Gameday XI - PFS2 3-98 Expedition Into Pallid Peril - GM Thread (Inactive)

Game Master numbat1


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The Festering Blot | Tarnbreaker’s Trail

Table GM Instructions
When the House GM announces that it's time to begin Act 2, quickly conclude your current encounter; successes earned or Rests taken in Act 1 no longer have any effect.


Slides Loot sheet

Ah, thank you! Could've sworn I read somewhere we could continue, but apparently I'm mistaken. Maybe I'm confusing it with other specials.


The Festering Blot | Tarnbreaker’s Trail

I also thought that I saw that somewhere, but figured even if I did the above statement was what mattered. No sense in spending time on something that doesn’t generate progress.

I had a party led by an Azarketi monk come notify my group of the change in plans. Makes it easy to understand how they were able to leave without issue. :)


VC Australia - WA

Thanks GM Bret for responding so quickly.

Yep, as I previously stated, we all move together to Act 2 and only report success from there.

If any of you find the section that caused confusion, please let me know. I am making a list to submit to the PTB.


| Extinction | url= |

This will go in my after action notes (and probably review on the product page):

Unintelligent eating/killing machines are not the most fun for an organized play GM. I feel terribly hand-tied with my tactics.


Slides Loot sheet

I feel you. My oozes just stopped at the first PC they encountered (and due to the small rooms, it's the same PC) and just wailed on him. The rest just attacked from reach and stayed out of danger.

Similarly, I can feel my Rogue player's frustration with the last few combats. First an underwater encounter where you need Athletics to move (it's only a DC 10, but on a -1 you're not taking your chances), immediately followed by a fight with oozes, followed by several swarms. I mean, that's kind of what you're buying into with playing a Rogue, but still.


| Extinction | url= |

The monk is making decent progress with the oozes, but everyone else brought piercing or slashing weapons. Some have resorted to punching the oozes. At this rate, this will be the only encounter in Part 2 they see.


My players just dispatched with four elite abrikandilus in under 3 rounds. Because these are the Bestiary 3 version, which has updated / clarified language, their Wreck ability is essentially unusable unless they Disarm a PC... and Disarm only works on a crit. And attempting a special ability that destroys valuable PC weapons on a crit and does (essentially) nothing otherwise seems made for Feel Bad Moments.

Prior to that, the party was summoned out of the Sunken Halls by a messenger. Six PCs were fighting four (large) giant eels in a 5x5 room. But for it being underwater and thus 3D combat (whee?), it would have been pretty close to a sliding block puzzle. The gunslinger was informed that his dueling pistol won't work, and then was thrilled to learn that his backup crossbow wouldn't do much either, due to piercing resistance.


3 more days to do these caravan and temple route? That's... pretty fast.
Numbat, which time and timezone for the Oct 13?


Slides Loot sheet

The dates don't seem to add up. Act 2 is supposed to end on the 22nd, and Event 5 is supposed to start the 13th. That doesn't make sense.


Witch's Winter Holiday

Event 5 is part of Act 2.


Slides Loot sheet

Ah okay, nevermind then. In that case, I agree with GM Fi. I don't think my players can even start on the second area before the 13th.

Dark Archive

Tyrant's Grasp | | Age of Ashes | | Dead Suns | | ◆ | ◆◆ | ◆◆◆ | ◇ ◈ | ↺ | ★

Having played this at an in person Con that seems accurate as well. We only made it through one side before everythng shifted onward.


VC Australia - WA

Just to be sure, I went back and checked the message from Alex.

Alex from a VO announcement wrote:
- Act 2: success thresholds are changing to 2/3x tables (including the Aspis successes). Act 2 is now 120 minutes total, moving to the final combat after 60 minutes.

For us, that makes it 20 days and moving to Event 5 after 10 days.

As for date and time zone, I have been using UTC midnight (or as close as I could manage) for commencement and progression.

Grand Archive

Thread for #3-08: Foundation's Price and #3-12: Fury's Toll | |

I have run this several times as well, and never completed two areas in Act 2. I have started a second area once or twice, but I have also had to contend with Aspis Event 3 in Act 2.


So we will have ten days to do *one combat*, and the scenario ends after 10 of 16 tables finish that encounter? It really feels like we're moving on from the main part of Act 2 too quickly-- and the rug will get pulled out from under 40% of tables during the finale.


VC Australia - WA

I will provide a survey at the end and gather feedback to pass to Alex. All comments will be passed on.

Silver Crusade

Yeah, my table had a delay in starting act 2 for a couple days and the combat in the first temple room took a bit of time. And now, that's all of act 2 they will see other than the finale. Timing is very weird after we had no trouble finishing act 1.


The Festering Blot | Tarnbreaker’s Trail

My group just finished the duergar fight on the temple route. Still need to do the pillars. Reasonable chance of them completing one route.


The Golden Serpent Maps | Actions: ◆ | ◇ | ↺

My table was pretty fast with the temple route and had the two fights and three of the five pillars dealt with by the time this came through. But they were fast and enjoying not having things resistant to practically everything. (It was so bad in high tier I started using an emoji to mark resistance being applied.)


