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Michelle Lutz's page

Goblin Squad Member. FullStarFullStar Pathfinder Society GM. 11 posts. No reviews. No lists. No wishlists. 5 Pathfinder Society characters.


OmegaZ wrote:

I noticed about 1/2 way through HotB that they were plowing through all the fights, so I gave the Carrion Guards and Initiates a level or two, this was probably my biggest mistake.

I'm thinking I can either:

-Level up the fights in Jackal's Price, but keep the xp the same as it would be normally (probably my best option)

-Find a level's worth of fighting/xp to skip (don't really want to do this)

-Level up the fights in Jackal's Price AND give out proper xp (could be fun, but could get a crazy if they're level 15 by book 5)

-Switch them to the Medium XP track (not a bad option, can always switch back to the Fast Track if necessary)

I have been using the Medium XP track and found if you add extra it keeps you right on pace or close to pace. By being ahead it should even you up.

Has anyone had players decide to go back and attempt to uncover what was on the other side of the collasped alcove in are 6? If so what have you placed in this area?


I really like the side encounter you added. I think I might add something like it for their trip back through Bronze Hook (as they return from Giant's Steps). I also like the chance of bandits being in Bronze Hook since they are looking the other way as long as coin in being spent.

I don't have Kingmaker, so wasn't planning on using that.

I am planning on including Pact of the Stone Pyramid after HoB and already have a way to nab my players from their backgrounds with only a little tweaking. One of the player's characters is from Osirion and his mother is a Osirionologist. I am not using the campaign traits. Not running Entombed with the Pharoahs because it just not my style.

I have been playing around with adding a mission to help re-establish trade north to Osirion. Thoughts?

This takes place assuming everyone stays in Kelmarane after freeing it from the gnolls and trade has started to resume.

Lady Almah calls everyone into her new office (include Haleen and anyone else the group seems taken to except the mercenaries). She again thanks them for the help they have given in the last several months (depending on what they have chosen to do). She explains she has a small tasking for them. “To increase trade to Kelmarane, the northern trade route needs to be stabilized. It has fallen into disrepair since the loss of Kelmarane twenty years ago. There is a village east of here called Bronze Hook and nearby it is one of the few fords across the Pale River available all year long. The ford is called Hook Ford. Please go to these locations and establish contact with them on behalf of myself and Kelmarane and let them know our desire to re-establish trade along this route to Osirion, specifically Ipeq. Follow the trade route that is by the old monastery east and it will take you to Hook Ford and then cross over the Pale River to Bronze Hook. My understanding is that there is still a guard at Hook Ford, though I do not know anything about them. Bronze Hook has also been out of the Pactmasters view since the fall of Kelmarane. Make sure they understand that with Kelmarane’s return, the Pactmasters will be looking at them also.

Once you are done making contact with Bronze Hook, continue north along the trade route until you reach a set of lakes on either side of the trade route. These are known as Giant’s Steps. Keep your eyes alert as this is a known area for bandits. See what you can do to eliminate or at least reduce the amount of bandits in the area. Giant’s Steps is the first relief caravans coming from Osirion encounter after entering the highlands. Part of the reason this trade route has been seldom used is this banditry. I will be working with the Pactmasters to establish a regular patrol of guards through that area but need it to be cleaned out while I get this established. I am sending some of the Mercenaries with you as the first set of guard patrol, but be aware they are not great for establishing any type of contact in Bronze Hook.”

Lady Almah is willing to pay them 250gp each. With a diplomacy check (DC 15) she is willing to go up to 500gp each (this includes anyone else who the players bring along besides the mercenaries). She is willing to lend horses (light) to anyone that does not have one, however if they do not bring back the horse, she will withhold some of the payment to cover the horse (75gp). Each horse comes with a saddle and bridle but they will have to see about obtaining feed for the horse while they are gone.

Travel to Hook Ford takes approximately 1 day by horseback. The party can attempt to interact with the guard that night or wait until morning. On this side of the ford is a small house connected to a watch tower. If the party attempts to interact with the guard at night, he will invite them to join him in a meal inside his place but explains he does not have room for all of them to sleep. The guard is Dasharn and he has been the watchman for this post for over 40 years. He is a veteran militia member and is proud of his service. He keeps a good watch however he is bored and starting to go a little senile. Mention wanting to cross the ford and he asks why the group wants to cross HIS ford. Part of his problem is he is outside the community of Bronze Hook and has gotten quiet lonely for human companionship. He has a eagle companion who accompanies him at all times and is extremely helpful in hunting gazelle to leave for the Dragonne of the Brazen Peaks that he has gotten to be friends with. He’s not ready to retire but would be willing to train another to eventually replace him with the understanding that he would get to remain as long as he wants. Whoever replaces him would also have to be willing to befriend and help the Dragonnes as he has.

It will cost everyone 7gp to get themselves and their mounts across the ford and will take the better part of the morning to cross. A diplomacy check (DC 25) will enable them to reduce it to 5gp for each person and their mount.

