This is my first post on the Paizo forums and I do hope this is the right forum for this question.
I'm currently running a campaign that is going to shift its focus from the end of a heavily modified-version of the Realm of the Fellnight Queen (successfully concluded) to Galt, and I'm wondering if anyone could give me appropriate advice or sources so I can make this part of my campaign as Galtan as possible.
After a little downtime in Andoran, celebrating their fame and hard-earned victory, the PCs will be going to Galt for adventure, but with the lofty goal of ending the Red Revolution for good. They are currently level 10 with 1 mythic tier.
The goal of the group (numbering about 6 PCs) becoming the new leaders of the Red Revolution is easily obtainable for such powerful PCs, so I'm not worried about that, considering governments take root and disappear regularly. The trick in Galt would be to keep the power and successfully change the outlook of the people to stop the successive governmental instability.
Through various research an adventuring, I've come up with various methods for them to complete certain actions that will help to ensure this outcome. Walking into the Revolutionary Council and just taking over won't work; they've got to get the support of the people, find the continuing cause of the Revolution, deal with the Gray Gardeners, etc before they can fully claim power. This part is covered and should be very interesting in the end, even for Mythic characters.
I'm going to have them start in Woodsedge, which is close enough to Andoran where they're coming from so they can use their reputation/sphere of influence and count on allies there.
Where I'm having trouble is finding the general outlook on the people of Galt. I've read various sources such as The Perfumer's Apprentice, The Secret of the Rose and Glove, and several sourcebooks, but I require more. The way I've designed Woodsedge so far is one where the city is wrife with various gangs, famine, plotting pathfinders and such, but I've a question on government. I'm assuming there's a senator who has some influence in the city, but would the towns/cities in Galt have a town watch? Various sources say the infrastructure of Galt has collapsed and it has no standing army. Are there militia's, a town watch, a semblance of civic order the Revolutionary Council has placed in its towns? The Pathfinder Tales sources seem to indicate there is some, but I've yet to see strong mention of this. I need to be able to set the atomsphere for them when they arrive in Woodsedge. Does anyone have any advice on the lifestyle, people, government of Galt I can use?
Thanks for your time!
Galt's inspiration seems drawn from post-revolutionary chaos (See historical: American revolution, French revolution. See fictional: Mad Max, Revolution tv series.)
Trust will likely be one of the strongest currencies. Support for needs such as food, shelter and materials will comes through bands that bonded through strength to take needs, cooperation to con needs or cooperation in creating/defending needs. Everyone will be seeking stability through any means necessary and constantly re-evaluating the cost/benefit of the choices they've made in how they are deciding to secure those needs.
That breeds chaos and revolution. As to the Golorian setting of Galt the rise and fall of different authorities in Galt and inability to maintain power means that trust is a very low amount. And the cost/benefit analysis leans towards the cost for stability is outweighing the benefit relatively soon after that stability is achieved.
An arc for a campaign in Galt may be why that is occurring. Why is the cost of stability never worth the benefit? Why, in the view of the governed, do the stability options always end up being judged so costly?
Galt has always been the most interesting area of Golorian for me.
One of the characters is an Inquisitor of Milani with origins in Galt, who maybe soon recruited by the Eagle Knights of Andoran into the Twilight Talon branch. One of their goals they relay to him is a stable Galt, for a stable Galt is a more secure Andoran and the intent of that nation is to ensure a peaceful Common Rule is spread for tranquility. They'll urge that character (and by extension, the others) to look for the ways to create a stable nation, and through that is trust. The Andorans truly don't wish to control Galt, but rather help the Galtans do so themselves.
Of course, each of the other characters will have other reasons for going to Galt and helping the people there, but I've already come up with ways and tasks the characters can accomplish to reach a fully stable country, but its some time away.
I'm also wondering at things such as the Galtan treasury. Does that even exist in a state of anarchy?
Looking at the Inner Sea World Guide...
Government Citizen Korran Goss is the current chairman of the Revolutionary Council. The cities apparently have Governors, and there is a senate, a relic from the time before the Red Revolution. They haven't had elections since the Revolution started over 40 years ago, but used to be held every 8 years. The 300 member body has been reduced by almost two-thirds by the final blades, and the lack of elections. While it doesn't hold any real power, apparently the arguments they have still drive much of the day-to-day of the revolution, so making friends is on the to do list of any potential future leader.
Funny you picked Woodsedge, as it seems to be the classic home for those who oppose any current Galtan Government. Not sure how much law and order you'd find here, but it does seem to stand apart from the rest of Galt, and is probably the place those whom the Revolution has turned against run to. (Those that escape, anyway.)
As far as a treasury goes, my rule of thumb is, if there's a government it will spend money. And filling it is actually fairly easy. Pick your favorite rich person, name him an enemy of the Revolution, seize all his belongings.
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There's also The Seventh Execution by Amber E. Scott.
Back in the day, I, also interested in Galt and its revolutionary theme, bought the module Flight of the Red Raven and the PS scenario To Scale the Dragon. I was disappointed to find that neither adventure did anything with the revolutionary aspect. (Requiem for the Red Raven hadn't come out yet, so I don't know about that one.)
|W E Ray|
A Paizo adventure, part of an AP in fact, seems to fit in really well with what you may be looking for, Gromnar (and BTW, Welcome to the Boards!).
Volume 35, the Kingmaker Adventure Path, War of the River Kings, details the town of Pitax and it's vile ruler, his fortress and NPC allies & uneasy allies, plus is an adventure where the PCs' attempts to make their own State go to "war" with another powerful State.
It sounds perfect and there's not much difference in setting from the eastern River Kingdoms to Galt (they're adjacent geographically) and I think Irovetti could fit perfectly in Galt.
