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**** Pathfinder Society GM. 89 posts. 14 reviews. No lists. No wishlists. 13 Organized Play characters.



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Five-Star Must-Play Seeker Scenerio

5/5

I rarely take the time to write reviews as most scenarios are just "meh" and are quickly forgotten as background noise... This is not one of those.

Storyline: Epic
Combats: Epic
Roleplaying: Moderate
Timeframe: Long (high tier, normal mode, highly optimized party = 8hr for my group)
Chronicle: Epic

Its hard to write high-level content that feels seeker worthy; this is an example of how to do it right. The storyline can't get much more epic than this, the players will feel like they are actually doing something worthwhile. The players choices actually matter and effect the world permanently. The combats aren't just a random collection of high CR monsters, but rather each one is unique, moves the story forward, and will challenge even optimized parties.

For Players: I recommend playing 9-25 and 10-09 in that order for storyline continuity. These two scenarios could have been a Part 1 and Part 2 if they were in the same season. This scenario also is the finale for one of the longest running plot lines in society play. Players need to be on their toes... It's one thing to fight a few demons that show up on the material plane; its a whole different ballgame when you walk into THEIR house. While my party did survive, I can EASILY see this scenario TPKing non-optimized/non-balanced parties.

GMs: Go read the GM thread, follow TACTICS. Plan for it to run LONG.

Paizo: It's probably too late, but this author needs to be hired to write more seeker content before PFSv1 ends.

TL;DR - This scenario is EPIC (have I mentioned that already?) This is must-play seeker level content, and rightfully takes it place in my top 5 scenarios of all time. I hope the author had a performance bonus clause in his/her contract, as this was knocked out of the park.


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5/5

Played this last night without any prior knowledge, and it now takes its place among my favorite and most memorable scenarios.

I was playing my Cleric of Pharasma / Envoy of Balance, and when we got the briefing I thought I was going to be in for a very boring night full of robots. Doubly so, as I generally hate it when people piss steampunk into my fantasy Frosted Flakes. But the author and devs should be commended for finding a way to combine two different encounter types into a unique experience you won't forget. (Seriously, this is up there on the scale with Traitors Lodge/ Thralls) Both traditional characters and and those who are into tech could contribute.

The Highs

Spoiler:

* The loot - Awesomesauce. Both the tangible items and the boons. And yes... That is a glowing blue cyberart of Pharasma's spire on my cleric's forehead!!!!!!
* The story - Compelling, unique, and engaging
* AI Core - Our GM was awesome, and it's going to take a good one to make this shine. My pharasmin cleric had a blast with SIRI ;) First thinking she was an undead glowing spirit and trying to channel her back to the boneyard. Then trying and failing to use memory domain abilities to jog her memory. Spent the rest of the scenario muttering to himself trying to get his head around how a non-living non-undead sentient being fits in the multiverse and whether or not such an entity had a soul.
* Technological "hive-mind" super haunt - ZOMG mind blown

The Lows

Spoiler:

* Time - There is no way this is going to fit well in a con slot without hand waving alot... We took 6 hours and it could have gone to 7.5-8 if we did the final combat encounter instead of diplomancing it.
* GM Prep - Its going to take your average GM a fair amount of prep to pull this off well. Between several NPCs to interact with, unique effects, and unique mechanics that affect monster stats.


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Welcome back to the Gloomspires

4/5

Overall I really enjoyed this as a continuation of the gloomspires story line and hope we get to venture deeper in the future.

Roleplaying - There is a possibility of multiple interactions, but its somewhat left up to the GM how well these play out. Depending on what actions the party takes these may be more or less fulfilling.

Rollplaying - While some encounters can be solved by non-combat means, there's certainly a challenge here for a combat oriented party. Unprepared Pathfinders may find themselves in trouble or facing a TPK. Especially parties in high tier that barely squeezed into that average player level, the last encounter may in fact be your characters last...

Mapping - There's a unique map for this scenario that I thought was presented fairly artistically to show you how large the Labyrinth was without overburdening the game with details. HOWEVER... Players are only going see how cool this looks at scale if their GMs have a large format printer, a normal color printer and alot of tape, or $20-30 to print it out somewhere.

GM Warning - This is a HEAVY PREP scenario. A lot of special abilities, NPC interactions, unique encounters/creatures, environmental effects, etc. DO NOT try to run this cold. Read the module, read the GM thread, read the module again and make notes.

