A Song of Silver (GM Reference)


Hell's Rebels

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Uh, what one witch can do, another witch can do as well? Except this one has an invisible imp to deliver touch spells. And has the disguise hex to be just another one of the inquisitors.

You're right--she's Dead Villain Walking as written. I boosted Tiarise with a rebuild and made her one level lower than my Barzillai Thrune; I'd also recommend a coven. Also she's a prepared spell caster with access to creating magical traps, like greater hex glyphs or having cast grim stalker. They should be triggering traps as they go through. Also, she should have an excellent idea of the party and prepare counter-measures and have forewarning of their presence. (Make the imp a consular imp and give her long-term access to commune spells to learn about her witch rival!) My version uses power word blind, feeblemind, and spite: bestow curse in the way your witch is using the touch of idiocy. And, of course still spell and rod of silent spell...

For extra fun, try casting delectable flesh on the party and see the cannibalism!


roguerouge wrote:

Uh, what one witch can do, another witch can do as well? Except this one has an invisible imp to deliver touch spells. And has the disguise hex to be just another one of the inquisitors.

You're right--she's Dead Villain Walking as written. I boosted Tiarise with a rebuild and made her one level lower than my Barzillai Thrune; I'd also recommend a coven. Also she's a prepared spell caster with access to creating magical traps, like greater hex glyphs or having cast grim stalker. They should be triggering traps as they go through. Also, she should have an excellent idea of the party and prepare counter-measures and have forewarning of their presence. (Make the imp a consular imp and give her long-term access to commune spells to learn about her witch rival!) My version uses power word blind, feeblemind, and spite: bestow curse in the way your witch is using the touch of idiocy. And, of course still spell and rod of silent spell...

For extra fun, try casting delectable flesh on the party and see the cannibalism!

Thanks for some of the ideas. This is where my inexperience with high level pay (and high level casters especially)

I missed her disguise hex and the potential use of it. Is your still and silent suggestion to further heighten the confusion of who is casting against them?

Did you change her archetype? And what level did you end up boosting her to? At least 13 as I think power word blind is a level 7 spell?

I have definitely though that she could use similar tactics to my witch especially if she learns from them. And given there is a party of her foes touch of idiocy would still allow the PC witch to do hexes (like the buffing ones) where as mentioned the reverse makes her in a much tougher spot, neutering her as the main villain

I assume spite doesn’t work against a spectral hand attack? Touch attack imp is interesting but it might be quickly revealed by lantern of revealing (such a great item to given the group that is currently help by an unseen servant )

I did not realise greater hex can be put through a glyph. Or are greater hex glyphs something else?

Traps/magical traps are a weak area of mine. I am really not clear on how to create them and how they are not largely overridden by detect magic. Definitely rusty on those rules


A separate question regarding the dragon and it’s breath weapon - is my reading correct that it has the be on a level with the PCs as the line originates at a point in time (rather than strafing from above?)

That makes it considerably less deadly because that plus it being a line rather than a cone make it difficult to get more than one PC (I would imagine). It also makes the as written tactics odd because with poor manoeuvrable I don’t see how she files in line for a breath weapon and then away again in one round. At least not the first round

But this could easily be due to confusion with the fly rules. Might have to return to the physical battle map for this one to help with the 3D parts (when it comes up) !


Her saves are going to get her killed, but there's not much to be done by that.

TIARISE IZONI
Female human witch (dimensional occultist) 14 LE Medium humanoid (human)
Initiative +2 Perception +11

DEFENSE
AC 19, touch 16, flat-footed 19 (+4 armor, +3 Dex, +2 natural) CMD 20
• Spite: Bestow Curse: first melee hit discharges the spell on the attacker.
HP 93 (14d6+42) w/False Life: 108
Fort +9, Ref +9, Will +11

OFFENSE CMB +6 Speed 30
Melee +1 dagger +7/+2 (1d4/19–20)
• Heroism: +2 attacks/CMB
Witch’s hexes: disguise, flight
• Ice Tomb: no AoP, 60’ range, Duration: until freed, Fort 21/half and negate; 3d8 cold, paralyzed, unconscious; freed w/20 points of damage to ice, then staggered 1d4 rounds, 1/day/target
• Retribution: no AoO, 60’ range, Will 21, 5 rounds, target takes half damage it deals in melee, bypasses all DR, resistances, immunities; repeatable on all targets
• Slumber Split Hex: no AoO, 30’ range for first target and 30’ from that target for second target , Will 21, sleep 14 rounds, 1/target/day, standard to wake or if takes damage
• Cackle: swift action 2/day or move action, continue fortune hex for another round
Fortune: 2 round duration, before roll, roll twice and take the best result for saves, attacks, checks.

Witch Spell-Like Abilities (CL 14th; concentration +18)
At will—feather fall (self only), fly (self only, 11 min/day), disguise self (11 hours/day)
1/day—levitate (self only)
1/week—commune with familiar

Witch Spells Prepared (CL 14th; concentration +19/+23 cast defensively or while grappled)
7th—Stilled Heal (140 HP, cures everything), power word blind (60’ range, no save, duration varies—permanent if <50 HP, 51-100 HP is 1d4+1 min, 101-200 HP is 1d4+1 rds)

6th—flesh to stone (Fort 21, 240’ range), cone of cold (60’ cone, 14d6 cold, Reflex half), delectable flesh (60’ range all w/in 15’ of target, Will 21, drop everything to eat the unaffected target)

5th—feeblemind (Will 20/24 for arcane casters, 240’ range, 1 INT & CHA, can recognize friends, no casting or communication or understanding language), teleport (to temple nave), mass pain strike (60’ range and all w/in 30, Fort neg, 1d6 nonlethal for 14 rounds) NEED TO SELECT TWO MORE

4th—charm monster (Will 19, 50’ range, 11 hours, opposed CHA check if not what you’d normally do), dimension door (to vault), black tentacles (medium, 14 rounds, no save, 20 spread, CMB +19, grapple and 1d6+4, CMD 29), spite (14 hours, stores bestow curse vs. first melee hit), greater infernal healing (1 full round casting time, fast heal 4, 1 minute)

3rd—bestow curse (Will 18, touch), dispel magic (d20+14 vs 11+CL), lightning bolt (Reflex 18, 120’ line from you), vampiric touch (5d6, have imp deliver), heroism (+2 saves, attacks, skills for 140 min), excruciating deformation (touch (imp delivery), 14 rounds, Fort negates for one round, each round 2d6 nonlethal, 1 Dex and Con damage, speed reduced by 10 feet)

2nd—cure moderate wounds, false life (2), see invisibility (140 min), status (14 hours), fungal blisters (14 min, 7-8 blisters, take 5 points of damage causes 5’ radius burst of 1d6+7 damage FORT negates, death leads to a cumulative burst)

1st—cure light wounds (2), mage armor (2), unseen servant (2), nereid’s grace .

0 (at will)—arcane mark, detect magic, light, touch of fatigue (DC 15)
Patron Dimensions (see page 20)

TACTICS
Prior days spells: Grim Stalker on ritual notes, Planar Binding an added invisible stalker, Hex Glyph (slumber split hex on nonevil creature entering vault, and next non-evil in range).

Before Combat Every day for all day, Tiarise casts false life, mage armor, spite: bestow curse, and unseen servant, all at caster level 15th via dimensional augmentation. She casts status in this manner as well, targeting her imp Kelaxiax, her invisible stalkers, and her hellcat Megonya.

