Green Dragon

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130 posts (131 including aliases). No reviews. 1 list. 1 wishlist. 1 alias.

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With a little adjustment you might be able to run Curse of the Lady's Light from the Shattered Star AP. Canonically, it takes place after the CotCT AP as a direct sequel, so the connective tissue is there, you just have to invert the timeline. So the Grey Maidens in CotLL aren't remnants, they were specifically sent by Ileosa to try and find the Everdawn Pool, but they got the wrong ruin. Or maybe they are looking for another piece of Kazavon's relics, and you can replace the Shard of Lust with that. Doing so would hint that perhaps Ileosa is under Kazavon's influence much earlier in the AP, but that could be cool to foreshadow more.

The main thing is, while you'd have to tweak how they fit into the AP a bit, you could still use most of the meat of the encounters and module-specific plot as-is.

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The books I read in 2017:

Books I read for a second time:4
American Gods by Neil Gaiman
The Scar by China Mieville
The Way of Kings by Brandon Sanderson (The Stormlight Archive Book 1)
Words of Radiance by Brandon Sanderson (The Stormlight Archive Book 2)

New books I finished: 22
Crusader Road by Michael A. Stackpole (Pathfinder Tales)
Reign of Stars by Tim Pratt (Pathfinder Tales)
Kirinyaga by Mike Resnick
The Dark Lady by Mike Resnick
Walpurgis III by Mike Resnick
The Crown Conspiracy by Michael J. Sullivan (Riyria Revelations Book 1)
Avempartha by Michael J. Sullivan (Riyria Revelations Book 2)
Nyphron Rising by Michael J. Sullivan (Riyria Revelations Book 3)
The Emerald Storm by Michael J. Sullivan (Riyria Revelations Book 4)
Wintertide by Michael J. Sullivan (Riyria Revelations Book 5)
Percepliquis by Michael J. Sullivan (Riyria Revelations Book 6)
The Face in the Frost by John Bel Airs
The Glasshouse by Charles Stross
The Thousand Names by Django Wexler (The Shadow Campaigns Book 1)
Changeling by Roger Zelazny
Singularity Sky by Charles Stross
The Wall of Storms by Ken Liu (The Dandelion Dynasty Book 2)
The Atrocity Archives by Charles Stross (The Laundry Files Book 1)
The Jennifer Morgue by Charles Stross (The Laundry Files Book 2)
The Burrowers Beneath by Brian Lumley
Edgedancer by Brandon Sanderson (The Stormlight Archive novella)
Oathbringer by Brandon Sanderson (The Stormlight Archive Book 3)

Books I started but failed to finish: 4
The Dimension Next Door edited by Martin H.Greenberg and Kerrie Hughes (short fiction anthology)
Madwand by Roger Zelazny
Donnerjack by Roger Zelazny
The Transition of Titus Crowe by Brian Lumley

Thanks to everyone in this thread for sharing their reading experiences. I've sought out many of the fantasy and sci-fi books I've read in the last several years because they were mentioned in this thread.

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I bought a few of these at an auction held by my old college gaming club a few years ago, although in all honestly, I did so mostly to help out the club rather than out of any desire to own them. That said, I did read them, and the bad reputation of the series is probably well deserved, at least from a mechanical standpoint. I don't recall ever incorporating anything from these books into my own games in the 5+ years I have owned them, although a few have some interesting flavor text and ideas. Granted, I may be missing some hidden gem in the series beyond those that I have read, so I can only speak for the eight titles that I own (listed below). It is also notable that some of the authors in this series also worked for WotC on official D&D products at some point in their careers, notably Mike Mearls (Quintessential Wizard) and Robert J. Schwalb (Q. Witch), so if you are a fan of their work, they might be worth having on that basis.

The books I actually own/have an informed opinion on are...

