Peerless Empire Shaitan

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So one of the struggles I had when setting up book 3 was how much my PCs love to engage with setting (I know, it's a great problem for a GM to have) and how that would interact with the layout of Noma. So I elected to treat the hex grid almost like Kingmaker, applying the notable locations to specific hexes, and playing up how much the DCI wants "survey data." That lead me to the unfortunate conclusion that at just one location per hex, there weren't nearly enough locations to support a sustained expedition.

I want to run this with borderline survival mechanics - the PCs will be on the ground for several days while they hunt for the core, which will put them into repeated conflict with reclaimers, stealing their polyfluid to survive, and their search should take them through a variety of hexes before they find the core, so I wanted every hex to have some established material. Luckily I had several China Mieville and Larry Niven novels, as well as Italo Calvino's 'Invisible Cities' handy, so I got cracking on filling in the gaps. If anyone wants to use my map of Noma, sorted by hex coordinates that (mostly) correspond to their artistic depictions on the map, here it is. I'd love some feedback as well.

Here's my Noma.


My PCs wanted to immediately visit the Brass Bazaar, which is located on the opposite side of Asanatown from Dawnshore. Basically they shared a linecrawler with Taeress with the intent to continue on to Corona, but the station locked down once they were in Asanatown.


Serpentine Owl wrote:

Love the Chelsea Dagger name.

Makes me want to name my next character Red Barchetta.

The funny part is that her character won't tell the rest of the party her name, but all the other players know it. So everyone has taken to calling her Knives Mackenzie.


Just getting into the adventure, the team has yet to choose a name.

Hypatia "Hype" Mert, Tiefling Warpriest of Pharasma

Percival, Human Necromancer

Chelsea Dagger, Human Unchained Rogue

Elleria "Aunt Ellie" Bloom, Old Human Plague Witch

Darlin', Duskwalker Gunslinger


Oh, yeah. The player handed his sheet over after that session. He's an Abadaran cleric so he's going to join the Vault & Chain and replace Bathos in Book 4. The Player is now running Partulles Mayne as a character (the party loves to recruit and equip NPCs).


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Name: Sir Gideon Mord
Race: Human
Classes/levels: Paladin of Iomedae 7/Oracle 1
Adventure: Twilight Child
Location: Encircling Bower
Catalyst: The Placid One/Betrayal
The Gory Details: After killing the High cultists and sentinels, the party's cleric decided to perform the Cult services that evening himself, posing as Vaddrigan and getting the other PCs to pose as cultists. He told the rest of the party that his aim was to reveal the cult's deception mid-performance, but had in secret made a deal with the Placid One to sell all of the cultists to Leng slavers. The Denizen returned to Leng, gathered several more Denizens, and returned with them at the height of the ceremony. The Paladin had refused to take part in the ruse, and when the Denizens returned and began abducting cultists, he threw himself into the fight.

While the party's Monk tried to catch the cleric for his treachery, the Paladin and the Magus fought two Leng slavers. Unfortunately for Sir Gideon, the Denizens managed to flank him, and both delivered full round attacks with full sneak attack, and a couple of crits thrown in. The Paladin took well over 100 points of damage, and the cleric had made off with the party's scroll of Breath of Life. At this point the monk and magus hid under the stage until the cultists had all been taken.

Sir Gideon was buried on a low hill in the Whistling Plains, and the magus carved him a headstone naming him the Shield of Yanmass.


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Well, my players outdid themselves. Half the party got killed in the Encircling Bower, and the remaining two got to Carrius and decided that if Panivar Lotheed was involved in his resurrection, nothing good could come of his existence. They believed Xan's talk of abomination completely. They executed the prince in his cell and burned his body to keep Martella from learning about it. The two survivors swore that they would never talk about what happened in the Bower.

So...I guess that's going to be a heavy rewrite of Book 6.


So my PCs just encountered Vaddrigan Pol, and he escaped alive. This isn't the first baddie to escape the PCs, Earl Vernisant did similar in the Birthright Betrayed prequel session I ran, and they won the verbal duel against Count Lotheed, leaving him alive (he could be broken out of imprisonment).

