Pathfinder Module: Dawn of the Scarlet Sun (PFRPG)

3.00/5 (based on 29 ratings)
GameMastery Module D0: Hollow's Last Hope (OGL)

Print Edition Unavailable

Add PDF FREE

Facebook Twitter Email

An adventure for six 5th-level characters.

The coastal city of Magnimar is no stranger to crime, yet recently, a series of murders has sent a chill through the early morning streets. Someone—or something—is stalking and killing worshipers of Sarenrae, the goddess of the sun. The city guard is prepared to ambush the murderer, but they need help—help of the kind that adventurers are so good at providing. What is the sinister truth behind these violent acts?

Dawn of the Scarlet Sun is a Pathfinder RPG adventure for six 5th-level characters—such as the six iconic heroes provided. In addition, this adventure can be integrated into the Shattered Star Pathfinder Adventure Path, and uses the villains featured in the Pathfinder Battles Champions of Evil Encounter Pack.

Written by James Jacobs.

This special 16-page Pathfinder Module was initially made available for Free RPG Day on June 16, 2012.

Note: Due to the special nature of this product, it is NOT part of the Pathfinder Modules Subscription.

Dawn of the Scarlet Sun is sanctioned for use in Pathfinder Society Organized Play. The Chronicle Sheet for this module is a free download (123 KB zip/PDF). Pregenerated characters are available here (1.9 MB zip/PDF).

Other Resources: This product is also available on the following platforms:

Archives of Nethys

Product Availability

Print Edition:

Unavailable

PDF:

Fulfilled immediately.

Are there errors or omissions in this product information? Got corrections? Let us know at store@paizo.com.

PZO9500-6


See Also:

1 to 5 of 30 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | next > last >>

Average product rating:

3.00/5 (based on 29 ratings)

Sign in to create or edit a product review.

Not Easy, but Very Exciting!

4/5

NO SPOILERS

Dawn of the Scarlet Sun is a 16-page adventure released for Free RPG Day in 2012. Designed for six Level Five PCs, the adventure is really just eight pages, with one page for credits and six pages for pre-generated characters (the Iconics). The scenario is intended for use with the Pathfinder Battles: Champions of Evils Encounter Pack, a set of miniatures that includes all the enemies in the adventure. The adventure is also pitched as a suitable optional side-quest in the Shattered Star Adventure Path. The full-colour artwork is fantastic--Paizo doesn't skimp in designing even its free products.

Dawn of the Scarlet Sun has a reputation as including at least one nasty encounter that could be labelled as "a worthy challenge" or "a TPK-generator" depending on your point of view. I ran it via play-by-post and I can confirm its difficulty. It does have a strong story, some compelling antagonists, and plenty of action. I'd recommend it for groups that have gotten cocky or for players who don't mind more risk than they're used to.

SPOILERS!:

The scenario takes place in Magnimar. A compelling background story explains that a succubus named Avalexi has come to the city, discovered an abandoned shrine to Sarenrae, and has decided to re-consecrate it as a shrine to Shax, the demon lord of murder. To that end, Avalexi has mentally dominated a priest of Sarenrae named Zadendi, allied with a half-fiend gargoyle nicknamed the Scarlet Son, and undertaken a grisly murder spree. It's a pretty exciting and compelling backstory.

The PCs come on to the scene after several murder victims have been found in Magnimar's Underbridge District. The victims, all worshippers of Sarenrae, have had their hearts removed. The City Watch, represented by a guard named Kasadei, recruits the PCs to help plan an ambush for the killer. Before doing so, the PCs can do some information gathering to talk to witnesses and a learn a little bit about what they might be facing. That's pretty much the only role-playing with NPCs they'll get in the scenario.

The way the ambush is set-up is elegantly concise. Whatever the PCs choose--disguising someone as a worshipper of Sarenrae to act as bait, stealthily trailing a real worshipper, intently patrolling Underbridge, etc.--they're asked to make relevant skill checks. Each success raises the % chance that the killers fall for the ambush, but if enough nights pass without being caught, the killers complete their work and the scenario ends abruptly. It's not a likely result, but I like how the scenario doesn't guarantee success or sugar-coat failure.

Assuming the PCs are on hand when the killers strike, they learn why the murderers have been so difficult to catch and why there are so few witnesses. The Scarlet Son flies low over the rooftops and drops Zadendi nearby. She casts silence and then sneaks up on her victim from behind, killing them before they even realise she's there. It's an exciting encounter, as both foes are real threats, but with the tables turned there's a good chance they'll flee--and the PCs can then chase them back to their hideout.

