PFS2 # 1-05 Trailblazer's Bounty GM thread


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Grand Lodge 4/5 **** Organized Play Lead Developer

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To answer some of the questions in this thread:
1) The encounter in area D should have 2 Wounded Orc Brutes and one Orc Warrior.
2) For the faction notes, if the PCs meet the listed conditions, every PC earns 1 Reputation for the Horizon Hunters faction, whether they slotted the Faction Champion boon for Horizon hunters or not.
3) Add the missing treasure bundle to area B. There's a dead body at the bottom of the cliff that still has a coin pouch. The PCs automatically find it without a check.

Paizo Employee Organized Play Developer

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Sebastian Hirsch wrote:
Discovery Points wrote:

This scenario is all about exploration. Travel times are deliberately nebulous. While it is possible to calculate distances in hilly and mountainous terrain and make an estimate of how many days an average adventurer would take depending upon the specific obstacles they face, this scenario takes a more abstract approach.
As the PCs progress move through the mountains, they earn Discovery Points. These represent how thorough PCs have been with gathering information about their path, recording it, and in some cases finding
creative solutions in improving their route. Players may wish to use a different skill for a certain activity. If it is a plausible substitute, allow them to make the check but increase the DC by 2.

Multiple PCs may attempt the same check, but only the highest check counts toward their success conditions.
Unless noted otherwise, PCs may Aid an ally’s check as described on page 470 of the Pathfinder Core Rulebook

Location A Discovery points wrote:

The PCs can attempt the following checks to earn them

1 Discovery Point per check. A critical success earns them two points per check, and a critical failure actually loses them one point, due to writing down misinformation or unknowingly tying some knots wrong. Increase the DCs
by 2 in Subtier 3–4.

I suspect, that I have been duing it slightly wrong, and I would be keen to hear how everyone else handled this issue.

Example: Players make a discovery check to find a good location for something, they roll a crit success, a failure, a success, and a crit failure.

Does that result in 2 Discovery points or none since the crit failure ruins the resulting data?

That results in 2 Discovery points: +2 for the critical success, 0 for the failure, +1 for the success, and -1 for the critical failure. While some misinformation or faulty knot-tying is brought into the equation, it's not enough on its own to completely spoil the progress being made.

Shadow Lodge 4/5 5/55/55/55/5 ****

Thank you tons for the clarifications, Linda and Michael!

Sovereign Court 4/5 5/5 ** Venture-Lieutenant, Netherlands—Leiden

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@Michael Sayre:

Thank you for the clarification, but aren't you contradicting yourself here?

- Only the highest check counts towards success conditions (which I take to mean, discovery points).
- You are summing up the results of ALL the checks (+2, +1, +0, -1).

Shadow Lodge 4/5 5/55/55/55/5 ****

Since I'm running this in about 14 hours, I just gave it one last once-over. The language on page 5 makes me think that the scenario maybe intended for critical failures to be tracked separately from the successes, as it does for the Athletics/Survival checks.

Quote:
(so it is possible for a group to acquire a total of 0 Discovery Points on a check by having an equal number of critical failures and successes.)

If that applied to all discovery checks, though, it still wouldn't line up with Michael's math...so I'm also wondering regarding Lau's question.

The Concordance 4/5 5/55/55/55/5 ****

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Lau Bannenberg wrote:

- Only the highest check counts towards success conditions (which I take to mean, discovery points).

- You are summing up the results of ALL the checks (+2, +1, +0, -1).

Lau, would it make a difference if it was 1 + 1 + 2 + 1, not 1 + 2 + 1 + 1?

Sovereign Court 4/5 5/5 ** Venture-Lieutenant, Netherlands—Leiden

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Rock Lord wrote:
Lau Bannenberg wrote:

- Only the highest check counts towards success conditions (which I take to mean, discovery points).

- You are summing up the results of ALL the checks (+2, +1, +0, -1).
Lau, would it make a difference if it was 1 + 1 + 2 + 1, not 1 + 2 + 1 + 1?

No, because my problem is that the instruction and the example just aren't in any way the same.

The instruction says to take the highest result, not to sum the results.

