Second Darkness Anniversary Edition?


Second Darkness


Hello everybody and thank you for your time.

Are we ever going to see an anniversary edition of Second Darkness? I'd really enjoy to play it with my friends.

Thank you in advance for your answers.

Sovereign Court

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber

Don't hold your breath. I'd just pick up the originals - they're a steal at the current prices - and update them yourself.


'ever' is a very long time, so it's not impossible.

Shadow Lodge

Hythlodeus wrote:
'ever' is a very long time, so it's not impossible.

Unless there's a massive run on the gobs of unsold stock that Paizo's had sitting around in warehouses for a decade, we will not be seeing an Anniversary Edition for Second Darkness. And that's not going to happen while the AP remains as - justifedly - unpopular as it is. Or unless a small country adopts copies of Second Darkness volumes as a reserve currency or something.


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Well, they could make the Player's Guide free to download. One of the AP's problems might be that it's simply overlooked, given the competition of newer, popular, well-rated APs with free Player's Guides.

Liberty's Edge

Use the originals with your own rewrites. It may be one of the worst rated APs but I had a great time running it.


Well, that's a real shame. I Guess I'll have to adapt it myself to the new rules.

Thank you very much for your answers, they are all really appreciated.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

If the Anniversary editions end up being a bi-annual or longer release, I'd rather see hard to get or very popular APs get the treatment rather than doing them in sequence. With new classes/systems/etc. anything more than a few years old probably could benefit from an update. I wouldn't mind seeing Kingmaker with expanded kingdom and intrigue rules. Mummy's Mask with horror and occult?

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Realistically, Second Darkness doesn't need much done to it, apart from inserting Pathfinder-statted critters and NPCs. The overall plot still works as well (or as badly, depending on your viewpoint) as it ever did. The most glaring change would be a particular NPC in the third book who was built as a bard for 3.5, but really should be an alchemist.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Modules Subscriber

I recall that James Jacobs has said that "Second Darkness" would benefit most from an update and re-write.

While the core storyline is very good, there are some well-documented problems with the AP.

List of common complaints:
1. Odd tonal shifts and clunky transitions between volumes.

2. Insufficient XP: The AP is written with the assumption that the GM will run additional side-quests and/or write a custom sub-plot for the PCs.

3. Player complaints of "bait-and-switch" when the the story of the AP makes a sharp turn into an unexpected direction. (Specifically: "I thought this was an urban adventure. Why are we on an expedition to the Darklands again?"

4. Significant world-lore issues: The writer made incorrect assumptions about Golarion based on established D&D/Forgotten Realms lore which were not caught in development. (Specifically: "Elves are jerks.")

However, partially due to these very problems, this AP did not sell particularly well. Consequently, there are LOTS of copies of this AP still taking up space in Paizo's warehouse.

One of the main criteria for deciding to re-publish an AP is scarcity of the original volumes: If Paizo is out of stock, and the aftermarket price is higher than cover price, then there's clearly demand for the AP. If not... it might not be a good investment to do an updated re-release. And there's no scarcity with Second Darkness: You can pick up the whole AP for $30, directly from Paizo.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

In fairness to the possibility of a Second darkness hardcover, their fan base has grown incredibly since those day, so I'd bet it sells better than the original just because of that.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Modules Subscriber
captain yesterday wrote:
In fairness to the possibility of a Second darkness hardcover, their fan base has grown incredibly since those day, so I'd bet it sells better than the original just because of that.

I have all six volumes of the softcovers, and I would TOTALLY buy a compilation edition!

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber

I would buy a compilation edition if they fixed the plot/motivation problems. There are some great set pieces and ideas, and I really want to adapt it to Starfinder.


I ran it, and had fun with books 1 to 3, and 6. I used Beyond the Vault of Souls instead of book 4 (PCs had too many RP issues with going undercover, so I had them find the information out a different way by tweaking that module), and book 5 I just didn't enjoy.

I would definitely buy a hardcover redux, though, and would love for stats of Abraxus for a continuing the campaign encounter.

