Starfinder Society Scenario #2-22: Rasheen's Reception

2.30/5 (based on 4 ratings)

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A Starfinder Society Scenario designed for levels 5-8 (subtiers 5-6 & 7-8).

Hot on the trail of the lost treasure fleet of the famous Pact Worlds explorer, Jelev Rasheen, the Starfinder Society finds the next clue in the path leading to the Near Space territory of the Marixah Republic. The PCs travel to this burgeoning stellar nation in search of the next leg of Rasheen's journey, and soon find themselves thrust into the politics of the region and as sudden facilitators of an ancient family pledge.

Written by: Mara Lynn Butler

Scenario tags: Faction (Acquisitives), Faction (Dataphiles)

[Scenario Maps spoiler - click to reveal]

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

  • No recommended maps.

Other Resources: This product is also available on the following platforms:

Fantasy Grounds Virtual Tabletop

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

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Average product rating:

2.30/5 (based on 4 ratings)

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Two good halves of a scenario, neither fully realized

2/5

Welcome to The First Mandate Part 3 where we bring back the full bevy of influence mechanics for the third time in this campaign.

And much like the previous scenario in this vein (Siege of Civility) it suffers from a disjointed presentation and everyone being left to ask why any of this was happening.

Part of this is a mismatch between concept and briefing (hey go to the place and find the beacon, which is probably in a dungeon someplace on this planet) and the actual meat of the scenario (charming 4 brand new PCs at a cocktail party). The cocktail party itself is pretty well realized and interesting but there isn't a whole lot of logical sense to the whole affair, especially once the motives of the owner of the land where the beacon is are revealed.

I thought the scenario did an excellent job of detailing what Marixah culture was like, which does juxtapose nicely against Siege of Civility, in which Gideron culture is showcased. And had that been the point of the mission that would have made way more sense. Especially given the big choice at the end of the scenario.

It's just so odd that the ongoing Marixah/Gideron conflict was mashed together with the Rasheen metaplot and in the end the two didn't really mix at all.

Given how detailed and drawn out the social section is, the dungeon section is necessarily truncated and the dungeon itself is one of the most bland and uninteresting locales that we have sent agents to.

The final fight is a huge letdown, though the first fight of the scenario is unique and fun, forcing some interesting tactical choices by PCs once they puzzle out what's happening (though again the question of why is this happening is not answered or even attempted to be answered).

In the end, I would have rather had the two concepts explored in the scenario given their fully realized due rather than suffer this poor mixture that did neither any favors.


Pretty good

4/5

Perspective: played this, and GMed it three times so far.

Few scenarios are truly perfect, and this one isn't either. But I really like the "reception" part, I think it's one of the better social encounters I've seen. The mechanics are kept straightforward but the NPCs have a lot of content to talk about, so as a GM you're not condemned to empty small talk and a dice roll.

There are a variety of clever bits happening under the hood to attach the social encounter to the next bit. The start of it is set up quite cleverly, with an unusual combat. Sadly, the final combat in the scenario is rather underwhelming by comparison. I feel like that last combat could have been trimmed and instead a more interactive social bit could have been added in the "tour" part of the scenario.

Despite some warts, I still think this is a very enjoyable scenario.


A terrible follow up scenario

1/5

This scenario ran long, wasn't really fun or engaging, and the monster at the end was total BS. I regret spending the high level game slot on this train wreck of a scenario.


Politics and Archaeology, but Little Excitement

2/5

I GM'ed this scenario.

Rasheen's Reception is the much-anticipated sequel to the Season 1 mission "Rasheen's Riches," and was certainly high on my "to run" list as a metaplot aficionado. However, while the scenario contains a variety of colorful characters and interesting locales, the overall effect falls flat of my initial expectations.

The problem is that Rasheen's Reception takes way too long to get going, positioning much of the action behind a lengthy social encounter that, while important, feels more like reading three news articles or global politics than introducing themes and concepts that will be brought up later in the story.

Full disclosure: I love the slowly building conflict between the Marixah Republic and the Gideron Authority. The political tension described throughout the scenario feels real. NPC characters have varied and diverse viewpoints on issues affecting them, and while some felt a bit two-dimensional, others felt genuine.

Now, on to the guts of the scenario. The social encounter is fine. Nothing interesting or impressive mechanically, although as I mentioned previously I do rather enjoy the cast of characters Mara Lynn Butler has assembled for it. And while this encounter is an important and necessary step for an archaeological expedition, it also feels like something that could have been resolved off-screen, before the players even arrive planet-side.

The second act is likewise bland. The encounter map is oversized and unexpressed, with large rectangular rooms and corridors, and little in the way of set dressing. Where set dressing does present itself, it often does so in an inconsequential way. The exception to this is a rather interesting combat encounter that take advantage of the environment. Unfortunately the enemy's otherwise simple tactics, combined with the bare nature of the combat arena, made the fight rather simple once the initial environmental interaction was divined and addressed.

Overall, Rasheen's Reception feels like a bit of a letdown. The scenario brings forward none of the organizations that were introduced in Rasheen's Riches, effectively killing the idea that this is a galactic race for a hidden treasure. The metaplot has lost its sense of adventure and exchanged it for a very practical--yet narratively unnecessary--political drama.

Had this scenario been part of another story, I might have awarded it 3 stars instead of 2. However, even then its faults are still apparent: Uninteresting exploration and mostly bland combat coupled with exhaustive exposition that might have been better shown--or broken-up piecemeal and distributed across several scenarios--than told all at once as it was.

Ultimately I am still invested in the Rasheen storyline and I'm excited to see where it goes next. Rasheen herself tantalizes us with a new and exotic destination, and I can't wait to set that course into the Vast!

Addendum: A point was raised to me after publishing this review that I feel I should also include here. The issue is with the half-page custom map the scenario uses. The map's scaling is visually confusing due to a grid-tile pattern within the map squares. This produces the impression that the map is larger than it is, as it is difficult to differentiate between tile and grid square. In the future, scenarios should avoid this kind of decoration unless the tile pattern is clearly distinct from the map grid.


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Announced for April!

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Technically this page has been updated to include the map list, but [spoilers] there are no recommended maps for this scenario.

Wayfinders

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Aaa! Six-legged hippodile! I can't wait to see how things are going in the Marixah Republic... ^_^


Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

Issue in monster stat block:

Spoiler:
The frenatas have light sensitivity, which does not appear to be a thing in Starfinder rules from what I can see, but is in Pathfinder. Guessing this should be something like: "The creature is dazzled in areas of bright light."


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

It's most likely intended to be light blindness, which is covered in Alien Archive.

Dark Archive

Huh:
voted to remain out of conflict because this is more of job for Pact World's Government than society of explorers :p That said the political conflict is really interesting, but its kinda hard to make decision on basis of this being first Republic vs Authority scenario I played and you don't get enough information in scenario to understand what are ramifications of decisions. Like does getting involved with conflict mean starfinders do diplomatic missions to facilitate peace or that they join one of sides and start attacking/sabotaging other faction?

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