|Doug Miles Venture-Lieutenant, Michigan—Detroit|
This is what I suggest: If the player successfully makes the Perform check, the little doll begins to sing as if reliving her glory days on the stage of the opera. It moves from behind the organ into full view, perhaps levitating atop the contraption. As long as the PC maintains the performance, the doll will sing. If the music is interrupted the doll throws a fit and slaps the PC with the inflict serious wounds. The damage it can do with that attack will alarm most PCs who have no way of knowing that it's a 1/day ability. The encounter is mostly to up the creep-factor. This was the first appearance of a soulbound doll in a PFS scenario, so most players couldn't metagame its limited offensive capabilities. Don't worry about this encounter challenging the party, just mess with them as much as you can get away with and then let them have their revenge .
Again, this is a suggestion. As long as the PC keeps playing the organ or otherwise musically accompanying the doll it will remain passive, just singing it's little non-heart out. If the PCs figure out that the doll came out of one of the cases spilled on the floor, they could try to trap it back inside with a combat maneuver.
I've just been through this as a player. Here's how the memorable enounters went.
Opinion: The paladin needed a little convincing, but my bard explained that we (pathfinders) are only breaking into our own house (a pathfinder lodge) to displace some squatters. Once it was put that way, he was fine with it. The encounter itself was about what you'd expect, and provided some useful tanglefoot bags for later.
Opinion: The blood on the organ spooked my bard enough to not even go near the thing. Also, perform(keyboard) isn't her bit. I have no opinion on the inflict spell, because in our game the Diva couldn't get it off, and once it was gone, she was out of spells and could do little.
There was a scroll of tongues in the desk that we used to converse with the two dark creatures. They really didn't have any useful information. We did warn them that we believed that it's possible the machine might explode if tampered with, but they chose to stick around anyway.
My bard was the only character with disable device, but it's not her main schtick. Even with a really good roll, the DC25 check only shut the machine off. I was hoping to simply turn it down to "normal" sunrod strength. Afterwards it was easy to switch the sphere (faction mission) for the one we were given. Of course, the two dark critters elected to attack, but since they were in the other room, they were dispatched before the bard was done messing with the prototype.
For all we knew at the time, this might not be the final boss. With no attempt at dialoge, the other figure in the room (who was also not described to us) casts his deeper darkness. The paladin's halo stops working, my bard's dancing lights fail, etc. Holy Carp !
Since you can speak out of turn, a quick consensus was that we must fall back or be defeated piecemeal. A complication is you must move at half speed when blind or risk a fall, but we all made it out of the room and shut the door. We began examining our resources for anything that might help us as well as making spellcraft/knowledge arcana checks to realize that the spell was deeper darkness as well as how long it was likely to last.
At this point the GM pipes up with "You don't think the man strapped to the device has long to live without intervention." We responded with "Wait a minute, you said there's a BODY strapped to the device. We took that to mean DEAD BODY." Now the Paladin insists we must attempt a rescue.
I wanted to go get the prototype from upstairs, get it working again, dismantle it, bring it down, reassemble it on a boat and float it over here, but that was vetoed because we'd been given the impression that it would be next to impossible to even get it functioning again. This made us disinclined to even attempt to get the machine in THIS room functioning as we were completely unsure given our fleeting glimpse of it that it was even intact.
We settled on having everyone delay until the worst initiative and then moving in formation to the machine, grabbing whoever was on it (we weren't even sure who it was) and then retreating. When we first opened the doors, light functioned normally until the BBG's turn when he put up DD again (rats, we were hoping it was limited).
We managed it only because the cleric was channeling, my bard was casting heal on whoever sung out "I'm hit", the paladin laying on hands and the GM was forgetting about the extra sneak attack damage. We never did twig to the fact that he's using lunge to attack from two squares away, what with everyone attacking the darkness.
As we bundled the unconcious but still living target of the rescue mission into a gondola, the problem is now that we won't all fit in the boats, to wich the GM sings out "Oh, but you can if you treat him as cargo (i.e. he lays in the bottom of the boat). Our response "Why didn't you tell us that earlier when we were trying to use fewer boats !?" The strength damaged Tengu ninja and the useless evoker begin paddling madly with the rescue-e.
Meanwhile, the two strongest party members are trying to hold the doors while the BBG is trying to force them open. Whenever he temorarily gets one open a bit, a motley collection of alchemists fire, tanglefoot bags, etc. are hurled until the third strongest member of the party throws himself against the door to reclose it.
After a few rounds of this, a round goes by with no attempt by the BBG to open the door. After a brief whispered conference we break for the boats and never look back.
|DLandonCole RPG Superstar 2013 Top 16|
I've run this one twice at the lower sub-tier and think it's a really fun, flavourful adventure that would be perfect for around Hallowe'en. It is potentially deadly.Notwithstanding JJ Frost's comment earlier about the Diva's ILS being once per day, it can still easily take a first level character from full HP to negative con in one go. That's fine - just not for someone playing PFS for the first time :)
Likewise, the final encounter can be dealt with despite the deeper darkness - I do wonder if a humanoid chain would work - but it is challenging.
Not a good mod for a party of level ones....also not a good mod to intro people to pathfinder. It is confusing and has fights that require one specific type of attack. Definitely not what I not what I expected from a Pathfinder mod....it sort of reminded me of the mods we hated in LG.
This is not a mod to play on the low end of the tiers at all...personally the end of this mod needs to be looked at for level 1s
|Drogon Owner - Enchanted Grounds|
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It's a good idea to read the spoiler thread and especially the reviews before running anything. Your experiences Slamy have been written many times.
Indeed. And I still say that, run properly, this scenario is an excellent scenario. If the GM is doing his job properly, no scenario is as bad as what you described, Slamy. Part of that job is reading the GM advice threads and the reviews.
Had a real good time with this one today. Power creep has worn away the danger however. Between a gunslinger and zen archer getting a pinpoint on Zoathrias and my tiefling alchemist with see in darkness making his way to the machine nothing really threatened the party overtly.
|RainyDayNinja RPG Superstar 2014 Top 16, RPG Superstar 2013 Top 16|
So I just ran this at the 4-5 tier, and all the fights were ridiculously easy up until the final fight with Zoathrias. That one was comfortably difficult, right up until the lights from the machine came back on. I decided that Zoathrias would use his elemental gem to back him up when he didn't have the benefit of deeper darkness.
A CR 5 large earth elemental is way too tough for a tier 4-5 party that's already been devastated by darkness and sneak attacks. I could have easily dropped 1 PC every round, but I declined to use power attack, and had the gem end after just 3 rounds. The party was just barely able to bounce back after that.
I have yet to run this but finally played it yesterday; we were on low tier. It does seem like it would indeed be a party-killer for most.
In the final encounter we lucked out with a full five rounds from a timely pyrotechnics SLA on an alchemist's bomb, thereby negating precision damage within the cloud, and decided that evacuating the room while carrying Miregrold and slamming and jamming the door shut was better than facing Zoathrias in his native element even though we had been lucky enough to land 12 points on him. It seemed like a chancy think at best!