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Crypt of the Everflame [GM Reference]


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The adventure is not too hard for a group of four players from level 1, especially against the shadow. They have no magic weapon.

My group has no priest.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Card Game, Maps, Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber
mass wrote:

The adventure is not too hard for a group of four players from level 1, especially against the shadow. They have no magic weapon.

My group has no priest.

It IS too hard, or is not?

If it is not, then maybe you need to beef up some of the opposition (if its too easy). If it is too difficult, then maybe you need to toss in some magic oils, potions, and scrolls...

What is your party composition (Im not running KOTE until after Burnt Offerings, so I'm going to have to buff it up a little...)

Andoran

Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

My in person group of 4 players did pretty well with this module, though they had a rough time(as they should) with the shadow. Oddly, the thing that caused them the most trouble was the swarms(they fled from them), but that was primarily because they didn't have any arcane power so were having issues damaging them.

They did well against the boss, though they had pushed themselves a bit too far and were trying to hurry and so didn't rest before even though they had an idea they were walking into a rough fight. It made the battle a good climax for the adventure.


My group of 4 (one PC was played by me, the DM) did well and I think they had a good time with the module. The module did a great job of introducing the final ruleset and how it handles a wide variety of combat and noncombat encounters.

We actually used the flipmat with the module, and it worked for the most part but I don't know that it was noticeably better than our standard battlemat (where you draw the dungeon as you go) that we normally use. Having to hide the dungeon and reveal only the parts the players could see was...challenging. And flipping the mat over when they went downstairs (it was mid-session) was tedious. Still, the quality of the flipmat was very nice.

The initial encounter with the shadow forced the group to retreat, and they were dubious that the fire was still going the next day when they returned. I actually hadn't thought too much about it, and came up with some off the cuff answer as to why it was still smoldering and giving off smoke. They had a pretty good game plan for the second encounter with it, and while they took their licks they were able to defeat it and felt good about it.

I was very much surprised to see how long characters could hold their breath for when it came time to investigate the well. Holy smokes people can hold their breath for a long time! I must have a very low CON in real life hehe. Ezren puts me to shame.

The party bypassed the obvious hall of traps, opting instead for the other passage. The pillar trap was very dangerous, and could have spelled doom for the group if not for a good disable device roll from the rogue in the nick of time.

They enjoyed the lower level's riddle, "safe" room, and monster encounters. They trounced the skeletons in the boss's room before the boss even got to engage them, but the boss managed to split them up a bit and put the hurt on them before they finished him off.

All in all it was a fun initial adventure.

Silver Crusade

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

Did anyone run into issues with the steep hillside? It was very difficult to describe to the group properly. Of course, that might be because we're in Louisiana, and have a grand total of one mountain. Most of us have visited mountainous/hilly terrain, but it's hard to give the right feeling of scale, difficulty to traverse, and potential dangers when everyone has a very limited frame of reference.

The mechanic was very neat, but it didn't work very well when the group decided to rope themselves together. It mentions a bonus for rope use, but the mechanic applied very awkwardly when two characters succeeded with flying colors, and the other four couldn't buy a double digit acrobatics check with 100gp and Circlet of Persuasion...

BTW - it's a large party - one human fighter (two-hander), one half-elf ranger (archer), one human sorcerer (celestial bloodline), one human cleric (Cayden Calain), one halfling rogue, and two druids (dwarf and half-elf) with two animal companions (ape and tyransaurus).


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Sorry to come in late,the pre gen Kyra in the back,she has a Scimitar,is this right for a Cleric?

I was reproducing the character for my players in Hero lab and the program says its a "martial weapon proficiency" required for the Scimitar and attacking with it would be at a -3 instead of the +1 stated in the back of the book,is the Scimitar a mistake in printing?

thanks in advance


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
hughnme wrote:

Sorry to come in late,the pre gen Kyra in the back,she has a Scimitar,is this right for a Cleric?

