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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    OrcBarbarianGuy

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    Default A Kingdom of Their Own: A Trio of Tieflings Play Kingmaker

    This is a campaign log for a game of Kingmaker, with some modifications to make things a bit more interesting. First and foremost, every character in the game is a Tiefling, which will eventually be worked into the plot of the game. Tieflings in Golarion don't have a country to call their own, and are dispossessed and reviled pretty much wherever they go.

    The second big change is the house rules. Primarily, the inclusion of Dreamscarred Press's Path of War book and the Path of War: Expanded playtest material. Every PC in the game is using Path of War material in their build, so its inclusion is going to be central to the game. There are additional House-Rules below, not all of which were used however.

    Spoiler: Additional House Rules
    Show

    Build Rules:
    25 pt. buy
    level 1
    Max HP per level
    Two Traits
    All characters must be a Tiefling
    Tiefling variant heritages are allowed (and encouraged)
    Pathfinder Unchained Background Skills

    Book Sources:
    All 1st party Paizo material on PFSRD
    All Dreamscarred Press Path of War material, including Path of War: Expanded Playtest material

    Classes:
    Barbarian & Bloodrager: Rage and bloodrage CON bonuses provide Temporary Hit Points, which last until the end of the rage and stack with other sources of temp. hp

    Monk: Full BAB

    Oracle (Warsighted): Martial Flexibility scales off Character Level, not Class Level.

    All PoW archetypes for non-initiator classes: Maneuver Progression will be adjusted to match Warder progression. Archetypes get access to maneuvers above 6th level natively.

    Feats:
    Weapon Finesse and Deadly Agility (PoW) are one feat, granting Dex to attack and damage in one go.

    New Feats:
    Military Training
    Prerequisites: Strength 13
    Benefit: You may use your Strength Score in place of your Dexterity Score for AC and Reflex Saves.

    Weapons: No such thing as exotic weapons. All exotic weapons are martial weapons instead.

    Gloryborn Armor: You can describe your armor as looking however you want. If you want to run around in a bikini with the stats of platemail, go ahead.

    Exploration: 2 hexes per day instead of 1


    So with the Crunchy bits largely out of the way, lets meet our intrepid adventurers:

    Spoiler: The Party
    Show

    Akaru- Played by C. Akaru was born in Tian Xia and abandoned by his family there because of his Oni Heritage. Akaru was found and adopted by the Scarlet Sentinels, and trained by them to be a bodyguard. He is a fearsome warrior with a great deal of talent with his preferred weapon, the Falchion. Both he and another character, Skara are members of the Scarlet Sentinels and worked as bodyguards for the same Cheliaxian Nobleman. This nobleman just so happened to be Ashena's father.
    Build- Oni-Spawn Tiefling Stalker 1, Strength Based, Primarily Scarlet Throne and Veiled Moon. Note: C was super excited about the Military Training feat in the houserules.
    Rebuild: Oni-Spawn Tiefling Brutal Slayer Stalker. Strength Based, primarily Scarlet Throne and Veiled Moon.


    Ashena- Played by J. Ashena is a female Demon-Spawn Tiefling, and the daughter of a Cheliaxian Nobleman. She was originally going to be put to death, but her father bought her as a slave instead and allowed her to live secretly in his mansion. She was treated better than other slaves on the condition that she never reveal her lineage. Ashena is a member of the Empyreal Guardians, although she hasn't completed her training yet to be able to use their signature discipline, Silver Crane.
    Build- Demon-Spawn Tiefling Warsighted Oracle 1, Strength based. Eventually going Warlord and then into Battle Templar.

    Skara- Played by E (me). Skara is a Scarlet Sentinel, and a talented archer with a knack for trick shots. His exact lineage is unknown, but he is very definitely a tiefling. Skara worked as a bodyguard for a Cheliaxian Noble along side fellow Tiefling and Scarlet Sentinel Akaru. Unusually for Scarlet Sentinels, his primary focus is on ranged attacks, especially archery. This would come to put him in an awkward position when his charge was found dead with an arrow in his back. The arrow had feathers that had been dyed scarlet. Together with Akaru and Ashena (who now had nowhere to live) he left Cheliax for Brevoy both to escape the shame of his failure, and the accusations that he was responsible for the death of his charge.
    Build- Tiefling Hawkguard Warder 1. Trait swap for access to Tempest Gale Discipline.


    Sessions


  2. - Top - End - #2
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    OrcBarbarianGuy

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    Default Re: A Kingdom of Their Own: A Trio of Tieflings Play Kingmaker

    Session One
    In which our intrepid trio begins their journey and discovers that the greatest obstacle to their success may well be themselves

    Our story begins with Ashena, Akaru and Skara riding in a donkey cart on the road from Restov, in Brevoy, to the Stolen Lands. Their destination is one Oleg's Trading Post, where the three hope to rest up before beginning their exploration of the Greenbelt. The dusty road and bright sun make for a cheerful day although they meet no travelers on the road to their destination.

    Our three heroes arrive at Oleg's Trading Post just in time for supper. They meet Oleg in the courtyard. He's an older man, balding and slightly chubby, but it's clear that he's not out of shape, merely shaped by his surroundings. Oleg is gruff with the group at first, although he makes no mention of their heritage (a welcome change). Inside the small house, Oleg's wife Svetlana is busy cooking and the smell of her venison and potato stew fills the air. While Ashena and Akaru talk to Oleg, Skara goes into the house to talk to Svetlana.

    Oleg tells the group that he was expecting them to be coming with a compliment of guards from Restov, but says little else on the matter. Svetlana, on the other hand, mistakes the trio of tieflings for the guards and gushes at their apparent skill at arms, certain that they'll be able to fend off the bandits that have been plaguing the Trading Post for the last four months.

    After pressing Oleg and Svetlana for more information about the bandits, the group agrees to help them and hatches a plan to trap and eliminate the bandits.

    The First Battle

    Our Trio of Tiefling Troublemakers hatch a simple plan: With Oleg's help, they'll lure all of the bandits into the courtyard, where Akaru and Ashena will confront and distract the bandits while Skara runs out and closes the gate behind the bandits, trapping them inside.

    At first, the plan seems to go off without a hitch. The bandits are lured into the courtyard, but their positioning is off and one of them is blocking Skara's path to the gate. As Akaru and Ashena engage the bandits, Skara thinks quickly and unleashes a rain of glowing caltrops around the gate to keep the bandits from leaving, using the Solar Wind Maneuver Solar Sting. While he does this, Ashena dispatches a bandit with a mighty blow of her morningstar and Akaru dances his way between two other bandits, slicing through both with his mighty blade in one swing (Scything Strike).

    The bandits' first instinct is to scatter, but as they're trapped by the party, they are forced to engage. One manages to get off a pretty good attack against Ashena, only for her to heal off the damage. A second attacks Skara, but fails to land any blow. The bandit leader fires at Akaru, but his arrows go wide instead.

    Akaru and Ashena make short work of the rest of the bandits while Skara tries and fails to peg any of them with one of his arrows. As soon as Skara manages to score a minor hit on the bandit leader, he turns tail and flees. Skara chases after the bandit leader, shooting him multiple times with his arrows but failing to do any significant damage. Ashena and Akaru make short work of the final two bandits. Ahsena then steals one of the bandit's horses to chase down their leader, but as soon as she gets within striking distance, one of Skara's arrows buries itself in his shoulder blades. With all the bandits dead, the party of tieflings begins stripping them of valuables, collecting some weapons and a peculiar silver amulet of a stag's skull. They sell the bandit's equipment (minus some bows and the arrows) to Oleg and help him string up the bandits' bodies as a warning to others.

    Spoiler: DM Notes
    Show

    I had a rough idea of how strong the party would be, so I added an extra bandit to the encounter. It didn't make much difference, but that extra bandit took up enough space to allow Happs, the bandit leader, to try and escape. The chase would have ended poorly for him no matter what, but it added some nice tension to the fight.


    Exploration, The First Day

    Leaving from Oleg's in the morning with five new horses and ten days worth of rations, the tieflings begin exploring to the south and east of Oleg's trading post. They first take the time to explore the hex around Oleg's Trading Post, finding nothing of interest. As they head southeast, they hear the shouts and snarls of a band of kobolds. The tieflings manage to successfully sneak up on the small creatures, and open negotiations with a hail of arrow fire. Skara, legendary archer that he is, is the only one that fails to hit.

    With initiative rolled, one of the kobolds manages to get an early attack in when he charges at Ashena. Akaru comes to her rescue though, and unleashes a mighty critical hit that cleaves the offending lizard in two. Skara sets up another zone of caltrops to block the Kobolds from charging the group. None of the other Kobolds manage to make a dent in the party, and with more than half their number dead in two rounds, the final three attempt to flee. Skara shoots the legs out from two of the kobolds as Ashena finishes them off. The last Kobold throws down his weapons and curls up into a ball, crying and begging in Draconic.

    Bad news for the Kobold, nobody in the party speaks Draconic. However, mercy is on his side and Ashena knocks him unconscious. The tieflings decide to tie him up and question the kobold later when they have time. In order to prevent the Kobold from trying to escape, Ashena decides to break his legs. Remember folks, Ashena is the good one.

    With enough time left to explore some more, the party decides to continue on the same route. Exploring the next area is largely uneventful, save that when the group stops to camp, their camp is attacked by a group of wolves. Although only two of them appear, they make good effort to try and assault the party. But both wolves get taken out without landing a single blow.

    Spoiler: DM's Note
    Show

    Both the Kobolds and the wolves were rolled for on the random encounters table. I actually rolled 8 kobolds, the maximum amount and I found that amusing. The wolves I delayed until night time in order to play up some tension. This group has bad luck with avoiding random encounters, as you'll see as we go on.


    Exploration, The Second Day
    At the end of their first day of exploration, the party has reached the first edge of their exploration charter. They decide to explore a little further the next day, with Ashena making the argument that it's in their best interest to know what lies beyond their borders so that they aren't caught off guard.

    Exploring a bit beyond the bounds of their charter, the group comes across a very drunk, very hard to understand hunter. He rails at the group as they approach, absolutely convinced that they are invading demons. He fires an arrow but his aim is so poor that he doesn't even manage to shoot more than 5 feet forward.

    Ashena and Akaru try to question the man, but he is difficult to understand, and adamant about "Nor halpen no... goram demons." That is, until Ashena offers him a drink of some booze (in actuality, the alchemist's fire the group had taken from the dead bandits) and he lets slip about some kobolds in a silver mine. The hunter promptly vomits on Ashena's boots, and having had enough she knocks him unconscious (scoring a confirmed critical hit to do nonlethal damage with her morningstar). The hunter is out like a light, and Ashena immediately begins administering "treatment" by sticking her fingers down his throat in order to induce vomiting. Once again, she gets covered in the stuff for her efforts. Ashena leaves to g clean herself up while Skara and Akaru set up lunch and wait for the drunk, unconscious hunter to wake up. While having lunch, Ashena tries to feed the Kobold, who bites her (for 1 nonlethal damage) for her trouble. She then proceeds to shove food down his throat until he vomits on her (this is quickly becoming "a thing").

