Disappointed with book 6? Spoilers ahead, fair warning.


Tyrant's Grasp

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Can't he get another army in say a few years? Vigil is gone and there is a big defensive hole that he can take advantage of.

Silver Crusade

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And in a few years, maybe we'll have another Adventure Path to put him down for good. I could see that easily coinciding with 2E's version of Mythic (that will hopefully be more balanced than 1E's). It's still not rocks fall, everyone dies, because again, it doesn't rely on GM frustration and table flipping. From the very first line of the TV Trope page: "This is what happens in Tabletop RPGs when the Game Master gets utterly fed up with the players: he kills them all spectacularly."


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Rysky wrote:
Val'bryn2 wrote:
It's not a sacrifice, it's the bad guy, who has literally been stuck with this artifact in his hand for 900 years, suddenly not knowing how it works. This is RFED because, as we established, in 1d10 days, Tar-Baphon is back, no longer has the thorn in his paw, and the world is short a few more legendary heroes to stop him. We can't even say his soul was destroyed, because that's from the interaction of the Radiant Fire and their obols. This is a villain victory. It may be Pyrrhic, but Tar-baphon wins.

It’s not. He lost his superweapon, he lost large parts of his army, he lost his assault and a chance at godhood. Just because he survives (in a fashion) doesn’t mean he won.

“suddenly not knowing how it works.”

I don’t think he ever knew about the Obols in the first place.

“This is RFED because, as we established, in 1d10 days, Tar-Baphon is back,”

That’s an assumption, he’s also constrained to his island so something’s up there.

The problem is, we have *no idea* what that something is. Technically, from the information present within the Adventure Path, we have no idea that something *is* up, because the fact that he does not stir from the Isle of Terror after rejuvenating is contained in separate material. So far as the adventure itself tells us, he loses a portion of a portion of his army; a weapon which was powerful but rapidly running out of uses, and which specfically did not factor into his attempt at gaining Godhood; and however much time it takes to rejuvenate and regather troops. There's no indication given that he loses any personal power, and his army is by its nature replaceable. He certainly hasn't lost his chance at godhood--he failed at one attempt, but the Starstone is still there. (And frankly, a full-scale assault on Absalom was the stupidest way of pursuing it, when all he had to do was teleport to it.) So far as the text of the adventure goes, the PCs accomplishment is wildly asymmetric at best. Getting rid of the Radiant Fire is huge, sure, but utter annihilation of the self is an out-of-proportion cost when it seems that Tar-Baphon could be back at the gates of Absalom in a month at the outside. Some specific mention, if only to the GM, that the lich's rejuvenation would be prolonged and that he'd lose a significant chunk of mythic power in the process, or damage his phylactery, or *something* would have gone a long way to mollifying the complaints.

To say nothing of how the information about how this heroic sacrifice is received half a world away from someone who had no idea who the Whispering Tyrant even was. Like, I love the Arcadia setting that we got, but it's presence came right out of left field in this adventure path, and something about it makes the whole explanation feel that much more tenuous for me.

Silver Crusade

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Pretty sure we find out more about Baphy’s fate in the Lost Omens World Guide, which street date is the end of the month but some subscribers are already getting their PDFs.

And Arcadia didn’t come out of nowhere, it’s where Arazni is from and how Aroden created his shield, so the origin stories for both of them.

Also running out of uses of a literal nuke is nowhere near the same as “run out”.


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This was literally the first I'd heard that Arazni was from Arcadia or that Aroden had ever been there. My impression was that Arcadia was almost entirely uncontacted by the 'main' setting, aside from a relatively recent Ulfen settlement. I assume that this information was mentioned in other materials, but I think I would be far from alone in finding it confusing.

And my point is that the information about Tar-Baphon's fate is not *in the adventure*, which is where it needs to be if you're asking the PCs to *annihilate themselves completely* to achieve it. The Radiant Fire is a monstrously powerful weapon, but Tar-Baphon is so powerful even without it, that if it's not perfectly clear that he can't go right back to sieging Absalom the moment he's put himself back together, it becomes very easy to get the sense that the PCs have destroyed their souls just to be a speed bump. That's not the intention or the actual outcome, but it is, IMO, the presentation.

