Gelatinous Cube

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I read the initial post and skimmed the responses, and responses to responses.
First rule, it's a game, try to have fun. If character A doesn't go with group B, stop and change.
That being said, what's lawful about being a fanatic and attacking people who have broken no laws? If you kill someone who you deem 'evil' that's still murder from the viewpoint of the local sheriff and magistrate. Indeed you could even 'justify' killing them in their sleep, since they would pose less of a threat. I would politely tell the Paladin, his god may be pleased with him slaughtering some heathens, but that will be cold comfort in the gallows.
The DM's role is not only to play opponents but to represent the society, culture and country the player is in. A Paladin should be zealous, but not a zealot. Pride and wrath are two of the seven sins.
Perhaps you as the DM could lead the character to a better way. An older mentor could explain that patience and humility would go a long way to finding a better way. Encourage the Paladin to watch and 'keep an eye on' the suspicious characters.

Well, we are three sessions into the AP again and everything seems to be going well. I will document the changes made to the 'Hall of Harsh Reflections' as they occur in my campaign.

Feel free to check out my long standing blog:

My Age of Worms campaign started with my regular group, which runs 8 players meeting every other Friday here in the Twin Cities in Minnesota US. I had to stop the campaign due to a series of life events, mostly the birth of my two boys.
After my group wrapped up a Rise of the Runelords campaign under another DM, we voted as to what adventure path we should tackle. Age of Worms beat out a modified Council of Thieves barely, and after a 4 year hiatus we had our first session recently.
We run a very old school band of players, and since we are starting 'the Hall of Harsh Reflections' I made several plot modifications.
1)The PC's met Eligos, and are looking for a way to transform an NPC Vampire (long story, I ran White Plume Mountain as an adventure in between BlackWall Keep and Hall of Harsh Reflections).
2)After 4 years of little succes Eligos has heard rumors of something called 'Apostolic Scrolls' which are akin to 'Scrolls of Uncertain Provenance'(see Magic Item Compendium for details). He sends for the PCs.
3)One of the PCs is recruited to spearhead a team in the upcoming Champions Belt Games.
4)Khellak the wizard from Aurics Warband sees the PCs when they come into town, follows them, and casts a knock on the Chimera cage and then invisibility to disappear. The two thieves steal things from the PCs during the fight with Sleight of Hand checks.
In our case a PC had an item which could Locate Object, and he tracked his pouch to the Thieves where they were counting their ill gotten gains at the 'Crooked House'. The PCs beat the thieves up are took back their items.
5)When the PCs get to Eligos' manor, they find he and Pollard murdered. While investigating the manor, after 5 minutes of reading his journal and seeing the 'Kyuss Worm Paste' recipe, a doppleganger disguised as a homeless waif claiming to have heard screams, has summoned a cadre of Guards. The PCs are arrested and spend the night in jail.
The next day they are taken, in chains and bags over their heads to the Sodden Hold.

As the adventure was written, Eligos was assassinated later, after the Champions Belt. Later, in the Spire of Long Shadowes he is raised/resurrected. His death and rebirth has no real impact on the PCs. Now it is a meaningful event. As the adventure states, The PCs are framed, as the doppleganger crew desires. From Zyrzog's view, a sage who has been snooping into things best left alone is eliminated/discouraged.
Eligos, who eventually will be raised, states that the PCs rushed into his home and slew Pollard, then him. Naturally they were leveled dopplegangers pretending to be the PCs. He will be distrustful at best, even after the PCs kill the nest of dopplegangers.

Uhhh Paladin must be LG and Bards cannot be Lawful, so this combination is illegal by game rules.

That aside, if the player is so concerned tell them that they can take whatever is found as their treasure split and replace it in the tomb afterwards.
Really the problem is one of party composition and group dynamics. You should have had the talk before this, but not that it's in play, no time like the present to have 'the talk'.
I'm not talking about the birds and bees, I mean the 'good vs. evil' in the party talk. Before a group starts play, there should be, but often isn't a talk about 'what the players want out of their characters.' Hack and Slash vs. Role Playing. Good party vs. neutral party vs. evil party. Having some consensus on these issues will avoid although not eliminate inter-party strife.

With 20/20 hind sight you can see that most of your party are immoral tomb raiders and the like. Your choices now: Discourage 'the odd man out', offer to make him/her into a fighter/bard to eliminate the problem, or play out the rest of the party tricking or lying to the paladin to get what they want. In extremis a party may 'remove' the obstacle player, but this can lead to real world bad blood. It will depend on the group.

Here's a further post from James Jacobs in the same thread:

"Paladins aren't immune to Kyuss worms. Disease in D&D is a specific game mechanic; you suffer ability damage once per day after an incubation period until the disease is removed or you make your 2 Fortitude saves in a row to recover. Kyuss worms, while they are destroyed by remove disease function in a completely different manner than an actual disease.

Now if you want to say paladins are immune to Kyuss worms in your campaign, that's cool. But keep in mind that once you start to blur things like this, there will be ramifications. If you make a paladin immune to Kyuss worms, then why aren't they also immune to green slime, brown and yellow mold, chaos beast bites, and slaadi egg implantation?"

