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As Jon pushes open the creaking, ancient door, he fails to spot the faintly glowing arcane symbol hastily drawn on the floor. It pulses a deep red as the door swings open and a burst of crimson energy flows out, enveloping the party and lighting up the entire corridor.
The pain that follows the burst of energy is exquisite and crippling and all encompassing.
Can everyone make a Fortitude save please?
Markus leads the way, following where he last saw Estovian.
As the party nears, you see that the rear of the temple tapers into a short corridor that runs to a dead end about twenty feet further.
There are two exits that lead off the corridor, one east and one west.
To the east there is an ancient wooden door that barely still hangs in it's hinges where as in the west wall a rusted, decrpit portcullis has been bent to one side, allowing access to the room beyond.
Round 10 - Enemy
The party assault the spirit from all angles. Cara's arrows continue to make it screech in pain but Morbar's hammer and Jon's blade seem to pass straight through it.
As the giant bat-like Jon closes in, the spirit lurches toward him as it did with Morbar.
Jon can you make a Will save, please?
Round 10 - Heroes
Still reeling from the alien presence in his mind, thoughts of hunger and blood lust overriding everything, Morbar collects himself enough to retrieve his hammer.
Round 9 - Enemy
The wolf spirit reels from the silver arrows that pass through its form and the blasts flame that wash over it. It steps partially through the wall and engages Davos directly as the flames lick over its surface as if it were substantial. Ghost touch spell from the wardens badge Having not endured that level if pain in many years, it's fury is directed at the wizard.
Vilkacis, touch 1: 1d20 + 15 ⇒ (5) + 15 = 20
Round 9 - Heroes
Round 8 - Enemy
The two remaining werewolves, despite seeing their brethren slain, continue to try to defend Highthrone as best they can.
Werewolf 4, Sebastian: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (1) + 5 = 6 Miss
Once more the beast shows more than a rudimentary knowledge of swordplay, blocking Jon's slash and pushing the blade down and away. It delivers a back hand blow with a clenches fist and follows it with a cut that slices across the oracle's ribs.
1d3 ⇒ 2
The wolf spirit glides forward and raises it's claws toward Cara.
Volkacis, Cara, touch: 1d20 + 15 ⇒ (11) + 15 = 26 Miss
Round 8 - Heroes
No, not quite Sebastian. You get a -10 penalty to your check for every foot of thickness of wall or floor between you and the source of the sound and -1 per ten feet of distance, not to mention the distraction of your own fight. The sound of battle gives a +10 bonus so overall the DC to hear what is going on downstairs is DC 23
Davos, AL8 is outside the building so I'm putting you in AI13
Cara's arrows punch through Morbar's armor and though the blood flows immediately, the spirit within flinches away from the silver instinctively. It reels out of Morbar's body, tearing itself free and as it does so his body begins to quickly reshape itself back to normal although the dwarf feels suddenly drained by the experience.
Morbar, you are fatigued for 6 rounds
Round 7 - Enemy
The werewolves on the roof continue their assault on Sebastian and Jon, this time with blades instead of bolts.
Werewolf 3, Jon, longsword: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (6) + 5 = 11 Miss
The wolf spirit, now ripped from Morbar's body attacks with claws of eldritch force.
1d3 ⇒ 2
Claw 1, Morbar, touch attack: 1d20 + 15 ⇒ (14) + 15 = 29
Morbar, I think you are on 14hp
Round 7 - Heroes
Just want to clarify something regarding levelling up. I've played in games where you have to rest in order to get your new abilities after levelling up. I don't mind you getting all your stuff like new abilities, hp, save and base attack immediately. However, spells and any ability that has a 'times per day restriction' won't be refreshed until you rest. Make sense amd everyone cool with that?
