Pathfinder Adventure Path #74: Sword of Valor (Wrath of the Righteous 2 of 6) (PFRPG) (based on
Paizo Publishing, LLC
Chapter 2: "Sword of Valor"
by Neil Spicer
The Wrath of the Righteous Adventure Path continues with “Sword of Valor,” by RPG Superstar Neil Spicer. The PCs, now invested with righteous mythic power, are poised to become the greatest heroes of this seemingly endless war against the demons of the Worldwound… provided they can succeed at their first mission. The citadel city of Drezen was once a symbol of the First Crusade’s triumph against the Worldwound, yet when a larger horde of demons attacked, they shattered Drezen’s defenses and captured both the citadel and the crusaders’ symbol of power. Can the PCs help lead an army north to reclaim Drezen and recover this potent relic, or are they marching their comrades and followers to a gruesome demise?
This volume of Pathfinder Adventure Path continues the Wrath of the Righteous Adventure Path and includes:
“Sword of Valor,” a Pathfinder RPG adventure for 6th-level characters with 1 mythic tier, by Neil Spicer.
An exploration of the ways cultists stitch themselves to demonkind, by Jason Nelson.
A hoard of legendary relics lost to horrors of the Worldwound, by Ron Lundeen.
The search for a rogue demon hunter in the Pathfinder’s Journal, by Robin D. Laws.
Four new monsters, by James Jacobs, Jason Klimchok, Jason Nelson, and David Schwartz.
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.
Paizo and Neil Spicer did a great job with this adventure. It has the basic "fights and a boss" structure you'd expect from an AP module, but also a lot more.
The mass combat rules from Ultimate Campaign are used extensively, along with hints of domain management in the next installment. The war background also pushes the adventure towards its conclusion, discouraging overly cautious play, which I really appreciate.
There's also a lot of fairly complex NPCs and possible interactions. This AP could really have been a combat slog, but Paizo really pulled out the stops to counteract that.
If I had a complaint, it would be that the balance between betrayal and redemption doesn't feel quite right to me. Some GMs might need to tune back the betrayal a bit, but that's easy enough to do.
Short Version: A good mix of combat and interaction on a ticking clock.
Sword of Valor is really quite excellent. It didn’t wow me quite as much as The Worldwound Incursion, but nevertheless it has all the ingredients for a great adventure. It has a strong plot, but still a large variety of options, ensuring that the PCs don’t feel railroaded, and it has a great, detailed cast of NPCs, both allies and villains. One of the most impressive things about the adventure is that it manages to make an adventure about endless war and killing into an adventure about people, one containing great roleplaying opportunities. Wrath of the Righteous is well on the way to being a superb adventure path.