Thanks! I wasn't planning to use the other Asian styled buildings for the adventure necessarily, but the fishing village looked like it could be used as any fishing village, Asian, medieval or pirate themed. The big Asian junk ship is kind of Asian flavored but I figured pirates are world spanning travelers and more likely than most to have assorted ships from any part of the world.
I have the earlier adventure paths but don't yet have this one. I'm planning to order all the issues for this Adventure Path and run it. I love using miniatures and 3D terrain so I was thinking of buying these nice looking boats, ship and fishing village that's on sale at the East Asian Village Kickstarter that ends in a couple of days, and I was wondering if someone can tell me whether these would be useful in running the adventure path (since I won't have the Path adventures in hand yet before the Kickstarter ends)? Here is a link to the fishing village, boats and ship:
I have just introduced five new players to D&D using Fourth Edition (all five had never before played D&D even once), and they loved it and want to play again. And they told their friends, some of who mentioned they played a couple of times years ago in high school, and they were jazzed to play after hearing how much fun we had. Now I have another four players who want to try it and will be running a whole other campaign for them. I think Mr. Pramas is mistaken. I think 4th edition, combined with the growing prominence of fantasy and sci-fi in mainstream culture, will mean an unprecedented number of D&D players.
I'm interested in trying to convert the Curse of the Crimson Throne to 4th Edition. Has any one here started this conversion? Is there a thread here or elsewhere with people working on this conversion? I don't want to duplicate work if others have already done some of it, but I can help with contributions by converting some of the NPCs and monsters. With a group effort it might not be so hard to convert the adventure path.
I was pleased to hear that there will be a GSL after all (I was starting to worry). I am glad to hear that Paizo is still open to at least creating some 4E product. I will be looking at how the Pathfinder RPG develops, but at this point I am hoping to switch to 4E unless something surprisingly bad is in the rules I have not seen yet for 4E. So once I make the switch, I will be hoping for as much great Paizo 4E products as possible.
The first Pathfinder adventure path was nicely put together, but it pales in comparison with the sheer beauty of this second adventure path. I got the Player's Guide and Edge of Anarchy in the mail today, and was really amazed by the production value and art. Also, one thing I did not like about the Rise of the Runelords was that the type was so small it made it hard for me to comfortably read it. That has changed with the much more reasonbly sized font size for the second path.
My number one "must fix" is the multiple stacking buffs which become an accounting nightmare at high levels, and which make a buffed party much, much more powerful than an unbuffed party. One particularily annoying effect of this is the super slow and tedius resolution of a targeted greater dispel magic on a buffed high level PC or NPC, or a Mordenkainen's Disjunction on the fully buffed and equiped party.
My proposed solution: change the buff types. Instead of sacred bonus, morale bonus, natural armor bonus, etc., change it to just a couple of types based on source. I think there would only be a couple: magic bonus (from spell or magic item), class bonus (from class feature or feat) and situational bonus. Natural armor would not be a bonus, but instead monsters with natural armor start out with a higher base AC than 10. You can only get one magic bonus to AC at a time, no others stack. You can only get one magic bonus to attack rolls, saves, etc. This way you can keep all the 3.5 spells and minimize backwards compatibility problems. But it is pointless to try to cast all your defensive spells at once if they affect the same attribute (AC, attacks, Reflex saves, etc.) as they won't stack. Also, if you already have a magic item that gives you a bonus, spells that further boost that attribute are pointless.
Lisa, you made my day with that post. I will certainly keep an eye out for how the Pathfinder RPG develops. Maybe I'll end up using your system, if the end result is better than 4th edition. Or maybe I'll use your system to run a Pathfinder adventure path interspersed with 4th edition adventures from WOTC. Of course, in both cases it depends if I can find players that are willing to use one system or the other to play the game.
I thought about it further and more carefully, and it became clear to me that the only thing that would get me to use the Pathfinder RPG rules to run an adventure path that runs to the mid- to high levels is if Pathfinder RPG fixes the one thing that I had grown to hate about 3.5 as a DM: buffs.