What I'd like to do is set up essentially a league of evil that holds a grudge against the party specifically for defeating them and forcing them out of power. Rallied by Duke Panivar Lotheed, I think it would make a fun and interesting added encounter in Zimar in Book 4 to face off against an assembled party of 10th level villains they've fought before, while serving to reinforce the threat of the Immaculate Circle.

The question is, would this work better as a stand-alone encounter in Zimar (don't want to blow their cover, but given this party's track record they'll probably do that themselves), or is there an equivalent encounter to a 10th level Cavalier on a lion mount, 10th level Mesmerist, and 8th level magus that I could sub in somewhere in the book? I'm currently drawing a blank.


Zaister wrote:
The Taldan Horse regiment that is assigned to patrolling the plains east of Yanmass, how big is it supposed to? The only reference is Martella's "two dozen or so", but that seems awfully tiny for something called a regiment, and not really a lot of soldiers to patrol an area like that, doesn't it?`Am I missing something?

I'd imagine that in peace time the Taldan Horse are deployed in a large number of small mobile units for scouting and patrol, to be rallied in larger numbers in the event of a large scale conflict.


I'm not sure if anyone else likes this idea, but I sort of reskinned the dynamic between Bisby and Sivanshin as lovers, that the Aohl drove apart. Turns the whole story into a sort of gothic romance and makes Sivanshin more of a tragic character.

The seeds are planted in the Bickering haunt that causes the party to fight each other - reinterpreting it as a lovers' quarrel. Then whoever takes possession of the Morrowfall experiences strange dissociative dreams linking them to Sivanshin through the Totemrix.

It's a fun way to give Sivanshin some more depth - he feels a little "stock villain" to me as written, and any way to flesh out the guy that the party has been hunting for five books is good for me.


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An easy way around that is to have a lower level PC with access to a scroll of a much more powerful spell. Since the check to cast is basically a given to a high enough level caster, you can say that this valuable 9th level scroll is in the possession of, say, a 13th level caster. That way the PCs don't have access to gate, or wish or whatever, but there is a one-time high level casting that they can pay for.


While that is true, Stachys has a population of about 60 people, many of which already have day jobs. Even with Dame Crabbe's lent laborers, I just felt it would be unrealistic (I know, that's a terrible word in RPGs) for however many unemployed day laborers to simultaneously build a windmill, a bridge, a church, a new tavern, and several farms while also resurfacing the roads, re-finishing the buildings, and restoring the pump house in less than a couple of months, especially with medieval building techniques.

That said I did allow the jobs to be done simultaneously for the very reason you posted.


My party aced the Jubilee and got all the free upgrade money, so they kind of front-loaded the book with upgrade business. They spent about three months of in-game time in Meratt County.


I assumed a month per upgrade from the date they decided to upgrade.


My PCs were more freaked out by the "Terrifying Duchess" and the "Nightmare monster from the night of the Jubilee," they failed to identify the Attic Whisperer, but tried to get information out of it until it life-drained the rogue, at which point they smashed the thing to pieces. It was excellent for atmosphere, though - crying from the next room during the whole Duchess fight.


Name: Thou-Shalt-Worship-Our-God Thicknesse
Race: Half-Elf
Classes/levels: Swashbuckler 4
Adventure: Stolen Land
Location: New Sehir
Catalyst: Rilev the Necromancer
The Gory Details: In the vaults beneath New Sehir, the party found the Necromancer they'd heard rumors of, guarded by four skeletons. Unfortunately, they came down noisily, in a straight line, which let Rilev get off a lightning bolt on everyone before they even entered the room. While the skeleton wall prevented most of the party from entering the necromancer's chamber, the swashbuckler employed his favorite tactic: acrobatics over the mooks and land straight in the middle of the engagement. While this had worked for months against non-spellcasters, in this case it left him cut off from the party as Rilev hit him, first with Ghoul Touch, and then a critical Vampiric Touch. The poor swashbuckler, who everybody expected to live forever, dropped immediately. Horribly, this was not the end. Rilev's next turn saw the reanimation of the swashbuckler's corpse into a zombie to bolster the undead that were harrowing the party. Eventually the cleric's channels and the wizard's burning hands carved a path for the party to take out Rilev, and Worship's corpse de-animated once again.