Less then perfect - There are some issues that prevent me from giving a 5 star...
* The first encounter on high tier just didn't seem to fit with the theme and is *completely different* then the low tier.
* Stat blocks ahead... I'm all for unique critters, it keeps things interesting. But please consider printing all the stat blocks at the back instead of some inline and some at the back.
* Few minor oops's that have been corrected/addressed/clarified in the GM thread.
* It runs long... My high tier party filled the entire 5.5 hour slot we had at our FLGS.
* There's only a VERY MINOR link to the Hall of the Flesh Eaters for characters who had played it (read: text blurb in the intro). My PCs (and I) were hoping for a bit more...

Spoiler:
The boon effect from Hall doesn't really come into play much


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Interesting Scenerio

4/5

Played this high tier...

Roleplaying - The ball is in the GM's court to roleplay two unique NPCs very well, and at the same time, in order to make the scenario shine. This may be one of the only PFS scenarios I can think of that can be completed with full prestige and have zero combats. If you wield wicked social skills you'll be doing a lot of talking and rolling. :)

Rollplaying - On the other hand, if your party has a good face person, but you're playing a combat focused character you may need a caffeinated beverage or two. In our run through we only had one true combat encounter, and completed the scenario in just under 3 hours.

Environment - Good story line, and it ties into other scenarios and faction themes.


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Fun exploration, but the ending let me down

3/5

I played this low tier, and the combats were unique enough to be interesting.

The first part is pure Cheliax, but it has quite a bit of "Season 7: The Year of the Skill Monkey" to it...

The second part in the archaeological dig was superb. The map was of awesome quality for a scenario (although our GM did mention there were spoilers on the same pdf layer so it would be hard to print), and the crawl had a nice twist to it.

The last part is where it fell apart for me, and I'm going to wrap part of this in spoiler... The PCs are basically presented with a scenario that has two options:

1) Do something my lawfully align character would NOT do.
2) Prepare to pay 21PP for a retrieval + raise or 5PP for retrieval, depending on what the GM decides, as the scenario seems to assume all parties would do 1).

Spoiler:

Fortunately for me, I guess, the other murder hobo's *cough* pathfinders I was with had no such morale dilemma. My PC spent the encounter taking non-lethal actions and using defensive abilities, while watching in horror as my fellow PCs committed murder to avoid being detained and questioned by the legitimate local authorities. Needless to say my PC had a long quiet trip back to Absalom, with a lot of introspective thought about the morale flexibility of the group he associates himself with these days.

So far this trilogy has not been the best to play on a lawful character. I really wish I had started it on a CG/CN... :)


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Print Edition Out of print

Excellent Module

5/5

This felt like an epic quality beginners module... Memories of playing Keep on the Borderlands keep coming back as we played. While there are a few opportunities for roll playing interaction with NPCs, the majority of the module is going to be spent exploring the crypt.


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Excellent All Around

5/5

This scenario is awesome. It's in my Top5 list.

Roleplaying - Good - Several different NPCs that can be interacted with, and in some cases are tied to encounters.

Rollplaying - Awesome - Some opportunity for some good combats that will may even challenge optimized groups.

Environment - Awesome - The spooky horror vibe of the area really came through.


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Great Intro

4/5

Excellent intro scenario for PFS, and Janira is an awesome NPC. This would be a solid 5 star scenario if it:

1) Didn't rely upon one flip-mat that is no longer in print, and secondly have gigantic custom maps to draw/print. This is a standard intro scenario and the necessary resources to play it should have been easy.

2) Either this or the Wounded Wisp should get a quick edit to fix the simple dependency between the two.


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Puzzle Game

2/5

It felt like the "core" of this scenario was the puzzle, and honestly I'm betting that's all players remember of it. Either they HATE it or they LOVE it. As written I felt it relied far too much on player intellect while ignoring character ability. A studious character with high INT and WIS should be able to gain some additional insight into figuring it out.

The first encounter wasn't too bad as written, but a vindictive GM could easy turn it into a bloodbath by not following tactics.

Last encounter I thought could be challenging depending on party makeup.

While there is some opportunity for rollplaying (particularly at the beginning), I felt the majority of the scenario was puzzle and combat.


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Lost in the Mana Wastes...

2/5

I have played this scenario (low tier) and had an excellent GM for the session, but even that couldn't save it.

Environment/Atmosphere - Ok - It felt like an episode of the X Files or Lost. There was a whole lot of something odd going on, we spent a lot of time investigating, but even at the end it still didn't all make sense. I think there should have been a lot more background information about the Mana Waste provided as well.

Rollplay - Bad - The way our session played out we didn't even get to engage the BBEG so that was less then satisfying. The underground area felt simply like filler material because of that and it could have been a single room cave. The combat encounters we did have were extremely short, and left you with the "Wait? Wut? That was it?" feeling.

