Campaign Log, Serpent's Skull

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Campaign Log, Serpent's Skull

Postby Keldoclock » Tue Sep 06, 2011 7:33 pm

Here's a campaign log I'm doing for this game of Pathfinder(D&D 3.75) I'm running with few friends. This is my first time GMing, and their first time playing any sort of tabletop RPG.

We're running the Serpent's Skull Adventure Path, which, among other things, will involve the players being shipwrecked, finding a lost ancient city, underneath which is a REDACTED, and fighting the REDACTED.

I've just ordered an assortment of goodies so that we can start playing the Saturday after they ship in.

Here are our players and their characters.
NAME: Jeff
AGE: 15
Character's Name: Vallader Van Liefde
Race: Human(Ulfen)
Class: Barbarian
Description:
Vallader was a young and brave warrior who had recently became one of the Royal Guards of his clan, when he was seduced by the wife of the tribe's hero(and therefore his rival). They fought a duel over her, and Vallader lost. The next day he found hero dead, and the wife turned out to be a demonic succubus. He fought the demon, but she escaped and he was found with a bloody hammer and a dead rival. He was exiled from the tribe, and nearly died in a blizzard when a great white dragon took pity on the miserable creature, and took him and dropped him into the Inner Sea, where he was found by a woman called Ieana(npc), and swore to be her bodyguard on her journey aboard the Jenivere.
Miniature:
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NAME:Marc
AGE:14, I think.
Character's Name: Seltyiel
Race: Half-elf
Class: Ranger
Description:
Seltyeil wandered the world for a long time, never able to truly find a home- humans saw him as another snooty bastard, and elves saw him as a disgusting savage throwback. He is fond of drinking and gambling, and this fondness got him into debt with the ship's captain, Alizandru Kovack, and he is currently working off his debt as a member of the ship's crew.
Miniature:
Image


NAME: Micheal
AGE: 14
Character's Name: Fordor the Short
Race:Halfling
Class:Cleric of Desna(god of luck, travelers, and stars)
Description:Fordor is a halfling cleric. He serves Desna where he can and wanders Golarion to bring her more glory. His homeland is Varisia, to be more specific the town of Sandpoint and it's temple to Desna.
Miniature:
Image


NAME: Victoria
AGE:15
Character's Name: Alice/Lotena
Race:Elf
Class:Sorceress
Description:Lotena is an elf from the mysterious Mediogalti Island, and is using the pseudonym of Alice in her interactions with the other PCs. She's a fencer, and has a frog familiar named Frog.
Miniature:
Image

NAME: Maria
AGE:14
Character's Name: Florian Treedancer
Race:Elf
Class:Bard
Description:Florian is a traveling musician from the Shackles. She was hired to insure the arrival of a certain cargo to Eleder(destination), and as such started with significantly more moneys then the other party members. She uses her lute, wits, and spells to get her out of danger, and failing that, she has a masterwork longsword(that she dual-wields with a short sword)
Miniature:
Image
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Postby RunsWithLegos » Tue Sep 06, 2011 9:21 pm

pretty nifty set up there!
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Postby Olothontor » Wed Sep 07, 2011 5:26 am

I'm also playing in a Serpent's Skull game with a Human Druid.

I'll try not to look at this too closely if you guys go faster than we do, I don't want any spoilers. Good luck!
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Postby Keldoclock » Thu Sep 29, 2011 7:51 pm

Our heroes began the journey today(an hour late) and it was... unusual. The characters ignored the NPCs, split up to go check out the Jenivere, died, went back as a party(still ignoring anything that hinted at RP), went and killed the sea scorpion there, when they finished they decided it would be a good idea to go get pizza(good) and then ignore the game and play halo(fun but still, >:( ).


The next session is at saturday at three, and I offered to just GM fiat them, rewrite their character sheets onto an easier to read format, give them all the loot and plot information on the Jenivere, tell them all the NPC information, raise all the NPCs to unfriendly, and shift the time to noon on the first day.


They have the Serpent's Skull map but utterly ignored it. Goddamn. Paid $15 for that. The one player who gave even half a shit has a charisma of 7, and at the end of the session wanted to strangle the others just as much as I did.


Am I doing something wrong or are these guys(and girls who show up an hour late) just being assholes?
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Postby Ross_Varn » Thu Sep 29, 2011 7:55 pm

Sounds to me like they came to jack around and hang out, which is what they proceeded to do. Still, it always sucks when a group yells you that they want to play and then screw off for the entire session.
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Postby Keldoclock » Thu Sep 29, 2011 7:57 pm

I think i might do OK if i ban phones at the table.
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Postby enders_shadow » Thu Sep 29, 2011 8:07 pm

Well, it's never fun to play with people who don't really want to be there, so I don't think banning phones is really going to get you anywhere, it's either not going to be followed, or people will end up getting pissed and leaving.
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Postby Keldoclock » Thu Sep 29, 2011 8:08 pm

Well shit, looks like I wasted $100 and spent 50 or so hours preparing for no reason.
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Postby knolli » Fri Sep 30, 2011 6:45 am

You could simply try to find another group. Not everyone has the patience needed for RPG. And I bet there are hunderds of people out there who woud appreciate the effort you make more than the ones you describe.