    Awake and slightly more sober, the hunter Fred spends a little time refusing to talk to his "kidnappers." His speech is still extremely slurred and he refuses to answer any questions until Akaru drags him to the river and shoves his head under the water. Upon resurfacing, he begs the demons not to drown him and offers to surrender. The party decides to take Fred and the kobold back to Oleg's Trading Post to talk. Along the way, Ashena presses Fred for information, but he steadfastly refuses to help, claiming that they assaulted him, kidnapped him and destroyed his property. When Ashena offers Fred a job serving as their guide, he refuses to go any further with the group. Parting ways, he flips them the bird as they leave and Akaru tosses Fred's quiver of arrows all over the place in retaliation.

    The group finishes the ride back to Oleg's Trading Post, stopping by to see how things are holding up. They are relieved to learn that the guards have arrived and set up a bounty board. Skara takes the bounty flyer about a group of kobolds that looks similar to what the group had heard about from Fred and also talks to Svetlana, who asks them to gather some radishes from nearby to help her make a special stew for her husband.

    The Tieflings agree to make a quick trip to the nearby radish patch they were told about and then explore a hex near Olegs before returning home. At the radish patch, the group finds a quartet of Kobolds greedily stuffing their faces with spicy radishes. The Tieflings again make short work of the Kobolds, entirely forgetting to take one alive in hopes of finding out more information. They gather up the radishes that the kobolds had picked and leave to explore a bit before returning to Oleg's. While exploring near oleg's they come across a wild boar. This beast rushes out of the brush to attack Akaru, who manages to dodge the attack. Skara lets loose with an arrow, followed by Ashena's own attack with her morning star. A final arrow from Skara puts the beast down, and the trio decide to take it back to Oleg's to share with the guards, Oleg and Svetlana, ending the first session of the game.

  3. - Top - End - #3
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    OrcBarbarianGuy

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    Default Re: A Kingdom of Their Own: A Trio of Tieflings Play Kingmaker

    Session Two
    Our Heroes Continue their exploration of the wilds, with danger around every corner

    Back at Oleg's Trading Post, the trio finally sit down to meet the new guards that will be protecting Oleg and Svetlana in the party's stead. They are led by a grumpy, dour faced man named Kesten Garess. He's of noble lineage, but minor, and has been assigned to guard the trading post along with 3 other low level warriors. The party is interested in Kesten's martial skill, is he an initiator? He's not, unfortunately (for him), but there's always the opportunity to convince him to train up later. Right now though, Kesten's primary contribution is that he's responsible for the bounty board at Oleg's, from which the party picks up another bounty, this one for the head of a Tatzylwyrm.

    The party is also introduced to a cleric of Erastil, Jhod Kavken. Jhod mentions that he is in the Greenbelt looking for a lost temple of Erastil, one supposedly guarded by an angry bear. Ashena, being the glory hound she is, immediately latches on to this information and tries everything she can to wheedle out more. Unfortunately, Jhod is entirely forthcoming from the beginning, and has nothing more to add other than that the Temple is very old, originally being established back when Taldor was still a major power in the area.

    While Ashena is busy schmoozing around the trading post, Skara takes some time to show off for the guards, demonstrating his archery skills. Akaru has mostly stayed separate from everyone else, until Oleg approaches him to speak privately. Oleg tells Akaru that the bandits stole Svetlana's wedding ring the first time they came, and that he would pay handsomely to get it back. Although Svetlana has forbidden Oleg to retrieve the ring himself, surely a group of powerful adventurers could recover the ring and bring it back?

    The group finishes up the roleplay interactions for the night by helping Svetlana prepare the feast. Ashena offers to help Svetlana if any of the guards become too forward with her. Svetlana laughs and assures Ashena that she has nothing to worry about.
    Spoiler: DM Note: Inappropriate Joke
    Show

    When Ashena makes the offer to protect Svetlana's virtue, C makes the claim that doing so would require a handle animal check. After some pressing as to why, he says "Because you can't put a chain on that beast!"

    We laughed.


    The party enjoys a feast of braised boar and spicy radish soup with everyone at Oleg's Trading Post, then settle down for the night to get some sleep.

    Spoiler: DM Notes: Quests
    Show

    The party currently has the following quests assigned to them:
    1. Map the Greenbelt and establish a Colony.
    2. Wipe out the bandits in the greenbelt.
    3. Find the Silverscale Kobolds- Bounty Board
    4. Restore the Temple of Erastil
    5. Find Svetlana's Wedding Right- Oleg
    6. Collect a Tatzylwyrm's head- Bounty Board

    Completed:
    1. Get Radishes for Svetlana


    Exploration, The Third Day

    Before leaving on more exploration, Ashena asks Kesten for advice on dealing with the captive kobold. Kesten's advice can best be summed up as "Break it's neck, it's a kobold."

    Spoiler: DM's Note
    Show

    J, Ashena's player has this thing: He's hooked on the idea of recruiting followers. He wants little pet critters (or people) to follow the group around and interact with them. Unfortunately, J also tends to try and force love on the things he tries to recruit. Like breaking the kobold's legs so it can't run away, or force feeding it against it's will so that it vomits. Or doing similar stuff to random, drunk hunters in the wilderness.

    In Short:



    The group decides to explore the area above Oleg's Trading Post (on the map). They explore (compass wise south east, map wise to the right) the hexes that share the road they traveled along to reach Oleg's first.

    Spoiler: DM's Notes- Ranting about maps
    Show

    Two things:
    1. It is incredibly annoying trying to orient yourself to the map to give cardinal directions. The compass rose on the map indicates that due north is sort of diagonally up and to the left on the map, instead of following the friggin standard for maps and orienting the map so that due north is "up." I highly recommend just ignoring that compass rose and treating north as being "up." This is a real issue when you're trying to run the game on a PDF like me. I do not want to keep trying to reorient myself or my poor laptop the entire time I'm giving directions.

    2. J has it in his head that the charter is a "guideline" and that the group needs to explore the hexes beyond the charter because "what if something comes after us?" This early in the adventure path that isn't likely to happen, it's all pretty self contained. The AP guide suggests throwing high level monsters at the party to discourage going off the map. This is definitely an option, but it really only encourages that exploratory behavior, because the actual danger is off the map, and if it's unknown, it's scary. Instead, I'd recommend trying to roleplay good reasons why that isn't feasible, change the geography around or just remind players that if they go off the charter too much, they'll lose their reward.


    While exploring this first hex, the party is ambushed by a small pack of wolves, led by a much larger, evil looking wolf. The Party is in a small copse of trees, and the wolves try to use this to their advantage and maneuver around the party. Unfortunately, focus fire from the party drops the pack leader in about one round and then it's just a matter of mopping up the other wolves. Akaru takes one out with a full attack action, and Skara drops the other one, which Ashena coup de graces. There's a brief discussion about saving the alpha wolf (J wants to turn it into another companion/follower), but ultimately, they just put it down and skin it for fur and meat.

    The wolves prove an entirely ineffective encounter, missing on every single one of their attacks, at least low rolls are getting spread around.

    The next hex doesn't really involve anything of note. The party successfully explores the area without any real encounters. This brings them to the edge of the area their charter says to explore.

    Ashena insists on exploring beyond the charter's boundaries, and in that hex they come a cross a fast flowing, rocky river with a floating blue light on the other side. Akaru is the first to hear it, the light calls out and whispers Help me, won't someone help me?. The floating blue light continues to weave back and forth on the far side of the river imploring the adventurers to help it. It happened so long ago... I fell in the river. Won't someone help me?. After getting over their initial fear of the floating blue light, the party helps Skara jump across the river (about 20 ft. wide) and he goes to look for the body. The party finds the bony remains of a forearm buried underneath a heavy rock in the river. Skara leans in to invesigate more closely, when the blue orb bull rushes him into the river. A failed swim check later, and Skara is rapidly floating down stream and getting banged up by rocks.

    The party goes into action mode as soon as the Will o' Wisp (at this point, why bother hiding it?) knocks Skara into the water. A lucky nat 20 lets Skara swim over to the banks, while the Will o' wisp crosses the river and shocks Akaru. Both Akaru and Ashena lay into the Will o' Wisp but to no avail, not even a roll of 19 is enough to hit its AC. The one shot the party has is when Akaru uses Dimensional Strike to attack it's much more reasonable Flat Footed AC, unfortunately he botches the roll. Immediately afterwards, the Will o' Wisp gets a nasty critical hit on Ashena, dropping her into the negatives. Skara covers Akaru as he scoops up the unconscious Ashena and makes a run for it. Up to this point, the tiefling's resistances had been doing a good job of protecting them from the worst of the Will o' Wisp's electrical attacks, but a critical hit on a first level character is pretty much always a death sentence. Luckily they make it to the horses in time to sprint off and together Skara and Akaru are able to get Ashena back to consciousness once they're safely away from the Will o' Wisp.

    Spoiler: DM's Notes
    Show

    I wasn't going to protect the party from death if it happened, but a lucky crit like that at 1st level was a bit unfair. At such low level, death is common and usually permanent. As such, I gave them a round or two to escape the encounter, and hopefully they don't go back to pick another fight until they're higher level.


    Exploration, Day Four

    Once the party has fully recovered from their ordeal with the Will o' Wisp, they set out from camp to explore the rest of the top row of hexes. Heading back towards Oleg's Trading Post, much of their exploration is uneventful. At the hex up and to the left of Oleg's Trading Post, they encounter Fred again. He's much more pleasantly drunk this time, his accent slipping between pirate and (bad) Irish.

    "Ay! It be the demon's o' the Greenbelt again! Well blow me down!" He greets the party.

    Ashena talks to him a bit to try and get some information out of him. She offers him some of the party's wolf jerky, but he spits it out, claiming that it's worg meat and that it taste like goblin [expletive].

    "Why I remember once back when I was captain o' me own pirate ship, We sailed the high seas, worgs as far as the eye could see. But not a drop tae drink."

    Akaru tries a sense motive check to see if Fred really was a pirate, and Fred truly believes he used to be a pirate at this level of inebriation.

    "I'll tell ye what lassie, ye saved me life top o' the mornin' once ago, so's I'll tell ye some news what makes your day." His accent slipping into Irish, he takes another drink. "The stag lord's fort, aye? It be down by the tuskwater there, a mighty stretch o' river, much like the high seas once I pirated in me own ship. Why I remember once we were on the high seas, there was worgs as far as the eye could see, but only elk ta drink."

    Ashena presses him for more information, offering a gold coin if Fred knows the location of the lost temple of Erastil.

    "Aye, the temple there lassie. It were in the deep woods to the south, but beware, there be traps and faeries in the way!" Fred tells the party.

    The party departs on peaceful terms with Fred the drunk Irish-pirate hunter.

    The next hex over, the party encounters a giant whiptail centipede, which bursts out of the ground to try and attack them. Skara gets off an early shot against it (finally hitting with a Horizon Wind Lancet boosted shot). Akaru charges the giant centipede, taking an Attack of Opportunity and getting poisoned, but he manages to land a powerful blow with his Falchion. Akaru and Ashena lay into the vermin, putting it down on the next round, and Akaru luckily makes his save to keep from taking still more dex damage. The party is forced to stop for the day to help Akaru treat his poison, so they set up camp and take watch. During Ashena and Akaru's watches, they see a floating blue light off in the distance, but nothing comes of it.

    The next day, the party takes it easy and only explores one hex. As they are riding through the area, they are ambushed by another pack of wolves, led by another Worg, who curses the party for slaying his brother and attacks. The party quickly dismounts and lays into the worg, putting him under in a single round. They only hit one other wolf, but the sight of the pack leader going down so quickly causes the wolves to scatter.

