My thoughts are that if you were playing a one of module or something you might be OK but to try it in an AP that has lots of combat going on and the need for all PC's to chip in and do there bit...
Good luck sir...
The problem I see is that the pc you had annoyed the group as is did a lot of damage. You now want to go the complete opposite and do one that does no damage.
Honestly...you will get the same reaction as you have gone the other way now.
Find a happy medium, a healer/buffer and hitter instead.
bear in mind if you have 5 players and are using 20 point but it may make the game a little easier and you may have to adjust some of the encounters to compensate.
AP's are based on 1 15 point buy 4 PC party so the encounetrs are made to fit this assumption.
My advice, not sure what difference the 20 point but will make but I as for the 5 players i would suggest palying the first few encounters out as is then if things look to easy then just make the CR one step up. Keep doing this until you feel its at a correct level, might be tricky to start with but it should become easier to judge the correct level after a few sessions.
It might be ok though, I have 3 players and used a 20 point buy which seems to work fine without any cahnges.
Point the GM to the message boards and the thread s&s sandbox style. There is a heap of stuff here to enliven things.
Also some of the problem might be that you have 3 ships. At this stage you should really only have one. How are you managing to crew it? do you have the 20 sailors and the officers to man each one, any less than this and the ships are not going anywhere? How do you deal with supplies? what about plunder you are getting? Each ship will need to spend 1 point of plunder evereytime they go to port to pay the crew. What about ship combat? 3 ships versus the 1 that you maninly find is going to be a cakewalk. What about random encounters or events in the ports? The base assumption is that the players only have one ship, if there are more the GM will not to alter encounters to make the game less of a cakewalk.
The players need or needed to know that the ap is not realy a hack and slash dungeon game it's much more of a role-playing game to be honest not a roll-playing game.
If the GM is newish though give him some slack this is a fairly difficult adventure to get right. Book 2 can be the hardest as its pretty much a sandbox with not much happening, the story is very much player driven for most of the book, you need to embrace the roles you have otehrwise you may get bored as I see you are stating to get, it will get better but the sandbox/ship travel elemnts will always be a part of the game.
There is a thread in here somewhere that deatils a very good Sandbox system for just this. I forget now what thread it is though, not much help I know sorry. The OP of the that post is a genius as its helped me now end. Maybe someone can remember the post? I think its s&s sandbox style?
I have divded the map up in to 50 mile squares (roughly 1 full day of travel)and let the players go where they want. I have tables, tables and more tables. Wandering monsters (from isles of the shackles as its better), shipboard events (from dead mans chest), hazards and ships (taken from all 6 books at the back.
Essenatily each day they can chose to, tarvel up to daily move rate, hunt a ship, re-supply, raid a settlement or head to a port. I then roll up for navigation and daily weather (dead mans chest) and roll twice for a random event (once day and night 33% chance and roll to see if ship, shipboard, monster or hazrad), thats pretty much it, it leaves the players to decided then and the GM to improvise. Depending on how the group likes to role-play its either just a sereis of dice rolls or leave it up to the players to do what they want each day ansd improve.
It all depends how much work you want to put in, I have a lever arch a4 binder (about 500 pages of stuff) just for the sandbox. But boy has it been worth it. Book 2 has taken me about 30-40 weeks of 3 hour sessions to finish, its been very enjoyable and the players even have their own tavern now in Senghor.
ahhh I see, now I see why everyone says the summoner class is broken. Summon monster 3 + char times per day and last for 1 min not 1 round per level?
What point buy do you have? 15 as its meant to be for a 4 man party or more? That can have an affect too.
I think in you're case its the summoner that is the problem, its too overpowered I think. For each encounter and creature he summons I guess its like having 1 extra npc in the party. You may need to ramp things up to compensate
Naval combats are pretty much a cake walk sometimes, it depends on what the players do most of the time. Again cahnce it up a bit if its boring, add a mage on the ship and sling spells at the parties ship before boarding, that should make a difference. Stonecall on the ship if rolled high enough can decimate a crew (then watch the players panic as the crew starts to dwindle nad they cant man the ship).
I agree with you, I try not to kill players off unless they are really stupid, it's a waste of everyone's time and effort. Just knock em down to minus every other encounter lol.
I would say no, not to begin with. The extra rules for Mythic play would complicate things for you.
