Shackled City - Trials and tribulations of my party.

Campaign Journals

I spent some time reading these boards at work last night, and well, I guess i am inspired to add my own 2 coppers worth of personal story experience to the forum. I've been running my group through the Shackled City Adventure Path, and they are having a great time with it. While my group is about just over halfway done, i figured to recount their exploits and what i can recall of the events that brought them to where they are now, and then continue once i get to "present day".

I'll start with some Campaign summaries or house rules and other such, plus a cast of characters and then move on from there into the story itself. Lets see, where to begin exactly...

I liked the backgrounds provided at the back or the book, and worked with each player to help tailor a background that fit well with the setting itself. For this campaign, I used a "higher powered" point buy, putting everyone on equal footing, but making the players a bit tougher as I intended to throw everything I had at them including the kitchen sink. I've recently enjoyed a great deal of the Eberron flavor, and the pulpy feel of things, and i like the thought of the players standing a cut above and being "heroes" like in the stories. (i believe it was 40 or something very close to it.)

I stuck to core books and the spell compendium for initial spells, but reserved splatbooks and other products as my own options to add spells/scriolls etc in as needed/desired by myself.

I chose to include the 'Retraining' option from the UA, it fit my players style very nicely. (Some concepts sound better then they play, and this helps tweak that without the 'I want a character rewrite' conversations)

My last stipulation was that i wished all concepts to be, or lean towards, good alignments. There is enough bad stuff happening in this setting to keep anyone busy, and i was wishing to avoid any of the copout 'I kill my companion because I want his stuff, i'm evil' garbage among other thing things. (as a side note, I ran an all evil drow game that was wickedly fun, so i'm not as narrow minded as people may think.)

I enjoy a good mix of drama and action in my games, and i like things to 'make sense' when they happen. Greyhawk was the setting i chose, as my group has a few long long playing members who remember some things from 1st edition even, but nobody who was a setting 'encyclopedia' aside from myself. (wooo, go me!)

Next up, my players' Cast of Characters.

Cast of Characters.(Part one)

**Name: Donnerval
**Race/Class: A Human Cleric of St Cuthbert
**Alignment: Lawful good
**Background Trait: He ended up with the Scion of Surabar, so he got a little more of the town back history then some of the others.

**Playstyle:A firm advocate of the Retribution aspect of his diety, he was a Smiter in attitude, and a heavy arnmor and shield tank. One of the most durable of the party, he ended up right on the front lines, swinging away. His career path would take him down the walk of Warpriest later on.

**Notes: At start, he'd just returned to town from a 3 year pilgramage to a larger temple (sea trip to greyhawk) and been annointed as a full fledged clericwhile there.. he had arrived back in cauldron that evening, and was making his way through the dark streets towards the temple, where he would be staying.


**Name: Hawk
**Race/Class: Human Ranger
**Alignment: Neutral Good
**Background Trait: Mark of the Beast, with the affinity being Wolves.

**Playstyle: Light armor with a fairly heavy melee and ranged punch. Bastard sword and short, longbow. 2nd most armed player in the group once you added in his mace for skeletons etc, and a half dozen daggers. came across as the 'grizzled vet' in initial play. Career would have him multiclassing Fighter and Ranger levels as he leveled up.

**Notes: he was a Geoff refugee from when that land was overrun by giants during the Wars. (can you guess his 1st favored enemy?) One of only a handful of survivors from his village there(none of which were family), he drifted to Cauldron looking for some distant relatives. He later learned that those relatives he was looking for had passed away during the Filth Fever outbreak years ago. Animal Companion? you guessed it, a Hawk. (used creatively in a variety of out of combat roles)


**Name: Galvin
**Race/Class: Human Fighter
**Alignment: Neutral Good
**Background Trait: Dream Haunted. Nightmares whenever he sleeps, the only way he found around it was drinking a lot. passed out, he wouldn't have dreams.

**Playstyle: Started with two-bladed sword prof, Improved Unarmed Strike, and light armor. Embraced an "anything goes' mentality, changing weapons and armor and even fighting styles and tactics based on whatever items the party managed to find. quiver of ehlonna turned him into a walking arsenal with the high strength to back up whatever was not able to be stored in the quiver. Has been seen with a heavy flail, silver longsword, javelins, a long and a short bow, daggers, and is currently the wielder of Alakast. Career wouold see his stay as a straight fighter so far, focusing on versatility feats like Trip, Disarm, Sunder, Two weapon use(improved at this point even), Etc

**Notes: Caravan guard was how he arrived in town, he was the only character without any 'real' ties to the region at start. but hey, when your character has perfectly justifiable reasons to hang out in taverns and drink a lot, you have an easy way to be added into being thrown out drunk onto the street just as a few other passerby are moving along the same street.

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**Name: Danifae
**Race/Class: Human Sorceress
**Alignment: Chaotic good (leanings towards neutral)
**Background Trait: Originally was going to use Wyrm Blooded, but after creation was finished, deceided that the feats chosen meant the background itself was not needed, so dropped it. considered a 'freebie' baclground with no game effects, but related to Hookface instead of Dhorlat.

**Playstyle. Draconic Heritage Feat build(Red Dragon) from Dragon Magic/Races of the Dragon. Started with the spell to breath weapon (2d6 per spell level) feat. (who needs burning hands, 30' cones are dangerous!) Career build involved almost exclusive picking of more heritage feats, and going into Dragonheart Mage prestigue class. also tried to pick draconic spells instead of the more commonly used ones for a more distinct and unique playstyle.

**Notes: a beautiful redhead with an explosive temper? yeah, that about sums it up. characetr tries to roleplay more draconic tendencies as they get mroe heritage feats and powerful, effectively keeping in check the CE alignment tendencies as well as the 'hoarding' mentality. Came to cauldron while trying to track down answers about her heritage. will be interesting when hookface finally shows up.

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