Thank you everyone for your kind words and suggestions, its highly appreciated and you've given me some ideas.
I think I'm going to play on the aspect of the mob mentality being present even when the mob hasn't formed. Everyone looks out for themselves and when the PCs start in Woodsedge, they'll be greeted by a low-level mob as their introduction to the city. From there, as they use their abilities and wealth to (hopefully) change the life of the populace for the better, attitudes will slowly shift to something more accepting.
I've an additional question for the lore masters out there.
The Into the Darklands sourcebook points to an unnamed, non-described person that's kept in the Dread Dungeons that can bring lasting peace to Galt. He's not allowed to escape, but nor will the guards kill him.
Are there any more sources on his unknown individual, or does anyone have any suggestions on who or what they could be?
Heh, of course there's a Man in the Iron Mask in Galt. Why wouldn't there be?
Hmmmm, I forget whether Hosseter or Jubannich are still alive, but perhaps one of them. I'm not sure why they aren't just killed though - they would have to be some sort of commodity to the derro. It might be the Primarch Bremovir himself, and they're keeping him imprisoned for some reason. Maybe he's actually immune to cytillesh, and the derro are trying to find out why.
I'm also very suspicious of the Grey Gardeners' motives. I suspect they may be some sort of cult that is using the final blades to collect souls for some nefarious purpose. Whether it's a fanatical cult to Father Skinsaw or some dangerous demon cult, I think they're a big motivator to keeping Galt unstable, and they'd need to be removed before a true, lasting peace can be established.
The angle you suggest for the Gray Gardeners is one I'm currently playing up. They are the real problem behind Galt.
As for the man, it was Hosseter who was killed and Jubannich who fled to Andoran. I might toy with Hosseter having been freed from the final blade by the primarch as an insurance policy and that's who is imprisoned.
After thinking about it some more, I'm not sure what divine backing the Gray Gardeners have, if any, but here's what I've come up with:
- As per Gray Gardener prestige class (for gardeners that take it), they need divine spells, and are typically given divine-like inquisitor abilities
- The organization appears to be neutral in alignment, given no alignment restriction for the class and the general feeling of the organization
- They appear to contribute to the problems in Galt, despite being a "stabilizing" force as mentioned
- They support the local Revolutionary Council on the surface, but are ultimately the ones to meet out local justice when the mob overthrows them
I then wonder about what divine backing, if any, they have. None of the Golarion gods really fall into a general patron for the organization. The closest ones I can see would be Sivanah, or Norgorber, but the former seems flighty and the latter doesn't seem like he would have much to gain through the final blads, though Norgorber is popular in Galt.
Paranoia will be the attitude of most citizens of Galt. There are likely spies and informants everywhere as well as unscrupulous people taking advantage to do away with rivals and enemies.
Yeah, this is what I'm getting. It seems right up Norgorber's ally, really. Even the "gray" part seems fitting to him. Add to that the fact that the Gray Guardiners all where masks and basically are the "legal enforcement of murder", Norgorber gets his portfolio to become really important there.
Pharasma would certainly be against it on all levels. The Final Blades remove souls from circulation: that's one of Pharasma's most major problems with Undead (as per James Jacobs). Thus that avenue is out.
Norgorber is close enough in alignment (neutral v. neutral evil) that it would make sense to throw people "off the trail" so that his servants' alignment would be one step different from his, making it more of a secret that he'd be behind it.
The other possibility - and bear with me here - is Nethys. The crazy side of him, that is. The one that wants to destroy everything and everyone, even though even Nethys doesn't want Rovagug free, because even the crazy side of Nethys doesn't want to destroy everything and everyone (even though he kind of does).
Thus a way to cause killing and death (and feed that part of his insanity) while keeping things around eternally: the Final Blades (a powerful magical artifact).
It could be that Galt is Nethys' pet project to keep his murder-happy side distracted while he focuses on other problems. One wanders what would happen, if this is truly the case, if Nethys' "distraction" were suddenly taken away.
Of course, it could be that Norgorber (secretly or not) kind of encouraged/put him up to it.
One final probability I see: Calistria. While she's lust and trickery, she's also Vengeance. And Galt is nothing if not a series of constant Revenge for wrongs, real or imagined... just like Calistria likes it. It's telling that a powerful spirit of Calistria has come over the nobles of the River Kingdom (New Galtan, I think?) who are planning yet more revenge in revenge for the revenge that was taken against them because of all the revenge they took on the people.
Or it may be all three. If Norgorber whispered a "great" idea to Calistria who, in turn, got Nethys all turned on to this nifty way of slaking his... desires as it were... and Nethys created the final blades...
Of course, unless Norgorber was really upfront about it, it's likely that he tricked Calistria or is keeping a secret from her or something similar. In which case, he'd best be careful. Payback's a b- er, I mean, "a wonderful lady named 'Calistria' who is awesome in every way".
When I got into pathfinder, Galt was also the first place I played with and it remains one of my favorite settings on Golarion. Read Plague of Shadows - it probably has the greatest amount of immersion in Galt (along with Walkers, though I have not finished that yet) and can give you an idea of how things are in terms of military and something of the Gardeners.
The first campaign I ran with Pathfinder also traveled to Galt (I set it after the events of PoS) and the PCs did in fact go to Woodsedge to find the fallen Pathfinder Lodge there. It was a lot of fun having the characters break into a Galtan barracks and disrupt a public execution with awesomely rolled 3 Muskateers like action. My player group, even half-way through Rise of the Runelords now, still mark the Grey Gardeners as their favorite villains, and the most threatening and creepy ("...State your business, citizen.")
Point is, it's an area worth putting some time in, IMO. I thought about the motivations of the Gardeners and their true nature as well, and what I began playing with took a prop from Clark Ashton Smith's The Charnel God...