In the end, and they buried 'Worship' Thicknesse in a clearing near the Thorn River.


GM of Blinding Light wrote:
Would it be safe to assume that Axis would be strongly-lawful dominant? I'm assuming yes but am surprised that this isn't mentioned in the book itself.

According to Planar Adventures, Axis is:

Gravity: normal
Time: normal
Realm: finite
Structural: lasting
Essence: mixed
Alignment: strongly law-aligned
Magic: enhanced (spells and spell-like abilities with the lawful
descriptor) or impeded (spells and spell-like abilities with
the chaotic descriptor)


So I'm trying to work out where exactly Tallgrasses is. The entry says it's "about 15 miles west of Taldor on the Whistling Plains." I'm assuming that's a typo, since the Whistling plains are on the Eastern Side of Taldor (and 15 miles West of Taldor puts it in Andoran), so my question is: 15 miles WEST of the Qadiran Border, or 15 miles EAST of Taldor? Or is it just 15 miles EAST of Yanmass? Since 15 miles west of Yanmass puts it on the other side of Brokenbridge River, in the Northern Tandak Prefecture. So I think the most reasonable conclusion is that it's 15 miles East of Yanmass, or am I totally off base?


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Darrell Impey UK wrote:

Does anybody have any suggestions of things that I can add to a Stachys harvest festival? (Yes, my group went there too.) I feel acutely aware that even though they have made a point of inviting Okerra and a couple of others, this is mainly going to be populated by the locals, so things that require more that coppers or silvers to be involved in are going to need to be in the minority.

If course, in the middle of typing this I've realised that I can have Titus crash the event... }:)

After establishing a House alliance with Baron Okerra, my PCs got him to lend them horses for a horse race as the headline event of their festival. They invited all the nobles from around the county, and both Okerra and Voinum decided to compete (as retired members of the Taldan Horse).

The rub came when the Lotheed coach rolled up to the party...and Count Lotheed turned down their invitation but "sent Titus in his stead," an obvious insult. So Titus, his toadies, and Gul Gusairne rocked up to the festival and tensions immediately spiked (my PCs hated Gusairne more than anyone). Titus decided to compete in the race, and the PC face rogue beat him (narrowly). Titus refused to admit defeat, and challenged the rogue to a duel. Chaos ensued, and after an absolute clusterf@&+ of a combat Titus, Gusairne, and both toadies were dead, the PCs had declared open rebellion against the Lotheeds, and they hit 51 loyalty points so they roused the town and are marching on the Palace of Birdsong with a peasant army.

So...Titus crashing the party is one of the best things to happen to my campaign.


GamerM13 wrote:

1) The party absolutely loved the Tanager Jubilee and I wanted to give them something similar.
2) It feels thematically appropriate for there to be a harvest festival right after the harvest and tax collecting portion, as it is what feudal and medieval systems did to appease the peasantry after the taxman came around to levy the harvests.
3) It gives an opportunity to sprinkle in the nobility again, as while there were plenty of opportunities during the Tanager Jubilee, my party at least has tended to visit one noble until they got their attitude to friendly, and then ignore them afterward. This means in our specific case, my party made fast friends with Baron Okerra and haven't seen him again, and meanwhile, they haven't even spoken to Bartleby Lotheed and only spoke with Baroness Voinum once.
4) It creates an opportunity for further foreshadowing by introducing nobles and gossip from future content.

This is amusingly similar to what I've done - except the PCs have been the ones to organize their "Stachys Summer Festival." They've gotten heavily invested in event planning and deciding which of their neighbors to invite - and it has all the benefits you describe.

