Starfinder Society Scenario #1-36: Enter the Ashen Asteroid

4.30/5 (based on 3 ratings)

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A Starfinder Society Scenario designed for levels 1-4.

When the dwarven miners of Ulrikka Clanholdings unearth a complex belonging to their erstwhile duergar kin on an asteroid in the Diaspora, they call on the Starfinder Society to investigate. As the duergar have very few remaining outposts or ruins left within the Pact Worlds system, investigating the asteroid complex is a rare opportunity to learn about ancient dwarven history. However, the duergar were masters of trap-forging and the creation of harmful machinery that they regularly employed in the defense of their homes. Can the PCs overcome these traps and foes to uncover the truth of the Ashen Asteroid?

Written by Larry Wilhelm

Scenario Tags: None

Note: This product is part of the Starfinder Society Scenario Subscription.

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PZOSFS0136E


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Average product rating:

4.30/5 (based on 3 ratings)

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Enjoyable scenario, but OP boss

4/5

I enjoyed the scenario itself, it's an interesting dungeon, Larry Wilhelm has shown several times before that he can deliver them. The boss though is really absurdly tough for low tier. I don't think this scenario would be playable if the party includes multiple pregens. (Which, for a scenario with 1-2 tier, is kind of a requirement.)


Prepare Carefully Before Running

5/5

This is an interesting scenario with a lot of unusual elements working together. The GM really needs to understand this scenario prior to running it. As a result, I really enjoyed running this scenario with its complexity.

The author quickly introduces us to a very low gravity environment and seems to have thought a lot about how it works. That has made it into the scenario in a number of places and affects the plot. When I ran the scenario, one of the players really got into the mood and started jumping around the battlefield like John Carter of Mars. [In retrospect, I’m thinking that the character, when jumping a long distance, should target the square that they want to jump at. Then roll a ranged attack roll against AC 5 (with a 20’ range increment) to see if the character hits the desired square. If a miss, use grenade miss rules to determine where they land.]

The scenario gives multiple options to resolve each of the scenario challenges. The group I ran had a good spread of skills (operative, technomancer, mechanic, and soldier) and they were able to succeed at most of the skill checks to keep the story moving.

Overall, this scenario was an outstanding presentation and I only have a few nits:
1) Large creatures in area A can be a problem in high tier and there isn’t a lot of room to maneuver; I suspect they won’t be as much of a challenge in high tier. The creatures attacked near the large door and there is only room for two at a time on the bridge.
2) The encounter in area B was too easily bypassed. This could be an exciting battle area if the enemy creatures used abilities that could move the PCs around (allowing some of the referenced low gravity rules to come into play).
3) When aligning the lens in area C1, the text incorrectly references the Development section on page 17; however, the information the GM needs is at the top of page 18.

Combat Difficulty:
In low tier, the combat were very challenging. First-level characters can easily be taken out of the fight by one critical (or two hits). Characters who are stable but are at 0 or 1 hit points are extremely vulnerable to the self-destruct damage and being forced to expend another RP. Our first-level soldier was down to one RP after the first fight (knocked out, stabilize, get back in the fight, and stabilize again after the self-destruct).


A dynamic dungeon delve!

4/5

At it’s core, Enter the Ashen Asteroid is a dungeon delve. PCs enter an enclosed location, look around, unearth some secrets, and fight some bad guys. It’s a type of adventure that’s underrepresented in Starfinder, so I think it’s a nice change of pace. Happily this delve is packed full of opportunities to use a wide variety of skill checks, has interesting environmental hazards, and features a few obstacles in it that can be overcome in multiple ways.

Spoiler:
Plus PCs might even get to walk on top of lava! That's such a cool thing to happen to a PC they might not even mind afterwards how much it hurts! Haha.

There’s some complex devices and backstory to untangle, which keeps the dungeon interesting, and plenty of important finds to collect. I particularly enjoyed the interconnectivity of the dungeon. Each room has ties to those around it, which is really nice to see.

The battles in this scenario are challenging, particularly one against an old foe from Pathfinder whose new art looks amazing!

Spoiler:
A forge-spurned.

At the end of the scenario PCs will have to report to some Ulrikka Clanholdings bigwigs and offer them a recommendation in regards to the fate of the asteroid. There's chances for some group RP and big decisions here, which is a nice addition.

It should be noted that this is a complex adventure to run. There’s some subsystems at work here that new or inexperienced GMs could find confusing — luckily this is mitigated by a super handy player handout. One of the locations also has a complex obstacle some PCs might struggle with. Although I really enjoyed it, I don't recommend this scenario for new or inexperienced GMs or players. It's not one I'd sit down to play with my kids, either.



2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Society Subscriber

Ancient ruins on an asteroid? Yet another Pathfinder race getting in to Starfinder? You have my attention, proceed.

Grand Lodge

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

This sounds like the perfect opportunity for Jadrin Handcart, dwarven technomancer and dream prophet, to test her mettle! I'll be waiting eagerly.

Paizo Employee Starfinder Society Developer

Maps Appearing in this Adventure:
-Pathfinder Flip-Mat: Elemental Planes (Fire Side)
-Two Half-Page Custom Maps


Okay, it says this product was autopurchased by me yesterday via subscription, but it hasn't been added to my downloads. As well as 1-37.


Downloads came in.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Starfinder Society Subscriber
DoubleGold wrote:
Downloads came in.

I have a sub for SFS mods Since December, and I havent received any after 1-35, back in March. Just went and tried to "re-purchase" the subscription, and was informed I already have teh sub.....but the mods have not hit my downloads yet. I need to hit lvl 9 before Origins :)


Massive maps question:
There is one really massive map in this scenario, with three areas separated by a lot of space, but where the party and the monsters could conceivably occupy different rooms simultaneously. How is everyone handling this? It’s bigger than my largest wet erase battlemat.


Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Society Subscriber

Question about door

Spoiler:
It is written, that asteroid lice from location B can soften door in A3. How? Door has hardness 30, lice decrease it by 10 to 20 - and do nothing even on high tier with 2d4+3=11 damage


I played this at GenCon and loved the unexpected throwback to Crown of the Kobold King. It was a very fun scenario.

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