SFS#2-03 The Withering World


GM Discussion

Dataphiles 5/55/55/5 Venture-Agent, Netherlands

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Hi all,

Just prepping this and encountered a question (might have more but thought I'd ask it now)

Quest #2 - "Marker"

Statblocks for Corrupted Guardian Statues:
Tactics - Before Combat: The corrupted guardians ... beginning their turns as marked on the map.

Anyone got any ideas where that is? Can't see any marks on Map B for that.

Or any suggestions, I was thinking one above B3, and maybe one at B2? Or just both at B3?

Dark Archive 4/5 5/55/5 ****

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Played this last night and our GM had them both pop out of the corrupted monument next to the person that was attempting the check to fix it. Not sure if that is B2 or B3, but it made thematic sense.

Paizo Employee 5/55/5 *

Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

My store's got a hard 4-hour timeslot for our sessions; am I correct in thinking this is gonna be running right up against that? Considering splitting it across two weeks (which I'd only do for a Quest cause you can still get "partial credit.")

2/5 5/55/5

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

The party starts each quest fully rested, correct?

SFS guide, pg. 4 wrote:

Starfinder Quests: Written for the Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild, quests are 1-hour adventures often used as introductions to the game.

Starfinder Quest Arcs: Written specifically for the Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild, quest arcs include multiple 1-hour quests that involve a common theme, typically culminating in a capstone adventure.

This scenario is a quest arc, and is therefore multiple 1-hour quests. And since a quest is an adventure, the players start each one fully rested. I think that makes sense (and is consistent with the previous quests), but I wanted to make sure, since the scenario takes place on or near a single planet.

Wayfinders 3/5 5/55/55/55/5 *** Venture-Agent, Illinois—Chicago

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Poit wrote:

The party starts each quest fully rested, correct?

SFS guide, pg. 4 wrote:

Starfinder Quests: Written for the Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild, quests are 1-hour adventures often used as introductions to the game.

Starfinder Quest Arcs: Written specifically for the Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild, quest arcs include multiple 1-hour quests that involve a common theme, typically culminating in a capstone adventure.
This scenario is a quest arc, and is therefore multiple 1-hour quests. And since a quest is an adventure, the players start each one fully rested. I think that makes sense (and is consistent with the previous quests), but I wanted to make sure, since the scenario takes place on or near a single planet.

When I GM'd it, I had them start each quest fully rested. My justification when the players asked how that worked was that the influence of the corrupted monuments and black hole caused time dilation. Completely unofficial answer, but that was my reasoning.

Dataphiles 5/55/55/5 Venture-Agent, Netherlands

Poit wrote:

The party starts each quest fully rested, correct?

SFS guide, pg. 4 wrote:

Starfinder Quests: Written for the Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild, quests are 1-hour adventures often used as introductions to the game.

Starfinder Quest Arcs: Written specifically for the Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild, quest arcs include multiple 1-hour quests that involve a common theme, typically culminating in a capstone adventure.
This scenario is a quest arc, and is therefore multiple 1-hour quests. And since a quest is an adventure, the players start each one fully rested. I think that makes sense (and is consistent with the previous quests), but I wanted to make sure, since the scenario takes place on or near a single planet.

Yeah, the problem with this is trying to make sense of it. In Dreaming of the Future, you have to travel days between planets so it makes sense.

I like Sasha's answer, because it's hard to justify being fully rested if they just climb up a tunnel and then up a hill to the next combat.

So I guess I will use that from now on.

Also, did anyone find high-tier Quest 2 combat ridiculous overpowered. I almost TPK'd a 5 person party with no pregens. That 4d6 cone is crazy good. Especially as you do it twice on the first turn. Thankfully I rolled high on the 1d4+1 to reset it. But wow, I put down most of them at some point during that fight.

2/5 5/55/5

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

To justify the long rests, I just described the mission as taking place over multiple days, as the Starfinders on and around the planet needed time to research what was going on and stop the cultists. Since part 4 is a starship combat, which doesn't really use per-day resources before level 6, I had that one begin right before the players went to bed between parts 3 and 5.

I ran it three times this weekend - twice at high tier, once at low tier. The four player adjustment made the part 2 combat much easier, since that 4d6 cone is reduced to 15 ft.

The combats I saw my players struggle with were parts 1 and 4.

The create darkness in part 1 basically meant that Iseph fought the boss while everyone without darkvision kept missing. And the four player scaling only makes the drow sickened - which does almost nothing for someone who uses will save spells instead of attack rolls.

For part 4, the starship combat, there is no four player adjustment. Even with the cultists being penalized for having their skittermander engineer abandon them, the enemy ship was too capable against 4 PCs and it went way too long.

Dark Archive *

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

casts animate thread

We just played through this set of quests in our home group, and had the misfortune of having only 4 players. I concur with Poit - Q4 needs a 4 player adjustment badly. The shortcomings of the Pegasus are well-known by this point, and we couldn't punch through the enemy ship's shields. We ended up letting them escape once we were at half HP and almost no shields, and they were sitting pretty at full HP and basically full shields.

Part of the problem, I believe, is that they made the enemy ship a bit too good. Two enemy gunners is rough - it means that the captain action to debuff gunnery is half as effective, since the gunners would have to do push actions less often. Additionally, I loathe the fact that enemy ships replenish shields in combat - starship combat is already a death spiral, and low tier ships do so little damage that a single hit is often replenished in a single round. The ship that punches through shields and creates the first critical hit is likely to be the ship that wins, which is why you see the Drake get chosen nearly exclusively at SFS tables.

So, how to fix this in scaling for 4 players? The usual practice of giving the baddies a -2 doesn't seem appropriate here, since the problem is more with the fundamentals of the fight rather than scaling. I'd look at reducing the number of gunners to one, and maybe even suggest that the Cult of the Destroyer admires entropy so much that their engineer doesn't bother with replenishing shields. If the party is successful at convincing the skittermander to abandon the Cult, then maybe part of the solution is that the party is able to pick up the missing engineer before battle begins, freeing up someone to fulfill another ship role.

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