Thanks guys! Kendra got run out of town with them, she's hanging out with the oracle and rogue currently. If any one has a chance of getting back into town its Kendra, but we'll see if they send her.
I like the idea of the town getting bad enough for the sheriff or father to contact them, might do that.
I also talked about having a certain aristocrat come into town to pay his respects to his old friend, Prof. Lorrimor. A man by the name of Adivion Adrissant...
Well, my players finally did it. It took them awhile, but they managed to reach 0 Trust Points in Ravengro. I put up warning signs, I gave them options to avoid all this, I explained that all actions have consequences, but they managed to make an entire town of people hostile towards them. After the town hall burned to the ground, there was no way around it. The people grabbed their torches and pitchforks and chased them away into the night.
I've never been so proud.
Now I've got to figure out how to run the rest of the adventure, because we are WAY "off script". Right now the PC's are level 2, in the woods/fields outside of Ravengro, with nothing in their inventory but manacles (attached) and the clothes on their backs. Before the town hall fire, they had been arrested for breaking into Harrowstone, stealing from the Restlands, and some other trouble around town, so all their gear is in the Ravengro jail.
What should I do? If they go back to town to get their stuff, they are almost CERTAIN to get spotted by the townsfolk and the mob will start up again. If they try to finish Harrowstone, they'll be doing so with no gear. If they leave for Lepidstadt, they'll leave Ravengro to die a horrible ghostly death AND be very low leveled.
I'm honestly stumped by this one. I'm not a terribly cruel or hard DM, so I'll try to reasonably accomodate their plans, but this is a pickle. Any advice?
I've got a few that I'm kicking around.
-Elven abjurer. Lives in Heldren, had a bad experience in his forties with a curse from a hag witch that his body to constantly produce a black bile, causing him to cough constantly. Got cured by a powerful wizard from out of town, who took him on as an apprentice. Since then he's learned how to protect himself and others from magic, especially curses/hexes. Taking the Warded against Witcher trait for him.
-A fighter with the Blood of Giants trait... who's a halfling. At 4' 2" he is the tallest halfling ever seen and uses his considerable girth to protect his fellows from bullies. Gonna specialize in the halfling sling staff, possibly going for the Weapon Master archetype.
-Lazy human fighter (crossbowman archetype), this guy joined the town guard so he wouldn't have to do much work. Focuses on the crossbow because its an easy weapon, just point and shoot. Thankfully, he's a very good shot and doesn't abuse his position. Has a strong sweet tooth and very fair skin, which he credits to his Ulfen ancestry. Going to grumble a lot near the beginning of the adventure, but the more he stays in the snow the more alive he feels!
-Sorcerer (dreamspun bloodline) and Desnan priest (don't know what race) who focuses on dreams, their interpretation, and driving out nightmares. Used to be under the sway of a nighthag, but was saved by an inquisitor of Desna. Now wanders Taldor and Galt, helping those who are plagued by horrors and need help achieving their dreams. Warded against Witchery or Restless Wayfarer trait.
-Half-elf oracle of nature and worshipper of the Green Faith. NG, lives in an orchard just out of town (that's about to get a LOT more snowy), sells the apples, pears, and peaches in town and is genuinely a nice guy. Only problem is I have no idea what trait would work. Could also be a sorcerer with the verdant bloodline.
-Taldan bard/fighter who idolizes the Ulfen Guard (even met one!). Very intrigued by their tales of the frozen north and the magics that exist up there, but is fairly despondent about the impossibility of him ever going there (lol). Uses his natural knack for inspiration and basic illusions to stage "battles" with other young adults in Heldren against the "vile witches of Irrisen". Adaptive Magic trait.
-Paladin of Iomedae who does his best to exemplify humility. Living in Taldor, he sees firsthand how much arrogance and pride can lead to one's downfall. Fights with a simple spear because he doesn't believe he's worthy of a sword.
Hooray! Glad its out, can't wait to play this one.
Regarding the no-spoiler section, I think it was unnecessary. The player's guides never gave anything away that the players SHOULD'T know, and neither does this one. Even very detailed guides, like Carrion Crown and Jade Regent, helped give an idea of what was coming without spoiling anything secret. I'd have rather seen that space filled with information Heldren, what the PC's likely know at the beginning of the adventure, or cold weather survival tips.
