Pathfinder Adventure Path #62: Curse of the Lady's Light (Shattered Star 2 of 6) (PFRPG)

4.70/5 (based on 13 ratings)
Pathfinder Adventure Path #62: Curse of the Lady's Light (Shattered Star 2 of 6) (PFRPG)
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Chapter 2: "Curse of the Lady's Light"
by Mike Shel

Varisia’s newest heroes have stumbled across a powerful relic from the ancient empire of Thassilon—yet the artifact has been sundered into seven fragments. The third of these fragments lies in the swampy Mushfens south of the city of Magnimar, hidden within an ancient, towering lighthouse known as the Lady’s Light. With squabbling boggards, troglodytes, and other swamp monsters dwelling around the ruins, approaching the Light will require either stealth or bravado. But the threats posed by slimy and scaly humanoids pale in comparison to the exiled Gray Maidens who have claimed the interior of the Light as their new headquarters, or to the sinister curse that afflicts the powerful, ancient caretaker of the ruin.

    This volume of Pathfinder Adventure Path continues the Shattered Star Adventure Path and includes:
  • “Curse of the Lady’s Light,” a Pathfinder RPG adventure for 5th-level characters, by Mike Shel.
  • The sadistic secrets of the Gray Maidens, a militaristic order once fiercely loyal to an evil, deposed queen, by F. Wesley Schneider.
  • The secret ways, peerless techniques, and ancient traditions of Torag, stern god of the forge, protection, and strategy, by Sean K Reynolds.
  • Alchemy and housebreaking in the Pathfinder’s Journal, by Bill Ward.
  • Four new monsters, by Levi Miles, Sean K Reynolds, and Mike Shel.

Each monthly full-color softcover Pathfinder Adventure Path volume contains an in-depth adventure scenario, stats for several new monsters, and support articles meant to give Game Masters additional material to expand their campaign. Pathfinder Adventure Path volumes use the Open Game License and work with both the Pathfinder RPG and the world’s oldest fantasy RPG.

ISBN–13: 978-1-60125-459-7

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Curse of the Lady's Light is sanctioned for use in Pathfinder Society Organized Play. The rules for running this Adventure Path and Chronicle sheet are available as a free download (512 KB zip/PDF).

Note: This product is part of the Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscription.

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Brilliant dungeon crawl

5/5

I ran a group of 4 players through this module as part of the Shattered Star adventure path using roll20 and the excellent maps from bigrin42. It was an awesome experience!

Trying to keep in tune with the generally old-school feel of Shattered Star, our group is essentially the classic four, but each member has a unique twist:

Daario Vanderale, happy-go-lucky male human rogue, an outcast of the aristocratic Magnimarian family, currently residing in the body of Sorshen.

Carmelizzia, female human fighter (cad) / shadowdancer, a Varisian dancer skilled in using her bladed scarf.

Iozif, male human bard / cleric of Shelyn, Carmelizzia's husband and bodyguard, brilliant fiddle player.

Jasmin, female human transmuter, adaptation of the insane cleric of Groetus Jasper from the web enhancement.

The group had a great time with this module, which does an excellent job of bringing its backstory to life. Almost the entire adventure takes place in a single dungeon but never gets boring. The place itself drips ancient history and all the creatures that can be encountered have a motivation to be where they are and can interact with other rooms without giving the GM a headache trying to keep everything together.

The difficulty is fair and challenging, and the final encounter can range from deadly to cakewalk depending on how well the players try to use the history of the place to their advantage. Very rewarding!

I fully recommend this adventure to everyone interested in a brilliant dungeon crawl, even outside of the Shattered Star adventure path. The entire adventure can be fit into any other campaign with only a few seconds of work.