Silver Crusade

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Arcadia and Arazni’s history has been spread out here and there (there’s other Avistani settlements for instance), but perhaps I didn’t phrase my last post well. This section fills in a lot of the history of Arazni and Aroden as well, and doesn’t change anything. So it didn’t feel to me as left field. A reveal, certainly, but not from left field.

And his fate wouldn’t really be spelled out in this AP because A) his defeat is the apex of the AP and that would go beyond it and b) the Lost Omens World Guide was most likely written at the same time or even before part 6 of Tyrant’s Grasp, so it would make sense to relegate future setting stuff to the setting book and keep the AP AP specific.


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To be honest? There is nothing in the AP which states Tar-Baphon reanimates in 1d10 days and starts going after Absalom once more. While the rules for the Mythic Lich state it takes 1d10 days for a Mythic Lich with 8 or more Tiers to reanimate, that isn't included in the actual write-up for Tar-Baphoon itself.

What is stated is this: Absalom celebrates for now, but it's only a matter of time before the Whispering Tyrant reawakens and threatens the world once more....

That honestly doesn't sound like 1d10 days. It sounds like months, years... maybe even centuries. Further, it also states this: Unlike the Whispering Tyrant, whose death marks his failure and the loss of the greatest weapon he's ever known, the PCs can enter oblivion knowing that their heroic sacrifice marks them forever as legends.

In short, loss of his "maginuke" is in fact a huge deal. It doesn't matter that he only had so many uses left... once he became a God, he'd probably use that power to wage war on the other Gods (assuming that power was enhanced as well upon achieving Godhood). And let's be honest... how many GMs here have bothered making "beyond the end" adventures? And how many just pull out the next AP and run that instead?

That an 18th+ level character dies forever stopping one of the greatest threats Golarion has ever known (I put him right up there with the Demon Lords of the Worldwound) and thwarted his greatest plot ever? Is ultimately not significant. The characters would be "done" whether you retire them to roll up a character for the next campaign, or if they died.

And outside of the Runelords trilogy, NONE of your high-level characters ever show up in the game again under the player's control because it would break the campaign... and many players would likely be annoyed if the GM did include a high-level character they ran and didn't let them "gift" their new characters with loot or the like or fix things for them.

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If they don't include alternate rules, the main rules are in play. Therefore, 1d10 days until Tar-baphon walks out and resumes the war.


The rules take a backseat to the story when the GM decides they would, especially at the end of the adventure and especially if they think the players would otherwise find the conclusion unsatisfying (and I do. I get the *intent* of it, and I like what it was going for, but I feel like the execution was lacking).

If at the table you decide "The detonation of the Radiant Fire scorches Tar-Baphon down to his very soul, and even after reforming his body next to his phylactery he finds himself scarred and burned, drastically weakened and in horrible pain," then that's what happens, no matter what the rules say or even what the book says. And there are several ways you could explain an aberration like that, just given the unusual circumstances and powerful magic involved.

And unless the Lost Omens world guide has some equally compelling reason for Tar-Baphon to go back into hiding (selfish and self-centered creature that he is, Tar-Baphon would *absolutely* put everything on hold and devote all his time and energy to searching for a way to heal himself; what's the point of conquering the world if you don't get to be dramatically slinging spells at the front of your army?), that's what happened in my setting. Tar-Baphon reforms, but he's been hurt, humiliated, and perhaps even stripped of some of his Mythic power.

At the very least, I'd have it so that mention is made that Tar-Baphon's hand is just gone now. That it doesn't regenerate with the rest of his body anymore and none of his or his followers' spells can bring it back. Maybe (either in addition or alternatively) make his severed hand that's found on the battlefield afterward an artifact of some kind that can be used against him.

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Val'bryn2 wrote:
If they don't include alternate rules, the main rules are in play. Therefore, 1d10 days until Tar-baphon walks out and resumes the war.

Which is 100% assumption on your part and goes against everything previewed in the Lost Omens World Guide thus far.


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Leingod wrote:
At the very least, I'd have it so that mention is made that Tar-Baphon's hand is just gone now. That it doesn't regenerate with the rest of his body anymore and none of his or his followers' spells can bring it back. Maybe (either in addition or alternatively) make his severed hand that's found on the battlefield afterward an artifact of some kind that can be used against him.