No problem with inspire and also sorry about the images, must have just had a brain freeze there. I will always say you are a 1 on the dice I roll to see if it is a hit though unless you tell me otherwise so we'll keep the hit Morbar scored last round but yes you have four images remaining meaning will roll a d5 if you get attacked again
Taking Davos' action
The wizard swoops down, still bleeding from multiple wounds of his own but determined not to let the wolves get the better of him.
He mutters words of power that sound alien in his own tongue and hurls a tiny ball at the roof of the temple. When it strikes the solid stone it erupts with a deafening KA-BOOM!! and an explosion that rocks the entire site. Those below are showered with dust and debris whilst the wolves above are immolated by a huge ball of flame.
Fireball: 8d6 + 4 ⇒ (3, 5, 5, 3, 1, 2, 3, 5) + 4 = 31
Werewolf 5, reflex: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (19) + 2 = 21 Success
When the smoke clears, two of the werewolves lie in smoking ruins on the ground, barely more than ragged lumps of scorched meat. The third caught in the blast staggers in blinding agony, fur singed from it's body in great patches.
Round 6 - Enemy
Several of the werewolves drop their crossbows in the sudden onslaught and draw longswords.
Werewolf 1, Sebastian: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (16) + 5 = 21 Miss
Sebastian's movement has never been so smooth and he slides away from blows like oil on water. Jon, in his rage however, presents an easier target, and the two wolves' blades bite deeply into his side and wing.
The others, shock and awe painted on their faces at the destruction wrought by Davos, continue to fire on him with crossbow bolts, both scoring direct hits that slam into his chest and cause him to start breathing bubbles of blood.
Werewolf 4, Davos: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (20) + 5 = 25 Hit
Davos, you are currently on 5hp
Down below the rabid dwarf continues his assault on Markus and Cara. From somewhere deep within he can see himself and his actions but can do nothing to control his own body. He has never felt so helpless.
5ft step to AK13
1d2 ⇒ 1
The real Cara is 1
Possessed Morbar, claw 1, Cara: 1d20 + 14 ⇒ (7) + 14 = 21
Round 6 - Heroes
Round 5 - Enemy
As Morbar's screaming fades the only thing it is replaced by is a heavy, wet panting.
He turns! No longer Morbar but some horrid half man, half beast as if the curse of lycanthropy had seized him. With fangs glistening hungrily he drops his shield and hammer and launches himself toward the pair claws hooked and teeth snapping.
1d2 ⇒ 1
Possessed Morbar, Markus, claw 1: 1d20 + 13 ⇒ (4) + 13 = 17 Hit
Markus, can you make a Fortitude save please.
The wolves on the roof reload and take another shot at Jon, davos and Sebastian
Werewolf 1, Sebastian: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (17) + 5 = 22 Miss
Round 5 - Heroes
Jon comes hurtling out of the woods with wings unfurled. He loops high over the trees, exhilerated with the feeling of rushing wind in his hair. He swoops up ever higher until he is silhouetted against the full moon like some giant nightmarish bat come to wreak vengeance on the wolves of the Shudderwood. With sword gleaming he plummets earthward toward his foe, a terrible vision of hatred and rage.
The wolves see the dramatic display and launch their bolts at the demon-creature, not knowing what sorcery has come to Highthrone.
Wolves take their round 4 readied action
Werewolf 1, Jon: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (15) + 5 = 20 Miss
A few seconds later Davos casts his own Fly spell and follows after the Oracle.
In the amphitheatre..
The wolf-spirit launches toward Morbar, both claws raised and teeth bared as if it were going for the throat!
But then, instead of eldritch claws tearing into flesh the creature envelops him in ghostly light. The two begin to merge and twist until it is difficult to see where the dwarf ends and the wolf begins.
Morbar twists at an impossible angle, his muscles bunch and tighten, tendons jump out through his skin like wires as Markus and Cara watch on in horror. They hear the sounds of his bones grinding and stretching, his jaw extending into a beastly maw and hands elongating into wicked claws.
Taking Morbar’s action to keep things moving.
