Question about influence sub-system in Book 4

Strength of Thousands

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

I understand the influence sub-system in general as published in the GMG, it’s the new “Contact a Mzali figure” activity I’m confused about.

The book says this influence system has rounds that last a week, which is fine. However, the new activity reads:


You gather information on a notable figure in Mzali, speaking with contacts and putting your name out. You also attempt to arrange a meeting with the figure. Each figure requires a specific skill check or skill checks to properly contact them. The GM notifies you as to which skill or skills you can use and uses the DC listed in the figure’s entry.

This activity normally takes 1 week, but if your allies are also working to contact the same figure, the time is reduced if any of you succeed. The activity takes only 4 days if two heroes are engaged in this activity, 2 days if three heroes are engaged in this activity, and 1 day if four or more heroes are engaged in this activity.

So if two PCs attempt to contact a figure and it only takes 4 days, but the other two do one of the other activities which takes a week, then what? Are the party just out of sync with their activities now, and I need to track who’s doing what by day, rather than just per week-long rounds? Or do the ones who attempted to contact the figure do nothing until the others finish their activities, meaning working together to make it quicker was completely pointless, and they might as well have had one do the contacting and the other do something else? How exactly are you supposed to run this?

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