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The Wormwood Mutiny (GM Reference)


Skull & Shackles

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Modules Subscriber

(If it's presumptuous to start this 'official' thread, please feel free to rename it)

I am reading through this chapter of the AP right now and noticed that a lot of the ship tasks and ship actions involve DCs around 10. So are players supposed to be able to take 10 on them or is the intimidating atmosphere aboard the ship enough for the PCs to be considered distracted or in danger?

I could see the reasoning go both ways.


Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber

I'd allow it unless they are actually being threatened ode distracted.


Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber

As I'm reading, I see a lot of XP awards to be awarded to "the PC" that manages this or that task. Is that a change that introduces individual XPs or are we supposed to see this as a group award even if it's earned by just one PC?


Wow that's a tough decision actually. Here are my thoughts (and I skipped to the tasks so I might have [probably] missed something).

If the PC doesn't have Profession(Sailor) or something similar they must "learn" how to be a sailor. Therefore, they are under extreme scrutiny for the first few days. In other words, they have to succeed 3 times in a row before they can take 10.

If the PC does have Profession(Sailor) ... urrrh ... let them do it right off, or maybe they have to succeed just once.

You could even up the ante some by saying they have to pass by 5 or more for those 3 times in a row before they're allowed to do their duties without being watched like a hawk.

Note, I'm all about verisimilitude and having fun and will thus bend the rules to fit the scene. Which all of my players prefer, just to be clear. :)

Paizo Employee Senior Developer

Nullpunkt wrote:

(If it's presumptuous to start this 'official' thread, please feel free to rename it)

I am reading through this chapter of the AP right now and noticed that a lot of the ship tasks and ship actions involve DCs around 10. So are players supposed to be able to take 10 on them or is the intimidating atmosphere aboard the ship enough for the PCs to be considered distracted or in danger?

I could see the reasoning go both ways.

Most of the skill checks represent a day's worth of work, rather than a single skill check. Asa result, in the Skull & Shackles game I'm running, I haven't told the players the DCs, and as a result, haven't asked to take 10. I probably wouldn't allow it, because of the penalties for failure aboard the Wormwood. That said, if you want to make to easier on your players, you could certainly allow them to take 10 if they have the correct skills.

Paizo Employee Senior Developer

Zaister wrote:
As I'm reading, I see a lot of XP awards to be awarded to "the PC" that manages this or that task. Is that a change that introduces individual XPs or are we supposed to see this as a group award even if it's earned by just one PC?

In a few instances, this adventure does give out individual XP awards (where it uses the singular "PC"). The reason for this is that most of these awards are for actions that all of the PCs will likely want to take, so no character should be getting extra. If a PC does not do one of these actions, that PC does not get the XP award, but as we're only talking about few hundred XP here at most, the difference in characters' XP totals will not be that great in the long run.

In all other cases, the XP awards are divided as normal between all the PCs (where the adventure mentions the plural "PCs").

Paizo Employee Senior Developer

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Information on the bonuses the pirate familiars in the Bestiary should grant to their masters was inadvertently left out of both the Bestiary and the Player's Guide, but here's the relevant information:

Other Piratical Familiars
Trained animals are extremely popular among pirates, serving as pets, ship's mascots, and company on lengthy voyages. Pirate spellcasters prove no different than their shipmates in their interest in pets, and find having an exotic familiar wins them bragging rights and a degree of status. Creatures like blue-ringed octopuses, goats, hawks, rats, lizards, king crabs, monkeys, rats, scarlet spiders, snapping turtles, vipers, weasels all serve as existing examples of potential pirate familiars that appear in either the Bestiary or Pathfinder RPG Ultimate Magic. Additionally, the statistics for many existent familiars might be used to represent more exotic, piratical familiars. The following table presents a variety of such exotic familiars, statistics that can be used to represent them, and the benefits of having them as familiars (which, in some cases, vary from the familiar creatures whose statistics they share).

Pirate Familiars
Dodo - Master gains a +2 bonus on initiative checks
Dwarf caiman - Master gains a +3 bonus on Stealth checks
Giant isopod - Master gains a +1 natural armor bonus to AC
Parrot (as raven [cannot speak]) - Master gains a +3 bonus on Linguistics checks
Seal - Master gains a +3 bonus on Swim checks


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Any recommendation for how to introduce new characters if one or more of the starting PCs succumb to flogging, keelhauling, traps, or some other agent of doom? It would be a shame to have the player have to wait 20 game-days before bringing in a new character from aboard the Man's Promise.

