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Roy Greenhilt

Fromper's page

FullStarFullStarFullStar Pathfinder Society GM. 4,960 posts (5,242 including aliases). 4 reviews. No lists. 1 wishlist. 16 Pathfinder Society characters.


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Silver Crusade

They avoided dealing with the devil.

They didn't actually ask all those questions listed above - those were just the things they were tossing around while trying to decide what to ask. They did ask the consequences of stepping into the circle, so they got the rhyme that led them to correctly guess it was negative level(s), which could be healed by a Restoration spell.

They discussed who should step into the circle, and the group didn't want the paladin doing it, because he already has a negative level right now, from Black Magga. You can only heal one of those per week, and he was the only party member who got two of them from fighting her, so only one has been healed so far.

Also, I try to be a little lenient about the guy playing the paladin not acting self sacrificing and heroic at all times. The player didn't actually choose that PC. Someone else made the paladin, then left the group after a couple of sessions, and we kept the character around to fill out the group, so he's now being played by someone who didn't really want to be a paladin. He's not blatantly violating any paladin codes or anything, but he's not overly gung-ho about sacrificing himself like Latrecis seems to think he should be.

Also, I intentionally played Avaxial a little more sane than described in the adventure, and had him hold out trying to negotiate, because the PCs were playing along, and it made for a fun moral dilemma to put them in. I think everyone enjoyed it.

As for relying on Divination too much instead of knowledge skills, shouldn't that be the benefit of taking the spell? If they're willing to spend the money (it's 25 gp per casting), time (10 minutes per casting), and spell slots (4th level spell), then shouldn't they get the benefits? And even though I was thinking some of my clues are too obvious, I've been amazed that the group still doesn't always understand them entirely.

In the end, the party oracle stepped into the circle, and rolled high on his Fort save, so he didn't even get the negative level. So Avaxial is ash, and Turtleback Ferry is saved.

And even though they already knew about Hook Mountain, they decided to investigate the fey connection to Fort Rannick's leader first. They're waiting for a messenger to return with a scroll of Raise Dead for the currently deceased party cavalier before heading to the Hook, because they figure it'll be tough, and they want the extra front liner. So that'll be next session.

Silver Crusade

Fromper wrote:

So I think the key points I need to make clear to them in my answers are:

1. The magic circles only bind the devils to stay, not anyone else, so whoever enters them can walk right out again with no problem.
2. Powering the dam only gives you one negative level, so anyone over level 1 can do it and survive, though they'll need a Restoration spell afterwards if they miss the Fort save.

Here's what I've got so far, though I think these answers might be too straightforward, and I don't like the rhymes as much.

Quote:

Magic circles only bind

Summoned pit fiend and his kind.
Others who enter always find
They can leave as they mind.
Quote:

Life is drained when lake is filled,

Weakest peasants would be killed.
But stronger creatures, weakness feel,
Survive the process, and spells will heal.

Silver Crusade

Given that my group is playing tomorrow, I need to get back to work on coming up with new Divination answers.

So they asked a different question than I was expecting last time - they suspected Skull's Crossing's dam wasn't working, so they asked specifically about what they'd need to fix it, which is incredibly smart, but I wasn't prepared for it. I made something up about life being drained in the magic circle to power the dam, which was informative, yet cryptic enough to scare them.

Ironically, they took some of the ogres at Skull's Crossing alive, and they found out through interrogation that they came from Hook Mountain, so they got a clue leading them there without needing Divination. They also know that a giant named Barl Breakbones took over the Kreeg clan and sent the ogres to break the dam, but the ogres they interrogated didn't know why. I figured generic ogres at exactly 0 HP after seeing their leader killed before he got to act in the first round of combat would be talkative to save their own skin.

They then cleared out everything at Skull's Crossing except the pit fiend. Despite the info from the earlier Divination, they're afraid to just have someone step into the circle and power the dam, because they're afraid of being trapped in the circle and/or drained of their life. The pit fiend told them he'd give them all the info they need if they free him. Once the party paladin proved he was a paladin (by laying on hands in front of the devil), the devil said he'd give them the info first, as long as the paladin promised to free him unharmed. The party started considering making a written contract, since it's a devil and all that.

That's where we left off. They've been emailing back and forth about possible Divination questions since then. In game, that amounts to stepping out of the room with the devil and discussing it as a group for a few minutes. :)

I've already decided that I'll strongly hint that they don't need the devil's help. I even looked in Gods and Magic to see how Iomedae expresses her displeasure with her followers (flickering/dimming the lights), and I intend to use that when they start talking about cutting a deal with the devil, even before any Divination castings. The paladin and oracle both have high enough Knowledge (Religion) to know what that means. But if they don't get the hint and ask it as a Divination, I'm prepared to go all Yoda on them:

Quote:

The devil’s deal,

You need not heed.
Already know
That which you need.

Here are some of the other questions they've come up with that I need to be prepared for:

Quote:

"Is the creature that we know as [the name the devil gave us] bound to obey a signed contract?"

"What effect would destroying the 'devil's' physical form have?" (i.e., would it permanently die? If not, how soon could it return to this plane?)

"Is the 'devil' as weak as it appears, and would it still be if removed from the circle?"

"Is there a way to keep the dam powered without condemning a living creature to remain in the magic circles?"

