Pathfinder Companion: Sargava, the Lost Colony (PFRPG)

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Pathfinder Companion: Sargava, the Lost Colony (PFRPG)
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Edge of the Empire

On the distant shores of an unexplored tropical continent, brave colonists strive to break with their devil-haunted past and make new lives for themselves in a land of plenty. Yet in fleeing tyranny, these colonists have also imposed their own, and the land’s indigenous peoples have greeted the imperialistic settlers with open arms and leveled spears. This is Sargava: a nation on the brink of disaster, surrounded on all sides by pirates, hostile natives, and trackless jungles full of howling beasts and ancient ruins. Through its ports flood ancient treasures beyond imagination, brought forth from the wilderness by the blood and sweat of intrepid explorers. But can the colonists maintain their delicate balance, or will greed and their own deals with the devil see them swept into the sea?

    This Pathfinder Companion includes:
  • A complete overview of the colony of Sargava, from its pirate-aided break with Cheliax to the various native peoples, tropical hazards, and daring adventuring companies that influence daily life.
  • Details on the nation’s major settlements, including ruined Kalabuto and the staunchly traditional port of Eleder.
  • Adventure sites such as Barkskin Lake, Smuggler’s Shiv, and the infamous magical prison known as the Stasis Fields.
  • An overview of religion in Sargava, and how the colonists’ faith interacts with that of local tribes.
  • New spells designed to make life in Sargava easier on poorly adapted colonists, as well as combat feats drawn straight from the fighting styles of tribal warriors.
  • New traits to help customize Sargavan characters, both native and colonial.

This player-friendly Pathfinder Companion works best with the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game or the 3.5 version of the world’s oldest fantasy roleplaying game. Although easily incorporated into any fantasy world, it is optimized for the Pathfinder Chronicles campaign setting.

Written by JD Wiker with additional design by Sean K Reynolds

Each bimonthly 32-page Pathfinder Companion contains several player-focused articles exploring the volume’s theme as well as short articles with innovative new rules for social, magic, religious, and combat-focused characters, as well as traits to better anchor the player to the campaign.

ISBN-13: 978-1-60125-255-5

Note: This product is part of the Pathfinder Player Companion Subscription.

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Passable, but not Exciting

3/5

Sargava, a former Chelish-built colony on the shores of the Mwangi Expanse, is an area of the fictional world of Golarion that, in lesser hands, could have gone horribly wrong. The colonialism, racism, and exploitation of Africa, South America, India, and so many other places by imperial powers in the real world could have found strong echoes in a setting about a vast, unexplored jungle continent full of technologically-primitive dark-skinned tribespeople. Fortunately, Paizo recognized the dangers of the "explore the dark continent" trope and was careful to ensure it would receive a far more intelligent expression in Pathfinder. Although the themes of colonialism, invasion, and corporate exploitation remain, the PCs are definitely not expected to follow in the footsteps of real-world colonialists, nor are they necessarily expected to play outsiders at all: extensive information is given about the indigenous peoples of the Mwangi Expanse, so that alternative themes of resistance and cultural integrity can be experienced. And lest this all seem to heavy, this is a Pathfinder game so groups who want to focus on being chased by huge dinosaurs and ancient demons can do that too!

Sargava, the Lost Colony is a 32-page book in the Player Companion line. I think the front cover is great, showing one of those aforementioned dinosaurs chasing after the Iconic ranger, Harsk. The inside back-cover reproduces the artwork sans logos, while the inside front-cover is a map of Sargava showing the perfect amount of detail for PCs to understand what's around them without giving away too much detail. The interior is divided into eight sections.

The first section (11 pages) is an overview of Sargava. It covers the interesting history of the area as a colony founded by the Chelish empire, the bloody battle for independence (aided by a problematic deal with a pirate fleet), and the situation today, wherein Sargava has to try to delicately navigate relations with the native inhabitants of the area and find allies overseas. All in all, it's an interesting political situation with plenty of room for PCs to become involved in all sorts of intrigue and adventures that could influence the state of things. A detailed timeline of Sargava is provided, which is probably more detail than is needed for a Player Companion. As we'll see, this is one of the problem areas for the book: an inability to differentiate between player needs and GM needs. The section provides an overview of the various Mwangi tribes that exist near Sargava, and I appreciate how it takes pains to establish that a) they're not all the same; b) they don't necessarily get along with each other; and c) there is a vast degree of complexity and sub-groups within each tribe. This helps avoid the "all natives are the same" problem of historic colonial fiction. The section contains large sidebars on private organizations that have a major influence in Sargava, including corporate mining companies, trade guilds, and the Pathfinder Society. There's about a page on "Classes in Sargava", but each class (core-only) receives just a single sentence or two about their common role in the area. As this would be one of the most important thing for players in a Sargava-focussed campaign, it would have been helpful to elaborate on this much further.

