Any Savage Tide storytellers still out there?


Savage Tide Adventure Path

Silver Crusade

In two weeks we're beginning our foray into the Savage Tide adventure path, using 5E rules (though I'm more concerned about the story than the rule set). I'm big on prologues and feel the setup (you've done something to gain fame in town, so Lavinia seeks you out) is too generic for my purposes. I like to use pure roleplay for each campaign start (e.g. in Kingmaker, it was "you received a charter to scout the Stolen Lands, so how did it happen?" We started at a wedding 6 months prior and everyone invented why they were there until we had intervened in an politically motivated assassination attempt).

Has anyone worked something like this for ST?

Having read the whole thing and scoured the forums, I'm very aware having the party like Lavinia is probably key. Tips or special encounters to make this happen?

I've read, but obviously not played, that after the battle of Farshore, the quality of the adventures (routine dungeon crawls) wanes. True? If so, fixes? The story seems strong.

I'm always on the lookout for home-brewed handouts, enhancements, etc., if you have a recommended resource. I've taken a lot of inspiration from Vermilleo's campaign journal and google site, though unfortunately his group fell apart.


I agree with you on the setup being too generic. Rather than use a roleplaying narration to start, I used the adventure Mad God's Key from Dungeon Magazine #114 to get the PCs together and start the campaign. You can use that adventure or another adventure set in a port city to form the basis for your opening narrative.


I had my party 'recruited' by a mysterious stranger through the orphanage that several of the group lived. This ended up them being pawns in a ArchDemon game, where several big players thought they had the PCs working for them.

But I fleshed out Sasserine as much as possible, so that the PCs would take to the city before taking to Lavinia.

I played Lavinia and Vanthus pretty much as written, the party simply liked Lavinia and hated Vanthus (especially following Parrot Island)

The later adventures were great in my group. They really took to WoD (even though most groups seem to hate it), the only adventures they didn't really love were TLD and CoBI (they turned into a bit of a war of attrition as they struggled to work out what to do)

Silver Crusade

I love Mad God's Key; 2/4 of my gamers have already ran it. Whatever idea we end up with, it'll be pure roleplay to explain their notoriety and hopefully tie them to Vanthus and Lavinia in some way. Working on ideas, but since the players will be inventing the prologue, just need a loose frame.


I also used scenes from Mad God's Key (chase) & Edge of Anarchy (Curse o/t Crimson throne adventure path) (i.e. the fishery), but more to expand the ST scenario.

IIRC (I don't have book with me at the moment), the fishery scene (CotCT) had the PCs escaping/exposing their master/slaver, which would already give them some fame (and/or you can have them find s.t. in the fishery linked to Lavinia/Vanthus)

Most of my PCs had already some minor link with the Vanderboren family and once they realised what Vanthus had been doing, it was clear they would help Lavinia.

Preparationwise: I also took the time to go through the STAP forum here @ paizo - great source of ideas & inspiration! In the end, my campaign was rather heavily modified. The campaign ended with the battle of Farshore (more or less as planned). Perhaps we will return to the Isle of Dread to end the Abyssal threat.

Have Fun!

Hagor


I ran ST once before, and used the written prompt but required more explanation of exactly what the characters had done to get Lavinia's attention; in some cases this opened up resources, plot hooks, or backstory for me to work with later on in the campaign. Some of my players came up with pretty interesting things to use as their hiring hook. (Sadly two died during TINO and most of the rest quit the party as a result, and I ended up with a completely different party without most of the backstory hooks....)

I'll be starting ST up again (the first game died just after the Battle of Farshore due to OOC issues) sometime likely this coming spring, and probably using the same method.


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Run a Challenge of Champions from either Dungeon #58, 69, 80, 91, 108, or 138. Some of the older ones will require a little bit of work to update, but it isn't that hard.

The nice thing about CoC's is that they offer roleplaying rewards (medals for winning, noteriety, etc.), but don't give any XP, so you're players will still be 1st level when "There is No Honor" is actually started.

Besides, who else would Lavinia seek out besides the recent winners of the latest Challenge of Champions?


That's what I did when I started running STAP nearly nine years ago - used the Challenge of Champions from Dungeon #138. The players had a blast and it really helped them gel together as a group (we played at a local game shop and only two of the group had ever played together before - the entire group went on to play STAP together on a nearly-weekly basis for two and a half years).

Good luck!


I had the group wake up in the hold of a ship without memories of how they were getting there. The ship was on its way to Sasserine.
Some organization helped fugitives to go to Sasserine, but wiped part of their memories in order to prevent discovery. When they met Lavinia, it was the first nice person they met after a mysterious and grueling experience.
As for the final adventures: my group enjoyed them very much and regretted it when the campaign was over.
I rewrote part of these in order to accommodate some personal stories of the PCs.
In POD I strengthened the echoes of the invasion of Normandy by the Allied Forces in 1944 (which are certainly there), which made it a really great adventure.

