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Magnimar Special Investigations Unit One (Inactive)

Game Master Nazard

A serial police drama set in Magnimar - unit One.


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Nazard wrote:


Auriel, I actually went and looked up the street performer archetype, looking for the "Call for Help" ability, thinking maybe it was an actual thing they got, before I realized your little joke!:)

Don't forget her summon Taverson ability. That one worked out pretty well on her last action. ;)


Expert 3/Slacker 4/Layabout 2

Sugar. With Awgin down Heward can't leave the library.

Dax, you're right about the strength and size cancelling. I had read the spell as a +2 Str bonus, not +2 to Str.

Joana, summon taverson is working out well. That guy is dynamite.


therealthom wrote:
Joana, summon taverson is working out well. That guy is dynamite.

Only 7 hp left, sadly. One more round of 3d6+4 constriction damage, and he'll be dead, too.

Seven 1st-level characters, plus Taverson, who's at least 4th-level, versus one summoner, and we're getting destroyed. I stand by my opinion about summoners. :P


Joana wrote:
therealthom wrote:
Joana, summon taverson is working out well. That guy is dynamite.

Only 7 hp left, sadly. One more round of 3d6+4 constriction damage, and he'll be dead, too.

Seven 1st-level characters, plus Taverson, who's at least 4th-level, versus one summoner, and we're getting destroyed. I stand by my opinion about summoners. :P

Actually, six, since Auriel hasn't really done anything except stand around and berate other people for not doing anything.


Hey, she summoned Taverson! And floured the summoner and sauced the snake! And pretty much did everything one can expect out of a PC with 9 hit points and no weapons! Just because she has nothing useful to bring to this fight doesn't mean she's not participating.

All Garidan did was miss and then get taken out with one blow, so I guess there's really only five characters. ;P

The problem is that Auriel was built as a support character for a larger party (c'mon, she's a bard), but she keeps getting caught by herself where none of her abilities are of much use.

Grand Lodge

Auriel actually gave us a fighting chance with her actions before the fight. Plus she summoned Taverson. It looks like the rest of us have failed to do our part.


Auriel's summon Taverson ability has definitely come in very useful for the group! :)

Seriously, I'd say Auriel has accomplished more than Laya has in this battle. Laya's attempt to distract the elementals was a complete failure. Her attempt to get the golem maid involved was a complete failure. Her attempts to battle Veristan have so far been a complete failure.

Laya's another character who was not designed for combat, and she has even fewer hp than Auriel (only 8). :)


Joana wrote:

Hey, she summoned Taverson! And floured the summoner and sauced the snake! And pretty much did everything one can expect out of a PC with 9 hit points and no weapons! Just because she has nothing useful to bring to this fight doesn't mean she's not participating.

All Garidan did was miss and then get taken out with one blow, so I guess there's really only five characters. ;P

The problem is that Auriel was built as a support character for a larger party (c'mon, she's a bard), but she keeps getting caught by herself where none of her abilities are of much use.

Agreed to all of the above. However, she's a support character who's used to having to make it on her own in life, so keeps running off by herself with her own plan, thereby robbing herself of the rest of a party.

No worries. I'm sure Percival will want a debrief when this is all said and done. :)

And agreed also with Navior. Laya is really useless!

Grand Lodge

While I agree that Laya has not been as successful as Auriel (failure is such a harsh word), she has been as successful as the rest of us so far. That is probably why we aren't doing so well right now.


Admittedly, if it weren't for that annoying protection from arrows spell, Laya would have done a whole 1 point of nonlethal damage to Veristan. That's gotta count for something. :)


Honestly, after her last meeting with the snake, Auriel had no delusions she was capable of fighting it. Her entire agenda for tonight was to evacuate the house if Veristan showed up to minimize civilian casualties and leave the actual fighting to people who had some ability to do it. That's why she was downstairs instead of waiting around upstairs with the others. And by her own standards, her evening was a wild success: she got both guests and kitchen help out of the house safely! If she'd been in the library upstairs with everyone else, there probably would have been more people in mortal danger than just Taverson and the MSI team by the time the elementals and eidolon made their way upstairs.


I know what you're all doing, making Heward out to be the hero to make him feel better about going down atvRimblesnuffin's.


