Killian Paltreth

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Organized Play Member. 92 posts. 1 review. No lists. No wishlists.

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I disagree, just because the players use the profession check rules does not mean NPCs do (otherwise everyone would have equal wealth).

To me this is like any other quality service, you get what you pay for. A 50 gp hooker is way better than a 5 gp one, or at least will seem that way. Also it depends on what they want out of it.

In other words, make it up, put it at a level they're willing to spend and go with it.

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James, I agree, you publish mostly through your APs now, but there's a couple of problems I, as a DM, have with that.

1. The storylines aren't cut and dried from beginning to end of the module, there's also a lot of assumptions on loot, ability, and knowledge of the encounters and stuff the APs have. That's not a big deal really.

2. The APs are really good, I don't want to spoil an AP for another game, if I use an AP then it no longer has it's uniqueness if we ever want to play the AP.

The other thing with making modules at this level is there is so much prep work involved, so the modules start saving more and more time for the DMs. It's pretty easy to pull straight from the bestiary and have a rough storyline on low level adventures, but later on it gets more and more difficult.

Also I think none of the modules in that range have been published in the last 4 years, the one level 12 module was in 2012, everything else is 2009-2011. So it's been a while before someone's given us something new in that range.

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Le Petite Mort wrote:

@ElSilverWind: I think having an HP benchmark is an okay idea, but I don't really know where I'd draw the lines on those benchmarks. I'm open to suggestions.

I think if you did 3 rounds of survivability with being hit with a full attack.

So <1 would be red, 2 would be yellow, 3 green, 4 or 5 blue.

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There should be rules in the book for it. I think you take damage and then get thrown back out.

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hiiamtom wrote:

If 1/3 of all your fights get use from an extra 5ft of movement, you must be really kicking yourself for not being an archer or even just investing in UMD for longstrider.

Fleet obviously has some use, so do other really bad feats like Weapon Focus or Critical Focus... but static bonus feats are a waste of resources in terms of how much of your character's potential is tied up in that feat. Fleet is no exception. It's a tiny, tiny bonus to speed that can easily be more than overcome by basic magic.

16% increase in speed is tiny? Especially when it's on all the time, I don't have to burn a round and resources casting a spell. Also don't your enemies tend to place themselves at a really good distance (like 35 ft away) where you have to advance and not do anything? And 40' rooms are super common in how I play, 20' and 40' rooms are like my standard dungeon rooms because they're good sizes for lots of things. 35' of movement means I can go from one wall to the other and attack a medium creature on that wall.

Also I don't play out of the player's companion books or the adventure path books, many of the choices in there are objectively the best which makes them a bit OP in my book.

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Barker wrote:

I was mean and had the local Cleric of Abadar come in with the Mayor and execute a binding contract with the party that they wouldn't take anything from the house. At the end of it I told them they would be subject to Truthtelling and anyone caught lieing would be arrested.

As far as the 4 to 5 player adjustment - just give the critters more HP or add 1-2 if they are really weak (like Grioths tend to be later on).

I had my guys sign a contract, but going through it, a whole bunch of the stuff in the Manor just flat out isn't that useful or cool to players. Though the wizard did keep one of the weird books, and I let him use his stealth skill to try to copy spells from the spellbooks during the following month (I did like 30+Stealth check number of hours he could copy spells).

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I ran through it with 5 players. I had them start the adventure 3/4 of the way to level 2 (I threw in two encounters beforehand). Then I also added about 3 encounters in the middle as well as increasing the kobold numbers by about 15-20% in the kobold sections. But they still didn't make it to level 7 at the end.

But it didn't matter, they pretty much breezed through the final encounter (even though the three NPCs that were there didn't help too much, one popped a mirror image, the other cast airwalk on the paladin). They did have the wizard die, but the Paladin burnt through the final guy very quickly with a holy smite.

I was expecting a couple more deaths so I thought it would have been a bit harder especially since my guys aren't super optimized (the wizard and the paladin are the ones that can burn through things like cake, though the wizard doesn't make it seem that way).

What I would have done if I were to do it over again is increase some more of the minions, especially in the monastary to pump up more experience and make the fights more deadly (though they got stomped by the mummy, absolutely wrecked, they couldn't hit it for the life of them). I also would cut down the treasure a bit more (or lend more of it instead of giving it to them) that would help with my followup campaign.

