I have heard a rumor that they will be releasing some of the new content via the Adventure Paths (beyond just the adventure itself) instead of just source books. As I understand it, this is to encourage people to buy the Adventure Paths.
This does seem, on first reading, like a particularly tough initial adventure. I agree about the danger of the high trap damage in the plague house, and the assassins' nocturnal attack, but I was most concerned, however, by the fact that Parts 2 and 3 run with no possibility to rest overnight and regain per day abilities or learn new spells.
When the orc attack comes in Part 2, the PCs are still in 'investigation mode' since they haven't uncovered the murderer, and spellcasters are likely to have prepared spells that aid their investigations. Sure, those spells might still be useful when interrogating captives, but the massive amount of battles they are expected to survive will assuredly be their priority, and I foresee some very frustrated players who haven't been given the opportunity to prepare a full complement of combat spells.
As soon as the battle against the invaders is over, the PCs are expected to go straight into the tomb to start Part 3. Although it doesn't explicitly state that the PCs must go in immeditaely and cannot rest overnight and enter the tomb in the morning, that seems to be the implication. After all, if left in there overnight, Skreed is likely to have found what he is looking for.
What a dastardly tough pickle the PCs are going to find themselves in.
I was considering having a Trunau patrol spot the orc invaders and arrive in time to warn the town that an attack is imminent, probably by the following day. This should give PCs the chance to prepare new spells and stock up, but still allows for the surprise of when the orcs will actually attack. Obviously, in this scenario there would need to be some reason why the prepared town was caught with their pants down enough to let orcs inside at all. Thoughts?
I am not too worried about the time frame. The party's only chance to find out what is going on is to capture the half orc in the Plague House and he is only there at night. If the PC's do a night adventure and finish up by morning then they rest all day and attend the funeral in the evening at which time the next event starts.
If they go during the day, they can't run into the half orc and the information can not be obtained meaning they will have to go back in the evening anyway there by having a night adventure as per above.