Furthermore, I ran Birthright Betrayed as a "Session Zero" before we began Crownfall, and Earl Vernisant has been established as an enemy of the party all along. He has had them followed, placing a spy in Stachys to watch them. I've written in some attempts by this spy to sabotage events at the festival, in the spirit of the beehive attack in the Senate Gala and the crossbow assassination attempt in the Jubilee.


Name: Nyssa Piper
Race: Human
Classes/levels: Knife Master Rogue 3
Adventure: Scion, Songbird, Saboteur/Down the Verdant Path
Location: The First World
Catalyst: Wild Hunt
The Gory Details: The main PCs decided to send in their agents to investigate Lauchlein Lake, and so a secondary set of lower level adventurers trucked out to look around. After getting on the Swan Maiden's good side, they offered to help clear up a little problem for her in order to form an alliance with Stachys. The Swan Maiden's main problem was a First World breach that had formed near the standing stones on the lake's shore, where a bleachling gnome had crossed over whilst fleeing the Wild Hunt. The party, not really knowing what to expect, agreed to help the gnome get their color back from the first world.

Fast forward through all the insanity a trip to the First World entails, and the party found themselves fighting the last member of a band of the Wild Hunt, having taken the rest of them by surprise. The leader, a glaive-wielding satyr named Clortho, was completely surrounded when he managed to get off a Fear spell with his horn, and everyone but Nyssa the neutral evil thief panicked and fled.

The rogue was equipped with a pair of cold iron daggers, the only cold iron weapons in the party. She and the satyr fought a narrow battle of five foot steps all over the map for ten straight rounds before the rest of the party was finally able to return from their cowering - just in time to watch Clortho deliver a max damage glaive critical to Nyssa, practically cutting her in half and killing her instantly. While the rest of the party was able to dispatch the satyr shortly thereafter (with the unexpected help of a Glitterdust spell that came alive as a flying squid), there was nothing they could do for Nyssa. So they followed what they believed she would have wanted, stripped her gear and left her to rot in the First World.


Darrell Impey UK wrote:

My players ended the Tanager Jubilee with Baron Okerra as a firm friend (winning the Dance of the Phalanx with him as a partner was a wonderful sequence of unlikely dice rolls), and they were exceptionally happy and public about it...

As such, The Night Swan is going to be starting her campain against them as Hostile rather than Indifferent. Any suggestions how this will change this please?

My game ran much the same way, and since the Night Swan is at the Jubilee her first awareness of the party is of them chumming around with Okerra. As a result, it was nigh impossible for my PCs to get on her good side - but since she is straight up hostile and antagonistic when they first meet her, the desire to try and get on her good side wasn't really there, either. Essentially, the Night Swan becomes more of a "stock villain," as the book describes. That said, it allowed my PCs to channel their hatred of Gul Gusairne with one less distraction.


benhimself wrote:

The book has the palace's petty funds lockbox also including a "mummified pinky finger" with no description of the object's history or what it's doing in there. Which is fair except one of my players is playing a psychic who can do some psychometry and I suspect might be curious.

My go-to answer is the finger of the first servant who ever tried to steal from Gul Guisarne, that he kept as a reminder to trust no-one (and a warning to any other servants who actually get into the lockbox), but I'm curious if anybody else has come up with their own explanation, or if there's one in the book that I missed.

I was just pondering that yesterday, and I think it will go a long way towards reminding the party of how much they hate Gul Gusairne if they meet someone in Meratt (maybe the innkeeper at the Count's Cravat) who is missing a pinky and gets squirrely whenever Gusairne shows up, only to find that pinky later. If my players had object reading powers I'd make it more personal. The monk already used some psychic power to "see" Gusairne's defining traumas and descent into jaded LE, and the party is now scared shitless of him.


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rkotitan wrote:

I'd like to say that this book in particular (and seemingly the path itself) are turning out to be my favorite to run... perhaps ever. The way my players have engaged with the story from the mystery of the Night Swan to the question as to whether they are the actual villains has been great.