Search the forum boards under 'Disease Immunity' and you'll get an old thread from 2005. From which I will excerpt the following from 'Gold Katana' Nov. 2005:

"Although the worms are destroyed when in a victim's body by casting Remove Disease and Remove Curse, they are neither a disease nor a curse. Per Dungeon 126, they are "a Fine vermin," per Dragon 336 "they are a strange symbiotic form of vermin that subsists upon the decaying flesh of the spawn." Also, per Dragon 336, "Once the worm reaches the brain, ... it begins to consume..." I propose Remove Disease and Curse are applicable per gaming rules because there is no "Remove Vermin" spell. A paladin would not be immune to the worms."

By the same rules the Periapt of Health should not work.

At the end of the day you are the final authority of your game. Since there are many times characters encounter the worms in later adventures, this ruling will effect those games also.

I think it's an interesting idea...for a back story. Have the LN character a 'wash out' from the clergy of Asmodeus, and worship someone else.

Dwilimir wrote:

About how many 4-hour game sessions does it take to get through a typical 90+ page Adventure Path chapter?

My group will be starting the 6th book of RotRL and it will be the 49th session. We play every other Friday from 6:30-midnight. We have a large group (8 players), so it should go faster with a more 'normal sized' group of players (4-6).

messy wrote:

finish maure castle!

but since that's not likely to happen, a new megadungeon would be great.

I'd like to see an AP Pathfinder version of the 'Village of Hommlet' and 'the Temple of Elemental Evil module'. The village fed into the quests in the computer game, and fed adventurers back into the dungeon and vice versa.

84. Jolly Johnny Meadbriar S 12, D 10, C 11, I 13, W 12, Ch 14, 4th level Expert, HP 18, Trader/Merchant. Jolly Johnny has a merchant shop where he 'can sell water to a drowning man'. Out back he has a stables, which he uses for horse trading, and rents to travellers when the inns are full. He is red nosed due to long years of drink, which he happily gives folk a taste if it will help a sale. He is married and his 3 daughters, the oldest is married off to a soldier and has moved away. He is keen to keep the local boys from the younger two daughters, unless he 'approves' of them.

The following is based on 27 years of playing role playing games. I have seen a lot of bad behavior, and I think you have four choices:

1)Live with a bad player that ruins your fun. Life's too short to put up with this jerk.

2)Have a heart-to-heart conversation, then let him ruin your fun. :(

3)Don't invite him and let him know why. You hope to repair this lost soul to a state of heavenly grace and transcent RP. Double :(

4)Don't invite him and make up a reason why: "The module is made for 5 characters maximum, sorry K." Everyone wins. You lose the jerk, and he maintains the delusion that he is a worthwhile individual.

As you can see I favor choice 4. Little white lies are important to maintain society, and a sense of a moral and stable world when reality proves otherwise. Feel free to disregard.

William Ronald wrote:

I plan to run a version of Keep on the Borderlands at the ENWorld Chicago Gameday on February 27th. So far, my conversion is coming along well (especially considering I can't find my copy of the original module and had to use a Fantasy Hero PDF and a 3E conversion document. However, I thought I would ask some questions and share some of my ideas.

I ran my players through the 'Return to KotB' a few years back and we had a blast. Only one player death due to the shadows vs. an overeager Rogue.

Please send me a copy of your conversion to:

Steelthorn wrote:
I just started reading and getting Kingmaker ready for my players. My particular group take a lot of pleasure in PC group setup and meeting everyone. From what I have read the first encounter the adventure kind of throws the PC's into the first encouter as a group. How did others handle this? Any suggestions of how others introduced the PC's to each other for this campaign?

My preferred method is to reward characters with a written background with a potion or scroll at 1st level. I don't want everyone to know everything about each other, I just ask each PC to write two other PCs into their backgrounds.

Twowlves wrote:
MattW wrote:

Before Hook Mountian we were all 5th level and were lucky to have one or maybe two magic items a piece. My characters total wealth for a 5th level character was shy of 6,000 gps. Just enough to upgrade to full plate mail and a +2 cloak of charisma (Paladin naturally).

The reward at the end of Skinsaw is 6000gp per character. If you are starting that mod with under 6000gp, you have missed every single piece of treasure up to that point.

6,000 gps x 8 characters = 48,000 gps dropped between cash, loot and magic items sold. I don't recall our DM giving much of a reward, as our cleric mis-cast the dispel evil scroll, and we never really 'solved' the problem with Foxglove Manor. A 5th level cleric casting a scroll penned by a 9th level caster has a 5% chance per level difference of miscasting. He did.

Our group or DM must be doing something wrong.
We have a large group (8 players) and are at the end of HMM and about to start FotSG. Before Hook Mountian we were all 5th level and were lucky to have one or maybe two magic items a piece. My characters total wealth for a 5th level character was shy of 6,000 gps. Just enough to upgrade to full plate mail and a +2 cloak of charisma (Paladin naturally).
We seem to have level and treasure lag and more and more frequent character deaths. This first encounter in Hook Mountain Massacre did just about that, with half the group down and one dead. We've had 5 character deaths so far with many more in the future as we continue to lag.
The sample characters in the back of Fortress of the Stone Giants are level 10 and we are all level 8. We win fights through attrition rather than force.
Do not try at home kids...

Any ideas? I was thinking of setting it somewhere in the 'formerly' Great Kingdom.

James Jacobs wrote:

As for chaotic neutral, I do try to make sure that when you have a monster that's actually evil, such as a baby eater, then that monster SHOULD be evil.

