The Cheese Wedge
The Cheese Wedge is back! Scion of the infamous Cheese Grinder, Dragon*Con's most feared role-playing tournament, the Cheese Wedge is appearing at Firefly Toys & Games at its new location in Columbia, South Carolina.
Held June 25th at 11 AM, the Cheese Wedge is a round-robin Pathfinder tournament. When one player dies, another takes their place. One minute a balanced party, the next all bards? You may last an hour – you may only last a round! Six finalists will battle to win their very own Cheese Wedgie. It could be yours!
First, Read the Rules
They're right in front of you. By entering the Grinder, you agree to play by them. Between Wedges, they're subject to change without notice.
Pathfinder Core Rulebook
Feats, Equipment, & Spells
Advanced Player's Guide, Ultimate Magic, Ultimate Combat, and Ultimate Equipment (though nothing to do with firearms)
Create your biggest, baddest 7th-level character using the Pathfinder Core Rulebook; you may also choose feats, items, and spells from the Advanced Player's Guide, Ultimate Magic, Ultimate Combat, and Ultimate Equipment (excluding firearms-related items). You can find these rules online at the Pathfinder Reference Document, which is the final source we're using for official rules.
The Cheese Wedge makes use of Hero Lab character creation software. I recommend it highly. Bringing your character's Hero Lab .por file will expedite your entry into the Queue. To configure Hero Lab for the Cheese Wedge, click here.
Race, Class, Stats, & Hit Points
Choose one of the seven core races. You have seven class levels; be sure to choose one as favored.
You have 40 points to buy your Ability Scores using the point-buy system from the core rulebook. Don't forget your 4th-level Ability Score increase.
Choose height, weight, and alignment. You can't have mismatched statistics for your race and class choices: no 10-foot halflings, 5-pound humans, or evil paladins. You must also be in the standard Adulthood age category.
You have max hit points. You're welcome.
Skills and Feats
Calculate and spend your skill ranks as usual. You're welcome to take ranks in Craft, but no crafting will be allowed.
Leadership is not allowed, nor are any Item Creation, Grit, or Performance feats. Traits are not being used.
You have 30,000 gold pieces to spend (more than normal 7th-level PCs because you're just that cheesy); it's better to have 1,000gp left over than spend 30,001 and be disqualified. Each purchase must be from the equipment and magic item tables, not from the item creation tables. All charged items (e.g. wands) must be purchased with full charges. Per the rules, spells with range "Personal" cannot be made into potions. Consumable items are capped at caster level 9; all magical effects are capped at CL 11. Permanent spells are not allowed.
For spells with material components that have a listed gold piece cost, you don't need to list every spell component you have. Simply list an amount of gold you've spent on spell components (e.g. "500 GP in spell components") and you can cast from that.
Spell Book Additions
The normal allotment of spells in a seventh-level wizard's spell book is two 4th-level, four 3rd-level, four 2nd-level, and (5 + Int mod) 1st-level. Prior to entry, you may add spells to your spell book by purchasing an appropriate scroll and paying a (spell level^2 x 10) surcharge (e.g. 160 gp to add a 4th-level spell), or 5 gold pieces for a cantrip.
Mounts, Companions, & Summoned Creatures
You may bring the pet granted by your class (animal companion, mount, familiar) or one mount: a horse, a warhorse, or a riding dog; use the average stats listed for these. You cannot bring any other pals into the tournament with you: no hirelings, cohorts, followers, undead or golem under your control, dominated creature, etc. You also cannot have hired anyone to do something for your PC, such as cast a spell on you.
If you summon a creature, you are responsible for having its stats ready. The GM may ask for those stats when you summon it. If you do not have them ready, the spell fails.
Read the Banned List. Anything can be banned at the table if it is beyond cheesy and right into broken. Take this as the compliment it is!
The massive damage rule is in effect, but no other optional or variant rules are used.
As mentioned above, all magical effects in the tournament are capped at CL 11.
Please, don't take other people's dice (including mine). Don't take other people's books. Firefly is not a library, so please don't use the books on sale to make your character without buying them (unless, of course, you're Jasper).
Most of all, have fun!
The Banned List
Ring of blinking [Core]
Phase I: Generating Your PC
Find a table, grab a copy of these rules and the appropriate Pathfinder references, and make a character. Alternately, read these rules and then grab a pre-gen from the stacks nearby. Pre-gens are solid but not super-cheesy.
Phase II: Hero Lab and the Queue
Once you've built your PC, take it to our Fromagier, the guy at the laptop who isn't currently running the tournament. Say hello. The Fromagier will ask if you've read the rules and remind you that, by entering the Grinder, you agree to play by them. He'll input your character into Hero Lab and place you in the Queue. If you've already built your character in Hero Lab, bring the .por file so the Fromagier can import you.
You can't take up or claim multiple spots in the Queue, although players who wish to try going in together may enter the Queue simultaneously and cross their fingers.
