Giantslayer Marathon: Part 6!

Saturday, August 29, 2015

The folks over at Order of the Amber Die just got me the report from their final marathon session as they tackle the sixth Giantslayer adventure—Pathfinder Adventure Path #96: Shadow of the Storm Tyrant! If you haven’t read the previous reports check here: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, and Part 5. Now I’ll turn this blog over to the Order of the Amber Die and let you hear how it all went down, but beware—spoilers abound!

Order of the Amber Die is back with the sixth update on our ambitious endeavor to complete the Giantslayer Adventure Path in just 6 months!

We had made it to the finals—the Super Bowl of Giantslayer—and we all felt it. We fully expected a hard adventure, and author Tito Leati delivered. Emotions soared when we began preparation for the final marathon of this 6-month gaming odyssey of our lives. We did what we could to look for some icing on the endeavor when it came to immersing ourselves in the Storm Tyrant's cloud castle. To start, we tapped into smell this time by using some Adventure Scents entitled "Flying Airship." We also couldn't resist breaking out two fog machines for the long climb through the clouds. To go further, one of our members constructed a unique lamp that simulated some of the bizarre lighting we encountered in the castle. Lastly, we even received some mid-marathon support from one of our fans in the form of an Edible Arrangements!

Highlights From our Experience With "Shadow of the Storm Tyrant"

  • Boarding the castle almost didn't happen: the party was left dangling from massive chains as the ground kept getting further and further away—and then the guardians launched their attack.
  • An epic feel was captured perfectly in this adventure, as we squared off against more colossal and gargantuan foes than any other module we have played.
  • We worked our way through chamber after chamber of the biggest cloud castle we could ever have hoped for. A 15-foot scale? Thank you Paizo!

How it Ended

Despite our best efforts, our clash with Volstus the Storm Tyrant went downhill fast. We employed a haste spell and rushed him, only to watch the giant leap onto the back of his gargantuan red dragon and take to the air. We attempted to engage, but the tyrant/dragon combination was too overwhelming, and two rounds later we were beating a retreat into an adjoining tower. It was decided that we would regroup by running down the stairs into the levels below. Eventually we ran into Liniratis, the naga companion of Volstus, who helped convince our party of where our true allegiance lay. When it was over, Crowe and Quinn were dead, Zadim and Oloch were in service to the Storm Tyrant, and Jagrin Grath remained hidden inside Ironcloud Keep. Only Thoon the doppleganger escaped. TPK? Pretty much.

Character Deaths

  • After a timely wall of force by the naga sorcerer, Crowe found himself facing this wicked foe alone. The Shoanti chased her around the chamber, only to watch the serpent disappear into one of many wicker baskets and reappear in another. While the bloodrager turned his focus to destroying the baskets, the naga proceeded to rain down 6 maximized fireballs in a row.
  • Zadim stared deep into the naga's eyes. Yes, it was all so clear to him now: his slayer talents were best used for the giants, not against them. He turned to face Quinn the investigator, who had been his companion. Quinn the untrustworthy. Quinn the enemy. With six swift attacks from the slayer's kukris—including 3 critical hits—Zadim put the traitor down.

Best Quote From Marathon 6

Mike (playing Quinn): "This is what I was born to do." (about to disarm the most enormous bomb we had ever seen)

The Giantslayer Adventure Path by the Numbers

  • Giants slain: 133
  • Total marathon hours: 464 hours, 5 minutes
  • Actual session hours played: 292 hours, 15 minutes
  • GM prep hours: inestimable
  • Real-life months passed: 6
  • Days passed on Golarion: 233
  • Character deaths: 16
  • Most amount of damage in a single round: 316 (Zadim)
  • Most amount of damage in a single hit: 194 (Crowe)
  • Highest DC reached on a skill check: 60 (Quinn)
  • Attacks of opportunity prevented with Escape Route teamwork feat: 182
  • Uses of Swing About teamwork feat: 25
  • Group-consensus on most valuable skill in Giantslayer: Craft (Alchemy)
  • Approximate mg of caffeine consumed from Monster per marathon: c. 4,500
  • Approximate mg of caffeine consumed from Starbucks per marathon: unknown

Final Thoughts

Certain problems plagued our team throughout the early parts of the AP, and those same things came back to defeat us in the finale. Still, we reached the end and accomplished our goal of playing through an entire adventure path in the shortest amount of time ever recorded—yet another world record! We also clocked the largest number of documented session hours of Pathfinder (played and GMed) within a 6-month period. It is our hope that the work we leave here will have contributed something new and lasting to the RPG community, and that others will follow in our footsteps in the days to come.

