Tropes for an Old West Adventure Path


Advice


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I'm starting to write an old west flavored adventure path. Just like the actual adventure paths, I am looking for ideas of cool NPCs, side quests, overall quests, settings (this may be the hardest), cool items (5-6 per book), etc.

So far I have written a few ideas down, and started working on some magic items, but I thought I would throw this out there to see if there are any particular tropes that you all would like to see.

This is obviously going to be taking place in the future(ish) of Golarion, firearm friendly of course, and I have been trying to come up with some NPCs that really have merged black powder and magic together.

Ideas I have so far - (I am horrible at naming these things by the way)

Items

The Smoking Gun (A Pistol that smokes more than the average firearm adding to concealment each time it is fired, providing the wielder does not move.

Wagon of Holding (A Wagon that you can use to set up a traveling blacksmith, Alchemist lab, etc.)

Galloping Saddle (A military saddle that provides its normal bonus as well as a +4 to strength or dex for 10 minutes (non-consecutive) a day. It also provides the benefit of mule back cords.

Masquerading Masks - (Act as disguise self as well as charm person)

Tropes

I have an idea for a magical train build for a Great Train Robbery moment.

The Big Card Game (used to get status among the higher ups)

A Ghost Town (Because, of course!)

Inventions (Nothing concrete, but definitely wanting to include something here)

A Bounty Hunter chasing the Party (Complete with updated Wanted posters as they go town to town)

Rule Additions

Different types of horses (Possibly a new feat or campaign trait to add a watered down animal companion to your character)

Mounted Chasing Combat (Looking for simplifying it, and getting it to be somewhat doable)

Wanted Level, similar to Infamy (Not necessarily because you're evil. Think corrupt governments)

Before I fill up a page, I'll throw it out to you guys.

Thoughts?


Bank robbery!

Magnificent Seven style last stand!

Prison Break!

Duel at High Noon!

Western society was set in an era of civilizing the wild places, so Abadar would probably play a big part (and probably Ersatil as his antithesis). You could have the magic train be a new thing, and the railroad company is improving the lives of the people in major cities, but it's doing it at the cost of those on the frontier.

Some items: Silver spurs, Quickdraw holster (maybe 1/day or something), Named bullet (that one might actually exist already), Gambler's gloves.

Speaking of gambling, you could have a game of chance with a very special deck (of many things).


Ok here's some thoughts on some rules:

- Firearms are martial weapons (you probably already have this).

- Firearms add 1/2 your character level (rounding down) to the damage dealt. This lets them stay relevant past the early levels without needing everyone tk go gunslinger. DEX to Damage is still somethjng specific to the gunslinger and DEX based characters still have the edge since it helps their To-Hit roll.

DUELS:
Two characters stand waiting a trigger (The clock bell/someone yells "draw"/etc), this is readying an action. Since everyone is readying an action that means they've all acted, so no surprise round and nobody is flat-footed.

After the trigger there will be a "Special Round" where each character gets only a standard action, but can draw their pistol as a free action (characters with the Quick-Draw feat get a +4 bonus on their Initiative)

The duelists each secretly write down a number (called from now on their "Secret Number"). The Secret Number is added to their initiative score. Both players then reveal their numbers and roll for initiative.

The first round for both combatants is only a standard action (because they readied an action). During this "Special Round" they take a penalty to their attack roll equal to their Secret Number. Also during this "Special Round" if their attack roll succeeds they automatically score a critical threat, and automatically confirm (meaning in most cases they deal ×4 damage).

Once both duelists have had their "Special Round" play returns to normal, and (assuming they're both still alive) a regular shoot-out ensues.

If a character wishes to fire before the trigger (darstardly cheater!) they can make a bluff check opposed by their opponent's sense motive. A character with the Quick Draw feat receives a +4 to their bluff check to deceive their opponent, or to their sense motive check to avoid being deceived. However if they cheat they do not get the automatic critical threat or critical confirmation.

If the cheater succeeds on their bluff check they automatically win initiative, and their opponent is flat-footed (with all the penalties that brings) during the "Special Round". They still only get a standard action (plus free action to draw their pistol) as this is still the "Special Round".