As the others have suggested either start with a couple of modules, see how things go then think about it or better still or go with Rise of the Runelords then try it after that (Its cheaper too as its one hardbook book).
Also as others have said I would wait until the whole AP is out before deciding to run it. You really need to know the AP as a whole as some plot points anad NPC's will be referenced through out and Its easier to see the whole picture first.
Not to put too much on this but where did the hair attack come from if youi are a Druid/monk?.
If its a flavour thing then surley you should not be using it as an atack option.
Could be why the GM is attacking the hair, maybe he's a tad annoyed with you using something you shoudn't actaully have?
Of course if its legit that's a differnt matter of course..
Yep, that's AP's for you. It's a lot of work. You may be better running a couple of modules first though as the core game can be quite complicated, the beginner game is a quick and dirty version.
One thing you do have to do is read the entire thing through first. Don't read book 1 then play etc otherwise you will miss out on crucial plot threads and NPC motivations.
You will need to make notes as well when starting to run it, I personally would find it really difficult to run if I just picked it up and ran it on the night after just reading it through.
You have a month as you say so just start by reading all parts making notes of the plot and recurring NPC's. Then I read part 1 and make notes, don't worry about the rest so long as you have an idea as to what happens in each part and the overall plot that will be enough. Some bits you may unfamilar with so make notes to check rule questions that come up, read the players guide to so you are familar with player traits and can help with the pc generation (Remember that AP's are built around 4 pc's with 15 point buy stats, more players or less players you will need to adjust the CR of the encounters to fit otherwise it will be too lethal or too easy).
There are plenty of GM tips on the forum but my favorite is to use index cards for combat, write/print the stats on them for the monsters/npc's add in a card for each PC then add the initative number on the top left of the card and add in order highest to lowest, its fairly easy to keep track of a combat round this way.
If you are just starting out I would personally just use the corebook, some of the classes (summoner) are hard to adjudicate.
so above all read the whole of AP at least once and note the plot and recurring NPC's, read part 1 make notes, read the players guide, remember 15 point buy 4 players and above all read the core rulebook and make notes of the rules if you are unsure. If new and unsure about things stick with the corebook to start with.
sounds OK but really you don't need to go to such lenghts to get the party to hate Harrigan. If you do the job right on the Wormwood the players will hate him easy enough and be itching to mutiny, mine were and I only did 12 days on the ship. They can't wait to meet him and send him to Davey Jones later on.
You just need to make their life pure hell on the Wormwood, yes Plugg and Scourge are the Ones doing it but they are just Harrigans Lackeys, play him up to be a bastard and you can't go wrong.
ahhh I see what it is now, its the feral mutagen. I think the GM may have made it a little too easy for you there then or might not have facterd the mutagen in (hence why I would not have allowed potions in the room either unless you scored a very high stealth roll to hide it as that is one powerful weapon)
I guess another option for the map could be if you kill her just take the map of her back as a skin parchment instead?
yeah mine is not as written (slight de-rail sorry)
in my case, she's a slow burner with treachory in mind and will turn on them at some point. The players have started to see how evil she is as they witnessed her treatment of the Threshers crew who left her at tidewater(after the players had taken the ship she systematicaly killed the subduded crew until only one remained which who is now completely mad having lost an arm an being shut in a store room. The captain player let her carry on as he saw it as vengence. Said captive will now be let off at the nearest port with a tattoo on him saying this is what happens when you tangle with us. I'm hoping as the captain player is warming to her methods he will give her command of a vessel (he has hinted of this) then its time for the treachory to begin.... :) bascialy she is not a complete psycho but is a cold calculating killer and waiting for the correct moment to strike, I might even have her take down one of the NPC's such as Rosie that the players have grown fond of.
I changed it as I didn't like another underwater cavern, there was no shaughin in mine, she's one of Harrigans pawns instead and was attacking the fort under Harrigans orders (I wanted to get something of the Harrigan plot in to part 2 as it was rather lacking on that front, Tidewater seemed the best place as he has already been made a fool of by the lady of the rock in the past)
To be honest I love the AP but it has changed so much with the actions of the players and my adding/changing things that anybody reading it then playing would not have a clue what's going on lol. It's become a real beast of a story (part 2 has taken roughly 30 weeks of 3 hour sessions and they have only just finished it, we dont us xp but level up when the ap suggests everyone is having a real blast.