I miss the guides that gave information specific to races and classes, those had the best value in my opinion. I'm not going to complain about a free product, especially when they're as good as this, but that format always appealed to me the most.
Still, really excited to see how this one goes, I've been brainstorming characters all day! :D
Has anyone ever played or ran a game with only a single player? I've been kicking the idea around for a while now and I find it very interesting. Part of the fun is tailoring the challenges to what the PC can do, which can be a bit tricky if they don't have access to healing.
What do you guys think? What kind of plots/encounters are good for solo adventurers? Any stories?
How much extra have you been adding? I'm going to be starting soon, and I'm considering using Medium advancement as well to allow room for the set pieces and random encounters.
I couldn't tell you off the top of my head, but if you stick with the book you should be ok. Just be stingy with those random encounters!
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)
So my PC's just finished The House of the Beast, they have the Scroll of Kakishon, Zayifid and the Carrion King are dead, and they'll be returning to Kelmarane shortly. This is all going swimmingly and they're having a great time. Only problem? They're level 8 and Jackal's Price says they should be starting at level 7. On top of the that, they're only ~13,000 xp away from level 9!
I probably did too many random encounters in book 1 and in the Brazen Peaks, so I'm gonna stick with the written encounters from here on out, but what do I do about them being too high a level? I don't want to take away their xp, that would be stupid and mean.
So what's a DM to do? Do I ignore the first 13,000 xp of book 3? Obviously I'll leave out any random encounters, but how do I stop them from completely bulldozing their way through book 3? Maybe only give them half xp?
Outside of the Verduran Forest in Taldor and the Uskwood druids in Nidal, what other druidic circles have been fleshed out? I know that the Green Faith has some good information and serves as the non-deity "druidic faith", but what else do we know about it? What other druidic circles are out there?
I also think this is a good place to share ideas about different druidic circles. Here are some of mine:
-A halfling circle that focuses on a rare kind of magical white clay. The clay has restorative and healing properties that they use in their rituals and spells.
-Traveling Kellid druids that follow ley-lines from nexus to nexus, erecting monoliths and dolmens to mark these centers of power.
-Desert druids in Thuvia and Rahadoum that guide travelers from oasis to oasis. They are very proud of their skills and offerings of fine gifts are often necessary to secure their services.
Classes/levels: Monk of the Four Winds 3
Adventure: Bastards of Erebus
Location: Temple of Bastards, underground tunnel
Catalyst: Charmed barbarian
The Gory Details: My friend Stephen had just made a character to replace the elven alchemist (she had moved to California), a sylph monk with good backstory and build. As the other PC's were already in their infiltration of the temple, I had Elyssa come into the story as a hostage of the Bastards. Not even two fights later, Vethamer (mummy-tiefling) had charmed the barbarian and convinced him to put his battle axe between her ribs.
Sorcerer would probably be better suited (pun intended) for Harrower than Bard. Bards have fairly low casting abilities, while Sorcerers have magic in spades (pun intended). The Harrower class wants you to cast a lot of spells, which the Bard can do at higher levels, but not nearly as well as a Sorcerer. Bard wouldn't be an impossible pick, but since spells are tertiary for them its far from the best hand to deal yourself (they write themselves).
You should be alright with any of these from a mechanical standpoint, but Council of Thieves does have some story/writing problems. I have played a bit of Skull & Shackles and it seems pretty involved for a beginning DM, so I would personally recommend Shattered Star. Shouldn't NEED to get any of the books on the Pathfinder society, but they can't hurt.
I haven't, but I did start making one. The PCs start as new prisoners, charged with some crime or another (its Galt, they could have just been in the wrong place at the wrong time). They go through a "routine schedule" kinda like the beginning of Skull & Shackles, but then there's a prison riot and they need to delve deeper into the Dread Dungeon to get out alive.
The whole thing was essentially a big dungeon crawl with different factions (prison gangs, guards, things hiding in the dark, etc.), and a bit of mystery as to how the riot started. Sadly, life caught up with me and I wasn't able to write much of it.
How about an evil diviner? They're seeking a fabled magical artifact and will sacrifice anything to gain control over it. On the surface they're simply ambitious, but the villainy shows when they do things like kill innocents and corrupt natives. Could be a member of the Aspis Consortium too.
A witch would be good too. Your witch could have made a deal with their patron to get out of a ghost ship, but now the ship's captain wants them back!
Alright, so had 3 events happen in tonight's game.