"Can a human reliably power the dam for a short period without suffering death or permanent injury?" (e.g., would making this a rotating "job" in Turtleback Ferry be a solution?)

Another possible question, most likely to be asked if humans are not a safe, reliable power source:

"Do any of the local fey have the ability to reliably power the dam without sustaining permanent harm?"

"Can the dam still draw power if the magic circles are dispelled?"

I'd like to think they'll get my hints about not dealing with the devil, but this group tends to get things in their head and not let go occasionally.

So I think the key points I need to make clear to them in my answers are:

1. The magic circles only bind the devils to stay, not anyone else, so whoever enters them can walk right out again with no problem.
2. Powering the dam only gives you one negative level, so anyone over level 1 can do it and survive, though they'll need a Restoration spell afterwards if they miss the Fort save.

Once they get that much, they should be ready to go.

Silver Crusade

Thanks for the responses.

I do have one more question, which may be more appropriate to start its own thread, but I figure I'll just throw it out here, since it's about the same situation. My group is considering cutting a deal with the devil, and they're figuring that if they put it in writing, they may be able to word it in a way to keep the devil from screwing them over. One of the questions they're considering asking with Divination is just how strongly binding such a written deal would be. ie Is the devil physically incapable of ever breaking their word?

Silver Crusade

Not sure if this is a Pathfinder rules question or a Golarion specific setting question. This is a question for a Pathfinder adventure set in Golarion, so I really want to conform to the rules of both (though as the GM, I do have the option of making up my own rules, but I'd rather not).

What happens to a devil when it dies? Does it cease to exist altogether, or does its "soul" (is that the correct word when it comes to devils?) go back to the plane that it came from to get a new body? And if it does return to the Hell from whence it came, how long until it can return to Golarion to wreak vengence on the PCs that killed it?

I'm running a Paizo adventure path, and my PCs are in a position to either kill or bargain with a very powerful devil. They're overthinking the decision (they really should just kill it, because they don't need its help nearly as much as they think), and between sessions, they're emailing back and forth about the questions they plan to ask using the spell Divination to determine how they should handle this. So I'm trying to be over-prepared once they decide which Divination questions to finally ask.

Silver Crusade

My group left Jakardros, Vale, and Shalelu at Fort Rannick, after killing all the ogres there and chasing down Kaven to kill the traitor. The Mayor of Turtleback Ferry is sending word to Magnimar about the Black Arrows mostly being dead, in the hopes of getting reenforcements to repopulate the fort.

So after "defeating" Black Magga, the PCs moved on to Skull's Crossing. Despite me intentionally showing them the map of the wilderness area (so they could see that Fort Rannick is right along the way, though I didn't specifically point that out to them), the thought of stopping by to ask Shalelu and the Black Arrows to come with them never occurred to them. It wouldn't surprise me if they tackle Hook Mountain without them, too.

My group does a LOT of damage, though, so most of the fights have been too easy. I don't mind them not taking advantage of additional allies that could be available.

Silver Crusade

Mudfoot wrote:
A lot of it depends on the players. Some like picking things apart, others just want a big sign saying "Adventure 5 miles ->". But the cryptic ones give you a better payoff when they work out just what it actually meant.

I like keeping it a little mysterious, but the spell description specifically says answers will be "useful", so there has to be something they can actually use, not just vague, cryptic hints.

Silver Crusade

Changed the wording of the answer to why the dam doesn't work to be a little more understandable:

Quote:

Skull’s Crossing’s ancient magic

Controlled the flow of water’s fall,
But since the death of captured fiend,
It has no arcane fuel at all.

Silver Crusade

Oh, they're into using it. They were just in a rush to track Kaven before he got too far last time. In fact, in our emails since, the guy playing the oracle has already said the he wants to use Divination next session to ask where Kaven was going. So the word "flees" will become "fled" in the answer about Kaven from the first post in this thread.

So I've been playing around with some rhymes while posting all this, fixing up some from the earlier posts, and here's what I've got for the flooding questions:

Why is this flooding happening?

Quote:

Ancient magic fails,

While new magic succeeds,
The dam doesn’t stop the flow
Of rain brought by evil deeds.

Why is the dam at Skull's Crossing not working?

Quote:

Skull’s Crossing’s ancient magic

Controlled the flow of water’s fall,
But since the death of captured fiend,
It no longer works at all.

Why is there so much extra rain? (still not sure which I prefer)

Quote:


Magic of Hook Mountain hags brings extra rain to drown
Those rune-marked souls who live below, in the lakeside town.
Quote:

Magic of Hook Mountain hags makes extra rain fall down,

Aiming for the rune-marked skins, below in lakeside town.
Greedy souls fuel runewell’s power, should they all be drowned.

Silver Crusade

Hmm... just came up with one about why Skull's Crossing isn't working, though I think maybe I should also mention the ogres attacking the dam, too. And why Black Magga fell through and ended up in Turtleback Ferry, but perhaps that deserves its own rhyme.

Quote:

Skull’s Crossing’s ancient magic

Controlled the flow of water’s fall,
But with the death of captured fiend,
It no longer works at all.

Silver Crusade

So I probably should have asked this sooner: Any suggestions for how to respond to questions about why the flooding's happening? I'm trying to come up with good rhymes that gives a little useful information without being too informative.