I need Pathfinder RPG to fix the fact that in 3.5 high level games, keeping track of buffs becomes an accounting chore, and that a buffed party is way more powerful than a non-buffed party.
Of course, fixing that then may require rebalancing the CR system to know what monsters and what NPCs truly are at the same level of power as the party.
If Pathfinder RPG can fix that fundamental problem I have with 3.5 Edition D&D, then I would consider running another adventure path with those rules. Otherwise I'm bailing and going to 4th Edition, and hoping that some day Paizo will join me over in 4th Edition so I can once again use their great adventures out of the box.
I am not planning on cancelling my subscription at this time. At the very least, I want to read through the whole of the Curse of the Crimson Throne. That looks to be a great adventure path, and I might undertake to convert it to 4E.
Also, I have not yet seen the 4E rules in full, nor the final Pathfinder RPG rules. If something turns out terribly wrong with the 4E rules I have not yet seen, or if Pathfinder RPG turns out to address many of the problems I have with mid- to high level 3.5 games, I may end up willing to use Pathfinder RPG as my default, or at least as an alternate rule system.
But unless WOTC's adventures for 4E blow me away, I may have to try to continue to get Paizo adventure paths and convert them. I have not yet seen any WOTC modules that stacked up against the best Paizo adventures. I am hoping that it easy to convert adventures to 4E. If I end up in limbo, liking the 4E rules but unable to find good 4E adventures and unable to convert Pathfinder to 4E without too much effort...then I may have to consider another hobby altogether. Well, for now I'll just try to stay optimistic despite today's troubling news of a divided D&D community (which I don't blame Paizo for).
I am saddened by the decision as I'm planning to switch to 4th edition D&D. But I wish Paizo great success in its endeavors. Paizo has shown a passion for producing great product. I may even try to run Curse of the Crimson Throne with the Pathfinder RPG alpha rules as my last 3.5 adventure before the 4th edition rules come out. And maybe I'll get some Pathfinder products that I can convert to 4th edition. I'll keep my fingers crossed, however, that maybe in 2009 Paizo produces some products for 4th edition. I haven't yet given up all hope that I will some day get to do a 4th edition Paizo adventure path.
I wish Paizo best of luck and success. I am switching to 4E myself (I unfortunately missed the poll I heard you guys had and never got to vote to express my opinion - I don't know why Paizo did not send out an email soliciting subscribers to vote in a poll). But in any case, I imagine the lack of a timely GSL from WOTC did not help matters, and I empathize with the difficulty faced by Paizo in being subject to the whims of another company's decision to change the rules.
There always was the danger that a few years down the road WOTC would release 4.5 Edition or 5.0 Edition and close off the GSL completely to third party publishers.
So I can understand the decision, but it saddens me because I will miss the excellent adventures Paizo creates when I switch to 4th Edition. I still maintain a faint hope that some day Paizo will be so successful that it will have the resources to continue its own RPG while also putting out quality product for 4th Edition, so I can enjoy some Paizo adventures again.
I tried the sample 4E adventure posted on ENWorld with the sample characters from D&D Experience, and I'm growing increasingly enamored of the new rules from the perspective of a DM, because of the ease of using 4E monsters. I am a huge fan of Paizo's adventures, but I think I'm at the point that I will no longer have an interest in running 3.5 high level adventures (I might still consider low level games). That means unless Paizo switches, I will be unlikely to keep subcribing to Pathfinder because the adventures go to relatively high level to reach the end of the plot arch. The one reason I would decide to continue subscribing is if I find it easy enough to convert adventures from 3.5 to 4E, but I don't know how realistic that is given my limited time. After all, if I had that much time, I could try to write my own adventures.
I am very frustrated by Wizard's delay in getting the GSL to Paizo. Although I think Wizards have done a good job with the new rules, I don't think their published adventures will ever equal the quality of Paizo. If Wizards' delay causes Paizo not to switch to 4E, Wizards will have deprived all new players of D&D joining during 4th edition of their best chance for an awesome experience through Paizo adventure paths.