Amazingly Good Dungeon

5/5

I'm neither one to enjoy dungeon crawls nor write reviews, but the quality of this adventure has me putting in my 2 cents. This is an exemplary adventure: from the use of entertainingly malicious traps, puzzles for the players, and role-playing opportunities mixed throughout the combat encounters, Curse of the Lady's Light finds my dungeon crawl sweet spot and dances on it for the length of the adventure. Mike Shel has created what is, for me, the perfect synthesis of modern game adventure and old-school module. It feels like what my best friend in junior high would have written if he had been a professional game designer. Good show Paizo!


A dungeon made right

5/5

My group and I had a real blast running through the Curse of the Lady's Light. Although this chapter of the AP, just like the others, features a prominent dungeon, the story is full of opportunity for roleplay: dealing with the tribes in the marshes, the encounters with the Gray Maidens, the possibility to have to Gray Maidens' leader join the PCs, etc. The final encounter is tough and tense, but not necessarily over the top if the players are smart.

That one famous trap in the dungeon is also a wonderful opportunity for great gaming if your players tag along, and mine sure did! Its repercussions through the rest of the campaign are going to be fun to play.

Bottom line? Keep Mike Shel on the payroll, he sure knows how to invent a dungeon with a twist!


Brilliant Dungeon - Fun Enemies

5/5

Curse of the Lady's Light follows in the steps of Shards of Sin, presenting an adventure mostly comprising of one big dungeon crawl. Like Shards of Sin, it suceeds in presenting an interesting array of characters, encounters, and tricks. If the players are paying attention, they can gradually begin to uncover the truth behind the dungeon's denizens and leader, using her real identity to their advantage in what should be a climactic and entertaining final encounter.

The NPCs have all been fun to interact with, and they all truly feel like they belong in the Lady's Light. Clever PCs can find clever ways to bypass encounters, especially if they make use of a particularly devious trap early in the dungeon.

Overall, this has been a pleasure to run, and possibly the best dungeon I've ever seen in an adventure path. I hope Mike Shell is here to stay as an AP author.


Dungeon Crawl Done Right

5/5

Read my full review on my blog.

In Curse of the Lady’s Light by Mike Shel, the second instalment of the Shattered Star Adventure Path, the player characters set out to find the next piece of the titular Shattered Star, the Shard of Lust. This quest takes them to the Lady’s Light, an ancient monument to Sorshen, the Runelord of Lust. Like Shards of Sin before it and the rest of the adventure path still to come, it is primarily a dungeon-based adventure. As I mentioned in my review of Shards of Sin, I can be somewhat critical of dungeon crawls. However, when they’re good, I give them the praise they deserve. Curse of the Lady’s Light is definitely one of those good dungeon crawls. While the actual dungeon itself is somewhat linear, the events that can occur within are surprisingly non-linear, with a wide variety of options for how things might progress. Most importantly, it has a selection of interesting and compelling NPCs. In fact, its two principal villains are amongst the best villains I’ve seen in an adventure path instalment: one sympathetic and tragic, the other irredeemably evil yet uniquely insane. This adventure is definitely a step up from the competent, but not-particularly-awe-inspiring Shards of Sin and could prove a good sign for the rest of the adventure path to come.


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Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

The_Minstrel_Wyrm wrote:
Oh... will there be a Pawns Collections for Shattered Star? (Oh and Jade Regent too)? Thinking about adding a Pawns subscription in the near future.

Let's see if the Runelords and S&S Pawn Collections go as well as we think...


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Okay Vic, fair enough. :)

Oh and it seems I must correct myself on my prior post about AP covers and all iconics appearing on one (or more) DL the Shattered Star part 1 and after seeing the cover minus Sheila Heidmarch(sp?) all the iconics are on the cover of PF AP #61 also.

But I really like that all of the iconics are appearing on the cover(s) together. :)

Carry on.

Shadow Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

Badass art for the cover, love the unmasked gray maiden really nice to see what they look like under the hood so to speak. Surprised she doesn't have any scars like as they were said to be scarred up during the initiation and training process.


doc the grey wrote:
Badass art for the cover, love the unmasked gray maiden really nice to see what they look like under the hood so to speak. Surprised she doesn't have any scars like as they were said to be scarred up during the initiation and training process.