The captain seems to be specifically avoiding contact others until he's ready to launch his attack on shipping lanes so it seems implausible to say that he puts into port to take on new crew.


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Someone shipwrecked or marooned on some flyspeck of an island?

The captain did just pick you guys up in a busy pirate port, so there's no real reason he can't make another stop for more crew. Especially since the PCs won't know his plans.

Worst case, the new PC can be one of the already press-ganged pirates who hasn't had much interaction with the PCs yet. I'd be tempted to hold back one or two faces in the crowd for that purpose.


One thing that struck me skimming through it was the assumption that everything shut down at night. Everyone's off duty, you can sneak around, all the officers are in their cabins, etc.

Is there no night watch? Do they anchor every night? It doesn't seem so, there are a couple of references to sailing overnight, but it seems everyone named is always on the day shift.

Is this just for convenience?


Anyone worried that their players will get bored for the first 20 days? Seems like it could get pretty repetitive.


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Ayrphish wrote:
Anyone worried that their players will get bored for the first 20 days? Seems like it could get pretty repetitive.

Players can go exploring the ship during the time, interact with lots of NPCs and do lots of stuff they can come up with. If they have no interest in that, I guess rolling the dice for the days can happen rather quickly, but then you probably have the wrong group for this AP.


Zaister wrote:
Ayrphish wrote:
Anyone worried that their players will get bored for the first 20 days? Seems like it could get pretty repetitive.

Players can go exploring the ship during the time, interact with lots of NPCs and do lots of stuff they can come up with. If they have no interest in that, I guess rolling the dice for the days can happen rather quickly, but then you probably have the wrong group for this AP.

Scenery role-players vs Action role-players.

RPG Superstar 2010 Top 16, 2011 Top 32, 2012 Top 4

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Ayrphish wrote:
Anyone worried that their players will get bored for the first 20 days? Seems like it could get pretty repetitive.

I plan to tighten this section up with a few planned encounters/events designed to acquaint the PCs with the crew and to pirate life in general. I also certainly do not plan on playing each and every day of this 20-day period. My players would ... mutiny. :-P


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Yeah, I'm working out how to balance out not playing every. single. day. yet give the players time to get to know the crew and to get the politics worked out. It's the latter that'll force the time to stretch out some, but if it's interspersed with some additional encounters, I think it'll work out pretty good.


We run a forum with our group, I have not read the AP yet, but in previous ones where RP is heavy and action is light, we often throw the forum in for RP conversations and interactions between sessions.

We only meet weekly, and this has greatly helped keep the balance. My group is, admittedly more action focused with an icing of role play.

Contributor

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Ahaaaaaaaaaaar!

I'll just double post this one as it probably belongs here too!

:

This was a very interesting adventure to write from a number points, not least of which introducing such high level future enemies in such close quarters to the PCs.

It certainly will be a challenge for some groups to get their heads around this proximity and one thing I've tried to stress is the nature of just how tough the bad guys are on board the vessel. You're the expert at pitching this to your players, what Wormwood does is give you a number of options for you to build upon.

The obvious way here is the NPCs, and there are some immediate potental allies to warn the PCs, but again if this isn't enough you can go with big fights between the tougher NPCs; and wounds that would down the toughest PC in a single go etc.

One thing I was very very mindful of is that the PCs are vulnerable to start with, and the GM needs to play this carefully, their relationship with Plugg is a tricky one - if he hates them it would be easy for him to have them keelhauled, which is why initially he falls into the background as the main villain behind Scourge. The possibilities of bullying the PCs must be carefully avoided too, give them victories along the way

The other issue I thought long about was controlling the PCs action's somehow - it could be too easy for one player to take over a session, which is why I've brought in the actions - to try to make sure that everyone gets a fair crack of the whip (or cat).

Absolutely, the day to day life will work for some, and less so for others, if you like more action pitch in a few more fights or side quests along the way, or skip some of the checks as has already been suggested - the important thing is for the PCs to realise what being a pirate is like for their future careers and most important have fun.

I'm really looking forward also to how GMs will approach this adventure and share their ideas - the suggestion here are not only great for fellow GMs but for freelancers looking at approaches in the future.

Shiver me timbers!
Captain Pett

Contributor

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I've a few extra bits I'll posts here too over the weekend me hearties!