The village of Bronze Hook is about a half hour ride away from the ford. There are several farms along the river that provide most of its food. The main source of income has been tolls from the folks crossing the ford. The village looks inhabited but run down. Some of the buildings even have visible holes in them. Bronze Hook is a village of approximately 30 families (about 75 people). There are three small farms, a large inn, a constable building, a common house (which also acts as the mayor’s office), two dozen or so small houses, separate stables with space for wagons behind it, a small general store, and a couple of abandoned buildings. There is no visible shrine or temple (the village is too small to host any clergy). The cost of stabling animals and lodgings is cost listed in Core Rulebook +50%.

Notable figures of Bronze Hook:
Local healer is known as a witch by the villagers and she is ancient by anyone’s standard. She is very bent over and can always be found in the company of a young girl who all say is her protégé. They are Ancient Jaeda and Young Kalka. Young Kalka looks out of place; she looks nothing like the rest of the villagers.

Mayor of the village is a middle aged man of Mwangi descent. His goes by Mayor Sinale. His main thoughts are the longer anyone stays in the village, the more money the village will collect. He is not particular on the laws of Ketapesh as Bronze Hook has not been in their sights and taxes are not collected. The mayor will drag out the discussions as long as possible but can be persuaded that is not in his best interested (especially is Merchant Samuel Kreb is helping the group).

Innkeeper is a heavyset man close to middle age. He enjoys his drink a little too much. His troubles started shortly after he inherited the place from his father shortly before the fall of Kelmarane. The caravan’s that created the money flow stopped coming and he is beside himself to do anything to help. At this point he is debating leaving Bronze Hook but does not know where else to go. Also working at the inn is the barkeep and his wife. The innkeeper is Ridwan and the barkeep is Deo and his wife Brisie is the cook. Deo and Brisie’s children also help out (work) at the inn. Brisie’s cooking is extremely good (some of the best cooking anyone has had).

Constables tend to start at least half of the tavern brawls just looking for trouble and something to do. When there is a large group (such as a caravan), they no longer know how to keep the peace. Some of the problem is boredom, some of it is they no longer know how to do their job and need to be either placed under someone who can control them or replaced. Two of the younger Constables don’t seem to join in unless they are goaded by the older ones. Even the mercenaries are a little put out by some of the older Constables. There are actually 8 Constables (large number is leftover from when many caravans used to come through). Their names are Hunayn, Racham, Kalev, Nuzhat, Bakht, Ora, Taha, Fayiz. The two that sit out could not control the others and are too inexperienced to lead.

Merchant of the general store is a general store who is completely fed up with Bronze Hook and would leave if his wife was willing to but she has lived here all her life and is unwilling to try someplace new. The merchant tried shortly after the caravans stopped coming but his wife went to her sister’s place and refused to leave until he gave up on the nonsense of moving. The merchant, Samuel Kreb is originally from Varisia. The store itself has very little in it, even lacking much of the supplies to require a smithy to make. He used to get his supplies along with exotic items from the caravans and often they were most of his customers. He is the best way to get a meaningful meeting with the Mayor about trade starting back up. Samuel Kreb’s arms are covered in tattoos.

Stable Manager is a young man that is always followed around by a dog. The other villagers will let you know that the Stable Master trained that dog and it was a stray. The Stable Master is good with all animals, not just the dog. Occasionally he will go out hunting so the village can have fresh meat but not very often as he is only an okay shot with his sling. The Stable Master is known as Stable Master al-Hayawan. (Note: the Stable Master would love to be in the wilderness more, possibly become a ranger if he could get the training.)

The mayor will not speak with anyone from the group until at least the next morning (from the day they arrive), even if they have spoken with Samuel Kreb. He figures that whatever they wish to speak with him about can wait until the morning. Without Samuel Kreb’s help, it takes a diplomacy check (DC 30) to get the mayor to believe their message. With Samuel Kreb the diplomacy check is reduced (DC 22). The mayor puts more weight on what locals say versus what strangers say.

During the first night, the Constables attempt to start a tavern brawl involving the group. If none of the players seem to get provoked, they will attempt to provoke the mercenaries. Either way, they are trying to get the group to swing first so they can arrest them, figuring they will need to be bailed out of jail. The two youngest Constables (Kalev and Ora) will avoid the fight if possible and if they have been talked up (diplomacy DC 18) they will warn the group. The two youngest sit apart from the rest of the constables.

The players need to decide how they are going to fix some of the situation in Bronze Hook so that it will not interrupt trade flow that will hopefully be starting up again with the return of Kelmarane.

The journey to Giant’s Steps takes 2 days by horseback. On the first night (around midnight), gnolls attack the group led by a gnoll ranger. Perception Check (DC 25) to spot the gnolls as the approach the camp spot.

Gnolls (6)
Gnoll Ranger – Gnoll Ranger 5
Hyena (Animal Companion)

Background: This group of gnolls has separated from the Carrion King due to the lack of raiding of human villages for slaves. They found about all the banditry around Giant’s Steps and have set up to raid caravans and occasionally other bandit groups. Every once in a while they will bring a group of slaves to Ketapesh for sale, assuming they survive the trip and “breaking”.