Book # - Class Focus
3. Cleric
4. Wizard (does have some amusing random mishap tables if that is your style)
6. Dwarf
7. Monk
8. Witch (Includes their version of the class)
9. Psychic Warrior (I think this is the 3.0 version, published 2002)
10. Druid
11. Samurai (Includes their version of the class)

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Brad Chazington.

At least that's what some of the local players I've hung out with call him.

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Honestly, it is your game, and your decision as to whether gods, godlings, demigods and demon lords can be killed, and by what level of PCs they can be killed.

That said, if you want a really epic encounter where 20th level PCs feel like they took on a god, I recommend the following, which I would set as roughly CR 26:

Effectively, this character is a complicated gestalt build of an Human Lich Oracle 20 (CR 22) and a 20 HD generic "outsider". It is built with a 20 point array and has at least PC wealth by level, before you count any artifacts it wields. As a (presumably evil) godling, it has one "villain point" per 10 HD, allowing it to execute the following ability:

Epic Plot Protection (Ex): The villain is too important to die yet! When the creature is dropped to 0 or fewer HP, or is subject to a death effect or otherwise slain outright, it may spend a villain point as an immediate action to prevent itself from dying. Time seems to stutter for a moment as the villain heals 150 damage and instantly relocates to a location within one move action. (If necessary, treat this as a 1 round Time Stop during which a beneficial Heal/Harm spell is applied to the character at CL 20th, and then the character physically moves). If the BBEG has no villain points, she is incapable of activating this ability. Generally activation of this ability is accompanied by a brief recounting of the thing the villain did to earn the villain point. i.e. "Mortal Fool! I have slaughtered legions of angels, what chance do you have?" or "Such a wound cannot end that which has blackened the suns of worlds beyond your ken!"

The reason I suggest this instead of just flatly making the villain immune to darn near everything is that this way, the villain is expending resources when your PCs kill it to keep itself in the fight. Also, this follows the idea of the Rule of Three / Three Strikes You're Out, which is a concept that a lot of PCs can get behind if they understand what is going on. Plus, it is a lich, you would have to kill it twice anyway, right? :-)

Godling Lich

A godling lich is effectively a gestalt of Outsider HD with a Human Lich, gaining most of the traits of both types, and possessing the better HD, BAB, Saves and skill points per level from either Outsider or Oracle. For simplicity's sake, I'm going to go ahead and post all the relevant information about the creature here:

Godling Lich:

Gestalt Outsider/Undead Oracle
• d10 Hit Dice.
• Base attack bonus equal to total Hit Dice (fast progression).
• Two good saving throws, usually Reflex and Will. (Or all three good saves, since it says "usually" you could get good Fort and Ref from Outsider and good Will from Oracle)
• Skill points equal to 6 + Int modifier (minimum 1) per Hit Die. The following are class skills: Bluff, Climb, Craft, Diplomacy, Disguise, Fly, Heal, Intimidate, Knowledge (arcana), (history), (planes), (religion), Perception, Profession, Sense Motive, Spellcraft and Stealth. Due to their varied nature, outsiders also receive 4 additional class skills determined by the creature's theme (plus any bonus class skills from oracle mysteries or feats).

• No Constitution score. Undead use their Charisma score in place of their Constitution score when calculating hit points, Fortitude saves, and any special ability that relies on Constitution (such as when calculating a breath weapon's DC).
• Darkvision 60 feet.
• Immunity to all mind-affecting effects (charms, compulsions, morale effects, patterns, and phantasms).
• Immunity to bleed, death effects, disease, paralysis, poison, sleep effects, and stunning.
• Not subject to nonlethal damage, ability drain, or energy drain. Immune to damage to its physical ability scores (Constitution, Dexterity, and Strength), as well as to exhaustion and fatigue effects.
• Cannot heal damage on its own if it has no Intelligence score, although it can be healed. Negative energy (such as an inflict spell) can heal undead creatures. The fast healing special quality works regardless of the creature's Intelligence score.
• Immunity to any effect that requires a Fortitude save (unless the effect also works on objects or is harmless).
• Not at risk of death from massive damage, but is immediately destroyed when reduced to 0 hit points.(* the Epic Plot Protection ability can prevent such destruction however)
• Unlike most living creatures, an outsider does not have a dual nature—its soul and body form one unit. When an outsider is slain, no soul is set loose. Spells that restore souls to their bodies, such as raise dead, reincarnate, and resurrection, don't work on an outsider. It takes a different magical effect, such as limited wish, wish, miracle, or true resurrection to restore it to life.

