Id be happy to send the maps (campaign cartographer) regional notes, characters and adventures already in the works to whoever is interested. He would appreciate my sharing. We had really high hopes. The campaign was to take place in Taldor so the focus is there. Lots of fleshed out locations and such.
Anyone interested can email me firstname.lastname@example.org
A close buddy and I planned a grand campaign for the past few months and accumulated a huge collection of Pathfinder material. Sadly, his health had taken a bad turn and our plans are canceled, permanently.
I have this beautiful collection of material, brand new for the most part, and hate having to divvy it up on ebay or something. Anyone interested?
Is this even appropriate for this forum? If not I apologize but Id like to contact some Pathfinder gamers and see that this stuff finds a good group.
Adamantine Dragon wrote:
If I had to run a campaign where magic was this mundane... well I wouldnt. Magic without wonder is boring as a story element.
By the way, as part of my low-magic campaign I seriously restrict the existance of magic items. Some on this forum have mentioned that by doing this I hinder the non-magic classes from keeping up with their casting buddy's power as they level up. By imposing some of the limits mentioned here, perhaps it helps level things back out a bit.
Ill be giving this a great deal of thought.
Im with you Greylurker, 100%. I have tried through strictly 'color and fluff" to present a world where magic is more rare, respected, spooky and costly but it contradicts the ease by which it is presented in the rules. Ive considered some house rules myself, yours has encouraged me.
Peter Stewart -house rules dont merely have to address a percieved problem but may intead present a new desired mechanic or bit of color to the game. I played in a campaign once where the casting of spells cost the caster HP.
There is certainly nothing WRONG with the spell casting or learning system at all, but if someone has a different vision for how it should work in their game... a house rule is the way to go.
I dont see it as any different from any other personal choice by a player. I have a character that uses a shortsword. Yes, there are weapons that do more damage but he likes the shortsword. Its dumb to keep that same crappy weapons - I know but my character likes it. You can sooo do better if you do this or that. I know, but I like this.
Playing a character is not ALL about doing max damage, performing the very best all the time. Its about roleplaying - remember, its a roleplaying game. Sometimes a given role is just not as effecient, effective or powerful as another - thats life.
So if Wizards are limited a bit by not being able to rob the dead of their spells all the time - so what? Thats how it works in the OP's campaign - dont play a wizard then if you dont like it. I dont know how many players he has in his game but unless he has dozens of spell-caster types, its not going to be a big deal at all.
None of my players give a hoot about optimization, they tend to visualize their characters first, then pick traits, skills and feats to match. They are, from the typical "build" standpoint, very inefficient but its how we prefer to play - cinematic v.s. tactical.
For this reason its quite easy to 'nerf', if such a term applies here, another spell user if it appears its needed. Slowing their learning of new spells is one easy method... but honestly i dont see it as necessary.
mkenner, very cool idea from a cinematic standpoint but tough on player freedom of action. In reality (or the pseudo reality of game play) a character dedicated to a diety might well have their destiny determined for them, in part or whole, in just the way you describe. It probably wouldnt be much fun though for the player and even less so for his group. If they were all wanting to go off and loot the dungeon and the cleric woke up with the devine notion that he needed to stick around town and feed the hungry it might upset some people.
The whole Rondlero thing is throwing me off Taldor. It seems odd that a culture where the Falcata and buckler, not to mention war elephants and phalanxes, are popular would entertain rapier wielding bravados. Perhaps its a 'new phase' wherein the old romanesque stuff is more traditional and slowing losing favor.
Old RPGr here but knew to the system.
Somehow I had the notion that as a character's BAB went up, this was applied to their damage rolls as well as their To Hit.
I see now that this is not the case. So a level 1 fighter hitting with his shortsword does the same damage as a level 10? (same strength bonus of course)
I would have thought that the higher level characters would deliver more damage. It seems odd that they must depend on magic items and such to do enough damage to threaten the higher level monsters.
Greylurker - consider your idea a permanent mechanic in my campaign. I agree that it makes a great deal more sense and lends itself to most of our visions of magical libraries and such.
I understand that it limits the typical Wizard from embellishing his own spell list through each encounter with an enemy wizard but adds a great deal to the value of the arcan tomes as treasure. A fair trade off I believe, as my world is rather low-magic anyway.
Good stuff, thanks!
Its the small things that instantly steer the mind toward a certain parallel. Rondelero, the fighting style so popular in Taldor includes a Falcata and Buckler - for example, instantly lends a mediterranean feel - ancient Spain or Portugal for example. Considering they utilize phalanxes and war elephants the picture begins to take shape even if some of the other details dont fit. A post Roman empire feel is unavoidable in my opinion. I try to not allow that vision to influence my fleshing out of the Kingdom but its difficult not to just fall sway to that vision and design Taldor around it.