If the non-cheater-character succeeds at their sense motive vs a bluff they automatically win initiative. Aditionally, they do not suffer the penalty associated with their Secret Number during the "Special Round".

This is a first draft so I'm sure it can be improved, what do you think?


Items

There's a unique magic weapon or a magic weapon property that allows a gun to shoot shadow-magic bullets that reform on their own (so that you don't need to reload). Maybe something more setting appropriate? It is a trope that some six-shooters in the older movies never seem to run out of bullets.

Does your galloping saddle provide the STR bonus to the mount or to the rider?

Tropes

A high noon showdown with wands!

You'll need some sort of Native American analog. Don't choose a humanoid race that's evil, such as orcs or hobgoblins, but they should be more exotic than elves. Just having them be "different" humans could work, but it might be more fun to hit up the race builder. Lizardfolk could work, but they're swamp-themed. Suli are Janni-influenced, which are from the desert...

If you want historical accuracy, maybe analogs for Chinese and Mexicans.

One of the main villains could be the head of a mining company, forcibly taking over land for their own purposes.

Rule Additions

Chases - check out these chase rules.

Perhaps a rule for missed ranged attacks hitting someone else nearby? Like if you miss bad enough, you roll for how off target the shot lands a la the splash damage rules.

Kudos to MrCharisma for his duel rules. I especially like the Secret Number being a bonus to initiative but a penalty to attack.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
MrCharisma wrote:
Bank robbery!

Most definitely including that!

MrCharisma wrote:
Magnificent Seven style last stand!

I was thinking of having books 3 and 4 be more dark (all hope is lost kind of feeing) If that works, then this will fit into one of those books for sure.

MrCharisma wrote:
Prison Break!

Thinking about having that in the first part of the adventure (Book 1)

MrCharisma wrote:
Duel at High Noon!

Lot's of this if possible. If I can get a good way to pull it off. I like your idea below.

MrCharisma wrote:
Western society was set in an era of civilizing the wild places, so Abadar would probably play a big part (and probably Ersatil as his antithesis). You could have the magic train be a new thing, and the railroad company is improving the lives of the people in major cities, but it's doing it at the cost of those on the frontier.

That's really interesting. Is there any part of Golarion that could be used as the setting?

MrCharisma wrote:
Some items: Silver spurs, Quickdraw holster (maybe 1/day or something), Named bullet (that one might actually exist already), Gambler's gloves.

Named bullet is a deed Gunslinger's get already.

I love gambler's gloves (They would also have to be invisible because no one would play with you if you're wearing gloves)

Quickdraw holster is cool, maybe combined with the abilities of a scabbard of many things?

Silver spurs for a bonus to handle animal, and intimidate?

MrCharisma wrote:
Speaking of gambling, you could have a game of chance with a very special deck (of many things).

I love the idea of creating a new deck of many things that fits into this campaign. Perhaps held and used by a higher end boss.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
MrCharisma wrote:

Ok here's some thoughts on some rules:

- Firearms are martial weapons (you probably already have this).

I have been toying around with a few ideas actually.

1) Firearms are martial weapons.

2) Bonus Feat at level 1 where you can choose (Amateur Gunslinger, Exotic Weapon Proficiency (Firearms), or Gunsmithing)

3) Campaign traits where each one provides either a stripped down version of the feat above, or the full feat itself.

What I am trying to do is open up class choices, while still making the gunslinger attractive. I figured with this campaign gunslingers would be like Jedi's are to a Star Wars rpg - Every one wants to take them. So if i part out the abilities of the gunslinger into other classes as a bonus, it makes them more attractive knowing they can get a bit of gunslinger flavor early, and then always multi-class later on if needed, or just slowly add it through feat progression. Or. at the very minimum, still be proficient with the firearms they come across.

So as an example;

Trait 1

Choose one type of one-handed firearm. You are proficient with that firearm. You also gain the gunsmith feat with these changes. All costs of firearms other than your chosen firearm are crafted for 2/3 of the price instead of 1/2, and non-alchemical ammunition is crafted at 20% instead of 10% of the market price.

