My 3rd Freeport campaign: Winds of Freeport

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Re: My 3rd Freeport campaign: Winds of Freeport

Postby Havard » Wed Jan 23, 2013 10:42 pm

A caecilia appeared, and provided some useful information about the island.


Isn't a Caecilia a kind of worm-like creature, or is that just in Classic D&D? :)

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Re: My 3rd Freeport campaign: Winds of Freeport

Postby timemrick » Thu Jan 24, 2013 2:33 am

It's also used to describe a monster that's kind of like a mermaid with cephalopod arms instead of a fish tail; here is an example I just Googled.

True20 Freeport: The Lost Island gives True20 stats for this kind of caecilia, and I've translated it to 3.5 in my conversion notes for the adventure.
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Re: My 3rd Freeport campaign: Winds of Freeport

Postby Big Mac » Thu Jan 31, 2013 11:04 pm

timemrick wrote:It's also used to describe a monster that's kind of like a mermaid with cephalopod arms instead of a fish tail; here is an example I just Googled.


A woman with lots of tentacles. I'm strangely drawn to her! :P

timemrick wrote:True20 Freeport: The Lost Island gives True20 stats for this kind of caecilia, and I've translated it to 3.5 in my conversion notes for the adventure.


Thanks Tim. That has "unlocked" another Freeport adventure for me. :cool:
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Re: My 3rd Freeport campaign: Winds of Freeport

Postby timemrick » Mon Apr 08, 2013 3:45 pm

After some more Earthdawn, and March being a bust schedule-wise, we've resumed Freeport again. We've carried out the changes I mentioned above: eliminating Insanity Points and the Knowledge (forbidden) skill, and converting the spirit shaman Larkspur to a druid.

---

Having finished off the sea hag and dead man's brain last session, the party planned to go back and harvest meat and shells from the pair of giant crabs they had fought on the way to the shipwreck. However, another pair of crabs had found the bodies, so the heroes took them on, too. The druid entangled the crabs and the party killed the one who got free. The other had reached the carrion, so ignored the fight until it was hit with missiles. The most memorable part of the fight came next: the hadozee ranger climbed a tree outside of the entangle effect so that he could glide across it and land on the crab's back. He stabbed it with his trident, then one of his companions shot the thing, killing it. He kept his footing as the crab collapsed--only to end his bit of epic-ness by failing his save against the entangle spell (which was immediately dismissed).

After butchering all the crabs, they explored the island further, trying to track down the merrow. They failed to find it, so called it a day and feasted on giant crab--with butter sauce provided by the druid's alter liquid spell [from Green Ronin's Advanced Player's Guide]. (Before now, Larkspur has mostly used this spell to avoid having to pay as much for cheap ale at the taverns they frequent. Needless to say, there were a lot of seafood jokes this session, including my own about Inacio's crab fork.)

That night, the ogre came to them, but was spotted before it climbed aboard the Half-Pint. It was a quick fight, in spite of the druid and wizard being very low on spells, and the ranger being downed by a couple spear hits from the merrow. (We've started using the Action Point rules from Unearthed Arcana recently, so Inacio used one to stabilize immediately at -8 hp.)

Everyone got a late start the next morning, as everyone needed more uninterrupted sleep in order to replenish spells or heal. They had to kill one more crab while they finished smoking the rest of the crab meat. [This was a hand-wave on my part to give them the tiny bit of XP they still needed to reach their next level.] Later in the day, they set sail back to Freeport and arrived there the next day.

---

Now that they're back in Freeport, they get to advance to 5th level. Larkspur can now bond with an animal companion; she was thinking about bonding with the ghost eater that hangs around their ship from time to time, but chose a penguin instead; that was her spirit guide before we changed her class, and she needs an aquatic animal to qualify for the prestige class she wants (wavekeeper, from Stormwrack). Inacio is now scout 1/ranger 4, so may acquire an animal companion as well (though with his 4 Cha, it may be challenging to train it). IIRC, his player was thinking of giving him a shark.

Possible adventure ideas in the near future include:
  • The PCs want to continue investigating the merfolk's disappearance from the Serpent's Teeth.
  • The Freeport Opera House's anniversary celebration is only 3 weeks away. Harissa recently attended a performance of one of Donadrien's other works, but I'm not sure if the party has any interest in attending the (assuredly cursed) final production.
  • The Great Hunt will be begin in about 2 months. IIRC, the druid is thinking of trying to interfere with that (but that may get the party in over their heads!).
  • Most of the party is CN, and willing to do quite nasty things to satisfy their greed, so a treasure hunt (such as "Cut-Throat's Gold" or parts of The Lost Island) would be an easy sell.
  • I have an idea for a brief jaunt into the sewers, where they'll meet a kurote and its monkey demon allies (both from Jade Dragons & Hungry Ghosts). I haven't decided whether to make this part of a treasure hunt, or simply have one of the demons steal something then go running off into the sewers (though I'm leaning toward the latter).
  • And they're due for another encounter related to the Society of the Velvet Whip [Cults of Freeport]. I have a couple of cult assassins to throw at them sometime when things grow a bit dull about town.
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Re: My 3rd Freeport campaign: Winds of Freeport

Postby timemrick » Thu May 09, 2013 10:25 am

Due to scheduling issues, we haven't played in a month, but our next session will be this Saturday. The party is curious about the mysterious curse on the opera that's about to be performed, so are going to go see it. (My wife, whose character has the lowest Wisdom in the group, was a great facilitator there! ;) )

