Pathfinder Adventure Path #145: Hellknight Hill (Age of Ashes 1 of 6)

3.40/5 (based on 18 ratings)
Pathfinder Adventure Path #145: Hellknight Hill (Age of Ashes 1 of 6)

Add Print Edition $24.99

Add PDF $17.99

Facebook Twitter Email

Dawn of a New Age

Fires burn atop the ruined citadel on Hellknight Hill, sending plumes of red smoke into the air that could be a call for help. Within the old keep, strange invaders from a distant land, mysterious long-lost ruins, and the machinations of a shadowy organization await discovery. Something dire is building toward an apocalyptic event, and it falls to your characters to stop the end before it begins. The Age of Ashes Adventure Path begins with "Hellknight Hill"—a complete adventure for 1st- to 4th-level characters.

ISBN: 978-1-64078-173-3

Online Resources: Rules and mechanics from this book can be accessed for free on Paizo's official online resource: Archives of Nethys. Click here!

Note: This product is part of the Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscription.

Product Availability

Print Edition:

Available now

Ships from our warehouse in 1 to 5 business days.

PDF:

Fulfilled immediately.

Are there errors or omissions in this product information? Got corrections? Let us know at store@paizo.com.

PZO90145


See Also:

1 to 5 of 18 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | next > last >>

Average product rating:

3.40/5 (based on 18 ratings)

Sign in to create or edit a product review.

5/5

Simply a very good adventure to start playing pf2. You find interesting, very easy for a novice Gm in pf2 to direct and carry it correctly. There are opportunities for role-playing, research and combat in a manageable environment for a novice Gm.
The book is structured in a fantastic way.
Sincerely, a first book of the path totally recommended to start with pf2.


New Edition, Old School Feel

5/5

Despite providing some new twists (such as rescuing goblins from a crazed halfling instead of the other way around), a lot of Hellknight Hill feels like a callback to older dungeon crawls. The PCs have a large structure to delve through and numerous factions with which to interact. A desire for exploration drives most of the adventure, allowing the PCs to grow together as a group and figure out how to unearth the secrets of Hellknight Hill in their own way.

The factions provide a lot of potential for expansion and interaction. In a short amount of space, the text delivers a good feel for each monster and its motivations. This leaves a lot of room for expansion of the GM desires and lets the PCs choose many different ways to bypass their problems. Do the adventurers kill all the monsters? Do they work with some of them? Play the different factions off of each other? These choices seem basic, but the fact that the adventure doesn't push the PCs too hard down one path allows the group to find their own identity and grow together as a team.

This volume lacks a real big bad at the end (although one particular nasty foe can turn into a TPK if the PCs get too cocky). Technically, the cultists the PCs face do have a named leader, but he and his followers are in a desperate situation themselves and don't feel like end bosses. However, their presence provides enough foreshadowing that PCs should be intrigued by what the future holds.

In terms of feel, I think this module compares to old school D&D modules like In Search of the Unknown and Keep on the Borderlands. The story unfolds gradually, but in doing so it showcases the latitude and depth of options that RPGs allow. The adventure thus serves as a great introduction to new players without repeating so many old tropes that old players might get bored.

Hellknight Hill serves as a solid first volume to the Age of Ashes adventure path, but it can also function as a stand-alone adventure if desired. It's a fun adventure with a wide variety of challenges, interesting NPCs, and lots of room for expansion.


Tons of fun

5/5

Had a lot of fun with this, just got through it, players loved it.


Solid intro for second edition

3/5

This adventure is packed with traditional fantasy rpg elements and monsters as well as some new ones. It has some fun NPCs that could be friends, rivals or outright enemies depending on what your players choose. That said, this adventure is not ground breaking.
The plot is a good scene setter for the Adventure Path, which itself is going to be ethically fascinating.
Some things feel quite rushed, the art, for instance, is repeatedly inconsistent with the text. The physical barriers between each chapter feel forced.

I see two audiences for this adventure:

1) People new to fantasy RPGs, who get a solid introduction to the genre in its traditional form. This will put the weird and wonderful things that Paizo do into context.
2) Seasoned gamers, who will get to see how the rules of second edition work with all those old school elements.

