Starfinder Society Scenario #2-13: Storm of the End Times

4.50/5 (based on 2 ratings)

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A Starfinder Society Scenario designed for levels 1–4 (subtiers 1–2 and 3–4).

Over two years ago, the Starfinder Society recovered the reports of a crashed starship that pointed them to several sites of interest. The world of Wealdriad is one such location, far from the Pact Worlds in the depths of the Vast. The Society has recently determined the planet is about to undergo a once-in-a-lifetime natural phenomena. The PCs travel to Wealdriad to catalogue the experience, but soon find that other forces have come to monitor the event and that not all of those witnesses are peaceful.

Written by: Nicholas Wasko

Scenario tags: Vehicle

[Scenario Maps spoiler - click to reveal]

The following maps used in this scenario are also available for purchase here on paizo.com:

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

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Average product rating:

4.50/5 (based on 2 ratings)

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An ambitious and well realized take on the influence scenario

5/5

Just a fantastic scenario - a little bit of everything and a great time to be had for GMs and players who are comfortable doing a bit of freeform role-playing. The scenario presents a legitimate mystery locked inside of a very fun take on the influence scenario (a la First Mandate and Siege of Civility - this one blows both away)

I will note that this is a scenario that is asking the GM to meet it more than halfway in order to make work. In order to have room to fit in the swiss army knife of action politics and exploration into the scenario they did have to go a little bit sparse on the details and so I highly recommend prospective GMs spend a little extra time with this scenario giving it a little TLC. I recommend hitting the ole Starfinder wiki and taking some notes - even being ready to have answers for culture and mysticism checks regarding the various factions present. This scenario assumes a lot of intimate knowledge of the setting by GMs so be sure to brush up.
Consider having the bonuses from Ace Pilot apply when people are being dropped off at their various pillars to give them a chance to identify the factions based on their choice of aircraft.

If you can find ways to bring the individual spires and characters to life and draw your connections between the obvious dots that the author has laid out this stands to be one of the more memorable and satisfying non-combat intensive missions that I have seen.

The combats in this one:

Two of them are absolutely perfunctory. The fight with the ferrofluid ooze is both a little disappointing - you literally fight a ferrofluid ooze in another year 2 1-4 adventure - it can be VERY hard if the party lacks certain offensive options.

The fight with the hostile fish is fun and funny. The scenario recommends placing it right before the climax but I think this creates unnecessary separation between players and their goals at the end. Instead I recommend placing this at a point during investigation and diplomacy where things have gotten a little repetitive and the players attention is starting to drag.

The last combat is very fun. Consider having the cultists play a bit of keep away so you get a chance to trigger your black hole ability to drag people off of boats - this was a highly memorable combat.

All in all this was a very fun 4 hours and comes highly recommended despite the heavy lifting I needed to do to make the scenario truly shine!


A great concept, averagely executed

4/5

Storm of the End Times is a bit sloppy in some ways and it suffers for it. Even so, in the hands of a good GM or a well-prepared GM, it will still be fun.

Some spoilery challenges:
The adventure feels like a few things were missing here.

For starters, one of the NPCs is of a race that doesn't appear in any published source (rather, it appears in a previous adventure; see the GM thread). The race isn't described or explained in the scenario, unfortunately.

The scenario asks you to chat up a number of different factions and make friends with them. (Gain their favor.) There's a handy handout to help you with this, which I'll mention a little later. The scenario forgot to mention what task you need to perform to make friends with certain factions, though, or you can't make friends with them all and that fact wasn't described in the text. At least one other faction only "favors" PCs with a certain scenario boons. This is an unfortunate complication because the players can only explore a faction's location if they have gained favor from that faction. That isn't necessarily a problem, but the handout seems to indicate that you can gain favor with every (normal) faction. That, combined with the problem that there's no note saying which factions you can't gain favor with, suggests that a mistake was made somewhere in authoring or development here and some information was cut or was never written.

The handout hints at another potential issue--a final faction, the cultists, is noted in the handout as landing at a certain stage, but their appearance isn't noted anywhere else in the text! They just sort of magically appear without further comment when they blow up a pillar. Again, it can be worked around if you prepare, but it really made me think that the whole "cultists show up" event was missing.

Finally, the final combat encounter was very strange. The stat blocks were fine (not that I deconstructed them in any detail) but the setting is a ledge on a pillar that has been rigged to explode--and the explosives have gone missing! The players are strongly hinted to go defuse the bombs but there's no mention of how to do that, or where they are on the map. Again, a GM can improvise this bit and it's generally fine, but it would have been helpful to have a couple of markers on the map with an Engineering DC at least.

That said, the more I think on this, the more I like the scenario:
You get to go to a weird location, you have a bunch of social encounters interspersed with investigation, and then you have a fight at the end. It's a little trite, sure, but it's a really good mix and works for all kinds of characters.

The various factions (except for the cultists, whose entry got deleted or was never written or something) are all detailed enough to give a GM something to work with to really bring out the different personalities and make life interesting. And the astronomers are a very nice callout to a race in an Alien Archive that has some serious potential.

The setting is a great one--maybe a little reminiscent of the Gloomspires in a way, but that's not necessarily a bad thing. There are a lot of little callbacks to our friend Morlamaws that I appreciated.

Finally, with enough prep, I was able to work around all of the issues mentioned above. It wasn't perfect, but it worked. Everyone at the table had a good time, which in the end is the metric by which we should measure ourselves.

I would love to give this 3.5 stars out of 5. I was going to give it 3 right after running, but after sleeping on it a couple of nights, I'm going to round up instead. Everyone had a good time with it. If the development had gone a little more smoothly, I'd probably bump this up to 4 (from 3.5) or even 5 stars.

So in sum: it can be very good. Just make sure you take the time to prep this. It's not a good one to run cold.


Dark Archive

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Well, this is dramatic name for scenario


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

What maps are featured in this scenario?

Dark Archive

Kaushal Avan Spellfire wrote:
What maps are featured in this scenario?

Ye can read them in shop blurb nowadays


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
CorvusMask wrote:
Kaushal Avan Spellfire wrote:
What maps are featured in this scenario?
Ye can read them in shop blurb nowadays

Oh, that's a nice change. I'm going to miss Thursty, though.

Silver Crusade

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Any idea when this scenario will be reportable? I have two reporting sheets burning a hole on my dinning room table.


FireElemental wrote:
Any idea when this scenario will be reportable? I have two reporting sheets burning a hole on my dinning room table.

Same -_-

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