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Grand Necromancer

TimD's page

Goblin Squad Member. RPG Superstar 2013 Star Voter. Pathfinder Society Member. 619 posts (621 including aliases). 1 review. No lists. No wishlists. 25 Pathfinder Society characters. 2 aliases.


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What's your preferred poison(s)*?

-TimD

* given your comment about Mediogalti Island, specifically alcohol(s) :)


I always thought that the Assassin PrC as written should also include a maximum Int or Wis in single digits. Preferably low single digits.

I mean you aren't trying to be an assassin if you have to "kill someone for no reason other than to become an assassin". You're trying to become someone's stooge. A very disposable stooge.

In games I've run, I've been replacing "must be evil" with "must be a moron" and just using either the Red Mantis or some other homebrew for professionals rather than the as-written thugs with illusions of grandeur and the apparent blessing of the god of malefic morons (in FR, Cyric).

-TimD


Thanks for sharing.

-TimD


Paracount Vladimir Ulth to bring suit against dragon Helexa and Pathfinder Society in Cheliax courts.

Elven baker in Absalom reports Aroden stole his pie.

Spoiler:

Adarabillious "Billy" Burntleaf filed a report with authorities in Absolom last week that Aroden, in his guise as a thief, stole one his pies.

Interestingly, this is not the first time this particular crime has been reported.
In fact, this is the third time this particular baker has filed charges against the God of Humanity. The first two times, however, was when Aroden was living and known to be active in and around Absalom. Both charges were dropped after the deity reportedly paid restitution for the thefts.

The ancient elf has been a baker in Absalom for more than a century. I caught up to him as he was preparing a cinnamon bun to ask him to comment on his allegations about the now-deceased God of Humanity stealing his pie.

"It's not the first time, Aroden loves my pie. He used to come in his guise as a beggar and just try to shame me into giving them to him with those puppy-dog eyes he had. If that didn't work, he'd come back the next week as a thief and just take one!
'Tweren't so bad when he was around more - a couple of months would go by and he's swing by like his old self and apologize and pay me for them or tell me he 'added a few years' as an apology, but this is different - he was a burglar, now he's a robber! Came in cool as an Irrisani cucumber, snatched my pie with a wink and walked right out the door!"

Authorities have declined to comment on their investigation, but our research has uncovered that this time the reported crime was a bit different as it a cherry pie robbery, whereas in the past Aroden reportedly had burglarized blackberry pies.

Janira Gavix contributed to this article. The authors would like to thank Kreighton Shane for access to research materials.


I have to admit, I was one of the folks who used to hate seeing / hearing the term "toon" in table top RPGs that did not involve a fear of erasers.

I think a lot of the resistance to the use of alternate gaming terminology is that it comes over with inferences from other systems.

Example 1: Toon. When I first started encountering "toon" a lot, for instance, it came with an implied "disposability / replaceability" of the character with a side-helping of "more stats than story". To be fair, this was likely me reading more into it than was intended. I have a friend, however, who (over)uses the term and I've grown more accustomed to it in time.

Example 2: Tank. When MMO folks hear the term "tank", they will likely begin thinking in MMO terms since that is an area where it is most prevalent. In MMO terms a "tank" can generally force opponents to focus on them rather than the more vulnerable members of a group (generally through an "aggro" mechanic). In a table top RPG, however, it's generally an indication of toughness as there is not really any "aggro" mechanic in most TTRPG systems. If someone is experienced with MMO's, but new to TTRPG's this can cause even more misunderstanding as they may feel that they should be able to utilize the mechanics and roles that they are used to from their MMO in a TTRPG.

Not saying that folks should change their play styles or preferences, only to illustrate why others may show greater frustration from word choices than the word choice itself may seem to warrant.

As always, YMMV.