The creature’s touch passes easily through the layers of steel protecting Morbar and he feels it’s cold touch on his very heart. Sensing his shield will be useless in this fight, he drops it to the ground with a loud clang and takes his hammer in both hands.
Let’s see how you like the taste of this!
Earthbreaker: 1d20 + 15 ⇒ (9) + 15 = 24 Hit
The hammer passes through the spirit both times but Morbar can feel it recoil from his blows nonetheless.
Round 4 – Enemy
Sebastian, you are on the bottom step of the stairs at the side of the temple. They run upward at a shallow angle for fifty feet before you can step out onto the flat adjoining roof where the wolves are. This will take a double move (so you won’t be able to attack any of them this round unless you use your burst of speed power in which case you will be able to get a single attack on werewolf 7) The stairs themselves however continue up to the tower and spiral around it seemingly all the way to the highest chamber.
Unable to get a clear shot on the monk, the wolves on the roof have once more ceased fire, although you sense another barrage is only moments away.
Back in the amphitheatre, surrounded by the bones of dead animals and the deeply oppressive darkness, Morbar, Cara and Markus face the spirit of the Vilkacis!
The wolf-spirit launches toward Morbar, both claws raised and teeth bared as if it were going for the throat!
Morbar make a Will save please. This is not a fear effect.
Unable to see the battle taking place across the hall from him, but certainly hearing it, Estovian turns and ducks around a corner, the light of his candle flickering out as he does so.
Cara, you are now in total darkness!
Round 4 – Heroes
Knowledge religion reroll: 1d20 + 19 ⇒ (12) + 19 = 31
Firstly, although you don't know the exact means, you know this is a calling effect as opposed to a summoning. It clearly has something to do with the stone Estovian was holding.
The creature he has called is called a Vilkacis.
Beings of pure malevolence and destruction, vilkacis arise from the souls of the most desperate and brutal werewolves as spirits burning with the need for bloodshed and vengeance. Spectres of savagery escaped from remains tainted by lycanthropy, vilkacis desire to wear mortal flesh and again revel in the vicious ecstasy of hunting and killing. Some see these beings as malign manifestations of the lycanthropic curse—the spirits of the infamous affliction itself—while others know them as the deathly continuance of lives consumed by lycanthropy. In either case, these ravenous spirit-beasts seek only to garb themselves in the skins of deadly hunters and revel in bloodshed once more. Vilkacis typically look like more savage versions of the werewolves they were in life, appearing in their hybrid forms with exaggerated fangs and claws. They are exceptionally rare.
You know that it is an incorporeal undead that also still carries werewolf vulnerabilites and resistances (DR vs silver) as well as an immunity to cold effects.
Most frighteningly, it has the ability to possess a host and whilst doing so, the host carries the curse of lycanthropy and can infect others.
Hang on Cara, in round 3 you would run toward the temple. You could get there but not have enough actions to also cast light. You do just see the flickering candle Estovian carries. Sebastian, if you use a standard action to cast barkskin, you do not have enough movement to get inside.
Once more, as the heroes break cover, the bolts fly!
Wolves take their round 3 readied actions
Werewolf 1, Cara: 1d20 + 5 + 1 ⇒ (10) + 5 + 1 = 16 Miss
Round 3 - Enemy
Once more the rain of bolts ceases. Clearly the wolves are choosing their targets rather than firing blindly into the cloud or woods.
Meanwhile, Estovian blinks dumbly into the dark.
H..H-hello? Who's there? you can hear the fear in his voice, the trembling. Well whoever you are, remember I have your ancestor! I control it's spirit and I summon it now to keep you back!
He takes a spherical black stone from his satchel with a quivering hand and mutters a few words you cannot hear.
Suddenly, there is a bright flash that casts weird and frightening shadows on the wall and the air is filled with with a sudden cacophany of echoing howls from a wisping cloud that coalesces in the room.
