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Pathfinder Module: Dawn of the Scarlet Sun (PFRPG)

***( )( ) (based on 25 ratings)
GameMastery Module D0: Hollow's Last Hope (OGL)


Print Edition Unavailable

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An adventure for six 5th-level characters.

The coastal city of Magnimar is no stranger to crime, yet recently, a series of murders has sent a chill through the early morning streets. Someone—or something—is stalking and killing worshipers of Sarenrae, the goddess of the sun. The city guard is prepared to ambush the murderer, but they need help—help of the kind that adventurers are so good at providing. What is the sinister truth behind these violent acts?

Dawn of the Scarlet Sun is a Pathfinder RPG adventure for six 5th-level characters—such as the six iconic heroes provided. In addition, this adventure can be integrated into the Shattered Star Pathfinder Adventure Path, and uses the villains featured in the Pathfinder Battles Champions of Evil Encounter Pack.

Written by James Jacobs.

This special 16-page Pathfinder Module was initially made available for Free RPG Day on June 16, 2012.

Note: Due to the special nature of this product, it is NOT part of the Pathfinder Modules Subscription.

Dawn of the Scarlet Sun is sanctioned for use in Pathfinder Society Organized Play. The Chronicle Sheet for this module is a free download (123 KB zip/PDF). Pregenerated characters are available here (1.9 MB zip/PDF).

Product Availability

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Print Edition: Unavailable

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Product Reviews (26)
1 to 5 of 26 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | next > last >>

Average product rating:

***( )( ) (based on 25 ratings)

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The Scarlet Colour is PC Blood

****( )

Surprised at the low reviews I have had a look through. It is a well written very short adventure. It is easily thrown into any game or fantasy campaign and while it is set in Magnimar, you could port it over to somewhere else quite easily. I am thinking of using it in the near future.

This though, isn't really for level 6s. If you have a very strong full party of six members, you can take the end boss, but level 7s would be better. It all depends how challenging you want it to be, and do you want to risk a TPK? I support a tough fight once in a while, but as its a short adventure the players may feel suddenly overwhelmed at the end (as their characters die). Still Magnimar has been a tough setting before.

Art wise I don't like Avalexi - the legs are terrible, but Kasadei looks great with a strong bearing.

So it is a very challenging short adventure, and far better than 1 or 2 stars out of 5. Some don't like a hard challenge or to lose, but as it is free and dangerous, I recommend it.

All fine until the last encounter

*( )( )( )( )

This module probably takes the cake for one of the worst designed for PFS (unless the writer/designer wanted to near inevitably kill the whole party... then it's a job well done).

Heed the warnings of other reviewers and don't run this for new players, this module is only meant for experienced people looking for a very hard challenge. There's no fun in fighting something that is near impossible to kill (or escape) without much chance as a pregen.

To put it simply, players will have to fight a BBEG that is way too powerful even for a full 6 player party of oddly made level 5 pregens...

Starting out the adventure was alright with the investigations that players had to carry out and clues that would easily be picked up eventually.

1st few encounters also just about right in terms of difficulty but still posed a threat that should be taken seriously.

Unfortunately, the last encounter with the BBEG was exetremely HORRIFYING. With over 100hp, 25+ AC, high SR, high DR, (VERY) high DCs for spells casted and instant teleport for hit and run tactics all in a tight room area... and that's not counting the fact that the BBEG's skills are insanely high, how do players survive with 6 poorly made level 5 pregens is beyond me. Oh and BBEG can just easily chase after any players that try to escape if the GM wants to be mercliess. BBEG is just a mere CR8? LIES! It's easily a CR10+ party killer encounter chucked in as a nasty final surprise.

Really, I almost felt like I wasted my time fighting against something that is impossible to kill without VERY good luck or an optimised veteran party...

I very strongly suggest avoid playing this module unless you're confident that your party of level 4-6 can handle the worst things for little reward.

Nice storyline, easy to fit in. Needs modification

***( )( )

I ran this module as an attempt at a decoy for the players, when the arrive for the first time in Magnimar in a RotR campaign.

They took the bait eventually, and have now "rescued" and survived meeting Avalexi.

I invented and used the GMastery guide chase rules for having the party follow The Scarlet Son to the temple - great fun.


In the "below temple" encounter with Lex Avei I took the liberty of introducing 2 prisoner NPCs in the storage opposite to Lex Avei.