Pre-combat buffs: 60’ fly, +3 deflection AC/CMD, 20% miss chance, fast heal 4 (1 min), +2 attacks/saves/skills/CMB, +4 morale vs. death, immune to energy drain, true seeing and see invisibility, roll twice and take the best (keep cackling, get two swift rounds). Tiarise drinks a potion of shield of faith and blur, reads a scroll of death ward and true seeing, activates her flight hex, and casts see invisibility, heroism, fungal blisters, and greater infernal healing, just before combat. Before entering, she activates her fortune hex. 10 rounds needed.
IF SURPRISED, DIMENSION DOOR TO THE VAULT B11 with imp.
IF NOT SURPRISED AND HAS 1+ MINUTES, DISGUISE HEX AS A INQUISITOR

Entering combat: Unseen servant opens secret door from B4. Fly w/swift cackle to B8, cast.

During Combat Tiarise begins combat with her most dangerous spells. If she can use area effect early, she’ll cone of cold or delectable flesh to either damage or distract. Given tight quarters, she may be forced to pick people off—ice tomb on a caster, power word blind on a melee or ranged fighter, flesh to stone on a caster or rogue, feeblemind on a caster, avoiding melee combat if possible. She retreats to take cover in the inquisitor troop if no other option is available, although doing so forces her to attempt concentration checks to cast spells (disguise self could help here). If reduced to 50 or fewer hit points, she uses vampiric touch, delivered by her imp familiar, on the most heavily wounded PC.

Morale If reduced to fewer than 30 hp, Tiarise casts dimension door to go to the vault’s dimensional wave point. Therein, she casts her healing spells before emerging to take up the battle again. If reduced to 20 hp or less a second time, she casts teleport to flee to the Temple of Asmodeus in the nave’s waypoint—the PCs can confront her again at Barzillai’s side, and this time, she does not flee. If Tiarise is slain, her body swiftly fades away into a coil of shrieking mist that then dissipates, leaving her gear behind but no body. This begins her transformation into an undead guardian, which won’t reach its conclusion until the final adventure, “Breaking the Bones of Hell.” Methods exist to prevent this transformation from occurring, such as taking care to kill Tiarise while she is in the area of effect of a hallow spell, but once she’s slain and the transformation begins, the PCs are destined to face her again in the final adventure.

STATISTICS Str 8, Dex 16, Con 12, Int 21, Wis 10, Cha 14
Base Atk +7;
Feats Extra Hex: Cackle, Great Fortitude, Improved Familiar, Scribe Scroll, Split Hex, Still Spell
Skills Disguise +8/+18, Fly +20, Knowledge (arcana) +22, Knowledge (history) +22, Knowledge (religion) +22, Linguistics +16, Perception +14, Spellcraft +22, Swim +3, Use Magic Device +19
Languages Abyssal, Aklo, Azlanti, Celestial, Common, Dwarven, Elven, Gnome, Halfling, Infernal, Necril, Shadowtongue, Strix, Tengu, Undercommon, Varisian
SQ dimensional augmentation, witch’s familiar (devil, imp named Kelaxiax)
Combat Gear potion of shield of faith +3 (2), potion of blur (2), scroll of death ward (7 min, +4 morale vs. death, immune to energy drain), scroll of dispel magic, scroll of raise dead, scroll of planar binding, scroll of true seeing (11 min, 120’ range, negates darkness, illusions, blur/displacement), lesser rod of silent spell, wand of cure moderate wounds (19 charges), wand of detect secret doors (14 charges), cackling hag’s blouse
Other Gear +1 dagger, +2 headband of int, +2 belt of dex, amulet of natural armor +2, cloak of resistance +2, handy haversack, platinum unholy symbol of Mephistopheles, Records Hall key, rope (10 feet), spell component pouch, adamantine key worth 300 gp (for the matching box in the vault), 5 pp, 5 gp

SPECIAL ABILITIES
Commune with Familiar (Sp) Once per week, Tiarise can use her link with her familiar Kelaxiax to cast contact other plane as a spell-like ability. The entity contacted replies via Kelaxiax, speaking through the familiar in a disconcertingly deep voice. Tiarise gains a +4 bonus on the Intelligence check to avoid ability score decreases when using the spell in this way, and such decreases last only 24 hours rather than a number of weeks.

Unseen Servant: must be within 50’, if beyond it ceases to exist, STR 2, speed 15’, performs simple tasks like opening, closing, mending, fetching…, can’t be targeted, but dissipates with 6 damage from area attacks. She commands her unseen servant to pick up any items the PCs drop in combat, to open and close doors to break line of sight, or otherwise force the PCs to waste valuable time.

KELAXIAX
Male consular imp LE Tiny outsider (devil, evil, extraplanar, lawful)
Initiative +3 telepathy 50, darkvision 60, Perception +15
Fiendish wings and a whipping scorpion-like tail lash behind this tiny, red nuisance.

DEFENSE
AC 24, touch 16, flat-footed 20 (+3 Dex, +1 dodge, +8 natural, +2 size)
HP 46 (3d10) DR 5/good or silver; fast healing 2
Fort +4, Ref +7, Will +10 SR 19
improved evasion Immune fire, poison; Resist acid 10, cold 10;

OFFENSE Space 2-1/2 ft. Reach 0 Speed 20 Fly 50 ft. (perfect)
sting +12 (1d4 plus Fort 13/1d2 Dex, cure 1 save, 6 rounds)

Spell-Like Abilities (CL 6th; concentration +8)
Constant—detect good, detect magic
At will—invisibility (self only)
1/day—augury, suggestion (Will 14)
1/week—commune (6 questions, CL 12th)

TACTICS
During Combat Kelaxiax remains invisible and perched atop Tiarise’s shoulder. He casts suggestion on the first PC to deal damage to Tiarise, suggesting that PC drop to his knees to beg until he gets forgiveness for the assault. He attempts to sting any foe that grapples Tiarise, but otherwise avoids combat for the most part, save for when he’s ordered to deliver touch spells—something he prefers to do while invisible.
Morale If Tiarise is slain, Kelaxiax flees and hides, hoping to avoid the PCs for the rest of his life.
STATISTICS Str 10, Dex 17, Con 10, Int 14, Wis 12, Cha 14
Base Atk +7; CMB +8; CMD 19
Feats Dodge, Weapon Finesse
Skills Acrobatics +9, Bluff +8, Fly +21, Knowledge (arcana) +16, Knowledge (planes) +8, Linguistics +13, Perception +15, Spellcraft +16, Stealth +17, Use Magic Device +13
Languages Common, Infernal, telepathy 50
SQ change shape (any small or tiny animal; beast shape II)

3 Advanced Invisible Stalkers (CR 8) N Medium outsider (air, elemental, extraplanar)
Initiative +10 darkvision 60 ft.; Perception +14
Natural invisibility: cannot be dispelled or countered by invisibility purge

DEFENSE
AC 24, touch 16, flat-footed 18 (+4 Dex, +6 natural)
HP 94 (7d10+56)
Fort +15, Ref +13, Will +6
Immune: stunning, bleed, paralysis, poison, sleep, critical hits, flanking, sneak attack, doesn’t need to eat/drink/sleep.

