I'm at a con this weekend, so please excuse the light posting.
I must admit, its hard to push this forward because there's nothing to occupy time.
Its currently middle of Day 2.
On Day 7 we attack the tribe.
Thats four full days where we have nothing scheduled.
I know Talivar is keen to ambush Red Mantis dude, but he isn't scheduled to visit that ambush location until Day Five. Which means he won't be there today, or tomorrow, or the day after.
There are other things we can do on those days but most of them involve getting active in the middle of town / Goldshackle / Pirates / Reaper Cult etc. Several of us mentioned not wanting to do things in the city though until the heat dies down so that does limit our available options.
Kinda in a situation I think where we have time but nothing to fill it with which makes it hard to push things forward. I guess we can scout Goblin tribes for an attack but I honestly don't know how much time thats going to take up.
Well there's plenty of other quests we could try. For one thing we could contact Makori and warn her not to trust the pirates recommended by Erandlon. We could also attack a different tribe.
I'm still around. It's sometimes hard being the "muscle" of the group and not really a strategist when it comes to setting a direction or contributing to these planning sessions. So don't mind me. I'm just over here flexing.
Sure but you can still make suggestions ;)
Like Talivar said, Uruelleth might not be up for making suggestions, but that doesn't keep Stalwart from making them. :)
Also, keep in mind that you don't have to fill every single day with activities. Yes, things will be happening in the background, but if you want to skip ahead a few days (or more), I'm fine with it, assuming you're taking precautions like Shadowy Haven or staying at the Thunderscale Warrens.
We still need the army if we are fighting those tribes Talivar - which still means waiting. I don't feel comfortable attacking a tribe by ourselves. If we couldn't take Erandlon a moment ago then I don't see fighting a tribe being a significantly easier task.
Makori is an option but still probably wants nothing more to do with us. Theres also the likely response that she doesn't really give a damn - if memory serves her dad was pretty unimpressed and didn't much care for whatever his brethren were up to. What he wanted from us was to be impressive and land blows against the Red Mantis, I'd rather approach them after we slaughtered all the tribes / killed Goldshackle - things that were mentioned by him as real significant blows against the Red Mantis before we approached him / her again.
I can vision quest on the pirates that Erandlon mentioned I guess tho. IDK how much use that would be tho. We could also go hunting for the Norgorber and attempt to offer them an alliance of sorts if we wanted to do something low level. That would be a city action though.
Hi! I’m back and posting now. Just a reminder that over the next week I’ll be posting less often than normal. If you’re ever waiting on me feel free to bot me.
I agree going up against the tribes will be risky but the read we didn't take out Erandlon is because there were neutral NPCs there.
My vote is to assassinate a tribe leader next (unless that means waiting ages). There must be some way of figuring out where they're going to be and striking at a moment of weakness.
* Lure them to a location of our choosing (all sorts of ways of doing this ranging from diplomacy to subterfuge, or a fake tip off about a rival tribe, or arranging for a 'natural' disaster).
* Capture and dominate a subordinate and find out where to look
* Summon something to look for us
Going to wait till y'all have more of a consensus before moving things along, but I did want to note that I think y'all may be suffering from analysis paralysis. While it's admirable to want to make the best possible use of your time, doing something is better than doing nothing at all. Just a thought. :)
The problem with taking on a tribe leader is that it basically requires the use of divination spells via Scry and Fry tactics. Luring them into a location is never going to work with diplomacy (starting attitude of hostile) and subterfuge is going to be tricky when a) probably requires everyone be good at disguise and b) still is risky because two NPC goblins survived our last attempt at subterfuge. They will be ready for an obvious bluff / disguise tactics.
I still like the idea (very much so actually) as it makes tactical sense but I still think you scout / spy via Transmutation Spells / Wild Shape (ie a non suspicious natural form) and get the information that way. Second issue with killing a tribe leader is that they just...get a new leader. We saw in that last fight that it took them all of two seconds to have a back up leader or goblin that stood up. Granted, not a combat threat but for maximum value I'd prefer you kill a tribe leader and then launch an attack on the tribe within 24 hours (but ideally same day). So I'm ok with moving against the tribes, but I'd rather save that for Day 6-7 ie right before / or while our army is getting into position.
Also, a note: Please do not rely on my Teleport spell until we successfully Dominate Erandlon (one of the reasons I wanted to fight now rather than in a few days). I need to know which area's are teleport trapped and there is no way to get that information from a vision. Erandlon is hopefully senior enough to know this. If not, we tried, and he might know who would be the next rung on the ladder. We know the Mayor is High Killer and I don't feel brave enough to take on that challenge yet.
I actually want to eliminate Goldshackle. I acknowledge the risks, and I hate the heat it generates but it does have many benefits. GM also keeps mentioning it through NPC's etc so I think its something we are 'meant' to do at some point.
