Pathfinder Adventure: The Slithering

2.20/5 (based on 17 ratings)
Pathfinder Adventure: The Slithering
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In the cosmopolitan trading city of Kibwe, at the edge of the Mwangi Expanse, innocent people struck by a terrible curse known as the slithering are melting into malevolent oozes. The heroes are at the epicenter of this slimy curse and might be the only ones capable of recovering the ancient magic required to break it. Tracking the course of the slithering through Kibwe's colorful markets and shrines, the heroes must untangle the curse's origin and discover the role the nefarious Aspis Consortium plays in the unfolding conspiracy. The mysteries the heroes uncover might usher in a new era of plenty and prosperity for Kibwe, if the heroes can survive the slithering to experience it!

The Slithering is a deluxe adventure for 5th-level characters written by Ron Lundeen. Featuring terrifying new monsters, repulsive new rules and magic items, and an in-depth look at one of the most exciting cities in the jungle-choked Mwangi Expanse, The Slithering provides a wealth of secrets and dangers!

This adventure can be used with the Pathfinder Flip-Mat: The Slithering.

ISBN: 978-1-64078-272-3

"The Slithering" is sanctioned for use in Pathfinder Society Organized Play. The rules for running this Adventure and Chronicle sheet are available as a free download.

Note: All four pregenerated characters for The Slithering are available as a free download here!

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

Hero Lab Online
Fantasy Grounds Virtual Tabletop
Pathfinder Nexus on Demiplane
Roll20 Virtual Tabletop
Archives of Nethys

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

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PZO9557


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Average product rating:

2.20/5 (based on 17 ratings)

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Not Bad, Not Great

3/5

I ran this module for a group of four in a Play-By-Post format. The team consisted of a Redeemer champion, Evil Eye witch, Storm druid, and Dragon summoner.

To open, I do like this module. It has a very interesting story and makes the stakes feel quite real, it’s just that the execution and the meta-mechanical aspects makes it just fine rather than great. To open, oozes are perhaps my favorite enemies in PF2, but they’re also quite difficult to balance. What I mean is, a group of players could approach with a clever strategy for defeating them, such as stacking their turns through the Delay action and then split the oozes as much as possible before taking them all out with a single fireball. Just as likely, however, is a group that knows very little about oozes accidentally putting themselves in an unwinnable situation. If a single ooze represents a Severe encounter, splitting it once or twice easily bumps it up to an Extreme encounter and can lead to some swift TPKs for the unprepared.

That aside, the entire adventure is not ooze, which is good. As a schitck, it gets old rather quickly. Chapter One is incredibly strong, with plenty of investigation (though I’m not personally a fan of the “tug-of-war” mechanic that public debate has). A rushed GM, or perhaps cynical GM could run Chapter One in its entirety and rewrite the ending for a lovely one-shot game. The game really begins with Chapter Two, as does the gauntlet of encounters. This isn’t necessarily bad, but it can wear on groups going from one fight to the next, especially when they’re nova encounters that can be quite difficult. I wish that perhaps the journey to the encounter site in Chapter Two could have shown off a bit more of Holy Xatramba, perhaps with some sneaking or other mechanics. Aspiring GMs could cut out some encounters and replace them with the GMG’s Heist mechanics to make their way into the city safely. Chapter Three is really the resolution and sadly where things fell apart a bit more for me. More encounters leading up to the final romp through the dungeon - these are actually fantastic and give a feeling of just what is at stake if the heroes fail. It shows that things have gotten bad and I really love it. The last dungeon itself has a clever idea that unfortunately feels a bit wasted. It’s the same location as one they visited in Chapter One, but slightly different as it’s been reinforced by the enemy. That said, there are only a few opportunities for the PCs to use what they learned before to great effect. While some things have changed, it very much just feels like going through the same setpieces but with new encounters.

Finally, and perhaps this is me being nitpicky, but the final encounter doesn’t feel like there’s much weight to it. The culprit behind the curse has already died before the game’s beginning, which leaves a hole for a mastermind or someone for the characters to oppose. It ends up being that the final enemy (while they can make a rather interesting encounter with their skillset) is someone from out of left field. Importantly, this person has very little incentive to actually follow through on their orders. Again, this is another opportunity for a GM to potentially introduce a non-combat encounter as an alternative to ending the module.

At the end of the day, this is an adventure with a lot of good ideas, but ends up falling short of expectations.


1/5


Why such a low rating?

