Into the Shattered Continent (GM Reference)


Ruins of Azlant

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Running through this one, and things are going great so far.

Regarding areas like the Bleeding Forest and Bonetown, creative geography edits are definitely the way to go. I put the waterfall cave in the bleeding forest, for example, so that the players would realize themselves after searching the rest of the river that the place they were looking for was somewhere beneath that crimson canopy. It worked perfectly.

The most unexpected thing I've faced thusfar is how resistant the PCs are to scouting forests for lumber, and stone for quarries. They complain a bit about always being sent on the dangerous missions, and insist that Ramona and Carver are trying to get them killed, but they still ultimately do those dangerous missions. "Go look at trees", on the other hand, sends them into fits of rage about having to do such a pedestrian job.

...I'm probably just going to let them keep finding other things to do until the plot moves on. They seem to take some mild pleasure in deliberately shirking that work in particular, so there's no hurry to say that an NPC eventually gets around to doing it in their stead.


How did the final encounter play out for you? Are you supposed to randomly determine from which patch the fire spreads? I guess if every patch keeps spreading the PCs don't stand any chance to stop it at all.


justaworm wrote:
One of the motivations would be exploring the rest of the island to map it and identify / deal with threats to the colony.

Here's a trick that worked to get my group to these locales. I had Ramona subtly mention that Captain Ancorato had scouted a third possible landing site on the northern stretch of the island. The player's immediately jumped on the possibility that the missing alpha colonists could be there and off they went.

Liberty's Edge

Lintecarka wrote:
How did the final encounter play out for you? Are you supposed to randomly determine from which patch the fire spreads? I guess if every patch keeps spreading the PCs don't stand any chance to stop it at all.

Might be advisable. I rolled once for each fire (I ran only two weakened stalker goons that fight as the party triggered the encounter early and disrupted the alchemist's fire plan) - the building was engulfed within four rounds.


My group have just reached Nal Shaker, so I have read Helekhterie in more detail.

She has a Spell lattice 2nd. What spell is in it?
She has 6/4/2 spell from her level plus the inflict spells plus Colour Spray and Hypnotic Pattern. So as written it has not been taken into account.
I was tempted with Shield of Fortification to stop the fight ending to early.


Haldrick wrote:

My group have just reached Nal Shaker, so I have read Helekhterie in more detail.

She has a Spell lattice 2nd. What spell is in it?
She has 6/4/2 spell from her level plus the inflict spells plus Colour Spray and Hypnotic Pattern. So as written it has not been taken into account.
I was tempted with Shield of Fortification to stop the fight ending to early.

Oh! I hadn't noticed the spell lattice. Thanks for mentioning it! I feel like they might have left it empty so it could work as loot for any party, based on what we want to give, though it may also be an oversight.

Shield of Fortification does sound like a good idea. I didn't particularly like that spell until I noticed it works for sneak attack as well as crits. It will be especially efficient if the party has a rogue. In fact, between that and the mists, if there is a rogue in the party, they might not have much fun.

Do you have a spontaneous spellcaster in the group who might enjoy using this spell afterwards? If so, I think it would be pretty cool. It will likely prove useful for the party later on.

For my own game, I'm thinking of giving her either Silence (a good overall spell which the group's bard might be happy to have) or Twisted Futures, mostly for thematic value, though it might become of use against some of the player's abilities as well.


No my party have no spontaneous casters.
So I am just looking at what will suit Helekhterie.
I do have a rogue in the party, I take you point it would really ruin a climactic fight.
I will look at Twisted Futures.


Pathfinder Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

My group is making steady progress through this part of the adventure, so I thought I'd share some insight into what I've done to make he story work out more smoothly for my group.

1 - The Sunken Laboratory - The pit that descends into the lab is 80 feet I think. Without LOTS of rope, pitons, and/or trees (that can survive fireballs), the party can't get down without levitation or feather fall or something. Add fireballs blasting every round (unless they 'kill' the haunt for the day), and this is just too hard. My party crafted makeshift ropes ladders with sturdy vines from the forest nearby and I had some scraggly trees that could support the weight. Getting back up was impossible with a group with all low Climb skills and no magic to get out. They had to rely on Monkey Fish spell to get 1 party member out who then hoisted the others out. How did Durvin Gest get down here centuries ago? Maybe I would add some more permanent chain ladder that he left behind to get down next time.

2 - I added some details to the map that the Sahuagin had in the Reef area. The map included a scrag meetup camp near the Bleeding Forest where they transferred their prisoners to the Scrags, who then took them the rest of the way up to Nal Shakar via a hidden mountain path. I added the waterfall to this map, so the party would be motivated to check out that site as the possible site Durvin recorded.