I've got these two possibilities:

Quote:

Magic of Hook Mountain hags brings extra rain to drown

Those rune-marked souls who live below, in the lakeside town.
Quote:

Magic of Hook Mountain hags makes extra rain fall down,

Aiming for the rune-marked skins of half the lakeside town.
Those greedy souls fuel master’s power should they all be drowned.

I think the first one sounds better, but the second gives more information. But I also don't want to give too much information up front. Either one would lead them to Hook Mountain.

I'm also wondering if I should reference the ogres trying to destroy Skull's Crossing in there somewhere. For that matter, the fact that Skull's Crossing isn't functioning should probably be hinted at. And they might ask about Skull's Crossing specifically, which would require a different rhyme.

Silver Crusade

Yeah, I just ran the flood scene last week with my group last week, and also noticed that the town geography doesn't match the description of the event. So I ignored the geography.

My PCs don't know (or care) why there was a woman with a bunch of kids in a boat, being battered against one of the buildings (closest to the church, which was still a distance away). They just wanted to help them. And they did it in style - Levitate spell on the boat! The snake couldn't reach them, and it was no longer battered by the waves. Of course, I described the kids shreiking in fear when the boat first started rising, but once they realized they were safe, all was well. The group waded out to kill the snake (the description says the water's 3 feet deep, so I just treated it as difficult terrain, not actual swimming), and it was a short fight.

The boxed text also describes people visible in the upper floor windows of the church, so my group then grabbed another boat and started rowing towards the church to try and evacuate it. I gave them a few rounds to get there before Black Magga showed up, so they were already close to where combat would take place.

Of course, BM hits them with the breath weapon, and nobody made the 27 Will save to avoid the wisdom damage and confusion, so wackiness ensued. The oracle and sorceress both tried blasting Black Magga with Fireballs (or Acidball, in the sorceress's case), and they were glad they both had Spell Penetration, though only the oracle managed to damage her. By the time the fight ended, the oracle had flown to a safe distance to keep casting at her, while the entire rest of the party was grappled (I decided BM would immobilize every enemy rather than focusing her attacks and probably killing a primary target). Then she dropped her three grappled PCs and ran away, taking a longsword crit from the paladin as an attack of opportunity as she fled.

Luckily, my party aren't so big on chasing down loose ends. In my campaign, Malfeshnekor is still alive, because he kicked their butts the first time, so they decided to leave him trapped in his room until they were powerful enough to come back and punish him properly. They just haven't gotten around to it yet.

Silver Crusade

Mark Stratton wrote:
Fromper wrote:
NobodysHome wrote:

You know I'm sure if we looked around we could find a "Slow Gamers at Play" sign for you...

Is 10 months to get through Burnt Offerings and Skinsaw Murders considered slow? :P

I started running the AP on July 14, 2014. Tomorrow (Feb 1) will be only our SIXTH game session. We will be starting The Skinsaw Murders.

My group is lucky to play once a month, and we haven't played since the middle of December (holidays, family schedules, etc.) Each group should play at their own place.

With one exception (our last game session) we only play about 6 hours per session, so it took about a total of about 35 hours to get through Burnt Offerings (heck, Thistletop took us two game sessions alone.)

My group meets more often than yours, but we only play for 3-4 hours at a time. It's usually weeknights, and we all have to work the next day. We had a few delays when we could only meet once per month, but we're usually doing roughly 3 times per month these days. We had some delays through the holidays, too.

I think we started November 2013, and we're only halfway through Hook Mountain Massacre now.

Silver Crusade

My group is mostly balanced, they just don't have those particular spells. The arcane and divine casters are a sorceress and oracle who just don't have Raise Dead or Teleport.

But they do both have Fireball (flame oracle), and the sorceress has the metamagic feat to convert it to acid, which gives her an extra point per die of damage from her draconic bloodline. So troll regeneration won't be a problem.

Their bigger concern while a man down is whether they have enough tanks to keep the bad guys off the casters. They're used to having a cavalier and paladin both tanking in full plate and high HP, but now the cavalier is dead. They do have a ranger, but he's archery focused, and the ranger's badger companion is three levels behind what a druid's companion would be, so it's probably not quite tough enough to tank at this level without getting killed. Besides, they really haven't invested heavily in armor for the badger, since they figured they didn't need it up front very often before now.

Silver Crusade

My party did pretty well prepping for emergencies, except for this. They were actually walking around with 3 scrolls of Restoration, which the party oracle can use, that they bought in Magnimar before heading off to Turtleback Ferry. They've also got scrolls of stuff like Remove Blindness, Remove Curse, etc. One of those actually came in handy already, when a foe (I think it was the ogrekin sorceress, but I can't remember for sure) successfully hit the party archer with Blindness/Deafness to blind him.

They returned to Turtleback after retaking Fort Rannick, and I had the flood kick in. The party paladin got 2 negative levels from Black Magga's bite, so they'll need one more scroll of Restoration, plus one of Raise Dead for the cavalier who died at the fort. And maybe extras, in case they need them again in the future.

So besides offering them 1000 gp to investigate Skulls Crossing and find out what caused the flood, Mayor Shreed also said he'd send messengers to get a scroll of Raise Dead for them, if they provide the similarly valued goods to trade. So all those +1 Ogre Hooks they got at Fort Rannick will be sent with messengers (probably to Magnimar), and it'll happen while they're fighting trolls at the dam. There will probably be some waiting around time after Skulls Crossing before the messengers return, which is why I was trying to find some place closer that they could get what they need.