OFFENSE
Speed 30 ft., fly 30 (perfect)
Melee 2 slams +14 (2d6+6)
• +2 attack vs. sighted opponents, ignores dex

STATISTICS Str 22, Dex 23, Con 26, Int 18, Wis 19, Cha 15
Base Atk +7; CMB +13; CMD 29
Feats Combat Reflexes, Improved Initiative, Lightning Reflexes, Weapon Focus (slam)
Skills Acrobatics +16, Bluff +12, Fly +24, Heal +11, Knowledge (planes) +12, Perception +12, Sense Motive +12, Sleight of Hand +13, Stealth +14 (+34/+54 if can’t be seen and moving/not moving), Survival +12
Languages Auran, Common
SQ improved tracking: no penalty for tracking while moving


Megonya Advanced Hellcat CR8
LE Large outsider (evil, extraplanar, lawful)
Initiative +9 darkvision 60 ft., scent; Perception +18
This eerie beast appears to be the animated skeleton of a huge fanged cat, its bones glowing with fire and seething with smoke.

DEFENSE
AC 21, touch 15, flat-footed 15 (+5 Dex, +1 dodge, +6 natural, –1 size)
HP 85 (9d10+36) DR 5/good;
Fort +10, Ref +13, Will +5 SR 18
Resist fire 10
Invisible in bright light, in normal light 20% miss chance
Flickering glow pinpoints in darkness

OFFENSE Space 10 ft.; Reach 5 ft.
Speed 40 ft.
bite +13 (1d8+5), 2 claws +13 (1d6+5/19–20 plus grab)
Special Attacks pounce, rake (2 claws +13, 1d6+5/19–20)

STATISTICS Str 21, Dex 21, Con 19, Int 10, Wis 14, Cha 10
Base Atk +9; CMB +15 (+19 grapple); CMD 31 (35 vs. trip)
Feats Combat Reflexes, Dodge, Improved Initiative, Lightning Reflexes, Mobility
Skills Acrobatics +17 (+21 jump), Climb +17, Perception +18, Stealth +17, Survival +14, Swim +17;
Racial Modifiers +4 Perception, +4 Stealth
Languages Infernal (can’t speak); telepathy 100 ft.


Yikes, thanks for all that

I am not a fan of Major Hexes as too many have no effect on a successful save. Did she succeed on any of her nasty spells or ice tomb with your group?

What level where your group when they ran into all that? And how many of them were there?

Invisible stalkers are going to be tough. Without See Invisibility they have +2 to hit and ignore Dex. I think all of my party get +4 from Dex

Shadow Lodge

roguerouge wrote:
Also she's a prepared spell caster with access to creating magical traps, like greater hex glyphs or having cast grim stalker. They should be triggering traps as they go through.

Don't they? I could have sworn there were at least glyphs of warding at the Records Hall.


zimmerwald1915 wrote:
roguerouge wrote:
Also she's a prepared spell caster with access to creating magical traps, like greater hex glyphs or having cast grim stalker. They should be triggering traps as they go through.
Don't they? I could have sworn there were at least glyphs of warding at the Records Hall.

You are right--there are glyphs of warding for 5d8 sonic Reflex 17/half. I just felt that that's... not enough at that level.

Shadow Lodge

roguerouge wrote:
zimmerwald1915 wrote:
roguerouge wrote:
Also she's a prepared spell caster with access to creating magical traps, like greater hex glyphs or having cast grim stalker. They should be triggering traps as they go through.
Don't they? I could have sworn there were at least glyphs of warding at the Records Hall.
You are right--there are glyphs of warding for 5d8 sonic Reflex 17/half. I just felt that that's... not enough at that level.

Depends on the group, I'd think. Which is to say, for yours and Lanathar's, it probably isn't enough at that level.


Oh, I've not run this yet--we're still in the Ruby Masquerade, as two parents at my table are in the throws of family vacations. I just do these things to prepare ahead of time.

Lanathar wrote:
I am not a fan of Major Hexes as too many have no effect on a successful save. Did she succeed on any of her nasty spells or ice tomb with your group?

At this level, it's either target the bad save (rocket tag) or, you're right, automatic effect even if saves. For my party, if she can take out the arcanist with that hex, it's a big deal, not least because the player is !@#$! Rommel tactically and that's their arcane caster with a huge bag of tricks.

I'm really looking forward to the cannibalism spell. I want to lead with convincing their low Will save PCs to try to eat the familiar of the Magical Child Vigilante. It'll be hilarious.

Lanathar wrote:
What level where your group when they ran into all that? And how many of them were there?

They'll be four PCs with an NPC cohort or NPC possibly. I've boosted levels because of access to many more books than core, high level of system mastery by 3 of the players, and how this campaign allows for planning for encounters rather than dungeon crawls into the unknown.

Lanathar wrote:
Invisible stalkers are going to be tough. Without See Invisibility they have +2 to hit and ignore Dex. I think all of my party get +4 from Dex

I hope so--their attack bonus is poor for their CR.

Shadow Lodge

roguerouge wrote:
I hope so--their attack bonus is poor for their CR.

Meh, the party ate of their flesh a whole book ago. How tough could they be?


zimmerwald1915 wrote:
roguerouge wrote:
zimmerwald1915 wrote:
roguerouge wrote:
Also she's a prepared spell caster with access to creating magical traps, like greater hex glyphs or having cast grim stalker. They should be triggering traps as they go through.
Don't they? I could have sworn there were at least glyphs of warding at the Records Hall.
You are right--there are glyphs of warding for 5d8 sonic Reflex 17/half. I just felt that that's... not enough at that level.
Depends on the group, I'd think. Which is to say, for yours and Lanathar's, it probably isn't enough at that level.

Yes my group all have at least 18 Dex and ABP gives them all +3 to saves. They don’t fail saves very often . All of them are well rounded in that front after a punishing run through Midnight Mirror pre Hells Rebels (indeed the difficult of that set the tone for their character creation)

But yet I think that glyph is CR5 which seems daft

But I need to research glyphs as I don’t understand them fully - hopefully the 1E rules forum still have some activity in the 2E build up !


roguerouge wrote:

Oh, I've not run this yet--we're still in the Ruby Masquerade, as two parents at my table are in the throws of family vacations. I just do these things to prepare ahead of time.

Lanathar wrote:
I am not a fan of Major Hexes as too many have no effect on a successful save. Did she succeed on any of her nasty spells or ice tomb with your group?

At this level, it's either target the bad save (rocket tag) or, you're right, automatic effect even if saves. For my party, if she can take out the arcanist with that hex, it's a big deal, not least because the player is !@#$! Rommel tactically and that's their arcane caster with a huge bag of tricks.

I'm really looking forward to the cannibalism spell. I want to lead with convincing their low Will save PCs to try to eat the familiar of the Magical Child Vigilante. It'll be hilarious.

Lanathar wrote:
What level where your group when they ran into all that? And how many of them were there?

They'll be four PCs with an NPC cohort or NPC possibly. I've boosted levels because of access to many more books than core, high level of system mastery by 3 of the players, and how this campaign allows for planning for encounters rather than dungeon crawls into the unknown.

Lanathar wrote:
Invisible stalkers are going to be tough. Without See Invisibility they have +2 to hit and ignore Dex. I think all of my party get +4 from Dex

I hope so--their attack bonus is poor for their CR.

Interesting view on boosting difficult due to book access. I didn’t restrict books either and regret it massively (and will not be making that mistake again)

My group seem to have developed system mastery (some had it).