So now Golarion has its own version of the Hand of Vecna....

Silver Crusade

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It's the rules, not an assumption. About the reformation, not the continuation of the war.


Tangent101 wrote:
Leingod wrote:
At the very least, I'd have it so that mention is made that Tar-Baphon's hand is just gone now. That it doesn't regenerate with the rest of his body anymore and none of his or his followers' spells can bring it back. Maybe (either in addition or alternatively) make his severed hand that's found on the battlefield afterward an artifact of some kind that can be used against him.
So now Golarion has its own version of the Hand of Vecna....

Which sets the stage for the Head of Tar-Baphon..


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Regarding this book, other than the ending, my sadness is also due to how, since the pcs are required to take part to a fight that they cannot win conventionally, we cannot see the full effect of the pcs victory. Absalom may be save for now, but what about Lastwall? Without Tar Baphon's leadership, what does happen in the kingdom from which the pcs are probably from? And what about the whole Ustalav? Surely, this was not written down due to page limit and the uncoming arrival of the "Lost Omens World Guide", but leaves too many questions unanswered.

Moreover, the fact that the last part of book 6 gets a meager 6 pages, with only 1 map, and no art of the final npcs that will fight together with the Pcs, confounds me. This is mostly because i found almost no reason for the existence of the first part of the book except for give this heavy undead ap a bit of variation.

To summarize, we get 9 pages that explores how the radiant fire can "force" the first world on the material plane, or somehow emulate the living beings from there, by "spontaneously generating small dinosaurs and tapirs", but also living cr 15 or higher beings. Also, the sole reason the pcs are given to explore this forest, which should be no more than 2-3 miles wide, is to gain intel (and possibly recover a few bodies) over "the defenses" of Hammer Rock, which sadly amount to 2 traps, whose effects could be a challenge for a level 9 to 11 party, but surely not for a level 16 one.

While i find pretty the chase with the wild hunt, i would have preferred 15 or more pages dedicated to the "siege of Absalom", possibly with some named antagonist outside from those met (and probably slaughtered) at Hammer Rock.

For example, i would have found way more epic if, riding Naraga, had appeared the fabled Malyas, first general of Tar Baphon and anti-paladin of Urgathoa, send to avenge the (almost sure) demise of the daughter of the dead.
Or we could have gotten something truly horrid, like a "bodak legion" quickly creating itself in the middle of the battle, guided by a Vrolikai demon, which forces the pcs to actually decide if target the undead legion or the fleeing troops to stop the dying from turning into new troops. Instead we get a bunch of powerful, yet "nameless" foes until it's time for the WT to make his entrance.

In the end, what i would have liked is - also - some final words from Gildais, since he was "the" npc from which desires much of the AP sprout from. Two or few lines would have been enough, like: "If Gildais is still "alive" when the Tyrant's about to lose control of the radiant fire, he starts laughing, and opens his arms, welcoming his ruin and much awaited freedom". His role was, in the end, lost in the ending of this Ap, a labour whose content were ambitiously spread into many sources, and that only by bringing said content together (pathfinder society 10 23 and 10 99) will grant a GM like me the narrative options i would require to give 1 edition the greatest send off we can.

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Just read up on the state of the Inner Sea region at the start of 2nd Edition, in the Core Rulebook, and yes, the effect of the PC's sacrifice of their souls is to be a speed bump. He's back, he's not bound to Gallowspire any longer, and while he hasn't gone back to Absalom, he has taken the nation surrounding his former prison and turned it into his domain.

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Val'bryn2 wrote:
Just read up on the state of the Inner Sea region at the start of 2nd Edition, in the Core Rulebook, and yes, the effect of the PC's sacrifice of their souls is to be a speed bump. He's back, he's not bound to Gallowspire any longer, and while he hasn't gone back to Absalom, he has taken the nation surrounding his former prison and turned it into his domain.

He hasn’t done that at all. He’s moved his base of operations to the Isle of Terror, Ustalav and Gravelands aren’t his domain.

A full on retreat sounds like a lot more than a speedbump.

