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Adam Daigle wrote:
Sneaks into janitor's closet, squeezes goop from mop head into a bucket, tip toes out of Paizo offices with bucket, having animated conversation with self
Richard Pett wrote:
Valley of the Brain Collectors is just the most amazingly engaging title ever, can't wait to see what Mike has done with it...
Terrible, terrible things...
Glen Shackleton wrote:
Mike you did an awesome job. I love your work in general but this special looks like its going to be awesome. Love the part 5 twist.
Thanks for the praise, but understand that John Compton's fingerprints are all over this thing. The part 5 twist was in the assignment outline, so I can't claim credit for the concept. I love it, too!
Mark Garringer also deserves some glory for his help in brainstorming and planning. He will be serving as the overseer for the special at GenCon, only five days away! I'll be wandering around observing the mayhem and helping out if I can.
With that said, I'm going to refrain from chirping in on any specific mechanical issues from now on to avoid confusion. John and Mike Brock have the final word on such matters.
See you all at GenCon!
I'm not sure if John, Mike, and others on the PFS team have something they're going to do where the aid tokens are concerned. However, I'd recommend that GMs have a bullet-pointed player handout for their tables that lists the parameters and possible uses of the tokens for easy reference.
Also, the compass of the map of the Grand Cathedral should be pointed to the right had side of the page (it now faces what should be west).
Looking forward to seeing you guys bring this to life only five days from now!
So is the June 27 version the final version or is it still the play test version? Kinda cuttin it close if its not the final.
No, the final version hasn't been distributed yet.
But fear not! John and dozens of his whiskey swigging quasit minions are feverishly working on the final version of the scenario as we speak.
Note: Truth be told, it's only two quasits, and one of them does nothing but peel John's grapes.
Thanks, though I can't take all the creepy credit. I sent in my turnover, which I thought was pretty creepy, but then it got...
Thanks, but I'm not special — everyone on the boards deserves better. No one likes a negative critique, but it helps if the poster puts a bit of thought into it. Smug calls for punting my pudenda might give someone a chuckle, but it doesn't illuminate. Unfavorable commentary is useful if it gives some quantifiable reasons for the dissatisfaction.
This particular scenario produced some strong reactions and those reactions have had an impact on my design work. For instance, I now work harder to make the backstory discoverable for players in situ. If you're unhappy with a scenario, by all means, let Paizo and the author know, but doing so in an insulting manner is counterproductive. Deliberately cruel language may seem clever or edgy, but it just gets you marked as a creep.
Thank you so much for your thoughtful and cogent review of this scenario. I was especially charmed by your call for the brutalization of my testicles. I think I speak for many scenario authors when I say that it's this kind of insightful critique of one's work that makes all the time and labor that goes into producing PFS scenarios and other Pathfinder products worthwhile. Should you deign to participate in any other material I have written, I hope you will provide more of your adroit and penetrating commentary.
On the off chance that you are under the age of 13 — chronologically or emotionally — let me make a recommendation: while the internet provides a level of anonimity and therefore offers opportunities to ignore basic rules of courtesy, try to refrain from coarse insults. It tends to mark one as a troll and results in others making an uncharitable assessment of the poster. Indeed, some may make comparisons of the poster to specific parts of the anatomy.
- Mike Shel
It sounds like you've done about as much as you can do to steer the PCs away from disaster, but they're apparently not a very wise bunch. There's only so much you can do to encourage players to avoid total failure. Frankly, I'd let things play out as they would, given the circumstances. Let the party proceed as they wish, with the subsequent torches and pitchforks. It may be the only way they learn that subtlety, diplomacy and cooperation are tools of the trade as well.
Alternately, you could have the local constables (the more competent Gergis leading them with Lezara Dodgion along for good measure) discover the party's skulking, have them hauled up before the baroness and have her read them the riot act: come clean and do these tasks for me or sit in our lovely jail.
I have one question for GenCon Prep. I have ordered every map from the PaizoCon version of this module. I'm hoping that whatever the surprise encounter is, will be contained to one of the maps already used. If not, can you tell us what map it is, so I have time to order and ship before the con?
You won't need any additional map packs than those found in the PaizoCon version of the scenario. I'd strongly encourage GenCon GMs who can afford it to have those map packs ready for use to speed up the game and pre-draw what custom maps you can (the Brothers' Arches, for instance).
Understand that the version of the PDF you have now is the playtest version used at PaizoCon, not the one for GenCon. Corrections will be made and the aforementioned twist will add substantial content to the adventure. I'm not sure what John's release date is for the GenCon version, but it's probably 2-3 weeks out.
