Sylgja

Specimen R6-a/H-001's page

14 posts. Alias of Aebliss.




Male DM DM 10

Welcome to the discussion...


Male DM DM 10

The morning dawns cool and clear.
A breeze is blowing in off the Serene Sea as you make your way up the gangplank, to the rather grandiose ship lying at anchor. The ship's name is painted on the hull in gold leaf: Kaye's Folly.

And why not? After all, Baron Kaye is the ship's owner, he's the owner of the island - Kaye's Island, of course.

The Baron himself is standing on deck, overseeing the loading of luggage and some 'small essentials' from a comfortable distance. He's a tall man, running to fat and balding, but with a genial smile on his face... and a beautiful Drow girl in maid's livery hanging off him the whole time, cooing and stroking his face.

Lledrith:
You have managed to blend in with the stream of servants moving freight onto Kaye's Folly. Surprisingly, the Baron has quite a lot of Drow slaves, most of them women. Your mother told you that there was going to be... someone on this Island getaway who is a descendant of one of the bastard generals who contributed to the destruction of the Deep Kingdoms, but she wasn't able to get you a name. All you know, is that he or she has a tattoo of a two-headed dragon somewhere on their body. It's your job to find and kill the target, and then to somehow get back... or make sure you can't be questioned.

The Baron's other guests for the festive opening of the Island resort are already on deck; one a man who appears to be not older than the Baron, but who has clearly gone deeper to seed and is accompanied by a hard-faced thug in leather armour; the other, a handsome dandy of a man in fine, dark silk and velvet.

Zhen'ka:
You watch your lord and master and his favourite concubine from a safe distance, hiding in the shadows of the main mast. There's talk among the Baron's slaves that he invited a lot more people than actually showed up. Scuttlebutt claims that the two guests mentioned are both representatives of the Hedonists' Society; the elder is called Dr. Baje, the younger is Count Lenker. Neither has a good reputation, but their favourable review could lead to great things for the resort.

As the ship is getting ready for departure, dark-robed men with beards you could hide a badger in are convening on the dock. In a happier world, these might be thieves or members of some criminal consortium. Unfortunately, this is not such a world. This is Rue, and the men approaching the vessel are priests of Kebal, carrying their traditional aspergilliums full of unholy water.

Selann is the last of the guests to make his way onto the ship, and he is barely in time to avoid what comes next: the Kebalite priests raise their aspergilliums against Kaye's Folly
and such slaves as are still struggling to get aboard, and start splashing them all with unholy water while they bellow and bray, their voices a discordant chorus that sends sleepy seagulls screaming towards the horizon:

"DOOM awaits you! DOOM follows you! There is no hope anywhere, only DOOM! DOOM is everywhere, DOOM is within and without! Hope not for safe return, hope not for safe arrival, surrender to DOOM and know peace! DOOM AND KEBAL! DOOM AND KEBAL! DOOM AND KEBAL! DOOM AND KEBAL!"

The slaves hurry to finish preparations, and the gangplank is drawn up.
Rue rarely has strong winds anymore, but the sails are raised anyway, just in case. Belowdeck, there is a mighty groan and the sound of a steady drumbeat, as slaves take up the oars that will provide the majority of the ship's propulsion.
Baron Kay strikes a dramatic pose next to the steering wheel and raises a glass of wine to all ... three ... of his guests.
"Gentlemen! Welcome aboard my humble little ship. Pray let us ignore the talk of naysayers; ahead lie only the most delectable of good times. After a leisurely boat ride, we will arrive at Kaye's Island, where awaits the grandest pleasure-palace of our Age. Pray accept your glasses, and let us toast an interlude of soul-soothing excess, to wipe away the burdens and sorrows of hum-drum everyday life. Gentlemen... Welcome to my Happy Island Getaway!"

Willowy Drow maidens make their way onto deck, carrying fluted glasses and bottles of wine as dark as night, yet as effervescent as champagne.

Selann:
Two of the Drow maidens approach you with a glass - on a velvet pillow - and a bottle of that exotic wine.
"Dear guest," the one proferring the glass murmurs, her eyes downcast. "Your Luggage has been brought to your cabin. Would the honoured guest enjoy some… company this evening?"

Zhen'ka:
Baron Kaye brusquely beckons to you.
"I want you to read the omens," he whispers. "Read the cards, talk to your guiding spirits, do whatever you have to. I need to know if this is going to work or not!"His Drow concubine purrs something comforting and brushes his cheek with her lips...

Lledrith:
You watch the disgusting display of Drow women swaying out onto deck like common barmaids from cover -- but not enough cover. One of the servers spots you and approaches.
"Don't just stand there lazing about!" she hisses, white eyes sparking red. "Go down to the galley and tell Cook we're ready for the first round of snacks, then come bring some. Hurry! You know how Hedonists get if they need to wait for their food!"
It seems she has not realized you're an intruder, at least...


Rue is a battered, worn old world, spiralling through the void in a stately dance around its sun - its red and swollen sun. The mountains have been mostly worn to hills. The moon disappeared long ago, and so there is no tide. The last known mines are close to drying up. Ancient civilizations are growing steadily more corrupt, like fruit rotting on the vine, and twisted ... things ... are creeping out of the shadows that should have remained hidden forever.

But life still goes on, and Baron Kaye has opened a new resort on an island out in the Serene Sea! For whatever reason, you have managed to find placement on the first group to come tour the lavish establishment. Yes, you face a month of fine dining, entertainments fit for a king, and nothing but idle living, you lucky dog!

Then again, you may have to endure some minor interruptions to your vacation.
Welcome... to Rue.

= = = = = = = = = = = =

I am seeking a party of 4 - 6 brave souls willing to brave the luxuries of Kaye's Island Resort, to plumb the depths of its wine cellar, to stomach three lavish meals a day, to explore the wind-swept natural beauty of Kaye's Island and the glass-smooth expanse of the Serene Sea... and possibly to catch a brutal murderer before he can kill you all.

Four to six brave souls, to catch a murderous fiend and solve a miserable crime, preferably before the next supply ship comes in and they can escape. Or, you know, before the killer can finish off everyone on the island.

Be warned that the pace will be SLOW. I will commit to at least a weekly post.
You will be running an investigation, rather than a running brawl, so please keep this in mind.

= = = = = = = = = = = =

Character creation:

Alignment: any, but I expect you to play your alignment sensibly.
Going off on a mad murder spree or insulting every other player and chalking it up to a chaotic and/or evil alignment will not be tolerated. Even if you're CE, you'd still need some skill at getting along with others most of the time, or you would have been knifed in an alley or publically executed long ago.

Races allowed: Drow, Dwarf, Goblin, Half-Drow, Half-Elf, Half-Orc, Human, Tiefling.

About the races:
The races of Ird can be divided into two groups: the Blessed Folk and the Despised Ones.
Humans, Half-Elves and Elves are the Blessed Folk. The Most High Priestess of the Goddess tore open the earth, allowing surface armies to raze the subterranean kingdoms of the Dwarves and Drow. She shattered the defenses of the Darkborn Empire, breaking the resistance of the Goblins and Tieflings. She butchered the last pure-blooded Orc Horde on the Plains of Malk, leaving only their hybrid offspring alive.
No prizes, therefore, for guessing which races are the Despised Ones...
Humans and Elves pretty much claimed supremacy over the planet after all of that.
While Drow, Dwarves, Goblins and Tieflings still exist, over ninety percent of their population is enslaved. Half-Orcs fare slightly better, owing to their human blood, as do Half-Drow. It is possible - though not common - for slaves to earn their freedom through their labour or through some deed for which their master chooses to reward them.
After the victories of the Most High Priestess, the Elves withdrew to their verdant kingdoms, leaving the rule of roughly seventy percent of the planet to their Human 'allies' - and carefully watch their borders to this day. Elves are almost never seen outside their own territory, but Half-Elves are fairly plentiful, owing to 'diplomatic traffic' between Humans and Elves.

Classes allowed: Alchemist, Cleric, Fighter, Investigator, Magus, Rogue, Sorcerer, Summoner, Witch, Wizard

Classes and standing:

Some classes have a better reputation than others on Rue, and the wise man or woman takes care not to expose a truth which could lead to public censure or equally public execution.
Clerics and Summoners are seen as people blessed by the Goddess (or else imbued with the intimidating aura of Kebal) and as such are held in high regard even among nobles.
Fighters, Investigators and Magi are all considered to be useful in their own way. They may not be tolerated in the halls of the high and mighty, but they are not persecuted, either.
Alchemists, Summoners, Witches and Wizards suffer censure if they are discovered; Alchemists and Wizards are seen as tied to the heretical Goddess of Reason, for their constant attempts to control the world by uncovering new knowledge; Summoners and Witches are seen as pagans, who draw upon spirits and heathen gods.

Religions of Rue:

On most of Rue, there are only two faiths in this era: the faith of the Goddess, and the creed of Kebal.

The Goddess' faith swept all of Rue generations ago. Its core tenet is that the Goddess is supreme and surpasses understanding. In her palm lies the whole universe, and all that moves within it - from the tiniest bug to the pagan gods of old - is but part of the great game she is playing with herself. As the Goddess is too vast for mortals to understand, she has many 'faces'; aspects of her totality worshipped because it is impossible to venerate all of her.
In game terms, the Goddess is True Neutral. She accepts clerics of the CN, LN, N, NE and NG alignments into any of her sects. A Cleric must choose one of those sects to call their own, and can choose from the domains offered thereby.
Currently, the accepted sects are:

Home Faith
Possibly the oldest sect, the Home Faith is a monastic order that concerns itself only with venerating their patron and seeking to become worthy of her.
Domains: Air, Glory, Law, Rune
Subdomains: Heroism, Inevitable, Language, Wind
Favoured weapon: Dagger

Goddess of Chance
An aspect of the Goddess which is unusually playful and impish, and which might have been branded a heresy if not for its huge popularity in all strata of society. This sect runs gambling halls, sponsors pleasure palaces and adventurers' guilds, and organizes lavish parties on the Goddess' holy days, where free food and drink are provided and merry pranks are played. Unkind tongues may claim the Goddess of Chance also sponsors thieves' guilds and meddles in the affairs of the high and mighty to show no one is free of the vagaries of chance, but nothing has ever been proven. At least, not to the point that anyone could make a charge stick...
Domains: Chaos, Liberation, Travel, Trickery
Subdomains: Exploration, Freedom, Protean, Thievery
Favoured weapon: Rapier

Goddess of Knowledge
A monastic order like the Home Faith, this sect concerns itself with the preservation of knowledge and little else - because its core tenet is that all knowledge has already been discovered and nothing new exists to be learned. Moreover, the monks and nuns of this sect rigorously prune the tomes and scrolls in their possession in an effort to weed out heresy against their Goddess. While they are always happy to take reception of new volumes, they are notoriously loathe to share more than the very basics of their knowledge, even when teaching young children.
Domains: Destruction, Knowledge, Protection, Rune
Subdomains: Language, Memory, Purity, Rage
Favoured weapon: Dagger

Goddess of Life
Currently the largest and most widely accepted sect, its members are what most people think of when speaking of the priests of the Goddess. Clerics of the Goddess of Life provide healing to those in need, offer advice to community leaders, and conduct funerals. They are also required to stand ready to defend against followers of the pagan gods, Kebal, and the Goddess of Death, as well as root out heresies. Needless to say, there is a darker side to the sect.
Domains: Animal, Healing, Plant, Sun
Subdomains: Fur, Growth, Light, Restoration
Weapon: Quarterstaff

Goddess of Love
A sect that involves itself strongly with politics and secular life, the followers of the Goddess of Love are a powerful influence on the matchmaking that goes on in the noble classes, as well as the production of healthy offspring, rather than romance. Due to their tendency to use any means necessary to achieve the matches they consider desirable, up to and including blackmail and enchantment magic, the members of this sect are greatly feared.
Domains: Charm, Community, Madness, Nobility
Subdomains: Family, Insanity, Leadership, Lust
Favoured weapon: Heavy mace