One thing in it stands out as not being old school, and that is the diversity. This is one of the things I love about Paizo: real world discrimination exists and can be a focus of an adventure BUT in most places your average shopkeep isn't misogynistic. On Golarian there are too many lich demi-gods of fantastic ancestries who are raining down terror for most people to create our naive, real-world biases.


Wary of the direction of Golarion.

2/5

A short summary of my impressions on Hellknight Hill, and the direction AP's are taking in general:

1) They're making goblins too cute. I imagine they want Goblins to be cleaner because they're hoping hoping for a younger and more broad 5e "critical role" audience crossover. Also, because they've made goblins a core class, they figure goblins should be more socially acceptable?

I don't like that.

Something I like about Pathfinder APs is that they haven't shied away from gritty and sometimes awful themes. I don't want a toned-down 'safe' world to play in.

Cute goblins are easily fixable though. And I have no problems making things nasty and horrific myself.

2) There are some other strange plot holes, but easy to fix. I've been seeing more of these plot holes in more recent APs (since Return of the Runelords, you can see my review of Roderick's Cove under that product.)

I wonder if Paizo has been overworked with the release of PF2, and that's making the AP's suffer. I'm holding out for the January 2020 AP. That will tell the tale on whether there is another problem other than a lack of manpower.

3) Some NPCs are ridiculously obvious and feel like they're written for 12-year old players who need to be smashed over the head with plot. Again, I'm wary that Paizo might be trying to make their stories more accessible, and by doing that, losing some of the great (adult) atmosphere they've created in the past.

CONCLUSION: This book makes me wonder: will they ever do a horror AP again? If they've made goblins into friends, are they going to tone down the horror of incestuous ogres, etc?

I wouldn't call it a classic AP book by any means, but the format is good and some aspects are nicely thought out. I think it could be a really interesting campaign, but I'm very wary of the 'safe' and almost trite tone that they're taking, and of the weak plot holes that should be fixed with more time and editing.

I was worried that they would reformat the books to reduce content, but there is plenty of content in this book. It actually feels more dense than previous APs.


1 to 5 of 18 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | next > last >>
151 to 200 of 343 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | next > last >>
Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion, Maps, Pawns, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

On a scale of 1 to a steamer trunk full, how many dragon miniatures should I have to run this AP?

Paizo Employee Creative Director

13 people marked this as a favorite.
Thomas Seitz wrote:
I guess we'll see when part 6 gets released in 2020.

In fact, people will all see when part 1 gets released in 2019, since we've got a pretty detailed GM supplement in that volume to help folks run the game.

Dark Archive

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Card Game, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
James Jacobs wrote:
Thomas Seitz wrote:
I guess we'll see when part 6 gets released in 2020.
In fact, people will all see when part 1 gets released in 2019, since we've got a pretty detailed GM supplement in that volume to help folks run the game.

and even if we didn't, part 6 is coming out this year...

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Enlight_Bystand wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
Thomas Seitz wrote:
I guess we'll see when part 6 gets released in 2020.
In fact, people will all see when part 1 gets released in 2019, since we've got a pretty detailed GM supplement in that volume to help folks run the game.
and even if we didn't, part 6 is coming out this year...

January, unless they’re doing a double month.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

I think they are shifting the start of APs so that they are now July – December and January – June. Technically, the Second Edition products are part of the July releases, with only their street date delayed by one week.


Rysky wrote:
Enlight_Bystand wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
Thomas Seitz wrote:
I guess we'll see when part 6 gets released in 2020.
In fact, people will all see when part 1 gets released in 2019, since we've got a pretty detailed GM supplement in that volume to help folks run the game.
and even if we didn't, part 6 is coming out this year...
January, unless they’re doing a double month.