This also means they're a man down for Skulls Crossing, but it was a 5 PC group plus companion animal, so it should be ok. One of our players left a while ago, so we had one guy controlling two PCs since then, and it's his first one that died. So the player still has the backup PC to play in the mean time. I'm debating if they could use help from the two remaining Black Arrows and/or Shalelu at Skulls Crossing. Jakardros, Vale, and Shalelu are back at Fort Rannick and don't know about the flood yet, but it's on the way, so I could imagine the PCs stopping in there to let them know and asking for help at Skulls Crossing.

Silver Crusade

And after all that, they didn't cast Divination in tonight's session.

They chased down Kaven using ranger tracking skills, and accidentally killed him too quickly, so they didn't get a chance to interrogate him. They consider that a lost opportunity, but he didn't know anything.

Then they went back to Turtleback Ferry, and the flood happened. The snake was no problem, but Black Maga scared the crap out of them. They all failed their will saves vs the breath weapon, so they were all confused. She managed to grapple three party members and knock them down to low enough HP to scare them all, but not knock anyone out. The flame oracle managed to fireball her for a little damage during a round when he was able to act normally despite the confusion, and the paladin got a crit on his attack of opportunity with a magic cold iron longsword as she was fleeing. So they did a total of 30 HP damage to her and considered themselves lucky to not have any more deaths.

The mayor asked them to check out Skull Crossing, so that will be our next session.

So my first and fourth poems, above, will never get used. The second and third could still happen, though.

Silver Crusade

So one of my party died retaking Fort Rannick, and nobody in the party can cast Raise Dead. They've got the loot to pay for it, but I'm trying to figure out where the nearest city that would have that service available would be.

Kaer Maga's the closest big city, in straight line distance, but it'll be tough to get to. Magnimar is further than Kaer Maga or Korvosa, but it's a direct boat trip, so that's probably the fastest.

Is there a small town closer than those big cities where a scroll of Raise Dead might be available? I considered having the church in Turtleback Ferry have one available to buy, but that just seems too contrived.

Silver Crusade

Name of PC: Beramy Rollswagon
Class/Level: Human Cavalier 9
Adventure: Hook Mountain Massacre
Catalyst: Jaagrath Kreeg

Story: Went toe to toe with the top ogre in Fort Rannick for two rounds. If Jaagrath's weapon hadn't had the Human Bane quality, he would have survived, but the extra 2d6+2 on top of the normal damage from three hits was too much for him to survive. If he'd gone unconscious after the second hit, Jaagrath would have switched targets to attack the paladin standing next to him, but he was at single digit HP after the first two hits, and the third hit easily took him past his negative Con score.

Oddly, given how deadly I keep hearing this adventure path is supposed to be, this was our first PC death. I guess I'm just a "soft" GM. We also lost Kibb the firepelt cougar in the fight against Lucrecia in Fort Rannick, but that's it for good guy deaths so far. There were two earlier fights where I could have killed PCs, but I let them get away with a daring rescue that probably shouldn't have worked in one of them, and I messed up the enemy tactics in the other.

Silver Crusade

So I'm GMing a group where the party oracle took Divination as a known spell.

They just finished retaking Fort Rannick. Kaven the traitor of the Black Arrows got away, but they killed Lucrecia and all the ogres. Their top priority seems to be tracking down Kaven, and they've got clues that will lead them to Commander Bayden's fae lover, but they seem to think they should have more leads about who Lucrecia serves. They got the name Mokmurian from her, but that's all they know, not where to find him or who he is or anything.

So I'm expecting some Divination castings, and I want to be prepared with intelligent (and rhyming!) answers.

Here's what I've got so far:

1. If they ask about Kaven (where he's going, who does he serve):

Quote:

No master served, Lucrecia dead,

he flees south to save his head.

2. As I mentioned in another thread, they seem to think the Brothers of the Seven are more crucial than they are. They don't realize that they already killed that entire group in their sawmill in Magnimar. So I would expect at least one question about them. Given that they didn't get my vague hint about them being "gone" in an earlier divination answer, I figured I'd be more explicit this time:

Quote:

Brothers of the Seven are all dead,

in their sawmill, lost their heads.
For Father Skinsaw, they did their murderous deeds,
'til Xanesha used them, for her master's needs.

3. They found Bayden's love letters, and no sign of him in the fort itself. Plus, they heard rumors in Turtleback Ferry that he was seen heading into the woods where the fairies live. So they might ask about him, and here's what I'm thinking as a response to that, though I'm thinking this answer might be a little too detailed:

Quote:


Good Commander Bayden,
ice upon his head,
lives on inside Hook Mountain,
though he's already dead.

4. And if they just ask a general "What should we do next?" type of question:

Quote:

Go south to Turtleback Ferry,

a village doomed to flood,
save them from a watery grave,
before the town sinks in the mud.

Any other thoughts? I'm trying to think of what other subjects they're likely to ask about at this point. And after the flood scene in Turtleback Ferry, they're likely to try another Divination for info on Skull's Crossing, so I'll have to come up with something for that.

