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Shadows in Freeport (Inactive)

Game Master baldwin the merciful


Adventure Summary

Hired by a group of concerned citizens, the characters stand before the Old Cresh manor, smack dab in the heart of Freeport, haven of pirates, thieves, and other scum. Compelled by a strong sense of urgency to recover lost family members, the characters must brave whatever horrors wait inside. But after a few encounters they quickly learn there is more at stake than simple kidnappings. Between the ghostly terrors wrought by Fatty Blue, the ghost of a particularly mean and nasty child, and the corrupted and twisted gangs of ghost youths, something terrible is at work here. With each room explored, the characters come closer to discovering that the former owner was no simple merchant, but in fact a despicable cultist! And what he could not achieve in life, he strives for in death. Can the heroes rescue the missing children, put to rest the unruly spirits haunting the place, and stop the what's lurking beneath the house before it's too late? * Dungeon Crawl Classics #20: Shadows in Freeport is copyright © 2005 Goodman Games.

Background Story:

Fifty years ago, there lived a man in Freeport named Alexander Cresh. A freakish man, Cresh was short of stature and had twisted features, with a humped back and unseemly gait. Despite his terrible appearance, he was a successful and bloodthirsty merchant, using his ugly visage to intimidate his customers and turn a handsome profit in all his dealings. However, his appearance belied his inner corruption; Cresh was no saint. He trafficked in the occult, the forbidden and evil subjects such as necromancy and demonology. Combined with his monstrous looks and equally terrible reputation, his peers hated him. They
mocked him at every occasion, bullying him for sport and to quell their own fears about what actually went on in Cresh’s imposing manor.

The little merchant grew to despise the people of Freeport. He severed his business dealings with dealers from the mainland. He spent his fortunes to acquire rare manuscripts and dark volumes of maddening wickedness to further his own dark agenda. All of this effort went to opening wide the mouth of Hell and bring forth swarms of demons and their ilk to lay waste to the city. To complete his dark ritual, he sent his minions into the streets to collect the children of Cresh’s rivals. One by one, the squalling brats were brought to the mansion where they were used for some purpose, foul and terrible.

The locals were terrified. Parents searched the streets. Freeport turned upside down in the hopes of locating the lost children. Every lead ended in a dead end. There was no sign of the lost children… at least until a group of searchers caught one of Cresh’s demonic cronies in the act, trapped in the bedroom of a merchant prince’s child, whom Cresh hated terribly. With the aid of Freeport’s clerics and their devices of inquisition, they learned from the tortured fiend that Cresh was behind the abductions and he used the captured children to spin some sinister plot which threatened the entire city.

The wealthy denizens of Freeport rose up and marched against the evil house. The people, buttressed by heroes and others who sought plunder, broke through the barriers, swept through the place, lighting curtains and furniture on fire in their efforts to root out the despicable man. Finally they found him in the basement, where they butchered him
with swords. But even with the master dead, the good people of Freeport would never return, for the master’s minions overpowered them. In the end, though all who sought Cresh’s death died on that fateful night, the abductions stopped and nothing stirred since.

After decades, new people came to the city. They purchased the homes and businesses of the vanished townsfolk. Starting new lives, they knew nothing of the manor and its foreboding history. The locals boarded up the windows, locked the gates, and pretended the old house just
didn’t exist. People avoid this place, crossing the street to the other side to avoid walking in its shadow. Only the bravest children dared a thrown rock or entered through the rusted gate to knock on the rotting door. It is a haunted place, a place with weird nocturnal lights, the occasional odd shriek, but nothing more. It is a place best forgotten,
best avoided, and never, ever, looked upon… at least until now.

A half century later, people are vanishing once again. The lights in the Cresh place are more common, pulsing out from between the shattered and hanging boards covering all the windows. The grounds of the place reek of corruption, and locals living on the same block swear the walls
bleed at night, that crockery flies, and cold spots appear in their homes. A few older citizens, those who dimly remember the horrors of Cresh’s reign of terror, combined their resources to hire a group of heroes to put the dead to rest, to put an end to Cresh’s evil, and above all, to save the children.