Plus the Kineticist really doesn’t need system mastery - it is a plug in and play character that is clearly practice for 2E : stick high numbers in your 2 mains stats and learn your class rules and off you go whilst everything scales and is built into your class so you don’t even need magic items

As mentioned my witch has come up with spectral hand tricks and has been using Rime spell on the cold spells that always do damage - things like that

And the cleric in my group makes it almost impossible to place any debuffs on the group (and there are so many fun ones!)

On the flip side they have not really been doing much prep for the missions. I think they have either 2 or 3 possible teams (molly, hellknights and mialari) as they failed the DC for the bridge.
They have either forgotten or are saving them for the temple (but that would mean someone having read or read about the book). So I think they have forgotten. But I told them so many times !

They only have the records hall and keep to use intrigues on as it stands anyway

*

I kind of want to put them through the ringer but let them kill tiarise because they just spent two sessions going after Hei-Fen and she just got away. They were really upset
(I pointed out to them that they had word of recall prepped themselves so her move wasn’t unreasonable)

Another escaped villain so soon will be a bit much. Tiarise has rubbish HP and no DR though (no great defences all round). So less of an issue...

Indeed her invisible friends will be more of an issue. I hope to interrupt at least one Gather Power and one Witch spell with those...(just because the first has only happened once and the second rarely happen as well )


Other spells to consider for non-combat spells to harass the party or the populace: Pox of Rumors, Possession (risky!), Various curses on civilians while using disguise hex, Vision of Doom, and Epidemic.

Don't forget the Symbol spells for traps!


zimmerwald1915 wrote:
roguerouge wrote:
I hope so--their attack bonus is poor for their CR.
Meh, the party ate of their flesh a whole book ago. How tough could they be?

Absolutely. It's why I'm fine with her calling more of them--I'm not convinced they'll ever hit an 11th level party. Maybe best to instruct them to target the low AC types.


Lanathar wrote:

So I added the blood daemons which were fun as my group fluffed their knowledge checks so as both players and PCs had no idea what they were fighting

I didn’t put in the karumzeks as they had taken a bit of a beating and I wanted to fit the Hei fenn fight in the session

I almost burnt through all her spells (and she had more as I boosted her including a wisdom of 24). Her last act almost sent someone to Abaddon (despite what the book said it was pretty much all she had)

However an interesting point came up:

She got dropped to 6 HP and 5 points of bleed due to a bleeding blast from the Kineticist . It ticked to 1 HP and she used Word of recall to go back to Vyre

How likely is her destination to have someone who could heal her within 12-18 seconds of arrival ? If it is a temple of norgorber - maybe? But it seems like there will just be a dead were rat in some secret hideout in Vyre somewhere with a very cool agile sword...

I think it depends on whether you want Hei-Fen to show up again. You could also not decide until it becomes relevant or even roll a percentage dice. If she appears near pretty much any cultist they could heal her, but chances are she'd flee to some hidden inner sanctum.

Oh yeah, and her boss might well raise her. Living or undead.

I think it's either let the story or let the dice decide, on your preference. I'd say a 25% chance she survives is more than fair, seeing that she's bleeding out rapidly...

EDIT: I did not see how far back that post was.


Rebellion supporters and notoriety:

Is there a place in the adventure where these items are wrapped up in the text? Do their teams stick with them after the Silver Bridge celebration? Do they gain any more plot reward supporters? Can the Song of Silver wrap up without hitting rank 20 rebellion?


Doesn’t the book jump you to 20 at the end even though it seemingly becomes irrelevant?

Also I don’t think it is possible to get enough supporters “naturally” anyway

Unless I am misunderstanding your question ...?

Shadow Lodge

DM Livgin wrote:

Rebellion supporters and notoriety:

Is there a place in the adventure where these items are wrapped up in the text?

No. The rebellion is supposed to reach its peak rank by fiat at the end of A Song of Silver, after which supporters stop mattering because an organization under these rules can't decrease in rank. Notoriety also ceases to matter under a friendly government.

Quote:
Do their teams stick with them after the Silver Bridge celebration?

Up to the GM.

Quote:
Do they gain any more plot reward supporters?

After the end of Song of Silver, no.

Quote:
Can the Song of Silver wrap up without hitting rank 20 rebellion?

No.


Who has run the records hall encounter ? It looks messy with far too little space for a troop, caster, familiar , 2 stalkers and the PCs to operate

But as discussed elsewhere the witch needs these allies to even be a minor threat

So how has it worked out for people ?


Lanathar wrote:

Who has run the records hall encounter ? It looks messy with far too little space for a troop, caster, familiar , 2 stalkers and the PCs to operate

But as discussed elsewhere the witch needs these allies to even be a minor threat

So how has it worked out for people ?

Don't forget that each square is 10 feet instead of 5 feet. There was more than enough room for everyone in my game.

Tiarise herself isn't a huge threat but the invisible stalkers nearly killed my group. (And as I've said before, I replaced Tiarise with Aluceda Zhol and that made this fight significantly harder.)


I missed the 10 feet part . That makes a big difference
I need to go an change my Roll20 maps.

Although i may consider drawing this one out (aside from the troop being awkward - but that won’t last long )


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I've been running this adventure path and converting it to D&D 5th edition along the way. I absolutely love Hell's Rebels and my group likes it a lot as well.

A few weeks ago, I sat down and prepared the rest of the path. Now, I can link/foreshadow things 100 times better and it has made my games "deeper", if that makes sense.

A few notes for those running the path who might not have read all the way through:

Jackdaw: When the group frees Jackdaw, she can tell them about how when she sang the song of silver, a pit fiend named Ougorthan appeared and killed two of her fellow OG Silver Ravens, Kyda and Amyreid. This info made my group extremely paranoid when singing the song of silver! the group meets Ougorthan in Book 6, page 43.

Thirothryn: I had Jackdaw also mention that later, a ghael azata named Thirothryn contacted her and vowed to hunt down the pit fiend. Thirothryn is captured and in hell in Book 6, page 53.

Red Dragon: Have the group find out that Barzillai once killed a red dragon named
Adrakash. This will hopefully impress the group and it foreshadows undead Adrakash's appearance in book 6, page 33.

Hag: Maybe work in a reference to an evil old hag named Nasperiah who used to abduct Kintargans. She's now a witchfire down by the soul anchor in book 6, page 36.

Noble: Place Carliss Mayhart as a prisoner in Kintargo Keep!! Check out book 5, page 20. He was part of a scandal/murder that was probably big news in Kintargo until the Night of Ashes took place.

Figurine: It is noted in Book 4 on page 57 that Barzillai himself owns a corrupted silver raven figurine of wondrous power. It burrows into your body like a scarab of death. I had him send this thing to deliver a message to the group and when they touched it - burrow. Worked out great.

Asmoden: I had Hetamon Haace (he is a love interest of one of the heroes in my campaign) tell SOME of the story of Andax Tasetas, the priest who was brutalized by the Asmodeans and eventually became the undead entity Asmoden in Book 4 page 57. I wanted to tell his tragic tale and mention that his arm was cut off, as this might make the subsequent discovery of this dude's arm more interesting. Hetamon is unaware, however, that Andax lives on as an undead abomination.

Solstines: Also, if possible, place the Solstine siblings (they are described only as "hot-headed would-be rebels" in book 5) in this book somewhere, fighting on the side of the rebels. They should die. This will set up the group's encounter with Raenna Solstine in Book 5, page 21.

