I wanted to map out Sandpoint with 1" squares, but that would have made the map way too large. I ended up with about 2/3" squares, and put it on posterboard. PCs moved around the map with pushpins, and the map itself stood up on a chair (I really should have tracked down an easel for this one).
The note that Barl has in the AE is silly at best - M is in constant (if I recall correctly) daily contact with him via Sending, there really should be NO reason for the note to exist unless it is very detailed and includes a long message with lots of details.
Latrecis, some neat ideas again about how to move some plot elements about, I'll have to consider some of those, thank you.
I am looking forward to, and somewhat dreading Stones over Sandpoint we'll see how it goes.
Couldn't confirm the Barl/Sending issue in actual text via a skimming of the material, but given that Barl is M's apprentice & hand picked guy to take over his old tribe, I suspect that fairly regular Sending spells are on the menu.
All of that is a bit moot really.
My players decided that after HMM, and returning to "Magnimar", and accepting custodianship of Fort Rannick, they would spend a few months there, selling things, going to the theater, getting items, having items crafted, and then returned to "Sandpoint".
My whole plans to have them deal with the environs of the Fort and have to constantly sink money into the Fort for repairs have quickly fell to the wayside as I dont see the point of making them walk back and forth to TBF/Fort Rannick AGAIN, and THEN starting Stones over Sandpoint. (and I wasted that time rewatching the Money Pit!)
So, things will play out at the Fort as they will - I've had Magnimar send a group of about 20 guys to - in theory - help the player's secure and fix up the Fort. I'm imagining the captain of this squad causing problems in TBF as he requisitions goods and work crews from the town.
Meanwhile, Stones over Sandpoint starts, using the cut scene technique - handing off some of the town's NPCs to the players to use in some of the scenes. I've pretty much just borrowed Gluttony's and Story Archer's ideas here, and twisted them to suit my campaign - I'm prepared fairly loosly, to make room for PC action, if nobody else, the Druid could be fairly mobile across the battle.
As always comments and ideas are welcome - especially those I dont agree with, thanks Latrecis for challenging my trains of thought and preconceptions.
Finished Stones Over Sandpoint.
Despite accepting a commission to take over a Rannick, the party decided to stay "Magnimar" for a few months, enjoying the big city and getting some crafting done, and then returned to "Sandpoint", ignoring the fort and the NPCs they left there.
(Its OK on some level, my big plan with Rannick was to play out a Pathfinder version of The Money Pit, but there will be repercussions).
Just as they were considering their abandoned responsibilities, and the party was scattered across town, while some of them were out and about business, others were sleeping off a night of partying I began the giant attack.
I wrote (semi) complete stat blocks for a bunch of 2nd-7th level NPCs - townsfolk that the players knew (or mostly knew). As the PCs were scattered across town, and there were attackers scattered all over I ran a bunch of little scenes, mostly with one PC and the other players playing some of the locals, each NPC also had one question about the NPCs backstory which I allowed the player who got to play them as they saw fit. It went over very well, and every combat was a nail biter.
I quickly dispensed with the round by round events and let each scene play out as it would. The players didn't really need to know the exact timing of events under the hood.
An aside at this point - I only had one really mobile party member - a druid, and he was more concerned with Longtooth.
It took three sessions to complete the attack, and 3 of my players all missed one session (fortunately 1 each week), so my format worked pretty well, as there was never more than 1 PC at an event. As there were a total of 8 combat scenes (some containing zero PCs) the players did do some interweaving of backstory questions for the NPCs without prompting. With only one solid character at most of the events, each one took a while to finish off.
Some of them only only went as well as they did due to some REALLY terrible die rolls on my part. I should have added more NPCs under my control at each scene.
It also went over well with the players in general - players have gotten a good sense that while they are in charge of THEIR story, that there are other stories going on all around them.
I'm fairly pleased with the results even if there was a lot of fudging of the timing of events behind the screen. Having the timeline as a guide was useful for weaving Longtooth through things.
If anyone is interested I can post a more detailed version in the "Fortress" thread.
Hmmpf - over 4 years ago I started planning for this campaign, and over 2 since I last updated this thread.
I've added lots of extra material and trimmed a little.
I really plan to do a section by section thoughts, I have a good part of that finished already. The campaign has not proceeded as well as I could have hoped especially over the last year, but that is as much due to real world interference.
Most importantly, last weekend we finally finished.
Big K met his match at the hands of the party - the final fight went well and had players sweating the outcome, players choosing to take a final stab at finishing off K instead of trying to save their fellows.
I don't feel it was the most exciting battle of the campaign but it went well.
Thanks to everyone who provided feedback thoughts and any material in this forum - you've made this more fun to run, and made me a better DM.