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** Pathfinder Society GM. 453 posts (456 including aliases). No reviews. No lists. 1 wishlist. 10 Organized Play characters.


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Tyrant successfully neutralized!

My players enjoyed this one a lot. I only made a small change to the whole "obols destroy your soul" thing. I had their souls left in tatters—too weak to be raised, but they could at least get their afterlives. I also told them that the obols' fusion with their souls was slowly eating away at them. They should be dead, and they'll be really dead within a couple of years anyway.

As for the fight, it went very in the PC's favor, enough that I need to tell you about it.

First round right after the wall blew up. Party is in bad shape after a horrid wilting, although the fighter has the Unbreakable archetype and saved, so has no damage. Oracle can't see everyone, so doesn't want to use mass heal yet. I took a look at Gildais' spells and saw wall of ice, so I used that to block the hole in the wall. Cost the tyrant a round and a mythic surge to get rid of it.

Daemon comes in to vital strike the skald, who's closest, but misses by 1. Smoke's cleared, arcane trickster successfully banishes the daemon.

Here's a screenshot of my game right after that happened.

Tyrant swoops in, paralyzing everyone, sees Gildais, and starts blasting, not using wail of the banshee because Gildais is immune. So meteor swarm and quickened fireball go flying, but not enough to kill people. Trickster has tricky spells, so I allow a greater dispel magic cast since it has no material component, but spell turning gets the first one and the second fails.

Meanwhile, the fighter has the unbreakable archetype, remember? She can ignore paralysis for one round, enough time to activate freedom of movement. She flies up to the Tyrant, rolls a natural 20, uses a rage power from the skald (who'd been freed by the paladin) to auto-confirm the crit, and between Greater Vital Strike and the bonus damage from the allies, deals 200 damage to the Tyrant. Should have cast that displacement spell, buddy.

Tyrant used the Radiant Fire on round 5.

Things would have gone very south for them if not for that big damage roll. I'd probably have mazed the fighter, and it probably would have been up to the arcane trickster to find a way to finish the job.

Chillergy wrote:

Quick Question~

What's the range of the gravity pumps that makes everything "down" while inside the divinity? Right when they enter A1's door that requires the orange access card?


IIRC, it's the entirety of the ship's interior. Nice and simple.

Book 3 gameplay: Been kind of slacking off here, mainly because I haven't had time to prep book 4 until now. Nothing much to talk about through the rest of book 3. The Temporal Disaster haunt is written poorly. At first it seems like gravity is pushing towards the east, but it later makes it clear that people should fall towards the west. I had to give my players an extra round to stand any chance of saving the past because they had to climb up to reach the gatekeepers instead of sliding down.

The Carnivorous Crystal looks ridiculous until the party realizes how slow it is and kites it. Mine got lucky die rolls instead.

The Amalgamite Swarms are actually ridiculous. Putting both hardness and fast healing on a swarm is straight-up stupid without a party that's spent a lot on area damage. I had to remove the hardness.

The rest of the book's gone pretty well. We're currently in the Palace of Eternal Sunset and have met with the princesses.

Yeah, staggered is still in its statblock. Time for a mea culpa.

There's no merchants, but the book gives the players more than enough equipment, including expensive items that would normally never be found at this stage of the game. You should change a few items to better fit your group, though (like the type of a weapon, or a pearl of power to a runestone). The theme of the first few books is *survival* horror, after all.

Merchants become available after book 2/beginning of book 3 for a little while, then if they have teleport they might be able to make a trip to a merchant before starting book 4. Merchants are easily available throughout book 5 and they could teleport again in book 6, although they won't really have time to have expensive items made at that point.

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The simulacrum of Tar-Baphon was nicknamed Tar-Buffoon by my players.

Book 3 gameplay: The heist went pretty smoothly. A little too smoothly, but that's how the dice went. GMs might want to look into The Angry GM's tension dice mechanic for this. Would probably have made more events happen, but brings more risk of having to fight your way out.

I let the mechanic temporarily replace his drone's weapon mounts for manipulator arms for this one, since they needed it to ferry Mr. Sarlu. We'll see if he regrets that during the next part of the adventure. It can still use a melee weapon.

I gave the soldier a perception check to recognize Yinni Bricala as someone seen talking to the Watch Master earlier in the week. Ended up not mattering as they spent no time in the salon.

Communications are important. Starfinder standard is comms built into your armor, and while that's a bit much for this part of the universe, especially if you're cutting out the life support and radiation protection, Pathfinder players would have message, so I let the suit radios work the same restrictions (it's as loud as a whisper).

I put the soldier on portico door guard duty. Should have been a good position to do something if needed, but the player was determined not to break cover, so she ended up pretty bored. I drew the soldier's attention to the body shopper, and he went and talked to the guy for a bit. Got an admonishment from his partner for taking too long but I decided it wasn't that big of a deal since he only went twenty feet away. Towards the end, I also threw in a couple of drunk guests who wanted to pet the velociraptors. The soldier tried to warn them of the danger, but rolled a 1 on the Intimidate check, upsetting the raptor, and he then barely passed a Survival check to control the beast and prevent an incident.

As for the actual heist, the mystic arrived early with the catering staff and got her bearings, easily determining where the library with the component was. Once the guests arrived, the engineer talked a random Thanex agent into showing him around, and got a look at the room. Once he determined the display case was locked, he met the mystic at the restrooms to get the null-space chamber from her. The witchwarper chatted up Tyreene Thanex and also got a tour, and she noticed the fake. I missed the part here about being escorted back out, so she got away with just claiming she wanted to look at the books.

