Ultron like character in a pathfinder campaign setting


As a note, I wasn't sure if I should put this in advice or campaign setting but since I'm asking for advice on what to do next I stuck it here.

So I'm having a hard time determining what to do next in my campaign. I've taken a 2 week break from game and I promised to run game this Sunday, but I'm still not 100% sure what to do. I'm more or less asking for some creative advice for my campaign setting. The game is runs fairly standard D&D in terms of level of magic. No guns, epic level fantasy for point buy. Pretty much LOTR if it had more magic. Below is the description of my campaign and how the players came to the current events.

I am currently running a pathfinder campaign in which the current antagonist is a Adamantine golem pretty similar to Ultron called Scion. Essentially, the golem is powered by a magical stone that contains a soul. This soul was lawful good aligned and Scion acted accordingly. Scion aided the players in defeating the first main antagonist of the campaign, a demon lord, and his soul was trapped in a magical stone.

As an epilogue session, Scion, wanting to learn more about the stone that powered him, visited a wizard to the north with the players. This wizard tricked the players and replaced the stone Scion currently had with the evil one. Now, Scion is powered by the soul of the demon lord, turned on the wizard and the players and went into hiding. One player willingly gave her life to make sure the group got away safely (this player wanted to roll a new character anyways).

So with Scion in hiding, the players agreed to a 1 year time skip, occasionally searching for Scion with no success. During the 1 year anniversary of the defeat of the Demon Lord, the players were in a Roman style Colosseum participating in a friendly match against other schools. Suddenly, Scion attacked with an army of constructs and forced the players to retreat. Shortly after, Scion slaughtered the kingdoms leadership and proclaimed himself king of the land and branded the players traitors and to be killed on sight. The players were aided by an Elven npc to escape the land and they are several miles outside the kingdoms jurisdiction.

So here comes my question: what the heck do I do next? I've been stumped for so long as to what Scion might do, what quests might intrigue the players, how do I keep them interested in the Scion threat, etc. As a side note, Scion has been building new golems to aid in his goals, but I'd like to avoid the standard "take over the world" plot, something with a little bit more meat, something with a twist, even a small one. I know it's not the easiest question to answer, but it's had me stumped for sometime.

Thank you for any advice you may have!

The Numeria book may just be the book for you. Heck it even has a "lich" made by technology. If it can't answer some of your questions with a few rules tweaks don't know what can. May suggest the technology book too.

So - what happened to Scion's original soul stone? Was it kept, lost, or destroyed?

The PC who sacrificed themselves so others could live - reroll suggests did not res, but did the party recover their remains...or their soul?

(And it's 'character' gave her life, not 'player'. Unless there's something you're not telling us.)

The demon lord currently residing in Scion's body, is it merely providing the motive power and the moral influence, or is it in control? How content is it to be a battery, if it is, and what resources might it bring to bear to escape.

Does the evil-powered Scion remember all the actions of the Scion construct, or all the actions of the demon soul, or merely all the actions of the evil-powered Scion?

Does Scion build standard golems, or is it attempting to recreate the soul stones and make similar constructs to itself? If so, might it use the kingdom's resources to bind demons to power the stones, and in doing so, mark itself as an enemy of the Abyss who harvests demons as resources for its own plan.

Did it take over the kingdom randomly, or does it feel that, as 'Scion' it is obliged to ascend a throne. Is 'Scion' more than a cool name, and either the construct or the original soul is linked to this kingdom, such as the original soul being a long-dead prince of the blood?

Giving the original soul a place in the narrative, and using the soul or remains of the sacrificed PC seem like steps I would take.

@Cavall Thanks for the suggestion! I'll definitely check out that book.

@Idle Champion

1.) It was kept by the wizard
2.) Yes, the character gave their life. I'm used to saying player.
3.) It is in control however it is merely a battery at this point. I'm not sure what resources would be needed to set it free, but perhaps I could arch the campaign of it trying to escape.
4.) It does remember but it chooses not to care about those old memories unless it can use them to its advantage. It essentially remembers everything, good or evil.
5.) It is building standard golems as well as some cool monsters I found in Numeria and standard pathfinder monsters. However, I never thought of it using other soul stones.
6.) Scion took over the kingdom so that he could have a base of operations, resources, and people to push around to further his own goals.

The name 'Scion' was dubbed by a Dwarven prince of a long forgotten kingdom. The Dwarf created it and was going to provide his soul for it, which eventually happened when the PC's found the Scion originally and powered him up with a soul stone. Long story short, the players found the Dwarfs ghost, got some items to let him do a ritual, got the Dwarf in the stone and stuck it in Scion.

