Pathfinder Society Scenario #4–23: Rivalry's End (PFRPG) PDF

2.50/5 (based on 24 ratings)

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A Pathfinder Society Scenario designed for levels 3–7.

The Pathfinder Society's conflict with the Aspis Consortium in the frontier region of Varisia has come to a head, and the time to secure dominance of the ancient land is now. But despite mounting victories on the Society's part, the Aspis Consortium still has a few tricks up its sleeves, including several powerful agents from the Pathfinders' past who could prove too challenging an obstacle to surmount. Can the PCs end the ongoing struggle for control of the flow of ancient Thassilonian artifacts out of Varisia's ports, or will the Aspis Consortium succeed in keeping the Pathfinder Society ever in its shadow as it profits on the exploitation of the millennia?

Written by Ron Lundeen.

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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2.50/5 (based on 24 ratings)

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Enjoyed running this at both tiers

5/5

I was able to get this going today with two different tables.
The low tier was about as perfectly balanced as a party can get. They more or less shut down every encounter with the the exception of the final one.

The higher tier table had a much different experience. While running this they were repeatedly brutalized and barely made it to the end. Part of it was due to my dice being on fire as the GM, part was cold dice on my players parts, and part was because this mod really does bring it at high tier.

The ending was a thriller. Nobody really saw it coming. Hopefully everyone minds their spoilers until the 14th. A very good, fun to run, mod.


Come loaded for bear

5/5

I ran this yesterday and players and I greatly enjoyed it. We played the lower tier with five players.

People should be under no illusion that this is a challenging scenario - after all, it is the end of the Shadow Lodge.

Some of the encounters do have the potential to do real damage to PCs that lack caution; that having been said, I don't think it's over the top. The twist at the end is well written and genuinely surprising. There is also an excellent opportunity for roleplay at the beginning.

While a fellow reviewer, Sieylianna, clearly didn't have as much fun as me, I have to disagree with some of the specifics. My party did have time for healing - ample time, in fact; there isn't an opportunity to relearn spells but that's hardly uncommon.

I'm becoming something of a fan of Run Lundeen's work. The Temple of Empyreal Enlightenment is still, I think, my favourite scenario to date, but I had a lot of fun with Severing Ties, too.

I'd give this the full five stars.


Very enjoyable

4/5

This scenario is tough. Bring your A-game and enjoy the story.


Throwback to Living Greyhawk Specials

1/5

It's unfortunate that there is not a zero stars option, because this module definitely earned it. About 5 fights and two traps with the cheesed out excesses that earned Mr. Lundeen a reputation back in Living Greyhawk days. A true meat-grinder with no opportunity to rest, heal or do much of anything except careen from fight to fight. (To clarify, one of the traps also qualifies as a fight).

I had the misfortune of playing the high tier and no, we didn't play up, that is where the calculations put us. It would have been a challenging module if it was the 8-9 tier of a 5-9 module. As it is, either the judges will softball it or lots of characters will die. We had one PC who died and was raised. It could have easily been four or five deaths.

I have now run the low tier version. It went far better than when I played the high tier. There were a couple of new issues - the gold amount/skill check to get into the tournament through the front door was excessive for lower level characters.

Some specifics, since the author is looking for constructive criticism.

Tournament:
There is a card tournament going on with thousands of gold pieces on the premises and the west exit is totally open? What's more PCs are hauling floor lamps around and NPC's are stealing said floor lamps and no check is ever required and none of the guards ever notices?

First Fight:
The ability to grab opponents weapons, specifically aimed at two-handed weapons made a long module even longer, caused more resources to be used, and didn't really add anything to the module. It very much seemed like a bit of cheese to hose players who needed to overcome DR.