The opera is loosely based on The King in Yellow, which is connected to the Cthulhu Mythos god Hastur (known as The Unspeakable One in Freeport). A member of the Brotherhood of the Yellow Sign has infiltrated the opera company to ensure that the secret ritual hidden in the play is performed properly. This will draw some of the god's essence into this plane, but I'm not planning on a full-blown avatar summoning or anything like that (they're only 5th level, after all!). There will be mayhem aplenty, though, as the serpent person unleashes madness-inducing spells on the actors and audience, and bizarre extraplanar monsters pass through the weakened veil between worlds. Even if the PCs don't tackle the monsters head-on, they'll have their hands full just trying to escape with their bodies and minds intact. :twisted:
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Re: My 3rd Freeport campaign: Winds of Freeport

Postby Havard » Thu May 09, 2013 11:33 pm

Love the idea of the King in Yellow Opera!

Would the cultist have set up various items linked to the ritual around the Opera Bulding? Perhaps givng the PCs to explore the Opera Basement?

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Re: My 3rd Freeport campaign: Winds of Freeport

Postby timemrick » Fri May 17, 2013 2:13 pm

The PCs spent some time acquiring suitable garb for the opera, and companions. Inacio asked Yahasha (the hadozee conjurer who they recently rescued from Crab Island), who in turn made sure that he would be as presentable as possible (a difficult feat, given he's an ape with a very poor Charisma). Harissa found an attractive young elf, Randal, who quickly fell prey to her charms and offered to take her. Marisol and Larkspur simply attended the opera with each other (and the druid's penguin) without any romantic overtures. Then they were off to the opera, full of curiosity about what form the curse on the play would take--and anticipating an enjoyable evening of schadenfreude.

At the Opera House, Rikard Burbage welcomed the audience, and exchanged some barbs with Councilor Nathan Grymes, one of the patrons who helped pressure the director into finally producing this delayed anniversary celebration.

"The Pallid Mask" is set in the kingdom of Yhtill, where the king has recently died and his queen has not yet chosen his successor. Act I consists of the debate between her and her three sons, who all loudly attest that they should be the next king. Their meeker sister attempts to make peace, but is largely ignored. Finally, the queen has had enough of the bickering, and declares that she will hold a ball celebrating her dead husband's legacy and the glory of their family. She will announce her decision about the succession there. As she finishes this aria, a city suddenly appears across the lake outside the throne room's windows.

During the intermission, Larkspur noticed that many of the musicians in the orchestra seemed anxious, but couldn't tell whether it's from nerves about the supposedly cursed play, or something more. Marisol recalled that the rumors about the cursed opera never talk about the end of the play. Meanwhile Harissa got better acquainted with Randal, who turned out to be a professional burglar, and had spent some time on boats. [Harissa's player wishes to take Leadership at 6th level, and wants a cohort who can provide some skills the party lacks, as well as help operate their ship. Assuming Randal survives the night, he will likely become that cohort.]

Act II opens with the ball, and rumors are flying about a mysterious masked stranger who has arrived in the city. This figure appears at the ball, and is questioned by the royal family. He speaks in riddles about a Last King who will soon appear. The queen commands him to remove his mask, but he claims to wear no mask. He is taken away to be tortured until he reveals who he is and what his business here is. (At this point, the orchestra starts to make several noticeable mistakes.) The ball breaks up, and the stranger is soon recalled to the throne room, where he is interrogated further, but strangely, no further mention is made of the mask he still wears. The queen is infuriated by his riddles and orders him executed. As he dies, strange lights come from the city across the lake, which now appears much closer. He proclaims that the Last King, who has a terrible Name, has arrived to claim Yhtill, which has now become Carcosa. The final lines of the opera are the royal family's cries of fear and despair about what their fates will be.

Upon the naming of the Last King (a name that Marisol recognized as one of the more obscure names for the Unspeakable One), some of the audience appeared to be entranced by the music and light show, while others fainted or screamed in terror. When the stranger died, the ghost of the composer, Fiarella Donadrien, appeared in one of the box seats. At the opera's conclusion, the stranger stood, revealing an amulet of the Yellow Sign, and Donadrien began singing her opera in the original Elven. At that point, both the audience and the orchestra turned into a panicked mob and stampeded out of the theater.

Harissa, being just a few boxes away from the ghost, acrobatically leaped across boxes to engage the ghost. Meanwhile the others, whose seats were on the ground level, took on the stranger, who cast a couple of spells upon himself, then at his attackers. They made short work of the Yellow Sign cultist, who was revealed to be a serpent person who had taken human form. Inacio made a point to stabilize the creature so that they could interrogate it later. The party then focused on the ghost, whose corrupting gaze only worked upon Randal--and nearly killed him, so he wisely left the fight to the others. Eventually they destroyed the ghost--for now, but she will almost certainly return to haunt the Opera House again.