Some of the awesome NPCs (particularly Veletto and the Night Swan) provided such interesting backstories for me to build off that my players have had an amazing time. :D

They are just about to finish up the book this Sunday and I'm not sure how they are going to react to their characters having to go back to being their old personas. :D

I've had the same experience. I've never had a party commit so thoroughly to their characters, and I've been playing with this group for 10+ years. Book 2 particularly has topped my previous favorite, the 2nd book of Council of Thieves and the infamous murderplay. Every NPC is so complex and interesting. It takes a hell of a lot of work and note-taking to GM this AP as well as it deserves, but it is well worth it.


Laprof wrote:
Your PCs took Amaya with them, really? She's probably the last one I'd pick, looks so delicate and vulnerable...

She started out as a distraction in Arael's jail break, but she got a level of bard and her inspiration has been invaluable. Also she served as a great acting coach during book 2, and as per Raynulf's suggestion she has started writing plays based on the Children of Westcrown's exploits to drum up a little more fame. She's kind of become the party mascot.


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Totally let Janiven help if you're concerned about party mortality. Hell, my PCs have taken various members of the Children of Westcrown on pretty much every mission they've done (as a result, Amaya is only a level behind the PCs).

As to the Derro, it looks great! Really sets apart how gross and dangerous the sewers of Westcrown can be. Maybe play up the presence of the Derro's cytillesh fungus growing on the walls, and you could reskin the goblin dogs to resemble a Cassomir Stray.


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I've added a lot of taverns across the city, usually notable because the party spends time there casing nearby locations. A few that have come up, most of which can be dropped wherever it's convenient for you:

The Bruised Eel, Yakapulio's tavern

The Broken Shield, across the street from the Limehouse theater (where actors and stagehands take their lunch breaks)

The Hellion Pub, which is basically a football club for Devildrome supporters

The Rye & Fire, frequented by the Dottari

The Wicked Wight, an alchemist bar


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There was a lengthy discussion about this in the Crownfall sticky post. Basically it seems it boils down to a simplified presentation of a more complex historical subject, just to streamline gameplay. So in Golarion, primogeniture and agnatic inheritance are essentially the same thing.

Also, Stavian's crown is called the Primogen Crown, which sounds cool. End of the day, it's a game, have fun.


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rkotitan wrote:

A suggestion (YMMV).

I noticed that the encounter in Sotto was laughably easy for my party and given that it and the attack at the goat exchange were their only combat I immediately thought I should have upped the ante on the fight.

This may only be appealing if your party is near the end of the second part of the adventure (the regular encounter being a better challenge if done first... perhaps) but I suggest upping the difficulty.

I suggest making Halmash a Barghest and the regular wolves worgs. The bargh's magical abilities and resistances would make it a better challenge for a group I think.

Maybe even throw in some diplomacy interactions with the locals to hint that the wolf leader isn't simply a worg like his underlings etc...

The barghest would essentially drawing out the exchange with the Sotto residents and making them increasingly desperate due to lack of supplies. Then they either start giving up innocents willingly or finds some way to find fault in their exchange and claim an innocent or two as 'payment' for them failing the deal.

Just a random suggestion. :)

I like upping the ante on Sotto, but there are already a lot of outsiders kicking around this AP, and I wanted some variety. So I replaced Halmash with Ruxandra Katranjiev, the example werewolf from Classic Horrors revisited, and the wolves with werewolves that she has turned from the Sotto locals. The whole "intelligent wolf seeks revenge on a town that glorifies wolf hunting" bit works pretty well, plus the wolves can disappear back into the population to make the challenge of finding them harder if they employ hit and run tactics.


quibblemuch wrote:
Has anyone done a cheat-sheet or Excel doc or some other dossier of all of the NPCs and their inter-relations in this AP? I ask because that would be very helpful, and I'll do it myself if need be from the six books, but if someone has a document, it would save a ton of time.

