Lands of The Linnorm Kings AP: Seeking Feedback


Lost Omens Campaign Setting General Discussion


"Sveinn Bloodeagle is dead.

The remaining Linnorm Kings: White Estrid, Ingrimundr The Unruly, and Opir Eight-fingers, all vie for greater power - and the jewel that is Kalsgard - with Freyr Darkwine caught in the middle.

After Sveinn's funeral, Ingrimundr and Opir ally, staging a coup that calls on all "true - hearted ulfen" to join their cause. In the confusion, Estrid's and Freyr's retinues die to the usurpers' axes. Estrid vanishes - some say escaped to regroup and fight, others that she is dead, still others believe she is shackled in the dungeons beneath Kalsgard, alongside Freyr Darkwine.

Kalsgard stands divided. Opir and Ingrimundr pressing their iron boots upon the many foreign dignitaries, travellers and merchants that call the city home. Even among the jarls and thanes that have joined the usurpers' cause, there is dissent and envy - with each lord vying for influence in the new order.

Disenfranchised jarls in Halgrim have likewise raised their axes for Ingrimundr, quashing the people of the Ironbound Islands, and chasing the Linnorm, Boiltongue, into the mountainous wilds of the Island. To maintain control, they have grudgingly allied with the nearby giant tribes, and now maintain an armada that prevents entry from or exit through the southern seas.

Among the smaller settlements, rebellion flares to life like forest fire roaring against a winter blizzard. Time and the gods will decide if they last against the forces of the usurpers.

To the East, The Hagreach reels. The Blackravens maintain control, but the folk living along the border with Irrisen are starting to panic in the absence of their stoic leader, as the nation of winter pours forth emboldened hordes of monsters, and watches the ensuing chaos with cold, calculating eyes.

Amidst this turmoil, a long dormant, cosmic evil stirs in its prison, as it sets forth a plan to both reclaim its freedom, and visit bloody vengeance upon the god who imprisoned it..."

Thoughts?

Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion Subscriber

I feel like the "cosmic evil" is a little too big of a twist. It feels like a dodge away from the themes of the campaign and the local setting.

That said, I had my own vague plans for a LotLK campaign... although I had a different twist in mind.

Spoiler:
Go find the map of Thassilon, and figure out which Runelord's kingdom once dominated these lands.


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Spoiler:
Xanderghul. I know :)

Plus the ruin of Xin-Edasseril in the Ironbound Archipelago.

As for the "cosmic evil" - I see your point. I'll need to consider that...


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I see what Kilindlara is getting at, though I don't think it's a deal breaker. What if the BEBG is a Jormundgandr-like linnorm bent on starting Ragnarok or such like?

On a personal note, your concept is amazing and I would love to play or run it!

Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion Subscriber
Magog wrote:

I see what Kalindlara is getting at, though I don't think it's a deal breaker. What if the BEBG is a Jormundgandr-like linnorm bent on starting Ragnarok or such like?

On a personal note, your concept is amazing and I would love to play or run it!

I'd totally be down with that. ^_^

I read "cosmic evil" as Lovecraft/Dominion of the Black-type stuff, which for me, felt like too big a twist. Something like your idea, though, would be just right.

Paizo Employee Contributor—Canadian Maplecakes

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This got my interest, as I'd run a long Linnorm Kings based campaign that touched on similar items. So... random thought time!

1) There's a great location to keep a 'world ender' in the form of the Monolith glacier. I'd planned on having a similar creature entombed within there, albeit with some Nidaele folks working some seriously awful mojo on it.

2) The linnorm Fafnheir has some connections the [[NPC mentioned by Kalindlara]]. My intention was to use Fafnheir as a means of introducing the 'world ender' concept to my party.

3) One interesting thing I'd toyed with [[NPC mentioned by Kalindlara]] was that he'd likely specialize in some powerful magic. One idea, to keep my game in-canon with Golarion, in case James ever decided to use said NPC, was to have a simulacrum instead. That also keeps the NPC at a more appropriate level to the PCs.

4) If you're going with a more 'cosmic outer horror' look there's probably inspiration from Ice Spire (one of my personal loves of the Lands of the Linnorm Kings).