4/5 ****

I thought I understood how thus worked. After Mike's example I now have no clue.

Silver Crusade 5/5 5/55/5 **** Venture-Captain, Germany—Bavaria

I am actually fine with the solution Michael gave us, even though it is not super well supported by the text of the scenario. It should result in a pretty high chance that well-prepared groups should not have to roll very well to make the 25 DP threshold.

Edit. It feels like the PF2 solution that mirrors the basic rules pretty well, crit successes are great, successes are enough, failures might give you grieve and critical failures just add a grieve cherry on top.

Paizo Employee Organized Play Developer

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Lau Bannenberg wrote:

@Michael Sayre:

Thank you for the clarification, but aren't you contradicting yourself here?

- Only the highest check counts towards success conditions (which I take to mean, discovery points).
- You are summing up the results of ALL the checks (+2, +1, +0, -1).

Location A offers seven different checks, with a total possible 14 points for critically succeeding at all 7 checks. You could end up with anywhere between -7 and 14 points for surveying the area. If 4 checks were attempted with a critical success, success, failure, and critical failure accrued respectively for each check, you'd have gained 2 points for area A.

If multiple PCs are attempting the same check, only the highest check counts towards the success conditions, so on a possible score of -1 to +2, if anyone attempting the check gets the +2, that's all that matters for that particular check.

Is that maybe phrased in a more helpful way?

Silver Crusade 5/5 5/55/5 **** Venture-Captain, Germany—Bavaria

Michael Sayre wrote:
Lau Bannenberg wrote:

@Michael Sayre:

Thank you for the clarification, but aren't you contradicting yourself here?

- Only the highest check counts towards success conditions (which I take to mean, discovery points).
- You are summing up the results of ALL the checks (+2, +1, +0, -1).

Location A offers seven different checks, with a total possible 14 points for critically succeeding at all 7 checks. You could end up with anywhere between -7 and 14 points for surveying the area. If 4 checks were attempted with a critical success, success, failure, and critical failure accrued respectively for each check, you'd have gained 2 points for area A.

If multiple PCs are attempting the same check, only the highest check counts towards the success conditions, so on a possible score of -1 to +2, if anyone attempting the check gets the +2, that's all that matters for that particular check.

Is that maybe phrased in a more helpful way?

Thanks for the clarification, I guess I will tell my next players that everyone can roll and only the highest roll counts. Looking forward to running it at a mixed gaming convention for completely new players in a couple of weeks.

Edit. I am assuming, that this also applies to the Area B checks? So by critically succeeding players can earn up to 14 points there as well?

Shadow Lodge 4/5 5/55/55/55/5 ****

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Michael Sayre wrote:
Is that maybe phrased in a more helpful way?

The way you put it in that post makes a world of difference. Thank you!

The Concordance 4/5 5/55/55/55/5 ****

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Lau Bannenberg wrote:
Rock Lord wrote:
Lau Bannenberg wrote:

- Only the highest check counts towards success conditions (which I take to mean, discovery points).

- You are summing up the results of ALL the checks (+2, +1, +0, -1).
Lau, would it make a difference if it was 1 + 1 + 2 + 1, not 1 + 2 + 1 + 1?

No, because my problem is that the instruction and the example just aren't in any way the same.

The instruction says to take the highest result, not to sum the results.

Apologies. I was sleep-deprived and thought it was a decent attempt at levity (you could say I was...on a roll?).

2/5 5/5 *****

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Pathfinder Maps, Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Michael Sayre wrote:
Lau Bannenberg wrote:

@Michael Sayre:

Thank you for the clarification, but aren't you contradicting yourself here?

- Only the highest check counts towards success conditions (which I take to mean, discovery points).
- You are summing up the results of ALL the checks (+2, +1, +0, -1).

Location A offers seven different checks, with a total possible 14 points for critically succeeding at all 7 checks. You could end up with anywhere between -7 and 14 points for surveying the area. If 4 checks were attempted with a critical success, success, failure, and critical failure accrued respectively for each check, you'd have gained 2 points for area A.

