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If a Pathfinder Adventure Path is designed for level 1 characters (and ends with them being level 15), how are characters supposed to play in multiple paths?

(If that is even an option, or do you need to recreate characters for each adventure?)

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up vote 10 down vote accepted

In general, people create new PCs for new Adventure Paths.

That's not mandatory; I've run some AP mashups, combining slower than usual advancement with modding adventure levels up or down to make it happen. For example, my current Reavers campaign used the first two chapters of Second Darkness, a bunch of other modules including the Freeport Trilogy from Green Ronin, and will have pieces of Skull & Shackes and Razor Coast APs in it by the time we're done. But yes, typically, the AP model is designed for new level 1 characters customized to the location/plot/genre at hand.

This is generally for the best; mostly people have grown tired of their character after 15 levels and are interested in trying something else out. If not, there are high level modules and ideas at the end of each AP on taking it farther. It's rare in gaming that people play "the same character for their whole life," though I have heard of home campaigns that have done that. Usually you try out new characters, and GMs put together new plotlines from the lower level stuff they haven't yet used.

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Even if you run AP after AP, the PCs won't advance much til the end of an AP. Of course you can expect the beginning of each AP to be a slaughter fest as the PCs are way beyond the recommended level range.

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