Investing In: Seven Dooms for Sandpoint

Ah Sandpoint! Nestled on the rugged coastline of Varisia, the picturesque town of Sandpoint beckons to travelers with its charming blend of scenic beauty and despite what you may have heard, a rich history. This coastal gem is a haven for tourists and adventurers alike, offering breathtaking views of the Varisian Gulf, pristine beaches, ancient ruins to be explored, and dungeons in desperate need of clearing. Named the Light of the Lost Coast, this vibrant community is renowned for its warm hospitality, making visitors feel like part of the family with their annual Swallowtail Festival, a spectacle of joy and unity. Whether you’re seeking thrilling adventures in the surrounding wilds, a deep dive into the mysteries and residual dangers of the Thassilonian empire, or simply an eventful retreat in a town where dangers linger beneath every street and building, Sandpoint promises an unforgettable experience. Come for the scenic beauty, stay for the heartwarming tales you’ll tell after the harrowing adventure! With the promise of adventure around every corner, Sandpoint is more than a destination; it’s a destination doomed for disaster!

Seven of them, in fact! Seven Dooms for Sandpoint is the latest adventure path from Paizo, bringing us back to those friendly yet dangerous streets we first traveled back in the very first adventure path Rise of the Runelords. In Burnt Offerings – nearly 17 years ago – James Jacobs introduced us to Sandpoint, to Thassilon, to runewells, to Lamashtu, and to the disastrous dangers that continued to befall this quaint town. Well, James is bringing us back because there’s new trouble in store for Mayor Kendra Deverin, Priest of Desna Abstalar Zantus, Brodert Quink, and of course those that gather at the Rusty Dragon. I thought I’d revisit Sandpoint as I reflect on this new adventure, but know there’s not any spoilers that aren’t obvious. As it turns out, there’s a malevolence manipulating events and bringing the tragedies down upon Sandpoint. Now it’s time for new heroes to step in and – hopefully – stop all seven of these dooms all while facing the politics and intrigue of the town that first cemented our love for Golarion and Pathfinder.

I mean it wouldn’t be much of a game if there weren’t dangers, right? We as Storytellers (GMs and Players alike!) want danger, conflict, intrigue in order to make the game fun. But you know, I didn’t realize how troubled Sandpoint was until I read through all that James had collected for the history (mmm Lore) and did a review myself. It’s been a rough time of it for Sandpoint and it’s about to get worse. Case in point note the sign art from the player’s guide above versus that of the path below, found in the first section. The Overview runs through the plot (the dooms!) at high level but again that Lore comes with a glossary and a wonderful timeline from Age of Creation to now. There’s mention of a 1E sourcebook I wasn’t aware of named Pathfinder Campaign Setting: Sandpoint, Light of the Lost Coast. Very useful if you’re a GM but possibly mild spoilers for players so best to only pick up if you’re running it. 

The origin of Sandpoint even starts tragically as the Scarnettis chose violence, leading to the Varisian Compact. I of course appreciate the call outs to previous paths like Nualia’s activities in 4707 that preceded the defeat of Karzoug by Rise’s adventurers. 4711 references Ameiko’s birthright from the Jade Regent path. A year later was Shattered Star and then eventually Return of the Runelords sees the rise of New Thassilon in 4718. Rise of the Runelords beckoned back to “The Late Unpleasantness.” That was the series of murders that happened 5 years before Rise and is tied into the events of Burnt Offerings along with Nualia’s activities. All of it comes up again in Seven Dooms, honoring all these published works with great respect and providing wonderful continuity for your players.

You know I love a good sidebar and the player’s guide and the main path both suggest the possibility of having the player characters be the children of the original Rise heroes. Wisely the player’s notes pose the question of where are those high-level characters and to discuss it over with the GM. Here’s a few ideas to help:

  • Not Quite Retired – After their adventures in Rise of the Runelords, the heroes decided to retire. They settled down in Sandpoint to raise their families in peace, wanting their children to have a normal upbringing away from the dangers of adventure. However, as time went on, the world would not forget the heroes and requests would come for assistance. They might have been asked to join a prestigious organization, protect a kingdom like New Thassilon, or undertake a quest of global importance. Their duties take them far away, possibly to another realm, leaving their children behind to carry on their legacy or possibly to keep them there in safety, secrecy.
  • Conflict of Interest – The heroes found themselves at odds with the direction Sandpoint was taking. Whether it was due to political disagreements, conflicting values, or changes they couldn’t abide, they chose to distance themselves from the town. This might have been a gradual process, starting with disagreements over policies and eventually leading to a complete withdrawal from the town’s affairs. 
  • Dangerous Presence – Perhaps it’s possible they’re drawing too many dangers to the city. They feared that their presence would bring harm to those they cared about, including their own children. They left Sandpoint to protect their loved ones, knowing that their absence was the best way to keep them safe.
  • Seeking Answers – New mysteries arose from their adventures including the ramifications of Return of the Runelords, prompting the heroes to embark on a new quest for knowledge or power. They left Sandpoint to explore ancient ruins, consult wise sages, or seek out artifacts that could help them uncover the truth behind their previous exploits. Their children remained in Sandpoint, unaware of the secret quests their parents were undertaking. It’s possible they’re even helping Sorshen with New Thassilon as I suggested above!
  • Mysterious Disappearance – The heroes vanished under mysterious circumstances, leaving no trace behind. Rumors circulated in Sandpoint about what might have happened to them, from being abducted by extraplanar beings to being trapped in a cursed artifact. Their children grew up without knowing the fate of their parents, always wondering and hoping for their return. In a similar vein, the PC could be the secret child and not know their parentage.