Silver Crusade

So we just finished the retaking of Fort Rannick in Hook Mountain Massacre. My group entered from behind the waterfall and secret passages, and came upon Lucrecia as soon as they entered through the basement. Kaven ran away while the group was distracted fighting Lucrecia, and they discovered his treachery, though they don't know exactly how far it goes.

They've since finished killing all the ogres and clearing the fort. Since there are no obvious clues to pursue as to the bad guys' plans, they're all assuming that hunting down Kaven is their top priority.

The book (anniversary edition) says that he'll try to rendevous with Lucrecia, but that's no longer an option. Where would he go at this point? Should I make it possible to track his movement once he left the fort, or would the heavy rain in the area wash away footprints?

The oracle of the group also took Divination as a known spell, so I'm assuming they'll find useful questions to ask and track him down one way or another. I'm just trying to figure out how that should play out.

Silver Crusade

Skeld wrote:

I've had several instances now of my players trying to connect the dots and coming to hilariously incorrect conclusions that are very entertaining for me. :D

Yeah, me too. We just finished with Fort Rannick. My party is convinced that The Brothers of the Seven are a larger, more powerful group than they are, and that they're behind everything. Somehow, they missed that the brotherhood was just that group of losers they killed at the Seven's Sawmill in Magnimar. They're assuming that the judge there was one of the seven, and that there are six more still out there. LOL

The sad part is that the oracle took Divination as a known spell, used it to ask about the Brothers of the Seven being in Fort Rannick, and I gave them a response that pretty much told them outright that they were asking the wrong question. They still didn't get it. Apparently, they thought "The Brothers of the Seven are gone" meant that they'd already left Fort Rannick, not that the organization was all dead. I only used that wording because I wanted my answer to rhyme. :P Next time, I'll make it more clear that they're chasing the wrong enemies.

Silver Crusade

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Apparently, she still has some dexterity.

Silver Crusade

3 people marked this as a favorite.

I'd call this confirmation that it's Bozzok. That storyline is definitely back, in a very unexpected way.

Silver Crusade

Or it could just be a no name goblin spy sent by Red Cloak.

I agree that it's probably not Thog, though. Subtlety isn't his style.

Silver Crusade

Misroi wrote:
To be fair, if they plan accordingly, she's a lot easier to deal with. Even pre-nerf Xanesha can probably be taken down fairly easily if you don't climb up the Tower, but go in from the top. Personally, I'd reward them for thinking tactically about things rather than just kicking in the door and taking their lumps. They should be rewarded for smart play, after all!

Yeah, my group considered flying to the top of the tower, instead of entering through the door and working their way up. They decided that would use too many of their spells, so they might not be ready for what they faced (it would have taken all of the sorcerer's 3rd level spells for the day). But it probably would have made the whole thing so much easier that her lack of level 3 spells wouldn't matter.

As is, the tower offered some minor challenge until they got to Xanesha, which was a tough enough fight to scare the heck out of them. I could have killed a PC, but I had Xanesha attack the most immediate threats to her instead, which was a mistake on my part. She should have targeted the healer first (after seeing him heal someone), even though he wasn't the one hurting her. So there should have been a PC death, but I messed it up, and they just barely escaped with no deaths, despite 2 of them hitting -10 HP at least once during the fight.

And the petrification mask was a bust. That DC 15 (IIRC?) save is just too easy at that level, especially since I had her try it on the healer, who she had no way of knowing would have a better fort save than most of the others.

Silver Crusade

Well, the adventure path says she joins the group. And obviously, the Black Arrows join long enough to help retake Fort Rannick.

How long are these NPCs supposed to remain part of the group? I was assuming they'd help with the giants at Skulls Crossing and beyond, but now I'm thinking that after retaking the fort, maybe they'd stay behind to work on rebuilding there.

I'm not really good at judging adventure difficulty, so I'm not sure how to judge whether the PCs will need the extra help against the giants going forward.

Silver Crusade

Yeah, the faceless stalkers are pretty easy. So is the sawmill.

The judge has the potential to be tough if he can join the fight before the PCs are all over him. When I ran it, my group tripped and grappled him, so he couldn't cast. Remember that using his mask to cast Confusion is just a verbal action that doesn't provoke or require concentration. That was the only thing that made that fight even remotely interesting, due to our cavalier's smart use of combat maneuvers.

Silver Crusade

So my group is up to Hook Mountain Massacre (Anniversary Edition). Shalelu is tagging along, and I printed her page from the book to use as reference as a character sheet.

After clearing most of the ogrekin out of the farm last time, they're about to check the barn and rescue the Black Arrows next session (tomorrow).

So two questions. First (copied and pasted directly from the Community Created Stuff thread, where it didn't get any answers):

Quote:

Anyone have the Anniversary Edition stats for the 3 rescued Black Arrows in an easy to print format?

I don't want to have to keep referencing that page in the AE, since they'll be participating in the adventure for a bit. But I also don't want to just print the whole pages with all the background information, and a big section header with a major spoiler in it, if I'm going to be leaving these sheets sitting on the table in front of me regularly where the players might see them.

I just know cutting and pasting stat blocks from Pathfinder adventures always takes time to reformat to make them work, so I was hoping someone else had already done it.