In the case of the Mother of Flies... I suspect that either the bit about her eating kids was an unfounded rumor... or it's just a goof.

I'm fond of both lawful neutral and chaotic neutral as bad guy alignments, but if something's evil, it should be evil. In the case of the Mother of Flies... she was intended to not be EEEEVIL as much as she was chaotic. And the intent there, as I mentioned above, was that there's a lot of legend and rumor about her that's not 100% accurate.

Just because someone is good doesn't mean they are friendly. Likewise evil isn't always antogistic. Every character should have goals which drive them. Their 'alignment' illustrates how they would accomplish those goals.

Then again Orcs are for head bashing, not analyzing.

Tikon2000 wrote:
While I love Paizo and their invention of the Adventure Path, I've noticed a trend in almost all the Adventure Paths (even those from Dragon Magazine) published so far. From Cauldron to the Council of Thieves it seems like you have to do something evil to win. Or more likely make a deal with an evil entity to gain an advantage. This is seriously getting kind of repetitive.

I think there is a definite story arc to the adventure path. That story arc is a bit predictable. The 'enemy of my enemy is my friend' trope.

Then again this is a game where the preponderance of XP comes from defeating or killing your enemy, so let's not get too righteous.
I am going to go 'old school' for a moment and say an old adventure like 'Curse of the Azure Bonds' where the PCs have a cursed tattoo/geas which compels them is a good mechanic to propel the adventure forward. Though something like that would seem too much like a 'railroad' to some players.
I think the basic conundrum is that you have a game where almost anything is possible, yet you need the PCs to get from point A to point B in the plot in an enjoyable fashion.
A personal favorite trope of mine is 'the intractable good'. Wherein a force of good (local government, righteous temple, etc. )is pigheaded or refuses to listen to reason. This causes conflict as the PCs know that force of evil X is planning something but the powers that be refuse to listen.
Example: A remote temple of good is secretly tasked to guard an evil relic. Even talking of said relic gets the clerics and paladins upset. The relic may have been stolen, as evidenced by a growing plague of evil in the region (undead, signs of blight, etc.). PCs have to sneak or otherwise make their way into said temple to determine the truth. Adventure follows.

Sharoth wrote:

See Heathy, Cosmo, Sebastian, CourtFool, and Kobold Cleaver! SEE! SOMEONE has finally shown the proper appreciation to us Silver Dragons! It is about Damn time!

~GRINS~ That is so AWESOME on so many levels!

The plan is to have one of our friends do some fine detail air brush ing before the sealant. More yet to come. Welcome to 'Nerdvanna' : )

Woodraven wrote:
Mairkurion {tm} wrote:
It keeps coming up "content unavailable" for me.
same here

I saved and uploaded them on my wife's account at Flickr under the name 'scubaspaz':

Try this and see what you get.

A friend of mine has a gaming palace/home in Golden Valley MN. I thought I'd share the following picture. He has a stulpter turning a tree stump into a 9 foot tall statue of a silver dragon in his front yard.

Enjoy. id=317863&id=1636803757

Ogrork the Mighty wrote:

My question is... should the cost of these be upped in the Age of Worms campaign due to the fact that the majority of the opponents are undead and therefore these crystals will be more effective than in an average campaign that is not undead-focused?


I believe the Magic Item Compendium tried to fill in areas where magic was rare. This means they tried to produce more low cost magic items. So overall, in my opinion, the items tend to pack more power for the price. You could easily make a case for doubling or tripling the price. Were the City of Greyhawk to be overrun by undead, 5 times the cost would not be out of order.

That being said the first level crystal is extremely useful in this campaign, since it can be added to enhance a pre-existing magical weapon. So a +1 Flaming Long Sword with the least true death crystal would do 1d8 weapon damage + 1d6 Fire + 1d6 Crystal damage (= untyped positive energy perhaps...)+ Strength. That's a lot of damage.

Personally as a DM in an AoW campaign I've restricted Tome of Magic Spells, and access to magic items is limited. It seems like there is definite 'power creep' issues. The later books for 3rd edition give more powerful feats, items, and spells.

My 2 Cents

Dichotomy wrote:
I do not want to slaughter the PCs, but I don't want to just pretend the doppelgangers are stupid. Any ideas on what they might have planned in store for a return assault by the PCs?

Let's see the dopplegangers have infiltrated a large metro area and have many of their kind as agents. Have one of the dopplegangers follow the PCs, while other dopplegangers rush out to buy disposable magic items of their own.

Add a few potions of invisibility, some poison for their weapons and a bead of force for fun.
My 2 cents.

Um Half Orcs have 12s in all stats and gnomes and halfling have 8s in all stats. I'll choose half orc! : )

Hmmm. For some reason, it is taking the adjustments (for all races) and using it throughout all the ability scores (that is, it isn't differentiating between the different bonuses/penalties for the different ability scores). Only the strength modifier(s) is being used for every ability score.