    This encounter is enough to bring the party to level 2, and a good place to stop for the night, so we wrap up and level up the characters. Ashena takes a second level of Oracle, and is eager to use her Warsighted class feature to pick up Power Attack. Akaru gets a new maneuver and a new stance. Skara grabs Stance of Piercing Rays for a decent damage bonus to his fairly meager damage at low levels. The party has covered most of the upper two rows of hexes, and managed to not die. Pretty impressive.

  4. - Top - End - #4
    Firbolg in the Playground
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    Default Re: A Kingdom of Their Own: A Trio of Tieflings Play Kingmaker

    I'm confused, did you houserule in a reduction in exploration times? Even mounted it should take a full day to explore a single hex, but you're saying in 4 days they've explored the whole top two rows of the map. Or are you only counting days where they run into random encounters as "days"?



    Also for what it's worth, I totally feel your pain on the map orientation. The maps throughout kingmaker really leave a lot to be desired, it took me a ton of searching to find a good regional map just to get a good idea of how everything fit together and what all of the neighboring kingdoms are (though that's probably less of a problem for people already familiar with Golaron).


    Also... your random encounter dice seem to be really hot. Three wolf packs, two worgs, 8 kobolds, and a willowisp in 4 days? Maybe some more I'm forgetting? That's pretty crazy. At this rate I expect to see TPK by way of Shambling Mound soon.



    Oh and as far as the whole "stick to your borders" issue goes, I would simply point out that another group has already been chartered to explore that section of the stolen lands. Remember 3 other groups got sent out at the same time as the players, and they should be more or less aware of that. If they go too far off course, have them run into their new neighbors exploring their new domains and establish Varn/Drelev (depending on which way they go) who might not be too friendly towards neighbors encroaching on their land before they're even established. It gives a good in character reason to stay away and can ratchet up tensions early.
    If my text is blue, I'm being sarcastic.But you already knew that, right?


  5. - Top - End - #5
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    OrcBarbarianGuy

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    Default Re: A Kingdom of Their Own: A Trio of Tieflings Play Kingmaker

    Quote Originally Posted by Seerow View Post
    I'm confused, did you houserule in a reduction in exploration times? Even mounted it should take a full day to explore a single hex, but you're saying in 4 days they've explored the whole top two rows of the map. Or are you only counting days where they run into random encounters as "days"?
    Not houserule so much as "didn't read." Kingmaker has a reputation for being nova friendly, so I upped the exploration rate in order to fit in more encounters. I want to put a little more pressure on the party, and they seem to be enjoying it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Seerow View Post
    Also for what it's worth, I totally feel your pain on the map orientation. The maps throughout kingmaker really leave a lot to be desired, it took me a ton of searching to find a good regional map just to get a good idea of how everything fit together and what all of the neighboring kingdoms are (though that's probably less of a problem for people already familiar with Golaron).
    Yeah, it'd be a lot easier if I wasn't running the game off a PDF.

    Quote Originally Posted by Seerow View Post
    Also... your random encounter dice seem to be really hot. Three wolf packs, two worgs, 8 kobolds, and a willowisp in 4 days? Maybe some more I'm forgetting? That's pretty crazy. At this rate I expect to see TPK by way of Shambling Mound soon.
    The dice I use are really hot. The party doesn't mind though, we can take it I did up the encounter rate slightly you can find details below.

    Spoiler: DM Notes
    Show

    So when I do rolls for random encounters, I use a 25% chance of one occurring if the party is exploring a hex. I ask either J or C for a "high or low" roll.

    I divide the 25% encounter rate into a 10% and a 15% chance for an encounter. The 15% matches the "high" or "low" that the player calls, and gets a "normal" encounter rolled off the table in the AP. The 10% goes to the opposite end, and nets a harder encounter, I usually try to bump the CR up by 1, unless it's already a hard encounter (CR 3+).

    Sometimes I save encounters for later too though, like when somebody is on watch. Just because they rolled a random encounter doesn't mean it has to show up right away.


    Quote Originally Posted by Seerow View Post
    Oh and as far as the whole "stick to your borders" issue goes, I would simply point out that another group has already been chartered to explore that section of the stolen lands. Remember 3 other groups got sent out at the same time as the players, and they should be more or less aware of that. If they go too far off course, have them run into their new neighbors exploring their new domains and establish Varn/Drelev (depending on which way they go) who might not be too friendly towards neighbors encroaching on their land before they're even established. It gives a good in character reason to stay away and can ratchet up tensions early.
    I'm saving that for later. It's not that big a deal to go one hex outside where they're supposed to, but it could at least serve as a plot point. I have to cook up some parties of rival adventurers though. Suggestions?

  6. - Top - End - #6
    Firbolg in the Playground
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    Default Re: A Kingdom of Their Own: A Trio of Tieflings Play Kingmaker

    Full Disclosure: I'm in prep-mode to start running this AP myself. Have been for the last month or so (we play once every 2 weeks, and the current GM told me 2 sessions back we were coming close to the end of his prepped material), but the last week or so especially I've been working on rewriting encounters and such to my taste. (The unique undead I was asking about adding Harbinger to up in the PoW thread a while back was my reworking of David Nettles)

    Not houserule so much as "didn't read." Kingmaker has a reputation for being nova friendly, so I upped the exploration rate in order to fit in more encounters. I want to put a little more pressure on the party, and they seem to be enjoying it.
    That's fair. Personally I like the idea that stuff takes time to resolve in Kingmaker. If the players have to devote a couple of months to exploration, and years to kingdom building, I think that's really cool. My expectation is that the campaign will span at least two decades in total.

    Personally my solution to that was to go hex by hex and preroll all of the random encounters as though the party had entered and spent 3 days exploring. I took the results of those random rolls and am setting up 4 mini hubs with 3-5 encounters each. This helps to both make it less nova friendly, and lets me place a group of several encounters into an area where previously there would be nothing, or only a single encounter (For example I rolled a couple of Brush Thylacenes and a Shambling Mound, and placed them near the Temple of Erastil, to make that scenario more interesting).

    Though I will still be doing some random encounters beyond that... it'll be exclusively bandits until they take out both bandit camps (one of my added hubs was a second bandit camp made up from a couple of bandit encounters I rolled); to make the bandit threat seem a bit more present and active in the campaign.

    Yeah, it'd be a lot easier if I wasn't running the game off a PDF.
    I hear you. A tablet might make that all right I guess? But running off a PDF on a laptop or something is rough. Either way saying "North is Up" makes for an easy shorthand and if it ever becomes relevant down the line you can reorient then.

    Spoiler
    Show
    So when I do rolls for random encounters, I use a 25% chance of one occurring if the party is exploring a hex. I ask either J or C for a "high or low" roll.

    I divide the 25% encounter rate into a 10% and a 15% chance for an encounter. The 15% matches the "high" or "low" that the player calls, and gets a "normal" encounter rolled off the table in the AP. The 10% goes to the opposite end, and nets a harder encounter, I usually try to bump the CR up by 1, unless it's already a hard encounter (CR 3+).

    Sometimes I save encounters for later too though, like when somebody is on watch. Just because they rolled a random encounter doesn't mean it has to show up right away.
    Okay that makes sense. Or at least it explains how you wound up with back to back worgs, sounds like they called wrong, you got a CR higher encounter, and threw the worg in because it fits best with a wolf pack and is more dangerous than another wolf or two.

    I'm saving that for later. It's not that big a deal to go one hex outside where they're supposed to, but it could at least serve as a plot point. I have to cook up some parties of rival adventurers though. Suggestions?
    Agree it's not a big deal for them to go a hex outside, but if they keep trying to push it is an open option.

    As for suggestions...
    Spoiler
    Show
    I haven't put too much thought into statting up either Varn or Drelev yet, as I doubt it'll be an issue with my group (who is looking like they will be very lawful and wanting to stick within bounds given, at least to start). If you haven't already, look ahead to the later APs for inspiration. I don't think Varn ever gets statted, but Drelev and his whole coterie is there, and you could easily make a lower level version of him. Varn is the leader of a group of mercenaries rather than adventurers, and while in the course of the AP you normally don't get to interact with him much due to [redacted]; statting him up as a level 2-4 Fighter or Warlord with a band of warriors at his back seems appropriate, and if the PCs piss him off that could turn into a fun series of skirmishes.

    Edit: Wanted to add I read a report of someone who had a great deal of success reworking the kobold sorcerer into a kobold Summoner, using his Eidolon as "Old Sharptooth". Just a change to the adventure you may want to consider.
    Last edited by Seerow; 2015-05-08 at 11:21 PM.
    If my text is blue, I'm being sarcastic.But you already knew that, right?


  7. - Top - End - #7
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    OrcBarbarianGuy

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    Default Re: A Kingdom of Their Own: A Trio of Tieflings Play Kingmaker

    Session 3
    Our Heroes cautiously continue their cartographic craft

    Spoiler: DM's Notes, Pre-game Discussion
    Show

    Having finally bothered to read the rules about kingdom exploration (thanks seerow), I had a brief discussion about them with J and C. We settled on a much more flexible, but still faster pace. Two hexes worth of exploration per day. In addition, C changes Akaru from a normal Stalker to the Brutal Slayer archetype, with my permission. Good for me, since I wanted to get some playtesting done on that archetype anyway.

    We also added the Background skills alternate rules set from Pathfinder Unchained.

    There should be some interesting things coming up in the future with Ashena's "goody-two-shoes" nature, and Akaru's Profane bonuses and Black Seraph discipline.


    Spoiler: DM's Notes: Quests
    Show

    The party currently has the following quests assigned to them:
    1. Map the Greenbelt and establish a Colony.
    2. Wipe out the bandits in the greenbelt.
    3. Find the Silverscale Kobolds- Bounty Board
    4. Restore the Temple of Erastil
    5. Find Svetlana's Wedding Right- Oleg
    6. Collect a Tatzylwyrm's head- Bounty Board

    Completed:
    1. Get Radishes for Svetlana


    Day 5-6
    The party rests for a day after leveling and continues their exploration. They head south-east and explore the next hex, discovering a band of four mites in the middle of a rather violent argument. At first the mites don't notice the party, but when Ashena tries to negotiate with them (none of the party speak sylvan). The presence of bigginses settles the mites' argument for the time being and they all draw daggers to attack.

    The mites first try to attack Skara, but miss. Ashena counterattacks and kills a Mite with her full attack, spitting at how bad the mite tastes. The mites all pile in to kill the party, attacking Ashena and Akaru. Skara fires off an arrow while in Stance of Piercing Rays, burning through a mite's eye socket and killing it. With only two mites left, Akaru uses Scything Strike to cleave through both remaining mites. The party searches their dead bodies and collects their daggers, but doesn't find much else.

    Further exploration of the hex reveals a Cairn, hidden by some blackberry brambles. For some reason, no one tries to eat the blackberries. The party investigates the Cairn, determining that it is:
    1) very old
    2) from a barbarian tribe
    3) Not magical

    Leery of undead, the party decides to camp for the night and keep watch on the cairn to make sure that it's not filled with wights or ghosts or something. The night passes by uneventfully, and in the morning Skara and Akaru begin dismantling the tomb, Ashena refusing to help on the grounds that it's wrong to desecrate a grave, especially since detect magic didn't turn up anything. Inside the cairn, the party finds a single skeleton, most everything rotted away save for a rusted copper ring on its finger. The ring is unusual, being shaped like an eel trying to eat a frog.

