Paizo Top Nav Branding
  • Hello, Guest! |
  • Sign In |
  • My Account |
  • Shopping Cart |
  • Help/FAQ
Pathfinder Adventure Card Game Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Pathfinder Adventures Pathfinder Campaign Setting Pathfinder Player Companion Pathfinder Accessories Pathfinder Miniatures Pathfinder Fiction Pathfinder® Society™ Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Compatible Products Pathfinder Apparel & Gifts Pathfinder Licensed Products
Pathfinder Roleplaying Game
Pathfinder Society

Pathfinder Beginner Box

Pathfinder Adventure Card Game

Pathfinder Comics

Pathfinder Legends

Way of the Wicked—Book #1: Knot of Thorns (PFRPG)

***** (based on 17 ratings)
FRM1001E

Backorder Print/PDF Bundle: $24.99

Add PDF: $10.00

Facebook Twitter Email

BE THE BAD GUY!

The Kingdom of Talingarde is the most noble, virtuous, peaceful nation in the known world. Herein is the story of how you burned this insipid paradise to the ground.

It's only fair. They burned you first.

They condemned you for your wicked deeds. They branded you. They shipped you to the worst prison in the kingdom. In three days, you die. In three days, the do-gooders pray they'll be rid of you.

They've given you three days. The fools, that's more than you need to break out. And then, it will be their turn to face the fire.

Welcome to the first chapter of the "Way of the Wicked" adventure path! Inside you'll find:

  • "Knot of Thorns," an adventure for 1st level villains compatible with the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game by Gary McBride.
  • Full color art and maps by Michael Clarke
  • A gazetteer of brave, noble, doomed Talingarde
  • Advice for running a successful villainous campaign
  • Rules for creating wicked PCs
  • A 100-page full color PDF (including printer friendly version) full of vice and villainy.
  • And more!

You've saved the world plenty.

This time, the world needs saving from you.

Product Availability


Print/PDF Bundle: This product is a backorder. The PDF will be added to your My Downloads Page immediately upon purchase.

PDF: Fulfilled immediately. Will be added to your My Downloads Page immediately upon purchase of PDF.

Are there errors or omissions in this product information? Got corrections? Let us know at webmaster@paizo.com.

FRM1001B


See Also:

Product Discussion (1,390)
501 to 550 of 1,390 << first < prev | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | next > last >>

Jiminy,

Sounds like a great group of villains. Thanks for the kind words and thanks for supporting "Way of the Wicked".

Here's hoping your descent into villainy goes magnificently!

Gary McBride
Fire Mountain Games

Qadira

Gary,

I point you back to my question...

Regarding Thorn's tastes:
How does Thorn feel about people in the 9th Knot becoming liches? Wizard found a prestige class that'll do it.


Kevin,

Spoiler:

As long as they are completing his missions successfully, Thorn does not care what methods the PCs use. Later in the campaign, Thorn starts to get worried about the PCs increasing power and may express concern, but by that time, the PCs should be in full rebellion, so it hardly matters what Thorn thinks.

Short answer: Liches are a go!

Gary McBride
Fire Mountain Games


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Second play report. 2 more sessions down.

First some notes on some of the tweaks I’ve made for my group:

On Setting:

First off, I’m running the campaign on Golarion, but “forward in time.” I placed Talingarde in the Arcadian Ocean, pretty far out to the northwest of Cheliax. The basic idea is that the island was once a Chelaxian colony (post-Thrune takeover), and Asmodean worship thrived, but over time the island was abandoned for being too distant and difficult to maintain while dealing with various struggles on the mainland. And so, Talingarde history takes over and the populace slowly begins gravitating toward Iomadae, and the actual APs history more or less takes over, just replacing Mitra with Iomadae.

The fact that it takes place on Golarion doesn’t really come into play. I’m mostly just doing it because I’m already familiar with these religions and have a bunch of sourcebooks that I hadn’t gotten to use much before, and now this gives me an excuse.

On Having 6 PCs:

I have 6 players, so in order for them to hit the proper XP marks, I’ve made some changes/additions here and there.

In the first section (the prison escape), I didn’t do much. Any time there was a story reward or something akin to it, I would simply increase that amount to the point where the 6 players get the same amount of XP that 4 would have gotten (e.g. if a story reward was 800xp as written, I’d bump it to 1200 so that everyone still gets 200).

In addition to that, I added a few more guards. I stationed 2 outside of the Warden’s tower, added a 3rd to the outer wall overlooking the courtyard, and I gave the guard (whose partner was gambling at the time) in the great hall a dog. I think that’s it… Oh, and I also gave lashtongue the advanced template. I’m pretty sure that’s all it took to get everyone where I wanted them, and it ended up working out great.

Also, I’m a GM who really likes treasure and magic items, and for my taste, this AP isn’t dropping quite enough (that’s not a knock, just a personal preference). The first thing I did to appease my treasure-love was to make the Asmodean Unholy Symbol on the Veil a Barbed Pentacle of Asmodeus (from Gods and Magic).

