Did anything unusual happen in your CotCT campaign?

Curse of the Crimson Throne

CotCT is an unusual campaign in the sense that it’s an urban sandbox and there are many ways to approach problems and many decisions to be made.

I think it would be fun if we shared some of the unusual decisions that the PCs made during this campaign.
“Did your PCs do anything unexpected?”
“Did your PCs do anything to drive the campaign slightly off the rails?”

For example:

1) Not returning the broach to the Queen.
2) Attacking the Queen and Sabina in Edge of Anarchy.
3) Making friends with enemies. Ex. I read that some PCs became friends with Vancaskerin.
4) Killing Laori or Shadowcount Sial or rejecting their help
5) Killing an ally (Vencarlo, Neolandus) or an innocent (Trinia, Salvator Scream)
6) Rejecting Blackjack and his help
7) No PCs wanting to take up the Blackjack persona
8) I think someone mentioned their party left Korvosa altogether once they started book #2
9) Make a pact with the Arkonas
10) Become bad guys (join forces with the Queen)
11) Fighting (or using stealth, deception or magic) against the Shoanti in book #4
12) Etc

Let’s hear your stories.

Jason S wrote:

CotCT is an unusual campaign in the sense that it’s an urban sandbox and there are many ways to approach problems and many decisions to be made.

I think it would be fun if we shared some of the unusual decisions that the PCs made during this campaign.
“Did your PCs do anything unexpected?”
“Did your PCs do anything to drive the campaign slightly off the rails?”

** spoiler omitted **

Let’s hear your stories.

This seems like an odd thread to have a bunch of spoiler tags in? Maybe just put one in the thread title, since it would be hard to talk about these things without spoilers.

Anyway, the thing that's been amusing me the most so far is that my group has been borderline-completionist about allying with major bad guys against other major bad guys. Shenanigans!

So far, they've done the friendly-rivals thing with an evil adventuring party I introduced; worked with Rolth and Jolistina against the Urgathoans in exchange for helping the former become Seneschal; aided Sabina Marrin in cracking down on the Thieves' Guild; assisted the Red Mantis in finding Neolandus in a trade of information; allied with Vimanda in a coup against Glorio; are presently planning to fight with the Grey Maidens against the remaining Arkona forces; and more or less ended up working for Sorshen to prevent Ileosa from monkeying about with Ancient Thassilonian Stuff. It's happening so frequently it's basically a theme with our game, and I've got plans to keep it rolling past the third adventure...

The Sorshen situation turned out to be pretty wild, too. I had a doomsayer preaching about her rise as flavor text during the riots, and they immediately decided she was the BBEG and got *obsessed* with it. I always try to roll with these things, and ended up making her a sort of interested third party in Korvosan goings-on. As it happened, though, when they met her - in a dream - I reused the art for a powerful, not-exactly-evil NPC in a previous campaign, and someone suggested that it was the same person under a different name. I had to go with it, but it's sort of snowballed.

The NPC in question is in fact far more powerful than they ever suspected from the previous game - a 35th level character using homebrew epic rules - and in fact completely outside the scale that Paizo officially uses for their setting. (So this character is primarily a caster, but could physically slap the Oliphaunt of Jandelay to death, given its recently-published stats. I've joked that she pretended to be an immortal, god-like wizard king to hide her true power.) She also has a very different personality and goals than the official Sorshen, so I've had to rewrite the whole history of Xin-Eurythnia. But it's great, because trying to determine the motivations and resources of a nigh-omnipotent wild card has been great fun for the players.

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So I was a player in this (a paladin) and I actually did something weird that surprised my GM

So in book 1, when you are storming the thieves' area with the street urchins and they attack you, my GM thought it'd be a great moral choice to pick on my paladin. Essentially had to choose between fighting kids or running away. Instead, my paladin took his gold pack and spilled it everywhere, yelling "Free Gold!". The GM was so dumbfounded and impressed that he had the street urchins distracted by the gold and I made a beeline for the head thief. He was seriously impressed I didn't go into "Lawful Dumb" mode on that one.

The Exchange

Not something that's entirely off the rails, but my party DID surprise me by


Actually using stealth to get into the hospice at the end of Seven Days to the Grave, which helped them skip a couple of encounter areas and conserve important resources for the rest of the raid. They managed to sneak in with sphere of invisibility and some potions, had a private, and very quite chat with the Good Doctor, got the information out of him that there's a secret underground lair, and sneaked there by creating a distraction.

This is the same party of players who once got an early TPK in a module because they failed so hard at stealth that they brought an entire city watch on their heads and tried to fight their way out. I was seriously surprised by how deftly they handled the hospice.