During the search, the columns were identified as a threat and well enough to tell they could be visually fooled, and eventually the hidden safe was found. They grabbed some napkins and draped them over the statues heads, which I decided wouldn't set them off, but there was also no way I was going to let that fly.

I didn't roll (successfully, that is) to have people enter the room at all during the night, so I forced it twice. The first was no big deal, but the second was immediately after the safe was unlocked, but before it was opened. The mystic had stationed herself with a tray by the door and intercepted the group with a minor accident, getting her sent back to the kitchen for a while. This gave the group inside long enough to clean things up.

While they waited for the room to clear out, they talked to people and helped the locathah. Then once they were clear, they tried to cover up the statues' heads again, only to discover that the napkins just slid off, implying the statues were changing shape. So instead the witchwarper used her infinite worlds ability to give the engineer concealment, allowing him to make the swap without being spotted.

Lucky for me, there was one more snag. The engineer left the null-space chamber under a napkin for the mystic to pick back up, but she rolled a 1 on her sleight of hand, fumbling it a bit. This drew the attention of a Thanex Blade. She couldn't quite talk her way out of it, so the engineer attempted to trip someone. He failed, but succeeded at a Stealth check to avoid being spotted, so I had the small confusion give the mystic a small bonus, just enough to have the Blade leave her alone.

After that, they just waited for the party to end and left. The soldier had to slip away from his post, so they'll lose some time for that even with a successful check.

About time! I was getting nervous because my party started part 3 last week.

Best title of the lot. I'm looking forward to reading it.

Book 2 gameplay: Last session ended immediately after Mr. Sarlu surrendered. My players decided not to demand too much from him for fear of his developing a grudge. They only asked for a 20% cut, plus the stuff in his vault they could use (no valuables). This is of course a sign of weakness, which Mr. Sarlu would take advantage of if they wouldn't keep disappearing for weeks at a time and coming back stronger each time. As it is I don't know what I'll do with him. Cash flow from the gate won't start for a while, and fortunately they didn't specify gross income on the contract they signed. That'll let me give them either a relative pittance or enough to make up any WBL gaps.

Speaking of wealth, while they're over WBL by a decent amount, they didn't have a lot of cash for buying upgrades, and the soldier's main weapon is still a level 4 sword from book 1. They have plenty of level 6 gear, some level 7s and one level 8 armor. They could have sold a few more backup weapons for some more cash (they're also inflating the party's wealth for my math), and I'll bring that up next session. Just an interesting note on perception vs. reality for buying at-level weapons. They mainly spent their money on magic items like rings of resistance, darksight goggles, and falcon boots.

Book 3 gameplay: Going to go into more details here to help future GMs have a little better idea of what might happen. My group's original plan was to use the Thanex party to simply scope out the place, but I kept pushing them to make use of the time I gave them (4 days) so they got more information and decided to steal the component during the party. I'm not going to go into all the details of their planning. I did warn them that getting in by using Relstanna's invitation would mark them as agents of the Bellianic Accord if anybody cared, and they eventually decided not to use that resource. They were worried about cameras, forgetting the tech level of this game isn't up to Starfinder standard until I reminded them. They also mistakenly thought they needed to completely avoid detection of the theft, until I informed them that there would be no way to hide that the gate had been fixed. They still plan to have a duplicate of the component to buy time. We investigated holograms but it looks like there aren't any good items for that and spells won't work at this level either. The mechanic is planning to make one, and I think I'll charge 500 credits for that.

Here's how the plan currently stands at the end of the session. The soldier has gotten himself hired as a guard. I let him use Prof(mercenary) for the interview. He'll be an outside guard, so he'll be of limited use for the heist itself, but he's provided great intel on the guard patrols, velociraptors, and even the layout as you can see half of the building through the windows. The mystic has been hired onto the catering staff, and will bring in a null-space chamber for the component and any gear they need. She'll have nondetection. The witchwarper will come as Andretta's guest, and the mechanic will come as Mr. Sarlu's guest, with his drone pushing the tank. Mr. Sarlu doesn't know what they're up to and is going to be furious if they have to run and abandon him.

Book 2 gameplay: Decide now if you think detect affliction should detect the parasite controlling the monks. It's not quite clear but I decided to allow it when the group decided to use this to check if the abbot was infected or not.

This whole area is another instance where Starfinder's life bubble could be overly useful.

Give the PCs Legendary Surge from book 3 as soon as they go through the repaired Red Gate to keep with the rest of the time gates power them up. They'll need it when they fail two of their three checks to repair the gate and start the Mr. Sarlu fight with 30 points of damage like mine did. Sarlu's tactics don't make much sense unless you start him off right next to the party, and then his squid minion will probably get caught in the synaptic pulse. Wonder what his lead-off spell was in the Pathfinder version.

Since the book forgot about Khedri, I had him send a message that he was going to stay to lay some groundwork for the Accord's plans for the planet and the PCs should go back without him. You may want to have him return with the group and help with the Sarlu fight.

Nothing of any real note for the rest of Book 3's prep.