    The party takes the ring and reburies the skeleton. Ashena says a prayer to Pharasma over the cairn, wishing the soul of the lost barbarian a long rest in the afterlife. As the party rides away, they briefly discuss and agree that going to Oleg's to trade their furs and the like in is a good idea, perhaps even purchasing or ordering some new weapons. In addition, Akaru quietly slips on the ring the party took and suddenly feels damp. Upon taking the ring off, he feels dry again. He continues this exercise several times.

    Spoiler: DM's Notes
    Show

    Ashena's Detect Magic on the Cairn didn't return anything because the cairn blocked line of effect to the ring. The ring is magical, but the party assumed that it wasn't because of the failed Detect Magic. I wanted to convey the idea that the ring was magical though, as it's a bit important later in the story. It's a ring of swimming so I figured making the character feel damp was appropriate. I think I'll keep doing this kind of thing for every magic item the party comes across, at least until I get bored.


    The first actual exploration the party does during the day is uneventful. A nice rolling plain leads to the northern forest. It's pretty. Exploring the second hex of the day, the party is ambushed by bear traps. Skara is barely able to avoid getting his leg caught in one, and the party immediately goes on the defensive. They search the area and trigger every trap they find, and collect any that still look workable. Ashena is able to repair a few of them to make them salvageable thanks to mending. All in all, the party disables 8 traps and is able to salvage 5 of them. they camp for the night, and get to enjoy the chittering and laughter of invisible, child like voices.

    Day 7

    Day 7 sees the Tiefling Trio return to Oleg's Trading post. They sell off a few items, furs etc. and collect a small amount of money. The party finally checks the ring with detect magic again and discover its faint aura of transmutation. They decide to keep the ring for now, since it's value has spiked significantly. The party talks with Oleg and orders a masterwork longbow and a masterwork falchion, leaving a 300 GP deposit as insurance. Finally, Oleg gives the party a scroll containing a letter addressed to them.

    Spoiler: The Letter
    Show

    To Whom It May Concern:

    It has come to our attention that the explorers mapping the Greenbelt have been exploring beyond the borders of their agreed upon charter and into our territories. We have sent this letter to you explorers requesting that you cease and desist this action, and abide by the rules of your charter as laid out by the Lords of Restov. If this expansionist attitude continues we will contact the Lords of Restov and request that your charter be revoked.

    Sincerely,

    Fellow Explorers.


    Ashena (or rather J) is immediately upset and suspicious of this letter and the people who sent it, and her first thought is to explore further into their territory. Skara and Akaru point out that this is needlessly aggressive, although Akaru is also suspicious. Ashena and Akaru seem convinced that there's something fishy going on with the other explorers that they'd get offended enough to send a letter like that. Skara repeats his point that there's no reason to go looking for trouble outside the Greenbelt since they have so much to do here already. Eventually the party agrees that they will stop exploring beyond their borders, with the caveat that they now hate the other explorers (apparently).

    After finishing up at Oleg's Trading Post, the party heads to the border land to the south-east to continue their exploration. They decide to take it easy for the day and do some fishing, then return to exploring in the morning. They manage to catch three decent size fish, at the cost of two fishing poles, and have a relaxing evening.

    Day 8

    The first Hex of the day is uneventful, another rolling plain with nothing interesting to speak of. The second hex leads to the party nearly getting ambushed by a very large spider. Skara misses with another Horizon Wind Lancet boosted attack (seriously, the dice hate me), Akaru and Ashena both deal some pretty good damage to the beast while Skara recovers his boost. The spider attacks again, and after a brief flurry of misses, is put down by another Horizon Wind Lancet boosted shot (Finally!).

    The hole the spider claimed as a nest looks like it might be a good place to search for treasure, so Akaru gets volunteered to go down there and search. He gives a grappling hook rope to Ashena to hold onto as he climbs down, but Ashena lets go of the rope (nat. 1 strength check) and Akaru falls half way down the hole before catching himself. He attempts to get revenge on Ashena by attacking her with the grappling hook, but only succeeds in hitting himself in the face (nat. 1 improvised ranged weapon attack).

    Spoiler: DM's Notes
    Show

    I'm not a fan of critical failure tables, but this was a roleplaying situation and it was definitely an amusing result. Nobody got hurt so I don't feel too bad of it.


    Akaru climbs down to the bottom of the hole and uncovers the body of a dead bandit. Looting the body, he finds 10 GP, leather armor, a Short Sword, a silver amulet of a Stag's Skull and luckily a treasure map. The treasure map shows a simple drawing of a claw-shaped dead tree atop an
    otherwise barren hill, with an “X” in blood scrawled by the tree’s roots.

    The party camps for the night, and Ashena with her newly learned Draconic, attempts to talk to the kobold prisoner that the party has been abusing for the past week. The kobold refuses to say anything other than to curse them repeatedly and list off all the torture it's endured. In the end, the party just kills it since it won't assist them.

    Day 9

    The party wakes to find that Ashena's boots have been dyed blue while she slept and that Akaru's saddle has been ruined overnight, its straps cut. Awaking to a bad day from the start, the party begins their exploration. Having already explored the Radish Patch (Day 2) they skip that hex and explore the next one over. The party encounters a quartet of wild boars, and the party decides to take the opportunity to get the drop on them.

    They ambush the boars, who are all drinking at a river. Skara manages to shoot one of the boars, while Ashena and Akaru ready themselves to attack any that charge the party. Three boars charge at once, although Akaru and Ashena both fail to hit them. Akaru takes a tusk to the side from one of the charging boars.

    Skara shoots the first boar he attacked, killing it. Akaru tries to use Scything Strike to take down two boars at once but misses. Ashena smashes another boar with her morningstar, which Skara then puts down with another arrow. Akaru bites one of the boars but misses his swing with the falchion. Ashena kills a boar with her full attack (morningstar+bite). Only one boar left, Skara shoots it and Akaru puts it down with a full attack. The party skins the boars and we end the session.

    Spoiler: DM's Notes: Encounters
    Show

    So I kind of feel disappointed with the way encounters have been going. In large part I think it's because low level encounters don't have much in the way of tactics, especially since 90% of what the party's fought has been animals. The party is strong. Every player is experienced and we complement each other really well. I think things will get better when we get a chance to fight humanoid opponents and I can start adding in some Path of War stuff on the DM's Side of things.

    One thing I've noticed though, is that hinting at a possible encounter seems to have a really strong effect. Players seem to get paranoid easily, so adding in description of stuff during watches or having them make perception checks when nothing is there is a great way to build tension. Description is important too, and shouldn't be overlooked.

    That's part of why I advocate "saving" some encounters. Just because the party rolled a monster while they're out exploring doesn't mean that they need to fight it right away. Change up the timing and the nature of the encounter, and keep the party on edge without actually increasing the encounter rate.

  8. - Top - End - #8
    Firbolg in the Playground
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    Default Re: A Kingdom of Their Own: A Trio of Tieflings Play Kingmaker

    Spoiler
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    So I kind of feel disappointed with the way encounters have been going. In large part I think it's because low level encounters don't have much in the way of tactics, especially since 90% of what the party's fought has been animals. The party is strong. Every player is experienced and we complement each other really well. I think things will get better when we get a chance to fight humanoid opponents and I can start adding in some Path of War stuff on the DM's Side of things.

    One thing I've noticed though, is that hinting at a possible encounter seems to have a really strong effect. Players seem to get paranoid easily, so adding in description of stuff during watches or having them make perception checks when nothing is there is a great way to build tension. Description is important too, and shouldn't be overlooked.

    That's part of why I advocate "saving" some encounters. Just because the party rolled a monster while they're out exploring doesn't mean that they need to fight it right away. Change up the timing and the nature of the encounter, and keep the party on edge without actually increasing the encounter rate
    Not sure if you're talking in spoilers because potential PC reading or just to make your post easier to read, but response in spoiler just in case.

    Spoiler
    Show
    Honestly, I have that problem with low level combat in general. Though with a group of competent players, you can generally send CR+1-2 without too much trouble, as long as it's more low level creatures. Like using 6-8 mites instead of 4. But either way combat at 1-2hd is just too swingy for my tastes, I tend to run adventures with PCs starting with 2-4 NPC class levels on top of their class levels, so the PCs still have the general capabilities of a first level party, but a little more durability/accuracy. Though for an AP like this it means doing a lot more prep work.

    That said I do really like your method of hinting at an encounter to raise tension. Heck even the way your party spent a full night waiting by the Barbarian cairn in anticipation of undead issues was great, and there was nothing there.



    Player response to the letter was great... and typical. I am really curious what would have happened if they had followed Ashena to go pushing further into Varn's territory.


    Btw I am curious, how did the players react to the pranks being pulled on them? I don't even know what my players would do in response to something like their boots being dyed blue.
    If my text is blue, I'm being sarcastic.But you already knew that, right?


  9. - Top - End - #9
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    OrcBarbarianGuy

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    Default Re: A Kingdom of Their Own: A Trio of Tieflings Play Kingmaker

    The players had some forewarning about fey creatures. They just sighed and made do with it. Once the pranks pick up a bit we'll see how they feel.

  10. - Top - End - #10
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    OrcBarbarianGuy

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    Default Re: A Kingdom of Their Own: A Trio of Tieflings Play Kingmaker

    Session 4
    In which our party confronts Bears, Bandits and Bullfrogs. Not necessarily in that order.
    Spoiler: DM's Notes: Quests
    Show

    The party currently has the following quests assigned to them:
    1. Map the Greenbelt and establish a Colony.
    2. Wipe out the bandits in the greenbelt.
    3. Find the Silverscale Kobolds- Bounty Board
    4. Find Svetlana's Wedding Right- Oleg
    5. Collect a Tatzylwyrm's head- Bounty Board
    6. Capture or Kill Falgrim Sneeg- Kesten Garess

    Completed:
    1. Get Radishes for Svetlana
    2. Restore Temple of Erastil- Completed Day 13

    Day 10

    When last we left our party, they had just finished killing four wild boars. They successfully skinned three of them, and decided to rest for the rest of the day, cooking up one of the boars to eat, and saving the other three to sell to Oleg. The next morning sees the party return to Oleg's Trading Post, where the party is able to sell the boar hides and carcasses for 78 gp. While there, Kesten Garess approaches the party and tells them he's received word that a well known bandit named Falgrim Sneeg is likely working for the Stag Lord. Kesten has a particular dislike for Falgrim because Falgrim once betrayed a caravan that both he and Kesten had been working for as guards. Kesten Garess wants Sneeg alive, and is willing to procure four pieces of masterwork weapons or armor if the party can capture the traitor alive, or two if he is returned dead.

    Finishing their business at Oleg's Trading Post, the party heads south to continue their exploration of the Greenbelt. While exploring, they come across a dead body trapped underneath a fallen log. Further investigation reveals that the fallen tree was supposed to be a trap, and that the unfortunate soul crushed underneath was likely the one who set up the trap. The party finds about 30 gp on the body and a masterwork hand axe in the stump of the tree. They collect these items and bury the dead man's body, saying a prayer to pharasma for his soul.

    With evening approaching, the party sets up watch. Although all they find during the watch is a squirrel, the party wakes to find that all of Skara's spare bowstrings have been tied together into a french braid and left to hang on a nearby tree.

