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Wishcraft caster

Cyrad's page

RPG Superstar 2014 Star Voter. Pathfinder Society Member. 580 posts (747 including aliases). 6 reviews. No lists. No wishlists. 1 Pathfinder Society character. 1 alias.



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I wish I could get a refund for this

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I had started a sea voyage campaign when I got the PDF for this, hoping to use its material. Unfortunately, I ended up regretting this. The PDF is so poorly optimized that loading it on my gamer desktop computer lags like crazy. It flat out crashes any PDF reader I use on my tablet. I wish I could say the material is worth the hardcover price, but this is not so. I find the book very difficult to follow and study as a GM. I still haven't figured out what the overall plot of some of the adventure paths are. The setting leaves much to be desired.

The only value I got out of Razor Coast was a two room dungeon that my players ended up bypassing anyway. This felt like $40 down the drain.


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Good on paper, disastrous in practice

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When I read this module, it looked really awesome, and I couldn't wait to run it. When I actually did run it, my players had the worst experience ever at my table. In fact, this marked one of the few times my players were actually very angry at me. While the encounters, plot, background, and maps are high quality, several issues make the adventure frustrating to play.

1) Because of the structure and order of locations and events, the adventure gives very little exposition until very late in the module. My players were left with almost no information to act on. Every decision they made felt like a shot in the dark.

2) The island's effects misled the players into believing there's a time limit. This put a lot of stress on my players, disabling them from leisurely exploring the island at their own pace. Worse is that it railroaded my players into continuing an adventure they had no fun with. It was so bad that a couple of the PCs preferred they leave and spend another adventure curing themselves than actually finishing out the adventure.

3) Martial characters felt completely useless. Nearly all of the adventure's major challenges require magical expertise. All non-spellcasters in my group spent most of the two 4-hour sessions twiddling their thumbs while the spellcasters solved the mystery.

4) I also noticed that sometimes the text did not match the maps provided. For example, the description said one location was in the west when it was north on the map.

Thankfully, all of these can be avoided with some clever GMing. If you wish to run this adventure, I suggest the following recommendation:

Spoiler:

Have the party encounter Sara or the villagers early when they visit the island. My players struggled because they lacked a clear objective other than wander around the island hoping they find something. The module does not let the Sara encounter line doesn't happen until they find the excavation site, which is likely the very last place they'll visit.

Overall, From Shore to Sea has a great story and premise marred by poor sequencing and a frustrating pseudo-time limit mechanic.


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Lame Story, Cool Map

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I personally thought the story was rather lame. I don't know, the villain just did nothing for me, even though I did like how they were playing with Pharasma lore with his backstory. The map also has a difficult swarm monster, which even a 2nd level party would have no answer. While running away is a viable option, it feels odd that a swarm of cockroaches is the most dangerous creature in a dungeon full of demons and undead.

The real gem of the module is the map. It's a pretty fantastic map with lots of colorful background flavor surrounding Thassilon lore. This makes the map an excellent adventure for any Varisian campaign or any campaign that plays with Thassilon and the runelords. My players were completely oblivious to Pathfinder lore, but after this module, they wouldn't stop talking about the runelords.

The map, though, does have a few problems of its own. There are several areas my players absolutely refused to explore simply because they smelled like a trap but gave no incentive to look into it. The best example is one pair of rooms that do a neat, terrifying, and yet relatively harmless effect to any that linger in it. However, no sane player would ever go into the room. There's no incentive to enter it and it just screams "THIS IS A TRAP."

There's also several staircases that lead to other areas not featured in the module. It's great if you have the supplements or another dungeon in mind. For me, this module took three or four sessions to finish. Neither I nor my players wanted to use up more time there. It was extra work to make sure every "hole" was plugged in. Even having a collapsed stairway was enough to make my players waste resources getting to an area that wasn't there. It's rather annoying and comes off as a shameless plug for other materials.

Over all, Godsmouth Heresy is decent. It has a good map that touches on Thassilon lore that makes the whole module worth getting. And while I did not like the story, your players may think differently.


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Don't even want to use it...

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I personally like fumbles because they can add tension and drama to a fight when done right, but can turn an epic fight into slapstick comedy if down wrong. I bought this to have a tool for more creative fumbles, because I'm tired of the usual 'drop prone' or 'your weapon flies out of your hand.'

Unfortunately, that's precisely the type of fumble effects you see in this deck. Most of them are damage or ability score damage.

Some are silly (create a stink cloud around you).
Some are harsh (your weapon is instantly destroyed).
Some are deadly (you critical threat an ally).
Some punish the defender more than the assailant (you take minor damage but the defender's armor is destroyed).
Some are repeated over several cards

Several, particularly the mage fumbles, are easily character-ending. Such as teleporting next to an enemy or immediately taking heavy damage.

Some GMs might still find this useful. However, I highly advise you exercise creativity and judgment when integrating this with your game.

Overall, I looked for a convenient tool for coming up with creative ways to add suspense and drama to a fight. Instead, I got a deck of ways to clown my players to death. I was excited to get this deck, but now I'm not sure if I really want to use it.


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Great Map! Stupid Encounters. Lame Story

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I used Fallen Fortress for my very first module and heavily modified it with a new story, replacing some nonsense encounters, populating boring areas, and made it into a sandbox dungeon crawl trying to rescue a damsel in distress. It turned out great and the players had a blast.

What made it wonderful is that the map is absolutely fantastic. It's an intriguing shape with plenty of ways for you to set up alternate routes and surprises. It's small enough to make the adventure short, but large enough to keep players wanting to explore. It's also easy to add floors, if you wish to make it bigger.

The downfall is that the story is lackluster and many of the encounters don't make any sense, like a giant frog that's isolated in a room and one large room that has absolutely nothing in it except for a javelin trap. If you must make any change, I recommend swapping the fire skeletons for normal ones. Those things can easily kill a 1st level PC in one round, never mind the damage reduction.


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