3 - I added story detail to motivate the party to visit Bonetown. The water naga and locathah shared stories about the small Gillmen settlement that mysteriously disappeared about 2 years ago after rumors of conflict with Skum. Maybe their disappearance is related to the colonists that went missing and clues could be found at Bonetown. Ramona suggested to follow up on investigating Bonetown for clues. It's kind of a red herring, but it helps to keep the party out of the colony so the faceless stalkers can continue their takeover.

4 - I added some background of continued conflict between Onthooths Skum allies and Helekheterie's Sahuagin allies. Onthooth was winning the conflict, but with serious attrition among his Skum allies. The Hag's sahaugin forces have been rebuilding slowly and the Skum can't procreate without human hosts to breed with. Onthooth really needs breeding stock for more Skum to keep control of the region. This leads into other stuff I added....

5 - The Skum have kept nearly all the female colonists in a slave camp on the small island in the center of the map. They are keeping them in very good condition to use as breeding stock. However, Skum can only breed once a year at the summer solstice...so the women haven't been corrupted yet. This Skum slave camp is run by a Skum Druid and Alchemist. The druid uses his magic to control giant sea turtles with rafts that can be attached/pulled. This is how the colonists are easily transported from Ancorato to the other islands. I just couldn't fathom how rowing back and forth in a 4 person boat would work, so adding this druid and his giant turtles helped this part of the story make more sense. The alchemist can help brew potions for the Skum and Faceless stalkers to assist in their takeover of the new colonists.

6 - I added Monkey Goblin allies with classes levels (Rangers and Sorcerers) to the Hag's tower. This made the fight with the Hag much more interesting and challenging, since she really didn't have much offensive capability. I also modified the orrery description to include details of metal whirling rings with the planets attached that were 20 feet up. The hag used her Fly potion to fly up to the planet rings to use her spells from above on the party while the Vampiric Mist and Monkey goblin fought. This made the encounter more fun and challenging. The hag really seemed to have too few allies in the story to seem threatening to Onthooth or even able to keep control of the island. More could be added to this to make the story seem more real. I also added some river drake allies to the crater area to make it seem like the hag had more 'control' over the area.

Other things I would consider changing next time include:

Reducing the power of those necklaces of air adaption. They are too valuable for the party to have so many by the end of the story, plus I can't see the hag spending so much time constructing them when she is so obsessed with her Oracle stuff in the tower. Maybe they could be nerfed to provide air breathing in a 10 foot radius (also to bypass the tower sound burst trap in 10 foot radius) and no move speed bonus. Then the sahuagin and scrags would only need like 1 each, or at most 2.


Pathfinder Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

A few more things.

Eliza escaped at the end of Part 1. She retreated to the Skum slave camp and now willingly works with the Skum and Onthooth at Onchymua's request. My party hasn't quite reached this encounter, but I know they'll be happy to finally get revenge on her. I changed her background some, making her an Aspis Consortium agent that had greedy intentions all along. I had to find a reason for her to be exploring Azlanti ruins, so making her an Aspis spy worked well.

Also, about half of the original colonists will be alive and 'well' and can be rescued. I like that idea rather than the idea of Onthooth burning through nearly 100 test subjects during their capture. His facility in Part 3 isn't really big enough to deal with that many captives over an extended period of time.

I'm looking forward to Part 3 soon...


Pathfinder Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

I also recommend considering some changes to loot in this adventure beyond the necklaces of air adaption. At one point, there is a wand of freedom of movement with quite a lot of charges in the treasure. This spell can trivialize many aquatic encounters, especially with so many free charges. Part of the challenge of some of the underwater encounters is the environment. Eliminating the challenge with 'free' freedom of movement might require rebalancing some encounters to make them tougher. The party can't even cast that spell yet at the level they should be when they acquire the wand.

Another change I made was the languages spoken by many of the monsters and races throughout the adventure. It made no sense that these cultures that have had little to no contact with Avistan would all speak Common. Most creatures encountered that speak Common in the Bestiary were changed to speak Aquan, Merfolk or an Azlanti dialect instead.

My party did have a challenge communicating with the Scrags in this adventure. They only speak Giant, and no one in the party spoke it. Fortunately Hags speak Giant, so at least that part made sense. The party had to rest with the cleric swapping spells to be able to understand the troll. I think the spell was Share Language or something like that. I didn't know that Comprehend Languages is a Personal only spell.

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