The shrine has two main encounters, plus battles against the escaped killers if they're present. The first encounter is against a trio of wights. Wights are one of those monsters that are far more dangerous than their CR might indicate, and can definitely weaken the party before the big ending encounter. Speaking of which, I really like how it's set up. The succubus (likely having warning of the approach of intruders) locks herself in a cell and disguises herself as priest of Sarenrae who is about to be sacrificed. It's a solid plan, and my group at least fell for it hook, line, and sinker. The disguise allows Avalexi time to study one of the PCs to use her death attack (to paralyze) before teleporting nearby, summoning a demon, and then returning to fight fully prepared. The difficulty of this encounter shouldn't be underestimated. When I ran it, it lasted fifteen rounds! One PC was killed, others were knocked out, and it came within a hair's breadth of a TPK. It was one of the most epic, cinematic battles I can remember running though.

In sum, Dawn of the Scarlet Sun has memorable antagonists, a solid plot, and an exhilarating climax. However, despite its connection to "Free RPG Day", it's not the sort of adventure to run for a casual pick-up group of new players to try out the game. I imagine the six Iconics would get slaughtered pretty quickly. It's a scenario to either adjust and play with higher level PCs or as a legitimate exercise in "hard mode" for more experienced Pathfinder players.


3/5

Strictly follow the tactics of the monster in the last encounter.


3/5


No class levels, please!

4/5

As mentioned below, the last encounter is quite horrific. Avalexi has some quite sick magic, very high AC, SR and hp. Near to impossible to kill.

So what i did., was to make her a perfectly normal succubus, without any class levels. Then she is a CR 7, and that worked fine for me.

But it is a great module. The plotline is simple, yet challenging. The whole idea works really great. And most of the encounters worked great for my team.


The Scarlet Colour is PC Blood

4/5

Surprised at the low reviews I have had a look through. It is a well written very short adventure. It is easily thrown into any game or fantasy campaign and while it is set in Magnimar, you could port it over to somewhere else quite easily. I am thinking of using it in the near future.

This though, isn't really for level 6s. If you have a very strong full party of six members, you can take the end boss, but level 7s would be better. It all depends how challenging you want it to be, and do you want to risk a TPK? I support a tough fight once in a while, but as its a short adventure the players may feel suddenly overwhelmed at the end (as their characters die). Still Magnimar has been a tough setting before.

Art wise I don't like Avalexi - the legs are terrible, but Kasadei looks great with a strong bearing.

So it is a very challenging short adventure, and far better than 1 or 2 stars out of 5. Some don't like a hard challenge or to lose, but as it is free and dangerous, I recommend it.


1 to 5 of 30 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | next > last >>
1 to 50 of 235 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | next > last >>
Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

1 person marked this as a favorite.

We've just announced this for Free RPG Day 2012! The cover art is final, though the cover layout could possibly still be tweaked slightly prior to release.

Dark Archive

Sweets!


Sweet

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Card Game, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

So Merisiel & earn will be in this one,mplus presumably Kyra as it's Sarenrea based, but with other three iconics will be in this one?

Dark Archive

Very cool


I'm hoping to carry on my tradition of running the Free-RPG-Day module at Scotty's pre-GenCon Wednesday. Are there plans to PFS sanction this?


Ooh, this sounds cool. Not to mention the first Pathfinder Battles Encounter pack as well! Definitely be picking them both up (only got 1 succubus and 1 gargoyle in my case)!

Scarab Sages

Looks good!

Grand Lodge

tburke0 wrote:
I'm hoping to carry on my tradition of running the Free-RPG-Day module at Scotty's pre-GenCon Wednesday. Are there plans to PFS sanction this?

Yes

Grand Lodge

Will it be sanctioned before Free RPG Day? I'd like to be able to offer it that day.

Liberty's Edge

Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories, PF Special Edition Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
godsDMit wrote:
Will it be sanctioned before Free RPG Day? I'd like to be able to offer it that day.

The rules for PFS and Free RPG day modules have always in the past come out in time for Free RPG day.


So who are the 6 Iconics used?