    Day 11

    Day 11 proves to be mostly uneventful. Nothing to see in the first hex explored, although it's a nice break from the heavily wooded areas. The second hex contained a few snare traps, one of which was triggered by Akaru. He managed to deftly release himself from the trap though and the party finished day 11 with hardly any events to speak of.

    Day 12

    The party wakes to find that the horses have had their hooves painted pink. Apparently whoever is pranking the party isn't terribly creative. The first Hex the party explores is uneventful. They catch a couple deer to shore up their rations and that's about it.

    The second hex features a prominent bubbling hot spring that stinks of rotten eggs. This is the source of the well known and aptly named skunk river. Exploring the edge of the hot spring, the party is ambushed by a quartet of giant frogs. They attack the party, but are put down fairly quickly. The tongues prove annoying, but Akaru sunders every tongue the turn after the frogs attempt to attack and the party is able to beat the frogs relatively unscathed. After killing off the frogs, the party finds a backpack with some assorted camping equipment and a small stash of river pearls that could fetch a nice price.

    Spoiler: DM's Notes
    Show

    This is one of the pre-scheduled encounters in Kingmaker, and doesn't offer any sort of reward. The giant frogs are a bit on the weak side, so I doubled their number and it still worked out fine. I added the pearls to help keep the party more in line with Wealth By Level as they've almost strictly fought animals the entire campaign.


    Day 13

    Thirteen being an unlucky number, it's not surprising how today would turn out. The party explores the next hex, and finds the Temple of Erastil that they had been told about by Jhod Kavken way back in Session Two. The temple is in very poor condition, the area is basically a ruin with a man made pool that has been filled with slime and muck. The party barely manages to begin exploring the temple area before they are attacked by an enraged brown bear, and so begins a desperate fight.

    The bear is easily able to shrug off most attacks from the party, and manages to grapple Akaru despite taking some heavy blows in the process. Skara is able to hit the bear for some decent fire damage thanks to a combination of Horizon Wind Lancet and Stance of Piercing Rays. The bear is entirely focused on Akaru though, who is forced to use his the masterwork hand axe to attack the bear because of the grapple. The bear is able to quickly drop Akaru to about half health, and unfortunately Ashena's healing isn't quite enough to really help. Then things get really bad.

    An unlucky crit drops Akaru to -12 hit points, two away from dead. He's able to stabilize himself, but even with Ashena's healing, he can't be brought back to consciousness. Skara is unloading arrows into the bear, but hardly making much of a dent. The bear gets off a nasty full attack on Ashena, but pulling her into his embrace proves to be a poor choice. She heals a little bit of damage and finishes the bear off with fangs and a heavy blow to the skull. The party manages to barely defeat the beast, which changes shape back into an old man before crumbling to dust and blowing away.

    The scum and filth leave the pool of water and the whole area appears much brighter and more vibrant. Ashena revives Akaru with another healing spell, and brings him some water to drink. The party is excited to learn that drinking from the pool heals their wounds and cures their aches and pains from the vicious fight. Exploring the temple, they find a golden holy symbol of Erathis that radiates divine protective magic.

    Spoiler: DM's Notes
    Show

    The bear in the actual campaign is supposed to be sickened and have fewer hit points than a normal grizzly, but I did away with that because I wanted the fight to be more challenging without adding extra enemies to the encounter. The crit was scary and extremely bad luck because it went through even though Akaru had Combat Precognition up (attacks against him roll twice and take the worse result), I literally rolled two 20s in a row.

    The golden symbol of Erathis was another bonus I threw in for the party. It's an Amulet of Natural Armor +1, although since nobody's put it on yet the party isn't aware of that. Whether they end up selling it or using it, it'll be a nice addition to their armory.


    The party decides to rest for the rest of the day, not wanting to continue onward when they're so depleted from the fight with the (now former) bear. They rest up and finish healing from the pool, and spend an uneventful night at the temple.

    Day 14

    Day 14 has the party stumble across the bandits' hideout. The bandits seem to be on their guard, and have posted four archers to act as lookouts. The party is able to hide in the trees though in order to keep from being spotted, and they take the opportunity to plan an ambush. Skara takes up a good sniping spot, while Akaru and Ashena find nearby places to hide and ready the ambush. The plan is to draw the enemy towards the party so that they can be engaged in smaller groups while Skara takes out the archers.

    The surprise round begins with Skara killing one of the bandits and Ashena and Akaru taking up position to ambush. It takes the bandits a couple rounds to reach the party, during which time Skara continues to pepper the enemy with arrows, although his usual accuracy issues continue to plague him. As soon as the bandits are close enough to engage, Skara drops Solar Sting to limit their movement while Ashena bashes one bandit's skull in with her mace.

    The bandit archers prove to be about as accurate as Skara, and most of their attacks miss. Akaru is the first to engage the Bandit Leader, Kressle, and the two spend a good amount of time exchanging blows while Ashena fights off the rabble and Skara shoots at the archers. The enemy is slowly whittled down to about four when Skara and Akaru are able to work together to take down Kressle and the final three bandits all surrender.

    Skara ties up the surrendering bandits while Ashena revives Kressle so that the party can interrogate the bandit. Kressle's unpleasant remarks about the party's parentage results in her being knocked unconscious while the party discusses what to do with the bandit group.

    Eventually, an agreement is reached, and Ashena places the unconscious Kressle's head on a stump and makes an announcement:

    "The penalty for banditry in the Greenbelt is death. If any of you wish to continue your lives, it would be in your best interest to tell us everything and anything you know about the Stag Lord. If we like what you have to tell us, you'll keep your lives, but you'll lose your hand."

    With that, Akaru brings down his falchion and beheads Kressle. One by one the other bandits are brought forward and their information judged.

    The first bandit tells the group that he doesn't think the Stag Lord is even human, but some type of stag headed monster and a master bowman. He loses a hand.

    The second bandit tells the party where the bandits keep their spoils, and that a case of liquor was intended to be a special delivery to the Stag Lord, who's an alcoholic of the highest order. He loses a hand as well.

    The third bandit tells the group the passphrase the bandits use to let the bandits at the Stag Lord's fort know they work together. The party is about to cut off his hand when he offers more information: The Stag Lord keeps an old man in the basement of the fort, and some bandits believe that this old man is the one who actually runs the bandits. He's apparently extremely dangerous and terrifying. Some discussion is had between the party, and they agree to let the final bandit keep his hand, but they scar and burn it as a reminder.

    The bandits at this camp are all either unconscious and dismembered or dead, so the party sets about collecting loot. They get four composite shortbows, four short swords, eight sets of leather armor, a couple hundred gp, some earrings and the case of liquor for the Stag Lord. The party is unable to find Svetlana's Wedding Ring, but the bandits tell them it may have been taken by some mites a day ago.

    The bandits defeated, the party ends their session with just enough experience to level up to level 3. We ran a little long so not everyone finished leveling their characters at the end of the night.

    Spoiler: DM's Notes
    Show

    This session was another super productive one. The party plowed through some major events without much holdup, although the fights were definitely a bit more dangerous than they have been.

    I'm still having difficulty tracking treasure and judging WBL, but that's mostly because animals never give treasure, making it harder to keep the party on track. Hopefully I've done a good job mitigating that issue though.

    I'm looking ahead to the Stag Lord's Fortress because I want to tweak the encounters there a bit to add some Initiating. I don't think I'll be rewriting all the characters, but I will probably restat the Stag Lord and maybe a couple of the lieutenants. The other bandits I'll likely add a couple maneuvers to just to make them more difficult opponents. Any suggestions?

    On a more general note, how is this Campaign Journal treating you readers? I hope it's at least mildly entertaining.

  11. - Top - End - #11
    Firbolg in the Playground
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    Default Re: A Kingdom of Their Own: A Trio of Tieflings Play Kingmaker

    On a more general note, how is this Campaign Journal treating you readers? I hope it's at least mildly entertaining.
    Well I am enjoying it. :popcorn:

    I love the whole "lose your head or your hand" thing the PCs did. They've clearly got a flair for the dramatic.

    Spoiler
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    Your party seems to be leveling much faster than the adventure would indicate though. Like the party is already level 3 and you still have half the map to explore, plus the whole Kobold/Mites thing and the Stag Lord to get through. At this point, I would be really surprised if the party doesn't end part 1 a level ahead of where they should be.

    Just something to keep in mind, since you may want to continue buffing encounters slightly to keep up. Which reminds me, have you been giving experience for hex exploration? I think in the AP and UC it says exploring a hex is worth 100xp. Just one more thing to make keeping exp/wealth relatively in line hard in this AP >_>.

    Also, if it's you personally having trouble coming up with pranks for the two fey, rather than just wanting to portray the two as relatively uncreative, there's a whole pdf full of prank ideas that got posted on the Paizo forums. I can track down a link to it if you want.
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    OrcBarbarianGuy

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    At least somebody is enjoying it

    I was pretty proud of the players for their bit with the bandits. Definitely sets a tone for their future kingdom.

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    There's only 3 people in the party and they are facing more dangerous foes than the AP calls for, which means more XP. I haven't been giving out XP for exploring the hexes, the random encounters have been frequent enough that the party doesn't lack for opportunities to gain XP. J and C are pretty hellbent on leveling, they really wanted to get to level 3 by the end of the session. At heart we're all just a bunch of munchkins really.

    I'm probably going to wrap up the pranks in the next session, so I don't think it's too necessary to get a PDF of pranks right now. I don't want to drag it on for too long since I want to give the party an introduction to the fey in the area.

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    I've never really paid much attention to any Kingmaker threads, but now I regret that. It seems like a fairly interesting and unusual type of campaign. Kudos on the game, it looks like you and your group are having a great time with it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Elricaltovilla View Post
    At least somebody is enjoying it

    I was pretty proud of the players for their bit with the bandits. Definitely sets a tone for their future kingdom.
    For sure. I am curious how that zero tolerance policy with banditry will go over with their neighbors in the River Kingdoms to the west. I did a little bit of reading on the setting in preparation, and apparently a big thing in the River Kingdoms is "You Have What You Hold" (it's one of the 6 river freedoms), banditry is more or less legal throughout the area, though thievery is strictly punished.

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    There's only 3 people in the party and they are facing more dangerous foes than the AP calls for, which means more XP. I haven't been giving out XP for exploring the hexes, the random encounters have been frequent enough that the party doesn't lack for opportunities to gain XP. J and C are pretty hellbent on leveling, they really wanted to get to level 3 by the end of the session. At heart we're all just a bunch of munchkins really.

    I'm probably going to wrap up the pranks in the next session, so I don't think it's too necessary to get a PDF of pranks right now. I don't want to drag it on for too long since I want to give the party an introduction to the fey in the area.
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    1) Fair point. I'd just be worried about pulling a few levels ahead, since even down 1-2 party members, those extra levels add up to a lot of added capability, and likely needing to make encounters more difficulty which then earns more exp which leads to leveling faster... it's a vicious cycle.

    2) I was actually kind of disappointed at how low key the fey in the standard AP are. You have Tyg and Pervilash, the Mites... and that's basically it for part 1. Later on there's a few more here and there, but given the endgame of the AP I actually expect a much stronger fey presence, and intend to play that up a lot in my game.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dusk Eclipse View Post
    I've never really paid much attention to any Kingmaker threads, but now I regret that. It seems like a fairly interesting and unusual type of campaign. Kudos on the game, it looks like you and your group are having a great time with it.
    It's difficult to run, considering how open ended the campaign is meant to be (for an AP at least), but it's a lot of fun. Exploration, fighting, travel, Adventure! If you've got the right group it's very good. I wouldn't try it with new players, but these guys are all pretty experienced and they can help me keep track of everything.