They are. Hellknight Hill comes out at the same time as Midwives to Death.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
HTD wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Enlight_Bystand wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
Thomas Seitz wrote:
I guess we'll see when part 6 gets released in 2020.
In fact, people will all see when part 1 gets released in 2019, since we've got a pretty detailed GM supplement in that volume to help folks run the game.
and even if we didn't, part 6 is coming out this year...
January, unless they’re doing a double month.
They are. Hellknight Hill comes out at the same time as Midwives to Death.

I was referring to a double for Age of Ashes.

Dark Archive

AGE OF ASHES: momentary intended release dates:

1: Hellknight Hill (august 1st)
2: Cult of Cinders (august 28th)
3: Tomorrow must burn (sept 18th)
4: Fires of the Haunted City (oct 16th)
5: Against the scarlet Triad (nov 13th)
6: Broken Promises (december 11th)

I expect the august volumes to be punctual.
The others could maybe move a week back.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Street date for Paizo products is usually the last Wednesday of the month, so more likely:

Part 1: Hellknight Hill – August 1 (exception, July product)
Part 2: Cult of Cinders – August 28
Part 3: Tomorrow must burn – September 25
Part 4: Fires of the Haunted City – October 30
Part 5: Against the scarlet Triad – November 27
Part 6: Broken Promises – December 26 (possibly a week later due to Christmas)


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

Based on past experience, the street dates for November and December should come before the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays, so my best guess would be November 20th and December 19th for the last two.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Ah, that makes sense. Sorry, as a European, I didn't even have Thanksgiving on my radar.


Thank you James Jacobs for reminding me that each opener will have a short summary of each other book.

Also I thought it was 2020 because I wasn't sure if there was enough time left in 2019 for Paizo to fit in ALL of this before the start of 2020.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

18 people marked this as a favorite.
Thomas Seitz wrote:

Thank you James Jacobs for reminding me that each opener will have a short summary of each other book.

Also I thought it was 2020 because I wasn't sure if there was enough time left in 2019 for Paizo to fit in ALL of this before the start of 2020.

Starting with Age of Ashes, each part 1 of our Adventure Paths will have more than a "short summary" of the rest of the campaign, but will have several pages of additional information and notes to help GMs prepare.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
James Jacobs wrote:
Thomas Seitz wrote:

Thank you James Jacobs for reminding me that each opener will have a short summary of each other book.

Also I thought it was 2020 because I wasn't sure if there was enough time left in 2019 for Paizo to fit in ALL of this before the start of 2020.

Starting with Age of Ashes, each part 1 of our Adventure Paths will have more than a "short summary" of the rest of the campaign, but will have several pages of additional information and notes to help GMs prepare.

This is excellent news as Age of Ashes will be the first Adventure Path that I will run as it is published.

Liberty's Edge

Will this one go to 20th lvl?


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
Paladinosaur wrote:
Will this one go to 20th lvl?

Apparently, the answer to that question is supposed to be "Yes" for the duration of 2nd edition.


All APs have been said to be envisioned to go from 1st to 20th level starting with Age of Ashes, a different pattern will be an exception in PF2E.


3 people marked this as a favorite.

So not only will PCs get to go the distance, GMs will now get MORE info so they can make a clearer determination of what each chapter will entail.

Good move Paizo guys. Good move.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Starfinder has sections of their AP books dedicated to lore that -could- be valuable to lore nerds like myself. If I were a player, I would be very tempted to purchase the Starfinder AP books and thumb through the backmatter.

Is this the case for the Pathfinder AP books as well? If it's just flavor to help a GM, I'm skipping it as a player. But if it's interesting lore and helps set the tone or provide tangential details... then I will probably buy them to use backmatter to add color for successful bardic knowledge rolls, for example.

Paizo Employee Customer Service & Community Manager

6 people marked this as a favorite.

I removed a derail about product release information.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

We got the updated product descriptions for the last four volumes, so could we get the descriptions for the first two, please? I'm really anxious to know the articles we are getting in those.

Scarab Sages

4 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Companion, Maps, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Charter Superscriber; Starfinder Superscriber

I think helping the goblins is going to be a nice inversion and callback to Burnt Offerings.


We actually got the updated product description for part 2 of Extinction Curse, however, we know nothing about the very first Adventure Path volume's additional content (articles and monsters)...

