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Campaign plot - A massive invasion in Golarion


Pathfinder Campaign Setting General Discussion

Cheliax

Hello guys n' girls

I am under the construction of a campaign in pathfinder. For it to work, I will need a big invasion in one of the countries in The Inner Sea. Andoran is perfect for it.

The invasion should be like "The Storm of Chaos" From the old warhammer world. But who should be the enemies be? And this is what I need your help and hints with. Who is angry on who and could attack each other?

Who would and can invade another country?


So, you're wanting to have the invaded country be Andoran? I would think the obvious suggestion might be Cheliax, since Andoran rebelled against the empire some time in the past, and Cheliax could easily be cast as trying to retake the country by force (though I'm not sure if Cheliax actually could maintain a long-term invasion).

Cheliax

Andoran fits well into the settings. That's why.
Cheliax was into my mind. Same with Taldor.

But I am sure some of you have a sweet idear of something else.

Andoran

Taldor is another likely canidate as well.

Andoran also has a long standing issue with the native Fae being as there are a number of logging interests encroaching on their territory. Having an internal conflict with the Fae would be great!


The pathetic wars of humanity are as nothing compared to the onslaught from the heavens. From the ancient stars and the void beyond Golarion cometh...

The {Insert evil space creature here}!

Alternatively you could stage an invasion of Cthulian entities, demons, devils, githyanki, etc.

Unless of course, you're dead set on wars between human nations.


Demons from the WorldWound ofcourse, what else?


Raging barbarians from the north (Varisia)!


Demons from the WorldWound on their way to invade Cheliax.

Thanks for the prompt, Darth Smoke.


One of the heavenly hosts assumes Andoran would be okay with them taking control in order to purify Cheliax.

Just for something completely out of the ordinary.


You could go all Second Darkness AP on them and steal the Drow as the invaders.


Check out "Cheliax at War" elsewhere on these boards for some additional angles for consideration.

Cheliax

This forum surprises me everytime. I love you guys.

I will post my conclusion later on. Keep the hints goin if you get something on the mind.

Taldor

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Cards, Companion, Maps, Modules, Pawns, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I'd go with a non-state, like drow or demons or other off-worlder, so you can have each nation dealing with it differently - some resist, some collaborate. New enemies cause strange friendships.

Sczarni RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

If you want an invasion of chaos, go for the Realm of the Mammoth Lords. There is reputed to be a portal to the Abyss in the northeast corner along the border to the Worldwound, but outside of the protective barrier created by the Wardstones.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

The fae - tooth fairys from Hellboy, Redcaps, formorians, and so on.

Osirion

How about something really different. Qadira launches a holy war against them after getting seriously offended by a string of perceived sleights and off-handed blasphemies by Andoran diplomats in Absolom, the hot blooded clerists call for a jihad and launch a fleet of ships across the Inner Sea to storm their coast. All of a sudden they end up with strange allies--like the Hellknights, or a fleet of black ships from Rahadum.

That would be cool.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion Subscriber

Andoran could always invade itself in a civil war.

Cheliax

The invasion is to be a part of a big campaign plot.

It is quite complicated to explain, but I will try.

The players are a part of a very very very secret religious cult of good guys. The goal with the members of the cult is to do very dangerous, very dirty and not atleast - very important jobs. All the secret missions that keeps the evil at bay - at all cost.

The plot goes like this. The players are on work and does alot of minor jobs in the beginning. The jobs are without connection at first - but later it comes together.

This starts to get heavy as they end up in a job that ends in a catastrophe. The cult member they are to save and find is murdered and the small town's mayor is murdered. Alot of guards and other authorities are dead. When the group turns back to the questgiver - who has a well hidden mansion in the forests, they find him murdered too. He has been stabbed with a dagger full of poison and then he killed his enemy - which gave him time to write a letter for the players.

It tells them to travel to "name of very big coast city" and meet with blablabla and blablabla which are loyal friends and members of the cult. And he guides them on. The letters lasts words tells, that the prophecy is true and that they are in BIG danger. Which means no travel by road and NO ONE can be trusted, before they meet with the other cult members.

When the players get into this big coast city, they have to find their way through the dangers and hard ways of finding members of a very secret cult. But once they find their contact, they are met with confusion. The contact knows nothing about a prophecy and tells them that their former quest-giver was kinda weirdo. But it is true that he should send them over to him when they where done with his jobs.

