I am getting two different groups put together to play the Strange Aeons Adventure Path. This post will be for the players to first post their characters and then to eventually post their journals.
Some of those that may be interested in reading these posts may be familiar with my other campaigns. (Sadly most have run out of steam and probably wont be completed. The successful one was my first one, Rise of the Runelords which took 2-years to complete for a party of 8-9 players.)
I was heavily influenced from work done by Order of the Amber Die. I read a quote that I really fell in love with, "...it took years of playing optimized characters to realize that even though it made our PCs better--it didn't make our games better." So after reading through a lot of their posts I have blatantly stole a few of their ideas for this campaign.
My rules for their character creation are core rules only for race. 20-point build, natural characteristic maximum is 20, no evil alignments, and must take one of the campaign traits.
During the campaign I am encouraging each player to post a journal (their first post will be their characters). Journals will give the player a d20 reroll that can be used by them to reroll a d20 or to force me to reroll a d20 that was used against them.
I will intend to deal with character death in the same manner as the Order of the Amber Die in that any starting character will be level 1.
I will occasionally make posts updating certain facts or to share entertaining results from the game. Hope you will enjoy this, I am positive I will as well.
I am currently running a Iron Gods campaign for a group of friends and have set this up for their journals and my GM notes for other GMs to read for information and ideas.
When I started up the campaign, I initially didn't give the players any information as to what the campaign was going to be or where. I only asked them to answer one long question. Do you want your characters to be from the town the campaign will begin in, the country the campaign is set in, or from outside the country? I told them not to think about races or classes and instead think of a background ideal. Where is your character's investment in the campaign?
The next week we all got together and I explained that we would build the characters in one setting. Otherwise they have a tendency to waffle around and when the game officially starts everyone is something other than what they had started as.
In order to help curb the power creep that I have noticed in the latter part of campaigns, where the term 'rocket tag' begins to take effect, I put limitations on character building. I have a group of six players which already sets the party number to two higher than the campaign is designed for. (Personally I would love to see Paizo start including CR upgrades in their campaigns for larger party sizes. I think that would be a HUGE boon for any GM and a nice feather in the cap for Paizo's customer service.)
The first thing was character maximums and minimums. We went with a 20-point build. The only stipulation I put on this was that AFTER character racials were applied, the maximum a stat could be was 18 and the minimum a stat could be was 8. The other change that was made will not come into play until level 8 and beyond. I am giving a flat stat maximum of 20 to any stat. (I am not worried about the Aging rules, as they aren't going to come up.) This forces the players to put points in those 'dump stats' or at least bring up their shortfalls. I tried to enforce the idea that the players shouldn't be looking at building a character to solve a puzzle, but instead build a character that will interact within a story.
All to often at character creation people will build, me included, a character that is the best at what they can do. Every trait, feat, stat and to some extent skill, is created to make that character the best at what they do. I feel that this detracts from the other characters in some way and limits character growth. Characters in stories don't develop along an idea of what they want to be, but are shaped around the story as well. In the case of Iron Gods, the Technologist feat and introduction of technology as a whole should vastly change a characters growth.
So I asked the players to keep this in mind during character creation. Whether they actually did this is entirely up to them, but one-trick ponies get boring real quick for the player and I want them to be invested in the game so that everyone, including me, has a great time.
The other thing I did was create my own Players Guide. Using my design tools as a graphic designer I was able to cut/paste a lot of the information that I wanted the players to know about Numeria as a whole. So a general timeline was included, monthly temperature averages, etc. I included a lot of my own write-ups as well. I also set a few limits on the actual Campaign Traits.
All the characters that were from Torch and Numeria were able to pick any of the campaign traits. Those that were from outside Numeria were only allowed to pick Against the Technic League and Stargazer. This gave the characters outside Numeria specific traits that would lure them to Numeria for some reason. Hopefully as the players include their player info and stories you will see those individual choices.
The campaign started for me with all those not from Torch starting in Hajoth Hakados and joining a caravan of smiths and merchants traveling north to Torch. Its on that journey of six days that the players find 'kindred spirits' of a sort and become quick friends. They actually arrived in Torch four days before the torch goes out. When using the timeline provided in Fires of Creation that gives the characters ten days to become acquainted with the players from Torch.
Right now I am going to give every creature the Advanced Template with maximum hit points and not increase their numbers. (My Rise of the Runelords campaign with nine players was nuts enough with advanced everything and increased numbers, larger maps to accomodate everything...ugh.)
So far the only encounter was with the malfunctioning repair drone. Also the great PC monkeywrench had only three PCs fight it as the others had gone off to make preparations for going to the tunnels. In the end the unchained rogue killed it with a flanking buddy, the gunslinger was a hit point speed bump and knocked unconscious, while the bard dished out some bonuses and revived the gunslinger for the flank.
The player list is currently a dwarven cleric of Brigh, a human gunslinger, and elven unchained rogue, a human swashbuckler(/soon to be investigator), a variant multiclassing Bard with clerical tendencies, and a human two-hand fighter archetype.
I am giving all players a boon if they write their stories here like I did with my Rise of the Runelords campaign. A free d20 reroll that they can use for themselves, another player or to make me reroll a d20.
Hopefully other GMs will enjoy the read, and Pathfinder lovers will enjoy the stories. I encourage anyone to post within the thread to ask questions to me or the players. I ask that we keep the spoilers of future events limited to PMs. Thanks and enjoy! o/
Under the rules for polymorph is the sentence, If the form you choose grants these benefits, or a greater ability of the same type, you gain the listed benefit.
So my question is, if Beast Shape says, for example, Swim 30 feet and the animal you are morphing into has a swim speed of 40 feet, what is your swim speed?
I assumed the swim speed was 30 feet because the spell caps(?) at 30 feet, but the rules for polymorph seem to contradict this. Hence my confusion.
Anyone able to assist me on this one or am I just misreading this? (Which I bet I am doing like normal.)