The Player’s Guide otherwise gives the typical recommendations on ancestries, classes, archetypes, faiths, languages, skills, and gear. However there are new Backgrounds to use, which I always appreciate. They really help capture lore and ties to a path, often reminding me of the Pathfinder1E trait system. You can be a child of the Sandpoint Cathedral, possibly even a foster of Zantus. That background gives you reputation with the Cathedral, as this path does use the Reputation system to track between influence on various groups. Curious Apprentice has you working for the blacksmiths, a general store, or other trade. You get reputation with the Mercantile League. Both reduce your reputation with the Scarnetti Consortium. Eager Scofflaw makes you a ne’er-do-well of the town with some underworld contacts the Bunyip Club while decreasing your rep with the Town Watch. Lost Coast Local has you from a local family or at least nearby with reputation increases for the Townsfolk, and again the Scarnetti aren’t going to like you. There’s also MIlitia Member, Newcomer, and Runelord Scholar which I’d of course choose. Finally there’s the Scarnetti-Connected so you aren’t from the family but you are connected to them. That might give you a clue as to some of the problems you’ll deal with during the path…

Back to the path there’s a truly amazing, updated Sandpoint gazetteer. The player’s guide has it but not to the extent of the path. Every group is mentioned including the Runewatchers who are interested in learning and trading lore of ancient Thassilon. You get information on earning income, support benefits, and of course a brand new map with details on each location. The Adventure Toolbox has numerous new magical items, some of quite high level despite this path getting characters to a max of 14th level. And there’s something lore-based, something that is extremely exciting to me, hinted at in the past that I so want to talk about but I don’t want to even remotely spoil it. With some more official information I eagerly look forward to bringing these details into my Kingmaker game, as I’m running that as if the other paths have happened. I hope James and Adam Daigle (developer on this with James) are really proud – but not too proud – of the glorious work they’ve done here.

There’s so much more out there to learn about Golarion in the Age of Lost Omens. I highly recommend you invest in this new adventure if you’ve done any of the Sandpoint-based adventures, especially Rise of the Runelords. Even if you don’t intend to run the exact adventure path, it’s filled with useful characters, updated Sandpoint information, stat blocks/crunch, and of course lore that is truly valuable to have for the Age of Lost Omens. If you’re reading through it, hit me up because I need to discuss! Here’s that beautiful Sandpoint art shot to enjoy in parting.

Investing In:

I wasn’t quite sure what to name my article series when I first started but the idea of showcasing or discussing things that make me excited, that I find new and interesting, or maybe I’m otherwise passionate about seemed to fit with the idea of Investing In something like the Pathfinder 2E mechanic. To use some magic items you have to give that little bit of yourself, which helps make these things even better. I like the metaphor of the community growing and being strengthened in the same way!

I also want to hear what you’re Investing In! Leave me a comment below about what games, modules, systems, products, people, live streams, etc you enjoy! You can also hit me up on social media as silentinfinity. I want to hear what excites you and what you’re passionate about. There’s so much wonderful content, people, groups (I could go on) in this community of ours that the more we invest in and share, the better it becomes!


Banner Seven Dooms for Sandpoint cover, Paizo

  1. Sandpoint sign, Seven Dooms for Sandpoint Player’s Guide, Paizo
  2. Sandpoint sign, Seven Dooms for Sandpoint, Paizo
  3. The Sandpoint Devil, Seven Dooms for Sandpoint Player’s Guide, Paizo
  4. Sandpoint Gazetteer, Seven Dooms for Sandpoint Player’s Guide, Paizo

Rob Pontious

You may know Rob Pontious from Order of the Amber Die or Gehenna Gaming's first series of Monster Hearts 2. He currently writes Know Direction's Investing In blog as well as a player for the Valiant podcast and Roll for Combat's Three Ring Adventure. He's been a lover of TTRPGs for over three decades, as a gamer, and a GAYMER. You can find him on social media as @silentinfinity.