Silver Crusade

I'm trying to find ways to make them loath Vanthus using pre-campaign roleplay. Perhaps they won't loath him until his actions become more apparent, but the setup is important. We begin this next Sunday.

As my group comes into shape, the 5th edition "backgrounds" become more useful. One player chose a background where he sees visions of a terrible calamity befalling the world. So appropriate...


You can have rumors about the fire circulating, and that Vanthus is suspected. That might help.


In my experience, getting players to loathe Vanthus is not difficult. Pretty much run the first adventure as written (the fight after they first encounter him is pretty brutal for four 1st level PCs) and they'll hate him.

Getting them to like Lavinia is much harder, but much more important. I found that showing her to be competent and badass was really key. Especially first adventure Lavinia can be a little damsel in distress-y, which makes players start asking why they're risking their lives for this woman, is she the only one who has jobs in this town? etc.

Once the party heads off to the Abyss/Scuttlecove it becomes good again. I think the perception of boringness comes from "The Lightless Depths" and "City of Broken Idols" which are both longish dungeon crawls, one after the other, right after the high note of the battle of Farshore. These two modules are a letdown after the climax that was the Battle of Farshore. They can be good though. TLD sets itself up well to be super creepy and almost horror in tone, so you can use that to make it interesting. COBI is, imo, the weakest adventure. I lowered the difficulty of the monsters and made it a romp--a place for the characters to show how powerful they were, instead of another slog of EL=Character Level encounters.

Lastly, be careful with how much RP you put into the prologue if it gets them attached to Sasserine. The Player's Guide to Savage Tide is very heavy on Sasserine stuff, so players could get the sense that Sasserine is a place they're really going to get involved with, a place where they need to get to know the movers and shakers and a place they need to be a part of. When in fact the adventure path needs them to be fine leaving Sasserine at level 5, never to return. I had an urban character who had a hard time leaving her city to go off to explore some island thousands of miles away.

Silver Crusade

Same thoughts on the "letdown" from Farshore. Two straight dungeon crawls after all the excitement seems meh. Not sure what to do for a replacement or modification at this point, but have some time.


Touc wrote:
Same thoughts on the "letdown" from Farshore. Two straight dungeon crawls after all the excitement seems meh. Not sure what to do for a replacement or modification at this point, but have some time.

short answer: drop one of the two or combine them, keeping only the parts you like. (I believe these chapters could be played out in either order, so no real constraints there).

--> IIRC this may have been suggested before in this forum, but I don't know if more details have been given.

--> my ST campaign ended with the battle for Farshore, although a more natural end point would be closing the connection between Abyss & Isle (i.e. after LD & CoBI) - IMC I was thinking of combining these two installments (there is a physical connection between the two lairs), together with some elements of the last installment (e.g. have some aid from Gwynharwyf and other allies as a diversion to allow the PCs to infiltrate)

Silver Crusade

Expectations are high! Just kicked off the campaign and entered Lavinia's vault. Everyone's loving it, great story and great start.


Awesome! Good luck!

Also, I will say that I really enjoyed the end of the campaign, as did my players. The plane hopping and coalition building of the final chapters is really great and you've got a bunch of NPCs who are really fun to play.

Grand Lodge

Some of us are still hanging in with the Savage Tide. We jJust started Bullwug Gambit. Players really liked There is No Honour. We fiound little issue with liking Lavinia and hating Vanthus.

We are playing Savage Tide as a pathfinder game. I've been able to manage converting the mooks, but was wondering if anyone had converted Harliss Javell to Pathfinder?


She has got to be a high-level Swashbuckler! (ACG)

I'm still looking wistfully at the STap issues on my bookshelf. Both my current groups chose RotR and are more or less at the same point in the story there (second half of book 2), so it will be a long time before I have a chance to get a STap campaign off the ground. *sighs*


Hopefully you will one day. It is a really great campaign!

Silver Crusade

3 sessions in and Vanthus may be one of the most hated villains in any of my campaigns. It's not because he's a high level, impossible villain who taunts them before escaping until they're strong enough to face him. So much better. He's the complete arse, totally despicable yet still somehow loved by his sister.

Per Potsticker, as much as I've wanted to build up Sasserine, have resisted (e.g. haven't tossed in side quests). Finding a focused story line is what the players are interested in currently. They don't want distractions to run an errand to recover elder centaur blood. They want to kick Vanthus from the Azure to Sunrise district. They want Lavinia back on her feet. After Rowyn called them "Lavinia's flunkies," well, it didn't endear her to the party...


Running this as the endcap to my ongoing campaign. Skipping the early parts and adding the final four.