-TimD


Jiggy wrote:
TimD wrote:
2. Once you take the "Dead" condition, you are reduced to neg con (at least / as defined by the Dead Condition).
Actually, it doesn't say that. The first sentence of the Dead condition reads: "The character's hit points are reduced to a negative amount equal to his Constitution score, his Constitution drops to 0, or he is killed outright by a spell or effect." It is listing the ways a character can gain the Dead condition, not stating what happens once you receive it.

Valid. Doesn't make it any less odd, but valid. :)

-TimD


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Interesting interpretive use of the ability...

Two things that make me question its practical application with the Dead Condition:

1. Does a dead body still count as an "ally"? (I'm relatively certain that a dead body becomes an object, but haven't found anything indicating one way or the other if it remains an "ally" while dead)

2. Once you take the "Dead" condition, you are reduced to neg con (at least / as defined by the Dead Condition). Once the condition is removed, it could be interpreted that there is no additional mechanic to give you the hitpoints back.

-TimD


Not sure how this escaped from the earlier recommendations, but there is also this.

-TimD

Edit after seeing the JJ post - I'm glad that possibility is still open in your mind, I would love to see what Paizo can do for more black-hat themed stuff that's more LE in flavor.


Limited, but yes.
There is an Evangelist ability for Pharasma (The Veil is Drawn Aside) that lets you gain an extra Revelation from the Bones list instead of your normal mystery.

There may be one or two others out there, but they are all incredibly limited. There is no "generic" way to get any given Revelation, however. (Which is probably a good thing as everyone with any Cha would be going for some of the Cha to AC revelations.)

-TimD


+1 for inescapable demi-planes &/ or geasa. Especially with constant 9th level "daylight" lighting to keep them from being able to utilize stealth. Aroden's Spellbane for dismissal, banishment, gate, & message also probably appropriate if you can arrange it.

For additional fun, look at the rules for AI's in the tech guide on the PRD and tweak for magic / apply to constructs and animated objects - which can be hidden as most anything.

Really though, not knowing what you intend (are they supposed to eventually be able to break out on their own, are they organizing a prison break, will they have to try to agree to be "redeamed" to get out, etc. ?) does somewhat restrict helpful suggestions.

-TimD


Game design is a pretty wide category these days. Assuming you’re looking at table top rpg game design…

If you are just starting to explore the field I would recommend that you go through all of the RPG Superstar stuff housed here on Paizo's site, especially the advice & feedback from the judges. This might give you an idea (at least from the Paizo-side of things) of stuff that professional game designers/ contributors look for. Then go through the 3pp publishing area of the site - there is a lot of advice from 3PP publishers about both game design and what they are looking for from freelancers.

Also, make sure you know the game you're writing for. If you're thinking about design for Pathfinder, keep in mind the stuff that is Golarion / Pathfinder specific and know where some of the sticky widgets are located (no paladins of Red Mantis, for instance). You don't need to know everything, but know where some of the common mistakes have been made or corrected. I highly recommend looking through the FAQ's and any posts made by the Paizo design team so that you have a better idea of not only what rulings were made, but to get a bit more of an idea of what the reasons were for the decisions made.

Write & submit. Don't rely on getting in the door to the publishing industry with a 1st party publisher like Paizo or Hasbro/WotC with no design credits. Many of the 3PP's hold design contests or encounter-writing contests on a regular basis. Enter them, follow them. Seek feedback. Read feedback. Don't take feedback in a personal manner, take it in a professional manner. Rinse wash repeat. In addition to the "normal" 3PP's, check out Wayfinder (a Paizo "fanzine" available for free on the Paizo site) - it's an excellent way to get some name recognition (and equally important practice / feedback).

Perspective and professionalism. Try to take as few things personally as you can. Even when it's obvious its personal. What you say, er type, will haunt you. Sometimes in a good way, sometimes not so much. Try to stay as professional as possible as much as possible, even when not Writing / posting in a "professional" setting.

Have / grow a thick skin when it comes to criticism.

