Pathfinder Society Scenario #5–22: Scars of the Third Crusade (PFRPG) PDF

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A Pathfinder Society Scenario designed for levels 1–5.

The fiery inquisitions that raged through Mendev during the Third Mendevian Crusade may have been damped but never truly extinguished. Fanatics have reignited the witch-hunts in eastern Mendev, and in doing so they have captured and accused allies of the Pathfinder Society. Unless the PCs intercede and put a stop to this mob justice, their allies' deaths will spark a new wave of internecine executions throughout the crusader nation.

Content in “Scars of the Third Crusade” also contributes directly to the ongoing storyline of the Silver Crusade faction.

Written by Jason Brick.

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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An investigation that's not to everyone's liking

***( )( )

I’ve always enjoyed role-playing and investigation more than a series of encounters or a dungeon crawl. I find it to be a better way to actually showcase a character. Dungeon crawls have a tendency to be numbers over character, which is a shame in my opinion. As such I was happy to play this investigative scenario with like-minded players.

This scenario basically boils down to the party having to investigate some murders by visit 8 locations and seeing if a bunch of rumors are true or not, while trying to not agitate the local townsfolk and important NPC’s. Different locations require different skills, so the party will have to be smart about splitting up.

Does that sound complicated? Yes and no. For the players it’s honestly not so bad. The rumors and locations you can go to are straightforward. For the GM, however, it’s a lot of things to keep track off. I can’t stress enough why this should not be run cold. You have to prepare this, or the entire table will have a bad session. Important pieces of information are scattered all across the scenario, forcing you to constantly flip back and forth.

This is also one of those scenarios murder hobos should skip and avoid. Not only can a whole bunch of encounters be resolved peacefully, it is also somewhat mandatory. Personally I have no issues with that at all, but I know others will struggle with having to role-play anything other than a murdering menace.

I would still recommend this scenario to those that prefer role-play over fighting. They’ll have a good time provided the GM is well-prepared. As mentioned, it’s a shame that the information is so spread out and that there are a lot of things to keep track of for a GM. This awkward formatting can result into a loss of immersion. Furthermore there’s a distinct lack of information about the murderer’s victims, which all things considering is really odd. There’s also a minor chance the (false) rumors will derail the investigation a bit too much.

Because of these minor things, I can’t give this scenario 4 or 5 stars. I would have given it 3,5 stars, but that’s not possible. Considering this scenario is not something everyone will enjoy, I’ll round it down to 3 and simply say that role-players should definitely give this one a go, especially if they're small group.


High-stressed investigation

****( )

One of my favorite investigation module, almost no combat, and the only ones are not difficult.

The strong point is definately the investigation and hostile atmosphere of Mendev. The crusaders always play as "becon of light" roles, this module can break your imagination.

The main problem is "roll play" in the last judge. RAW, if you fail your roll (our bard roll 3 dices all below 5), then you can't get 2pps or even 1. Punish a role-playing/detective player may be too desperating.

Finally, if you prefer combats, don't play it or may want to leave the table. Need a well-prepared and experienced GM as well, too many works to do.


A Great Investigation

*****

This scenario is tough to run, and has little combat - that being said, it's a blast to both run and play if the party gets into it. The mechanics, once deciphered (DONT run cold), are well put together, and make for a fun, well paced investigation.


There's been a murder!

****( )

Played this at low tier with a party of 6.

This is only the second investigative PFS scenario I have played, the other being Throaty Mermaid. Compared to that scenario Scars is a far better story. The clues make more sense but you do have to work for them.

The scenario is pretty much all role play with only one combat encounter, and then it is rather too easy. Combat characters will be mostly bored through this so I recommend bringing your diplomats and investigators.


Ring Side Report-RPG Review of Pathfinder Society Scenario #5-22 Scars of the Th

****( )

Originally posted at www.throatpunchgames.com, a new idea everyday!

Product- Pathfinder Society Scenario #5-22 Scars of the Third Crusade
System-Pathfinder
Price-$4
TL;DR- Great roleplaying, but nothing for the combat heavy characters. 87%

Basics-Murder is afoot! Pathfinder agents have been arrested, and you are sent to determine if they are guilty or not. Can you prove the innocence of your fellow agents while in a town that already doesn’t trust the Pathfinders?