Quick question I hope.
Do you gain the abilities of animals when wildshaping at higher levels?
For example, the Compsognathus is a Tiny creature (Beast Shape II) has Poison which is not listed under Beast Shape II. But when the druid is able to use Beast Shape III, Poison is listed as a ability that can be gained. So at that level does the Compsognathus then have the Poison ability?
So I was looking at the Earth domain (metal sub-domain) ability Metal Fist and I learned that its a little underwhelming when compared to the other 'fist' abilities.
Wooden Fist from the Plant domain makes your unarmed attacks do lethal damage and not provoke AoO.
The spell Stone Fist lasts for 1 min/lvl, ignore hardness of 7 or less, does 1d6 lethal damage and does not provoke AoO.
Metal fist (which I would think is better than Stone Fist) only does 1d6 + STR but as non-lethal damage, bypasses DR less than 11 and doesn't provoke AoO.
I get the STR bonus in damage, but really don't the other two do the same? Why can't Metal Fist do lethal damage?
EDIT: Especially when a Gauntlet (which is generally made of metal) does lethal damage.
So I was doing some reading and found that the wording for barbarian rage is listed as "At each level after 1st, she can rage for 2 additional rounds." It doesn't say 'at each barbarian level after..."
So does that mean a level 2 character who has a 10 CON, and took barbarian at 1st level has a total of 6 rounds of rage per day or 4 rounds of rage per day?
The Living Monolith prestige class grants you the Soul Stone ability which allows you to cast Enlarge Person on yourself 3 times per day. This ability transforms to Righteous Might at 5th level with Greater Ka Stone. No where does it say the duration for the effect.
Since the spells are 1 min per level and 1 round per level respectively, I am left to wonder if that is Living Monolith level or total character level.
Has there been a ruling on this?
So I am unsure if Advice is the best area for this question but anyway.
I am working on the spellbooks that have been claimed as loot in my Rise of the Runelords game and I realized that Divination isn't a Thassilonian school. So no Detect Magic, Detect Poison, and Read Magic. Although, the wizard class says specifically that all wizards can cast Read Magic in the spellbook section.
So how exactly do I build spellbooks from ancient Thassilon? Do they even have spells from the Divination and Universal schools? I guess no, but the lack of Detect Magic seems kinda . . . wrong.
Any ideas? Am I missing something obvious?
Our group is looking into starting up this campaign in the near future, and I tend to come up with multiple ideas for characters that fit well within an AP for fluff reasons.
One of the characters I am thinking about is a Human (Kellid) Ranger (Infiltrator archetype). Originally from Realm of the Mammoth Lords, Tolguth.
My question and is the subject of the post. What animal companion is going to be fluffy enough to validate showing up around 4th level? Or should there be a narrative animal written into a back story that the character is working with for the day he gets Hunter's Bond?
Early plans are making me think about pushing the Guardian path because I like the idea of making a tough companion (whether it lives until the end will be left up to the dice gods).
Any suggestions as to my question and/or other pertinent advice for a Ranger that I can chew on?
We are getting ready to begin our Shattered Star campaign and as such I tend to write campaign journals throughout the adventure. I convinced our group (5 players) to go with the classic Fighter, Rogue, Cleric, Wizard combo with the fifth player picking anything they wanted. I decided on the fighter and decided to put together a Shoanti Thunder and Fang style warrior. I initially looked at the Viking archetype and was going to go that route but decided against it in the end as I had played an Urban Barbarian/Cleric in our last campaign and I wanted to avoid the Rage mechanic, plus I happen to love vanilla fighters.
We are going with a 25 point build and I decided on
Backstory (I apologize for poor writing skills, you have been warned.)
On the day of his rite of passage, Akrem’s hands, arms and feet were bound in the heavy hemp rope used on their fishing boats by his father. The sun was still below the eastern horizon and had not yet risen for adequate light. “Remember to remain calm,” was all Akrem’s father said before his mother and father tossed Akrem from the cliff into the fjord waters far below with the quah watching. Even though it was early spring, the waters were still cold from the late winter. Knowing that to begin the struggle of removing the bonds would be futile until he reached the bottom, Akrem remained as still and calm as he could. As he slowly sank, he spotted a tunnel in the cliff wall below the surface of the water. The tunnel was easily large enough to swim through and Akrem decided to investigate its length at a later time.
Akrem was brought back from the prospect of investigating the tunnel when he felt his feet reach the sandy bottom of the sea. Quickly he began looking for a rock that would allow him to begin cutting his bonds when he spied the corpse of an outlander. Jutting from the skeletal corpses chest was a sword and even though it was badly rusted, Akrem knew that it would cut his bonds quicker than any rock he may find. Reaching the corpse was difficult but Akrem again heard his fathers voice in his head as he reminded himself to stay calm. After a few moments of gently sawing his arms across the sharpened edge of the sword the ropes loosened enough for him to break the bonds. Once his arms were free, Akrem pulled the sword from corpses back and cut those bonds that held his feet in check.
Discarding the sword, Akrem quickly began swimming back to the surface. As he passed the tunnel his curiosity took hold and he entered the tunnel. Knowing that what he was doing was foolish Akrem pushed on and was rewarded by surfacing into a small cave. The walls were alight with a strange fungus that gave off a small amount of light. As he pulled himself from the water to look about he found several chests setting on an outcropping of rock. Within the chests were piles of sun colored coins, rings and chains with bright colored stones, and other fanciful things that Akrem didn’t understand. For several minutes Akrem looked about holding the items before setting them back down as if they were fragile.
With a start Akrem suddenly realized that he had been looking about for long period of time. Unsure of how long he had lingered in the cave, Akrem dove into the waters and furiously swam back to the surface. Just as the rising suns light began touching the waters where he had been dropped into, Akrem surfaced to the delight of the quah. It was at this moment that the quah shamans decided that Akrem would now be called Akrem Sun Diver.