Realize that game design (or any other type of writing) really is work. Treat it like you would breaking into any other professional field. It gets better / faster / easier with practice, but like any other skill or job some days are easier than others and some tasks will make you want to drink booze by the bottle and then break it over someone's head. Don't drink booze by the bottle and then break it over someone's head*. That said, while it is work and you can make a living at it, it is not a field renowned for its fiscally advantageous pay rates.

There is a lot of competition out there, work hard / good luck!

-TimD

*except possibly as a kickstarter stretch goal or as part of a charity auction / reward, of course!


Mathwei ap Niall wrote:
TimD wrote:

Not sure where you're getting that their Int would drop to - as that is not a swarm trait (though it's often a trait of the creatures that make up a swarm).

Their immunities even call out that they are vulnerable to mind-affecting effects if they have intelligence / hivemind...

** spoiler omitted **...

It's not the swarm type that removes their Int, it's the vermin type that does it.

Vermin Traits wrote:
Traits: Vermin possess the following traits (unless otherwise noted in a creature's entry).

I disagree (and bolded part of your quote above as to why). The intelligence is part of it's type, not a defensive ability of the worm-that-walks, so wouldn't be lost upon discorporation...

Worm-that-walks Bestiary 2 entry wrote:


Type: The base creature's type changes to vermin. It gains the augmented subtype. Do not recalculate BAB, saves, or skill ranks. Worms that walk are intelligent and do not possess the standard mindless trait of most vermin. Note that while a worm that walks has the ability to discorperate into a swarm, and while its body is made up of countless wriggling worms, it does not itself gain the swarm subtype.

-TimD


Sniggevert wrote:

Also, metamagic rods aren't generally usable as weapons, as...

PRD wrote:
(Many, as noted in their descriptions, can function as light maces or clubs due to their hardy construction.)
...none of them are noted in their descriptions as functioning as such.

I think both Zwordsman & I both misread Sniggevert's post the same way initially...

To clarify in case others are about to make the same error: none of the metamagic rods indicate that they can be weapons in their description.

Some of the non-metamagic rods (Alertness, Lordly Might, Python, Thunder & Lightning, Viper, and Withering) do indicate that they can be used as a weapon in their description.

-TimD


Not sure where you're getting that their Int would drop to - as that is not a swarm trait (though it's often a trait of the creatures that make up a swarm).

Their immunities even call out that they are vulnerable to mind-affecting effects if they have intelligence / hivemind...

swarm sub type from the PRD:

Swarm Subtype: A swarm is a collection of Fine, Diminutive, or Tiny creatures that acts as a single creature. A swarm has the characteristics of its type, except as noted here. A swarm has a single pool of Hit Dice and hit points, a single initiative modifier, a single speed, and a single Armor Class. A swarm makes saving throws as a single creature. A single swarm occupies a square (if it is made up of nonflying creatures) or a cube (of flying creatures) 10 feet on a side, but its reach is 0 feet, like its component creatures. In order to attack, it moves into an opponent's space, which provokes an attack of opportunity. It can occupy the same space as a creature of any size, since it crawls all over its prey. A swarm can move through squares occupied by enemies and vice versa without impediment, although the swarm provokes an attack of opportunity if it does so. A swarm can move through cracks or holes large enough for its component creatures.

A swarm of Tiny creatures consists of 300 nonflying creatures or 1,000 flying creatures. A swarm of Diminutive creatures consists of 1,500 nonflying creatures or 5,000 flying creatures. A swarm of Fine creatures consists of 10,000 creatures, whether they are flying or not. Swarms of nonflying creatures include many more creatures than could normally fit in a 10-foot square based on their normal space, because creatures in a swarm are packed tightly together and generally crawl over each other and their prey when moving or attacking. Larger swarms are represented by multiples of single swarms. The area occupied by a large swarm is completely shapeable, though the swarm usually remains in contiguous squares.

