Paizo’s announced a pretty broad set of changes for Season 4 of Starfinder Society. A recent blog post has most of the details, which you can read here.
Starfinder Society is moving to the Achievement Point model that’s already in use with Pathfinder Society 2nd Edition. This one change leads to a few other, more specific changes:
- Starting May 28th 2021, Starfinder Society players earn Achievement Points (AcP) for each game played and GMed, at the same rates PFS2 players and GMs earn fame.
- Fame is going away in stages.
- First, starting May 28th 2021, SFS characters will no longer receive fame on their chronicle sheets. This doesn’t affect fame that’s been saved up. You can still use fame to buy stuff in the Season 3 guide.
- Second, at the end of the year (December 31st 2021), any unspent fame will be lost. No more fame, no more spending fame on things.
- Third, the Paizo team is going to work on a way to convert unspent fame to AcP. If this works (it’s not guaranteed to happen) then we should expect that announcement in November.
- Achievement Points replace other systems. Those other systems will also come to an end on May 28th.
- Conventions that run Starfinder Society will no longer grant boons (race or otherwise)–instead, players and GMs will earn extra Achievement Points at conventions.
- The Regional Support Program for Starfinder will be transitioned to a new model where some game days will provide AcP at convention rates one quarter (3 months) out of the year.
What’s not changing?
- We are now expecting that boon slotting will continue.
- Existing boons, including standalone boons, boons purchased from the Guide, and boons earned on chronicle sheets will all continue to be valid.
- Existing boons with checkboxes on them, or that have other forms of interactivity, will continue to be useful and can still have boxes checked. This includes the Regional Support Program boons where you need to check 12 boxes to get a race boon, and you check a box for GMing at a registered game day–you can still make progress on these boons, assuming you have started them before May 28th.
Why is this happening?
In large part this change is being made to force us to report accurately so that Paizo has a better idea of the popularity of Organized Play and can accurately assess it when planning and budgeting. Here in Pittsburgh, we have been very good about reporting, but we have also identified some bugs in the Paizo reporting tool that have led to reported games disappearing from the database. Those bugs have been reported, but they’re hard to pin down. If you see a game missing and it’s been more than a couple of days since the game, please let us know! We might be slower than normal in reporting, or we could have reported the game and didn’t realize it had disappeared.
There’s another reason for it as well, which is that it consolidates a number of programs that had previously all required a lot of hands-on support by Paizo developers into one program that is much easier for them to administer. By unifying everything, this also provides people who can’t attend conventions a way to earn even the rarest of race boons. And if you only want race boons, you’ll only get race boons. You won’t need to worry about getting your 73rd Tune-Bot, say.
How does this affect Pittsburgh?
Some of you may have noticed how far behind we are (scratch that: how far behind I am [Alex]) on providing boons you’ve won! You will still get those boons and they will still be valid. We’re working through the list now.
We try to regularly remind our SFS GMs about the Regional Support Program race boon, but not everyone takes us up on it and not everyone remembers to ask about it. If you’d like to start on your race boon and get some credit for it, let us know!
We’re also working to get our RSP support, but we’re not quite there yet. We’ll post an update when we have one.
What can I get with my Achievement Points?
In order to see and spend your AcP, you need to:
- Go to paizo.com
- Click on the Organized Play link in the heading, under My Account
- Note, this is not the Organized Play link that appears, permanently, in the header. You need to go to the page where you make your characters.
- Once you’re there, look for the “Boons” tab. Click on that!
- Scroll through a very long list until you get close to the bottom. The new Starfinder boons are there!
This system includes chronicle sheet boons, faction boons (that used to be in the Guide), and purchasable boons that replace convention and Regional Support Program boons. A brand-new feature also lets you buy race boons across systems! You can use your PFS2 AcP to buy a Starfinder kobold boon, for example, or use your SFS AcP to buy yourself a Pathfinder android.
Note that the list of boons in the Guide also includes the purchasing plan, which is how you get things like Raise Dead cast on you. So you’ll need to spend AcP on that–cutting into your race boon earnings, potentially!–but at the same time, you won’t need to worry about every character needing to bank fame, and you’ll be able to get Raise Deads cast on those first-level characters you really liked.
Can I trade boons / AcP?
You’ll still be able to trade and gift the “paper” boons earned from conventions and the Regional Support Program that have been given to you in printed or PDF format. Unfortunately, we’ll not be able to trade or gift boons earned through the Boons tab on Paizo.com, nor are we able to gift AcP. Paizo is aware that this is something we’d like to do, and they haven’t ruled it out in the future, it’s just not available right now.