I have been compiling a doc, but it's pretty loosely organized and dependent on my personal campaign. I can tell you that at the point we've reached (Book 2, Part 2) There are already 50 named NPCs that I have to keep track of, as the PCs may call upon them. This includes everyone from Senator Duo from the Gala in Book 1, to Purple Finch (who my PCs are sponsoring at the Moost Conservatory). Honestly if I'd had the foresight to start it as a spreadsheet I would have, but now I've come too far. I recommend that approach over my own.


rkotitan wrote:

How much is Dame Crabbe's bust worth? Heyyyy O!

But no seriously any of you guys suggest a good value for the bust that Dame Crabbe gives for being helpful?

Well the Amulet is worth 8,000, and the treasure generator from Ultimate Equipment lists a "marble idol" between 300 and 500 gp. I'd round up for craftsmanship, assume 8,500. So after three failed tries to get the amulet off, you basically have a smashed lump of worthless marble.


My party got off to a disastrously bad start, botching all their checks right up until the assassination attempt, at which point they were able to regain their lost ground and get everyone to helpful (except Titus and Yander). I even ran the extra npcs (Titus, Yander, Lucretzia, & Gusairne) in the social rounds, and with a combination of good roles and excellent social skills they dominated the event. I think its fair to say that unless your party is really not geared towards socializing. this shouldn't be a Herculean task.

That said, the manticore fight would have been a TPK if the party hadn't brought Malphene Trant with them (she's engaged to one of the PCs).


Am I blind, or am I just missing how much gold value Baron Okerra commits to rebuilding Stachys if made helpful? I've searched the module and can find nothing. I'm planning now to simply set it at 5,000 gp (halfway between the "taxes" returned by Bartelby and Voinum's vineyard assistance.


I kind of love the idea that Dame Crabbe has a beastly dexterity. I played it up during the jubilee, as her being graceful adds a dimension to an otherwise lacking character, and a PC wizard who pursued her romantically ended up using his INT and her DEX to dominate the Dance of the Phalanx.


Ed Girallon Poe wrote:
How is Dame Crabbe winning the Trucco matches on the fourth round? She's a level 4 aristocrat who (I assume) took weapon focus hammers for the Trucco bonus. To consistently win on turn 4 she would have to hit a DC 20 dexterity check with her Dexterity(unspecified)+3 bonus for 3 out of the 4 rounds. That's statistically unlikely unless she has a dexterity of 30-something.

The matches (Trucco, Joust, Hunt) all have default winners written in to play up the NPC's natures and cement them as characters. This requires a little hand waving, sure, but nothing is stopping your PCs from taking gold in these events - except the hunt, where apparently capturing two commoners is more impressive than slaying the Iron Lash of Meratt.


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I went with seven pairs, taking the final round's DC up to 22 (not impossible but also not easy). I considered going to 10, but didn't want to stretch the scene too far.


Name: Rin Oerbridge
Race: Human
Classes/levels: Oracle 6
Adventure: What Lies in Dust
Location: Massacre House
Catalyst: Father Jair
The Gory Details: In this adventure Sivanshin took notice of the PCs early; once they obtained and questioned Ghaelfin's remains, Sivanshin sent his most trusted servant (Jair) to recover Coriana's cremains from the (abandoned) Massacre House basement. The party fought off the vampire Jair for many rounds, saving against most of his spells, fightiing off his summons, and resisting his channel energy for an incredible amount of time - but eventually he was able to Dominate the party rogue, who used his bow to start sniping Rin. The oracle had a Heal scroll in hand to combat the undead, but at the last minute his curse of haunting took the scroll from his hands, and the dominated rogue managed to sneak attack him. Jair then escaped using his gaseous form ability, ensuring that the party will encounter him again.


I was unaware of the Iconic's name, but a little foreshadowing couldn't hurt. What if he is a spiritualist, and his phantom is an even scarier Vort, who was part of the Immaculate Circle? It all comes around.

I don't know, I've had a few whiskies at this point and might be going overboard.


Anything to make noble families distinct is great, and Vort the Elder being a sinister opera aficionado with ties to crime in the Blackwood is just begging for some spin-off side quest.