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Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber

The first thing that struck me as I read through the adventure was that 30 NPCs is alot to keep track of. Even with some of the crew being un-influencable future villains, having the crew spread out over several pages and then a few focused on for several pages, and then the appendix of several pages again was a little inconvenient. Without a chart to print out, I had to make a spreadsheet.

The contents of which is being transferred to index cards with notes on description, mannerisms for roleplaying the NPC, job, actions that can modify influence checks (and their modifier), locker contents, and a color coded post-it strip to indicate their current attitude toward the PCs.

The plan is the cards will enable me to keep track of where on the ship the NPCs are with having to move around 30 miniatures. I can also pick up the rigger stack or the swab stack and have a good idea of who the PCs are interacting with during their daily tasks. This should help to build up the NPCs as people and give the players a better sense of the future crew members they are attempting to turn friendly or helpful. Also, anyone who is indifferent at the end of the adventure will still throw in their lot with the PCs (should they win), but could be people the PCs need to keep their eye on.

Hopefully this works works out as well as the only other time I've ever resorted to index cards (Return to the Temple of Elemental Evil). I look forward to this being as fun for me as it is for the players.


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
WampaX wrote:

The first thing that struck me as I read through the adventure was that 30 NPCs is alot to keep track of. Even with some of the crew being un-influencable future villains, having the crew spread out over several pages and then a few focused on for several pages, and then the appendix of several pages again was a little inconvenient. Without a chart to print out, I had to make a spreadsheet.

The contents of which is being transferred to index cards with notes on description, mannerisms for roleplaying the NPC, job, actions that can modify influence checks (and their modifier), locker contents, and a color coded post-it strip to indicate their current attitude toward the PCs.

The plan is the cards will enable me to keep track of where on the ship the NPCs are with having to move around 30 miniatures. I can also pick up the rigger stack or the swab stack and have a good idea of who the PCs are interacting with during their daily tasks. This should help to build up the NPCs as people and give the players a better sense of the future crew members they are attempting to turn friendly or helpful. Also, anyone who is indifferent at the end of the adventure will still throw in their lot with the PCs (should they win), but could be people the PCs need to keep their eye on.

Hopefully this works works out as well as the only other time I've ever resorted to index cards (Return to the Temple of Elemental Evil). I look forward to this being as fun for me as it is for the players.

I was thinking of doing something similar. There's a ton to keep track of. I'll be glad when someone becomes captain at the end of the book, and I can pass off some the responsibility to them!

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I have taken a two-step approach to aid me in handling the enormous task of keeping straight and managing all the Non Player personalities.
First, I entered each member of the crew into HeroLab. I now have familiarity and a record sheet for each due to the data entry process.
The NPC's with little more than a small paragraph description have now become full fledged characters with art to complete my vision.
Second, I have hand picked miniatures for each (prime) member of the crew and plan to add others as they become relevant to my story.

Having this strong visual/physical association with the personalities will help you GM them and your players to relate to them.

L2G.
G2L.

Captain Venture


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Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber
Azmyth wrote:

Second, I have hand picked miniatures for each (prime) member of the crew and plan to add others as they become relevant to my story.

Having this strong visual/physical association with the personalities will help you GM them and your players to relate to them.

I was thinking of doing this too, but realized I probably don't have enough unique non-metal-armor-wearing human or near human minis to represent the entire crew . . . so I went and purchased the Paper Minis, which has the entire crew!

Shadow Lodge

I am concerned about the lack of information on the "Other Officers". The AP is clear that they will have significant roles later on, but as-is we dont even know their general appearance. I realize that there's no room to have a full write up on, say, Peppery, but since she's slinging spells around like nobody's biz (a big part of one of the fights), I'd like to know more about her than her race and level.

I also realize this is only a concern for "early adopters", but nonetheless I hope to keep my campaign canonical as I can without having to retcon a statement I made out of ignorance.


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Varthanna wrote:
I am concerned about the lack of information on the "Other Officers". The AP is clear that they will have significant roles later on, but as-is we dont even know their general appearance. I realize that there's no room to have a full write up on, say, Peppery, but since she's slinging spells around like nobody's biz (a big part of one of the fights), I'd like to know more about her than her race and level.

Descriptions are from what I can tell from the paper mini images:

Peppery Longfarthing - Trim female human wearing an overly large wide brimmed black hat, a long reddish brown cloak, and covered head to toe in finely tailored red clothing (shirt and pants) with brown leather boots. Black hair, black or brown eyes, fair complexion. Also has a long staff topped with a large green ord or crystal.