If multiple PCs are attempting the same check, only the highest check counts towards the success conditions, so on a possible score of -1 to +2, if anyone attempting the check gets the +2, that's all that matters for that particular check.

Is that maybe phrased in a more helpful way?

That definitely is clearer/easier to run, but it feels kinda against the philosophy of not just encouraging everyone to roll all the time.

Sovereign Court 4/5 5/5 ** Venture-Lieutenant, Netherlands—Leiden

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Michael Sayre wrote:
Lau Bannenberg wrote:

@Michael Sayre:

Thank you for the clarification, but aren't you contradicting yourself here?

- Only the highest check counts towards success conditions (which I take to mean, discovery points).
- You are summing up the results of ALL the checks (+2, +1, +0, -1).

Location A offers seven different checks, with a total possible 14 points for critically succeeding at all 7 checks. You could end up with anywhere between -7 and 14 points for surveying the area. If 4 checks were attempted with a critical success, success, failure, and critical failure accrued respectively for each check, you'd have gained 2 points for area A.

If multiple PCs are attempting the same check, only the highest check counts towards the success conditions, so on a possible score of -1 to +2, if anyone attempting the check gets the +2, that's all that matters for that particular check.

Is that maybe phrased in a more helpful way?

Yeah, that's clear.

---

@NielsenE: it makes it a lot easier to get high discovery point counts, but I wouldn't worry about it. At this point in the campaign, it's healthy for the meta that sometimes the party just feels highly competent and successful.

Later on we'll want difficult challenging scenarios, but for now it's good to have a few easy romps. The scenario should have a pretty feelgood vibe to it and have everyone leaving the table happy.

2/5 5/5 *****

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Pathfinder Maps, Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

It wasn't about the difficulty. All the scenarios up to here have done a very good job, IMO of teaching that using your skills matters in this edition. That aid is not automatic. That a crit fail can set you back.
I've felt that people were more involved in the skill checks and the role-play around them, when every check isn't 'everybody roll'

Sovereign Court 4/5 5/5 ** Venture-Lieutenant, Netherlands—Leiden

NielsenE wrote:

It wasn't about the difficulty. All the scenarios up to here have done a very good job, IMO of teaching that using your skills matters in this edition. That aid is not automatic. That a crit fail can set you back.

I've felt that people were more involved in the skill checks and the role-play around them, when every check isn't 'everybody roll'

Right, that's a fair point.


In encounter D low tier, how many Wounded Orc Brutes are there supposed to be? Page 15 says 2, but page 26 says 3.

Shadow Lodge 4/5 5/55/55/55/5 ****

Red Metal wrote:
In encounter D low tier, how many Wounded Orc Brutes are there supposed to be? Page 15 says 2, but page 26 says 3.

Scroll up to the top of this page and you'll have your answer.

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

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Ran this on Saturday, and we had a blast. We had a dwarf barbarian (1), 1/2 elven sorc (2), goblin monk (1), goblin druid (1), and a goblin alchemist (1).

They all had a blast, and have been talking about their antics on discord ever since!

They never even thought about harming the nobles, and even before I started talking about how the encounter was run, they were attempting to help them out. They did succeed, getting their 3 successes (barely).

The druid tried to use wild empathy on the ravens, but she wasn't very good at diplomacy... so her answer was the ravens going in to attack. I noticed with this encounter that swarms are both more and less dangerous in PF2. Less, because normal damage can hurt them (at least with the ones that I have seen). More, because their swarm attacks are just an action (and still have no attack rolls!) Thanks to alchemist's fire from Fumbus, they had pre-cooked snacks and survived the fight relatively unscathed.

Their investigation of the stream was interesting. They found a ford, and then the dwarf fully enjoyed himself moving rocks to clear it out (nat-20!) Then, the druid found all the goodness about the locations wildlife (another nat-20!). However, the sorcerer and alchemist made what turned out to be a sub-par map (a failure replacing a crit-fail).

For the avalanche hazard, it was the final pair climbing (Fumbus and the sorcerer) that had the most trouble. They managed to clear the scree going up as individuals! So, of course, that was both good and bad.