But the module is excellent, I highly recommend it, absolutely fun.

It would be tougher with 6, I did like the NPCs as pressure release valves, they could do good if I needed it, and could not help if they didn't, so I would keep Maffei. But at bare minimum max out pretty much every creatures health to make fights more than 2 rounds.

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My players have had Maffei since they encountered her. (I'm pretty fond of her, ha, it gives me a good valve on controlling damage in the group). They also picked up the druid.

In the final fight I really don't know if maffei will help that much though.

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Tarondor wrote:

Wow. I never noticed that. Thanks!

Why does that work? Just because?

Because your putting level 6/7 players against a CR11 encounter. So all the additional stuff you can do (the name, recruit the druid, recruit maffei, loot the crypt of tula) is to make the combat possible.

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Tarondor wrote:

Hi, Mike. Awesome module and I -will- write a review when I'm done GMing it (not long now). Thanks for this and for many of my other favorites, such as Valley of the Brain Collectors, Curse of the Lady's Light and most especially for the Mud Sorcerer's Tomb.

** spoiler omitted **

It's not an item. Look in the quests at the front for a description. It's more about what the players do during the monastery.

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Mike Shel wrote:

That's Lodo. Just for that, Lodo... ** spoiler omitted **.

Glad Dragon's Demand is still beating up your party. WRITE A REVIEW!

Crud! But that wand was surprising for everyone.

And don't worry I'll write a good long review once we finish up. I have already recommended the module to at least 3 other groups.

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Mike Shel wrote:

Note that one reviewer gave the module a mediocre review because it was a "cakewalk" for his party of 6. Remember that due to action economy, bigger parties quickly overwhelm the CR. It's pretty tricky to get it right. Throwing in one or two mooks to compensate may not be enough to ramp up the challenge.

Remember to post a review!

Oh wow, you wrote this? The module is awesome.

I don't think my players are breezing through it even with me adding encounters to make up for experience (and because I have other story stuff I want to do as our game will continue on past the module).

My players are a mixed bag, one experienced DM who is playing, a couple of guys who grew up and playing D&D and haven't played in a while (first time in Pathfinder) and a new guy who hasn't played anything.

There have been about 5 fights where someone has dropped unconscious, and at least twice as many where they have gotten really darn close. I generally don't pull punches, so I actually feel for a group with just 4 if the GM is playing it right.

I really think if the GM is playing smart a party of 6 would have a rough time in many places still and I'm only up to the auction place. As a GM some of the more deadly encounters caught me off guard (Ludo especially, he wrecked the party).

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justaworm wrote:

We played through with 6 I think. We don't use XP; free yourself and stop using XP. ;)

We also pretty much left everything alone, and as for the spell books I can't remember but may have copied some stuff out of them with permission.

If you are worried about it you can give them something else to do or only give them limited permission to copy from the book - like 2 hrs / day of access.

Meh, I like experience better than leveling at the random whim of the GM. Plus as a GM it gives me a nice tool to increase the strength and number of encounters.

They've got a bunch of stuff to do (they wanted to own the tower so now they have to rebuild it, I've also got some side quests that will end them up with some awesome stuff.

Eh, despite the Wizard player being smart I don't know if he'll actually try to read any of the books.

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The trip to Hunclay's manor is pretty much a walk through an "I want this" store.

My group is likely to leave everything alone (as the Paladin would insist), but what about the Spellbooks? Did you allow your players to copy spells out of them before the auction? I mean there's a month of down time (I'll have a lot of that filled because they decided they wanted to own the tower and I've got side quest), and letting the wizard sit down and copy 224 levels (8 hours/day, 7 days/week, 4 weeks) I feel would massively upset the wealth by level (11 5th level spells is 12k gold in scrolls alone, let alone the other levels of spells).

Also anybody deal with a group of 5 in this module? It's really built for 4, the XP is pretty tight and you've got to keep up.

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Cold Napalm wrote:

But if you kill a PC with an AoE spell, no, I do not give you EXP and you better damn well explain yourself before I SUBTRACT exp.

If you do it to an NPC that is an ally...well you once again no EXP and you better explain yourself or lose EXP.

I would not want to play with you. The ramifications of actions should occur in the game not in the meta-game. Did that character somehow get less experienced because they accidentally killed someone the DM considers an ally? Of course not.