The only change I made to the player’s time at the manor (before going in for their 9 Lessons) was adding a 5th member to the White Ravens. I wanted at least 1 more member for the group’s eventual rivals. I also wanted to add a 2nd female presence that would give the group a bit more of a potential ally/convert if roleplayed out, so that I could just run Elise as written.

I ended up adapting Anya Jeggare from The Queen’s Hands in the Rival Guide. I’ve never done much with summoners before, and thought this might be a nice chance to fiddle around with one. I also really liked the idea of introducing the White Ravens to the party by just having the PCs see a large serpentine tail slithering into a room before they know there are others in the manor with them. I mostly kept her backstory intact from the Rival Guide, with the main tweak being this addendum to the end of it:

“Although she performed well in the role, the others harbored a hidden resentment that they were not chosen for this position, and ultimately turned on their leader. Just barely, with the loyal aid of Ogoshae, Anya was able escape to the north, where she subsequently fell in with The White Ravens. The fact that she is now back in the service of Asmodeus leads the young Jeggare to believe that the fateful events of her past have led her to this destiny...”

As for The Nine Lessons:

Room 1: The only change I made here was increasing the reward for discovering the jewel from 400 to 600xp. I didn’t understand why finding one door was worth 600, but the other was only 400 when they share the same DC, etc… So I just bumped it.

Room 2: Made no changes.

Room 3: I actually swapped rooms 3 and 5. So for me, this room contained the 2 Mithral Cobras. I did this largely because of the treasure that I added to room 4 (more on that in a moment). I added the advanced template to both snakes, and knew it would be a tough fight, so I wanted them to find the Cure Potions right afterward. I also wanted the PCs to have the items in room 4 for the encounter with the vampiric mist, so again, it behooved me to flop the areas.

Room 4: This room had the most significant changes. Instead of having Timeon in the secret chamber, he was already strapped to the rack. Not only that, but I placed a CR4 trap in the ceiling directly above him. The trap I used is an adapted version of the Shocksaw Trap from Dungeons of Golarion. My version’s trigger was based on movement occurring within 10’ as opposed to triggering on Sight within 15’ Timeon could move his eyes (and attempt to get them to notice it), but that’s it unless the PCs disarm the trap.

Going back to my love of treasure, hidden in the secret chamber is a small horde for the group, as a reward for making it this far (from Branderscar to here). Each PC had a paper with their name attached to an item, and there was a couple extras as well:


  • +1 Longbow (Jimmy the Zen Archer)
  • +1 Full Plate (Imperius the Antipaladin)
  • +1 Mace (Al the Crusader Cleric)
  • Living Garments (Kyrin the Infernal Sorcerer)
  • Cloak of Elvenkind (Vornlyn the Rogue))
  • Necklace of Fireballs 4 2d4 and 1 6d6 (Fuego the Fire Elemental Sorcerer)
  • 3 Potions of Cure Light Wounds
  • and a Wand of Magic Weapon

    Room 5: (remember, this is the encounter from room 3 as written) I simply gave the Vampiric Mist the advanced template and bumped the reward for overcoming the darkness from 600 to 900.

    Room 6: Bumped the trap’s XP from 800 to 1200 (which was worth it, because this trap WRECKED them in classic fashion!)

    Room 7: Bumped the reward from 600 to 900

    Room 8: Increased the Draugr count from 4 to 6.

    Room 9: Gave Balin one more level of fighter.

Highlights Part 2:

  • The group seeing only the tail of Anya’s “pet” slithering up a set of stairs into the darkness and subsequently exclaiming “Naga!!!”

  • The players studying the Pact of Thorns with a fine tooth comb before actually, physically signing it. Doing this went against their very nature. This is not a group of players to allow themselves to be beholden to a master… Going to be very interesting.

  • In the second room of the Nine Lessons, after having found the alchemist’s ice, Al (the cleric) figures out the connection between it and the mold. After having already watched 2 of his companions get rocked by cold damage, he gets nailed himself as he walks up to the mold and simply holds the jewel against it. While the mold does recoil slightly, it takes 2 more rounds of cold damage for him to rethink his strategy…

  • Fuego, the unarmored, halfing Sorcerer charges ahead into the Mithral Cobra room, and is immediately flanked by the creatures. Hijinks ensue...

  • The group opens to door to my altered room 4. They see Timeon strapped to the rack, eyes emphatically moving between the PCs and the ceiling above his torso. Before anyone else can react, Fuego barges into the room, walking directly toward the squire. The trap is set off, the electrified blade comes rocketing toward the Halfling and drops him unconscious in one hit (he had been hurt badly by the cobras in the previous room). After seeing this, does the rogue then move to find/disable the trap? No. He tries talking to Timeon, who continues to only move his eyes to the trap. Now does the rogue do something about the trap? No, he tells the archer to shoot the boy, hoping that will loosen his tongue. The arrow strikes true, jolting the boy’s body, thus setting off the trap and killing him instantly. Farewell, Timeon… we hardly new ye… Classic.