My first guess would have to Merisiel, Ezren, Valeros, Kyra, Seelah, and whichever Iconic is featured in Pathfinder Battles: Rise of the Runelords (I'm betting on Seoni [Featured in The Rise of the Runelords AP) or Harsk (for purpose of gender / racial balance). This way in addition to the encounter pack minis, a Pathfinder Battles mini of each of the pregenerated characters will be available as well.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

Valeors, Ezren, Merisiel, Harsk, Kyra, and Seelah.


Then can we assume that Harsk is the Iconic Hero immortalized in the PB: RotRL set?

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

Leo_Negri wrote:

Then can we assume that Harsk is the Iconic Hero immortalized in the PB: RotRL set?

Who are we to stop you from making assumptions? :-)

(Take, for example, the assumption that there's only one iconic in the Runelords set...)


Vic Wertz wrote:
Leo_Negri wrote:

Then can we assume that Harsk is the Iconic Hero immortalized in the PB: RotRL set?

Who are we to stop you from making assumptions? :-)

(Take, for example, the assumption that there's only one iconic in the Runelords set...)

Touche, so there's more than one Iconic Hero in RotRL.


Pathfinder Card Game, Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Charter Superscriber

Cool deal. I'm thinking we are going to be seeing some Magnimar lovin' in the year ahead.


I love free rpg day. Great idea to release the mini set for it. Also, so great to be back in Varisia.


Shattered Star AP?

Liberty's Edge

1 person marked this as a favorite.
The NPC wrote:
Shattered Star AP?

Shattered Star is a sequel of sorts to the Rise of the Runelords AP. #1 will be available at GenCon 2012.

Silver Crusade

The synchronicity between this module and the new Wizkids Encounter Pack for Free RPG Day is why I love Paizo.

Thanks, all.

Liberty's Edge

So in June we get a rockin' module for Free RPG Day with its own Encounter Pack, PB minis of the iconics available in time for it, the RotRL Anniversary Edition AND a sequel of sorts for it comes out two months later?

Paizo, you're setting the bar too high for anyone else who wants my money.

Shadow Lodge

2 people marked this as a favorite.

Hells ya. I just realized with luck, I may actually be home from redeployment on Free RPG Day. . .

Dark Archive

Leo_Negri wrote:
Touche, so there's more than one Iconic Hero in RotRL.

I believe Erik very tongue in cheek said our guesses that RotRL iconics would be Harsk and Seoni were 'good guesses,' then again I can see Erik typing that response with a poker face.

Dark Archive

More Varisia goodness... wow, we'll be truly spoiled this year! :)

Grand Lodge

1 person marked this as a favorite.

I am on it like a fat gamer on an awesome Paizo offering. Waitaminute . . . ..


I love names of adventures with the word "Dawn" in them, even better when it includes a word that is simply another form of red.

This probably means I need to get my hands on a copy when it becomes available.


Great! I was looking for a short-ish level 5 adventure. I'm just about to start a new Pathfinder-Group (thanks to the Beginner Box) and I'm running them through a few modules up to level 5. This looks like it'll be an awesome last challenge for the party before we start over with the "real" rules - and the RotRL Anniversary Edition. :D


Pathfinder Maps, Starfinder Maps Subscriber

Does the change from an assumed party of four to one of six imply anything going forward?

Paizo Employee Creative Director

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Steve Geddes wrote:
Does the change from an assumed party of four to one of six imply anything going forward?

Not necessarilly.

We made the change for this one after hearing that most groups who played previous free RPG day adventures had larger tables than four, and so decided to build this adventure to make it easier to accommodate these larger tables.

Whether or not we'll switch to assuming 6 players as a baseline for all adventures... I can't say yet but it's something we'll be keeping our eyes and ears on.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I think it's easier to adapt adventures up for larger groups than down for smaller.


Pathfinder Maps, Starfinder Maps Subscriber
James Jacobs wrote:
Steve Geddes wrote:
Does the change from an assumed party of four to one of six imply anything going forward?

Not necessarilly.

We made the change for this one after hearing that most groups who played previous free RPG day adventures had larger tables than four, and so decided to build this adventure to make it easier to accommodate these larger tables.

Whether or not we'll switch to assuming 6 players as a baseline for all adventures... I can't say yet but it's something we'll be keeping our eyes and ears on.

Cheers.I figured it was something like that, but I was wondering whether it was broader than free RPG day.

As one among many, let me put in a voice for four - I also find it easier to scale up than down.


A JJ module is a must buy for me. 'nuff said.

Dark Archive

Steve Geddes wrote:
As one among many, let me put in a voice for four - I also find it easier to scale up than down.