The NPCs, the storyline - fine, nice and easy to incorporate.

However, she is somehow to powerful for a CR 8 encounter IMHO. Our party on that night was: Oracle 5/Summoner 2; Halfling Bard 6/Cleric 1; Fighter 3/Wizard 4; and a Ranger level 5. So 3 level 7 pcs and 1 level 5.

The final fight lasted 14 rounds, luckily for the party, Avelexi's summoning didn't succeed. I'm quite certain that should she have succeeded in that, the party would all have been slain.

I lowered her AC to a permanent 21 since they didn't get any hits in on her due to her DR and SR. Furthermore when she exhausted all her "powerful" attacks, and the party succesfully demolished her sword, she didn't have any interesting attacks left, so the fight lasted a bit boring.

Summarizing the good: Nice plot, storyline and Golarion feel. The players got to know both Sarenrae and Shax and Underbridge Magnimar - that's super. I bought the miniature package for this module through e-bay and made my own 2.5D tiles for the lower part of the temple, which ofcourse lifts the adventure a lot too.

The bad: To strong major villain, last combat to long and tedious.

Good to start with, awful awful awful awful ending

**( )( )( )

I ran This with a group of five 6th level players, and the start of the adventure is pretty good, every having a bit of an investigation, easy to improv from the info given. Then you get the first big fight, which was interesting and gave the party a few headaches. Then a smattering of lower level encounters may have increased their confidence and on to the Big Bad. The only way it wasn't a TPK at the end was by removing the SR and DR of the main antagonist. The party that took on the adventure was a sorcerer, two fighter, a rogue, and A druid (with a armoured Dire Ape Companion).

If you are thinking of running this as is, ensure your character have some sort of ability to hit with cold iron or good weapons.

Use Pregens

First off, I've loved James Jacobs' work since 3.x days.
Second, I would never have suspected this was his work.

Played and ran it this weekend.
Playing it with 5 veterans, I grabbed the nearest body and ran. 3 dead, 2 escaped. (The second escapee had been forced to leave, much to his delight.)
Running it with 4 elite players, several one hit from death, barely escaping.

1. Use the disposable pregens. (I have to wonder if this was assumed.)
2. Heed the warning it's for six 5th levels. I think a large action economy imbalance is assumed in the last battle.
3. Be ready to improv many NPCs & knowledge checks. The module gives few, though the party will be seeking out many.
4. Don't improve her tactics. (You know who I mean.)
5. If not in PFS, don't run 'as is'. It has potential.

Review (spoiler free and in order of appearance):
1. It starts out well enough with the intro, but the brief investigation is "roll", as in not fleshed out. Most RPing occurred here with NPCs not in mod. Much of the 'story' is here, but also not in mod.
2. There is a mechanic where the players can do everything right and still fail. Odds are small as they get several chances, but the 1st failure could lead them into doing new, wrong things, completing the failure.
Welcome to Pathfinder???
3. There is a fleshed out backstory full of history and intriguing events and characters. Throughout the module, the GM gets a sense of the villains' stories, preparation, and intentions.
The odds of the PCs learning more than hints of any of this is minimal.
The development of the PCs' story arc is also minimal.
(Short story premise turned into module?)
4. First conflict works well, and PCs can excel and succeed, or fail and make up the difference.
5. The one opportunity to roleplay with a villain is wasted by her silence.
6. Irrational jump from minor clue to highly specific knowledge. Such 'easy' knowledge would/should have been a natural jump from standard investigation tactics earlier.
7. Fine setup in next stage, followed by modest opening battle.
8. Great imagery for finale, but awkward map at best. (How many 1/2 squares can furniture take on a map?)
9. She is a beast.
For most parties it will come down to one roll. If prepared, they may get two or three, but the timeline allows no time to prepare specifically. Each of these rolls has a minimal chance of success. (Both times, we had four or so chances.)
Welcome to Pathfinder???
She retrieves a weapon she has several feats for, but is not in her picture, her stat block, nor is it used in her tactics. Oh, and it's inferior. What was going on with that?
If I hadn't rolled natural '3's for her several times, I would've TPKed my party. If I had confirmed my two crit threats with easy rolls, I would have TPKed or PPKed the party. A party which did everything right, and had PCs which handily fought above their level.

Please, do not use nor play this at a convention. Unless with pregens.

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