Fantastic account, thanks for sharing this! My players are slowly making their way to Dragotha -- searching for his phylactery in the Library of Last Resort. We're also playing Pathfinder, core rules only. It would be great to see how your conversion (the one you actually used), if you're willing to share. Thanks!
I just finished running cartographer Christopher West's Unfamiliar Ground published in Dungeon Magazine 119. It was great! It was the third phase of the first campaign I'm running with my kids -- 8 and 10 -- using the Pathfinder Beginner Box (with a bit of on the fly tweaking for the GMing as we went along).
The undead dragon skeleton Snapper was absolutely the biggest thrill. The party walked around the room, trying the doors, getting fried by the trapped door, and opening nothing. Then the fighter thought to toss a pebble into the pool, and the splash back that they got was way more than expected! Everyone but the fighter failed their initial frightful presence save and ran out of the room. The fighter/barbarian took one unlucky swing and followed them all out. They cowered in the rubble in the hall for a few minutes and fixed their resolve to go back in. Second time round, everyone made their will save except the wizard, who headed back out into the hall. They started bashing with and smacking at him, while he hopped out of the pool and responded with random full-round attacks again. A rogue with a cure moderate wounds wand jumped around healing and getting in the occasional cause moderate damage. Out pops the crazy imp Hezzrack, who greeted Snapper amiably and was glad to see him playing with some new friends -- and then walked away (this was too much for the players who couldn't figure out what to do with such craziness in the midst of their toughest battle to date, and just watched him walk away). and the cowering wizard (who had just reached level 4) finally decided to summon an Earth Elemental who walked in and got in a couple of blows on his behalf. Finally, using the blunt side of his great sword, the raging fighter/barbarian who had been brought to zero HP twice, smashed his undead foe and the dragon bones collapsed onto the ground.
This has been a lot of fun to play. Thanks for the great adventure Christopher! Hezzrack and Neegla were compelling and fun to run, and the trip to the goblin cave was tricky and interesting, and as I said above Snapper gives a thrill and challenge. I certainly recommend anyone checking this one out to adapt to a Pathfinder Beginner Box game!
Christopher West wrote:
I'm eager to hear how other players have handled him...and how they've reacted to his appearance. I hope he hasn't been responsible for more than his fair share of total party kills...
I just finished running Unfamiliar Ground -- it was great! It was the third phase of the first campaign I'm running with my kids -- 8 and 10 -- using the Pathfinder Beginner Box (plus some GMing with the Core Rules).
Snapper was absolutely the biggest thrill. The party walked around the room, trying the doors, getting fried by the trapped door, and opening nothing. Then the fighter thought to toss a pebble into the pool, and the splash back that they got was way more than expected! Everyone but the fighter failed their initial frightful presence save and ran out of the room. The fighter/barbarian took one unlucky swing and followed them all out. They cowered in the rubble in the hall for a few minutes and fixed their resolve to go back in. Second time round, everyone made their will save except the wizard, who headed back out into the hall. They started bashing with and smacking at him, while he hopped out of the pool and responded with random full-round attacks again. A rogue with a cure moderate wounds wand jumped around healing and getting in the occasional cause moderate damage. Out pops the crazy imp Hezzrack, who greeted Snapper amiably and was glad to see him playing with some new friends -- and then walked away (this was too much for the players who couldn't figure out what to do with such craziness in the midst of their toughest battle to date, and just watched him walk away). and the cowering wizard (who had just reached level 4) finally decided to summon an Earth Elemental who walked in and got in a couple of blows on his behalf. Finally, using the blunt side of his great sword, the raging fighter/barbarian who had been brought to zero HP twice, smashed his undead foe and the dragon bones collapsed onto the ground.
This has been a lot of fun to play. Thanks for the great adventure Christopher! Hezzrack and Neegla were compelling and fun to run, and the trip to the goblin cave was tricky and interesting. I certainly recommend anyone checking this one out to adapt to a Pathfinder Beginner Box game!