1. It disrupts the economy of the city, and the Red Mantis. The Vernai we killed ages ago faking to be a healer had a specific relationship with Goldshackle and therefore clearly there are economic benefits to the slave trade being what it is in the city.
2. It was specifically mentioned by the SixSteps family as being something of value to the Red Mantis if it would be destroyed (along with removing the goblin tribes). Crushing both sends the Pirate Lords a strong message and a better bargaining position if we want to reopen negotiations.
3. It gives us an opening with Jaxira who I *think* is a druid. Even if she isn't, she was mentioned in Rixx's letter (along with Goldshackle) and is probably the easiest to ally with. As she was going to be enslaved under Goldshackle, she might even help us during the fight, or after it. She could possibly help us with out scouting missions as well since shes very familiar with the flora and fauna of the island.
Cons (To show I'm not looking at this one eyed):
-Its basically making an open challenge to the Red Mantis along the lines of "we are going to f+*@ things up for you". Its risky because I'm never going to support Teleporting out of the city (unless we know if area's is free of traps) which means we would need to hide within it while being actively hunted.
-Its getting involved in the city. I know that Kilarra in particular wants nothing to do with the city for now, which is fine.
-I also wouldn't mind opening up negotiations with that Assassin Cult. They have already proved themselves an irritant to the Mantis (from my visions) imagine what they could do with our support / resources.
-I'm also going to use my visions to spy on the pirates that Erandlon mentioned. I'm ok with taking them down as well but I'd rather we had solid gold evidence on them dealing so the rest of the Brotherhood don't think its a personal strike against them. We can even hand it into Makori for follow up.
-I'm also going to try and use Call Spirit on Kiani. Its unlikely to work, so I'll only do it on a day where we have limited combat planned but it might smooth things over with Sixsteps family. I can also Call Spirit on the exhibition team that died to the Jungle Runners to get specifics.
I think you're being too defeatist about the tribes. Let's capture grunts from several tribes and interrogate them. I bet we'll learn lots of useful things. It may be possible to start a war between some of them.
That said I'm all for zapping slave traders but the goblin tribes seem to be part of the current plot arc. Urulleth and Killara what is your preference?
I still think we can take the tribes easily enough by just assaulting their territories. Attack and keep attacking, then withdraw. Then do it all over again. We'll win the battle of attrition, assuming we're not overwhelmed. But if we keep one of Talia's teleport spells in reserve, we'll most likely be able to keep that from happening. (Talivar's battlefield control spells are also fantastic for that as well.)
The only reason why I'm not completely advocating for eliminating all the goblins in one swoop is that it'll probably get pretty redundant, fighting nothing but goblins for the next dozen battles or so. I'm sure Zek will try to add some variety in the bosses, but still the rank and file will probably be some variant of ranger/fighter/barbarian.
Yeah we can have too much of one thing. Still ambushing Erandlon ought to add some variety.
I'm totally in favor of that.
Yep, goblins over and over can definitely get boring, and not just for players. :) Something to keep in mind is that a straightforward battle may not be the best or only strategy against every tribe. The Egg Suckers were particularly head-to-head combat focused, but other methods or solutions could work for the other tribes. Not every tribe is necessarily going to have a back up leader in the wings. They are different tribes for a reason, after all.
So as far as your plan for now, are you going to skip forward a few days to the ambush?
I want to deal with the goblin tribes before moving on to Goldshackle.
I'm find skipping ahead to the ambush on Erandlon.
Hey everyone, I never know how to time these things. On the one hand, I want to give everyone a heads up, but on the other, I don’t want to cause the game to slow down before it has to. Anyway, I’ll be out of town 8/8 to 8/17. I’ll be in Alaska for a vacation with family. While I thought about possibly updating things while away, I don’t think I could do so fairly for all the games I’m involved in. I highly doubt I’ll have internet for a good portion of my time there anyway. As such, I think it best if we just ‘pause’ things while I’m away. I don’t particularly like stopping things entirely, but I think that’s better than you looking for a post from me for a week or more in a row without finding one. So, 8/8 to 8/17, we’ll put things on pause. Hopefully we can get going again on 8/18, but definitely by 8/19 at the latest.
I'm sorry to do this to you GM, but I'm going to heavily abuse my visions again now. I get 3 visions per casting - we ambush Erandlon Day 5 which means I can get 3 visions on Day 3 and 3 Visions on Day 4 with a full spell list Day 5 (of ambush). Any day where we are not doing anything critical is a vision / info day for Talia.
So that's 6 visions.
Vision #1: Erandlon's engagement or interaction with Red Mantis or allies immediately after our chat (if he doesn't do anything then vision wasted).
