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A Twisted Fate? Pathfinder Adventure Path #191: The Destiny War Reviewed

Pathfinder Adventure Path #191: The Destiny War - Stolen Fate 2 of 3 (Paizo Inc)Game Title: Pathfinder Adventure Path #191: The Destiny War (Stolen Fate 2 of 3)

Publisher: Paizo Inc

Authors: Chris S. Sims with James Jacobs and Jason Tondro

Artists: Loïc Canavaggia, Shafi Adams, Rael Dionisio, Dariusz Kieliszek, Robert Lazzaretti, Christoph Peters, and Brooklyn Smith

Year: 2023

Genre: Second chapter of the Stolen Fate adventure path for the Pathfinder RPG

Pages: 94 pages

MSRP: $26.99 in softcover or $19.99 in PDF

The stakes take a dramatic jump for our heroes in The Destiny War, the second installment of the Stolen Fate Adventure Path.

From the start, The Destiny War feels a little less meta and a little more like a traditional Pathfinder adventure. War is undoubtedly an apt descriptor as combat takes a prominent role across three chapters of the outing, even as room for creative problem solving certainly remains.

Of course, calling a single entry in an Adventure Path a “war” does raise some challenges, as wars are generally large in scope, consist of multiple battles, and are not typically resolved in the course of a single entry in a storytelling structure. There is, after all, a reason for the “war epic” genre.

While perhaps not quite sufficiently grand in scale, and certainly a more straightforward adventure than its predecessor, The Destiny War nevertheless benefits from strong narrative design and gameplay-story cohesion. During the opening, in which players must defend the Harrow Court from a multistage onslaught, success is not simply about making good rolls, Pathfinder Adventure Path #191: The Destiny War - Stolen Fate 2 of 3 Interior (Paizo Inc)but careful thought, planning, and cost-benefit analysis. With the siege coming in waves and encounters designed to take a full four-person party, players are forced to consider their options and work together to survive. Fans of strategic combat will be in their glory as each choice feels monumental in its potential for long-lasting consequences.

In between all of this, the player characters are still in hot pursuit of the Deck of Destiny. While the previous chapter saw the party doing some demiplane-assisted globetrotting, this time, their efforts are focused in and around the city of Kho. Much like in The Choosing, players will find some freedom in how they pursue their goals, allowing everyone a chance to shine. While these encounters feel more like side quests than full adventures in miniature as they did before, they still present fun and interesting challenges with memorable NPCs. The opportunity for strategic alliance building here also helps the adventure in living up to its name — no war is won without strategic alliances and adventuring around Kho offers the opportunity to forge partnerships that will prove decisive in the final act.

The final battle with the Prince of Wolves may not quite seal the deal on the “war” moniker, but there is a palpable elevation in scale and risk. Foolhardy parties who wade into the fray alone risk their own person Waterloo, while those able to leverage their new-found compatriots will be one step closer to triumph.

The Destiny War offers GMs an opportunity for storytelling that feels cinematics in its control of tension and narrative stakes. By the end of the adventure, even as the player characters emerge victorious and the Harrow Court recovers and rebuilds, it’s obvious that the final confrontation to come will test them like nothing before. The Destiny War offers an outing that satisfies on its own while still establishing a clear path towards the adventure path’s climax, offering a sense of achievement even as it leaves players ready for more.

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    A Twisted Fate? Pathfinder Adventure Path #191: The Destiny War Reviewed

    Cinematic storytelling and strategic gameplay make The Destiny War a winning continuation to the Stolen Fate Adventure Path and set the stage for a truly grand finale.
    9
    10
    Excellent

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