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Just for comparison, the group I ran through Second Darkness (who are more roll than role players) saw absolutely zero issues with any of the plot or motivations.


I'm pretty much going to buy all of the compilation editions, just because I think they're so cool, and have been buying them since Shackled City. Right now, I wouldn't even touch the old Second Darkness because it hasn't been updated to the actual Pathfinder rules. An updated compilation edition would be an insta-buy.

Dark Archive

Haladir wrote:

I recall that James Jacobs has said that "Second Darkness" would benefit most from an update and re-write.

While the core storyline is very good, there are some well-documented problems with the AP.

I'm currently running a modified version of Second Darkness, and your list of common complaints has been very helpful so far in deciding what aspects to change.

The changes so far seem to be working out quite well.

- requiring all the PCs to be elves who (initially, at least) want to join the Lantern Bearers
- running the 2nd edition adventure Shattered Circle as a prologue, set near Mordant Spire (and including Kwava as an NPC in it); an elven general asks them to retrieve an artefact from the dungeon in return for sponsorship into the Lantern Bearers
- followed by a 40 year time skip (which is the ostensible reason for the "must be Elves" requirement); during this time their sponsor into the Lantern Bearers disappears completely, apparently on a secret mission to the Mwangi Expanse
- then starting Shadow in the Sky at 3rd level, when Kwava asks the PCs for help with an investigation in Riddleport

Requiring everyone to be an elf is not something Paizo could do in a published adventure path, of course.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Haladir wrote:

I have all six volumes of the softcovers, and I would TOTALLY buy a compilation edition!

Count me as +1 for this!

Grand Lodge

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I have all the books, kind-of liked it and I look forward to a compilation with some rewrites.


I came across these mods online, saw that it was a drow/Darklands series, and snatched them up at great prices. Obviously this was in part due to them being 3.5 edition books, but since I make a habit of inputting all NPCs into Herolab (which is great for finding errata), converting into PF is not that big a deal for me. It's just one extra step in what I'm already doing.

I'm sorry to see that it was so poorly received. IMHO anything involving a major drow plot arc should be awesome slathered in awesome sauce, with awesome on the side. Nonetheless, I expect there's a lot of fun to be had with Second Darkness, flaws and all. When I get around to this one and take a serious look, I'll see what needs tweaking.

Andrew <:-{}

Dark Archive

I would purchase from Paizo updated editions of all 3.5 APs. Already have Rise of the Runelords and Curse of the Crimson Throne.

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
quistar wrote:

When I get around to this one and take a serious look, I'll see what needs tweaking.

Andrew <:-{}

I enjoyed running the AP, even if my players did TPK in the final encounter (at least they saved the world!). However, I feel the AP is certainly divisive.

Most people that have a problem seem to have one of three major issues with the AP. Firstly, some people seem to feel the first two books are a bait and switch, presenting a permanent homebase to the players, and then shoving them out of the nest to be murder hobos.

The other big sticking point is book 4...when the characters are essentially physically transformed (via magic) into Drow, to allow infiltration of a Drow city. All cool, right? Only, the characters now have to act as Drow, to avoid detection. Hope you don't have any Paladins along for the ride.

Lastly, apparently, the main people the players are helping can come across as arrogant and not worth saving. I didn't hit this myself, YMMV.


YogoZuno wrote:


Most people that have a problem seem to have one of three major issues with the AP. Firstly, some people seem to feel the first two books are a bait and switch, presenting a permanent homebase to the players, and then shoving them out of the nest to be murder hobos.

Presentation helps a lot here, and GMs who are more open with their players (such as telling them they won't be staying in Riddleport for long) probably have an easier time on this point.

"to be murder hobos" may be how some GMs do it, but other GMs may be sending them out to visit Crying Leaf at Kwava's request ... hardly "murder hobos". From then on, the AP sort-of expects the PCs to be heroes, donating their time and effort for the greater good (note that the Elves are sometimes disappointed in them if they require [excessive] payment).

