In addition to the two types of adventures written for Pathfinder Society, several of the other adventures Paizo produces have been sanctioned for society play. All of these are published for a wider audience than the Pathfinder Society campaign, so such adventures often include a short, downloadable sanctioning document that details any special considerations for running the adventure for organized play, as well as Chronicles for the individual volumes.
- Pathfinder Adventure Paths: Multi-volume campaigns representing dozens of game sessions to complete. Many Adventure Paths are sanctioned for use in the Pathfinder Society campaign.
- Pathfinder Adventures: Stand-alone adventure books that take one or more sessions to complete. Many Adventures are sanctioned for use in the Pathfinder Society campaign.
- Bounties: Short one-hour adventures aimed at introducing new players to the game or representing what characters do in between Pathfinder missions. Bounties are sanctioned for use in the Pathfinder Society campaign. As a sanctioned adventure, bounties do not give down time.
The society rules for play are customized to work with Pathfinder Quests and Scenarios, and are not necessarily applicable to other sanctioned adventures. As such, PFS has 2 different modes for play:
Society Mode is used for PFS Scenarios and Quests, and adheres to all the rules published in this guide. Society mode is governed by the Run as Written provisions in Game Master Basics.
Adventure Mode is used for adventures not published for society play, and allows the GM more freedom to adapt those adventures, including running the adventure in Pathfinder using GM house rules, and the ability to alter encounters and statistics found in the adventure.
Most Pathfinder Society Scenarios and Quests require the use of a PFS character or PFS sanctioned Pregen. However some come with separate sets of pregens. Most Adventure Mode sanctioned products can be played with any character, however some have pregens, and players are encouraged to play those characters for an optimal experience.
Pathfinder Society Characters must be built using the rules in the Character Creation Appendix, starting at level 1, and played from there. (Some boons allow characters to start at higher levels.) Any adventure that can be played with a PFS character can also be played with a PFS Sanctioned Pregen.
Story Pregens are characters released with an adventure, and often contain ties to the adventures backstory.
Campaign Characters are characters that are designed according to the GM's House Rules.
|Ruleset||PFS Characters Only||Story Pregens Required||Story Pregens Recommended*||Campaign Characters|
|Society Mode||Scenario, Quest|
|Adventure Mode||Bounty||Free RPG Day||One Shot||Adventure, Adventure Path|
* GMs who chose to use Campaign Characters instead should work with their players to tie the characters into the backstory to provide the same level of experience.
Each Sanctioned Adventure comes with a freely downloadable Sanctioning Document located on the product’s description page on paizo.com. This document contains the rules for running that adventure, as well as chronicles rewarded for completion. GMs should read the sanctioning document charefully, as it may modify the Adventures rewards. Unlike Pathfinder Society adventures, Chronicles for Sanctioned Adventures are assigned at the completion of the adventure.