It's low-res, but the entire left half of her face is horrifically scarred.

She's also on the cover of the Player's Guide. Has an over-the-eye anime scar, and some mutilation.

Silver Crusade

Ice Titan wrote:
doc the grey wrote:
Badass art for the cover, love the unmasked gray maiden really nice to see what they look like under the hood so to speak. Surprised she doesn't have any scars like as they were said to be scarred up during the initiation and training process.

It's low-res, but the entire left half of her face is horrifically scarred.

She's also on the cover of the Player's Guide. Has an over-the-eye anime scar, and some mutilation.

That's actually what led to my earlier "Is she a Grey Maiden or an Iomedaean paladin?" confusion.

Curse of the Crimson Throne spoiler:
Maybe I read a bit much into the text, but the disfigurement was quite a bit more severe on average when I used them. Missing eyes/noses/ears. Sliced cheeks. The sort of thing that took the Kuthonite priestess from the Zon-Kuthon article in that AP and built from that as the minimal base of OH GOD NO.

General terriblenesss to demonstrate just what kind of hell those people had been put through, with the notable exception being because she was the queen's favorite(for what that was worth). I'd be hardpressed to describe her Crown of Fangs appearance as non-beautiful in her own way. Heck, I'm still thinking about having her say that she inflicted those scars on herself out of guilt over what was happening to the women under her command, rather than it being the work of Illeosa or some proxy of hers.

This lady looks to be squarely in "cool/badass scar" territory, but that's perfectly fine as well. :)

Shadow Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Mikaze wrote:
Ice Titan wrote:
doc the grey wrote:
Badass art for the cover, love the unmasked gray maiden really nice to see what they look like under the hood so to speak. Surprised she doesn't have any scars like as they were said to be scarred up during the initiation and training process.

It's low-res, but the entire left half of her face is horrifically scarred.

She's also on the cover of the Player's Guide. Has an over-the-eye anime scar, and some mutilation.

That's actually what led to my earlier "Is she a Grey Maiden or an Iomedaean paladin?" confusion. ** spoiler omitted **

This lady looks to be squarely in "cool/badass scar" territory, but that's perfectly fine as well. :)

Yeah though I think we may see some more harsh ones in internal art so as to not throw some people off from picking it up. On my end though I love the concept and enjoy seeing a powerful female faction that isn't focused on seduction and wears neither the chainmail bikini or breastplate now all I need is one that isn't focused on killing the PC's so I can point some of my female players that way. Maybe we can get some gray redeemers or something in a later companion as a faction trying to undo the damage of their former compatriots and masters. Could also be cool to see an archetype or even a prestige class around the gray maidens would be cool.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

If she's too beautiful you could print her low-res and say it's a branding rather than a tatoo.

Anyways: BOGGARDS!!! Slimy, croaking, hopping boggards!

doc the grey wrote:
so I can point some of my female players that way. Maybe we can get some gray redeemers or something in a later companion as a faction

Why not let her start the whole thing?

Ruyan.

PS: B-O-G-G-A-R-D-S! First the mites, now this!

Shadow Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
RuyanVe wrote:

If she's too beautiful you could print her low-res and say it's a branding rather than a tatoo.

Anyways: BOGGARDS!!! Slimy, croaking, hopping boggards!

doc the grey wrote:
so I can point some of my female players that way. Maybe we can get some gray redeemers or something in a later companion as a faction

Why not let her start the whole thing?

Ruyan.

PS: B-O-G-G-A-R-D-S! First the mites, now this!

Ehh right now we run in a homebrew world so gray maidens don't really exist though we do have amazons. I suppose what I'm wanting to see is something like that show up in future works as so that other players can work with it and see how it goes.


Is this the first time a second chapter has been made for PCs as high as 5th level? Interrestiiiing...

(I'm wondering if we're gonna span all 20 levels with this AP.)


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
The Rot Grub wrote:
Is this the first time a second chapter has been made for PCs as high as 5th level? Interrestiiiing...