The footsteps of giants.

More Content

Read through the entirety of The Giantslayer Endeavor, and for more pictures, campaigns, and other content check out: Order of the Amber Die Facebook and Order of the Amber Die Instagram.

Painting for miniatures provided by Blue Table Painting.

The crew is going to take a break from marathons for a bit and then return with a new project. Hopefully I’ll get to bring all of you the reports from the next endeavor. I’ll keep you posted.

Adam Daigle
Developer

More Paizo Blog.
Tags: Community Giantslayer Pathfinder Adventure Path

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Card Game, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber

Truly an epic session! Thank you SO MUCH for sharing your adventures, and I look forward to hearing/seeing more.

Silver Crusade

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber

Ouch, defeated in the final book, that is rough. Well played, and I toast the attempt.

Order of the Amber Die

4 people marked this as a favorite.
Elorebaen wrote:
Truly an epic session! Thank you SO MUCH for sharing your adventures, and I look forward to hearing/seeing more.
DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:
Ouch, defeated in the final book, that is rough. Well played, and I toast the attempt.

Elorebaen and Dudemeister,

Thanks so much for the kind words and cheers to you both! It was an amazing (and truly epic) experience. You guys and the support of the community is one of the things that made it all worth it.

There's more to come!!

PS
If you haven't liked our Facebook yet we would greatly appreciate it. Help us break 500!


500 it is now...

You guys are crazy - the awesome kind of crazy. :D


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber

This is so awesome. You guys are my heroes.

Paizo Employee Developer

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Well done, guys! It's been rad reading about your campaign and I'm glad that we were able to give you a spot on the blog to showcase your hardcore dedication to not only the Giantslayer Adventure Path, but to Pathfinder.

Rock on!


Order Members,

Fantastic to see you've come to the end of your endeavour. Gutted to hear the team got taken out at the end, but it puts your performance up to the final battle into perspective - no mercy from the DM! I can't wait to hear what you are up to next :-)

Jim

By the way, are those Crossbows & Catapults wall blocks?


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Sad to hear about the TPK, but congratulations on accomplishing your other goals! :)


If only adventure paths allowed for 6 PC's instead of 4.

I think Shardra Geltl and Enora could have helped to turn the tide.

Oh well. Well fought and well played! Any thoughts on a follow up?

Sczarni Order of the Amber Die

5 people marked this as a favorite.
Bellona wrote:
Sad to hear about the TPK, but congratulations on accomplishing your other goals! :)

We're sad about it too, we already miss our characters. How could we not after playing them for almost 300 hours in 6 months? They will always be a part of us, as will all of you who were with us throughout this endeavor and we sincerely thank you for that. Despite the TPK we tried the best we could, are proud of what we accomplished, and will definitely be stronger for it the next time. So YES - we will be back soon.

Oloch out...

Order of the Amber Die

6 people marked this as a favorite.
Adam Daigle wrote:

Well done, guys! It's been rad reading about your campaign and I'm glad that we were able to give you a spot on the blog to showcase your hardcore dedication to not only the Giantslayer Adventure Path, but to Pathfinder.

Rock on!

Thanks Adam, we were grateful for the opportunity to accomplish something never attempted before, and to have you guys right there helping us show it to the world. Dedication is what it took, and I was privileged to be able to GM this most committed group of players who could pull this off. I can say that I'll definitely miss: the splendor of unending rows of Mike's minis lined up on a table in the prep room, Aerick's voice for Oloch (and the performances throughout), Alex's good spirits that held us together during the hardest times, and the constant snap of Sterling's camera. To all of the other members who devoted your time to spending one or more marathons with us (Louisa, Sean, Tyler, Erick, John, Ian), your efforts became part of the success of this endeavor, and it was a pleasure to share the time and play alongside everyone.

To the Order, never forget:

Marathon 1: Spending two days in real time wandering around Trunau, meeting the locals, and especially Omast Frump. Glad I could roleplay the drunkest I've ever been while perfectly sober for you guys.

Marathon 2: Being separated for an entire Sunday during "Zero Dark Thirty" at Redlake, while switching teams in and out of the living room
in complete silence so no one could tell where the other teams were.

Marathon 3: What it was like at midnight going into that Monday, knowing we had to push until dawn. Standing above the Forge against Urathash--as the sun came up--was where heroes were made.

Marathon 4: Spending the weekend in the snow and cold--for real--and what a mess it truly was. Should I mention the two weeks of cleanup? Oops.

Marathon 5: With the lava lamps burning hot, turning up the volume on your character songs before the showdown with Tytarian and his retinue. It wasn't an octagon, but it might as well have been.