The second section (7 pages) provides more detail on particular settlements in Sargava. First up is Eleder, the only city built by the original Chelish colonists. The sense I get is that it's a lot like how the colonial British acted in India as seen in a novel like A Passage to India: deeply concerned with maintaining the social decorum and expectations of the "Old World." Although the local Mwangi have roles within the city, it's also clear they face discrimination and subordination. Apart from these issues, there wasn't a lot that stood out to me about Eleder--it seemed like a pretty average "D&D" city. But perhaps that helps to emphasize the mysterious dangers that await outsiders if they venture too far into the jungle . . . The second settlement discussed is Kalabuto, a city with a really interesting history (a bit too involved for me to cover here) that today consists of a partially-assimilated Mwangi tribe and some descendents of the colonists. Because it is frequently attacked and often overrun by hostile Mwangi, Kalabuto is a much more dangerous (and exciting) place for PCs to visit. Five other settlements, much smaller than Eleder and Kalbuto, receive about two paragraphs of description each: Crown's End, Fort Bandu, Freehold, Port Freedom, and Stark Point. Overall, I would say the writing in this section is about average--not as original and exciting as some Pathfinder products I've read, but serviceable.

Section three is "Adventuring in Sargava" (six pages). The first few pages talk about different locations in the area where adventurers are commonly hired, and what tasks they might be asked to perform. It's not exactly "adventure hooks" in the conventional sense, but more like "reasons why a PC might be in a general location." One of the topics on a subsequent page is interesting: buying nobility. A chart lists the quite modest cost to buy 100 acres of land of various terrains from the colony's leader, and says that titles of nobility can be purchased as well (though no prices are given for the latter, which seems like an oversight). The most important page for players is the collection of new traits. There are four combat traits, each of which makes fighting in a particular terrain (hill, jungle, river, and savanna) a little bit easier. There's one magic trait which is actually a pretty good one: the ability to take one zero-level spell from another class' spell list and add it to your own. Next, there are eight race traits, but the "race" prerequisite doesn't refer to things like the "core rulebook races" but instead specific tribes in the Mwangi Expanse, being Mwangi in general, or being a colonist. On the whole, I don't imagine they're taken very often: they are quite specific and most come with a drawback along with a benefit (like a bonus on Intimidate checks vs. Mwangi but an equal penalty on Diplomacy checks against them). The three regional traits are pretty bland and narrow in scope. Of the two religion traits, one is interesting from a flavour-perspective ("Faithful Arodenite"--a worshipper of the dead god Aroden), but both are lacking when it comes to game effect. As a whole, I wasn't impressed with this section. The first part is too vague and, for the most parts, the traits are forgettable.

Section four, "Sargavan Fighting Styles" (two pages), introduces several new combat feats, each with an animal theme, like "Monkey Lunge" (no AC penalty for using Lunge) and "Rhino Charge" (allowing a character to use the Ready action for a charge attack). The feats are actually quite useful for certain melee builds. There's also a new "Equipment Trick" (a concept first introduced in the Adventurer's Armory Player Companion). This one focuses on Kava Musk, an adhesive chemical with a powerful odor. It's a creative idea of something to base an Equipment Trick around.

The fifth section (two pages) is on religion in Sargava and talks generally about the Mwangi attitude toward religion, the efforts of some colonists to convert them to "mainstream" religion, and how some of the "Core 20" deities (like Shelyn, Abadar, and Iomedae) are viewed in the area. This section is all "flavour" with no "crunch."

Magic is the topic for the sixth section (two pages), and it contains three new spells (all for druids, rangers, and/or wizard/sorcerers) and six new magic items. All of the spells and items are jungle themed, and seem reasonably interesting and useful.

The last section (two pages) is "Local Hazards", and it contains descriptions of various jungle dangers (like heat, mosquitos, getting lost, wild animals etc.). It's all pretty broad, and I would think such stuff would be more for a GM than a player.