I was reproducing the character for my players in Hero lab and the program says its a "martial weapon proficiency" required for the Scimitar and attacking with it would be at a -3 instead of the +1 stated in the back of the book,is the Scimitar a mistake in printing?

thanks in advance

Kyra is a cleric of Sarenrae, whose favored weapon is the scimitar, and PfRPG clerics get their deity's favorite weapon as a free proficiency.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I'm gearing up to run this and am preparing some background information for my players. I swear somewhere I read about the beginning of the Quest for the Everflame: that a generation or so after Ekat Kassen's death, the townsfolk were troubled that the young people didn't have the same sense of shared purpose, so they decided to recreate the founder's last mission as a ritual to impress the importance of community on the younger generation. Only now I can't find that part. Have I lost my mind? Did I just make this up?


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Joana wrote:
I'm gearing up to run this and am preparing some background information for my players. I swear somewhere I read about the beginning of the Quest for the Everflame: that a generation or so after Ekat Kassen's death, the townsfolk were troubled that the young people didn't have the same sense of shared purpose, so they decided to recreate the founder's last mission as a ritual to impress the importance of community on the younger generation. Only now I can't find that part. Have I lost my mind? Did I just make this up?

I don't remember reading that, but I still think it's a very good point! Good idea!


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Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Cesare wrote:
Joana wrote:
I'm gearing up to run this and am preparing some background information for my players. I swear somewhere I read about the beginning of the Quest for the Everflame: that a generation or so after Ekat Kassen's death, the townsfolk were troubled that the young people didn't have the same sense of shared purpose, so they decided to recreate the founder's last mission as a ritual to impress the importance of community on the younger generation. Only now I can't find that part. Have I lost my mind? Did I just make this up?
I don't remember reading that, but I still think it's a very good point! Good idea!

Yeah, apparently I'm just nuts. :) I ended up writing it up as part of the background I'm giving my players, so I'll spoiler it below, if anyone is interested. You'll notice I changed up the frequency of the ritual slightly ('cuz I'm the queen of never running anything exactly as written) to give it a bit more importance than an annual harvest festival.

Spoiler:
After the defeat of Asar Vergas and the death of Ekat Kassen, the surviving townsfolk drew closer together in mourning -- and in pride at what they had come together to accomplish. Old feuds were forgotten for a time, and the traditional Nirmathi independence of spirit bent to an appreciation of what the community as a whole could do. As the generation that had fought alongside the paladin aged, however, they were unhappy to see their children and grandchildren falling back into old habits, holding grudges that drew lines of division in the town, now simply called Kassen, and disregarding the hard lessons of community that their forebears had paid for in blood. The town elders came together to devise a way to convince the youngsters of the benefits of working together, and so the quest for the Everflame was born.

Once in each generation, generally every five to seven years, the young adults of the town participate in a coming-of-age ritual that recreates the quest of Ekat Kassen and his followers into the wilderness. On the late autumn day that marks the anniversary of the day Kassen set out on his last march, the chosen young townsfolk gather in the square and are solemnly sent off with a lantern from the Greathall, to light it at the eternal flame in the crypt of the fallen paladin and bring it back to town to be preserved through the cold winter, a symbol of the town's history and resilience. What happens while the fledgling adventurers are away is a secret closely guarded from the younger residents, but when they return a few days later, the town holds a great celebration in their honor, using the fruits of the year's final harvest. Those who return with the lantern are hailed as the heroes of Kassen and are henceforth viewed as fully-grown citizens, marking the end of any apprenticeships. The Everflame celebration, therefore, is often the background for engagements and weddings, as well as land and business transactions as the heroes prepare to enter adult life.

Although most of the inhabitants of Kassen have gone through the quest for the Everflame, all seem to have taken an oath not to tell anyone uninitiated what exactly is involved in the ritual. Most adults only smile secretively when asked by a child. If approached during the Everflame celebration, returning heroes are equally unforthcoming; some will rumple the children's hair and tell them not to worry about it, while those more fond of the limelight will spin wild tales about wrestling trolls or defeating squadrons of orcs from Belkzen. Every child in Kassen seems to know of a vague and distant relation some generations ago who died during the quest, but as their own time approaches, the adolescents grow more dismissive of the dangers, rolling their eyes and declaring it's only some lame trick of their parents that couldn't possibly be all that interesting. After that, most young people are too busy in apprenticeships and jobs and courtships to give much thought to the ritual ... until the morning a folded paper is slipped under their door, summoning them on the morning of the 4th of Neth to the town square and the quest for the Everflame!