Aside from all that stuff, I love the authority points gimmick but there came a point when I just stopped tracking the numbers and went by feel.

Once I found out that there is a scrying font in the temple of Asmodeus (book 4 page 51) I would decide a time of day that Corinstian Grivener would scry on the group, and then see what the group was doing/saying at that time. This ultimately enabled Barzillai to use the orb of storms to trash the group's folding boat and nearly drown them when they were crossing the river.

In my game, the group is about to fight the blue dragon Rivozair for the second time (the group surprised attacked the dragon while it was blowing up buildings during a reprisal).

I felt like the Song of Silver performance should have been more dramatic, so I fleshed it out a bit. I toyed with the idea of having the pit fiend Ougorthan show up, and having the rest of the group hold the pit fiend off until the performance was done. I probably should have done that!

Instead, I let the group learn that a pit fiend had attacked when Jackdaw performed it way back when. They were very paranoid. I had the group roll initiative:

Round 1: Small pieces of the opera house ceiling fell, the building shook. I asked each player what they did, they positioned themselves, ready for an attack.
Round 2: The ceiling glowed silver, the performer (Fio, the party's bard) began to hover and glow.
Round 3: Fio let out a magical pulse that spread through the entire city. I had her and the heroes make checks to withstand it, stunning them on a fail. The group's weapons glowed as the boons kicked in.
Round 4: Fio chose who got the individual boons. With each choice, a silver beam of energy struck that character, who had to make a save or be stunned.

Once it was done, they heard the devil's bells ring and a loud roar erupted from the temple district. Barzillai had ordered Rivozair, the blue dragon, to go to the opera house to destroy the silver ravens.

After that battle is dealt with, there's nothing left to do but to attack the Temple of Asmodeus. I've been dropping hints/clues about the temple, having the devil's bells ring out over the city, and making sure the group knows that the bells supposedly can do things to non-believers of Asmodeus inside the church.

I've also made it clear to the heroes that there are TONS of bad guys in the church. When preparing it, I was kind of groaning - this church is full of combats. If I ran it as a "dungeon", the church would take months to get through and I think the group would get bored.

Instead, I am going to run it as a sort of mass combat. The group is rallying all of their teams and allies, such as the Order of the Torrent, tieflings from Red Roof, etc. I'll run this as the group fighting waves of major foes (probably 3 waves, starting with Corinstian and ending with Barzillai) while their NPC allies fight the other monsters that inhabit the church.

I absolutely LOVE this path and look forward to it every week. We play on twitch and you could watch our stuff on youtube if you're planning on running this path, although unfortunately up until around episode 30, I wasn't able to foreshadow properly because I hadn't read the whole path.

Of the things I really wish I could have foreshadowed, it would be the businesses on the bleakbridge (would have been great to use when the heroes go shopping), the church of asmodeus (I'd have loved for them to visit the church and check out the "gift shop" inside), and generally I want another crack at running the dinner in Book 3 (which is one of the coolest things I've ever run). It went pretty well, but I wish I had read everything bout Hei Fen so I could have really depicted her in a more menacing manner while she was sitting at the table with the adventurers.

Our latest episode (where they sing the song of silver) is right here.


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Fantomas wrote:
Solstines: Also, if possible, place the Solstine siblings (they are described only as "hot-headed would-be rebels" in book 5) in this book somewhere, fighting on the side of the rebels. They should die. This will set up the group's encounter with Raenna Solstine in Book 5, page 21.

TL;DR: Add the Solstine's in early, try to kill them on-screen, if it doesn't work and they survive, that's okay.

I introduced the Solstine brothers in book 1. One of my players was paranoid that a group of dottari were following him across the bridge so he started to try to lose them and looked for somewhere to hide. I had him roll Bluff to try to not be obvious about it and one of the Solstine's saw him searching. The Solstine told the PC to hide under his apple cart and from that point on the brothers were eyes and ears for the budding rebellion. The 'apple cart vendors' became favourite NPCs of the group, one of them started to hero-worship the face of the rebellion, it was all great fun!
I didn't want to force their deaths and wanted it to be on-screen (and give the players a chance to prevent it). The Solstine's went to the Masquerade even though they were warned away by the group because it was too good of a chance to make contacts for their business. There they became a target for Tiarise because the PCs were showing too much concern for them so Tiarise knew attacking the Solstine's would hurt the group. (I added Tiarise in to that fight because in my campaign she ended up too much of an important villain and needed to be at the end of a book rather than a speed bump in book 4). When Tiarise turned towards the brothers the face of the rebellion made enough of a nuisance of himself that he became the target of Phantasmal Killer instead, and thus made a prophesy I had spelled out a few sessions earlier come true.
Yes, this made it so that brothers lived, but interacting with their grieving grandmother as written in book 5 would've been easy and this all made it much more memorable.

Fantomas wrote:
Red Dragon: Have the group find out that Barzillai once killed a red dragon named Adrakash. This will hopefully impress the group and it foreshadows undead Adrakash's appearance in book 6, page 33.

Don't forget that Thrune doesn't encounter Adrakash until during the events in book 2.


So my PCs only have castle Kintargo and rivozair left until the temple but I really like some of those foreshadowing points above

I need to see how I can fit in both introducing and killing them. Probably a stretch

The dragon part is cool and will be a good intimidation point

Asmoden thing can be fun as well but also might need some crowbarring. But could easily be in pre temple discussion


I have some questions about the dragon fight and the approach:

- I have only just noticed that Rivozair has different spells and feats to an adult blue dragon. This was a surprise as I just assumed all monsters kept base abilities unless marked as "unique"

- Is it assumed the players know she breathes fire? Or is it supposed to be a deliberate twist

- I expect my players will be raiding Kintargo Keep last. My initial concern was that they would just teleport straight out back to the Lucky Bones leaving me uncertain of how to trigger the fight and forced into the narrow streets. Jackdaw means they probably won't be able to so I imagine it is best for her to attack whilst on the causeway between the caste and the keep?

- Is my understanding of a line breath weapon correct in that is literally a line along a battle map that needs to pass through a target (not along the line of their grid). My interpretation is that unless a dragon is the same height as their opponents (if they are are all on the ground) then there is no way of getting more than one in the area? Is that correct?

- When have others had this fight triggered? Post keep with a partially sane Jackdaw with them could make this rather tricky (including fleeing if necessary).

- Did anyone manage to make use of her illusions or ventriloquism? Or are these only really for when Blue dragons are used elsewhere and you are approaching their lairs?


Lanathar wrote:

I have some questions about the dragon fight and the approach:

- I have only just noticed that Rivozair has different spells and feats to an adult blue dragon. This was a surprise as I just assumed all monsters kept base abilities unless marked as "unique"

- Is it assumed the players know she breathes fire? Or is it supposed to be a deliberate twist

- I expect my players will be raiding Kintargo Keep last. My initial concern was that they would just teleport straight out back to the Lucky Bones leaving me uncertain of how to trigger the fight and forced into the narrow streets. Jackdaw means they probably won't be able to so I imagine it is best for her to attack whilst on the causeway between the caste and the keep?

- Is my understanding of a line breath weapon correct in that is literally a line along a battle map that needs to pass through a target (not along the line of their grid). My interpretation is that unless a dragon is the same height as their opponents (if they are are all on the ground) then there is no way of getting more than one in the area? Is that correct?

