This adventure should be retired from service. Anytime the GM is given the tools to tpk a party and no instructions not too, you have to wonder just what the editors were thinking. Unless the gm softballs the adventure, and the players have cheated and prepared for the abuse, stay away from this one.
The writer's job is to provide plot and background for a scenario. The judge's job is to deal with anything their players will throw at them.
That being said, I found nothing wrong with the premise of the scenario. Our table came up with the perfect plan, and our judge did a fantastic job of implementing it.
Thank for running, George.
Without getting into spoilers, the box text in the first encounter leads the player to expect one thing, then GOTCHYA!! SOMETHING else happens. The adventure should be pulled, and that paragraph of box text rewritten.
If you are not an optimized skill monkey table, a TPK is guaranteed. If you are a good aligned elemental caster, the mod screws you. Mind the traps that aren't traps.
The icing on the cake:the only classes that get any kind of bonus in this adventure are featured in Paizo's newest book.
A difficult or even deadly adventure is forgivable, But blatant deception on the part of the writer is not.
I have both played and run this adventure, and I had a great time each time.
I made sure each player had something to do. Role playing involves character interaction. Not everyone is a consummate actor, so the GM will have to do a little encouraging to get the "roll players" to do something.
The final encounter can be difficult, but it can be overcome with team work and a little luck.
There should be a disclaimer at the beginning of the adventure that reminds the GM that SWARMS DO NOT STACK. I was aware of this ruling, and the GM that ran this adventure was aware of this ruling, but evidently, the writer was either unaware or simply did not care. If GM's insist upon stacking the swarms, please remind the GM that swarms damage EVERYTHING in their area-including each other.
The opening encounter is designed to incapacitate a party with lots of auto-damage, damage to your equipment, and then near automatic enervation damage. Yet another Season 5 module that drops the players into a "hot zone" with no warning and no preparation.
The rest of the adventure was only so-so at best.
A few more adventure like this, 5th edition Dungeons & Dragons will have swarms of players just itching to start a new campaign on even footing.
To be fair, the story line was well written. However, it is my opinion that Mr. Mona is a hack writer that uses box text and bends the rules (if not outright cheats)to give his villains every advantage over the PCs to ensure a high death count just for his enjoyment. This mod is a colossal heap of shame.
Do NOT play this mod at a con UNLESS you have a table of 6 players that you know and trust.
Please note that I didn't include any spoilers. I could show at least 6 things that are completely wrong in the 1st encounter-all designed to screw the PCs thanks to the miracle of box text. If anyone care's to PM me, I will be more than happy to explain in great detail.