Goddess of the Sea
Exactly what it says on the tin. With the loss of the tides and the relative weakness of the wind, those who make a living plying the ocean deep rely on the blessings of this aspect of the Goddess to make sure they reach their goal and return home safely. Of course, pirates also call on this aspect of the Goddess to lead them to rich booty... Clerics of this sect spend most of their lives on ships in either case.
Domains: Law, Travel, Water, Weather
Subdomains: Inevitable, Oceans, Storms, Trade
Favoured weapon: Saber

There also exist three sects which have been branded as heretical, and possibly as masks for pagan gods of old, rather than aspects of the Goddess. While they still exist, anyone found guilty of belonging to them would face a torturous death over months. These three are:

Goddess of Death
Queen of monsters, matron of assassins, or shepherd of souls who depart their mortal coil? At one time, this sect oversaw every burial and assisted the sect of the Goddess of Life in battling plague, but its more sinister aspects gradually lead to censure from the high and the mighty, and the sect was branded a heresy. Black-robed priests and priestesses of the Goddess of Death still minister to their flocks, but nowadays they must do so in secret, and their faithful are most likely to be members of the Despised Ones.
Domains: Darkness, Death, Repose, Trickery
Subdomains: Deception, Loss, Souls, Undead
Favoured weapon: Scythe

Goddess of Reason
In some ways, this sect is feared more than the other two heresies. In times long gone by, the followers of the Goddess of Reason worked hand in hand with those of the Goddess of Knowledge; while their sister order preserved and 'purified' knowledge, the priests of the Goddess of Reason were devoted to discovery and research. Alas, the sect even dared to analyze and criticize dogma held as sacred by the Home Faith, and its research all too often delved into subjects best thought left alone... such as animating the dead, raising up constructs, and teaching commoners how to read, write and do arithmetic. Even today, the mad scientists of this sect spend a lot of time poring over heretical and pagan tomes and perform weird research in secret laboratories, seeking to uncover... something.
Domains: Artifice, Knowledge, Liberation, Magic
Subdomains: Arcane, Freedom, Revolution, Toil, Thought
Favoured weapon: Club

Goddess of War
Once, this sect held great favour with the high and mighty, as its Clerics were forever marching off with the armies in battles against the deep kingdoms and the Darkborn Empire... But then members of the sect started turning up in the enemy's camps as well, and no one in the sect would agree to censure these 'traitors' or even admit that what they were doing was wrong. Members of this sect worship violence in all its forms, though it is probably not true that the sole ambition of every member of this sect is to plunge the whole world into unending bloodshed...
Domains: Chaos, Madness, Strength, War
Subdomains: Blood, Ferocity, Insanity, Protean
Favoured weapon: Greatsword

= = =

By rights, Kebal should be counted among the pagan gods, whose worship was suppressed by the sweeping wave of the Goddess' faith ... but somehow, that didn't work out.
One possible reason why Kebal's faith has never weakened is that the dour priesthood of Kebal doubles as Rue's most prominent society of bankers, with the vaults of his black, fortress-like temples and monasteries holding the precious metal that backs the global economy, as well as the mint that stamps out coin.
However, it is far more likely that Kebal's faith has never died out because Kebal is too powerful for even the Goddess to suppress.
The Lord of Doom's faith is possibly as old as Rue itself, and its message has never changed over the aeons: the world is inevitably doomed, its end coming closer as time passes and grinds existence itself down into dust. Kebal's black-robed clergy stands at the edge of every settlement, casting unholy water on travellers and reminding them that Doom awaits wherever they go; they hold grim marches on the holy nights of Kebal, their monotonous chants reminding the people that darkness will fall over everything soon enough; Kebal's churches receive the suicidal and the murderous both, providing a quick death to the one and vile poisons to the other.
Many people hate and fear the church of Kebal, but no one has dared to seriously challenge it for centuries. The soot-blackened ruins of the City of Kreiborne are a testament to what happens if someone challenges the rich, powerful cult of men and women who willingly embrace death for a chance to destroy all they hate.
Kebal's alignment is Lawful Evil, and he accepts Clerics of the LE, LN and NE alignments.
Domains: Death, Destruction, Earth, Law, Luck, Strength
Subdomains: Catastrophe, Devil, Fate, Metal, Murder, Resolve
Favoured weapon: Greatclub

= = =

Finally, there are the pagan gods, also called the heathen gods by followers of the Goddess, or those who fled by the faithful of Kebal.
Once, Rue was home to thousands of religions, many of whom conflicted. Today, only two are widely acknowledged, but many wonder where the gods, fiends and spirits of yester century have gone. Are they truly all dead? Or do they lie dreaming in the wild places of the world? Are they perhaps striding among the stars, awaiting some revolution to change their fate? Who knows?

Abilities: 15-point buy.

Starting level: 1

HP: Max + Con. modifier at first level, half max +1 + Con. modifier on following levels.

Traits: Two, one of which must be a 'campaign trait' from the list provided below. You are free to take the Additional Traits-feat.

'Campaign' traits:

Agent of Doom
Prerequisite: Worshiper of Kebal
Doom is coming to Rue. This is inevitable. In fact, it cannot come soon enough; an end to the whole sad farce. You saw the coming of the end in the swift decay of your family. You saw it in the desintegration of your own life as you lost your job, your home, your possessions... Only entropy awaits, and Kebal sits upon its throne.
Walking into the gambling hall, winning a free trip to this island resort, was clearly all part of the Lord of Doom's plan. You must go into this glittering illusion of happiness and ease and rip it apart from the inside out. You just need to find its heart.
You gain a +1 trait bonus to Appraise and Perception checks, and one of these is always a class skill for you.

Brought low
Prerequisite: Female; Half-Elf or Human
Once, your family had wealth and standing in society. Events conspired, however, to ruin it all. Your older sister's engagement to a marquis was called off; your father's business is failing; your mother has fallen gravely ill from the stress; you are starting to worry whether the family can even afford to send your little brother to school...!
Baron Kaye's invitation to attend the grand opening of his island resort came as a godsent. You have heard from reliable sources that the Baron has spared no expense in outfitting his resort, and you have always been good with your hands. Needs must make a thief of you, before your family loses even more...
You gain a +1 trait bonus to Disable device and Sleight of hand checks, and one of these is always a class skill for you.

Darkborn memory
Prerequisite: Goblin, Half-Orc or Tiefling
Whispers travel from father to son, mother to daughter. Through the blood, it travels; whispers of the Darkborn Empire which once covered a large part of the world. Where went the twisted spires and the black domes, thick enough to keep out the sun? Where went the flesh-forests, its trees yielding fruit that tasted and nourished like meat? Where are the herds of mammoths and aurochs your people used to follow in accordance with the seasons? Where are the shrines of your people, the monuments of their achievements? All gone, brought to dust by the hateful enslavers.
But you remember. Even trapped in servitude to Baron Kaye, you hold the memories inside. You learned the stories from your mother, your father, your siblings. You remember the Darkborn Empire and so much more...
You gain a +1 trait bonus to Knowledge (history) and Knowledge (religion) checks, and one of these is always a class skill for you.

Deepborn Stalker
Prerequisite: Drow, Dwarf or Half-Drow
You are a Despised One, born a slave. But you are also a child of the deep kingdoms that were, and your blood boils with the hate of your ancestors for the Blessed Folk, the ones who destroyed your ancestral home without provocation and turned your people into slaves. Yes, you are a Despised One, born a slave... but you did not stay one for long. You have always been good at escaping from cages, and you found your way into the criminal underbelly that festers beneath the glittering façade of the Blessed Folk's society.
Your presence on the cruise to Baron Kaye's island resort is not a coincidence. You are masquerading as a slave, but that is not what you are. You are a Deepborn Stalker, an agent of vengeance... and you have come to kill a man for the blood he carries; the blood of one of the Most High Priestess' generals of yore.
You gain a +1 trait bonus to Escape artist and Stealth checks, and one of these is always a class skill for you.

False face
Prerequisite: Female; Drow, Half-Drow or Tiefling
Your mother was a table dancer in a big city, your father probably its landlord. It is not impossible that he is also your grandfather. Before you could be locked into her own miserable fate, your dear mother taught you ways of disguising yourself as one of the Blessed Folk and hid you in a crate due to be shipped out of the city.
You have managed to survive, masquerading as something you are not... and you have not seen your mother since. Finding an excuse to be on the cruise to Baron Kaye's island resort, you are keeping your eyes and ears open for opportunities to improve your lot in life, and maybe to one day save your only (known) living relative from her indenture.
You gain a +1 trait bonus to Bluff and Disguise checks, and one of these is always a class skill for you.

Love-Lost
Prerequisite: Female; Half-Elf or Human
Once, you were the daughter of a noble house, betrothed to an actual prince, and he held your heart in his hands. You knew your heart was safe with him, for yours was a match made not only in politics, but also a meeting of kindred souls... And then a Cleric of the Goddess of Love came to the college where you were studying. Before you knew it, your great love had been turned away from you and towards some other woman. Perhaps you should not have protested so loudly or so persistently. Regardless, the sect of the Goddess of Love started making trouble for your noble family, and your father decided to send you to Baron Kaye's island retreat to keep you safe. Literally, to keep you safe! He seems genuinely concerned about your safety.
If anything, you wonder why the horrible Cleric never tried to simply twist your mind...
You gain a +1 trait bonus to all Will saves to resist all spells and spell-like effects from the school of Enchantment.

Lucky kid
Prerequisite: Young-aged (+1 to physical abilities, -1 to mental abilities); Half-Elf or Human
Yours has been an unusually blessed life. Your family was comfortably well off and could afford to get you an education, but not so rich that it became embroiled in political skullduggery. You are doing well enough in your studies that you can breeze through your education, but not so well that you are likely to become a target for resentment.
You even won a tidy sum of money at the local gambling hallclast week, as well as an invitation to attend the grand opening of Baron Kaye's new island resort! Now, strictly speaking you shouldn't be taking an unannounced break from your studies, especially not without telling your parents, but come on! When are you ever going to have another chance like this...? You'll make up for it all when you come back!
You gain a one-time bonus to your starting gold, raising the sum to 500 gp.

Old retainer
Prerequisite: Middle-aged; Drow, Dwarf, Goblin, Half-Drow, Half-Orc or Tiefling
You have been a slave to Baron Kaye all your life, as were your parents before you, and your grandparents before them. When the Baron started his new island retreat, you were among the 'lucky' servants selected to come serve at the retreat.
You are not as young as you used to be, but you have a lifetime of experience serving your 'betters', and you know some secrets - secrets passed down from parent to child, just in case.
You gain a +1 to Diplomacy and Knowledge (nobility) checks, and one of these is always a class skill for you.

Opportunistically mobile
Prerequisite: Male; Half-Elf or Human
You grew up poor, but that has only made you try harder to succeed in life. Let others wail about the unfairness of fate; you make your own luck and you make your own way in the world! Picking the pocket of that rich drunkard netted you an invitation to the opening of some grand new island resort you'd never heard of! Stealing some laundry from the garden of the local lord got you a suit of clothes fit for the occasion!
Now all you need to do is keep up the charade that you are this 'Viscount Maxwell' whose name is on the invitation long enough. Which is to say, long enough to make a selection of some tasty valuables from the resort to fence after making your way back to shore! It'll be a challenge, but you're determined to meet it the way you do all challenges; with guile and skill!
You gain a +1 trait bonus to Appraise and Sleight of hand checks, and one of these is always a class skill for you.

Out to pasture
Prerequisite: Old-aged; Half-Elf or Human
Life has come and gone like a great wave, and you were washed up on the shores of old age.
Whatever or whoever you are, time is the great equalizer, and now you are just old. Whatever children you had have left the home; whatever partner you met has abandoned you for a younger spouse or just passed away; all you have are your little house and your memories.
Actually winning such a prestigious prize as a free ticket to the opening of Baron Kaye's resort in the temple raffle came as a great surprise, but you knew you couldn't pass it up. Not just because this is a once in a lifetime opportunity, but also because it would be seen as terribly rude.
And maybe, just maybe, you will be able to add a last precious memory to your supply. Maybe there will be something new to enjoy at this island. Maybe.
You gain a +1 trait bonus to Knowledge (history) and Sense motive checks, and one of these is always a class skill for you.