Anyways, just some random thoughts :)


What I had been thinking of with regards to BEBG was more or less a

Spoiler:
wendigo god - or "wendigo all-father".
Only a select few know about him because
Spoiler:
Erastil
locked him away before any real civilization had developed - but the invasion of Baba Yaga and the ongoing eternal winter of Irrisen started to degrade the wards locking the guy away...

With regards to Kalindlara's NPC suggestion, I had thought that he had discovered the wards imprisoning BEBG, and had devised a way to drain his power, or otherwise make use of him, setting up an animosity between the two that the party could discover and potentially exploit.


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I feel like using the old "and then a Runelord was the villain!" standby for a Land of the Linnorm Kings AP is a bit of a copout. If you're playing there, the most likely candidates for characters would be people native to the region or merchants/travelers from specific locations; Minkai and Osirion specifically, considering the trade routes. So, at least in my opinion, it would make more sense for a campaign set there to utilize the unique aspects of the Linnorm Kingdoms to create an interesting story.
There doesn't need to be a "great cosmic evil" threatening the place; enough high-level savages and cannibals from the frozen islands, or fey invaders from Irrisen, can be just as much of a threat as an ancient wizard or shoggoth from beyond, if not moreso because they can withstand the natural harshness of the land. In addition, the location practically begs the players to be open-ended in their individual goals while aiming for a single obvious target: "Kill Fahfnir, Drag the Corpse, Become THE Linnorm Kings, Conquer All!" The feel of the location lends itself more to Conan, to the Grey Mouser, to Siegfried and Merlin and Moses and other sorts of fantastically-powerful individuals who can come in, kick ass, crush their enemies, see them driven before them, and hear the lamentations of their women.

THAT feels like a more interesting AP than "Another Runelord, Part 3" or "Cthulhu Lands On Golarion".


Evelyn Jones wrote:

I feel like using the old "and then a Runelord was the villain!" standby for a Land of the Linnorm Kings AP is a bit of a copout. If you're playing there, the most likely candidates for characters would be people native to the region or merchants/travelers from specific locations; Minkai and Osirion specifically, considering the trade routes. So, at least in my opinion, it would make more sense for a campaign set there to utilize the unique aspects of the Linnorm Kingdoms to create an interesting story.

There doesn't need to be a "great cosmic evil" threatening the place; enough high-level savages and cannibals from the frozen islands, or fey invaders from Irrisen, can be just as much of a threat as an ancient wizard or shoggoth from beyond, if not moreso because they can withstand the natural harshness of the land. In addition, the location practically begs the players to be open-ended in their individual goals while aiming for a single obvious target: "Kill Fahfnir, Drag the Corpse, Become THE Linnorm Kings, Conquer All!" The feel of the location lends itself more to Conan, to the Grey Mouser, to Siegfried and Merlin and Moses and other sorts of fantastically-powerful individuals who can come in, kick ass, crush their enemies, see them driven before them, and hear the lamentations of their women.

THAT feels like a more interesting AP than "Another Runelord, Part 3" or "Cthulhu Lands On Golarion".

Well said, EJ.

It is interesting that you bring up Conan and Grey Mouser, since they are characters who experience "episodic" adventures rather than "campaign arc" adventures - and it brings me to a question that I've been considering for this AP idea: Does it need an over-arching plot-thread (such as a BEBG) to "unify" everything that goes on? - Or would it be better to be flexible and allow the party to interact with the situation of the civil war, and the various factions that have risen as a result?

In the latter case, I see the players (partially) determining which "mini-arc" they embark on next. Otherwise, they determine their own goals in the region, and how they react to the circumstances of the civil war.


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

If you're going for ancient cosmic evil, some ancient fey lord could be the thing you're looking for. The LotLK sit atop a great planar rift leading to the First World, so there could be plenty of options for what to do with it. Could be a fey lord trying to conquer Golarion, and he intends to fully activate the rift to make travel between the First World and Golarion incredibly easy.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Just move Kingmaker there.

"I don't see any Linnorm head, so your claim to this land is going to be... disputed."

"Hang on, be right back."

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