4/5

I just finished running it with a group of 4 (cleric, paladin, wizard, monk), and it was an enjoyable romp. The party sliced through all encounters with ease, in fact, and they seemed to have enjoyed the story well enough. Granted, I had to do a bit of retuning, and I made chapter 3 shorter cause running the same dungeon with different enemies is not very fun (hence 1 star off). Overall it's a solid adventure as long as GM makes a few adjustments.




3/5

I agree with most of the reviews to date, but think they're being a little harsh with the star rating.

1. There are a lot of fights. Some people like that. My players did.

2. The fights were tough. Some people like that. My players were okay with it. There was only one fight that seemed unfair from a design standpoint, and that was the spectre fight.

3. The pregens seemed bad. I don't consider this a negative, because everybody I play with prefers to play with their own characters.

4. I wish there were more scheduled activities in Chapter 2. I felt like the PCs were very isolated, without any resources to draw from.

Overall, it was a decent Adventure that met a limited set of expectations.


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Pathfinder Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
TOZ wrote:
So you knew the answer and still asked the question?

This is not an uncommon part of dialogue. It's often used when one suspects the other person hasn't given much consideration to their position. Giving them an opportunity to answer a question about it might stimulate critical thinking.

A recent example: I was in a discussion with someone about recent riots across the US. She made a comment that the CDC said it was OK to riot. Obviously the CDC did no such thing, so I basically asked her a question that was her own statement: "The CDC said it was OK to riot?" knowing the answer is of course no. This caused her to reconsider what she said, that the CDC did not in fact say it was OK to riot, but instead that groups of people up to a certain size could gather and not necessarily cause a problem, and she was interpreting it in the worst possible manner. It's a form of conversation that is less in your face than flat out telling someone they're wrong, as it gives them an opportunity to gracefully revise their position. In a way it is a version of the Socratic method, and it's a shame it isn't used more in our society. Of course some people will double down without a second thought, but that's human nature I suppose.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
CorvusMask wrote:
Like, sure, new edition so monster abilities might be different, but saying trolls don't like fire or skeletons don't like bludgeoning is a spoiler is really weird :P Its usually something gms tells to players as tutorial on how weaknesses and regeneration and such work.

That's a shame, because that GM is robbing those players of the chance to encounter such a thing organically in-game, as their character would, which is a wonderful experience. It may be hard for us seasoned players to remember what it was like to be completely new, but I feel we should all try. I have a new player joining my Age of Ashes campaign that has never played an RPG outside of a few Xbox games, and I am asking the other players to let him discover such things on his own as we play. Denying him that opportunity is cruel in my eyes. If I need to explain how vulnerabilities and resistances work I will make something up as it is extremely simple to do so.

Dark Archive

3 people marked this as a favorite.
Fumarole wrote:
CorvusMask wrote:
Like, sure, new edition so monster abilities might be different, but saying trolls don't like fire or skeletons don't like bludgeoning is a spoiler is really weird :P Its usually something gms tells to players as tutorial on how weaknesses and regeneration and such work.
That's a shame, because that GM is robbing those players of the chance to encounter such a thing organically in-game, as their character would, which is a wonderful experience. It may be hard for us seasoned players to remember what it was like to be completely new, but I feel we should all try. I have a new player joining my Age of Ashes campaign that has never played an RPG outside of a few Xbox games, and I am asking the other players to let him discover such things on his own as we play. Denying him that opportunity is cruel in my eyes. If I need to explain how vulnerabilities and resistances work I will make something up as it is extremely simple to do so.

And I think you are getting dangerously close to "wrongbadfun" territory of saying what you think everyone prefers :p

Shadow Lodge

6 people marked this as a favorite.
Fumarole wrote:
TOZ wrote:
So you knew the answer and still asked the question?
This is not an uncommon part of dialogue.

I know. I use it often.


4 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Rulebook Subscriber
PFRPGrognard wrote:
TwilightKnight wrote:

Yeah, to follow up on my last comment, DO NOT PLAY A SWASHBUCKLER! especially not the pregen version. There are waaay too many oozes in this that are immune to all your damage types. Ordinarily I wouldn't spoiler in the open, but this is too important.

The swashbuckler is an awesome class, the pregen is a well-built character and I really like this module. However, IMO it is incredibly bad design to release an adventure with the intention of featuring the four new classes from the APG when nearly all of the creatures in the first Chapter of the adventure are immune to virtually everything you do. During the first chapter of the adventure, the swashbuckler is essentially nothing more than a an NPC class, punching with their first and hoping (very unlikely) to win the battle of hit point attrition.