They had a good conversation and drink with Bark, and the goblin druid loved Wilbert (she was a bit weird in that she has a dog AC). The next day they proceeded forward, and their "rock specialist" (the dwarf) climbed up to near the goats, but chose not to disturb them. He then threw down a rope to help the others to climb up. They then did some investigation, and did ok at it, but not great.

They talked to the orcs, and had a wild time drinking. Three of the team actually understood orcish, which helped a lot, as did the paint thinner... I mean gin.

They went to find the ogre, and the fight was actually quite anti-climactic, as they dispatched him and his shrews without much trouble.

All in all a very enjoyable run to be my last before we shut down our local game days.

Scarab Sages 5/5 5/5 *** Venture-Captain, Netherlands

Thank you Jack! I'm glad you and your players enjoyed it!


Hey, I'm planning on running this adventure for my party. The mix of skill checks and combat looks really fun. This is my first time running a PFS adventure, and only the second session of Pathfinder 2e I have ran, and I had a few questions about how things in the adventure were intended to be run.

1.
In "Travel"

Quote:
For each PC, keep track of the number of checks they succeed or fail at during each interval. If the group collectively succeeds at a number of checks equal to or greater than the number of players, they make good time and the PCs earn 1 Discovery Point. If the PCs have a total number of critical failures equal to or greater than the number of PCs, they lose 1 Discovery Point (so it is possible for a group to acquire a total of 0 Discovery Points on a check by having an equal number of critical failures and successes.)

Is the first sentence supposed to be interpreted as "number of checks they succeed or critically fail"? In that case, the final sentence seems a little unusual as a clarification, since there are many other ways to get a total 0 Discovery Points, but it would be accurate.

If the first sentence is correct, are the other two references to "critical failures" in that section mistakes?

2.
In "Roleplaying the Nobles"

Quote:
Talk to Amyas about the rigors of the wild, and how new types of terrain pose different types of dangers. This is a DC 12 Survival or DC 15 Nature check.

There's a number of skill checks in this adventure that give different DCs for different skills. The adventure calls out that each character can attempt each check. Is the intent that each character makes either a Survival check or a Nature check, not both? Also, is the intent that characters can't retry these checks? I am assuming yes to both.

3.
In "B. Treeline"

Quote:
The cliff is 25 feet tall and requires a DC 15 Athletics check to scale.

It seems reasonably likely PCs will try to climb this cliff in encounter mode, after the first PC makes it to the top and angers the goats. Is this the DC of climbing per the Climb action, so needed to climb 5 feet (for most PCs) as opposed to the DC for climbing the entire?

***

Linda Zayas-Palmer wrote:
2) For the faction notes, if the PCs meet the listed conditions, every PC earns 1 Reputation for the Horizon Hunters faction, whether they slotted the Faction Champion boon for Horizon hunters or not.

Has there been an update on this in the past 9 months?

1. 2 Reputation would be in line with all the other scenarios that grant bonus Reputation.

2. My character that played this received 2 bonus Reputation on my Chronicle and on the site.

3. I just finished GMing, and the checkbox says 2 Reputation next to it.

Sovereign Court 4/5 5/5 ** Venture-Lieutenant, Netherlands—Leiden

Watery Soup wrote:
Linda Zayas-Palmer wrote:
2) For the faction notes, if the PCs meet the listed conditions, every PC earns 1 Reputation for the Horizon Hunters faction, whether they slotted the Faction Champion boon for Horizon hunters or not.

Has there been an update on this in the past 9 months?

1. 2 Reputation would be in line with all the other scenarios that grant bonus Reputation.

2. My character that played this received 2 bonus Reputation on my Chronicle and on the site.

3. I just finished GMing, and the checkbox says 2 Reputation next to it.

Alex Speidel has told us on the VO communication channels that this should be 2 bonus rep - a blog should go out to that effect at some point, but it's probably gotten snowed under.

The intent was to standardize all faction bonus rep to +2.

Paizo Employee 5/55/5 * Organized Play Associate

Confirming the above post from Lau, including the intent to get it in a blog/the next update of the PFS Guide.

