Pathfinder Society Scenario #10-21: Slaver's End

4.30/5 (based on 4 ratings)

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A Pathfinder Society Scenario designed for levels 5–9.

The Society's no stranger to treachery, and one of its most despicable betrayals came at the hands of the disgraced venture-captain Phlegos Dulm. He's escaped the Society's justice, but Venture-Captain Wulessa Yuul has joined forces with Karisa Starsight of the Liberty's Edge faction to track down the perfidious poisoner and bring him to justice. However, the PCs will need to tread carefully as they help corner Phlegos. Not only is he a cunning foe who knows many of the Society's secrets, but he's found new allies whose hatred for the Society runs deep and whose lust for vengeance may prove a greater threat than Phlegos's treacherous cunning.

Contents in Slaver's End also contribute directly to the ongoing storyline of the Liberty’s Edge faction.

Written by Vanessa Hoskins.

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

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4.30/5 (based on 4 ratings)

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A very quick assassination

3/5

This scenario is basically an assassination mission.

It was over fairly quick, in less than 2 hours. For us was not particularly challenging. Maybe it would have been better if special tactics weren't used.


Solid All Around

4/5

NO SPOILERS

I got to play my "caveman shaman" Gurkagh in Slaver's End at high subtier using the four-player adjustment. It's a solid, enjoyable scenario with a good mix of combat and role-playing, and it nicely caps off a couple of loose ends from previous scenarios. There might not be anything particularly amazing about it, but it's definitely one worth playing and a good addition to a GM's rotation.

SPOILERS!:

The backstory to Slaver's End involves two NPC antagonists from previous scenarios. First, going way way back to # 1-38, No Plunder, No Pay, is a former Chelish ship captain turned pirate named Jirandiel Waverider. The PCs in that scenario (I haven't played it) apparently stole Jirandiel's ship from her and led to her extreme embarrassment, gaining PCs a "Waverider's Revenge" boon that gets paid off here. Second, earlier in Season Ten, PCs in # 10-06, Treason's Chains, encountered the schemes of treacherous Venture-Captain Phlegos Dulm and forced the half-orc alchemist to flee Katapesh. Off-screen, Dulm allied himself with Jirandiel in a slavery business before Jirandiel's hatred of Pathfinders (even former ones) got the better of her and she turned Dulm into a slave as well! Now, Jirandiel and her pirate crew are building a base on a small island off the coast of Qadira, using Dulm and several other kidnapped Pathfinders as slave labor. (as an aside, I'm not really sure why Dulm thought it was a good idea to get into the "enslaving Pathfinders" business--surely it's far riskier than other types of slavery!)

The scenario proper starts with the PCs receiving a letter from Venture-Captain Wulessa Yuul (Dulm's rival from Treason's Chains) instructing the group to meet with a leader of the Liberty's Edge faction named Karisa Starsight. Starsight has creepy eyes, but explains the mission: the Decemvirate wants Dulm captured and brought back for questioning. Leads point to Dulm having sold Pathfinder agents into slavery, so the best place to start is by talking with Corvius Vayn, a wealthy slave merchant and genie binder.

When the PCs get to the Vayn estate, they'll soon be presented with an intriguing dilemma. Vayn is willing to divulge Dulm's whereabouts . . . for the price of a PC's servitude for a month. Alternatively, he'll ask for every PC to owe him a favor to be collected at a later date. PCs not interested in making deals with a powerful slave merchant have an alternative, however. They could secretly free Vayn's efreeti bodyguard who can provide the information, but the efreeti is evil and they'll be setting free a creature that could easily inflict harm on innocents later. And to add another layer of complications, the efreeti could even use a wish to instantly teleport the group to Dulm's location--but (depending on how well they negotiate), with a twist. I think it's an excellent situation to put PCs in, as there's a solid moral quandary and lots of room for character personality and motivations to feed into quality role-playing and decision-making. The best way to proceed isn't obvious, which is crucial to making an interesting problem like this one.

However the PCs solve it, they'll be able to get to Jirandiel's pirate base, but will be unaware that Dulm is a slave as well. It's a clever twist. The rest of the scenario takes place on the island. PCs who travel there through mundane means will arrive at the docks, and the scenario makes excellent use of the Docks flip-mat for it. PCs who get there via an efreeti wish may start in a sea cave that could just be occupied by a giant octopus or squid! This sea monster is controlled by Jirandiel by a new magic item, an orb of aquatic mastery, and the PCs are likely to encounter the monster at some point in the scenario, either in the sea cave or at the docks. A careful GM will note that it will only use its grab & constrict ability once per round (despite the number of attacks it has), which makes the encounter easier than it could be. Still, I was happy my PC had a lesser talisman of freedom--things could have gone very bad otherwise!

The manor house contains pretty much what you might expect: some lesser pirates (aided by some guard dogs), the Pathfinder slaves that need to be freed, Dulm (whose fate could be another interesting moral question), and, of course, Jirandiel--gamified here as a high-level swashbuckler. I like how the writer played fair with how long it takes various NPCs to respond to alarms by donning armor, buffing, etc., and PCs who move quickly might be able to catch them unprepared. I don't imagine most groups will have difficulty with Jirandiel (one martial villain against four to six PCs is probably not going to fare well), but Dulm does have some poison ability and the giant octopus/squid can be a wild card that could ruin an unlucky player's day. It's a solid set of encounters in terms of overall challenge, and I don't have any complaints on that score.