  • Kyrin loses much blood to the vampiric mists while Imperius climbs onto the pillar in order to get down the oil lanterns and smash onto the grate above the vile creature.

  • In the Chamber of Sin, the group is very skeptical and cautious. They search (though role poorly) the eastern wall, the southern wall, and the podium. Eventually, all but Fuego are crowded around the pendant, not touching it. Fuego remains in the doorway, studying the inscription. Finally, Kyrin reaches out and picks up the dragon pendant. Vornlyn, Jimmy, and Imperius all immediately run for the stairs, fearing the worst. As soon as Vornlyn’s foot touches the step, the Spiked Ball trap is triggered and 5 of my 6 PCs are run over, with only Jimmy making his save. Imperius, Kyrin, and Al are all unconscious, and the last of the groups Cure Potions are consumed.

  • The group opens the door on the shrieker room. It is bathed in darkness, though those with darkvision describe the contents to the others. Before anyone even fully enters the room, the Aasimar casts Daylight… The shrieker shrieks…

  • After the mushroom is destroyed, the PCs are left with the distant sound of smashing wood. They steel themselves for battle. Most of the draugr fight takes place in the hallway between rooms 7 and 8. The antipaladin drops unconscious and Kyrin nearly dies…

    The group is now in seriously rough shape with one room to go. They have only just now realized that they have the time to take a rest. Fuego took and is holding the key to Balin’s room, and they are hunkering down in room 8.
  • Next week should be fun!

    Shadow Lodge

    I've been running a group through this for the past two months or so, and I am loving this path.

    I have four PCs:
    A Cleric
    An AntiPaladin (changed as suggested to LE from CE)
    A Monk of the Four Winds
    A Halfling Rogue/Alechemist

    They just reached Aldencross, but this wont really be anything spoilery. I just love it.

    Sort of Spoiler:

    They learned of some "heirloom" type magic items mounted in a curio shop (I had a bit of a good run on figuring out what type of magic items would be present in town and the PCs had a "cover story" that ended up with them going to exactly the place I had them). They mulled over a way to get the lot, and couldn't think of anything that wouldn't turn suspicion on the new kids.

    The rogue, in his "wisdom", decided to try to poison one of the shop owners in his sleep to convince the other owner to sell the shop. They didn't really have the capital for the sale, but they weren't thinking that far ahead. The rogue sneaks in at night, and successfully poisons the mark with arsenic. He survives, but remains asleep. In attempting to administer another dose, he botches and dribbles the poison on the guy's face. The mark wakes up and the rogue gets a quick stab in to almost silence him. Then the brother wakes to investigate. He gets the kidney shuffle as well as his wife. Three corpses in the apartments above the shop.

    The halfling thinks quick. What to do? He knows dwarven, so he carves "Dwarves did this!" in dwarven on the wall. Subtle. After joining his friends and them mocking his solutions, he returns to the scene and plants a "shopping list" that the "dwarf" dropped in his haste to escape and cover his robbery/murder.

    They then start using their circlets to spread rumors around town that the dwarves in town have brought thieves with them to stalk the town and strip it of its shinies. Most people don't buy it, but it's starting to take a bit of hold.


    Hey, thanks for the updates! I always enjoy reading them.

    Joseph, wow! Sounds like your group has indeed taken quite a beating. It seems their master definitely believes in the school of hard knocks.

    Beanish, a great update. I love it when PCs take a very different than expected tack on an adventure.

    Gary McBride
    Fire Mountain Games

    Qadira

    @Joseph Wilson -- What are Living Garments? For Balin, I just left him as is and increased his CR by 1 because his stats are that of a PC instead of the standard elite array.


    Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
    kevin_video wrote:
    @Joseph Wilson -- What are Living Garments? For Balin, I just left him as is and increased his CR by 1 because his stats are that of a PC instead of the standard elite array.

    Probably going to end up doing something like that for Balin myself anyway, as one of my 6 players will be absent from the next session.

    Living Garments are a new magic item in the Advanced Race Guide in the Drow section. That particular PC has an obsession with fine clothing, and always wanting to look prim and proper. As soon as I read this magic item I knew it was perfect for him, so found the soonest possible place to work it in.

    Qadira

    Joseph Wilson wrote:
    kevin_video wrote:
    @Joseph Wilson -- What are Living Garments? For Balin, I just left him as is and increased his CR by 1 because his stats are that of a PC instead of the standard elite array.

    Probably going to end up doing something like that for Balin myself anyway, as one of my 6 players will be absent from the next session.

    Living Garments are a new magic item in the Advanced Race Guide in the Drow section. That particular PC has an obsession with fine clothing, and always wanting to look prim and proper. As soon as I read this magic item I knew it was perfect for him, so found the soonest possible place to work it in.

    Thanks, found it. That's crazy expensive for a +5 Diplomacy and self-sewing itself.

    When I was looking over Balin, that was the first thing I noticed, and pointed it out in an early post for Gary. I've only got four players myself plus an NPC and they're pretty hardy. I loved the other stuff you made note of. I pretty much did the same thing for treasure for the PCs.


    Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
    kevin_video wrote:


    Thanks, found it. That's crazy expensive for a +5 Diplomacy and self-sewing itself.

    When I was looking over Balin, that was the first thing I noticed, and pointed it out in an early post for Gary. I've only got four players myself plus an NPC and they're pretty hardy. I loved the other stuff you made note of. I pretty much did the same thing for treasure for the PCs.

    Agreed, which is why I didn't mind handing it out at level 2. It's basically a diplomacy version of the cloak of elvenkind.

    Also, thanks for the tip and the kind words!

    Qadira

    Joseph Wilson wrote:

    Agreed, which is why I didn't mind handing it out at level 2. It's basically a diplomacy version of the cloak of elvenkind.

    Also, thanks for the tip and the kind words!

    No problem. Also, forewarning you that you'll be revising Nerianus the oracle as well. He's actually CR 6 with 7d8+21 hp and an extra two feats. I just gave him back the regular two feats that all tritons have. I also gave him a couple pearls of power to get back the spells he used.

    Qadira

    Hey Gary,

    Background stuff:
    Given what you said about running other campaign evily in Wayfinder (good read, btw), I'm hoping you'd be able to give better insight than I was about this. A friend of mine just picked up a copy of your first book. He loved it, and wants to run it as well. However, he's one of those crazy detailed guys, and doesn't just want the PCs to have the crime trait and go "you're in prison because of X." He actually wants to role play the whole thing out with his players. Preferably all together rather than separate. Maybe they're all going to the same job, but they all have their own separate mission. I'm okay with it, but I couldn't help him. The best I could do was tell him how I had my some of players do a one-on-one with me (not all of them cared, they just wanted to get started), unless I saw fit to have a couple of them in there where one accidentally bungled the other. Like the rogue murdered the priest that the ninja had attempted to so he could usurp the head position for his brother. So one's got murder and the other's got attempted murder, and now there's a rivalry between them over who's going to end up being the best.

    He'd like something a bit better than that. Maybe even have the PCs start at level 0 using the Apprentice rules

    Any suggestions? Maybe a module that could be reduced another level? I'm fresh out of ideas, and all I can think of is what I did. Nothing like what he's looking for.


    1 person marked this as a favorite.

    @kevin_video -- without knowing specific crimes/PCs, it's difficult to give any specific advice.

    However, some general advice:

    Spoiler:

    My first piece of friendly advice -- consider NOT doing this. The campaign is already long. By the time we're done, "Way of the Wicked" will encapsulate twenty levels. Twenty levels is a long time to play any single character. Does this really need further expansion?

    But if he wants to push foward on this project, take a 1st level adventure he likes, make it even easier (for 0th level characters) and instead of just raiding a tomb (for example), make it desecrating/stealing/burning down from a tomb in the middle of a honored religious site.

    And it ends with the PCs all getting busted. And try to keep it a one-shot. You don't want to take too long after all to get into the meat of the AP.

    Hope that helps,
    Gary McBride
    Fire Mountain Games

    Qadira

    Fire Mountain Games wrote:

    @kevin_video -- without knowing specific crimes/PCs, it's difficult to give any specific advice.

    However, some general advice:
    ** spoiler omitted **

    Yeah, my issue was the lack of knowing what the crimes are as well. If murder is involved, I'd probably suggest that a priest of Mitra regularly goes on the anniversary.

    Thanks for the advice. Hopefully he doesn't actually go through with it.


    Why does this "crazy detailed guy" not just work together with each player when they create their background. I - as a fellow GM - would rather be disappointed if the player just choose a trait and tell me nothing about the why and how they done it. I think this would suffice.
    Maybe he could roleplay how the villains get dumped in Branderscar - but I would use really strong measures that they won´t even try to use this as a means of escape (maybe even let one another npc prisoner try it and die as he tries - think of the beginning scene of skyrim).


    @other GM´s or Gary:

    Spoiler:
    My pc´s stole the elven wine bottles in the cellar of Balentyne (after Barhold has switched them). Then they sold it to him after they heard some rumors that he really likes wine. He has played along (fearing the pcs power but recognizing his the bottles).

    I decided - after so many murders - he tells his brother about the secret tunnel to Balentyne. I let Tacitus set up an Alarm spell in the tunnel - so next time the pc´s wants to visit - they will set up a trap. What contigent would you place there? Mott, Mad Martin and Varning are already dead.

    Qadira

    Patrick Kropp wrote:

    Why does this "crazy detailed guy" not just work together with each player when they create their background. I - as a fellow GM - would rather be disappointed if the player just choose a trait and tell me nothing about the why and how they done it. I think this would suffice.

    Maybe he could roleplay how the villains get dumped in Branderscar - but I would use really strong measures that they won´t even try to use this as a means of escape (maybe even let one another npc prisoner try it and die as he tries - think of the beginning scene of skyrim).

