A Pathfinder Society Scenario designed for levels 7-11.
Thousands of years ago, a defeated order of Osirian sages sought refuge in the perilous Pillars of the Sun in central Osirian. Until recently they were presumed lost, but recent exploration has uncovered the fortress sanctum they left behind. When the PCs delve into one of its sealed halls, they find the sages’ millennia-old projects dormant but not dead.
Content in “Beacon Below” also contributes directly to the ongoing storylines of the Dark Archive and Scarab Sages factions.
Written by Matt Duval.
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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An interesting story was ruined by mechanics that are designed to screw the players over at every turn. My favorite was the hallway that you had to roll randomly to walk down, and getting one of the prestige points relies partially on getting good results on your unmodified checks. Though a creature that can disintegrate a PC before their first turn is obnoxious.
An investigation with colorful NPCs and a delightful dilemma
I enjoy investigative missions and this was no different. What makes this investigation stand out to me, is the delightful flavor and above excellent NPC’s. The two I’m referring to really were nicely detailed and offer a nice dilemma for most parties. I loved the moral dilemma involved and I as a player would have really struggled with it, were it not for my character being biased. That happens when you’re a funerary priest of Pharasma I guess. Thankfully some other partymembers (I’m looking at you, tech-crazed gnome alchemist) had a preference as well, so it worked out rather well.
The final portion of the scenario is a bit weird. It really helped that our GM brought 3D-representation of what was going on. It was immensely useful to clarify the situation. It’s a complicated ordeal otherwise, so I recommend GM’s to really take their time preparing this segment. That said, due to the dilemma and role-play opportunities, I can see this scenario run long. It’s not something for relatively short timeslots either. If you take your time and have some skills that can contribute to this investigation, I’m convinced you’ll have an good time.
Great scenario, awesome followup to the Destiny of the Sands story. Interesting combats, great setup for a story, fantastic use of interesting spells and situations, good implementation of an investigation. Just one minor complaint: we were under the impression that time was of the essence, and therefore rushed a lot of the investigation parts. In the end, it didn't matter a whole lot, but it's weird how information is disappearing around you at an alarming rate, and you get the option to pray at a statue for 10 minutes.
Also, the final encounter seems pretty complicated. Our GM had to pause for a bit to reread everything because it was apparently spread across multiple pages. There was stuff happening across an entire battlemat and while I like complicated encounters, this might've been a bit too much.
There were also some nasty skill checks tied to a couple of parts. You really need some specialised characters to get maximum enjoyment out of this, I feel, but if you do, you'll like this a lot.
Final conclusion: great adventure with lots of hectic action, some cool decisions and a fun story. Highly recommended.
Hmmm...looks like cutting and pasting the maps is a no-go, just like the earlier season 6 scenarios. Is this a deliberate change? If so, why? If not, may we please get it corrected? Unfortunately, this is a pretty major blow to usability for people who play on VTTs.
I give this scenario 2 stars... and the only reason it gets that is because it has a pretty good story line. What knocks it down is the length. i signed on to play this expecting a normal 4 to 5 hour scenario and got hooked into an 8 hour session. this was with an experienced group and an experienced GM. there is just entirely too much content in this scenario to complete within the normally allotted time. In the end, i walked away from the table sore, frustrated and annoyed with only a lousy 1xp and 2 prestige to show for it... not happy.