We're using Weapons of Legacy in my AoW campaign. I've tweaked the concept a bit, and instead of penalties to abilities, hit points, to hit & damage, etc. I have an xp cost associated with each level. The overall xp cost is as if the character crafted it, and by 20th level they cost in xp as much as a 250,000 gp item.
Check out the 'White Plume Mountain' adventure which is on the Wizards of the Coast web site under 'downloads'. They have write ups for 4 weapons.
I created a new Weapon of Legacy which was found in the lair of the Faceless One. An elvish long sword which has only the least legacy established. AS the characters accomplish more the PC will intiate new founding legacies for the lesser and greater legacy.
The weapon was created by wizards from the Queens College of Magic in Celene as a gift for a clan of Wild Elves in the Welk Wood. THe elves were beset by a tribe of chameleon-like evil fey. The swords least legacy powers involved protection and revealing invisible creatures.
Now the character has adventured below White Plume Mountain seeking another weapon of legacy for a powerful entity. He completed the mission and was given a boon by Keraptis (who is chaotic-cruel, not entirely evil in play)at the end, a wish spell which brought his friends back to life and founded the lesser legacy granting the sword more protection powers, defnding abiltity and healing powers.
We'll see where he is for the founding of the greater legacy, possibly in the spire of long shadows.

ledgabriel wrote:
KaeYoss wrote:
ledgabriel wrote:

This is not Fireball...
Indeed not: It's a cube, since diagonals are counted as 1 instead of 1.41 (or 1.5). :P

Mmmmm Firecube.

Wizards will sell more books than before. This is the 'New Coke' but for a smaller scale. I'd wager they care little for us, but are hoping to hook the 'tweener' 11-17 year old market with this facile crap.

4th edition D&D + Wizards/Hasbro + Borders at the Mall = $$$

All the marketing majors and dilbert-like game designers at Wizards/Hasbro Inc. form your little circular firing squad, lock, load and fire!

Nahualt wrote:

This is excellent stuff, I will sure include this with the other affiliations I took from Living Greyahwk.


Would you post a link to the Affiliations from the Living Greyhawk campaign please?

DarienCR wrote:

What do you think the Chormatic Dragon's position is in regards to the Age of Worms?

Is she still an enemy to Dragotha? What about Kyuss? Whose side is she on?

If you want to use this event to herald the end of 3rd edition and the start of 4th edition you could have her agents ready to bring out the Dragonborn race from some neither region.

Which do you think would work better for a weekly gaming group, and if you have played through either, which would you recommend?

What are some of the selling points for this AP opposed to STAP?

I'm a fan of AoW because it is set in the 'middle kingdom' area around Greyhawk and is close geographically to the old TEE (Temple of Elemental Evil) campaign from the bygone days.

I think Shackled City and Savage Tide have closer links, since they are set near each other in Greyhawk.
The one knock on AoW is the lack of outdoor play, so druids and rangers will see limited play IMHO.

Mad Zagyg wrote:

Hi all,

I thought you might enjoy some pictures of my custom made Apostle of Kyuss Ulgurstasta set against the backdrop of our custom made Greyhawk Free City Arena!

Derek Lloyd
Battleground Games & Hobbies
Abington, MA 02351

Nice work!

But that player got to thinking, and talking, with the party fighter. And They decided that the DC is stacked too heavily against success for bull rush or overrun attempts. Their specific argument was that a lvl 1, str 16 human fighter (CMB +4) has to roll a 12 to overrun a housecat-sized imp (bab+3, -2 size, +0 str, CMB +1), and a 17 to knock said tiny outsider on his tuckus. And if it's that hard to overrun a tiny creature, how much harder will it be as levels go up?

They want the movement-based combat actions (bull rush and overrun) to remove BAB from the equation. So it's just size and strength.

I was with you until you said Imp rather than just a house cat. Knocking a figure prone is a huge advantage, since with more figures around they all get bonus's to hit. I would be in favor of changing the size difference from -2 to -2, but don't take out BAB since an Imp is a tough little opponent versus a very green 1st level fighter.

My 2 cents.

Cuchulainn wrote:

I could see good an evil nations uniting. The good nations want to stop the slaughter. The evil nations want living subjects, not zombies that can only be controlled by one church.

I was thinking, however, that nature-oriented, neutral dieties as well as true neutral druids might actually side with Kyuss. Here is the reasoning.

Worms, in nature, break-down dead animal and plant-matter into nutrient-rich soil, which then allows for new life to spring forth. The Neutrals could see the Age of Worms as a necessary transitional phase to restore the world to a purer, more natural state.

Kyuss and his minions will spread the worm-plague, eventually killing everyone and everything and turning them into zombies. The zombies will decay and rot, and the worms will consume them. The worms will then be forced to consume each other when nothing else remains.

Kyuss will consume the life-forces of any living worshippers to sustain himself, only to realize that it was a temporary measure. With no more worhippers and no living beings to either convert or feast upon, he will diminish a fade away.

All that will be left of the material world will be nutrient rich earth and water. The Neutral Dieties of Nature will then cause things to grow anew.

Whatchya think? Too wacky?

A devoted cult under a charismatic leader could head in this direction, but I think it's a 'ends justify the means' approach which no true nature religion would tolerate. Most nature religions tend to humans who revere the old ways. When they die so does the religion.

How about a follower of Istus, 'the Lady of Fate'. A high priest or powerful worshipper could be convinced the Age of Worms is our destiny, and work to make it happen in their life time.
I see Kyuss as a follower of Nerull in the Flan pantheon before apotheosis. The head of that religion is Pelor, and the main nature diety is Obad Hai 'the Shalm'. Vecna, a competitor with Kyuss, is nominally in this pantheon as well.
Another option would be to have the Ebon Triad turn into a bunch of crazed fanatics (more so than now) who believe Kyuss is really the Over God they prophesized.