Sargava, the Lost Colony is clearly from the period when Paizo was still figuring out what a Player Companion should be like. Readers expecting it to be like a modern Companion that's chock full of dozens of feats, archetypes, spells, etc., will be disappointed by the relative sparsity of PC options. The book serves as a solid introduction and overview to Sargava, and could be useful to both players and GMs who intend to use it for that purpose. But although Sargava is potentially quite interesting, this book probably doesn't do the area justice. I would recommend this one only for a campaign specifically set in the area, and even then, I wouldn't say it's a "must buy."


Enter the Heart of Darkness....

4/5

I remember my very first Jungle adventure, far too many years ago; suddenly everything old about Advanced Dungeons and Dragons was new again. Couple this with Heart of the Jungle, and you have the basis for a winning campaign. Check my full review: Sargava The Lost Colony


Preliminary Review - strong, but has a pet peeve

4/5

This is preliminary, since I have read the book but not had the opportunity to use it in play.

Good: The setting is very strong. Excellent variety of locations and background on society and integrates well with Heart of the Jungle, I think.

Suggestion: a place to find some stat'd up NPCs outside the modules.

Pet peeve: It just had to be the case that what pretty much seems to be an emerging bad-actor group is the Ivory Cross, right?


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Contributor

Mikaze wrote:
This book is going to show us how Erastil, Gozreh, Abadar, and Iomedae are percieved and worshipped by the native cultures, right? Man, I really want to see how Iomedae is handled. I hadn't even thought of her as even having a presense of note amongst the Mwangi cultures, owing to her relative late arrival and how concentrated her faith is up in Avistan.

"Relative" being the operative word. :) She's been a goddess for over 800 years. It's like saying "Christianity is relatively new to the New World"... except Europeans brought Christianity to Central and South America just over 500 years ago. If you compare how well-established Christianity is there in just 500 years, it's not hard to see how Iomedae's influence may be strong in Sargava. Heck, Sargava was founded in 4138, which means Iomedae was already a goddess for over 300 years when the first Avistani colonists (who, seeing as they were from Cheliax, which at the time was very Arodenite/Iomedaen, probably worshiped Iomedae) arrived.

Sovereign Court

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure, Companion, Lost Omens Subscriber
Sean K Reynolds wrote:
Mikaze wrote:
This book is going to show us how Erastil, Gozreh, Abadar, and Iomedae are percieved and worshipped by the native cultures, right? Man, I really want to see how Iomedae is handled. I hadn't even thought of her as even having a presense of note amongst the Mwangi cultures, owing to her relative late arrival and how concentrated her faith is up in Avistan.

"Relative" being the operative word. :) She's been a goddess for over 800 years. It's like saying "Christianity is relatively new to the New World"... except Europeans brought Christianity to Central and South America just over 500 years ago. If you compare how well-established Christianity is there in just 500 years, it's not hard to see how Iomedae's influence may be strong in Sargava. Heck, Sargava was founded in 4138, which means Iomedae was already a goddess for over 300 years when the first Avistani colonists (who, seeing as they were from Cheliax, which at the time was very Arodenite/Iomedaen, probably worshiped Iomedae) arrived.

Your grasp of how Religion should function within a Fantasy world still amazes me after all these years. Of course it helps that I have never disagreed with your interpretations.

Contributor

Hee hee! :)

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

SKR on the top of his game, talkin' 'bout religion.

Sovereign Court

I am quite eager to see this book and the AP.

Silver Crusade

Sean K Reynolds wrote:
Mikaze wrote:
This book is going to show us how Erastil, Gozreh, Abadar, and Iomedae are percieved and worshipped by the native cultures, right? Man, I really want to see how Iomedae is handled. I hadn't even thought of her as even having a presense of note amongst the Mwangi cultures, owing to her relative late arrival and how concentrated her faith is up in Avistan.

"Relative" being the operative word. :) She's been a goddess for over 800 years. It's like saying "Christianity is relatively new to the New World"... except Europeans brought Christianity to Central and South America just over 500 years ago. If you compare how well-established Christianity is there in just 500 years, it's not hard to see how Iomedae's influence may be strong in Sargava. Heck, Sargava was founded in 4138, which means Iomedae was already a goddess for over 300 years when the first Avistani colonists (who, seeing as they were from Cheliax, which at the time was very Arodenite/Iomedaen, probably worshiped Iomedae) arrived.

Ah, got my internal timeline crossed up again. I keep thinking of Iomedae as being much younger than what she really is.

STILL, very curious about the Sargavan take on her!

Also, any mokèlé-mbèmbés? :D


just got the pdf and it looks good. I just hope that I will have the chance to read it on the train.