Trait 2

Choose one type of two-handed firearm. You are proficient with that firearm. You also gain the gunsmith feat with these changes. All costs of firearms other than your chosen firearm are crafted for 2/3 of the price instead of 1/2, and non-alchemical ammunition is crafted at 20% instead of 10% of the market price.

Would this work, or should it be more inclusive?

MrCharisma wrote:
Firearms add 1/2 your character level (rounding down) to the damage dealt. This lets them stay relevant past the early levels without needing everyone tk go gunslinger. DEX to Damage is still somethjng specific to the gunslinger and DEX based characters still have the edge since it helps their To-Hit roll.

I was thinking about this problem specifically, how do you make them attractive for others. I think by just giving them the ability to use them (through campaign traits) it might be enough because they are still a touch attack. Do you think there needs to be any other added bonus?

MrCharisma wrote:

DUELS:

Two characters stand waiting a trigger (The clock bell/someone yells "draw"/etc), this is readying an action. Since everyone is readying an action that means they've all acted, so no surprise round and nobody is flat-footed.

After the trigger there will be a "Special Round" where each character gets only a standard action, but can draw their pistol as a free action (characters with the Quick-Draw feat get a +4 bonus on their Initiative)

The duelists each secretly write down a number (called from now on their "Secret Number"). The Secret Number is added to their initiative score. Both players then reveal their numbers and roll for initiative.

The first round for both combatants is only a standard action (because they readied an action). During this "Special Round" they take a penalty to their attack roll equal to their Secret Number. Also during this "Special Round" if their attack roll succeeds they automatically score a critical threat, and automatically confirm (meaning in most cases they deal ×4 damage).

Once both duelists have had their "Special Round" play returns to normal, and (assuming they're both still alive) a regular shoot-out ensues.

If a character wishes to fire before the trigger (darstardly cheater!) they can make a bluff check opposed by their opponent's sense motive. A character with the Quick Draw feat receives a +4 to their bluff check to deceive their opponent, or to their sense motive check to avoid being deceived. However if they cheat they do not get the automatic critical threat or critical confirmation.

If the cheater succeeds on their...

This is pretty neat. I'm going to use this on a quick one shot and see how it plays out. I'll keep you posted. [Obviously inspired by "The Quick and the Dead"]


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Andostre wrote:

Items

There's a unique magic weapon or a magic weapon property that allows a gun to shoot shadow-magic bullets that reform on their own (so that you don't need to reload). Maybe something more setting appropriate? It is a trope that some six-shooters in the older movies never seem to run out of bullets.

Yeah, there is a Pistol of the Infinite Sky that does that (Skull & Shackles drop I think). You can get the reload portion of that through a few feats pretty easily, but creating an actual +3 weapon enhancement that does it would be cool too. Does +3 sound about right price-wise?

Andostre wrote:
Does your galloping saddle provide the STR bonus to the mount or to the rider?

The mule back cords portion goes to the mount.

The 10 minute STR or DEX bonus goes to the rider as written (or should it be mount as well?)

I was thinking about all the movies when a rider hangs off his saddle while shooting at a full gallop.

Andostre wrote:

Tropes

A high noon showdown with wands!

Nice! I'll try to figure out how to get that to happen

Andostre wrote:

You'll need some sort of Native American analog. Don't choose a humanoid race that's evil, such as orcs or hobgoblins, but they should be more exotic than elves. Just having them be "different" humans could work, but it might be more fun to hit up the race builder. Lizardfolk could work, but they're swamp-themed. Suli are Janni-influenced, which are from the desert...

If you want historical accuracy, maybe analogs for Chinese and Mexicans.

One of the main villains could be the head of a mining company, forcibly taking over land for their own purposes.

That was exactly what I was going for. A new Playable Race that ends up being forced off their land, and the overall arc is to take the fight back to those that are forcing them off their land. I think I'll make them a sub race of Suli. That makes the most sense and still makes them feel Pathfinderish.

Andostre wrote:

Rule Additions

Chases - check out these chase rules.

That's super cool. I was playing around with putting initiative into movement as well, and this would allow for that. Very neat Idea. Gonna have to look at this very closely.