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How is this a full on retreat? He's still gone from being bound to a dungeon to being a free ruler of a domain. He's sitting smack in the middle of a Ustalav, Kyonin, and Druma, and they haven't dislodged him. And before you say it's just an island, so is Absalom, but it's still a major player on the international level, and it isn't ruled by a being that is literally on par, power level-wise, with demon lords.

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He didn’t reattempt to take the Starstone, instead he fled back to the beginning and holed up there.

You don’t get more full on retreat than that.


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Rysky wrote:

He didn’t reattempt to take the Starstone, instead he fled back to the beginning and holed up there.

You don’t get more full on retreat than that.

I think I'm more with Val'bryn2 here, though admittedly we don't know many details of TB's current situation. The bottom line, however, is that he's no longer locked up behind the Great Seal in Gallowspire, and the major entity tasked with keeping him there, Lastwall, has been destroyed. He didn't achieve all the objectives that he set for himself but he's in a far better strategic position at the end of the AP than he was before it began.

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He didn't win, but he certainly did not lose either. You can't even say it's a draw, because the heroes lost their souls, he took a nap. He's a millenia year old lich, the time it takes for him to reform his body is the equivalent of how long it takes some of us to decide what to have for dinner.

Silver Crusade

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He did indeed lose. He didn’t get the Starstone, he lost his superweapon, and a chunk of his top units and armies. And there’s no telling what the Obol enhanced Radiant Fire did to him.

The fact that he’s holed up in the Isle of Terror instead of actively campaigning like in this AP is rather telling.

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Holed up is a rather wishful term for his current status. At the beginning of the AP, he was trapped in Gallowspire, with a shard of shield in his arm, maybe not crippling him, but certainly causing constant pain even to an undead. He did not take the Test of the Starstone,true, but he did break the bindings so he's free, and the shield that had been tormenting him is gone. Let's not forget that, yes, he lost the Radiant Fire, but he's also succeeded in further damaging the emblems of Aroden. A battle with a god resulted in him pulling an Obi-Wan moment, rising as the most powerful lich in the world. He battled the herald of Aroden twice, killed her and cast her down, then put her down again when she became a lich. In itself, her becoming a lich is a psychological victory, because he corrupted the literal chosen of a god. And now he took one of the few sacred relics of Aroden, and turned it into a tool of fear and horror. He has corrupted Aroden's legacy. It may not be his main goal, but it's not a loss.


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Rysky wrote:
The fact that he’s holed up in the Isle of Terror instead of actively campaigning like in this AP is rather telling.

May I quote from the new CRB (p. 422)

"While the heroes temporarily thwarted the Whispering Tyrant's immediate plans shortly after he emerged, the lich remains an active menace." (emphasis mine)

"The lich is gathering his resources on the Isle of Terror, and none can say where or when he will strike next." (emphasis mine)

This would seem to indicate that he is not "holed up" in the sense of being in passive, purely defensive orientation, but that he may begin "actively campaigning" again at any moment.

Silver Crusade

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1) Baphy didn’t turn Arazni into a Lich, Geb did.

2) I read the CRB Eye of Terror section too. He’s holed up and reconsolidating his power, so he’s a ways off from attacking. He’s not actively conquering/slaughtering the neighboring countries.


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And yet he isn't trying to get to the Starstone.

BTW, Tar-Baphon managed to outwit Aroden on multiple occasions and use that God to further his own goals on multiple occasions. Why should a group of 18th level characters be able to permanently destroy him? Especially seeing that the previous world-changing AP had four demi-gods with 10 Mythic Ranks take out two Demon Lords, permanently killing these near-divine beings?

Now, Mythic Adventures was obviously flawed. But no doubt the original intent was for there to be several Mythic Adventures APs and the reaction of the fanbase to the eventual flop of high-level Mythic combat in WotR and an end-boss who just didn't prove that impressive was a huge factor in the move away from MA. The original gem of an idea probably had four 10th rank Mythic Adventurers facing down Tar-Baphon and a cadre of mythic foes for a truly epic battle... and fan disdain for Mythic and the failing of the rules took that initial gem of an idea and reduced it to what we got.

Also, Tar-Baphon is one of the Great Big Bads of Golarion. While many folk think of the Runelords... they were a distant past "threat" who were far more akin to the Ten Who Were Taken from the "Black Company" line of books. But Tar-Baphon? He was the TRUE big bad, the closest thing you had to the imprisoned God of Destruction that the PCs might in theory face. I can fully understand why Paizo chose not to let the PCs just nuke him and be done.