Second, the group will be leveling up soon, which now includes Shalelu. What do you all recommend for her advancement? The group already has an archery focused ranger, so she's kind of redundant, not to mention being nowhere near as good at archery, since the archer PC is just better built. It's probably about time for me to copy her to a real character sheet, so I can level her up easily when needed.

Silver Crusade

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NobodysHome wrote:

The scariest part of my driving lifetime: I got sent to Boston to run a training course. Everyone told me not to drive. I drove around anyway. I felt right at home.

Don't underestimate the San Francisco Bay Area for aggressive driving!

(I felt out-and-out bad driving in Chicago. The drivers were so timid I felt like a bully.)

EDIT: To avoid further derails I'll just add here: Yes, Captain Yesterday, I also dislike Chicago. I got sent there many, many times. I have a friend who teaches at the university there and tried to show me the "best of Chicago". I still don't get it. Just seems like a dingy, unfriendly, uninteresting city. I'm sure natives will pipe up with things to do there. But after visiting it around a dozen times, I also have no idea why anyone willingly lives there. There's got to be SOMETHING there that's nice... my friend just didn't manage to find it for me...
Ottawa, on the other hand, is a true hidden jewel...

I love living in Chicago. It has all the advantages of a big city (tons of good restaurants, museums, live music, summer festivals, public transportation, more Pathfinder groups than I can count, etc), with a friendlier midwestern attitude than most big cities. And as mentioned, the drivers here are pretty tame compared to what I'm used to (just moved here from Florida two years ago).

Worst drivers: Florida. And the further south you go in the state, the worse they get. Miami drivers are just downright scary, and that's coming from someone who learned to drive and spent 2/3 of my life living in the 2 counties just north of there. I was amazed when I first discovered that as bad as the drivers are in Broward and Palm Beach counties, they're actually MUCH worse in Miami.

Back on topic, I've found that most of the maps for Runelords don't quite fit on a single flip mat. You can tell that Paizo started publishing those 24x30 blank mats after they published this adventure path, because there are so many 26x32 maps in the adventure, which I'm assuming was some sort of standard size at the time. As mentioned by someone else above, I just broke Thistletop into two sections, separated by the bridge in between.

But now we're up to Hook Mountain Massacre, and that Fort Rannick map is just huge, if you try and give them the overall map with the exterior, moat, outer wall, courtyard, and all inner buildings. I have a big rollout map (48x36), and I was thinking of using that and just telling them that each square is 10 feet instead of the usual 5. But combat might not occur there, depending on how they handle it, or only in certain sections, so I may refrain from drawing it and just draw small sections as needed when we play that part.

I'm also worried about the start of the 4th book, with all of Sandpoint becoming a giant battleground. Not sure how I'll handle that.

Silver Crusade

I had Xanesha go invis and climb down the side of the tower to heal herself during the final fight. Ran her as written from the Anniversary Edition, and it was challenging for my group that's plowed through most of the AP easily. I had a chance for her to kill someone in that fight, but I mis-played the tactics a little, so nobody died.

Silver Crusade

bugleyman wrote:
Fromper wrote:
What's on the flip side? Just plain grid?

The "plain grid side" seems to be a thing of the past.

Which is why the single sided sample preview kinda surprised me.

Silver Crusade

What's on the flip side? Just plain grid?

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So what do you think Belkar will do with that Protection from Evil clasp? Slap it on the vampire? Or sell it to someone else in the party and claim he intentionally picked it up just for them?

Silver Crusade

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Looks like Belkar's still evil... but maybe starting to grow a conscience.

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Dun dun DUN!!!

So we're starting to see Durkula's angle in visiting the temples. I'm sure we'll see soon what it is he's really after.

Silver Crusade ***

Good stuff, for the most part, but I'll make one suggestion.

I don't like the idea of a two sided faction "card". The fact that everything in Society play can be printed single sided on standard sized paper makes the paperwork easy and straightforward. Please keep it that way.

Silver Crusade ***

I have noticed a lot of tables where the GM doesn't ask people to introduce their PCs. I always go around the table as a GM and have people describe their PC, and introduce themselves in character if they want. If I'm playing and a GM doesn't do intros, I'll request it, and I've never had a GM resist.

As for being pigeonholed for being a race and class, I'll occasionally lie and/or be vague about what my character's class, but always do so in character.

For instance, when I introduce Green Beard the Pirate, I describe him as a big, ugly half-orc with a tri-corn hat and a necklace with a skull and crossbones, wearing a heavy wooden shield, mithral breastplate, cestus, and a whip on his belt. I then start talking in character and sound like it's "Talk Like A Pirate Day". Nobody realizes he's a cleric until he starts casting. And when they do realize he's a cleric, they'd better not ask for healing. His only healing is a wand of CLW, and he'll try to charge people for using it on them (not really, but I'll RP his being a money grubbing pirate looking for loot).

I also have a paladin who introduces himself as a samurai. It's not a lie. Samurai is his official position in his native country, and Common (Taldan) isn't his native language, so he truly doesn't understand the confusion this causes. This goes along well with his dumped wisdom (I wanted the points for str, con, and cha).

Silver Crusade

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Fromper wrote:

One of my players (an archery focused ranger) took the campaign trait that says he came to Sandpoint specifically to hunt the Sandpoint Devil. Since they're level 8 now, just leaving Sandpoint to head east to Hook Mountain, I'm thinking it would be about right for a random encounter in the wilderness at this level.

