Posts Tagged ‘Paizo’

Starfinder RPG Interview

December 15, 2016

starfinderposter_360You’ve probably heard by now that Paizo is working on a science-fantasy version of Pathfinder they’re calling Starfinder.  It’s not out until August 2017, so I haven’t been paying too much attention to the game so far, not that there’s a lot information available just yet.

However, there was an interesting 6-page interview at gameinformer about Starfinder.  What caught my eye is that Paizo says they’re trying to streamline the rules.  Specifically mentioned in the interview are the lessons learned from Pathfinder Beginner Box!

Of course, at this point we have no idea just how much “streamlining” is happening, or what form it takes.  For all I know, Paizo’s idea of streamlining may actually make the game more crunchy and complex.  But for now I’m cautiously optimistic that Starfinder may be closer to Beginner Box than PF Core.

Of course, nothing says somebody can’t make a Starfinder Beginner Box.  Just sayin’….

Cheers!

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Long Winter Campaign is…Go?

May 7, 2016

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Looks like I might finally have a chance to run the Long Winter Campaign in a couple of weeks.  Now it’s time to drill down from high-level concepts and ideas to specific content.

I will, of course, post campaign updates here, for those who are interested.  Cheers.

Edit:  Never mind.  Looks like the Long Winter campaign will have to wait a little longer. 🙂

PFBB Bestiary – Remorhaz and Yeti

April 29, 2016
Remorhaz_by_BenWootten

By Ben Wootten, used without permission

 

I figured the Long Winter Campaign could use a couple of new, icy monsters.  So I present Beginner Box conversions for the Remorhaz and the Yeti.

Please let me know if you have any questions or notice any errors.  Cheers!

PFBB Expanded Deities

March 1, 2016

Kyra - Cleric

Here’s the Expanded Deities for the Pathfinder Beginner Box.  What I’ve done is take the four deities presented in the BB and add five additional ones, making 9 in all (and one deity for each alignment).

As much as possible I’ve tried to avoid duplicating abilities and spells.  Given the BB’s limited options, in some cases I had to cheat a bit with the holy weapons and bonus spells.

Technically the BB doesn’t allow PCs to be evilly aligned, so perhaps you can use the evil deities for NPCs, or change their alignments, or just ignore deity alignment altogether (as the BB seems to).

On a final note: GMs may want to use this document as a reference for creating their own deities, or allowing players to create their own deities.  Simply let your players pick two abilities they feel are appropriate for their deity (with GM approval, of course), and then a selection of appropriate bonus spells (one each of 1st, 2nd and 3rd level spells).

Please let me know if you have any questions, suggestions, etc.  Cheers.

PFBB Bestiary – VAMPIRES!!!

December 31, 2015

PZO9231-Cover_360

I thought I’d ring out the old year with some monsters…vampires, in point of fact.  I based the master vampire off of a level 5 wizard (evoker), applying the vampire template.  I’ve also BB-ified things quite a bit, so please forgive me if they aren’t exactly like PF core vampires.

Still, these BB versions of vampires are quite nasty, especially with their energy drain and dominate attacks.  A standard BB party, unprepared for vampires, could easily face a TPK.

Cheers, and Happy New Years!

PFBB Bestiary – Bugbears & Ogre Magi

December 14, 2015

pfogremage

Here’s another PFBB monster conversion: Bugbears and the formidable Ogre Mage.

I removed some of the Ogre Magi spell-like abilities, both to save some space and because I didn’t see them coming into use too often during a BB style game.  None-the-less, I left the monster at CR 8, for it’s Cone of Cold ability is dangerously lethal to a 5th level character (especially when combined with it’s innate fly and invisibility abilities, allowing for the perfect ambush!).

As usual, please let me know if you have any questions, suggestions, or notice any errors.  Cheers!

PFBB Bestiary – Giants!

October 31, 2015

PZO9093-Urathash_120

Here’s another Pathfinder Beginner Box monster conversion for you on this all hallows eve…giants!

Actually, I wanted to do vampires for Halloween, but they just have too much going on to fit in the standard Beginner Box monster format (that, and vampires may be just a little too deadly for BB characters to handle).  So, you got giants instead. 🙂

I took some liberty with their Rock Catching ability, but I couldn’t really see it coming in to play very often, so I don’t think it’ll matter much.  Have fun smashing puny humans!

Edit:  I just realized that I forgot to add the giant’s long reach abilities.  DOH!  I’ve attached a corrected version.  Sorry about that.

LWC – What’s in a Karg?

October 19, 2015

The Long Winter Campaign will feature a number of small, stone fortifications, represented by castles on the Outdoor Survival map.  These fortifications are commonly called kargs, taken from the dwarven word for stone fortifications, usually built in mountainous regions.  In the post-Cataclysmic world, karg specifically refers to a pre-Cataclysmic stone fortification, which is probably at least partially in ruin, but still livable.

The Outdoor Survival Map; the castle icons represent kargs

The Outdoor Survival Map; most of the castle icons represent kargs

The Spells of Ending damaged nearly every fortification and city in the region.  Yet, despite their dilapidated state, kargs still present the strongest possible defense.  Not even the dwarves posses the engineering skills to build such formidable structures in the post-Cataclysmic age.  So, most damaged kargs are still in use, their breaches repaired as best as possible with wooden palisades and ramparts piled from ancient rubble.

A crazy old wizard probably lives in this tower-karg.

A mad wizard’s tower-karg.

