There are more ways to play Pathfinder Society sessions than just in person! Thanks to digital technology, you can now play PFS sessions online via the Internet. The best part of this…it’s completely free! All you need is your computer and access to the Internet.
How do I do this?
Well, once you have turned that computer on, connected to the Internet and have your browser open to this webpage, you can start clicking links to connect to the digital world of PFS. My suggestion is to start with the Discord link and connect with the people who do play online.
- Organized Play Online http://pfschat.com/
- Caydens Keg https://discord.gg/jZnYget
- Cosmic Crittermanders https://discord.gg/PkuVfn6
- Glass Cannon Community https://discord.gg/2v6d57F
The following are Play-by-Discord (PbD) lodges and their Discord servers
Finally, there is the traditional Play-by-Post lodge which is well known over on the Paizo Forums. This is a very dedicated community that has been around for a very long time.
It’s that easy?
Yes, it really is! Online PFS play is just as easy as playing it live. What is really nice about Online PFS play is that you can find games much easier than you can for a live session. Players come from all over the world and meet up in the PFS Discord chat to share information and stories as well as to look for a game, or in the case of GMs, players to play in a game.
What’s the difference?
Glad you asked! The hardest part for most people at first is playing without being able to see your GM or your fellow players. We elves or you humans use a lot of non-verbal communication techniques to communicate with each other. The digital world does not allow for that unless one is using a camera. Most of us are not using one of the cameras for online PFS play as it eats up computer resources making for lag. So, that is a bit alienating for some people, but to be truthful, most people are using communication tools which do not involve non-verbal communication techniques such as texting, e-mails, etc. We have emojis for that instead!
Voice communication is used almost exclusively in online PFS play. Most of us have headsets with mics but you can use your computer’s equipment if it has it. I suggest getting the headset with a mic because that makes for better communications and also helps cut down on feedback distortion. Besides, no one else in the room wants to hear your fellow players cheering wildly whenever you roll and confirm a 20 for a critical hit and save the day for the entire party against that nasty blue dragon who was getting ready to let loose with its breath weapon because it was next in the turn order.
What are Virtual Tabletops (VTT)?
Virtual Tabletops or VTT are websites that provide a graphic user interface for players and GMs to play games through. There are several of these available which Pathfinder players use. I am going to provide a list of the ones that I know of which are used by Pathfinder players. There are others but they are not in wide use at this time although you are certainly allowed to use them for VTTs.
Foundry is the preferred VTT for the larger segment of the online PFS 2e community.
Roll20 is probably the second most preferred for 2e and may still have the larger bulk of the PFS 1e and SFS groups. It is heavily dominated by the D&D community (55% playerbase is 5e).
Fantasy Grounds is a premium VTT with a dedicated PFS community.
Google Slides has a following in the online world as well.