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Paizo A question about Paizo/PF adventure design

dave2008

Legend
Question just because I'm curious: are there firm differences in playstyle between the new group versus the veteran group? Or is it just party makeup?
There are differences. The new group is less likely to improvise than the veterans and less likely to be cautious or retreat or parlay.

To be clear by "new group," I mean new to D&D and RPG's in general.
 

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dave2008

Legend
I think you could run PF2 like that, especially if you used Proficiency Without Level. You’re not just setting up fights and having at it, so your PCs can just disengage when things get too dangerous. Essentially, your organic approach to determining difficulty ought to still work in PF2.
Yep, I've thought if I do run a game of PF2 I would have to probably use the prof/ w/out level variant. Seems like it might fit my playstyle.
However, if I recall correctly, you have other reasons why PF2 is not a good game for you to run, but I thought it was worth pointing out. What you do sounds similar to what some of us have discussed in our approaches.
I am still interested in playing, just not so much in running it anymore. The issue with playing it was that I had a hard time finding a group before covid and I'm not really interested in playing online. We see how that goes next year..

Regarding being a GM. I think for were I am in at in my life and my preferred playstyle, there are just too much of a focus on rules for my personal taste. I don't really want to spend that much time learning a system. I have a slight concern for that reason with regard to playing as well. I fear I am not suited to a game that requires tactical play / coordination with team mates.
 

There are differences. The new group is less likely to improvise than the veterans and less likely to be cautious or retreat or parlay.

To be clear by "new group," I mean new to D&D and RPG's in general.

Yeah, I had thought it would be like that. Still interesting. I had older players in one of my first 5E groups and they initially had problems using skills because 1) They were old players (for many, their previous edition was AD&D) and 2) I think they were way more used to an adversarial GM playstyle. They were big on avoiding points where the dice could fail them, though they lightened up after a few games when they got a better feel for the edition.

I do kind of wish I had gotten into 4E back in the day to try with them, because they were also largely wargamers and I wonder how they would react from the perspective of old school players who were also big into tactical combat.
 

Porridge

Explorer
In order to enjoy a PF2 Adventure Path as written you really need to enjoy playing the game chiefly for the combats.

Every PF2 AP consists of a string of very hard combats interspersed with not-very-hard-but-far-from-trivial combats that total about a dozen combats. Each level, every level.

Any GM that doesn't want combat for combat's sake can of course remove those combats, but that would reduce the content of a Paizo PF2 AP by at least 75% in my estimation. In conclusion: any GM that's more in it for story and roleplaying is much much better off with a system like 5E.
I agree that the first two PF2 APs largely stick to this format. But I think this is more a consequence of the kind of adventure they're telling in those books than a feature inherent to the system.

By contrast, the current Agents of Edgewatch AP leans more heavily into skill-based encounters, investigations, and roleplaying than the more combat-centered Age of Ashes and Extinction Curse APs. For example, the heist in book 3 - which should bring the players from level 10 to level 11 - has only three likely combat encounters. And for two of those encounters, the book describes ways in which they might (with some difficulty) be resolved without combat.

(Which is not to say that there aren't sections of Agents of Edgewatch which fall back into the more familiar formula you describe, of course. There definitely are!)
 

CapnZapp

Legend
I agree that the first two PF2 APs largely stick to this format. But I think this is more a consequence of the kind of adventure they're telling in those books than a feature inherent to the system.

By contrast, the current Agents of Edgewatch AP leans more heavily into skill-based encounters, investigations, and roleplaying than the more combat-centered Age of Ashes and Extinction Curse APs. For example, the heist in book 3 - which should bring the players from level 10 to level 11 - has only three likely combat encounters. And for two of those encounters, the book describes ways in which they might (with some difficulty) be resolved without combat.

(Which is not to say that there aren't sections of Agents of Edgewatch which fall back into the more familiar formula you describe, of course. There definitely are!)
An optimistic read. There appears to be just as many combat encounters in AoE as in any other Paizo scenario. If more of them are designed to be avoidable, that's great.
 

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