I like to play up travel time, not just teleport my PCs from location to location between books. My group also enjoys getting to stretch their RP legs a bit, and Taldor is just so vividly rendered in First Empire, that I will absolutely be continuing this habit with WftC. They will have also gotten used to the idea, after three months or so in Meratt County, of being able to just call on the manor of a noble and be put up for the night while traveling.

To that end, here is what I have in mind. After the PCs deal with New Towne, Caphridius Vort gives them the Vort family amulet. After completing this adventure, they will travel by horseback to Cassomir, taking them right through...Vort County. They'll think "perfect! Someone related to someone we've helped!" and try to stay the night.

So Count Erasmus Vort is decidedly less fond of the "peasant rabble" than his nephew, Caphridius. If he sees the PCs carrying the amult they got from Caphridius, he will want to know where they got it, and probably be suspicious. He may not like his nephew, but blood is blood. Maybe he starts off unfriendly. If the PCs convince him to let them stay, he insists they join him for his "dinner theater," in which local peasants are forced to act out murderplays with actual weapons to the Count's raucous laughter (cribbing a bit from Council of Thieves). Count Vort himself will not attempt anything untoward with the PCs, but they have to pass this way again after book 3, when they return by the same route from Yanmass to Meratt. And by now Vort will have heard that they are supporters of Eutropia.

Vort has a huge following - mostly criminals and bandits. He can essentially hunt the PCs through his lands "The Most Dangerous Game" style. This fits thematically with the 'harmless' amusements the nobility uses at the Taniger Jubilee (jesters and prey conscripted from the local peasantry), but cranks it up to 11. Count Vort, after all, thinks he has a shot at the Throne. Why would he let agents of one of his "competitors" live?


I'd read right over that guy. So how does the baronet of a starving community that barely qualifies as a hamlet rank so highly on the national stage? As far as I can tell there's nothing in the book to explain how the Tribune of New Towne has people backing him for the throne all the way from Cassomir to Lotheedar, and straight into the 5th book (if these maps are to be believed).

I'm tempted to give Caphridius Vort a more powerful uncle that commands some actual power and prestige, and who is a lot more menacing and involved with the criminal activity in the Blackwood, while his baronet nephew bumbles along in New Towne trying to "help the people."


Seems like he is just another faceless local Senator. Nazezi and Starborne have similarly small but loyal followings. Since the agents have to travel through his territory (looks like Blackwood Swamp) on the way from Meratt to Yanmass, if you want to flesh him out it shouldn't be too hard - say, the PCs stop at Vort manor after a day of travel, that sort of thing.


So let's talk about the Dignified Repository. I love it, but there is a significant factor that I haven't seen brought up - and my party ran straight into. Namely, the contents are described as wooden crates full of clothing and furniture (notoriously flammable) and Fair-minded Efarni is throwing splash damage firebombs around.

Yes, they act as stinking cloud, but they still deal fire to large areas of loosely packed flammable materials. Add to that my PCs have a wizard casting burning hands recklessly, and the Repository is basically destined to burn down.

So - this can put a timer on the rescue operation (if they leave to rest the structure collapses), or just be cinematic (burning down an adventuring site through carelessness seems fitting in a game this grounded in consequence).


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Name: Urag Bonerattle
Race: Half-orc
Classes/levels: Skald 2
Adventure: Crownfall
Location: Hall of the Protected
Catalyst: Walcofindes
The Gory Details The fearless skald, after failing literally (not figuratively) every skill check thus far in the campaign, heroically took point when exiting Senator Voritas' safe room, only to immediately fall prey to the walcofindes. A surprise round followed by the (top of the initiative order) undead's full round brought the man low, as his teammates looked on in horror. Shortly thereafter, the rest of the party retrieved the letter from Kalbio's parents from Urag's corpse, and were considerably more saddened by that than the loss of their useless skald.


So a question about Delvehaven: I have looked and looked, but I'm just not seeing where the stairs down from B6 actually connect to the cellar levels. Am I going insane, or this simply a map error?