    I was thinking more along the lines of The Running Man. Head explode.

    I don't know why he's so fixated on it. Probably because that's how he's always done it. He's kind of OCD so it's likely hard to break out of routine.

    As for the wine stuff, just have extra guards in the area. When the ping does off, blow the horn and have the guards readied to point spears at the door.


    Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

    Hello, Wicked Community.

    Curious as to how other GMs have handled the "training montage" after The Nine Lessons. I've got it coming up, and am waffling on how to approach it.

    Qadira

    Joseph Wilson wrote:

    Hello, Wicked Community.

    Curious as to how other GMs have handled the "training montage" after The Nine Lessons. I've got it coming up, and am waffling on how to approach it.

    I had them actually do the training montage. I had them do stamina training (chop down wood to keep the lord warm), survival training (find edible food when there isn't any to be had), pop quizzes (knowledge checks) about all of Talingarde, and just a few other mini quests. I was behind on xp so I had them gain little bits of xp here and there, and even the occasional random encounter.

    Was there anything in particular you were looking for?


    This book, "Way of the Wicked Book One: Knot of Thorns" has been nominated for an Ennie. We here at Fire Mountain Games are especially proud of this nomination since this is our very first release.

    We are humbled and blown away by this announcement.

    Thanks to everyone involved and enjoy being wicked.

    Gary McBride
    Fire Mountain Games

    Cheliax

    Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

    Honestly Gary, the surprise isn't that you got a nom for best Electronic Book, it's that you didn't get a nom for Best Adventure. Of course neither did any volume of the Pathfinder AP, so maybe it's the lesser of two evils that none of us have to make that choice...

    Qadira

    Fire Mountain Games wrote:

    This book, "Way of the Wicked Book One: Knot of Thorns" has been nominated for an Ennie. We here at Fire Mountain Games are especially proud of this nomination since this is our very first release.

    We are humbled and blown away by this announcement.

    Thanks to everyone involved and enjoy being wicked.

    Gary McBride
    Fire Mountain Games

    It's well deserved.


    Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
    kevin_video wrote:


    I had them actually do the training montage. I had them do stamina training (chop down wood to keep the lord warm), survival training (find edible food when there isn't any to be had), pop quizzes (knowledge checks) about all of Talingarde, and just a few other mini quests. I was behind on xp so I had them gain little bits of xp here and there, and even the occasional random encounter.

    Was there anything in particular you were looking for?

    Nothing in particular. Just general thoughts. Thanks for sharing!


    Fire Mountain Games wrote:

    This book, "Way of the Wicked Book One: Knot of Thorns" has been nominated for an Ennie. We here at Fire Mountain Games are especially proud of this nomination since this is our very first release.

    We are humbled and blown away by this announcement.

    Thanks to everyone involved and enjoy being wicked.

    Gary McBride
    Fire Mountain Games

    I'm a random gamer, and I approve of this!


    Thanks everyone for all the kind words and encouragement.

    It's been a whole day since the announcement and I'm still in a daze about it all.

    Gary McBride
    Fire Mountain Games


    Would Thorn ressurect a pc? One of my players died while "storming" Balentyne and walked into a trap (Iron Sam, Eddarly and one side - Tacitus and his golem the other) in the secret tunnel to Balentyne. Commander Eddarly killed him with 3 arrows. Another barely survived through expending 2 hero points from APG (ok Villain points *eg*)
    Because one of the players already died and I beginn fearing that the "initial" knot will be fewer and fewer I want him to get raised. The player likes his pc too. But If I just handwave it an let Thorn rezz him I fear that they will beginn thinking they are invicible. What do you think?

    Qadira

    Patrick Kropp wrote:

    Would Thorn ressurect a pc? One of my players died while "storming" Balentyne and walked into a trap (Iron Sam, Eddarly and one side - Tacitus and his golem the other) in the secret tunnel to Balentyne. Commander Eddarly killed him with 3 arrows. Another barely survived through expending 2 hero points from APG (ok Villain points *eg*)

    Because one of the players already died and I beginn fearing that the "initial" knot will be fewer and fewer I want him to get raised. The player likes his pc too. But If I just handwave it an let Thorn rezz him I fear that they will beginn thinking they are invicible. What do you think?

    This actually got asked before, and I favourited the post. Basically, if he wants to keep the character as is, Thorn would raise him, but only as a reward for doing a good job. Until then, he'd just make it possible for the PC to rise up as an undead spirit of vengeance. If Gary's revised that answer since the first time, I hope he posts that one.


    could you link me to garys answer?
    I am a little biased. dying is not "doing a good job". He did nothing to raise the other knots. On the other hand he is a valuable ressource and I want to keep the knot intact.


    Patrick,

    As I noted early on resurrection, ultimately the decision is up to you.

    The rest begins to tread into spoiler territory so...

    Spoiler:

    Thorn certainly COULD resurrect a PC, being a high level cleric of Asmodeus. Would he is up to you, the GM. I have just a few bits of caution:

    1) Favoritism -- if one PC dies and gets raised and another does not that could create animosity. Of course no one knows your group better than you.