Joana wrote:
Honestly, after her last meeting with the snake, Auriel had no delusions she was capable of fighting it. Her entire agenda for tonight was to evacuate the house if Veristan showed up to minimize civilian casualties and leave the actual fighting to people who had some ability to do it. That's why she was downstairs instead of waiting around upstairs with the others. And by her own standards, her evening was a wild success: she got both guests and kitchen help out of the house safely! If she'd been in the library upstairs with everyone else, there probably would have been more people in mortal danger than just Taverson and the MSI team by the time the elementals and eidolon made their way upstairs.

Very true. Of course, now she 's doing an excellent job of pissing off a very powerful noble who already hated you and is really mad that the exalted MSI unit was unable to protect his daughter's party from a simple Shoanti barbarian.

If it helps at all, Veristan is about to make the mistake iconic to all classic police drama villains. Auriel's opportunity to be useful may be imminent.

Grand Lodge

Nazard wrote:
I know what you're all doing, making Heward out to be the hero to make him feel better about going down atvRimblesnuffin's.

Awgin's not that kind of guy. He's more of a kick-them-when-they-are-down kind of fella. I had planned to have Awgin say something to Heward like, 'isn't it time for you to take a nap', at the beginning of every fight until he went down. Unfortunately, Awgin didn't get a chance.


Expert 3/Slacker 4/Layabout 2

Ramblings --

Yeah, the melee squad has not been the most effective, but that's the dice. Awgin and Heward are trying. And Awgin did crunch elemental 1 pretty good before he went down.

I made Heward a melee guy because I remembered how poorly we came off in the other CSI game's combat. Not that it's working out real well.

Nazard's point about Auriel depriving herself of a party is funny and accurate. But perfectly well roleplayed. The team hasn't had time to come together. I kind of like it in a frustrating way. So often a party of four total strangers meshes into a well-oiled combat machine without any character interaction. Maybe Nazard should have started us out solving candy thefts.

Oh, and sweet dreams, Prince Awgin..... Just sealed Heward's fate

The Exchange

Hi guys.

My Dad was rushed into hospital a little over a week ago (just after my last round of posts!) when his aortic aneurism ruptured. Thankfully with some luck and the really quite excellent people at the NHS his operation went really well, and he's now back home (sporting a scar down the whole of his stomach, with just a little detour round the belly button - they really weren't messing about when they opened him up this time!). Being the only one of his six children who lives anywhere near, I get to volunteer for all the trips up to the hospital and stuff, so I've not really had any time to get on-line.

Hopefully I'll be able to get back to a better posting routine now, but it may still be a little spotty, as I'm sort of on call to rush up and help out at a moment's notice, so if everyone could bear with me that'd be great!


Nazard wrote:
Heward Wallas wrote:

"We need Laya in here," Heward mutters. He stands, steps to the door, and opens it. "Laya! Garidan and Awgin need you."

Aid another would be good strategy, but Laya's a sure bet.

But you don't lose anything by trying, and it may take a few rounds for Laya to get to you.

Yeah, she's kind of in the middle of a climactic confrontation with the BBEG right now. Can she get back to you on that?


Joana wrote:
Nazard wrote:
Heward Wallas wrote:

"We need Laya in here," Heward mutters. He stands, steps to the door, and opens it. "Laya! Garidan and Awgin need you."

Aid another would be good strategy, but Laya's a sure bet.

But you don't lose anything by trying, and it may take a few rounds for Laya to get to you.
Yeah, she's kind of in the middle of a climactic confrontation with the BBEG right now. Can she get back to you on that?

There's also a big table in the way, which will block her channelling and stop her reaching anyone with a touch healing spell. And if she tries to move past it, the villain will likely no longer stand idly by.


Expert 3/Slacker 4/Layabout 2

ProfPotts, no worries on my part. Good luck to your dad during his recover.

I don't think she's gonna be able to stall him more than a couple rounds. It will take us at least two rounds to stabilize them. If we stabilize them.

I'm not sure what to do. If the consensus is that stabilization is the better ploy, Heward can return to that plan.


Expert 3/Slacker 4/Layabout 2

So, if stabilization is the plan, somebody shoo or call Heward back to it. And he should help Calatin, cause Calatin has the better roll.


therealthom wrote:
So, if stabilization is the plan, somebody shoo or call Heward back to it. And he should help Calatin, cause Calatin has the better roll.