Those who remembered the old days fear Cresh has risen from death and they are right. What they don’t know is why. Six months ago, a cultist broke into the house looking for information on notable families of Freeport (Cresh was a notorious busybody). Armed with this information, the cultist hoped to have enough dirt on the members of the current Captains’ Council and other notable citizens to insulate his activities in establishing a new temple. What he did not expect was the raw malevolence and mind-shattering horror the house contained. Through his meddling, he awoke Cresh and his minions, putting into motion the dark ritual the madman sought to complete in life. Now, not only do the characters have to find the captured children, but they also have to stop the undead monster’s efforts to open the gate to Hell.

Game Rules:
1. This should be a fast paced game, so its important to check in and post. I anticipate 4-7 posts per day, per player. It will not be unusual to get 70 - 100, (sometimes more) in a day. If this seems daunting and you can't keep up, please tell me now because this may not be the game for you.

2. If you can't post for awhile, let me know, so I can DMPC you. I will DMPC your character to move the story forward. I understand that real life happens but communication is important.

3. GM rolls initiative.

4. I will link a map at the beginning of each round and often an updated map towards the middle of the round. Please tell me the map coordinates for your movement. Otherwise you run the risk of me moving you and if there is a chance of an AoO, I will take it.

5. I, generally, post mid-round updates and end of round summaries.

6. I will fill in some gaps in the story or action when need be. These tend to be for flow of the game.

7. This particular game is a published module from Goodman Games, I will make changes to the published material as I see fit. I will update it for pathfinder, and I will toughen up the encounters based on the party strengths and weaknesses.

8. Combat- This particular game is combat heavy and the roleplay is really intra-party. This is different from most games that I run, which I tend to have heavy roleplay and character development. I wanted to run a meat grinder for a change of pace.

9. I don't mind if you post out of turn, especially if you won't be online. I will do my best to fit the action in or I will fill the gap in a semi-logical manner.

10. Even though there will be a lot of combat, try to be descriptive in your text rather than posting a bunch of dice rolls. A list of dice rolls is mundane and boring to read. Your only limitation is your imagination.

11. Put your melee and range attack and damage dice on your character sheet, this makes it easy for me to cut and paste into the game thread if I need to DMPC the character.

12. Put your vital stats: AC, saves, Init., Perception, Current HP/Total HP next to your avatar. This, generally, makes my life easier.

13. Although the players can't use 3PP material in character creation, the GM does not have that same restriction. I liberally use monsters for the Tome of Horrors Complete and my favorite 3PP publisher, Rite Publishing. Expect some unusual monster templates.

14. I've been playing for years, mostly GMing, I know the rules but I do make mistakes especially with all the Pathfinder's tweaks. I follow the written rules but I'm not hardcore. If I make an error made please point it out and provide a book and page reference or link to the PFSRD.

15. Have Fun!

Houserules:

1. A natural "1" on an attack roll is a possible fumble. The player makes a DC10 DEX check, including any ability modifier in the roll. A number below a 10 means you have either dropped your melee weapon or snapped your bow/crossbow string or your thrown weapon was dropped.

2. Everyone gets a bonus 1HP per HD.

3. I do not retcon actions. This game is designed to move quickly. It potentially becomes problematic for me to redo actions and consequences. Sorry.

Sanity and Madness:
This particular adventure introduces some sanity and madness elements, so refer to Gamemastery Guide, pg 250 and 251. Alternatively, the PFSRd at:

MADNESS

Missing Children:
A list and description of the three missing children are written down for you.

Renshaw the barrel makers oldest boy, Brunson. He is eleven and has shaggy brown hair that has never met a comb it liked. He is sturdy little one standing nearly 5 feet tall already. He has a lisp. He was the first taken.

Randall Griswald's, III, oldest boy son was the second one taken. His name is Randall IV, or 4 Square as he likes to be called. He has light brown hair long to below his shoulders, he is lean and tall at 5'2. He is also eleven years old.

Sally Lou's daughter, Sally Lou is 12 years old. She s petite little blonde hair to her waist, blue eyes. She likes to read.

NPCs:

Alexander Cresh - evil merchant who died over 50 years ago. Did experiments on children.

Jusopher Hoonish, the money monger

Alfred Wihning- mad wizard who did initial lookign into the missing children.

Jenmare Livihood - missing bard who did some intitial researchon the history of Cresh.


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