    2) Defusing Tension -- if the PCs believe that a mysterious patron out there will raise them no matter how bad things get, its takes tension out of the game.

    Making it clear this is one time thing in order to ensure that a critical mission succeeds (and perhaps taking the cost out of their reward) would be one way to help with those problems.

    Anyways, hope that helps,

    Gary McBride
    Fire Mountain Games

    Qadira

    @ Gary and Patrick -- After their training montage, I gave my group an overpowered feat from Super Genius Games that came out this April 1st. It's called the "Extra Lives" feat. You can come back 3 times during your character's career. I also made them put one rank into Heal for fluff purposes.

    My mindset was that one of the things they learned while training was CPR. They're essentially walking into a death trap with every mission, but Thorn's not so stupid as to make them go kamikaze and make his plans take even longer should they fail. This way they could fireman carry a buddy out of the area, and they'd have mere seconds to bring him/her back from the brink of death. I'm only letting them take this once because you can really only cheat death so many times. After that, they're pretty much on their own.

    This actually concerns my players for one very important reason. How scary is this campaign that they need to be given that feat for free? They've been even more cautious since getting it.

    Paizo Employee Webstore Gninja Minion

    Now available as a print/PDF bundle, along with part 2, "Call Forth Darkness" and part 3, "Tears of the Blessed"!


    Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Pathfinder Maps, Pawns Subscriber

    For those of us who bought the pdf - any slightly cheaper printness?

    Because I'd really like to support Fire Mountain Games, but I also already ponied up $10 for the pdf.


    chavamana wrote:

    For those of us who bought the pdf - any slightly cheaper printness?

    Because I'd really like to support Fire Mountain Games, but I also already ponied up $10 for the pdf.

    First, thanks for buying the PDF. It is only because of people like you buying those PDFs in the early days that we have the money for there to be print versions now.

    Alas, we cannot drop the price. $25 is what we need to make enough profit to push forward.

    That said, in the future, all our books will have print/PDF bundles available quickly after their production either here or on DriveThruRPG.

    And again, thanks for supporting Fire Mountain Games.

    Gary McBride
    Fire Mountain Games


    Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Pathfinder Maps, Pawns Subscriber

    Fair enough :)

    I am very glad that you will have the bundles sooner in the future - because it is a fantastic adventure. Additionally both your art and layouts are beautiful.


    Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

    Really excited to see the print versions here on Paizo. I have all of the pdfs, but only bought the first one in print so far. I look forward to adding the others to future subscription shipments! :-)

    Qadira

    One thing that I can guarantee you, Gary, is that once this is done, and you release a compiled version for print, I'd totally buy it. Even if you were to do it at a later date, as an anniversary edition.


    Chavamana,

    Thanks for the compliment about the art and layout. That side of the company is mostly done by Mike Clarke, our amazing in-house artist.

    Gary McBride
    Fire Mountain Games


    I'm actually going to be starting this soon with my group and was wondering if there were maps without the numbers that I could hand out during play to make it easier on them?

    Qadira

    Randomdonkey wrote:
    I'm actually going to be starting this soon with my group and was wondering if there were maps without the numbers that I could hand out during play to make it easier on them?

    Not for the first book, I'm afraid. At least not yet.


    Hi,

    finally I managed to get a TPK (ok only two died - rest was in negative) when they tried to rescue their comrades from the prison in Balentyne. Tacitus and Sir Thomas Havelyn are just too much for a group who is underleveled - thanks to some players who died or not showed up every session. We had a: human antipaladin (3), tiefling witch (5), goblin ranger (4) with humans for favored enemy, human summoner (4) with his eidolon and a duergar barbarian (3) who is a replacement for the rogue who died the session before. They also had a bugbear with elite stats with them (more of a npc - his player played him only once in over 4 sessions since joining the group).

    I decided to have Thorn rescue them (but I am feeling like cheating and I find they deserved to die... but I want to play the damn AP). Tiadora catched the surviving members and even the dead Antipaladin.

    The Antipaladin was made into a skeletal champion, the rest healed and re-equiped. They are vastly underleveled - granted. When players die in my campaigns I let them roll new characters with one level below the lowest living pc. In this case I let them start level 3 - level 2 would have been suicide.

    Thorn sends them back to fulfill their mission - but they are feeling like going to the slaughterhouse. They are under the impression they have absolutely no chance against Sir Havelyn. And maybe they are right. Even if they have luck an kill him - they will be to low for Part 2 of way of the wicked.

    So please - any advice is welcome.

    Qadira

    Patrick Kropp wrote:
    So please - any advice is welcome.

    Throw templates on them. That's what I did with my group. I've got a half-fiend vishkanya ranger, an advanced gnome rogue, a cunning creature tiefling wizard, a crafty prodigy human cleric, and an advanced samsaran oracle. Each of these templates essentially levels up each PC by two levels (CR +2). Check out the PFSRD for more examples. Maybe give them all the same template, advanced. They'll have +4 to all stats, and +2 natural armor. They should feel like gods then. Have it be a side effect from whatever Thorn did to keep them alive.