First trap:
A DC 32 Disable Device check to disable the web and creeping doom trap seems excessive for level 7 characters. Actually the whole creeping doom seemed excessive for level 7. This is the encounter which I mentioned as a trap and a fight because you are left with four advanced centipede swarms with 60 HP each. This was the encounter which forced us to abandon the mission due to the inability to sleep and regain spells. We had a dwarf fighter at 0 Dexterity and probably lost 25-35 points of Dexterity as a party - I believe everyone in the party except my life oracle (thanks Energy Body) lost multiple points of Dexterity. A DC 20 Fortitude save with the difficulty increasing by 2 for each failed save is also excessive for level 7 characters. I have now read the module in preparation for running it(I have a level 11 Shadow Lodge member and I don't feel like forfeiting all my PA to change factions)and see where the swarms are only supposed to stick around for four rounds - I know our DM timed them but I thought it was well over four rounds. I spoke to my DM who confirmed the swarm stuck around for six rounds - he got the module to prep the night before.

Shadow Lodge faction mission:
The encounter says the faction must alter the ledgers secretly with a DC 15 Linguistics check. Linguistics can not be used untrained, so the faction failed. However, the faction mission summary gives credit for turning in the unaltered ledger. This seems to be incorrect, but it is confusing.


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Webstore Gninja Minion

Announced for June!

Grand Lodge

Is this the one I've been waiting for?

Paizo Employee Developer

You don't wait for all of them?

Sovereign Court

Life's too fast to sit around and wait for anything!

...:
Except for Blakros Matrimony, but that came out late and was totally worth the time.

Shadow Lodge

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Agh, I'll have to GM this one, my Shadow Lodge character just hit Eight...

Shadow Lodge

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Curious if Grandmaster Torch will be as kind as Amara Li...

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

Thankfully, I only have two Shadow Lodge characters, and they are both in the range. :)


Did the date on this change or am i just extra full of crazy?

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook, Starfinder Society Subscriber

I do think this was to be released the last Wednesday of June, originally.

Paizo Employee Developer

June scenarios are being released a week after the last Wednesday of the month in order to debut at PaizoCon. At the same time, July scenarios are releasing 4 weeks early to debut at the same time. This was always the plan, even if the website didn't know that plan because it's a computer and not clued in to the awesome stuff we have planned for PaizoCon.

Paizo Employee Contributor

4 people marked this as a favorite.

Man, they let that guy write another scenario? Sheesh!

Grand Lodge

Still seems like a pretty tight schedule to get it in... and my Shadow Lodge character is at 6th... and holding. Have a choice... play him at slow progression for a level (so that I can do the final two levels of Thornkeep with him AND this one), or use another character for Thornkeep...

Oh, the humanity!!!

Liberty's Edge

Ron Lundeen wrote:
Man, they let that guy write another scenario? Sheesh!

I know! His scenarios sucked as hard as the event horizon of a black hole! Except when they didn't, which was always. LOL

Sczarni RPG Superstar 2014 Top 16

Without spoilers, are there any scenarios in particular that I should play before this one, to get the full story impact?

Liberty's Edge

It needs to have an obligatory Torch in Bathhouse scene!

I am hoping that Torch sells out to the Aspis

Liberty's Edge

When is the deadline for this one to get the retirement boon? I.E.: when must I GM this one for my players and I to get the retirement boon; sorry, just wanted to clarify my question.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

August 14th, same as Way of the Kirin.

Shadow Lodge

We're going to be so short on time to get to play this to get the pre-August 14th boon; even shorter if you want to play and GM it. Only 6 weekends to play with.

Sovereign Court Owner - Enchanted Grounds, President/Owner - Enchanted Grounds

What happened to the release date? When I announced my July schedule last week, this was listed as coming out on Wednesday, so my GMs would have five days to prep. Now they only get the weekend.

Why do you guys keep mucking up what is already a difficult job to do? )-:

Paizo Employee Developer

This scenario has always been intended to be released in tandem with its debut at PaizoCon. If you need your GMs to have early access to it, you may consider contacting Mike to have the scenario added to their downloads, as it is done and in PaizoCon GMs' hands so they can prep.

Sovereign Court Owner - Enchanted Grounds, President/Owner - Enchanted Grounds

2 people marked this as a favorite.

I am going to say something odd, but here goes: I like the fact that my GMs are willing to pay for their scenarios. It makes them care more about the game they are running, and it pays you for your product. I also dislike bothering any of you to give me a handout when I know you are busy.