Scarred minister
Prerequisite: Middle-aged; male; Half-Elf or Human
Once, you were a priest )not necessarily a Cleric) of the Goddess of Life, tending to the population of a small village. Life was good; you were happy in your work, ministering to your flock. Then came the strangers; fellow priests of the Goddess of Life, come to preach - but also to purify. To your horror, your fellow priests found flaw and heresy everywhere they looked, and your village burned.
You were the only survivor... and you knew you could not go on as you had done. You had to reinvent yourself somehow, and find out whether you had truly overlooked evil in others... or whether your own faith had betrayed its purpose.
You gain a +1 trait bonus to Perception and Sense motive checks, and one of these is always a class skill for you.

Victorious gladiator
Prerequisite: Dwarf, Goblin or Half-Orc
You were born into slavery and thrown into the arena as an opening act at a young age. Against all odds, you survived; your hands stained with blood, flesh under your fingernails and the taste of death in your mouth. You have waded through gore to get where you are, but you finally reached the end of the road: a freedom earned with a slave's wages and gifts thrown to your feet by the cheering crowd.
Freedom is a strange thing to you, and you are unsure of what to do with it, especially given how the Blessed Folk still look down on and spit at you in the streets. For now, you have decided to spend your hard-fought earnings on a little 'vacation'. You will have to see what comes next...
You gain a one-time bonus to your starting gold, raising the sum to 500 gp.

Sourcebooks permitted: Core rulebook, Advanced player guide, Ultimate magic, Ultimate combat, Advanced race guide, Advanced class guide.

Archetypes: allowed

Background: please do! Tell me a little something about your character's past, present and wishes for the future, in keeping with the themes provided by the Campaign trait you have selected.


This is us: a fun, lively, well-functioning group of adventurers.

Due to our esteemed GM's work making it impossible for him to continue leading us, we are in urgent need of a replacement.
We are currently in Sins of the Saviors, of the Rise of the Runelords-AP.
We want to finish the current AP together and, if possible, tackle Return of the Runelords together when it comes out.

Who wants to come guide us through adventure, strife, unexpected romance, surprise ear-flickings and humour? ;)


Who here has ever played Advanced Fighting Fantasy (AFF) 2nd Ed., the play system originally created by Steve Jackson and Ian Livingstone, and might be interested in trying an online game using the system, set on the world of Titan?


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Consider the Pathfinder realm of Rahadoum and its policy of atheism - and potential problems due to lack to access to clerical magic.
Now consider the Ravenloft 'religion' known as the Divinity of Mankind. Imagine someone from Paridon managed to escape to Rahadoum and introduced the Divinity of Mankind. What do you think the results would be?


4 people marked this as a favorite.

You are not a hero.
You are not a legend.
You're just another lost soul, desperate for a roof over your head and money to pay for your meals.
Maybe you're the last of your clan.
Maybe you've been banned from home for some misdeed, imagined or real, and no one will hire you.
Maybe you've got a bounty on your head, or you're just neck-deep in debt for some reason.
Maybe you really did do something awful.
Maybe you are just desperate to give your life some meaning.
Maybe you just couldn't stand to follow the path that destiny seemed to have laid out for you.

And then you heard the town crier, or you saw the fliers nailed to the town gate.

Some enterprising noble wants to found a new town, down the course of the river, near the sea-shore. A harbour-town, built near the shadows of forest and mountain range, to accommodate trade and make fresh fortunes.
It's bad land, they say. Monsters and bandits haunt the area, they say. There is dark magic lingering in half-buried ruins from forgotten ages in the area, they say. They are wonders and horrors aplenty ready to come from across the rolling ocean, they say.
The settlers are going to need guarding, they say, as will the barges containing the building materials and the noble's squires, who are coming to oversee the clearing of the chosen site and construction.

It's a job. Apparently the nobleman isn't picky about the background of his caravan guards. And once the town is set up, there will be plenty of opportunities to found your own little business, or find a cushy position as town guards.
You can have a home. You can have money.
All you need to do, is see the town founded successfully, against all the odds stacked against you... and survive long enough to pluck the fruits of your labour.
It'll be hard work all the way, but isn't that just always the way of it?

Do you dare roll down the river to the Frontier, and help found a town?

= = = = = = = = = = = =

Pathfinder rules.

You start at character level 1.

Point-buy: 15 points.

All alignments allowed, but don't play them stupidly.
If you try using a CE alignment as an excuse for blindly attacking everyone around you, you're out. If you use a LG alignment as an excuse for attacking every non-human creature you see even if it hasn't done anything, you're out.

Maximum HP for first level; all following levels are half maximum +1.

Two traits. One drawback is allowed for one additional trait.

Hero points and feats related to them are in effect.

Background skills are in effect.

Variant multiclassing is NOT allowed.

Books allowed for character creation and -building during levelling (do NOT ask permission to use any others) are:
Core rulebook
Advanced player's guide
Ultimate magic
Ultimate combat
Advanced race guide (core, featured and uncommon races only, no self-made)
Advanced class guide
Occult adventures
Inner sea magic
Gods and magic
Faiths of balance
Faiths of corruption
Faiths of purity
The great beyond
Distant worlds
Dragon empires gazetteer
Technology guide
Paths of prestige

You start with average gold for your character class.

Those who want to set up a business in the founded town should invest in skills that reflect their plans.

Recruitment ends on the final day of February.
Pacing will occasionally be slow as RL takes precedence.


It never ceases to surprise me how the people I meet online come up with bits of unexpected knowledge and/or skills.
I'd like to test your abilities, dear forumites ... with some home-made codes. Have a look, have a try, pm me your solution if you've got one. Break one code and I'll try to come up with something more challenging.

Without further ado, then:
19-22-15-15-12-00-07-19-18-09-00-18-09-00-26-00-09-18-14-11-15-22-00-09-06- 25-09-07-18-07-06-07-18-12-13-00-24-18-11-19-22-09-00-06-08-18-13-20-00-13- 06-14-25-21-09-08-00-18-13-08-07-22-16-23-00-12-21-00-15-22-07-07-22-09-08- 00-04-22-09-22-00-02-12-06-00-08-14-26-09-07-00-22-13-12-06-20-19-00-07-12- 00-24-09-26-24-16-00-07-19-22-00-24-12-23-22-00


Male DM DM 10

Let the discussions .... commence.


Male DM DM 10

On a continent far across the Sovereign Sea, a butterfly flaps its wings. In ages gone by, such an inauspicious event could have been the start of hurricanes .... but those days are done.

In the beginning, there was the Age of Stone, when sentient beings huddled in their caves and great beasts ruled the world. It ended when mortals discovered fire and the working of stone and wood into weapons.
After the Age of Stone, there came the Age of Glorious Barbarism, when heroism and nobility lay cheek-by-jowl with brutality and cruelty; when the strength of one's arm and the keenness of one's blade were the determinators of merit. It ended with the death of a god and the birth of new gods.
After the Age of Stone, there came the Verdant Age, as mortals learned the ways of farming instead of foraging, of trade instead of raiding, of civilization. Land and mortal thrived together, then. It ended as great conquerors arose, who united the world.
Following the Verdant Age, there came the time of the Sunrise Empire when magic reigned supreme and the Fey races dominated the world. In the name of their aesthetic, they created magical cities that sang and shone, and ground all other life into the dirt under their heel. It ended in bloodshed and fire.
Next, there came the Empirical Empires, also known as the Secular Empires, when faith and magic waned and science reigned. Races that had been held back in the magic-rich times of the Sunset Empires thrived then, reaching for the stars in the sky and digging into the depths of their world, always eager to discover more. They died when something was discovered which should forever have remained a secret, and madness had consumed much of the world before it was made a secret again.
Sixth, there came the Evil Empire. Vice became virtue, cruelty was nobility, and a dark serenity gripped the world like a gauntlet, intent on choking light and hope out of the world in the name of order. In the end, it ended as the Sunrise Empire had because it had compressed chaos into too small a space, and it erupted.
The gods appeared to the people with a message of hope after the fall of the Evil Empires. They promised a Celestial Age and a renewal of the mortal world, but their promise became dust as the first Celestial Gathering was turned into a bloodbath through treachery, and some say hope died that day.

And now, it is the Age of Rue.
Let a thousand butterflies flap their wings, there will come no more hurricanes. No moonlight graces the nights, for the moons are gone, and no mortal seems to remember why this is so. There is no tide to stir the oceans. In some places, the waters bubble as the carcasses of great beasts rot in the depths, releasing noxious gases. In other places, the sea can be as smooth as glass for days.

But not today, for the butterfly has flapped its wings. A breeze has picked up, and it sweeps across the Sovereign Sea, rippling its surface. It sweeps into the harbour city of Theviss, one crumbling port among many, though not as many as in ages gone by. Ships still sail out from Theviss every day; little fishing boats, mostly, but there are also biremes and triremes, criss-crossing the waters under the power of indentured prisoners' muscles instead of wind and tide as was done in ages gone by.
The breeze finds its way through the narrow streets, blending the faint stench of ancient rot it picked up along the way with the fresher stenches of a city; raw sewage in the clogged sewers, garbage tipped into the Streets by uncaring home owners, the dung of camels .... all these things 'perfume' the air.

Standing in the Great Square, in front of the city gates, you are found by the breeze. A mixture of clean salt and foulness curls around your ankles and stings your nose as you wait by the statue of a headless equine while your employer, the white-feathered Tengu merchant Dageau, haggles for some last-minute supplies at the little stands that surround the square. He ordered you to wait here and watch his small cart and his two camels, not to mention the single box of mystery merchandise sitting in the cart.
Your little group is getting rather a lot of attention from the locals; not many people willingly travel anywhere these days, not without a sizeable caravan or a trireme around them. Small bands like yours, well .... More than one merchant from the little stands has made disturbing offers to literally buy the clothes off your back. "Go on, sell now!" one enthusiastic young man said. "What good is it to leave such fine clothes rotting in a ditch or a monster's nest somewhere? Sell it to me now!"
He left disappointed, of course, but people are still looking at you and muttering behind their hands. In addition, priests have gathered at Theviss' city gates, eyeing you with varying degrees of severity; a Cleric of Kebal in slate grey; a Cleric of Athelgarde in jet black; and a Cleric of Laelae in muted violet, his eyes vague and his smile benevolent.

Dageau is still doing a bit of dickering, though it seems he is wrapping up his affairs, so this seems like a golden opportunity for you to introduce yourselves to each other. After all, this is the first day you met, as you have gathered in response to Dageau's flyers and posters offering one hundred units of credit (gp) for those willing to protect him and his belongings on the week-long voyage from Theviss to an inland city called Ulak.


2 people marked this as a favorite.

Wanted, for the grand task of escorting a tight-fisted merchant as he brings an order from one crumbling town to another, in a worn-down old world: five to six adventurers.

(Fair warning, the pace will likely be slow. Let's at least commit to a minimum of one post a week?)

Welcome, to Rue.
Once, this world was thriving, alive, the home of a thousand different empires peopled by species and tribes from all over the multiverse. Once this, world had a different name, but who can remember that now? Time has moved on, grinding mountains down into dust and everyone under Rue's moonless sky knows that this sad old world is breathing its last under the light of a red and fitful sun. Still, the last gasps of a dying world may still take centuries, and it could be ages yet before the sun goes out.
Or explodes.
And while worlds and stars take so much time to die, mortal creatures die far more easily. They can die of exposure, of hunger, of bone-deep sorrow. In order to stave off all such maladies, you have accepted the inglorious job of escorting this miserly merchant from the crumbling port city of Theviss to the even more weathered city of Ulak, deep in what was once prime Farmland, but is now mostly weeds surrounding the last farms keeping Ulak alive.
There is a week's worth of travel between Theviss and Ulak. A week in the weird and warped badlands that separate the last settlements clinging to a semblance of civilization. Old storytellers say the world's death has poisoned the minds of the wild creatures. You don't know whether that is true, but everyone knows the badlands are home to aggressive animals, monstrous beasts, and foul magic. You may well have your jobs cut out for you .... if you dare to go.

