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Blackguard in STAP


Savage Tide Adventure Path


One of the player characters was recently slain during the trip to Tamaochan. The player has been inquiring about a concept he has regarding a character aiming for Blackguard.

As a DM, I prefer keeping the group to one side of the Good/Evil chart. Neutral is always fine within a group dynamic, but I often find my playgroup will ultimately end in conflict if they start mixing the Good and Evil tendencies. Suffice it to say, I've strongly discouraged the players from bringing in evil alignments into what is mostly a good group.

That said, this player's concept involved selling his soul in service to a devil in exchange for his power. This devil has an undisclosed interest in Lavinia and her ragtag of adventurers, and has sent the PC to keep a close watch on them. He left the actual details for me to help fill in.

Now, having been approached from that angle, and knowing how STAP ends up, I thought this could be an interesting opportunity, perhaps changing the pact from devil to one of the demon lords. Indeed, towards the climax of the adventure path, it might even make sense for an inner party conflict, should that occur.

Would it be a good idea to allow this character?

If I choose to go ahead with this, I'd prefer not to deviate too much from the adventure path as written. Which demon lords would be most suited for the task?

Shadow Lodge

In my campaign I have a player aiming for Disciple of Dispater.
As a matter of fact I find it interesting since in the end there are demons and eldarins involved but not a single devil willing to strike down the prince of demons... I find it odd and I plan to give Dispater a part in it in the final chapters...
If your player want to deal with devils rather than demons I would take the opportunity to do the same.
Let your player choose freely the devil he wants to serve and make him the pawn by which the nine hells get involved in the fight.
You can also imply that some devils are deployed into the battlefield, granted by the character's infernal patron.

I also plan to make a side trip to the Iron City of Dis during Enemy of my enemy.


Poisoned Cocktail wrote:

Would it be a good idea to allow this character?

That depends on the rest of the party. If they're all neutral, then yeah, they wouldn't mind. But good... Not really. Concept behind 'good' aligment is they seek to oppose evil. Why would they allow him to travel with them?

As for the concept... Why not stick with the original plan? I see no point in changing his allegiance from devils to demon lords who are enemies of Demogorgon, it ends up the same.

So a servant of Graz'zt, Orcus, Orcus, Malcanthet, Shami-Amourae, etc would be a logical choice.


I think that you should leave it as a devil. Dispater would be a good choice as he is so paranoid that he would do anything to make sure that he knows what is going on, same too for Asmodeus, and Bel or Mephistopheles would be interested in furthering the Blood War by bringing down the Prince of Demons.
It could also be a duke such as Moloch, as they have the most to gain out of the unique devils.

Scarletrose wrote:

In my campaign I have a player aiming for Disciple of Dispater.

As a matter of fact I find it interesting since in the end there are demons and eldarins involved but not a single devil willing to strike down the prince of demons... I find it odd and I plan to give Dispater a part in it in the final chapters...
If your player want to deal with devils rather than demons I would take the opportunity to do the same.
Let your player choose freely the devil he wants to serve and make him the pawn by which the nine hells get involved in the fight.
You can also imply that some devils are deployed into the battlefield, granted by the character's infernal patron.

I also plan to make a side trip to the Iron City of Dis during Enemy of my enemy.

Please do tell about the trip to the iron city, I plan on having devilkind involved in EomE too.

Shadow Lodge

Laurellien wrote:
Please do tell about the trip to the iron city, I plan on having devilkind involved in EomE too.

right now we are still playing HTBM and right now he never met a devil... he is just starting to show some deference to the lord of dis using the +1 glamered chainshirt of Kersh Reftun Disgised as an Iron Armor with the symbol of Dispater on it.

A bold display of devil worshipping but fits the character...

I'll let you know about the Side trip as soon as I start planning something


I gave my player free choice and coincidentally he has chosen Dispater, so I'll be interested in hearing your plans for the Dis trip now, too.

We're still on the tail end of SWW, so you've got enough of a lead on us. :)


If you choose the devil angle, and the characters are mostly good, you could extend the conflict along the law-chaos axis. If the characters are mostly lawful good, they could have a reason for working with a LE character in order to defeat what in their eyes would be a greater evil. But you know your players best. You definitely need mature players for this.