Generic Villain wrote:
Hopefully we'll learn more about Walkena the Child God. I noticed some of his followers in the NPC Guide, and would like to know more about the faith.

If you are interested in learning of the greatness of Walkena, I'd be happy to do a home visit. You can also come to our prayer meetings. With Walkena in your life, the path to greater happiness will be clear. Do the proverbs not say that the little Child will lead us?

*hands over colorful folded papers written in Polyglot*

We have brochures!


Order History still lists it as Shipping. But the GMG has shipped as of Tuesday so I'm not going to grumble too much. If I only have the GMG to read on the train to AC that will be fine. I'm planning on converting the info from here and the Chronicles book to the work I'm doing for my version of Spelljammer.


Good call Bellona, yes it can be considered a fair bit like Sasserine with even more possibilities. Merging the two could obviously work.

Sargava to me (since I've run a game there for some time now) is a lot like if the Spanish had not quite conquered the Aztecs, and all of their fears of the jungle and its inhabitants were real.

In my game I take Sargava forward a bit in years, the colony still holds out against Mzali and all other native resistance. The pirates protect (extort?) it from the Chelaxians. It is assisted by a number of allied Tian daimyos recently established by a Tian exodus from the civil wars. Yes, the Sargava I run has swashbucklers, pirates, conquistador cavalry, natives, powerful Mwangi clerics, warlocks and ur-priests, a slew of monsters unique to the region AND samurai and ninjas. The tech is up to gunpowder (pistols, muskets and blunderbuss) but the sword and buckler are still extremely common. Cannon are very rare, never really took off in a departure from earth history.

If you want to put a lot of pressure, survival mechanics, traps and curses on a group of players, run a game centred in Sargava and exploring outwards.


Bellona wrote:

Hmmm ... could this be the Golarion version of Sasserine? :)

At just a glance, it looks as though the start of the Savage Tide adventure path could easily fit this location.

- Yes, I had the same thought...


3.5 Loyalist wrote:

Good call Bellona, yes it can be considered a fair bit like Sasserine with even more possibilities. Merging the two could obviously work.

Sargava to me (since I've run a game there for some time now) is a lot like if the Spanish had not quite conquered the Aztecs, and all of their fears of the jungle and its inhabitants were real.

In my game I take Sargava forward a bit in years, the colony still holds out against Mzali and all other native resistance. The pirates protect (extort?) it from the Chelaxians. It is assisted by a number of allied Tian daimyos recently established by a Tian exodus from the civil wars. Yes, the Sargava I run has swashbucklers, pirates, conquistador cavalry, natives, powerful Mwangi clerics, warlocks and ur-priests, a slew of monsters unique to the region AND samurai and ninjas. The tech is up to gunpowder (pistols, muskets and blunderbuss) but the sword and buckler are still extremely common. Cannon are very rare, never really took off in a departure from earth history.

If you want to put a lot of pressure, survival mechanics, traps and curses on a group of players, run a game centred in Sargava and exploring outwards.

OMG you did it..you managed to set up a game with Pirates, Dinosaurs and Ninja


In the Faith chapter under Aroden we have the following...

Although the worship of Iomedae has replaced
the church of Aroden elsewhere,
many colonials still cling to their
old religion and believe that
Aroden will one day return
to announce that this has all
been a test of their faith.
This dichotomy in faith has
led to the “old” and “new” churches
of Aroden in Sargava. New church
clerics believe that Aroden is gone
forever, and they have forgone the
elaborate raiment of their worship
in favor of lighter, less suffocating
clothing. Old church clerics believe
that they need to return to the original
ways and have gone back to wearing the
formal attire—though only during ritual
observances (which both churches have
pragmatically moved to evening hours).

This implies that some Clerics of Aroden, whether "old" or "new" still exist. I assume they no longer receive spells/blessings and are therefore somewhat useless to their followers?

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Oh, the clerics of Aroden is an old story in Golarion. Several were featured throughout the years, most notably the high priest of Aroden in Taldor, and ex-Arodenite church features prominently in Beyond the Vault of Souls. I'm pretty sure there was an Arodenite in Tower of Last Baron, too.


Gorbacz wrote:
Oh, the clerics of Aroden is an old story in Golarion. Several were featured throughout the years, most notably the high priest of Aroden in Taldor, and ex-Arodenite church features prominently in Beyond the Vault of Souls. I'm pretty sure there was an Arodenite in Tower of Last Baron, too.

