Pathfinder Society Scenario #3-04: The Kortos Envoy (PFRPG) PDF

***( )( ) (based on 11 ratings)

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A Pathfinder Society Scenario designed for Levels 7–11.

The centaur tribes of the Isle of Kortos have long been an enigma to the people of Absalom. But the Pathfinder Society needs the help of one of the horsemen’s greatest heroes, in it falls to you to negotiate an agreement between the Decemvirate and the centaurs of the plains.

Written by Benjamin Bruck.

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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PZOPSS0304E


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Average product rating:

***( )( ) (based on 11 ratings)

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I wish I could give 0 stars.

*( )( )( )( )

The story goes as follows: You are told to go kill stuff. Then you go kill stuff. The end.

There's virtually no interaction with NPCs beyond the briefing, there's very little tie-in with the overall campaign story beyond the briefing, and frankly the ambience is just some generic caves, forest clearings, etc. I give the fluff aspect 0 stars.

The fights vacillate between utterly trivial and downright impossible to survive without an extremely lenient GM.

After examining the stats of the monsters and comparing them to the average monster stats table in the Monster Creation page of the PRD, the two most difficult encounters are WILDLY CR inappropriate. In the high tier, the final encounter matches most closely to a CR 16 or 17 encounter, which is cruelly dangerous (bordering on impossible) even as a campaign ending mission for a four player party of level 11 PCs. This could go up against APL 9.5 players.

In the low-tier (and high) there is a fight that can throw 14d6 of damage as a 20 foot burst from a 60 foot range (by flying opponents) on the first round, as well as a mesmerize effect that can't be broken, and hits everyone within a 300 foot range.

Everything flies, damn near, except for the two encounters that are little more than speedbumps due to their wildly under-powered nature.

Pathetic encounters and outrageously difficult encounters do not average out to a reasonable scenario.

Crunch gets 0 stars as well. Unfortunately, I can't give 0 stars, so I'll begrudgingly submit this review with the required minimum star.

It also is nearly impossible to run in a 4-5 hour slot. 6 combats with no story makes Bruck a dull boy.


Fun

****( )

This is a fun scenario with some large scale combats. I think some of the combats could have been improved some, and allowing some diplomatic resolution of some conditions would have been nice.

2nd part:
I actually found the objective point system fun. It reminded me of a final fantasy game. I also had a good time with the harpies, as we got one harpy to track down the queen in return for becoming the new queen, provided she stopped eating people with wayfinders.


Dissappointing

*( )( )( )( )

I personally really disliked this adventure. Basically, you are given a list of 5 people to beat up. So, you do. Not much roleplay to be had, and the combats are mostly forgettable.


A must play

*****

I've both played and GMed this one and it's my favorite of Season 3. It's also in my top 3 PFS scenarios.

The roleplay is great and I really enjoyed the combats. If you want to give your party a challenge you can definitely through it at them in this one!

Players should bring their -A- game.

Definitely a longer scenario, I wouldn't recommend playing if you're really on a time crunch. (Definitely not a CON when you're getting quality)


A good fun mod

*****

This was a great mod. The combats were fun, the role play was good and I still have fond memories of the mod.


1 to 5 of 11 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | next > last >>

First! Hey Ben, I'm keen to see an adventure with your name on it.

Shadow Lodge Contributor, RPG Superstar 2010 Top 8

Thanks Matt!

Paizo Employee Managing Developer

Totally!!

Go, Ben, go!


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber

This one didn't come out today with the rest of the GenCon scenarios?

Shadow Lodge

Good job Ben! I hope it is awesome!

Shadow Lodge Contributor, RPG Superstar 2010 Top 8

Sniggevert wrote:
This one didn't come out today with the rest of the GenCon scenarios?

I noticed that, I'm not really sure what's going on.

Venture-Captain Kyle Baird wrote:
Good job Ben! I hope it is awesome!

Thanks!

Grand Lodge

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild Subscriber

So no word on why this one is unavailable, which is ok. I'm more concerned with when it is going to be available. Any idea?

-Skeld

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32

An 'i' was undotted and a 't' uncrossed. Now available.

Grand Lodge

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild Subscriber
Ross Byers wrote:
An 'i' was undotted and a 't' uncrossed. Now available.

Thanks Ross

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32

Skeld wrote:
Ross Byers wrote:
An 'i' was undotted and a 't' uncrossed. Now available.
Thanks Ross

I aim to please.

Shadow Lodge Contributor, RPG Superstar 2010 Top 8

So anyone on the boards get a chance to play/run this yet?

Dark Archive

Benchak the Nightstalker wrote:
So anyone on the boards get a chance to play/run this yet?

I'm waiting to find out myself. :D

Paizo Employee Franchise Manager

1 person marked this as a favorite.

