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Enhance Brew Potion, add Investigator(Toxin Codexer)

5/5

Details:
pages:36 pages with content:30
traits: regional:10
racial feats:11 (grippli 3, nagaji 4, vishkanya 4)
racial archtypes:5 (grippli 2, nagaji 1, vishkanya 2)
class archtypes:7 (alchemist 2, witch 1, rogue 2{rogue talents 5, slayer talents 2}, investigator 2{inventigator talents 3})
spells:8 (mostly arcane)
feats:4(enhancements to Brew Potion)
poisons:10
drugs:12
items(alchemical:1 & tinctures{t}:16, equip:6)
magic items:(wpn:1, wondrous:16)
potions(elixirs:13)

overall it is a lot of new content with only 1 page giving a table of standard potions and oils(CR,APG,ACG,OA,UC,UI,UM).
This is your supplement for enhancing Brew Potion, introducing a poisoner (that's not an assassin per se), or adding to grippli, nagaji, or vishkanya racial abilities.

The material looks balanced on the whole and shouldn't upset most games. My only caution is that drugs with high addiction DCs should be reviewed before using in a campaign.

Standouts would be;

Magic Items: Aegis of Recovery, Greater $3750 (neck), Eye of Crystallized Venom $2250 (neck).

Alchemical: Venombane Lozenges $35, Dodger's Draught{t} $300, Mage's Assistant{t} $150.
The tinctures{t} are creative, expensive in general, excellent duration (1 hour or better) and they have drawbacks. A regular magical potion/scroll/wand might suffice instead but NPCs need stuff!

Poisons: decent effects & DCs at reasonable prices, only 2 are deadly. Insecticide as written doesn't kill vermin.

Drugs: interesting but some are actually very cost effective slow acting poisons with high DCs. Craft these for long term situations.

Art: pg 26 there's something special in that satchel!

I would have liked to seen more poisons in the work (say 20 total rather than 10), particularly under 100gp.


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Interesting but requires GM skills, Contrary scenario

3/5

Those familiar with Golarion or scenario history will get more enoyment out of this scenario.

An investigation that leads to a chance to document a unique event that may not make sense. lol... meet some personalities, fight a few fights and low skill groups get more combat (yay!?)... denial or contrariness seems to be a strong theme throughout this scenario. There are philosophical sections that will make you smile, shake your head, or disengage. Perhaps all three. Due to the high drama content in the last section it is a bit of a railroad. Did you know there was gonna be a quiz later?

In play we had a well rounded group with no cleric or Exchange members. Player engagement varied throughout the scenario. Some elements confused the players. Full gold & 2 PA and decent pathfinders should earn that here. Explore, Report, and Cooperate yall!

GM eyes only!:

Engagement: Moderate to Low. Since this scenario engages on many fronts, different scenes will engage with different player types. That means you have to switch focus to different players with the first and last sections.

Plot Development: Good to contrived. Clear location based linear plotline. Players challenged on social and knowledge skills, a little sleuthing, and low skill sets given more combat. Players acquire prestige due to skill rolls and memory (pop quiz at the end).

Roleplaying: High or Low. Lots of places to roleplay/interact with personalities played by GM otherwise players slog through combats and get 0/1 prestige. Rude players get 0 prestige (remember, "don't be a jerk!").

Challenge: Low or High (lol, this scenario is contrary). If players are not social or knowledgeable they get COMBAT.

Complexity: High if you don't understand that this scenario is a fluffy introduction of a new deity with fangs for the disrespectful or unwise, otherwise is a weird philosophical scenario with some forced combats (Low complexity). Contrarian again. GM plays various personages and gets to engage players with Golarion backdrop and some Qadiran/Exchange values. It plays well to people that know the Golarion background or PFS scenario history.

Chronicle: Nice. 10% discount on an item, NOW. Downflower Sash is nice. Ultimate Equipment stuff. Wand of Lesser Restoration at high tier is very good.