So... funny story. I decided to just go with it tonight. They were in Sandpoint for just one night on their way east from Magnimar to Turtleback Ferry, so I had a farmer report spotting the Sandpoint Devil, and they went out hunting. With two rangers in the group now that Shalelu joined, they were easily able to track it to the Devil's Platter and confront it.

First round, Shalelu wins initiative, rapid shots, and only one arrow hits, for 4 points of damage after DR.

Next comes the devil, and it howls at them (its bay ability). EVERY SINGLE PARTY MEMBER, including horses and an animal companion, misses the save, except for the paladin, who ironically rolled high enough but would have been immune regardless.

So they and their horses run away in a panic. I decided the devil had just eaten a cow that night, so it wasn't particularly hungry, and didn't bother chasing them down. They decided not to try again immediately (the paladin and ranger who really wanted to hunt it got voted down), but they promised to come back and try again after they're higher level.

Silver Crusade

One of my players (an archery focused ranger) took the campaign trait that says he came to Sandpoint specifically to hunt the Sandpoint Devil. Since they're level 8 now, just leaving Sandpoint to head east to Hook Mountain, I'm thinking it would be about right for a random encounter in the wilderness at this level.

Silver Crusade

Anyone have the Anniversary Edition stats for the 3 rescued Black Arrows in an easy to print format?

I don't want to have to keep referencing that page in the AE, since they'll be participating in the adventure for a bit. But I also don't want to just print the whole pages with all the background information, and a big section header with a major spoiler in it, if I'm going to be leaving these sheets sitting on the table in front of me regularly where the players might see them.

I just know cutting and pasting stat blocks from Pathfinder adventures always takes time to reformat to make them work, so I was hoping someone else had already done it.

Silver Crusade ***

trollbill wrote:
RainyDayNinja wrote:
What would constitute a violation of a PC's chaotic alignment?
Well, that is part of the problem. In reality, any character that, in a given scenario, consistently follows the laws and his mission orders is acting in a lawful way and should get dinged. But, as GMs, having characters that follow the laws and mission orders makes things easier for us, so we have a hard time punishing people for doing what we actually want them to do.

My first PFS character was a barbarian who started out chaotic neutral. But I'm not the type to be disruptive at the table, so I ended up playing him as more of a team player than originally intended, and I eventually changed his alignment to true neutral instead. No GM ever intervened though - it was entirely my own RP decision.

Ironically, the one time I deserved an alignment warning from a GM (but didn't get it) was actually when I played Dalsine Affair with that PC, and I committed the blatantly evil act of torturing the faceless stalker. Mash is fiercely loyal to his friends, and the stalker had gotten one of them alone to start his ambush against us, so Mash was pissed off about it. My intimidation check when questioning him got a little overly physical, and some of the stalker's body parts didn't stay attached.

BigNorseWolf wrote:
Snorter wrote:
So, a paladin may have sworn an oath, but unless that oath is to 'uphold the demands and wishes of whichever here today, gone tomorrow, inbred, spoilt brat psychopathic despot might be sitting on the throne of Taldor right this minute.'

Respecting the inbred spoilt psycopathic despot IS part of the paladins oath.

Quote:
then little king Joffrey McMurderpants will have to get to the back of the queue. Behind the more deserving recipients of his deity's mercy and protection.
He has to be in the queue somewhere. If all you care about is doing the right thing then you're neutral good. Lawful Good is trying to hold onto two seperate ideas at the same time, so they are going to conflict on occasion.

I agree that obeying the laws of the "inbred spoilt psycopathic despot" is on the paladin's list, but any mortal laws will be down below obeying the lawful and/or good GODS, and probably even the neutral gods who aren't too far from lawful and/or good. So obeying an unjust Taldan law probably falls just below respecting Asmodeus on any paladin's priority list.

Everyone keeps talking about paladins of Sarenrae in this thread, but even paladins of Erastil or Iomedae should say that respecting the worship of Sarenrae is a higher priority than obeying a clearly unjust law of Taldor. And as a paladin, protecting good (though unlawful) Sarenrae worshipers from unjust oppression and needless death is a moral imperative.

Helping Pathfinders with illegal smuggling? Not so much. But paladins in the Society have sworn an oath to the Society, so whether or not to turn the Venture Captain over to Taldor authorities isn't nearly as clear cut a decision as the OP and the paladins at his table apparently made it seem. It's a moral conundrum of enforcing Taldan law (which isn't the job of those paladins) vs breaking the law to help the Society. And there is a compromise solution that doesn't do either of those extremes.

If I was playing either of my PFS paladins (neither of whom have any personal connection to Taldor or Sarenrae), they would certainly help the Sarenite cultists get out of Taldor alive.

But as for the smuggling part, and hiding evidence of it, they'd probably refuse to help their teammates, but wouldn't actively hinder them or turn the Venture Captain over to the Taldan authorities, either, especially not knowing if these are among the corrupt authorities who have been killing Sarenites for no reason. My paladin of Iomedae, who is just really gung ho about smiting evil and only obeys the lawful side of being a paladin because she's supposed to, would probably let it end there. My other paladin would probably file a formal protest with the Society after returning to Absalom, and try to get the Taldan VC demoted and removed from his post. But he'd work through Society channels to get the guy punished, not through Taldan legal authority.

