Plus, it was mentioned that the Knights of Ozem had attempted to infiltrate Geb (the nation) with the hopes of freeing the people who get eaten/destroying the nation ruled by the undead. Problem is, paladins tend not to make good infiltrators, so when Geb (the ghost) found out who they were, what they were doing, and why, he immediately went to the worst retaliation he could do.
Actually, that's slightly what I had in mind for a PC if I ever played in this. Though it'd be more like, two former Whispering Wayers who ended up becoming spiritualist & phantom, discovering the truth, and deciding, "We have to stop this right now." Pharasma's lenience could be because of their realization that they were taking solace in evil this whole time.
...Though things might get tricky if, at the end of Book 1, they willingly agree with and submit to the primary antagonist, and the other PCs just stand back and watch.
I do admit, I did like the idea of a CG Gorumite, and imagined one of them doing a wedding:
Then I realized that someone who encouraged self-improvement through constant struggle, even in a non-physical sense, would probably do better in the clergy of Kurgess.
I do like the idea of, "Oh Me, what have I done?" but instead of murder, Aroden could always have faked his death and left humanity to decide on their own collective destiny, instead of being told what to do from on high. That also fits in nicely with the writing staff wanting to avoid PCs' actions being pre-ordained by Fate/Destiny/Prophecy, so that they can adjust the present to make their own future.
Or something like that. It also has the god of humanity realize he was being a human supremecist there, and avoid an explicit suicide.
Yeah, I love the idea of a former Outer God who was driven sane by the plight of mortality. I really want to make well-meaning CN Elder Mythos Cultist of Desna who the mainstream Desnans keep telling not to be so furtive and creepy all the time. Since Desna makes her realm in Cynosure, for Desna, the stars are always right!
I was in a similar situation myself, only in that case, the paladin (of Aroden somehow) was bullying everyone, and the GM allowed it. Another player backed me up when I tattled to the GM, the player refused to believe he did anything wrong, then told us we were over-reacting, but PvP was not allowed.
So the only spell I cast on him was Enlarge Person in the hopes of making him a bigger target when he'd inevitably charge and alert everyone within shouting distance to his presence. When that didn't work, my character announced, "I don't want to be human any more," but nobody realized why. Then I announced I'd hand over a written transcript of all my findings to the Pathfinder Society, apologize to the others for being unable to cope with this undeserving, deluded battle oracle, and left to another continent.
Basically, when I couldn't take it any more, I left and put the same character into another AP that different people were partway through. He was my first character to never get killed in either adventure.
I have four sets of dice. In a sort of Dragonlance fashion, I use the white dice for good characters, the red dice for neutral ones, and black dice for evil ones.
I also have a set of gold sparkly dice, but since those tend to fail me when I need them the most, I lend them out to other people who've forgotten theirs. That'll learn 'em.
Then, an indeterminate time later, the breakthrough was made that crumbled the formerly impenetrable walls between Essences and Traditions, and the first Mystics appeared, followed by the first Technomancers.
Also, d'aww, another uplifting story about places on Golarion that aren't eternally fraught with danger and corruption. I love this one as well.
Just sticking my head in to mention something that may not have been outright stated here before: a likely reason why Tar-Baphon didn't do the sensible thing and persevere in the face of accidental self-nukage?
He finally broke out of his prison. Finally marshalled all his disparate forces. Managed to kill Arazni - again! - and possibly killed her so hard that it even broke her phylactery (incidentally, is there any mention on that happening? If so, it can also make it more plausible that a similar thing happened to TB). He was ready to launch his attack on Absalom, when a bunch of random nobodies showed up, made fun of him, goaded him into using the ultimate weapon he wanted to start using less often and it literally blew up in his face.
The AP mentions, repeatedly, that he is a man of monstrous, bloated ego. It detailed his reaction at being locked in Gallowspire. If he shows up a week later, his forces in disarray, getting mopped up, his Urgathoan help rescinded, his very undead body permanently mutilated, he - he - the being who had successfully tricked Aroden himself, destroyed by some people whose presence he was almost wholly unaware and not even Mythical... I could accept it if he gave up right then and there and went Mythic Demilich in a fit of sour grapes.