At this point the players begin to do cult work inside the city. And they find a lot of clues. Contracts made by nobles and criminals. Murders in all layers of society. Everything is very confusing.

And suddenly. The country is at war. A BIG invasion. And the armies of the invasion is going straight for the capital of the country. This big harbor city gathers it armies and sends them to help, of course.

Now the city is less guarded and fight-able. And now the real insane starts.

Fishers and travelers by sea tells about the water going black. And farmers and vagabonds by land tells about the forests going black. The trees are dying and grass melting. Big mushrooms beings to grow in the dark forests and disease follows. The darkness moves and it conceals more and more. It is - alive.

Everyone at sea and outside the walls flees into the city. And the city is now besieged by darkness. All while the army is away to defend the country of the invasion.

Inside the city - panic spreads. The nobles and politicians are having big debates. Everyone talks about this "Cover of Darkness" and the diseases that spreads. No one can flee. People who runs out in the forest are later heard screaming in pain. Ships trying to sail on the black water is consumed by its darkness and sinks into the black depths.

And as everything seems as bad as it can be. The heaven turns black too. No more sun. No more light. The city is in total chaos. Noble-houses fights each other with their private guards and rogues. Criminal organizations are fighting and everything is extremely dangerous.

But then the true face of the invasion shows. Because the invasion is just a big division. A trick by to make the army of "the big harbor" out. For the prophecy is true. "The pits of hell shall open in the city besieged and covered in the black chaos of darkness."

The real plot is to destroy this harbor city and make an easy way for the real bad guys to enter the country and spread more invasions. The invasion of the country in the beginning does not have to be the same "monsters" it can be hired money or lords n' kings under spells or extortion by the big evil boys.

What do you guys think? I have not mentioned all the quests and encounters that the players will met of course. Just the overall plot.

Osirion

Well two things offhand:

1-When Aroden died prophesy stopped working on Golarion, so I'd be sure to have the prophesy maybe start right, but then skew off very differently to what's happening. It's widely known in setting that prophesies have started to malfunction like this and secret society leaders will be frustrated and at a loss as to how to deal with it.

2-This kind of disaster sounds much less like anything to do with the abyss or the hells, and totally like an invasion from the Dark Tapestry. If you haven't bought the 4th issue of the Carrion Crown adventure path, check it out. These are the critters you want for your rotting darkness monsters (especially Shu-Niggurath).

Cheliax

About the prophesies... I did not know that. How that could pass my readings is strange. Thanks for that!

Thanks, I will check it out! :)

That you read my long post is appreciated

Osirion

No problem. Glad I could lend a hand. Best of luck with the campaign.

Osirion

Grimcleaver wrote:


2-This kind of disaster sounds much less like anything to do with the abyss or the hells, and totally like an invasion from the Dark Tapestry. If you haven't bought the 4th issue of the Carrion Crown adventure path, check it out. These are the critters you want for your rotting darkness monsters (especially Shu-Niggurath).

That' supposed to be SHUB-Niggurath, curse you tiny texting keyboard!


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

For your secret cult of good guys... I think I'd go with some offshoot of Sarenrae worshippers or the knight of Ozem (both of which seem to very fairly schismatic, as evidenced by the Dawnflower Dissident and the Low Templar PrCs).

A good group of behind the scenes baddies might be the Cult of the Whispering Way. I seem to recall one of the 3.5 modules in Andoran (Revenge of the Kobold King, IIRC)seems to indicate there is at least one seal holding the Whispering Tyrant in Andoran. And at least one or two of their number have taken interest in Andoran for that reason in canon material.

Another option might be to play up the return of a displaced remnant of the ancient Azlanti civilization that left Golarion before the Starfall (the ancient Azlanti left ruins all over the place- including Andoran. Any returning Azlanti might want to grab the artifacts left within undiscovered ruins)


Curious on the topic of wars has their been a book released yet in regards to all the various historical battles and wars in Golarions history yet? I.e details, military statistics, war lengths?

I'm quite interested in learning more about the planets historical battles being the war nut I am hehe.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Yeah, guys, I don't know how helpful ideas like "Realm of the Mammoth Lords" and "Varisia" are, given that they'd need to pre-invade every nation in-between to even get to Andoran. It's like saying "Romania will be invaded... by China!".