Silver Crusade ***

Shasfowd wrote:
BigNorseWolf wrote:

The animal companion is so pimped out it has spinners

One thing: Racer Walrus.

For the home Rise of the Runelords campaign I'm GMing, the cavalier's horse carries much of his useful equipment, leading to some awkward moments when they're in the middle of a dungeon and say things like "I left my rope and grappling hook outside on Wilfred". They've joked that Wilfred has a cell phone, so they can call him to come in and help when needed.

Silver Crusade

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Latrecis wrote:
Strange juxtaposition - your post references Local Heroes. Nothing heroic in what happened in that hotel room.

Or accidental, from the sounds of it.

Silver Crusade

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New update: Craft Wondrous Bauble

Best zinger V's ever gotten on Blackwing. Luckily, Blackwing was too distracted to notice.

Lot of good little details on this one. Love the hat stores in the first panel, and the fact that the gnome's standing on an elevated platform, which is why he's almost V's height.

Silver Crusade

So we played this out last night.

They had her tied up and blindfolded in a prison cell with weapons pointed directly at her and readied actions to fire arrows if she even hinted at trying anything. They even thought of bags of flour, since they know she can go invisible. And they had permission from the Lord Mayor to execute her without a trial, mostly because the mayor was upset that he'd been targeted for assassination.

They also made a point of interrogating her the same day (in game time) that they'd captured her, in the hopes that she'd be running low on spells for the day, despite knowing that their own spellcasters were similarly low on spells after battling her.

So the oracle made his caster level check to overcome her SR with a Cure Light Wounds to wake her up, and the interrogation began. Because of the blindfold, she couldn't target anyone with Charm Monster or any other spell-like ability, and the tied hands prevented spellcasting with somatic or material components. I'm pretty sure her shapeshifting only lets her become human, and her human upper half is the same size in snake form, so shapeshifting wouldn't get her out of her bonds. I did roll an Escape Artist check, though, but it didn't stand much chance untrained, despite her high dex.

The conversation was longer than it probably should have been, but it can be summed up like this:

"Are you going to tell us anything?"

"Are you going to let me go if I cooperate?"

*coup de grace*

Silver Crusade ***

Tom Mannering wrote:
Ascalaphus wrote:
When the VC says "it'll be easy".

I have a rep for this, except I usually say;

"I picked this scenario because I thought it would be fun."

Cue TPK.

I swear it's unintentional.

We had something similar the other day. We were playing sub-tier 1-2 of a season 1 adventure, which myself and another player at the table had both GMed before. So most of the table knew this is an easy scenario, even for only 4 players, like we had. We even mentioned that this should be pretty easy to the other 2 players, who hadn't played it before.

Cue the axe crit (x3 damage) in the very first fight against the level 1 squishy wizard, played by the relative newbie to Society play who didn't "know" it would be an easy adventure.

Silver Crusade ***

Jayson MF Kip wrote:


"I've traveled forward in time from the year 1983 to be here today."

You traveled forward from 1983 to be here, too? So did I! The trip only took 31 years.

Silver Crusade

They specifically said they were going to make sure she was bound, gagged, and well covered by armed guards from the start. They're aware she's a spellcaster. I'm not sure they're aware she's a shapeshifter, though. Can she do more than just switch to human form? I'll have to look that up.

Silver Crusade

The module "Feast of Ravenmoor" takes place not far away, and makes a decent unrelated side quest. You may have to up the difficulty a little, since it's a level 3 adventure, though the final fight is pretty tough for that level.

Silver Crusade

So my group just beat Xanesha last session. And surprisingly, they captured her alive.

Per the tactics in the Anniversary Edition of the AP, she jumped off the roof to Feather Fall down when she knew she was beat, but looking at the spell description, I realized it would take 3 rounds for her to hit the ground. With an archer and blasting focused sorceress on the roof, it was no problem for the PCs to knock her unconscious. The group's main healer was already flying faster than Xanesha was falling, so he got to the ground and stabilized her immediately, and they took her alive.

So the big question is... now what? The published adventure doesn't take this possibility into account. Once imprisoned in Magnimar, how much will she say? They already have proof that she was involved with Justice Ironbriar and the earlier murders, as well as plotting to kill the Lord Mayor, so there's really no way the authorities will cut her a deal that would let her avoid the death penalty. And she has no nearby accomplices that might break her out of prison.

So how much information do you think the PCs should be able to get out of her? I'm actually thinking she won't talk at all, unless offered a deal for her life, which just won't happen. I wonder if my PCs would come up with the idea of using the Detect Thoughts spell to interrogate her. I doubt it - they aren't that game savvy, and I won't bring it up. That could get them too much information too early.

I'm thinking maybe she'll make a threat just before her execution, and mention some other bad guy names to put the fear of Mokmurian and/or Karzoug into the PCs before she dies.

Is it too early to mention Karzoug? I think the group already heard his name once, in Thistletop. Malfeshnekor was talkative after charming one party member and trying to entice the others into his room so he could eat them, so I think I gave them the names Karzoug and Alasnist, but without detailed context. But hearing that someone from thousands of years ago is now Xanesha's boss would likely have the desired "oh crap" effect. But I might just give them Mokmurian's name now and save the big reveal on Karzoug for later.

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