Pathfinder Society Scenario #2-21: In Pursuit of Water

3.00/5 (based on 3 ratings)

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A Pathfinder Society Scenario designed for levels 1-4.

The Pathfinder Society sends the PCs to the Thuvian city of Aspenthar, where they learn that div-worshipping cultists have taken violent measures to secure the ancient keys to a mysterious site out in the desert. With one of the keys in their possession, the Pathfinders travel deep into the desert to find this site and stop the cultists from bringing their destructive plan to fruition.

Written by Matt Duval

Scenario tags: None

[Scenario Maps spoiler - click to reveal]

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

  • Pathfinder Flip-Mat Classics: Desert
  • Pathfinder Flip-Tiles: Dungeon Starter Set
  • Note: This product is part of the Pathfinder Society Scenario Subscription.

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    Average product rating:

    3.00/5 (based on 3 ratings)

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    Tight and challenging, but not well organised

    4/5

    In Pursuit of Water is a direct, challenging, and evocative scenario that requires more GM prep than it should. Scenes are atmospheric and interesting but a lot of guidance on how things should run is dotted around the text and GMs should plan to read this through several times to get the most out of it.

    - Combats are potentially very tough, but attention to the antagonist's motivations will make them less punishing.
    - It's not clear how the time-pressure is supposed to work (there doesn't seem to be any reason the PCs should fail unless they are defeated in combat, but the scenario spends many words on how they can recover from poor time-management).
    - GMs need to think about how the plot can be telegraphed to the players more effectively than how its outlined in the text itself.

    There are great ideas here and the scenario is fun to run, with a complex but satisfying final encounter. The story is very efficient and I managed to get through it without rushing in under 3.5 hours (in tier 3-4). I hope for a return to Aspenthar in season 3.


    Brutal TPK

    1/5

    I played this last night with a party of 4: Bard 4/Rogue 2/Oracle 2/Cleric 2. All of us were experienced players and knew what we were doing. I’ve really enjoyed all of the PF2 scenarios I’ve played or GMed until this one.

    2-21 shaped up to be a classic "leave a trail of bodies behind/murderhobo" scenario from beginning to end. We did fine until reaching the last encounter(s). The last fight appeared to be 3 separate fights chained together and was severely over-tuned.

    If we had faced each wave separately (with time to Treat Wounds and restore full health) we might have succeeded. I believe that we triggered the second wave in round 3 and the third wave in round 5. Resting simply wasn’t an option.

    We could have survived the final room were it not for the **** ongoing effects that kept PC’s in a death spiral, as PB alluded to in the previous review. Every PC was at Dying 3 at some point and there was no way to stabilize anyone for more than 1 round. In the final fight, we used copious amounts of Battle Medicine; the Cleric and Oracle collectively used all of their Heals; by my count we used 8 Hero Points and 4 Campaign Coins (in the final fight alone). It was still not enough to save us. This encounter was a death sentence and it was not fun. I cannot recommend this.


    Unraveling secrets

    4/5

    Imo this is a very interesting scenario. What starts as a relatively simple task soon becomes an unraveling conspiracy, with lots of obstacles that seem random but make a lot of sense in retrospect. Once the party gets to the location, things begin to fall into place, leading to the logical final confrontation.
    The balance seems good as well, for the most part, and the npcs behave and act logically.

    The only issue I have is

    Spoiler:
    In the last room once the boss activates sandstorm, it covers nearly entire room, and suffocating rules mean that melee characters are at a serious disadvantage, not to mention permanent ongoing damage every turn that means once you hit dying you can quickly go to dying 4. The boss is lethal as-is and environmental effects make it potentially extreme

    I'll update my impressions after I GM this


    Paizo Employee Organized Play Associate

    Announced for June! Cover and product description are not final and are subject to change.

    Dark Archive

    I guess this means divs in bestiary 3? :O

    Liberty's Edge

    Pathfinder Adventure Path, Maps, Starfinder Maps Subscriber

    Yay! A follow up on that archeology mission.

    Dark Archive

    RobertTHEPerylous wrote:
    Yay! A follow up on that archeology mission.

    ? Which one

    Liberty's Edge

    1 person marked this as a favorite.
    Pathfinder Adventure Path, Maps, Starfinder Maps Subscriber

    Pathfinder Society Quest #6: Archaeology in Aspenthar. Granted, I don't remember much from when I ran the quest over a year ago, so it might not be related. But, hey, you never know until you play or run it. Still, it sounds like fun!

    Any word on the maps list? We typically run the new scenarios the Friday after release, so any advance info is appreciated.

    Paizo Employee Organized Play Associate

    1 person marked this as a favorite.

    Cover and map list updated.

    Dark Archive

    Aww, it is still showing place holder cover

    RPG Superstar 2013 Top 4

    2 people marked this as a favorite.

    Stay on your guard out there on the dunes, Pathfinders :-)

    Scarab Sages

    Alex Speidel wrote:
    Cover and map list updated.

    When you click on the cover, the .jpg file is an image of the placeholder cover.

    Dark Archive

    NECR0G1ANT wrote:
    Alex Speidel wrote:
    Cover and map list updated.
    When you click on the cover, the .jpg file is an image of the placeholder cover.

    There honestly seems to be some sort of bug with cache since the cover images keep periodically changing between old and new one

    Grand Lodge

    What is the source of the place-holding artwork? IIRC placeholder art is usually from older material, but I cannot seem to locate that magic-user from the cover.

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