As a random real-life aside, the Mayans had flushing toilets and sediment filtration.
Though back to the topic at hand: when it comes to evil societies in Arcadia, I would like to see more about what syrinx civilization is like. Would PCs be able to successfully bargain with a parliament of philosopher-monarchs, or would they consider you to all be tough and stupid for lacking natural flight? Are there populations of syrinx who aren't eternally snooty?
66. Flithy the Sarenite
ABC: Goblin (maybe acolyte) Paladin (Champion?) of Sarenrae
Weapon: Scimitar, fire, piousness, determination to protect everyone from the symbol of all hypocrisy in the world.
Flithy always tried to pray/
I mean, I had PCs who couldn't stand each other, kicking each other for non-lethal damage to wake up whichever one was sleeping.
Also, those same PCs (both of them Chaotically aligned) gave everyone consent to blast everyone in an AoE if they were surrounded by foes. If one of them had resistance to/protection from the incoming energy, so much the better.
2) "Tell my wife that I'll return within the month, the recent loss of face mended. Also - I apologize, I really should learn the better spell - your teeth have fallen out and your trousers are gone."
(My NE wizard wanted to send a message back home, but only had the Nightmare spell. He figured his manor's gardener was the sturdiest of his staff)
Not only did I do that, I also gave him the Serpent-Fire Adept archetype, describing his kundalini as pale green instead of vibrant orange.
I don't have the statblock on hand, but he basically nearly caused a TPK until he ran out of kundalini qi and couldn't fly any more. Then everyone bum-rushed him.
From a few posts up there: yeah, I'd figure you'd have to be suicidal to even consider landing on Azathoth in the first place.
The way I explain it, There's Religious Magic you get from religion, Nature Magic from a connection with nature, fancy, pompous wizardry & sorcery, which involves figuring out how to exert your will upon the world and its forces, and occult magic as "Mind Magic". Since bards can affect people's minds with their words and dance without spells, it seems fitting.
My take? Err on the side of not doing it.
If the rest of the iconics were planning on chartering a boat ride out of Absalom, this would play right into the fears of the "Core Goblin PCs Will Ruin Everything" bunch.
In one AP, our group was an oread druid who just wanted to Elemental Shape (fire) all day and never look back; a tiefling monk who later picked up levels of rogue and kept charging everyone (and was the only Good one in the group); a human Wrath evoker (the only Lawful one in the group) who was the sole voice of reason but never really did much because we were already "the fightiest group with no full BAB". By the time it was her turn, things were usually well in hand, though she eventually got trigger-happy with the Head Explodey spell; and the group's healer, weirdly beloved by all (even those he didn't magically brainwash), the CE inquisitor of Razmir (actually a magician bard). We accidentally managed to save Westcrown, lie to the Hellknights, and bring Razmirism to the downtrodden.
Now we're doing Serpent's Skull, only this time, the druid's a vanara who loves grapes and storms, the monk/rogue's a yellow kobold who's determined to punch cultists, the wizard's built around buffing his combat familiar while he hides and builds things, and the bard's the rapping ratfolk who's oddly good at intimidation, and we have an alchemist whose homonculus is her stuffed moth. Only this time, nobody's evil, everyone's been befriending most of the people in the AP, and when a fight does break out, one of us solos whoever it is we're fighting.
In both APs, the GM has been flabbergasted on a regular basis.
True. According to Greed, everyone and everything is expendable. If your minions are broken, just get some new ones.Of course, now I want to include the Spaceballs reference, complete with Thasillonian mosaics of semi-precious gems that spell out
CONSERVE AIR: BREATHE LESS
Well, I can't wait for non-risky PC kobolds, which I've already said before. This does show the benefits of having PC rules be different from NPC/monster rules.
...I just hope there won't be a flurry of whining about kobolds always being evil and always getting shot on sight, regardless of who's a PC.
I'm okay with Core goblins. I can accept that they were popular, and that this is a way to bank on their popularity. I'm okay with goblin tribes attempting to make peace with longshanks, especially because of all the Pathfinder Good-alignedness with a focus on redemption.