Yes, there is mention of them in various releases, but they're not really "clerics" any more, at least not useful ones, now they can't receive spells.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

Yup; while there are still a few holdout "clerics" of Aroden, they don't get spells. Those who follow Aroden are more properly called philosophers—their beliefs are treated like those who follow things like the Whispering Way or Diabolism or the like. The vast majority of spellcasting clerics who once worshiped Aroden switched to the worship of Iomedae.

Dark Archive

James Jacobs wrote:
The vast majority of spellcasting clerics who once worshiped Aroden switched to the worship of Iomedae.

The church could probably still function at least at a basic level through the use of Adepts and / or Bards.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

Set wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
The vast majority of spellcasting clerics who once worshiped Aroden switched to the worship of Iomedae.

The church could probably still function at least at a basic level through the use of Adepts and / or Bards.

It could, I suppose... but it doesn't really. It's been over a 100 years of no clerics, and Iomedae has pretty much taken up the vacancy.


stuart haffenden wrote:


I assume they no longer receive spells/blessings and are therefore somewhat useless to their followers?

Yeah. Just like real-world priests, who are also unable to cast any divine magic. People still put a lot of weight to their words for some reason. ;-P

Paizo Employee Creative Director

KaeYoss wrote:
stuart haffenden wrote:


I assume they no longer receive spells/blessings and are therefore somewhat useless to their followers?
Yeah. Just like real-world priests, who are also unable to cast any divine magic. People still put a lot of weight to their words for some reason. ;-P

Comparing Golarion faiths to real-world faiths in that way is meaningless, since in the real world, priests can't resurrect the dead, heal wounds with magic, or blast undead with positive energy.

More to the point, part of Golarion's theme is that Aroden is dead and his church is more or less gone. I don't want to set up a functional, healthy church of Aroden any more than I want to introduce a transcontinental railway or common airship travel or talking cats on every street corner or intelligent plant-men as a core race. All of those ideas are interesting and could make for some cool game play elements and world flavor... but none of them are right for Golarion.

You can define a world as much by what ISN'T in it as you can by what IS in it.

And one of the key things that defines the Inner Sea region is that the favored god of the most populous race (humanity) is gone and his church is dead, thus forcing humanity to seek new faiths and forge ahead into a scary world of unknowns. Removing Aroden from the game is one of many ways we make the Inner Sea region a tumultuous region ripe for adventuring.


Walkena's Witness wrote:
Generic Villain wrote:
Hopefully we'll learn more about Walkena the Child God. I noticed some of his followers in the NPC Guide, and would like to know more about the faith.

If you are interested in learning of the greatness of Walkena, I'd be happy to do a home visit. You can also come to our prayer meetings. With Walkena in your life, the path to greater happiness will be clear. Do the proverbs not say that the little Child will lead us?

*hands over colorful folded papers written in Polyglot*

We have brochures!

Aaaah. The witnesses. Sources of untold hours of amusement.

"We're Walkena's Witnesses"
"Witnesses, eh? What do they accuse him of?"

I also like to scare them (especially if they show up early in the morning on the Weekend, and I mistake their knock for a courier carrying an important message/parcel): When I hear the knock at several bells before sunrise on a Starday, I call to them in a voice sweet as honey. "I will be with you shortly! Just a little patience, my friend!" I use ghost sounds to evoke disturbing sounds like whispers not quite loud enough to understand. I'll get my special-made glowing eye lenses (they also provide darkvision and you can turn of the glowing - it's not as if I bought glowing eye lenses just as a gag. Not just...) and put them on, and also get some of that non-perishable pea soup a gnome acquaintance once gave me a whole barrel of and put it all over my face and mouth, and a good swallow into the mouth which I let run out of my mouth down my chin. To top it all off, I get that bloody (literally) old rag of a coat I once took off a mad cultist's corpse (not mad enough..) and put it on. Then I sneak to the door, rip it open and in the most deep, demonic voice I can manage shout: "I HAVE BEEN WAITING FOR YOU! MUAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAA!

It's simply amazing how fast those guys can run. As if Abraxas himself was behind them.... :)


James Jacobs wrote:


More to the point, part of Golarion's theme is that Aroden is dead and his church is more or less gone.

INFIDEL!

*SMITE!!!*

I said: *SMITE!!!*

Must have forgotten to recharge it. Consider yourself lucky, mortal! But persist in your heresy and see what you get yourself into.


James Jacobs wrote:


Comparing Golarion faiths to real-world faiths in that way is meaningless, since in the real world, priests can't resurrect the dead, heal wounds with magic, or blast undead with positive energy.