Kargs are typically small-ish forts, built at strategic points, and capable of supporting a few dozen soldiers at most.  During the Old Empire, kargs served as fortified watchtowers and outposts, protecting this border province from barbarian incursions and goblinoid raids.  In the Cataclysmic age, a karg represents an extremely powerful fortification, usually home to a lord, or the headquarters for some powerful faction (such as the Paladins, Rangers or Druids).  Some of the more remote kargs have fallen into the hands of the monstrous races, the powerbase for an ambitious orc warlord or a goblin pretender king.

This karg is on the larger side.

This karg is larger than most.

They typically have small ‘dungeons’ for the keeping of prisoners and storing of provisions.  In many cases, these dungeons have been expanded to store additional supplies for the long winters.  A handful of the old Imperial kargs were built on the ruins of even older fortifications, and the process of expanding their dungeons to accommodate more supplies exposed long-sealed depths.  Some lords may permit adventurers to more fully explore these deeper dungeons…in exchange for a share of any treasures recovered, of course.

This karg needs a little work.

And this karg needs a little work.

Finally, it should be noted that new stone kargs cannot be built.  No one, not even the dwarves, retains the knowledge to build such solid structures ( wooden palisade forts, on the other hand, can be easily built).  So, if you want a nice, stone fort, you need to go out and find one, and then you’ll probably have to take it from its current tenants.  This provides an opportunity for the players to get into the kingdom building game, if they so choose.  All those pre-positioned stone forts make nice targets for would-be warlords.

PFBB Campaign Idea – The Long Winter

September 21, 2015

About a year ago I posted some ideas on a Pathfinder Beginner Box campaign (which you can read here, if you’re interested), which threw out some ideas for house rules and the like.  This post builds on those ideas, fleshing out a campaign setting in greater detail.

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The Long Winter campaign is a fantasy post-apocalyptic setting using the Outdoor Survival map (once used as the wilderness map for early OD&D campaigns).  This is a depleted world, in a diminished age, with interesting implications for the structuring of society, military activity, economics and trade and, ultimately, adventuring.

So, a bit of background.  Centuries earlier an event known as the Cataclysm, the result of an apocalyptic war between the Old Empire and a distant rival kingdom, laid waste to the land.  The Rain of Colorless Fire (yes, I’m totally stealing that from Greyhawk) and the Spells of Ending destroyed nearly every major city, killing countless people.  And those not killed by the invoked armageddon soon faced the onset of a precipitous winter (a sort of magical ‘nuclear winter,’ if you will).  This was the beginning of the calamitous Long Winters, whence countless others, caught unprepared, starved and froze.

The Outdoor Survival Map

The Outdoor Survival Map

This region is beset by long, dark winters followed by relatively short growing seasons.  It is during these all-too-short seasons that the remnants of civilization must prepare for the coming winter.  Food is scarce, goods are scarce, and labor is scarcest of all.  Settlements tend to be small (the largest city on the map has but a few thousand inhabitants).  These isolated settlements are surrounded by a howling wilderness dotted with the ruins and relics of the Old Empire, and home to starving monsters that must themselves prepare for the coming winter (usually at the expense of the civilized).

The PCs will have about 6 to 7 months of adventuring time, depending on how close they’re willing to cut things (being caught in the wilderness by an early winter could be lethal).  Winter is spent mostly indoors, or at least in established settlements, providing lots of down time to prepare for the next adventuring season.  Town adventuring is also a possibility during winter, though in all likelihood winter will probably be adjudicated in an hour or so of play time.  But during the adventuring season, adventurers will have to acquire enough resources to support themselves during winter.

This is also a materially poor region.  Most treasure will not come in the form of coins and gems, but rather in the form of luxury goods that people can use: salt, spices, wines, tobacco, ingots of workable metal, etc.  Values for goods will vary from settlement to settlement dependent upon their specialties.  For example, one city may be the best place to buy alchemical goods, another the best place to find masterwork weapons, and a third the best for acquiring mounts.

Population levels are fairly low.  The totality of humanity numbers approximately 10,000, spread throughout the region.  Dwarves and elves number in the hundreds each.  The PFBB doesn’t include halflings, but I may add them.  If I do, they’ll number no more than a few hundred.

Set against them are the starving hordes of chaos (in the OD&D sense of Law vs. Chaos): tribes of orcs, goblins and worse, along with a multitude of monsters, and exactly one black dragon hidden somewhere on the map.  Orcs and goblins generally aren’t the farming type, so they’ll spend the short warm season raiding settlements and taking captives/food stock (they don’t mind a bit of cannibalism, if that’s what it takes to get through a rough winter).

Large armies are unheard of.  If all the forces of civilization combined their might, they could field approximately 1,500 professional soldiers, and perhaps a militia levy of another 1,000 or so.  But fielding such a “vast” force has never happened, and never will, as concentrating these disparate “armies” would stretch the region’s logistical capability to the breaking point (to say nothing of leaving so many settlements exposed and unprotected).

Far more common are small warbands, numbering in the dozens or scores.  A large “battle” might feature a hundred people total, accounting both sides.  Humanoid races spend the entire warm season raiding, but the civilized races typically have but a short marching period between planting and harvest, a month or two at best.  Military campaigns, such as they are, must be concluded swiftly, as every free hand will be required for harvest and the coming winter’s preparation.  As such, punitive expeditions into the wilderness are all but impossible, leaving, perhaps, a niche for foolhardy adventurers to fill.

Over time I plan to fill in the details with more posts.  Maybe someday I’ll actually be able to run this campaign. 🙂  Cheers.

PFBB Bestiary – Kobolds

September 5, 2015

D1-Cover-Small-DnS-filter_400I’ve converted a couple of kobolds for the Pathfinder Beginner Box.  The kobold boss is based on the Kobold Rogue from an adventure (I found the stats on d20pfsrd.com).  Please let me know if you have any questions, or if you notice any errors.  Cheers.


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