John is very aware of the resource challenge and we have already bandied about some ideas re: this. The journey through Jormurdun will need to get tightened up some.
But, O me Brothers & Sisters, I'm getting more and more excited about the twist: I think it'll both surprise and delight players and GMs alike.
Dorothy Lindman wrote:
Lady Ophelia wrote:
Yes, if you had to draw the entire map of some encounters you would be right to damn me. However, I had conceived of players viewing the full map of the Grand Cathedral and selecting where they would be positioned for the briefing (and therefore the subsequent combat encounters, which are actually influenced by PC location); the PCs also choose their location in the Throne Room. The GM would then draw only that area of the map for players. I haven't had a chance to read over John's developed text yet, but I'm assuming he retained this notion. Unless, of course, he wanted me to be lynched by a gang of angry GMs.
A) The enormous telescope and seat mechanism are fixed in place in the observatory and are not a part of the lot you reference. It would have a substantial gp value.
B) The mansion is built on a hill opposite the ruling noble of a well-established town and would be considered a very desirable location.
C) If you're GMing it you can do whatever you'd like to do, but I think letting the place go for less than 60K would be a mistake.
@Orcsmasher: James and I assumed that the price of the manor would be well out of the PCs' price range and would be purchased by Arnholde Devy, the baron-to-be, when all was said and done. However, it's up to you how you'd like to handle it.
First off, I really love designing maps and often do my best brainstorming messing around with them. Honestly, my map design is often driven as much by aesthetics as encounter demands. But after complaints about map size for Ghennet Manor Gauntlet, I made sure all my future PFS Scenarios fit on a standard flipmat or employed Gamemastery maps.
However, when doing stand-alone modules or AP adventures, I've allowed my love of map aesthetics to guide me, which may admittedly lead to some unwieldy configurations. With something sprawling like the monastery I think TheInnsmouthLooker's idea of printing off a smaller version to reveal and reference along the way, drawing out encounters individually as needed, works well. Using programs to print play maps to scale (as recommended by the Haunted Jester) is also very cool. I recall a certain venture captain doing exactly that with Ghennet Manor at GenCon a few years back; he let me take it home with me. I think it was one of those nice Shackleton boys. It made for a really cool game.
And guys, if you enjoy the adventures, write a review!
While I'm not sitting in on the meetings Paizo has about this sort of thing (any sort of thing, actually), I think you can safely assume that there will not be another AP focused on technology and/or Numeria for many years to come. This is also true for APs that include a trip to Earth, or are focused on pirates, or feature any other prominent twist/hook found in previously published APs. Numeria is the only techno-fantasy realm in Golarion, and there is plenty more of the world left unexplored. Paizo has demonstrated a commitment to trotting around the Inner Sea and beyond. The only exception, really, is Varisia (for reasons well explained by others).
Personally, I would recommend that you keep your subscription: the AP might just surprise you. If Paizo announces Iron Gods 2, then a wallet vote might make more sense, IMHO.
I also believe that giving the players access to the town map is more immersive and increases the likelihood that they start caring about the town...thinking of it as their town, and that serves both the storyline and their enjoyment of the adventure, IMHO. Seeing the town layout in its entirety, after all, doesn't give away any "secrets," per se.
Richard Pett gets a fan letter folded into an origami crane and placed in a carved teak box depicting six trolls enjoying a picnic
John Benbo wrote:
If you like Rich's work, I recommend you check out his novel released last Fall- it has everything I like about Rich's writing, but amped up a 100%. The book is called Crooked.
Thanks for the heads-up on this! I immediately purchased a copy for my Kindle and am gobbling it up greedily. Wonderful stuff!
You mean they immediately murder a harmless, mentally-challenged stable boy and storm in and murder three otherwise defenseless old ladies? I'd say each unprovoked, cold-blooded murder would count as an alignment level drop toward evil for all involved (including those who stand by and allow it to happen), don't you? So no, Holy Ahendile wouldn't be alerted to their presence, but evil-aligned PCs are not allowed in PFS play. Game over, hand in your character sheets.
I don't know how often this kind of thing happens at PFS tables, but wouldn't murdering someone you just suspect is evil be an evil act itself, even if your assessment later turns out to be correct?
Some may disagree...
That's my .02, anyway.
James Jacobs wrote:
Other than the short story "Jerusalem's Lot," what other full on Lovecraftian stories has Stephen King written?