Well, the only person there who can do it is Calatin, and I think we can safely assume that he does so without having to wait until tomorrow morning for Megan's usual posting time. Go ahead and make some stabilization rolls. Like many things, I do these kind of aid another rolls without the need for deciding in advance who is the primary and who is helping. Everybody involved make a roll and the best roll is the primary, with the others helping.


Expert 3/Slacker 4/Layabout 2

Laya could tell Heward to get lost, too.


M Human Wizard (Divination School Specialist)/2

Yes, of course...

... and then I come online late, on account of my player happens to be a school board member and was chairing a panel hearing a complaint from a parent this morning... :/ (Seems to have been resolved amicably in the end.)


Calatin ab'Halla wrote:

Yes, of course...

... and then I come online late, on account of my player happens to be a school board member and was chairing a panel hearing a complaint from a parent this morning... :/ (Seems to have been resolved amicably in the end.)

Parents really are the bane of a teacher's existence sometimes...


Garidan Hawk Dancer wrote:
Quote:
... just as the ranger shrinks back down to his normal size...
We've had ten rounds already? ::sigh:: - there goes my last contribution to combat...

Well, if it consoles you at all, even if he were still enlarged, he'd still be unconscious as well, just taking up more space on the floor.

Still waiting on that army of cats you promised! ;)


Male Human (Shoanti) Witch 2

Yeah, I was hoping that the big guy may get some healing and back into the fight before the enlarge person wore off, but no such luck.

As for the cats... to be fair to 'em, I only asked that they be on the lookout for an invisible guy which the stupid non-cats weren't noticing - since that's what we thought the perp's M.O. was at the time. Since it turned out that he's actually using mundane disguises, which no-one saw through, and only did the vanishing thing when it all kicked off anyway, I think we can probably forgive our feline friends this once... ;)


Seriously, I want to apologize for the quality of these "jokes." A comic I am not. I'm just desperately googling for something germane, non-anachronistic, and vaguely recognizable as meant to be humorous. Sadly, hideous laughter is her one offensive spell.


Expert 3/Slacker 4/Layabout 2

I'll tell you how funny the jokes are after we see if Veristan fails. In the meantime try looking up some of Woody Allen's old one-liners.

Do any of the rest of us know she has a magic crossbow?


therealthom wrote:


Do any of the rest of us know she has a magic crossbow?

Just Mrs. Brigglespan. :)


Expert 3/Slacker 4/Layabout 2

See. Your jokes are getting better already.


Sadly, for a bard, her communication skills are really bad, at least in terms of telling her own teammates crucial bits of info. However, apparently Shoanti are really keen on bad puns. Would be good to remember when dealing with Garidan.


Nazard wrote:


By the way, on of the reasons the bad guys' saves are there in the combat stats is so that players can roll their saves for them to adjucate and resolved their own spells without having to wait for me. It speeds up combat a bit to not have to wait for me, and gives you narrative power over your own spell results. If you come up with a reaction that the NPC would not give, i'llfixit.

Far too nerve-wracking to be responsible for rolling saves for the bad guy. It's bad enough I have to roll my own!

Then you get into situations where you're constantly saving for the guy you're trying to kill and failing your own, and that way leads madness.


Joana wrote:
Nazard wrote:


By the way, on of the reasons the bad guys' saves are there in the combat stats is so that players can roll their saves for them to adjucate and resolved their own spells without having to wait for me. It speeds up combat a bit to not have to wait for me, and gives you narrative power over your own spell results. If you come up with a reaction that the NPC would not give, i'llfixit.

Far too nerve-wracking to be responsible for rolling saves for the bad guy. It's bad enough I have to roll my own!

Then you get into situations where you're constantly saving for the guy you're trying to kill and failing your own, and that way leads madness.

You don't get out much, do you?


Nazard wrote:
Joana wrote:
Nazard wrote:


By the way, on of the reasons the bad guys' saves are there in the combat stats is so that players can roll their saves for them to adjucate and resolved their own spells without having to wait for me. It speeds up combat a bit to not have to wait for me, and gives you narrative power over your own spell results. If you come up with a reaction that the NPC would not give, i'llfixit.