Short version: 20d10+(Cha mod per level) HP, +20 BAB, all base saves +12, 6+Int skillpoints with the combined class skill lists of the Outsider type and the Oracle class. All Undead traits, but instead of dying at 0, it can use Epic Plot Protection as above, and unlike an undead, it cannot be returned to "the living creature it once was", but rather has the whole "Body/soul is a single unit" feature of the outsider type with regards to coming back to life via magic. Although the creature is theoretically a lich, the unified body/soul bit from Outsider trumps that.

If you want to be especially evil, you may consider the idea that when destroyed, the Lich can simply return to her home plane and reform there as if the entire plane were her phylactery and/or she was a summoned outsider, but this is counter-intuitive to making sure the PCs can feasibly kill her permanently. Alternately, her phylactery could also be a specific piece fused with the plane that could be smashed or disintegrated by the PCs, resulting in the plane's implosion and her final death. Nothing says "Epic" like beating on reality until it breaks ;-)

You may also consider allowing the godling to have a wider variety of spells at hand than a normal oracle would. As a godling, she may be capable of granting 2-3 cleric domains to its followers. Add all the spells on these domain lists to her spells known for free. Heck, treat all basic cleric/oracle spells as known, and then add the spells from these domain lists that aren't on the normal cleric/oracle list as well. Options are power, but actions are also going to limit how many of these spells get used, so your players may not notice (and if you do, you can always point out that the cleric followers of the godling had to be getting their powers from her somehow, right?).

Finally, if after all this you still think the result is too squishy for CR 26, change the Lich DR to /epic and maybe add some more Outsider HD or another class.

Hope this helps

Robert "Heck with Canon, Killing Gods Should Be Possible" Ranting

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22. Catfolk
71 Darkfolk
78 Vodyanoi
79 Ghoul
99 Mul

Alright, here's my attempt (with sincere thanks and apologies to David Eddings, China Mieville and Stephen R. Donaldson)

Creation Myth:

When the lands of Aegys first emerged from the primordial chaos, there were three brother gods who sought to give it shape: Ul-Ra, Vod-Ya and Na-Gho. The all-consuming fires of Na-Gho forged the chaos into a molten orb, which Ul-Ra shielded beneath the Great Sky Dome, and Vod-Ya's waters quenched into a solid mass of land. Upon this stone the forces of fire, air and water worked their will, and brought forth from it the shape of Ysos, the mother goddess. Each of the brother gods embraced her in turn, and brought forth a child. From Ul-Ra came Sekhat, feline goddess of mystery. From Vod-Ya came Gebeth, god of craftsmanship. From Na-Gho came Zoth, god of understanding.

Together the seven gods set about filling the world with wonders, but all was not well. Na-Gho was possessed of an overwhelming hunger, and even as the others created, he set to devouring their creations. Aghast to find his works destroyed, Gebeth appealed to Vod-Ya and Ul-Ra to stop the depredations of their brother. Yet their efforts were in vain, for when they attempted to reason with their sibling, he gnashed his teeth and threatened to devour them as well. Having no recourse, the two set upon the third, and trapped him within a hollow in the earth.