Touc wrote:

In two weeks we're beginning our foray into the Savage Tide adventure path, using 5E rules (though I'm more concerned about the story than the rule set). I'm big on prologues and feel the setup (you've done something to gain fame in town, so Lavinia seeks you out) is too generic for my purposes. I like to use pure roleplay for each campaign start (e.g. in Kingmaker, it was "you received a charter to scout the Stolen Lands, so how did it happen?" We started at a wedding 6 months prior and everyone invented why they were there until we had intervened in an politically motivated assassination attempt).

Has anyone worked something like this for ST?

Having read the whole thing and scoured the forums, I'm very aware having the party like Lavinia is probably key. Tips or special encounters to make this happen?

I've read, but obviously not played, that after the battle of Farshore, the quality of the adventures (routine dungeon crawls) wanes. True? If so, fixes? The story seems strong.

I'm always on the lookout for home-brewed handouts, enhancements, etc., if you have a recommended resource. I've taken a lot of inspiration from Vermilleo's campaign journal and google site, though unfortunately his group fell apart.

I'm enjoying the Lightless Depths (after the attack on Farshore), just make sure you are prepared to give players a clear reason to attack the ziggurat (the conclusion is probably too much for them to make on their own) and also a really reasonable explanation of how they can get back out so they actually decide to venture forth :)


I am currently running a D&D 3.5 campaign using the Savage Tide Path. I played it a few years back and loved it. My players are really enjoying it so far (They are just about to finish up part 1). I am looking forward to seeing how they handle the next part.


Nice! Keep us posted.


Late to the party because I haven't checked up on this forum in a while, but yes I'm still running my second attempt at this campaign. My players are currently on the trek-around-the-island part of Tides of Dread, and have just completed me inserting Lost Temple of Demogorgon into one of the more remote portions of the Isle of Dread; they claimed the dread forge, slew Tellax, and have promised Lord Khayven they will restore him to mortal life - the group has two Oracles in it - as soon as they're high enough level for one of them to pick up resurrection, in exchange for his aid in the defense of Farshore against the upcoming pirate attack. They have decided for certain that they want to destroy the dread forge but being an artifact such things are tricky and they haven't had much time to research methods yet.

They've also made alliances with the phanatons and a tribe of sabosans I added to the area around the Fangs of Zotzilaha, and bartered with the demonic aspect himself for his aid against the pirates as well! The Invoker (aka 3e Warlock) in the party was even considering taking him on as a dual patron, but decided her true loyalty lays to the incomprehensible things between the stars.

Of the Infamous Eight (upgraded from the Infamous Seven by adding He-Who-Hums the kaiju yrthak to Skyscar Peak) they've slain Temahuti-Tecuani, Burbalarg, and Cerattakatha. They've discussed allying with rather than killing the intelligent ones - Emraag, Baaragrauth, and the dragon - but haven't planned anything specific yet.

My party is running the game in Gestalt, are currently level 10, and contains the following members:
Audra, Halfling Magus [Bladebound/Kensai]|Swashbuckler [Inspired Blade]
Aidan, Human Oracle (Life)|Harbinger [Crimson Countess]
Twila, Changeling Oracle (Theurge)|Invoker (Star Pact)
Rin, Human Investigator|Slayer
Tlanextli, Will-o-Wisp Rogue|Psion [Twila's Cohort]


Still turning it into Spelljammer over here. Pyrespace/Greyspace.


I am just entering Kraken's Cove with my 5E party. They started higher-level, so I am upscaling the AP considerably but they are loving it.

They witnessed the fallout from the savage tide and noped out of going anywhere near the caves. Cautious exploration has cost them a familiar and a bunch of spell slots, and now they are even more terrified of whatever is going on in the cove.

Beldin, tiefling Fiend-pact Warlock/Bard (Haunted One)
Nahaliel, aasimar Cleric (Hermit)
Ren, tiefling Rogue/Shadow Sorcerer (Haunted One)
Tsovinar, water genasi Fighter (Pirate)


Currently I'm running this campaign with two groups, still with 3.5 tho'

One group arrived two in-game days ago to Scuttlecove, the other is about to leave Farshore

Group 1:
Linen: Gnome Knigth/Death knigth
Puerkazo: Boar / Linen's mount via Wild Cohort feat
Eric: Cleric of Fahrlang
Mirdivar: Elf Ranger
Dorp: Gnome Wizard Ilusionist
Rag'Mar: Olman Druid/Rogue/DaggerSpell Shaper
Belathiel: Half-elf Monk

Group 2:
O'Hara: Human Sorcerer/Dragon hearth mage
Tuskara: Forest Elf Ranger/Fist of the forest/Monk/Bear warrior
Lili: Human Hexblade
Edhom: Half-elf Abjurer Wizard/Master specialist/Elemental Savant
Zanthy: Half-elf Duskblade
Mr biggins: Gnome knigth


do you guys have some ideas of how to modify this part of the adventure for a "PCs and Ravens arrives together" scenario?
Game Slot

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