Exactly Vod, one would think that the typical military, town guard, hunters and the like are of sufficient level to keep the world from crumbling into chaos without heroes day to day. Your typical 1st level characters are novices, or at least it seems to me, and they shouldnt be expected to take on challenges that the mainstay authorities gear up for. (bandit kings, undead infestations and the like)
One almost has to invent a reason why they are expected to deal with it when those far more capable, well equipped, supported etc. are not.
I know, its an issue of Logic, and as such has no place in a fantasy game but Ive always found my players appreciate a certain 'sense' in the game. I try to provide it, although granted sometimes it makes thigs a bit more complicated.
Not to mention that if you consider the effect your traveling characters have on a world regularly leveled to fit them, it becomes a bit rediculous.
In this town the guards are level 1, in this town they are level 4 and in this small village, where the 10th level characters ran into trouble, they are 6th!
A bit of variation is fine but it looks kind of odd overall.
Good stuff guys, thanks for responding.
I know I tend to design my world based on what I consider logic rather than any notion of "fairness". I just finished fleshing out Ridonport in Taldor for example and the Constable's men there (the tax collector and cohorts) are mostly Level 3 or 4 warriors. Makes sense to me as they should heads and tails above the typical citizen in order to create the threat they present. The PCs in the game are brand new Level 1s though, so any encounter with these guys is going to be dicey at best.
Some of you do present a good point though that as this approach is a little unconventional, I should probably warn the players, otherwise their assumption might well be that any 'possible' encounter is planned and their 'jumping in' assumed as well.
I have tried to make sure I give a serious description when such dangers are encountered, then allow the players to proceed as they see fit.
"The Constable demands a steep visitor's tax and has 6 very capable and eager looking thugs standing by to take it if its not offered willingly. These guys look like they can handle themselves, they arent your typical town ruffians but men recruited and trained to deal with strangers like yourselves."
I will admit that early on (30+ years ago) I designed my campaign setting around the PCs specifically. Not only did I attempt to create 'goldilocks' encounters but also presented situations and setting detail with the PCs in mind, catering to their interests and personalities.
As the years went by I found myself deviating from this habit and spending more time and energy designing my world independent of the PCs. The world was there first, they were then born into and began adventuring within it.
This of course created regular situations wherein the players became involved in situations far above their ability. Their ability to determine when to attempt something and when to avoid it became a pretty important part of the game.
(Castle Bloodskull has remained a menace for generations. Dozens of brave adventurers and heroes of the realm have entered and few have ever returned. Youve heard the rumors, are you and your fellow 2nd level adventurers really planning on going there?)
Ive always felt this is the most, for lack of a better term, realistic way to run a campaign as in reality the world doesnt scale itself around certain individuals. There are threats all around us that we simply dont have the skill to manage. (Like crossing the tracks on Friday night in my home city)
This practice has been criticized by some however as they seem to feel that the whole intent of the game is to challenge and reward the players. Anything that doesnt fit them is pretty much a waste of time and energy.
Yes, your right of course Mapleswitch, I mistyped.
As for the percieved detail in the Detect Magic spell I suppose every class's version could be different in description, though identical in effect. Up to the DM I suppose on how he wants to relate it. Id be willing to bet the vast majority simply say..."You cast the spell and see that its a Wand of Magic Missles." without any further effort.
Ok, so typically for low levels they would have to carry the item back to some magic-using professional and have them cast Detect Magic and identify the item for them.
Otherwise they are forced to just put the ring on, use the sword of what have you and take thier chances if its an automatic type item. Those requiring an action of some sort to trigger are pretty much useless until identified.
Im a little sketchy on the entire magic item usage process. Can anyone clarify...
My party finds a wand of some sort.
One of the characters casts detect magic and uses spellcraft to identify it as a Wizard I, Magic Missile Wand.
If nobody had detect magic, could they identify it with just spellcraft or a Knowledge:Arcana roll?
The CRB says there is a 30% chance there is some clue on the wand as to its nature. Does this mean a 30% of it being obvious what it does or merely making the identify roll easier?
Now that they know what it is, they want to use it but have no wizards in the group, which is required to use this Spell Trigger item.
Someone has to Use Magic Device in order to use the wand, a DC20 attempt each time they try and trigger it.
If they had not been able to identify it, could they try and trigger it blindly with a DC25, facing a possible mishap?
Is that pretty much correct?
Im not using any published advenures, prefering to create my own so Ive taken their number into concideration. I suppose I could have a couple of the NPCs decide to leave during the next lull, or fane some disagreement or something. Of course I could just run them into something really nasty and kill a couple off!