With the Giant’s Steps in sight, Perception Check (DC 15) to notice a group of riders approaching at a fast pace. This is one of the many groups of raiders operating out of the Giant’s Steps area. Seeing the large numbers of the party, they assume this is a fast moving (high in money) caravan going back to Osirion for supplies.

Bandits (10) – Human Warrior 2, Fighter 1
Bandit Leader – Dwarf Barbarian (Mounted Fury Archtype) 5
Camels (11) – Bandits are mounted on them

To finish accomplishing the tasking, the group needs to search around Giant’s Steps to see if they can find any other large groups of bandits and raiders. (Need details on how to find) The group finds a small bandit camp. Within the camp are three recent captives, a merchant and his two young sons. Guarding the camp are 8 more bandits and the camp leader. This is actual part of the same group of bandits that attacked the group when they first got to Giant’s Step.

Camp Bandits – Human Warrior 2
Camp Leader – Halfling Fighter (Mobile Fighter Archtype) 3

The merchant and his three sons were traveling to Solku to reunite with family. The merchant’s wife recently died and the merchant had no place to leave his two younger sons while he was on the road. His eldest son died in the attack and often acted as a caravan guard.

Looking around, the camp would make an ideal location as base camp for the new routine patrols. The mercenaries quickly make themselves at home. Also in the camp are 4 backpacks (two being small), 4 waterskins, a scroll case, a tent, MW merchant scale, dyes, belt pouch containing 40gp, a dagger, 4 bedrolls, and several changes of clothing that belongs to the merchant his sons. Also in the camp are wooden armor and a MW scimitar that belonged to his eldest. He offers them up to the party as thank you for rescuing them. He requests they escort him and his sons to Solku but will accept an escort to Kelmarane if that is all they are willing to provide. There is no sign of his eldest son’s body around the camp. (The body can be found floating in Left Step, in some cat-tails. Perception Check (DC 20) to notice when they are near Left Step.)

If the eldest son’s body is found, the merchant asks for proper burial ceremony. He and his family are devout followers of Sarenrae.

It is a scimitar in my game (I have 3 scimtar wielders, a rapier wielder and a quaterstaff weilder).

Thanks for your suggestions guys. I think I am going to make it he was a Cavelier with the Stategist Archtype - seems perfect for a general.

Gordon the Whale wrote:
In answer to the original question, though... The moldspeaker shouldn't be able to ask "what class are you," or at least shouldn't be able to get an answer, from any NPC, and class abilities can be dressed up in different fluff. Answer the questions creatively, based on his role in the story rather than game mechanics which will never come up anyway, and try not to let them metagame it.

The magus is looking for ways to better his martial prowless and came searching for hidden techniques so I can see him asking about things like that. I can also see Vardishal answering questions if he thinks it would help his host ensure Jurvhul(sp) doesn't return/complete his task.

I am tyring to figure out what class(s) Vardishal might be. One of my players just became "moldspeaker" during yesterday's session though right now he thinks that Tempest is an ego sword. If he figures out that Vardishal is sharing conscious with him, I think he will ask questions about him. I haven't had any luck figuring out what Vardishal might have been. The person who's the "moldspeaker" is a maguc.


Febuary: Genghiscon - Denver CO - - JP Chapleau (VC - Colorado)
Labor Day Weekend: Tacticon - Denver CO - - JP Chapleau (VC - Colorado)

We are about to start next weekend. I am not using campaign traits, though using some of the ideas of them to help hook the players into the adventure.

Kafeel: Human (m) Paladin of Sarenrae - Sacred Shield Archtype - Orphan of the Battle of Red Hail - mainly a hater of everything Gnoll
Balat: Human (m) Cleric of Sarenrae- Orphan from Qadira who wants to reclaim Katapesh in the name of Sarenrae - unknown parentage but grew up in a temple of Sarenrae
Sayife (Sofie): Human (f) Rogue - worshiper of Irori, looking for anything historical
Mathis Jalisco: Human (m) Sorcerer of Starsoul bloodline - worshipper of Nethys and a member of a merchant house of Nex
Jabari Khalid: Human (m) Magus from Osiriani - mother is a Osiriontologist, partially raised by a Cleric of Nethys and is a worshipper of Nethys - looking how to increase his martial and magical prowless

John Mangrum wrote:

Okay, looks like this thread's not particularly taking off, but no matter -- the Violet Fire is continuing to evolve. Here's a work-in-progress map of the second floor.

The Violet Fire, Second Floor

I'm not so much designing the building's layout as allowing it to reveal itself to me as I go along. With the main levels solidifying, I can also work on mapping the private third level and the high-security vaults and access tunnels!

I've enjoyed reviewing what you have had with your campaign but this one is a little hard. If the main goal/ultimate bad guy of this is the "second in command" and he wants to do something under the cover of the tournement, how are the PC's suppose to be in 2 places at once without leaving a character or cohort hanging.

I like the idea of resolving Haleen's backstory and/or having a tournement based on the story of the retaking of Kelemane with a twist. The logistics of this doesn't seem to work for me.

Also, your map looks detailed but the font in unreadable (though cool) to help figure out the different areas at a glance.


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