Again, I ask and implore, is there no way that Paizo can publish some transition adventures in order to be able to start their next adventure path with 4th edition after they see the GSL?
I'm pretty certain that I'm switching to 4E for my home games. So as a Paizo fan, I'm also one who is hoping that Paizo switches to 4E. But I would love to find a way to support Paizo during a difficult transition period to help make sure they make it successfully into the new 4E world of D&D publishers.
Couldn't Paizo put out a "transition" Pathfinder edition to gain more time, with maybe more a couple of adventures set on Golarion but not tied to a path, or else maybe a short arc of adventures set in Golarion?
I'm hoping that Pathfinder will either switch to 4E or stick with low level adventure paths that only go up to about level 12. I have enjoyed 3E and 3.5E, but frankly after running Shackled City up to 20th level, I don't think I want to ever run 3.5E adventures again as DM beyond about level 12 or at most 13 or 14 or so. High level 3.5E adventures just require too much of my time for run properly, with so many buffs and combos needed to run effectively any opponent to high level 3.5 characters.
I can make out what most runes symbolize, except for a couple:
Gluttony looks like big jaws.
I'm not sure about envy. It looks like a sideways E to me.
I for one hope to run Rise of the Runelords in 4th edition, if that turns out to be viable. I will be greatly surprised it is not possible. The question in my mind is only how much work will it take. Would Paizo be ok with fan created conversions being posted in the format required by ENWorld for conversions from 1st or 2nd edition to 3rd edition? I belive that format required that one not post any reproduction of the adventure itself, only posting 3rd edition stats for the monsters and treasure in each area. The purpose of this is to require that someone purchase the product in order to be able to run the converted adventure, so someone can't run the adventure with merely the conversion notes. In this case it would mean posting the 4th edition stats for the monsters and treasure in each area, or suitable substitutes where there is no perfect conversion.
I am capable of doing complex math, but I would far rather spend my time, and have my players spend their time, roleplaying or otherwise having fun. I am sure for some doing tons of math at the game table may be fun, but for me it is rather tedious. Actually, high level third edition games don't really have complex math, but rather just lengthy and tedious addition and subtraction, with occasional multiplication and division. That kind of tedious math is not fun when you have to do it for most characters' and monsters' actions in combat. I hope fourth edition minimizes that somewhat. I still don't know if the end result of the fourth edition rules will be a fun game, but if it is, I hope Paizo will consider using the rules for at least some of their products.
KaeYoss, I somewhat agree with your post. I agree Paizo, in evaluating whether to jump on 4th edition, should see if they can basically use it to produce "4th edition rules, 3rd edition feel!" products. The only caveat I would add is that they don't need to be limited to core books and Paizo products if Necromancer and other 3rd edition/OGL publishers produce classes, races and monsters that Paizo can use.
On the other hand, if Paizo, doesn't switch, and the 4th edition rules turn out to be so much more fun to run for DM's that more and more games switch to them, they may see a slower but invitably growing number of cancellations as people switch to 4th edition and don't feel like paying for product they need to convert. I don't envy Paizo's situation. I think the 4th edition rules are more likely than not going to be pretty good. I may be wrong. In any case, aside from how good the rules are, there may be restrictions on the license that may make it painful for third party publishers. I have really enjoyed Paizo's adventures, so whatever they decide, I wish them luck and hope they will be successful and be an influence on D&D for many years to come.
I hope that Paizo at least looks seriously at producting products for 4E. I myself don't like many of the "fluff" changes, but I remain hopeful of the mechanical changes.
I really like Paizo's adventure's flavor and quality, and would love to see what Paizo can do to use the new rules, which hopefully make it easier to run games, but with Paizo's particular flavor and flair.
If Necromancer Games does a good job putting 3.5 flavor monsters back in the game using 4E rules, and in the OGL, this will hopefully make it possible for Paizo to use such monsters in their adventures.