I have to say, I have often thought that Eric Mona in particular must have at least a streak of bitterness after having such a strong hand in visioning what I (and many) think is the very finest Greyhawk adventure ever published -- the Age of Worms -- and then to so quickly have that entire world pulled out from under him with the cancelling of Dungeon. He and James and the other compelling authors of that great series really did so much to further the canon into a new age, inspire readers over generations and effectively play nostalgia into a absolutely compelling and epic campaign. Although with success one must get over it, but today I bet Greyhawk brings up those feelings of loss and betrayal. Of course, we all benefit so well off the phoenix from those ashes and I am thankful for that. I hope those feelings of pride and accomplishment still allow Eric and friends to enjoy old classic campaign setting.
My players are going to finish PoRH tonight, and they were all lvl 14 (5 characters in all) throughout the entire thing. The Hangman Golem gave them the toughest run, but in all they were able to get through everything just fine, no deaths and some great role play.
There is, however, a great opportunity for side treks (either actually played or simply narrated with a handwave and an award of 10,000xp) at the end of the PoRH if/when they get the book from Lashonna's Triptych Vault listing all the members of the Ebon Triad. Players willing, there could be side-campaign to simply eliminate the few remaining Ebon Triad cells before they head off to the LoLR. They are clearly going to need to be lvl 16 to run through the bulk of that adventure, so that 10,000 XP bonus should do the trick.
To pull off that kind of major sidequest in the timeline between PoHR and LoLR, it would work to follow the suggestion from a much earlier thread to have Lashonna give them the tools to scry on on Darl by themselves, perhaps once they have rid the world of these Ebon Triad problems. Then the events of the LoLR initiate with the peek in on Darl's life, and they are off to Tilagos.
Good luck, and have fun in Redhand!
In other Zeech's Feast news, I did have a Nanaimo-based specialty cake company (www.aweecupcakery.com) make the Ziggurat Cake for the feast. It looked spectacular in the box and with the entire party at the Feast.
I had planned to have the cake come out as the finale of the feast. However, as the battle with the Hangman Golem and the Ebon Aspect went late into the night, I had to re-jig the events of the feast (I'm sure the cake wouldn't keep for a month!). Right after the skeletons did their macabre performance (at this time to my bleary eyed players), the Fabler hauls out the cake to open up the party eating. The expression on my group's faces was priceless as the dark chocolate and blood red Ziggarut of Kyuss walked out of the kitchen in four mazapan-covered layers. A great way to end the evening and to celebrate the 6th (!) year of our ongoing campaign, which I've been keeping a blog of here.
I also have just opened the gates to Prince Zeech's feast right now and had the exact same idea about getting some of our local Vancouver Island improv guys in to help me with the guests at the party. Not sure if I'm going to be able to pull it off, but it really would spice up the role play and sew some seeds of loyalty to the place and its people. I think it would be pretty rich, particularly if we plant some key details that they could get from the dialogue, rumours that build PC trust for Lashonna and undercut her close ties to the despot Zeech for instance, or details that leave them thinking that an Alhaster without Zeech and his angels might be looking pretty good as a place to be, seeding some roots of friendship that may have been lost if all the party didn't get there all from Diamond Lake. Let's make this place worth saving from the Big Event! Let us know if you decide to do it!
I am extremely pleased that Paizo has produced this. I've been playing Pathfinder with my sons (9 and 6) and their friends. They have nearly trashed my core rulebook, but really the reading level is just too high. I bought the WoTC 3.5 'basic' game, and the new 4.0 boxed set, and they are both just works of misery, not at all the great kinds of products that we are all reminiscing about from our childhoods. Thanks Paizo! If you need a test player, let me know, as I and my group of pre-teens are 'in'!
Wow Whiteknife, I'm really impressed, and appreciate the advice, which now rests in my Evernote database of sage DM-ly nuggets for AoW.