Book 2 gameplay: Players went off the rails by deciding to skip the abbey and go straight up to the Cloud Garden. Book had zero details about the mountain so I said they could make several tough Athletics checks to climb the mountain or one check to climb enough to get to the trail leading up. They chose the latter, and once there they saw the unguarded door leading into the abbey. They fortunately decided to check it out first.

Make sure it's at least noon by the time they encounter the monks on the trail so there's sunlight for their regeneration.

The xenodruid ID'ed the plants well, but I kept back details about the mother plant and the parasitic ability, just saying that their spores had mind-affecting properties, and they became intelligent and dangerous as they grew up.

Vine attack on the monks is not very effective, so I buffed its attack to match the spear and had the monk only take damage the first time the vines came out.

I should also note that I haven't done any hp damage to anyone since the last Thirsty One. You may want to toughen up the enemies.

Book 3 prep: The Archive Chamber (C2) is a mess. I have no idea what on the map equates to the room description, and it'll be hard for the archivist mechanism to move around. I'm intending to ignore half the stuff in the room.

Clockwork mages don't list DC for spells, but judging from the Pathfinder version we should assume they use a +0 casting stat. So DC 11 for their first level spells. Also, arcane surge does not exist and I assume it's a typo for arcing surge.

Sporewings statblock was badly edited, and their spores don't entangle despite everything else saying they do. Staggering is similar but not enough for me. I'm going to just add the effect, negated by a Reflex save. Also, blood drain has no description and is not a universal monster rule in Starfinder, so it works by doing the listed Con drain after a successful grapple. They should also lose the aquatic subtype and have a fly speed instead of the swim speed.

The baykok's Devour Soul ability should say "cannot be brought back by mystic cure."

The Palace of Eternal Sunset map, besides having an incredibly aggravating grid, has a couple of room labels wrong. The stable is obvious, it's labeled D4 when it should be D7, but D16 is a bit trickier. It's the larger room between D21 and D22 that is mislabled as D12.

The image on page 55 is of Princess Seshana from page 59. It's definitely a harionago, but they don't look like hags and have mostly normal-looking faces except for having cuts and bruises. This will matter for how she interacts with the PCs at first.

Book 2 gameplay: Chase sequence is fun but no real danger. A less lazy GM will want to give two more levels to everything. I had the first group of gnolls start one chase zone behind, then had the second set ambush the wagon and start in the same zone. Since like everything else in this adventure, the GM is left to figure out all the details, when it came time to bring in the gnoll chieftain from earlier (who my group saved), I waited until after the encounter with the lieutenant, then had the remaining gnolls come in surrounding the group. Before anyone could do anything, the chieftan made his appearance and called off the raid, content with what they had already grabbed.

When it came time for the monk attack in the Bloom, the PCs were resting at an inn, in two rooms. One monk snuck into each room. DC 30 perception check to wake up in time. The soldier was closest to the door in his room and easily survived a coup de grace. After that, it was a decent enough encounter, even with nobody wearing armor. I kept the vine attack hidden for now. PCs didn't examine the bodies closely before the innkeeper got rid of them, either.

Book 3 prep: I'm going to be keeping my eye on the CR +3 encounters (the carnivorous crystal and the clockwork golem). The PCs have a couple of legendary feats at this point but this may still be too much given that they won't be expecting a boss fight, especially with the golem.

Book 2 gameplay: Thirsty Ones are too much of a BAMF for how they're used. 1d6 Constitution damage per hit? Way too easy to TPK. I gave the CON damage a save for half, and had the Thirsty One only heal 5 hp per attack, not per point of CON damage.

Both the Thirsty Ones and the later Radioactive Winds are incorporeal, and I believe both have too much hp. They have the standard amount for their CR, but I think that since they're incorporeal, they should have less. I left Thirsty Ones' hp alone since I nerfed its healing, but I reduced the Winds' hp to 54.

Radioactive winds also have every defensive ability under the sun. I ended up ignoring the natural invisibility and the radioactive aura because they were too much hassle. The length of the fight proved me right.

My players rolled high on their checks to examine the pillar, so I let them know about the energy interfering with it. Then when they went to release the force field, they were worried about radiation, so they wanted to drop the force field to try to release the interfering energy, then bring it back up right away to block off any radiation. I tried to head that off by saying it would take a while for the equipment to reset, but they elected to wait anyway. Which meant that the exact opposite of what they wanted happened. The radioactive winds were released, but with the field back up they couldn't heal themselves and the players had to do it themselves. I let them ground out the negative energy into themselves because they didn't have enough healing left after the winds fight.

On to the caravan, it seemed odd that the caravan you meet with the water problem needs help, since the next event is an oasis. I had Maryk take the caravan off the beaten path to get to the oasis, but perhaps a better answer would be to have the other caravan warn you about the sand gluttons, and that's why they couldn't get water. Also, create water isn't a spell in this game and I don't know that there are any that can also work.

About the drought swallow swarm: if you've played Pathfinder you might think that as it's made of Tiny birds, you can use single-target weapons against the swarm, but in Starfinder no such exception exists. Also note that the narrow pass makes it surprising difficult to damage the swarm without hitting your allies. Now would be a good time to remind your players of Maxim 20 of The Seventy Maxims of Maximally Effective Mercenaries: If you're not willing to shell your own position, you're not willing to win.

Book 3 prep: If it wasn't obvious, the easternmost B7 is actually B5.

B7's room description is wrong. There is no western passage.