The party now has an unconscious serpent person to smuggle out of the opera, as well as a random assortment of potentially valuable objects dropped by fleeing patrons. Rather than braving the mob clogging the exits, and anyone who might be responding to the emergency, they intend to look for a secret way out through the backstage and basement areas. Now that he's had some healing, Randal should prove invaluable there.
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Re: My 3rd Freeport campaign: Winds of Freeport

Postby timemrick » Wed May 29, 2013 10:14 pm

We had a very short session after dinner together on Memorial Day. The PCs stripped loot from the unconscious serpent person, and made a quick search for any valuables dropped by fleeing patrons. Then they heard footsteps heading back towards the theater, so abandoned their idea of questioning the cultist. They ducked backstage and cut some ropes to make a mess to cover their escape. One of the boits of dropped scenery landed square on the serpent person, which neatly avoided any possibility of it identifying the PCs if questioned. As they fled, they heard the tread of armored men (likely the Watch) and shouted curses (some of the recognizably Burbage's).

The two hadozee were able to keep their bearings as the party (and their dates) fled into the bowels of the Opera House. As they reached the levels of the sewers, they were attacked by a group of monkey-like creatures who stole some of their valuables before fleeing. Thanks to a well-timed web, the little monsters were caught and dispatched, and the items recovered. [These were monkey demons, from Jade Dragons & Hungry Ghosts. They're only minor nuisances for this group, particularly since they completely failed to bite anyone (which would have inflicted "monkey madness" on a failed save).] They then found the entrance to the sewers, and made their way back to the surface without incident, apart from one PC slipping and completely fouling her finery. Randal proved useful in opening locked grates into the tunnels and out to the street above, as well as helping Harissa pass their well-dressed group off as people who belonged in the Merchant's District, rather than the lawless ruffians they really were.

I had originally planned to have an additional encounter while in the sewers (with a kurote, also from Jade Dragons & Hungry Ghosts), but we ran short on time. My wife and I are moving in two months, so time for our group to meet before then is very limited. I need to limit myself to very short scenarios that we can finish up in a single session, to make sure we don't leave anything hanging until a next time that might not happen. Fortunately, 4/5 of our group will be moving together (my wife's coworker and her husband are also relocating to Lexington, KY), so we'll be able to pick up the game again eventually. However, that other couple is expecting a baby due a month or two after the move, so it will be a prolonged hiatus while they deal with becoming parents, my wife and I find other gaming opportunities, and I look for a recruit or two to fill gaps in the Freeport party.
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Re: My 3rd Freeport campaign: Winds of Freeport

Postby timemrick » Mon Jun 24, 2013 2:37 pm

We had our last session a few weeks ago, but I've put off posting about it because it was one of those sessions that illustrated the axoim, "No plan survives contact with the PCs." I've finally figured how to progress from where we ended the session, so here we go...

After disposing of their loot from their night at the Opera House, the party decided it was time to go scout out the Crimson Weal again. Harissa asked Randal if he wanted to join them, but he'd heard just enough about the place to think she was crazy, and begged off. The PCs went to Dreaming Street during the day, when they knew there would be next to no activity at the Weal, and climbed up to the roof, where they encountered the gargoyles again--this time, all four of them. After a long and very noisy fight, they slew them all.

Harissa and Inacio were just about to try the back door when it opened mysteriously. They entered, and were attacked by the same drow they had seen the first time they spied on the place. After he hit Inacio with confusion and Harissa with bestow curse, they retreated to the yard and the drow pursued. Larkspur and Marisol returned from their running battle with gargoyles about then, and after a long, bloody battle, the drow fell.

This is where we stopped, because I hadn't anticipated them taking down Gulimar, who is several levels above the party. I had intended him to scare them off, perhaps even killing or capturing a PC or two if they persisted in the face of a far superior foe--and reinforcing the idea that they weren't ready to take down the cult at the Weal yet--but I played him very poorly (and not nearly as ruthless as he should have been). Therefore, I needed time to work out contingency plans for what the PCs did next.

Technically, Gulimar reached -10 hp and is dead, but I've decided to fudge that if the PCs decide to stablize him in order to interrogate him. This didn't get them far the last time they questioned a Velvet Whip cultist, because the prisoner's vices and initiation left him unfazed by pain (and Gulimar is even more inured to it!), so they still don't even know the name of the cult or its goddess. But he may tease them with some cryptic tidbit.

Regardless of how they treat the drow (or his body), Leanna, Mistress of the Freeport cell, will do everything in her power to learn what happened and avenge her second-in-command's death. She has access to numerous divination spells to conduct her investigation, as well as fiend-summoning incantations to bargain for the means to work her revenge. The cult has summoned a glabrezu in the past, and if she can successfully bargain for use of its wish power, it might resurrect the drow, turn him into a vampire, or possibly give her Gulimar's memories of the Felomelonicon, depending on its mood and her offer. She is willing to go to any length to salvage the drow and/or his memories, up to and including congress with the demon to produce a half-fiend child. (Sure, she's evil and has no emotional attachments to anyone, but losing Gulimar's unique knowledge would be a crippling blow to her cell. And really, submitting to the demon is a fairly trivial step beyond what she's already suffered in Lowyatar's service.)

If the party decides to search the Weal, they are likely to find little that reveals the cult's secrets unless they enter the basement. I've decided that doing so will free a fiend currently bound in the magical research room, who will try to kill any trespassers then report to Leanna. The fiend will probably be a gladiatrix or darksphinx (from The Book of Fiends) because Hadriel's minions fit Lowyatar's pain-related teachings quite nicely, and I want to give them a good solid scare. If the party stays in the Weal too long, then they will be discovered there by numerous cultists coming to prepare for the evening's business. These cultists are nowhere near as powerful as Gulimar (only Leanna comers close), but they'll have the advantage of numbers and fanatic zeal--and they might catch the PCs low on spells and hit points. They won't encounter Leanna herself now--I want her to remain a mysterious shadow for now.