I just finished reading up the entire description of every location in Sandpoint. Congrats on a great home town setting! And I am especially greatful for the inclusion of characters of varying sexual orientations in a tasteful manner. As a gay D&D player, I can tell you it's about time to see such characters presented much as they are in real life, ordinary members of society, who are capable of being good, or not good, like anyone else, rather than always presented as outcasts or deviants. Kudos to Paizo!
I think it would be unfair to expect Paizo to tell us what they are going to decide as to changing to 4th edition at this point.
I personally don't plan to throw away all my 3.5 materials any time soon. I still have some good gaming material I had planned to run for players after wrapping up our current Shackled City campaign which is on the verge of cocluding after more than a year and half of sessions. As long as there are players willing to play 3.5 nearby, I can continue to run a 3.5 game if I choose.
On the other hand, I plan to get the 4th edition core rule books regardless, and to look them over and see how I like the new rules (assuming the core books sell for about $20 or $25 each). If I find the new rules really do improve the game experience, then I will most assuredly try running a campaign with 4th edition rules.
Once I've tried 4th edition, only then will I be in a position to decide whether I would hope for Pathfinder to switch to 4th edition or to stay with 3.5.
The ideas for other allies are good, but probably better as alternates or substitutes rather than additional allies or it will seem like overkill. But if you have lawful good paladins in the party that cannot ally with Orcus, then at least the adventure makes it relatively easy to imagine how to substitute similar allies along the same lines after facing challenges of similar nature and equivalent difficulty.
If you make up new rules similar to PHB2 affiliation rules, I suggest using rules that provide only roleplaying type benefits to characters, not bonuses to skills or abilities. The closest thing to mechanical benefits should be temporary use of bodyguards or helpers, access to free clerical magic or reduced cost or free copying of a wizard spell, burrowing a magic item within a limited value, etc.
In a way, I'm glad the Great Wheel outsiders can't be used "out of the box" because, though useable and interesting, I think we could really use a good creative reimagining of the outer planes and the beings that hail from there. The outsiders grew pretty organically by creation of different good, evil, chaotic and lawful outsiders which others later tried to force into some kind of coherent multiverse. I'd love to see good outsiders reimagined by, for instance being organized by the seven virtues, or some other order. I'd love to see fiends reimagined. And I'd love to see a new chaotic race that is more evocative of pure chaos than the slaad ever were.
When I ran this adventure, I took the suggestion from someone on these boards to have the dark creepers be the magically twisted descendants of gnomes who survived the first onslaught of the Vanishing but were somehow altered by the magical disease into these magically shadowed "evil gnomes." I had the gnome player in the party know stories from childhood about the "shadow gnomes" which would allegedly eat children who'd been bad. That made the creepers a bit more, well, creepy.
I ran the adventure for very experienced players, and they thought that encounter was very cool, because it was so unexpected by them to have second level characters run into a beholder. One player spent the whole encounter staring at the beholder in total concentration trying to make his Will save to disbelieve!
If you are modeling the Olmans after Meso-Americans, don't give the Olmans -2 intelligence or associate them with Neanderthals. The real world Meso-Americans had a civilization that was in some ways very advanced, such as astroly, mathematics, architecture and certain forms of engineering, even though it was ultimately not as effective at resisting conquest by the Conquistadors' disease and advanced warfare. At least don't give them -2 Intelligence if you have players of Meso-American descent in your group. I know I might take issue with that if a DM in a game I was playing in did it.
The Suss forest, which is a continuation of the Gnarley forest (the southern/eastern part) is very ancient, and contains very ancient ruins related to Tharizdun or some old evil civilization or cult that worshipped Tharizdun. That whole area of the forest is tainted by evil. Even the squirrels there are evil dark carnivorous squirrels, if I remember correctly.
Most beholderkin are less powerful than a standard beholder, but there are some beholder types that are more powerful, such as an elder orb (basically an Huge sized advanced beholder with eye rays with higher save DCs, etc.), and a hive mother (huge beholder that can control "standard" beholders to form a colony of beholders and beholderkin under its rule. Also, there are beholder mages, which is basically a 10 level pretige class which at its highest level allows beholders to cast all the way to 9th level spells.