Season 3 of the Pathfinder Society Roleplaying Guild campaign ran from August 2011 to July 2012. The season is referred to as the Year of the Ruby Phoenix due to the prominent role the Ruby Phoenix Tournament and activities in Tian Xia played over the course of the season's plot. At the start of this season, five new factions were introduced into the organized play campaign, including the Grand Lodge, the Lantern Lodge, the Shadow Lodge, the Sczarni, and the Silver Crusade.
The Pathfinder Society, learning of a powerful artifact believed to be held within the treasure trove of legendary Gokan sorcerer Hao Jin, set into motion a plat to obtain it. They first ensured a team of combatants representing the Society would qualify to participate in the Ruby Phoenix Tournament, a decennial fighting tournament held in Tian Xia which grants the winner a single piece of treasure from Hao Jin's infamous collection of wonders. Once the Society had secured a spot in the tournament, they dispatched a number of expeditions over the course of the second half of 4711 AR to gather techniques, allies, and weapons and other items of power to aid their representatives in the tournament itself. Among the resources sought were the Mutani Manual of Martial Mastery (a rare book of techniques in the possession of Druman aristocrat Temel Passad), a centaur ally from the tribes of the central Isle of Kortos, and the mythical Braid of a Hundred Masters—an Iroran relic from distant Tian Xia that required a months-long trek across the Dragon Empires to unlock its true potential..
The Pathfinder Society's representatives were victorious in the Ruby Phoenix Tournament, despite the best efforts of the Aspis Consortium and their Tian allies among the Golden League.. As their prize, the Decemvirate selected an unassuming tapestry from Hao Jin's collection. This relic, known as the Hao Jin Tapestry, contained within it a demiplane in which the Ruby Phoenix had secreted away her largest and most dangerous exhibits—an entire world of ancient and magical treasures ripe for the Pathfinder Society to explore. In their first forays into the tapestry, the Pathfinders explored ruins from Ancient Osirion and Vudra and encountered a society of lizardfolk who had dwelt in the tapestry demiplane for generations.. During the course of their explorations, they discovered that the Aspis Consortium had somehow gained access to what should have been the Pathfinders' private realm to explore. Much of the first half of 4712 AR was spent tracking the Consortium's operations in the Tapestry to discover their means of ingress. Along the way, Pathfinder agents ventured into the heart of a mysterious spherical mountain to parley with the ratfolk civilization who lived within. and encountered a Tian temple to the empyreal lord Korada that hid some surprising revelations. Finally locating the Aspis agents' backdoor into the Hao Jin Tapestry, the Pathfinders overtook the outpost there and secured both sides of the permanent portal therein.. This doorway, they learned, connected northwestern Varisia to the demiplane through a repurposed gateway in an ancient temple to the goddess Lissala. In the process of eliminating the Aspis threat to the demiplane, the Pathfinders defeated a rival of Cheliax faction leader Zarta Dralneen, named Aglorn Desimire.
Other ongoing plots
Having defeated leadership of the Shadow Lodge renegades who sowed such chaos the previous year, the Society attempted to rout out remaining cells of disloyal agents, beginning with the interrogation of a band of goblins from Irrisen who had served the Shadow Lodge operatives based in Whitethrone.Meanwhile, a powerful cult of Zyphus in Taldor attempted to exact revenge against the Society for the Pathfinders' role in foiling past plans the cult attempted to execute. Absalom scholar Yargos Gill once again found himself in the possession of a dangerous and powerful tome, which required the Pathfinders' intervention, while the lorestone discovered a year earlier also uncovered a new danger among the druids of the Verduran Forest.. A secret door in the floor of a subbasement of the Blakros Museum precipitated a team of Pathfinders venturing into the ruins of an abandoned wizard's tower in search of its key. Elsewhere in Absalom, agents investigated a string of thefts of religious relics from the Ascendant Court negotiated a treaty with a tribe of kobolds in the sewers through which elicit Pathfinder operations sometimes traveled infiltrated the Thuvian embassy during a dinner party (and met a number of influential movers and shakers in the process) and gained an influential ally in the Ivy District's Sendeli Foxglove.