Cheliax and Taldor already are great antagonists and they are both just next door. Quadira actually would be a great antagonist, too ( although its obvious middle eastern roots could make that uncomfortable for many ), although they would first have to go through Taldor, which would a be whole campaign by itself.

Sczarni RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

magnuskn wrote:

Yeah, guys, I don't know how helpful ideas like "Realm of the Mammoth Lords" and "Varisia" are, given that they'd need to pre-invade every nation in-between to even get to Andoran. It's like saying "Romania will be invaded... by China!".

Cheliax and Taldor already are great antagonists and they are both just next door. Quadira actually would be a great antagonist, too ( although its obvious middle eastern roots could make that uncomfortable for many ), although they would first have to go through Taldor, which would a be whole campaign by itself.

I was giving ideas for an alternate for a "Storm of Chaos" scenario. Taldor is more worried with Qadira and vice versa, neither of which have any real beef with Andoran. An invasion by Cheliax would not feel right for "Storm of Chaos". Cheliax is very much a lawful country and not a very stable one. Besides discontent with between the common person and the countries leaders, any war could see the colony of Sargava attempt to shed the bonds of its far away master. And any remaining goblinoids in Isger would have ample opportunity to strike again since Cheliax would most likely strike from that direction as well, leaving the country under defended. Which could leave Druma's mercenary armies to subdue the goblins in Isger and either become its new guardian or consume it completely. Cheliax may be working to covertly to lessen the strength of its enemies, but any overt action could very well see its neighbors tear it to shreds and/or lead the peasants and slaves to revolts.

Reading over the very long post by the Saganen Hellheart, an alternate history campaign could work out well. Basing the story in Sakoris prior to the Worldwound opening or in ancient Nidal leading up to Earthfall.

Cheliax

All the posts are great ideas for scenarios and plays. Not only I can take help from it.

My campaign just has two musts. The country must be very religious and has a coast line with a big harbor.

All the posted suggestions are great.

One of my friends came up with the idea of playing it in Cheliax. The secret cult looks great for something the Asmodeus church could make up.

And it is not always the campaign setting lets the players be evil chars.

Sczarni RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Saganen Hellheart wrote:
My campaign just has two musts. The country must be very religious and has a coast line with a big harbor.

If you have the Inner Sea World Guide, read the history of the Worldwound. If not check it out on the pathfinderwiki (or pathfinder.wikia, which is not blocked at work for me) for the info. But it could tie in well for your game.

Long ago the god of humanity drove a cult of demon worshippers into a lake. But with his death the cult could have become emboldened and starting at the point where they were driven into the lake, begin a march of glorious destruction. Coming from a harbor area like you suggested. Since the lake is within the borders, the countries rulers would see no point in keeping an army their if they have problems elsewhere, allowing the cult to arise anew.

Instead of literal darkness growing, you could have the darkness be symbolized by the blight of the demon taint spreading. Your players could be members of the Rift Wardens (a secret organization) who were guarding the thin veil between the Abyss and Golarion, while the opposing faction is a cell of Darkfire Adepts that worship the demons.

Adding a real CoC feel, the party would eventually have to decide between their survival or sacrifice themselves to slow the spread of evil.

Then if you and your group like a series of campaigns tied together, you could have the second campaign be the First Mendevian Crusade to stop the spread. Then skip forward to the 4th crusade for the finale where they must verture to the very depths of the Abyss itself to seal the rift (possibly using Mythic rules?).

Using 3 different groups of PCs, the players would get the chance to live the various important battles against the Abyss and the cult.


One of the ideas I was toying with was using Absolom.

The city has reached a peak and can no longer support itself, the vassal city of Diobel can no longer take on the excess baggage of those who cannot find a place and the military city of Escadar grows restless.

Recently the Inner Council reached an alliance with the Centaurs of the Island of Kortos as well as some of the mountain tribes (unknown to the region).

This is on top of recent discoveries made from the Red Redoubt of Karamoss and adaptations of the "Machine Mages" notes.

With this, Absolom has quietly built 2 new navies, one using steam power and one using air ships (the discoveries have also allowed them to build siege constructs, and a legion of Warforged)

Currently it is using its agents to cause strife with Andoran and Cheliax (which has taken the Cheliaxian fleet away as well as it's agents). All Absolom needs is the right time to strike, but where and when remain a mystery.


