Pathfinder Society Scenario #2-04: Path of Kings

4.60/5 (based on 12 ratings)

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A Pathfinder Society Scenario designed for levels 3-6.

The Pathfinders sail across the Arcadian Ocean, hoping to establish a new lodge on the continent of Arcadia. Following the course laid out centuries before by the Linnorm Kings, the PCs hope to arrive at the legendary Ulfen settlement of Valenhall. What they find when they arrive is a scene quite different than what they were led to expect, and the Pathfinders must deal with a number of factions, both Ulfen and Arcadian, if they hope to succeed in their mission.

Written by: Luis Loza

Scenario tags: Horizon Hunters

[Scenario Maps spoiler - click to reveal]

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

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

Fantasy Grounds Virtual Tabletop

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

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Average product rating:

4.60/5 (based on 12 ratings)

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Not a fan of the structure, but otherwise a solid scenario.

4/5

(I played this.)

In all honesty, I don't like adventures like this. It's mostly the storyline that feels like three separate miniquests glued together, with only the location tying them together. It feels more like busywork than an actual adventure. I did like the diplomacy-part being split among two groups, so you can't just let one person do all the talking. That was a neat little thing, IMHO.

The location feels a bit odd, suddenly being on Arcadia without much fanfare, and honestly, not much is done with it. Like another reviewer said, this feels like it could've taken place anywhere. But I guess it advances Sveinn Blood-Eagle's plot, which will become relevant later.

Combats felt pretty good. While not super exciting, they offered a surprising challenge, so props for that.

Overall, while I don't really like the structure of this adventure, I really can't find any faults in it. I'm not super excited by it, but it does what it set out to do really well. I just wish the location was explored a bit more.


A tidy teaser

5/5

The adventure does exactly what I want it to, while the setting has me excited for more to come!


Meh... No Flavor, Easy Fights

2/5

So, I had a longer review typed up - but the internet ate it. So I'll be more succinct this time. Please note that I played the scenario at low-tier, and read over the scenario as well (in case I have to GM it later).

That typed, I disagree with the other reviewers - this scenario was a major disappointment for me.

For one thing, the scenario doesn't do it's setting justice. There's nothing that happens that couldn't happen in a previously established snowy locale (for instance, it could've been set in the Linnorm Kingdoms just as easily - and the entire story would've been mostly kept intact).

The scenario also relies too heavily on fetch-quests, and doesn't really take the time to mesh the quests together in a satisfying way, or to have any meaningful roleplay interactions - especially since Sveinn Bloodeagle is present in the scenario, and it would've been awesome to have a more meaningful interaction with him.

Finally, the fights are too easy. The only battle that has any real threat is the final one, but when I played through it, our party handled the encounter without much issue at all.

Overall, in my opinion this was a very disappointing first outing into an uncharted continent. I wanted so much more, and while I am still looking forward to Part 2 of the Arcadia arc, I hope that the next installment will value story over formulaic fetch-quests - as well as have some challenging fights.


Solid all around

5/5

Not much to say that hasn't already been said by the other reviews, I look forward to seeing more Arcadia.


Awesome and motivating

5/5

Hi!
I ran this scenario yesterday, and I am relly flashed. It had an awesome and very immersive story, the fights were well designed and quite hard. The interactions of the characters had been implemented into the scenario in a very good way.
The whole story was well rounded, and all of my players asked: "When will part 2 of this adventure begin? When are we following Sveinn-Blood Eagle to Valenhall to unravel its mysteries?"
Very good scenario, i totally recommend it.


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Paizo Employee Webstore Coordinator

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Announced for September! Product image and description are not final and may be subject to change.

Contributor

6 people marked this as a favorite.

Arcadia! :o

Dark Archive

Isn't that 1e valkyrie picture?

I mean yeah placeholder I know, but I'm trying to remember which picture that was

Silver Crusade

That is indeed the P1 Valkyrie.

Grand Lodge

1 person marked this as a favorite.

I like the new art! Very excited.

Silver Crusade

Oooo, me too

Paizo Employee Designer

8 people marked this as a favorite.
Sasha Laranoa Harving wrote:
I like the new art! Very excited.

Rahaksenwe will be one of the very last new characters I got to add to the PFS continuum as its line lead, and I'm super happy about how her art turned out, too! Especially since she's part of establishing how big Arcadia is; there's a reason she doesn't have the same garb as some of the other depictions of Arcadian residents we've seen, and that reason is that it's a huge continent with lots of diverse cultures. We'll get to meet a couple of them in this adventure, and hopefully that'll open the door to meet even more down the road :)

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps Subscriber
Michael Sayre wrote:
Sasha Laranoa Harving wrote:
I like the new art! Very excited.
Rahaksenwe will be one of the very last new characters I got to add to the PFS continuum as its line lead, and I'm super happy about how her art turned out, too! Especially since she's part of establishing how big Arcadia is; there's a reason she doesn't have the same garb as some of the other depictions of Arcadian residents we've seen, and that reason is that it's a huge continent with lots of diverse cultures. We'll get to meet a couple of them in this adventure, and hopefully that'll open the door to meet even more down the road :)

Any other scenarios we should play before this one, Michael?

