Pathfinder Society Scenario #1-00: Origin of the Open Road

2.90/5 (based on 8 ratings)

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A Pathfinder Society Scenario designed for level 5 pregenerated characters.

Over recent decades, numerous incidents at the Pathfinder Society's Grand Lodge in Absalom have damaged the priceless collections, destroying many documents outright. The Society has sent the PCs to Nexus House in the arcane metropolis of Quantium, hoping that the second oldest Pathfinder lodge might contain duplicates of the lost texts to copy and study. Yet the PCs are not the only ones interested in the secrets preserved in Nexus House, and the PCs find themselves on the trail of unlikely criminals.

This adventure makes use of the 5th-level pregenerated characters available as a free download.

Written by Ron Lundeen.

Scenario Tags: None

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

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PZOPFS0100E


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Average product rating:

2.90/5 (based on 8 ratings)

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WAY too hard for an introductory scenario

1/5

Played this. TPK.

We ran into one monster with a rather nasty special ability. I think the writers just expect the wizard to
1) Roll high on intiative
2) Choose to spend an action on a knowledge check
3) Roll high enough to get the required knowledge.

Didn't happen, Amiri went first, caused the monsters special ability to activate, things just went south from there.

It didn't help that the only pregen with in combat healing is Kyra and we didn't bring Kyra. Yes, there are alternate means but the pregens don't have them.

No Kyra, wizard rolled lower than barbarian == TPK

This scenario would be difficult but ok with player built characters at level 5. But with pregens and inexperienced players and inexperienced GMs its just too swingy and difficult

On the "bright" side its come very close to finalizing my opinion of PFS2. Not sure that Paizo considers that a good thing though considering the way my opinion is going.

I think PF2 may be a reasonable game with a decent GM modifying silly things. But with PFS insisting that things be run as written it really isn't.


Terrible introduction/poorly designed combat

1/5

Whoever decided to put

Spoiler:
black puddings
into this scenario should probably not be allowed to write scenarios in the future. Pregens have no way of dealing with them. This is an introduction for new players. TPKing them is not the way to get them interested in the system. The pregens likewise have few options for dealing with the final encounter. The GM that ran the game for me at GenCon just basically handwaived half of the last encounter. Not a good start at all.


Well, I liked it

5/5

I played this at a FLGS with a table who went with ye olde traditional party of 4 (Valeros, Kyra, Merisiel, Ezren) and a good time was had by all. I enjoyed the classic monsters and the PFS lore. It was also very cool that all the characters contributed significantly to skill checks, damage, and to the overall success of the mission. We finished the scenario, including the optional encounter, in well under 5 hours. All success conditions were obtained and nobody went down. I attribute this outcome to really stellar GM prep, as well as the intense focus and good play on the part of all the players. The known personalities of the pregens and their relationships allowed for some nice roleplay moments at our table and was actually quite helpful in fostering camaraderie among our group of strangers (your mileage may vary).

My personal experience was therefore excellent, which is reflected in the star rating of this review.

Having said that, my impression is that this is very much a scenario written for players who are already invested into PF, and in particular, into PFS. Despite the innovations of the new rules, the scenario setting itself has a very old-school feel that experienced players can enjoy but would be quite lost on casual walk-ins. As an introductory scenario for PFS2, #01-00 does do a good job of showcasing the expected difficulty level, and in emphasizing some of the "meta" of PFS (e.g. the importance of skill checks, knowledge, group tactics), but it is definitely not a gentle introduction and will not reward a passive or inattentive party.

GMs should prep the living hell out of this scenario, especially if they intend to run for inexperienced players. The optional encounter should be skipped. GMs should be proactive if they see vital clues being ignored or choices being made out of ignorance that are heading towards disaster. If at all possible, players would be best served if they do their homework beforehand and are conversant with the 2e core rulebook and the org play guide, and understand the capabilities of the pregens.