Character creation:
Level: 1
Alignment: All except Chaotic Evil.
Race: No restriction, save your selection must be found in the allowed sourcebooks. On Rue, races once considered monstrous are now accepted members of what passes for civilization, if only because they still have some vague lore of times when Rue was not gasping its last.
Ability scores: 20-point buy.
Classes: No restriction, save your selection must be found in the allowed sourcebooks.
Traits: Two. No drawbacks.
Starting gold: Average for class.
Equipment: Anything in the sourcebooks that you can afford.

Sourcebooks: Advanced class guide, Advanced players' guide, Advanced race guide, Core rulebook, Occult adventures, Ponyfinder campaign setting, Ultimate combat, Technology guide, Ultimate magic

Religion: Rue has its own pantheon of deities, survivors grimly hanging onto existence where all their comrades from before have faded away. If selecting a patron, be it as Cleric, Inquisitor or Oracle, or simply as your character's spiritual guide, please select from this list.

Athelgarde
The Only Queen
Ruthless, mirthless and relentless, Athelgarde is the last deity watching over the continuation of civilization. Her sole interest and purpose; to perpetuate city-based life in spite of all the forces of decay worrying at her territory. Consequently, her edicts are harsh and the actions of her black-robed clergy and the nobility sponsored by her church are .... equally uncompromising.
Alignment: LE
Portfolio: Cities, civilization, crafts, industry, sea-faring
Cleric alignments: LE, LN, NE
Domains: Artifice, Community, Evil, Law, Protection, Water
Subdomains: Defense, Home, Oceans, Purity, Toil, Tyranny
Favoured weapon: Heavy mace
Appearance/symbol: A beautiful woman, cast entirely of black iron

Kebal
The lord of Fate, the Doom of Rue.
Kebal is the deity of predestination, fate and entropy. His grey monasteries stand in most of the remaining cities, and his faith is everywhere. The grey-robed priests of Kebal remind people daily of the fact that their god is mightiest and his hand is upon Rue. Make your peace with the Doom, for fighting him is pointless and only hastens your end.
Alignment: LN
Portfolio: Doom, fate, predestination
Cleric alignments: LE, LN, N
Domains: Darkness, Death, Destruction, Law, Luck
Subdomains: Catastrophe, Curse, Fate, Loss
Favoured weapon: Ranseur
Appearance/symbol: A giant wrapped in stone armour, a horned helmet with lowered visor hiding his face

Laelae
The Dead Dancer, the Luminous
Laelae is the little sister and herald of Kebal, the princess of death and release. Where Kebal looms and threatens, Laelae passes through the lives of mortals as light as air, releasing them from pain and fear, ending their suffering.
Alignment: N
Portfolio: Death, freedom, mercy
Cleric alignments: CN, LN, N, NG
Domains: Air, Charm, Liberation, Repose
Subdomains: Freedom, Love, Souls, Wind
Favoured weapon: Dagger
Appearance/symbol: A waif-like humanoid of no particular species, her skin blue, her eyes and hair white, clothed only in a dark shroud.

Nevy-Nee
Charging Through Dreams
Nevy-Nee is the lady of dreams, both the source of grand fantasies and nightmares, each in fair measure to whichever mind is visited by her creations. She is also the elder sister of Petty-Boon.
While she may once have been a true guardian of the living, the same despair that lies upon the rest of Rue has also touched her. Nevy-Nee has retreated into dreams and refuses to leave them, spending the last days of Rue here, where her power is greatest still, so that when the end comes, it will at least not find her awake and aware.
Alignment: N
Portfolio: Dreams, omens, soothsaying
Cleric alignments: CN, LN, N, NE, NG
Domains: Chaos, Darkness, Madness, Trickery
Subdomains: Deception, Night, Nightmare
Appearance/symbol: A great nightmare with mane and tail of blue smoke, trailing off into infinity

Petty-Boon
Bard of the Impossible, Singer of Insanities
Petty-Boon, little brother of Nevy-Nee and lover of Vexat, is a stubborn holdover of the green and verdant days, considered naive by mortals and gods alike, and often ignored. His is a single voice crying out for mortals to hold on to hope and not give in to the cruelties of fate, whispering to fools and dreamers that the end may be approaching, but it is not unavoidable. Consequently, he and his church are considered to be anathema by the church of Kebal, and they are few and far between. In remarkable contrast, both the churches of Athelgarde and Vexat welcome the clergy of Petty-Boon, whose uplifting message helps keep people from falling into despair and madness.
Alignment: NG
Portfolio: Dance, Fauns, fertility, hope, Ponies, Satyrs, song, thought, travel
Cleric alignments: CG, LG, N, NG
Domains: Charm, Good, Knowledge, Travel
Subdomains: Exploration, Friendship, Love, Lust, Memory, Thought, Trade
Favoured weapon: Unarmed strike
Appearance: Petty-Boon is a known shapeshifter, and can appear in any of a Thousand guises. He is known to favour the shapes of Fauns and Satyrs, but is just as likely to appear as a goatherd or a wandering goat.
Symbol: Pan flute

Vexat
Mother of Chaos, Mother of Madness, Mother of Magic, Mother Vixen
Vexat, the undisputed queen of magic and chaos, is an ancient power, easily older than her eternal enemies Athelgarde and Kebal. Her following takes the form of shadowy cults who meet in stone circles in the wild or in catacombs and cellars, rather than official temples and churches, and her followers are few and far between -- and yet her faith has never weakened in all the ages of Rue. She was as strong in the distant stone age, as in the green and verdant days, as now in the dying days of the world. Her faithful say that when Rue dies, Vexat will be the one to give birth to a new world, and that she gave birth to Rue as well. Regardless whether this is true or not, it is a certainty that her followers continue to fight the oppressive forces of Kebal and Athelgarde as they have always done, seeking out youngsters to instruct in the secrets of magic and preserving ancient knowledge.
Alignment: CN
Portfolio: Art, chaos, creativity, foxes, Kitsune, magic
Cleric alignments: CE, CG, CN, N
Domains: Animal, Chaos, Charm, Knowledge, Magic
Subdomains: Arcane, Fur, Lust, Memory
Favoured weapon: Sword cane
Appearance: Like her lover Petty-Boon, Vexat is a known shapeshifter. She favours the shape of great foxes and shapely Kitsune, but can appear in any guise, anywhere.
Symbol: A nine-armed spiral, turning clockwise


Male DM DM 10

A month ago...

For reasons all your own, you responded to the 'wanted'-posters, the rumours, or whatever else beckoned you to be in the Blinded Elephant at midnight.

As dive bars went, you supposed the Blinded Elephant was not too bad. The staff made a point of immediately killing and removing any roaches or rodents to brave the floor when there were customers about. Maybe the green lampshades made the place look a bit lugubrious, the emerald sheen making skin look pale and leprous, but even blackened by the light, the beer was of decent quality -- and as it turned out, your prospective employer had paid so you could eat and drink for free!

"Good evening and welcome," the tall, thin, well-dressed man said as he rose from the corner table and beckoned you over. "My name is Mr. Johnson. I am very glad that you have decided to respond to my annonce. Please have a seat, dinner will be out soon."

Sense motive DC 12:
Yeah, 'Johnson' is NOT his real name. Then again, it's a common enough alias for dealings in shady taverns.

You ate and drank on the customer's dime. For some of you, this meant you had the first square meal you'd had for quite a while, now. After the cheeseboard had been cleared away -- and the wait staff had removed the body of a rat that ran across the table in a mad dash for the sliced camembert -- Mr. Johnson got down to business.

"I sit before you as a man bereaved, my friends. As much as fifty years ago, my family was robbed most egregiously. Some scurrulous thief broke into our home and stole a box. Not just any box, but a treasure box. An heirloom box, even! The delight of my grandmother, may Abadar keep her soul in his Vault as the valuable thing it is. We are a family of some means, as you may have guessed, and our security staff was after the rogue in short order. But such a clever scoundrel! He boarded a ship with perfect timing, and off he was across the Inland Sea! Where it went? No one knew! The manifest said it was to dock in Vudran, but it never arrived there. Where was the ship? Where was the thief? Where was our priceless heirloom box? No one knew! A mystery! A tragedy! A farce! And so we remain uncertain -- or we remained so until last month. Wreckage sighted on an Island near a reef known very dramatically as 'the Widowmaker', by a ship which belongs to my family. A description handed up to me, references checked -- this must be the ship which had carried away my inheritence, my last memento of dear Grandmama! But how to proceed? Oceanfaring ships may not approach Widowmaker for fear of their hull being torn all asunder. Small ships may get there with luck, but to send my salty sailors and lead them into temptation of light-fingered behaviour? Unthinkable! But you doughty folk, heroes of the truest character, mercenaries well-used to doing a job as ordered? Ah..."

Mr. Johnson smiled then, and made you the Offer. One of his family ships was to take you to Widowmaker, and the Island that lies within its deadly embrace. Once there, a rowboat would be given to you, with which you must pass through the one gap in Widowmaker, and then make ground on the Island of Hope Lost ("Another very dramatic name, such playwrights our salty sailors would make!") and cross it to the other shore, where the wrecked ship awaits. Once there, you are to enter, find the heirloom box and retrieve it. Next, retrace your steps to the shore where you landed, and there stand ready to row out to the next ship to pass, for the family has already arranged for such.
Upon return to Absalom, you will hand over the box and receive one hundred pieces of gold per head. If any of you should lose your head while in service to the family, your share will be divided among the survivors.
Mr. Johnson offers you all a purse with an additional hundred pieces of gold, to share and pay for any last-minute shopping you should like to do. All that remains to be asked is: "Will you take the job?"

Introduce yourselves to each other, roleplay, and discuss what you should like to buy from your new party funds. Once that is out of the way, we move on to Widowmaker and Lost Hope. ^_^


Male DM DM 10

Everybody pile in....


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Greetings!

After many a scrape, our merry band has made a treaty with Kobolds and Mites, defeated a brigand lord, rediscovered an old temple, killed a bunch of unreasonable creatures..... and received the right to rule over the land!

We're ready for the coronation and to get started on the next phase of the Kingmaker AP (Trolls have already tried to meddle in our treaty with the Kobolds), but it seems that our DM is no longer available.

We really want to continue into the next chapter of the AP. Many adventures still await and we are eager to meet the challenge!
Are you a DM interested in running Kingmaker with: An Aasimar Mysterious stranger/Sorcerer/Spellslinger, a Half-Elf Hunter, a Tiefling Oracle/Paladin, a Winter Witch and their assorted animal sidekicks? ( Can you take the comedic byplay? ;) )
If so, come meet us here and help save our burgeoning kingdom from oblivion!


The task before you is so easy!
All you need to do is go to a tropical island, scavenge an old, wrecked ship, and retrieve an heirloom box for your employer - but don't open it.
You will receive 100 gp per person for your troubles, plus travel expenses. The only wrinkle is having to wait for a ship to collect you after you have done the deed, but it has been chartered.
Who wouldn't want such an easy job...?

Looking for a maximum of 6 characters.
1st level only.
Background skills allowed.
Two traits from the APG allowed.
All species from CRB and ARG allowed.
All classes, archetypes, skills and feats from CRB, APG, ACG, UC, UM, OA, Inner Sea Magic allowed.
All alignments except CE allowed.
Maximum starting gold at first level.

Please provide at least two paragraphs of backstory, and include an explanation as to why you're desperate enough to take the job.


Male DM DM 10

Something blotted out the sun overhead and you looked up.

Darkness.

Air rushing past.

Snatches of crazed laughter.

Falling.

Voices arguing, singing...?

Music.

Darkness.

Music.

It is music that intrudes on the darkness and gradually drags you back to awareness.

Happy music, a simple tune that repeats endlessly, the volume raised enough to force people to raise their voices to be heard.

It takes you a few moments before you can dredge up a word that explains why this music seems so familiar. It's something from... before.
Before... what?
Something from your childhood. You remember going to a funfair when you were little, and the entertainers blasted this music the livelong day. You remember candies, and rides, and other simple entertainments that had you so excited you felt like jumping and running the whole time you were there with... with...

With who?