As the great stones ground in place, the son of the entombed, Zoth, the All-Seeing stepped forward to confront his uncles. "No man or god knows better than I how necessary this action is, but only a fool would consider this the end of the matter. Know this; One day the teeth of my father shall rend the belly of Ul-Ra and make such a terror on the land that he shall flee to the farthest skies rather than look upon it. And yea, Vod-Ya shall by his own hand offer up all he holds dear as fodder for my father's gullet. Only then shall Na-Gho's hunger be sated." This dire warning delivered, the god of scholars retired to his studies, leaving his family to continue their work in the fervent hope that his vision would prove false.

The Age of Conflict:

For millenia, the mortal races created in the image of the gods lived in relative peace along the banks of the sacred river Vod, their lives in tune with the rhythm of the River's flooding, and paid homage to their gods with the construction of great monuments in the sands beyond the river banks. Then came the age of conflict, as the Northern Kingdoms of the Ur-Uls (humans) spread into the Southern Kingdoms of the Mur (dwarves). A terrible war erupted, and the Ur-Ul aggressors were forced back, but the Mur, ever a proud people and keen to hold grudges, were not satisfied with mere victory. They pushed forward into the Ur-Ul homelands and made slaves of those they captured before being driven out in turn. The hostilities between the realms would continue on and off for centuries, and all the while both sides accumulated large numbers of captured slaves. Inevitably, this cultural interaction resulted in the first minglings of the two races, and thus were born the Muls, children and slaves of both races alike.

Two thousand years ago, Epophys,a powerful serpentine being from the Primordial Chaos succeeded in piercing the Great Sky Dome and found its way into the realms of Aegys. Seeing the great works of the gods filled it with a sense of both awe and revulsion, but most of all it was moved by the plight of the enslaved mortals who toiled to build in the name of gods who seemed to care not a whit for their creations' individual accomplishments. Insinuating itself among the slaves, it planted the seeds of rebellion, doing what it could do defy the will of the gods. In time, it became revered as a god itself, inspiring legions of slaves to throw off their shackles and rise up against their masters.

One such slave was a Mul gladiator named Nurg, or "Slayer" in the Mur tongue. After leading a successful slave revolt,he engaged in a campaign of guerilla warfare against the corrupt system that had enslaved him. In time, he gained a great number of followers, a veritable army mustering in caves beneath the desert sands. Yet even if he should succeed in defeating the armies of nations, he knew that he was no match for the gods which stood behind them. Thus, he began to search for signs of the great hollow in the earth in which lay the dark god Na-Gho.

When Nurg finally discovered the dark god's resting place, it took him days to make the mad god listen to his pleas. Ultimately, Na-Gho agreed to give Nurg two of his teeth to be fashioned into a terrible weapon, and to instruct some of his followers in the ways of dark magic. Armed with these powers, Nurg lead his armies against the kingdom of the Ur-Uls, crushing them utterly. When Ul-Ra appeared to end the warlord's reign of terror, the two engaged in a deadly battle. Impossibly, the god fell beneath the blade of Nurg, the teeth of Na-Gho from which it was crafted biting deeply into Ul-Ra's body as the prophesy of Zoth had foretold. As Ysos carried Ul-Ra into the sky to recouperate, Nurg licked the god's blood from his weapon, absorbing a piece of his divine essence into himself and began his ascension to divinity as Nurg-Ul, the Slayer of Gods.

As Nurg-Ul's armies tore the lands of the Ur-Uls assunder, the Mur prepared a desperate plan. Expecting no mercy from the Mul hordes, the Mur set about a plan to dam the River Vod, preventing its life-giving waters from reaching the lands that Nurg-Ul had conquered. That it cost the lives of thousands of Mul slaves, preventing them from joining the rebellion once Nurg-Ul's forces arrived at their doorstep only encouraged the unforgiving pace of the project's construction.

With the life-giving flow of the River Vod cut off, Nurg-Ul's army found themselves in an untenable situation. If the dam were not brought down, the lands of his hard-won kingdom would wither and die under the desert sun, insuring an pyrhic victory for the fallen Sky God despite their accomplishments. Yet already his men were tired and running low on supplies, in no shape to launch an assualt across hundreds of miles of desert.