Just Misses the Mark

2/5

I played this with a fairly strong group of players with all six of the Level 5 pregens. At this point in time I have not GMed this nor read it. I may buy it to read up on the full lore and back story, but unless some additional pre-gens are created at level 5 I have no intention of running it in the future.

Let me start by saying, that I personally had a great time, but that my experience was not shared by all of the players at my table. In addition the GMing was great – I was fortunate enough to have John Compton run this for me at DragonCon. So the flaws that bring this down to only 2 stars are centered around two key points.

First, this is a poor “Intro” module, which is what it seems to be billed as. The difficulty level feels extremely high and many of the pregens are rendered close to useless in various fights, which does a poor job of highlighting the “good” about the various classes in PF2. In addition, because there are currently only six Level-5 pregens, you are stuck with the same mix of characters, which will likely lead to essentially the same problems my group faced. I played as Valeros (which apparently had a significant typo in his Shield stats that John corrected on the fly).

Spoiler:

I felt particularly bad for the Merisell and Fumbus players who felt ineffective throughout good portions of the night. I think it might have been better for Fumbus to have a more tailored load out for this particular scenario then the default one given – but without meta-gaming knowledge that is impossible. If it were based on just this scenario, I'd probably never look at the PF2 alchemist again. Which i think is a big miss.

Second, “Time”. We’re all new to PF2 right now, none of us have played level 4 or 5 before. So the scenario ramp up, and turn-by-turn play-time is long. If you are GMing this in a time boxed situation – just do everyone a favor and skip the optional encounter. We skipped this, but even without it we were sorely pressed for time. This made the end of the scenario feel overly rushed.

I did enjoy the plot, the backstory, and the overall flow of the adventure. I would recommend this at some point in the future when PF2e is a better understood rule set, but where things are right now with only 3 other PFS scenarios, I would recommend passing on this one for now – unless you are desperate to play all of the PFS content. And I would certainly say don’t play this first – as an introduction to playing or GMing PFS 2. Go play 1-01 (Absalom Initiation) or the Quest for that matter.

I almost want to give it 3 stars instead of 2 in part, because I think some of the flaws will get better with age. But I honestly can't recommend this scenario at this point in time.


Thoroughly enjoyed

5/5

Interesting scenario. Good story - my players had great fun with the research.

My players engaged with the story & managed to have some great fun. The enemies were actually fleshed out characters which had enough information on their goals for me to react when the players went off-book in terms of their approach to the problems.

It's definitely a scenario that was harder than most intro scenarios - but I think this will hold it's longevity. I'm hoping we'll hear more continuation of the story hints that are unloaded here.

We had a bit of trouble with the time slot, despite having 5 hours. We did run the optional encounter, but the encounter after it took substantial amounts of time. I'd probably recommend adding 30 mins to the optional encounter suggested run time if you want to finish on time.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Michael Sayre wrote:
Jib916 wrote:
Is there a link somewhere to the pregens? Not seeing them? (Or do we just use the 5th level Iconic pregens?)
Use the 5th level iconic pregens.

At GenCon, our party was Fumbus (Alc), Amiri (Bbn), Kyra (Clr), Valeros (Ftr), Merisiel (Rog), and Ezren (Wiz), since those were the only six pregens on the table.

I'm scheduled to run this at ReaperCon over Labor Day weekend.
I don't see the scenario prescribing which pregens to use.
Should I offer only these six to my players, or should I let them choose from all of the pregens?

Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Starfinder Maps Subscriber
Derek Schubert wrote:
Michael Sayre wrote:
Jib916 wrote:
Is there a link somewhere to the pregens? Not seeing them? (Or do we just use the 5th level Iconic pregens?)
Use the 5th level iconic pregens.

At GenCon, our party was Fumbus (Alc), Amiri (Bbn), Kyra (Clr), Valeros (Ftr), Merisiel (Rog), and Ezren (Wiz), since those were the only six pregens on the table.