Swarm Traits: A swarm has no clear front or back and no discernable anatomy, so it is not subject to critical hits or flanking. A swarm made up of Tiny creatures takes half damage from slashing and piercing weapons. A swarm composed of Fine or Diminutive creatures is immune to all weapon damage. Reducing a swarm to 0 hit points or less causes it to break up, though damage taken until that point does not degrade its ability to attack or resist attack. Swarms are never staggered or reduced to a dying state by damage. Also, they cannot be tripped, grappled, or bull rushed, and they cannot grapple an opponent.

A swarm is immune to any spell or effect that targets a specific number of creatures (including single-target spells such as disintegrate), with the exception of mind-affecting effects (charms, compulsions, morale effects, patterns, and phantasms) if the swarm has an Intelligence score and a hive mind. A swarm takes half again as much damage (+50%) from spells or effects that affect an area, such as splash weapons and many evocation spells.

Swarms made up of Diminutive or Fine creatures are susceptible to high winds, such as those created by a gust of wind spell. For purposes of determining the effects of wind on a swarm, treat the swarm as a creature of the same size as its constituent creatures. A swarm rendered unconscious by means of nonlethal damage becomes disorganized and dispersed, and does not reform until its hit points exceed its nonlethal damage.

Swarm Attack: Creatures with the swarm subtype don't make standard melee attacks. Instead, they deal automatic damage to any creature whose space they occupy at the end of their move, with no attack roll needed. Swarm attacks are not subject to a miss chance for concealment or cover. A swarm's statistics block has “swarm” in the Melee entry, with no attack bonus given. The amount of damage a swarm deals is based on its Hit Dice, as shown below.

Swarm HD Swarm Base Damage
1–5 1d6
6–10 2d6
11–15 3d6
16–20 4d6
21 or more 5d6

A swarm's attacks are nonmagical, unless the swarm's description states otherwise. Damage reduction sufficient to reduce a swarm attack's damage to 0, being incorporeal, or other special abilities usually give a creature immunity (or at least resistance) to damage from a swarm. Some swarms also have acid, blood drain, poison, or other special attacks in addition to normal damage.

Swarms do not threaten creatures, and do not make attacks of opportunity with their swarm attack. However, they distract foes whose squares they occupy, as described below.

Swarms possess the distraction universal monster rule. Spellcasting or concentrating on spells within the area of a swarm requires a caster level check (DC 20 + spell level). Using skills that involve patience and concentration requires a DC 20 Will save.

-TimD


Bigdaddyjug wrote:

I read The Black Company and rather enjoyed that. Maybe I should jump back into that series first, including a reread of TBC.

I also heard Cook has another series about a PI, but I can't remember the name of it now. Anybody know anything about that series?

Garrett, PI.

First book is "Sweet Silver Blues".

I've been reading the series for a bit over 20 years - it's one of the book series that really got me hooked on fantasy.

-TimD


Undone wrote:
Buri wrote:
blahpers wrote:
It isn't just PFS. The vast, vast majority of gameplay occurs much lower than level 20. Way more than 95% of gameplay. Most of the time, it makes sense to focus on the levels people actually play.
This is a great display of the mindset I'm talking about. I'm playing a level 13 character... ALLLLLMOST level 14. Am I not an actual person? Can I not talk about my experiences? If I do, will you shout me down because it's not relevant to 'way more than 95% of gameplay?' It actively diminishes the kind of environment Paizo and their guidelines seek to create on these boards.
I'm not saying disregard high level. I'm saying disregard levels 17+.

Ò¿Ó

I think I'm starting to see where part of the failure to communicate is originating from...

-TimD


Sanderson is a good choice, but if you're waiting for the next Dresden book, you'll probably need a few more after that.

Long (>6 book) series which entertain me:

David Weber's Honor Harrington books
*Military SF. Female Horatio Hornblower in space, with the latter books less focused on both action & the main character.

S.M. Sterling's novels of the "the Change"
*"if physics were changed by an outside force" speculative SF, not sure how else to categorize it.