I wouldn't go as far as saying that it's meaningless. Sure, if you live in a world where clerics generally *CAN* do such things, it's harder to get followers if you can't, but how religion works in our world is great to look into and explain how Aroden still has a fellowship!

Even if you say he's dead and gone, you can inspire hope by saying that if enough people believe strongly enough, he will be resurrected. And you don't have to go that far. You can say that he's not dead, but merely gone. Call it a Big Test of Faith. Claim it was part of the Ineffable Plan all along, that he never intended to come back at the time he said. That, instead, he decided to first test the faith and fidelity of his flock - after all, everyone will follow a strong god who can dole out many gifts. A real believer, though, will not turn his back upon the Deity if his faith is true. "I know that my Redeemer lives" (Job 19:25)

James Jacobs wrote:


a transcontinental railway or common airship travel

Giant cannons, big turtles or cute dragons are still in, though, right? Right?

James Jacobs wrote:


And one of the key things that defines the Inner Sea region is that the favored god of the most populous race (humanity) is gone and his church is dead, thus forcing humanity to seek new faiths and forge ahead into a scary world of unknowns. Removing Aroden from the game is one of many ways we make the Inner Sea region a tumultuous region ripe for adventuring.

I think the story of Aroden was a stroke of genius, actually. Especially the part where it wasn't dropped on the running, living campaign world.

In addition to the great tumult it caused, it explains why prophecy isn't an accurate way of information gathering and why those divination spells usually have a chance of going awry.

I think the remnant faith to be one of the things that makes it so interesting.


James Jacobs wrote:
Yup; while there are still a few holdout "clerics" of Aroden, they don't get spells. Those who follow Aroden are more properly called philosophers—their beliefs are treated like those who follow things like the Whispering Way or Diabolism or the like. The vast majority of spellcasting clerics who once worshiped Aroden switched to the worship of Iomedae.

So does their ability to channel stop too?

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I'd assume that former Arodenites follow rules for ex-Clerics. That means, no class abilities including channelling.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

stuart haffenden wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
Yup; while there are still a few holdout "clerics" of Aroden, they don't get spells. Those who follow Aroden are more properly called philosophers—their beliefs are treated like those who follow things like the Whispering Way or Diabolism or the like. The vast majority of spellcasting clerics who once worshiped Aroden switched to the worship of Iomedae.
So does their ability to channel stop too?

Yup; Gorbacz is correct. Clerics of Aroden follow the rules for ex-clerics. Of course, it's been 100 years, so the number of actual REAL ex-clerics of Aroden left is incredibly small. Close to zero, I would dare say.

Characters who decided to take cleric levels from the start and worship Aroden are no more likely to gain spells than if they worship Razmir or Merisiel or a giant slug.

Dark Archive

James Jacobs wrote:
Characters who decided to take cleric levels from the start and worship Aroden are no more likely to gain spells than if they worship ... Merisiel ...

Now there's a PFS character idea. A low int/wis fighter who worships Merisiel, and thinks he's a cleric.....Obviously he'd favour knives....

Sovereign Court

James Jacobs wrote:
stuart haffenden wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
Yup; while there are still a few holdout "clerics" of Aroden, they don't get spells. Those who follow Aroden are more properly called philosophers—their beliefs are treated like those who follow things like the Whispering Way or Diabolism or the like. The vast majority of spellcasting clerics who once worshiped Aroden switched to the worship of Iomedae.
So does their ability to channel stop too?

Yup; Gorbacz is correct. Clerics of Aroden follow the rules for ex-clerics. Of course, it's been 100 years, so the number of actual REAL ex-clerics of Aroden left is incredibly small. Close to zero, I would dare say.

Characters who decided to take cleric levels from the start and worship Aroden are no more likely to gain spells than if they worship Razmir or Merisiel or a giant slug.

Well, in some earlier incarnatins of the game (2e FR ???) I recall at some point there being an explanation that 1st and 2nd level spells came from the cleric's own faith power, 3rd to 5th from angels/servants, and beyond from the big boss himself... or something like it.

Now, it does not NEED to be like this on Golarion, but for a homebrew, you could rule that way, and surmise that A. is not dead but just imprisoned. Maybe he is held caged in some great cosmic device to prevent the Worldwound from opening further, and is "as good as dead", and the quest of his remaining servants to free him could cause an even greater disaster ???