Vision #2: Firesinger's response to learning of the attack against one of her tribes
Vision #3: Goldshackle's last interaction with the Red Mantis
Vision #4: Captain Kallinash, Captain Flanger, and Captain O’Linley's arrangement with the Red Mantis
Vision #5: The Practising of the Cult of Norgorber
Anyones suggestions are welcome
If you need more detail / specifics also let me know GM since I'm probably hitting the visions hard and then taking a long break from the spell again.
I'm fine with a pause. Remember I'm low activity until 12/08 anyway and I'm probably going to be busy for my very first week which would be 12-18th anyway. So as far as things go, if there was ever a 'good' time for me to pause, this would be it.
Vision #4 - What exactly would the 'event' be?
Also, I'm game for it this time since we haven't had visions in a while and this will hopefully give you something to chew on while I'm away, but I'm probably going to restrict you to two visions per casting going forward. I know it kind of nerfs the spell at higher levels, but I'm fairly confident I'm giving more information via the spell than is intended and/or normal.
And yeah, I thought about you being busy too, so I guess it sort of works out, or as well as these sorts of things can. Also, I hope you meant August 12th and not December 8th. :P
Ah, maybe there is no event.
Basically we picked those three because Erandlon mentioned them. I kinda thought that they had some sort of deal or meeting with the Red Mantis to maintain wealth / power or something but also act as spies. So I thought I'd get a vision of something but perhaps there is no event / meeting and they are scared or its self interest.
Also you may as well restrict me to 2 per day from now including today - makes more sense (in character) for Talia to continue to get 2 per casting and not a random 3 and then back to 2 :)
Just take out the Goldshackle vision (since we wont be doing that for ages anyway) and that leaves 4 visions in total. I can do Goldshackle later since there's probably 1 or 2 days between the ambush and us attacking the tribes.
Once the tribes are dealt with I'm predicting that we might move into the city again to clear up more loose ends / Goldshackle in which case we will be super busy again and I wouldn't be using my visions for awhile.
There is no event that we know for sure, but I think that they have had a meeting with the Red Mantis - a face to face meeting. Maybe they are Red Mantis agents that have infiltrated the pirates (I think this likely) or they could be actual pirates working for the Red Mantis
If I had to title it, ‘Captains X, Y, Z (etc) recieve their Red Nantus orders’ might work or it could be too vague
So I guess the consensus is to skip ahead a few days and ambush Erandlon before moving onto dealing with another tribe. Perhaps deal with the Longlung tribe next, the idea would be to buy/steal a boat and deliberately wreck it during bad weather (yeah we want to be flying or get a swim speed before it hits the breakers). They will come to us seeking plunder.
Hey Vorya! A few different places, I think, though I'm not the one in charge of the itinerary, haha. Anchorage, Denali, and a glacier at least, I believe.
Alright, Talia, I just want to be sure of the specific one you had in mind. I'm planning to have all four visions for you before I leave, but it may be later tonight before I start posting them.
In the meantime, feel free to polish your plan for the ambush and also your plan for dealing with the next tribe.
Talivar, in the interests of resolving this and getting an agreed upon action, would you mind articulating why Talivar is so keen to attack an entire island of Mantis recruits (and teachers / instructors) when he didn't want to take on Erandlon barely a day earlier? I'm genuinely trying to 'get it' so I can have Talia 'get it' and not be so stubborn in thread as its not lending itself to a helpful dialogue. I get Uruelleth's stance (he wanted to do both) but I don't get Talivar's position.
On the one hand, we had a single Red Mantis agent. We had buffs ready, we had him unprepared and we had him outnumbered. Granted, there were neutral NPC's there, but if Talia stands in the doorway she can hex Erandlon, be protected from harm via NPC's or Erandlon with EFS and then 5 foot back and Dominate Erandlon, upon which we have him admit to being a Red Mantis agent and hostilities cease. No NPC's get harmed via this so I'm still struggling to see what the issue was.
Contrast this to teleporting into a Red Mantis stronghold, with an unknown number of enemies (or how powerful they might be), unknown defenses and no guaranteed options for retreat. There is a genuine risk of being outnumbered and/or outmatched as we have no information on this. The only difference I can see is the NPC thing but in either case I dont see them playing a large role unless I'm missing something.
Not trying to be a dick or anything, genuinely trying to understand the difference. I don't like this arguing :(
-We can skip ahead, ambush Erandlon who hopefully tells us if the island is protected or not, and then we raid it and kill all the recruits.
-We take a boat, anchor it off the island, fly onto the island, kill the recruits, fly back out to the boat and sail / teleport away - no risk of Teleport Trap.
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Short answer because it was Urelleth's idea.
