Pathfinder Society Scenario #5-10: The Crocodile's Smile

2.00/5 (based on 13 ratings)
Pathfinder Society Scenario #5-10: The Crocodile's Smile
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A Pathfinder Society Scenario designed for 1st- through 4th-level characters.

After ensuring that Fasiel ibn Sazadin saw Qadiran justice for his crimes, the Pathfinder Society received a mysterious letter from his benefactor detailing that she now sees the Society as a formidable opponent. After receiving this, Venture-Captain Safa spent quite some time traveling and researching across Qadira and Nex, only to find that the benefactor resides in Jalmeray and is a rakshasa with fine tastes. In order to find out more information about her, Safa and Rashmivati are sending a small crew of Pathfinders to attend a local auction in order to do some reconnaissance. However, while attending the formal event, the Pathfinders can't help but notice that it looks like one of the guests might have some sticky fingers!

Written by Ruvaid Virk

Scenario tags: Metaplot (Unfettered Exploration), Faction (Horizon Hunters)

[Scenario Maps spoiler - click to reveal]

The following maps used in this scenario are also available for purchase here on

  • Pathfinder Flip-Mat Classics: Noble Estate
  • Pathfinder Flip-Mat Classics: Thieves' Guild
  • Note: This product is part of the Pathfinder Society Scenario Subscription.

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    2.00/5 (based on 13 ratings)

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    Slow and bad pacing


    The scenario presents a reasonably engaging setup, but is hampered by a poorly executed influence system affecting five distinct NPCs. The overly ambitious thresholds and steep DCs make the beginning less appealing.

    I cannot recomment to play this scenario. My advice would be to sidestep the influence mechanics altogether and instead focus on engaging in roleplay interactions with the guests.

    Influence Hell


    Crocodile features the influence system with far too many rounds. The influence system took 2.5 hours of non-roleplay to complete, and all of players at the table were very bored. As I’ve explained, the influence system snuffs out imagination and roleplay and promotes roll-play.

    The worst part was, the influence system and all the work you did, will have no effect on the outcome of the story. All of the work you completed was for nothing.

    Overall: Scenarios just need to go back to their classic roots. (1/10)

    The influence subsystem does not work in the PFS context


    I'll post my title here again.

    The influence subsystem DOES NOT WORK in the PFS context. Most people do not come to PFS to actually do anything involving heavy roleplay. As such, my table absolutely loathed this scenario. I GMed it as quickly as I could, but it just drags and drags and drags. It was interesting, don't get me wrong, but this kind of play does not work in this context. Especially in the setting of a busy convention center, like I ran mine.

    The combats afterwards aren't half bad, but they felt entirely underwhelming. After all of this deep role-play, I expected some more complex mechanics in the combat. But no.

    The twist is fine. It works fine. It would land better if it came sooner and actually meant something more dangerous for the characters. I understand it's a low level adventure, but the scaling was just all out of balance here and my table walked away feeling entirely underwhelmed.

    Some Good, Some Bad


    I felt the first half of the scenario was really well written. These social encounters are often not very strong, but the five NPCs the PCs are trying to influence are really interesting and well-developed. The Influence system really shined in this scenario. My group and I had a wonderful time with it and the RP with the NPCs. This was a PFS social encounter at its very best.

    As that portion of the scenario came to an end, the rest kinda fell apart for us. It was drab, boring, and poorly constructed. There is a thing that happens that drives the PCs to go after someone. There is a real sense of urgency coming out of the social encounter. But the scenario was written like they were in a slow, plodding dungeon crawl where a lot of things need to be slowly investigated. We were in a chase scene kind of moment, not a dungeon crawl. Poorly executed and each combat encounter was overly easy. After the enjoyment of the first half of the scenario, everyone was bored by the second half or frustrated by the poor quality.

    The scenario also had a lot of editing issues. Some sentences didn't make sense, making prep difficult but this was mostly in the second half. Some descriptions of certain features in certain rooms matched features on the map in different rooms. Kinda looked like cut-and-paste mistakes accidentally put descriptions in the wrong place.

    Was it worth playing? Yes, maybe... The first half of the scenario was brilliant! The second half is rough. Those 2 Stars fall solely on the quality of the first half of the scenario.

    Story was good. Mechanics were bad


    So as many have said the influence subsystem engagement just took way too long. It was too many rounds, and there wasn’t enough information to find out who to really engage with.

    The combats were a complete fail from what I could see. My group had 5 players playing in high tier, and I think we spent about 30-40mins total of the whole scenario on combat. The second to last fight was 1 round.

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    Paizo Employee Organized Play Coordinator

    1 person marked this as a favorite.

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

    Paizo Employee Organized Play Coordinator

    1 person marked this as a favorite.

    Map list updated.

    Pathfinder Maps, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Superscriber

    Yes :-) Let's go to Jamelray !!

    Should those who have the Advantage subscription already have this? I still do not nor the December scenarios.

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