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    I've been pretty interested in Kingmaker, so I'll be subscribing. Looking forward to more journal entries.

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    I am entertained! This also makes me want to run Kingmaker. Ive played a few sessions of it once and i enjoyed it on that side of the screen, and since i love sandboxing i would probably love running it.
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    Session 5
    In which mites might be a mighty problem.

    Day 15

    Having dealt with the banits at the Thorn River Camp, the party rests and readies themselves to continue exploring. As they progress east (because screw the map, right is east) their explorations uncover a small cave. With their super duper Tiefling senses, they are able to see all the way into the cave and into the back of it. The back of the cave glitters brightly, and some investigation reveals that the cave houses a rather large vein of gold. The party is obviously very excited, but their lack of pickaxes prevents them from abandoning their adventuring career to take up mining. A brief discussion follows, and the party agrees to work to disguise the cave and protect it for later, once they've finished exploring the Greenbelt. They spend a good amount of time disguising the cave (taking 20 on disguise checks and aid anothers to disguise it) and have just enough time to explore one more hex before finishing out the day.

    Spoiler: DM's Notes
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    The presence of the gold mine sparked an OOC discussion with the group, one you should probably have beforehand with your groups. Specifically it was about whether or not the party members knew they were supposed to be setting up a kingdom or not.

    The players all knew going into this that Kingdom Building was a thing, but the charter the characters receive at the start of the game doesn't actually say that the party will be responsible for setting up the kingdom, just that they're responsible for exploring the greenbelt. We settled on the PCs knowing that there would be a colonization effort after their exploration was done, but not that they would be in charge of it yet.


    The next hex the party explores has an unusual feature, one very large oak tree stands in the middle of a two mile wide clearing at the top of the hill. This old oak tree was long dead, having been struck by lightning and split in half. Akaru recognizes the tree as being the same one in the treasure map that the party found in the boot of the dead bandit in the spider's nest. Some investigation later, and the party is able to locate where the treasure is buried. They check it for traps (by which I mean C rolled a 7... total) and dig up the leather wrapped treasure. Inside they find a ring, a mostly ruined spellbook and a stick. They party identifies the stick as a wand of burning hands, and is super duper happy because they're all a bunch of pyromaniacs.

    Setting up camp for the night, the party is surprised by the arrival of Perlivash, a faerie dragon that claims responsibility for the pranks that have been plaguing the party. He thanks them for taking out the bandits and being good sports about the pranks, and offers to help the PCs if they have anything going on. The party asks Perlivash if he knows where the mites are located, and he points out their base of operations on the party's map. Ashena is pretty enamored of the adorable little dragon, so she and perlivash have a party most of the night while the rest of the group tries to sleep.

    Spoiler: DM's Notes
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    For whatever reason, I decided to use a valley girl accent for perlivash, which was probably the funniest thing I've done the whole campaign. J absolutely loved it, and C spent the whole conversation facepalming. Just wanted to share.


    Day 16

    The first hex explored for the day is a rather uneventful plains hex, which Ashena tries to tap for white mana. The second hex explored contains a large river though, and the party spends some time looking for a way to cross the river to continue their exploration. They come across a destroyed rope bridge and a burnt out shack. There's a sign on the bridge strut that reads "Nettle's Crossing, 5 cp, ring bell for service." With no hesitation, Akaru pulls out 5 copper and rings the bell. The waters of the river suddenly get disturbed as a long dead body wielding a ranseur rises out of the river. It points the ranseur at the party and says, "You are not the Stag Lord. Throw his body into the river that I may know his death and rest in peace." The party tries to question the spirit, but it only repeats itself twice and then vanishes back into the river. Ashena, Akaru and Skara all quickly agree that when they kill the Stag Lord, they're going to dump his body into the river.

    The party attempts to cross the river using the remains of the destroyed bridge (there's still a thick rope connecting the two bridge struts). Akaru and Skara are able to cross successfully, but Ashena falls into the water and nearly drowns before being miraculously washed up on the other side of the shore (nat 1 followed by nat 20 swim checks). She coughs up a fish, and the party finishes exploring the hex, setting up camp far away from the river.

    Day 17

    The party finds the Old Sycamore that the mites are using as a nest in their exploration of this hex. The entrance to the cavern underneath the old sycamore is a bit of a drop, and the party argues for a bit over how to go into the cave. Eventually Ashena says "You guys are Scarlet Sentinels, you'll protect me!" and jumps in. Skara and Akaru tie a rope to the sycamore and follow her down. What follows is one of the most impressive series of ninja like encounters I've had the pleasure of seeing. The party's clever use of darkvision, stealth, surprise attacks and amazing initiative rolls lets them get the drop on basically every mite they encounter. With the groups ability to each take out about two mites per round, there's very little that can slow them down. They get first initiative in basically every combat and wipe the floor with the mites before anything happens. The only bit of trouble the party has is with the whiptail centipede that appears in the middle of a large chasm. It's reach is big enough that it can safely stay back from the melee party members and attack them without issue. Skara is able to pump some damage into it though, and Akaru pulls off a great bit of tactical thinking by readying an attack against the centipede if it tries to attack him.

    The next room after the chasm the party finds a group of mites torturing a kobold that they had captured and put in a wooden cage. Three bloody assaults later and the kobold is the only non-tiefling left standing. He thanks the party profusely for rescuing him, and begs them to let him out of the cage and to recover his tribe's lost totem. The party frees the kobold, who introduces himself as Mikmek. He tells them he's a Sootscale Kobold, which reminds Ashena of one of the quests they've been given (J had written "Kobolds- Kill 'em all" in his notebook by the quest, but whatever ). The party tells Mikmek to wait in this room for them to recover the statue, and enters the mites' War Room.

    What awaits the party in the war room is so disgusting and vile as to be unspeakable... not really, it's five Mites, one of which is riding a giant tick roughly the size of a Tibetan Mastiff. The party pulls crazy initiatives, and all three of them assault the tick, splattering it out from under the chief Mite. A brief discussion follows, and we all agree that wrapping up the fight in a cinematic style would be preferred, as there's just no real way these mites can pose a threat. So as soon as the tick gets splattered, Ashena and Akaru turn and each kill two of the other mites, Akaru cleaving through both of them with a mighty swing of his Falchion, and Ashena crushes the skull of a mite and bites the head off of a second. Skara puts an arrow through each of the king mite's eye sockets, and the party is victorious. They recover a decent amount of treasure, including the statue of the Sootscale Tribe's totem, but sadly there's no sign of Svetlana's ring. It appears to have been taken by the kobolds in a raid against the mites.

    The party returns the tribal statue to Mikmek who thanks the party members profusely and offers them "lots of shiny things" if they help him return it to the tribe. The Sootscale tribe's home isn't far from here, but with the night getting late, this is where we wrap up for the night.

    Spoiler: DM's Notes
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    The mites in the cavern were absolutely no threat to an ECL 3 party, let alone one that was as lucky as this group. It was getting late by the time we got to the last battle, so wrapping it up quickly seemed like a good idea since it let the group get in some time to talk to Mikmek.

    J was very excited that this kobold wasn't utterly terrified of him and biting him every time he talked to it. Apparently, doing the exact opposite of what he did with the first captured Kobold works wonders.

  19. - Top - End - #19
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    OrcBarbarianGuy

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    Session 6
    In which our party makes friends, kills enemies and breeds werewolf-horses

    Day 18

    When last we left our party, they had just finished killing off a hive of mites and (inadvertently) rescued a Kobold of the Sootscale Tribe named Mikmek and his tribe's devil totem. The party agreed to help Mikmek return with the totem to his tribal home and remove the curse that had been plaguing them. While traveling, Ashena is able to get Mikmek to open up about the nature of his tribe, and how he feels that the tribe's shaman Tartuk is a bad influence for the tribe and that everyone is afraid of the purple scaled Kobold. The party agrees to return the statue to the tribe's chief Sootscale instead of the shaman.

    The party arrives with Mikmek at the Sootscales' cavern home, which used to be a silver mine. Outside, the cave is guarded by a single bored kobold named Potluk. Potluk is very surprised to see Mikmek return, especially with three bigfolk in tow. Mikmek eventually convinces Potluk to let the party in and he leads them past the traps and through the tight tunnels into the Kobolds' common chamber. There, Mikmek and the party hand the demonic looking statue over to Cheif Sootscale. There's a brief pause, then Chief Sootscale raises the totem over his head and smashes it on the ground. He declares the Sootscale Tribe free of the curse of the statue and asks the party to aid him in removing Tartuk, for good.

    The party follows Chief Sootscale through another set of tunnels and back to the room where Tartuk is busy brewing potions in his large cauldron. Chief Sootscale's courage gives out though and he steps back to give the party the opportunity to fight Tartuk first. Tartuk is waiting for them though, and as soon as they enter the chamber, he and his raven familiar vanish from sight.

    Akaru charges and swings at where Tartuk was standing when he vanished, but he is unable to connect. Ashena uses her Warsighted ability to get the Military Training Feat (see houserules in the first post). Then she and Akaru spread out to try and locate the invisible kobold, but have little luck. Skara, however is able to find the small kobold and gets off a miracle shot that pierces Tartuk in the shoulder, making him much easier to find. Ashena grapples with the kobold, and holds him tight while Akaru takes a mighty swing with Rising Zenith Strike and knocks the Kobold unconscious with the flat of his blade. Tartuk's raven familiar reappears, and Akaru kills it with a single strike.

    Then the unconscionable happens. Akaru and Ashena pick up the unconscious kobold and dump his body in the cauldron of boiling water in the center of the room. Ashena covers the pot with her shield like a lid, and she and Akaru hold fast against the struggling Tartuk until he's boiled alive. This takes several rounds worth of opposed strength checks before Tartuk finally dies, and I (as DM) have to inform the party that their actions constitute an evil act.

    Spoiler: DM's Notes
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    So, when J proposed drowning Tartuk in his own cauldron of boiling water, I didn't actually expect him and C to actually go through with it. I should have known better. I freely admit that I should have warned them that it was an act of exceptional cruelty and would be an evil action, but I was kind of thrown off my game by the action itself.

    There was a brief discussion, during which my roommates (who are not J & C, to be clear) got involved as well. The discussion ended when I told J and C that it wasn't going to force an alignment change, but that it was the first step down that path and I promised to be better about warning them in the future.

    So the takeaway here: Don't assume your players are joking when they mention wanting to do something completely insane, and make sure you warn them about any serious consequences beforehand.


    So, Chief Sootscale sees all of this and is understandably terrified now. Thanks to some stellar Diplomacy rolls by J, Ashena is able to convince Sootscale that the party isn't interested in doing the same to him. Skara talks briefly with Ashena and Akaru in Infernal about negotiating a trade and work deal with the Sootscale Kobolds, in order to get access to the silver they mine as well as workers for the gold mine that the party found a while back. Some more negotiations with the still shaken Kobold Chieftain eventually lead to a deal being worked out, and the party acquiring a large chunk of treasure including several magic items (including a Wand of Magic Missile and an unidentifiable scroll), about 1000 gold and Svetlana's lost wedding ring. The Sootscale tribe will offer first trade rights to the party as well as agree to work in their future gold mine endeavors, in exchange the party won't brutally slaughter them, they'll be allowed to keep their home and even expand into the new mine, and the party will act as liaisons between the Sootscales and the incoming settlers.