Andostre wrote:
Perhaps a rule for missed ranged attacks hitting someone else nearby? Like if you miss bad enough, you roll for how off target the shot lands a la the splash damage rules.

Perhaps this could be fixed by extending the penalty that already exists for firing into melee to include firing while mounted and involved in a chase? That way Precise Shot takes care of this without adding anything additionally?

Andostre wrote:
Kudos to MrCharisma for his duel rules. I especially like the Secret Number being a bonus to initiative but a penalty to attack.

Yes. Totally going with this idea. Gonna playtest it soon.

Dark Archive

MrCharisma wrote:
Duel at High Noon!

Yes! There must be a showdown / climactic gunfight at some point, although, with a group of heroes, a showdown at the OK corral / save the town from the bandits aka Magnificent Seven might be a better fit.

Other tropes;

Fight in an abandoned mine, with cave-ins and natural hazards. It needs to be blown up at the end, with the winners just running clear in time as it explodes behind them!

Fight in the saloon, possibly unarmed?

Chase-scene on horseback!

Something to do with the natives. (Perhaps some raids by the true enemy have been staged to look like they were committed by the natives, so that the locals waste time and energy fighting the wrong people, and even inviting the assistance of the *real* bad guys in 'protecting' them from these 'savages.' The party has to uncover the truth and convince the locals to restore their previous 'live and let live,' or even trading partners, relationship with the natives and rally together against the sinister forces looking to take over.)


Coinspinner's Song wrote:
Yeah, there is a Pistol of the Infinite Sky that does that (Skull & Shackles drop I think). You can get the reload portion of that through a few feats pretty easily, but creating an actual +3 weapon enhancement that does it would be cool too. Does +3 sound about right price-wise?

Maybe? Weighing magic items has never been my strong point. The weapon effect I was thinking about is Shadowshooting, which is a +1 effect. Take away the uncertainty of shadow magic and remove the misfire chance or normal weapons, and I'd probably go with +2.

Coinspinner's Song wrote:
Andostre wrote:
Does your galloping saddle provide the STR bonus to the mount or to the rider?

The mule back cords portion goes to the mount.

The 10 minute STR or DEX bonus goes to the rider as written (or should it be mount as well?)

I was thinking about all the movies when a rider hangs off his saddle while shooting at a full gallop.

I can see that. I just couldn't tell because I could see it going both ways. I think that the STR bonus would help the rider and/or the mount more in melee combat, which seems less like it would apply to your AP. Looking through the PRD, most of the magic saddles I just glanced at provide some sort of effect to both mount and rider, even if it's not the same effect.

Andostre wrote:

Perhaps a rule for missed ranged attacks hitting someone else nearby? Like if you miss bad enough, you roll for how off target the shot lands a la the splash damage rules.

Coinspinner's Song wrote:
Perhaps this could be fixed by extending the penalty that already exists for firing into melee to include firing while mounted and involved in a chase? That way Precise Shot takes care of this without adding anything additionally?

It's probably more trouble than it's worth, but I'm just thinking of all of the scenes in a shootout where a guy is shot at, and the only reason he knows this is because a person near him falls over dead. That probably can't translate to Pathfinder rules very easily, though.

And I've thought of another trope: Having to defend a lone cottage sitting in the middle of a prairie from a horde of outlaws or natives galloping towards the house from a distance.


Set wrote:
Fight in the saloon, possibly unarmed?

I second this. Definitely unarmed. You could possibly set it up by having someone accused of cheating at a card game, which breaks out into a brawl.


Thanks guys I'm glad you liked the duel idea (I just thought it up last night, so i'm sure there are some tweaks needed). I do think the "cheater" idea needs work.

Regarding extra damage for firearms: Once you get past about 5th level the lack of damage starts to be really noticable. Without adding STR/DEX to damage firearms and crossbows see almost no use. Adding damage per level is a waybaround it 2ithout having to get too rules-heavy. Having said that, 1/2 level damage is probably too much, 1/3 or even 1/4 is probably better (I' thinking 1/3 now but I haven't tested it).

I'm super interested to see what else comes up in this thread, but I' short for time now so I'l check back in later.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Set wrote:
MrCharisma wrote:

Duel at High Noon!