- When have others had this fight triggered? Post keep with a partially sane Jackdaw with them could make this rather tricky (including fleeing if necessary).

- Did anyone manage to make use of her illusions or ventriloquism? Or are these only really for when Blue dragons are used elsewhere and you are approaching their lairs?

1) /shrug. I was just frustrated the the dice for the breath weapon isn't in the book's stat block. I keep on forgetting it.

2) I had her do a fly-by and roast the group as they were returning to the base after a mission, while the base was under attack. Work well to let them know that she breathed fire, to soften them up for the easy fight in the base against a few troops, and to get the knowledgeable types a chance to see she is devilbound like Nox was.

3) The Lucky Bones is too far to dimension door, so they wound need to actually teleport; roll the teleport failure chance behind the screen and have them teleport to the Longroads Coffee house instead (a similar location) or off target somewhere close to the Lucky Bones but exposed.

4) I've described the line as a strafing blast of fire, ignoring versatility and just draw a line on the grid. Might have to refine that one the group takes to the air.

5) She did one fly-by to drop the hint that she had hellfire breath. Then the group decided to attack her them self. Since she was perched on the temple balcony there was a good 200-300 of open field to approach. She took this chance to take off and toast the Opera House... Unfortunately my group took this as a chance to storm the temple... So they are dealing with a hard fight right now... (Good thing they found all those heal scrolls along the way...)

6) I didn't notice those, There was never a place those were obviously useful in my game.


Thanks for your views

Strafing was what I was going to do as it seems to make sense

I still don’t expect them to neatly line up anyway

I am not concerned about teleport as they won’t be able to take jackdaw if they do that. And I removed strea from the silver star and was either going to put her in the keep or the temple

I may need to reconsider some of my planned changes to the keep if she is going to attack afterwards . I have currently rebuilt the warden and given her stats you would expect from a warpriest rather than 12 strength and that plus reduced DCs means she will do absolutely nothing to my group . But i might need to track a middle ground between my rebuild and the stats per the book !


Rivozair is devil-bound and therefore has differences from a normal blue dragon. If the players know she's devil-bound they might be aware of the hellfire breath weapon, depends on their knowledge checks.

I had her let out a roar just as the PCs got into Kintargo Keep that way they had to choose which one to deal with and put pressure on them to finish the keep fast. Even if Rivozair doesn't attack them directly she'll be able to draw them out. (Or, if the PCs aren't drawn out by a dragon attacking the general population, well... I guess a lot of NPC allies of the group are going to die, aren't they?)

Breath weapons are a straight line, you should be able to, so long as everyone is close enough together, get at least 2 PCs even if it's an aerial, 3D combat.


They know about the devil bound thing from the ritual notes but not about the hellfire part. But we have only just got to that point


Warped Savant: I wish I had done something similar with the Solstines! I'll be introducing them tonight.

We'll be playing in an hour or so. I prepared the big fight at the temple, we should at least start it tonight. I'm running it as a mass combat. As the group's allies fight all around them, the heroes will fight three waves of bad guys:


  • Corinstian Grivener and some priests

  • The Erinyes from the Ruby Massacre. She had got away. I could have sworn there were more details about her in book 3 but I can't seem to find them now.

  • Barzillai. Assuming the group wins, I'm going to have him die (I don't like the scenario where he returns on the Bleakbridge). When he dies, I'm going to have him moan "Narcelia...", the sister he's obsessed with (detailed in book 6). I'll also try to narrate his mortal wound in a way that it tears open a hole in his chest, revealing that he has no heart and that there's stuff stashed in there.

For the big battle, I made a list of named NPCs and during each character's turn, I'll describe an NPC fighting one of the many bad guys in the church, and we'll do a die roll to see generally how the fight goes. I'll give the character a chance to help if possible.

My favorite thing about this big battle is that there are some really random monsters in there. The Gardener - a giant green woman. And the "shining child", which cracks me up. Can't wait to describe it!

I originally was going to do more elaborate preparing, but I tend to over-prepare and it suffocates the game, so we'll see how this goes.


So... the Song of Silver. What were the boards' alternatives for this again? The only thing I've been able to find in my notes is:

• Add a longer ritual for 1/year to powerfully ward of forbiddance and teleportation by devils negation for all Kintargo lasting a month

Were there other ideas for alternatives?


roguerouge wrote:

So... the Song of Silver. What were the boards' alternatives for this again? The only thing I've been able to find in my notes is:

• Add a longer ritual for 1/year to powerfully ward of forbiddance and teleportation by devils negation for all Kintargo lasting a month

Were there other ideas for alternatives?

Do you mean to make it better? It seems quite good but perhaps not quite as good as hyped. The free breath of life is a big thing for certain parties

When you say forbiddance do you mean the spell? If you say to cover Kintargo then it would need to be post takeover wouldn’t it?


So as I expected I am a little stuck.
My group have completed the final mission but are looking to teleport away

I thought I had added enough prisoners (4 in total) but they have one teleport spell and the scroll of word of recall .

They are actually talking about teleporting to lucky bones but I have interpreted word of recall has destination set by caster / creator (so opera house ). This could mean a split party

Obviously the book assumes Rivozair catching them in the open which in this case would have been on the keep causeway

I guess my best approach would be for post teleport to just have rivozair start burning the city to try and force a confrontation . And just have it be over the other side of the river so they have time to join together

And then as they are crossing use the bridge

And just assume they won’t stand by and let the dragon massacre the civilians

*

Did I see something mentioned about a visible clue of the ritual in the temple ?

Two of my PCs have died recently and have a permanent negative level. I would imagine their plan is to hole up for a week post rivozair. If they did that they would probably lose the campaign

I think the suggestion was some kind of visible asmodean symbols above the temple with some kind of way of signalling 3?

It will also be a cool aesthetic compared to the silver from the opera house


Update: so their WhatsApp is suggesting that they think there are anti teleport spells on the prison and they are going to disguise as Hell knights to walk home

So that kind of rules out attacking them on the way back which leaves me with having the dragon torching the city either before or after they get back

My players are being more creative than I give them credit for!


My plan was to have the dragon start to torch the opera house roof (I described the roof as glowing when the started the song of silver). So that it would imply that the song of silver benefits were at risk.

I also really emphasized the number of Zebubs on patrol, making sure the party knew that if they walked the streets openly informants would be reporting their location.


Rizovair roars and starts attacking the town, that will draw out the PCs.

They're going to destroy all of Thrune's allies and then let him rest and recover for a week?!? While other reinforcements can arrive from other parts of Cheliax?!?
Damn, if they're serious about doing that they deserve to have the ritual work and the 6 Pit Fiends getting summoned.
Possible fix: Have NPCs argue against the PCs waiting around as Thrune will obviously be getting more devils and likely some other allies.
Also, I assume they have the ritual notes from the Records Hall that talk about the Mephisto Manifestation, right? (Book 4, sidebar on page 18).


Warped Savant wrote:

Rizovair roars and starts attacking the town, that will draw out the PCs.

They're going to destroy all of Thrune's allies and then let him rest and recover for a week?!? While other reinforcements can arrive from other parts of Cheliax?!?
Damn, if they're serious about doing that they deserve to have the ritual work and the 6 Pit Fiends getting summoned.
Possible fix: Have NPCs argue against the PCs waiting around as Thrune will obviously be getting more devils and likely some other allies.
Also, I assume they have the ritual notes from the Records Hall that talk about the Mephisto Manifestation, right? (Book 4, sidebar on page 18).

