How long, in game, to complete the AP?


Wrath of the Righteous


I'm curious if anyone has read through the entire AP (all the books) and has a GENERAL idea of how long the characters are adventuring? I'm just curious as to the over-all time-frame. Are we talking weeks, months, more than half a year.... several years?

Liberty's Edge

Do you mean in-game time or out of game time?

In game, it can go as quickly or as slowly as you would like to pace it and makes no assumptions on how long events take to play out. There are parts in book three that actively encourage the use of downtime so you can make the pace quite relaxed if you'd like. However, like the good designed adventure that it is, you can keep the pressure on your party and run it much faster paced without changing anything.

Out of game is a very different question. It has been my experience that each chapter of an AP plays in about 25-35 hours depending on the group, making an entire AP play in about 150-200 hours of play time. I don't know how much of an impact mythic rules will have on this, however.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook Subscriber

Excuse me while I guffaw tremendously. ^^;;

My group has only reached the Winter Portal in RoW after five games (I think - it's been a while since we started and sadly time constraints has delayed games significantly). So in probably 28 hours of gaming, we've reached halfway through one AP.

It depends on the organization skills of the GM, how well the GM and players know the rules, how much roleplaying goes on, how much is skipped, and so forth.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Regularly most AP's so far have taken 1 1/2 years of three hour sessions once a week. In-game, it heavily depends on how the AP is written. Some AP's give you a very loose definition of passage of time between or in modules. Some of them (RotRL seems to be such a one) seem to always give you a "you must go to this next adventure location now, now, now! Or bad things will happen to people!" pointer at the end of a module. And some of them are in the middle.

Scarab Sages

It took my group six 4ish hour sessions to get through the first AP book. They've done five sessions in book 2 and have just finished clearing the first floor of Drezen. I foresee probably two more sessions for the last of the book.


My group is into part 4 of Wrath of the Righteous with 6 3-5 hour sessions and 1 session of bs'ing in character.

Scarab Sages

Part 4? As in Midnight Isles?

With a total of no more than 30 hours of gameplay? that's insane.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Lochar wrote:

Part 4? As in Midnight Isles?

With a total of no more than 30 hours of gameplay? that's insane.

oops...my miss communication...part 4 of book 1...hehehe


Pathfinder Adventure, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

Assuming you mean In Character Time (all times assume your characters don't completely miss something, screw up and have to retreat and start over, or get side tracked on other things). Spoiler tags hide a breakdown of the individual sections.

Book 1: 6-10 days +/-

Spoiler:
Underground probably takes about 3-4 days. Above Ground 2-3, depending on how fast they clear the city. The Garrison 1-2 days.

Book 2: 10-15 days +/-

Spoiler:
Getting to Drezen takes 5 days to march, +/- a few days to take care of other things along the way. Drezen itself should take between 2 and 5 days. The Citadel can take 2-5 days.

Book 3: Not counting down time 4-6 weeks (or more)

Spoiler:
Exploration of the worldwound can take several weeks all by itself. Part 3 should be 1 day maybe 2. Part 4 1-2 days.

Book 4: 2-4 weeks

Spoiler:
Part 1 should be 1 day. Getting to the City should be no more than 3 days. Building Notoriety can be very time consuming, as well as the journey up river to the mine. The mine 2-3 days.

Book 5: 2-10 weeks

Spoiler:
Part 1 should take no more than an hour in game. The prison iteslf should take about 2-4 days +/-. Most of the time is taken up by wondering through the different layers of the Ivory Labyrinth.

Book 6: not out yet, however comments by James Jacobs seems to imply that there is going to be a hard timer on this adventure.


I thought I made it clear in the OP when I said "characters adventuring" apparently that wasn't the case, I will attempt to make my questions less ambiguous in the future to avoid confusion.

With that said, Thank you JB200 for being the only one offering the information I sought, in a clear and concise manner.

But let me get this straight, we go from level 1 'newbs' to lvl 20 with mythic abilities, in less than 6 months?

I'm getting rather annoyed at (almost) all mass-produced adventures ending with high level characters in less than a year, game-time...

If level up were so quick, shouldn't all towns be filled with lvl 10+ NPCs?

But, I digress and begin a rant, so with that said:

Thank you for your input, especially the last poster for the actual answer I was seeking.


Now that I think about it you are kinda right. You basically go from level 1 to level 6 and 1 Mythic tier in less than a week, and then in the course of about two weeks you gain another three levels and two Mythic tiers. I guess you could write it off as part of being Mythic (basically you awaken latent abilities you already possess - they were just dormant) but it does seem a little strange. Kingmaker offers much more time for characters to develop, and so does Skull and Shackles.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber
Athose Immortius Aeternia wrote:
But let me get this straight, we go from level 1 'newbs' to lvl 20 with mythic abilities, in less than 6 months? If level up were so quick, shouldn't all towns be filled with lvl 10+ NPCs?