I'll echo that (or +1 as you kids say).

Dark Archive

Yeah 4 is much easier to balance up than 6 is to balance down


Pathfinder Maps, Starfinder Maps Subscriber
Ravenmantle wrote:
Steve Geddes wrote:
As one among many, let me put in a voice for four - I also find it easier to scale up than down.
I'll echo that (or +1 as you kids say).

I stopped being a kid twenty five years ago.

That's another part of the problem, actually - the older we get, the smaller our group. :(


We can't even get four PCs without someone playing two characters. Another vote to keep the baseline assumption four, please.

Liberty's Edge

I say 5 player baseline!


+1 to the existing 4 player baseline.

The Exchange

Since this is set up for free RPG day, is this going to allowed for all players to be able to play. Or will it only be for those players that have a specific fifth level character? If so that might make a few issues for players.


I totally missed the part about the module being for 6 players. That'll be a bit complicated for our 4-man-group. :-/
But maybe I'll just add 2 iconics as GMPCs to show of a few possibilities of the complete rules (see my last post for details).

Anyway, I'll add my voice for keeping 4 players as standard size. Adding a monster or two to an encounter or adding a template to a boss seems way easier than toning things down to fit for a smaller party.

Still, I'm totally looking forward to this :-)

Dark Archive

Come to thik about it if this is desighned for six players and can be integrated into Shatterd star does that mean shatterd star assumes 6 players?


James Jacobs wrote:
Valeors, Ezren, Merisiel, Harsk, Kyra, and Seelah.

D'oh!

Paizo Employee Creative Director

Blave wrote:

I totally missed the part about the module being for 6 players. That'll be a bit complicated for our 4-man-group. :-/

But maybe I'll just add 2 iconics as GMPCs to show of a few possibilities of the complete rules (see my last post for details).

Anyway, I'll add my voice for keeping 4 players as standard size. Adding a monster or two to an encounter or adding a template to a boss seems way easier than toning things down to fit for a smaller party.

Still, I'm totally looking forward to this :-)

There's advice in the adventure for how to run it for a 4 person group—the simplest being "If you run this for 4 players, they should be 6th level instead of 5th level."

But yeah, for all the reasons listed above—we're likely staying with a 4 player assumption for the most part.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

Kevin Mack wrote:
Come to thik about it if this is desighned for six players and can be integrated into Shatterd star does that mean shatterd star assumes 6 players?

Nope.

As I mention above, if you play with 4 players, then the adventure works best for 6th level players. And the way the adventure plays out, in addition to it's plot, it works pretty well as a "sequel" of sorts to play after you play the 2nd adventure in Shattered Star, when the players are 6th level or have just hit 7th level.


Level 6 won't be an option for my group because I want this to be the last module played with the BB rules. But I'm aware it's not an issue for most groups. I'll figure something out and use it anyway.

Thanks for the response, James :-)

Dark Archive

A I'll be doing the Free RPG Day at a FLGS using the Pathfinder Battles Champions of Evil Encounter Pack figures, but how does a person get the module prior to the day? I have told the store to make sure they are registered for the event (The are now big supporter of PFS as well) so will they get a copy early enough or do I cold run?

--michael

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

OberonKestral wrote:

A I'll be doing the Free RPG Day at a FLGS using the Pathfinder Battles Champions of Evil Encounter Pack figures, but how does a person get the module prior to the day? I have told the store to make sure they are registered for the event (The are now big supporter of PFS as well) so will they get a copy early enough or do I cold run?

--michael

Stores should be getting their bundles a few days in advance.

Dark Archive

Vic Wertz wrote:
OberonKestral wrote:

A I'll be doing the Free RPG Day at a FLGS using the Pathfinder Battles Champions of Evil Encounter Pack figures, but how does a person get the module prior to the day? I have told the store to make sure they are registered for the event (The are now big supporter of PFS as well) so will they get a copy early enough or do I cold run?

--michael

Stores should be getting their bundles a few days in advance.

Cool beans! Thanks.

--Michael

Dark Archive Contributor

Is this module going to have ties to any map packs or flip-mats? I'm getting myself ready for free RPG day and it would be great to know ahead of time if any of the maps work particularly well.

1 to 50 of 235 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | next > last >>
Community / Forums / Paizo / Product Discussion / Pathfinder Module: Dawn of the Scarlet Sun (PFRPG) All Messageboards

Want to post a reply? Sign in.