Suggestions and other ideas will be greatly appreciated.

My concept of what happens if the PCs fail to stop Kyuss is the following. He emerges from his imprisonment and would usher in an Age of Worms (thus the name). I think swarms of Kyuss Worms which can infect animals would be pretty bad. The infection spreads until all life on Oerth is harmed.

The strongest bastions against the unholy plague would be underground or in secluded areas, undersea or in a different plane altogether would be preferable for higher level folks.
From these areas a plan is hatched to either 1)trap Kyuss in the God Trap beneath Castle Zagyg. With the aid of Iggwilv and Mordenkainen a hearty band of heroes lures and traps Kyuss, ending his threat...for now. or 2)Slay Kyuss' Aspect on the material plane. He has achieved true godhood, so this will only resore the balance, and send him to grovel at the feet of Nerull.

Olmac wrote:
MattW wrote:

I don't think I would allow a Paladin to turn his mount into a walking, fighting bag of holding that way. Hmmm here's a thought. The egg may seem a tiny tiny bit EVIL to Mr. Paladin.

My players tried to use their Paladin's war horse the same way. I ruled that a Paladin's war horse would not allow itself to be treated like a pack horse. Besides, can you dismiss it and sending it back with another live critter on it's back? I think not. The egg has dozens of little critters in it.

I guess seeing how it is done already, I would have the egg hatch as soon as the Paladin summons his horse again. Can you imagine the chaos of that, especially if they are already deep in combat.

Personally I wouldn't let a player abuse his ability to use a mount this way. Rather than retroactively try to figure out some response to why you as the DM slipped up, I would contact the player privately. Tell him/her that you mis-ruled when you allowed this action during play, and afterwards you realized this is a rules violation. Then tell him/her that they are carrying the egg in their arms until they reach Diamond Lake.

Then again at the start of play in front of the entire group you should give your explanation/apology for having to over rule yourself.
Which ever way you handle this remember that we all make mistakes. Give yourself a way to save face yet rule the right way. If you go with 'Olmac's suggestion' let the players know after the egg hatches and hell breaks loose, that you had erred and you cannot use the mount as a pack horse. It will save you next time they try to 'tie up Filge, throw him over the Paladin's saddles and send him to the 7 Heavens or else.'

Polevoi wrote:
Snorter wrote:
I don't forsee any possibility of the heavens being over-run by this action.

Oh heck no, I don't either, I was thinking it was a pretty clever solution.

I may just take your advice and have a passing celestial deal with the egg and have the horse show up next time without it...that'll have them scratching their heads.

I don't think I would allow a Paladin to turn his mount into a walking, fighting bag of holding that way. Hmmm here's a thought. The egg may seem a tiny tiny bit EVIL to Mr. Paladin.

office_ninja wrote:

Goals: To discredit, humiliate, and overthrow Prince Zeech.

Nice! This makes me want to have Alhaster’s town square prominently feature a guillotine. Viva la revolucion!

Funk wrote:

MattW -

I was wondering if you ever finished this up. I think this is great stuff, and am planning on using what you have so far for my game.

- Bryan

Working on them as I can.

Here is one I rather like, since it dove tails with my old Temple of Elemental Evil campaign, and one of our party members is a part of the organization. His character is an Elemental Archon, slightly modified from the FR campaign setting.

Elemental Adepts
Symbol: A circular disk of metal, with clouds, a mountain, a flame and a wave.
Background, Goals, and Dreams: This organization was created shortly after the rise of the Temple of Elemental Evil. The group’s founder, Willa ‘the Blue’ Tashema, was a powerful Elemental Savant dedicated to water from Nyrond. After the forces of Elemental Evil were defeated at the battle of Emridy Meadows, followers of Saint Cuthbert stalked any and all who worshipped or revered elemental lords, marking them as heretics. In response Willa and a number of like minded individuals formed the Elemental Adepts. The leaders of the Adepts are members of an elite, called the ‘Elemental Council’.
The cabals goals are two-fold. 1) A self protection league. 2) The destruction of worshippers of Elemental Evil and followers of the five lords of elemental evil (Cryonax=Cold, Imix=Fire, Ogremoch=Earth, Olhydra=Water, Yan-C-Bin=Air).
Requirements for Membership: Must worship one of the Princes of Elemental Good (Ben-Hadar-Water, Chan-Air, Sunnis-Good, Zaman Rul-Fire), or the Neutral Lords (Akadi, Grumbar, Istishia-Water, Kossuth-Fire). To join a member must also swear a non-aggression oath, since too often followers of opposite elements would seek conflict with each other rather than their common enemy.
Secrets: The worship of the Neutral Lords is cross planar in origin. Seeds of their worship were started by planar travelers long ago. They keep this a secret, lest their worship seem even more foreign.
Type: Cabal
Scale: 11(Multi-regional)
Criterion Affiliation Score Modifier
Character level +½ character levels
5+ Ranks of Knowledge (the Planes, Arcana, or Nature) +1
10+ Ranks of Knowledge (the Planes, Arcana, or Nature) +2
Elemental Savant or Elemental Archon Prestige Class +2
Member can cast Teleport +1
Member can summon an elder elemental +2
Perform a mission for the Elemental Council +2
Helps another member +1
Saves the life of another member +2
Defeats an evil elemental creature +½ CR
Harms another member -2
Kills another member -8