Assuming the party survives to get clear of the Weal, they'll easily have enough XP for their next level. However, they'll have to deal with repeated attacks from members of the cult, as well as Leanna's summoned assassins, as soon as she has the means to track them down. Ultimately, the PCs will have to leave Freeport in order to escape the cult's wrath--and even then, the attacks may continue, though far less frequently. This is all to the good, though, because the players and I both want to do more maritime adventures for a while--they do have their own ship, after all, even if it's a bit on the small side. Also, fleeing Freeport in fear of their lives seems a fitting place to stop until we can resume play sometime in the fall or winter (see my last post about our upcoming hiatus).

I'm not entirely sure what to do with the 5th player in our group once the rest of us move. We'll be experimenting with continuing my wife's Earthdawn campaign via Skype or Google Hangout so that we can keep that party intact. But I'm not sure I want to do that with Freeport; I haven't played or run a game that way before, and Marisol isn't as critical as her player's character is in the other game. To be honest, the most convenient solution would be her dying in the next and final session before the move--she is the squishy party mage, after all--or taken captive with no hope of immediate rescue. But I'm just going to see how things play out and work it out with her player if she manages to survive.
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Re: My 3rd Freeport campaign: Winds of Freeport

Postby Big Mac » Sun Jun 30, 2013 2:18 pm

timemrick wrote:To be honest, the most convenient solution would be her dying in the next and final session before the move--she is the squishy party mage, after all--or taken captive with no hope of immediate rescue. But I'm just going to see how things play out and work it out with her player if she manages to survive.


I'd go for taken captive, so that she can return in a one-shot if the player comes to visit. ;)
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Re: My 3rd Freeport campaign: Winds of Freeport

Postby timemrick » Sun Jul 07, 2013 7:57 am

The party allowed their summoned creatures to tear Gulimar to pieces. They then used detect magic on his gear, and kept scanning as they searched the first and second floors of the Crimson Weal. Apart from the drow's possessions, they found little of interest, so went down to the basement. Here, they had just enough time to take in the former slave auction room before a pain mistress materialized before them. Two of the party were already rather injured, and claw attacks from the fiend nearly killed them. This was their clue to flee with all possible speed, and they managed to escape the building as the pain mistress was squeezing up the stairs. As they fled, Larkspur spotted a winged figure flying up from the vicinity of the Weal and heading towards the Old City. [This was the pain mistress, polymorphed into a striga so that it could more quickly reach Leanna to report the intrusion and Gulimar's death.]

The PCs returned to their ship to rest and heal. The next day, the visited the Valiant Weasel, the magic shop they frequent. They had their new magical loot identified, and finally met the owner, Amanashaya, who wanted to see a scroll they had tried to sell last time, when she wasn't in. (Shaya is a retired PC from my previous Freeport campaigns; she is a cleric of the god of magic, as well as a mystic theurge and loremaster. She's usually too busy with research to manage the shop's day to day business, so delegates that to her two apprentices--one a cleric and one a wizard.) Shaya also identified the drow's holy symbol as that of Lowyatar, Bringer of Painful Delights. She had not been aware of any temple to this goddess in Freeport, so her curiosity was piqued. She also identified the pain mistress from their description.

The PCs are now 6th level (and most of the way to 7th, thanks to taking down Gulimar by accident). Harissa can now take the Leadership feat and recruit a crew for their ship, which will make seafaring adventures more manageable. However, thanks to the impeding hiatus, we have much to discuss about when and how the campaign will continue. FWIW, Marisol's player (the only one of us NOT moving to KY this summer) acknowledged that it may be a lot easier on the rest of us to recruit a replacement rather than try to continue the game with her online, and is OK with that.
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Re: My 3rd Freeport campaign: Winds of Freeport

Postby timemrick » Tue Jul 09, 2013 4:59 am

Also of interest, some of the PCs are on the verge of taking prestige classes:

  • Harissa (azhar corsair) will be continuing in her base class. (With Freeport's corsair class and sea dog PrC, the legendary captain PrC seems redundant, so she'll probably just advance indefinitely as a corsair.)
  • Inacio (hadozee scout/ranger) needs one more ranger level before he can qualify for tempest.
  • Larkspur (water-planetouched human druid) can start the wavekeeper PrC next level.
  • Marisol (azhar water-elementalist wizard) can start mystic navigator next level.

Which is all complicated by the fact that I'm almost certainly going to convert the campaign to Pathfinder once the new Freeport Companion is released around the end of this year. Some of the characters will be easier to convert than others: the azhar, corsair, and mystic navigator are in the existing PF Companion (so should get updated in the new book), but the hadozee and scout are from non-OGC sources.

Marisol's variant wizard specialty is my own creation, for which I'd substitute the water school from the Advanced Player's Guide. (Alternately, I'd let her player rebuild her as a water bloodline sorcerer.)

The undine (Advanced Race Guide) is pretty much exactly what Larkspur already is. Between that race and an archetype (either undine adept or aquatic druid) she should be able to mimic most of the wavekeeper's abilities without needing to convert the prestige class.