    The party finishes the day out by exploring the hex surrounding the Sootscale Caverns, and decides to only explore one more hex tomorrow before returning to Oleg's Trading Post to do some buying and selling.

    Day 19

    Exploring the next hex, the party encounters a Werewolf and things get weird. The rabid, curse crazed beastman attacks the party's horses, biting Ashena's horse. J and C are (out of character) exceptionally freaked out by the arrival of a werewolf, since both have played Ravenloft extensively.

    The party tries to kite the werewolf, with Akaru acting as bait while Skara peppers the thing with flaming arrows. The werewolf seems more interested in horse flesh though and attacks Akaru's horse after he dismounts. Through a combination of teamwork and applied fire, the party is able to knock the werewolf unconscious. Then I get to have this conversation:

    Spoiler: DM's Notes: OOC Conversation
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    "E, did the horses make their saves against lycanthropy?"
    "Uh..." *rolls some dice* "Nope. I don't think they can get lycanthropy though."
    "Are you sure?"
    "I don't know."
    "We're going to use the unconscious werewolf to bite Skara's horse too then."
    "What? Why?"
    "Just in case."
    "Just in case what?"
    "Just in case they can catch lycanthropy. That way we can have werewolf horses."

    So now the party has three lycanthropy infected horses.


    After an obnoxious series of handle animal checks, Akaru coup de graces the werewolf and the party finishes exploring the hex. They return to Oleg's after dark, and are greeted by Oleg just as he's closing up for the night. The party is able to sell 2,246 GP worth of goods to Oleg, but he doesn't have enough cash on hand so he offers the party 1,300 GP now and the rest in store credit. The party immediately uses up their credit to order a Masterwork Breastplate for Skara and a Masterwork Morningstar for Ashena. The party buys some traveling supplies, specifically including several bags of flour in case they have to deal with any more invisible enemies.

    The party also receives a letter of commendation from Restov for their efforts in removing the bandit population, along with a reward of 400 GP for their trouble. Ashena drafts a return letter informing Restov that a deal has been reached with the Sootscale Kobolds, and they will be very peaceful about integration with the incoming settlers.

    The party then spends some time talking with Jhod Kavken, who's taken a seat off in the corner to smoke a little and become one with nature, as it were. He talks with the party for a bit and seems somewhat unfocused but very relaxed. The party offers to take him to the Temple of Erastil the next day on their way back to finish exploring. They also offer him the enchanted Symbol of Erastil they found, but he tells them to keep it as he has no use for it.

    The last thing the party does for the night is return Svetlana's ring to Oleg, who happily gives it back to his wife. Oleg offers the party an additional 1,000 gp worth of credit as a thank you for returning his wife's ring.

    Day 20

    The party returns to the Temple of Erastil with Jhod, who thanks the party and offers to heal them free of charge should they ever need it. They thank him and go their separate ways.

    The hex the party explores next contains a rickety bridge which crosses over a gorge formed by the Thorn River. Ashena spends several hours repairing the bridge with mending so that the party can cross safely and finish exploring the hex. Their exploration proves uneventful, although night watch is filled with mosquito bites.

    Spoiler: DM's Notes
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    I got as far as "You come across a rickety bridge..." before J interrupted me and said he was going to spend as long as it took repairing the bridge with mending until the party could cross safely. I read through the description of the bridge event and agreed to let him do it because there was pretty much no way the party could cross the bridge and keep their horses. It did eat up their opportunity to explore an extra hex though.


    Day 21

    The party crosses the Thorn and finds themselves back in the large forest in the Greenbelt. Their explorations cause them to stumble across a massive boar in its lair. This is Tuskgutter, the legendary boar that's killed many hunters in the Greenbelt, and has a bounty on its head as a result. The party immediately goes into action mode. Skara shoots Tuskgutter and trips it thanks to Tempest Gale's Sudden Gust strike. This prevents Tuskgutter from effectively closing with the party and wastes its turn. Ashena casts Bless on the party and baits tuskgutter's attack of opportunity to move into flanking position for Akaru. Akaru uses Rising Zenith Strike and gets a crit, dealing a whopping 45 damage and completely decapitating the boar.

    Ashena takes the head and leaves to turn it in to Oleg for the reward, but on her way back she runs into Jhod, who tells her that an owlbear has driven him out of the Temple of Erastil. Jhod and Ashena retrieve Akaru and Skara and return to the temple to find the Owlbear there.

    Akaru gets the drop on the beast, activating his combat precognition to give his defenses a boost and charges it to deal 14 damage. Skara fires a flaming arrow, modified by Stance of Piercing Rays, Horizon Wind Lancet and Sudden Gust to deal a whopping 26 damage to the Owlbear, but failing to trip it. The owlbear full attacks Akaru, but only hits with a claw, and pulls the unfortunate tiefling into its deadly embrace. Ashena runs in to save the day, screaming "Put! Him! Down!" and swinging her morningstar with all her power, knocking the beast out. Jhod asks the party not to kill the owlbear on Erastil's holy ground, so the party drags the body out of the temple and kills the dangerous beast in the woods. Jhod heals Akaru and thanks the three tieflings for their help.

    The party returns to Oleg's Trading Post to turn in Tuskgutter's head. They collect the reward, and Oleg agrees to trade the masterwork longbow from the reward for a masterwork scimitar he will order for Akaru (C wanted something he could use when grappled). The party decides to rest at Oleg's for the night and that is where our session ends.

    Spoiler: DM's Notes
    Show

    I just... don't even know what happened man. First, the boiled Kobold. Then the were-horses. And a Werewolf and Owlbear both rolled as random encounters? The dice were all over the place. J pretty much only rolled 20s and 2s. C was rocking skill checks, especially with Rising Zenith Strike. And Horizon Wind Lancet didn't screw me out of every shot I tried to make...

    I'd originally decided to save the owlbear for later, but it was getting late, and I thought it'd be a good way to wrap up the night, especially since it'd help them build a bond with Jhod, who could become useful later on. Things are getting pretty close to the end here, they've got only one or two more major events, and then just finishing out the map and we'll be on to the next book.

    Guess I should go read up on Kingdom Building. And werewolf-horses...

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    Default Re: A Kingdom of Their Own: A Trio of Tieflings Play Kingmaker

    Haven't read the session yet, but I have to say Were-wolf horses is probably the best thing I've heard this week
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    OrcBarbarianGuy

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    Default Re: A Kingdom of Their Own: A Trio of Tieflings Play Kingmaker

    Quote Originally Posted by Dusk Eclipse View Post
    Haven't read the session yet, but I have to say Were-wolf horses is probably the best thing I've heard this week
    It was an ordeal. That's what I get for trying to satisfy my curiosity. Apparently horses can't contract lycanthropy normally, but I guess that my game isn't that normal.

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    Default Re: A Kingdom of Their Own: A Trio of Tieflings Play Kingmaker

    Will the horses have to save or have their alignment forcefully changed to CE? Because I'm thinking you can have some fun with that.
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    Default Re: A Kingdom of Their Own: A Trio of Tieflings Play Kingmaker

    Quote Originally Posted by Dusk Eclipse View Post
    Will the horses have to save or have their alignment forcefully changed to CE? Because I'm thinking you can have some fun with that.
    I haven't figured anything out about I'm gonna handle it. I put it off for the time being and I've got two weeks to figure it out.

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    Default Re: A Kingdom of Their Own: A Trio of Tieflings Play Kingmaker

    There's the Monstrous Lycanthrope template from Green Ronin Publishing's Advanced Bestiary book.

    It lets you make an Anything Were-Anything-Else creature. I once used it to make a Warforged-Scout Were-Winged-Warforged. Was fun times.

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    Default Re: A Kingdom of Their Own: A Trio of Tieflings Play Kingmaker

    Quote Originally Posted by unseenmage View Post
    There's the Monstrous Lycanthrope template from Green Ronin Publishing's Advanced Bestiary book.

    It lets you make an Anything Were-Anything-Else creature. I once used it to make a Warforged-Scout Were-Winged-Warforged. Was fun times.
    That definitely looks like a good place to start.

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    Session 7
    In which our party faces frogs, fallen fae and foot fungus

    Spoiler: Pre-Game Discussion
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    So last session, my party infected their horses with Lycanthropy. I asked J and C to come up with a name for these new beasties, and J came up with the name Felhangst (sp?) which is supposedly German for "fur stallion." I think it's a suitably cool sounding name.

    I don't have stats for the Felhangst yet, but if I ever get around to it I'll put up a link for you all in this thread.


    Day 22
    When last we left the party, they had traveled to Oleg's to sell many of their goods and turn in several quests, then they returned and camped at Tuskgutter's lair, a relatively safe place to sleep now that the vicious boar was dead. In the morning they continued west (assuming up is north because seriously I hate the maps in Kingmaker), and explored a swampy, damp portion of the greenbelt's forest. Their explorations lead them to a pair of abandoned buildings, one appears to have been a house and the other possible some kind of storage shed. The party is surprised by a loud, roaring croak, and Akaru spots a humanoid frog coming out of the smaller building. The frog-man raises both hands over his head, revealing one to be badly mangled, and hops towards the party, shouting "Truce! Truce!"

    Akaru is able to identify the creature as a Boggard, an amphibious race known for being violent and isolationist, he shares this information with the party in Infernal. Skara suggests just leaving the boggard be, since he hasn't attacked them at all. Ashena and Akaru assume this is some kind of trap and decide they want to explore further, anticipating ambush when they try to leave.

    Ashena struggles to communicate with the boggard, who only knows a few words of common, but the boggard agrees to let them explore around his house until "Sun highest" and the party agrees. Skara keeps watch and holds the horses while Akaru and Ashena explore the area.

    The larger building turns out to contain a very large purple amphibian with prominent tusks. The boggard identifies it as a slurk and that it belongs to him. Ashena tries to get the boggard to move the slurk so she can look inside the house but the boggard refuses, explaining as best as he can that the house belongs to him and he doesn't have to let anyone in that he doesn't want to.

    This continues back and forth about four or five times, with brief interruptions and discussions with Skara and Akaru in infernal. Skara suggests that the party either leave or kill the boggard and his slurk. Akaru insists that the Boggard is hiding something in the house, and that they have a "right" to look inside. Eventually the boggard demands that the party leave. They refuse, and Akaru attempts to remove the slurk by force, initiating combat.

    The slurk ends up biting Akaru and dealing a significant chunk of damage, while Ashena hits the boggard with a mighty blow from her morningstar. Akaru returns the damage dealt to him two fold with Rising Zenith Strike, one shotting the giant purple amphibian. The boggard cries out in anguish and attacks Ashena but misses. Ashena then brains the boggard for 14 damage and kills him.

    Ashena is suddenly assaulted by visions of the boggard's life and his relationship with his pet slurk: picking out the egg from the nest, feeding the tadpole and cleaning out its pond, teaching it to hunt and wear a saddle, sharing body heat and blankets on cold nights in the swamp, fleeing together into the wilds after being abandoned by their tribe...