One time Additions:
Defeats a church of elemental evil +8

Affiliation Score Title: Benefits and Duties
0-3 Apprentice Adept: Not affiliated or junior member with no benefits.
4-10 Lesser Adept: Members can instantly recognize the name, element and
alignment of any elemental lord’s symbol.
11-20 Master Adept: +2 competence bonus to PC’s social interaction with ‘non-
opposite’ elemental creatures. +4 competence bonus to PC’s social interaction
with his or her favored elemental creatures.
21-30 True Adept: Members gain the feat ‘Elemental Focus’ which gives members a +1
DC to spells of their chosen element (Air, Earth, Fire, Water) and such spells have
a duration as if the caster were two levels higher.
30+ Master of Mysteries: You must travel and meet personally with the other Masters
of Mysteries. After you meet each one, you may contact them with a Sending spell with no chance of missing the recipient no matter which plane they are on at the time of the spell.
Elemental Extend, all spells with your specific elemental type (air, water, etc.) are cast as if the extend meta-magic feat had been used.

Executive Powers: Pariah, Raid, Shadow War

Ross Byers wrote:
The hard copy is sold out. On the other hand, the PDF is free, free, free!

Sweet! Thanks a million.

Hi there. I work most Saturdays so was unable to get a free copy during my local gaming stores giveaway of this module.
I am looking to buy a copy now, and can't find one anywhere. Is there a PDF version? I would rather pay more to get a hard copy.

My campaign is running D1 with Bugbears bad guys and Goblin slaves rather than the kobolds since my group is higher level. Everything else is amped up a bit to 6th/7th level. This is a fantastic module and I just had to use it, since I love the Dwarven Ruins and new monsters from D1!

If something happens in-game, to change a PC against his will, I might be willing to run with it, for a 'tragic hero' theme. But if players are just cherry-picking powers, then they can go swivel. What's he going to do? Stand in the graveyard with his neck exposed every night? Who's to say (if a vampire does come) they won't just kill him and eat him?

It's up to DMs to draw a line in the cheese, and say "No further!"

Hear, hear. An in play quest to get a wish and a hunt for a vampire might be the focus of the campaign for some time. Chances are the rest of the players won't like one PC shifting the narrative for the entire group.

I normally try not to tell my characters they can't do something, since a direct line to the gods is beyond their abilities in most cases. I just ask them "How are you going to become the only non-evil vampire?"
It's much easier to give the PCs the mission statement of the Campaign arc. "The focus of this campaign arc depends on a group of PEOPLE from Diamond Lake who rise to a mighty epic level challenge." Stress the word PEOPLE, not Minotaurs, Bugbear Samurai or Were-tiger monks.
Why would a were-tiger monk care about the fate of Diamond Lake? Good catnip there?

Which are the bigger bunch of freaks?

Gotta go with the were-tiger monk. Kinda like my 3rd level gnome thief were-eagle I had...when I was 14. Make him/her a half golem for good measure, or grafted undead or abberant parts.

Allen Stewart wrote:

Your group appears to be trying to gain an edge by looking for every concievable bogus race/class combo that bends the rules to the breaking point.

I agree that these are 'Freakshow characters' a dozen War Dukes should do the trick.
When they flap their arms do they fly? In other words what can't they do? Just make 'em gods and scrap the campaign. My other response is too vulgar for this board IMHO. Something about a circle and mutual satisfaction.

Doug Maynard wrote:

"Most intellectuals in Waterdeep consider the Mirthmakers to be a collection of wastrels"

Nice write up. I like the flavor of the organization. I think I'll use it, with a few twists since I run a Greyhawk campaign. Perhaps a heavy amount of Zagig and Olidammara followers in the ranks, along with gnomes.
Gnomes in my world have a long and pesky history. I tend to run them as faerie tale-like folk. The good Gnomes may cobble shoes at night as in Hans Christian Anderson's stories. The bad gnomes tend to play mean practical jokes. Casting an illusion on a politician while he's orating, making it appear his/her clothes have vanished. Etc.

The Eyes of Celene
Type: Spy Ring (Racial - Elf)
Scale: 12 (Multi-regional, Kingdom)
Description: The role of the eyes of Celene is to gather information and circulate it amongst the expatriate elves of Celene. The elves and half elves of Celene share information of a political and magical nature. The recognize each other by sigil rings, usually of precious metals, but bearing the elven words ‘Eyes of the World’ or ‘Eleea Amar’ with a single gem stone. By this manner do members recognize one another.
If a member of Sapphire level or above is slain, a EL 8 team will investigate or kill the responsible party. A member of the Emerald level, an EL 12 team is dispatched. A member of the Diamond level is slain and an EL 16 team is dispatched. Anyone who slays a member of Emerald level or higher automatically becomes ‘an enemy of the affiliation’.

Criterion: Note, since multiple Knowledge skills are involved, a character gains an affiliation bonus equal for each separate skill, and takes the better bonus for said skill (+1 or +2). Must be an elf or half elf.