Roleplay - Ok - There was some decent interactions with the townsfolk as well as a certain other NPC I won't spoil here, but nothing to write home about in my opinion.

Rewards - Highly Variable - One awesome boon and one interesting one, if you happen to play a characters that can take advantage of them. I played a character that couldn't use the awesome one, and wasn't eligible for the other.

I've read the scenario since playing it, and that still didn't change my opinion. Just not my cup of tea I guess.


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Good follow up to my favorite scenerio

5/5

This adventure is a follow-up to my favorite scenario of all time 5-09 Traitor's Lodge.

Roleplaying - Excellent - One of the best NPC's throughout PFS makes a return and the new author has continued to represent her "unique" personality in grand detail. The interaction with other NPCs at the destination also leaves opportunity for good RP. There's a cool twist with a completely unexpected NPC too.

Rollplaying - So so - I GM'd a high tier table and only one of the encounters proved to be a challenge, and mainly due to a single surprise round action. The combat encounters we had at my table suffered greatly due to action economy. Although there is a possibility for another combat encounter that would have proven quite challenging due to even action economy and a excellently prepare antagonist.

Environment - Good - The author once again brought back some of the creepy vibes from 5-09 while the PF's explore the destination location. The environmental details were well thought out and EXTREMELY thematic for the location and scenario's antagonist.

Spoiler:
Although, I feel some of this is cool vibe lost if the PCs are able to deal with the hazards/trap without experiencing the effects.

Timing - Good to possibly long - We finished at 4.5 hours WITHOUT the first possible combat encounter. And I feel that combat would have lasted the longest, so this may be a longer scenario if that encounter occurs. (Our FLGS gives us 6 hours, but I know many FGLS/Cons are limited to 4)

Highly recommend playing this scenario, especially if you liked 5-09, and I look forward

Spoiler:
the conclusion of the trilogy ;-)


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Well Rounded

5/5

Having first played and then GM'd the scenario, I have to say it's a good one.

Roll Playing - Some unique aspects to the combats combined with some infrequently encountered opponents really makes them stand out. A couple of them could prove challenging depending on the party composition. At at least one of them will require more then brute force to be successful.

Role Playing - An awesome NPC for GMs to work with, and I really hope he comes back in future scenarios.

Rewards - Excellent. Chronicle is filled with goodness.

Comments/Concerns - I wish there had been art created to visibly show the area to which the pathfinders journey. There is a description provided, but I felt it would really take a lot of elaborating to help players visualize it. Especially if fail to recall anything about the area they are in with their knowledge checks. Also there are a couple loose ends that aren't addressed in the scenario at all, as well as a couple that feel like sequel material.


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Awesomesauce!

5/5

As I was prepping to run this scenario again; I have to say, this is one of my all time favorite scenarios. Why? Good thing you asked:

1) Plot - The story is absolutely fantastic and unique. It has some hooks/references to other scenarios/events but is solidly able to stand on it's own without character or player knowledge of the others. The environment this little adventure takes place in simply oozes with the creepy vibe you want the characters to feel. The sinister nature of the area can be played up by the GM to great effect, and there is the potential for danger for even the most optimized of PC groups.

2) NPC - You'll know the one when you play/GM it... There is just SOOOO much potential. SOOOOOOOOOO much potential.

3) Encounters - Awesome. Only one I would say is of standard "look monsters" fare, all the others have something very unique about them. The BBEGs (as I'd say there are 2) are both AWESOME. There is a nice combination of combat and skill/knowledge based encounters as well.

4) Chronicle sheet for PFS has something other then yet another +1 cloak of resistance on it. Very cool. (sorry no spoilers here...)

5) This scenario's main area of exploration and investigation is able to be built with Dwarven Forge (or other brand) terrain pieces to good effect. Obviously that shouldn't be a concern of scenario designers, but I like being able to use them every once in a while even for PFS games. Especially when it's a custom map and not an existing flip-mat.

Thumbs up all the way for this one!


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Dated and easily derailed V2

3/5

Echoing the sentiments of some previous reviewers, this is a pretty interesting scenario that is far too easily derailed by modern/optimized parties in the provided level range. A single 9th level caster has enough tricks to trivialize alot of the scenario, never mind if there are 2+ casters in the party.

Honestly, as one of my players pointed out last night, this would be a really cool low level scenario if the encounter CRs were modified down. The unique sled mechanics, environments, and story would would really shine if they couldn't be circumvented. Which a party of 6 level 7-9's with all their abilities, items, magic, etc can easily do...

I know it would never happen, but I'd love to see this scenario re-balanced for modern parties or modified to a lower tier.

TL;DR: Good story/scenario, but the mechanics are sorely under-powered and easily trivialized in the provided level range.