Legacy of Fire's second chapter started at 5th as well, due to chapter one running a little "long," as I dimly recall.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
The Rot Grub wrote:

Is this the first time a second chapter has been made for PCs as high as 5th level? Interrestiiiing...

(I'm wondering if we're gonna span all 20 levels with this AP.)

I doubt that, since #6 starts with the PCs being 15th, which is similar to e. g. KM, where the chars are around 17th-18th level once they've completed the story arc (or so one has heard - not there yet).

Ruyan.

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Card Game, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
RuyanVe wrote:
The Rot Grub wrote:

Is this the first time a second chapter has been made for PCs as high as 5th level? Interrestiiiing...

(I'm wondering if we're gonna span all 20 levels with this AP.)

I doubt that, since #6 starts with the PCs being 15th, which is similar to e. g. KM, where the chars are around 17th-18th level once they've completed the story arc (or so one has heard - not there yet).

Ruyan.

I also doubt that this'll make 20th, but #6 starting at 15th is almost certainly still provisional until it's developed, which I'd guess is still a month or two away...

Contributor

The Rot Grub wrote:

Is this the first time a second chapter has been made for PCs as high as 5th level? Interrestiiiing...

(I'm wondering if we're gonna span all 20 levels with this AP.)

Lady's Light was originally designed for a party starting at level 4. However, Greg Vaughn threw so much nastiness into the first volume that this one had to be adjusted (it's probably just as well that this happened, as I think my turnover only had a single encounter that was below CR 5 anyway). By the end of this volume players should be 8th level (providing, of course, [maniacal laughter] that they survive [/maniacal laughter])

I don't think there are plans to take this AP all the way to 20th level, but that's something the evil geniuses at Paizo would have to answer for certain.

Owner - House of Books and Games LLC

Well, even if not, it's nice to see that it'll be hitting higher levels than they typically do.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

Curretntly, I'm almost done developing part 4, "Beyond the Doomsday Door," and that one's looking like it'll hit 13th level at the end. Which, I'm guessing, will make part 5 a 13th–15th adventure, and part 6 a 15th–17th one.

I'm trying to get them to go as high as possible in this one, with the use of side quests to bolster XP now and then and the fact that you can just fit a LOT of encounters into a classic dungeon crawl. More than you can fit into adventures that feature more complex types of plots.

That said... If you do everything Burnt Offerings has to offer, you'll start part 2 at 5th level. And I think you could hit 5th in Souls for Smuggler's Shiv if you have a few extra wandering encounters or shipwreck explorations.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Will we got three deity articles in this AP ?
I mean, with Torag in this book, Groteus announced in part 4 and Lissala in part 5, it seems that there will be 3 deity articles in SS ([praying] hope it's not a mistake [/praying])

Paizo Employee Managing Developer

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Lagia wrote:

Will we got three deity articles in this AP ?

I mean, with Torag in this book, Groteus announced in part 4 and Lissala in part 5, it seems that there will be 3 deity articles in SS ([praying] hope it's not a mistake [/praying])

Not a mistake! The Shattered Star AP will feature deity articles on Torag, Groetus, and Lissala.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

We've done 3 deity articles before... back in Serpent's Skull we did Nethys, Gozreh, and Ydersius. And had Torag appeared where we had originally intended, Skull & Shackles would have had Besmara, Norgorber, and Torag.


Pathfinder Adventure Subscriber

For that matter, Council of Thieves had Iomedae, Asmodeus, and Mammon. Although the article on Mammon was in a slightly different format, so maybe it don't count.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

I'd be interested in an AP that ran to 12th, PFS style, use the slow advancement rate. High levels always break down for me (YMMV etc).

Paizo Employee Creative Director

Kajehase wrote:
For that matter, Council of Thieves had Iomedae, Asmodeus, and Mammon. Although the article on Mammon was in a slightly different format, so maybe it don't count.

