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Pathfinder Society Scenario #4–11: The Disappeared (PFRPG) PDF

****( ) (based on 35 ratings)

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A Pathfinder Society Scenario designed for levels 1–5.

A powerful ally of the Pathfinder Society has disappeared, and no one but the Pathfinders even remembers that she ever existed. Can the PCs discover the fate of their missing associate, or will all memory of her be erased completely from history?

Written by Jonathan H. Keith.

This scenario is designed for play in Pathfinder Society Organized Play, but can easily be adapted for use with any world. This scenario is compliant with the Open Game License (OGL) and is suitable for use with the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game.

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Product Reviews (36)
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Average product rating:

****( ) (based on 35 ratings)

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Fun as player, surprisingly easy on the GM


I played this together with Magabeus, and we did have a rather easy time with this. I dunno about it being "too perfect"; the whole point of my Investigator is that he's easily able to slip into social gatherings, appear harmless, and then do what needs to be done (including wholesale slaughter of demon infiltrators). Then again, I played The Immortal Conundrum (dinner party) with my Wernher von Braun style alchemist, and that was a lot of fun too..

As a player, this was fun. When I GMed it, I was really pleasantly surprised at the quality of the writing. All the info is there; for every room, suggestions on obvious ways of handling it, complete with DCs. All the information is in the scenario, in the place where you'd expect it to be. In my experience with relatively "interesting" scenarios like this, that's unusual for PFS editing.

You need a couple of statblocks from a bestiary, but you don't have to modify them. The puzzle is nontrivial but not impossible, and for once there are no actual errors in it. I do have some comments for the GM, which I'll put in the GM thread.

The combats aren't the strongest part of the scenario, although they're likely to be somewhat challenging, and perhaps a welcome change for players with unsubtle PCs.

A side effect of scenarios focused on time pressure is that it can also speed up the OOC gameplay. We finished this earlier than we usually do. I have some more comments on the time pressure element in the GM thread.

All in all I think this is a very well-crafted scenario. It challenges PCs on non-combat things, but does so in a very fair way. Even PCs who are mostly built for combat can get through this scenario, although you'll have to be much more creative than if you're a master of stealth and disguise. (Duh.) What really helps is that the scenario gives good guidance to the GM on how to adjudicate "other solutions" that players come up with; even if the players do everything different from what the scenario presumes, the GM should still have enough handholds to run that in a fair way.

Too smooth?

****( )

I played this yesterday in a party of 3 + pregen in high tier. We had an investigator, channeling cleric and a bard and were helped by Jirelle. So there was an abundance of social skills in the party.

Thinking back I think we were just a bit too good for this scenario, everything was rather smooth and therefore it felt a bit bland and not challenging. Was that a fault of the scenario or the GM? Not at all!

The scenario is almost only role-play and allows for a lot of player interaction. However it lacked some tension, a feeling that we could have failed. Maybe the Venture Captain just picked the exact right team for the situation and there was no chance to fail, but for us it wasn't a scenario where you manage to succeed against the odds. The odds were stacked in our favor from the start.

So what do I take away from this scenario: that it is probably a lot more fun with a party that is less fit for the challenge as you are then really forced to think out of the box and get into weird situations. We did our job expertly and smiled, but besides the smirking and joking over certain items and paintings in a bedroom there was little laughter to be had.

Verdict: a strong 4 stars: I love scenario's that have lot of role-playing opportunity.
Main take-away: sometimes it is more fun to play a scenario with a character that is not the best suited for it. Remember that when thinking at the table about that other PC that would have aced the scenario.

Creativity really gets rewarded in this scenario


The first time I heard of this scenario, I was told that this was for 95% a roleplay scenario. Turns out, this was no exaggeration. The amount of roleplay for this scenario is far more than I've seen in every other scenario I've played thus far. This itself makes it a challenging scenario, but at the same time the options and opportunities to get the job done are endless. No playthrough will be identical, even though certain events will always happen. As a player this means you can be more creative than ever, while at the same time making it challenging and fun for the GM as well. If you're just in it to smash and kill things, you'll likely not enjoy this scenario.

Does this mean combats are boring? No, it doesn't. In fact, certain one-trick-ponies will feel useless in one encounter, whereas the second encounter is flatout brutal and can even be a TPK. It's pretty lethal, unexpected and honestly quite original in my opinion. I have not played the 'optional' fight, but based on what I've seen and heard, it's not a walkover either. In short: the few fights you might find yourself in are rather challenging.

That said, this was one of the most enjoyable scenarios I've played and I highly recommend it to others.

Not Impressed

***( )( )

This one is great for rp, but is easily bypassed with good rolls. The low tier combat is lame, but the high tier seems good. The boon is useless to a non-social character. IDK, I was not impressed overall.

Suspension of disbelief required...

**( )( )( )

I've just played that scenario here on PBF. And while I agree that it was a welcome change from combat heavy adventures, there were things in the settings that I found hard to believe.

1/Unknown people, with arms and armor, asking for a meeting with the ambassador in the midst of a social event... and entering the building with all their warlike stuff. No question from the guards. "Want to kill our main Chellish ambassador, mate? No problem! Come inside,it's cold tonight! Nice double handed axe, btw!"

2/same people roaming in the rooms and corridors, heavily armed, no question asked? No alarm raised?

3/Fight in a room: unless you're able to kill your opponent quietly in two rounds, why doesn't someone coming to check on what's happening IN A ROOM SUPPOSEDLY EMPTY?

4/No one in the Chellish embassy will see the difference after your Pathfinder passage (destroyed furniture, missing files..), no one will ever have a clue. So be creative and write "Cheliax stinks" with Turpentine everywhere on the walls.

It would have been better if the characters would have been limited to light armors and light 1H weapons (Sleight of hand to hide them)OR even no weapon/armor and a pure RP/skill/brain game without any combat.
But that is just my opinion.

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