On the advice of his father Akrem never spoke of the cave or what he had found hidden within. Over the years Akrem found himself returning to the cave periodically to investigate its treasures. He was fascinated with the multitude of coins and the raised drawings of faces to people he would never meet. The detail and craftsmanship in the rings and neck chains with their oddly cut and shaped stones of every color in the arch of light after a rainstorm.
On one of Akrem’s visits to the cave he encountered the outlanders that had deposited their gold and jewels in the cave for safe keeping. Slaver pirates from Riddleport had arrived and before Akrem could escape he was captured and branded on the side of his neck. Although he struggled the metal bands on his wrists would not break, and neither would his spirit. He fought every day against the pirates and was beaten with a wooden cudgel for his troubles. In time Akrem relented to their demands because with the beatings came the loss of food and weakness of the body eventually wore down the spirit. It was during this time that Akrem learned to speak the common tongue from the other slaves on board the ship.
One day the ship pulled into the Riddleport harbor and Akrem stood in awe of the great stone arch that was built over the bay. Strange symbols that looked like the shoanti language were carved into its sides. The city was like nothing Akrem had ever seen and the air smelled of filth and the sea. There were people everywhere Akrem looked. There were people moving cargo onto and off of the largest ships Akrem had ever seen. There were people moving about on the wooden piers working on moving the cargo or repairing the docks. People were crawling about on the sides of large stone and wood homes repairing damage from some super storm. Once the ship had docked Akrem and several other slaves were re-shackled and pushed onto the shore where they were led to a large wooden platform where other shackled slaves were being sold to captains and peoples who bartered for them like someone bartered for a chicken.
While on the auction block, an older man with lightly olive colored skin and almond shaped eyes purchased Akrem. The older man, although small, stood straight and proud and in the shoanti language introduced himself as Yamoko Iatsudo, a Pathfinder and traveler. Speaking Akrem’s native language, a language that he had not heard spoken for a year surprised Akrem and the old man chuckled at Akrems look of shock. Continually speaking in shoanti, Iatsudo explained that he detested the idea of slaves and that he did what he could to free them. In Riddleport though, his actions were limited to purchasing the slave and then freeing them when they were far enough away from Riddleport. Iatsudo then waved his hand over the shackles and said something in an unknown tongue and the manacles opened and dropped from his wrists.
Iatsudo took Akrem to a tavern where he ordered food and drink. While they waited for their food Akrem was presented an elixir that would heal the damage he had taken at the hands of the pirates. The magical elixir did its trick as Akrem could feel the bruises that covered his body flush with heat and then fade along with any aches. As Akrem devoured several bowls of fish stew and hunks of bread Iatsudo explained that he was going to his homeland of Tian Xia far to the north.
He had hoped to purchase help from a mercenary for his journey but learned of the slave auction and thought his money could go to better use there. Iatsudo then asked if Akrem would like to accompany him as his bodyguard and as payment, Iatsudo would teach Akrem all he could. Iatsudo explained that Akrem was free to leave and return to his quah but he was also welcome to travel with Iatsudo. Since Iatsudo had shown honor in his deeds by freeing Akrem from his bondage and showing proper tribute to his culture by introducing himself in shoanti, Akrem agreed to accompany Iatsudo on his journey.
For three years the two traveled together, all the way to Tian Xia and back, and true to his word Iatsudo taught and showed Akrem all he could. He learned of ancient Thasillon and its rulers. He learned how they had enslaved his people and used them as their armies. His final lesson was of Magnimar, its people, its grandeur, and its underbelly. The city was so much larger and so unlike what he had seen in Riddleport. Iatsudo told Akrem of the Pathfinder lodge in Magnimar and that he was always welcome there. Akrem took his leave from Iatsudo, whom he now regarded as a close friend, and decided to discover what Magnimar had to offer on his own. Akrem wandered the city reflecting on the large statues that dotted the cityscape and thought of his home. It had been almost five years since he was taken and his shame at not heeding his fathers advice prevented Akrem from following up on his wish of going home.
Eventually he came to the Serpent’s Run where its owner Jorston “Axetongue” Droaeb hired Akrem to fight in his grand arena. The fights were fair and fake, but the coin and cheers from the crowd were real enough. Akrem learned a great many things about fighting and met several other shoanti that worked at the Serpent’s Run. In time the desire to travel and adventure blunted the cheers of the crowd, and so Akrem returned to Iatsudo and the Pathfinder Society.
I am tired of sifting through old posts (2008) with 3.5 rules on this and the more recent rules which are not answering my question.
I understand the rules now on using the Thunder and Fang feat.
The question I am having a hard time finding is what happens (when equipped with a Klar and Eearthbreaker) when you swing the earthbreaker two handed?
There are rules for bucklers and two-handed weapons but not in regards to this (because the Klar is treated as a Light weapon). Which leads me to believe that if in the middle of fighting with two weapons, aka Thunder and Fang, that if you wish to switch to two-handed with the earthbreaker then you have to Free action drop the Klar to do so.
Am I correct in this assumption?
Currently gearing up for a new campaign (home brew, not an AP), and am looking for some advice. All I know is that the game will be in an urban setting (mostly) and with lots of undead. The word the GM used was 'gritty.'
For me I feel that every concept I am coming up with very closely resembles something I have already played. So I tend to talk myself out of an idea before I really invest any real thought into it.
So, using that knowledge of the setting, what would you play and why? Maybe your answers will spark an idea, that I will just outright steal the answer and use it myself. ;)
I am a little late getting to the Mythic playtest, but I am thinking of running an adventure path with characters starting at 1st level and having 1 Tier of Mythic added to them as well.
I am currently running Rise of the Runelords (anniversary edition) right now, but am thinking of taking the best 4 role players of that group and a Friday game I play in and having a once a month game using the Mythic play test rules (until the actual rules come out).
Right now, seeing how RotRL is set up and playing in Second Darkness, I can see the difference of 3.5/early Pathfinder and how the RotRL AE is specifically geared to Pathfinder. I would like the AP to mimic what I see in the AE game.
