As far as I understand how this happened, the Starfinder team was very small at the beginning. Smaller than the team working on Pathfinder APs and hardbacks combined at the time, to say the least. We were working on that Core Rulebook at the same time as AP #1 (and preliminary work for Alien Archive), so the decision was made to put out shorter AP volumes at bimonthly intervals as just didn't have the staff to do more.
As you know, we have (had *sad face*) a few more people than before, and we've increased the frequency of the AP volumes, which I truly hope people are enjoying! Will we ever make the volumes larger too? That's a question I can't answer.
Hope that answers your question!
Hylax is all about peace and diplomacy, so most shirrens of that religion are more about saving sentient species from the Swarm than taking the fight to the Swarm. However, there are a few apostates out there who believe they might be able to redeem the Swarm by force! I think we detail that group a little more in the "Church of Hylax" article in a later volume, but #20 does fill in a lot of the gaps of shirren history.
Also, because we had some extra space to fill, I added in a spell inspired by whip of spiders.
The adventure uses some (small) custom maps, but nothing very complicated.
You could probably use:
Any map with a large-ish cargo hold for the first encounter, such as Starfinder Flip-Mat Starship. For the other encounters, the maps aren't incredibly large or detailed so you could draw them out ahead of time in a few minutes on a blank map. Flip-Mat Classics: Swamp would do in a pinch, but it doesn't really have enough water features...
Good luck! Hope that helps!
Just want to hop on here to reiterate that the Starfinder team does pay attention to these forum posts and we are hearing you! As has been stated previously, our data suggests that higher-level content doesn't sell as well as lower-level adventures, but that doesn't mean we haven't completely dismissed the idea. Of course, I can't announce anything at this time (as there is nothing to announce).
That being said, I'd like to know what KIND of high-level adventures would you like to see. Do you have a preferred sci-fi "genre" for such adventures? Would you prefer the return of an old threat or a brand new one? Do you want to save the Pact Worlds or would you want to travel to a new system? How would you feel if these adventurers ended with a major change to the setting?
Just call me Dr. Frasier Crane, because I'm listening!
I like that image!
While the three of us did the initial design work on the classes, choosing the iconics was more of a full team effort. Many factors were considered and lots of ideas were bandied about. When we can say more about these new characters, we certainly will!
Thanks to everyone who tried out this year's puzzle hunt! And congratulations to the nearly 50 finishers and prize collectors!
Sorry we didn't have enough opportunities to jump onto this thread and help out, but I'm glad some other solvers were!
Now that the con is over, though, we will try to keep a better eye on this thread if people still have any questions and want to try to solve the hunt!
Also, if you have any questions about puzzles and puzzle-making in general, ask away!
We already have kalo! What more do you want from me?!?
These are all fantastic. I just want confirmation that undines can breathe underwater on launch and I will be happy.
I hate to make you unhappy, but undines can't breathe underwater, unless they activate the environmental protections of their armor!
Pathfinder undines were aquatic and amphibious only with an alternate racial trait. Talk to your GM about doing a similar switch!
Swarm starships are indeed living creatures, and are basically considered part of the Swarm.
The Swarm can be considered to be more of a natural disaster; we sometimes refer to them as interstellar locusts. They are driven by an insatiable hunger to consume organic material and other resources to propagate their species.
The Dominion of the Black is a more calculating group, working toward some unknown purpose or for some ancient entity. They might steal your brain, but only for the knowledge it contains.
Both are pretty terrible large-scale threats, but each has its own flavor of dread.
Asmodeus's Dad wrote:
The Player's Guide in this AP is a bit of experiment to see how well it is received within the volume itself. It contains information that would have normally gone at the beginning of the adventure, giving the adventure a bit of room to breath but also a couple of new themes and pieces of equipment, so it should hopefully be worth the price of admission!
We bandied that idea around with our authors, but really, the Swarm don't work that way. They prefer to consume your flesh for its precious nutrients and DNA.
Cori Marie wrote:
I am hoping that in at least one campaign out there, a PC romances this gruff half-orc ranger and brings out his softer side.
Since some people are getting their PDFs, I am curious to their reactions to the villain of the adventure. Like on a scale from 0 to lots, how much do you want to punch his face?
The secondary effect of the fog of ghosts (which deals 4d12 negative energy each round to everyone in the room; Fort for half) happens every round until the apparitions have been destroyed.
1. The range for slithering chain should be close.
2. That sounds like an excellent alteration to the text. Consider it what we meant to say!
I just saw this thread and will pass the kudos along to author Chris Sims. Since he sits right next to me, we had a good talk about what kind of horror "The Diaspora Strain" would emulate. In addition to all the other movies noted above, I would recommend the movie Oculus. While it isn't a perfect movie, it does give you some idea what we were thinking about when it comes to the effects of the signal on New Elysium's guests (and the PCs!)
Oh, and also Poltergeist for some of that.
This is very good advice!
Of course, it's going to be difficult to do both the AP and carry around passengers/cargo, but your group might be up to that challenge.
"I know we agreed to take you to Bretheda, but we just have to stop off at this spooky asteroid real quick..."