What if they subvert the gunsmithies of Alkenstar ...


Turin the Mad wrote:
What if they subvert the gunsmithies of Alkenstar ...

All they need to do is put in a contract for Alkenstar to suply them with weapons. You could have a scenario where the characters are either protecting, capturing or destroying a shipment depending on who's side they are on.

It could be like the Battle of the Atlantic in WWII, with commerce raiders, wolf packs and convoys.


The 8th Dwarf wrote:
Turin the Mad wrote:
What if they subvert the gunsmithies of Alkenstar ...

All they need to do is put in a contract for Alkenstar to suply them with weapons. You could have a scenario where the characters are either protecting, capturing or destroying a shipment depending on who's side they are on.

It could be like the Battle of the Atlantic in WWII, with commerce raiders, wolf packs and convoys.

Sweeeeet.


The 8th Dwarf wrote:
Turin the Mad wrote:
What if they subvert the gunsmithies of Alkenstar ...

All they need to do is put in a contract for Alkenstar to suply them with weapons. You could have a scenario where the characters are either protecting, capturing or destroying a shipment depending on who's side they are on.

It could be like the Battle of the Atlantic in WWII, with commerce raiders, wolf packs and convoys.

That would be a very interesting concept to add to my idea.

Other concepts would be to have a group of adventurers be a subversion group either finding out information, sowing seeds of dissent, maybe hit and run tactics to weaken certain objectives, assassination attempts or anything like that.

Sczarni

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Here's the Cheliax at War thread that Turin mentioned. It's full of World War-type scenarios.

I think you could easily use Andoran as the setting, Augustana as the port city, and Cheliax as the attacker. Or maybe you could get a little more complex, and use Molthune -- Cheliax might be using them as a proxy, or else they might be upset if Molthune decided to upset the balance unilaterally.

As for the supernatural threat: you have a lot of options. You could use the Dark Tapestry, the Shadow Plane, Aucturn or another extraterrestrial planet, demons, evil fae, ancient Azlanti or Thassilonians...whichever suits your fancy and gives you the monsters that you like best.


Irrisen has an interest in Darkmoon Vale. I doubt they will serve your purpose, or fit your current intrigues, but they could be used as a sub-plot, exploiting the chaos to make their own local bid to control the Vale (working with the evil fey there).

I suppose Baba Yaga could be behind the real threat as well, using Cheliax (or whomever) as the feint against the capital. I can definitely see the witches swinging some sort of deal with the Asmodeus-worshipers.


Are you looking for individual scenerio's to fill in your story, you can take any campaign or battle from any war and turn it into an adventure...

For example:

The enemy launches an assault against an unexpected area (heavily forrested and mountainous) that is garrisoned only with hastily recruited raw militia (who are training while they are garrisoning). If the enemy succeed they will be able to push over the mountains and attack the port from the less protected land side.

The regular units are far away and only other raw militia units can be sent in as reinforcements for weeks until the first regular units arrive.

The PCs can start out in low level leadership positions or as part of a section/squad, because of heavily wooded, mountainous, and environmentally inhospitable it is (jungle, desert or cold), the fighting is bitter close and a serries of ambushes and outflanking maneuvers. The PCs are outnumbered by an elite enemy formation, and the higher ups die very quickly in the hand to hand or due to snipers.

The only chance is for a fighting withdrawal to shorten up supply lines, and delay as long as possible, so more reinforcements can be brought in.

The PCs can raid supply lines, ambush scouts, snipe enemy offices, you could put them in charge of raw fresh militia reinforcements that break and run and later redeem themselves.

The enemy could push them back to the ridge line overlooking the port, but the PCs efforts in delaying the enemy have given the defenders time bring up siege engines from the port and they pound the enemy forcing them to retreat. Bolstered by fresh regular reinforcements the hero's then start pushing the enemy back over the mountains and as they fight their way back through old battlefields they find that the enemy has not only been killing prisoners they have been mutilating and cannibalizing them as well.

After everything is secure and they are brought back for a rest they Parade before a general who doesn't congratulate them, he berates them for retreating and calls them cowards and rabbits.

This could set up the political aspect as your characters are promoted their plans could be opposed by this general who thinks they are cowards.

The above is based on a real campaign in WWII.

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