    Spoiler: DM's Notes
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    Spoiler: J I know you read this, stay out
    Show

    So why did I subject J's character to this? Well, because it was funny. But also because J built Ashena to epitomize goodly behavior, Alignment, the Merciful Oracle Curse, being a member of the Empyreal Guardians. It all adds up to someone who should epitomize the ideals of good. So I think that from now on, when J starts acting up, he's going to get nice little visions of how horrible a person Ashena really is. I doubt it'll change anything but there's certain expectations that ought to be upheld and I'd rather do it via roleplaying than punishing the character mechanically.

    As a side note, the Merciful oracle curse gives Lay on Hands like a paladin, including mercies. The restrictions on it aren't very severe at all either. It's a 3rd party curse and I should have checked it before approving it, but that was my mistake. I won't be allowing it in the future, I can say that much.



    Slurk and Boggard dead at last, Ashena and Akaru move the slurk's body out of the entrance to the house and find... nothing. Further searching reveals the Boggard's treasure, located in the other building underneath the boggard's nest. It contains a fair amount of gold and a few semiprecious stones.

    The party camps for the night, and during Ashena's watch she is greeted by the ghosts of the Slurk and Boggard who are crying as their souls depart.

    Day 23

    In the first hex the party explores they find a Statue of Erastil, overgrown with vines and leaves but otherwise undamaged by years of exposure to nature. The party decides to bring Jhod by to visit the statue when they next see him. The second hex is just an uneventful border hex between the forest and the western plains. It's very pretty.

    The party camps for the night in an uneventful sleep.

    Day 24

    The first hex the party comes across, they find a swampy basin in the forest that stinks of rotting flesh and is filled with bugs and fungal growth. As they approach the stagnant water in the basin, the party spies the gleaming white body of a dead horse. Closer inspection reveals it to be the body of a unicorn, and that the unicorn has been utterly untouched by the rot surrounding it. Akaru investigates the body and determines that it was likely slain by magic, and that its horn had been removed after death. Ashena confirms that unicorn horn is a highly valuable magic item, the party buries the unicorn's body and leaves the area a bit unsettled.

    The second hex contains a small split in the skunk river, with a shallow area rising out of the river that seems to have caught a great deal of debris, creating a natural ford. Sunning itself on the island in the middle of the river is a tatzlwyrm. Although it appears to have noticed the party it doesn't react until Skara shoots the beast. Angered, it rapidly charges the party and attack Ashena hitting her with its claw but failing to bite down on her. skara unoads another two arrows into the wyrm putting it down for good. The party investigates the debris around the tatzlwrym's sunning spot and recovers several useful items: a suit of scale mail, a masterwork cold iron longsword, a pewter drinking stein, a silver ring, some gold and a jade statue of a female nude elven monk.

    Spoiler: DM's Note: Random Commentary
    Show

    The AP specifies that the statue is of a "nude female elven monk." Does anyone else find that a bit odd? I mean, if she's nude, how do you know she's a monk?


    The party decides to camp on the small island and as the sun sets, Skara spots a second Tatzlwyrm swimming up the river towards the island. He shoots it twice for a good bit of damage, and Akaru runs to the edge and leaps (using a charge action and an impressive 25 Acrobatics check) at the swimming dragon-kin, impaling it with his falchion and killing it. he swims back to shore and the party turns in for the night.

    Day 25

    As the party explores their first hex of the day, the hear loud barking and whining. They find a very large (8 ft. long) dog like animal trapped in a 20 ft. deep pit. Ashena tries to approach the edge of the pit, but the footing is poor and she falls in (failed REF save). She takes a small amount of damage from the fall, and the dog-like animal tries to attack her. Skara runs closer to the edge of the pit, but is careful not to risk falling in and shoots the dog twice for 9 damage total. Akaru jumps into the pit and slams into the dog for 10 damage. The dog (it's a Thylacine, I'm just going to call it that from now on, but the party failed to identify it) bites Ashena for 6 damage, and she returns the favor with a bite of her own, killing the thylacine. Akaru throws up a rope to Skara, who holds it to allow the rest of the party to climb out of the pit.

    In the next hex, the party finds a massive bramble of fangberry bushes, these bushes are draped in spider webs though and the party is having none of that. They torch the fangberry thicket with alchemist's fire, then spend what's left of the evening controlling the fire so it doesn't spread too far. Ashena makes liberal use of the create water cantrip and Skara and Akaru use dirt and trenches to control the spread. The fangberry thicket is burned to the ground and there are no survivors. The party camps for the night far away from the thicket just in case the spiders come back for revenge.

    Spoiler: DM's Notes
    Show

    There's a spider swarm or two in the thicket that the party is supposed to fight, but they were having none of it so I just let them burn it down and skip the encounter, it's not like they need the XP.

    They did miss out on solving a future quest though, since the party never actually met the crazy potion maker Bokken. Oh well.


    Day 26

    The party explores a hex that contains a very nice spot to ford the spot where the Shrike and Thorn Rivers meet. It also happens to be a great fishing spot for grizzly bears, apparently. The bear hasn't noticed the party yet, but that doesn't stop them from shooting at it. Ashena activates her Warsighted ability to gain the Military Training feat, and Akaru spends a ki point for combat precognition. Skara fires an arrow at the bear's legs tripping it and dealing 16 damage thanks to Sudden Gust and Horizon Wind Lancet. Akaru charges the bear and hits it for 14 damage, while Ashena hits it for 8. Skara's next attack misses, but when the bear tries to stand up it provokes an attack of opportunity from both Ashena and Akaru. Ashena's attack of opportunity hits for 14 damage, but Akaru scores a critical hit and rolls maximum damage, dealing a whopping 40 damage with a single hit and basically cutting the bear in half. Akaru skins the bear with the help of Skara and Ashena and the party continues on their exploration

    In the next hex, the party is attacked by a massive mound of writhing fungus and vines. The party decides to play it smart and use their horses to their advantage, and just kite the shambling mound instead of fighting it directly. What follows is best illustrated by the Benny Hill Theme, the party continues to retreat and pepper the shambling mound with arrows, with skara making the shots as Ashena and Akaru assist him. Skara still manages to miss more than half his shots (damn you Horizon Wind Lancet!, but it's a moot point as the shambling mound simply cannot catch up to the party. Eventually the party kills it and recovers a couple potions of cure light wounds and a few hundred gold from its corpse.

    Spoiler: DM's Notes
    Show

    These were both rolled as random encounters, one right after the other. For the record, the Bear is a CR 4 encounter and the shambling mound is CR 6. I liked that J & C wanted to fight the shambling mound tactically, so I didn't mind that it basically did nothing the whole fight, every once in a while stuff just goes well for you right?

    Well, I should have paid closer attention to the stat block since apparently Shambling Mounds speak Common, and can understand Sylvan (WTF?), with INT 7 it probably should have been smart enough to give up the fight, but eh.


    Day 27

    Exploring the next day, the party is greeted by a high pitched "Hey you big *******!" Ashena and Akaru can't locate the source of the voice, but Skara spots the telltale gleam of distorted light and plants an arrow by the feet of a now thoroughly frightened grig. The grig tells them that he's friends with Perlivash and Tyg-Titter-Tut, and offers to give the party's horses a manicure. The party decides to take a short break while the grig works on the horses' hooves and the grig comments on how they seem to have been infected by some kind of curse.

    Ashena tells the grig that they found the body of a dead unicorn, which makes the grig very concerned. Ashena shares the location of the body, and as soon as the grig is done polishing and painting the horses' hooves, he departs.

    The party decides to ride back to Oleg's and they arrive past sunset, although Kesten Garess still lets them in to sleep for the night.

    Day 28

    In the morning, the party meets with Oleg to sell their goods, turn in quests and order more equipment. The party collects 1400 GP for the Tatzlwyrm head and the deal made with the sootscale kobolds, and sells another 1600 GP worth of goods to Oleg. Ashena suggests the party start planning for the future, and they negotiate with Oleg to order two mithral breastplates for Skara and Ashena and a mithral armored kilt + mithral chain shirt for Akaru. It takes some negotiating, as the party doesn't quite have the capital to cover the costs, but they've made Oleg a lot of money before, so he's willing to work with them, especially after they offer a 5,000 GP deposit to cover the costs of getting the armor. Oleg tells them this kind of order will take time, over a month, and the party agrees that this is fine and that's where the session proper ends.

    It's entirely likely that the Stolen Lands could be finished up next session, so we spent some time discussing what changes we'd like to make to the Kingdom Building Rules to better fit our vision for the future Tiefling Kingdom of Awesomeness. We also spent some time leveling up our characters, because the party picked up a good 2100 XP this session kicking them over to level 4.

  27. - Top - End - #27
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Blackhawk748's Avatar

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    Default Re: A Kingdom of Their Own: A Trio of Tieflings Play Kingmaker

    I can see it now:

    J- "Lets kill the Boggard!"
    C- "He probably is hiding something"
    E *in head* "Oh god why?? Theres nothing in there!!"

    Ya ive seen this kind of mentality before, but J is definitely better at roleplaying than most people who fall into this trap. Eh whatever, its his character, and it makes things funny
    Quote Originally Posted by Guigarci View Post
    "Mr. Aochev, tear down this wall!" Ro'n Ad-Ri'Gan, Bard
    Tiefling Sorcerer by Linkele
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    My Spell, My Weapon, Im a God

    My Post Apocalyptic Alternate Timeline setting: Amerhikan Wasteland


    My Historical Stuff channel

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    OrcBarbarianGuy

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    Default Re: A Kingdom of Their Own: A Trio of Tieflings Play Kingmaker

    Quote Originally Posted by Blackhawk748 View Post
    I can see it now:

    J- "Lets kill the Boggard!"
    C- "He probably is hiding something"
    E *in head* "Oh god why?? Theres nothing in there!!"

    Ya ive seen this kind of mentality before, but J is definitely better at roleplaying than most people who fall into this trap. Eh whatever, its his character, and it makes things funny
    It was pretty much all C. He must have said "There's a trap door under that slurk isn't there?" at least 5 times. We're a trio of bloodthirsty munchkins though (We're good at roleplaying, just bad at not killing things... honest!), so this was expected. If they'd rolled better on their knowledge local check I'd have been able to give them more information about the boggard, like how the fact that it's even talking to them instead of shooting them with curare darts is a sign that he's different. Meh.

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    Larkas's Avatar

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    Default Re: A Kingdom of Their Own: A Trio of Tieflings Play Kingmaker

    Looking forward to the next sessions! This sounds like a really fun game!
    Quote Originally Posted by cerin616 View Post
    I just like to think that Smaug's "cry of pain" was "OH GOD, MY PRETTY! YOU HIT MY RIGHT IN THE PRETTY."
    Metal Perfection - a template for creatures born on Mirrodin.
    True Ferocity - a simple fix for Orcs and Half-Orcs.
    Monastic Magus - a spiritual successor to the Unarmed Swordsage.
    Pathfinder-ish Synthesist - a simple fix making Synthesist Summoners follow polymorph rules.
    Sword & Sorcery for Sneaky Scoundrels - rogue archetypes/fixes that aim to turn the rogue into a warrior/caster.

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    OrcBarbarianGuy

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    Default Re: A Kingdom of Their Own: A Trio of Tieflings Play Kingmaker

    I'm definitely having a blast running it. Next session will likely be the end of the Stolen Lands, and the session after that will be the session plotting out the mechanical changes to the Kingdom Building rules. With luck we'll actually get around to building the kingdom and then be able to at least start Rivers Run Red. Stay tuned for more shenanigans!

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