Happy Holidays, a free villain to use, as you like (inspired by RPGSS).

RPG Superstar™ 2008 General Discussion

“If only these adventuring groups could be turned to more humanitarian pursuits.”

Pater Sarno (LN Male Half-Elf Commoner 4 / Adept 4)

A self-made man of humble beginnings, Sarno (deferentially titled “Pater” by his disciples) is an avid reader and sometimes painter with a soft spot for children, small animals, and the less fortunate. Among close acquaintances, Sarno is quite fond of jokes about humanoids, and is exceptionally proud of having taught himself to speak no less than four of their dialects. A self-styled “humanist,” Sarno actively participates on the councils of several cities, generously contributes monetarily to public works projects, and travels extensively, proselytizing on behalf of his church.

Growing up an orphaned bastard, Sarno knows firsthand how difficult life can be for abandoned children, and often carries blankets and candy on his person. Bullied and ostracized as an adolescent, he transformed his simmering fury into a positive force for change. He works tirelessly for reduced taxes and better housing conditions for human citizens, brushing off the concerns of others for his ill health, stating it as merely a consequence of his “weak lineage.” Over the course of the last ten years, Sarno has founded a religious organization dedicated to caring for downtrodden humans, and healing half-blood humans of their ailment, though privately he hopes to one day amass enough resources to cure the “elven condition” altogether.

“What do you get when an elf fornicates with a troll?”

Smiling wherever he goes, Sarno abhors physical violence, and would never cause harm to a human (directly or indirectly). He rarely carries a weapon of any kind, preferring instead items which aid him in his travels, or which he might use to detain transgressors until suitable authorities arrive to remove the “rabble-rouser.” Inwardly he loathes personal contact with non-humans, and actively balks at the thought of getting their blood on his person, though he is not adverse to coercion and third party terror tactics is his “urban beautification” efforts. Wherever a human suffers from unemployment, hunger, or disease, Sarno is certain to be there, probing for non-human culpability.

Laws and intimidation are Pater Sarno’s weapons, and he wields them deadlier than any knife. Sarno never breaks his bond to a human, but similarly never keeps his word to a non-human (and is smart enough not to make a promise to a non-human in public). In his mind, non-humans are simply too deceitful to keep their end of the bargain in the first place. Likely to come from any altercation smelling of roses and with the law on his side, in a pinch, Sarno can count on the backing of several all human adventuring parties he personally sponsors, shelter provided by human sympathizers, and the ardent protection of the disaffected half-human members of his congregation. Given sufficient time, Sarno can garner triple the wealth for a typical NPC of his level, willingly donated by human nobles motivated by his good works.

“So the dragon says, “I said Dwarven HOARDS! …get it? Hoards?”

Adventure Hooks:


The party returns to town with their hard-earned plunder, only to discover exorbitant taxes on anything the non-human party members attempt to buy or sell, as well as a new law, which states non-humans shorter than four feet cannot roam unaccompanied by a human, “for their own protection.”

Pater Sarno is fond of hiring adventuring parties of humanoids for suicide missions, especially if it means clashing with other non-humans. As he sees it, whoever might perish, there is simply no way to lose. He may wish to hire the party to exterminate “lawless brigands,” coerce “squatters” to leave the city, or instead hire another adventuring party to defeat the pc’s, seeing them as “marauding vandals” if they are comprised of non-humans and winning the hearts and minds of the populace.

Pater Sarno has successfully researched a new version of Summon Monster which allows for the summoning of humanoids, and is giving away the scrolls for free as fast as he can scribe them. When one of the party’s contacts is repeatedly whisked away to be pressed into service as a slave or worse, an unwilling combatant, will they be able to discern the source of the magical calamity before their friend becomes unhinged?

Recently sighted outside of the lairs of chromatic dragons: Mysterious half-elven priests leaving behind scraps of parchment. Upon inspection, these notes comprise a recipe for “Dwelfling Pie,” a dish that consists of stuffing a halfling into a dwarf, and then stuffing the dwarf into an elf.

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 , Star Voter Season 6 aka exile

I'm not sure how I feel about this entry. On one hand, I like it a lot; in fact I am about to copy and e-mail it to the guy who is currently DMing for our group. Out of 8 or 9 of us, there are only two humans in the party. Of those two, one is rarely there, the other suffers from a hunchback and clubfoot, making her often mistaken for something "less" than human. All in all, he's a perfect villain for all of us.