You cannot recall. There is only the bright, dancing phantasm of your own time at the funfair, sometime long ago.
With a shock, you realize that that is literally true. That is all you can recall of your past. A dim memory of looking up at something that blotted out the sun, a sensation of falling through darkness while eldritch voices laughed and shrieked, and your childhood day of untainted joy at the fair.
Oh, you can recall languages -- but not who taught you to speak them, nor conversations you might have had in them. You can probably speak without trouble, but you cannot remember whether there is anyone you might speak with. Do you have friends in the world? Family?
The world... You do not remember where in the world you are from, nor where in the world you might be.
Panic clutches at your throat and your eyes fly open.

You find yourselves, lying stark naked in a grassy field, ringed around by brightly painted wagons. Within the circle of wagons, a circle of mirrors, surrounding you. Over the wagons, you can see the tops of tall tents, pennants fluttering in the breeze.
That music you heard before is filling the air -- the air, scented with the perfume of sugary treats and treats fried in batter.

None of this looks at all familiar.

Nor are the creatures you find lying nearby, their strange forms reflected endlessly in the mirrors -- and you realize your own form is among those reflections.
A burly, green-skinned creature with rough features and small tusks.
An equine creature -- with feathery wings.
A pale-skinned humanoid, gaunt, with pale, sunken eyes it tries to shield from the brilliant sun overhead.
A rodent of unusual size, which turns out to be capable of standing upright.

As you all stagger to your feet, be it two or four, you discover small piles of clothing lying near each of you, except for the equine. They look like they might fit you. As you start to reach for these little bundles, names suddenly flash into your minds, bright as stars, painful as fire. Even when the initial stab of pain has faded, you are left with a dull, throbbing ache in the backs of your heads.

Kethys.
Midnight Frost.
Szerith.
Tigwith.

Your own names. That is something, surely. But apart from that name and the dim memories from before, you have... nothing.

Nothing...


Male DM DM 10

Discussion thread now open for business! ^_^

I am still expecting one character submission, but he'll catch us up. Let's kick this party off with a bang! -- or with carnival music, anyway. ;)


I obviously haven't learned my lesson about not starting games as GM...

Fair warning: this game will move with painful slowness at times as other matters swallow my time. If you're not prepared for that, it's probably best not to apply. ^^;

The premise
Greetings, and welcome to recruitment for a game idea I came up with: Against the Cycle.
Your great challenge: finding clues, unravelling mysteries and surviving battles, all for the purpose of getting you home from the strange places and distant times you will find yourself thrown into. If all goes well, there will be several chapters of your quest for home. The wrinkle: you are not all from the same time and place. The upset: you're not entirely sure where and when you're from... or even who.

When Funfair starts, you all find yourselves on -- you've guessed it -- the grounds of a funfair. This much is familiar to all of you. Some small details will seem off about it to some of you, though. Cotton candy-making machines will seem extremely odd to some, for instance. Stranger still will be the fact that you, the players, will find the fair deserted apart from yourselves.
This is where it starts. Where it stops... You'll find out as you go.

Character creation
Character creation will be a bit unusual.

Crunch:
* You start at 1st level.
* You get standard 20-pt. buy to determine ability scores.
* You get maximum HP + Con. + favourite class bonus as appropriate at level 1. At all consecutive levels, you get half maximum HP + Con. + 1 + favoured class bonus as appropriate.
* Background skills are allowed; you get two skill ranks per level to determine background skills. Note the selection thereof every time you level, please.
* Hero points are allowed.
* You can select two traits from the available books, as appropriate to your species and background.
* Variant Multiclassing is allowed.
* All alignments other than CE are allowed.
* The books you are allowed to draw from are:
- Core rulebook
- Advanced Players Guide
- Ultimate Magic
- Ultimate Combat
- Advanced Race Guide
- Advanced Class Guide
- Ponyfinder Campaign Setting (but NO other 3rd-party materials!)
- Paths of Prestige
- Blood of Fiends
- Orcs of Golarion
- Humans of Golarion
- Goblins of Golarion
- Blood of Angels
- Dragon Empires Gazetteer
- Technology Guide
- Faiths of Purity
- Faiths of Corruption
- Faiths of Balance
- Gods and Magic
- Inner Sea Magic
I trust these will be more than enough books to be getting on with. :p I'd appreciate it if no one tries to ask for more...
* You get maximum gold as appropriate to your class at level 1, but you must spend it all. If you have any cash left over after buying equipment appropriate to your character concept, it is gone when you arrive at the Funfair. No exceptions. So go on, spend that last cp on a bauble. It's fine.

* Now we get to the wrinkle.
I would like you to write up your character's backstory (at least two paragraphs' worth, detailing childhood, early adulthood and family), but all your stories end with a day that was supposed to be perfectly normal... until something suddenly blotted out the sun. You looked up -- and there your memories end, until you wake up at the Funfair.
And to make matters worse, when you do wake up at the Funfair, you will not remember your backstory.

When awakening at the 'Fair, you will be without memories... and without your equipment. You will awaken with the shirt on your back (as appropriate to creature type), and that is it. Please rest assured that your equipment is on the grounds, and that you will have the opportunity to reclaim it when you come across it.

* Oh, yes. There is no Common language; fill that language slot up with a language appropriate to your racial bonus languages.
But hey, you all get a bonus language: Androffan! Now won't that be nice...?

Worlds within worlds:

When creating your backstory, please keep in mind that you will not all be from the same places. In fact, your choice of source materials will determine where you are from.

Obviously, anyone using material from the Ponyfinder campaign setting will be from the magical world of Everglow - but take note that you may be from any of its outlined time-frames. You could be from the era of consolidation, from the height of the empire, or from the time after its fall.

Anyone using the materials outlined in the Technology Guide should not be from Golarion or Everglow. Instead, your homeworld is part of a great Star Empire, one which has united many worlds. The Empire may not be as democratic as its predecessor, but it has rigid order and startling levels of technology. To you, magic is a fable and the gods a myth, but who cares so long as science bears you up?

If other worlds come to mind... we can talk about it.

Are you still here? Still with me? Still interested?
If so, you have until next Sunday to set up your character concepts and intrigue me. Seven will be selected to play... but how many will survive the fun and games awaiting you at the Funfair...?


I obviously haven't learned my lesson about not starting games as GM...

Fair warning: this game will move with painful slowness at times as other matters swallow my time. If you're not prepared for that, it's probably best not to apply. ^^;

The premise
Greetings, and welcome to recruitment for a game idea I came up with: the Cycle.
Your great challenge: finding clues, unravelling mysteries and surviving battles, all for the purpose of getting you home from the strange places and distant times you will find yourself thrown into. If all goes well, there will be several chapters of your quest for home. The wrinkle: you are not all from the same time and place. The upset: you're not entirely sure where and when you're from... or even who.

When Funfair starts, you all find yourselves on -- you've guessed it -- the grounds of a funfair. This much is familiar to all of you. Some small details will seem off about it to some of you, though. Cotton candy-making machines will seem extremely odd to some, for instance. Stranger still will be the fact that you, the players, will find the fair deserted apart from yourselves.
This is where it starts. Where it stops... You'll find out as you go.

Character creation
Character creation will be a bit unusual.[/b]

Crunch:
* You start at 1st level.
* You get standard 20-pt. buy to determine ability scores.
* You get maximum HP + Con. + favourite class bonus as appropriate at level 1. At all consecutive levels, you get half maximum HP + Con. + 1 + favoured class bonus as appropriate.
* Background skills are allowed; you get two skill ranks per level to determine background skills. Note the selection thereof every time you level, please.
* Hero points are allowed.
* You can select two traits from the available books, as appropriate to your species and background.
* Variant Multiclassing is allowed.
* All alignments other than CE are allowed.
* The books you are allowed to draw from are:
- Core rulebook
- Advanced Players Guide
- Ultimate Magic
- Ultimate Combat
- Advanced Race Guide
- Advanced Class Guide
- Ponyfinder Campaign Setting (but NO other 3rd-party materials!)
- Paths of Prestige
- Blood of Fiends
- Orcs of Golarion
- Humans of Golarion
- Goblins of Golarion
- Blood of Angels
- Dragon Empires Gazetteer
- Technology Guide
- Faiths of Purity
- Faiths of Corruption
- Faiths of Balance
- Gods and Magic
- Inner Sea Magic
I trust these will be more than enough books to be getting on with. :p I'd appreciate it if no one tries to ask for more...
* You get maximum gold as appropriate to your class at level 1, but you must spend it all. If you have any cash left over after buying equipment appropriate to your character concept, it is gone when you arrive at the Funfair. No exceptions. So go on, spend that last cp on a bauble. It's fine.

* Now we get to the wrinkle.
I would like you to write up your character's backstory (at least two paragraphs' worth, detailing childhood, early adulthood and family), but all your stories end with a day that was supposed to be perfectly normal... until something suddenly blotted out the sun. You looked up -- and there your memories end, until you wake up at the Funfair.
And to make matters worse, when you do wake up at the Funfair, you will not remember your backstory.

When awakening at the 'Fair, you will be without memories... and without your equipment. You will awaken with the shirt on your back (as appropriate to creature type), and that is it. Please rest assured that your equipment is on the grounds, and that you will have the opportunity to reclaim it when you come across it.

* Oh, yes. There is no Common language; fill that language slot up with a language appropriate to your racial bonus languages.
But hey, you all get a bonus language: Androffan! Now won't that be nice...?

Worlds within worlds:

When creating your backstory, please keep in mind that you will not all be from the same places. In fact, your choice of source materials will determine where you are from.

Obviously, anyone using material from the Ponyfinder campaign setting will be from the magical world of Everglow - but take note that you may be from any of its outlined time-frames. You could be from the era of consolidation, from the height of the empire, or from the time after its fall.

Anyone using the materials outlined in the Technology Guide should not be from Golarion or Everglow. Instead, your homeworld is part of a great Star Empire, one which has united many worlds. The Empire may not be as democratic as its predecessor, but it has rigid order and startling levels of technology. To you, magic is a fable and the gods a myth, but who cares so long as science bears you up?

If other worlds come to mind... we can talk about it.

Are you still here? Still with me? Still interested?
If so, you have until next Sunday to set up your character concepts and intrigue me. Seven will be selected to play... but how many will survive the fun and games awaiting you at the Funfair...?


Is there an option for me to contact an admin via private message on a sensitive matter? Or if an admin reads this and contacts me via pm, that would be super. It is rather urgent.


Male DM DM 10

Now opening the new Discussion thread...!
Let's hope this fixes all the previous problems.


Male DM DM 10

You have come a long way.

What started out as simple caravan guard duty, accompanying the Lady Valeria of House Jeggare from her home in Imperial Cheliax to meet her fiancé, the young knight Doritian of Andor, so they could be married and cinch a peace treaty between their two nations, devolved into a mad quest.

The caravan was attacked by a tribe of Goblins called the Red Debbulls, but those you could have beaten without too much trouble. Alas, the Lady Valeria was kidnapped by a Keleshite Wizard whose name you have learned is Xorshak, and who took the Lady to his tower stronghold in the mountains.

Braving peril upon peril, surviving Kytons, Orcs, an Ogre, and managing to bypass two terrible shrines without losing your souls, you won all the way to the top of the tower, only to face vilest treachery. Doritian was there, and admitted to having chartered Xorshak to abduct and kill Lady Valeria in such a way that Andor would not be implicated and his bloodline would remain clean of Chelish influences.

You did battle there, brave battle, defeating Doritian, the Debbull chief Bangu-Bangu, the mad Chelish noblewoman Secunda Jeggare, and even Xorshak -- or so you thought. The Wizard had already departed, leaving behind a Simulacrum in his place. You rescued Lady Valeria, but she has been through considerable hardship and only wants to return home. Carrying her, the catatonic body of Doritian - whose very soul is in jeopardy at the hands of the terrible goddess Dhalavei - with you, you escaped the tower just before it collapsed.

Thence, you returned to Apol's Thorp to rest and resupply before taking up the journey to grim Cheliax. Alas, such a welcome awaited you...


3 people marked this as a favorite.

