But are they pirates?

Homebrew and House Rules

I have this idea for a campaign that will include material from the Skull and Shackles AP, Freeport and Razor Coast among other things in a campaign world that takes inspiration principally from Waterworld (yes, the Kevin Costner PA movie), Pirates of the Caribbean and Pirates of Dark Water with this being the general theme song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zewxwc1SFeo

In this drowning world there was a cataclysm some 1K+ years before the start of the campaign that flooded the world and it hasn't dried out yet. There are plenty of island nations that are near constantly at war with one another over resources. But there are treasures waiting to be looted on the sea floor both from the remains of civilizations long, long ago and one of the nations has this idea in its collective noggin to sink its own ships and claim it was done by pirates or a rival nation as an excuse to hang the innocent mariners as pirates or go to war.

The PCs are part of the crew of a salvage guild ship specializing in looting all these wrecks. Although if some navy vessel decides they want to take them on suspicion of piracy they will defend themselves and in fact they have effectively raided several warships from the one nation that sinks its own ships that I mentioned above because ships from that navy decided to catch them to fill their quota for the week. Now, given all that information how justified would it be in calling the PCs pirates?

Is there some reason that they need to be called pirates? Maybe if they attacked other ships in addition to salvage. The piracy charge could be trumped up, or a big stretch. The charge could be an expired salvage license with the authorities just being harsh.

Monkey D. Luffy from One Piece calls himself a pirate. The only pirate-y thing he's done is fight the government, and only when they're doing something bad.

The campaign calls them pirates and the one nation certainly considers them pirates for taking the treasure they themselves sunk and planned on recovering. While I am not in favor of One Piece it is something I am looking at as an example since it focuses on piracy. Some players may revel in being called pirates but they are not really pirates; salvagers and explorers to be sure but not the sea robbers that are pirates.

The Exchange

Are there pirates?

If so, why not letting the players have a sort of prologue where they get caught and are (if I understand correctly) "employed" as said "pirates"?

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Better question would be to ask who in the world thinks they're pirates. For the nation that have effectively had their warships raided whilst doing their official duties, this group would likely be seen as a pirate menace.

For other salvagers who know what the sketchy nation is upto, the crew may be seen as just in the wrong place at the wrong time.

For the other nations that hear their rival nation is being attacked by this crew, they may think the enemy of my enemy is my friend and seek to work out a privateer arrangement.

For the villagers in the coastal towns who've heard the news about the crew's exploits, some may support the idea of sticking it to the sketchy nation, but if those villagers don't know the whole story, maybe they believe the "official reports".

Conspiracies can be fun!

Interesting ideas, Proley, I am taking not of your suggestions. The main goal of the campaign is more exploration and selling their exploits to the public. There is also some cosmic horror thrown in here so the crew sometimes gets more than they bargained for. Although the Captain does his best to make sure that what should remain sunk stays sunk.

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I'm unsure about the 'sink their own ships' idea. In the scenario you describe the resources needed to build and repair ships are going to be in critically short supply. I would expect the navy and merchant houses to start screaming bloody murder over this plan.

Community / Forums / Pathfinder / Pathfinder First Edition / Homebrew and House Rules / But are they pirates? All Messageboards

Want to post a reply? Sign in.
Recent threads in Homebrew and House Rules