As a DM I tend to follow the golden rule of Paizo's message boards "Don't be a jerk." This has kept players from walking away, getting frustrated, getting hurt feelings etc. A game is a social contract. Break the rules and there isn't game.
It appears the fighter can fight but the cleric can't cleric. The fighter might not have displayed the best tactics but refusing to heal an obviously potent resource is displaying worse tactics.
As a player I would rather than vote the out cleric than the fighter. .
I think I gotta give a spoiler warning.
I would start level one, a couple gp extra for scrolls and potions. Start with a wee baby city adventure in Magnamar. With their newfound "rep" they meet Aldern who hires them to go to Sandpoint and find his obsession. Enroute maybe a detour with some fireworks wielding Licktoads,rescuing a pig, some kobolds with a wounded wyvern master and catching a Scarneti mill burning while saving the family from the burning windmill...wicker man kinda thing.
Don't forget, Vin Vendors smoking hot easy daughter will want to score too when they get to Sandpoint.
Foreshadow the second chapter by showing/describing the Foxglove manor in an lightning filled windlashed thunderstorm. Little haunted house action.
#5. Really? Roflmao!
In 4E encounters I got that dick DM label for not allowing characters to use free heals from clerics in between sessions because they were "out of combat".
I'm a 31 year DM. In MY experience, splatbooks unequally increase power between characters. Meaning that some characters are awesome and some characters suck. This causes player frustration, interplayer friction and player apathy and people quit playing till the next game. It also unnecessarily increases encounter design difficulty and time required to construct encounters. Then the cycle repeats.
The splatbook powercreep happened in AD&D(Unearthed Arcana), 2nd Ed (kits) 3.X (splatbook of the month) 3.P (-sigh-), 4E (PHB 2 especially) and now I'm seeing it in the 5E playtest materials ( and it doesn't even have splatbooks yet!). You would think in 28 years we would figure out how to handle powercreep.
I really wish that all of the core classes were on equal footing with splatbook classes. But you you know what they say:" if wishes were horses then beggars would ride."
Now I wanna "Dick DM" t-shirt.
I'm all for it.
I certainly get more out of the old school modules and their three paragraphs of background information than out of a 128pg sourcebook. A DM can take three paragraphs and run with it, filling in some blanks and keep that sense of mystery alive. A detailed sourcebook doesn't have the room so to speak and ends up functioning more as a straight jacket or a ball in chain.
If you get the chance google "Tucker's Kobolds" for some ideas on whipping your parties keister.
I ran an encounter where about 12 goblins with a total of sixteen NPC levels walked all over my players with cleaver use of terrain and abilities. Seven players all about level six with couple level sevens.
I guess I kind of disagree with most of these. I have come to the opinion that Feats have essentially ruined an edition of D&D. (no I'm not just trolling :-)) The original feat system is ok but the power creep that follows with each successive splat book greatly increases the pain in the ass factor for the DM and players.
I think the Basic (1981) and AD&D fighter actually offered more by being less codified and having a few iconic class abilities. In AD&D the fighter got a Whirlwind attack at fourth level against 1HD mobs. Gotta be sixth in 3.x and you're certainly focused on following that feat tree. Yes the 3.x fighter can attack more than 1 HD mobs but usually by then he or she needs to begin to focus more on single target damage.
Any-who, I'm hoping future iterations of the wolds most popular role playing games pare down feats or remove feats in favor of iconic class abilities. Maybe even block 3rd party development of feats via an GSL or something.
I love rolling!!!!
I keep it tight. Core races. By core I mean Tom Moldvay Basic/Expert D&D core; Human, Elf, Dwarf and Hafling. I have been super open in the past but in my experience it did not really add to the game.
As I have matured as a DM I have found that it is my job to be the monster(s), the players to be heroes(or anti-heroes).
Your mileage may vary.
Definitely put Hommelet near Sandpoint or Magnamar. Bigger town and even bigger city for Burne and Rufus to have support of nearby noble house(s). I don't know what history you want to associate with the abandoned moathouse but there was a series of conflicts between the settlers from Cheliax and the Shoanti. "Conquest of Bloodswone Vale" for more info, afaik.
The suggestion of Falcons Hollow is a good one, if you have the Temple of Elemental evil Falcons Hollow does a great job as a replacement for the town of Nulb.
I would also suggest Diamond Lake from the Age of Worms AP. Old school feel for sure.
Kirth Gersen wrote:
IMPOSTOR! If you were old school like me you'd know it was Str, Int, Wis, Dex, Con, Cha.
Alas I didn't go to Gencon.
Not really in order but ones that have stuck with me.
The Falcon Hollow kobold trilogy.
The Mad Gods Key. (Dun114)
The Whispering Cairn. (Dun 120 something)
The Tamerauts Fate ( Dun ?)