What Adventure Path would you recommend I use for the campaign and why?
Getting ready to have my "army" enter into the Catacombs of Wrath upper level (Burnt Offerings) and am curious if other GMs have had their players take area B2 or B3 to enter into the CoW and in very short order make their way to B13 and confront Erylium?
I am debating removing the tunnel leading from B1 to B2 and removing the opening from B1 to B3 to push them into the middle of the CoW so there is a greater chance of encountering Koruvus before the Erylium fight.
My Friday night group has decided to run this campaign and I have come here looking for advice in the past and noticed a distinct lack of posts within this forum. I can assume that is because it is either old (which it is) and everyone has moved on to greener and newer adventure paths or the fact that the apparent plot leaves something to be desired (to put it lightly).
So to helpfully generate at least some discussion or traffic within this forum I thought I would post my characters journal as we play. It will be in character (as much as I can) with player comments noted in areas.
My character is a chaotic neutral Half-Orc Cleric of Gorum with a 25 point build.
Tsadok, like many of Riddleport is an orphan. He does not know who his parent were, and he does not care to know. He grew up on the streets fighting for every meal, and for a dry place to rest. Because of his penchant for violence he came to the attention of Boss Croat and worked for many years as a Hushman within his organization.
It was during his employment that he learned of Gorum as one of the marks Tsadok was sent to kiss was himself a devout follower. The fight became an intense affair, enough so that Tsadok was horrifyingly scarred from repeated blows to the head from his targets punch dagger. When Tsadok finally gained the upper hand in the fight, after breaking his targets left arm and biting off his right hand, the mark thanked Tsadok for a worth fight. Explaining that Gorum was proud of his follower this day. The remaining minute before he bled to death the mark told Tsadok of Gorum and his teachings, and from that moment on Tsadok has followed the will of Gorum.
Tsadok would then announce his presence to every mark that he was sent to kiss, making sure that the fight was not perceived by Gorum as a cowardly attack. All attacks were during the day, never at night. The more that was witness to the attack the better. Several marks would run, and this drove Tsadok mad with anger. He would chase the individual through town bellowing his name, calling him a coward. Eventually Boss Croat grew tired of Tsadok’s fervent beliefs and fired him.
Since then, Tsadok has thirsted for battle. Hiring on to any who would hire him if it promised the chance at a fight. He even considered going to Clegg Zincher and fighting in the arena. It was then that he learned of the Gold Goblin Gambling Hall tournament and subsequent reopening. The possibility of becoming a bouncer a lure that offered more coin and less strings . . .
The day of the big tournament was about to begin but the Golden Goblin was closed until late afternoon and I spent that time wandering the wharf district hoping to find someone spoiling for a fight, or to catch one of Riddleport's many cut-purses in the act. Sadly that was not to be and I found the day slowly move to the late afternoon.
Arriving soon after the Golden Goblin opened I was impressed with the patrons waiting to enter. It would seem there was a lengthy note that was being read by all before they could enter and there seemed to be some hesitation by those ahead of me. When I finally advance far enough to read the contract as it were I laughed heartily at its intent. Knowing the document to be playing to the theme of cheating the devil of his gold the contract was a nice touch, so I signed and entered within.
(PLAYER COMMENT: Almost everyone in our party that read it balked at the "contract" and it took the DM explaining that it wasn't a "real" contract but a thematic element. The idea that the campaign would end right at the start was rather humorous to me.)
Upon entering I was greeted to the site of many of its workers dressed as sultry succubi and attendant devils. The bouncers did not look to pose any threat and some of those that knew me or of me, tended to drift to opposite sides of the room. There even seemed to be some sort of imp or small creature in a cage above the gambling house.
An hour or so after I entered the owner entered gave a rather flourishing speech and started the tournament. I admit that the games were challenging and my luck was not with any of them. Although in the end I more than doubled my money it wasn't because of the games of chance.
(PLAYER COMMENT: We didn't spend to much time on the games of chance only doing roulette and listening to a few insults. We did play long enough that one of the players almost won the tournament.)
Later in the evening a sudden burst of magic and bright light blinded me as an individual told us all to drop to the floor and no one would be hurt. A small scuffle from near the exit told me that someone came in from the entrance and disabled the bouncers there. Words of magic were spoken on the stage and movement told me they were grabbing the chest of silver and making for the exit.
Roaring in anger at not being able to see and the throng of bodies on the floor making any movement difficult at best I screamed at the mage that when my eyes returned I would cut him from stem to stern. To be honest I have no idea what that actually means but I have heard many a captain in Riddleport use that threat and it always seemed to work.
(PLAYER COMMENT: Nothing like waiting two weeks to finally play and get taken out of a fight with a crappy roll on a save.)
Sadly I was unable to back up my threat as the sorcerer was dead by the time my eyes returned. It seem that a few people had fought back against the attackers, a dwarf wielding a greatsword covered in blood looking to have been the largest killer of the thieves. After a later visual inspection, most of the blood was his own, a cleric of the Drunken Hero offered him aid.
With the raid over many of the owners employees quit, afraid of more attacks. It would seem that my hope to find work as a bouncer would in fact pay off. The owner in fact did offer such a position, but instead he offered a partnership. If we helped and the Golden Goblin thrived than we would share in the profits. The idea of such a partnership would probably be short lived but I was willing to try, especially if fights were to become common place.
Those in attendance and soon full partners included the dwarf (Barbarian), and four humans (Monk/Bard, Cleric, Rogue) and a strange looking gaunt and pale woman (summoner).
In fact the very next day a group of drunken sailors came in and eventually started to cause trouble. Proclaiming that they were robbed of their coin the previous night and jumping up on the tables. As much as I thought that removing them from the table with my great sword would be satisfying, it would not honor Gorum since they were drunk and relatively unarmed. Not to mention the mess it would create. Instead asking for Gorums blessing I increased in size and yelled at them to get down. (Intimidate) The dwarf partner on the other hand drew his weapon and thus so did the sailors.