Far too nerve-wracking to be responsible for rolling saves for the bad guy. It's bad enough I have to roll my own!

Then you get into situations where you're constantly saving for the guy you're trying to kill and failing your own, and that way leads madness.

You don't get out much, do you?

I just know the Paizo dice roller has a grudge against me and a twisted sense of humor.

Grand Lodge

I know how you feel.


Expert 3/Slacker 4/Layabout 2

For once the dice roller came through. Not in spades, but that's a pretty solid hit.


All I can find is this from Additional Rules:

Quote:
Energy Attacks: Energy attacks deal half damage to most objects. Divide the damage by 2 before applying the object's hardness. Some energy types might be particularly effective against certain objects, subject to GM discretion. For example, fire might do full damage against parchment, cloth, and other objects that burn easily. Sonic might do full damage against glass and crystal objects.

...and this under Heat Dangers in Environment:

Quote:

Characters exposed to burning oil, bonfires, and non-instantaneous magic fires might find their clothes, hair, or equipment on fire. Spells with an instantaneous duration don't normally set a character on fire, since the heat and flame from these come and go in a flash.

Characters at risk of catching fire are allowed a DC 15 Reflex save to avoid this fate. If a character's clothes or hair catch fire, he takes 1d6 points of damage immediately. In each subsequent round, the burning character must make another Reflex saving throw. Failure means he takes another 1d6 points of damage that round. Success means that the fire has gone out—that is, once he succeeds on his saving throw, he's no longer on fire.

A character on fire may automatically extinguish the flames by jumping into enough water to douse himself. If no body of water is at hand, rolling on the ground or smothering the fire with cloaks or the like permits the character another save with a +4 bonus.

Those whose clothes or equipment catch fire must make DC 15 Reflex saves for each item. Flammable items that fail take the same amount of damage as the character.

Nothing about bypassing hardness.


As it says under the "Additional Rules" quote Joana gave above, under DM's discretion, you can make some energy types more effective against certain things. I've played with many players who would vehemently argue that fire against wood should be one of those more effective things.

However, I'm going to argue otherwise. People overestimate how easily wood burns because they're so used to the image of a wood fire. But there's a reason you need to use small bits of kindling to get a fire going. It takes a while to ignite a thick piece of wood. Once it starts burning, it burns well and keeps burning for quite a long time before it finally burns through. Now, the wood of a table is not as thick as a log you would use in a fireplace or on a campfire, but it is quite a bit thicker than kindling. I would rule that the elementals would have to remain in contact with the table for several rounds before it actually catches. (By a strict reading of the rules as written, if their per round damage divided by 2 isn't enough to get past hardness, then it should never catch fire; however, that's a bit absurd too. It should catch eventually. Just not immediately.)


Yeah, I had to take a break to go put the kids to bed, but I was going to point out that if I dropped a lit match on my wooden dining room table, it wouldn't burst into flame. Would mar the finish before it went out but not reduce it to a pile of ash. So I don't think fire damage should bypass wood's hardness. Parchment, cloth, etc., like the CRB specifies, sure.

So that would mean you'd need at least a Medium fire elemental to burn down a house. Small could burn up the curtains and papers and such.


M Human Wizard (Divination School Specialist)/2

Die roller seems to hate me too...

... at least, in this game. It's OK when I'm DMing.


Expert 3/Slacker 4/Layabout 2

Dice roller hates me when I'm Heward; hates when I'm DMing too. It's pretty impartial that way. (Of course when I actually do hit and score some decent damage, it feels really good. Nice and warm and toasty. Fist pumps and knuckle bumps all around. )

ProfPotts: thanks for the boost from the table. Inspired thinking there.

Now if Taverson would just pump some quarrels into Veristan, we would worry less about him summoning elementals.

Nothing to add on the fire debate. DM rules.


Male Human (Shoanti) Witch 2
therealthom wrote:
ProfPotts: thanks for the boost from the table. Inspired thinking there.

No problem! To be honest, Garidan is really un-optimised for this sort of thing... but at least he's got enough Strength to lug furniture around! :)

What we really need is someone with a whip - 15ft reach and can trip spider-boy off the wall so we can all pound on him. Is there a Bard in the house? With only one guy able to attack at all we don't really stand much of a chance (unless Heward gets a lucky critical hit or two in with the spear)...