Within the swirling mass of frigid air manifests the form of a bestial spectre. Claws the size of daggers lash menacingly before its half-bestial, half-humanoid form, and its narrow eyes glow with a smoldering malevolence.
It growls at the pair and flies forward toward them, claw raised.
Vilkacis, Morbar, charge, touch: 1d20 + 15 ⇒ (13) + 15 = 28
Round 3 - Heroes
Yes because you are not hindered by heavy armor. You can't see where you are going so you will just head straight through the cloud and up to the temple.
As soon as Morbar breaks cover from the cloud, a hail of bolts rains down on him.
Werewolf 1, Morbar: 1d20 + 5 + 1 ⇒ (14) + 5 + 1 = 20 Miss
Bolt after bolt clang off his armor and shield that he raises high above his head. Before he knows it, he reaches the wall of the temple and barrels through one of the archways inside.
As he feels and hears the dwarf clatter past him, Markus also takes to heel, running as fast as he can for the safety of the walls.
Werewolf 5, Markus: 1d20 + 5 + 1 ⇒ (11) + 5 + 1 = 17 Hit
The interior of the temple is utterly dark but the pair's eyes adjust to the change almost instantly.
The archways open into a cavernous, pillar-lined amphitheater of crumbling stone with high ceilings and a rough dirt floor strewn with bones. The skeletons of deer and other large game animals hang from several of the columns, all of which are painted with crude symbols and marred with deep scratch marks.
The southern portion of the room contains an elevated dais, connected to the earthen floor of the amphitheatre by short stairs on either side. To the rear of the dais, an open archway leads deeper into the ruins.
As you both catch your breath and take in the sight of the skeletons you are also stopped in your tracks by the sight in the southern portion. A small, nervous-looking figure is standing in the darkness, a flickering candle in one hand. He searches in your direction, obviously hearing your ingress into the temple but unable to see you in the darkness. It is Estovian.
Cara, I assume because you can't see very well you will be edging toward the border of the cloud as Sebastian intended. Let me know if that is incorrect.
Sebastian, you move into the cloud and end beside Markus. You cannot see the edge of the cloud or judge the distance to the temple so next round you can either make a dash for it and hope you get there, or you can spend next round edging carefully to the border of the cloud in order to run to the temple in Round 4. Make sense?
Cara, do you have a light source on you? If not, you are operating solely in low light vision when you exit thr cloud and complete darkness when you enter the temple. I don't think Markus or Sebastian have light on them.
As the bolts rain down, the party splits with Davos and Jon retreating back into the woods whilst the others press on toward the temple. Realising how exposed they are, Markus conjures a thick cloud of roiling cloud that the others are more than grateful to duck into.
Round 2 - Enemy
For now at least, the hail of bolts has ceased.
Round 2 - Heroes
I can sympathise with this.
I agree with all the points above that your players are being unreasonable if they are essentially threatening you with dropping the campaign if you don't let them play some weird frog/flower/fey combo.
Some are simply not interested in the roleplaying aspect of the game (when many, myself included, would see that as at least 80% of the game in the first place) and that's a shame. Try sitting down with them and reasonably explaining your concerns that the races they want to play have no cultural grounding in your campaign world and will find it extremely difficult to interact with 'normal' races because they have pretty much just dropped from the sky!
You can't be held ransom by your players though. At the end of the day it's a game and everyone should be having fun, yourself included.
The reason I can sympathise is because every time I start a new campaign most of my players pretty much automatically head for the Aasimar and Tiefling subraces, in which you can find the perfect chassis for any superpower gaming version of any class you like. They also have no desire to play small races because of the movement, CMB penalty, reduced weapon damage and so on.
Shame, because I feel the traditional races have a rich history in the game that provides a 1001 roleplaying opportunities.
I should have clarified. One of my players is a Warpriest and we are fine with the Blessings and the fact they are (Su) answers a lot of questions that could be raised.
This is specifically about the domain power Dimension Hop from the Travel domain.