Shadow Lodge

That was one of my big wonderings as well... a massive shakedown is going on in the Tanar'ri hierarchy and zero Archdevils are making a move?!?

The only people who really suits their intents in my party would be the LN assassiny-type Whisper Gnome and the TN Scorpion Clan Binder, the rest of the party is either Good or Chaotic; I just need to figure out who would be the one to contact them. Asmodeus comes to mind immediately for the Binder, given her tendency to talk around things with Bluff and Diplomacy... he could work for the assassin as well I guess...

Let us know how it goes :) Might borrow a few tricks from your book, heh.

Andoran

Spoiler for my pbp game:

Spoiler:
Orcus and Graz'zt, now that that thing is over, are duking it out for top Abyssal dog. Graz'zt has a detente with Asmodeus, and might even have exchange troops in his use.....the Bloodwar is pretty much lukewarm, and everybody's getting ready for a war against the gods. And Iggwilv......


As has been stated, if you have mature players who can handle it AND you dont mind the conflict then yea the blackguard could fit. The key here is simply this. I would suggest having him "play innocent" so to speak as far as motives and alignment, pretending to be a knight of righteosness and such so that his "allies" accept him and he can keep an eye on him. The spy angle is nice if at level 18-20 things break down and hes found out, good roleplaying oppurtunities. More than likely the heroes will keep him in their ranks even after finding him out if hes proven himself, maybe even promising evening it up after the Big D goes down..... extra stuff for after the AP naturally falls from this such as smacking down him and his master, to even redeeming him, etc. I think having an evil pc in a controlled situation is ok. BUT we're talking controlled chaos, if its causing conflict or ill will or your players arent mature enough then fix it immidiately or dont do it at all. Thats the best advice I have for you.

Shadow Lodge

Stewart Perkins wrote:
I would suggest having him "play innocent" so to speak as far as motives and alignment, pretending to be a knight of righteosness and such so that his "allies" accept him and he can keep an eye on him.

Or heck, just act like a mercenary, play Neutral. A lot more believable for an Evil character, and a lot easier to pull off ;)


It has worked out so far. I nudged him into the infiltrator/spy angle right now. The character has been accepted thus far, and there hasn't been any major points of contention yet. If that session was any gauge, the character will bide her time until the real time to strike arises (I'm predicting it will likely be a post-climax conflict, possibly expanding into something larger scale, but in any case at either the end of the AP, or close enough to it, that it shouldn't be an issue with my group)

As far as the lack of arch devil involvement, from my understanding and what I recall from reading, the arch devils don't seem to ingrained in the Bloodwar, and it's mostly the lower ranks that deal with that. Isn't Asmodeus building a huge army in preparations for some battle he believes will make the Bloodwar seem insignificant?

Shadow Lodge

I vaguely remember something along that line.

You're right about the lower eight Archfiends, but Bel and the Dark Eight on the First would be reeeeeeeeally interested in the effects of this war. Or perhaps even Zariel, or a rogue servitor of hers, hoping that they might be able to use this somehow to unseat Bel and put her back on the throne. (Actually, now that I've thought of that, I may use it myself...)

Even ruling out everyone from Dispater down you still have quite a few options.


Yes. deposed dukes are good choices for this. I will have Moloch and Geryon involved in the STAP in some way, trying to curry favour with Asmodeus.


One of my players also plays a blackguard, but then my characters are neutral and evil.

I used plotlines from a previous campaign, in which chaos achieved a great victory and the devils were severely weakened. That is the reason in my campaign why they are not really getting involved. There are even hints in my campaign that the primal pact might be stolen (nothing definite, since I have to consider the consequences), and that is the reason why big D has decided the time is ripe for his plans.

The blackguard is more or less working for Glasya, who is of course plotting to overthrow her father. If she achieves a great victory against the demons, she would at least have earned some respect from the other archdevils (meaning that she will be more dangerous as an enemy).

Perhaps there will be a nice girl fight between Glasya and Malcanthet near the end of the campaign.

Shadow Lodge

We are entering now the Shrine to Demogorgon.
I plan to plant an erinys in farshore since disciple of dispater requires a living inteligent sacrifice in the presence of an erynys.

I'll let you know about the meeting..

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