Last Saturday our players put the wrap on the Spire of Long Shadows, having made it through in some part by one of the players having rolled a natural 100 in Manzorian's fountain allowing her to have the one-time help of a Solar, which she used to save the party frm certain (un)death. The blog is here if anyone is curious.
But man the game mechanics are getting trickier and trickier. We are playing Pathfinder rules, core rulebook only, which I am hoping will eliminate the splat factor. I am hoping that the change of pace in the Prince of Redhand from the back-to-back dungeon crawl will carry their curiosity through to the end.
I intend to drop the Champion's Belt and Gathering of Winds from my current campaign. I don't like that the real plot does not beging before The Spire of Long Shadows (stuff that happens before happens to be only tangentially related to the main quest)...
I rather have to agree with Kang. AGoW (with the changes suggested in the old thread) has actually been extremely interesting for character development and story arc for our group. A useful coming of age story. The Spire of Long Shadows, which is a grizzly horror-show-of-Kyuss, is a fairly routine dungeon crawl, and has been a bit of a pain to 'convince' the players they want to stick around and get their hides handed to them over and over again. The motiviation for them sticking around is pretty weak. Champions' Belt had the great reveal in the Shrine of Kyuss, which has played as a very memorable hook that you might want to draw on.
Just some thoughts from someone who started playing when the modules were published and is still slowing working through it with the original group (4 year campaign and counting...)
Thanks Rick! This is a great resource! I've been using the Seekers as important NPC during the characters' encounters in Icosiol's tomb. Several new members of the party have come to meet what is left of the original group by having been exploring in the Cairn Hills. When one the new Seekers died in one of Icosiol's tomb's traps, the Seeker group in Greyhawk floated a loan for resurrection, but want Wind Duke artifacts in exchange. It gave the whole party more significant motivation in going through the tombs, and all the threats it posed. They are about to come out and go meet with their Seeker allies, so your work is perfectly timed for me!
My group switched from 3.5 to Pathfinder PRG when we started A Gathering of Winds last year. I've been quite pleased with the transition. With the Beastary in hand, I have little work to do in order to upgrade the encounters, and the players to a (wo)man have enjoyed the excellent flavour that Pathfinder has brought to each of the character classes. I play strictly core rulebooks with Age of Worms, which has also made the transition simple. We have not changed any of the campaign setting/deities -- a big thrill of AoW are all the nostalgic Greyhawk references.
The new cleric rules have not broken the undead encounters to date, though I'll be interested to see how it runs at higher levels. My take so far: Pathfinder RPG works like a charm in Age of Worms!
Our Campaign Blog:
Our campaign blog tells all here if anyone wants to check it out.
I have laminated three of the large 1" grid sheets that had been included in some of the Wizards minis that I bought way back, and they are working extremely well with erase-able overhead projector markers (medium tip, blue, black and red). I also print out the 'player' versions of the maps from Paizo's Dungeon Supplements, cut them out, and give them to the players as they move through and complete areas. I often reveal these as I go along, either cutting sections of the player maps and putting them on the table, or folding them, unfolding as more of the area is revealed. These useful player maps from Dungeon Supplement provide a valuable small-copy index of the places visited, the players make annotations on them, and can easily redraw them when we return to a place.
Kang, I am about mid-way through Gathering of Winds (and have been enjoying your posts over the years). Your terrain sounds amazing! I'd love to see a photo or two if you get a chance!
Steven Tindall wrote:
Well, I would not be reading too much more of this board if you are going to be a player in the game. I think all secrets are revealed here!
On your question, I have had a cleric of Wee Jas in our game that was able to command not turn undead. It was fascinating at the lower levels (zombie meat shields lumbering through caves, etc). There are a lot of good backstory elements in the AoW Overload and in some of the campaign setting areas, giving the DM much to draw on to enrich the story.
But then, of course, like almost all the characters in the campaign, he died. And now no one commands undead anymore.
I found going to the public library the best way to check these old Dragon articles out. Our library had Dragon in with the kids books, so I was there doing 'research' with all the 4-year olds!