(On a side note, there is considerable grousing that the PCs don't get to murderize all seven Runelords. There's a reason I compare them to the Taken as both groups were busy trying to kill each other. But sometimes you can't just kill your way through things. Sometimes you need to use diplomacy or even just ruin the big bad's plans so they're forced to step back and regroup.)


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The level of threat posed by Tar-Baphon in the immediate aftermath of the AP is really unknowable. We just don't have enough information. However, I'll make two final points.

1) TB's gold reserve is located on the Isle of Terror.

2) If I were a Druman defense planner (and I'm very glad that I'm not), I wouldn't be thinking, "Boy, those heroes beat Tar-Baphon's butt six ways to Sunday. I think I'll take the afternoon off and go for a round of golf."


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You have a lich with plans for godhood.

Said Lich merrily romps all over Lastwall, functionally destroying the country (which, OOC, is no great loss, since it was always "the other place with knights, but with less urgency than Mendev"), raising vast armies, and making a beeline for Absalom in order to get his deification boogaloo on.

Said lich is stopped. Sent back to square one.

Yeah, he's still semi-active... but the power he used to grind Lastwall into dust? Gone. Finito. Every nation around him? No longer subject to Radiant Fire nuking- and on notice, so they have time to prepare for the more conventional worries caused by armies of undead.

Some speed bumps rip out the undercarriage of your car if you hit them too fast. Tar-Baphon is in on the Isle of Terror waiting for his tow truck from AAA to get there and tell him what the damage is.

EDIT: As for the big hole in the defensive perimeter caused by Lastwall going boom... it's flanked on the north by Ustalav and on the south by Nirmathas, and on the west by the Hold of Belkzen.

Plow through Nirmathas to the west and you run into Nidal- not a fight I think even the Whispering Tyrant wants. South? That'd be Molthune, and while they're comically bad at fighting against irregulars, armies of shambling undead play to their strengths a bit more.

Plow through Belkzen (good luck with that!), and you run into the Mammoth Lords, or New Thassilon. Neither one seems like a terribly safe place to attack.

Plow through Ustalav and you run into leftover Worldwound demons and the crusaders smacking them around, or, god help you, Numeria.

So.... maybe you ignore the ruins of Lastwall (except as a marshalling ground) and move across the lake- amphibious assault vs Kyonin? Bad idea. Forced landing in Druma? Safe to say we know which border has the most Blackjackets on it now.

Only Razmiran really seems to offer a soft-ish target that doesn't have something nasty behind it... and that means it can probably count on help. If a bunch of hobgoblins could get Nirmathas and Molthune into detente, I'd say the big bad ugly boogum in the middle of the lake is going to generate a fair bit of regional cooperation.


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Moving away from the conundrum that is Tar Baphon's ultimate fate, i would point the discussion towards the lack of a proper third act for book 6.

As I've said before, this section is lacking: we don't get any map of the Cairnlands, nor for the single fights with the Cairn king or Naraga. The leader of Absalom forces, Rothos of the First Guard, is also faceless (thought, probably he's got covered in the society scenarios).

Also, while the frustration mechanics is quite funny, at the end of the book Baphon appears to fight not only the pcs, but also the leaders of 2 of the three armies that he's facing. Deep striking in the enemy line to assassinate their leadership seems hardly a move made on the fly, and would probably have happened regardless the pc tauntings.

However, Baphon actually coming "almost alone" is strange nevertheless. Since the gated daemon could teleported by itself on the pyramid, the Tyrant could have well arrived with an entourage of "lesser" undead, like a gallowdead honor guard or similar, just to "make this funny". I know that the reason is one of meta-gaming (to allow pcs to "stand a chance" into ... touching him?), but this seems quite strange, expecially considering that the Pcs are intended to "win by losing".

To rationalize this, maybe the Pcs actions have also the effect to sprone Baphon to action before he can regroup with the opportune forces for such strike. By killing several minions, he's forced to delegate to lieutenants certain parts of the army, and therefore cannot appear with an honor guard of gallowdeads, or similar things.