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Joana, that is a very nice backstory for those events. Thanks for sharing.

Stefan


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Outstanding work Joana! I used your writeup today to kick off my campaign. The tie-ins to Nirmathan independence and the slipped note under the door were especially nice touches.


Asgetrion wrote:


My biggest complaint is with the "hook" of the module; it may go over well with new players, but I know my players would find it very artificial and forced (we actually criticized James Wyatt's 'Dungeoncraft' articles about his Greenbrier campaign for this very same hook). So, no 'coming-of-age' rituals for my players; I'm likely going with 'Pathfinders-in-training' who are asked to go and look for a group of villagers who vanished in the vicinity of the tomb. Or maybe there are no vanished villagers; rather, the PCs will follow the trail of bandits (originally led by Razmir's priest) who stole something valuable from the village?

I thought the same thing, what i did is i gave the players the option of A) comming of age or B) Having recently done something heroic for the town.

it says that its usually done by the mayor and some dignitaries, so i though, hrm, someone who saved someone from a burning fire might get this honor as well. which leads to some fun RP
Spoiler:
so we have some adults on the quest that know its supposed to be fake, and some kids who think its real, and the adults play it up :P


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Cesare wrote:
Outstanding work Joana! I used your writeup today to kick off my campaign. The tie-ins to Nirmathan independence and the slipped note under the door were especially nice touches.

Glad you could use it! Hope your campaign goes well. Mine seems to be cursed. Every time we juggle everyone's schedule to find a common free day to start it, something comes up a day or two ahead of time (last-minute trip, death in the family, etc.) that makes us postpone it again. I hope we can get it off the ground one of these days!


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While this is not strictly GM stuff, I did not find any other thread in which I wanted to post this.

First off, my PCs (5 players) have about 3000 EP now after the adventure,so I need a story worth about 2000 EP for each to go in between - I would be happy for ideas here.

I finally DMed the adventure for my first-time Pathfinder group (all old hands at XD&D-my guess is that there were about 100 years of D&D experience at that table) this weekend. We had a lot of fun with it, but some things came up:

The dungeon setting could have used a few words explaining which part is how old, and who built what part for what purpose. It was stated in passing that the crypt is older than Kassen. Which parts are the oldest ones? The upper level? Then there are some catacombs missing there, or was it completely rebuilt? Was the lower level added after Kassens death? His crypt seems like it. Who built all the traps? The villagers after Kassens death are the most likely candidates. Did they build the traps to be harmless from the beginning? The Cassen statues in the upper level hallway indicate that the traps are meant to be deadly.

It would seem that regular villagers would have quite a hard time navigating the dungeon, even without deadly dangers awaiting them. My players doubted that regular folks would have had a chance to reach the crypt itself.

Encounters: My group consisted of two fighters, a cleric (of Abadar), a sorcerer (all human) and an elven rogue.

The six skeletons in the first room might have been a TPK if I had not cheated several damage rolls. The dice were against my players there, and the sheer number of attacks proved very dangerous.

The bombardeer beetle was minced meat before he could even attack once - two fighters are quite effective against one opponent.

I left the shadow completely out of the adventure - at that point, they would have had nearly no way to fight it, and a touch attack with 1d6 strength drain would have spelled disaster.

The PCs had not earned enough XP to advance to second level when they entered the second dungeon level, and had to fight the plague zombies (which proved no real danger in the confined room) and the frogs (who were not that dangerous) before advancing to second level.

I left the bats only as disorienting in the adventure, not as an enemy to fight, as I hadn´t the swarm rules with me, and didn´t think that encounter particularly interesting.

My players avoided the Azure Fungus in the water parts, and used clever tactics to easily defeat the skeletons at the wheel - positionig themselves so that only two skeletons a time could attack them. The noticed the water pits just in time, just before the two fighters in banded mail fell into them...

They waited for the arrow column to run its course, and passed through that room easily.

The end fight was ok, the four skeletons were no big threat, and Asar was smashed into smithereens, with one warhammer crit (x3), followed by a solid hit from a powerattacking greataxe after he had taken some damage in the previous rounds - in his final round, he took some 30 points of damage.