It still counts.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

mach1.9pants wrote:
I'd be interested in an AP that ran to 12th, PFS style, use the slow advancement rate. High levels always break down for me (YMMV etc).

That's something I can more or less guarantee won't happen. If only because we already service that campaign model with the Pathfinder Society campaign.


Pathfinder Companion, Maps Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
mach1.9pants wrote:
I'd be interested in an AP that ran to 12th, PFS style, use the slow advancement rate. High levels always break down for me (YMMV etc).

I believe Council of Thieves tops out at 13th level, if you haven't run it yet. It's the lowest-level endgame of the APs.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

^Thanks, I didn't know that

James Jacobs wrote:
mach1.9pants wrote:
I'd be interested in an AP that ran to 12th, PFS style, use the slow advancement rate. High levels always break down for me (YMMV etc).
That's something I can more or less guarantee won't happen. If only because we already service that campaign model with the Pathfinder Society campaign.

Yeah it was more of a statement of personal preference than an real wish :D

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Pawns Subscriber

So I could be mistaken, but weren't subscribers supposed to receive an email last week regarding the pending charge to our accounts for this product?

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Card Game, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
the Haunted Jester wrote:
So I could be mistaken, but weren't subscribers supposed to receive an email last week regarding the pending charge to our accounts for this product?

Nope, it's due Thursday-Friday, with shipping next week. You can check on your My Subscription page

Liberty's Edge

I just got my subscriber shipment email, and checked out the PDF.

My VTT map copy paste test has a problem! The Dungeon Level 1 map pastes with a Secret Door label.

I don't suppose there is a chance the maps with smaller grids could be embedded with larger versions? They will look very pixelated in a VTT zoomed in :( This isn't something I expect to be fixed - just a comment.

Grand Lodge Contributor

So when can we get our pixels on the web enhancement mentioned in the introduction? Huh? Huh? Huh?

Paizo Employee Creative Director

Shaun Hocking wrote:
So when can we get our pixels on the web enhancement mentioned in the introduction? Huh? Huh? Huh?

Pretty soon; as far as I know, it's having the last bit of editing and layout done. Hopefully it'll be ready by the time the book's actual release date arrives.

Grand Lodge Contributor

YAY! OMG!

Thanks, JJ!


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Holy crap.

The trap at the begining of the dungeon is just... brilliant.

Web Product Manager

Pygon wrote:

I just got my subscriber shipment email, and checked out the PDF.

My VTT map copy paste test has a problem! The Dungeon Level 1 map pastes with a Secret Door label.

I don't suppose there is a chance the maps with smaller grids could be embedded with larger versions? They will look very pixelated in a VTT zoomed in :( This isn't something I expect to be fixed - just a comment.

I'll take a look at that particular map and it should be updated sometime this week. The DPI and quality the images are exported at for this adventure are the same as all of our other Adventure Paths, but I will double check to be sure this volume was exported correctly.


Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path Subscriber

I don't know if you can do much about it, Chris, but the pdfs of the two Shattered Star volumes are particularly slow with the Apple pdf engine (both on Preview, or with iBooks on iDevices). Not all pages have this issue, but the engine takes a long time to render the maps in both volumes, as well as the foreword pages of Curse of the Lady's Light. It wasn't the case in the previous AP volumes.

I can provide more information if needed. :)

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Pawns Subscriber

Still no "Your AP has shipped" email :(

Dark Archive

Got my shipped email a couple of hours ago and just DLed the books.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

All I have to say is...Mike Shel's early trap made me absurdly happy.

Paizo Employee Managing Developer

I love that trap.

Scarab Sages

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I too love the trap. the Module's worth Buying just to encourage innovative stuff like that Trap, I think.

Web Product Manager

Olwen wrote:

I don't know if you can do much about it, Chris, but the pdfs of the two Shattered Star volumes are particularly slow with the Apple pdf engine (both on Preview, or with iBooks on iDevices). Not all pages have this issue, but the engine takes a long time to render the maps in both volumes, as well as the foreword pages of Curse of the Lady's Light. It wasn't the case in the previous AP volumes.