The whole notion of WBL and CR and the like seem to be in an attempt to conventionalize play across the entire player base. Unless your playing semi-competitively with other gaming groups its all really mute. All the talk about players feeling constrained or even cheated by the GM doesnt apply if your game is the only one they are playing or familiar with. Each game is different, each GM lending a different feel to his campaign. There is no such thing as a typical handling of a game or even a normal one.
I think most GMs make it very clear to their players that they are playing in His or Her game now and will be experiencing thier world through their eyes. Such mechanics as builds, WBL, CR and the like are a hindrance more than a help unless you are prescribing to some notion of a communal game.
The rules are there to provide structure for an interactive story, they are a tool, not the objective.
Abraham spalding wrote:
I understand your point but my desire to keep magical items rare has nothing to do with their memorability. I describe any major item with a bit of detail. My problem with magic items being so numerous and common is that it lessons their percieved quality and the "eww" factor when every character is walking around with magical bling dangling from every appendage. They can all be wonderfully described and have rich back stories but they arent very special when you can pick them up in any town, have to sell them after every adventure, or keep a backpack full of them to pull out as needed.
I have two players in my campaign. There are currently 4 NPCs in their party and Im working myself to death. Trying to handle a new rules system (Im new to PF, not RPGs) running the bad guys, handling the environment and then playing the part of 4 party members is getting really daunting. Should I turn over their party members to the Players? Will this take away from their identifying with their own personal PC?
Heres an odd twist, and bare in mind Im a novice to this system.
What if a number of common magical items, the staples most PCs depend on as described here. (Sorry, I dont know what the big six are) arent magical but merely superior in some way?
Your +2 longsword isnt magical but extremely well made with a razor edge and exquisite balance that makes handling it and slicing through foes easier.
That ring of protection isnt a magic item, rather its a blessed item, empowering the wearer with the blessing of a diety.
A potion isnt magical, but a natural (but perhaps very rare) blend of ingredients?
This approach could drop the perception of the magic being so common yet allow those boosts that apparently are critical to the system.
Ok, but from what Im reading then if the difficulty of the encounters are scaled down then there isnt a problem? I see most of the references are to the CR being affected. Take out the CR, or just adjust it, and balance is maintained? Granted, I suppose the really tough monsters will be out of reach of the typical PC, without magical assistance, but perhaps thats not entirely unreasonable. I can see, even in my low magic campaign, that a normal human no matter how awesome, is not going to stand toe to toe with an Arch Demon or something. That even fits with a lot of popular fiction where the REALLY bad guys have to be beaten by something special.
My PCs are finishing up a current adventure and this hamlet looks like a likely place for them to end up, after a wilderness hike, low on supplies etc.
They may not stay there long but there is a chance they might be looking for information and my placing this historian there (months ago when I fleshed the area out) seems like a good opportunity for a transition into something new.
I could just be a meeting, a few questions, an interesting encounter and perhaps a 'boon' with a good Diplomacy roll but Id like the chance of something else to be going on that they might stumble across.
These are 3rd level characters, well they will be by the time they finissh the current adventure, if they survive.
Good read guys, Im particularly interested as Im beginning my Pathfinder campaign and intend it to be very low magic in nature. I have a long history of RP but am new to this system, caught up in the hype I suppose but Im concerned about what Im reading that somehow magic items are integral to the balance of the game as PCs advance.
My RP background is primarily a Hyboria type of setting (indeed 4+ years of Hyboria specifically) and therefor I have a fondness for grittier more mundane action. I understand Galorian will be a change for me and I welcome it, but not to the level of High Magic Im detecting.
If I tone down my game, limit magic items to the wonderous and rare things I feel they should be, (Where a 6th level fighter MIGHT have a +1 sword and a ring of protection, MAYBE) do I really need to consider implementing some supplemental stat bonuses?
I prescribe fairly closely by the way to mplindustries notion that the world does not comform to the PCs. I design my world with perhaps a nod to their capabilities but dont scale the setting with them as a priority. I consider the CR but its merely advises me of how difficult a situation is likely to be, it doesnt rule it out.
Exactly, I find that to be a good formulae for fantasy RP in general, keeping the players poor and hungry, enjoying their booty for a time then finding themselves with a broadsword and loincloth again. Its a different animal in this setting though. I think it can be done but obviously is going to take some thought.
I have a small hamlet in North Western Taldor, a days ride east of Ridonport. The Prefect garrisons a couple of squadrons of cavalry there in a ruined keep to patrol the roads. Nearby stands the abandoned remains of a temple of Aroden, the last of its faithful many years gone. Ive place an old sage, a historian really, in the temple as a sort of regional 'wise man' who is gathering a history of the area for the Prefecture's Chamberlain.