YogoZuno wrote:
The other big sticking point is book 4...when the characters are essentially physically transformed (via magic) into Drow, to allow infiltration of a Drow city. All cool, right? Only, the characters now have to act as Drow, to avoid detection. Hope you don't have any Paladins along for the ride.

Paizo has been criticized in the past for the APs being "unfriendly to Paladins". I think the main issue is that some of the Paizo developers' idea of a "moral challenge" is a "fall/fall scenario" in the eyes of old-school Paladin players.

YogoZuno wrote:
Lastly, apparently, the main people the players are helping can come across as arrogant and not worth saving. I didn't hit this myself, YMMV.

Yeah, it isn't guaranteed to happen... but I can see how it would.

For more about these, see my thread on my changes to the AP.


The complaints about this AP are just so much white noise. "We thought we had a base, now we're murder hobos."

Geez. Get over it. It's six adventures. If you want to stay in Riddleport and homebrew a sandbox, then just do that instead of playing an Adventure Path. It's not that difficult.

Also, people don't really understand how to play paladins, unfortunately. They seem to too easily fall into the "lawful stupid" trope rather than thinking things through.

Bad players always trump good adventures.

Dark Archive

So now that 1e hardcover version is definitely not happening, would you guys prefer 2e remake or no remake at all?

I'm not really sure since original is partially non canon(because elves are off character) so while with legacy of fire you could just run it in 1e with some work, this one would need way more work to be better. So I guess 2e remake would be better if you want to play all aps(meanwhile legacy of fire doesn't need remake and can just be converted). But I'm not really sure I want to play 3.5 ap in 2e since experience would feel really different

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I'd prefer to skip remakes in favour of new and interesting content...why rehash the past over and over again?

Dark Archive

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YogoZuno wrote:
I'd prefer to skip remakes in favour of new and interesting content...why rehash the past over and over again?

While I don't disagree with your opinion, I was appreciating the hardcover releases of their old APs.

1. Updated rules/stat blocks to Pathfinder (from 3.5).

2. Updated encounters and information where player reviews indicated there were some difficulties, all for a better experience.

I would definitely purchase updated PF1 editions of Second Darkness and Legacy of Fire, if Paizo released them.


Second Darkness seems like it would make for a great collected edition, but the sales on it were so abysmal, that Paizo can't give the AP away.

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Quote:
I was appreciating the hardcover releases of their old APs.

You mean, release of a the first AP? There was never any talk of them doing any more than that one, afaik.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I'm of two minds about the "PF2 re-make"/"no re-make at all" question.

Personally, I don't plan on running anything with PF2 rules, as I have too much invested (literally!) in the PF1 rule sets. Hard copy versions of most books (rulebooks, APs, campaign setting, player companions, various extras), PDFs of many books (this without being a subscriber to most book lines, so they were not free subscription PDFs), and Hero Lab (basic version plus all the Paizo PF bundles that I can get my hands on), it all adds up.

(I do plan on buying the PF2 CRB so that I can play a basic character if someone else runs something, plus whatever Paizo publishes as the new ISWG for the lore updates, but that's it.)

On the other hand, if a compilation of SD smoothes out all the rough spots and adds needed extra material, then maybe it would be worth while to buy it anyway (for conversion back to PF1).

Dark Archive

So uh, on elves being out of character...

Nation of Kyonin is CG and average alignment of elves is CG... But vast majority of elven NPCs in Second Darkess are LN or N

Besides stuff like assuming elves don't sleep and them being kind of jerks, you can really see why paizo devs believe they were out of character ._.


CorvusMask wrote:

So now that 1e hardcover version is definitely not happening, would you guys prefer 2e remake or no remake at all?

neither.

ideally, I'd prefer a PF1 version but since that ship has sailed, I'm kinda ambivalent to the question. SD would benefit from an update, storywise, but I'd have to convert that updated content back to PF1 anyway.
Maybe after PF2 bombed and Paizo returned to the 3.x ways


I backed the Rise of the Drow kickstarter to get a full drow adventure path. It'd be interesting to try to work an amalgram of the two adventures.

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