Pennies for your thoughts

Sovereign Court

Also curious up to some point what became of his servants (aside from those who have joined Iomedae). Surely not all of his planetars / inevitable / what have you are offed and some must still lurk around ?

strange they are not talking ... maybe they can't ? Or maybe they are AFRAID ? Or maybe SOMEONE silenced them ?

Sovereign Court

MWAHAHAHA !!!


James Jacobs wrote:
Characters who decided to take cleric levels from the start and worship Aroden are no more likely to gain spells than if they worship Razmir or Merisiel or a giant slug.

Blasphemer !

Kneel before me !

And in your heart you know you have more than a passing interest in Merisiel Jacobs ... ;p


Stereofm wrote:


Well, in some earlier incarnatins of the game (2e FR ???) I recall at some point there being an explanation that 1st and 2nd level spells came from the cleric's own faith power, 3rd to 5th from angels/servants, and beyond from the big boss himself... or something like it.

Now, it does not NEED to be like this on Golarion

I'd say that it definitely isn't like that on Golarion, or in Pathfinder in general, or even 3e. Like a lot of things from Earlier Editions, I consider this to be overthinking the matter, adding needless complication.

Plus, it can't be FR, at least not more recent FR (i.e. after the Time of Troubles) since any divine magic requires divine patronage since then. (And not worshipping a deity will really get you into trouble).


Stereofm wrote:


Now, it does not NEED to be like this on Golarion, but for a homebrew, you could rule that way, and surmise that A. is not dead but just imprisoned. Maybe he is held caged in some great cosmic device to prevent the Worldwound from opening further, and is "as good as dead", and the quest of his remaining servants to free him could cause an even greater disaster ???

Pennies for your thoughts

What do you mean, "you could rule"? I'm not dead. I'm not imprisoned, either. What am I, a Rough Beast? Or part of a divine soap opera where misunderstandings will get you killed but doing the most horrible deeds will get you house arrest?

I just took some time off, is all. I'll be back in no time (it may just seem lifetimes to you brief mortals. That's because you don't try enough. I was human once, too. Didn't stop me. And it's not as if you cannot do it, too - a drunkard ascended for My sake!)

Sovereign Court

Aroden wrote:


I was human once, too. Didn't stop me. And it's not as if you cannot do it, too - a drunkard ascended for My sake!)

I'll have to give it a thought. Maybe by boosting my fiendish ancestry a bit that could work. MMM... Yes sacrificing a whole group of PCs in a TPK would be a good start.

Dark Archive

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber

Is the city stat blocks explained anywhere? In another book perhaps? Just want to understand what the + & - #'s are in relation.

Thanks,
ShaneG.

Contributor

That's from the new city stat block format in the Gamemaster Guide. If you don't have the GMG, feel free to disregard that data.


Just got around to reading the Sargava companion today. I must say IMHO, this was the best Companion book to an AP to date. The flavor of the setting is excellent. Good job to all involved.

Question about the interior artwork. There are two city pictures in the "Settlements of Sargava" section (p12 and p17). Are they reversed?

I ask because the pic on p12 looks like it depicts Kalabuto according to Kalabuto's description, yet is is next to the Eleder writeup. And the Eleder city description resembles the art on p17 next to the Kalabuto write-up.

Just curious :)

Contributor

Sunderstone wrote:

Just got around to reading the Sargava companion today. I must say IMHO, this was the best Companion book to an AP to date. The flavor of the setting is excellent. Good job to all involved.

Question about the interior artwork. There are two city pictures in the "Settlements of Sargava" section (p12 and p17). Are they reversed?

I ask because the pic on p12 looks like it depicts Kalabuto according to Kalabuto's description, yet is is next to the Eleder writeup. And the Eleder city description resembles the art on p17 next to the Kalabuto write-up.

Just curious :)

Yeah, Eleder is show on page 17, and Kalabuto is on page 12. For the chapter openers, we don't generally worry about trying to make them related to the first thing in the chapter, but since the only other illo was Eleder, it probably would have made sense to switch those two. Sorry for any confusion!


Thanks. Love the Kalabuto pic.


Set wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
The vast majority of spellcasting clerics who once worshiped Aroden switched to the worship of Iomedae.

The church could probably still function at least at a basic level through the use of Adepts and / or Bards.

I have an idea of my own about the Demon Queen Sifkesh (Lord of Heretics) giving her power to some Arodenites on the sly, with the intention of increasing her own power, making non-demonic religion look bad, and 'for the evulz'. Hey, she IS a Demon Lord, after all.