Inacio is trickier. We can just make him a single-classed ranger, and select feats to mimic the tempest's abilities. For his race, I'll have to see if his player would settle for making him a vanara (ARG); otherwise we'll have to tweak the race for use with the PF rules.
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Winds of Freeport: My Pathfinder Freeport campaign (2014-2016).
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Re: My 3rd Freeport campaign: Winds of Freeport

Postby Big Mac » Tue Jul 09, 2013 10:57 am

timemrick wrote:Inacio is trickier. We can just make him a single-classed ranger, and select feats to mimic the tempest's abilities. For his race, I'll have to see if his player would settle for making him a vanara (ARG); otherwise we'll have to tweak the race for use with the PF rules.


I'm sure a lot of SJ fans would love to see a Pathfinder conversion of the Hadozee. ;)
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Re: My 3rd Freeport campaign: Winds of Freeport

Postby timemrick » Sun Jul 14, 2013 4:44 am

If I do, I'll be sure to post a link here, Mac!
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Re: My 3rd Freeport campaign: Winds of Freeport

Postby timemrick » Fri Aug 16, 2013 9:38 pm

I recently bought Hero Lab for Pathfinder. While playing around with it, I decided to use the Race Builder rules from the Advanced Race Guide to create a template for hadozee:

HADOZEE

Type: Humanoid (hadozee), 0 RP
Size: Medium, 0 RP
Base Speed: Normal, 0 RP
Ability Score Modifiers: Standard (+2 Dex, +2 Wis, -2 Cha), 0 RP
Languages: Standard [Common, Hadozee], 0 RP

Racial Traits:
Defensive Racial Traits: Bond to the Land (jungle), 2 RP
Feat and Skill Racial Traits: Skill Bonus (+2 Acrobatics), 2 RP; Stalker, 1 RP
Movement Racial Traits: Climb, 2 RP; Gliding Wings, 3 RP

Total: 10 RP

The Hero Lab app doesn't seem to have an option for creating custom subtypes, so I'm using the monkey-like vanara subype within that program. 3.5 hadozee don't technically have a climb speed, but it's simpler and more elegant to just give it to them! This tweak and the ability score modifiers make them even more similar to the vanara, so it might be easier to just treat hadozee as a vanara subrace with Gliding Wings as an alternate racial trait replacing low-light vision and prehensile tail.

The existing Pathfinder Freeport Companion has rules for azhari that are identical to their 3.5 racial traits. I'm imagining these will be tweaked for the Kickstarter book, as all the standard races are slightly more powerful in PF. Meanwhile, here's the closest I can do with the Race Builder:

AZHARI

Type: Outsider (native), 3 RP
Size: Medium, 0 RP
Base Speed: Normal, 0 RP
Ability Score Modifiers: Standard (+2 Dex, -2 Wis, +2 Cha), 0 RP
Languages: Standard [Azharan, Common], 0 RP

Racial Traits:
Defensive Racial Traits: Energy Resistance (fire 5), 1 RP
Feat and Skill Racial Traits: Skill Bonus (+2 Acrobatics), 2 RP; Skill Bonus (+2 Climb), 2 RP; Skill Bonus (+2 Profession [sailor]), 2 RP
Offense Racial Traits: Frenzy*, 2 RP
Senses Racial Traits: Darkvision 60 Feet, 2 RP
Weakness Racial Traits: Elemental Vulnerability* (cold), -2 RP

Total: 12 RP*
(* 12 RP is in the Advanced range rather than Standard. The two asterisked traits are Advanced traits.)

Alternately, you could simply treat the azhar as ifrits (Advanced Race Guide), given that the two races are both descended from the efreet. The ifrit's fire affinity also seems to implement the "fire in the blood" theme better than the azhari as written does.

I haven't tried to convert Larkspur's race (water-planetouched human) with the Race Builder yet, but the simplest solution is to just make her an undine (Advanced Race Guide), which are PF's version of water elemental planetouched.
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Winds of Freeport: My Pathfinder Freeport campaign (2014-2016).
Time of the Tarrasque: My homebrew Pathfinder campaign (2017-).
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Re: My 3rd Freeport campaign: Winds of Freeport

Postby timemrick » Wed Aug 21, 2013 4:33 pm

Winds of Freeport is now on hiatus, as we moved at the end of July. The other couple relocating with us moved the following week, but are having a baby at the end of next month, so I don't anticipate running more Freeport until the end of the year--which, conveniently, is also when the Kickstarter book should be out.

Until the baby comes, our friends want to do some low-impact gaming, and learn more about Pathfinder as well. (They've only played once before, and we hadn't at all yet.) My Freeport game will be converted to PF after the hiatus ends, and my next campaign, "Time of the Tarrasque," will start out as a PF game. This short game gives me the opportunity to try out running the system without the pressure of maintaining a coherent campaign. It also gives my kids (ages 8 and 9) a chance to get some more gaming time in, too, without me having to prep something separately for them. The players have created characters (dwarf monk, elf druid, human rogue, gnome cleric, halfling sorcerer) and I've run them through their first short adventure. For this, I chose "The Deadly Mine," a short adventure from the Beginner Box GM Kit. (This is a free download at Paizo.com. I don't own the Beginner Box, but it's easy enough to look up full monster stats in the Bestiary or PF SRD.) It was just the right length to fill a couple hours and keep the kids' attention the whole time, with a nice variety between the handful of encounters. I'm currently trying to work out what's down the tunnel that goes off the edge of the map in order continue the adventure this weekend. I'm also reading through some other free Beginner Box demo encounters, and trying to find more free low-level adventures. Now's not really the time to spend money on anything longer, when we already know that we'll just have to put the game on hold--or continue without two players--in a few weeks.