Marathon 6: The castle's engine room done right, which is one of the coolest places we've ever stood in this game. I'd go back.

A final word of appreciation to the Amber Die itself: even under the lights and in front of the world, you did what we hoped you would do and have done for us all these years. Thanks for the 20s.

Adam
GM
Order of the Amber Die

Dark Archive

Starfinder Superscriber

Where did those bricks come from they look oddly familiar? Like I have them in a box somewhere and I've never made the connection familiar.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I believe it's from an old game called Crossbows and Catapults

RPG Superstar 2013 Top 32

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Is the PDF The Giantslayer Endeavour dropbox fully updated yet? If not, do we have an ETA?

Well done guys, it's been great following your adventures. I'm looking forward to hearing about the next one.

Order of the Amber Die

4 people marked this as a favorite.
Transylvanian Tadpole wrote:

Is the PDF The Giantslayer Endeavour dropbox fully updated yet? If not, do we have an ETA?

Well done guys, it's been great following your adventures. I'm looking forward to hearing about the next one.

Thank you! Things have been very busy with the end of the Endeavor and so the PDF is not yet finished, but we're hoping to have it done within the next two weeks. We'll make sure to let everyone know on our thread and also on our Facebook when it drops. Lots more great pics to come!

Order of the Amber Die

4 people marked this as a favorite.
captain yesterday wrote:
I believe it's from an old game called Crossbows and Catapults

Yes, the game is indeed Crossbows and Catapults! I used the base of a patio chair that was the size of the tower (the cloud castle was massive), and traced around the edge with a vis-a-vis wet erase marker onto a blank grid. Then we took the bricks from the game and lined them up in a nice circle to make a 3D battlefield enhanced by some dungeon tiles for any furniture/terrain. For the final battle with the naga, we also created a grid with a better looking floor using the same dungeon tiles.

Hope that helps!

Adam
GM


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I had that game, it was a blast!

Dark Archive

Starfinder Superscriber

I knew I recognized them. Went down to the basement and there they were a whole box worth. Thanks for the idea!


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Well done. Brought the pain only to be undone by the wiles of a Naga.

Crazy awesome.


3 people marked this as a favorite.

Yes, those tile blocks are from Crossbows & Catapults. That was brought by one of our players, Mike, the inquisitor.

Thanks for all your support guys, was a blast of a time even though we went down. Would play Module 6 again.


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber

Not sure if any of the Order of the Amber Die will notice this? I REALLY APPRECIATE all of your time and effort that went into this endeavor! I was wondering if and when you were going to add any more of it to the Dropbox? I am going to be GMing this AP in a couple of months and your insight into it is appreciated, also I ran the into the Giants from TSR and Wizards years ago. I THANK YOU for your time on this and HOPE to hear about any other endeavors your group may have planned.

Order of the Amber Die

2 people marked this as a favorite.
kevin bienhoff wrote:
Not sure if any of the Order of the Amber Die will notice this? I REALLY APPRECIATE all of your time and effort that went into this endeavor! I was wondering if and when you were going to add any more of it to the Dropbox? I am going to be GMing this AP in a couple of months and your insight into it is appreciated, also I ran the into the Giants from TSR and Wizards years ago. I THANK YOU for your time on this and HOPE to hear about any other endeavors your group may have planned.

Kevin, thank you very much for the kind words, we really appreciate comments like yours. Knowing that the community has benefited from our projects inspires us to keep doing them, and the reception was already so positive from The Emerald Spire Project and The Giantslayer Endeavor that we are indeed working on another one.

We needed more time than expected to put our personal lives back in order after marathon 6, but the Dropbox will be updated with more material as we put the finishing touches on the main PDF and add some map content for Anvil of Fire.

Regarding Against the Giants from TSR, I would recommend checking out the 1999 Silver Anniversary edition, The Liberation of Geoff. Our experiences with it felt like playing G4-6 in a larger campaign, and it might be useful for additional inspiration while prepping Giantslayer.

Good luck with the AP, and feel free to reach out to us through our Facebook with your thoughts while running it--we are always up for a good exchange over how published adventures played out.

Adam
GM


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber

I THANK YOU your answer to my question and I look forward to reading the Dropbox when you get it done. I do have the 1999 Silver Anniversary edition, The Liberation of Geoff and will reread it! Look forward to your next Endeavor!

Community / Forums / Pathfinder / Pathfinder Adventure Path / Giantslayer / Paizo Blog: Giantslayer Marathon: Part 6! All Messageboards

Want to post a reply? Sign in.
Recent threads in Giantslayer