As if in answer to his unspoken prayers, the priests of Na-Gho set about reanimating those slain in past battles as an army of the undead. Those Ur-Uls who survived the Mul rebellion were denied food and water, and systematically infected with a virulent disease which gave terrible unlife to those it slew, creating a plague of ravenous dead who would serve as shock troops for Nurg-Ul's armies. These terrible once-men they called Ghouls in honor of dread Na-Gho. In short order, the swollen ranks of the dead legions marched across the empty desert to lay seige to the Mur.

The seige wore on for years, the numbers of the living slowly adding to those of the undead in a terrible attrition. When at last their defenses were breached, Nurg-Ul called out to Vod-Ya to face him in combat, but the god would not be goaded. "You have been nothing but a pawn in my brother's revenge, slave-born, and now you stand victorious over a kingdom of ghouls. How long do you think it will take before they consume you as well? No, I will not fight you today, Nurg-Ul, godling of madness, for you have already destroyed everything you fought for and all that I sought to protect. There can be no victors today, only victims."

Then, in a final act of desperation to ensure that the kingdom of Nurg-Ul would never again enjoy the flow of the River Vod, Vod-Ya shattered the earth beneath the dam, sending the river's waters plunging along a new course deep into the hollow places of the earth, where Na-Gho waited with an open maw to receive this final offering. It is said that even as the water fell in a torrent, Nurg-Ul stood in the deluge, raging at his fate like a madman before the flood, until at last he was swept away and never seen on the mortal plane again.

The Modern Day:

In the two thousand years since the end of the Age of Conflict, the survivors of the great wars and plagues have rebuilt their lives. On the islands beyond the northern shore, in the depths of the earth, and amid the shifting sands and ruined monuments of a dead empire, life goes on, and history is lost to living memory in a world where gods fear to tread.

Sekhati (Catfolk)- While never the most numerous of Aegys' races, the children of the goddess of mystery have managed well for themselves, and can be found in virtually every forested isle, desert oasis, or bastion of civilization. Aloof and self-centered, prone to sudden mood swings and fickle affections, the catfolk are simultaneously familiar and unknowable to the other races, and they revel in it. Consumate manipulators and explorers, Catfolk do well in any occupation that involves constant change and activity to keep their interests, often becoming merchants, sailors, thieves, assassins and perfomers. Adventuring Sekhati often favor the Bard, Rogue,and Sorcerer classes, and despite their reputation for a lack of wisdom, a surprising number are clerics of Sekhat or rangers.

Mul (dwarf/human hybrid) While the Muls owe their current freedom to the revolt of Nurg-Ul, most modern Muls recognize that in the end, his quest to bring down the gods only resulted in his own ruin, and that they are all lucky to be alive after the disaster he caused. Hardy and practical to a fault, the Muls nonetheless still carry with them a sliver of the resentment against a world that allowed them to be enslaved, even centuries after the last pure blood Ur-Uls and Murs have perished.
Muls tend to be stoic and suspicious around other races, and expect a certain amount of distance in their interpersonal relations, literally and physically. Generations of living in crampt quarters have lead the Muls to place a great value on personal space. Muls excel as crafstmen, laborers and warriors, but if given an opportunity to expand their horizons, many can find surprising talents they never knew they had. Adventuring Muls often favor the Barbarian, Fighter, Monk and Ranger classes, although they might excel in any field they choose. Mul clerics understandably are rare and often misunderstood by their peers.

Ghouls True to the words of Zoth's prophecy, the terrible hunger of the dark god Na-Gho was sated by the flow of the River Vod into his subterranean realm. As a side-effect, the ghouls found themselves for the first time not driven by a supernatural hunger that could not be supressed. Although no ghoul remembers its life before its unholy transformation, they slowly began to realize that they were in fact just as much people now as they had been before. Free to choose other pursuits, the ghouls slowly rebuilt their kingdom, eventually reaching out to the living races for trade, with hands now devoid of a paralyzing curse. While the ghouls are no longer tempted to nibble on their neighbors at the drop of a hat, they do occassionally practice cannibalism, which has lead to a surreal arrangement in which the living races employ the ghouls as undertakers. More commonly however, the ghouls use their long lifespans and clinical detachment to serve as clerks, scribes, physicians and other such scholarly pursuits. Adventuring ghouls often seek to explore their unique condition through magic, often becoming alchemists, magi, witches and wizards,and occassionally clerics.