Many reviews that target the characterization/philosophy of a demigod or deity should be ignored. That's a different topic. Players should realize it's a POWER and play along or get *thumped* by that power. duh... *make arm pull down motion* choo-choo!


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Vertical hopscotch makes me feynt

4/5

A moderate challenge with lots of distractions. You need a balanced party that has some skills and a sense of when to fight and when to talk.

GM eyes only!:

Engagement: Moderate to High. Lots of unique NPCs to interact with and some want to talk to the players. There be social skills rolls all around.

Plot Development: Linear A-B-C-D-D'-C'. Bogging down may happen in early part D and rewards affected. Create 4-6 cross reference charts to simplify the run and switch charts every 5 min real time rather than roll each time, check Will save DCs. PCs have to switch roles at various times/scenes and know when to do so (fairly obvious).

Roleplaying: Moderate to High. Social skills play critical role and in PC rewards.

Challenge: Moderate to High. Fights aren't that tough. One could be really annoying and essentially out of tier (-1!). Double whammy penalizing spelluse is a sour don't get off the railroad note. Again... leaving artifacts laying about is not good in a home game setting.

Complexity: High. 4 different groups of NPCs. A section with moving random parts... GM needs to be forgiving in one encounter. Odd race & class choice for BBNG makes for an odd pre-Torchwood Dr Who companion (lol, torchwood). -1 for complexity but creativity kept it at 4*.

Chronicle: Good. One shot boons and some nice items(limit 4). Unlocks 1 okay item and effectively another from Ult Equip.


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Dark Just-eeeek!-an-standee Tapestry salesman

3/5

A moderate challenge with lots to do for skilled investigators and the knowledgeable. Some unsavory tasks. Thematically makes no sense and the uneducated and unwashed must slog through it. Really a stylistic and mood driven Dark Tapestry/Psychic mystery. A good read for the GM and a unique ride for the PCs.

GM eyes only!:

Engagement: Low to Moderate. Very difficult key skill checks and moderate skill checks throughout. Generally confusing and more difficult for the unskilled in the Arts.

Plot Development: Clear and clueless then unclear and clueless... lol... it starts easy enough then goes crazy... it's like a Lovecraft tale, A-B-C-P-WQXZ-A plotline. Never a good thing leaving artifact like items laying about in a home game. A similar item(s) underlies a faction...

Roleplaying: Low to Moderate. Depends on how much the GM engages the party in the first half. The second half can get very descriptive but low on interaction... depends on the GM.

Challenge: Moderate. Key skill rolls very difficult. Some distasteful tasks. Second half is harder for the non-educated <wink>.

Complexity: Moderate. It is very descriptive and relies on setting a mood and that's a hard sell in PFS. GMs have to ask for a lot of Skill Checks and saves... if they forget it can get naSTY!

Chronicle: average. What you want isn't on it.


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Old partial temple and old foes...

5/5

A moderate challenge with some outdoorsy skills, some sleuthing and knowledge checks, and some combat. A hard moral challenge which could lead to extra combat in a home game. Some Occult Adventure material.

In play (with a optimized party of 5{yes, 5; 2 O Faction} at Lvl 10-11) it came to a 30min discussion in the last section. Full gold & 2 PA.

Given the setting the temple area could have been larger or more complicated than 4-5 rooms. However, then it would run longer.

GM eyes only!:

Engagement: Moderate to High. Some cooperation and bluffing is required throughout the scenario. The last hard moral decision may take 30+min.

Plot Development: Clear travel/location based A-B-C plotline; A)Get there, B)Explore, C)Fight... Part B could have been fleshed out some more. Never a good thing leaving artifact like items laying about in a home game or as a backdrop. Combat NPC should have had more time to prepare (given that she is active behind the scenes in part A and her statue animates in part B) and should have left a guardian or at least an alarm.