Meanwhile, I've also resumed the solo Greek myth BESM game that I run for my wife, and we've fast-forwarded through the five years in-game that Kynthia took off from questing in order to raise the children she bore at the end of our last pre-hiatus session. She's been given her next quest, to save the life of an old enemy who was exiled years before for crimes against Kynthia's extended family. I wanted a nice, sticky moral dilemma to get us off to a drama-laden start, and it's working nicely. :D
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Winds of Freeport: My Pathfinder Freeport campaign (2014-2016).
Time of the Tarrasque: My homebrew Pathfinder campaign (2017-).
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Re: My 3rd Freeport campaign: Winds of Freeport

Postby Big Mac » Sat Oct 19, 2013 11:28 am

timemrick wrote:Winds of Freeport is now on hiatus, as we moved at the end of July. The other couple relocating with us moved the following week, but are having a baby at the end of next month, so I don't anticipate running more Freeport until the end of the year--which, conveniently, is also when the Kickstarter book should be out.


That is a surprisingly well planned baby for two Freeport fans to be having! Tell me you didn't both sit down with a calculator and work out this was the best non-gaming slot to fit a baby into! :shock: :o ;)

timemrick wrote:Until the baby comes, our friends want to do some low-impact gaming, and learn more about Pathfinder as well. (They've only played once before, and we hadn't at all yet.) My Freeport game will be converted to PF after the hiatus ends, and my next campaign, "Time of the Tarrasque," will start out as a PF game. This short game gives me the opportunity to try out running the system without the pressure of maintaining a coherent campaign. It also gives my kids (ages 8 and 9) a chance to get some more gaming time in, too, without me having to prep something separately for them. The players have created characters (dwarf monk, elf druid, human rogue, gnome cleric, halfling sorcerer) and I've run them through their first short adventure. For this, I chose "The Deadly Mine," a short adventure from the Beginner Box GM Kit. (This is a free download at Paizo.com. I don't own the Beginner Box, but it's easy enough to look up full monster stats in the Bestiary or PF SRD.) It was just the right length to fill a couple hours and keep the kids' attention the whole time, with a nice variety between the handful of encounters. I'm currently trying to work out what's down the tunnel that goes off the edge of the map in order continue the adventure this weekend. I'm also reading through some other free Beginner Box demo encounters, and trying to find more free low-level adventures. Now's not really the time to spend money on anything longer, when we already know that we'll just have to put the game on hold--or continue without two players--in a few weeks.


Have you looked at the Pathfinder organised play stuff? I created an [Golarion] Other Pathfinder Society Websites sticky for the Pathfinder forum.

There are a lot of free downloads. Some of them (that are optimised for organised play) might be less useful, but there are a few free adventures in there. So if you get through the adventure you have, you could play with one or more of those. You might also be able to raid the 10 factions that Pathfinder Society uses, if you want to create some sort of context for your games. (You might even be able to import one or two of those factions into your future Freeport games.)

timemrick wrote:Meanwhile, I've also resumed the solo Greek myth BESM game that I run for my wife, and we've fast-forwarded through the five years in-game that Kynthia took off from questing in order to raise the children she bore at the end of our last pre-hiatus session. She's been given her next quest, to save the life of an old enemy who was exiled years before for crimes against Kynthia's extended family. I wanted a nice, sticky moral dilemma to get us off to a drama-laden start, and it's working nicely. :D


The five-year time jump for a baby seems like art imitating life. :)

Do you have a thread for your Greek myth games in the Homebrew Worlds forum yet? :)
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Re: My 3rd Freeport campaign: Winds of Freeport)

Postby timemrick » Sat Oct 19, 2013 6:44 pm

Big Mac wrote:That is a surprisingly well planned baby for two Freeport fans to be having! Tell me you didn't both sit down with a calculator and work out this was the best non-gaming slot to fit a baby into! :shock: :o ;)

It wasn't quite that planned out. But we'd known since late last year that we and they would be relocating this summer, so my Freeport game would need to have at least a brief hiatus due to the move--and that we'd need to work out what to do about the one player who wasn't moving. Then our friends got pregnant, with a due date two months after the move, so the hiatus will necessarily be rather longer. (We have two kids of our own, and recall how just disruptive becoming parents was to our social lives.)

BTW, GR has just announced that the Freeport book won't be ready until spring, due to Chris Pramas' medical problems the past few months (but which are hopefully at an end since his surgery). I've started talking with my players again recently about wanting converting to PF, and they've said they've certainly be up for converting their characters for a short trial-run adventure. We don't know yet whether we'll do that before or after the Freeport book is published, but with that project delayed, I'm thinking the trial run will probably be well before that. If that goes well, we'll move forward, and can retrofit some of the new material later, when it's available.

Big Mac wrote:Have you looked at the Pathfinder organised play stuff? I created an [Golarion] Other Pathfinder Society Websites sticky for the Pathfinder forum.

There are a lot of free downloads. Some of them (that are optimised for organised play) might be less useful, but there are a few free adventures in there. So if you get through the adventure you have, you could play with one or more of those. You might also be able to raid the 10 factions that Pathfinder Society uses, if you want to create some sort of context for your games. (You might even be able to import one or two of those factions into your future Freeport games.)

