enough Fame.

Beacon of Good (Fame 5, 2 PP) The Shining Crusade gives you a shining wayfinder (see page 55) emblazoned with the emblem of a silver dragon. If you lose your shining wayfinder, you can purchase a new one for an additional 2 PP. Members of the Silver Crusade who are caught selling shining wayfinders for their own profit are exiled, and must switch factions.

Now I bet you’re wondering what a shining wayfinder is, right? It wouldn’t be much of a tease if I gave you everything, though, would it? Oh, okay. You’ve been patiently reading these for 17 installments now, so I guess I can give a bit more: a shining wayfinder functions like a normal wayfinder, but also lets the user cast detect evil at will and protection from evil on herself once per day.

That’s all you get from me this week, though. No more. You’re just going to have to wait until next Monday for me to talk about the fifth and final new faction: the Shadow Lodge! Have a good week, Pathfinders.

Mark Moreland
Developer

Paizo News: The Future of Pathfinder Society Organized Play, Part XVI: Use Pathfinder Missions as a Front for Personal Gain

The Future of Pathfinder Society Organized Play, Part XVI: Use Pathfinder Missions as a Front for Personal Gain

Monday, July 4, 2011

A loose affiliation of Varisian swindlers, thieves, and smugglers, the Sczarni don’t have much in common with the average Pathfinder. But to many, there’s little distinction between someone who robs the grave of an ancestor and someone who cons one out of her night’s dinner. Thus, when Sczarni and Pathfinders come to town, both are often lumped into the same category by suspicious natives and watchful legal authorities—troublesome people to watch out for. Though not officially allied, many Pathfinders work with local Sczarni throughout the region to aid one another in surviving, hopefully gaining a leg up in their own endeavors in the process.

Since the earliest days of Pathfinder, Varisians have been a large part of the world. We did, after all, start out with three Adventure Paths set in Varisia. So it was only natural that we include a faction aligned with what is arguably our most thoroughly developed part of Golarion. But we didn’t just want an ethnic Varisian faction, as we’d then need Ulfen, Kellid, Mwangi, and Garundi factions as well. Similarly, a political faction didn’t seem right given the fractured nature of Varisia’s three major city-states, as we would have had to choose which city would get a faction and which wouldn’t. So we started to think about what elements of Varisian life most aligned with the Pathfinder Society.

The Sczarni seemed to fit quite well, so we went with them. I swear there was no knee-breaking involved in the decision. People have, after all, been asking for a long time to make Sleight of Hand checks as their Day Job rolls. The fact that people wanted to play pickpockets and con artists seemed fairly obvious. We expect this faction to appeal to people currently playing Taldor-faction PCs, and many of its faction missions will deal with deception and pilfering with a more criminal than political manipulation bent.

Anyone who’s played the Pathfinder Society Quest: Ambush in Absalom will recognize the faction’s head, a man named Guaril Karela, who operates all of Absalom’s Sczarni activity out of his dockside curiosity shop, the Pickled Imp. He’ll likely assist the Pathfinder Society in getting goods or people past unfriendly city watchmen, through hostile territory, or even out of some legal binds they may find themselves in. If he and those agents loyal to him happen to make some money along the way, how does that hurt anyone else?

That brings our new factions revealed to three, leaving just two more to go before Gen Con! Next week, we’ll look at the Silver Crusade, the new “good guy” faction that should appeal to paladins, clerics of any good-aligned deity, and characters who want to help others while they travel the world working for the Decemvirate. Until then, all you Americans, enjoy the day off, and we’ll see you tomorrow!

Mark Moreland
Developer