    1 person marked this as a favorite.

    Patrick,

    Spoiler:

    You are correct they are under-level for the end of Book One. Havelyn and his officers are designed to be challenging encounters for Level 5 PCs.

    How about a sidequest in the savage north? Thorn decides that before they return to Balentyne they need better equipment so he sends the PCs to meet with the Ice-troll leader Sigarth Eikenhart (See Book One pg. 82). But before Sigarth aids the Knot, he requires a service...

    A side quest of your own design to get the PCs up to level 4 or 5 and let Balentyne and Aldencross "cool off". Then the PCs return, complete their mission and they are ready to charge into Book Two.

    Anyways, just keep in mind it's all in good fun.

    Hope that helps,
    Gary McBride
    Fire Mountain Games

    Cheliax

    Fire Mountain Games wrote:

    Patrick,

    ** spoiler omitted **

    Anyways, just keep in mind it's all in good fun.

    Hope that helps,
    Gary McBride
    Fire Mountain Games

    I had them do a side quest as well to level up. Took a little effort but I ran PF module "No response from Deepmar" on Seal Island. I found the hellish background of the module fit well. I had to power down some encounters by numbers or young template but it was very rewarding. The PC hunted around the island on the way to Fireaxes camp and really wanted to explore it more but they were on the clock so I let them go back and ran a modified version of the module.

    Basically I let them find some info out (rumor) that a new prison was being built in secret on the isle, since my group is so looking forward to using the optional rules for evil organizations from book two, that this was a great way to liberate some minions from the clutches of Mitra. It was a solid fit and it might just be me but I also found they were under the wealth by level chart so the module filled that gap as well.

    I have purchased first 3 PDF's and read them all.... Great Game! I am having a blast running it.

    I do have to ask for some advice (retro, in case I run it for a 2nd group) at the Watch Tower in the end of book one the PC's really got into RP and sucking every rumor out of me and had formulated many other ways of weakening the towers defenses. The trouble we ran into was endless debate how to handle each individual situation. We had a group leader (cleric of Asmodeus) but they could never agree on a single course of action. I eventually had the leader assign a different course of action to each PC for them to run as they seen fit and make all the decisions about it, this way everyone had a say and actions in the towers downfall. But it felt kinda forced and not smooth but the debates about what actions to take had went on for 2 gaming sessions.

    Any better way to have handled that?

    Qadira

    1 person marked this as a favorite.
    Fire Mountain Games wrote:

    Patrick,

    ** spoiler omitted **

    Anyways, just keep in mind it's all in good fun.

    Hope that helps,

    Gary, questions on your suggestion.

    Spoiler:
    What would be a good build for the king? Obviously you don't want him too high. I was thinking ice troll barbarian 2/expert 2 with craft (metalworking).
    As for a homebrew adventure, do you have any suggestions? Maybe there's a mithral reserve up North, but it's guarded by something that's got a ward specifically against trolls. But even then, if they were to be to get past that, there's an ice golem inside (which would be pretty tacky I know considering they'll be facing off against the wizard's later). Just figured maybe if his clan likes mithral so much, have the PCs go after a chunk of it. Maybe artic elves in the upper North? They've been at war for some time, but just need the PCs to go infiltrate one of the camps nearby and get what they have. The elves and trolls have been at war for some time thanks their beliefs in Mitra vs Asmodeus, and the king believes that the mithral is what give them their advantage. As such, they fight almost every day. While his men distract the overconfident elves, the PCs raid one of now less guarded camps.
    Perhaps a pre-made adventure that could be adapted for the low level party? There's not too many artic-based ones no matter what system you look at. There's barely even any arctic based creatures in Pathfinder. A couple I got suggested were all 3.5 ones, and they're fairly heavy on the "good guy" scenarios. The main issue I've found with villains is that bad guys don't like fighting other bad guys, and tend to just let them do as they want, or ask to join in.


    1 person marked this as a favorite.

    WhipShire,

    I run into this problem as well -- too much debate. Debate and RP is not a bad thing. If everyone is having a good time, then let it continue. However, every once and a while, it clear begins to bog down the game.

    My solution is simple. I always play the game where I can see a time piece (my cellphone usually). When the PCs begin to debate in character, I shut up and let them go...for five minutes. During those five minutes, I'm not inactive. I keep crude notes over what the plans are and who supports what. After five minutes, if they ever start repeating points or it ever become a circle of debate, then I interrupt.
    As long as the debate is covering new ground and everyone is having fun -- fine. I let it go on. I only intervene when it becomes clear we're stuck.

    I say something like this: "I think we've heard everyone's take on this and we've reached an impasse. Chris, Eric and Chad clearly support plan A. Joe and Bryan support plan B. Alex supports plan C. Plan A has the most support (or if that's not clear vote on it), let move forward with that one."