***

Thanks!

Can I suggest putting an erratum into the .zip file on download?

Paizo Employee 5/55/5 * Organized Play Associate

Updating scenarios is on the ever-growing-and-expanding list of "things we'd like to do someday, you know, when we have free time for these things."

Scarab Sages 5/5 5/5 *** Venture-Captain, Netherlands

I have to brood on 1 for a bit because this got changed in development from what I wrote.

In regards to the other questions:

YoungLink314 wrote:


2.
In "Roleplaying the Nobles"
Quote:
Talk to Amyas about the rigors of the wild, and how new types of terrain pose different types of dangers. This is a DC 12 Survival or DC 15 Nature check.
There's a number of skill checks in this adventure that give different DCs for different skills. The adventure calls out that each character can attempt each check. Is the intent that each character makes either a Survival check or a Nature check, not both? Also, is the intent that characters can't retry these checks? I am assuming yes to both.

Yes, they make either a survival or a nature check. Its just easier to get the point across from a survival point of view, then a nature point of view, so that is why using survival is easier.

You cant retry, but players can of course help eachother make the check if they want to.

YoungLink314 wrote:

3.

In "B. Treeline"
Quote:
The cliff is 25 feet tall and requires a DC 15 Athletics check to scale.
It seems reasonably likely PCs will try to climb this cliff in...

Yes, they proceed with the normal climb rules. Onyone at the bottom would need some time to climb up, but if someone is stuck all alone at the top, nothing is keeping them from climbing down, either all the way, or just a little bit to allow others to catch up.

5/5 *** Venture-Agent, Netherlands—Utrecht

So, the way I read it, if no one critically succeeds at a task in A, the max amount of points is 29? Getting the 23 points for max Fame/Rep should be doable, but the 25 for HH bonus is tougher. I just ran this, there were no crit successes, and they failed a few tasks. They just ended up with 23 DP (four player party, no one really invested in Wisdom, so a lot of Nature checks were missed).

Anyway, noteworthy things:
People started attacking the swarm, but Resistance 6 proved to be tough. The guy with the slashing weapon (he lost initiative, so was last and saw everyone else struggle to damage it) decided to improvise. He grabbed a big leafy branch from the ground and tried to smother the swarm. It didn't do damage, but I ruled it as lowering its AC and reducing its DC. The Alchemist threw an Alchemist Fire onto the swarm, and I ruled the branch caught on fire as well. Branch did 1d4 fire damage and 1d3+STR bludgeoning. It was an interesting encounter, teaching everyone about swarms.

Everybody loved Wilbur, even the two players playing Addams Family characters broke character. It helped that I chose this picture to portray it. Bark obviously was a bit of a crazy cat lady person, but with his dog.

After calming the goats with Nature checks, they fought the ogre and giant shrews ("it's a Tineke scenario, of course it has rodents"). The ogre got critted to death, but the shrews were still being a handful (one of the players had been poisoned). One of the players asked if they could calm them down using the same method as the goats. I thought it was a reasonable request, and even our resident murderhobo decided it was a better idea to feed the boar to the shrews than to kill them outright. I was debating whether to use Nature vs Will DC, like the goats, or use Diplomacy, like the Druid's Wild Empathy, but they rolled really well, so it didn't matter. But just for my sake and for future reference: is a Nature check versus Will DC a valid method of calming down animals, or was that just for this scenario?

Horizon Hunters 4/5 5/5 *** Venture-Lieutenant, Indiana—Indianapolis

Sebastian Hirsch wrote:
The scenario also has the "Repeatable" Tag on page 2... which seems wrong for a scenario without random elements.

I’m sorry for the necro - but I didn’t see this answered.

The scenario itself has the repeatable tag; the product page does not list that tag.

Is this scenario repeatable or not (maybe I missed the answer in this thread, but I didn’t see it.)

4/5 ****

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It is not.

Horizon Hunters 4/5 5/5 *** Venture-Lieutenant, Indiana—Indianapolis

Pirate Rob wrote:
It is not.

That’s what I thought, but as I am running this next week, I wanted to be sure.

Thanks, PR!

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