I don't suppose anyone has a grease spell handy?

If Garidan makes it to level 2, I really need to see about weaponizing his spell list a bit...


In the first incarnation of the game, we were all under designed for combat. That's why I didn't reprise Foggy in this game. I figured we would want somebody to be able to duke it out with the bad guys sometimes.

In general I think Awgin's shown better in combat than Heward. With two decent front line fighters I think the casters can take a modicum of combat spells. Even though Awgin and Heward get beat up, we should be OK.

Not saying we couldn't use more help here though.


Female Human (Chelaxian) Bard (street performer) 2
Garidan Hawk Dancer wrote:
Is there a Bard in the house?

*waves* Why would I use a whip, though? Sounds more like an elf dominatrix. :P


Male Human (Shoanti) Witch 2

Yeah - I haven't really geared the guy towards being a big de-buffer, which is where Witch characters can excel as far as offense goes, but gone for investigation and support. The enlarge person is his best combat spell, and that got shut down pretty quickly... Still, if he lives, at least Garidan can fill his spare slot with what's sure to be a much needed cure light wounds... ;)

Quote:
*waves* Why would I use a whip, though? Sounds more like an elf dominatrix. :P

So... that's where your mind instantly goes, huh? Not a certain Doctor Jones? I won't judge... ;)

... But yeah, Bards get proficiency with the whip for free, and it's such a useful and versatile (and easy to conceal, and cheap) weapon that all Bards really should carry one 'just in case'... IMHO...


Garidan Hawk Dancer wrote:

So... that's where your mind instantly goes, huh? Not a certain Doctor Jones? I won't judge... ;)

... But yeah, Bards get proficiency with the whip for free, and it's such a useful and versatile (and easy to conceal, and cheap) weapon that all Bards really should carry one 'just in case'... IMHO...

I have a really hard time justifying her knowing how to use a whip. It may be a free weapon proficiency, but what about growing up in a shoe shop and then becoming a bohemian artsy street-performer type says 'knowing how to trip someone with a whip?' The mechanics might justify it, but the fluff certainly doesn't. 'Knowing how to hit a handsy guy over the head with a sap and run like heck,' sure.


M Human Wizard (Divination School Specialist)/2

If you are a 'street urchin' character, you might have played with a top as a child. If you know the history of children's toys, you might have come across the 'whipping top' - dexterity with one of those might translate quite readily to using a whip in combat in later life.


Calatin/Megan wrote:
Don't you like trig? It was the bit of mathematics I enjoyed the most, even better than algebra and calculus!

Actually, I enjoy trig immensely, especially teaching it, which I've done for several years, now. I was more worried that if I actually did it out, it would turn out that Calatin was actually out of range, and I didn't want to rob him of something to do, just for the sake of a few decimal places...

However, here goes. It's not really trig, just a combinatino of Pythagorean calculations (my 3D trig is not up to snuff, so I'll do it the old-fashioned way). The diagonal is calculated as 15 feet to the wall and 10 feet north, so the root of 325, which is about 18. Squaring that distance and going up 15 feet, we get a new hypoteneuse of 550, which the root of is about 23.5. So Calatin was 1.5 feet with range of his close ranged 1st CL cantrip.

But he still missed; the cantrip probably just didn't have enough range to actually strike the wall behind the summoner.


Calatin ab'Halla wrote:
If you are a 'street urchin' character, you might have played with a top as a child. If you know the history of children's toys, you might have come across the 'whipping top' - dexterity with one of those might translate quite readily to using a whip in combat in later life.

She actually had a boring lower-middle-class upbringing, but that doesn't mean she wouldn't have played with a top. Still doesn't explain why it would make her proficient in the whip when she grows up when all the little commoners- and fighters- and clerics-to-be who were playing with the top right along with her don't get the same benefit.

Honestly, I've never been a big fan of the bard class in general and think some of the mechanics are odd. Even if she had been trained at some bardic college somewhere, I have no clue why they would teach their students how to use a whip. Temple of Calistria, yes.


Expert 3/Slacker 4/Layabout 2

Hey, Auriel picks up random guys for one night stands. Surely someone taught her how to use a whip?

:-)

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