Level +½ PC’s level
Spell caster +1
Bard +2
Helps a fellow member with a mission or battle +1
Performs Mission for Affiliation +2
Defeats an enemy for the affiliation +4
Defeat drow or Orc with CR higher than PC level +¼ of enemy CR
Has the Gather Information skill +1
Knowledge (Local History) 5+ ranks +1
Knowledge (Local History) 10+ ranks +2
Knowledge (Ancient History) 5+ ranks +1
Knowledge (Ancient History) 10+ ranks +2
Knowledge (Local History) 5+ ranks +1
Knowledge (Local History) 10+ ranks +2
Knowledge (Religion) 5+ ranks +1
Knowledge (Religion) 10+ ranks +2
Knowledge (Arcana) 5+ ranks +1
Knowledge (Arcana) 10+ ranks +2
Evil Aligned -10
Fails to help another member -5
Harms another member -10

Rank Title: Benefits and Duties
3 or lower Amber: Not affiliated or junior member with no
4-10 Amythyst: +2 Competence Bonus to Gather Information
& Sense Motive checks
11-20 Sapphire: Cast Detect Magic, Read Magic, Arcane Mark or
Erase 1xday each as a spell-like ability.
Duties: Characters must contact another Sapphire level or above member every month to share information or lose 1 affiliation rank.
21-30 Emerald: +1 to hit vs. Orcs or enemy affiliations (‘the Hand and the
Eye’ – church of Vecna, etc.).
Duties: Characters must contact another Emerald level or above member every week to share information or lose 1 affiliation rank.
30+ Diamond: +1 Luck Bonus to all saves, if a worshipper of an elf deity,
take the feat: True Believer for free. The feat allows a +2 bonus to
any one save 1xday. The bonus must be taken before the save is rolled.
Duties: Characters must perform a mission for the affiliation every 3
months or lose 3 ranks.

The Greyhawk Wizards Guild (Business)

Type: Business
Scale: 7 (City and Outliers)
Description: The Guild of Wizardry is open to any wizard without a criminal complaint on his head. Each new member must be sponsored by an existing member. Members are on probation for the first 3 months, after that they can rise as far as their talent allows.
The Guild will refer potential customers to the member, and vouch for his/her abilities. The member must demonstrate his spell casting abilities to gain said references. Member must pay 10% of any money made crafting items or selling spells to the Guild.
Common infractions for members are Causing unintended harm by use of magic (lightning bolt or fireball most common), Blocking access to public roads (by use of web, fog cloud, grease, etc.), Creating undead, Summoning dangerous creatures within the City, etc. Wanton criminal acts will be judged by a tribunal of three chosen members, possibly led by the Guildmaster, to determine whether the member should be censured, fined, suspended or by dis-barred from the Guild.

Character Level +½ of PC’s level
Wizard or Sorcerer +2
10 or more ranks in Knowledge (Arcana) +2
Can cast 3rd level or higher spells +1
Can cast 5th level or higher spells +2
Can cast 7th level or higher spells +4
Donates magic item(s) valued at over 3,000 gps to the Guild +1
Sponsors a new member who joins Guild for at least 2 years +1
Shares 6th level or higher spell with other wizards at yearly Guild Convocation +1
Brings back sample of rare creature (as judged by the DM) for study +1
Completes mission for the Guildmaster +2
Divulges secrets of Guild -4
Sells services without paying the Guild fee -4
Sells more than 5,000 gps worth of services without paying the Guild fee -6
Member breaks a minor law -2
Member breaks a serious law -4

Rank Title: Benefits and Duties
3 or lower Member of the Guild: Junior member. Ability to buy potions and scrolls of
any standard spells up to 5th level at the Guild Hall.
4-11 Adept of the Guild: Potions and Scrolls up to 5th level can be purchased
for 90% cost.
11-20 Master of the Guild: When you gain a level you gain an additional spell,
i.e. three rather than two.
21-29 Magus of the Guild: Scrolls of spells over 5th level can be purchased for
90% cost. When you craft a magic item pay only 90% of cost.
Gain a +2 on competence rolls to banish or dismiss extra-planar creatures.
Duties: Must make a DC 20 Spell craft check once a month or donate 200 gps and affiliation score reduced by 1
30+ Boccob’s Uncaring Chosen: Crafting costs and scroll purchase reduce to
80% cost.
You can borrow one item up to 20,000 gps once a month for up to 2-8
Succession Battle: succeed on a DC 15 Diplomacy check, 1 indicates
failure, once per month or face a challenger (EL 12+)

Executive Powers: Craft, Gift, Research

For those of you who play about as often as my group, could you tell me when you started and how far you have progressed through the AP?

We have been playing every other Friday for a total of 21 sessions. We started in June of 2006. Our 9 person group is larger than most so I've had to add content to up the xp. We are one session away from completing Blackwall Keep. I added 'the Fiend's Embrace' from Dungeon magazine after 'the Whispering Cairn' and before '3 Faces of Evil'. I also added a few other sub-plots, added some content found on the boards to beef up the 'mine shack'

You can track our progress on our blog:

Our group is all 6th level and we should have 1 or two at 7th by next session. I have another filler adventure before 'the Hall of Harsh Reflections'.

I'm working up the affiliations of PCs in my campaign. First off is the Greysmere Covenant.