I intend to join in on some local Pathfinder Society stuff as soon as I can work it into my schedule. (I recently started a new job, so am still getting acclimated to that.) I've read the PFS handbook and created my first character, I just have to find the time and opportunity to play him.

I don't intend to use any Golarion-specific material in my Freeport game. For Winds, I'm using the World of Freeport setting from the Pirate's Guide. And I'm unlikely to ever run a PF game set in Golarion; with the exception of Freeport, I'm just not very interested in running games in other people's worlds. Playing is different--I just need to know enough about the world to play my one character.

Big Mac wrote:The five-year time jump for a baby seems like art imitating life. :)

Do you have a thread for your Greek myth games in the Homebrew Worlds forum yet? :)

The out-of-game hiatus for the move seemed to be a convenient place for an in-game jump. We'd wrapped up the heroine's unfinished quests, and I needed time to plan out the next ones, so felt the time was right for a break to start a family. And there's no way she would've left home again until they were at least a few years old, so I took the opportunity to advance the timeline of the various lands she's visited (and will again). It also means we're now much closer to the more interesting parts of the Trojan War, which started shortly before the campaign did, but has only minimally concerned the heroine so far. That, of course, will change fairly soon!

And no, I don't have a thread for this game in the Homebrew section. My wife used to have an in-character journal on LJ, but took it down some time back because she decided she wasn't entirely comfortable sharing all the details of the game. (It's definitely not PG!) And at this point, we've played over 150 sessions of this game, so I'm not really sure where I'd start for trying to discuss it at any real length here. I do have a lot of material online at my Thastygliax's Vault wiki, but most of it is GM-only material that's not directly linked to the public pages, so that my wife won't see it.

OTOH, there's a good chance I'll post to Homebrewed Worlds about my "Time of the Tarrasque" game when that's ready to start play. I already have a lot of material for it on a wiki, and will probably provide more links than text when referring to that (especially since the wiki is where I'll be doing all the editing). At the very least, I expect to post some summaries of how the campaign progresses, as I've done here for "Winds of Freeport."
Tim Emrick, Green Ronin Freebooter and Keeper of the Freeport Errata
Winds of Freeport: My Pathfinder Freeport campaign (2014-2016).
Time of the Tarrasque: My homebrew Pathfinder campaign (2017-).
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Re: My 3rd Freeport campaign: Winds of Freeport

Postby Big Mac » Sat Oct 26, 2013 3:22 pm

Thanks for the update. Good luck with the new baby and the new game. :)

I'm not sure if your wife would be interested, but I'm pretty sure that Blogger allows people to flag blogs as being adult, so that people have to click past a warning to see the content. So if LJ being too "open" is the problem and she liked the idea of doing a journal, maybe she could do one there.
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Re: My 3rd Freeport campaign: Winds of Freeport

Postby Nevermore » Sat Oct 26, 2013 11:21 pm

I've read all yout playreports and seems a nice campaign. :D
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Re: My 3rd Freeport campaign: Winds of Freeport

Postby timemrick » Thu Jan 16, 2014 1:55 am

Our friends' baby is 3 months old now, so they're starting to find their balance a little bit. Enough to be raring to game again, anyway! :) We've done a little bit of 1st-level Pathfinder, to get more experience with the system, and so my kids (9 and 8) can join in the fun. We'll be doing more of that before going back to Freeport. (The kids won't be joining us for that. The party is CN rather than PG!) We also need to recruit a new player, to fill the gap left by the one person in the group who didn't relocate to Kentucky.

It's likely to be another month or two before we do more Freeport, but we're converting characters to PF now. I''m letting them rebuild their characters as they see fit (within reason) to take advantage of the differences between the two systems. We're doing point-buy ability scores, and they get the standard PC wealth for their level (6th).

For races, we went the simplest route and decided that azhari are the same as ifrit, and the water planetouched human is an undine (Advanced Race Guide). The hadozee is a vanara with a couple of racial traits (low-light vision and prehensile tail) swapped out for gliding wingflaps (using the gliding wings alternate racial trait for kobolds in the Advanced Race Guide). We'll be using the original Pathfinder Freeport Companion's corsair class (which is almost word for word identical to the 3.5 version) and will tweak that as needed when the new book comes out this summer. The hadozee ranger's level of scout is now rogue. The druid is still a druid, but her companion will use the Totem Guide archetype (Animal Archive), which will nicely evoke a little of the PC's original build as a spirit shaman before we retconned her into a druid.

The absent player's azhari water-wizard will become a NPC. The Advanced Player's Guide includes a Water School very close to the elementalist I created for her in 3.5, but I've rebuilt her as an aquatic bloodline sorcerer (same book) instead. It fits the character's intended "weather witch" schtick better. (And I ruled out the witch class for other reasons.)
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Winds of Freeport: My Pathfinder Freeport campaign (2014-2016).
Time of the Tarrasque: My homebrew Pathfinder campaign (2017-).
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Re: My 3rd Freeport campaign: Winds of Freeport

Postby timemrick » Sun Mar 16, 2014 3:51 pm

I think we'll be starting up again in April (depending on how much my work schedule changes then). Meanwhile I'm looking through my wiki to flag info that needs to be updated to Pathfinder.