Only if an AP was available for every NPC in town. There's only going to be so much adventure to go around. The characters who reach the high levels are going to be the 1% who happened to be in the right place at the right time to participate in an AP. They ended up killing all the monsters and getting all the XP, leaving nothing for the rest of the town.

Consider that just to get a group of four to lvl 20, they will have to kill hundreds, probably *thousands* of monsters on their way -- then try multiplying that for an entire town. A town of 400 would need to kill *hundreds of thousands* of monsters for all of them to get to lvl 20. I daresay there aren't enough monsters to go around. You'd reach an extinction level event if an entire town tried to level to 20, and would cause a massive ecological catastrophe. Even then you probably wouldn't have enough monsters to level the entire town. Let alone *all towns*, as you posit.

The point of heroes is that they fight (i.e. level) so that others won't have to fight (i.e. level). Heroics preclude the possibility for others levelling because by definition they are protecting others from combat, and consequently from gaining XP.

It's sort of like the economics of the real world. The (XP) wealth is concentrated in the hands of the one percent. If you had a more communist settlement, where everybody split evenly fighting all the monsters, instead of having a few heroes, then you'd have the 99% all reaching level 2 by the time the adventure was over. You wouldn't have anyone reaching high levels because all the monster XP is shared among so many people.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

If the fast track annoys you, then change it. You are in control of the pacing.

Add more downtime. Get rid of the massive quest completion bonuses and add more encounters. Incorporate more kingdom building rules around Drezen to slow that down. Book 3 seems to be the point when you can slow things down, if you wish to.


Pathfinder Adventure, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

You could easily spend months in Drezen on downtime activities.

Also the numbers I gave were minimums, if you moved from one thing to the next without down time or significant time to RP or do other things. Also the xp in the AP is very dense, especially in this AP since the tiers let you get xp at a much faster rate (fighting mosters 2-3 APL higher compared to APL).


Two things I'd like to point out.

First the exponential XP of pathfinder means that while you can go from 1st level nobody to 20th level mightiest hero in the land in just a few short months/year or so going from level 20 to level 21 is far, far harder. I actually worked it out even if you recalculate the XP so that its level based (that is in the earlier modules you still reach level 16 but you get the pathfinder level of XP rather than the DnD one) you would only reach level 22 if you completed EVERY AP currently out. That is to say WotR would get you to level 20 but you'd then need to do every other major event in the world to push yourself to level 22. Basically the stronger you are the harder it is to get stronger.

Secondly as was mentioned you can easily expand the time frame I'm personally after looking at the downtime rules thinking about having the players spend 2 months rebuilding and fortifying Drezen before they even start exploring the world wound and even there you've got the hex rules. 2 day's to fully explore a hex + 4 day's if its a canyon one or cliff one. So just completely exploring the hex's surrounding their city (and not counting Drezen's hex itself or time spent mid-exploration continuing to rebuild/sell/equip) to ensure there's no other threats lurking nearby would take them 22 day's nearly a month. It'd take a week if they're down near the bottom of the map just to respond to a call for help if it came from Drezen or other areas up there and more since they then need to return to where they were.

Considering a lot of the encoutner sights aren't actually near Drezen they either wander around quickly (still a day per hex and you can easily rule they don't find fortifications and the like because they just rushed through so they need to go back) or they thoroughly explore the land which takes time. There's 20 day's of exploration in a straight line between Drezen and the final battle site.

All up you could easily spend months on chapter 3 securing and exploring the effects the worldwound has had on the land.

Book 2 could run a bit more than 15 day's as it depends on how long your siege takes.

Don't know about the later books.

Second Seekers (Luwazi Elsbo)

Starfinder Superscriber

Aldarionn and Samy both hit the nail on the head. The NPCs in town didn't get to high level because they didn't go on this particular adventure.

Kingmaker and Skull and Shackles really reward the GM and the players for taking it slow. You get to add more adventure in, and you play around more in those lower levels that are so much easier to GM for. I'm actually running both Kingmaker and Wrath of the Righteous right now, for the same group, and they like Kingmaker because they get to play around and explore and get to know the setting and NPCs, but they like Wrath because they're cranked all the way up to 11 and blow stuff up.

Now if you look at the world as if the APs were happening as they came out, what you get is several groups of high level adventurers around the world that have all appeared relatively quickly, but not really as many as you might think. The group from Reign of Winter might not be on Golarion anymore, the Jade Regent group might be in Minkai or somewhere else not near the Inner Sea, and the Skull and Shackles and Kingmaker groups might not even be important yet. So you could populate your world with these guys, or maybe not.

Dark Archive

So far We are on book 5 close to the end and we are nearing a year with down time I believe, give or take a month or two.

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