I don’t know about the rest of you, but this year which started with so much promise for us has become a live gaming disaster, not to mention how horrible it has been for everything else. I am not going to go into detail about the pandemic because it is far too real for all of us on a daily basis. I just pray that everyone and their friends and families are safe. I have no idea how everyone is doing since our gaming events were wiped out, but if anyone has lost a family member or a friend, my condolences are with you.
Now that the first of hopefully many vaccines is shipping out tomorrow (Dec. 13th), I think we finally see a light at the end of the tunnel. I am watching the news and while this depends on several different factors, I am pretty sure we are going to be able to resume live gaming in some fashion at some point in the May-July months. It could even be earlier, but I do not want to get too excited. Some of this depends on how fast people get vaccinated and how many Luddites refuse to get vaccinated. Regardless, I expect Gen Con 2021 to be a live event and live gaming to be underway by August.
I really can’t plan too far ahead yet without a solid date, but when we get the okay for live gaming, all of our lodges will begin to function again in their venues. I will have to check on dates, but my initial plan is to just pick up where we left off. Valhalla’s Gate PFS was playing on the second Saturday, Absalom Lodge in Quincy on the last Saturday, and our new Maryville lodge will depend on the venue and our VA there. I am currently planning to get a Kirksville-Macon lodge going and we may see about getting a lodge in Hannibal going too. Until live gaming starts though, those areas are in the planning stages only.
Organized Play has been very busy during the pandemic though! Too busy at times it feels like because every small con in the world tried to go online with many successes, but with some failures as well. Not all of the small cons were able to hold an online con and all of them required players from the entire community of online PFS. While I was glad these cons happened, they still are not the same as a live con and we are all hoping to hold our local cons as well as the large ones live in 2021 sometime this summer. This is good news for QuinCon in Quincy, and Gen Con in Indianapolis, but unfortunately the live cons through March are definitely going to be online affairs. A good example of this is the beloved Winter War in Illinois which has already been cancelled. Fortunately, the Org Play folks are setting it up as BahliCon 2021 for the last weekend in January.
So what has happened in 2020 for Org Play you ask? A LOT!!! Paizo has weathered the pandemic well. They laid off zero employees and managed to continue to produce high quality products. There were some scheduling changes due to several events beyond their control, but they were minor. They produced two PFS2 and SFS scenarios every month along with one quest/bounty. They produced multiple volumes of the Lost Omens line, put out the Advanced Player’s Guide for PF2, had a playtest for the upcoming Secrets of Magic book which comes out in August of 2021, another playtest for Starfinder precogs, and more rulebooks for SFS which I would have to look up. Not to mention pawns, accessories, battle cards, etc.
One thing that came out for Pathfinder Second Edition was the Beginner Box which is flat out one of the best products of the year. I think this is going to be a great tool for us in transitioning players into Pathfinder Second Edition and into GMing. Everything needed to run a session is right there with a set of stripped down rules and a ready to play adventure which has been sanctioned for PFS2. I mean, EVERYTHING. Dice, pawns, maps, rules, adventure, and four pre-generated characters, all in the box ready to use. I picked up the box and got it on Roll20 as well. This is a well built product that does exactly what it was intended to do. Plus, there is a new adventure to use with it, Troubles in Otari, which came out this month. Society allows us to use the new bounties with it too. Lots of fun!
The world of Online Play has obviously picked up. There are games every day on multiple VTT platforms. Seems like there is a con every weekend too. There was also the official errata for the PF2 CRB which you can read here. Note it is in two parts. I will make this simple for you. Battle Medicine only needs one hand free. The errata really helped clear up some things.
That’s all I have for this post. Later I will make one for what’s coming in 2021. For now, stay safe and stay home if you can. Play online with us. All of the Venture Officers have been playing online and running scenarios. Currently we have 34 PFS2 scenarios, 4 bounties, 13 quests, 2 adventures (expecting Slithering sanctioning this month), and the Beginnger Box materials, plus the Multi-Table Special which can be played three times. This is a great time to play the longer running scenarios instead of at our monthly events like Fall of Plaguestone. I’ve got it on Roll20 and it plays great on it. Plus, I now have the Syrinscape sound module for it too.
See you next year!