Hmmm... Maybe the most unusual and suprising thing was at the end of the AP.

Crown of Fangs spoiler:
My PCs did defeat the Queen, what a fight that was! Not much hp damage dealt to PCs but more fighting against each other (song of discord) and nasty status effects. But alast, the Queen goes down.

And the Everdawn pool goes wild and Kazavon begins to grow out of it. PCs panic as Everdawn pool deals some serious damage to them. Wizard demands others to come to him so he could dimension door them away. They see how large the dragon is and they flee outside. Soon Kazavon breaks through the ceiling, roars mightly and flies away. Pcs are nothing more but insects to it.

So they stopped the Queen but at the same time failed to stop even bigger evil coming back to life. Oopsie. Sadly we did not have time to continue our campaing (real life reasons) so Kazavon is still free and gathering his powers and armies in the shadow plane.

So bit of bitter-sweet ending. I was so sure that they would came up with plan to stop Everdawm pool but they fled. I just couldn't see that coming. But sometime it is noce to have story that doesn't end perfectly but leaves something open.

Great Ap and this is great thread!

The surprising things my PCs have done so far:

1) Made a “deal” with Lamm. You know how every PC is supposed to hate Lamm and want him dead? Well, I allowed Lamm to make a compelling speech to the PCs, marginalizing, explaining, and lying about past grievances so that they didn’t want to kill him. And making amends (lies!) on other monetary grievances. Hilariously, they let Lamm live, went back to Zellara’s house and she basically said “WTF guys!”. Hahaha. They will still try to kill Lamm of course, because he’s going to double cross them.

2) Tried to get back into Lamm’s criminal organization (in my campaign Lamm is more of a crime lord) to make money.

3) Disrespected Zellara when they eventually retrieved her head and cards. Two of the PCs actually said that they would “Head f*** her, if she didn’t do as they ask”. No harrow points for you!

RE: #3:
An angry ghost can really wreck some PCs at that level =O

Can she really manifest as a ghost (the creature) though? Her Harrow card artifact make no mention of that. If she could, she could have killed Lamm herself.

Dunno. I'd have to look it up.

She can't, that's why she summoned the PCs in the first place.

Here's the one thing that completely threw my GM off his possible TPK high-horse due to my PC:

character spoiler:
My character, which I literally took Hector Barbossa from Pirates of the Caribbean and was a Level 3 Rogue Pirate when we got to Vreeg in the carrion golem dungeon, was in a spot of trouble because our GM decided since we had a grand total of 9 player characters in the dungeon that he would buff up the necromancer's spells and double the HP of the more powerful undead. Here's a summary of how things were going so far:

Our dumb (5 Intelligence) Duergar Magus was stuck in the back because he was too slow in his heavy armor

Our Half-Elf Inquisitor who was mainly a role-player over a combat person couldn't shoot anything because I kept getting in her way

The Ratfolk gunslinger couldn't do anything because his weapons couldn't get past the undead DR

Our Celestial Cavalier couldn't hit at all while his AC kept him from taking any damage

The Shoanti Barbarian (who could do ridiculous amounts of damage with that Earthbreaker of his while in rage) singlehandedly knocked down all the undead before getting brought down by Vreeg when he opened up his robes and brought everything back to life

Our Halfling Cleric of awesomeness (seriously, her healing rolls were ridiculously lucky so far) was trying to push by by everyone to get to the Barbarian without getting AoO by any of the skeletons, which was extremely difficult for her.

Our Kitsune Rogue/Gunslinger was picking off the weaker undead with his longbow since he forgot to buy bullets and powder for his musket before coming down into the dungeon

Our Human Wizard bailed on us right before the fight because the player had to get home at a decent hour

Finally, my Human Pirate was hitting whichever skeleton was in range of me with my pistol, dropping the weaker ones and keeping the larger ones away from the Barbarian enough to give the Cleric a chance at healing him without an AoO, while trying to avoid taking more damage since the skeleton snakes a few rooms ago took me down to single-digit hp and the cleric was only willing to heal anyone that fell below zero.

To top it all off, our GM decided to combat our large party size by giving Vreeg flying 60 feet due to a levitation spell and giving him a 25 AC while he's flying due to his magic buffs. To sum it all up, he expected to at least kill our glass cannon of a Barbarian and possibly the Cleric, except he wasn't expecting me to hit the guy with a natural crit with my pistol and knock him to the ground with all 32 damage that I gave him. That gave the cleric enough time to bring the barbarian back onto his feet and let him give the bugger a fateful of Earthbreaker to finish him off.

The look on my GM's face was priceless when I told him my pistol was a x4 crit and that it did 32 damage on him. Never again will the Rogue Pirate be taken for granted!

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