If you ask nicely, the Fromagier will print your character for the price of $1. [Note: All sales are final in the Cheese Wedge.]
Phase III: Entering the Grinder
When a PC dies, listen for the death bell. The Fromagier will call out the name at the top of the Queue. If that person does not answer, he'll take that name off the list and call the next. Please speak quietly and listen for your name.
Once your name is called, take the empty seat at the table and hand the GM $1 to pay for your life. You never knew life was so cheap, eh? [Note: All sales are final in the Cheese Wedge.] The GM will import your Hero Lab character into d20Pro. Please wait patiently.
When you enter the Grinder, you may purchase up to three Cheese Points from the GM for $1 apiece. [Note: All sales are final in the Cheese Wedge.] These tiny morsels of cheese float around your head in the manner of ioun stones (though they may not be stolen) and may be used as an immediate mental action. You can't have more than three Cheese Points at a time, and they must be kept on the table in plain view at all times so they remain obvious to everyone. Should you die without using all of your Cheese Points, you can keep them for your next life or give them to another player.
Phase IV: In the Grinder
You'll play in the Grinder as long as you survive. The usual routine is:
The GM determines the next room and places your d20Pro figures on the map.
New players introduce and describe themselves (or their character).
New characters and those who solved the previous room before the first timer went off have one round of prep before entering the room.
The GM reads a brief description of the room and starts the timer.
Room Difficulty, Scenery, and Effects
The majority of the rooms have reasonable Challenge Ratings. If the encounter seems too hard or too easy, you probably need to think your way out of it.
Most rooms have walls, floors, items, or the like which are indestructible. When they aren't, rendering the room insoluble (e.g. by destroying the key to the door) will probably spell death for you and the other remaining PCs.
Rarely, a room's effects don't quite fit the Pathfinder RPG mechanics. These breaks in the rules are meant to enhance the room's theme (or joke), not to hose the players. The GM can invent a justification if you like, but regardless: just go with it.
Every room has a time limit, usually 30 minutes for combat rooms and 15 minutes for non-combat rooms. When the timer goes off, all friendly healing effects cease to function. The GM will restart the timer to about half its previous value and play will continue. Should the timer run out again, all remaining characters receive punishment in the form of hit point damage. Those who survive count the room as a failure and move on to the next.
If the entire party agrees, they may choose to fail a non-combat room before time runs out. This causes the party to take the above punishment and move on.
If a player is taking too long, any other player (or the GM) can "put the clock" on her. If she has not finished her turn when one minute has elapsed, her turn ends. Should a player not be at the table when it's her turn, the GM may put the clock on that player. (Don't worry – there are bathroom breaks.)
Your PC is considered dead when any of the following conditions are met:
Hit points at or below the PC's negative Constitution.
Hit points below 0, unconscious, and not stable at the end of the PC's turn.
Petrified (or a similar status) at the end of your turn.
The PC leaves the room while unconscious.
The PC's body, spirit, soul, etc. leaves the current room for more than an instant before achieving the victory condition. (Teleport and dimension door are okay; plane shift is not.)
When your PC dies, all equipment you brought with you vanishes with your body.
Time Between Rooms
Characters enter magical stasis between rooms, during which five minutes pass. Spell effect durations continue while metabolic processes are frozen (so the duration of a regenerate spell would keep running, but you won't regain hit points while it does).
Phase V: Cheese Requiem
When you die, clean up your space at the table and give up your seat to the next player. You may then re-enter the Queue if you like. If you played a pre-gen and you don't plan to go right back in with that same pre-gen, please replace it in the appropriate stack.
I hope this doesn't come up, but breaking the rules or arguing with the staff gets you disqualified. Your character dies immediately and you must surrender your seat. You will not be refunded any money you spent (as all sales are final in the Cheese Wedge), even if you didn't survive a single round. You may refresh yourself with the rules and re-register with the Fromagier when you're ready. No hard feelings.
However you get to the finals, you have to play the character with which you qualified. We'll try to announce finalists around 8:00 PM. If a finalist is not present, an alternate will be selected. If no alternates are present, the seat will be given to a player who is!
Create a new hero using File->New Portfolio
Put the character name in Hero Name
Put your name in Player Name
Type: Hero (PC)
Choose Point Buy: High Fantasy, 20 (you will spend 40 when you set attributes. Go to overspent by 20)
Starting Level set to 7
Starting cash set to 30,000gp
Alliance: Ally of Party
Configure your Hero Settings (the checkboxes on the right) Select only the following:
Advanced Player's Guide, Ultimate Combat, Ultimate Magic (optional)
Core Rulebook Deities
Max HPs at New Levels
Hide Validation Messages
Show Feat/Ability Descriptions
Build your character!
Select a portrait for your PC under the Personal tab (this will be imported automatically into d20Pro). If you input your character at the tournament, the Fromagier should be able to help you with this.