The Exchange

Eric Hinkle wrote:
Set wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
The vast majority of spellcasting clerics who once worshiped Aroden switched to the worship of Iomedae.

The church could probably still function at least at a basic level through the use of Adepts and / or Bards.

I have an idea of my own about the Demon Queen Sifkesh (Lord of Heretics) giving her power to some Arodenites on the sly, with the intention of increasing her own power, making non-demonic religion look bad, and 'for the evulz'. Hey, she IS a Demon Lord, after all.

THAT would make the basis for an awesome campaign! I can see some PCs getting into a lot of trouble when they confront the local "cleric of Aroden" revivalist and his duped worshippers with their accusations of demonic powers.

The Exchange

*casts thread necromancy*

I was wondering what product the ruins north of Sargava are detailed in? Mbaiki and Darkreach are on the map on the inside cover of the Sargava book, but I couldn't find where they are written about.

The Exchange

I checked the Pathfinder wiki. Apparently Mbaiki and Darkreach are described in "Heart of the Jungle." I'm kinda sad about that, since they do appear on the map of Sargava, but they are outside the red dotted-line, so I understand why they would be in a different book.

Contributor

Also, keep in mind that Sargava is a player-oriented book and thus doesn't have secret info that player's shouldn't know, like what monsters and such live in old ruins. Heart of the Jungle is a GM-oriented book, and thus would have that sort of secret info.


James Jacobs wrote:

Yup; Gorbacz is correct. Clerics of Aroden follow the rules for ex-clerics. Of course, it's been 100 years, so the number of actual REAL ex-clerics of Aroden left is incredibly small. Close to zero, I would dare say.

Characters who decided to take cleric levels from the start and worship Aroden are no more likely to gain spells than if they worship Razmir or Merisiel or a giant slug.

A question from a noob: why is Baron Utilius a cleric of Aroden then? And why did he decide to become an ex-cleric of a dead god instead of being a paladin of Aroden/Iomedae or an oracle (with a mystery having been part of Aroden's portfolio)?

Please do not see this as a critique, I'm just curious why it is as it is.

Yours,
A.S.

Dark Archive

Starfinder Superscriber
alain_1970 wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:

Yup; Gorbacz is correct. Clerics of Aroden follow the rules for ex-clerics. Of course, it's been 100 years, so the number of actual REAL ex-clerics of Aroden left is incredibly small. Close to zero, I would dare say.

Characters who decided to take cleric levels from the start and worship Aroden are no more likely to gain spells than if they worship Razmir or Merisiel or a giant slug.

A question from a noob: why is Baron Utilius a cleric of Aroden then? And why did he decide to become an ex-cleric of a dead god instead of being a paladin of Aroden/Iomedae or an oracle (with a mystery having been part of Aroden's portfolio)?

Please do not see this as a critique, I'm just curious why it is as it is.

Yours,
A.S.

First this is a Player's Guide.

Second in Sargava being a Cleric of Aroden is more prestigious than being a cleric of Iomedae. As the leader of the nation, the Baron needs to cater to those of the old Faith (ie Aroden), since they control most of the wealth and thus wield significant power.

Liberty's Edge

Does anyone know what city is pictured on page 17? I had assume it was Eleder but can't wrap my head around the geography. Maybe Crown's End?


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As much as I hate to say it, I'm really not that impressed with this one. I was hoping to get a book detailing some really cool analogs to the various African pantheons and highlighting their mythologies, but that's not the case. While the other cultures presented, up to this point, have gotten some really cool back stories, and fun settings, the one setting that happens to be set in an area that would be predominately populated black, gets, to put it mildly, the short end of the stick.

The native black tribes are predominately portrayed as servants, slaves, or man eating savages, and that irritates me to no end. There are plenty of African cultures and myths that the writers could have used as the basis for this setting, but instead they chose to go with the native black tribes playing second fiddle to what are basically analogs to White European settlers, and I'm not happy about it. I'm not sure why the creative staff chose to go this route, but next time they might want to do a little research on African mythology, and not base everything on stories about Allan Quatermain.

I'm sorry if this comes off sounding a bit bitter, a just wish they'd done their homework on this one, as I think this would have been a great setting.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Maps, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

I think you might prefer the supplement for the Mwangi Expanse.

The whole point of the Sargava supplement is the Chelish colonization and its effects on the natives.

Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion Subscriber

DSumner, I recommend checking out Pathfinder Chronicles: Heart of the Jungle. ^_^

You may find it more to your liking, as this one is very... colonial.

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