B8: Here's another part where the map's supposed to be marked, but isn't, and this time it isn't so easy to figure out where it's supposed to be or how big it is. And lurking rays are Huge, so why are they in that stairway? I think I'm just going to move them down to the base of the stairs. The whole situation's just confusing. Do the PCs step on the trapper?

What was the cartographer smoking? The grid's busted again for the junction station map, and what's supposed to be a mosaic of a tunnel map is instead of an Earth steam locomotive. And on top of that, there's no textless version in the art folio.

Book 2 gameplay: St. Albat's (if that's the right name) went smoothly enough, but I was smart enough to anticipate my players' discovery of the penitents, so I had the abbess tell them that the "bricked-up" (looked like big stones on the map) passageways were past the "Hall of Penance." This helped them realize who the people in the columns were, and they opted to leave them be.

St. Menande's (again, pulling name from memory) went in an odd direction. The party had life bubble up from the trek, and it lasts days per level, so they weren't affected by the poison on the path to the abbot (which as I said before is far more serious in SF than PF, so consider having it stop at Impaired). If you're like me and decided to nerf armor's environment protection in this campaign to fit the genre better, you might want to do the same to life bubble. Maybe make it a leveled spell, with the level 1 version acting like endure elements from PF, level 2 giving water breathing, and then level 3 giving the normal effects and duration.

Back to the abbot, the party demanded to see the pages before buying them, and a Diplomacy check got him to do so. I didn't think to have him fetch them, but leading the party to his room worked out well anyway. They recognized the petrified nixie for what she was due to their encounter with the dracolisk, mistakenly thought she was the previous abbot due to a lack of gathering enough information, and got into a fight. The rest was predictable.

True Veleate. My witchwarper ignored all warnings and tried to use parallel form to sneak her gear in. The priest examined her closely enough to get a save, and made it. This gave the Witchbreaker a chance to save, and he made it, too. I gave her a chance to talk the Dockmaster down to just gear confiscation, but she was too honest about what she was up to and got arrested as a confederate of Khedri. The rest of the party followed the normal path, which feels kind of railroady with the way Ginny suggests getting themselves arrested. Ah, well. My group was all too eager to go along, because they ran against their role-playing limits for this section.

Yeah, it looks like you're reading the book incorrectly. They're trapped inside the mist. They don't have to go through the mist to get to town.

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Book 2 gameplay: Trebelbet has a lot of little RP traps you can walk into if you're not paying attention. Plenty of NPC behaviors expect PCs to act a certain way, so think about what you'll do if your PCs don't follow up on things, fail to call out a lie, or are cagey about their goals.

Book 3 prep: Dark Side Tunnels makes 3/3 maps with a broken grid and 2/2 maps that are supposed to have POI markings but don't. Again, easy enough to figure out where the Slicing Barricade trap's control glyph is supposed to be. The trap also mixes up its N/S and E/W axes, so read it carefully.

Thanks for posting this. I had the SpaceX stream on all day so I couldn't watch.

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Book 2 gameplay notes: I showed the Rythes map to the players without worrying about the encounter locations marked on the map. But then they asked questions of Wuli about the closer places. It was easy to explain that the farmer and the Syaandi Camp weren't actually on the map, and the Seabridge and the Crossing were easy to describe, but I hit a snag with the Howling Stones. I scrambled to come up with an explanation that wouldn't give the game away too much. I came up with "People generally avoid it, it's bad luck, not sure why since it's been so long." The players' curiosity got them to explore it anyway, and once they figured out what happened, "It's bad luck" was acceptable as a rumor caused by getting hit by lightning.

As for the elementals, I was going to just give them telekinesis as an SLA at their normal attack bonus. But one of my PC's spoke Ignan and talked them down.

I estimate travel times being one day getting past Kobec's Crossing and second day ending at the farmer's.

Book 3 prep notes: Seems a bit odd for Khedri to get an invitation. I might make him Relstanna's +1 instead.

The acid dart traps guarding the gate component require separate checks to find each of them. This has a good chance of getting called out as BS by your players and could set a bad precedent. If you think that's a problem, consider telling them that they notice a second trap if they get 10 over the Perception DC, which could get them to think to keep checking for more.

Land mine squares in the warehouse office aren't marked but it's not hard to guess where they should go.

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Book 2 gameplay: The day of dealing with Mr. Sarlu and Basher can get very long, so if your group had to spend a lot of resources dealing with the moray eel, you should let them rest before they go meet Basher. On the other hand, my group didn't get into any fights in the emporium, so I sped up the rate of arrival of the klaven infiltrators to every round and they did fine.

The ransom exchange is weird. It's incredibly stupid for Basher to agree to make the exchange at Sarlu's place, whatever the difficulty in getting another location is. So I had the tower guards leave entirely, so this became slightly less suicidal.

No DC is listed for the doors Geldek has to open to escape with the ransom payment, so I made it 25. Basher's thugs are supposed to flee once he dies, but they can't get the doors open. They ended up trying to follow Geldek and later Riaz out in my game. They didn't live long enough to get stuck at a door, but maybe they can give the ysoki cover.

XP note: The group had well over 17k XP (15k is needed to get to level 6) after the exchange. It's a good time to level anyway. I won't be tracking XP anymore.

Book 3 prep notes: I'm glad we've played Against the Aeon Throne, so we all have some heist experience. This is a very player-driven scenario, so one group's experience won't be much help.