Their skill with a blade was poor and made even poorer with drink. A small tussle ensued leaving one of the sailors dead (and making a mess of one of our tables) the largest of their band wrapped in my arms and the other two wetting their britches. The Gendarm arrived shortly after taking the sailors into custody.
The next few days showed an increase in patrons, the word beginning to spread that the Golden Goblin was the best place to spend your evenings and your coin.
The next night I had an interesting dream . . .
Dream sequence provided by GM:
You stand in an open plain, a recent battlefield. The sky, a striking crimson; whether it is dawn or dusk you cannot say. In the background you hear the sounds of crackling fire, the groans of wounded soldiers, and a slow rhythmic pounding sound. As you struggle to come to terms with these strange surroundings, you begin to realize that the pounding sound seems to be getting louder. You now feel the ground begin to tremble underfoot. Then suddenly, you see a form materializing on the horizon. As the figure approaches you are struck with a distinct combination of awe and fear. This being stands twice and a half the size of any man, clad from cap to boot in black iron armor, its eyes burning with a mystical flame. You know deep down that you stand in the presence of Gorum, Lord of Battles!
"I set a task before you, stripling." As he speaks you can feel your bones rattle. As he stares at you, you feel your face sting as if you sat too rear a camp fire. It take all you fortitude to continue to meet his gaze.
"You will seek my blade." He continued, either oblivious or unmoved by your discomfort.
"You will find the Fang of Kathalphas." With each word you felt as if your bones may snap, and your skin blistered as he stared.
"Firsts you must acquire my token. It will guide you onwards." You dropped you your knees, feeling crushed, unable breathe. No longer can you meet his gaze. You can smell your skin as it begins to cook.
"My token lingers in the hands of an unworthy. A fool and coward unworthy of its might." You hear him say as you crumple to the floor, your skin melting off your face.
"Seek him on the crow's path. Find my token. Seek my blade!"
You shoot up from your bed. Covered in a thin sheen of sweat. You instinctively touch your face, making sure it remains intact. Was it a dream then? Shaken, you rise and prepare yourself for the day. "A dream, or perhaps something more." you ponder as you try to shake a pair of burning eyes from your mind.
Looking at making an aasimar bard for an upcoming campaign and was looking at the Favored Class Bonus:
RULE: Choose one Bardic Performance; treat the Bard as 1/2 level higher when determining the effects of that performance.
So if I were to choose Inspire Courage, and raise it by 1/2 point per level (rounding down) does that mean that at 4th level (considered 6th level for the performance) the bonus would increase from +1 to +2? Then gain a +3 at 8th level (considered 12th level for the performance), and max out at +4 at 12th level (considered 18th for the performance)?
Understanding that Second Darkness was one of Paizo's earliest adventure paths the Players Guide is not on par with their later guides such as Skull & Shackles and Rise of the Runelards - Anniversary Edition. The addition of the new Trait mechanic taking a good chunk of the space in the Players Guide.
Do any experienced players and/or GMs have any advice similar to the tips given in the respective Player Guides on pages 3-4 of Skull & Shackles and page 3 of RotRL-AE for Second Darkness?
The Campaign Traits are the only indicator of what tips there are and that is woefully inadequate when you look at what is provided by the later Player Guides.
Recently I asked for some advice in the RotRL forum because I am running a group of 8 players through the campaign. Seven of the players are new to the Pathfinder system, but all of us have been gaming together more than 20 years, some even longer. When setting up the campaign, I gave them the player tips from the players guide, and told them to pick a class they "wanted to play" and also to keep that secret from the other players. I wanted a desire to play the class from the player, I didn't want to hear, I'll play the cleric since no one took it. Turns out it worked out well.
So I intend on having my players come here and post their journals of the nights adventure, their perspectives, etc. If they do that I give them a boon for the next week, one d20 reroll for either them or to make me reroll against them.
Because I gathered their backstories, I will include them here as well.
I will also update the post by explaining what I put them up against, and the minor changes I may do to increase the difficulty of the encounters.
I hope you all enjoy!
My family name is Eld, as far as you know. As to how that came to be, I will be happy to tell you. I was born to an aristocratic family, a trading house, in the Taldorian city of Cassomir. I learned my father’s Merchant trade, but knew from an early age that as the seventh son, I had no chance of inheriting anything substantial. Indeed, on my sixteenth birthday, I was given a fine set of travelling clothes, a pack of gear, and told in no uncertain terms to go out in the world and seek my fortune.
As a child, I had always listened earnestly to the stories of my mother’s brother (the black sheep of the family), a traveler and scoundrel who was almost always away on some sort of adventure. I was fascinated by his tales of faraway lands and strange people, and wanted to visit them for myself one day. One day when I was about fifteen, a parcel arrived for my mother; it was a locked box and a note from her brother that it should be given to me. There was no key, and I was so fascinated by the idea of what might be inside that I never got round to actually opening it and looking.
My first night on the road, as I made a crude camp on the edge of the Verdant Forest, I dug through the pack in search of the hard edge that had been digging into my back all day. I had been feeling quite sorry for myself, and in truth a bit homesick, even though the weather was fine and my purse was full. My spirits lifted when I found that my mother had packed my uncle’s box in the bottom of the pack; affixed to the top with a bit of wax was a note from her, and a small brass key. What the note said is no concern of yours; the key of course fit my uncle’s box. Inside was a wonder: a variety of small intricate tools, some handwritten notes, a number of parchment cylinders, and a heavy pistol in somewhat less than pristine condition.