I can provide more information if needed. :)

I am aware that there were some issues. I thought I had resolved them, but I will take another look. It is actually an issue with Apple's PDF renderer, which I thought I had worked around.

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Loved the trap and the big reveal in the dungeon


Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Olwen wrote:

I don't know if you can do much about it, Chris, but the pdfs of the two Shattered Star volumes are particularly slow with the Apple pdf engine (both on Preview, or with iBooks on iDevices). Not all pages have this issue, but the engine takes a long time to render the maps in both volumes, as well as the foreword pages of Curse of the Lady's Light. It wasn't the case in the previous AP volumes.

I can provide more information if needed. :)

I can confirm this issue, it takes forever to turn pages in Preview on Mac OS 10.8.2 (Mountain Lion). Pages with maps and artwork seem especially resistant, and sometimes when I try to go to the next page, it takes a while and the page is then shown again and only on the next try does the page actually flip. "Shards of Sin", checking again, seems to suffer from the same issues, only not as prominently.

Shadow Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

>Looks to see if his sub has shipped<
.
.
.
>CRIES<

Silver Crusade

Me too. ;_;[/howcouldthishappentomeeeeeeeee]

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Pawns Subscriber

I am in the same boat pal. I think the AP Subscription line has become so popular that not all of the Subscriptions can ship within a week. IF this is the case then it is a great thing for Paizo, but can be a longer process for us.


Pathfinder Adventure Subscriber

I knew adding those two minis to my order was a mistake. :(

Scarab Sages

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Kajehase wrote:
I knew adding those two minis to my order was a mistake. :(

It's less the minis than where you are. I received my shipment (not the notice, the shipment) yesterday and I had a Mini and a shot glass in it. Luck of the draw I guess. Or where your location is.

Silver Crusade

Got the shipping notice today, but I borrowed a friend's(who will be playing in this campaign) copy yesterday. Still doing a thorough read, but I wanted to say:

This is some really good stuff. Crimson Throne fans are in for a real treat. In fact, people planning on running Crimson Throne could get quite a bit out of this book.

Postin' more in a bit.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

What is the longest we should be waiting for a despatch notice please? I got the credit card email on Friday 14th Sept. Being in the UK it takes another 10-14 days to get here usually so I read the PDFs mainly.

Thanks!

Silver Crusade

Okay, incomplete thoughts, but from front to back so far, from what I've managed to digest:

SPOILERS AHEAD MAYBE

Love whoever you guys got to do that interior cover art for those NPC portraits. Sabriyya has had some great art already, but it's good to have multiple options and multiple angles on the same character. Really like how Ayavah turned out too. That's one character I've really been excited to see explored further, and while I don't expect much more for her in Shattered Star, I'm definitely eager to see what may be possibly hopefully coming down the pipeline next summer if my suspicions are correct. I have to admit, for ALL the details on that character detailed in Magnimar: City of Monuments, the thing that had me wondering the most was what the heck those "pointed hats she favors" would look like. Huh, didn't see that design coming. :D

Turns page.

OH HAI VAMPIRELLA

In all seriousness, that look works for that character. Still wondering at those embedded crystals first seen in Inner Sea Magic. They're bigger than the expected Thassilonian-style-implanted ioun stones at least. Has me thinking this was a fashion statement for those that could afford it back then. Going to be playing with that for flavoring recovered glimpses of everyday life in Thassilon and possible surviving styles in Kaer Maga or at the fringes of Varisian and Shoanti society.

The adventure itself is a huge treat for Crimson Throne fans. Said it before and saying it again, if you're planning on running Crimson Throne and haven't yet, you should really check this volume out first. There's a lot of stuff in the adventure proper and the Gray Maidens support article that could really enrich your campaign.

The note on rehabilitation efforts applies precisely to how my CotCT group played their endgame. Feelgood moment.

