We had our first session of Kingmaker yesterday and I'm worried I'm running the progression too fast. We played for about 6.5 hours so it's really a session and a half, and I have 6 players.
Since the players should just be level 4 at the completion of this book, I assumed it would take around 6-8 sessions to complete, with an average of one level gained every 2.5 sessions.
After our first session and a half, they have fully explored 19 hexes, encountered 9 of the locations on the map (Although the bandit camp at K they retreated from after finding it, finding it too challenging at first) I only rolled one random encounter which was quite trivial (A boar encounter, which was really just free hunting/food/gp for them), and they only completed one quest (Radishes)
All six players now have 1523 XP which is on pace for 6-8 sessions, but they've knocked out quite of a bit of the greenbelt and I worry we will finish this first book in no more than 3 or 4 sessions at this pace.
Am I worrying for nothing? Most of the major encounters have yet to be done and I know they will take longer, and because the first two northern rows of hexes on the map have very few locations of course they were faster and easier to explore.
Because this is 6 players I up the CR on random encounters and on the combat encounters, but I still only award 400xp for quests and 100xp for explored hexes.
So I guess my only real question is, is our pace on par with what you others saw when you started? How far did your players get in the first couple of sessions?
I hate to be a downer but I agree, while this announcement is exciting and would be interesting to play, I take this announcement with great skepticism.
I've been a senior programmer in the video games industry for many years, and shipped many titles on a multitude of platforms and MMO's are by far the most expensive, and difficult to build and maintain.
This is a new development company, (I've certainly never heard of goblinworks) Without an engine, and a huge staff of experienced MMO designers/engineers/producers, and artists this will never come to fruition. The costs are going to be staggering.
The goblinworks website is crawling already because of the traffic :-)
The guide is pretty clear that GM's can not allow players to play at their tables for any reason they deem appropriate. I would think that naming a character Darth Vader is just ridiculous and would affect the other players that are taking the theme and their characters more seriously. If the other players thought it was cute, or funny, I probably wouldn't care either, but I might not allow that character at my table if other players didn't like it.
I don't see why it would matter at all if you kept the name/image from the pregen. As far as I know that's perfectly legal.
Lava Child wrote:
Here's my experiences, yours may vary.
I always bring extra dice, lots of pencils, and printed pre-gen characters for walk-ins.
The hardest thing for me is the player's character builds, they are almost always PFS illegal somewhere, or attacks are calculated wrong, or the player pulled traits from some very obscure supplement you've never seen. Granted, they are supposed to bring the books with them, or print the relevant pages. But they don't always do that.
I have to say though all the players I've played with have been great.
Also, some GM's I play with seem to be very lenient about giving out chronicle rewards and prestige. I tend to think the players get a more rewarding session if they don't always find everything, or accomplish their missions. They will try harder and pay better attention next time to not miss out.
Alistair Rigg wrote:
I don't know why I keep calling it Ravenwood, my players keep calling me out on that as well. I'm not sure where it came from, but it's sure stuck in my head.
Yep, I have the geography all messed up, the text mentioned the road traveled to Riddleport, but checking the map, and reading the text more says the group has to abandon that road. I'll have to adjust it.
Just rolling a d4 for the Raven fights seems weak, considering the PC's get to do something and participate in the other events. Giving them control of a Raven lets them roll it's attacks and move it around the board and get into the spirit of things a bit more I think. I also plan to have only 1 victorious Raven, with winners of previous matches fighting again with their previous injuries intact. It will probably take a while (Although it only takes 3 hits to win the fight), but I think the group will have fun with it.
The festival events are my favorite part of this module so I want to extend their use and really engage the PC's, it's a prime example of what is different between a scenario and a module, we actually have time for some fun role play and unique events between the combat and investigations.
Ian Eastmond wrote:
It's legal as far as I would rule it. HeroLab replaces the Extra Bombs feat when you chose Crypt Breaker, and I would also rule that that is exactly how it should work. PFS just doesn't want you brewing potions.
Alistair Rigg wrote:
Thank you so much for these notes! They way out shadow the ones I did and will be incorporating much of your work into my session. Because I have more time to run mine than you did I have added some more things as well.
First, you and I have almost the exact same ideas for why the PC's are in Magnimar in the first place. Which is awesome.
Travel from Magnimar to Ravenwood
Part 1: Galduria, I had the exact same thing you did, someone knows something very little and it's a high check to find it out.
Part 2: Riddleport, There's not much to find here either, but the PC's have the option to rest here, or continue on and camp on the road. If they continue on the road to Ravenwood it is difficult to navigate at night and I will ask for a DC 20 Survival check to stay on the right path. Really I just want to give them the opportunity to use their wayfinder's for something other than light :-)
If they get lost, they will be ambushed by wolves (3) well off the road.
If they travel during the day instead, the bogs are hot and invested with insects. The encounter is now in the bogs: Giant Ticks (3) and Stirges (2). I wanted the PC's to encounter violent Stirges before the Applesauce encounter, to make them even more weary of it. I also like the risk some of the PC's might end up diseased before arriving.