Most were either very or moderately useful (esp. 333, 336, 337, 338, 339, 341, 342, 343) and they definitely added colour to the game.
The Dragon ecology article on the Spawn of Kyuss was also excellent.
More useful, perhaps is the the Dragon Monster Ecologies publication could actually be called Dragon Age of Worms Monster Ecologies. Choker, dracolich, inevitable, kenku, kobold, lizardfolk, rakshasa, spawn of Kyuss, and spell weaver are all covered in detail, and there are useful articles that help put in context the classic D&D mythos around beholder, mindflayer, and displacer beast, all of which are also AoW beasties. This is a very helpful purchase if you don't already have a whole bunch of Dragon backissues (like I did not)
I've been searching the archives and haven't been able to find the author's points you mentioned, nor the demon rework suggestions you mentioned... Any chance you (or anyone else) could post a link or 2 to those?
No problem Kang. This is a useful old thread, with a number of helpful comments on tweaking the Gathering of Winds.
We're going through the trap I am hoping to devise to to replace the Abyssal Ghoul (as Wolfgang Baur suggested in the thread above), next Friday. Aside from the CR 12 trap listed in the pathfinder beta rules, has anyone got something clever and CR12-ish they can recommend? I've gone through the index for Dungeon magazine, but nothing helpful from the old campaign workbook...
"Gathering of Winds" gives you chance to tie up loose ends. ... If you skip the adventure, you'll miss out on some cool...
I'm of the same view here. I have a group just entering the Whispering Cairn after an energetic, evening long battle with Ilthane. I'm quite excited about the prospects of the power of the backstory of the Wind Dukes to propel the characters along, tying them all into an arc of history that is much bigger than the current events of their lives. I've made the Seekers an important part of the motivation of new characters who have entered the group post-Champion games, and the ancient relics of the Wind Dukes, and the powerful assistance they might give, has become quite a strong motivator for the new comers. The few original characters are thoroughly wrapped up in the home coming and a highly anticipated visit with their ambiguously powerful sage about the wormy news from the Free City.
There is no need to rush to the wormy climax. Take some of the GoW author's good points (posted in the archives of these boards) around trimming a bit of excess out of the module, recraft the demon as others on these boards have suggested, and I think you have a great linking story-line, bridging personal lives, epic time scales, inter-generational relationships. Though this is in plot a straight up dungeon crawl, I think the backstory it gives is rich for the role play.
Of course, this ll just raises the stakes for character death in SOLS, so hopefully we are not all is for big TPK disappointment! Good luck, whatever you choose.
After a 2 year hiatus (new jobs, new babies, an active Shackled City campaign, players leaving, players joining) we are getting our once-weekly Age of Worms Campaign back on track for what is likely going to be a once-monthly run to the finish.
We left off our party at the end of the Champion Games where, through a combination of DM oversight (I can never quite remember in the heat of battle which bonuses stacks and which do not!) and party creativity and tenacity, the catastrophe was averted and the group were the game champions.
Our rogue abandoned the group with his loot from the Champion Games, (the player having moved off to one of the beautiful Gulf Islands in Canada), replaced now by a newly rolled 11th level archaeological rogue who had been poking around in other cairns in the Cairn Hills and having encountered a few Kyuss Spawn in the process. The brilliantly played Wee-Jas Cleric has also retired, with the player bringing in a newly rolled 11th level paladin who was a close friend of Eligos that had been doing much of Eligos' Age of Worms research for him. He has decided to take on the Wormhunter class as part of his new quest in joining the party. Hopefully the wormhunter paladin will be OK for a party that no longer has a cleric.
So, I'm am gearing up to get this game going again, but this time using Pathfinder rules. All the characters have been re-jigged using the beta rules (I really hope there are not too many changes in the final version!). Is there any advice for how much magic these newly rolled 11th level characters can bring into the game? Given the economics of you have to trade stuff and half-value to get more powerful stuff at full value, it seems that it might be a bit rich to let them buy whatever magic they want for the amount of standard GP a newly rolled 11th level character would have. I'm not sure though.