We ran this for many tables at Gen Con, so I know there are people out there who played it. Feedback and reviews of higher-tier material is always slower to come in than that for low-tier scenarios, though. So be patient, Mr. Bruck!

The Exchange Contributor, RPG Superstar 2010 Top 16

It's in the top sellers list so someone is playing it.

Dark Archive

Dennis Baker wrote:
It's in the top sellers list so someone is playing it.

Well, Scenarios 5 and 6 are in the top sellers list and they aren't even available.

Dark Archive

I am prepping to GM this and spotted the following possible errata (avoiding names to minimize spoilers):

Act 2/Encounter 2/subtier 10-11/page 15: The stat block only shows one "pet" - I think it needs 3 pets at this level for the stated CR.

Act 4/encounter 2/subtier 7-8/page 21: Only one of the lower CR creatures is listed in the stat block - it says 2 in the text at the bottom of page 19. I think 2 are needed for the overall encounter CR.

Act 4/encounter 2/subtier 10-11/page 22: The lower CR creatures don't have any tactics listed.

Shadow Lodge Contributor, RPG Superstar 2010 Top 8

ZomB wrote:

I am prepping to GM this and spotted the following possible errata (avoiding names to minimize spoilers):

Act 2/Encounter 2/subtier 10-11/page 15: The stat block only shows one "pet" - I think it needs 3 pets at this level for the stated CR.

Act 4/encounter 2/subtier 7-8/page 21: Only one of the lower CR creatures is listed in the stat block - it says 2 in the text at the bottom of page 19. I think 2 are needed for the overall encounter CR.

Act 4/encounter 2/subtier 10-11/page 22: The lower CR creatures don't have any tactics listed.

I haven't seen the finished product yet (still waiting on my contributor copy), but I went back and compared the developed document with my turnover and notes, and here's what I've got:

Act 2/Encounter 2/subtier 10-11/page 15: It looks like the (2) got dropped somewhere along the line, but yeah, there should be two pets. I also notice that the first monster is listed as CR 8 at this tier, which is wrong (that's it's CR for the lower tier), it should be CR 11. That's probably why your calculations are giving you three pets.

Act 4/encounter 2/subtier 7-8/page 21: Again, it looks like the (2) was dropped. There should be two of these things.

Act 4/encounter 2/subtier 10-11/page 22: This one is my bad, it looks like I didn't include any tactics for them in my turnover.

Tactics:
They should focus on flanking PCs in melee, dealing sneak attack damage with their natural attacks. Otherwise, use the same tactics as the brimoraks from subtier 7-8 (summoning reinforcements once Dahruun enters the maze, and teleporting away once the minotaur is defeated).

Hope that helps!

Dark Archive

Benchak the Nightstalker wrote:


Act 2/Encounter 2/subtier 10-11/page 15: It looks like the (2) got dropped somewhere along the line, but yeah, there should be two pets. I also notice that the first monster is listed as CR 8 at this tier, which is wrong (that's it's CR for the lower tier), it should be CR 11. That's probably why your calculations are giving you three pets.

Thanks. So 3 pets would have been a bad assumption at least for the players...

Quote:
Hope that helps!

Yes. Thanks.

A few more questions/observations:

Is the camp set in a particular place in the mountains - or is it just a generic point in the mountains? as I would like to use the map from Vision of Betrayal

Spoiler:
also where is mount Ganog and the pass?

I note the travel times listed in Vision of Betrayal to get to/from the foothills - are they in line with your thinking? Though PCs of this level usually have very fast transport available.

I also note the lack of any trade routes mentioned in Vision of Betrayal which might lead to a backstory continuity error/conflict.

Do we know the

Spoiler:
ship travel time to Goka? - assumed about a month
though I suspect most high level groups would be able to circumvent that - so I am thinking of imposing a
Spoiler:
teleport deadline instead

Can you have a

Spoiler:
potion of feather fall? The spell targets falling creatures and it is a standard action to drink a potion - not an immediate action

Dark Archive

I feels like the players don’t have enough context at the start of this scenario with the setup as described. It feels very old school and the players seem to have to “go with the flow” to make the scenario work with little motivation provided by the introduction.

I felt that there are also several potential issues that the GM needs to address:

Spoiler:

Natasha comes off as being dishonourable at the start as she appears to be already breaking the terms of her agreement. So there is little incentive for the PCs to be honourable either, and I can see some parties coming up with “degenerate” solutions because of that.

The mission time limit is imposed on the basis of making a boat trip at the end. At this level they may well be able to circumvent the boat trip completely giving themselves several weeks of leeway. So there needs to be something about the boat trip that is important of itself, or simpler do away with the boat trip deadline and impose a teleport deadline instead.