First, while in the sewers, the PC's had found the body of a slain noble. The Desnan inquisitor recognized it as the body of Saxon Oberigo, who had gone missing days before, and there was a reward. So they took the signet ring to Eirten Oberigo, defended the noble from a Garden Ooze on the veranda, and claimed their reward. I wanted to throw this in to showcase what the nobility of Westcrown is like and introduce Eirten.
Second, they returned the horses to Gorvio's uncle and met Thesing. The rogue horribly insulted Thesing, so Thesing challenged the rogue to a duel the following day at high noon on a dueling-barge in the Miratanza. As they were getting ready for the duel, the alchemist and witch saw Tarvi (child of Westcrown) talking with her parents... and an Asmodean inquisitor. The inquisitor was Korad Imvius, recently returned from Korvosa. Tarvi's parents have been trying to set her up with noble boys and Imvius is looking for a wife. He does genuinely like Tarvi, but the PC's don't know that yet. It turns out that Korad will be judging the duel between Thesing and the rogue, since he and Thesing already knew each other.
The duel was over very quickly, as it was just until first blood (we were running out of time and I hate ending in the middle of fights). Korad declared Thesing the victor, but the tenor wanted the rogue's blood and continued to attack. The Asmodean inquisitor then walked up to Thesing and hit him with an Agonize spell, apologized for Thesing's violation of the dueling rules, and declared the rogue victorious.
>Boost the DC's of your spells, especially Enchantment
>Get Dominated minions (maybe a couple members of their faction)
>Maybe come up with a feat that has Spell Focus: Enchantment as a pre-req? Like Augment Summoning for enchanters
>Crafting could get Issilar more items, like wands, scrolls, and Headband of Expanded Intellect
>Check out some of the new spells on the SRD, there's been a lot more released since Serpent's Skull
>Since he's already encountered the PC's and fought them, he will likely have a sense for their abilities. Issilar could use this information to counter them (but not know about the leveling they've done since Tazion)
>Ally him with another faction (Aspis Consortium is a good option). The leader will likely find out about his true face, but let him use Disguise Self to fool the rest.
Gonna try and keep mine spoiler free, here they are in no particular order.
Vivified Labyrinth: I love the Vudrani themes of this dungeon, the way the rooms change via levers, the multiple bosses, the intrigue, and how it tests the player's wits, not just the numbers on our character sheets.
Armag's Tomb: A bit more classical with clever room ideas, good fights, a fantastic boss, and some good non-evil enemies to fight.
Veil of Frozen Tears: Great high level dungeon, interesting challenges and concepts, good theming, and a solid boss.
Castle Scarwall: Fantastic theming, good map, lots of memorable fights, great bosses, only complaint is too much ability draining (and that's easily solved).
Aberian's Folly: Great map, lots of fun encounters, one of the more interesting boss fights I've read.
Azlanti Ziggurat: Tazion's dungeon provides a lot monsters we don't usually see, a mobile boss fight, and lots of paths to take.
The things that make a dungeon stand out for me are memorable bosses, interesting concepts, clever puzzles, multiple paths to victory, and a good map.
Alright had a great session where I got to use one of these!
The player of our elven alchemist wasn't able to make the first session, so I had it be a "security threat" for the Children of Westcrown. The players new the elf was on the level, but they kept the meta-gaming down and I'm proud of them for that. Anyway, they tracked down the elf to her master's lab where they were being attacked by Sanguine Alchemical Ooze Swarms (from the Haunting of Harrowstone bestiary). They did very well against the ooze (not that its hard) and had a fun time squashing the little jelly-blobs.
After that they planned the rescue of Arael (ended up ambushing the carriage in the forest). With Arael rescued and the Children back in the Shrine of Aroden, they all began to celebrate with a (relatively) elaborate dinner. Arael gave a speech thanking them all for saving him from the Order of the Rack and explained that now they could begin the real work of saving Westcrown. The session ended with him saying "...and I have some ideas on how we could do this."
Think I'll have Arael recommend fighting the bandit problem, then "open the floor" to other suggestions. Fiosa will talk about the halflings, Tarvi will say she might not be able to stay in the group because of her parents' setting her up with an Asmodean inquisitor, and Gorvio will later discover evidence of the demonic cultist. Janiven will talk about the goblins, which will likely bring in some of the other children.
I just hate it when GM's find the patron as a way of screwing with a player and nullifying them.