May I ask how old they are?

Also: What did you spend the $100 for?
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Postby Keldoclock » Fri Sep 30, 2011 11:36 pm

knolli wrote:
May I ask how old they are?

Also: What did you spend the $100 for?

Their ages are in the first post actually, and the money was for a Flip-Mat, minis, PDFs of the rules and AP, poster maps of 3 key locations, and some jungle grid maps. Donations covered about half of it and all the food, which is nice. Next session in 16 hours!

As for finding another group, playing with a bunch of 30yr olds, while possibly fun, would probably be vetoed by my parents.
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Postby knolli » Sat Oct 01, 2011 1:48 am

Keldoclock wrote:Their ages are in the first post actually.


Sometimes I just fail my spot check. :-P
Now I remember that when I read the ages and the character describtions the first time I had my doubts that you will enjoy the session. They only know RPG from computer games and are new to real P&P RPG, arn't they?

I was in a group like that once, too, but it didn't exist for a long time because some players simply started to ignore us IRL. They missed sessions, didn't respond to emails and phone. I'm not sorry for that.
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Postby Ben-Jammin » Sat Oct 01, 2011 6:28 am

Exactly how good is Pathfinder? I heard that it was very similiar to the D&D 3.5 Ruleset from which it was based. Is that so?
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Postby enders_shadow » Sat Oct 01, 2011 12:49 pm

Pathfinder is like D&D 3.5 but better. Skills and stuff have been greatly simplified (that's the main difference for me). I personally play with house rules for 3.5, which accomplishes pretty much the same things in terms of skill. Another main difference is the classes. they actually have some pretty neat new features which allow you to customize your character further than usual, with special skills and such. Imo, pathfinder char.s are a bit more powerful, so mixing them would not be advised. On the other hand, pathfinder still only has mostly core classes (as of last time I checked) so if you want variety, go with 3.5 (though it is a bit more expensive).
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Postby Keldoclock » Sat Oct 01, 2011 7:28 pm

This time, the game was fantastic!

We started an hour late and with two people missing, but things still went quite swimmingly. Through the mighty power of GM fiat, the castaways found themselves back at the beach with plenty of wonderful loot from the Jenivere, along with the two corpses they had missed. After some suggestion from me, they decided to travel along to coast to reach a point near the center of the island to make camp in. They discovered shipwreck D2, the "Tears of Grog", and explored it, leaving the other PCs and NPCs on the shore. Within they found plenty of treasure, including a lucerne hammer, several daggers, a handaxe, and 26 sling bullets,(and a tiny amount of money), but the greatest prize was the massive dire wolf pelt in the throne room of the barge- two of the player's eyes lit up at the prospect of making totally sweet capes out of it, but alas, the moment Fordor stepped up on the throne to grab the pelt, a massive axe swung out of it, removing about half his neck!

Having healed up and pressing on, the heroes(by this time another player had showed up, and so the party once more had a bard), the group marched straight into the nest of a pair of dimorphons, which quickly pushed Vallader into negative HP! They managed to survive (fortunately Jeffery used to play World of Warcraft, and knew that healing potions are red) barely, and finally reached their destination and made camp, quickly going off to bed. BUT NO! I sic'd a giant spider on them in the middle of the night, having only two people awake at the time(Ishirou, being on guard duty, and Florian, having had a 7hp poisoned bite being taken out of her leg). An absolutely absurd Charge action ensued, where Ishirou rolled a natural 20 on the attack roll, an 18 to confirm, and than dealt 26 points of damage (max rolls on both d10's!), absoluetly pulverizing the creature and securing a mightyfine 400xp for the party!


Then we played Slayer on Boardwalk and I whooped everyone's ass with rockets and a jetpack.
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Postby knolli » Sun Oct 02, 2011 11:44 am

Keldoclock wrote:We started an hour late,


Hence it was a normal gameing session.

The plot seems to be quite linear: Monster bashing, looting, next stage, monster bashing, looting...

An anecdote I like to tell:
Dwarf Durin is locked in a one-on-one fight against the skeleton king while all around them an epic battle is fought. What Durin doesn't know is that the magic crown the big skeleton is wearing makes it immune to normal attacks. So Durin attacks and attacks, but nothing happenes. He doesn't even hit the crown by accident, because he is too short. Then Durin has enough and goes berserk. In an nearly impossible attack he strikes with all he can muster. And crits! And roles maximum damage (12 on 2d6, with all bonusus resulting in about 60 HP) And again he hits the torso. So the Skeleton King takes no direct damage, but he is knocked back so far that he loses his crown. When he finally hits the ground again, the impact smashes it to pieces.
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