Habbly Quarne - Older male human wearing a black short brimmed hat, blue doublet, and a short brown carpenters smock over black breaches and black leather boots. He is also wearing belts and braces from which hang the tools of both his trade (carpenter and surgeon equipment). Scruffy short greying brown beard gives him a "weathered" look.

Kipper - Fit mid-twenties male human wearing a sleeveless leather jerkin, brown leather bracers, blue pants and black shoes. Wild brown hair pulled back under a red bandana. Also has a heavy crossbow.

Patch Patchsalt - Hagish (looks like an Annis hag or classic witch) gnome female wearing a grey vest, white shirt, large red belt/sash, black pants, and no shoes. Fair skinned with long brown hair exploding from under a patterned red bandanna. A small cutlas and dagger are tucked in the belt and a thick gold chain hangs around her neck.

"Caulky" Taroon - Waifish young female human (she's small) wearing a much too large for her red with gold filigree sleeveless captain's dress coat, tattered white pants, and no shoes. Dirty blonde hair held back with a bright purple headband. Bowed head with sad blue eyes.

Richard,
I have two nitpicky questions for you.
Its specified that 4 others have been press ganged along with the PCs, but no names are mentioned. Did you have anyone particular in mind as to who these other 4 would be?

Area A10 specifies that 18 lockers are in use, but not who their owners are. Subtracting the 4 press ganged crew and the 6 officers with their own lockboxes elsewhere (Captain Harrigan, Mr. Plugg, Master Scourge, Riaris Krine, Peppery Longfarthing, and Habbly Quarne) leaves 20 potential crew members . . . so who doesn't have a locker? Magpie and Owlbear would be my gueses.

Andoran

Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Card Game Subscriber
WampaX wrote:
Its specified that 4 others have been press ganged along with the PCs, but no names are mentioned. Did you have anyone particular in mind as to who these other 4 would be?

I was wondering the same thing, but then I thought maybe he meant the other recruits that have only been on board a few days: Sandara, Rosie, "Cog", and Shortstone. The paragraph before their descriptions calls them recent "recruits".

Tim

Sczarni

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Mwa-ha-ha-ha-ha!!!

The joyously twisted mind behind Escape from Old Korvosa, The Skinsaw Murders, The Sixfold Trial, and Sound of a Thousand Screams returns. With PIRATES!!!!

I am loving this adventure so far, and can't wait to run it.

As far as the "bookkeeping" for the crew/officers/party, I was intending on keeping a "personnel spreadsheet" with work-schedules, possessions, attitudes, etc on each of the NPC pirates.

Now I may steal the "index card" method described above...seems like it'd be easier to shuffle actual physical media at the table than click some keys on my laptop. It should prove easy enough to track who's where, who's friendly, and just what all the NPC pirates have on them come the end of the adventure.

Plus, grabbing images from the internet/NPC gallery to paste on the back of the cards should give the players a better grasp on just which NPC is which.


psionichamster wrote:
Plus, grabbing images from the internet/NPC gallery to paste on the back of the cards should give the players a better grasp on just which NPC is which.

The paper minis might work well for this purpose as well, if you expanded the images from the PDF. Hopefully the resolution doesn't end up too poor.

Paizo Employee Senior Developer

WampaX wrote:

Its specified that 4 others have been press ganged along with the PCs, but no names are mentioned. Did you have anyone particular in mind as to who these other 4 would be?

Area A10 specifies that 18 lockers are in use, but not who their owners are. Subtracting the 4 press ganged crew and the 6 officers with their own lockboxes elsewhere (Captain Harrigan, Mr. Plugg, Master Scourge, Riaris Krine, Peppery Longfarthing, and Habbly Quarne) leaves 20 potential crew members . . . so who doesn't have a locker? Magpie and Owlbear would be my gueses.

As Tim Felts said, the other four "pressees" are the recent recruits: Sandara Quinn, Rosie Cusswell, Crimson Cog, and Conchobhar Shortstone.

As for lockers, the 18 includes the 14 crew members listed on pages 19-20, plus the 4 recent pressees. The officers' lockers (including Kipper and Patch Patchsalt) are not included in that total.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Pawns, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Macharius wrote:
psionichamster wrote:
Plus, grabbing images from the internet/NPC gallery to paste on the back of the cards should give the players a better grasp on just which NPC is which.
The paper minis might work well for this purpose as well, if you expanded the images from the PDF. Hopefully the resolution doesn't end up too poor.

The Paper Mini's pictures can be blown up to full A4 and still look good.