The Thanex Manse map grid is broken. I can't make it square. Annoying, but it's not so bad it's not playable.

Really wish the art was labeled. I have no idea which portrait goes with which character. Are there even any tieflings in this book?

How are the PCs supposed to find out about the soiree? This is never actually mentioned.

Keeper Axater has a sonic dampener, despite not wearing armor with an armor check penalty. Give him a lightwarp inlay or change his armor.

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This needs setup. Starfinder game playing Legendary Planet; one of the characters is a chlorvian, a humanoid-plant hybrid. The party has been asked to get hired by a kidnapper in order to betray him during the ransom exchange.

Player 1: "This should be easy. We say we're mercenaries looking for work, which we are."
Player 2: "Well, you are."
Chlorvian player: "I'm just a plant!"

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Book 2 gameplay: Why don't they tell us what's in the box? Most players will want to know. I had to come up with something generic, so you might want to plan ahead for that.

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Book 1 gameplay notes: Lomrick went down easily. The minions were effectively neutralized after one round thanks to a good grenade and a hurl forcedisc that successfully hit all five targets it could. I'm not sure it would have made much difference if they were still relatively hale, as they'll fall victim to Lomrick's grenades even more easily than the PCs will. He's likely to last several rounds (five in my game), at least, so it's not like he feels like a chump. Won't do too much damage, though. If your party is above average (or you let them level up to 5 early—see XP note) and you want a tougher final battle consider replacing two of the klaven with warbeasts.

Do NOT give Lomrick deathblade poison. It's a level 20 item. Not only is the DC high for this level, but if it's recovered, it can be sold for over 13K credits. Make it blue whinnis instead. Much more reasonable.

XP note: If you've done all encounters to this point, the party will pass 10,000 XP to hit level 5 after killing Aardregghr. After killing Lomrick, they will have 11,500. If you skip the coliseum fights, they will only have 9,900. I'm going to keep tracking XP at least through level 6, but after that, the advancement track is clear enough. Going to need to switch to it anyway after book 3.

Book 2 prep notes: The Witchbreakers repeat a mistake from the CRB, making their weapons ethereal when that fusion doesn't exist and should probably be ghost killer. The Veleate guardsmen use the Tower Guard stats, which means they have a magic weapon with their paralytic machine guns. While it's one thing for the Witchbreakers, having normal guards have magic is too much hypocrisy that I don't think the Baroness actually has. Just take away the fusion.

I haven't looked closely at the armor that's been in the adventure so far, but if I can help it, I won't let them have level 7 armor before the Isle of Orange or it'll negate the radiation threat. I plan on having the towns on Rythes only have items up to party level -1 or even -2 to reflect their relative poverty. Another answer might be to say that the tech in this AP isn't up to the same level as the Pact Worlds and reduce the radiation protection armor gives.

I'm wondering why the warwagon doesn't have the Drawn ability that the sarlu aquarium does. It makes it seem like it has an engine when nothing else in the adventure backs that up. I may just allow my PCs to use Piloting or Survival to pilot to keep it simple. Also vehicle weapons don't have arcs.

The Pelicole Pass map makes no sense whatsoever. There's no mention of what seems to be a door to G8, and there's no point to the G7 area. I might make the unexplained holes in each room be part of a tunnel between them, or just say G8 is below G7.

The gnolls are a complete joke if they're attacking PCs. I'll have to come up with something to spice things up.

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Book 1 gameplay notes: The adventure deliberately leaves the pacing of the information gathering to find Lomrick up to the GM, but simply going from one thing to another causes an unsatisfactory moment. If the only info the Avaar Coterie agent can give them is Kaetrix, that seems like poor payment for their services, so I had to change things so that he gave them Kaetrix and Lomrick's location.

Book 2 Prep notes: The Kobec's Crossing guards inexplicably have no statblocks. Tempting to just make them all Tower Guards from Sarlu's, but that's a CR 8 where they all have cover against a level 6 party. Could be unpleasant, and I'd prefer to use a CR 7 group there. May make them Tower Guards with the shaken condition. Lucky for me, my group is likely to use diplomacy.

False St. Albat is a weird one. It's a solo CR 3 encounter against a level 6 party, but does 1d4 Charisma damage on a hit with no save. I think I'll just make him a marrowblight (CR 7).

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My last two sessions dealt with Zel-Argose and the investigation to find Lomrick. The book already gives pretty good advice, and any RP you do that results in a particularly useful source of information (like finding the psychic detective agency on Morpheum Street) should be understood to feed into the gameplay mechanism of the DC reducing over time.

I tried to use the downtime rules to expand on the weekly Profession checks to earn a living, but Zel-Argose is so large that those bonus checks are impossible. In another game, I'd have limited the effects to the neighborhood, but it didn't really work in this circumstance.

Skills side note:
I created my own version of Pathfinder Unchained's Background Skills for this campaign. I gave everyone two extra skill ranks per level: one for a Profession and one for a choice among Computers, Disguise, Piloting, Sleight of Hand, or another Profession. I did this so they would have profession skills for this section and some piloting for book 2.

You might be tempted to skip the Coliseum fights, but the extra income might be handy for gear. My players bought very little after coming to the city initially, but after three fights the soldier bought some new armor that came in very useful for the Daytaar safehouse. Also, use the Performance Combat rules from Pathfinder. I plan to have them face the champion once they're level 4, but the crowd will be fully on his side.