Mechanics or Crunch-This one has exactly one or maybe two fights scenes in it, depending on how the players proceed. Most of the time, players are investigating the murders. If you have a combat heavy party, they will just be bored. Also, the combats that are present will be somewhat underwhelming to most parties in the level range. The module presents some rules for investigation, misinformation, and events in town. Some of these events are arbitrary as well as the rules for these events being somewhat unclear. It just might need a bit more to keep some people involved. 3.5/5

Theme or fluff-This is where this module shines. You as the GM get to scream at the players if they reveal that they are Pathfinders. Most of the people in town don’t trust the Pathfinders, and players tipping their hands make this module come alive. The town is well described and the personalities in it are fun to run. Everybody here has a story, and the players have to try to figure out who did it over the course of the adventure. I loved what I saw here. If you want a mostly roleplaying module, this is the one to look for. 5/5

Execution-This is a wordy one. To get all the information a GM needs to run the mod, lots of words have to happen in a very short amount of space. I do like that the town has a town map to help you and your players understand all the places they can investigate. In addition, the investigation methods are presented decently as well as providing the GM with a worksheet to help GMs keep track of all the information at hand, but this chart could use another column to help me keep track of what I and haven’t told the players. I’d have liked a few more divides in the words, but the module is set up well. 4.5/5

Summary-I liked running this module. I have no problems standing up at a convention and screaming at the top of my lungs about how I hate the Pathfinders and such. When I ran this at a con with about five other tables, I did get a few stares. If you want to have some awesome roleplaying with your characters, then this is the module to run. If you what a hack and slash fest where lots of things die, then do not even consider this one. I would like some changes to the module, but overall it was a great if you have the right group. 87%


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Webstore Gninja Minion

Announced for June!

Silver Crusade RPG Superstar 2013 Top 8

You dropped an apostrophe in the blurb. The deaths are those of the allies, so allies is a possessive and should be allies'.

Webstore Gninja Minion

Thanks for the catch! It's been updated.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber

Any update on when this will publish?

Sovereign Court Owner - Enchanted Grounds, President/Owner - Enchanted Grounds

It usually hits at 8:00 Pacific time.

Paizo Employee Paizo Glitterati Robot

Now available!

Grand Lodge Global Organized Play Coordinator

Please do not run this until July 4.

Grand Lodge

Mike... I did not know it was being held until July 4th. I scheduled this 2 weeks ago and now I am supposed to run this on Sunday and now I am not going to be able to. It is not showing up on the purchase list. I wish you had mentioned this earlier. :(

So now I have people signed up and I am going to have to tell them I can't. (running both 5-22 and 5-23). :(

Grand Lodge Global Organized Play Coordinator

Deanoth wrote:

Mike... I did not know it was being held until July 4th. I scheduled this 2 weeks ago and now I am supposed to run this on Sunday and now I am not going to be able to. It is not showing up on the purchase list. I wish you had mentioned this earlier. :(

So now I have people signed up and I am going to have to tell them I can't. (running both 5-22 and 5-23). :(

The last four scenarios of the season have been held for PaizoCon for the past several years and it was no different this year. I apologize if there was any miscommunication on our end.


Paizo posted the availability and some of us scheduled events based on your statements. Now, like Deanoth, I have to spend time to change the event posting.
Thanks for wasting my time.

Shadow Lodge

Hey, mistakes happen, and its just a game. :) At least now you have plenty of time to prep. From what I see, DMs are really going to need it, and I feel sorry for players whose DMs even attempt to run these cold. Especially Assault.

Plus, what would you have done if these hadn't been made available at all yet?


DM Beckett,
Mistakes happen, but rather than Paizo living with the consequences of their mistake, they decided to inconvenience their customers. "its just a game. :)" Pathfinder is just a game, but we're talking about my time that Paizo elected to make me spend, rather than their having a slightly less special convention. If it's so humorous to you, perhaps you'd like to reimburse me for my time?

Your comments show that you do not understand the situation.

"At least now you have plenty of time to prep"? Instead of being able to buy it now, and prep for next Saturday, I have to hope it's available Saturday morning, and rush my preparation for Saturday afternoon. I have _less_ time to prep.

As for what I'd have done if it hadn't been available at all, that's simple. If Paizo didn't state that the scenario would be available on 27 June, I wouldn't have scheduled it on 5 July.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber
Scott Romanowski wrote:
If it's so humorous to you, perhaps you'd like to reimburse me for my time?

How much do you feel would compensate for your lost time?


When consulting with a client who arbitrarily changes a time on me, indicating that they think my time is a resource they can abuse, I charge a minimum of 8 hours. I don't think you're serious though and I don't discuss my rates in public.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber

It would clearly be more than the store credit I have saved then.


I have a question about some of the mechanics in the scenario:

Spoiler:

For the 'Town Sentiment Track' table, the column for 16 doesn't give an encounter number, but I assume it should be number 5.

In addition, the final row for that table is only labeled '5.' Perhaps that row is a typo, and the '5' is supposed to continue from the last row (i.e. run encounter 5)? The remaining text would be describing the encounter if it is not occurring after encounter 4, then??