Yes! There must be a showdown / climactic gunfight at some point, although, with a group of heroes, a showdown at the OK corral / save the town from the bandits aka Magnificent Seven might be a better fit.

That is for sure the best fit. Writing it is going to be pretty fun.

Set wrote:

Other tropes;

Fight in an abandoned mine, with cave-ins and natural hazards. It needs to be blown up at the end, with the winners just running clear in time as it explodes behind them!

I was thinking about a reverse dungeon crawl in an abandoned mine. Having somehow fallen it to it, or forced to take refuge in it. Perhaps even a small mine cart chase winding it's way deeper. Then having cave ins happening while they are trying to make it back out, having to make decisions on fighting monsters and looting treasure as they go.

Set wrote:

Fight in the saloon, possibly unarmed?

Chase-scene on horseback!

Absolutely yes to both of these!

Set wrote:
Something to do with the natives. (Perhaps some raids by the true enemy have been staged to look like they were committed by the natives, so that the locals waste time and energy fighting the wrong people, and even inviting the assistance of the *real* bad guys in 'protecting' them from these 'savages.' The party has to uncover the truth and convince the locals to restore their previous 'live and let live,' or even trading partners, relationship with the natives and rally together against the sinister forces looking to take over.)

I'm thinking this should be the overall arc of the campaign. Eventually restoring the natives right to their land and making a stand against the colonists pushing West. Or is this too heavy handed? I think a lot of people would like to go toe to toe with the government when its all said and done. Especially finding out that lots of towns and people like working alongside the Natives, and it's only an organization of corrupt land-owners pushing their way west at any cost.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Andostre wrote:
Coinspinner's Song wrote:
Yeah, there is a Pistol of the Infinite Sky that does that (Skull & Shackles drop I think). You can get the reload portion of that through a few feats pretty easily, but creating an actual +3 weapon enhancement that does it would be cool too. Does +3 sound about right price-wise?
Maybe? Weighing magic items has never been my strong point. The weapon effect I was thinking about is Shadowshooting, which is a +1 effect. Take away the uncertainty of shadow magic and remove the misfire chance or normal weapons, and I'd probably go with +2.

That sounds like a good compromise. I could work that in pretty easily.

Coinspinner's Song wrote:
Andostre wrote:
Does your galloping saddle provide the STR bonus to the mount or to the rider?

The mule back cords portion goes to the mount.

The 10 minute STR or DEX bonus goes to the rider as written (or should it be mount as well?)

I was thinking about all the movies when a rider hangs off his saddle while shooting at a full gallop.

I can see that. I just couldn't tell because I could see it going both ways. I think that the STR bonus would help the rider and/or the mount more in melee combat, which seems less like it would apply to your AP. Looking through the PRD, most of the magic saddles I just glanced at provide some sort of effect to both mount and rider, even if it's not the same effect.

I thought both makes the most sense. Plus there will be a few new species of horses for the campaign too, because you know, horses!

Andostre wrote:

Perhaps a rule for missed ranged attacks hitting someone else nearby? Like if you miss bad enough, you roll for how off target the shot lands a la the splash damage rules.

Coinspinner's Song wrote:
Perhaps this could be fixed by extending the penalty that already exists for firing into melee to include firing while mounted and involved in a chase? That way Precise Shot takes care of this without adding anything additionally?
It's probably more trouble than it's worth, but I'm just thinking of all of the scenes in a shootout where a guy is shot at, and the only reason he...

I'll play around with this idea some more, but I like the feel of the Feat taking care of it, considering it's built already similar to that.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
MrCharisma wrote:
Thanks guys I'm glad you liked the duel idea (I just thought it up last night, so i'm sure there are some tweaks needed). I do think the "cheater" idea needs work.

I'm busy writing, so please don't stop the ideas as they come to you.

MrCharisma wrote:
Regarding extra damage for firearms: Once you get past about 5th level the lack of damage starts to be really noticable. Without adding STR/DEX to damage firearms and crossbows see almost no use. Adding damage per level is a way around it without having to get too rules-heavy. Having said that, 1/2 level damage is probably too much, 1/3 or even 1/4 is probably better (I' thinking 1/3 now but I haven't tested it).