Ulramog(Darkfolk) Not all of the Ur-uls were exterminated or transformed into ghouls during Nurg-Ul's rise to power. A few managed to seek shelter beneath the earth after witnessing the fall of Ul-Ra in the climactic battle, only to find themselves cut off from the surface when the River Vod was redirected into the Earth Hollows. Lead by fanatic priests of Ul-Ra, desperate to maintain their power in the face of their deity's defeat, these poor souls were fed on a steady diet of guilt. It was their fault that Ul-Ra had fallen, their doubts and faithlessness had made the god falter and strengthened their enemy. Only by committing themselves fully to the cause of Ul-Ra could they hope for their god to recover and forgive them for their transgressions.
Many generations passed, and in time, the Ur-uls became the Ulramog, the Forsaken of Ul-Ra. Stunted and misshapen, they wear heavy concealing layers of shabby clothing, adding new layers as the old ones rot to tatters, believing that they are unfit to be seen until the Sky God forgives them. More disturbingly, as each Darkfolk dies, their bodies discorporate in a burst of light, which the priests of Ul-Ra insist is their soul being transformed into healing light that strengthens Ul-Ra in their sacrifice. The most fanatical sect of the Ulramog believe that the Sun is Ul-Ra's dying light, and that it never shown in the sky until the day he was laid open by Nurg-Ul, the Enemy. In any case, no Ulramog wishes to see another's dying light, for to do so is to capture a fragment within their eyes and memories, thereby denying it to Ul-Ra. Likewise, to look upon the Sun is to take power from Ul-Ra, and thus is forbidden to all but those chosen for holy missions on the surface world...
Of course, any society as fanatical as that of the Ulramog's has its runaways, rebels and detractors who live peacefully on the surface well away from their more zealous brethren. These Ulramog often find employment in positions where discretion and wariness are strengths, such as couriers, guards, bounty hunters, guides, private investigators, customs inspectors and tax collectors. Adventuring Ulramogs often pursue the roles of clerics of Ul-Ra, Inquisitors, Monks, Rangers and Rogues.

Vodyanoi The Mur survivors of Nurg-Ul's assault followed the sacred River Vod as it plunged deep into the Earth Hollows, and like the Ulramog, they were changed by the long centuries spent in the dark. Although superficially they resemble the Mur from which they descend, their slimey skins, wide mouths, goggle eyes and tendril-like beards lend them the look of dwarf-newt hybrids.
Although the largest numbers of the Vodyanoi can be found along the twisting subterranean path of the River Vod, over time they have spread to the sea coasts and major lakes throughout the surface world. It is said that "Where there is water, there are Vodyanoi", and this is not far from the truth, as a Vodyanoi far from a body of water is probably carrying a substantial amount of water with him, both to keep himself moist and to sell to other travellers in the desert.
Cantankerous and contrary at first brush, Vodyanoi take some getting used to. They enjoy trading insults and practical jokes, and are not above petty acts of property destruction when their enemies displease them, although they tend to avoid direct violence if at all possible. Vodyanoi, like their watery god, prefer to let their enemies struggle futily against an enemy unmoved by their demands for a fair fight. Most vodyanoi make a living from the river or the sea, diving for pearls, fishing, ferrying travelers, sailing and loading cargo for ships, and occassionally selling water in the desert. Adventuring Vodyanoi favor the Barbarian, Cleric of Vod-Ya, Druid, and Ranger classes, and are seldom arcane casters.