The Pact Worlds and the Veskarium have already defended against a Swarm attack and likely now have some contingencies in plan against another one. We wanted to use a place that was less prepared... and there are other reasons the Swarm might be attacking this particular place, which the AP will get in to.
Marco Massoudi wrote:
Patrick also wrote this guide/article, but I am also happy to speak about it.
Since Attack of the Swarm! begins in a new area of the Starfinder setting, this "player's guide" details what the characters would know about it and gives information about how the Swarm invasion of that system has been going so far (spoiler: poorly).
Like in previous APs, we give you ideas by theme about why a character would have joined the war effort. This lists out all the Core Rulebook themes, plus a few from Pact Worlds that make the most sense to use. We also tell you that starship combat will eventually be part of the AP, but your group doesn't start out with their own vessel. Finally, we give you some advice on what kind of gear you might want to purchase at the start (it is well-known to this system's army that the Swarm are immune to acid, for instance), as well as give you some more gear options.
Finally, there are two new "military" themes that would fit right into this AP: the battle medic and the career trooper.
If people like this format, we will consider adding such an article to the first volume of future APs (where appropriate).
Marco Massoudi wrote:
As you said, there's new art for them in the adventure, so I wanted to make sure people know they have their own pawns too!
They get some sand from the artificial beach worked into one of their joints, but when they open the casing to clean it out and lubricate, it's full of meat, inside.
I like it!
You can use a lot of the provided phantasms, as even robots don't like to get injured or have pieces of themselves fall off.
But similar to HammerJack's, you can tell the SRO that they are experiencing things that would be alien to them: the need to breath, for instance. Imagine realizing that you have to concentrate to take in and push out oxygen... and then suddenly there isn't any oxygen in the room!
Archpaladin Zousha wrote:
That Rebel Alliance feel was totally what we were going for. The Azlanti Star Empire are one of the few known political entities whose power extends beyond a single star system.
Even if the PCs succeed at the campaign, the Empire is still out there and is still strong. You don't take down the Empire by taking down one noble. This shouldn't diminish the PCs' accomplishments, of course, but make them realize how fortunate they were to go against the Empire and live!
Talk with your players about what would feel the most satisfying to them. Would it be easy just to start the combat over from the beginning? Does everyone remember how many resources they used during the fight? If they are happy to let you guesstimate, then go right ahead, but I bet they would like to enact sweet revenge on Xavra at this point.
Alternatively, let them surrender and get captured by Xavra and his warriors. Instead of just murdering them, Xavra feels the need to present his conquests to the kish chieftain Hoyfeq. Perhaps this gives the PCs a chance to rest and get some HP and spells back! But when they reach Hoyfeq, they find that Tzayl is there and she convinces the chieftain that some kind of honorable duel is required by the ancestors to decide the PCs fate. Everyone is taken to the Fields of Honor... where the PCs have to play a few rounds of a dangerous sport against Xavra and his warriors. Perhaps the PCs can just kill Xavra during the match or if he loses, he flies into a rage and the PCs get a chance to fight him all over again (with the right stats, of course). You could even say that due to the PCs' success at the sporting match, Xavra is "weakened" from his earlier toughness, giving the PCs a chance to feel like they accomplished something.
Alexander Augunas wrote:
Alex, you hit me with the side of a mountain!
Any of you third-party wood carvers out there listening?!
I decided to bring over the corruption system to Starfinder because I was really interested in the concept when I read it in Horror Adventures. I used to play in this homebrew Weird West campaign that had characters getting infected with "the Lazarus virus" when they got wounded that slowly turned them into undead creatures, but it was like a grab bag of iconic powers and weaknesses. So one person might have a werewolf's claws but be allergic to sunlight.
Anyway, I tried to make the corruption system for Starfinder a bit less punishing and something that a player could decide how "deep" their character would go. Basically, if you have Resolve Points left at the end of the day, you have the strength to automatically fight back against the corruption progressing (so if you take a long, boring Drift journey, you don't have to worry about turning into an NPC before its over). However, on those rough days when you have to spend all your Resolve to stay alive, you might succumb to the corruption.
I hope you all enjoy this update! And I'd love to hear any feedback!
There sure are!
The adventure begins with the PCs receiving an all-expenses paid trip to a resort. We give you some reasons why they might have won/been awarded this prize, leaving a fair amount of wiggle room for working in PCs' backstories, especially starting characters at 7th level!
Joseph Davis wrote:
We are experimenting with content like this. "Reach of Empire" has a page or two of ways to be connected to Cedona, broken out by theme; that information contains no spoilers for the campaign, so they could be excised and given to players.
We have something a little more comprehensive in the works too, but since we work on books so far in advance, you might not see it until the middle of next year!
Black Lamb wrote:
Disguise self will let your skittermanders and ysoki appear as (short) Azlanti, which will help them get in the door at least. The SRO pretends to be a simple automaton (as long as they don't mind if their friends treat them a little badly in front of the Azlanti) and the dragonkin is their prisoner (what I refer to as "the Chewbacca gambit").