Id like the old sage to have a bit more to him than meets the eye. Some not quite sinister aspect but I cant seem to come up with something suitable. He has a garrison of troops next door so he has to maintain a low profile. He rarely accepts visitors but really doesnt have an evil reputation or anything, yet.
Any ideas? How to breathe some life and perhaps a plot hook into this old geezer with the elder halfling slave that serves him and makes his supply runs to town and such.
Wow, all this talk has me wondering if I shouldnt have stuck with my Hyborian Campaign where the setting doesnt even entertain such notions. I run a pretty low magic game certainly, I prefer them, but if the very mechanics of Pathfinder REQUIRE this sort of dynamic, Im going to be doing a lot of adjusting along the way.
Just my $.02 but dont worry about "builds" and craft your character the way you invision them. There is no WRONG way for a character to be constructed, each individual is ... well.. and individual. Most of us arent perfectly suited to our callings, nor should every character in a fantasy world be a perfectly designed specimen to their class.
Make up a character and send them adventuring! Leave the powergaming and such to somebody else.
I suppose if I think on it a bit, my issue with the Magic Mart idea stems from the view that such a thing would eventually destablize the world I want my characters to adventure in. If your various adventurers can sit back and flood the market with items, or sell off chests full of the items theyve found, creating huge surpluses filling shelves for customers to browse... I see every tavern owner with a Magic Missile wand behind the bar. Every group of bandits will have stealth capes and every ship captain a compass that creates wind. Armies will deploy with each soldier wielding an item as they clash. It gets rediculous.
I absolutely see your point that the rules specifically allow this and if Im a dirty GM by prohibiting it through world wrangling, so be it.
Abraham, your comment as to Magic Marts "making sense" and "working" are in fact tied to your opinion that the game centers around the characters and therefor the world should too. I, and many other gamers, take a different approach where our world exists, with or without the players, and they have to make their way in it. It doesnt conform to them. The entire notion of a Magic Mart is geared towards the 'gamey' aspect of magic item value, class balance, and the like... all elements that dont actually exist in the 'real world' of a campaign but are part of the game/character/rules mechanic.
This mechanic is something many GMs try to reduce. Of course many GMs have a great time working within that sort of game environment too, as do their players. Its a matter of choice.
I was just commenting that from a strictly 'story' based game, the Magic Mart thing really doesnt seem to have a logical place. In my opinion of course.
And therein lies the difference Abraham, in my view the players shouldnt have any control of the world. The risk, adventure and fun is in the challenge. Never being rich, powerful, secure, is the best way to keep the game interesting without involving battles between Gods and the like. Keep it low level and hungry is my motto.
The Jeff, I see your point, really I do. As mentioned I havent come up with this problem much as magical items are as you say, VERY rare. My current PC groups is approaching 3rd level and have found a few potions and one item so far.
No, I dont design my items to fit the group, quiet the contrary. I try to make them fit their location in a logical way. If the party cant use them and seek to sell them, they can... somewhere, but probably wont get what they expect for them. Even then, once sold, who knows where it goes? Purchased by a noble who then gave it as a gift to a scribe you stuck it in his study or something... it wont be there when they get back most likely. I follow this path of logic to its conclusion and that is that items probably arent lying around to be purchased either.
In our game the emphasis is on the story, not performance. We've never had discussions or to my memory and concerns about balance and the like. The rules are used to manage the flow of the action, they arent permitted to introduce elements that are counter to our perception of the world and the events that take place in it.
As far as the buying and selling of magical items by adventurers.. I think where I stand, and failed to explain, is the rarity of adventurers in our world as well. My PC group is adventuring in NorthWest Taldor at the moment. I would say there probably arent more than another two or three such groups anywhere in that part of the kingdom. Expand it to all of Taldor and Ill go a half dozen at the most.
As magic items are a rare find, selling them and having them on hand at any one place is even more rare. If one or two are discovered a year in Taldor, and most are kept obviousl, there is never going to be much of a supply.
Magical items are a rare find. Most commoners would be terrified at the notion of buying one, if they had the coin to do so. Buying one is more likely to occur in hushed undertones and a trip to the back room where somebody has something rare and wonderful they think you might be interested in, rather than it setting on an endcap.
Creating items simply to sell them is a problem. It goes counter to how I percieve the dynamic in my world but Ill admit I havent had the problem yet, none of my players has gone that way. I would probably hinder it in some way. Perhaps the authorities interfering with someone distributing dangerous items to the populace.
I disagree on your last comment however, it is about the rarity of magic users in general. The world isnt centered about the party and PCs, it exists and they live within it. If wizards and sorcerers become more powerful as they progress, as the rare and powerful characters they are, so be it. The fact that you have two of them in your party is particulary lucky, thats all.