First off, I am a player so, please, no spoilers on the Adventure Path. (If it helps, we are in the Storm Tower right now, but not finished with it.)
I have already started this conversation with my GM, but I am curious how other GM's and players have handled this, if it has come up.
I am playing a wizard in this AP, and have noticed that it is not very "wizard-friendly". To my knowledge, or GM hasn't altered the AP significantly. At 2-1/2 books in we've not encountered a single wizard NPC, which means no spellbooks to copy, and while there have been some arcane scrolls it's not exactly been a boon. (At the opposite extreme is RotR, which practically throws spellbooks at you.)
The issue I have now is that we're at the Crown of the World, leveling, and by RAW a wizard only gets 2 spells/level for free. All other spells have to come from another spellbook, a scroll, or be independently researched. Given that we are in the middle of nowhere, literally a thousand miles from civilization of any size, there are no other sources of spells at a time when our party needs them. I am starting to feel like I have the limitations of a sorcerer in terms of spells known, but none of the benefits. :)
I have asked for a little temporarily relief from our GM. Either in upping the number of spells/level that you get for free, or reducing the independent research costs and time for duplicating existing spells, until we get out of the arctic. Do you think this is a reasonable request?
How did you handle this in your games?
There's not a lot of wizards in this AP, no, so not a lot of lootable spellbooks. That said, there's a couple of things:
- It's not hard to throw extra spellbooks into the loot. While few NPCs actually are wizards, many of them have dealings with wizards, have killed wizards, and otherwise have reason for such a thing, and plenty of people who have ritual type things inscribed into the walls that could be treated as convertible to a spellbook. If a GM wants to put in more spellbooks, those are the places to do it (can't be more specific without spoilers, sorry).
- While the AP doesn't offer a lot in the way of free spellbooks (unlike RotR, which is notorious for the amount of wizards that know every spell in the PHB), it does offer an extraordinary amount of downtime that is very uncommon in APs. Crossing the Crown of the World, you literally end up with months of downtime to inscribe spells and craft magic items to your heart's content. I think that's a fair tradeoff, particularly when...
- The AP passes through multiple high-value metropolises where you can acquire any spell your heart desires on a scroll ready for the scribing. You should have just done Kalsguard, a city where you could acquire anything you like, and the other side of the Crown of the World offers similar.
We found it to be a notable difference in the AP, but not a problem. Wizards aren't entitled to find free spells everywhere, after all, adn the nature of APs mean this sort of thing happens. Serpent's Skull begins on a desert island with no spells available anywhere, Legacy of Fire starts with such a short window that scribing spells would prove impossible, and several other APs have assorted problems with this line. It's one of the downsides of being a wizard.
Thanks you. My experience with PF has been two AP's so far: RotR and this one. So I don't have much to go on. I wasn't sure if I was seeing two extremes, or one or the other was move "average". Even without the spellbook fountains in RotR, downtime and adventures seemed to be close to civilization a lot. We knew that wouldn't be the case in JR in the middle, but I was still caught off guard by how difficult the spellbook management has ended up being.
FWIF, I did do stocking up in Kalsgard. I just failed to plan for an additional caster level coming when it did. So, that was a planning/timing problem. Or, to put it another way, I guess I shot myself in the foot. :)
RotR is widely considered to be THE wizard-friendly AP, and has a truly ridiculous abundance of spare spellbooks.
Jade Regent is definitely on the lighter side - there are wizards, just not many of them - but is much closer to the average AP levels.
And every adventure path I've read or run has at least a section - usually a book's worth - where the PCs either have no access to civilization, no time to shop, or both, so being unable to get all the whatsits you want is pretty common for them.
My experience with PF has been two AP's so far: RotR and this one.
Your experiences with Paizo adventure paths are similar to mine. I was a player and later the GM for Rise of the Runelords, a GM for Jade Regent, a player in Serpent's Skill, and currenty the GM for Iron Gods.
Rise of the Runelords is extremely high in enemy wizards. Serpent's Skull had the fewest I've seen, due to mostly wilderness adventures. Iron Gods had a friendly wizard at the start, a necromancer wizard in the 2nd module, and increasing thereafter. Jade Regent focuses on ninjas and oni, so no spellbooks until you reach civilization.
The Hungry Storm has a few treasure stashes that could contain scrolls or spellbooks if your GM adds them, but you will have to talk to your GM so he or she knows what treasure you want. I like having wish lists from my players.
Thanks, everyone. I appreciate the feedback and you have convinced me to change how I plan my advancement going forward.
Here's what my GM came back with:
1. He's generously letting me retcon the purchase of a couple of scrolls in Kalsgard, using the money I still had when we left there.
2. He does agree I am a little cut off from a supply, and is considering some relief options for the near future. He is thinking along the lines of what both of you have suggested: adding a modest spellbook to a stash "somewhere".