The hinted at artificial teleport restriction within the mountains will be grating to many as it is limiting a hard earned capability. And is only usable on return journeys anyway as you cannot teleport to somewhere you do not know.

As the scenario doesn’t have a standard VC style introduction, I wrote the following intro to try to address the issues I foresee by providing a deeper context to the players without changing anything in the scenario.

Spoiler:

Master of Spells Aram Zey invites you into his office and closes the door behind you.

Do you know how little we know of the Kortos mountains just a few miles away? There are secrets there waiting to be discovered. Secrets we could uncover if only we had a foothold there.

If any of you have been paying attention to local events here in Absalom, you will know that a particularly nasty conflict between traders and centaurs in the foothills of the Kortos mountains has recently been brought to a peaceful conclusion.

Aram Zey looks at each of the assembled pathfinders, shakes his head forlornly, and then continues:

What is not common knowledge is that the Decimvirate brokered this truce.

One of the terms of this truce requires that centaur warrior princess Nashota Bloodhoof, represents the Pathfinder Society at the upcoming Ruby Phoenix tournament in Goka. The qualifiers start in ten days time.
Your primary mission is to visit her camp in the foothills of the Kortos mountains and ensure that she lives up to her end of the bargain. Get her here within ten days and I will teleport her directly to Goka.

Now the more astute of you may have realised that we wouldn’t normally send senior field agents on such an apparently simple mission. There is of course a catch.

The terms of her participation are contingent on her tribe being safe and secure. Therefore you will need to take care of any local difficulties, and importantly you must do so without undermining her position in the tribe, which is likely fragile after the recent hostilities. It must look like she is calling the shots and you may need to swallow your pride on occasion.

This will be a real test of all the attributes we expect from senior field agents. It will require direct action, gentle persuasion, supporting Natosha’s position and gaining her tribes trust.

We need this foothold in the Kortos mountains. Don’t let the Decimvirate down!

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

Jadeite wrote:
Dennis Baker wrote:
It's in the top sellers list so someone is playing it.
Well, Scenarios 5 and 6 are in the top sellers list and they aren't even available.

They're available for sale, just not for PFS play.

Paizo Employee Franchise Manager

Vic Wertz wrote:
Jadeite wrote:
Dennis Baker wrote:
It's in the top sellers list so someone is playing it.
Well, Scenarios 5 and 6 are in the top sellers list and they aren't even available.
They're available for sale, just not for PFS play.

Huh? Both Scenarios 3-05 and 3-06 are legal for play. I'm so confused.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

Mark Moreland wrote:
Vic Wertz wrote:
Jadeite wrote:
Dennis Baker wrote:
It's in the top sellers list so someone is playing it.
Well, Scenarios 5 and 6 are in the top sellers list and they aren't even available.
They're available for sale, just not for PFS play.
Huh? Both Scenarios 3-05 and 3-06 are legal for play. I'm so confused.

I think I was the confused one. Ignore me!

Dark Archive

I just read the reviews. Now I'm shedding the tears of a rapper.

Tell me it's okay, Ben. Tell me the mean reviewers simply have PCs made of glass. :P

Contributor, RPG Superstar 2010

1 person marked this as a favorite.

I played this recently and really enjoyed it. Ben, it doesn't deserve the ratings its got. I found it fun and interesting.

Spoiler:
Hanging from a rope on a cliff while harpies and drakes try to bull rush your friends off the cliff top were entertaining and challenging.

I did pre-emptively deafen the rest of my low will save party with blindness/deafness so negotiations with the harpy queen went downhill really quickly because no one could hear what she was saying.

As for roleplaying, we did manage to convince the bandits to leave, (peaceably) after our sexy Scarni rogue promised to 'hook up' with the bandit leader later on in Absalom.

Also the surly Chelish Hellknight was able to quickly assess just how good the Nashota (the centaur princess) was at fighting, round 1: grapple, round 2: pin, round 3: stomp a hoofprint in hellknight armor, all to the laughter and applause of the tribe (and PCs) :-).

The minotaurs were fun as well, we plowed through them, but we did get to use that classic LotR quote: "They brought a rock/cave troll! :-)"

The minotaur diabolist elder was interesting with his maze. Being able to go one on one with a single PC is a scary ability, but given he's a negative energy cleric, it does mean he can't really heal himself.

The only thing I found a bit jarring was having:

Spoiler for Quest for Perfection III:
the bandit leader ride an axe beak. Why would he just randomly tame and ride an axe beak just because Nashota killed his horse? That was a bit of parallel development that could have been changed.


Props to my GM and fellow players for this session. However the fact that I can remember all of this when I played 10 sessions at the con, shows that this scenario has some good stuff going on.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber

Had a real good time with this one today. Nice variety of encounters let each player shine at different points.

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