I hope Harsk gets his fair share of awesome time next, or at least soon.
But yeah, that's good webfiction.
Oh, also, I liked the idea of Sorshen retraining out of lust enchantment as a step of atonement. It shows her turning her back on sin, potentially to practice every virtue at once as Xin intended. Plus, she may want to be fully CG at some point, but she's still in the process of atoning for her lifetimes of evil (which should also take a long time).
A similar thing happened with me - their cavalier demanded to meet their leader, and tried to teach them about the virtue of Kindness instead of the sin of Wrath. He did it poorly, but the Wrathlings (as I called them) were certain he would lead them into the Great Outdoors, as foretold, where they would bring glory to Alaznist.
As to the advice, I'd say if the paladin really wants to redeem them, go for it. Until then, have them loudly charge anything that might seem a threat in the defence of their new Highlady. All the horror stuff at the beginning of Book 6 will have extra impact if the PCs watch the Wrathlings get eaten.
The way I handled it is by claiming that Thassilonian lost a bit in the translation to modern Taldane. Specifically, I claimed that "Charity" could also work as "Compassion", and "Kindness" was also used to mean "Justice".
That way, Charity Abjurers can protect people from icky stuff and Kindness Evokers can zap the wicked and help people with gusts of wind and walls of force without sounding inconsistant.
I also agree with a replacement for permanent confusion. If you replace it with a phobia of divine magic, then they'd have to save against spells the cleric casts on them to remove it.
But yes, rolling a 1 and being unable to do anything is a pain. I know Hero Points becoming Core help mitigate it somewhat, though I'm okay with a sensible operating procedure of buying stuff that can reverse permanent problems as soon as they become available. In a pinch, it can add more tension to a fight, where they have to get the status-ending curative to the paralyzed/petrified/blinded/whatever PC. If the PC is just dead, then (aside from Breath of Life), it's less tense because "We'll just raise 'em if we don't wipe."
Also, as to What Rituals Add: letting non-magically-adept people use magic is not only handy for not making an arcane or divine caster required (allowing for more varied groups to work), they also open up more characterization. I like the idea that non-spellcasters can do some magic by slapping together magical equipment they got elsewhere under the proper circumstances, but there's a good chance that something will go horribly wrong, and wizards complain that this is why everyone should just leave tinkering with mysterious forces to the trained scholars.
I always thought that the ultimate source of Pride would be to start up a cult of personality that only you knew was based around yourself. Then, when I saw that mythical ability where you become a demigod, I just figured it was that.
I'm happy about all classes getting their own sub-specialization, and am cautiously optimistic about Defenders of Goodness for each of the Upper Planes.
At first I was disappointed, as in, "Wait, you can sign on for that class and not necessarily be a Forthright Vanguard of Honour & Justice?"
Really, the only letdown for me is them having to be monotheistic. I like it when paragons of virtue get to practice moral pluralism: Enemies attacking? Torag's dogma can help out! The enemy surrendered? Sarenrae knows all about mercy and redemption! In the meantime, Irori helps with self-improvement, and so on. (Also, if you're fighting someone spec'd for disarms, it helps to have multiple holy symbols)
My PCs have finally arrived, but I've re-jiggered how Runeforge works for the PCs (since I'm using Unchained Automatic Bonus Progression).
Fortunately, each PC/cohort/previous PC each has a different sin-or-virtue so they'll all be affected evenly.
In "Their Wing", they'll get +2 on Initiative and all skill/ability checks, +2 to concentration checks, and, only once (though they'll get another use of this if they leave, then re-enter the next day but they won't know that), they can decide that a single happenstance will not affect them. No attack roll or saving throw necessary.
Also, since I've been keeping a RotRL Sin Log since the beginning, they'll get to enjoy a sort of clip show of their relevant acts of sin and virtue as they traverse each hallway leading into each wing.
Recently, my players met a man who was cursed for profaning a temple to Lamashtu; he was immortally stuck in the temple area, and would die only if he left the temple, attempted to reproduce, or was violently killed.
Everyone was deeply saddened, even beyond all the magic emotional scarring he threw at them.