Speaking of the safehouse, Veelan Iron-Hand is pretty scary if your PCs are still level 3. His tactics to full attack often will wreck your players if your dice are hot. I gave him a shield (I want to add them in occasionally since they didn't exist and had him full attack less frequently. The soldier went down but the mystic was prepared with spell gems of mystic cure to keep him up with her own HP.

XP note: My party had 6500 XP (level 4 is at 6000) after three coliseum fights, the Dirty Deals encounter, and clearing the Daytaar safehouse. If you want to skip the coliseum fights, you will not have enough XP to hit level 4 before entering Lomrick's Manse, so you should either give an extra story award or use fiat leveling for this part.

Prep notes: Incredibly bad conversion work in this volume. Besides more weapon references I didn't mention last time, there's a major screw-up with the plasma elementals in the Howling Stones. The text says they try to get the PCs inside the circle of stones with their telekinetic throw ability, but their statblock doesn't have it. They're only CR 3, so they'll never succeed at bull rushing. I'll have to give them something else when the time comes to run this.

Also, the Syaandi leader is supposed to cast a spell to start the combat and signal his allies, but during conversion he became a solarion. That's at least easy to work around with a different signal.

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No notes from my last gameplay session (the ruin and making it to Zel-Argose) other than the adventure gave plenty of wealth during this first segment. Maybe above average even for Paizo's APs, but I didn't do the math. Most of it is useful gear instead of cash. Players ended up with mid-900s in credits after selling gear, so didn't buy much besides consumables as weapon upgrades compared to what they found aren't worth it at this level.

More prep notes:
The Dealers at Sarlu's appear to be using Dex to throw their grenades and have too-high DCs even with their special ability, but I don't care enough to change it since I'm not familiar with SF's method of NPC creation.

More sloppy conversion work: Basher's henchmen's tactics say they go invisible to sneak attack. Operatives don't need to do that. Come up with a more inventive use for the invisibility or don't waste the turn. Also the half-elves that show up for the exchange are described as having bows but have rifles in their stats.

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Thanks, Nimor.

Random notes while I enter the second book into FG:

The Tower Guards for Sarlu's Compound have thermal capacitors in their armor, and so should have 5 cold and fire resistance in their stat block.

The paralytic weapon fusion is listed at level 12, but placed into a level 4 item, which is not allowed. Just make it level 4, even if it is strong for that level. Cost depends on the weapon it's added to, so that's not an issue. Side note: the highest level fusion Paizo has made is level 10.

Are occult rituals treated like spells? I see they can be subject to spell resistance, but can they be dispelled or blocked with spell immunity?

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I want to like this, but I'm really going to miss the "highlight everything that changed in the last month" button.

I made a mistake with the XP in the last post. They had 1400, not 1350.

No particular notes for the third level until Lt. Maulvorge. There's an orphaned reference to his warbeast which didn't make it into the SF version, and my players were a little disappointed he wasn't riding it when they saw the associated image. I'm not sure I would recommend adding it back in unless your players are doing well and have at least half their resources left, and even then think twice. Maulvorge by himself is quite scary, hitting very hard and a fairly potent AoE with supernova in tight quarters. There's an error in his statblock; he should do 4d6 with supernova.

XP note: There is exactly enough XP to hit level 3 after killing Maulvorge.

My party had a bad time with the bodak in the Bastion and fled after the fighter got 5 negative levels. It took three days to recover. So what's a GM to do with a forewarned enemy with plenty of time?

The only Whispering Way left on the ground floor are the researchers on the east side. I'm having them move into the main room. Nobody left in the building has Survival, so they can't figure out where the PCs came from, but the big sanctuary is an obvious place for them to come through. I decided against having anyone from upstairs come down, but they'll all be ready for a fight when the PCs get to them.

The three deathless researchers will be at the north end of the room. One will be right by the door to the east vestry. They'll use all the patches from the robe of bones and have those undead around the south end as cannon fodder...and bait. Anyone moving towards those undead or to move up between the pews will set off a new cloudkill trap like that one from the altar in the west. The researcher by the door will be able to move the cloud 10' each round as a move action. I'm stealing that from the mythic version, but an artifact made it and it's a big room, so who cares?

The undead minions probably won't last a round, between a fireball and a bones oracle taking control of them. Once they're done and the PCs start to close with the researchers, the one by the door will throw it open and run away from the mutant bear they've let out. The researchers will run for the relative safety of the cloudkill spell and use it for concealment and protection from the bear. Assuming it hasn't been dispelled by then.

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Do not force your players to fight the Tauslek Matriarch until they've been able to gather the equipment on level 2. I gave my group a glimpse of her entering level 1 as they were starting to climb up from the sublevel, and they were all too eager to avoid her for a while.

The Matriarch is going to be a tough fight, and without good luck it's possible that only her desire to poison everyone and drag off anyone she grabs, both inefficient actions, will save the party. Also note that her poison is potentially fatal in SF. You may want to limit its end state. The fascination effect in battle is a bit wonky, so I had it break on anyone who was attacked and gave a new save every round. My group finished her off by dropping a grenade down the elevator shaft as she fled. Very satisfying.

Andretta is useless in any fight in the prison except for casting daze on klaven. This is by design, but I felt the need to swap out one of her spells for mystic cure.