Spoiler:

I also noticed that the "Other investigations" section on page 11 mentions making use of a 'Carousing' list for off-script investigations, though I couldn't find such a list in the pdf. I assume something was changed to 'Word on the street' at some point, but it could confuse some GMs.


Sorry to keep posting, but I'm prepping this for PaizoCon and want to be sure that I'm ready for a smooth run (never GMed a con before). I noticed a few more inconsistencies:

Spoiler:

* Visiting the prisoners is noted as increasing the opposition track by +2 in the table on page 7, but only +1 in the development notes on page 9. Which is correct?

* There's a duplicate paragraph on page 14 on the topic of PCs ignoring the letter in encounter 4.

Paizo Employee Developer

Paulicus wrote:

I have a question about some of the mechanics in the scenario:

** spoiler omitted **

In response:
It appears the 5 in "Encounter 5" got bumped down a line. Those last two sections ("Sheriff Tobias and Ekira…encounter as descried") are part of the same condition.

Carousing changed into just Beer Garden during development, as carousing wasn't technically a location name. Any mention of carousing as a location is an artifact of that change.

Looking at an earlier version of the scenario, the prisoner visit was only worth one point on the Opposition track. Go with that.


Thanks for the response John! I'm looking forward to running this one.

I'm quite glad you guys put in a beer garden.


Drogon wrote:
It usually hits at 8:00 Pacific time.

Keen to run this on the weekend, but due to the time difference between Australia and the US it might be a bit tight, depending WHEN on Friday it's released.

The above quote from Drogon, does anyone know if this is PM or AM?


I hope I do this right as this is the first time ever posting a Spoiler type item. I have a question regarding the investigation.

Movie plot spoiler:
It mentions that a group can only find "one rumor at a location for each actively investigating PC each phase", but later mentions that for "every two PCs that investigate a particular location in one phase, reduce their final number of successes by 1 for that phase". My main question is how to handle it if a single person gets enough successes to get more than one rumor? This is especially challenging for when they get one or more true rumors AND one or more false rumors. Examples include: Single PC gets 1 or more sucesses. Two PCs get 1 success (does it drop to 0?). Two PCs get 4 successes at the General Store. Four PCs get 4 successes at the General Store.

I tried to use the best examples, but hopefully you get the idea.

Shadow Lodge

Spoiler:
"This information is presented as true rumors and false rumors that the PCs learn as part of their investigations, and many of the locations around the town might provide the PCs one or more of each type of rumor depending on the outcome of skill checks."
-
Each location has a certain number of possible rumors that can be learned. For Example, Otto's Farm ha one true and one false rumor only. When you make the skill checks, you either get successes or not. If you roll high, (beat by 5 or more), you get additional successes. Again, using Otto's Farm, (1-2 subtier), it's a DC 12 Bluff, Diplomacy, or Intimidate check. If you get a 17, it's 2 successes. If you get a 22 it's 3 successes. However, if you had 2 players there in the same phase, it would be a -1 Success. So lets say you had 2 players go. One rolls a 17, the other a 19. That's a total of 4 successes right now, but because there are 2 players, they take a -1 to successes earned. Each player can only learn 1 Rumor, but the number of successes does not grant extra rumors, it indicates that the rumor they do get includes better information. In this case they would get 1 true rumor. If they had only gotten 2 successes, they would instead have gotten one true rumor and one false rumor, (see sidebar n page 10). In the case you mentioned, where they total out at 0 successes, that indicates (for Otto's Farm) that they receive 1 false rumor (page 10). Does that help? The way I'm understanding it, all the successes are totaled first for everyone present, then subtract the penalty for multiple players at the same place in the same phase. Once the final total is there, it dictates how many rumors can possibly be learned, (by the entire present party), but is limited by how many the location actually offers as well as limited to how many players are involved. So if you get 2 true and 2 false rumors as the result, but only have 3 players involved, they can only get 3 out of those 4. Once all the false rumors are given, every time they should get a false rumor, they are supposed to get an additional bit of info on that rumor that is supposed to cast it into doubt or prove it false, so I would probably hand out the false rumors first.

Grand Lodge

Merch wrote:
Drogon wrote:
It usually hits at 8:00 Pacific time.

Keen to run this on the weekend, but due to the time difference between Australia and the US it might be a bit tight, depending WHEN on Friday it's released.

The above quote from Drogon, does anyone know if this is PM or AM?

8PM Pacific time Friday makes 7am EST Saturday in the East of Australia (11 hours forward),

I imagine when I go back home, I will have to will have to wait til Saturday for my new scenarios.

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