I am also bracing for the work of sorting things out on the DM side for running Age of Worms as a Pathfinder Advenutre. If anyone has seen the final printed version, are there any significantly different tips on doing DM conversions (page 298-9 in the Beta)? Any other tips? Anyone done this already and might want to share?
For those interested, I'll try to post anything useful up to therpgenius.com and the campaign blog up to http://ageofwormscampaign.blogspot.com/. Wish me luck. I've certainly enjoyed playing Shackled City as a Pathfinder player (currently a fey bloodline sorcerer just entering the Flood Festival, who is one of my favourite characters ever!)
Thank you all for these excellent suggestions. I agree fully with the serious force of the state backing up Racknian if they do decide to go vigilante during the fight with Pitch Blade. I will certainly paint the picture suggested by Christopher and Brian of the very visible City Guard infrastructure and the 30 or more purple-sashed bodyguards of Racknian himself.
Picking up on I've Got Reach's suggestions, I think I'll have Talabir provide a lesser globe of invulnerability for the executive suite. It may only block the 3rd level spells, but the slight magic shimmer it gives off could be interpreted as anything on a weak spellcraft check. I'll try to encourage some serious team role play before the event, debating the wisdom of such a public act, perhaps suggesting more subtle means. The elf, though not the leader our Wee Jas cleric is, sometimes provides persuasive caution to the group.
The party has not yet cracked open the green-light flooded doors in Bozal's room to see the Urgulstasta (they are thoroughly spooked by the scrolls and the nasty Akilith that gave them such trouble). The cleric had summoned two earth elementals and had them scout out the area. Only one returned (the other made full body contact with the sphere) and had little sensible to report. I don't think they have quite pieced it all together yet.
I also kind of think they may not be heros in this one. Greyhawk, in my guess, is going to the wights. We shall see soon. Game tomorrow night.
The cleric of Wee Jas in the game I am DMing just sent me a pre-game alert to his intentions to execute the law and attempt to take Racknian down during their next fight in the arena. They have just killed Bozal (and were almost completely pummelled by Bozal's demon friend) and feel they want to do swift justice on Racknian for all the wickedness they have discovered under the arena.
I'm glad to have the information in advance, as I had only prepared for the battle with the flying dwarves and not something potentially much bigger. However, I would love a bit of strategic advice on how to handle it. I'm quite new to this high-level of play, so would really appreciate some tips.
I don't want to cop-out and not have Racknian observing the games that round, nor do I want to have his viewing area somehow magically protected. These seem to be simply too overt meta-game tactics to thwart the direction of the players.
I do think that on the first sign of an anti-Racknian strike, he would leave his viewing place (knowing that the Party is dangerous) and leave his henchmen to "expel" the Party from the games. Perhaps under Okral's lead, and supported by the officious wizard (he's only 7th level), 30 or 40 of the 5th level bodyguards would take to the field and expel the party. Handling that combat may be cumbersome. Is there perhaps more heavy support that Racknian might be able to draw on in such an instance? Would Orkal's men try to kill the party in front of the crowd (clearly Pitchblade would want that), or merely expel them for Racknian to deal with some other way.
The more I think about it, the more I think it looks like TPK if they go ahead with this. I'll try to give all the indications of that being a bad idea, but any strategic advice would be gratefully received.
...[the Wee Jas article] directly addresses some basic philosophical tenets that came under question in the AoW AP, such as, "Why would a religion that guards its cemetaries against necromancers have Animate Dead as a domain spell?" and "How is the soul affected by the creation of undead?"
I am completely puzzled by this aspect of the article following attempting to bring it into our game last night.
I have a 9th level cleric of Wee Jas in my AoW campaign. he has been busy touring around the unsociable parts of the world with undead zombies and the occasional skeleton as part of his dungeoneering entourage. I was excited to introduce this core beliefs article to the campaign and had Wee Jas's Planer Ally visit the cleric two nights before a big encounter to explain the issues around souls, necromancy, and chaotic raising.