Sczarni

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Varthanna wrote:
I couldnt tell by reading the product review, are the paper minis' wormwood pirates all distinctly unique? Do they fit the one-sentence descriptions of the crew?

While I haven't seen this particular set yet, the others I've gotten (RotRL & LoF) have been pretty much spot on for NPC descriptions.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Pawns, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Varthanna wrote:
I couldnt tell by reading the product review, are the paper minis' wormwood pirates all distinctly unique? Do they fit the one-sentence descriptions of the crew?

Unique! [Although a couple of them could be brothers!]

EDIT: I should clarify, Some of them have the same picture/pose with different colouring.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion Subscriber

Is anyone running how everyone get to Port Peril and the night at the Formidably Maid?


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
brent norton wrote:
Is anyone running how everyone get to Port Peril and the night at the Formidably Maid?

I have three players. Two of them just escaped from prison (See Fire Mountain Games AP) and are supposed to meet a contact at the bar. The third PC is already a crew member who got the job of getting them drunk and unconscious before bringing them to the Wormwood.

Will be interesting to see how it turns out.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

For area D1 what's the white dotted line supposed to represent? Is that just where it goes underground entirely and becomes the cave system? That's my assumption just checking to make sure I'm correct.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Oh also while reading through it all it says in The Cauldron (area D8) that characters tripped must start making swim checks, according to the low tide marker on the map there's still a good 40-50ish feet of water. So 2 parts A) wouldn't they already be swimming? and B) can you be tripped if you're in/under water?


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Not got the ap yet as its not a pdf until weds but having read the posts and blurb I am thinking of running Fury in Feeport as a prologue so the pc's get to know each other before the ap starts. Freeport will be Port Peril with a few name changes here and there. It seems it would work OK and I should be able to finish it with the PC's relaxing in the Formidably Maid then I can kick start the AP. Just an idea at the moment though.

Shadow Lodge

Pirate Punishments and Death

A few people have mentioned concerns about the ambush in the bilge as being dangerous to PCs, but I'm unsure about the various punishments doled out. 3 lashes here, 6 lashes there. Every lash is 1d3+2 nonlethal, according to Scourge's stat block. Once your nonlethal damage is equal to your Max HP, it becomes lethal afterwards.

let's say a smarmy rogue with a decent Con... lets say his hitpoints are 9 at level 1.

He shirks his duties to explore the ship and gets caught. Scourge gives him 6 lashes.
Three nonlethal, six nonlethal, nine... he's staggered by the pain... twelve... the pain is so bad by the fourth lash he drops unconscious. He now has 9 nonlethal and 3 lethal damage. Two more lashes put him at 9 nonlethal and 10 lethal damage.

Am I doing that right? He's now Dying. Let's say because they're nice they help him stabilize.

So they throw him in his bunk and he rests all night and gets back 1 nonlethal per hour and heals 1 lethal damage. He still has 9 lethal damage.

He's Disabled, and can't work, so he get a dozen cats 1d4+2 lethal each... so 12d4+24 damage. Very much dead.

Once they're aboard the Man's Promise, all those lashes turn to cats. DANG!


Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber
Varthanna wrote:

Pirate Punishments and Death

A few people have mentioned concerns about the ambush in the bilge as being dangerous to PCs, but I'm unsure about the various punishments doled out. 3 lashes here, 6 lashes there. Every lash is 1d3+2 nonlethal, according to Scourge's stat block. Once your nonlethal damage is equal to your Max HP, it becomes lethal afterwards.

let's say a smarmy rogue with a decent Con... lets say his hitpoints are 9 at level 1.

He shirks his duties to explore the ship and gets caught. Scourge gives him 6 lashes.
Three nonlethal, six nonlethal, nine... he's staggered by the pain... twelve... the pain is so bad by the fourth lash he drops unconscious. He now has 9 nonlethal and 3 lethal damage. Two more lashes put him at 9 nonlethal and 10 lethal damage.

Am I doing that right? He's now Dying. Let's say because they're nice they help him stabilize.

So they throw him in his bunk and he rests all night and gets back 1 nonlethal per hour and heals 1 lethal damage. He still has 9 lethal damage.

He's Disabled, and can't work, so he get a dozen cats 1d4+2 lethal each... so 12d4+24 damage. Very much dead.

That's what Sandara is for. She can get the PC back on his feet (OR the PC can use a healing resource he may have acquired already). This should help impart a greater desire to rescue her once she is kidnapped by the grindylows and that having friends and allies among the crew is important.


Varthanna wrote:

Pirate Punishments and Death

A few people have mentioned concerns about the ambush in the bilge as being dangerous to PCs, but I'm unsure about the various punishments doled out. 3 lashes here, 6 lashes there. Every lash is 1d3+2 nonlethal, according to Scourge's stat block. Once your nonlethal damage is equal to your Max HP, it becomes lethal afterwards.

let's say a smarmy rogue with a decent Con... lets say his hitpoints are 9 at level 1.

He shirks his duties to explore the ship and gets caught. Scourge gives him 6 lashes.
Three nonlethal, six nonlethal, nine... he's staggered by the pain... twelve... the pain is so bad by the fourth lash he drops unconscious. He now has 9 nonlethal and 3 lethal damage. Two more lashes put him at 9 nonlethal and 10 lethal damage.

Am I doing that right? He's now Dying. Let's say because they're nice they help him stabilize.

So they throw him in his bunk and he rests all night and gets back 1 nonlethal per hour and heals 1 lethal damage. He still has 9 lethal damage.

He's Disabled, and can't work, so he get a dozen cats 1d4+2 lethal each... so 12d4+24 damage. Very much dead.

Once they're aboard the Man's Promise, all those lashes turn to cats. DANG!

I doubt they would continue to whip an obviously critically injured crew member. The idea is to punish them, not kill them. They gain nothing by whipping a near lifeless body. If they didn't want to deal with him at that point, they would just perform a mercy killing and throw his body overboard. They aren't robots.

Paizo Employee Senior Developer

Robert Jordan wrote:
For area D1 what's the white dotted line supposed to represent? Is that just where it goes underground entirely and becomes the cave system? That's my assumption just checking to make sure I'm correct.

You are correct.

Paizo Employee Senior Developer

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Robert Jordan wrote:
Oh also while reading through it all it says in The Cauldron (area D8) that characters tripped must start making swim checks, according to the low tide marker on the map there's still a good 40-50ish feet of water. So 2 parts A) wouldn't they already be swimming? and B) can you be tripped if you're in/under water?

The PCs are likely already swimming. A trip attack represents being pulled below the surface, thus requiring another Swim check to recover.

Paizo Employee Senior Developer

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Varthanna wrote:

Pirate Punishments and Death

A few people have mentioned concerns about the ambush in the bilge as being dangerous to PCs, but I'm unsure about the various punishments doled out. 3 lashes here, 6 lashes there. Every lash is 1d3+2 nonlethal, according to Scourge's stat block. Once your nonlethal damage is equal to your Max HP, it becomes lethal afterwards.

let's say a smarmy rogue with a decent Con... lets say his hitpoints are 9 at level 1.

He shirks his duties to explore the ship and gets caught. Scourge gives him 6 lashes.
Three nonlethal, six nonlethal, nine... he's staggered by the pain... twelve... the pain is so bad by the fourth lash he drops unconscious. He now has 9 nonlethal and 3 lethal damage. Two more lashes put him at 9 nonlethal and 10 lethal damage.

Am I doing that right? He's now Dying. Let's say because they're nice they help him stabilize.

So they throw him in his bunk and he rests all night and gets back 1 nonlethal per hour and heals 1 lethal damage. He still has 9 lethal damage.

He's Disabled, and can't work, so he get a dozen cats 1d4+2 lethal each... so 12d4+24 damage. Very much dead.

Once they're aboard the Man's Promise, all those lashes turn to cats. DANG!

There's no point in continuing to whip an unconscious character. In the office game I'm running, if a PC falls unconscious from lashes, they get the ones they missed from being unconscious on the following day.

And, as others have said, Sandara (or a PC cleric) can certainly help those characters recover from their wounds.


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There's flogging around the fleet where the convicted would be sentenced to hundreds of lashes, split up among the ships. A surgeon would travel with him and determine when the flogging needed to stop for the day. Such a punishment could take weeks to be completed.

Now bring in magic. A particularly cruel captain with access to a cleric, or other means of healing, could flog a crewman to, or near, unconsciousness, have the cleric heal him, and continue.

Especially cruel if the cleric and transgressor are PCs. The cleric could be under threat of the same, or double, if she doesn't perform the duties. An excellent way to make the PCs despise Plugg.

Shadow Lodge

Rob McCreary wrote:

There's no point in continuing to whip an unconscious character. In the office game I'm running, if a PC falls unconscious from lashes, they get the ones they missed from being unconscious on the following day.

And, as others have said, Sandara (or a PC cleric) can certainly help those characters recover from their wounds.

oh, okay! Thanks for the feedback. So the AP says that they get a dozen cats if they wont, or CANT perform their day's duties. I thought this is what it meant. I can't think of anything else besides low HP that means a PC CANT perform a duty.

Just so I understand, if two cats can knock out a particularly frail wizard, he'd have six days of punishment in store for him?


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Thank you Mr. McCreary just wanted to make sure I was correct in my assumptions before I started with my group.


I have some questions about the Rum Ration.

I don't have a GMG, so I am trying to understand the rules for addiction from the PRD, and am unsure if I understand correctly.

The Fortitude save only affects the possibility of addiction, correct?
It has no impact on the damage or effects of the rum ration at all?

Also, the 1d3 Con damage, is that only a temporary effect or does that persist? Because the way I read it it would seem pretty easy for a PC to die from alcohol poisoning well before Day 21. Or does it assume that a PC would spill or dispose of the rum before that happens? Its a relatively easy check, but the penalty for failing is fairly significant, I can easily see six lashes from the cat and a damaged Con score pretty much guaranteeing that a PC enters a spiral of destruction with no easy way out. Especially given how many tasks require DC 10 Con checks.

Lastly, what impact does the 1d8 hours of fatigue play for a PC? Does that affect their night actions only? Just the first one, or all of them? And does the +1d4 Charisma bonus last as long as the fatigue?

Contributor

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OK, as promised and late to set sail here's the first extra, an NPC that when I thought on was one NPC too many for the PCs to interact with, however, you may wish to use him in preference to another perhaps:

Dungrin – The Whispering Dwarf (Swab)
Indifferent
A handsome dwarf who leans upon a weathered driftwood staff.
Let me tell you a secret. Dungrin is also a pressee, he was involved in a most profitable gambling scam with Crab Maglimbenry, a notorious (pretend) blind gnome rogue who operates out of the Formidably Maid in Port Peril, when he let his guard slip by inviting pirates into the scam. He woke up on the Wormwood 2 days ago and, although initially he hated his situation, he now sees a considerable profit can be made from it by being everyone’s friend. Secrets, he is sure, are worth money aboard the Wormwood.
In terms of the PCs, Dungrin is never openly helpful or hostile to anyone, preferring to brood upon his feelings to act upon at a later date. Does he side with the PCs, learning things from Plugg and passing them on, or does he pretend to be friendly with the PCs and secretly betray them at some point?
DUNGRIN CR1
XP 400
Dwarf sorcerer 2
NL Medium humanoid
Init +3; Senses darkvision 60 ft., Perception +1 (+3 to notice unusual stonework)
DEFENSE
AC 13, touch 13, flat-footed 10; (+3 Dex)(+4 dodge against giants)
hp 14 (2d6+2)
Fort +1, Ref +3, Will +4 (+2 save against poison, spells and spell-like abilities)
OFFENSE
Speed 30 ft.
Melee dwarven waraxe +2 (1d10+2/x3) or
2 claws +2 (1d4+2)
Ranged heavy crossbow +3 (1d10/19-20x2) or
dart +3 (1d4/x2)
Special Attacks +1 attack against humanoid creatures of the orc and goblin subtype
Spells Known (CL 2nd; concentration +4)
1st (5)—charm person, mage armor, magic missile
0 (at will)— acid splash (+1 damage), flare, guidance, open/close, resistance
STATISTICS
Str 14, Dex 16, Con 13, Int 12, Wis 12, Cha 14
Base Atk +0; CMB +2; CMD 19
Feats Eschew Materials, Scribe Scroll
Skills Bluff +5, Climb +3*, Intimidate +5, Perception +1, Sense Motive +3, Spellcraft +4
Languages Dwarvish, common, goblin
SQ bloodline – draconic (green), +2 save against poison, spells and spell-like abilities
Combat Gear dwarven waraxe set with obsidian wolf figures being dismembered by dwarves on fire worth 120gp, 12 darts, heavy crossbow, 12 bolts, scroll of magic missile and mage armor, 3 scrolls of charm person Other Gear hooded cloak, staff made of weathered driftwood carved with warding runes, potion of blur, potion of cure moderate wounds, mummified owl head, pocketful of owl pellets, key to locker, calabash with silver stem worth 15gp, pound of Hobb Dark Shag tobacco flavored with brandy; Locker (average lock) 35gp, scroll of magic missile, vial of antitoxin
TACTICS
During Combat Cagey. Dungrin prefers to operate at the edges of combat, ideally above and from some sort of cover. He never enters combat unless wearing mage armor and ideally having consumed his potion of blur if the fight looks tough.
Morale It is better to fight another day and be a coward today. Escape if possible when reduced to half Hit Points, but otherwise surrender or flee when so injured.

Contributor

Looking at the other stuff I have most of it seems to have made the final cut so I guess the NPC is the only extra I'll have this time - ahaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaar!


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I was going over the map of the Wormwood last night and something occurred to me... how the hell do the ship's non-officer crew get back and forth between the main and middle decks?

There are only two sets of stairs that lead from the main to the middle deck - one in the Officer's Quarters and one in the Captain's Quarters. Both are kept locked and trapped with the Officer's Quarters having Owlbear chained to the bottom of it expressly to prevent anyone from coming up the stairs into the Officer's Quarters.

Do they get hauled up and down through the cargo hatches? That seems a bit unusual.

Am I missing something obvious? Should this be hand-waved? Do the captain and/or officers let the entire crew come traipsing through their quarters every time a crew member needs to relieve themselves?


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The PRD has everything you need on the rum ration effects.

DonalGraeme wrote:

The Fortitude save only affects the possibility of addiction, correct?

It has no impact on the damage or effects of the rum ration at all?

"When a character takes a drug, he immediately gains the effects, an amount of ability damage, and must make a Fortitude save to resist becoming addicted to that drug"

So the fort save is just for the addiction part.

Quote:
Also, the 1d3 Con damage, is that only a temporary effect or does that persist? Because the way I read it it would seem pretty easy for a PC to die from alcohol poisoning well before Day 21. Or does it assume that a PC would spill or dispose of the rum before that happens? Its a relatively easy check, but the penalty for failing is fairly significant, I can easily see six lashes from the cat and a damaged Con score pretty much guaranteeing that a PC enters a spiral of destruction with no easy way out. Especially given how many tasks require DC 10 Con checks.

Reading on in that same paragraph above, the d3 Con heals like normal ability damage, so 1 point should heal a day later, but 2 or 3 points would stick around and force a character drinking their ration to make their fort saves vs addiction at increasing DCs. The PCs should probably watch the rest of the crew and get cues on how they handle the rations, or have an example made of one of the other new recruits so they understand the danger presented by drinking the rum ration each night. On the other hand, they may plan to gain the system and use the CHA boost to help with influence rolls, but they will run the risk of addition and take the CON damage for the next day's task.

Quote:

Lastly, what impact does the 1d8 hours of fatigue play for a PC? Does that affect their night actions only? Just the first one, or all of them? And does the +1d4 Charisma bonus last as long as the fatigue?

+1d4 CHA lasts as long as the fatigue, and would affect their night activities, should they attempt them while fatigued.

ArchAnjel wrote:

I was going over the map of the Wormwood last night and something occurred to me... how the hell do the ship's non-officer crew get back and forth between the main and middle decks?

There are only two sets of stairs that lead from the main to the middle deck - one in the Officer's Quarters and one in the Captain's Quarters. Both are kept locked and trapped with the Officer's Quarters having Owlbear chained to the bottom of it expressly to prevent anyone from coming up the stairs into the Officer's Quarters.

Do they get hauled up and down through the cargo hatches? That seems a bit unusual.

Am I missing something obvious? Should this be hand-waved? Do the captain and/or officers let the entire crew come traipsing through their quarters every time a crew member needs to relieve themselves?

Just from perusing the rest of the adventure and the fact that some of the jobs and events require PCs to move about the ship freely, that during work time and leisure time, the doors and stairs to the officer cabin are open. The harpoon traps are probably set and the doors locked for the evening, to prevent the majority of the crew from easily getting around the ship.

Owlbear's chain is probably shortened or he is waylaid by the press of bodies in the morning and evening. I would say that anyone moving about the ship at other times has to deal with Owlbear making noise and possibly grasping for them, but knowing the length of the chain, might be able to squeeze by. This way, he can still act as an alarm for the officers at night, but not be an impediment to the normal ship's routine.

Richard Pett wrote:
Looking at the other stuff I have most of it seems to have made the final cut so I guess the NPC is the only extra I'll have this time - ahaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaar!

I was a little surprised that there were no dwarven crew members included in the published product. But this will do nicely. I may replace Cog or Shortstone with Dungrin. Thanks Richard!

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