Stefan


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I would just like to send my kudos to the designers for a fun few sessions with my players. The Pillars of 10,000 Arrows nearly killed my party (even given the fact that it was subdual damage). I had a good sized party (6 characters), and between crappy rolls on their part and good rolls on my part, only 2 remained conscious after 2 rounds of the barrage and were able to drag the everyone's unconscious bodies from the room. After they recovered, SqueakMaan's kobold bard got across the room by getting under an overturned crate from the storage area and pushing it along like a turtle.

Laso, the boots floating in the Blue Fire room worked out well considering the scummy dwarf crossbowman has made a specific point to collect all of the boots he can from the dead folk he comes across.

Thanks, Paizo!

Andoran

Stebehil wrote:

While this is not strictly GM stuff, I did not find any other thread in which I wanted to post this.

First off, my PCs (5 players) have about 3000 EP now after the adventure,so I need a story worth about 2000 EP for each to go in between - I would be happy for ideas here.

3,957.5 XP

That's the maximum number of experience points, assuming a party of 4 players, that are available in Crypt of the Everflame.

If you are looking to run this module as part of the Immortals Trilogy, GMs are advised to realize this before hand and work this issue into their overall campaign. You can try and do it afterwards, but there are some more natural ways to do this which require just a little more forethought.

We'll be covering this in our first episode of Chronicle: The Pathfinder Podcast due out within the next 2 weeks.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Cards, Companion, Modules Subscriber

Well, I wasn´t completely prepared when asked to run that adventure, so I did not have the time to work something out to bridge the gap beforehand. I don´t like the idea to just throw enough random encounters at them on the journey to have them advance in level. Besides, my PCs are at 3150 xp each, so they would need nearly 2000 xp each to advance, which would be quite a lot with just random encounters. (I have five PCs). I might just introduce something like "travel xp" (like in MERP/Rolemaster). I guess I will dig through my collection of Dungeon magazines and see what I can find.

Stefan

Andoran

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Late to the party...

I haven't run a game since 4E was announced and I'm finally getting back in the saddle again, running this scenario out of Narwell in the Wild Coast of Oerik using the PF rules. Looking at all the locked doors and considering my "noob" players, I can imagine that a lot of door hacking is going to happen. Are the doors in the dungeon standard wood doors? The only mention of doors I've come upon is the swollen doors with the frogs and just want to make sure I didn't miss something about "unhackable" doors.

Thanks for all the previous insight folks...Paizo's boards have always been a godsend for that.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Cards, Companion, Modules Subscriber

I can´t recall anything about unhackable doors. The entrance doors are "very heavy". The doors to the crypt are "grand bronze doors". Otherwise, I guess the doors are quite unremarkable, standard wooden doors.


I was wondering about the blunt arrows that are in this adventure and the skeleton's DR 5/bludgeoning. Should these arrows be able to do actual damage to a skeleton, bypassing the DR 5/bludgeoning? I would think that an arrow that can knock you out should be able to do at least some damage to bones. Thoughts?


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
PRD wrote:
Arrow, Blunt: These arrows have rounded wooden tips. They deal bludgeoning damage rather than piercing damage. An archer can use a blunt arrow to deal nonlethal damage (at the normal –4 attack penalty for using a lethal weapon to deal nonlethal damage).

[emphasis mine] Blunt arrows are bludgeoning weapons. Therefore, they overcome DR x/bludgeoning.


Joana wrote:
PRD wrote:
Arrow, Blunt: These arrows have rounded wooden tips. They deal bludgeoning damage rather than piercing damage. An archer can use a blunt arrow to deal nonlethal damage (at the normal –4 attack penalty for using a lethal weapon to deal nonlethal damage).

[emphasis mine] Blunt arrows are bludgeoning weapons. Therefore, they overcome DR x/bludgeoning.

Thanks got the info.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber

I'm a player (for the first time in 10+ years!), and we were faced by the rotating-pillar trap last session. Two of us went down pretty quickly, while the other two mostly avoided damage by hanging from the lip of the pit.

However, two PCs went down from too much nonlethal damage, but as the arrows continued for 10 rounds, we were peppered to such a degree that we died anyway, as nonlethal damage gets lethal once you're down.