E.E. Knight's Vampire Earth
*alien vampires have taken over the plan, POV from the resistance

Eric Flint's (with many others) 1632 series
*time travel of a town in AR to 1632 Germany and all of the interesting social & economic changes that it causes

Glen Cook's Black Company
*the dark fantasy series every other dark fantasy is compared to for a reason

Steven Brust's Dragaeran Books
*fantasy series from two different POV's - the original Vlad Taltos books are written in very different voices (due, from what I understand, to changes in the authors life over time) and the Khaavren Romances read like an Alexander Dumas book. I really like the multiple "voices" for the same world.

Naomi Novik's Temerraire Books
* napoleonic era dragons with cannon!

Roger Zelazny's Amber Series
* iconic multiple worlds modern fantasy series...

Other worthy reads:

ANYTHING written by C.S. Friedman or Daniel Keys Moran
Patrick Rothfuss' Kingkiller Chronicles (only two books thus far)
Peter V. Brett's Demon Cylce Books (Warded Man, Desert Spear, & Daylight War thus far)

... I should probably stop there or I'll be typing for the next hour :)

-TimD


Buri wrote:
Can we please stop dismissing them just because PFS stops before level 20?

Sure.

What would you like to discuss?

-TimD


Sidebar: 2 points towards ShadowCat's post:

1. ECT = Electro Convulsive Therapy. It is not "the goal of ECT" to create permanent brain / nerve damage. ECT is used to induce minor seizures and is often used as an option of last resort for folks who are not responding to other treatment methods.
When I first started working in the mental health field I was pretty surprised that it was still in use until I spoke with a woman who was having issues finding an ECT option - she had found it was the only efficacious treatment for her after suffering 20+ years of depression and was all but panicking at the thought that she might not have access to that treatment.
To be fair though, many of those who have been treated for depression for ECT are also now looking into TMS (Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation) treatment as an alternative option.

2. "Declared incompetent against their will" is different from "involuntary commitment" and pretty much every state I know of has some sort of law on the books which allows for involuntary commitment if someone is a danger to themselves, others, or is demonstrably psychotic.
Even when someone is forced to accept medications, however, once they have stabilized and been released, they will often cease taking them resulting in readmission and / or additional legal & financial issues, further complicating any potential treatment.

Little of this has anything to do with autism, however, so I apologize for the divergence and now return you to your regularly scheduled programming.

-TimD

P.S. @ Freehold - ECT:

From what I've seen it's far from common, but it does happen - especially when patients aren't responding to other forms of treatment or have other dx's or rx's that might contraindicate psychiatric med treatment. Of course, my POV may be slanted as many might say that I'm on the dark side of the Force (managed care) rather than the light side (practitioner) for this one. On the other hand, I see a LOT of clinical (though most is for higher levels of care, rather than outpatient).


Simon Legrande wrote:
Given that the DSM is created and updated by professionals in psychology/psychiatry, how do the rest of us assure that it doesn't become a totally self-serving document? Given that many of the classified disorders have a genetic component and are very treatable, what are the odds that the ratio of people with a classified disorder becomes 1:1 in the future?

Sissyl's answers were excellent, though I might disagree a bit about the interest in "making patients" in some cases, but I would add one additional note to them:

Like most things in life there are at least two sides. Especially when money is involved.
Insurance and managed care companies have their own mental health professionals involved in both the DSM/ICD revision processes. In addition, many plans and policies are managed in a way that require precertification or authorization for services (mostly excepting "standard" outpatient treatments). Effectively there is already one layer of oversight to what is being billed, which translates to what is being treated (though I acknowledge many might argue any layer is too much).

From what I've observed, autism treatment itself is in an interesting phase in the US, as far as legistlation and recognition goes, especially on a state level. In addition, with the introduction of mental health parity laws a few years ago, there are more and better treatment options available in many areas for mental health treatment for autism and other diagnosis.