7.) Thanks for the questions, they did help jog some ideas but I'll keep thinking.

Liberty's Edge

Perhaps Scion is driven to become a new nascent or full-on Demon Lord, and is building an army, but not to take over the world. A single world on the Material Plane is chump change. No. Scion wants to carve out his own section of the Abyss with an army of constructs and cold-iron golems immune to the supernatural powers of the other Demon Lords' armies. He simply needs the planet to be his starting base of operations, a resource hub for his cold iron mines, as well as a golem factory. Perhaps what makes Scion truly dangerous is that he wants to find a way to open up a reverse-Worldwound and invade the Abyss, turning the planet into a ravaged warzone and beachhead for his invasion.

Scion could possibly be using the memories of the demon as well, perhaps using its countless years worth of arcane knowledge to eventually create its own demiplane, or even a proper portal to the abyss where it can build a stronger "battery" from more powerful demons.
Maybe it envisions itself as the harbinger of the end, bringing a living hell (so to speak) to the material plane as a way to spark the end of days.

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook Subscriber

Watch "Next Avengers: Heroes of Tomorrow".

It's functionally the situation your players are now facing.

Thanks for the advice everyone! I think I settled on a general idea.

I really like the idea of Scion building a new army to not just take over the world but also attack other planes. Being an immortal machine, he knows that one world will simply not be enough. Taking on the Abyss, other worlds, and transcending itself into godhood is the way to go. I'm thinking that Scion will be using this current world as a base of operations, extracting cold iron and adamantine from the earth, constructing Golem factories and constantly improving not only himself but his constructs as well. When ready, he would not only conquer the world but launch full assaults into other worlds on the material plane, the Abyss, and more. Driven both a calculating insanity, Scion is not only a threat to the world, but other worlds and countless lives.

Thanks everyone! If yo uhave anymore ideas feel free to post, I'll gladly listen.

My thought revolves around his soul-stone, or whatever it's called.

Perhaps Scion himself, the golem, has independence and sentience outside of his soul-stone. The soul embedded within him provides memories and powers, but he's the one in control. So what would be better than a devil prince's soul? How about the soul of a god?

Now, obviously, you can't just march into the outer realms, kill a god, and stick it in a gem. But there are many artifcats out there that are closely tied to deities, containing the 'essence' of their creator god. As well, there are dead gods, and 'fragments' of a dead god's soul are common macguffins. Scion's goal is to acquire enough of these fragments and embed them in himself, thus becoming a true god.

The characters can, of course, be trying to locate these soul fragments before Scion can. For added fun, perhaps the dead(?) god he's collecting soul fragments of had a son or daughter, and their soul is the catalyst to combine all the other soul fragments he's acquired.

Along the lines of conquering other worlds, perhaps Scion needs to build and fortify "assault points", areas where the veil between planes is especially thin. This could mean that he needs slaves as labor, skilled craftsmen to devise the construction, and even wizards of other spellcastes that he could promise (truthfully or not, or maybe somewhere in between) to make immortal in exchange for their services.
These Assault Points could act as permanent Gates, allowing him to send forces freely between the planes without worrying about things like constantly needing spellcasters. As a result, the players could try to rally denizens of other planes to their aid, using the threat of a common enemy to make all parties work together.
Alternatively, they could try and trap Scion on a magically dead world that might slowly drain his power and leave him harmless.
Planescape might be a good resource for something like this. ;)

Here's a one-off idea:

The demon lord currently inhabiting the golem is having problems maintaining control due to a flawed crystal. He needs various super-rare reagents or items to perfect the crystal or he'll eventually break down and lose control permanently. Alternatively, the demon lord wants to be free from the crystal/golem, and needs those same items to form a way to escape.

Minions are currently scouring the land in search of these items when the PCs catch wind of it and need to go on several missions to intercept and claim the items before the Demon Lord's minions can get there first. The PCs could be aided by various rebel groups within the currently dominated kingdom, or other factions that do not want to see a demon lord ruling the world.

Perhaps along the way the PCs might also discover hints at ways to restore the original Scion(Although that's REALLLLLLY cutting it close to the Avengers 2 plot. LOL!)

Shadow Lodge

A way to make him even more Ultron-esque:

The new soul-stones that he creates to power the additional constructs are perfect copies of his original soul-stone...down to the detail of the soul encased within it. As such, ALL of the constructs are Scion. Only by defeating all of them can his threat truly be ended.

As an alternate solution, setting him free to resume his demon lord form might make him individually more powerful, but it would deactivate all the Scion-drones as well.

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