I completely understand, and that's the sign of a bad DM. What I plan on doing is having the patron require the witch to do something that will benefit the patron without making too many problems for the witch. Maybe its a ritual every new moon, where she must commune with her familiar by the sea. I had the PC with Puck as his patron come up with ways to amuse the fairy, essentially becoming Puck's jester. A new player who has taken the Deception patron will be asked to never reveal her true name to anyone she meets (as a new girl in the city this shouldn't be difficult).
I think if the patron requires things like this its not terribly difficult for the player to accomodate.
Lord Fyre wrote:
The fame points would DEFINITELY work with halflings, but that's a good point. The Andoran aspect would probably be unknown to the PC's and definitely to the general public.
Didn't know it was a debated part of Pathfinder, but good to know. Seems a bit silly to debate it since you can house rule anything you dislike (especially fluff like this). Mysterious patrons can be interesting if played right, but like the amnesia-based backstory, its usually just the result of laziness.
I've swapped the term "patron" out for "path" in my games until I can decide on a better word. Neither the players or I care for the common trope of power-through-an-entity; I wonder if this holds true at other tables.
Interesting, care to elaborate? The class description does say it does not have to be a personified entity, so the Path is perfectly acceptable.
A witch's patron is the source of their magic. By making a pact and communing with this entity/force, a witch is granted spells, hexes, a familiar, and other goodies. However, I haven't seen much talk about what people have done with the patron in game: no stories about the details of the pact, interacting with the patron, nothing.
I'm sure its out there and you all have good ideas, so let's here them! What is your witch's patron like? How is their relationship?
For example, a player of mine made a tengu witch with the Trickery patron. I asked if he wanted to come up with a patron or let that be something I come up with. He said no, so I decided his patron would be Puck from A Midsummer Night's Dream. Seeing his face when the tengu learned who he had made the pact with was priceless. Much hilarity ensued.
Liz Courts wrote:
Ah, ok cool. Thanks!
Starting Council of Thieves tomorrow, have the party made up and we are ready to meet at Vizio's Tavern. One thing I wanted to change is the downtime section (after Arael's rescue, before the Bastards' hideout). Instead of just having Thesing and the PC's lying low, I wanted to give them some side quests to get a feel for Westcrown, get to know the other Children of Westcrown, and set up the Bastards. Here's what I have so far:
-The elven alchemist PC loses contact with her mentor. Upon investigation, she finds that he's being killed by the Alchemical Ooze Swarm (Haunting of Harrowstone bestiary) he's been working on. Kill the ooze swarms, save the mentor, get fame points, gp, and gold.
-Fiosa has found out through her halfling friends that some slaves have found a ship that will take them out of Westcrown to Andoran. Problem is, they need help getting out of the villa and to the docks. PC's will be left to come up with their own solution to this problem, but it will likely involve distracting nobles, eluding Hellknights, etc. Would get fame points, but no gp.
-A demonic cleric has been kidnapping children for sacrifice. To save them, the PC's must ally with an Asmodean inquisitor! Puts them in an awkward position, and I intend to have the inquisitor be a recurring character.
-Bandits in Rego Dospera (ruined slums in the northern city) are having a turf war! Help the civilians get out of the crossfire while fending off gangs and opportunists. Clues leading to the Bastards of Erebus will show up, including the location of their hideout.
What do you think? Any ideas on what I can throw in?
I'm excited. I'm really excited. The drow are something I've always wanted to try out, but haven't had the chance yet. A dwarf-focused adventure is something I'm interested in too, as are several of my players. With "The Hobbit" coming to theaters soon I'm sure the interest in dwarves will skyrocket!
So I've got an elven illusionist in my Kingmaker game (just beat book 1 tonight, woohoo!), and I'm looking at Veiled Illusionist. From what I can tell, if you're focusing on illusion spells there is no reason not to go for this. Its flavorful, the mechanics are good, and the only things you really lose are Invisibility Field at lvl 8 (meh) and some bonus feats (admittedly a significant loss). You've still got full casting, you gain new class skills, get a bonus illusion spell every level, and a bunch of other great tricks!
Idea to foreshadow Eccardian and Chammandy: they're both wet-works operatives and their plan involves a good amount of dead bodies, so let them be the ones who murder the power players in the Council. News of this will hit the streets and the PC's will learn about this Powerful Aristocrat being found dead from rapier wounds and blood loss.