Now the (big social) problem. This just seems like an inopportune time and place to post the villain. Sure you have the holidays coming up, and it is a nice gift (one that as I have said, I am looking forward to seeing in play), but it's also right in the middle of a contest where others (who are competing) are trying to draw attention to their own creations. Further its far enough into a round where many of those creations have suffered harsh criticisms that you've had the opportunity to remedy in your own creation (i.e. Sarno clearly has long term plans that could haunt the party for much of their career; he's clearly more villain than BBEG). In short, I think he would have been better posted once voting for this round closed. Heck, I might even post one of the villains I have running around in my head- one of them who looks a lot like this guy, but is a lot more militant (they'd probably work very well together), the other of which has a "cure" for an all together different problem.

All that said, I'm still digging your guy. If you've got more information about his "cure" for half-humans and the elven condition, I'd love to see that. Is it a spell, a wondrous item of some sort?


exile wrote:
This just seems like an inopportune time and place to post the villain.

I kind of agree, but wanted to slip it in for people before the “Big C.” To be completely honest though, I don’t expect him to pull any attention away from the heavy hitters.

exile wrote:
If you've got more information about his "cure" for half-humans and the elven condition, I'd love to see that. Is it a spell, a wondrous item of some sort?

Here's my entire design process -> Arctaris posts the word, "turducken." I wiki the thing and see what an abomination it is. I chuckle about it, then get an idea for dwefling pie. Thinking about who might go that far as I'm folding laundry this morning, I come up with this guy in about a half hour. 17 minutes of typing as I should be getting ready to leave work later...one villain.

Rough guess would put it as a water additive. Either something alchemical, or magical (perhaps both).

Ok, so I went to pick up my son’s toys, take care of the dishes, and take a nice bath (still have to empty the cat box, blech), and I thought about this some more.

The water additive thing was stupid and totally incorrect and you should forget I ever mentioned it. This guy hates himself, he would never, ever convert anyone against their will. He craves validation, he wants people to be certain that being an elf is a terrible thing to be, and humanity is the pinnacle of existence.

So, with that in mind, we have the following:

A renegade..something..Solar probably, which an very pro-human agenda, has been following Sarno for some time; in fact, he’s the one surreptitiously ensuring Sarno’s church receives divine energy. Seeing progress in his prodigy, he decides it’s time to proceed to phase two, and contacts Sarno about making…this thing I have no word for yet, in my head it’s the Mensche-schmiede (which doesn’t exactly roll off the tongue, nor is it linguistically or politically correct). In order for the solar to give him the plans and the aid he needs to build it, Sarno must accept a geas which binds him to being in the last set with elven blood to use the device (which means, for one thing, there can only be nine other half-elves and no elves in the world if he wants to be human).

Basically, it’s a tower, with great winding staircases wrapped around it, a platform with spaces for eleven people (ten in a ring, one in the center) and a big lens on top. Ten elves or half elves form a circle around a single human, the willing sacrifice of which is required to power the device. The human’s essence divides, and the other participant’s elven qualities are “purified” by the device. Half-elves become human, elves become half-elves (and thus require two trips, and two lost human lives). Once a day at noon, this thing fires up, and forcibly discorporates whatever is beneath it, reincarnating those of formerly elven blood. Everything works perfect, assuming all the conditions are met.

What neither Sarno or the solar know is, the device is horribly, horribly flawed if used incorrectly. If the half-elves or elves don’t have enough levels to lose, if something other than elves and humans are put in the device, or if something other than a human is placed in the center, atrocity commences. The contributors are turned inside out, or slammed together into one giant mass, or grow cancerous, attain taint, whatever, it’s bad. Especially because they don’t die until someone hacks them into little tiny bits.

Ok, off to clean the cat box.

ROFL! Oh man I love this. To bad ya weren't in the RPG SuperStars. This would have been great. Defently can see this as an ongoing villian for a campaign.

Thank you for the complement; I'm glad you like him.

I entered, then crashed and burned with the rest; probably because of my “fire and forget” type of creation. I had a fair idea of how I wanted the country to look, but that’s about as far as I got in the creation process. I only shine under extreme pressure.

I haven't stated him out (I may yet later), but I'm thinking he has a toad or a snake familiar named "elf."

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