Dasrak wrote:

Just my two cents, but it really feels like all the claimants other than Pythareus and Eutropia were just tacked onto the campaign and only serve to detract from it. We never meet an NPC who supports one of these other claimants, they never do anything that has any effect on the story's plot, and then just disappear with a hand-wave when they're no longer convenient for the narrative. Why are they even there in the first place if they literally do nothing for the plot except get in the way and require a massive hand-wave in the final act?

I love the underlying theme of a Taldor divided between dozens of different claimants, threatening to tear the country apart, but that really wasn't the story being told in this AP. It was Eutropia vs Pythareus for three acts, then the Immaculate Circle / Carrius attempting to steal the prize in the final act.

While that is the greater part of the story, there is plenty of opportunity to have "guest appearances" by other contenders during the segments between books. The PCs have to travel the length of the country several times (Oppara to Meratt to Yanmass to Zimar, etc), and much of this is before they have access to teleportation. They're going to be stopping to spend the night in one of the rival factions' territories at least once (unless your party doesn't like dealing with overland travel). Easiest thing in the world to throw in a "Game of Thrones" moment where supporters of opposed factions run into each other in a roadside tavern while the party is staying there and a fight breaks out, or some such.


Frederico Gomes wrote:

Also, are the PCs supposed to be teleported all at the same time or each one once they are struck by one of the stavian agents or they should be teleported as each one of them is struck?

I ran it as each one individually being struck. I also ran it as an actual, encounter, with initiative, and the party was actually able to take down the first mercenary that came their way before the wizard got struck with a javelin and vanished. I simply marked the wizard off the initiative order and kept going. The PCs freaked out at this, and assumed the mercs were "carrying disintegration javelins" to prevent victims from being rezzed.


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It's no secret that the shadow room in the Asmodean Knot is hilariously overpowered for the level, and in my opinion the link to the Plane of Shadow also seems a bit shoehorned into an otherwise infernal-themed dungeon. I decreased the spawn rate of shadows, but I also wanted to bring the room into alignment with the rest of the dungeon (and add more of a Mammon flair).

What I ended up doing was replacing the mirrors with the "Claws of Erebus" haunt from Hell Unleashed. A pitch dark room that eats anyone who enters (reflex save to avoid). The zone still spawned shadows at a dimished rate, reskinned as the souls of those who expired in the cells.

My party couldn't defeat the haunt (bad rolls) but consecrated the area to prevent shadow spawning.


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While running the second book of the campaign, I was introduced to a comic called the Black Monday Murders, about a cabal of bankers who worship Mammon and control Wall Street. This got me to thinking that Mammon is poorly represented in the campaign, barely appearing until you actually encounter Sidonai's contract.

And so I want to reimagine the Council of Thieves as a cult of Mammon. It makes more sense than Sidonai Drovenge deciding out of nowhere to make a deal for a tiefling son, given Cheliax's opinions on tieflings. This way opens a door on various soothsayers having dreams about "the golden child" coming to rule Westcrown, as well as providing more Mammon story earlier in the campaign.

Mammon is such an underappreciated demigod, and the Council Members using his worship early on (as early as the Asmodean Knot sessions) makes the idea of evil rich people so much more flavorful than just generic Asmodeus worship and gives the campaign a good lead up to the otherwise sudden appearance of a Son of Mammon.

To that end, my current plan is to rewrite the Asmodean Knot to be more focused on Mammon - changing the previous mayors to be Mammonite council members to introduce the Argent Prince as earky as possible.

I'll expand on this as my campaign.moves forward. Just curious to hear other GM's thoughts.


I love, love, love Taldaris (and by extension the Impariut). I will be using him as an opponent in some campaign even if my WftC campaign doesn't get that far.

My only complaint is that his attack is slightly off. His attack is listed as a +1 mithral halberd, but his gear has listed a +3 axiomatic mithral halberd. His attack rolls as presented use the former, but by his gear he should have an additional +2 attack and damage on all rolls.


They're fey, and have an INT of 10 with no points in linguistics, so they should just speak sylvan.

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