I set the box and its contents aside, and the pistol lolled loosely in my right hand as I tried to make out the notes by the light of my tiny campfire. Thus engrossed, I never heard the bandit as he stepped into my camp, and he actually had to clear his throat to gain my attention. “Put up yer hands, lordling,” he said as he drew his short bow, “and let me see yer purse. If it’s heavy enough, I might let ye live.” I was shocked to say the least to see this apparition less than three feet before me. He was gaunt, had only one eye (though he could hardly miss me at such a range), and his clothes were little more than filthy rags. I dropped the pages I was reading and began to raise my hands.
As the pistol came up, a stray spark from my small fire landed on the priming pan of the gun. The roar as it discharged was deafening, and I flinched aside, just as the ruffian’s arrow grazed my ear. As it turned out, I could hardly miss at such a close range either; my assailant’s clothes actually caught fire from the powder discharge, and his body was blown into the brush on the far side of my small clearing in the woods. I heard footsteps running away, and bodies crashing off into the woods as the accomplices of my mugger were apparently even more startled by the discharge than I. Still, I thought it prudent to gather my meager belongings and quit the scene of carnage before they regained their courage and thought to return. I spent the rest of that night ensconced in a tree.
The very next day, I read my uncle’s instructions and followed them to the letter, disassembling and cleaning the weapon, and reloading from the meager store of cartridges he had bequeathed me. I was soon to discover that gunpowder and shot as such were hard to come by, but the raw materials to make them were decidedly less so. In my travels, I fell in with a Kelishite Alchemist while on a voyage across the Inner Sea, and he was kind enough to instruct me in the art of mixing gunpowder in exchange for some services. No, not that kind of services. Not those either. Mostly running errands and carrying heavy things from one place to another, and using my trusty pistol in guarding his person.
At length, my explorations have brought me to Sandpoint, where once again my attention to my uncle’s tales has stood me in good stead. Upon my arrival, I noticed a sign for an establishment called the “Goblin Squash Stables.” This seemed familiar to me, and thinking for a moment, I recalled one of my uncle’s stories about a goblin uprising near Sandpoint, and that he had assisted a man named Daviren Hosk in putting paid to it. Seeking only to verify in some small way one of the beloved stories of my youth, I stepped into the establishment and inquired as to whether Mr. Hosk was the proprietor, and if he might be about. A massive man with graying hair and grizzled beard bustled out, saying that yes, he was Daviren Hosk and who wants to know? As he took in my face and stance (and probably the pistol on my hip as well), he went pale as a ghost. I hastened to introduce myself as my uncle’s nephew, and asked if he were alright. He regained a more healthy coloration, and said, “Sure and I thought you was your uncle himself, come to claim what was owed for his part in that nasty business back when. Dead you say? Then I suppose I’ll have to make right by you.” With that, he made me fine gifts; a mount to befit a prince, along with tack, saddle, bit and bridle, feed, and free lodgings for the beast for a month! Thinking back to my uncle’s story (my father had always considered him a shameless braggart), I began to think that perhaps he had, if anything, been understated in his tellings. At that moment, I determined to take for myself his surname of Eld, and I will live as such for the rest of my days. Let me be known as Uther Eld.
I myself was born to a spice merchant in the capital city of Katheer. Katheer is second in mercantile and trading only to the great city Katapesh. I even remember my former father’s more humble beginnings. I am no stranger to the pang of hunger so debilitating that one can hardly move a spoon and save oneself. Through some bizarre play of luck and patience my former father was able to make his business thrive into a very prosperous trade. He now has more than five cargo ships to his name as well as multiple store fronts in the city. His greatest vice, in my belief, and the main reason I sit here today, is the pride in number and variety of slaves he possesses.
The most common breed of slave in Qadira is the Gnoll; Katheer and my former father are no exception. I have always been against the owning of others, odd for a Keleshite I know, but I have always been a bit off by my society’s mores anyway. I came to enjoy many an evening dining with our Gnoll slaves, now please get that disgusted look off your face, it does not suit you well my friend. As I was saying, dining with our Gnolls came to be a most agreeable experience for me. Once you get over their mannerisms they become the most hilarious company. I am quite bewildered they make decent workers for all the humor they have to suppress. My friends, the stories told by Gnolls have to be the most entertaining tales on this plane. We came to be quite fond of one another; in trade of knowledge and even some tutering, they taught me their odd language of yips and barks. I have even been told I “speak” their tongue better than they do. I came to the conclusion that such fine members of society did not deserve to be servants. If anything they should be the world’s greatest bards! Regardless I brewed up a scheme to free my cackling friends.
I came up with a harmless little plan to free my friends. Poisoning my former family’s dinner was far too easy. Again with that look, be well my friend I have not yet ended my reiteration. It was a simple poison to put them into a deep sleep, and just between you and I, my former mother quite enjoyed the peace and tranquility of those unwaking hours. Then I had the guards simply look the other way as I lead the group of Gnolls towards the docks. This raised no suspicion as it is commonplace to sell one’s troublemaking slaves at the docks during all hours of the day. A ship I had long known to be like-minded took them to a land that they could start anew. I know not where but have faith that they arrived as promised.
The next day my former father was furious. Yes, I am aware I didn’t need to state that, I was simply using it to segue into my next point; now if you continue to interrupt me I will find little quarrel altering your physic that even a Tian would laugh at your endowment. So, being slighted most his workforce and pride, my former father stripped me of my family name and forbade me from coming home. He gave me a small pouch of gold and I decided to head north. Frankly this is pretty much best possible outcome. He could have sent my insubordinate self to jail or worse, but he would then have had to deal with even more loss of face. This way he could tell the story as the Gnolls kidnapping me however, anyone who even remotely knows my former family would be aware of this fabrication.