-TimD


Last I heard it will be "early 2015" - I know he said it was delayed somewhat due to dental trauma.
Also, there is at least one reading of the first part of it on you tube somewhere. (I missed a lot of the Jim B. panels at D*Con this year, so found a bunch of recorded ones online from other cons and stumbled across that reading.)

-TimD


Much amusement for this topic.

My contributions:

I thought I hired a sous chef, not an Oenopion ooze-wrangler!
You DO realize we're trying to serve the food to the diners, not the diners to the food don't you?!
Pay attention! Averting your gaze is for medusas, not cooking, you fool!
Are you a necromancer? Because I can't tell if you are planning on cooking that or animating it!
...no, that was NOT a suggestion, no one wants to eat an animated chicken that delivers itself you fool! - and no, food that goes away from channeled positive energy is NOT diet food.
Where did you learn to cook, Oenopion? ... no? must be the Daggermark Guild then BECAUSE THIS FOOD WILL KILL SOMEONE!

-TimD


I'm not seeing either of those scheduled for a weekend slot in GA at the moment, but most of us haven't yet posted our scheduling for Q4, so you may want to check later this month on the Georgia PFS forums and see if either of them are posted for later this year.

If I schedule either of them for the store that I'm the coordinator for I'll pop back in this thread and let you know.

-TimD


1. 2E / early 3E FR (because that's the timeline & primary setting I'm currently running most of my PF home game in)
2. Al'Qadim (probably the best flavor+crunch I've seen in a camp setting)
3. Birthright (because highlander metaphysics would probably work really well in higher-powered PF)
4. Dark Sun (because all the gnomes were already dead - it was like a vacation!)

Like most, I would not really be interested in FR "theme", only the reality.

LMPjr007 wrote:
What if I told you in this Adventure Path there would be a campaign setting / world destroying power ACTUALLY destroying campaign setting / worlds and the PCs would travel to MANY different campaign setting / worlds to prevent this happening?

I'd say it sounds like the campaign I've been writing & running for the last several years with my final arc scheduled to clock in with approx. 30th L characters at the end (which I'm guessing will be in 12-15 years).

-TimD


-Amenko- wrote:
Well seeing as how they seemed to have unbanned many of the gun slinging archetypes from the APG as they don't seem to be listed as being banned anymore in the APG area for Additional Resources, don't quote me if I am wrong, but I would think Trophy Hunter would be your best bet.

Hate to burst the bubble, but I believe the Trophy Hunter is from Ultimate Combat.

PFS Additional Resources, Last Updated Thursday, August 28, 2014 wrote:


Ranger: The trophy hunter archetype is not permitted in Pathfinder Society Organized Play.

-TimD


2 people marked this as a favorite.

Wish I had more time to post on this topic, as it is a near and dear one to my heart, but one thing I would observe for the folks that have not had an evil PC in their game is that for all the "heroic" themes you can have going for you, there can be no real redemption for those who were not at some point evil.
Redemption storylines can be very powerful and very rewarding long-term roleplaying between PCs. For long-term campaigns, this is incredibly optimal as it assists the GM as both a better gauge for player interests and for setting a backdrop for different types of conflict than one might normally see even in an PvP game.

-TimD


Oh, I've read him... bought the first few of his books in a row (and even bought a "loaner copy" of MHI at some point), but I own a bit over 1,500 books, so I sometimes lose track of authors that I need to catch up on or whose books I've loaned out and forgotten about.

His books are good popcorn fiction fun, at least the Monster Hunter stuff (I keep forgetting to pick up his other stuff when I'm book hunting, so I can't speak to it).

-TimD


Bumping for 2014. :)

-TimD


Does anyone know if there have been any new Void Spells added since the Dragon Empires Primer was released?

I'm looking for additional school spells for a PFS Void/Shadow Wizard and it appears that the list for that school has not been updated since the school was released, but I'm hoping that may have just missed some additional resources.

