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Byzantium did not see themselves as the successor to Rome. The were the part of the Roman Empire which did not fall. They were Romans and Latins. The difference is a more modern consideration
The identification of Taldor with Byzantium rather then Rome is interesting because it is something done less often in RPGs, while Rome comparisons are quite common.
Personally I think the issue of slaves is a minor detail, with more interesting things to consider first.
Wish I had found this tread some time ago.
I have not run any
Played in Tomb of the Iron Medusa and Academe of Secrets. Both were OK but not exceptional
Tears at Bitter Manor, appeared to be too ambitious for the size. Tried to pack too much stuff (and level progression) in, so I cannot see how it will work
Just wanted to disagree with one thing from Sir Longears
"Taldor and Magic: I think their view of magic are pretty standard... they are neither fanatic about it nor dismissive. It is simply a tool to achieve something. If you take in consideration the usual picture of a Duke, who probably had devoted much of his life in the military career, he'd probably not be a wizard... on the other hand he would acknowledge the value of having a wizard on his court as an advisor."
A Duke has probably never had a career. Most would not serve in the military. They may get to lead an army due to position/political clout.
He would be raised to further the interests of the family in the great game of politics.
Personally I have always seen Taldor as similar to Byzantium. Clinging on with a politic system that is half the ptoblem and not any help with a solution.
I'd actually not dump dex, go a little lighter on armour and try a dex stealth build. You've got a ranger and rogue. Why not try a scouting party group? Could be a blast.
This is an intesting idea. It is seldom you get a chance to have a stealthy party.
Warpriest idea also works for this
Personally I would dump a physical stat. Probably dex. I like skill points too much to dump int (which is a personal thing)
Dex will affect your:
The Gory Details:
" In Varnhold Vanishing
Kelso. Item creating Wizard 8th. The only subtle one in the party
Jarl: Archery focussed ranger 8th, favoured enemies humans and fey. Really beginning to see this character shine. Was a bit over shadowed by Sven and Abigale (except against the human bandits) But all the archery feats are now meshing for serious damage."
We are now deep in to book 4 and have been having problems. At least 4 deaths in this book so far.
Abigale Paladin/Cleric 9th/2nd
I had read that thread, and it does raise some other problems and I was planning on taking some of the advice on there.
The manor looks good, it just the execution of some of the book doesn't appear to hang right, which is why the opinions of people who have played/run it is so welcome.
I may just not run this one, or start at 6th and strengthen the beginning encounters.
Has anyone run this module and if so what was you experience?
I am particularly looking at the story awarded experience and the speed of advancement.The module need the party to be 8th before they face the Big Badie at the end. Therefore they need to be 7th when the enter the Manor. The problem appears to be starting at 5th.
The gap between 5th and 7th is too big for the module to fill, hence the story awards of Experience.
My problem is that the PC's will be shooting through levels every 2 sessions. It may just be easier to start at 6th.
However reading a module is different to playing it. Has anyone played this, and what have they found?
Your problem appears to be the oracle.
A divine spell caster normally acts as a back up melee character/archer
Thistletop boss is a tough fight, but from what you say you struggle with many of the fights.
Your group needs to sit down and talk about what is working and what is not. No point playing if it isn't fun.
The "healing in combat is a waste/inefficient" mantra like most perceived wisdom on the web has to be taken with caution.
What is said on a forum may have no relevance to your game. These perceived wisdom's are always based on assumptions which might not apply to your game. If you are all enjoying yourselves you are doing nothing wrong.
To my mind it is not the monsters being close to Sandpoint but how the farms on the other side of the Devils Platter survive. The Platter on one side and Whisper Wood on the other.
Shalelu is one answer, But really you need some form of 1) secret protector 2) Some form of deterrent threat to keep the monsters in line or 3) Evil force/person powerful enough to keep the rest in line
Basically I agree with NPC Dave, here are my thoughts in more detail:
1. The campaign has to end with the world saved. So they need to find evidence/correspondence that shows The Shadow Pearls cannot be made anywhere else and that the ones already delivered have been used or accidentally broken.
2 The climax has to be special. Look at your party and enhance Khala or add helpers to make the fight really epic.
I stopped my ST campaign at a similar point.
Occult could bring up stuff which claims to get around normal prophecy,
The Knights of the Ioun Star know a lot about him. Aboleths (good luck to the party getting them to talk). Thassilonian ruins/records or Azlanti ruins themselves. The Mordant Spire Elves
These spring to mind
While not essential there are all kinds of stuff which could be useful (you can run it with just the Book itself)
1. Player companion to Varsia (cannot remember it name)
These spring to mind.
I would echo the call to look at the forums. Some people do some amassing stuff and then share.
The Caryatid Columns have DR 5/- so the chances are good. The primary weapon will be broken. Yes they all have back up weapons, but facing a big boss CR 3 above party level with back up weapons looks like trouble.
I had not considered Suishen (The party had decided to present it to Ameiko, but are still carry it). You are right it does help with the initial fight and evens up the big boss fight a lot.
Has anyone had trouble with the Advanced Caryatid Columns
Anytime anyone hits them with a weapon, the weapon takes 3D6 Damage.
I can see them going in to face the Big Boss with broken weapons!!
My brother is playing this kind of character in my Jade regent Campaign. He is not multi-classing, and is doing fine. In a party with a summoner, inquisitor and Warpriest, the character is more than holding her own.
The Ranger dip does not do much harm but is not necessary (swap the con and dex as you suggested or lower str to 17. The dip does also give you some different class skill and track. These are ok but hardly earth shattering. That decision I think comes down to flavour and personal preference
I do not see that you need to change much.
Sea Wyverns Wake
Here There be Monsters
Tides of Dread
The whole bad people fighting worse people can be great fun