SoT (Grad School Year 1, Sem. 1): Maps, Handouts, Macros Enmity: Maps & Handouts | Macros | Hero Points

Tracker says only 50% of the tables completed a route; this seems rather low. We completed a route so timing feels fine to me (I don't think tables should expect to complete both routes — especially because this is repeatable). That said, I am usually considered a faster GM both in person and PbP.

Generally, it also feels like there's a little less meat on the bones of this special. Combat and enemy tactics have seemed repetitive and overly simplistic. At least moving at a fast clip helps mitigate potential boredom.

______

Thank you for keeping such a close eye on changes from Alex, and sticking to the time as written, Numbat!


| Extinction | url= |

The table I'm playing at should be done with our location (unless the last NPC has way more HP than predicted), our GM just hasn't checked in yet.

The table I'm GMing is still stuck with an army of oozes and no good way to deal with them. I will not be posting a location success before the deadline.


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Slides Loot sheet

I feel the same as GM Doug H, the whole scenario feels undercooked. I'm playing tier 1-2, and the first few levels don't have a whole lot of exciting creatures in the first place, but most of these things don't even have the intelligence to do anything other than "go up to opponent and stay there until dead," or have any abilities to spice up combat.

Speaking of enemies, in tier 1-2 all the enemies feel exceedingly tame. All the encounters are level -1 or 1, with only a single level 2 ghost to spice things up. Most combats have been over in the first round, or the second round at most. These fights simply aren't fun or interesting.

The whole "refreshed every time you go into a new area" feels overly generous. There's at most two encounters in each area (and a trap), maybe a third if you roll an Aspis encounter in there. Feels like you could easily do two areas in a single day.

The constant refreshing combined with the easy encounters leads to absolutely zero stakes. The party Wizard has fired off a single level 1 spell across four in-game days, and the Druid has only cast Electric Arc so far. There simply isn't a need for anything more drastic.

Also, was this supposed to be the direct follow-up to the other Pallid scenarios? In the second one there's this whole choice of going after the necromancer or not, I don't see anything of that storyline here. This whole scenario feels more like an intermission, rather than a continuation of that story.

---

Maybe this was all better in the GM thread, but I just wanted to share my thoughts and see if anyone agrees. This is not meant as a complaint to you, Numbat, you're doing a great job!


SoT (Grad School Year 1, Sem. 1): Maps, Handouts, Macros Enmity: Maps & Handouts | Macros | Hero Points
GM Kwinten wrote:
Also, was this supposed to be the direct follow-up to the other Pallid scenarios? In the second one there's this whole choice of going after the necromancer or not, I don't see anything of that storyline here. This whole scenario feels more like an intermission, rather than a continuation of that story.

This right here was my biggest disappointment. I was really excited to follow up on these things; I am just confused about the story arc at this point.

Dark Archive

Tyrant's Grasp | | Age of Ashes | | Dead Suns | | ◆ | ◆◆ | ◆◆◆ | ◇ ◈ | ↺ | ★

I asked a lot of those similar questions. Basically this Special isn't supposed to be a conclusion to the end of the season. Scenario 3-19 is the big conclusion. So this is sort of as you said an intermission scenario


| Extinction | url= |

My table would probably disagree with the zero stakes.

This is a -9X not a -00, so I find it on par with other non-00 specials like Ruins of Bonekeep. The plot is more interesting than Ruins of Bonekeep, though.

What I think is not conveyed to the players is that they can nova all their abilities and spells and maybe should in order to speed up the successes. So tables eek out their resources like a standard scenario not taking into account the speed/timer aspect.

The necromancer keeps getting brought up in various runs of this, and the answer that I keep hearing is no, it's not a direct follow-up. It's just in the same location after the events of those scenarios, but it's not meant to give closure to that story arc.

Grand Archive

Thread for #3-08: Foundation's Price and #3-12: Fury's Toll | |

My group has almost finished the Temple route, just a couple of Duergar to finish off, so we should be reporting the success before the deadline.

I find it interesting that it doesn't look like we will see Aspis Event 3 before moving to the Finale. That probably has something to do with the changes.

It may surprise folks that there is no rest before starting Event 5, as there is when moving between other locations.


SoT (Grad School Year 1, Sem. 1): Maps, Handouts, Macros Enmity: Maps & Handouts | Macros | Hero Points

It would be nice is the special made reference to the other upcoming missions. Luna could acknowledge it; e.g.: "The Pathfinders discovered mysterious new areas, but we need high-level specialized teams to explore them. For today's mission, we're exploring a totally different section that was discovered in the interim."

Delve the Pallid depths actually references this; you guys are right on that:

Delve the Pallid depth Spoilers:

Conclusion wrote:
In the coming months, Luna intends to organize a full-scale expedition to set up a base camp and explore the ruins. She hopes the PCs can lend their expertise in these efforts. As for the Forever Forge and the necromancer’s catacomb, Luna believes exploring these sites may require a team of highly experienced Pathfinders.

