Pathfinder Adventure Path #64: Beyond the Doomsday Door (Shattered Star 4 of 6) (based on
Paizo Publishing, LLC
Chapter 4 "Beyond the Doomsday Door" by Tito Leati
The hunt for the seven shards of the Shattered Star leads the heroes back to the western coast of Varisia, to the multifaith monastery known as Windsong Abbey. The next shard appears to be hidden somewhere within the dungeons below the abbey. But when the PCs arrive, they find the monastery in ruins and held by savage giants and twisted fey! An ancient terror has returned home, and now dwells within the levels beneath the monastery—a terror who hopes to open the dread doomsday door within!
This volume of Pathfinder Adventure Path continues the Shattered Star Adventure Path and includes:
“Beyond the Doomsday Door,” a Pathfinder RPG adventure for 10th-level characters, by Tito Leati.
Delve into the horrors of the Abyssal monstrosities known as qlippoth, by James Jacobs.
Learn about the faith of Groetus, God of the End Times, and the madness of his tortured clergy, by Sean K Reynolds.
The perils of being a junkie in Riddleport in the Pathfinder’s Journal, by Bill Ward.
Five new monsters, by James Jacobs, Sean K Reynolds, F. Wesley Schneider, and Jerome Virnich.
Each monthly full-color softcover Pathfinder Adventure Path volume contains an in-depth adventure scenario, stats for several new monsters, and support articles meant to give Game Masters additional material to expand their campaign. Pathfinder Adventure Path volumes use the Open Game License and work with both the Pathfinder RPG and the world’s oldest fantasy RPG.
The fourth instalment of Shattered Star, Beyond the Doomsday Door by Tito Leati, is an excellent adventure. It’s not perfect—there are some confusing inconsistencies in its setting’s history, for example, and it does start to feel a little drawn out by the end—but it contains a fascinating, dynamic setting, and a truly unique villain. It’s a dungeon crawl where you might not want to kill everything you meet along the way, and that’s the kind of thing I love.
As a dungeon, Windsong Abbey proves to be fun and cool, and it has it all: exploration, traps, a wide array of baddies to fight, a fully developed history. However, it also has some very nice additions to it that send it over the top into more than just a solid crawl:
1) multiple ways to deal with several parts of the dungeon (many monsters can be interacted with in ways other than fighting, any number of alliances and relationship may be created)
2) the first part of the crawl is more dynamic than usual and allows PCs to get creative, resulting in either a long fight, constantly moving from area to area, or any number of subtler ways to deal with a large group of foes
3) The BBEG is a fleshed out character and the PCs get to learn about him before facing him, and they can even choose to try to set him back on the right path instead of killing him - that's a very nice breath of fresh air
4) the support article on the Qllipoth is not only very cool, it also features the stats of Yasamoth (CR 24), one of the most powerful Qlippoth in existance, and even better.... Yasamoth himself makes an appearance at the end of the adventure! exciting stuff.
5) boos fights are handled very well - no major boss is encounterd without a group of diverse goons helping it. I like this style
If every dungeon would be as good as this one, no one would have ever complained about crawling being boering and repetitive.
EDIT: forgot to mention why I knocked off a star. While this dungeon seems like a bunch of fun it could use a little trimming. Some rooms and encounters are a little redundant - for example there are two adjecant rooms, each with exactly the same monsters, both using exactly the same tactics... Why would the PCs need to go through two identical encounters? the second one only deminishes he first. Probably can be solved with ease by just removing some encounters, though.