    PCs now have to deal with the fact that they're trying Plan A. They can roleplay being unwillingly dragged along if they like, but it gets the action moving again.

    Hope that helps,
    Gary McBride
    Fire Mountain Games


    1 person marked this as a favorite.

    kevin_video,

    Spoiler:

    The ice troll king's build depends on the PC level of course. Your build didn't seem unreasonable. I also imagine the ice troll not being an enemy the PCs should fight but rather one they should have to deal with.

    As far as pregen adventures, way back in Dungeon #20 for D&D 2nd edition there was an adventure called "Ancient Blood" for levels 3-5. Great arctic themed side-quest. Of course, you would have to convert the system.

    Failing that, Werebears are good arctic foes. Perhaps a werebear leading leading polar bears (advanced grizzly bears) have been giving the trolls grief. The PCs can hunt down this noble defender of the north and return with his hide, gaining the aid of the ice troll king who will begin manufacturing mithral weapons for the bugbear leadership.

    And then, this sidequest finished, the PCs can return to renew their assault on Balentyne.

    Hope that helps,
    Gary McBride
    Fire Mountain Games

    Qadira

    Fire Mountain Games wrote:

    kevin_video,

    ** spoiler omitted **

    Hope that helps,
    Gary McBride

    It does. I'd never have them fight him. Also,

    spoiler:
    I came across an adventure in Frostburn that I'm reading called Delzonmen's Iceforge. It's EL 5. Not sure if it's the right adventure or not yet, but one of the hooks is that the PCs are sent to find the legendary tower because it's apparently got magic items in them. If it's true, they are to be brought back to the benefactor that's paying for the expedition. Figure he'd want some of that.

    kevin_video,

    You know, Frostburn is a book I never picked up, but that sounds very appropriate.

    Gary McBride
    Fire Mountain Games

    Qadira

    Fire Mountain Games wrote:

    kevin_video,

    You know, Frostburn is a book I never picked up, but that sounds very appropriate.

    It's turning out to be, yes. And

    spoiler:
    depending on how the PCs go about it, it can be a fortress for them, leave it be for the current inhabitants (Neanderthals), or a fortress for the trolls. It's even got a forge in it. However, that's meant more for making simulacrums. Which is all the PCs fight when they get into the actual tower. Including a white dragon. It's got a good background story too that could easily be brought into the Way of the Wicked setting.

    As for a copy, you can pretty much Google that nowadays and get a direct download from most sites.

    Cheliax

    Fire Mountain Games wrote:

    WhipShire,

    I run into this problem as well -- too much debate. Debate and RP is not a bad thing. If everyone is having a good time, then let it continue. However, every once and a while, it clear begins to bog down the game.

    My solution is simple. I always play the game where I can see a time piece (my cellphone usually). When the PCs begin to debate in character, I shut up and let them go...for five minutes. During those five minutes, I'm not inactive. I keep crude notes over what the plans are and who supports what. After five minutes, if they ever start repeating points or it ever become a circle of debate, then I interrupt.
    As long as the debate is covering new ground and everyone is having fun -- fine. I let it go on. I only intervene when it becomes clear we're stuck.

    I say something like this: "I think we've heard everyone's take on this and we've reached an impasse. Chris, Eric and Chad clearly support plan A. Joe and Bryan support plan B. Alex supports plan C. Plan A has the most support (or if that's not clear vote on it), let move forward with that one."

    PCs now have to deal with the fact that they're trying Plan A. They can roleplay being unwillingly dragged along if they like, but it gets the action moving again.

    Hope that helps,
    Gary McBride
    Fire Mountain Games

    Thank you so much for the reply and the advice i truly appreciate it.

    501 to 550 of 1,390 << first < prev | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | next > last >>
    Paizo / Messageboards / paizo.com / Product Discussion / Way of the Wicked—Book #1: Knot of Thorns (PFRPG) All Messageboards

    Want to post a reply? Sign in.

    ©2002–2014 Paizo Inc.®. Need help? Email customer.service@paizo.com or call 425-250-0800 during our business hours: Monday–Friday, 10 AM–5 PM Pacific Time. View our privacy policy. Paizo Inc., Paizo, the Paizo golem logo, Pathfinder, the Pathfinder logo, Pathfinder Society, GameMastery, and Planet Stories are registered trademarks of Paizo Inc., and Pathfinder Roleplaying Game, Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Pathfinder Adventure Path, Pathfinder Adventure Card Game, Pathfinder Player Companion, Pathfinder Modules, Pathfinder Tales, Pathfinder Battles, Pathfinder Online, PaizoCon, RPG Superstar, The Golem's Got It, Titanic Games, the Titanic logo, and the Planet Stories planet logo are trademarks of Paizo Inc. Dungeons & Dragons, Dragon, Dungeon, and Polyhedron are registered trademarks of Wizards of the Coast, Inc., a subsidiary of Hasbro, Inc., and have been used by Paizo Inc. under license. Most product names are trademarks owned or used under license by the companies that publish those products; use of such names without mention of trademark status should not be construed as a challenge to such status.