Without going too indepth or spoilery,

Spoiler:
really dig the cover character and her related crew. Groups that enjoy sympathetic enemies are going to have a ball with this. Absolutely love the build towards the possibilities promoted with the troglodyte tribes. Seriously, in love with that sidebar. I'm definitely playing that up.

Redemption focused characters are going to have a ball with this one if the GM plays it as written

Then there's the matter of That Trap. I honestly have no idea how this is going to go over with folks. Hopefully for most groups it will be seen as a character opportunity rather than a character derailer. I guess that mostly depends on how invested a player is in their character's race. How all the various characters that'll fall victim to it cope with it afterwards, that's a thread I'm looking forward to seeing.

One thing I'm glad to see come back from Savage Tide is the "weaken the powerful big bad through various accomplishments" thing. Also have some sneaking suspicions that this villain's themes of madness and broken dreams might be a prelude for what happens with Xin in the climax. Just a feeling.

One thing I really, really like and want to thank the writer for: Giving all of those dead Gray Maidens names, at least as far as I've seen so far. Having their comrades, especially Oriana, able to name them without missing a beat is very important when it comes to humanizing these characters and keeping many players from slipping into that unfortunate metagamey pitfall of thinking "doesn't have a name, not important". I was already planning on having names ready for each and every Tower Girl and other Sczarni thugs in the previous chapter, and was planning ahead on doing the same here, and it turns out that work was done already. Thanks for going that extra mile. :)

Man, looking through the Lady's Light area, there are so many things that can change around completely if someone's fallen for that initial trap already. Extremely dynamic at a glance, lots of moving parts and people.

Gnaeus really helps fill some fanservice gaps for the parts of the fanbase that have been looking for some beefcake, so it's great to see some of that available. Wondering at how the Sorshen-alikes will play off that encounter. flips over to page 49 Cheesecake fans certainly aren't missing out in this volume eithe- eyes pan up Ha, you tricked me once with that ghoul in Second Darkness, Paizo. You're not pulling that off twice. >:( Seriously though, wonderfully warped image there. The encounter description with her mingling with the crowd in that illusion? Really like.

I mentioned somewhere, maybe earlier in this thread, that Oriana's scars on the cover didn't look all that rough compared to what the descriptions in CotCT had led me to expect. Her art on page 54 though, ow. That crosses back over the line from "cool to have/badass" scars to "oh wow those are deep, holy hell that must hurt/still badass" scars.

This current format for the major NPCs at the end of the adventure? Really liking. I'm hoping I get to use all of that backstory for Oriana organically. Some people may complain about "wasted text" being used on super detailed NPC backstories that players will (supposedly) never know about. As a GM, I love having that stuff, both just to read and to inject into the game to further flesh out those characters. Please keep that kind of history coming.

So glad I already established Sorshen's theme song for our group near the end of CotCT. Breaking it out again once they get to the Lady's Light is hopefully going to make for a great callback moment.

Love the Gray Maiden article.

Love it so much, going into detail:

CURSE OF THE CRIMSON THRONE SPOILERS MIXED IN HERE

Sabina Merrin was undoubtedly a complicated character and issue for many groups. One thing I really like about her entry and what's touched on in some of the other entries is that even with a Good End outcome for her(she got a bit of a bittersweet deal in our campaign), she never does come out of CotCT completely clean in the eyes of others. Her current location after our CotCT game really has me wondering if we should revisit that, especially with folks like Jirvaslie Rhanamors. Speaking of whom, I really liked that detail. The events of Crimson Throne were such a traumatic mess that it's left some fundamentally decent people(one of whom got as happy an ending as any Gray Maiden recruit could get!) still at each others' throats. More jobs for heroic characters there, and some especially painful potential for drama.

I really, really wish I had known about Vavana Dhatri while running CotCT. For those that haven't run it yet, MILK THIS FOR ALL IT'S WORTH. Her fate is certainly left wide open, and given what her specialty was, I'm not counting any possibility out entirely.