The first three RotRL
The Forsaken Arch ( Dun 120)
Howl of the Carrion King
I haven't finished reading it yet but I really like the Brinewall Legacy so far.
The Madness in Istiven trilogy (Dun 117-119?)
Thank you for asking for my favoites!
Varisia has hulking bald barbarians, hot tattooed gypsies and a grip of ruins everwhere from a couple of failed civilizations. Whats not to love?
APs are in Varisia because Varisia is cool. Kinda like California. Notice that Katy Perry sings about California girls not Iowa girls. Daisy dukes and bikinis on top? Check. Coveralls? Not so much.
I don't know much about the sci fi sites in Washington, but my trip into British Columbia was WAY too short. The people were great, the sights were amazing. I really loved mountain biking on south mountain, Whistler was really cool (although their bike park wasn't open yet) and Victoria on Vancouver Island is a blast. Its more "victorian" than London. Great inspiration for a steampunk game.
Oh yeah about the Nor Cal section... There is a great micro brewery in Ft Bragg, a kick ass ice creme shop in Mendocino's tourist area (I can't remember what its called) and do not forget Bodega Bay where the movie "The Birds" was filmed. Don't eat at the Tides restaurant, there is a little shack outside of the restaurant that is cheaper and has better food. Pt Arena light house is cool and Pt Reyes is a neat section of coast.
Threeshades, it is the way it goes. As Dark Mistress pointed out life gets complicated. I rock a three player group almost weekly but...we bail on two or three sessions every six or seven weeks. My Geeks are 25-39 in age if that's any help.
What ever you do, do not take it personally. Things just get in the way. Don't get me wrong, I get bummed when we don't play, I start jonesing for the DM screen and itching to roll some dice.
One thing that has helped our games is a "restart" if we miss three weeks or more. You don't even have to tell your players about it if you dont want to. I'll retool the adventure and start'em out all over again or move on with something different. (the arguement could be made that as we get older our memory starts to slip...)This helps a lot, I use recurring monsters/NPCs to keep flow and continuity but adventures or modules that take three decent sessions to get through seem to be best.
Hope that helps.
I've been gaming with the same basic group of people for nine and a half years. Soon after I usurped DMing the group with relatively new first and second level characters ran into an owlbear that schooled them pretty badly. I use owlbears as a test monster to gauge the players progress with their characters and as a group.
They have taken to it with gusto and usually I am reminded every two or three levels or so to throw one or more owlbears at them. Kinda fun really.
I will run a games with one player and I have several friends I will do that with. Maturity is required.
This is from an eleventh generation Texan.
I am converting Mad Gods Key and There is No Honor into one adventure for my 4E Game.
I am looking at combining all of the 'Hollow adventures with Burnt Offerings.
My 2 cp.
I am in the process of converting The Crucible of Freya by Necromancer Games and The Whispering Cairn and Three Faces of Evil by Paizo to 4E. I will reserve my opinion on 4E until these have been played through.
I agree with one of the prior posters that the PFRPG Alpha 1 release had a really cool skill system. I wish it had remained.
I hate favored terrain.
I hated it in Necropolis by Gygax (RiP)and I hate it now. I was most disappointed with the 3.p ranger. Of all the classes out there I most wanted to play a ranger and after reading the latest incarnation it is the one I am least inclined to play, and DM.
I love the new half orc, I can't wait to play one.
I didn't like the "re imagined" orc in the Pathfinder suppliment, I have grown tired of the raw seething horde of mindless killing frenzy.
I am looking forward to release 3 as the Ranger and the Monk seem especially suited for a half orc character.
As a DM I am glad that orcs aren't frothing thugnards and this opens up a few opportunities for classic villains. The half orc cleric of orcus in the Necromancer games adventure "The Crucible of Freya" has some lasting potential.
We have used the new turning twice in our playtest.
It has worked out well so far (2nd level-slow advancement).
I really like that as a DM I can engineer more complex encounter with more opponents than before as the Cleric will still be the healing battery, but the players choice of spells is important not just a throw away ability destined for cure ____ spells.
The next encounter is a third level cleric that channels negative energy... will the party survive? A 30 foot burst of 2d6 save for half is going to be eye opening. (an advanced Nirashi from Haunted Forest).
I really like where this is going with conditions. However, a page with each condition in its own box like the Broken Condition in Alpha release 1 Pg. 43 would be great or... Condition Cards!!! That would be awesome!
Having a nice color page with the various conditions on them would be cool, something we could have in a sheet protector for ease of reference. But a Condition Card the DM could slap down to tell me how much my character $^!#$ would be much more fun.
I most certainly plan to buy the beta and the hardcover. I am even looking at going to gencon to buy and show my support for Paizo. So far it is as good a Unearthed Arcana and on its way to being as good or better than Arcana Evolved. I think those were the first to truely eclipse WotC as far as quality hardcover products go.
The warring states period of China was one of my favorite.
Are you going to have anything like the water margin chronicle?