The Greysmere Covenant

Type: Business (racial-dwarf)
Scale: 10 (regional)
Description: The Greysmere Covenant functions as a “super-clan”, the group has a number of non-dwarf allies, but only dwarves can earn affiliation.
The Covenant often sends members on trade or scouting missions, and the most honor is earning by killing their main rivals –giants and ogres.
The Dwarves of the Greysmere Covenant are masters of mining and negotiation. They work tirelessly and well together to enrich the dozens of clans which make up the Covenant. Each member of the Covenant’s 1200 members treat other Covenant members as family, indeed they are all distantly related. Their genealogy is recorded in the Covenant’s ‘Book of Names’.

Character level +½ PC’s level
Charisma 13 or higher +1
Kills a giant type of equal or higher CR +1
Kills a giant type of CR 10 or the PC’s level whichever +2
is higher(does not stack)
Kills a true giant of equal or higher CR than the PC, +¼ of the CR
and learns the giants name before it’s death
(does not stack)
Base attack of +5 or higher +1
Base attack of +10 or higher(does not stack) +2
5 ranks in Appraise, Craft, or Profession (Miner) +1
10 ranks in Appraise, Craft, or Profession (Miner)(does not stack) +2
Can cast divine spells +1
Recover a Dwarven relic or artifact over 20,000 value +1
Marries into an important clan with the covenant +2
Completes a mission assigned by a superior +2
Acts in a chaotic or evil fashion -10

Rank Title: Benefits and Duties
3 or lower Member of the Covenant: Not affiliated or junior
member with no benefits.
4-14 Defender of the Covenant: +2 on all Bluff, Diplomacy,
Sense Motive checks when two or more members are
Duties: Destroy 5 giant types to gain 1 potion of your
choice once per month. More expensive potions take a
month to receive.
15-22 Hero of the Covenant: Re-roll a failed Bluff,
Diplomacy, or Sense Motive check once per day.
23-29 Champion of the Covenant: Call in Favor – lower your
affiliation score to gain a divine spell or scroll.
Lower your score by 2 to gain a spell or scroll of 4th
level or lower for ¼ price, and lower it by 5
permanently for a 5th level or higher scroll or spell
for ¼ standard price.
30+ Leader of the Clans: Ancient Advisors (Using the Pyre
of the Ancients in the Greysmere Covenant’s home you
can cast a Commune spell once per month.
Duties: Must vie for the leadership of the Covenant
against current leader or affiliation score drops to
29 and member cannot vie for leadership until 1 year
has passed. Challenge can take the form of a contest
of crafting, or of arms.

PC Name: Arga (Half Orc Barabarian 1)
Adventure: Whispering Cairn
Location of Death: Icosiel's Tomb
Catalyst: Let's loot the tomb ourselves.
Short Description:Short handed, four of the eight adventurers try to loot Icosiel's tomb, Wind Warrior crit kills Arga, and the rest run.

PC Name: Vance (Oeridian Human Fighter 2)
Adventure: Whispering Cairn
Location of Death: The Feral Dog
Catalyst: Kullen's Axe
Short Description: The PCs negotiate with Kullen, later his crew kidnaps a PC and in rescueing him Kullen crits. 3xdamage.

PC Name: Mendax (Rhennee Human Bard 3)
Adventure: 3 Faces of Evil
Location of Death: Erythnul temple
Catalyst: Grimlock Barbarian
Short Description: The Bard climbed the ledge, cast hypnotism to affect the grimlock troops, meanwhile the Chief charged him while raging. Went to -8 and bled out.

PC Name: Mouse (Halfling Rogue 4)
Adventure: 3 Faces of Evil
Location of Death: Erythnul temple
Catalyst: Grimlock Barbarian
Short Description: Trying to save the Bard, he flanked, got the chieftan's attention then the chieftan critted with his great axe. Off went the halfling's head.

PC Name: Stigand (Sueloise Human Fighter 1/Dragon Shaman 4)
Adventure: Blackwall Keep
Location of Death: Twisted Branch Lair
Catalyst: Advanced Gelatinous Otyugh
Short Description: Squeezedd to -10 before the tentacled mass of goo could be brought low.

There was a previous thread concerning group alliations from the PHII. Recently I made up a list of groups which the PCs with which my campaign interact.


Elves of Celene (Racial, Elf)
The Greysmere Covenant (Business-Racial, Dwarf)
The Bronzewood Lodge (Cabal)
The Greyhawk Wizards Guild (Business)
The Ruby Temple (Church of Wee Jas)
‘Swampers’ (Cairn Hill folk, Tribe)
The Twilight Order (Spy Ring)
The Fist of Valor (Church of Heironeous)
The Greyhawk Thieves Guild (Thieves Guild)
The Righteous Cudgel(Church of St. Cuthbert)
The Able Carter Company (Business)
Greyhawk Militia(Government)
The Elemental Adepts(Cabal, worshippers of elemental lords other than elemental evil, Chan, Akadi, etc.)

Evil Alliliations:

The Seekers (Cabal)
The Ebon Triad (Cabal)
The Worm Touched (Chruch of Kyuss)
The Hall of Secrets (Church of Vecna)

DMR wrote:

WoTC has two new books out - Exemplars of Evil and Elder Evils. The later has a chapter specifically focused on Kyuss/The Worm that Walks. Is anyone using any of this material to alter/modify the AoW campaign? If so - I'd be interested in hearing about it. Thanks!

I the dampaign I DM Mayor Neff has been thrown in jail and the new Mayor will be a young man named Edwin Tilgast, Zelch Tilgast's good for nothing son. Eventually he will go by his Mother's maiden named Tolstoff.

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