Roleplaying: Moderate. Cooperation in part A and B, big discussion in part C. So really 2 sets of NPCs; A) make some skill checks, B) one is a talker and the other a combat.

Challenge: Moderate. PC choices play a critical role. In a total crawl you'd kill off all the NPCs and hit maximum difficulty.

Complexity: Moderate. GMs need to know how to run arcane and psychic casters.

Chronicle: Good but mainly focused on arcane casters/knowledge skills(if you can take 5min probably never fail another knowledge check), a bevy of wands. Other items always available in absalom.


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Good conclusion where most becomes known

4/5

A moderate challenge with mainly combat to possibly 2 very tough combats. As this adventure is in Tian Xia someone in the party needs to speak tian. A well rounded party or combat oriented party coming from part 1 should do fine. Some Occult Adventure material but a good smattering across most classes. Most things should become known to the party as NPCs help fill in the blanks and are downright helpful. Need I say play part 1 then part 2...

In play (with a sub-optimal party of 4 at Lvl 6-7, one spoke tian) at one point most PCs had less than 10HPs and one was at -9. A confluence of spending resources (about $450), player luck, and NPC help carried the day. Almost lost about $716. Full gold & 2 PA.

Home Game: Main NPC Bakten/Sharaheen gets off way too easy. Sharaheen should ask the PCs to go back and help fix the problems they caused in Part 1.

GM eyes only!:

Engagement: Moderate to High. NPCs fill in the blanks about most motives from part 1. This is a job with combats.

Plot Development: Good. Clear location based A-B-C-D plotline. Players given combat and a little sleuthing. Players can make choices which make things more difficult.

Roleplaying: Low. Most NPC interaction is combat or filling you in on motives from part 1.

Challenge: Moderate to High. PC choices play a critical role in how hard this is and really bad choices can make it go to very hard.

Complexity: Moderate. GMs need to know how to run arcane and psychic casters, monks with ki pools... It would have been nice if an NPC could choose an action but it just went round by round as described. Illumination rules aren't that hard.

Chronicle: Good. Lots of different things (occult, alchemist, ki pool, martials, divine, arcane) with a tian flair. Prayer beads at reduced cost, book, scrolls, wand from Ult Magic with limited charges.


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Strong test for a well rounded party

3/5

Multiple challenges on different fronts that lead into 7-08. As this adventure is in Tian Xia someone in the party needs to speak tian or as the cover displays Elven if not both and understand tian culture. The party needs to be well rounded with multiple skill sets. An overall strong challenge for a well rounded party. Occult Adventure material, the information gathering and social aspects of those classes would be helpful. This is part 1 of a 2 part adventure so not all is revealed.

In play our weakest HP character & familiar was slain, it could have been avoided with withdraw/retreat. As we had a tian tiefling samurai and a tian aasimar ninja with varied weapons at low tier we did well on the social front and finally in combat. Full gold & 1 PA.

GM eyes only!:

Engagement: Moderate to Low. If the players do not have languages or social skills to engage the Tian NPCs, it's a errand job with some combats. Parts of the hidden backstory will be discovered but PCs cannot uncover the hidden agendas. It takes some cultural understanding and sleuthing to understand why NPCs make the decisions they do and sometimes it's impossible.

Plot Development: Good to contrived. Clear location based A-(B1-B2 | C) tree plotline. Players given diplomacy, combat, and a little sleuthing. Players are likely to only acquire 1 prestige due to failure in diplomacy or combat.

Roleplaying: High to Low. Lots of places to roleplay in one plot branch, the other you get to be (clueless) heroes. Again, culture is key here for roleplaying otherwise it slides to low.

Challenge: High in (3-4) to Very High (6-7). It is very important for the GM to follow the tactics in part C otherwise it can get too deadly.

Complexity: Due to multiple hidden agendas and cultural disconnects it can get complex for the GM and frustrating for the players.

Chronicle: Okay. Wands from Occult Adventures with limited charges.


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