Pathfinder Society Scenario #38: No Plunder, No Pay (PFRPG) PDF

4.70/5 (based on 9 ratings)

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A Pathfinder Society Scenario designed for 7th to 11th level characters (Tiers: 7–8 and 10–11).

The famed Chelish pirate, Captain Caradoc Alazario, infamous nephew of the mayor of Egorian and the brazen enemy of Her Majestrix's Navy, has finally been caught. Unfortunately for you, he was caught after stealing a fiendish artifact of twisted origins bound for the Grand Lodge in Absalom and is the only one who knows where that artifact came to rest off the coast of the forever rain-drenched Sodden Lands. You are charged by the Pathfinder Society to break Captain Alazario out of prison and use him to guide you to the lost artifact. Prison, pirates, and horrors of the deep await you in a land where an honest day's wage never comes honestly.

Written by Larry Wilhelm

This scenario is designed for play in Pathfinder Society Organized Play, but can easily be adapted for use with any world. This scenario is compliant with the Open Game License (OGL) and is suitable for use with the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game.

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Average product rating:

4.70/5 (based on 9 ratings)

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This Scenario is Rated "Arrrr!"


I had so much fun running this scenario a couple days back, I'm still thinking about it. It immediately went into my top five favorite scenarios of all time.

It's got mental color, imagery, and texture. It's got the flair of an old pirate movie - or even a spaghetti western. Dirty Dozen. Kelly's Heroes. Big Trouble in Little China.

Interesting plots and settings that require role-play and creativity. Interesting enemies that you don't see in any other Pathfinder Society scenarios.

It was also a little nostalgic for me, as it also has the same flavor that a lot of home games have.

There is a mini-game in the middle that I tend to not like, but that only bumps the scenario down from six stars to five stars. :)

Anyway, excellent scenario.

Creativity gets rewarded


I was one of the players sitting at Quentin’s table and I agree with what he has said. The fact that there are multiple ways to deal with encounters, allows you to be creative. There is no fixed solution. As such things can end up spiraling out of control really quickly, but in a good way.

In our case this for instance resulted in flashing a badge of the House of Thrune and the party being given free reign in the fortress. Add a gnome ‘naval siege engineer’ and the presence of ballistas, and you end up in a situation later on in the scenario where a huge water creature ends up getting sneakattacked by a ninja paladin using a now boat mounted ballista. Being the gnome, that was my favorite part of the scenario, though I admit the 'storm' portion was pretty fun as well.

While it’s of course is the players (and GM) that decide how fun a session will be, it really helps if a scenario itself is not too much of a railroad and offers a bunch of flexibility. While that nowadays (say roughly season 6 to 8) is typically the case, the same can not be said for your typical season 0 or 1 scenario. This scenario is an exception to that unwritten rule, I feel, and at the same time is more innovative than others released at that time.

This scenario just does everything well and while a bit outdated by modern standards when it comes to the combats, it can easily hold its own. It’s an excellent scenario and I’d love to see more like this.

Simply fantastic.


(I GMed this.)

Pretty all the other reviews have said it already: this is a great adventure in setting, roleplay, and combats. Larry Wilhelm is one of my favourite authors purely because many of his scenarios feature nice little touches that put it one step above many other scenarios. While it isn't as innovative as some season 6, 7, or 8 scenarios, it really shows a clear vision that it wants to portray, and it works. Encounters are written open-ended so multiple approaches are possible and the human enemies have clear quirks that make them memorable. Yet there's little enough written about them that you have the freedom to muck around.

The clear highlight for me was the series of skillchecks in the middle. That's such an incredibly cinematic scene, I wish I'd put on some Pirates of the Caribbean music in the background. The storm is very evocative and does cool things without complicated mechanics.

The only downside is that combats fall a little flat. By today's standards, these simply don't pack as hard a punch, especially the human combatants. I'm not going to mark the scenario down for it, as they're still pretty entertaining, but I would like to mention it.

In the end, I'm not as completely wowed by this as I have been by other, more recent scenarios, but it was a pretty cool ride regardless and I'd definitely recommend it to others. Mister Wilhelm, please write more scenarios like this!


Played this at low tier. Party was sorcerer, witch, swashbuckler and hunter.

This is a good fun adventure that I would recommend you try and play. There is roleplay opportunity and the combats are suitably fun.

The only downside to this wasn't the scenario itself. Instead, it came from the sheer variety of spells, classes and abilities that have appeared in Pathfinder since the release of this scenario. Basically, while we had a lot of fun with this scenario we basically broke it because we had spells and abilities that were not thought of at the time which made some elements really easy. But don't let that deter you.

One of the best!


I played this in the low subtier in a small group (3 players and a pregen). It was fantastic!

The set and setting were excellent. The combats were pretty easy, but still very fun and memorable.

I can't wait to GM it now.

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Now available!

This one is very cool, guys. Check it out, you won't be disappointed.

Lantern Lodge

Is there a reason for the "Alternate Download" I see in My Documents for this scenario? Eg, the scenario appears twice in My Downloads, with one version noted as "Alternate Download".

Possibly related to the bug that prevented downloads last night ... I'll check.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

Joshua J. Frost wrote:
Possibly related to the bug that prevented downloads last night ... I'll check.

Yep. Ross is removing the extraneous listings.

Lantern Lodge

No problem, thanks :)

Hey Matt! This one IS very cool! :)

Dark Archive

I'm getting an error when I try and download this that it Cannot extract the embedded font and the PDF comes up with a bunch of dashes for most of the letters.

You'll need to either update Adobe Reader to the current version or, if you're not using Adobe Reader, use Adobe Reader.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

Joshua J. Frost wrote:
You'll need to either update Adobe Reader to the current version or, if you're not using Adobe Reader, use Adobe Reader.

"Cannot extract the embedded font" usually means that your Reader (or full Acrobat) installation has been corrupted; uninstalling and reinstalling (and then reapplying any updates) should do the trick.

Dark Archive

Okay that worked great! Apparently my PDF's were defaulting to use Acrobat 6.0 instead of my Adobe Reader

Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

Reviewing this one to run, looks good, however there is an error in the attack line of the first encounter (both tiers):


Tier 7-8:
Says: 2 +1 dwarven waraxes +5/+5/+0 (1d10+4/x3)
Should be: 2 +1 dwarven waraxes +7/+7/+2 (1d10+6/X3)

Tier 10-11:
Says: 2 +2 dwarven waraxes +10/+10/+5 (1d10+5/X3)
Should be: 2 +2 dwarven waraxes +13/+13/+8 (1d10+8/X3)

Looks like the "wielding a non-light weapon" penalty was double counted on 7-8. 10-11 is just off.

Otherwise looks great so far! And this might have something to do with the "Easy fights" comments in the reviews.

2nd Fight:

It's not really going to hurt anything, but the leader in Act 2 does not qualify for Greater Weapon Focus.

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