The rest of level 2 (before the Matriarch fight) went smoothly. I was worried about the mimic fight, but it was easier than a Pathfinder mimic would have been. My group may have gotten lucky with the die rolls, though.

Make sure you pay attention to how the doors are locked in the battle pit trap room.

XP note: My players reached level 2 after killing the Matriarch and clearing everything on the first two prison levels, with 1350 XP.

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This is a thing that needs doing, so here it is.

I've just started this campaign, and will be leaving notes here as I go for future GMs' reference. Anyone else is welcome to add your own.

My party, for reference:
Vesk blitz soldier
Human drone mechanic
Aasimar witchwarper
Chlorvian xenodruid mystic

I tried to encourage them to have two melee weapon wielders considering the theme and the loot, but it didn't work out that way. The mechanic may make his drone into one when it gets more durable, but for now it's not.

Side note: I use the Fantasy Grounds VTT, so I loved the art folio to share images with my players, especially tagless version of the maps. But for some reason, a couple of the maps didn't have tagless versions, so I had to delete them myself in GIMP, which is never pretty.

Now to the actual adventure. I was concerned about an adventure originally built for level 2 Pathfinder characters being converted for level 1 Starfinder characters, but it works well...mostly. The initial fight against the baghra is going to be really bad if no one in the group has natural weapons or attack spells. Even with my group that had both, it was a rough fight and I wished I had given the baghra the sickened condition.

It's entirely possible that your group stumbles upon the klaven before they get their equipment, so make sure they find the gear first. It's supposed to be dark in that center area, so maybe have a flickering light visible through the malfunctioning door of the storage room. The klaven fight is tougher then it looks since your group is likely to get flanked. I was originally going to hold off on giving the mechanic his drone until BR-N3R could become it, but I saw during this fight that that wasn't going to work, so I retroactively gave it to him with the rest of his gear like the adventure said to. Even so, they were out of spells after healing from the two fights, and needed to rest after clearing the rest of the rooms and meeting Andretta.

Speaking of Andretta, this is the first instance of sloppy story conversion. The adventure says that faulty equipment knocked the baghra in the room out, but then says they spoke to her and she recognized the language as Ultari. It looks pretty strongly to me that in the Pathfinder version, she knocked them out with a sleep spell, but sleep doesn't exist in Starfinder, hence the quick change. I went with saying she used magic to knock them out anyway, since it was the end of the game session and her recognition of Ultari is the first important detail that the information-starved party will be getting, and knowing my players wouldn't question it. Use your own judgement for that one. It could also work to have her not know anything more than they do until they see Ultari on one of the other levels.

Much obliged.

I'll be running the Starfinder version of Legendary Planet soon. Starfinder recently added shields to the game, and I'd like to add them where appropriate to LP. Could anyone with the Pathfinder version of LP take a look and tell me about any significant enemies that use shields or any other time where they come up?

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Shisumo wrote:
Paradozen wrote:
Isn't half of the maelstrom an ocean of entropic water?
No so much half as the sum of 1/2 + 1/3 - 2/5 + 3/8 - 5/13 + 8/21 - 13/34...

This is entirely too rational.

The maelstrom is the source of all those old recipes that tell you to add a dash or a smidge of something.

Here's my group.

Human envoy.
Android ghost operative.
Shirren overlord mystic.
Lashunta solarian who hasn't used her solar weapon in forever because the book 1 boss's sword is just too good. (We've just got to Aurelos.)

I think this is a reference to the We Be Heroes Free RPG Day adventure.

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I can give it a shot.

First off, the guards are lax to begin with. If your players haven't alerted anyone during their investigations, they can say almost anything and be believed as long as most of them look Azlanti. Just follow the guidance in each room and they should be able to get clearance to the normal prison cells without issue. If your players try anything, just assume they're on camera and have to make a Stealth check.

Increase the tension a little when they actually get to the cells. They guards will check their clearance, and have them make a Bluff check even if the guards will still believe everything.

If they want to check out the room where Cedona is, I would have the guards at the hub warn them that the warden didn't want to be disturbed, but be easy to convince that the warden can deal with the PCs.

The warden's room is soundproofed and she won't raise an alarm, so that's not an issue. But coming out with Cedona is odd, so that will almost certainly lead to a fight. There will probably be reinforcements coming as they free the other prisoners.

The robots patrolling the hallway can be fooled easily if disguises are still up. If they missed hacking any cameras, then the security station will be waiting for them and may get the robots to attack them anyway. If they didn't, then they could get away without any more fighting. The right disguise or attitude could get the guards at the airlock to let them pass without stopping them, but that last camera at the airlock probably didn't get hacked, so you could have any guards that were bypassed come running up for another fight, a chase, or just a narrated escape as they ineffectively shoot at the party's ship.

Well, this is awesome.

And also too late. I've just bought Legendary Planet so we could have a high-level adventure.

With élan.

Here's what my group came up with:

Casandalee, Iron Goddess
NG goddess of androids and technology
Symbol: Android version of Vitruvian Man
Favored Weapon: Bastard sword (null blade for those who can get/make one)

Not much to report for Week 3. We didn't actually have any combat. The ranger got a bear to leave us alone, and we ended right as we found the result of our investigation and are about to head into a dungeon crawl. I was somewhat on fire as a result of the boar fight, so I had to Refocus right away while the bacon was being carved so as to avoid spooking/distracting the people we were questioning. There was also a chase scene, and the only reason I made any of the checks was the boost to Reflex saves from the mystery, so that was kind of nice.