-TimD


Dotted for interest.


2 people marked this as a favorite.

Now I have to add Larry Correia to my list of people I'd want to game with...

... and I should probably make sure I'm caught up on my Monster Hunter books before Dragon*Con.

-TimD


DirkSJ wrote:
TimD wrote:

Another reason to keep Swashbucklers banned from my home games until I have a chance to rewrite their CLAs.

-TimD

The item is the only problem. The rest of Swashy is fine. They wont compete with any wizard or archer on damage...not even close.

What an odd strawman.

My ban has nothing to do with damage, archers or wizards. The issue I have is with the mechanics of the CLA's not fitting in with what I consider the rest of the general game mechanics / assumptions to be.

-TimD


/lights torch
/readies pitchfork

Aye! At 'em!

-TimD


I think "don't be a jerk" should still be included, but I can understand wanting cleaner / clearer policies.

-TimD


That I like cowls.

-TimD


Chess Pwn wrote:
TimD wrote:

That's kind of funny.

Another reason to keep Swashbucklers banned from my home games until I have a chance to rewrite their CLAs.

-TimD

Why do you feel the need to ban the Swashbuckler? I think it's only the item interacting this way causing a problem. What other problems does the Swashbuckler have?

I hated banning the Swashbuckler, because I like the thematics. Sadly, the mechanics necessitated it for my games...

I ban both the Gunslinger & Swashbuckler classes primarily for their 7th level Startling Shot & Targetting Shot Deeds (or Swashbuckler equivalents). I'm not a fan of the auto-success mechanic on the Startling Shot deed, nor the called shot ability of the Targetting deed in a game system which is built to disallow called shots. The gunslinger has additional issues which mean I'll probably never allow it as a base class in a home game, but have been working on an archtype for it in case I ever run a Golarion-based game or a game where the PCs end up on Golarion.

-TimD


2 people marked this as a favorite.

It's probably wrong, but I don't want to play Iron Gods so much as show up for the first session with an android so on day 2 I can ask the GM if I dreamt of electric sheep...

-TimD


That's kind of funny.
Another reason to keep Swashbucklers banned from my home games until I have a chance to rewrite their CLAs.

-TimD


Had a long, slightly sarcastic post, but really Zhangar and Deadmanwalking summed it up much better.

-TimD


Disagree with pretty much everything about the original post, most especially the thought of the leader of the Red Mantis Assassins not even being good enough to be a good Red Mantis Assassin - that just seems silly to me.

To each their own (scale), I guess.

-TimD


This TrainCon concept intrigues me...

begins looking at AmTrak rates online

-TimD


randomroll wrote:

@TimD: You mentioned "Putting the PCs in a position where a single, painful choice is the answer to the continuation or destruction of a people", which sounds like a very memorable situation for the players. What was the painful choice they had to make? What was the result for the players?

It was about 15 or so years ago, so my memory is a bit sketchy on it.

I know that theme to that encounter was "sometimes there are no good answers" and the players had to choose whether or not to kill "the Last Innocent" in order to get her patron deity to pay attention to the fact that their people were all but extinct, but many of the details elude me (other than my ex-g/f crying after they decided to do the deed).

Fortunately, I just remembered I'm playing PFS with one of the players in that game tonight, so I'll see what he remembers and follow-up tomorrow with a bit more detail.

-TimD


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Love the thought of a masqued ball encounter:
Not only the disguised devils and devil minions, but the opportunity for a disguised heir of Sheraya Solistar to be secretly in attendence...
...Intrigues of devil-supporters vying with rebels and attempting to convince followers of Red Mantis that Abrogail is legit and not lawful prey to the Red Mantis...
...and, of course, the Veiled Master at the heart of it all.

Would also love to see some details on other Hellknight Orders, maybe even some who are actually just actually carrying out the last orders of King Gaspodar and awaiting a proper heir to throne of Cheliax to arrive so that they can surrender what was lost at Korradath.