Paizo Employee Designer

4 people marked this as a favorite.
Anorak wrote:
Michael Sayre wrote:
Sasha Laranoa Harving wrote:
I like the new art! Very excited.
Rahaksenwe will be one of the very last new characters I got to add to the PFS continuum as its line lead, and I'm super happy about how her art turned out, too! Especially since she's part of establishing how big Arcadia is; there's a reason she doesn't have the same garb as some of the other depictions of Arcadian residents we've seen, and that reason is that it's a huge continent with lots of diverse cultures. We'll get to meet a couple of them in this adventure, and hopefully that'll open the door to meet even more down the road :)

Any other scenarios we should play before this one, Michael?

It won't hurt to have played the following adventures just for some background, but you don't need to have played anything to enjoy this one!

Pathfinder First Edition- 10-19: Corpses in Kalsgard

Quest #3: Grehunde's Gorget

Scenario 1-10: Tarnbreaker's Trail

Minor Plot Spoilers:

Corpses in Kalsgard is set against the backdrop of Sveinn Blood-Eagle sailing off to Valenhall; experiencing that can add some context to his presence in this scenario.

Grehunde's Gorget introduces the PCs to the idea that not all linnorm kings survive the journey and helps add to the sense of scope and danger in this adventure.

Tarnbreaker' Trail is a direct follow-up to the events of Grehunde's Gorget and has parallel themes of the Ulfen culture interacting with the Indigenous cultures they share territory with.

Dark Archive

I'm kinda confused about map of arcadia on where the locations are located and scale of it.

Like the way I interpret the map is that players apparently travel half of northern edge of continent inland? But that can't be right :p

Radiant Oath

The addition of a separate pdf with the map is great, but please when doing maps in future content have the borders be on the sides of the squares. Having fractions of squares on a map makes importing them into some VTT programs a lot more work, as you need to shave off those extra pieces first to line up the grid.

Dark Archive

Shave them off? I just use alt and move maps to right spot on the grid. The maps don't actually need to perfectly align with the grid

Radiant Oath

CorvusMask wrote:
Shave them off? I just use alt and move maps to right spot on the grid. The maps don't actually need to perfectly align with the grid

Yes they do, because a map of any significant size with just a few pixels off will cause exponentially bigger errors the further out it goes from the square you use as your baseline. It took a significant amount of time to align some of the Extinction Curse maps properly because for some reason the squares around the edges weren't squares, they were inexplicably longer than they were wide, and this map similarly has boxes around the edge that aren't square. Importing Flip-Map pdfs (which have perfectly aligned borders) is super easy, because you can just set the image size to (squares X 50px) and then set your square size in the VTT to 50px, a process that takes less than a minute.

It's not like I'm making some insane request, I'm asking that maps be as big as the amount of squares they require, no more or less. My assumption is that it's just something that hadn't occurred to anyone involved in the process, because it certainly never occurred to me until I was preparing games in VTT. If it is actually way more work than I expect they'll likely ignore the request, but there's no harm raising the issue.

Dark Archive

? I'm still confused since I haven't hard that much problem with aligning maps with roll20 squares, besides the maps in old modules which have multiple squares that aren't symmetrical with other squares(aka haev one line of squares slightly less wide than other squares)

Dark Archive

Played high teir, GMed low tier.

Slight tweaks to ease final encounter:
That last fight is brutal for the ill equipped and ill prepared causing a number of TPKs at recent con. Current Fire Oracle meta excluded.

1. Rewards from one of the build missions helps a lot, but the shield reward from the end could help the low tier groups - any chance of moving that to the reward for Sveinn's mission? How about getting it on the chronicle sheet?

2. Prep time:- When I played we were thrown straight into a fight and were unable to establish any kind of battle line so were swiftly overwhelmed and died. When running I gave the PCs to set up as the box text does give plenty of time for the players before the encounter starts. 1 fighter tank knockout and the high level "tank" down to 3hp; felt down to the wire. If that 2nd tank died they would have been overwhelmed / suffered a lot more casualties. - instruct GMs time to allow players to prep? (Plus it'd be nice to give a snare crafter time to deploy a trap or two before combat.)

Scarab Sages

Evilgm wrote:
The addition of a separate pdf with the map is great, but please when doing maps in future content have the borders be on the sides of the squares. Having fractions of squares on a map makes importing them into some VTT programs a lot more work, as you need to shave off those extra pieces first to line up the grid.

I have had this issue as well.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Maps, Starfinder Maps Subscriber

I gotta say, I loved this scenario. It has the right mix of social and combat, though there's not a lot for skill monkeys beyond the socials.

I also noticed that the rewards after the boss fight did not make the Chronicle Sheet. Was this intentional?

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