Depends how you play it. A lot of people including myself relised that she is such an interseting NPC and so underused that it was a shame to have her killed off. I rejigged her level to slightly lower and the players actually decided without me interveining to capture her and give her an ultimatum.
It worked really well and the map was dead simple to sort out as the players just copied it and I was able to relay the background info through her.
She is still an evil piece of work and the players are finding it hard to trust her which makes things really interesting.
Simple. By the time they have finished with the cannibals they should be level 2? They send the help signal, picked up by the Wormwood, shorten the days on the ship to say 5-8 days?, don't level the players at the end of the Man's Promise battle and there you go back on track. No need to change anything or alter any NPC's. Keep the NPC's form the island and replace and either add to the exisiting crew or change Roise, Cogward and Conch with the ones form the island (you will still need Sandara and Kroop). They need to be on the Wormwood as they need to have seen Harrigan for the plot of Skull and Shackles to continue.
Been thinking more about this...
Yes Vikingson is correct, using the rules as is there is no way you could ram the ship in the first round of combat. The maximum you could move is 60ft and as the attacker always starts at 1d4+2 squares away then you would be a minimum of 90ft away from the prey provided you rolled a 1 every time you did the combat set up (very unlikley). So if you are playing the enemy ship why are you a not fighting and b not moving away and using tactics?
As for the Dominater...enough said I just don't see how it was possible either to capture it or to crew it as well as 7 other ships, it does not make sense
I think you need to have another look at this and work it out. Don't let the players lose the ships though that's not very fair. Let them either sell them or find a secret cove to store them in.
One question: have they just started book 3? If so they are a level above the suggested starating level of 7 which could cause problems as the ap is based on parties of the level stated, just beef up the encounters that shoudl be enough.
Next the number of ships. 7 is a heck of a lot and the Dominator too oppps I sense trouble. (see below)
Sea battles are pretty easy once you factor in spells and ramming, I have the same problem myself. The ship rules are not that good to be honest, I use a cross between fire as she bears and the AP rules which works a lot better. Fire as she bears has some really good damage rules and makes ship combat much more deadly.
Book 3 and 4 I don't think are going to be much of a problem though as much of book 3 is spent chasing clues in and around ports and not much ship combat. Book 4 is island based so again no use for the ships for that one.
Thinking about it...I don't think there will be a problem really. The ship combats don't really happen on a large scale until book 5 and they need a fleet by then anayway, the players just have the start of a fleet a bit early on thats all. By book 4 the fleet will be left stuck in the island dock for ages whilst the players do their thing.
My advice: Read ahead and plan, I don't think you have anything to worry about if you are following the AP.
one thing I would do though...the players need to ditch the amount of followers they have and the cohourt once they start the clue hunt and island part. The AP is based on just a 4 person party. By adding in the cohurt and the 7 followers you are making the party double or triple what it should be for the encounters. If they want to take them you will need to alter and beef the encouters up to compensate otherwise it will be a cakewalk.
Im happy with pathfinder rules and what changes they have made or added its just the setting
Campaign worlds...3rd ed had lots to choose from.
slight rant now sorry...
Pathfinder is sevrerly lacking in good worlds. The Inner Sea is getting a tad boring and repetitive for a 5 year run so far and it seems as if there is no end to what they will churn out next to milk it. Pazio really need to start thinking about the other conitents at least. I mean robots next year uhhh not what I want at all (although it seems im in a minoroity here). 3.5 had lots of good worlds to pull ideas from, Forgotten Realms, Greyhawk, Dragonlance, Ebberon, Scarred Lands etc etc.
I like the dieties of the Inner sea though.
Im hoping that Frog Gods Lost Lands will suffice when it arrives in the future.
yep, you either love it or hate it. I agree with above poster, this is NOT A d20 add or subtract mod fail or succeed game. But as I said I rather like it as do a lot of others from what I hear and a lot don't don't like it as well. If I did a review I would say 3 stars for the system and 4 for the right tone and flavour but its a hard sell for a whole group I think.
I think this is a game that needs a lot of rule knowledge from both the GM AND players for it to work though. I'm a little gutted as I'm 99% sure my group will have no interest in it. The dice rolls are just too complicated for them I think and they will just balk at the idea (at least they look that way the first few times you look at them).
I will continue to buy the core books though as I'm rather partail to it, kind of a quilty pleasure if you like.
As the last poster said though...BE WARNED BEFORE YOU BUY, THIS IS A VERY DIFFERENT GAME.
