Pathfinder Society Scenario #10-09: The Rasping Rebirth

****½ (based on 3 ratings)

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A Pathfinder Society Scenario designed for levels 12-15.

Over a century ago, hordes from the Abyss tore through a weak point in the Material Plane and surged forth onto Golarion, creating a corrupted and blighted land that would come to be known as the Worldwound. Legions of crusaders fought against the demonic incursion, containing it behind a wall of holy artifacts. In Pathfinder Society Season 5: Year of the Demon, forces bolstered by Pathfinder agents pushed back a demonic siege and even reclaimed land that had long languished under demonic control. The heroes of the Wrath of the Righteous Adventure Path finished the job, sealing the Worldwound and slaying the demon lord responsible for its creation, Deskari.

Yet the land where the rift to the Abyss once stood remains scarred and fragile, and on the Abyss itself, some artifacts and powers tied to Deskari remain unclaimed. One of the Pathfinder Society's most formidable enemies, the demon Koth'Vaul, is eager to seize upon these opportunities. Unless the PCs thwart him, Koth'Vaul's will become even more powerful than ever before, and wreak truly terrifying vengeance upon the Pathfinder Society.

Written by Cole Kronewitter.

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****½ (based on 3 ratings)

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Another excellent seeker romp.

****( )

Incredible challenges, interesting plot dilemmas and as you expect at this tier some truly epic set piece fights.

Minor quibble:
What about Gamin though man! You bring back Koth'Vaul and give Gamin a chance to confront the beast and you blow it! I was really hoping for some kind of seeker upgrade for the blade here.


Five-Star Must-Play Seeker Scenerio

*****

I rarely take the time to write reviews as most scenarios are just "meh" and are quickly forgotten as background noise... This is not one of those.

Storyline: Epic
Combats: Epic
Roleplaying: Moderate
Timeframe: Long (high tier, normal mode, highly optimized party = 8hr for my group)
Chronicle: Epic

Its hard to write high-level content that feels seeker worthy; this is an example of how to do it right. The storyline can't get much more epic than this, the players will feel like they are actually doing something worthwhile. The players choices actually matter and effect the world permanently. The combats aren't just a random collection of high CR monsters, but rather each one is unique, moves the story forward, and will challenge even optimized parties.

For Players: I recommend playing 9-25 and 10-09 in that order for storyline continuity. These two scenarios could have been a Part 1 and Part 2 if they were in the same season. This scenario also is the finale for one of the longest running plot lines in society play. Players need to be on their toes... It's one thing to fight a few demons that show up on the material plane; its a whole different ballgame when you walk into THEIR house. While my party did survive, I can EASILY see this scenario TPKing non-optimized/non-balanced parties.

GMs: Go read the GM thread, follow TACTICS. Plan for it to run LONG.

Paizo: It's probably too late, but this author needs to be hired to write more seeker content before PFSv1 ends.

TL;DR - This scenario is EPIC (have I mentioned that already?) This is must-play seeker level content, and rightfully takes it place in my top 5 scenarios of all time. I hope the author had a performance bonus clause in his/her contract, as this was knocked out of the park.


A must-play for seeker level teams.

*****

This scenario sets the bar for high level play. Not society play. Any high level game.

I've always thought of high level play as three balancing acts going on at once. First the story must keep up with exponential growth in the powers the PCs possess. Then something new needs added to make each encounter unexpected -- in lower tiers it is swarms and oozes, then DR, SR, immunities and so on -- just something to keep the players from feeling that they have it all figured out. But the hardest aspect, the last thing that a great GM weighs out in planning a scenario is how to create a rewarding feeling after a real struggle or even a defeat.

This scenario more than exceeds the DCs of these checks. It has features that surprise and enhance the powers the PCs arrive with without overshadowing their characters. It makes each fight feel like victory is always just out of reach.

The premise ties in several major and minor plots from previous seasons but also follows nicely from the end of Betrayal in the Bones. It is by no means a snipe hunt or picking up a McGuffin. The table I ran had players engaged in the role play before the introduction even finished.