Part 3: Ravenmoor
If they left Riddleport in the morning and fought the insects, they won't make it in time to Ravenwood and will have to camp on the road anyway, which allows the wolves to ambush them if you want. Next morning they arrive in Ravenmoor on time.
I'm running this next weekend as a marathon session, I'm glad to hear it only takes 7 hours or so, I have 12 hours slotted, so it will be great to finish early maybe.
I'm also planning to run it again split up for the players that couldn't make it to the marathon session, I'm hoping I can run it in two 4 hour slots.
I just found this in the rules for it which would seem to indicate it's not a useful combat ability at all, I don't know how I missed this before:
"The distraction of a nearby combat or other dangers prevents the ability from working."
I'm going to have to rule it then that if the creature can see or hear combat, or has already acted in the combat, it's immune.
I have a level 2 Bard in my group, that likes to use Fascinate whenever possible, and leaves it up to me to tell him if it's possible in that situation. Which is fine, but I just want to ask how other GM's have been ruling on it during combat. Here's how I am running it and it seems fair, but maybe I'm still giving it too much power.
During combat, he can Fascinate one target at a time, if the target saves against it, it can never be the target again. If it fails then it is fascinated and he must keep performing to keep it that way.
If anyone attacks in the area, I let the fascinated bad guy roll a save each round on his turn, as an "obvious threat" occurred near by but not to him specifically. If he saves, he can immediately act, and doesn't have to wait for his next turn. If he fails, he can delay.
If he is attacked directly, fascination immediately ends, and if he is still delayed he will act immediately after the attack on him is complete.
I have heard that some GM's only allow fascinate in battle if the Bard uses it during a surprise round using stealth before the NPC feels threatened at all. I've also heard GM's not allowing it's use in combat all together.
I don't think it's so bad for the Bard to take one NPC out of the fight momentarily, but it's really quite a powerful tool against monsters with low Will, as they will likely stay out of the battle entirely.
Also, when the Bard get's higher in levels and can affect more than one target, and the saves get much harder to hit, the way I'm running it might become very troublesome for me to have any meaningful combat encounters with the group.
What do you think?
I am running a game online - when completing the chronicle sheet, I can easily update the pdf and send the the pc's electronically ....except for the signature. Is an e-sig ok, or must I use a physical signature, scan and email to the players?
I just created a signature in MS Paint and put a watermark behind it. I just import these into my PDF's and email them to the players. Works fine, is fairly secure, and very fast.
I worry a lot about actually permanently killing a PC in PFS before raise dead becomes an option for them. If I kill a PC in PFS they are not permitted to recreate a new character at the same level as their old one, so they might not be able to play with the group anymore as the levels diverge, that would be uncomfortable and a disappointment if I lost players because of it.
It's always seemed a bit wrong to me to keep hitting on a downed PC when other targets are available. A lot of time and effort goes into building these characters. Am I too soft? Should I be actively trying to kill PC's outright?
I have 7 players in the rotation now, and I already came up with the idea to split them up, and play a pregen on the table that would be short, and/or get another player which might happen. But so far, only 6 players have signed up for the next session, so I'm going to keep them together.
I must have missed that rule about adding 1 to the APL for 6 players, maybe I can convince them to play up, although that will be very challenging for them.
If this was a normal campaign we'd be fine, but everyone wants to play PFS, so we'll stay within the rules.
I've run through the intro scenarios with my group and we're about to start Season 3. The problem I'm facing is the group is 6 players, plus a tiger the druid has with him. Now that the group is level 2, they are insanely powerful for a group of this level, and the scenarios are just far too easy for them.
During the intros they passed just about every skill check, and combat encounters were a joke, they last maybe three rounds at best and I can only inflict minor damage on the PC's, which ends up being a little pointless as the Cleric's have basically free cure wands (2 PP) with 50 charges each that easily heal the party up completely between encounters.
Now I've got a Zen Archer Monk with +6/+6 ranged flurry, a Fighter with an AC of 22, a Druid with a very strong melee attack, and his Tiger, with two Cleric's buffing, and healing everything. Everyone upgraded to masterwork weapons and armor.
So my question is: Is it permissible to adjust the difficulty of a scenario without going to the next tier? If a scenario has 1-2 and 4-5 tiers, can I adjust it slightly so it would more likely be a Tier 3? This would help me increase the challenge of the scenarios and make them more fun for everyone.
I was GM on this session, and I'm happy to be wrong, as it seemed really weak to do this, and I mulled over how to handle this days before the session with another GM, and we both settled on this.
Flurry of Blows says it acts as if you are using the Two Weapon feat. This feat causes you to have -4/-4 when attacking with two weapons, instead of the normal -10/-6. Because a lvl 1 Monk has a Flurry BaB of -1/-1, I took this to mean the total penalty was -5/-5 + DEX MOD, so for this character that is -1/-1 in the end for using Flurry of Blows.
If I'm not supposed to use the two weapon fighting penalties, why does the book say to use the two weapon feat at all then?