The cleric's player balked out of game, saying that his cleric making zombies and skeletons does not mess with the soul at all. Wee Jas, he argued, would not be concerned if the cleric has made a zombie out of a Carrion Crawler or a Grimlock, as no souls are involved, and chaotic alignment is not a factor for these undead.
So I am stumped. How do we reconcile the death domain as a key part of being a lawful neutral cleric of Wee Jas?
Have I missed something from this otherwise very useful Core Beliefs article?
The funeral was held for our hero last night. The streets of Midnight Muddle started to fill, with the members of the Blueberry Theatre moving through the quarter telling people to watch for the parade of a great fallen fighter. The city guard kept close watch on the crowds, providing assurance and assistance to the procession that was assembling. While fellow fighters and old associates from the temple of Kord made the final preparations and adornments of the caskets, dawning their finest armour and marching with polished swords, acolytes of Heironeous, always vocal and popular with the public, made preparations for lively, praiseful services. Quietly in the background, the party cleric, a solitary follower of Wee Jas felt satisfied. This was to be a signal of unity of gods in honour of a mysterious death.
The funeral procession began, and as it did, on-lookers were surprised to find that not just the local crowd were assembled. In their ranks city official, prominent business people, minor nobles, were all standing in tribute. The actors of the Blueberry Theatre recounted on a street stage the major strokes of the fallen fighters life, drawing applause and awe at the feats of a life of just under 40 years. Then, after the body was laid to rest with the crisp traditions of Kord striking contrast with the effervescent sermons of Heironeous, a spontaneous series of speeches ensued. A few of the prominent city folks used the forum to clear their names from the deceit of the dopplegangers. More however, focussed on the Champion Games, inciting the crowd to see and experience heros like this one life and fall by their skill, resources and temperament. By the end, many gathered built intense anticipation for the games (others spat cynically, quietly at the whole foolish games-loving lot). On the lips of everyone was the idea of hoping to see the fallen heros comrades compete in the games.
Then the debts were called in. Kord Temple officials detailed 1300gp of finery and services. The city administrators required 900gp for closing the streets and providing the safety of the city guard . Heironeous acolytes took the cleric quietly aside, demanding a shocking 5000gp for their part of the event. And the actors troop, having done an impressive work which really glued the event together, did not leave before collecting their 4586gp fee.
Back to my question, I suspect this was too much, but it is what came to mind. The PC hosting the funeral wanted something monumental. A similar cost to paying the magic to have the fighter restored seemed on par. If anyone has suggestions for economies at this scale, I would be interested and perhaps be able to find some appropriate value to refund the party if need be.
Christopher West wrote:
... Unless I'm doing the math wrong (entirely possible), that should be more than enough.
The non-game reason: The player with the figher was also playing the rogue and was getting a bit overwhelmed at this level and wanted to drop a character. Luckily, a new player was joining us with a monk rolled up and waiting in quiet contemplation for a consultation with Eligos about some strange unkillable zombies he had encountered in a far away land. Pollard made the introduction with the almost-dead cleric and a new party powerhouse was installed.
My PCs have just crawled out of Sodden Hold, having lost their Kord-honouring fighter to the invisible stalkers. The party Cleric, a faithful servant of Wee-jas , has planned a large and impressive public funeral for their hero. I’m stumped on what to charge for it, as I don’t have a very good handle on urban economics in D&D.
