RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 16. RPG Superstar 9 Season Marathon Voter. Pathfinder Society GM. 1,213 posts (2,946 including aliases). 4 reviews. No lists. No wishlists. 110 Organized Play characters. 5 aliases.
One of the things I was most excited about with the Ultimate Intrigue book was the cleaner, more varied, and more elegant mechanics it would allow authors to use for PFS scenarios. Scenario #4-09 The Blackros Matrimony has long stood as my favorite scenario. So a social focused scenario from Thurston Hillman utilizing the new tools at his disposal had me excited before getting to play or read it.
I think the new social system was excellent, giving more varied skills a place in the spotlight instead of everything being about diplomacy. Balancing doing research with interacting and influencing NPC's works great. I think the overall storyline, although straight forward, works.
Our local game day ran 2 tables (one low with 4 players, one high with five players) and everyone seemed to have a good time, even players who typically played more of a "murder hobo" style in most games. (We even got some roleplay out of people who don't do things in character normally.) Even with two pregens at the low table, we were able to successfully navigate the scenario.
I do agree with some of the criticisms on formatting and being able to find information (and is the reason for my 4 star instead of a 5 star rating). Now that I've played it, I'm prepping to run four slots at GenCon, and am making sure to create easily referenced tables and lots of handouts to keep games flowing quickly, and making sure we have more time to focus on the characters and interactions, and spending less time on the book keeping and looking things up. Can't wait to see how things go.
- Closes out season 6 in a big way
- Good variety of encounters/challenges that fit the situation
- Area defense is great mechanic for multi-table cooperatives
- Some really good encounters, especially once you learn the backstory behind them
- Too much to do in a 5 hour slot
- Ridiculously easy for the bad guys at times
- Complexities of the plot really don't come through for players (Really need to play 6-98 to make sense of things)
- Too many map packs and flip mats required (try to use more maps from the same pack or both sides of a map instead of every encounter location being a different pack.)
- Why do pathfinders even hold convocations anymore? Have any of them not become a disaster?
This special has a huge time spanning plotline, and interesting settings. There is a ton going on here, with an epic plot varied enemies, and a storyline that holds together well. Story is great, and well worth including this in your con.
A few things for future specials however:
1) Far too many map packs and flip mats included in this one. In my mind specials should try to limit to about 3-4 sources of maps, and then find ways to use those sources to fit as many encounters as possible. This pack utilizes 4 map packs, 2 flip mats, and several custom maps, making prep more onerous.
2) This adventure tries to put about 20 encounters into a 5 hour block. Most tables will finish less than half that, which will effect both the ability to make successes and more importantly, the ability of players to delve into the plot and learn more about the rich environments. I could have seen leaving out the entire second act of this adventure and still having a rich adventure that would have fit better in the available timeslot.
3) This adventure tracks a lot, necessitating more complex hand signals than many other specials, and successes can be difficult for many tables.
This scenario kind of snuck up on us. I GMed it at a with a mix of veteran players and a brand new player sitting down at his first Pathfinder table ever.
I love getting a module or two each season set up north. This one did a good job capturing the flavor of the borders of the Linnorm Kingdoms and Irrisen, and the local politics makes a simple mission into a diplomatic mess quickly. I loved the multiple paths to success, and really wish this was a 1-2 instead of a 1-5 so that I could see more of the multiple paths to success play out. I love seeing options for the party, and this was full of them.
With the multiple paths, this is one of the least "railroady" adventures I can recall in PFS, which was a great change of pace.
The highlight though was the roleplaying opportunities. Although it didn't get to heavy, this was full of roleplaying opportunities, and was good for getting players out of their shells. My local meta-game is usually heavy on murder-hobo first, figure out consequences later, so it was great to see players talking their way through a number of the situations, and it resulted in a great moment at the end.