I'm also perplexed why he uses a wish to blast an hole in a pyramid, when he's got not only disintegration, but many other funny spells, like mythic meteor swarm! By using a wish, and before that a gate and the a teleport, he starts this battle not only "Hornless", but also without 2 very flexible level 9 spell.

Yet, most damning of all, we don't get any boastful shout from the card calling villain of pathfinder. This was surely due to page limit, but almost all of the final bosses got some text line before their final battle. And he surely need some quotes! In this case, any Dm is free to image what the Tyrant will say to their ultimate doomed Pcs.

I'm going with ...

"Rejoice, bloated Fools!" the Tyrant says, his voice a rasping sound that digs deeply in your hears, poisonous whispers of dread malice "Death has come for you! Soon you shall know her blessings ... in the everlasting servitude within my grasp! "

Or a more generic.

"If the Tyrant feels things are going in his way, he boasts about his grand plans while casting silent spells using his rod. He taunt any pcs who overcame his aura of terror by calling them "Good puppets of the slave queen of the desperate, now ruined and forever broken", and that "He'll put them into good use again after choking their life from their carcasses" ... or similar Saturday morning villain quotes.
I mean, he's the WT, after all!

To sweet a bit this thread, I invite you all to follow up with a few quotes from dear Tar Baphon which are to be said during this book, or possibly the whole ap.
Or should we make an apposite thread on "Baphon's funny rantings?"

Silver Crusade

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Pnakotus Detsujin wrote:
To rationalize this, maybe the Pcs actions have also the effect to sprone Baphon to action before he can regroup with the opportune forces for such strike.
Pretty sure that's why the counter is called Frustration. He's not acting rationally at the point, he's pissed and needs to blast something.
Quote:
I'm also perplexed why he uses a wish to blast an hole in a pyramid, when he's got not only disintegration,

Mythic Disintegrate doesn't increase the square cubage you can destroy over normal Disintegrate, so it wouldn't have worked. And reading over his history, Wish is his go to, he likes spamming it. Flaunting it.

He didn't want a hole he wanted an entrance.

Quote:

I'm going with ...

"SURPRISE!"


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Pnakotus Detsujin wrote:
I'm going with ...

"So, a funny thing happened on my way to godhood this morning..."

"I bet you're wondering how you got here..."

"Now you see why evil will win, because good is dumb."

"Aroden-Sempai! NOTICE ME!"

That last one, not so helpful, but it brings me endless joy to imagine it.


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Cole Deschain wrote:


Said lich is stopped. Sent back to square one.

Yeah, he's still semi-active... but the power he used to grind Lastwall into dust? Gone. Finito. Every nation around him? No longer subject to Radiant Fire nuking- and on notice, so they have time to prepare for the more conventional worries caused by armies of undead.

The power that was invented for him for this AP you mean and he didn't really need to cause the world a ton of trouble previously.

I'm afraid I don't buy into any of the TG apologist points of view. If it feels like a loss for the PC's and a win for the bad guy then it probably is one.

Maybe the Tyrant didn't achieve all his aims, but he's still kicking and the party are not.

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NotBothered wrote:
Cole Deschain wrote:


Said lich is stopped. Sent back to square one.

Yeah, he's still semi-active... but the power he used to grind Lastwall into dust? Gone. Finito. Every nation around him? No longer subject to Radiant Fire nuking- and on notice, so they have time to prepare for the more conventional worries caused by armies of undead.

The power that was invented for him for this AP you mean and he didn't really need to cause the world a ton of trouble previously.

I'm afraid I don't buy into any of the TG apologist points of view. If it feels like a loss for the PC's and a win for the bad guy then it probably is one.

Maybe the Tyrant didn't achieve all his aims, but he's still kicking and the party are not.

"Feels like" is very subjective. I for one would not feel that this ending is a loss for my character, nor a win for the bad guy. You obviously do, and that's fine. Not every AP is for everyone. I had no desire to play Skulls & Shackles or Hell's Vengeance, that doesn't make either AP a bad AP for those that did.


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Cori Marie wrote:
"Feels like" is very subjective. I for one would not feel that this ending is a loss for my character, nor a win for the bad guy. You obviously do, and that's fine. Not every AP is for everyone. I had no desire to play Skulls & Shackles or Hell's Vengeance, that doesn't make either AP a bad AP for those that did.