It is specifically called out as a (Sp) which means it is subject to concentration checks, attacks of opportunity and so on but doesn't let you know what the spell level is in order to calculate the DCs required.
Incidentally, I would be inclined to agree with Steel's assessment that it is in line with about a 3rd level spell, kind of like a minor Dimension Door.
Morbar: 1d20 + 2 ⇒ (2) + 2 = 4
WW1: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (19) + 5 = 24
Round 1 - Enemy
As the heroes reel from the first volley of fire from the tower, another follows just seconds later.
Markus=1, Sebastian=2, Jon=3, Morbar=4, Davos=5, Cara=6
Targets: 7d6 ⇒ (3, 6, 1, 4, 2, 1, 5) = 22
1 shot on Markus, 2 shots on Sebastian, 1 shot on Jon, 2 shots on Davos, 1 shot on Cara
Werewolf 1, Markus, FF: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (7) + 5 = 12 Hit
Werewolf 2, Sebastian, FF: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (13) + 5 = 18 Miss
Werewolf 4, Jon, FF: 1d20 + 5 + 2 ⇒ (10) + 5 + 2 = 17 Hit
Werewolf 5, Davos, FF: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (9) + 5 = 14 Hit
Werewolf 7, Cara, FF: 1d20 + 5 + 2 ⇒ (1) + 5 + 2 = 8 Miss
Round 1 - Heroes
Those with darkvision or low light vision can see several wolves on the roof of the flat extended building. They are smaller than the ones you faced in the woods but obviously all armed with crossbows. Humans in the party cannot make them out clearly at all due to the poor lighting conditions and distance
At the base of the extended building, more than half a dozen open archways lead into a darkened exterior.
1d20 + 4 ⇒ (16) + 4 = 20
As Jon and Sebastian discuss their tactics in crossing the open ground, a howl rings out from high on the tower. It is joined by another and yet another.
Jon looks down at his glowing blade and realises all too late that it must shine like a beacon in the dark forest.
As if to punctuate that thought, silver bolts come streaking out of the darkness toward him and the others, whistling on the the air as they fly with deadly purpose.
Markus=1, Sebastian=2, Jon=3, Morbar=4, Davos=5, Cara=6
Targets: 7d6 ⇒ (4, 4, 2, 5, 5, 3, 1) = 24
1 shot on Markus, 1 on Sebastian, 1 on Jon, 2 on Morbar, 2 on Davos
Werewolf 1, Markus, FF: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (6) + 5 = 11 Miss
Werewolf 2, Sebastian, FF: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (20) + 5 = 25 Hit
Werewolf 3, Jon, FF: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (4) + 5 = 9 Miss
Werewolf 4, Morbar, FF: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (13) + 5 = 18 Miss
Werewolf 6, Davos, FF: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (3) + 5 = 8 Miss
Most of the bolts strike the trees or thud into the ground beside you but a couple make their mark.
With Duristan nowhere to be seen, the party decide to press on, knowing that the Stairs of the Moon, and clues to Vrood’s latest move, are close by.
The night air is hot and oppressive beneath the forest canopy, the darkness absolute. You move forward through the undergrowth, trying to remain as quiet as possibly but keenly aware of every snapping branch and rustle of grass.
Then, without warning, the screen of trees comes to an end, opening suddenly onto a wide clearing, only sparsely dotted with trees and dominated by a tall circular tower that reaches toward the moon. A circular staircase runs along the outside of the tower to an unseen plateau whilst the bottom floor appears to be extended into a longer antechamber.
Even palely lit by the moon’s glow you can see that this is an ancient and impressive site that is still now save for the howls of wolves.
You are about 100 feet from the tower, standing at the tree line.
I've got a second edition player's handbook which includes Bard as it's own class. At 7th level they become a Troubadour.
Also, THAC0..... unbelievably complicated:
Advanced Dungeons and Dragons 2ed wrote: