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well, gather around, and mourn for Katar Qu'esh gnome rogue (alchemist to be), of untamable spirits, copper hair and a very rotund belly. Known as "the fat gnome", he tried to access
Penny Longfarthings laboratory.... and absolutely missing the trap set by her.
ZAP !!! 21 points of viscious lightning to his hand, arm, shoulder and brainpan.... His tongue quiverd, his eyes popped, smoke curled up from his ears !
They said, the Wormwood smelled of chicken barbecue that night.
His roasted remains were hung in a chickencage from the mainmast, to remind everyone aboard about the consequences of stealing.
2nd level rogue, cn, send forth to no diety in particular
Level 3 Rogue in the campaign I'm GMing. Died to...
In the battle against the Whale and the Grindylow Queen - not to the Whale as one might expect, but rather to the two lacedons. The rogue swam down to snag the silver ingots (they managed to save Quinn and Jack Scrimshaw before they actually reached the bottom, so they didn't know what was down there). This is while the battle between the Whale and the Queen is still going on above. The rogue swam down, saw the two lacedons, lacedons saw her. Moved in, started swinging... but only one lacedon hit, she makes the fort saves. During her turn, instead of withdrawing to safety... she took a swing at a lacedon and stayed still.
Two full attacks with the lacedons, 5 hits, something like 24+ damage on a hurt PC... and absolutely no reason for the lacedons to do anything but nomnomnom.
The Whale came decently close to killing the barbarian as well, but kept failing the grab check on his bite (rolled 1s and 2s each time)
This has got to be the deadliest Paizo Adventure path I have ever played in. Every person playing in the campaign has had to make at 1 new character. One person had to make two.
Fell of the boat during the raid, got eaten by Sharks.
The ghouls in the tent paralyzed the party and proceded to kill them. Later our new characters fought our old characters as Ghouls.
Added a 5th player:
So we added a 5th player, who got killed in the Whale and Queen fight (Granted, he made a silly combat move and paid for it). The rest of the group felt satisfied as he too had to make his 2nd character.
Ouch! Just how were the replacements handled since Plugg would be severely undermanned when the TPK happened?
After a long few days where our Wizard was jumped by two of Plug's thugs in the bilge pump and had to use a hero point to escape with his life he was then accused of attacking them and was then sentenced to a slow keelhaul when our monk stepped up and valiantly volunteered to take his punishment. Amazingly he made most of his reflex saves and came out of it relatively unhurt.
Plug then put the wizard in the sweat-box which almost killed him too. After the storm we were sent to the island and landed in giant grab central. My tiefling priest decided to not wear his breastplate on the trip to the beach in case of water encounters and when we landed we got immediately attacked by 3 giant crabs (we were playing one man down that night too).
After a series of painfully bad rolls on our side and no less than 5 natural 20s from the DM we were grappled and pincered to death. My priest didn't have selective channeling so my channel positive energy was just delaying the inevitable.
Human Evoker Wizard
Replacement characters (who just happened to be shipwrecked on the island too):
Human Zen Archer Monk
Xaod The Destroyer wrote:
Double ouch. I think letting up on the sweatbox for the wizard would have been better, and/or delaying for the fourth player to come back.
If you haven't done the final fight yet, try to beat you know who senseless so you can deliver some payback.
two more deaths, same player (^^)
Ratty Rattsberger, refurbished NPC --> PC, fighter/rogue 2/1
Snatched, munched, gobbled and chewed to pieces by the Morray Eel on the "Infernus". Small fighters seem to suck. Literally !
In the following session, with his replacement character from the crew, Crimson..
Crimson, refurbished to PC, Ranger/Rogue 1/2
Met the Lacedons in the final battle and being underwater, armed with a cutlass and swimming, quickly succumbed to paralysis and indeterminate carnage. Blood everywhere, his liver floating and air streaming from his torn throat ! The rescuer became the victim...
Is it just me or is this adventure path excessively hard?
"Holy Grappling monsters Batman"
I like a challenge but we almost lost two more PCs last night. Both of them on the farm to the Ankheg and then we had to run away from two encounters with the Mosquito Swarm since we had no AOE to deal with them. I am not sure what they were thinking putting them in there because in reality there are very few characters who could deal with them at 2nd level. Even an elementalist-fire sorcerer with Burning Hands would have to roll well on the damage (assuming he made all his concentration rolls) to do 31 HPs in damage (even with the 50% increase in damage to swarms and assuming they failed their reflex saves). Luckily the DM let them lose interest after chasing us a short distance but if he didnt the only chance we would have had would have been stealth (vs their +9 perception) or running in four different directions knowing one of us would die (the Mosquito Swarm has a fly speed of 40).
Xaod The Destroyer wrote:
The swarms are almost too mean. When my group came across them, they had nothing as well. I let them dive in the bog and made them hold their breath until the swarm moved on.
Xaod-Alchemist fire will do the trick on swarms at low levels
Ok lets look at the numbers...Alchemist fire does 1d6 x 1.5 due to the swarms vulnerability to aoe damage and then even if you allowed it to do 1d6 the second round which I probably wouldnt due to the swarms traits that is an average damage of 4 (3 x 1.5 rounding down) the first round and 3 on the second round (assuming you allowed it). You would need to have a minimum of 3 flasks per swarm which means you would be taking a minimum of 6d6 damage. Not good odds if you ask me. Maybe if you had a cleric with selective positive energy channeling you could out last the encounter but that is a lot of ifs.
Xaod The Destroyer wrote:
Remember that you're playing Skulls and Shackles, too, and good luck finding or having the presence of mind to buy flasks of alchemist's fire when you've got other, more important things to buy-- like ranged weapons, two-handed weapons, rope, shields and armor.
There are some ways to deal with the swarms:
Mosquitos In the Swamps: Summon something to distract them, and sneak past/go around. Jump into the swamp water, hold your breath and remain submerged for as long as you can.
Botflies in the Fields Don't touch the heads! The GM should give the players a heads up, that the heads seem to be writhing and infested with particularly hideous and huge flies. A quick Kn. (Nature) will reveal the danger, and encourage the PCs to go well around. Heck they might be able to use the heads against the Ankheg.
Botflies in the Stockade Again the GM should clearly flag the botflies crawling all over Aaron Ivy's body, and buzzing obnoxiously. Actually the issue with the Botflies here is that it discourages the PCs from approaching. If I know my players when they look through the door they'll see a body covered in a swarm of tiny terrible monsters and will immediately set the body alight (oil and alchemist's fire anyone?)
Sometimes players get stuck in the straight up combat aspect of the game forgetting that you still get xp for successfully avoiding monsters just as you'd get xp for killing them. :)
Rest In Peace
Sergeant Buck Holiday (3rd level ranger, sword and shield style):
I (the DM) threw the Ship's Whores into the encounter with Arron Ivy in an effort to challenge my group of 5 PCs (built on 25 point buy). The ghouls paralyzed Sgt Buck when he stepped forward of the party to block a bottleneck; the ghast (who I put on the ground and mobile instead of hanging in the cabin) then coup-de-grace'd Buck and ate him for a couple of rounds before turning his attention to the rest of the party.
Finally, a friendly note to all DMs, the summoner archetype (Master Summoner) is a real beast. At third level, its ability to summon multiple eagles using Summon Monster II, and do it MULTIPLE TIMES, basically generates a whole new adventuring party to fight the encounters. I don't believe in calling anything overpowered (I really don't like the term), but, as a DM you need to be prepared for significant power leap by the party if this archetype shows itself in your campaign.
Some more ways to deal with the swarms:
Alchemist's Fire There is a chest with 6 vials of the stuff in the Whore's Boudoir so even if the PC's have none there is SOME AoE available.
[b]Gust of Wind[/b} Really this is the best route. A Druid, Sorcerer or Wizard could (in a Pirate campaign should) have this by this point in the Adventure Path. It will most likely blow any swarms 70ish feet away and do 2d6 damage. Pretty solid life saver right there.
But yeah, The last bit of this module is crazy dangerous.
The tendency of many of these encounters on the island to bleed together is destined to result in some PC deaths. Running away from Ghouls? Meet some Giant Frogs/Crabs? or hello Ankheg! My group ended up barricading themselves into the Stockade to get away from the Ship's Whores just to be ambushed by Vine Chokers. A nearly dead PC fleeing from the Chokers into the lodge got overwhelmed by Botflies and Ghast Stench. Lovely.
And then this beaten and bedraggled group is supposed to deal with an underwater dungeon and a tribe of Grindylows, before returning to the Man's Promise with what fuel in the tank for a confrontation with Plugg & Scourge? It's not looking good.
I completely agree Sabedoria on your comment about encounters bleeding together causing mayhem. I love the idea of this AP but this first one has been a constant frustration. A DM really shouldnt have rewrite encounters throughout an entire module...I accept that you cant write encounters for every class make-up and DMs must step in and adjust as needed but this whole module has too many examples of this.
We were in the Riptide Cove just outside the BrineBrood Queens chamber when the Devil Fish attacked and spit out its black cloud of annoyance. We realized with its reach and grappling it was a bad idea to rush into the cloud to deal with it. As we pulled back into the low tide tunnel it ran into the Brinebrood Queens chamber. We chased it in there not knowing this was the final boss and were supposed to face the Queen, the Whale and a slightly damaged Devil Fish. So she lets the prisoners drop into the water, which is the only reason we were there, and submerges. Everyone at this point was debating on how to deal with her. We had a ranger-barbarian, a Zen Archer monk, a rogue, and me a half-orc bloodline sorcerer. She cast fog cloud above the water and visibility below the water was reduced to 5-10 feet. I let them debate what to do and finally just said I am not dieing for NPCs so I am leaving. They all looked at me in amazement that I was running away until they realized it was a death trap. I like a challenge but this module has consisted of us running from more than half of encounters and a full wipe the one time we should have run and didnt.
Constantly being in the water, with limited (slow) ways to run does not help things either.
but, isn't this the "Obituary" thread aka Death Scenes only ?
The group I am currently in has finished Wormwood Mutiny and are moving onto the second book later today. Heres our casualty report.
1st: Cleric of Besmara "died" to the storm on the wormwood, knocked overboard and unable to catch up with the ship. (was saved by the "Blessing of Besmara" and reappeared magically on the ship, DM fiat)
2nd: Half-orc Ranger repeatedly failed to learn how to board ships. Eventually was forced to do it "for real" and failed that landing in the water and promply was eaten by sharks. (failed like 10 rolls in a row, poor guy, DM let him come back in with an "identical twin" because that was just horrid)
3rd & 4th: Party had been lagging on exp due to a lack of roleplaying on the Wormwood (I was playing a coward and spent 90% of the time hiding in cabinets in the galley) so the DM threw some random animal encounters at us to get us up to speed while on the island. We had a bad show of players this day as well and were down to three. The aforementioned half-orc ranger (level 1), a human wizard (level 1) and a gnome sorceress (level 2; me!). Not exactly a balanced party. Well a few encounters went OK until the DM rolled two cougars at once (bad luck for us). The half-orc started the encounter at 6 health or so, and promptly went down. I spent the next 10 turns or so spamming color spray. The wizard did a lot of damage and killed one cougar and the other cougar was badly hurt when color spray finally wore off (it resisted the last one) well the wizard was promptly mauled by the cougar before it turned on me, attacked me and brought me to 2 hp. Thinking about my odds I drank my potion of invisibility (rewarded for warning the captain during the raid) and tried to make good my escape. Cougar saw through it (scent I guess) and attacked again, I was lucky and not a single attack hit. I turned thought "eh" and used "acid splash" did 3 damage and killed the cougar. Unfortunately the Ranger and Wizard bled out. This is the only time in my 8 year gaming career that a level 0 has saved my life.
Hey, there! Snorb here! You may remember me from my extremely sarcastic and insulting Jade Regent party obituaries! Well, I'm just a player in Skull and Shackles, but I get to (per DM request) write the obituaries for this one! And I'm pleased to announce our party's first Skull and Shackles death!
Race: Human Oracle of the Waves
Origins: Cheliax, on the Pellean mainland.
Adventure: The Wormwood Mutiny
Location: The island whose name eludes me, so... umm... Gilligan's Island. Yeah.
Cause of Death: Devilfish
I Hope This Isn't Sushi Related: Not in the traditional sense, no.
So What Happened: In our effort to rescue our slightly-renamed cleric of Besmara and Captain Harrigan's ex-cabin girl from a couple of grendylous and THE WHALE, we ran into her guardian, the dreaded devilfish. He claims that he wants to "give us the mark of his queen" before he lets us have an audience with her. Good ol' Jayce willingly and cheerfully saunters right on up on his peg leg, walking across the water, to meet (the devilfish, certain death).
Only An Idiot Would Fall For That: Suuuuuure did. P.T. Barnum once said that there's a sucker born every minute, and this was that sucker.
What Happened Next: Not surprisingly, Jayce gets grappled by the devilfish. Hilariously, the tentacle attack that grapples Jayce is a critical hit that dealt Strength damage and broke his good leg. (Gotta enjoy the Lame curse combined with a peg leg.) Fortunately, there is a half-orc cavalier with a flintlock pistol, a drow swashbuckler dual-wielding cutlasses, a water elemental-blooded sorcerer, and my perpetually ticked-off CE barbarian with her scythe standing by to make some sashimi out of this truly ugly fish.
Surely This Valiant Band of Badasses Can Save Him: I'm writing this obituary, so... let's just say Jayce didn't quite win the initiative roll. What we hear next is...
Mike the DM: Okay, Booke, the devilfish is gonna pop you into its mouth with its SAVAGE BIIIIITE. (rolls) Ohh dear. The, uh, devilfish threatens a critical hit on an 18 or higher...
And... I have to confirm another death in our campaign. Pull over a barrel, light you pipes and hear the sad and mourning wake for Fer'yman De'Santos, our Oracle of Lore ( Actually he served Nogorber) from Galt.
On a cloudless and breezy day, the crew spied two vessels interlocked and off to leewards, one flying the hated chelian pennant. Tempers soared, Rosie beat to quarters and the "Last Kiss" went to battle... Standing at her wheel proudly arrained in tricorne and his leather surcoat Fer'yman steered her true as they swiftly approached the Chelian Cutter like a Black Squall, butthe master got clipped by two crossbow bolts when they soared through the final yards...setting him back some (like a dozen HP). When the PCs rammed the "Vorsfang", he stayed at the wheel to secure the "Last Kiss" in place... and alas...becoming the sole target of value for the rearmost ballistae.To the end he stayed at his post, having sailed the "Last Kiss" through hails of bolts and stones ! Straight at the Volsfang, her Crimson flying !
A heavy twang, a roll of a 19 and a confirmation of the viscious hit by the siege engine crew.... a polesized ballista bolt pinned him to the wheel, chest burst and torn, his last breath escaped him (crit for 36 HP), send his spirit afloat and... well, Fer'yman never had much stamina in the first place ( only HP 27 overall ) as his body slumped.
ooc: two people at the table simultaneously saying, "oh, it's a Wash"
yeah well, no mercy was now shown to the Chelians, which over all proved a viscious fight, after having the main healer been eliminated early on. Blood everywhere and no survivors, pirates freed, one dead sailing master.
The PCs actually switched everyone to the cutter which was instantly christened "Ferryman's Grave" (amongst plans of : "how cool is that, we are sailing a chelian warship") and plan to use it for maximum effect and confusion. The "Last Kiss" is getting shipped to Bloodcove trying to sell it - in Chelian uniforms, as a "lawful prize" !
For now, they stowed Fer'yman in a barrel of brandy, intending to bury him "in pirate style" on a lone island.
Selds'e was a recent escapee from the Drow, where he was a slave. Prior to being pressganged, he had made good his escape with the talenets he learned from a stolen spellbook and the Blindfight feat. These proved to be useful when captured by pirates.
Selds'e was well known among the party as the one who deals the pain, having electrocuted Scourge, the manticore, and Whalebone's bell. Unfortunately, the confidence went to his head.
Aboard the Dominator, he created a Fog Cloud, and wandered in to fight Commander Kain and two cronies. They quickly ganged up on him. As the Party destroyed the tiller, Selds'e was fighting a losing battle against the Commander. The party, seeing that reinforcements were arriving every other round, made a break for it, the fog cloud preventing them from seeing Selds'e's final moments. Kain challenged the magus, and brought his axe down in two strokes. The first Selds'e blocked with a hero-point induced Shield spell, but the second was much more devistating. Reduced to negative hit points, Selds'e's fate was unknown to the crew. An agonized captian ordered retreat, vowing revenge. Their ship managed to escape out of the bay without hardly a scratch.
Selds'e woke in the brig as the Paracountess Lorvika came down with torturers to find the location of his crew, but Selds'e was used to far worse at the hands of the drow. Succeeding on a 20 Will save, he refused to give up the location of Tidewater Rock. Instead, he directed them to Bonewrack Isle, hoping to get them all infected with Ghoul Fever. They hung Selds'e until dead off the yardarm of the ship, befitting a pirate like him.
The player for Sel is my GM in Carrion Crown, and he killed one of my characters there, so now we are even.
Race: Changeling Water Elemental-Bloodline Sorcerer
Origins: I have no idea. She was described as "looking like that girl from The Ring," so... your guess is as good as mine here.
Adventure: Raiders of the Fever Sea
Location: At sea, appropriately enough.
Cause of Death: Negative experience with a friend-or-idol decision.
.....What?: Our valiant crew, now staffed with a druid we picked up to replace Jayce, decides "You know, we really need to work on building our reputation as pirates." We are given a choice: either go after some rink-a-dink barely defended cargo ship, or The Big One- a Pellaen treasure ship complete with man-o-war guard. This ship is stocked to the brim with gold and gems, but heavily defended.
Obvious Choice Was Obvious: So after ambushing the ship from behind at night, we board. Unfortunately for someone in this combat, the escort ship decides to grapple and board the treasure ship. That sucker ain't going anywhere. We find out that the treasure ship is captained in name only by a former player character of mine, George Anger Hawkins. (Yes, that is his real name. Just imagine Daffy Duck with rogue levels and that's George.) He calls his beautiful first mate/sex wench Isabella for a conference which went "Wench- conference! Undo your top more. Okay, now what the @$%! is going on?! We got boarded?! Kill everyone on that ship! And the other ship, too- they sucked at not getting boarded!"
An...y...ways...: So after mutilating our way across the treasure ship and the guard ship (with me roleplaying both Kara, my barbarian, and George, the Pellaen diplomat with serious mental health issues) Isabella boards our ship. She attacks Livia with a Lightning Bolt spell, and Ringu no onna goes down.
Doesn't That Mean "Woman of The Ring?": Probably, but my Japanese is eluding me massively.
So What Happened Next?: Isabella, realizing that she's the only one with any capability of fighting back, makes an offer: She gets away with the treasure ship, and Livia doesn't receive a second dose of Lightning Bolt.
Totally Worth It: The Drow Captain Ro'Byrts says "All right!" as do the rest of us. Chaotic Evil Me implies that not only am I cool with Livia being reduced to a greasy smear on our deck, I would totally help her out. Mike the DM rolls damage, I suddenly get reminded of how easily Sailor Jupiter curbstomped Nephrite in the Sailor Moon manga, Livia bites the green weiner at -35 health.
On The Plus Side: We got about 7 Plunder out of the deal, George Anger Hawkins' magic rapier, leather armor, Belt of Dexterity, and Isabella's Brine Rapier, Headband of Alluring Charisma, and Amulet of Natural Armor. And Ro gets Isabella handily delivered to his bedchamber for a few hours.
Oh Boy.: Too bad for Ro that Isabella took some poison and died, but not before revealing the treasure map tattooed on her back. The druid casts Make Treasure Map, and we realize we have a castle to storm.
So What's The Next Character?: A Pellaen gunslinger who left the Diplomantic Corps. He looks like Rudy Roughknight from Wild Arms 1, and has a feat that basically lets him make pistol ammo dirt cheap(er than usual.)
Oh, God. One from last night.
Name: Captain The Drow Pirate Ro'Byrts
Race: .....Look up. (HINT: It sure as hell ain't a samsaran.)
Origins: The Underdark.
Adventure: Raiders of the Fever Sea
Location: Storming the Tower near Port Peril.
Cause of Death: Racial, uh, "feature" gone horribly horribly wrong.
There's Got To Be A Story Behind This: So, after raiding the Pellaen treasure ship I mentioned in the last post, we come across the replacement for Livia- Paul, the brother of George Anger Hawkins from above, and he's a Pellaen knight. This means "revolver." (A digression: When asked to describe his character, he starts to show us a character picture and our DM says "No. Bad Player. TELL us about your character, not 'show me Rudy Roughknight's picture.'" He eventually came up with "Well, I have blue hair." And that's it. Mike the DM actually does the Jean-Luc Picard facepalm, and I almost say "No @$&*. Ami Mizuno has blue hair. Rei Ayanami has blue hair. Naoto Shirogane has blue hair. BE MORE DESCRIPTIVE.")
Digressing D: : Oh. Yeah. Sorry. Anyway, after a harrowing adventure on the GHOOOOOOOST SHIIIIIIP (read: wasting a bunch of undead in three rounds and my character turning the ship's bell into a gong with her bare hands) we pull in to Port Peril and decide to raid that tower.
Several Rounds of Rum Later: The Nightclaw makes way for that tower, and when we get there, we give the mooks inside enough time to make ready for us. Turns out picking at a lock for a couple minutes, threatening to shove a gnome through an arrow slit, and scything through a door in barbarian rage kinda makes noise and alerts whoever's on the other side of where you're trying to B&E.
A Murderin' We Went: My sister's half orc wades into combat, I become a whirring circle of gory death, the gnome sends his crocodile in to thin things out, our new gunslinger actually does a competent job, and Ro does awesomely setting me up for a Butterfly Sting. Then...
DISASTERIFFIC: A lucky critical hit from one of the mooks not only drops Ro to -14 health, but also drops his Constitution to 6. ("I was dead anyway!" he said. "I only had 11 Con! D:") Our druid moves in with a Cure Moderate Wounds spell at the ready. The realization kicks in as he casts it on Ro that drow have spell resistance. "But Snorb!" I hear you say through the internets. "You can turn off spell resistance as a standard action!" All well and good, but when you get polymorphed from "Dual-cutlassing drow with a kick-ass pirate crew" to "Lifeless humanoid-shaped piece of inert matter bleeding all over the masonry," you can't really do much of anything besides expire (messily.)
So, 'Bout That Spell Resistance: At fifth level, Ro has 11 spell resistance. Our gnome needs to roll a 6 or higher on the caster level check to save the Drow Pirate Ro'Byrts. "No problem!" says his player.
He rolls a 4. The Drow Pirate Ro'Byrts becomes the Stone-Cold Dead Drow Pirate Ro'Byrts.
Well, Gee, I Really Guess That Sucks: The party avenges Ro's death, and we come to the realization afterwards that my sister's character is now the captain. When the tower's mistress offers us the resources to have Ro revived, New Captain Gramross muses this, then says "We should revive him. But he's not the captain anymore." Then we all change our minds and say "Naaah." Going through his pockets doesn't make us feel any better- all Ro had was four Pellaen gold points.
So His Replacement?: I'm sworn to secrecy on that one, except for him being totally awesome.
...And no, he's not going to be the captain.
So has anyone had their ship get sunk yet? I'm waiting for those ones...
Nopes, we've only exchanged ships like lukewarm bottles of beer. Actually loosing the ship should be very hard before the Regatta
where the storm elementals will prove the first real chance of wrecking the ship, permanently
Raiders of the Fever Seas:
Death of "Sergeant at Arms, Hugo and acting captain of commandeered Famished Mane"
location and cause:
Met his end in the tiller room of the Dominator. Hugo, did some awesomeness with 2 weapon fighting, rapidly disarming the two marines.
Cavalier challenged, charged, and vital striked, nearly wiping him in one blow. Hugo disarmed the cavalier next while the rest of the party took out the tiller's rope and held off the marines- but the commander soaked the attack of opportunity, retrieved his axe and slew him.
Total deaths in campaign is up to 3.
The Forgotten wrote:
Technically no, but unless you're playing PFS, most people house rule it in my experience (including James Jacobs)
You just have to make an attack action. There are many attack actions ... including charge which grants an attack. If it was just the 'standard action attack action,' why wouldn't they just make vital strike a standard action, using the same language as cleave?
I had to open my big mouth. Our DM for S&S is fairly new, and thus more lenient to 'playing around'. We were looking for ways to "negotiate" with a manticore in Port Peril, and when my Captain was asked why we would want to have a manticore on board, I replied "More allies equals more power". When the question of how to get more power was discussed, I flippantly replied "We could always find a Deck of Many Things."
Some brief backstory: We had just raided a Rahadoumian (sp) vessel that had a manticore as a 'mobile siege engine'. My Captain, upon seeing the creature released for attack, immediately wanted it captured alive to be part of the crew. During the fight the manticore continually cried, "I'm going to eat your f*****g face!" Well, indeed, it ate the face of Bellamy, our elven two-handed fighter. Bellamy barely survived after a potion of healing trickled into his mutilated face when he was lying in the manticore's filth-ridden cage.
So, ye ole mysterious gypsy whips out a Deck of Many Things and slyly asks if we care to draw cards. Making some Spellcraft rolls, some of us are aware of the inherent risks from drawing from the powerful artifact. Initially we think it's a scam until a Detect Magic makes our noses bleed.
Poor Bellamy, his confidence, face and sanity shattered, decides to draw four cards. His first drawing is the Skull. A Dread Wraith kills the poor fool. Utterly gone.
Once we had cast off (with our new crew-mate, Frederico the Manticore [so named by his previous crew and he stuck with it]), we were stalked by Whalebone Pilk and his ghost ship. In the ensuing fight that night Adelaide, the lover and partner of Bellamy, gives up the ghost by...giving up to a ghost. Corrupting Touch withered the poor gunslinger to flesh and bone.
Wakes were had, memories were cherished, new crew were hired.
In just the first book, I lost two characters, and if you saw their ability scores, you would be in awe that they could die like chumps.
Saar Ann the druid got to level 4 in the first adventure path (our gm levelled us up EARLY) and managed to get pinned under a trap. I think you guys know the one... A doozy, even at low tide.
A ridiculously powerful hungerseed tiefling barbarian, Madriki, ended up with the misfortune of catching ghoul fever and being brought down to 9 con right before a random battle with the headcrab zombie things. The fighter, whose stats were only slightly touched in comparison and had a higher AC than her without armor on was wasting time by being ridiculously cautious and refusing to engage the enemy. They targetted the party's halfling(and active healer, did I mention the druid died?), so the barbarian literally made a charge attack at the transgressor, leaping into the air, and crashing into the railing. That would have been fine, if not for the two perfect crits that followed.
Now, I'm no stranger to character death, but this trend means that my characters die with more frequency than Daniel on Stargate SG1.
It gets worse, though. Perhaps the rules don't specifically state this, but the dm ruled that dying while sick with ghoul fever means Romero's continuuity is involved.
The party had to contend with the large greatsword-wielding barbarian with 20 strength while raging in ghoul form, not three days later in game, with my new cleric having cast shield other on the aforementioned fighter.
Dm rescue,and book 2, but g%!+!!it!:
Aasimar cleric joins the party just in time to save the other members with ghoul fever and volunteers to help retrieve the barbarian's body when the captain(that poor, cowardly fighter) remembered he'd left the stiff bound and tied up in the bilge of the ship(this might not have been too bad, but they hadn't locked the thing, and her equipment was left unattended in the captain's cabin).
New aasimar cleric, sweet thing that she is, and having already been warned about the ghoul fever, casts shield other on the fighter.
First round of combat(surprise round in the bilges) literally killed her, too, because of the bite attack additive. It sucks to be killed by your own character, and that would be two character deaths in one session(the aasimar was a spare I had around), so the dm ruled that retroactively the spell was removed before Mabel joined the dead club. I accept that this one was my own doing, but... the fighter would have died from massive damage otherwise.
I suppose it's a badge of honor that every character death here was reasonably dignified. In the past, I've counted being tossed down the stairs and landed on by a fat bard, turned into a tree and being set on fire, being crushed by a tree token at epic levels, drowned in three inches of water, electrocuted by a mandolin, being killed during player-into-character feuds just because I was standing next to the paladin and the rogue/alchemist missed, being put in a bag of holding by a warforged who failed anatomy class, being jumped on by a changeling suitor while featherfalling from an incredible height, being mauled by a ochre jelly whilst a druid watched with fascination from the ceiling, and being shot like a cannon from an exploding grain silo as causes of character death.
Well, not so much wailed on as eaten by him. The Whale was at very low health when he decided to eat Mr. Laron, and he succeeded on the bite, knocking the unfortunate ninja unconscious, at dangerously low hp. On the next round, every single person in the party, despite its prodigious girth, managed to miss the bloated grindylow. Next round the ninja kicked the bucket, marking the first character death for that particular player.
Indeed I do. I really must admit that I might have been being a bit hard on that fighter, but he became the captain before any of this went down, and his caution level is ridiculous. If it had been up to him 'tanking', the entire party would have died within a very short amount of time. We lost plenty of named npcs to it.The dm sees this as a problem, and #2's last living words were yelling about this. The point was never made, so Madriki gets to haunt the ship(no Resurrection for the vaporized) until such a time as the nagaji fighter kicks her ethereal ass in one-on-one combat, thus proving he has the balls to be captain and protect everyone else.
In the game I'm DMing we actually had a character receive a keelhauling! He came one die roll away from actually surviving the whole ordeal, but the drowning rules are unforgiving when you go unconscious underwater.
What went down:
A couple of our group wanted to stick it to Fipps Chumlett, who had become their nemesis on the boat with a quickness. They went below and broke into his footlocker during dinner and stole everything he owned. Both characters quickly hid all of the contraband very well, except for a vial of Alchemist's Fire that was given to a third PC to pay off a 1gp debt.
When Fipps saw his locker looted, he raised a cry and the whole crew was made to stand against the walls while lockers and bodies were searched. The two guilty PCs were smug because they knew these sailors would never find where they hid the loot and they were right, they got away with it.
However, the PC holding the Alchemist's Fire didn't even know it was stolen property, so he took no pains to hide it. When it was found, he was thrown directly into the sweatbox before he could even say, "I stole what, now?"
He made a new character, and the players are thinking about naming their ship after him when they squib it.
Alas, Akodo Imaru is no more. The tengu druid died trying to rescue his shipmates.
When the PCs saw the devilfish, they had no idea what it was. No knowledges for them! So it made the water go inky-black and everyone retreated to think what to do next. As they'd only explored half the cave complex, they went around the other way and came back around ... to the devilfish!
They actually tried to negotiate with it, offering it food (dead grindylows) if it would let them past. Sadly, it was not interested in this offer nor was it intimidated by their puny-yet-tasty selves. Akodo moved forward with his katana held high but was struck by a large tentacle, dragged into the maw of the beast, and chomped in half.
Introducing the New Character:
I had three people strung up and get dropped down into the water in the final fight. After the remaining party members defeated the Queen and the Whale, they found out they had rescued the only surviving crewmember of the Infernus, who had been captured and tortured by the grindylows for days but incidentally protected from the ghouls and mosquito swarms. He was dropped with Sandara Quinn and Jack Scrimshaw mostly because the Queen was getting bored with him.
The player built a battle oracle replacement.
Peaceful negotiations with the lady of Tidewater Rock were interrupted by the Chelish Navy as the Man of War Dominator sailed in to take out our piratical heroes. The Commander Kyan Kain challenged Varanus in the fight and had some Marines gang up on the Lizardman using their Precise Strike feat to inflict extra punishment. Ultimately Varanus just couldn't withstand the barrage and his healer threw hands in the air saying "no point putting a bandaid over a bullet hole." Commander Kain's last strike was a rapier thrust straight to the heart. With a vicious twist Varanus' career of piracy was at an end.
My PCs made it to the island well enough. They bypassed some of the encounters on the island and headed into the Grindylow caverns. The Devilfish ate well that night. Having JUST wiped the party the week before in Carrion Crown, they asked for a rematch with the Devilfish. I agreed, and the outcome was the same. Round three, they managed to trap him with a tanglefoot bag and ping him from afar, finally achieving victory.
Frustrated, they left to regroup and upon leaving the cove they succeeded their perception checks to spot the wreck of the Infernus. They did not, however, make their perception checks to spot the Giant Eel lying in wait. The rogue was killed in one round and the eel retreated with his well deserved snack.
The Elusive Trout wrote:
I once fell into a spiked pit holding alchemists fire in each hand, then my brother fell down trying to rescue him because he couldn't see the pit by candlelight because he was too cheap to buy torches, it didn't end well. this was after another brother died from a rot grub infestation when he cut his own arm off trying to prevent them from spreading up his arm (didn't work) sigh, i miss undermountain.