So it seems these are two different things.

However I needed to re-read my scenario to jog my own memory. I am pretty sure I'm not the only one.


The Festering Blot | Tarnbreaker’s Trail

My group (tier 3-4, 32 challenge points) had problems with the wrecker demons, but the rest of the fights have been pretty easy. They did not explore past the first room of the Sunken Halls and will not get to the caravan route.

They didn’t take any extra rests in Act 1, but they came close to wanting one with the one battle in the Sunken Halls they were fighting.


Slides Loot sheet
GM Blake wrote:
This is a -9X not a -00, so I find it on par with other non-00 specials like Ruins of Bonekeep. The plot is more interesting than Ruins of Bonekeep, though.

Ah, thank you for that insight. I wasn't aware of the difference between -9X and -00. This is basically a mid-season special, not a season opener/closer.


Oh, huh. I was interpreting "the labyrinth" as the necromancer's catacombs, but I guess that's not intended. I implied it to my players, so I should probably clear that up.

My table is nearly done with the duergar combat in the Temple Route, and has already set off four of five pillars, so we *should* report a location success before the timer goes off.


SoT (Grad School Year 1, Sem. 1): Maps, Handouts, Macros Enmity: Maps & Handouts | Macros | Hero Points

What is "The Door in?"

This term appears on page 22 but Event 5 is labeled "The Threshold."

I assume this is the same thing?


SoT (Grad School Year 1, Sem. 1): Maps, Handouts, Macros Enmity: Maps & Handouts | Macros | Hero Points

I realized my bridge map was cropped in a way that prevents placement according to the scenario as written (at least on Low). New map on slide deck added.

Added the door art too.


VC Australia - WA
GM Doug H wrote:

What is "The Door in?"

This term appears on page 22 but Event 5 is labeled "The Threshold."

I assume this is the same thing?

I'm sorry I did not catch that discrepancy before posting. I believe they are the same and will point out the House GM text may need changing.


Slides Loot sheet

By the way, how do we handle reporting? This is my first special, so I don't know how it usually goes. If we send the information over to you, do you have a preferred format? Plain text? Google Doc/Sheet?

Dark Archive

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Tyrant's Grasp | | Age of Ashes | | Dead Suns | | ◆ | ◆◆ | ◆◆◆ | ◇ ◈ | ↺ | ★

Event Name: Gameday XI
Event Code: 2708830

Reporting Links

Pathfinder Society (second edition) Reporting Link


SoT (Grad School Year 1, Sem. 1): Maps, Handouts, Macros Enmity: Maps & Handouts | Macros | Hero Points

Just finished. Is there time to run another wave of aspis? I can’t seem to find the schedule right now (my fault: not at home, on mobile).


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The Festering Blot | Tarnbreaker’s Trail

Yes, I expect there is.

End 25 October


| Extinction | url= |

If your table is as fast as you usually run it, I'm sure you can fit a wave in.

They're the weaker waves from Event 1, if I recall correctly.


The Festering Blot | Tarnbreaker’s Trail

I see that we just got our 10 Aspis successes.

Will we still allow things to run or do we want to call the conclusion? I don’t know if there are any tables that haven’t gotten an Aspis success.


SoT (Grad School Year 1, Sem. 1): Maps, Handouts, Macros Enmity: Maps & Handouts | Macros | Hero Points

Oh that worked out, if true. We just started a second wave but I am honestly not very interested in running these super weak aspis enemies again.

Horizon Hunters

We recently started the second wave as well. I don't expect them to last long considering they were defeated in two rounds last time they were encountered.


Frozen Flame + Dragon's Demand

We're still working on our first wave, if we could have a little more time.


Slides Loot sheet

Yeah, I started my second wave yesterday and half of them are already dead. Not super keen to run them, but we needed the extra successes.

Grand Archive

Thread for #3-08: Foundation's Price and #3-12: Fury's Toll | |

We have already done two waves, finishing the second last night.

I stopped the group after two because I wanted to let the higher level tables have a chance to get a success. I thought if we got a bunch of low level successes, the scenario might end before the high levels got a chance to finish.


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VC Australia - WA

As a compromise, I will add While a few teams of Pathfinders subdue the last of the Aspis, prior to the conclusion block text so that any tables who wish may continue their current fight.


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VC Australia - WA

I will try to have a post-game survey linked here in the next 48 hours. All feedback will be appreciated.

Thank you to all GMs, backup GMs and especially to those who provided valuable guidance during my first PbP House GM experience.


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SoT (Grad School Year 1, Sem. 1): Maps, Handouts, Macros Enmity: Maps & Handouts | Macros | Hero Points

Awesome job!!! Super smooth, thank you!!


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The Festering Blot | Tarnbreaker’s Trail

It was a lot of fun.

Is it only me that finds it weird to have reporting conditions on a special? I think this is the first time I’ve seen that.


The Golden Serpent Maps | Actions: ◆ | ◇ | ↺

My biggest complaint about the reporting conditions is they're listed in the oddest place and reference the wrong sections. And yes it is a bit odd.

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