Much of the Society's efforts over the course of the yearlong span were focused on the continent of Tian Xia, and the establishment of stronger ties to the Pathfinder agents based out of the Lantern Lodge in Goka. Under the guidance of Venture-Captain Amara Li, agents in the Dragon Empires recovered the aforementioned Braid of a Hundred Masters, helped a nagaji settlement in Nagajor settle a political dispute and attempted to make contact with representatives of the Way of the Kirin—a noble Tian organization who Amara Li believed to be in her debt..
In summer 4712, the Society held its annual Grand Convocation, during which the Pathfinders used their influence throughout the Inner Sea and with the Blakros family to facilitate the betrothal of Michellia Blakros to the Hellknight Damian Kastner, an alliance members of the Society felt would be beneficial to their exploratory efforts in the region. At the conclusion of the festivities, agents from the Onyx Alliance in Shadow Absalom attacked the assembled revelers in an attempt to exact revenge for the Society's meddling in their broken arrangement with the Blakroses in 4710 AR..
Season 3 releases
The following adventures were released as part of Season 3. This table may be sorted by scenario number, title, level tier, metaplot arc, venture-captain (or other official) assigning the mission, location, or country.
- Tim Hitchcock. (2012). Blood Under Absalom, Paizo Publishing, LLC.
- Mike Shel. (2011). The Ghenett Manor Gauntlet, Paizo Publishing, LLC.
- Benjamin Bruck. (2011). The Kortos Envoy, Paizo Publishing, LLC.
- Jerall Toi. (2011). The Edge of Heaven, Paizo Publishing, LLC.
- Benjamin Bruck. (2011). On Hostile Waters, Paizo Publishing, LLC.
- Sean McGowan. (2012). Defenders of Nesting Swallow, Paizo Publishing, LLC.
- Tim Hitchcock. (2012). The Ruby Phoenix Tournament, Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-381-1
- Jonathan H. Keith. (2011). The Dog Pharaoh's Tomb, Paizo Publishing, LLC.
- Jeff Erwin. (2012). The Icebound Outpost, Paizo Publishing, LLC.
- Hal Maclean. (2012). Snakes in the Fold, Paizo Publishing, LLC.
- Kyle Baird. (2012). The Sundered Path, Paizo Publishing, LLC.
- Russ Taylor. (2012). Pagoda of the Rat, Paizo Publishing, LLC.
- Ron Lundeen. (2012). The Temple of Empyreal Enlightenment, Paizo Publishing, LLC.
- Larry Wilhelm. (2012). Storming the Diamond Gate, Paizo Publishing, LLC.
- Sean McGowan. (2012). Portal of the Sacred Rune, Paizo Publishing, LLC.
- Jim Groves. (2011). The Frostfur Captives, Paizo Publishing, LLC.
- Michael Kenway. (2011). Among the Gods, Paizo Publishing, LLC.
- Thurston Hillman. (2011). Song of the Sea Witch, Paizo Publishing, LLC.
- Ron Lundeen. (2011). Tide of Twilight, Paizo Publishing, LLC.
- James F. MacKenzie. (2011). Echoes of the Overwatched, Paizo Publishing, LLC.
- Dennis Baker. (2012). The God's Market Gamble, Paizo Publishing, LLC.
- Dennis Baker. (2011). Sewer Dragons of Absalom, Paizo Publishing, LLC.
- Larry Wilhelm. (2011). The Immortal Conundrum, Paizo Publishing, LLC.
- Jim Groves. (2012). The Golden Serpent, Paizo Publishing, LLC.
- Alex Greenshields. (2012). Red Harvest, Paizo Publishing, LLC.
- Jim Groves. (2012). The Golden Serpent, Paizo Publishing, LLC.
- Owen K.C. Stephens. (2010). The Penumbral Accords, Paizo Publishing, LLC.
- Kyle Elliott, Chris Jarvis, et al. (2012). Grand Convocation 4712, Paizo Publishing, LLC.