What's up with the open spoilers? That's pretty inconsiderate.

TwilightKnight's statement was not a spoiler. It was a public service announcement. I couldn't agree more with every word that was written. The fact that a pregen swashbuckler was published for this adventure has to be some sort of cruel joke. I shudder to imagine a new player handed the pregen swashbuckler to play for this adventure.

Grand Lodge

1 person marked this as a favorite.
PFRPGrognard wrote:
No, I didn't ignore you justifying being inconsiderate. I'm pointing it out whether you like it or not.

Fair enough. Given that I prefaced my comments that it might be considered a spoiler, it appears that I don’t care if someone thinks it is. IMO the information to future players and GMs outweighs any minor consideration of spoilers in this case. The point of playing is to have fun and bringing a swashbuckler to this adventure is very likely to negatively impact that fun. This is an incredibly challenging adventure if run “correctly” so players should be cautious about having characters that will be significantly gimped through at least a third of the action.

Besides, telling you not to play a swashbuckler is no more/less spoilery than telling you not to play a human.

And as others have said, it’s not much of a spoiler when the published summary for the product clearly indicates that oozes are present.

Dark Archive

I think this adventure does show that there needs to be greater variety in oozes of this level range :p

Also while ooze part of the adventure is the nastiest part, did anybody else get feeling that for ooze themed adventure this adventure lacks... Ooze themes?

Like besides lack of setpieces(I do like the thing they did with flip mat, but it would have worked better if adventure started with said map so there was longer period time before pcs return to it), after oozes its

basically just:
dinosaur fiends, cultists and corporate lackies.


Will there be a Roll20 version as there was for Plaguestone?

Scarab Sages

Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Maps, PF Special Edition, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
FlorianF wrote:
Will there be a Roll20 version as there was for Plaguestone?

I think the answer is yes.

The Slithering

Liberty's Edge

The back of the book synopsis didn't mention anything about this being a non human adventure so I bought it for a particular adventuring party in mind (that has two humans in it). If I had seen that I wouldn't have purchased it at this time. Kind irritated.


4 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Evan Clarke wrote:
The back of the book synopsis didn't mention anything about this being a non human adventure so I bought it for a particular adventuring party in mind (that has two humans in it). If I had seen that I wouldn't have purchased it at this time. Kind irritated.

Yes it does...

Grand Lodge

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Quote from the back cover..."The Slithering is a stand-alone adventure for Pathfinder Second Edition, designed for 5th-level non-human characters."
*emphasis mine


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Evan Clarke wrote:
The back of the book synopsis didn't mention anything about this being a non human adventure so I bought it for a particular adventuring party in mind (that has two humans in it). If I had seen that I wouldn't have purchased it at this time. Kind irritated.

It's not like you can't Mac'Guffin some excuse for the transformation taking longer on them. Like the a slither of power from the Cursebreaker getting into them the first time they get to Temple of Sun. Then the slow effect makes their organs change somehow eventualy granting them the Oozemorph Archtype and some feats.

Yay! With almost no work you turned something bad into something your players are going to think is awesome.

Dark Archive

Oh hey sanctioning

Dark Archive

So on the now nerfed originally potentially tpk causing encounter depending on how you run it:
spectre encounter, now that spectres have been nerfed in errata they are much less over powered and thus would be completely useless in sunlight... But I wasn't aware of the errata, so when I run this module second time for non pregen party(first time it was pregens), I run them as originally written (and still assuming sunlight since nothing in encounter states its during night or cloudy day) x'D

So first time I run this for pregens, party recognized pretty fast that they could (and should) kite them to death since they had only one action. I think one of them might have gotten hit once, but realized to avoid it once they realized what spectral corruption did and nobody got dominated.

Second time I run this for non pregen party, they were confident enough to take multiple hits and actually get dominated :'D They still won since they had good melee line up even though champion got crit fail dominated, but it does lean me to assume that encounter really was originally designed for "use over powered spectres in sunlight" since as long players make mistake of not avoiding them, fight is still semi tough even in sunlight due to how op pre nerf spectres are.

Paizo Employee Marketing & Media Manager

4 people marked this as a favorite.

Content Note:
While Pathfinder Adventure: The Slithering contains typical Pathfinder action and adventure, it also includes themes of contagion and quarantine. Before you begin, understand that player consent (including that of the Game Master) is vital to a safe and fun play experience for everyone. You should talk with your players before beginning the adventure and modify descriptions or scenarios as appropriate.

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