Would that be a rule in the campaign or maybe an optional favored class bonus that all levels could take (I kind of love this idea)? I figured there would be enough party members proficient with firearms and enough firearm drops, as well as crafters that can make magical firearms that it might curb this for quite a few levels, but 1/2 level to damage if you take it as a favored class bonus seems fun. Make it so you can use it with quite a few classes and races, but not gunslinger? Maybe even tie it into the campaign traits where if you take the campaign trait that give you a stripped gunsmithing ability, you also get a choice to take the favored class bonus of 1/2 of your favored class level added to damage (rounded down).

MrCharisma wrote:
I'm super interested to see what else comes up in this thread, but I' short for time now so I'l check back in later.

So am I. I have been organizing these ideas off and on all day.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I am also having trouble coming up with monster encounters (Custom ones of course). Of course there are the normal desert dwellers (snakes, lizards, scorpions, coyotes/wolves, Cactuses, etc. There are a bunch within the desert terrain. Oh, and in the ghost town, of course, G...G...G...G...Ghostsssss!) and NPCs are of course great, but does anyone have some good ideas for non humanoid custom encounters? Pathfinder AP's do a really job with custom monsters, so I would like to come up with a few that fit within the story.

I did come up up with mimic water barrels or watering troths, but was thinking more like new creatures or humanoid races that live in the gold mine caves and that's why they have been abandoned (Have the PCs exploring it and clearing it out early in the campaign, only to find out later on that that helped the land barons make more money to finance their genocide).

Swarms and stampeding animal herds for sure. Though that already exists somewhat.

P.S. I was also thinking this would be a good campaign to have an abnormal amount of cursed items (amateur magic item crafters trying to make a quick buck)

Just some more random thoughts.


Coinspinner's Song wrote:
I am also having trouble coming up with monster encounters (Custom ones of course).

Think "weird west", like Jonah Hex -- although you might not want to spring it on the players right away.

Then again, maybe you'll want to tease right from the beginning that it's not your "typical" genre setting, sort of like how the 1st episode of Game of Thrones hinted that it wouldn't be your typical medieval romp (before becoming exactly that for most of the rest of the season).


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Coinspinner's Song wrote:
MrCharisma wrote:
Western society was set in an era of civilizing the wild places, so Abadar would probably play a big part (and probably Ersatil as his antithesis). You could have the magic train be a new thing, and the railroad company is improving the lives of the people in major cities, but it's doing it at the cost of those on the frontier.
That's really interesting. Is there any part of Golarion that could be used as the setting?

While it's technically the "Wild East," I think the Whistling Plains east of Taldor might be an interesting place to set this campaign. Access to magical railway might cause Taldor to want to expand/settle the vast frontier region. It has bison, worgs, and bulettes (which all sound very cowboy to me), but also lions, which might be a fun addition. Also, you've got the lawmen of the Taldan Horse trying to keep order, and native tribes of centaurs and gnolls to deal with.


MrCharisma wrote:
Regarding extra damage for firearms: Once you get past about 5th level the lack of damage starts to be really noticable. Without adding STR/DEX to damage firearms and crossbows see almost no use. Adding damage per level is a waybaround it 2ithout having to get too rules-heavy. Having said that, 1/2 level damage is probably too much, 1/3 or even 1/4 is probably better (I' thinking 1/3 now but I haven't tested it).

The Kirthfinder houserule set uses Wisdom instead of Dex for ranged attacks, mainly based on the Wild West trope that a steady hand and unflinching gaze will serve you better in a gun fight that being quick. Maybe at certain level, characters can add their Wisdom bonus to attack and/or damage rolls when using firearms. Whether that's a feat or an AP houserule, though, I can't say.


You could put it in Thuvia (desert and mountains) or in Garund somewhere (have the natives be Mwangi instead of Indians).

More tropes:

The natives are really good trackers in tune with the wild (obviously, ranger levels and druids).

The local schoolmistress (who may be a cleric or bard in this world) as a quest hook, possible love interest, and local support.