There's not much in the way of epilogue, but the Chronicle does allocate boons for the different ways the PCs might have dealt with Vayn and his enslaved efreeti. It's a fun, solid adventure, and actually something that would work well for new players despite being for higher level PCs. PCs in the Liberty's Edge faction will find some special features as well. So although this may not be in the very top tier of PFS scenarios, it's definitely one to play.


Fantastic and Immersive Fun

5/5

Played it once, ran it twice. This scenario ticks so many boxes for me as a player and GM. The NPCs are an absolute blast to role-play (both with and as), including a quest-giver I've been looking forward to meeting for a long time. Even the NPCs intended to only interact via combat are super memorable! I was afraid of the primary combat in the scenario, but the guidelines are given very clearly and every time the scenario is ran results in at least one memorable "oops" moment (for the PCs and NPCs), making the entire encounter feel very organic. There are lots of ways the players can approach this one, and the author did a wonderful job making sure we would have the tools necessary to accomidate our players attempting to go off the rails.

Spoiler:
The slavemaster was so well written that we had a player who wanted to take him up on his offer even though the party was going to free the efreeti! Even when my own character got hit by the trap in the living room, I was able to engage with the rest of the encounter because of how perfectly placed that trap was! It was also hard to not feel sorry for our target rogue venture-captian, even if he was a scumbag.


Fantastic and fun!

5/5

This scenario takes place in Sedeq, a city in Qadira, and builds off of events from #38: No Plunder, No Pay and #10-21: Treason’s Chains. This mission is of particular importance to members of the Liberty’s Edge faction. Venture-Captains are Wulessa Yuul (name-dropped) and Karisa Starsight.

Slaver's End tasks the PCs with tracking down the traitor Phlegos Dulm and bringing him in alive. This is a really fun, challenging, entertaining scenario, with great enemy tactics and placement, map layout, and story. I adore the scripted dialogue in this one, and the social encounters! This scenario allows for multiple ways to approach and overcome the encounters, and gives characters the chance to make decisions that could have further ramifications outside this scenario. I absolutely loved this adventure. Really great job!

Note on the final location:
This scenario's major encounter involves an infiltration or attack on a building. All of the enemies have detailed tactics and a listing on how long it takes them to prepare for and enter combat. Which is awesome! It turns the exploration into wave after wave of enemies once the PCs make enough noise to attract attention. The pacing between waves works well, and the building layout is well-suited to this sort of mobile encounter. There's enough room in some spaces for larger fights, but PCs should be able to use room size and hallways against their attackers in order to gain an advantage.


Grand Lodge

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure, Lost Omens, Pawns, Rulebook Subscriber

He just don't learn.

Shadow Lodge

Huh. I expected it to be about Muhlia Al-Jakri, not the new guy they brought in for the goblin game.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure, Lost Omens, Pawns, Rulebook Subscriber

Muhlia has already been dealt with.

Shadow Lodge

TriOmegaZero wrote:
Muhlia has already been dealt with.

Well that spawned some research... sigh, ok, that makes sense.

Paizo Employee Organized Play Developer

5 people marked this as a favorite.
thistledown wrote:
Huh. I expected it to be about Muhlia Al-Jakri, not the new guy they brought in for the goblin game.

Phlegos Dulm isn't new. He's actually been around longer than Muhlia Al-Jakri. He was first introduced in Seekers of Secrets back in 2009 and has appeared in a few products since then.

Second Seekers (Luwazi Elsebo)

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Seems like a perfect scenario to unleash a very anti-slaver Vigilante Were-shark... *Hopefully with Bane Human.

Grand Lodge Contributor

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Oriklad wrote:
Seems like a perfect scenario to unleash a very anti-slaver Vigilante Were-shark... *Hopefully with Bane Human.

Sounds like!

Liberty's Edge

1 person marked this as a favorite.

He got away once. Not this time.


Rules Question about this scenario. It does contain spoilers, so i will put it in the spoiler spot.

question:

During the first room of the estate, there is a trap set up for the lower tier to turn the store into mud and back into stone. The only problem with this is that the spell it is referencing doesn't work on stonework that has already been altered. Should I play it as if it should work on the floor, or as if the people who set it up were idiots and didn't know that part of the spell?

Grand Lodge

3 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure, Lost Omens, Pawns, Rulebook Subscriber

That issue was anticipated.

Spoiler:
"The estate’s original architect used a natural stone floor
and glass ceiling to ease a guest from outdoors to indoors."


TriOmegaZero wrote:

That issue was anticipated.

** spoiler omitted **

Thank you for that. I did miss it.

Liberty's Edge

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Hey--I'm famous!

Backstory

Grand Lodge

Anyone able to tell me what maps are needed for this scenario?

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure, Lost Omens, Pawns, Rulebook Subscriber

Maps:
Docks Flipmat
1 Custom Map

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Maps Subscriber

So prepping this for the first time and noticed a number of errors in the statblocks from incorrect number on attacks rolls to completely inaccurate DC listed in the character descriptions. Not sure what to use in PFS play.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Maps, Pathfinder Accessories, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Superscriber
Taenia wrote:
So prepping this for the first time and noticed a number of errors in the statblocks from incorrect number on attacks rolls to completely inaccurate DC listed in the character descriptions. Not sure what to use in PFS play.

Might want to try the GM discussion thread here.

Grand Lodge Contributor

Taenia wrote:

So prepping this for the first time and noticed a number of errors in the statblocks from incorrect number on attacks rolls to completely inaccurate DC listed in the character descriptions. Not sure what to use in PFS play.

If you post your findings in the GM thread referenced by Iogsig, I will check it against my original Hero Lab files.

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