Also be aware there is no PDF as the Lucas/disney rights don't permit one as yet so its very much a not a try cheap before you buy game.
Got it and the corebook, read it scratched my head, re-read it slightly scratched head, tested a few rolls, end result, I really like it.
It is VERY different to D20 though, the dice roll results go with the feel of the game, its very much a story telling game and needs to have a GM who an improvise a lot to get the most out of it. Don't go thinking that you roll the dice and you succeed or fail, there is a lot more to it than that. I think this will be like Marmite, you either love it or hate it.
The game at present is kind of like star wars meets shadowrun meets Firefly with force users being very underpowered and living as outcasts on the fringes (like the old D6 version) NOT overpowered like the D20 version so I'm guessing that its unlikley most people would want to play one yet until they relaese the force book in a few years down the line (I like this better as you have the training and learning aspect much as Luke went through and playing one cold be a lot of fun).
My group might stuggle as it's so different and they are used to HP and rolling dice with numbers. I'm tempted to try the beginner adventure with the and see how it goes (they stuggle with the damage system inSavage worlds so im not holding out much hope).
As far as I'm aware no. I have had to go via the states for mine.
Postage is the big problem though, its prety expensive. I went through Noble Knight and Frog god themeselves. Both time the books arrived pretty early really. Noble knight I ordered on express 5 days and got it in 5 days, Frog god games shipped 26th july and I got it 10th aug.
Packing was better with Noble Knight though it came in box with a ton of paper and wrapping books were in great condition.
Frog god's postage though is pretty good buy 2 books and pay $25. Might be a bit hit and miss on the packing, my books arrived in a cardboard sleeve with bubblewrap and very slight damage to the bottom of the spine. Not that worried though as its not that bad but im slightly worried about my razor coast book as its bigger.
Essentaily anything really can be used if you adapt it to fit. I have added bits and pieces from varius AP's, sourcebooks, 3rd party adventures and d20 books.
Dead mans chest has an adventure called Island of Bonjo Tomo, tpk games has an adveture called ship of fools yet to use this yet though, I have used a haunted house adventure from Freeport and added the skinsaw guy from Rise of the Runelords to it, the info on Senghor in heart of the jungle is really useful as is Bloodcove and Im thinking of utilizing Razor coast in to the game too. My players are happy to have side treks as we don't use XP, we use the guidlines in the AP to level up so im not worried about the extra XP they would generate.
basically if something you have read takes you're fancy and you can think of a way of using it that fits then I say use it. Chop bits out, change things (many paople of said how thay don't like the undersea cavern in book 2 as its similar to book 1...swop it out and use something else (I used the bonjo tomo adventure above). It may mean a little bit more more work but the adventure will become yours in the end and may even shape itself inn to something else (I think mine is satarting to go in a slightly different route).
Spells: One of my players only reads what he wants to read in the spell descriptions.
Stoneshape: river 20ft wide, 20ft deep, fast flowing in a cavern 4oft high. Looking at the volume of the spell can I make a sheet 1 inch thick to stretch from one bank to the other so it will stop the flow of water. (This one REALLY hurt my brain, maybe possible but without a degree in maths I had no idea).
and countless others
Knowldge nature: Can I spot of creatures in the area that can sense the precence of a ghost.
and this one last night, fog shrouded city...
Can I disperse the fog? How, what spell are you think of using..none but can I do it?
For the love of....not strickly a rules misconception but still, face palm..
I just added a crew of 20 zombies for the crew to face, it worked fine. Then the Pc's and NPC face off with Whalebone and the 7 brine zombies (I also added a zombie Plugg as the navigator and a zombie scourge as his bodyguard)
Not too sure what you mean here but the AP suggests that the crew fight in the background and are not influenced in the ship combats. This would suggest to me that the CR has no bearing on any crews and that it's based on the officers, captains and the players more. But I could be wrong.
Maybe Vikingson or Brvheart can clarify more?
This is why I think most people including myself have houseruled the crew combat. The best I have seen is from Naval combat for the whole party thread in this forum page, you want to look at the boarding action rules. The work brillantly and the crew on both sides will fluctuate up and down forcing the players to hire more crew (and at the same time get more infamy chances), actaully the whole of that post and Fire as she bears add much better rules than those in the players guide.
Here's my 2penth without reading all the posts.
My group has 3 players, I have a storm druid, a wizard and a swashie rogue. They are all 6th level.