SO MUCH room for things to do with mines. Probably have them disturb some kind of underground spirit (homebrew, look up something the players have never heard of before).

A gang of bandits who are enemies of the local bankers (not that they're nice people themselves, but the locals like them because they mostly leave the locals alone).


Coinspinner's Song wrote:
I am also having trouble coming up with monster encounters (Custom ones of course).

I've got two suggestions:

1) Spitoon elementals! A hybrid elemental made of saliva and discarded addictive plant material. They are gross.

2) The other idea is more a source of inspiration than a full-fledged idea. I would trawl Native American legends and folklore for ideas. Native Americans had lived on the land for thousands of years before their land became America's "frontier." There's tons of material available via a quick Google search. I tried "Native American monsters." I came across this article that seems like a good start. Flying heads! Water panthers! Owl women! Child-sized cannibals!

Also...

New magic item idea: cigarettes and cigars that never run out of tobacco

And spellcasters should commonly keep the spark cantrip memorized so that they can light cigarettes and cigars.


I've only recently taken an interest in Old Western fiction. I loved the movie Savage Sam, which I heard got poo-pooed by critics on the grounds that it was too cliched (and maybe I'm too new to the genre to be sick of the cliches, or even know what they are). So what if savages (or monsters) captured a bunch of children - including at least one young woman - for the PCs to pursue and rescue?

Several people have mentioned the FINAL showdown of The Magnificent Seven, but what impressed me the most about that 1960 movie was that the BEGINNING looked like the perfect start to a campaign. What if the PCs - who don't necessarily know each other - happened to show up in a tavern in time to hear someone trying to arrange the burial of a dead body left around, but no one will condone the burial of... "a filthy half-orc"? And when the PCs hire on as guards for the hearse, their next patron takes notice and hires them?

Set wrote:
Fight in an abandoned mine, with cave-ins and natural hazards.

...or man-made hazards. I'm currently reading a western novel in which the hero leaves traps for the villains in a cave. (Think Home Alone.) But I'm thinking the reverse: the villains leave behind trip-wires to trigger cave-ins or explosive devices for the heroes.

Andostre wrote:
I would trawl Native American legends and folklore for ideas. Native Americans had lived on the land for thousands of years before their land became America's "frontier." There's tons of material available via a quick Google search. I tried "Native American monsters." I came across this article that seems like a good start.

Or you could use the Wikipedia.

EDIT: How about True Grit? The PCs are hired to pursue a murderer who's fled into the wilderness. Maybe the murder victim was a friend or relative of one of the PCs.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I haven't had a chance to follow up on all the great new posts yet today, but had an idea for a couple items for the first few levels.

After surviving level 1 (initial idea is they can't leave the town until they solve a recent murder, as they are implicated as well, and they have their weapons taken away until they prove their innocence). The party is sent to track down the orchestrator of the murder and are deputized by the sheriff (aka Young Guns, sort of)

Anyway I came up with a cool idea for four deputy badges, i think. Though it seems like it could do a touch more. Keep in mind that they will be getting these at the start of level 2.

Deputy badge

Slotless

Each badge grants a +1 inherent bonus to Ride skill checks as well as a +1 inherent bonus to one of the four categories.

Diplomacy
Bluff
Intimidate
Sense Motive

The party chooses which badge to give each member.

Of course the sheriff himself has one that is +2 to Ride checks and +1 to each of the four above skills, possibly given to the party when they return from their quest, or tie it into when they clear out an outlaw town and set up their own rule of law.

And the second item

Bardic Phonograph

I have not built a bard before, but the thought of being able to put bardic performance or inspire courage on a phonograph that takes a full round action to activate but then plays for 1-3 minutes sounds pretty darn cool. Not sure what else you could get it to do, but it sure fits with the western timeline.


I like them.

This isn't a new thing, but this campaign sounds like a good place for a set of DUNGEON RINGS.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
MrCharisma wrote:

I like them.

This isn't a new thing, but this campaign sounds like a good place for a set of DUNGEON RINGS.

Yes! I have thought of that being a drop in here as well! Sounds like a second book drop kind of item.

Here is what I have for the first book item set (that could change though).

Western Adventure Book 1 Treasure.

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