*disclaimer: the following is a fictional introduction of the setting and not meant to offend any Americans or Russians real or unreal, living or undead*

As seen on a public announcement board:

It is good to live in America in the Sixties! Your Uncle Sam wants you to do your part for Mom and Apple Pie, so you've got your job cut out for you! America is the best place in the world to live! The number of jobs that need to be done to safeguard Peace, Freedom and Democracy are endless, so you kids need to study hard, you adults need to knuckle down, and you all need to do your part for the Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave! Work hard, and your Country will reward you for your labour.

*Rumours that both emigration and immigration have been disallowed because the threat of Nuclear War has left Uncle Sam, Mom and the Apple Pie paranoid about Rusky spies and saboteurs are Lies and Sedition, and as such punishable by Detention at the Government's Pleasure.*

America, Great Melting Pot of the World! Here, the industrious descendants of Europe's brave explorers have, after shrugging off the chains of the old countries, settled and joined in Equality and Harmony to make a Better, Brighter Future! With the Freedom Marches of the fifties concluded, America has shown the lie of socialist propaganda, which dared to claim that discrimination stained our noble Red-White-&-Blue! Every loyal citizen is equal under the Law, no matter the colour of their skin, the number of appendages on their body or the beliefs they practice in the privacy of their own home, and opportunities exist for everyone who applies themselves and shows loyalty to the Good Old U.S. of A.!!!

*Protest marches currently forbidden under the law against illegal gatherings so as not to disrupt public life. Workers' unions currently forbidden under the law against illegal gatherings under suspicion of Rusky involvement. Claims of discrimination based on species, sexual orientation, religious beliefs, race, political beliefs, gender et al. must be submitted to your local Police Station and Nowhere Else. Do not undertake any independent action before you have been contacted by Local Police.*

So in short, if you are a Citizen of America, you are one Lucky Duck! You are living in the world's Mighty, Throbbing Heart of Freedom and Prosperity! While the world beyond our borders teeters on the brink of War, America stands in Peace and Strength. Our Armies are mightier than those of all our enemies, our Economy is more stable than the Rock of Gibraltar, and our People are Hap-Hap-Happier than any other! So turn that frown upside-down and ask not what your Country can do for you -- it's already doing it! You are living in Paradise on Earth, Lucky Duck, so start asking what you can do for your Country. Remember, Mom and Apple Pie need you, and Uncle Sam is always watching. If you find yourself at a loose end, come see a recruiting officer at your local army base, or present yourself at the unemployment office. Just as you need America, America Needs You!

*Rumours that citizens approaching to within one mile of the international borders have been shot are Lies and Sedition. Rumours that the ongoing disruption to air traffic has been engineered by the government are Lies and Sedition. Rumours that the ongoing disruption to sea travel has been engineered by the government are Lies and Sedition. As such, these rumours are all punishable by Detention at the Government's Pleasure.*

* * * * * * * * * * * *

Welcome to a version of sixties-era America. There are a few differences; the world you live in is not merely populated by humans (modern evolutionists denounce the idea that a single species could be dominant on a whole world, when there are so many ecological niches to fill as science fiction), but also by other species. The Cold War is already in full swing, and America is Knuckling Down! This means that, as the introductory pamphlet (see above) mentioned, public gatherings and unions have been outlawed.

Your well-trained, friendly Policemen are really cracking down on those long-haired, dope-headed, work-shy, socialist Hippies, so no need to worry, citizens!

Private, social gatherings are in full swing, however, what with kids experimenting with pot in their parents' basements and adults gathering to discuss their jobs, their old army exploits and the trouble with young people these days. (That and key parties...)

*Any private gatherings suspected of serving seditious purposes are defined as Actions Preparatory to Treason and are by Law permitted to be broken up with Necessary Force, all participants to be detained at the Government's Pleasure.*

While the government is constantly telling its citizens that they're so happy here that they don't need to even think about leaving and that they really need to Knuckle Down for America, the average citizen's main concern is, as always, to make enough money to pay for rent, food and amenities. The more intellectual worry that the nation is living under the threat of nuclear war, however. With emigration, immigration and civilians' access to communication across the border having been cut off completely since the end of the Second World War leaves these intellectuals highly nervous as to what is going on in the wider world -- but mostly, they remain silent.

*Rumours that people who have questioned Government Policy have been abducted by Government Officials and remain missing without record of trial are Lies and Sedition.*

In any case, for all intents and purposes, America is your whole world.
Sure, you've read about Europe, Russia and other parts of the world during social studies, you're learning their languages in class, but you've never actually been there or even met someone who remembers living there. Some of the really old Elves might remember, but those all live the high life in their gated communities in Virginia. How would a common kid like you ever get to talk to those rich snobs?
Old soldiers (like your dad or grandad) still talk about the battles they were involved in, but even they were kept apart from the locals when they were shipped out.

*Rumours that American soldiers were ordered to shoot any natives approaching bases during foreign deployment on sight are Lies and Sedition. Rumours that our brave soldiers stationed abroad did not know most of the time who they were fighting or why are Lies and Sedition.*

* * * * * * * * * * * *

Should you take up the challenge to live in this world, you are currently a teenager attending Howard Memorial Highschool in Port August. Your mission in life is simple (according to your parents and the posters on the public notice boards, anyway): Get good grades, find a socially acceptable mate (a spouse of the opposite gender and the same species as you capable of conceiving offspring) and either move onto work or further education once you've finished high school. Prestigious extracurricular activities are a decided plus.
(Secretly, you know your real mission in life is to experience the pleasures of sex, booze and pot, as well as show off in front of and have lots of fun with your friends and peers, but your folks would probably kill you if they found.)

Life is perfectly normal. Then one day, you're in the school library doing research for a sociology project -- and the Monkey appears. You and the others present find yourselves under attack by the hideous brute, fighting for your very lives to survive. Things go decidedly downhill from there, as you will soon discover that life in these altered States of America is far stranger than you had previously suspected...

As is Reality Itself.
*Interference detected. Rebooting signal.*

* * * * * * * * * * * *

Character creation:
Starting level: One.

*

Alignment: Any other than Chaotic Evil.

*

Ability scores: 15-pt. buy.

*

HP: Maximum + Con. modifier at 1st level. Half max. + Con. modifier at following levels.

*

Character classes: Your first class level must be in Expert; you are an 'average kid' (if such a beast exists) growing up in a 'civilized' society (a post-industrial one, anyway), and as such have no experience that could lead to your starting as one of the regular character classes. As you advance in levels, however, you can receive training to acquire survival skills not needed in 'normal' life. Surviving long enough to reach higher levels requires you to think as well as act; play cleverly.

This is not to say that you can not have any combat training.
Sports clubs do exist, and you may have taken lessons in boxing or some martial art (or just be a bully who likes beating up social inferiors) granting you access to Improved Unarmed Strike or Catch Off-Guard or something similar.
Likewise, you may have an interest in tales of magic and wonderment, granting you access to skills like Knowledge (arcana) because you have researched the subject in your spare time.

*

Character races: Please select one from the following list: Aasimars, Catfolk, Changelings, Dhampirs, Drow, Dwarves, Gnomes, Goblins, Half-Elves, Half-Orcs, Hobgoblins, Humans, Ifrits, Kitsune, Kobolds, Nagaji, Orcs, Oreads, Ratfolk, Strix, Sulis, Sylphs, Tengus, Tieflings, Undines.

Note that, despite the public announcement's claims, discrimination is very common in these Altered States of America.
*Lies and Sedition detected! Contact your Local Police at once or be considered implicit in these acts of Lies and Sedition!*

Aasimars, Dwarves, Half-Elves, Humans, Ifrits, Oreads, Sulis, Sylphs and Undines are 'first-class citizens', the cream of society, the proud descendants of the first colonists (who killed a lot of the natives and stole their land), as opposed to all the later immigrants, to wit:

Catfolk, Changelings, Dhampirs, Drow, Gnomes, Kitsune and Strix are considered to be 'second-grade citizens', and seen roughly on par with Gypsies in our own world.

Goblins, Half-Orcs, Hobgoblins, Kobolds, Nagaji, Orcs, Ratfolk, Tengu and Tieflings are 'third-class citizens' and commonly considered to be 'freaks' with criminal tendencies, even if they are law-abiding citizens.

*

Starting wealth: You start with 50 gp, otherwise known as fifty dollars. Invest it wisely or put it in the bank. (What do you expect? You're living on an allowance.) Invest this money wisely, and in the knowledge that your parents (if you have any) have probably provided for school supplies and necessary clothing. (Howard Memorial Highschool has a uniform. You will wear it.) No magical gear at 1st level; magic is not a common part of this setting.
That you know of.

*

Traits: You get two of these, which you can draw from the APG, Faiths of Balance, Faiths of Corruption and/or Faiths of Purity. You may also decide to select one of the Setting Traits. Please do not select from the APG's section of campaign traits.
Drawbacks are allowed, but only if they can be integrated with the setting. The feat Additional Traits from the APG is likewise allowed.

Blood Immemorial:
You may not know it, but yours is a pedigree that goes back even further than the proudest grandparent might care to speculate about.
Upside: Once a day, you may use Detect thoughts as a spell-like ability. This is an inheritance from some distant ancestor who possessed uncommon psychic power. Save DC is Cha.-based, as you unleash this power through some raw, vital force, rather than focused study.
Downside: Your mind is unusually weak against psychic invasion. You take a -2 to Will saves against mind-affecting effects, such as charm, compulsion, or attempts to read your thoughts.

Broken Home:
Maybe your dad was laid off from work some time ago. Maybe one of your parents walked out on the family before you were old enough to understand why they were unhappy - or selfish - enough to do that. Maybe you're the unwanted child of an interspecies dalliance and a ward of the state, growing up in an orphanage. Whatever the case, your home life is decidedly less than ideal. This has hardened you; you weather life's difficulties if not with ease, then at least with stoicism.
Upside: You gain a +1 to Will saves.
Downside: You start with a social stigma, gaining a -1 to Bluff and Diplomacy checks against known authority figures and your supposed peers.

Social Outcast:
You see them at every highschool; the kids that don't fit in with their peer groups, the 'weird' kids with the interests no one shares. Solitude, scorn and bullying have left their scars on you, but you have gained something from your loneliness.
Upside: Take a +1 to one Knowledge skill of your choice. This Knowledge skill is always a class skill for you. You also take a +1 to Initiative, as you have learned to be wary of danger in your everyday life.
Downside: You take a -2 to saves vs. fear and Intimidation.

Superstar:
You see these people at every highschool, too; the ace of the football team, the prom queen candidate, the kids already modelling for toothpaste and underwear commercials. You stand at the top of your social pyramid -- but if you are wise, you will realize you have a long way to fall...
Upside: You possess a +1 trait bonus to Bluff and Diplomacy vs. known authority figures. You're a rockstar at your school and everyone knows it!
Downside: You take a -1 to Perception and Sense motive. Your total assurance of yourself sometimes blinds you to hidden hostility...

*

Feats & Skills:
Feel free to draw these from the CR, APG, ARG, UM, UC and ACG, so long as you can justify them in the given setting and with your character background.

*

Available patrons:

These Altered States of America primarily worship Lissala, goddess of civic obedience. References to 'rune magic' in holy scripture are generally considered the remnants of more primitive forms of worship, or even as metaphors. While the Government claims that the USA have freedom of religion, no known worshiper of any of the other, 'pagan' gods is likely to achieve a high position in life. (Of course, covert worshipers can get anywhere so long as they are clever.)

*

Alseta came to America from Eastern Europe, and is relatively popular among the lower strate of society. Because she is considered a patron of travellers and the current climate disallows travel across the borders, this faith has been marginalized in the media.

*

The faith of Aroden comes from western Europe and is semi-alive and well in the Altered States. Seen as the hearth god of humanity, Aroden is generally treated as the result of old pagan creation myths, just like the other hearth gods. Modern science often downplays Aroden as a grandiose father figure and an expression of humanity's deep-seated need to appear to be special in all ways.