First a bit of background. The fighter died a hero, trying to save two others from near death. The party elf wizard had been absconded by the dopplegangers and was out of the picture. The Rogue, Cleric, Fighter and doppleganger elf-wiz had just come back from a very serious entanglement with the giant octopus. The ‘elfs’ spells had ‘failed’ during the octopus fight, and the party asked him to try it out a simple detect magic in the Stalker’s room, which they had not yet been in. The tricky doppleganger muttered the password and failed the spell. The cleric came in and managed to get off the detect magic before being thumped hard by the Invisible Stalkers. A round of attacks ensued with the Stalkers only attacking the rogue and cleric at first. At last, the conspiring dop-elf-wizard turned on the party, sneak attacking the rogue, doing serious damage. Everyone was completely surprised. A massive battle followed, with the rogue and fighter dropping completely dead and the cleric, below 10 HP and almost out of spells, doing a very hasty, invisible, flying retreat out of Sodden Hold. He was not followed. He had, fortunately taken bits from each player early in the Campaign and was able to borrow from Pollard (Eligos’ assistant) the funds for a resurrection for the rogue (who he always spars with, but hopes to redeem). Alas, there were not enough funds for the fighter, so he was lost in battle. The party regrouped, went in and saved the real elf wizard and got thoroughly spooked by the mind flayer foreshadow experience.
Now, before going to search for the mind flayer, the cleric has the idea to sell the 19,000 GP assets of the fighter and hold a big public funeral. He’s contacted some performers from the Blueberry theatre (detailed in the Dragon wormfood article, with which they had a very funny bardic lore experience sorting out Ilthane’s tainted dark vial potions) to re-enact the scenes of the fighter’s life. He contacted the church of Heironeous to organize a big public funeral march procession, and the church of Kord to obtain appropriate miliary-like funerary goods (monuments, tombstone, coffin drapery, etc). Of course, there are also his own diety's interests in death he has long respected. Because they had made contacts with city officials, handing Telekin over with all the revealing papers, there is expected quite a crowd of public officials and others. All of this is in the heavy backdrop of whipping up the public for a new set of potential heros for the champion games.
So, for the big public funeral, with actors, city guards, appropriate donations to both Kord, Heironeous and Wee-jas temples, and the logistics of a Greyhawk festival, does anyone know where I might turn for guiance on costs. I’m thinking it might be appropriately in the 10,000GP range, but I’m really not sure. Advice would be appreciated. Game night is Wednesday.
I've got to say that this thread has been singularly helpful, and I read all the AoWAP threads every day.
I'm DMing this major campaign as my second 3.5 campaign and my first one with anything beyond level 5. We're mid-way through HoHR (with most of the party brilliantly deluded by a co-conspiring player).
What has helped me a lot is to use the online SRD from d20.org and make full printout sheets of each NPC, monster, treasure, etc and print them ahead of time, reading them over once or twice. I've been posting these as PDFs to theRPGenious.com Age of Worms AP resource page. Other beginner DMs should check it out, if they might find it helpful. I'll keep posting them right through our campaign.
I've got to say that combat even at level 7 is getting slow, and I've messed up initiative many times. Our D&D games are a joyous computer-free zone during play, so excel or other such options are off. Picking up on the index cards advice, how do you other DMs run it (on paper) so that everyone knows when their time in the queue is? Or if there is a larger group of monsters? Right now, I use a notebook as a campaign journal, and a scrap pad for initiative and effects as they come and go with each round of combat. Pretty primitive, but so far, all I can figure out.
thanks again for the great posts (here and elsewhere).
We pronouce the first bit the way the Japanese phoneme /ky/ is pronounced (like in Kyushu), and the second bit we say -us with a slightly elongaged /s/. There is slight stress on the -u-, though we say it as one sylable.
I'm fascinated that this has come up so often here, as we had a bit of debate about it too.
I'm DMing a campaign where our four unlikely heros also felt that the observatory would be an impressive upgrade from the old mining shack, and want to own it. I told them that in a lawful town they couldn't just occupy it, so they enquired with Smenk, who it turns out does have the deed. They bartered with the cultist-stricken Smenk for the deed to it, and for Smenk's men to restore the desicrated graves of the Land family (insisted upon by the group's Wee Jas cleric). They are deep in the TF0E now, and if they make it out, Smenk has no intenion of giving up the property, and I don't think they will have the resources quite yet to secure it. Soon perhaps, as they acquire additional. And if they survive...