What do I do you ask? Not much of a story there. I was poor and unable to obtain education until my teenage years. Though it would have been simple I never joined the ranks of the many hordes of children forced to steal and beg for money only to be beaten if they didn’t bring enough home or worse yet, to some keeper. Instead, I went to the plains north of the city and learned a small amount of how to listen to nature and live off the land. I very nearly left home to live solely in the wilds and try my luck there, however, my former father turned things around right on the brink of my desertion. I then had enough to attend classes and found much joy in the many histories of this land. Most importantly this is where I learned of my love for the alchemical world. It was from this love that I chose my current title of Friedrich Beilstien, an ancient scholar known as one of the founders of alchemy. He wrote the first book encompassing alchemical reagents and many of the formulae still used today. This book was titled Handbuch der Organichen Chemie. It is a shame but very few even in my field are taught this fact, many prefer to claim his work as their own and simply rename the formulae to their liking and self gratification.
I delved deep into the studies of altering our physical existence through the use of substances we find everywhere. I learned to make near magic-like effects happen through the use of elixirs of my own design. Explosives are everywhere, literally everywhere. It takes almost nothing at all to make something unstable enough to explode. That ale you’re drinking, give me five seconds and it could be a bomb. No, I will not tell you how, so don’t ask. I leaned of history as I stated earlier, the cyclopean cities that once dotted this very countryside, their language and that of the Thessilonian have intrigued me a great deal. So I decided to head for Varisia straight off.
First from the docks of Katheer I took a sailing ship to Almas, the capital of Andoran. From hence I procured a river boat to take me up the Andoshen River to the pleasant logging town of Falcon’s Hollow. From Falcon’s Hollow I was able to journey with a merchant caravan into the Cheliax haunted country of Isger, stopping at Dustspawn. Left after just a few days rest through the mountain pass to Druma’s, Profit’s Flow River. I walked along the side of the river until reaching Macridi on the outskirts of the Palakar Forest. Whence from I took yet another river boat to the Capital, Kerse, and found a ship to bring me to war-torn Nirmathas. Beginning in tamron I followed the Marideth river until arriving at the eastern foothills of the Mindspin Mountains and travelled by foot once more to the Shining River and the pneumatic wonder known as the city Skelt.
I spent some weeks in Skelt allowing my body to rest after all the traveling it had partaken. During this time I was able to marvel at the many manufactured channels the boats where raised by to get to the city, which rests at the top of a cliff. Sorry, makes it kind of hard to follow with me jumping around like that. I fallowed the rivers north and west again until I finally found myself in Varisia. It was in Korvosa that I learned of this festival opening a new church to the seven and I simply could not miss such an event. What grand timing as well, for I had time to make it to Sandpoint if I played my hand well, and indeed I did. I was lucky enough to find a ship to take me to Magnimar by way of the Conqueror’s Bay and finally on to Sandpoint, with just about a week to sleep before the festival starts up. That my friends is how I came to be here, now if you will be so kind as to excuse me, there is a bed upstairs calling to me even now as I speak these last few words. Drink my friends, be happy, for Shelyn saw to it that I am here, and in one piece none-the-less.
Eilarolyn “Lynn” Tarsis
Due to my parents’ occupations, I have spent much time trapped in rooms and libraries reading and listening to lectures. Tons of books and tomes, some of which I had to learn, so I could sit in classes. It wasn’t until the last 10 years or so that my parents actively started pushing me toward something to start my life.
I was unable to dedicate myself wholly to magic. I could focus when necessary and learn proper methods, but was always drawn to the fighting fields. Studying both seemed to satisfy me, but lead to mediocre reviews by my teachers as I did neither as well as those classmates wholly devoted. Some of my teachers were glad to see me go, as I seemed to be at the center of disruption. Between girls being angry with me and others tending to have mishaps, the fingers always seemed to point in my direction.
My parents sent me to work with Master Sidthor. Master Sidthor mixed the use of weapon and magic into one. There would be times during studies that he would instantly spring to his feet and order an attack or sparring lesson, only to immediately put me back to studying. Or immediately call for spells in the middle of sparring or actively have me attack using both.
I came to that point where Master Sidthor said I’d be better off going out on my own to learn more. I told my parents, packed some stuff and left for Sandpoint to start my adventure. My parents gave me enough to get me to Sandpoint. I sailed from Greengold to Tamran. Walked, hitched from Tamran to Korvosa. Sailed from Korvosa to Sandpoint.
Sheldor, the Elf
Where he is from: The foothills of the mountains to the east are where I call home. These foot hills are strategically located in between the lands of the Winterwall Glacier to the west and the northern mountain range of the Realm of the Mammoth Lords. This is where I was born and raised, this land of long bleak winters and ancient magical invaders. Here is where I learned the ways of the natural world and the balance between survival and coexisting with nature and the natural order.
History: It is no secret that my family and clan are Fey in essence. That is obvious due to our ability to manipulate nature through spells and our almost symbiotic relationship with both plant and animal. The ancients have passed down from generation to generation the oral tradition of our beginnings. The dreadful Ice Queen and her minions invaded from the far north long ago. It was her invasion of the lands southward that brought my early ancestors to where we are now. At one point, one of my fore-fathers diverged from the dark path and we have lived on somewhat seclusion ever since. The Queen still demands our allegiance and to be brought back into the fold of evil. She has made her Winter Witches responsible for “convincing” my clan to rejoin. Too much time has passed and that will never happen.
Arriving in Varisia (My story): My people have a long running tradition. This tradition is to venture out into the southern lands to experience life and to gather knowledge to bring back to the clan. These experiences are shared while sitting around communal fires and enduring the long winter days and nights. We share these stories when it is the coldest and we are gathered together keeping warm and passing the time still the great thaw comes again. As I travel through these strange and exotic lands, I keep a journal of facts and encounters with others. This will ensure an accurate record of my venture and further enlighten the elders and members of my clan so they may understand how the world is faring outside our cold and rugged lands.
Half-Elven Ninja Witch:
Story to come
The only other Pathfinder experienced person at the table. Does not have internet, doubtful I will get a story, but will add if I do get one.
Synopsis written by GM
An orphaned child rescued by Varisian troubadours and raised by them. Fantastical tales of long fiction where told as to the whereabouts of his rescue and orphanage. Now a cleric of Desna and enjoys the open road.