*

The worship of Asmodeus came to the Americas with Italian immigrants. Nowadays, the lord of devils is even more marginalized than some of the other 'pagan' faiths due to old power struggles between his faith and that of Lissala -- which Asmodeus' clergy lost. Modern science suggests he may be the hearth god of the tiefling tribes, but spokesmen for the more vocal tiefling groups violently deny this.

*

Brigh is a goddess whose worship has never been very vocal, and it continues as a whisper today -- but it does continue. The Whisper in Bronze is heard most often at the colleges and research institutes of America, where it has taken on the form of a secret society for the intelligentia. Rumours that these societies hoard seditious documents and are involved with treasonous activity keep the faith even more low-profile than its own tendencies would do.

*

Although Calistria is known to be the hearth goddess of the Elves and the Drow, her faith having travelled with them from their old holdings on the African continent, she has been disinherited by the aristocratic Elves now living in the gated communities of Virginia because she 'presents the wrong image'. In contrast, the Drow clinging to the lower strata of society are devout in their worship of the Savoured Sting -- yet another thing reducing their chances in modern society. In recent years, Calistria-worship has become synonimous with prostitution and (dis)organized crime. Dark tongues whisper that she is fast on her way to becoming the main patron of major crime syndicates.

*

Nivi Rhombodazzle is a much better-known figure in the Altered States of America than she is on Golarion. Known as the hearth goddess of the Gnomes, her faith travelled with them from England and its colonies, and she has become a fixture in the modern media. Seen mostly as a laughable figure, probably the outgrowth of an old faerytale, Nivi Rhombodazzle is used as a trickster figure in any number of folk tales and cartoons. The Gnomes, who enjoy a joke and a good trick as much as anyone, just smile at this portrayal of their goddess.

*

The faith of Pharasma endures, but in a much reduced form. The gods may all worship her, but mortalkind does not -- or at least, not in large numbers. A growing obsession with health and longevity causes many Americans to shun her altars and holy places, and the priesthood has to work hard to be able to compete with secular companies that offer to arrange funerals and the services surrounding them.

*

Shimye-Magalla is a name seen in ancient history books and in graffiti on the walls of Lissala's temples. A composition not just of the lost names of Desna and Gozreh, but also of countless other gods and spirits once worshiped by America's natives and slaves brought to toil on American farmlands, the composite deity is seen as a patron of the oppressed and those in tune with a nature which is being abused by modern industry. Wildly unpopular with the government and the church of Lissala, Shimye-Magalla is demonized in the modern media and mostly worshipped by the lowest strata of society.

*

Where there are Dwarves, there is Torag, or so say the grey-bearded Dwarven elders. Unfortunately for them, society moves on, and many younger Dwarves are starting to bow to the altars of Lissala for the better opportunities she grants them in modern society. Modern media describe the Father of Dwarves as a hearth god and a patron of outdated crafts, further marginalizing his worship.

* * * * * * * * * * * *

Still with me after all that? Still interested? Yes? Good! I am looking for five to six players to venture into this brave new world and face the Monkey in the Library (and assorted other horrors). I like a few paragraphs of backstory from my players. Just a thought. ;)
Updating will likely be slow and hiatuses are probably inevitable, but I'll try to keep going so long as everyone's having fun.

*Rumours that the DM intends to subject you to injury, horror, death and attempts at comedy are Lies and Sedition!*

Except when they're not rumours.

*Interference detected. Rebooting signal.*


Male DM DM 10

Now open for business! Roll call?


Male DM DM 10

It is a beautiful summer's day. The soft chime of the horses' tack mixes with the dull thud of foot and hoof on the dirt track, creating an almost hypotic rhythm. The chirp of songbirds in the trees is soothing, pleasant.

The warm sun directly overhead manages to dispel the gloom of the Whisperwood somewhat. The underbrush is still tangled like the fingers of a pleading beggar or the limbs of a dying spider, the trees' canopy still cast an oppressive gloom, but at least they have been cut well back from the path you are travelling. As long as you don't look too closely and the sun is out, this place is almost beautiful.

And even with the Whisperwood's less pleasant qualities, you feel relieved to be here. The end of the first leg of this trip is nigh; the rendezvous-point is just another day's march away. Tomorrow evening, you will meet up with the Andoran delegacy, and Lady Valeria Jeggare will have her first official meeting with the young knight Doritian. After that, it's on to Andoran for the marriage ceremony, after which you get to go... wherever it is you wish to go, once you have received your due reward.

It was impressed on you quite strongly that receiving any kind of reward at all is entirely contingent on Lady Valeria reaching Andoran alive and in good spirits. The send-off from House Jeggare's opulent mansion was very festive for the people who were not actually going; for you all, it was a grim affair, full of menace; the House's bodyguards were eyeing you all and thumbing their crossbows as Lord Jeggare gave his farewell speech.

Fortunately, the trip has been going very well so far. Lady Valeria is definitely in good health and high spirits. You know so because, once the city walls had disappeared behind the horizon, the sixteen- (or possibly seventeen-) year old lady opened the curtains of her sedan chair and stared out at the wide world despite her governess' shrill objections.

It had been a while since you had seen such sparkling eyes and such a brilliant smile on the face of a Chelish noblewoman, even one as young and beautiful as Lady Valeria. She shows none of the reservedness and arrogance you might have expected from someone of her rank and station, and instead seems to consider the whole outing to be a grand adventure.

More than once, you have all felt the young Lady's eyes upon you and caught her looking at you as if you were some kind of rare animal or plant, or maybe a mystery to be solved.

Likewise, whenever you had the unmitigated gall to meet Lady Valeria's eyes, you have felt the disapproving glare of the young Lady's governess and cousin. Then there is the sternly disapproving gaze of Brother Gorlist, the Asmodean priest assigned as Lady Valeria's chaplain (and more than likely the Asmodean who will preside over the first engagement ceremony). Both those stares pale in comparison with the dire glower of the captain of the small retinue of bodyguards that forms the inner circle of steel around the sedan chair. You yourselves are, of course, the outer circle of steel around her on this trip.

Fortunately, the trip so far has been perfectly peaceful.

So far.

There are, of course, odd noises in the forest from time to time. The nights are worst, and sometimes you'd swear you felt something was following the small caravan.


The unthinkable has happened.
Peace talks have broken out between Andoran and Cheliax! Despite many, many setbacks in the diplomatic process and numerous objections from many Andoran and Chelish nobles, slow progress has been made, and a pivotal point has been reached.

A marriage has been arranged between a young Chelish noblewoman and the son of a longstanding member of the Andoran Ruling Council.

Seeing as there are still plenty of people who would prefer to end the diplomatic process (and the courtship) with a sharp knife or some quick poison, it has been decided to bring the two young people together for their first in secret, in a neutral location in the Whisperwood.

YOU have the noble mission of escorting the young lady from Cheliax to the location in the Whisperwood, to meet her Andoran fiancé and escort both of them onward to Andoran.
And of course... it all goes terribly wrong.
Will YOU go forth to Rescue The Princess...?

NO CE characters.
20 pt. build
Hero points allowed
Two traits at character creation. You may choose to take a drawback, in which case you can have a third trait.
Maximum starting gold at 1st level.
Maximum hp at 1st level. At all following levels, half maximum plus 1 plus Con. modifier.
At least two paragraphs of backstory, a description, and a good reason why you might have been selected by House Jeggare to escort their young flower to her engagement.

Sourcebooks.

Core rulebook
Advanced player´s guide
Ultimate magic
Ultimate combat
Advanced race guide
Inner sea magic
Gods and magic
Humans of Golarion
Goblins of Golarion
Humans of Golarion
Orc of Golarion
Blood of Angels
Blood of Fiends

WARNING.
I have advertised for this campaign on a different site as well. There are four people who have right of first refusal, and I want a party of seven at the most.

Updating will not be very fast, but I will try to at least have a new post for you on a weekly basis.

If this first adventure goes well, there will be more adventure to follow this first dungeon/crawl.


What it says in the subject title. ^^ Is any DM interested in running these adventure paths? 'Cause I can think up some characters interested in playing them!


A common opinion of androids as constructs seems to be that they do not have souls.

We know from the Advanced Player's Guide that a Summoner eventually starts sharing their soul with their eidolon, as their connection grows stronger and stronger.

Now, if an android manages to unlock the mysteries of the Summoner class and progresses far enough to get to the point where the soul-sharing begins...

... would the android start sharing the soul or similar spiritual essence of their eidolon? Would the android then be able to survive its physical body, be it as a part of the eidolon, or even in an actual afterlife?


Greetings and salutations, all DMs who have access to the Carrion Crown adventure path and have the time and energy to take on a group that has made it to the second chapter, Trial of the Beast!

Right here, you will find DM Corvus' game. We have a fun, enthusiastic and interesting group, ready to continue, but alas... our DM is unable to continue with us!

Dare you be our active, creative, and - very importantly - mature DM? Will you take on this adventure, this challenge, and lead us adventurers through the fetid darkness of Ustalav -- or deeper into it? On behalf of the Hawthorn Society, I welcome your interest -- not to mention your applications. ;)


Male DM DM 10

The discussion thread is now open for business.

Both players and spectators are welcomed here, so put up your feet and sit a spell. ;)


Male DM DM 10

This evening, there is a cold wind blowing in from the Lake.
The air smells of dead fish and dark water, and who knows what may stir in its depths?

Clearvale-by-the-Lake is a misnamed city; this is something everyone can agree on.
When people first came to settle this spot by the lake, black-bellied clouds often rolled down from the mountains to deposit their cargo of rain, sleet and snow. Fogs rose every morning and evening, some diaphanous, others thick as pea soup.
Once the city stood, the smoke from a thousand hearths mixed with the low clouds and the rising fogs, scenting both with the perfume of burning wood and roasting dinners. Soot started to stain the walls and roads of the growing city, but in those days, the problem was still manageable.
Then Clearvale-by-the-Lake grew rich as a centre of trade -- and industry. The factories in the Heavy Industry-district belch out their black, polluted smokes day and night. From the Trades and Crafts-district, fumes rise, spawned by crucibles and mixing vats. Stenches rise from the revolutionary sewer system and the city's slaughterhouses.
The smell of wealth is a vile stench, carried on the fog. Depending on the prevailing wind, the whole city can reek like an alchemist's laboratory, or like an open midden. The layer of soot that descends from the thousands of chimneys has become a permanent coating on some areas of the city. In others, only tireless and backbreaking labour prevents every stone surface from becoming black and sticky.

The Nobles' District is one such area. After sundown, long after the government Alchemists have been about their duty of lighting the city's revolutionary streetlights, convicted criminals are driven through its streets in silence. These wretches scrub and polish every surface they are allowed to, and no one else is allowed out on the street while they labour under the unforgiving eyes of their overseers.
Private residences are kept scrupulously clean by its staff, or the unflagging attentions of house Mages, who are paid a small fortune every year to keep homes and gardens looking pristine and to ward the vile-smelling fogs away from noble noses.

Dulapont Manor apparently no longer has a House Mage, nor a staff capable of keeping its grounds looking pristine and elegant.

As you approach the Manor, you notice a pall upon the sidewalk. The granite walls look stained, with small pockmarks forming in its surface. Past the wrought-iron fence, you see a dying garden, the beautiful flower-beds and rose bushes wilting, the tree leafless and blackened, the ornamental fish pond empty of life.
Dulapont Manor itself reminds you of a dying warrior on the battlefield, continuing to stand through pure force of will. But the windows resemble blackened eyes, with their curtains drawn. The marble has turned grey, the slate tiles suffer from a patina that looks like mould.
Even though you know people still live here, the Manor looks like a haunted house.

The servant sitting in the little gatehouse seems surprised to see you. When you state the reason for your visit, he nervously licks his lips, starts to say something -- but in the end, he just ducks his head, opens the gate and waves you through.
"Go 'round back," he mutters. "Tradesman's entrance. The uh, the young -- Master Jeremy has ordered it. ... The front door's jammed, and the paneller won't be here until morning."

Sense Motive DC10:
The footman is lying about the door being jammed.


For several generations, the Dulapont family has been a byword for wealth, excellent breeding, patriottism and loyalty to the crown in the city-state of Clearvale-by-the-Lake.