Knowing it would be great, really. =/


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Hrm, I got the shipping notice, but the PDF isn't available for download. What gives?


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
magnuskn wrote:
Hrm, I got the shipping notice, but the PDF isn't available for download. What gives?

The release of this month's pdfs is being delayed until 1 August due to the release of second edition at Gencon (August 1-4). There's a thread on it here somewhere — in the Customer Service forum, I think.

Silver Crusade

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Charter Superscriber

Here is the thread Ed Reppert mentioned.


magnuskn wrote:
Hrm, I got the shipping notice, but the PDF isn't available for download. What gives?

I'm pretty sure this is a joke. XD

... right?


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
The Gold Sovereign wrote:
magnuskn wrote:
Hrm, I got the shipping notice, but the PDF isn't available for download. What gives?

I'm pretty sure this is a joke. XD

... right?

It is not. PDFs for Second Edition products will become available on August 1. See the thread linked by Franz above.


Zaister wrote:
The Gold Sovereign wrote:
magnuskn wrote:
Hrm, I got the shipping notice, but the PDF isn't available for download. What gives?

I'm pretty sure this is a joke. XD

... right?

It is not. PDFs for Second Edition products will become available on August 1. See the thread linked by Franz above.

Sorry, I wasn't clear enough. I was actually referring to him expecting the pdfs earlier as a joke. I mean, Paizo wouldn't put their new product before the release.

Dark Archive

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Card Game, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
The Gold Sovereign wrote:
Zaister wrote:
The Gold Sovereign wrote:
magnuskn wrote:
Hrm, I got the shipping notice, but the PDF isn't available for download. What gives?

I'm pretty sure this is a joke. XD

... right?

It is not. PDFs for Second Edition products will become available on August 1. See the thread linked by Franz above.
Sorry, I wasn't clear enough. I was actually referring to him expecting the pdfs earlier as a joke. I mean, Paizo wouldn't put their new product before the release.

This is the first ever volume of the AP where they have done this - I believe the only book that they’ve done this for in the past is the 1st ed core book.

So it’s not an unreasonable query.

Paizo Employee Customer Service & Community Manager

3 people marked this as a favorite.

As a quick reminder, if you have a subscription to a line that has a release in this month July 2019's cycle that qualifies for a complimentary PDF, that PDF is currently just placeholder text. It will be updated on August 1st.

Scarab Sages

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Companion, Maps, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Charter Superscriber; Starfinder Superscriber

Which timezone are you marking as the start of this August 1? Eastern, Pacific, UTC, other?


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Companion, Maps Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
logic_poet wrote:
Which timezone are you marking as the start of this August 1? Eastern, Pacific, UTC, other?

It's generally when the doors open at GenCon. I don't remember the exact time, but it should be morning Central Time, I believe.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Bracing for the final countdown


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Companion, Maps Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Joana wrote:
logic_poet wrote:
Which timezone are you marking as the start of this August 1? Eastern, Pacific, UTC, other?
It's generally when the doors open at GenCon. I don't remember the exact time, but it should be morning Central Time, I believe.

I was too lazy last night to go looking for it, but I remembered Vic had given a time and it is here.

Vic Wertz wrote:
Diego Valdez wrote:
The kiosk will have the same hours as the exhibit hall. So it will open at 10am. There is no early VIP access to the kiosk. If you ave that it needs to be done in the exhibit hall.
Gen Con is no longer providing early access to the exhibit hall as part of their VIG program. It'll be 10 AM for *everyone* this year.

However, I thought Indianapolis was in the Central Time Zone, but turns out Indiana's just over the line into the Eastern Time Zone. So, 10 AM Eastern Daylight Time, August 1st.


2 people 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

That explains the 7 a.m. PDT time to go live for 2e.aonprd.com.

151 to 200 of 343 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | next > last >>
Community / Forums / Paizo / Product Discussion / Pathfinder Adventure Path #145: Hellknight Hill (Age of Ashes 1 of 6) All Messageboards

Want to post a reply? Sign in.