On the minutiae, the appendix is very helpful to speed up prepping, please continue printing these. The level, table size, and difficulty adjustments are very precise and crucial to prepare. If at all possible, know these in advance in order to internalize them. Also, follow the tactics as written. CR is wibblier and wobblier the higher it goes and careless reading as a GM would easily result in disappointed players.

The first combat is reminiscent of a fight with an alien race that rhymes with Yerg. I used 9mm pipe cleaners to represent the legs of the creature that couldn't fit on the map, but even without that the visual of fighting such a creature is inspiring. A statblock was not provided for this creature, so I recommend creating one for the Eternal Hive just to make an easier reference in combat. Tactics for un-burrowing creatures are fantastic, be sure to follow them!

I used a handout for the bonuses for the second combat since the time between arriving in the area and combat beginning is very short. Note that the Epic DR is most useful for natural attack creatures since it allows them to bypass part of the Curators own Epic DR. I've always felt that this rule was buried too far, but it must not be neglected here. Describing how the enemy is being damaged each round also helps the party decide on strategies. Our party retreated (a true feat for them!) in order to buff without which they would have been stopped dead in their tracks.

The last fight frustrated the players more than anything as the go-to demon binding spells failed due to the followers. When this was realized, their opinion of the followers got ugly fast. I based the choice of melee tactics for the enemies on a desire to tear the PCs limb from limb, which helped it feel like the glabrezus were not pulling punches when they were not spamming spells from across the map.

The bonus effect in this last combat does not have the clearest rules, but reading closely, it seems to be a party benefit that occurs at the start of each round with everyone rolling at once and one effect following the results.

Players, make your GMs run this scenario. GMs, make your players enter the abyss.


Silver Crusade

Charlie Henderson and Kevror, please report to the grand lodge now...


Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Just double-checking my understanding of the high-level stuff: because there are no pregens of that level, you’d need 4 players with custom PCs to run this, right?

Grand Lodge

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber

Correct. No pregens can be used in Seeker content.

Dark Archive

Really feels weird that now Worldwound scenarios can actually acknowledge that worldwound was closed years ago <_<

Silver Crusade

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

I'm tempted to buy this just on giddiness.


Hmm, I wonder if we will be finished high tier hard mode Breaking the Bones PbP before this releases?

Shadow Lodge

Hoooo boy. I am glad I opted not to play Betrayal in Bones, the fact my Demon Hunter/Mendevian Sergeant is still in tier for this makes me giddy.

Shadow Lodge

I am so excited to get the band back together for this. And that I made KV a nemesis for the party ranger.

andreww wrote:
Hmm, I wonder if we will be finished high tier hard mode Breaking the Bones PbP before this releases?

Signs point to yes. :)

Dark Archive

1 person marked this as a favorite.

I'm in a group just starting to go through All For Immortality tonight, and once we wrap that up doing this should push us all to 15.2, perfect for letting (any of) us (who want to) make our way up to 20th.

Nice send off to standard PFS play.

Paizo Employee Organized Play Lead Developer

Maps appearing in Scenario #10-09:

  • Pathfinder Flip-Mat Classics: Battlefield
  • Pathfinder Flip-Mat: Forest Fire
  • A full-page custom map
  • Grand Lodge

    Hoping to get my hands on this soon.

    Silver Crusade

    Anyone else having trouble reporting this for Society?

    Grand Lodge

    hsponaugle wrote:
    Anyone else having trouble reporting this for Society?

    Not this in particular, but I've been having trouble reporting anything for Society for about four months.

    Dark Archive

    I'm honestly kinda confused now: SO wait, Deskari is officially dead dead?

    I mean, don't you need to kill demon lords twice and AP itself doesn't make assumptions about whether Deskari is perma dead or not?

    Grand Lodge

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

    The AP does not make assumptions, but the devs have decided what assumptions they are working with going forward.


    Just finished playing it, and it's definitely my new favorite scenario, with combats as epic as its story.

    The Exchange

    Just finished playing this and wow

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