This will be it for gameplay commentary during the playtest period due to Thanksgiving. I may make some more comments as we go, though, and I'll probably post the rest of my future leveling choices for this character.

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Give them a Crafting DC, and if they pass the pillar's save result becomes one degree worse.

I couldn't find any setting books about Lastwall, and they'd be of limited use anyway with the significant changes that happen here.

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Week 2!

Mostly investigation this week. Still, there was some fighting. I made a determined effort to use my revelation spells this time.

First fight was a group of bloodseekers. This seemed like a good time for incendiary aura, since I knew they were going to come straight for us. Unfortunately, they didn't have enough hp to even get to take the persistent damage. Minor curse now activated.

Next was a boar fight. We started about 70' or so away from it, so it was concealed from me. I didn't want to risk wasting fire ray. So I spent two actions to get closer and my last to try to Demoralize it, failing even without the -4. Next round, the ranger's badger was down, so I stabilized it. Next round, the fighter was down and the boar was running on ferocity, so I finished it off with fire ray. Crit too, which was pointless but satisfying.

The curse and my revelation spell are clearly pushing me forward into near-melee, but I'm a pyromancer and want maxed Charisma, leaving my AC pretty weak. Concealment from the moderate curse helps, but I don't think it's enough. I'm really missing medium armor right now. I'd like the revelation spells to have more oomph to make up for the gameplay changes they force on me. Flaming fusillade looks pretty good, and maybe fire ray will too once it has a chance to improve its damage compared to produce flame, but they're not so hot (pun retroactively intended) at level 1.

If I can hijack the thread for the same topic, my party just got past Colulus. There are a couple of references to his using shadow conjuration, but as far as I can tell, he can't use it. Nightmare ettercaps don't get it and the nightmare creature template doesn't give it. Nightmare lords get it, but he's not one.

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This was released just in time for a Fall of Plaguestone game I was in tonight. I hurriedly converted a fire domain cloistered cleric over, so I didn't have all that much time to mull over the options, plus I know this will never get past level 3. Also this is the first spellcaster I've played in PF2.

The other characters in the party are a fighter, monk, and ranger.

Human Acolyte Flame Oracle
STR 10, DEX 14, CON 12, INT 10, WIS 14, CHA 18
I got Religion, Acrobatics, and Intimidate from the class, and also trained Medicine, Arcana, and Occultism.
I took the fire domain, Divine Element with my class feat, and picked up Battle Medicine and Reach Spell with my human heritage and feat.

So, that's a lot of fire. Maybe if I did it again, I'd take the sun domain or a different feat for more variety, but I decided to stick with it because there's not actually such a thing as too much fire. My other 1st level spell was heal, and among my cantrips I grabbed daze for fire-resistant creatures.

In the wagon attack, I hit a wolf with produce flame, then burning hands on the boss wolf and another (one-shotting the weaker wolf). The boss would have been a good target for fire ray, but I stopped to Battle Medicine the fighter after he took a bad hit. The wolves were dead next turn, and I never used a revelation spell to start my curse. That's the only fight of any significance we had tonight.

So, I have a somewhat overkill mix of fire attacks with a cantrip, focus/revelation spell, and area attack spell. And incendiary aura seems like a great combo with fire spells (anyone who takes fire damage within 10 feet of you catches on fire). But I didn't find an opportunity to use it in the first fight. I'm really not sure when I would. I don't want to get within 10 feet of anybody unless I'm casting burning hands. I could cast it at the start of a fight and look for opportunities to run forward and light someone up at the edge of a fight, but then there's the problem of that it's a revelation spell. Once I use my first revelation spell of the day, my curse begins, and I can only cast one revelation spell per fight after that. I'm generally going to want to save that for fire ray, or dazzling flash for the sun domain.

I'll keep reporting as we go. Can't comment on the curse yet, so for right now, it's a fun magical nuker but incendiary aura looks to be really hard to use at low levels.

The Gleeful Grognard wrote:
HammerJack wrote:
Yes, but we know that following the expert for stealth to avoid notice is intended to work, since it's the only case where the Quiet Allies feat can be used, so I wouldn't worry about that trait.
I love the idea that each time they step someone is making sound effect to try and cover it up though :P

Group stealth.

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I have to brag about my players' creativity.

Nine Eaves library. Wasp swarm. Players have realized that it's guarding the nests and won't pursue. One player applies the vermin repellent that he just happens to have bought at character creation and goes in alone. He climbs on a chair and starts hacking at the nests. He only gets about halfway through before the swarm starts making the save to be able to attack him, so the other players have to come in and help. They cut the nests down, force open the balcony door, and throw the nests outside. The swarm's written as defending the nests, so I decided it was fair to reward their tactics and had the swarm follow the nests outside.

They were able to manipulate who got attacked by who was handling the nests and got out with only moderate damage (which means no resources spent because we're using the Strain/Injury rules), and only one PC was poisoned badly enough for a lesser restoration to be needed. The alkalai flasks from the greenhouse were the only damage source they had and they wouldn't have been enough.

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Nothing to do with the rules or reality, but I think that would be a nice niche for crossbows. They could be easier to use than bows while Taking Cover (including when prone) but you'd be sacrificing mobility.

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