To be fair most of my opinions are subjective, this is not the kind of thing you can really bring evidence to.

I 100% take your point about not every AP is for everyone, but this one tends to divide opinions less along theme and setting and more along writers decisions.

Again I'm the exception, I thought it was a pretty bad AP from book 1 before I knew the ending and really only collected it for a complete the set of 1st ed thing.


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Rysky wrote:
Pnakotus Detsujin wrote:
To rationalize this, maybe the Pcs actions have also the effect to sprone Baphon to action before he can regroup with the opportune forces for such strike.
Pretty sure that's why the counter is called Frustration. He's not acting rationally at the point, he's pissed and needs to blast something.
Quote:
I'm also perplexed why he uses a wish to blast an hole in a pyramid, when he's got not only disintegration,

Mythic Disintegrate doesn't increase the square cubage you can destroy over normal Disintegrate, so it wouldn't have worked. And reading over his history, Wish is his go to, he likes spamming it. Flaunting it.

He didn't want a hole he wanted an entrance.

Quote:

I'm going with ...

"SURPRISE!"

Tar-Baphon: Oh, you’re the heroes all right, just not super ones!

PCs: Yeah? What’s the difference?
[Tar-Baphon casts Mythic Wish to blow a hole in the pyramid]
Tar-Baphon: Presentation!

Silver Crusade

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Tangent101 wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Pnakotus Detsujin wrote:
To rationalize this, maybe the Pcs actions have also the effect to sprone Baphon to action before he can regroup with the opportune forces for such strike.
Pretty sure that's why the counter is called Frustration. He's not acting rationally at the point, he's pissed and needs to blast something.
Quote:
I'm also perplexed why he uses a wish to blast an hole in a pyramid, when he's got not only disintegration,

Mythic Disintegrate doesn't increase the square cubage you can destroy over normal Disintegrate, so it wouldn't have worked. And reading over his history, Wish is his go to, he likes spamming it. Flaunting it.

He didn't want a hole he wanted an entrance.

Quote:

I'm going with ...

"SURPRISE!"

Tar-Baphon: Oh, you’re the heroes all right, just not super ones!

PCs: Yeah? What’s the difference?
[Tar-Baphon casts Mythic Wish to blow a hole in the pyramid]
Tar-Baphon: Presentation!

Yesssssss, that’s exactly what I was thinking of.

Silver Crusade

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NotBothered wrote:
Cole Deschain wrote:


Said lich is stopped. Sent back to square one.

Yeah, he's still semi-active... but the power he used to grind Lastwall into dust? Gone. Finito. Every nation around him? No longer subject to Radiant Fire nuking- and on notice, so they have time to prepare for the more conventional worries caused by armies of undead.

The power that was invented for him for this AP you mean and he didn't really need to cause the world a ton of trouble previously.

It let him instantly wipe out everything in a 5 mile radius. There’s not much else in setting that can compare to it.

Dark Archive

Plus honestly wouldn't be surprise if he got bit scarred.

I mean, obol being destroyed by radiant fire apparently shreds souls, so even though he obviously comes back he might have bit of metaphysical scarring afterwards :p


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NotBothered wrote:
The power that was invented for him for this AP you mean and he didn't really need to cause the world a ton of trouble previously.

"The power that was invented for him for this AP" (something Aroden, Arazni, and Arnisant never had to contend with) is now kaput, gone, bye-bye.

I would say that actually argues more for the achievements of the PCs in Tyrant's Grasp, because a villain who added a wholly unprecedented superweapon to his arsenal that made him even nastier than he was when he killed Arazni back in the day and was using it in a naked bid for power that, as a plot device, nobody could really stop, is foiled by a group of people who mostly do it by being a damned nuisance.

To say nothing of the whole, "stopping him from becoming a god" thing.

We have no idea what shape he's in, save that he's not gone for good, and he no longer has the ability to wipe entire cities from the map with a snap of his fingers. But with Paizo having just done a Tar-Baphon AP to end 1st edition, I think it's safe to say he won't be getting up to much in-setting anytime soon.