The rogue is starting to notice just how limited he is and is starting to get a tad dispondent, so much so that he wants to multi-class next level to Cleric.
The reasons for this as far as we can see are that the wizard and the druid far outwieigh the rogue in versatilty and damage output. Without spells the rogue is feeling like a spare part.
He uses his abilites as best he can, sneak, bluff, high acrobatics etc but is nearly always trumped by the other 2 players. The Druid is a bit of a powergamer and is using a sythe so the damage is really high. The rogue uses his +1 cutlass but his str is not his fortay and has a higher dex score instead.
When it comes to tactics and improvisation to a given situation the spell users have much more flexability and are able to adapt to situations a lot better than the rogue (create pit, animate rope for insatance).
No matter what way you look at it Pathfinder is a very magic centered game especally if like me you are running one of the AP's. if you don't have some kind of magic abilites you will suffer a bit.
Yes martial focused classes with the right weapon can cause lots of damage in combat but when it comes to tactics and non-combat sitauations the spell casters win all the time and unless you are going toe to toe with the enemy martial pc's tend to be left on the sidelines. Not every situation involves face to face fighting.
For me as a GM and the rogue player we both never relised until now just how much magic dominates the game.
We still play 1st ed, one of our players is 70 and it's the system he knows and likes the most. I like it, it's fun not too complicated, has no feats or skills to speak of but that darn THACO and rolling a d8 for initative, then minus the + score for dex, lowest first still confuses me lol
Dead simple for our group too, we have a wizard, a storm driud and a Rogue swashie. The Wizard was built around the ships cook and gunner, the storm driud was the natural navigator and the swashie with high bluff skills was the best fit for the captain, no arguments the group just naturally slipped in to the roles.
Not a big fan I must confess, although Paizo have done a great job it dosn't really float my boat.
There are some parts I like- Mwangi expanse and shackles/sodden/eye area, Katapech, Varsia and the hold, Chelix, Linorm Kings and worldwound- but that's about it really.
I really don't care for the mana wastes and the crashed spaceship and I really dislike the androids. IMO the regions are too diverse and close together to make it feel real, its almost as if its how much diversity can we cram in in one continent in the world but I can see why they decided to do it this way.
Having said that I like the feel of the world and how as others have said they have steered away from the Tolkien style and are slightly more gritty, emerging firearms works for me too. The work they have done on the Gods and outsiders is amazing and I like the adding of the mythos to the world.
I 2nd the index cards. Cheap and as Odraude says you can add all the stats on the cards. All you I do is have cards for all PC'S, Monsters and NPC's in a combat write the intaitve number in the top right corner and put them 1 behind the other highest to lowest, then put the card to the back once they have acted. Works like a dream.
Other then that, if you have the cash: hero lab (expensive but worth it IMO), a GM screen (If you get the paizo one make sure you copy the actions in combat page and pin it one of the panels, its the one chart you need and its not on the 4 panels), dice, lots of dice, scatter dice are great for random rolls, others have said condition and buff cards (good) and if you can do it a chexmat, some of the dungeons in the ap's are difficult to define with tiles and sometimes its easier just to draw them.
OK, this is the text in the module:
"A thick tattoo across the golems chest reads “Davey.”
That's all there is. The master is now an undead pirate that the players will be facing later on after leaving the island (its basicaly a mix of a necromancer games adventure and skull and shackles book 2, the ghost ship in that ap im using as the undead captains ship).
The party are dressed as pirates so the Golem won't see them as a threat. They have his name but as they have not met or have Quimbey with them they will not know the password. The adventure does not state if Quimbey is the Golem maker only that he knows the password. Below is the only info on him
"Captain Quimby is a fifty-year-old sea dog that once made the mistake of crossing the pirate captain Cho Sun, and found himself set adrift on a life boat with ten of his men."
I like to reward my players for inventive thinking hence why the skull kind of worked. I assumed that the Golem cherished the skull as a kind of doll or plaything and as it had some contact with humanoids it would know on an instictive level it was speaking.
I like the idea of the spell but they are on an island and have no access or way of gaining access to the spell.
I would like them to at least have a shot at having the Golem as sometimes the rule of cool and player initaitive I think should be rewarded in some way even if the rules don't really allow it.
How about having the password in a log book or something in the final room? Then as they have his name, the are pirates and have some kind of link with the skull they can control without the need for spells?