Kordaitra Destaid, Erid Suuls, and Erinyes Company certainly are worrying, but honestly that is a perfectly logical direction for many of those folks to go considering their conditioning. The idea that the program that made them is now going to be spread and continued anew...I would not want to be an outwardly competent-with-any-weapon woman living in Cheliax at the moment is all I'm saying.

Faceless Kaid's story on how she left Korvosa really helps drive home just how brutal the overthrow in Korvosa had to be. In our game I mentioned that there were lynchings happening and the group did their best to stop that, but this one little bit of text was much more visceral in capturing what it must have been like for those on the losing side of that battle. I'm really wondering if this group is going to turn up in Asylum Stone. If so, there are definitely some post-CotCT developments I'm going to need to prepare for.

Wolchine Savaltana...cripes. And the armor is still on. Just...GAH.

Filario Grantsleim. You know, between Ayavah, That Trap, and this character this is probably the gender-complicated Pathfinder book yet. This character brought back memories of Le Chevalier D'eon, and I mean that in the absolute best way possible. (also, man, the knife bit) With the mention of his sister being killed in the uprising, can't help but imagine that she was one of hte many previously faceless Gray Maidens slain by the PCs during the events of CotCT. Again, going back to good people being set against good people in the aftermath of that ugly conflict.

Kelles Vel? Midnight Maiden? Old Korvosan vigilante? There needs to be a story about this character, like right now. ;)

That sidebar listing the atrocities of the Gray Maidens is another element that would be useful for future CotCT GMs. The Merciless Way Massacre is a fantastic background event to serve as a pivot point to let the players know that something is even more wrong with Korvosa than it seems, even in the midst of that crisis.

Haven't had the chance to read the Torag article in full, but my friend has stated that it made Torag quite a bit more likable in his eyes. I have to admit, the dorf got is starting with a handicap for me, but I'm going in with an open mind.

Bogwids bring back every horrible childhood memory of that damned frog documentary I wish I had never seen. NO. Well done and well executed and I'm certainly going to use it, but still, NO. shudders, instinctively scratches back

I've always dug the general shape behind the Thassilonian Sentinels, so I'm glad to have a take on that symmetry available now. The Bestiary's opening image is absolutely perfect for use in the Lady's Light. Wonder if more of these will be showing up throughout the future ruins in this AP.

tl;dr: Is good.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Mikaze wrote:

Okay, incomplete thoughts, but from front to back so far, from what I've managed to digest:

SPOILERS AHEAD MAYBE

Love whoever you guys got to do that interior cover art for those NPC portraits. Sabriyya has had some great art already, but it's good to have multiple options and multiple angles on the same character. Really like how Ayavah turned out too. That's one character I've really been excited to see explored further, and while I don't expect much more for her in Shattered Star, I'm definitely eager to see what may be possibly hopefully coming down the pipeline next summer if my suspicions are correct. I have to admit, for ALL the details on that character detailed in Magnimar: City of Monuments, the thing that had me wondering the most was what the heck those "pointed hats she favors" would look like. Huh, didn't see that design coming. :D

Turns page.

OH HAI VAMPIRELLA

In all seriousness, that look works for that character. Still wondering at those embedded crystals first seen in Inner Sea Magic. They're bigger than the expected Thassilonian-style-implanted ioun stones at least. Has me thinking this was a fashion statement for those that could afford it back then. Going to be playing with that for flavoring recovered glimpses of everyday life in Thassilon and possible surviving styles in Kaer Maga or at the fringes of Varisian and Shoanti society.

The adventure itself is a huge treat for Crimson Throne fans. Said it before and saying it again, if you're planning on running Crimson Throne and haven't yet, you should really check this volume out first. There's a lot of stuff in the adventure proper and the Gray Maidens support article that could really enrich your campaign.

The note on rehabilitation efforts applies precisely to how my CotCT group played their endgame. Feelgood moment.

Without going too indepth or spoilery, ** spoiler omitted **...

Now be nice and copy-paste that into a 5-star review of the product ;)

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