Story to come
My gaming group comprises of 10 people (thats including me) and I am taking the helm at GMing for a while. I and one other player are the only ones familiar with Pathfinder as we have been playing it since it arrived on the gaming scene. Because the other player and I like Pathfinder over the old 3.5 (which is what we usually always play) I am going to run the RotRL-AE for them.
My question is can you increase the difficulty of the 6 adventure series to encompass 9 players? As a GM of some PFS games I understand the level of difficulty scaling that is offered with the scenarios, but only having just picked up the RotRL book, I am curious from those GMs and players that know the adventure if its possible? If so, any advice you would like to impart?
The wind up:
The pitch (strike 1):
The pitch (strike 2):
The pitch (strike 3):
Okay, getting ready to wrap up my 3 GM session this week with Decline of Glory and I have a question that experience GMs may be able to help me with.
The Collapsing Entrance Trap that is described here has me a little confused as to how the damage and possible Disable Device check will work.
The general description when I read it to the players talks about a 5-foot indent, so I imagine that at least one player will step in and begin to pull out timbers, loose rocks etc. There may even be a couple of others within the group that will walk up and assist, but not in the indent.
I assume that after a few minutes of doing so the trap will trigger pulling all those working on it into the stairwell.
The damage listed under the trap is one of the first things that confuses me.
"Effects: All creatures in a 10 ft. by 10 ft. area over the opening take 2d6 falling damage plus +10 melee 1d4 jagged wooden posts (1d4 each); DC 15 Reflex negates."
So they fall and take 2d6+10 damage? That's pretty brutal if they were 1st level, or even 2nd level. In my case it will be 6 level 2 players so we are playing in Tier 3-4. Or do they mean that each player will take 2d6 damage from the fall, each player will be hit by 1d4 jagged wooden posts that have a +10 to hit, and each post will do 1d4 damage? Does the DC 15 negate all the damage or just the wooden posts?
Also, how does the Disable Device of 20 even figure in? If they disable it they do not get sucked in and they drop all the debris and contained ghoul below?
Howdy, getting ready to run my leg of our PFS home game and am starting off with Black Waters. Really looking forward to the undead/horror feel to the adventure. "... morbid and creepifying, I got no problem with, ..."
But on to my question that the Subject eludes to. Is there a Paizo sponsored PDF master list of all the allowable Chronicle Sheets available for PFS?
Okay, before I get flamed for asking these, I have searched and found answers to most of these already. Essentially I just need to make sure I am understanding certain key issues correctly. So hopefully I will get some reasonable help.
Background: Our normal Pathfinder group has decided to start out a PFS style play instead of our normal "winging it" approach. Most of the group is RP medium/heavy, but most of them will number crunch out the class, ie. Treatmonks style. But after seeing some of the horror story threads of TPKs on scenarios this might not be a bad thing and may help to keep everyone alive.
Okay, so on to the questions:
1) Player death: I understand that if (as a group) we are in the collective level 4 range and one person dies we can pool our resources to have them raised. My understanding is that is gold only. Correct? Then if we do (or if the character has enough PP or gold to do so himself) we can then pay as a group in gold (or with PP/gold from dead character) to have the negative levels removed via Restoration. Correct?
2) First Steps: We are looking to run these scenarios in succession, hopefully without the possible TPK at the end of Part 1. I understand the characters will get up to 2 PP for this scenario. Now essentially all the PPs earned (6 in total, if conditions met) will be turned into the faction chosen at the end of Part 3. I understand that each faction has certain rewards (not sure what they are just yet, but that is irrelevant right now). Using the "Guide to Pathfinder Society Organized Play," on page 22, Table 5-4, you may spend those PPs here as well. The table is labeled Generic Prestige Awards, which leads me to believe regardless of faction, these are available to all factions. But according to the footnotes, the 1 PP for 150g or 2 PP for 750g item purchase state "... from your faction..." So I am assuming that even though they are generic awards, they are still faction based so until the end of Part 3, you cannot spend any PPs. Correct? (I did read the post RUNNING THE FIRST STEPS SERIES NONCONSECUTIVELY and now Im confused.) What has been the ruling in PaizoCon?
3) General looting: Looting within the scenario is okay, and items found can be used. Correct? So if said mob had 2x Potion CLW, you can use them during the scenario, but once the scenario is done they 'disappear' if not used. Correct? Assuming I am correct so far, why include random trinket on mob equipment that has no use other than cash? (ie. Opal worth 200g)
Thats enough for right now. I will probably have more so hopefully I can get some help from experienced GMs.
A friend and I were talking about how in the grand scheme of the game that Clerics get the shaft on skill points. But that in itself segwayed into Fighters not having enough either. He believed that all classes should get 4 skill points at the minimum, unless INT lowers that value.
I went home on that and have been reading many posts about how people would like to see more of a non min/max (or optimizing) in PFS play, so there wasn't so much of a cookie cutter approach to character building.
Thats when I thought about a rehaul of the skill point system. In order to push the idea that any person has the ability to do, or learn, multiple things we would arrange skill points by race and class.
For example, looking at a Dwarf Cleric, if you had only a 12 INT, you would only get 3 points/level (favored class not included). That generally means, Heal, Kn. Religeon and a floater to go where ever.
What if using the Dwarf Cleric as an example, you were given 1-2 racial skill points, 1-2 class skill points, and 1-2 skill points that can be modified by INT (to a minimum of 0).
Each race would have certain skill sets that are naturally inherent to their race, Kn. Engineering for example, maybe even Appraise, etc. in the case of a Dwarf.
Each class skill point would have a skill set as well, Kn. Religeon, Spellcraft, etc. in the case of Cleric.
General skill points could go anywhere that do not raise the skill level above max ranks at that level.
Level advancement could be 1-2 class and 1-2 (modified by INT), etc.
The 1-2 is because I am spit-balling an idea and the value is not as relevant as the idea.
But I think this could give players the ability to round out a character more than what they can currently do.