I'm scheduled to run this at ReaperCon over Labor Day weekend.
I don't see the scenario prescribing which pregens to use.
Should I offer only these six to my players, or should I let them choose from all of the pregens?

Unless there is an update before then, those are still the only six pregens available at level 5.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Kyrand wrote:
Derek Schubert wrote:
Michael Sayre wrote:
Jib916 wrote:
Is there a link somewhere to the pregens? Not seeing them? (Or do we just use the 5th level Iconic pregens?)
Use the 5th level iconic pregens.

At GenCon, our party was Fumbus (Alc), Amiri (Bbn), Kyra (Clr), Valeros (Ftr), Merisiel (Rog), and Ezren (Wiz), since those were the only six pregens on the table.

I'm scheduled to run this at ReaperCon over Labor Day weekend.
I don't see the scenario prescribing which pregens to use.
Should I offer only these six to my players, or should I let them choose from all of the pregens?
Unless there is an update before then, those are still the only six pregens available at level 5.

Thanks for the quick reply.

I've downloaded the pack of iconics and now I see. That's easy.

Dark Archive

Michael Sayre wrote:
Jib916 wrote:
Is there a link somewhere to the pregens? Not seeing them? (Or do we just use the 5th level Iconic pregens?)
Use the 5th level iconic pregens.

So for those of us that don't have access to all the secret links to all the PFS2 documentation... can I have a link to the pregens?

Paizo Employee Organized Play Developer

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Callandor Prespotus wrote:
Michael Sayre wrote:
Jib916 wrote:
Is there a link somewhere to the pregens? Not seeing them? (Or do we just use the 5th level Iconic pregens?)
Use the 5th level iconic pregens.
So for those of us that don't have access to all the secret links to all the PFS2 documentation... can I have a link to the pregens?

Word.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Maps, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Is Paizo going to do anything about those of us who had complementary PFS subscriptions last month but paid for this product by mistake since they never gave us any clear indication that it would be part of the subscription? Certainly nobody got this module as part of the last drop even though we can now start a PFS subscription with it.

Paizo Employee Organized Play Developer

2 people marked this as a favorite.
David knott 242 wrote:

Is Paizo going to do anything about those of us who had complementary PFS subscriptions last month but paid for this product by mistake since they never gave us any clear indication that it would be part of the subscription? Certainly nobody got this module as part of the last drop even though we can now start a PFS subscription with it.

I honestly have no idea, but I've brought your question to the attention of those who can get an answer.


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Any news on what was asked by David knott 242?


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Maps, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

I got mine fixed via Customer Service. Your best bet is probably to ask them for that refund.


I am a bit confused by the chronicle at the end of this scenario. The chronicle says that you can award it to "any character of levels 1-5 who does not already have a copy of this Chronicle sheet."
However, the scenario is not tagged as repeatable. Reporting for the events seems to be marking all 2e scenarios as repeatable, so that's not a good source to get an answer. Does anyone know if it's possible for players to receive credit for this scenario more than once?

Paizo Employee Organized Play Developer

Avram Suson wrote:

I am a bit confused by the chronicle at the end of this scenario. The chronicle says that you can award it to "any character of levels 1-5 who does not already have a copy of this Chronicle sheet."

However, the scenario is not tagged as repeatable. Reporting for the events seems to be marking all 2e scenarios as repeatable, so that's not a good source to get an answer. Does anyone know if it's possible for players to receive credit for this scenario more than once?

It is not inherently repeatable, but that doesn't mean that there won't be ways to get a replay for it, and since the Chronicle doesn't apply to the character who earns it (since it's a pregen scenario) we want to be clear about the limitations on applying the Chronicle.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Superscriber

Should this be part of a Pathfinder subscription? I have a subscription but not this scenario.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Maps, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Yes, it is part of the subscription. It was added late in a slightly irregular manner. If you should have gotten it and didn't or if you paid for it when you should have gotten it for free, you should contact Customer Service to get the issue fixed.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

I've been playing pathfinder since 2012, this is the worst map I've ever had to draw.

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