The most recent generation showed great promise. Mme. Marite Dulapont, the current matron, had managed to maintain the family's fortunes and its good relationship with the crown despite the untimely death of her husband, François, and had raised their two sons well despite her refusal to remarry. Traven, the eldest son and heir, was married and the happy father of a healthy, happy baby girl. Not to mention, a very promising young scholar. His younger brother Jeremy was not yet married and seemed at times a bit resentful of being 'the spare', but showed courage and determination, and was making a career for himself in the army.

But suddenly, everything started to go wrong.
Then Traven's young wife and child were killed by muggers while they were out on the town to buy some new silks.
Traven retreated into the family house and never ventured outside. What few callers were allowed to see him reported that he was a broken shell of a man, aged beyond his years.
In contrast, Jeremy's star seemed to be on the rise; he left the army and entered the social whirl that was the Dulapont family's birthright. Alas, his education so far had not prepared him adequately for this, and he caused several faux pas, which cost his house considerable embarrassments. In the end, Mme. Marite forbade her youngest child from attending the many parties and gatherings of the social season without her there to coach him - another blow to the House's good name.

The family's cash flow has slowed down to a trickle, as old business interests have withdrawn their custom from what they believe to be a failing family.
Someone or something ravaged the Dulapont family tomb, four years after the death of Traven's wife and child, and no trace was ever found of the perpetrator.
And now, the hauntings.

You, whoever and wherever you are, have heard of the hauntings. How could you not have heard? Mme. Marite has finally broken down and called for help to protect her house. The news has travelled from mouth to mouth, from wall to wall as notices have been spread to the houses where adventurous souls gather to exchange news and seek their next grand quest.

'Every Night, the great and ancient House of Dulapont hears the footsteps of the Dead.
Every Night, the wounded and bleeding House of Dulapont hears the voices of the Dead.
Every Night, the House of Dulapont shifts and shudders in the grip of the Dead.
Who will reach out their Hand?
Who will take the Hand of the House?
Who will soothe its Fears and lead it out of the Night?
If none do, the House shall heed.
The House shall bleed.
The House shall fall.
And the Dead shall rise.'

=======================================================================

Hello to everyone who started reading this post and has made it this far. Are you hooked yet? ;)
I am not the greatest of DMs, and I warn you the pace of this campaign is more than likely to be slow, and I am capable of many mistakes. Please be ready to work with me if this happens... ^^;

The system is Pathfinder.

The books open for character creation are:
* Core rulebook
* Advanced player guide
* Magic of the Inner Sea
* Dragon Empires Gazetteer
* Ultimate Magic
* Ultimate Combat
* Advanced Race Guide

We are starting with 1st-level characters.
I would like to have a party of five to six people, and recruitment ends next Wednesday.
20-point buy character creation.
Two traits, which must be drawn from the Advanced Player Guide.
Maximum starting gold; buy anything you want, so long as you can afford it.
I enjoy a good, well-developed character background. Please give me some story (two to three paragraphs) to go with your submission.
Have some good reason to come to the Dulaponts' rescue. I will accept one distant Dulapont cousin, coming to his family's aid, but no more. ;)
Levelling will be done at my discretion, rather than by constant tallying of xp.

Clearvale-by-the-Lake is a city of my own design. Think of a sprawling, London-like metropolis, as it was during the 19th century - if the many creatures of fantasy roleplaying had been there. The city is misnamed; it is a place of creeping fog and blackest smog, when the factories belch out their smokes at the same time that the Lake disgorges its regular mists. When there's no fog, there is rain, but the city still thrives because it is a centre of industry and craftsmanship, and it ships its products out via the Lake to the other city-states that surround it.

With all of that said... any questions? And more importantly: is anyone interested enough to take up the cause of the Dulapont family?


I was just looking through my bookcases recently, and found the Riddle-Master of Hed books by Patricia McKillip. A brilliant read. ^^

And then I got to thinking: did anyone ever make an rpg based on this setting?


From time to time, I enjoy crafting the odd NPC. I thought I'd share some of them with you all; you might be able to use them in a running campaign.

Should you decide to use them, I ask one thing: let me know how they worked out. And if anyone is planning to use them for anything official, I ask something else: let me know about it and we can talk.


From time to time, I enjoy crafting the odd NPC. I thought I'd share some of them with you all; you might be able to use them in a running campaign.

Should you decide to use them, I ask one thing: let me know how they worked out. And if anyone is planning to use them for anything official, I ask something else: let me know about it and we can talk.


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After someone in our Carrion Crown game made a joke about a 'Triple Goddess of Moon and Vengeance', I felt inspired. I did a bit of looking, and I don't think Golarion has its own moon deity, unless you count Groetius. So, presenting for your review:

Mirarae
Duskflower
Hyacinth Candle
Lady of the Three Balances
Moon Witch
Night Elf
Night-Eye
Ocean Bridle
Queen of the Night Sky

CN/LN/N goddess

The changeable Mirarae is a goddess whose worship is in serious decline. In the days of Ancient Osirion, she was hailed as the sister of Sarenrae, the queen of the night sky. She was a patron of sailors due to the moon's influence on the tide; she was beloved of Witches, who so often held their coven meetings at night and bathed in her magical light; but she was also a strong champion of balance, which often took the form of redress and retribution. Any creatures that dwelled mostly in the hours of the night, be they good or evil, were favoured by her.

The increasing popularity of Calistria and her philosophy of vengeance gradually eclipsed Mirarae. With the fall of Ancient Osirion most of her ancient rites and legends are forgotten. Those who worship the divine in the changeing faces of the moon often do not even know that it has a name, or what her ancient rites are. What few myths still circulate describe the Ancient Osiriani moon goddess as a demonic patron of were-beasts and things that stalk in the darkness when the moon is hidden from sight. A few scholars know more of the truth, but even they fear Mirarae for her ability to change. Some Dusk Elf tribes remain loyal to the goddess who favoured them in the days gone by. It is believed that Calistria condoned the slaughter of so many Dusk Elves by their Light Elf cousins. Witches also continue to favour her, with many seeing her as the Moon Patron they draw on, but their faith in the goddess damns her in the eyes of those who see all Witches as creatures of evil.

Doctrine:
Mirarae teaches the importance of balance. The moon is the balance to the sun in that it brings light to the night sky. Its phases allow light and dark to shift places in a steady rhythm, allowing for balance between the two of them. Likewise, mortals should seek balance in their lives for all things. The way she advises creatures to achieve that balance changes with the phases of the moon, however. However she changes, she always claims to be unconcerned with good and evil; she bestows her blessings equally on all creatures, and it is up to mortals to use them how they see fit.

Phases
During the new moon, Mirarae is Chaotic Neutral. The sickle moon is seen as Mirarae's slit eye, looking down on a world wrapped in darkness. During this time, Mirarae advises mortals to restore imbalance in the dark. A knife to the back balances injustice; a quick leap and snap of jaws soon balances hunger; a nimble invasion of another's home balances poverty.
When she manifests, Mirarae appears as a vampiric tiefling woman wrapped in a shroud of star-studded darkness, her face pale as the moon. Her eyes and hair are as black as the great batwings that carry her through the sky. Her horns are like the horns of the sickle moon.
The CN phase of Mirarae has the following Domains:
Domains: Air, Darkness, Trickery, Water
Subdomains: Cloud, Deception, Night, Oceans, Thievery

When the moon is half full, Mirarae is fully Neutral. She grants equal opportunity to light and dark, good and evil, chaos and law, and favours none. She advises mortals to adjust imbalances in their lives with detachment and control, and recommends magic as the ideal tool. Magic itself is balanced, arcane to divine, and balances mundane life by its very nature. When not dealing with imbalance, the goddess recommends caution and wisdom. Let the light expose danger, let darkness hide you from it.
When she manifests during this phase, Mirarae takes on the form of a handsome human woman with pale skin and platinum blonde hair. Her face is covered by a half mask of ebony, her body half exposed, the covered half draped with a robe of black velvet.
The N phase of Mirarae has the following Domains:
Domains: Air, Darkness, Magic, Water
Subdomains: Arcane, Cloud, Divine, Night, Oceans

When the moon is full, Mirarae is Lawful Neutral. She advocates the redress of imbalance in greater openness. When one creature leaps out from the shadows to face another in the full light, Mirarae applauds. When blades clash, her light shines upon the steel. When fists find flesh and bone, it sparkles in the flying blood. It equally illuminates the fur of hunting werebeasts and charging champions. If there is no wrong to redress, she encourages her followers to enjoy the light in which she bathes them by dance and song, combined with strong drink and rich food.
When she manifests, she assumes the form of a voluptuous Dusk Elf, her dark body exposed for all to see, her eyes and hair shining with all the radiance and colour of the full moon. She is frequently seen riding on the back of a dire Worg or a were-beast of some sort across the night sky. In this phase, she is the mover of the oceans, both feared and beloved of sailors and all those who travel at night, hoping that her light will bless their path. Sadly, were-creatures also howl to her in this phase, as do those unfortunates who suffer from 'lunacy', the madness brought about by the sight of the full moon.
The Lawful Neutral phase has the following Domains:
Domains: Air, Darkness, Madness, Water
Subdomains: Cloud, Insanity, Night, Nightmare, Oceans

Regardless of her phase, Mirarae's favoured weapon is the Khopesh.

Those who worship her and draw spells from her must choose one of her Phases with which they are compatible to focus on; the Phase chosen determines the Domains which a Cleric can access, and its philosophy should influence her worshipper's actions, if only a little.

Relations:
Mirarae maintains friendly contact with Sarenrae, despite their different philosophies and the terrible fate that connects them. The Dawnflower and the Duskflower know that they are balanced, the twin rulers of the skies. As Sarenrae is resigned to the fact that Mirarae eclipses her from time to time, Mirarae is resigned to the fact that one day in the distant future, Sarenrae will be her executioner.
This bond of prophesied death is a secret of Mirarae's faith, carefully preserved only by the high priests and kept from most worshippers, not to mention unbelievers. Neither goddess knows why Sarenrae would ever need to strike Mirarae down, but both know it is inevitable.

Mirarae and Pharasma are on good terms with one another, though they rarely have time to socialize. Cynics may claim that Mirarae is preparing for her inevitable death and hopes to achieve a peaceful afterlife by getting in good with Pharasma, but her clergy claims that she respects the goddess of death because death is the balance to life.

Mirarae's relationship with Groetius, however, is chilly and distant. The two are not openly hostile to one another, but Mirarae resents Groetius' lunar form. Also, the prophecy of her death states that the liberation of Groetius to end Golarion will be the sign that signals her own execution at the hands of Sarenrae. While Mirarae accepts her fate, she is not eager for it to come to pass, and so she prefers for Groetius to stay where he is.

As a patron of Witches and magic in general in her True Neutral phase, Mirarae has a good rapport with Nethys, and there are rumours that the two have been lovers in the past. Any connection they might have is lost the instant Mirarae changes phase, however, which is probably for the best; in his madness, Nethys might ruin what they share if they stayed together for too long.

There is a terrible hatred between Mirarae and Calistria. The Duskflower carries a grudge over the slaying of her Dusk Elf followers, and Calistria is still bitter over the fact that any Elves were lured away from her at all. Neither goddess has launched an open attack yet, but each spins plots of revenge in the shadows, and the clergy of either goddess is rarely safe when that of the other is nearby.

Mirarae despises Zon-Kuthon, who unbalances the darkness completely, and is generally friendly to anyone who wishes to upset his plans.

Like all the other gods of Golarion, she is a staunch enemy of Rovagug, the Rough Beast. She likewise despises fiends of all kinds.


Hello, hello. ^^

As the subject title says, I am eager to play Pathfinder now that the PHB and the Beastiary are out. If there's someone who wants to start a PbP campaign here or is already running one but needs an extra character, please let me know. I'm curious about almost all the character classes, so I shouldn't have any trouble with filling an existing slot.


Hello, hello. I'm looking for a Pathfinder rules-based pbp campaign. If you're running one or thinking of running one and have vacancies, please let me know. Basically, I'm eager to try any of the classes, but most interested in arcane spellcasters; Bard, Sorcerer, Wizard ...