Re morality, given what we know the training island sounds like a free fire situation unless proved otherwise (only mantis are allowed there). Erandlon had visitors and we don't know who they are, killing them doesn't sound like a good action to me. Given the situation I'm pretty convinced they would have defended Erandlon against us and in their shoes I would have done so too. Also Domination means he'd be forced to say whatever you wanted him to say do if there were clued up his words would so his confession would ring false. I note in passing that Killara wanted to leave before Talivar did.
Does anybody disagree that trying to dominate him would have precipitated a fight where the neutral NPCs would have died? If not are you ok with that?
I guess this segues into a question, how dark do we want this to get? Do you view your characters as heroes or anti heroes? I wasn't planning for Talivar to turn evil but if everyone is headed in the CN / CE direction maybe he has to toe the line inorder to destroy a greater evil.
Long answer to your question which comes in two parts:
1. Please don't take this the wrong way, for the most part I enjoy enjoy playing with you Talia. Sandbox campaigns can be amazing and this has been one of the very best. However of of late it feels like Talia has become frightened of her own shadow except when the party is doing what she wanted. That's just my perception and it may be inaccurate. It's not my intention to offend here and if it has please accept my apologies.
2. If Kilarra had suggested an idea Talivar would have got behind that too. Actually she did, she wanted to fight the tribes. Urelleth seemed to agree as did Talivar but Talia didn't want to without the Kobold army. I'm quite happy to just do that and ambush Erandlon after although we can expect that to be quite a tough fight.
Metagame note: I have faith that our GM will either scale encounters to be challenging but possible or find a way to warn us in game if going some place is suicidal (e.g. with the pavilion).
Ah I see, that clears things up. Just RE morality, no, the reason I pushed so hard was because I didn't see a situation where neutral NPC's would have died.
The idea was Talia blocks the doorway and everyone stands behind her. I can withstand a few attacks with Emergency Force Sphere and target only Erandlon. I was banking on Dominating Erandlon to tell the truth to questions (being the command) to avoid him telling him what to say, and then getting that information out.
Its ok though that we see things differently (I didn't even explain the above plan either to be fair) as its still a decision Talia can understand and support.
RE further questions
1. I guess, the main reason I feel strongly about the Island Assault (only when relying on teleport tactics mind you) is that everything hinges on a 50/50 coinflip - its either trapped or its not. If its trapped, I (and everyone) probably get redirected into an antimagic field cell and the campaign basically...ends.
Do I think the GM would actually pull this? Nah, not really but Talia (IC) doesn't know this - its fundamentally insane for her to support such a risky action on a coinflip for the purpose of just killing a few Mantis. Bottom line, we don't know it could be more or less likely but its basically 50/50 and Talia feels its a huge gambit for...not really much of a gain (in comparison to the risk). Kinda why she wants to find information on whether the island is warded before slaughtering the recruits.
2. RE the example of the goblin tribes - Talia's wary after the recent encounter - even with the help of the kobold army we barely survived - Kilarra dropped below 0, Talivar ran out of spells, I was tapped out etc. The way its being portrayed is that we fly in guns blazing against a full tribe.
If it helps any, Talia is very much a planner first - its how she looks at decisions, shes good at Knowledges, and has her visions and a flexible spell list. So hopefully it explains her knee jerk reactions or responses to 'we can wing it' ideas.
RE the actual tribes themselves, I'm ok with us taking them on - even before the ambush. I probably want a days scouting though before we do just so I can optimize my spell list tho - if we can spare a day. If not I guess we can go in guns blazing - I'm just less effective.
Metagame note: Yeah, I agree that the GM does / will do the same, but technically Talia doesn't know this. I feel like I'm cheating if I'm taking that into consideration but maybe I should relax it a bit.
That was actually super helpful though Talivar, thank you for putting that together, can totally see now where you are coming from.
Attending a con this weekend. I'll be posting again on Monday. Feel free to bot me, if needed. Thanks!
Just letting you know I'm busy working towards an important deadline, so my posting over the next week might be spotty. If I'm holding up the game feel free to bot me.
If anyone feels like asking questions please do. I'll come up with something if you don't ;)
So nobody has any questions for this guy?
Sorry for the radio silence. Had some day trips and I'm playing single parent for the rest of the week. I'll post when I'm able.
Yeah here. Sorry. Been busy. Will likely be busy a few more days yet.
Not really sure what to add. The party is becoming a bit dysfunctional tbh :(
Thank you for speaking up, Talivar. I really would like to address issues like that sooner than later. I'm sure it's not exactly fun, but I would rather we handle it now than let it fester.
Is there any 'revelation' or maybe just a discussion that could be had to help things be more functional? Also, is everyone just busier than they've been before? I know it's a bit tougher to keep things moving with only four, or it seems that way, at least.
Let's talk about it! :)