I'd rather it were simply available when I'm told it will be. Especially one like this, which is highly anticipated and has a time-frame for playing.

Shadow Lodge

Need to read the mod and evaluate my play of it with what was actually written.

Liberty's Edge

Spoiler:

Part of the scenario requires a list of 36 names and then a list of 8 names to match the busts (and the mirrors).

Here's a good online Fantasy name generator:

http://rinkworks.com/namegen/

There's even a Japanese name generator on that site for help with the Lantern Lodge faction mission.

For some added fun, enter the following 10 names into an anagram generator and insert the results into the list of 36 names--one every 8th name:

Ron Lundeen
James Jacobs
F Wesley Schneider
James Sutter
Logan Bonner
John Compton
Adam Daigle
Rob McCreary
Mark Moreland
Patrick Renie

http://www.wordsmith.org/anagram/

Liberty's Edge

casiel wrote:
** spoiler omitted **

Here's a list of names that I am using as handouts when I run "Rivalry's End"...

The Ten: (37 names)

Spoiler:

(every 8th name is an identity of one of the Decemvirate)
Roight Riletroth
Durod Blyustust
Dunner Lone
Honurn Briprad
Belah Triaughbel
Aces Jamjobs
Elmrana Didard
Deifcers Shewnley
Nynrak Llaydia
Osem Joosest
Master Jutes
Neach Rhalyeet
Rothkin Scharler
Chesold Choolest
Essardu Imyerbur
Bornean Long
Quabwor Deabves
Rilyh Jouzrak
Jom Coptohnn
Nalvese Nuywor
Imche Miafcha
Serldra Mevesper
Kintan Weillcha
Alga Diadem
Miser Rerilage
Ashond Ceraright
Carry Comber
Wopol Deghine
Inagdan Boentia
Ingut Shiuskdyn
Aleacki Sweswor
Kraal Dormmen
Daos Densaygha
Aldvor Tanrakrak
Carter Pinkie
Stesul Vakelend
Lyeem Peremche

The Eight (busts/mirrors):

Spoiler:

Koig Vesburler (Absalom, 12pm)
Suzukami Yoshito (Goka, 3am)
Noet Whiniss (Egorian, 9am)
Irn Dansaycha (Magnimar,6am)
Kem Toubtin (Sothis, 2pm)
Kinl Schesar (Katheer, 5pm)
Leiq Rodanser (Oppara, 8pm)
Rylt Omendrod (Almas, 12am)

Liberty's Edge

Cool handouts there, I love it.

Paizo Employee Developer

Your list of Decemvirate identities is missing several that have already been revealed in other scenarios, namely the Eyes of the Ten series. Otherwise, a very handy tool for GMs.


casiel wrote:
casiel wrote:
** spoiler omitted **

Here's a list of names that I am using as handouts when I run "Rivalry's End"...

The Ten: (37 names)
** spoiler omitted **

Ace Jamjobs

The Eight (busts/mirrors):
** spoiler omitted **

LOL!

Shadow Lodge

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Is anyone else extremely disappointed with this scenario? Reading through it, and it just seems very much wtf?!?!? Now do not get me wrong, the scenario itself is good, and this isn't at all a slight towards Ron. I'm talking about the outcome.

Spoiler:

This is what they came up with on how to get rid of the Shadow Lodge, not to mention how to portray Torch, who has gone out of his was to create a network of agents within the pathfinders dedicated primarily to looking out for their own when the jerks of the society fail to do so. Basically anyone with a rank above agent. Secondly, the Shadow Lodge was basically the one way that, out of character, one could play PFS without being uncomfortably a Society slave.

Secondly, why would anyone loyal to the Shadow Lodge give a crap about what the Society wants them to do, even if, if they believe Torch is guilty, (as opposed to finding a new leader and Charlie Mikeing (continue mission)? Instead we are going to just follow some of the most annoying and hated personalities within the Society, Sheila Heidmarch, Drandle Dreng, and Ambrus Valsin? Uhuh? Wait, what?

Webstore Gninja Minion

Added spoiler tag to the above post!

Shadow Lodge

My apologies, it all seemed like common knowledge material, and I intentionally avoided specifics.

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