I don’t know that they plan to rest up for certain. I just know they are incredibly jittery about doing anything when not at absolute full power. And when it becomes obvious that they have to go to the temple....

I just know they are already tracking when they next qualify for a restoration spell. I am not paying attention because I know the answer is “not this book or if it is this book then things have gone very very badly”

They have also taken to teleporting to Vyre to buy stuff. Her-Fen is still around but I don’t want the skinsaw cultists to be back so soon

Allies convincing them to act will help I think on both counts but shouldn’t be necessary

I guess the book assumes the song is active for the rivozair fight even if it is done last...? I just wonder how much of a window to do that (if any) to give them

*

As it stands there could be two fights with rivozair as I don’t think all the spells necessary have been prepared such as ways of getting into the air . This witch also plans stricken heart and rime spell frost bite (really looking for those no save spells now) but doesn’t have those prepared (but some scrolls).

They of course need to get through mirror image and SR but would be pretty potent if they get through


Have faith that your players will realize that they need to continue to put the pressure on Thrune.
Unless they've specifically said that they'll need to wait a week, I can't imagine a group actually doing that. And if they do, you might need to remind them about the Mephisto Manifestation ritual. (There's been a lot going on and the players may have forgotten about it.)


Lanathar wrote:
roguerouge wrote:

So... the Song of Silver. What were the boards' alternatives for this again? The only thing I've been able to find in my notes is:

• Add a longer ritual for 1/year to powerfully ward of forbiddance and teleportation by devils negation for all Kintargo lasting a month

Were there other ideas for alternatives?

Do you mean to make it better? It seems quite good but perhaps not quite as good as hyped. The free breath of life is a big thing for certain parties

When you say forbiddance do you mean the spell? If you say to cover Kintargo then it would need to be post takeover wouldn’t it?

Yeah, I recall it being a concern that the Song of Silver is a lot of lead-up for not a lot of tactical pay-off.


roguerouge wrote:
Lanathar wrote:
roguerouge wrote:

So... the Song of Silver. What were the boards' alternatives for this again? The only thing I've been able to find in my notes is:

• Add a longer ritual for 1/year to powerfully ward of forbiddance and teleportation by devils negation for all Kintargo lasting a month

Were there other ideas for alternatives?

Do you mean to make it better? It seems quite good but perhaps not quite as good as hyped. The free breath of life is a big thing for certain parties

When you say forbiddance do you mean the spell? If you say to cover Kintargo then it would need to be post takeover wouldn’t it?

Yeah, I recall it being a concern that the Song of Silver is a lot of lead-up for not a lot of tactical pay-off.

My players seem happy enough with the teleportation limitation. Also the breath of life could be useful - i foreshadowed that in a flashback and I don’t think they picked up on it

Incidentally it seems like there is nothing stopping teleportation in and out of the temple of asmodeus which seems like a defensive oversight...


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Lanathar: As far as your concerns about Rivozair finding the heroes, Corinstian Grivener can use the scrying font in the temple to locate the heroes, correct? So, Corinstian could locate the heroes, and tell Rivozair where they are.

Personally, I think it would be awesome if the dragon attacks while the group is split. Two here battle the dragon on the causeway while the other two see it from a distance and try to get there as fast as they can. Seems like it would be awesome as long as the two heroes not in the battle don't get bored.

I ran the temple mass combat this past saturday, and it went extremely well. It was three waves of bad guys, and then on each turn, I'd describe one of the NPC allies fighting one of Thrune's goons. How the character did on their turn dictated how that particular battle went. A number of important NPCs croaked:

- Gut-Tugger, the awakened dinosaur, was killed by the hell wasp swarm.
- Both Solstine siblings were killed by clay golems.
- A member of one of the group's NPC Rebellion Teams, "Ice Cold Stan Boston" was killed when Zella Zidli applied a sleeper hold (my campaign is stupid).
- 1 of the kenku sisters was killed by a blood golem.
- Mantice Kaleeki was almost killed by a vampire spawn, but the heroes dropped everything to save her.

I was a bit concerned during the first phase, as the group mopped the floor with Corinstian Grivener. I screwed up the elevation. If you look at the map, I think that central area is raised, but then the central area is a pit. The means that the group doesn't have line of sight on the creatures in the pit.

I didn't realize that until it was too late.

I had the bells go off every round, though i "nerfed" the bell of infernal darkness. For this battle, the blindness was just for one round, rather than permanent. The bells worked great.

For the second wave, the erinyes flew above and rained down arrows on the group. She was a much bigger threat! It turns out that my waves worked out perfectly - increasing in difficulty without being too overwhelming. Thanks to the song of silver being in effect, the necromancer's skeletal archers fired off volleys of silver arrows that did a lot of damage to the erinyes.

Once the erinyes was dealt with, Barzillai jumped down from the balcony. I don't know if any of you use syrinscape, but it has a "Barzillai taunt" button that I love. The syrinscape sound set for Hell's Rebels is absolutely awesome. They even have a different sound for each of the Devil's Bells.

The group began fighting Barzillai, but we ran out of time. We'll pick it up next week. We should get to the infernal engines and the profane belfry too, I hope.

You can check out the mass battle on youtube here.


How many allies did your group take? I am nervous about the balancing of adding NPCs

Had your group gone around the temple clearing anywhere out? Or did they just walk in and attack? As written that seems like suicide unless (perhaps) they bring every allied NPC with them (but technically most need to hold onto districts )

But it clearly needs to be hinted to the PCs somehow that walking in and attacking is a bad plan - it would be messy

How many goes is the temple supposed to take? Because alerts seem to be raised quite quickly

I will check out the video when I can


I turned it into one giant mass combat. I'm not rolling out all of the NPC stuff, it's more of an abstract thing. I had decided that having the group go through there to "clear the dungeon" would take forever and probably be boring.

Essentially this is a combat with 3 waves of bad guys: Corinstian & priests, an erinyes, and then Barzillai.


Lanathar wrote:
Warped Savant wrote:

Rizovair roars and starts attacking the town, that will draw out the PCs.

They're going to destroy all of Thrune's allies and then let him rest and recover for a week?!? While other reinforcements can arrive from other parts of Cheliax?!?
Damn, if they're serious about doing that they deserve to have the ritual work and the 6 Pit Fiends getting summoned.
Possible fix: Have NPCs argue against the PCs waiting around as Thrune will obviously be getting more devils and likely some other allies.
Also, I assume they have the ritual notes from the Records Hall that talk about the Mephisto Manifestation, right? (Book 4, sidebar on page 18).

I don’t know that they plan to rest up for certain. I just know they are incredibly jittery about doing anything when not at absolute full power. And when it becomes obvious that they have to go to the temple....

I just know they are already tracking when they next qualify for a restoration spell. I am not paying attention because I know the answer is “not this book or if it is this book then things have gone very very badly”

They have also taken to teleporting to Vyre to buy stuff. Her-Fen is still around but I don’t want the skinsaw cultists to be back so soon

Allies convincing them to act will help I think on both counts but shouldn’t be necessary

I guess the book assumes the song is active for the rivozair fight even if it is done last...? I just wonder how much of a window to do that (if any) to give them

*

As it stands there could be two fights with rivozair as I don’t think all the spells necessary have been prepared such as ways of getting into the air . This witch also plans stricken heart and rime spell frost bite (really looking for those no save spells now) but doesn’t have those prepared (but some scrolls).