Not saying you have to like it- I mean hell, I tweaked the ending to make it feel a bit more rewarding for my players when the time comes- but let's not undersell what the narrative has the PCs going up against.


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Pnakotus Detsujin wrote:

To sweet a bit this thread, I invite you all to follow up with a few quotes from dear Tar Baphon which are to be said during this book, or possibly the whole ap.

Or should we make an apposite thread on "Baphon's funny rantings?"

To rip off the Tall Man from Phantasm: Ravager:

"You brought this on yourselves. You're unwanted pawns in the game. Your tenacity's amused me, and I've enjoyed your despair, but my use for you is at an end."

Silver Crusade

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He lost a superpower that he never actually had. It's not in any of his statblocks, it was a diabolus ex machina for the AP. He still has the power that he had before, where it took the sacrifice of an artifact to get him flee. He has the power that took down a demigoddess who probably had pointers from the guy who first put him down temporarily. And yes, I know Geb was the one to turn her into a lich, but that wouldn't have happened if Tar-baphon hadn't killed her. It will take him longer, he can't clear off 5 square miles at a time anymore, but widened Circle of Death is still viable to clear cities block by block.

Silver Crusade

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Val'bryn2 wrote:
He lost a superpower that he never actually had.

This is blatant falsehood that doesn't do you any favours.

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It is not a falsehood, because the Radiant Fire never showed up in a stat block that I have seen. It is a falsehood that he's constrained to his island again, but no one was called out on that.


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Val'bryn2 wrote:
It is not a falsehood, because the Radiant Fire never showed up in a stat block that I have seen.

So you're saying that because the plot device superpower that he canonically uses throughout the course of the AP- including both the whole "blowing up Vigil" bit and the final encounter, where it blows everybody up- doesn't exist.

Gotcha.

So it's exactly as nonexistent as the trick Areelu Vorlesh used to blow up the wardstones in Wrath of the Righteous- after all, it's not in her statblock.

And whatever Baba Yaga does to her daughters, since it's not in her statblock.

Sound.

Silver Crusade

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Val'bryn2 wrote:
It is not a falsehood, because the Radiant Fire never showed up in a stat block that I have seen.
You claiming something doesn't exist because it was never statted up is indeed a falsehood.
Quote:
It is a falsehood that he's constrained to his island again, but no one was called out on that.

I said holed up, not constrained, at this time we don't 100% know why he's sticking there.

Edit: I did use constrained, but the second part of that still stands. We don't 100% know for sure why he's not leaving the island.


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Rysky wrote:
Pnakotus Detsujin wrote:
To rationalize this, maybe the Pcs actions have also the effect to sprone Baphon to action before he can regroup with the opportune forces for such strike.
Pretty sure that's why the counter is called Frustration. He's not acting rationally at the point, he's pissed and needs to blast something.
Quote:
I'm also perplexed why he uses a wish to blast an hole in a pyramid, when he's got not only disintegration,

Mythic Disintegrate doesn't increase the square cubage you can destroy over normal Disintegrate, so it wouldn't have worked. And reading over his history, Wish is his go to, he likes spamming it. Flaunting it.

He didn't want a hole he wanted an entrance.

Exactly. It's pretty clear from reading about him, both in the AP and elsewhere, that Tar-Baphon is not only an egomaniac, but also a drama queen. He's capable of subtlety, certainly, but in general he always tends to default to big, flashy displays of power. There was, for instance, no rational reason for him to try to use a wish spell to teleport Arnisant's heart into his hand; the disparity of power was such that he could have cast any number of lower-level spells that would have done the job just as well. It was purely ego-stroking theatrics. It's even spelled out in the very first book of the AP:

Quote:
Nuance is lost on the wizard-king who once constructed a portal to oblivion in an attempt to slay a rival. Centuries of tearing at the walls of Gallowspire with his necromancy have only driven him deeper into the dark arts, searching for a spell powerful enough to finally shatter the Shining Crusade's mighty seals. He never realized that his brute-force attacks only strengthened the walls of his prison, or that the key to his salvation lay embedded in his own hand.

Tar-Baphon is many things, but "capable of properly judging the appropriate amount of force" clearly isn't one of them. Which certainly fits an incredible magical prodigy who is driven entirely by ego, ambition, and revenge against what are now truly ancient slights.

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