While working in that, I came across a note I made about the reincarnation spell. The party druid will gain access to that spell next level (and will likely need to use it at some point! :twisted: ) but the table in the PH doesn't seem suitable for our group. It's designed for humanoids, but the party only has one humanoid PC (the hadozee) while the other three are native outsiders. So I added a page to the wiki for my alternate list, which includes the PCs' races plus a few other additions to give the spell more Freeport flavor. I'll be updating that to Pathfinder eventually, but thought I'd share this version now.
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Winds of Freeport: My Pathfinder Freeport campaign (2014-2016).
Time of the Tarrasque: My homebrew Pathfinder campaign (2017-).
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Re: My 3rd Freeport campaign: Winds of Freeport

Postby timemrick » Fri Mar 28, 2014 10:44 pm

The Earthdawn game that my wife runs is currently on hold while she deals with class work, but should resume in May. Meanwhile, one of the other players will be running us through "The Shadow's Dungeon" (from the Gamers 3 Kickstarter), which will help us get more familiar with the PF rules. Once that's finished (May?), I'll be starting up Winds of Freeport again.

I've converted most of the public pages on the campaign wiki to Pathfinder (link in my sig). The players are still converting their characters, so pages for their new stat blocks will be created once that's done. The old v.3.5 pages are still on the wiki; follow the link at the very bottom of the home page to get to those. The GM-only pages (which are not linked to the home page) still need updating, but very few of those are high priority, so I'll convert them as needed.

I plan to start off with a stand-alone encounter or two, to get us used to how the party works in PF (and also to see how urgently we need a new fourth player). One of those scenes will be an attack by Velvet Whip Society assassins trying to take revenge on the PCs for killing their Master. Attacks by the cult will escalate further as time goes on, but the party has already figured out that spending most of their time at sea is the wisest course right now. I'm converting "Cut-Throat's Gold" from Tales of Freeport to provide their next sea adventure.
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Winds of Freeport: My Pathfinder Freeport campaign (2014-2016).
Time of the Tarrasque: My homebrew Pathfinder campaign (2017-).
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Re: My 3rd Freeport campaign: Winds of Freeport

Postby timemrick » Thu Jun 12, 2014 11:51 pm

Our GM for The Shadow's Dungeon says we only have another session or two left to wrap that, so we've picked up discussion of Freeport and Earthdawn again.

We're bearing down on getting the Freeport PCs' conversions finished, especially now that the preview draft of the new Freeport book has been released to backers. (YAR!!) They had reached approximately at the midpoint of 6th level in v.3.5, so I'm having them rebuild their PCs in Pathfinder with the average of 6th and 7th level XP and wealth. At the moment, it looks like the PCs will translate as:

  • Inacio: vanara ranger 6, with the urban ranger and skirmisher archetypes. To preserve the hadozee feel, I'm letting him swap prehensile tail and low-light vision for the kobolds' gliding wings alternate racial trait. His animal companion will be an elasmosaurus--which at his next level, will grow big enough to ride.
  • Larkspur: undine druid 6. Probably no archetype, since the thematically appropriate ones (undine adept and aquatic druid) delay wild shape and/or animal companions. (Also, she's choosing alternate racial traits that give her a swim speed and water breathing, so the aquatic druid feature's are largely redundant.) Her animal companion will be a crocodile with the totem guide archetype.
  • Harissa: azhari or ifrit freebooter 6. Freebooter is the PF version of the corsair class. The player and I still need to decide whether we want to use azhari or ifrit for this game; they're nearly identical, but the differences matter to the character.
  • Marisol: azhari or ifrit wizard 6 (water school). Marisol will be an NPC from now on, and her race will be the same as Harissa's (the campaign will have either azhar or ifrits, but not both). She will have a bonded item instead of a familiar.

We're also discussing how we want to handle the need for a 4th PC. We may keep Marisol, and have the continuing players take turns running her, or create a new NPC for that purpose. If the latter, it will be someone that fills the arcane role, but kept as simple to play as possible so they can focus on their own PCs. (We did that in The Shadow's Dungeon game after deciding that my kids lacked the focus needed to continue playing.)

Meanwhile, I definitely want at recruit at least one more player into our group before we start my "Time of the Tarrasque" campaign sometime later this year. The four of us have been playing together for years, so we want to make sure we find someone whose personality and playing style is compatible before inviting the into a game that will (hopefully) last for years. (I want to finally run a game that takes the PCs from 1st to 20th level, possibly even higher.) We'll be trying to schedule some one-shots with local gamers we know. One possibility is to have them play a guest character (or the committee-run NPC) for a session or two of Freeport. If that works out well, then we might recruit them for Freeport full-time until we switch to the new campaign.
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Winds of Freeport: My Pathfinder Freeport campaign (2014-2016).
Time of the Tarrasque: My homebrew Pathfinder campaign (2017-).
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Re: My 3rd Freeport campaign: Winds of Freeport

Postby timemrick » Thu Jun 19, 2014 12:37 am

We've decided to go with azhari, since the skill bonuses (among other things) are very useful to both sailor PCs.

Besides converting Cut-Throat's Gold, I'm working on some ideas for a crazy all-monkey scenario to throw Inacio's way someday. I need to look over the white gorillas section from Black Sails and see what I can plunder from that, but the sheer number of ape-like monsters in the first four PF Bestiaries is providing plenty of inspiration without it.
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Winds of Freeport: My Pathfinder Freeport campaign (2014-2016).
Time of the Tarrasque: My homebrew Pathfinder campaign (2017-).
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