So my question is: Was that really the intent behind this trap?

Taldor

hughnme wrote:
I was reproducing the character for my players in Hero lab and the program says its a "martial weapon proficiency" required for the Scimitar and attacking with it would be at a -3 instead of the +1 stated in the back of the book,is the Scimitar a mistake in printing?

Don't always trust HeroLab


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
The Diplomat wrote:
hughnme wrote:
I was reproducing the character for my players in Hero lab and the program says its a "martial weapon proficiency" required for the Scimitar and attacking with it would be at a -3 instead of the +1 stated in the back of the book,is the Scimitar a mistake in printing?
Don't always trust HeroLab

I'm sure HeroLab has fixed this since 2010 if it was an error at the time. ;-) Besides the Scimitar is a favored weapon for Kyra, hence the proficiency.

Taldor

Leonal wrote:
I'm sure HeroLab has fixed this since 2010 if it was an error at the time. ;-) Besides the Scimitar is a favored weapon for Kyra, hence the proficiency.

I have found other errors on it. I advise my players that if they are going to use HeroLab to create their characters, they also need to check the results against the rule book to make sure it is correct.

Shadow Lodge

I wanted to throw another idea out there for tying this into PFS play. Rather than use the coming of age story, I tied it in with the PFS agent in town already (in the NPC section). The premise is that Abrus Valsin has sent the rookie PFS agents to assist insetting up a PFS outpost in Kassen. The challenge is convincing the townsfolk who are as a majority very wary of Pathfinders. Mayor Uptal is on good terms with Ambrus, and suggests that the PFS agents make good with the townsfolk by reviving an old historical tradition - the quest for the Everflame. From there, the rest of it works, and the townsfolk can pull off a good practical joke on the Pathfinders. I believe it went over fairly well with my group.


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Joana wrote:
PRD wrote:
Arrow, Blunt: These arrows have rounded wooden tips. They deal bludgeoning damage rather than piercing damage. An archer can use a blunt arrow to deal nonlethal damage (at the normal –4 attack penalty for using a lethal weapon to deal nonlethal damage).

[emphasis mine] Blunt arrows are bludgeoning weapons. Therefore, they overcome DR x/bludgeoning.

I have been confused by this, but I think there's enough reason to think that the blunt arrows found in this adventure are not efficient against skeletons at all.

*Undead are not subject to nonlethal damage.
*The text in the adventure says: "blunt arrows (as normal arrows, but they only deal nonlethal damage)".
*"Normal" blunt arrows deal lethal damage and take a penalty to deal nonlethal damage.
*Those carrying the blunt arrows had no reason to think they needed them against enemies, because they were there to set up simple traps.
*The blunt arrows are used in the pillar trap where they are specified to deal only nonlethal damage.

So personally, I don't let them have any efficiency at all against skeletons, as they were intended as nonlethal arrows.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Hey guys!

One of my player (Juho from Finland) made a drawing of the amulet! This one shows the three parts of the amulet joined together. You can cut it into three pieces and present them to the players when they find them! I thought I'd share it with you, since I think it's really cool!

Amulet joined together


Rithralas wrote:

Question about the CR 1/3 skeletons....

The skeletons as presented in the module are CR 1/3 each. They had two attack options:

(Attack Option #1) Rusted Scimitar +0 (1d6) and Claw -3 (1d4+2)

or

(Attack Option #2) 2 Claws +2 (1d4+2)

I played them as Attack Option #2....each skeleton got two claw attacks at +2, which has potential to do 3-6 damage per attack, or 6-12 damage per round from each skeleton. Seems pretty powerful for a CR 1/3 creature.

I wiped the party out in two rounds with these things....am I playing that right? Should it just be one attack? The players were a little upset with me. :-)

As a beginning GM, I wondered the same thing. Will this be a TPK-encounter for my adventurers?


DM Jeff wrote:
golem101 wrote:

I don't think that's the case, as

** spoiler omitted **

I just removed them from my own maps and drew a hard wall there. I stared at it for sometime and, finding nothing within the module that explained it, deemed it unneeded and a potential to confuse the players and bog the game down.

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