They of course need to get through mirror image and SR but would be pretty potent if they get through

Just an observation: if your players are not aware of time pressure - like the Mephisto Manifestation, you're not obligated to have it follow any particular schedule. The pc's can learn about the Manifestation at the Hall but it doesn't tell them when it will start. They might assume it starts when Barzillai retreats to the Temple but there isn't an obvious way for them to know that (at least I haven't seen one in the AP.) I think the AP assumes the pc's will follow up as soon as practical after Thrune pulls back. So if the pc's think resting a week (or running out the duration on a Restoration delay) is what they need to do to win, there isn't any particular reason to prevent that. It could be the Manifestation takes longer to execute. Maybe (contrary to the rules) some reprisals continue until the pc's attack the Temple. Or perhaps the reprisals mysteriously stop for a couple days and the pc's try to figure out why and that gives them a clue about the Manifestation (the residents of the Temple are busy doing something BIG!)

Same with Rivozair. If the pc's take control of the city without being exposed to a dragon attack, you could simply have the dragon attack sites meaningful to the pc's to draw them out over the next couple days. The Long Road Coffeehouse, etc. Maybe the Opera House. All pending on what locations are important to the pc's in your campaign.


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roguerouge wrote:

So... the Song of Silver. What were the boards' alternatives for this again? The only thing I've been able to find in my notes is:

• Add a longer ritual for 1/year to powerfully ward of forbiddance and teleportation by devils negation for all Kintargo lasting a month

Were there other ideas for alternatives?

I didn't think the Song was as valuable as the buildup and effort to get it implied. So I've come up with this:

The Song of Silver can be performed 1/month for free and a second time in a month for 15000gp in sacrifices. The second performance cannot provide the same boon as the first. When performed it can have one of the following affects:
- The DR of all evil outsiders is reduced by 5 and they cannot perform or initiate any dimensional travel while within Kintargo, incoming, outgoing or within.
- Up to 100 people (named or visible to caster within the boundaries of Kintargo) can receive +4 sacred bonus on saving throws against charm and compulsion effects and become immune to fear effects for the duration of the song’s effects. As an immediate action, a character can end these to automatically succeed at a saving throw or to gain the effects of breath of life (CL 20th). Once this action is taken, the character loses the immunity to fear and bonuses on saving throws.
- The entire city is affected by a Hallow spell and up to 10 people can choose 1 affect for themselves: bless, death ward, endure elements, freedom of movement, resist energy or tongues.
- All affects last for 1 week

This seems more consistent with the role of the original Silver Ravens which were not really a rebellion but rather a para-military outfit that fought off multiple threats to Kintargo, many of which where not diabolic in origin. I also wanted to give the players some choice and a need to think strategically, etc. given any affect only lasts a week. And, of course, give them something else to spend money on.

Note: not play-tested or necessarily even final. My group is still a distance from Book 4.


So I think I might have asked this before (perhaps for another books) but - solo villain / monster encounters...

I was having another look through the Temple and there are a fair few of them. And from my experience they are utterly pointless against my group. With a witch just stacking no-save evil eyes and the crazy amount of healing the cleric can dish out and two big damage people the whole endeavor just becomes far too much of a walkover

This seems compounded by the number of rooms where the CR is lower than the APL (single or not).

Now I guess the high level point is for if they trigger an mass attack then the whole thing would be nastier if everything was stronger. But most of the solo monsters don't seem to join this:

- Serpent of Darkness
- Horned Devil (once the Mercane shifts)
- Contract Devil
- Ice Devil
- Trapper
- Hellwasp swarm
- Shining Child
- Animate Dream
- The Gardener

The last one is the only one who joins the fight if it is triggered in the main room

So the others just seem to be thematic "filler". Is that what they are supposed to be? Or have I misunderstood how much of the temple is supposed to be done in one go (i.e. most of it) so the CRs are lower?

I just don't see the point in most of the above. The Shining Child (and perhaps Ice Devil) seem like the only real challenges there

So have I misunderstood how the challenge is supposed to work? Or should I try to change things?

The problem with a lot of the above is that there isn't a lot of rationale that I can immediately think of for adding more AND simply adding a second in most cases would probably tip the difficulty two far in the other direction. For example the Mercane could easily have 2 Horned Devils but this might end up excessive...

The only thought I have currently had is making the Gardener's Stone Golem of Barzillai being finished...


I intent to use those weak encounters are palate cleansers between the big fights.

My team attacked the ritual immediately after opening the door and had a rough fight that ended with the Gardener dimension dooring a stunned Thrune away. They pulled a lot of the temple and had to fight the dragon too because they hadn't killed it yet (used two scrolls of heal). After all of that I want to give them a breather to steam-roll a few fights. So this next session will be several easy fights in a row and a chance to remove the pressure to play a perfect tactical game and just be goofy.

Since Thrune lives still, he will be thrown in as a hard fight when they are half-way to the dealing with the bells.

Edit: the idea is making sure I reduce the tension. So that the hard fights feel hard by making the not hard fights easy and having some easy fights reduce the stress on the players and let them relax and coast for a bit. But I love your idea on the gardener golem...


DM Livgin wrote:

I intent to use those weak encounters are palate cleansers between the big fights.

My team attacked the ritual immediately after opening the door and had a rough fight that ended with the Gardener dimension dooring a stunned Thrune away. They pulled a lot of the temple and had to fight the dragon too because they hadn't killed it yet (used two scrolls of heal). After all of that I want to give them a breather to steam-roll a few fights. So this next session will be several easy fights in a row and a chance to remove the pressure to play a perfect tactical game and just be goofy.

Since Thrune lives still, he will be thrown in as a hard fight when they are half-way to the dealing with the bells.

Edit: the idea is making sure I reduce the tension. So that the hard fights feel hard by making the not hard fights easy and having some easy fights reduce the stress on the players and let them relax and coast for a bit. But I love your idea on the gardener golem...

Did your group have allies with them? Because that temple fight including the dragon looks like TPK material

Doesn’t the dragon fly away if beaten? Did it win in yours then?

I am still not sure if me group will storm the ritual or not. I am reluctant to have them bring allies purely because it is so much work

Also unless the rules for districts change (do they?) after Thrune retreats to the temple don’t they need to stay managing the areas. That removes Shensen, Chuko, Jillia , Octavio, Hetamon and Mialari

I think the rest are either severely under levelled or dead apart from the invesitgator and molly


I have just rechecked the bells and have considered how these lower encounters can also be used to build up the power points there


Lanathar... you're complaining that the individual fights are too easy, fighting everything at once is too hard, Fantomas suggested using mass combat and only rolling for one NPC ally a round but you seem to want to use a bunch of the NPCs and use them every round but that's too much work, and you want to keep to what the book says and have allies required to secure the various districts.

Relax. Let your players decide what THEY want to do. If they want to bring allies, let them. In which case, take Fantomas advice and handwave the majority of what they're doing, only rolling for one a round. IF they don't want to take allies, let them go at it alone.
If they want to be stealthy and take out one room at a time, reward them for careful planning and being stealthy. If they want to kick down the door and attack everything, follow what the book says for how long it takes people to join the fight.

Let the players decide their actions. If it's about to be a TPK the players can likely teleport away. If not, that's when you have some allies show up to hold enemies off while the PCs flee. (Or they stand and fight... it's up to them.)

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