The ultimate dream would be for some love of evil in the AP with recommendations on how to run this for a black-hat party (even if not supporting Thrune, as apparently there is no legal requirement that the crown go to the heir of Abrogail I.)

-TimD


Cthulhudrew wrote:

So who was "so close they're practically right? I'm guessing it was Dreaming Psion:

Dreaming Psion wrote:
Andoran (non-Darkmoon Vale) involves Eagle Knights or other Andorans fighting against Chelaxian imperialists/slavers, perhaps with a feel that hearkens back to the Slavers series of 1e. (Would be a fitting place to start after a giantslayer AP...)
Closest I could find after a cursory glance through the thread. Anyone else?

I don't know that mine was closest, but...

TimD wrote:
Something which gives additional info on the rise of the Thrunes and involves devilish manipulations and maybe even daemons could be cool.


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Hell's Belles, indeed :)

-TimD


Epic pillaging.
Like the ability to steal buffs, items, snag targetted advantageous spells as they're being cast by allies, etc.

.. and epic chaos.
His Noodly Apendage appearing to assist with flanking might be a good start... but that may be a bit more real world religion than your players would expect to see in a PF game.

-TimD


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Ensirio the Longstrider wrote:

HAH!

Remember: Eris loves you! Sometimes!

Eris always loves you. She's just a bit unclear about the concept of relationship boundaries...

...or , ah, hail, I might be thinking of discordia, ignore me...

-TimD


When looking at the OP's post, I'm not sure how close the PCs are supposed to be on the trail of the killer when this is going on, thus my recommendation.
If the PCs are literally only moments (ie longer than breathe of life) too late, it might be an issue, which is why I brought it up. Investigation scenarios are often foiled by divination magic.

-TimD


Kind of a neat concept, but seems more enchantment than illusion.

I could see a pretty nasty bard built with a variant of House of Imaginary Walls, maybe a masterpiece that only they have access to or an "artifact masterpiece" that causes those who learn it to become a particular type of killer and gain the ability to use performance to create the horrific illusions you're thinking of. Combined with message, ventriloquism, mage hand, and invisibility and you could quite easily drive others mad with no one else the wiser. This with the bardic suggestion ability would be a particularly insidious combination. The only problem would be the aura of magic remaining afterwards, so you may want to try to find or invent something that would take care of that if you don't want detect magic to "win" and let the PCs figure out that it's magic early.

-TimD


In general, best advise is don't start at high level, work up to it.
That said, it appears that both you and your PCs are aware of the challenges and rewards of meaningful high level play, so ... as always, know when to ignore advice :)

Fair warning: most of my higher level play experience was in 2E.

As a PC:

Engineering the fall of paladins.
Repeated castings of earthquake on a svirfneblin city, completely destroying it and wiping out their presence in the area. Following it up with earth elementals to make sure that there were no survivors and to retrieve the bodies so that they could be animated and sent against their kin.
First casting of wish.
Interrupting some lower-level combats to give advise to up-and-coming adventurers with some fun meta of "if he's around, why are we doing this?"
Giving advise to up & coming adventurers or reminding old battle-scarred ones of "why we do what we do".
Redeeming the fallen.
Extreme lair building & minion recruiting.
Crafted spells (much harder to do in PF).
Quality of life at epic levels - when I really needed another decanter of endless water because myplumbing system had to expand when I added another adamantium tower.

As a GM:

In role-playing moments, having lower level NPC allies use the PCs as a dramatic reveal to scare off agressive NPCs.
Putting the PCs in a position where a single, painful choice is the answer to the continuation or destruction of a people.
Having respectable NPCs do a bit of hero-worship / fanboy factor on the PCs.
Having the PCs sitting and listening to a popular new song, only to realize about half way through it's about them (and getting most of the details wrong, of course).
Spotlight world changes which occured due to PC actions / inactions which were not a direct part of their encounters.

-TimD

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