Shattered Star

The Seeker's Shard, Session 2
Shards of Sin

Summary

Having received a clue to the whereabouts of one Fenster the Blight, who purportedly had information related to finding Natalya Vancaskerkin, the PC’s set out to find Fenster in the Underbridge. Traveling down towards the shoreline, the streets of Magnimar took on a run-down demeanor and the characters stayed vigilant to avoid any trouble.

Asking around in the Underbridge, they finally located the slope-sided warehouse supposedly occupied by Fenster, and quickly cased the location. The party entered the warehouse, and taking in Fenster’s ramshackle board and boat hut, with sailcloth door, they laid 5gp into the dish near the broken chest and stood back to await Fenster.

Fenster appeared a couple minutes later, and the PC’s proceeded to ask him where they might find Natalya. Fenster indicated that she was no longer with the Tower Girls, and that she had set up shop with some new goons in a run-down building in the Underbridge. The PC’s duped Fenster into beleiving a 50GP gem was worth 100GP in order to get this information, and he also provided them with a map to Natalya’s location written with coal on parchment.

The players made their way to the location mapped out by Fenster, and began to study the building itself for points of entry. Upon approaching the front door, they were accosted by two thugs wielding crossbows. The thugs demanded to know what they were doing in the area, and promptly told them to find a new location to lurk about.

Responding quickly to this threat, Iolar Madaxe charged the front door, smashing through with brute strength. Unfortunately, he discovered that the room had no floor, only a board spanning the cesspit and reaching to the door on the far side of the room. He maintained his balance for a moment, but then hurtled face-first into the sludge.

Doug moved to engage the thugs outside, while Theon fired an arrow at them from in front of the building. Itor engaged with a Fire Bolt, and Elsbeth entered the building, rushing to the far door in the first room and flinging it open. Elsbeth was then fired upon by two goblins hiding behind stacks of crates and barrels in a corner of the room, at which point she decided to retreat. She shut the door and turned to run outside for healing, but then fell into the sludge next to Iolar.

Theon moved to engage the thugs outside, as Doug took two vicious shots from their morningstars. Seeing that Doug was in danger, Itor moved up and cast Cure Light Wounds to keep him in the fight. Enraged, Doug swung back with his weapon but was disarmed by one of the thugs!

Back inside the building, Iolar heard evil laughter from within the sewer pipes emptying into the room, and decided to wriggle through a pipe to injure some enemies. Elsbeth attempted to climb back up onto the board crossing the room, trying to reach Itor in order to be healed. After a couple tries, she finally made her way onto the board, and then began calling for Itor.

Outside against the thugs, Theon began to land shots with his weapons, slipping past the armor of the second thug. Doug then killed the second thug with a Shield Bash, and turned his attention to the other thug. Itor ran back to heal Elsbeth, and they then both turned to try to take out the last thug.

Inside the sewers, Iolar plopped out of the sewage pipe and encountered two goblins, dispatching them in short order. He then slipped back into the sewage pipe to make his way back to the party, who witnessed another Doug shield bash that killed the first thug.

Natalya vancaskerkin

Not wanting to battle their way through a decrepit, deadly building, the party searched the outside of the building for other ways in. Eventually, they decided that Theon would climb the crumbling chimney and descend via Ring of Feather Falling, while the rest of the party following Iolar and Doug through the boarded up windows out back.

Two attempts later and Doug and Iolar had broken through the windows out back, only to find themselves plunging into separate rooms, sans floors and filled with sewer sludge as well. Meanwhile, Theon had spotted a woman scribbling into a book in the hollowed-out chimney, and stealthed down to slip his blades up to her neck and back, forcing her and her two sewer goblin guards to surrender. The party discovered Natalya’s mad plans to take over the Sczarni gang in the city with her gang, and Iolar took a coppery shard from her that she claimed was an object of great power.

Shard of pride

Returning to Heidmarch Manor, the party showed the shard to Sheila, and soon learned that it was a fragment of a powerful artifact from ancient Thassilon. Iolar revealed the powers of this particular shard, while Sheila noted that it was part of a larger grouping of shards, that formed an artifact named the Sihedron. Sheila told the party about the power each shard had to point the way to the next piece, and Iolar focused on the shard and discovered that the next piece was surprisingly nearby, in an Irespan piling called the Crow. The party agreed to continue the quest for the next shard, while Sheila promised more information through her research the next time they spoke.

People and Places
Underbridge
Irespan
Heidmarch Manor
Magnimar
Pathfinder Society
Sheila Heidmarch
Venture-captain

Items
Shard of Pride

Thoughts

I thought this was another good session, despite being down two players. As a rule, I won’t ask players to play other player characters unless the lack of that character would have a big impact on party survivability. Essentially, if there are is no tank or healer, I’ll ask someone to play one of those roles to avoid TPK (total party kill). This is not to say that other player characters are not important, just that you can live without some DPS but you probably won’t live without a tank or healer.

Pace was good, and everyone was very patient again, given that I’m the primary source for rules knowledge at this point. If each of you could take a bit of time to read some of the rules (which you may find free on the Pathfinder PRD under Core Rulebook), this will really help the game move much more smoothly. At the very least, take a look at your race/class rules so that you know what your character is capable of doing.

Everyone is doing a good job of RP’ing their character, so keep it up. Keep in mind your alignment, the things that motivate your PC to do what s/he does, and what your goals are. This will help you develop your character within the campaign. I have one character background in my hands (thanks George!), so let me know if any of the rest of you create one or need help creating one.

We played until about 10:10PM, which is a good quitting time I think. That allows everyone to be home no later than Midnight and back into happy fun time work the next day. We’ll shoot for another 4 hour session next time, so that we can keep things moving along.


Housekeeping

I still need to get Iolar Madaxe and Elsbeth to choose Traits for their characters.

Iolar Madaxe

You may choose (1) campaign trait for the Shattered Star campaign.
Shattered Star Traits

You may choose (1) basic trait (Combat, Faith, Magic, Social).
Basic Traits

Elsbeth

You may choose (1) campaign trait for the Shattered Star campaign.
Shattered Star Traits

You may choose (1) basic trait (Combat, Faith, Magic, Social).
Basic Traits

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A Game Afoot in Magnimar, Session 1
Shards of Sin

Summary

Sheila heidmarch
The adventure began with each of the players being asked to visit Magnimar by Sheila Heidmarch, a Venture-captain with the Pathfinder Society. Upon arriving at Heidmarch Manor, the characters were asked by Sheila to wait in the lodge library/study while she finished up business with Koriah Azmeren, a renowned Pathfinder known as an expert on the Darklands.

Sheila asked that the characters take a look at a paradox box, which Koriah had brought back from the Darklands. The ladies then retired to a nearby room, leaving the characters to puzzle over the box, which sat next to a pile of notes on a table in the middle of the cluttered library/study. After roughly 50 minutes, the players were able to open the box, whereupon two Pugwampi sprang from the paradox box and began to destroy anything they could get their hands on in the library/study.

A short fight ensued, with the characters able to finally dispatch the loathsome creatures, with no small amount of destruction to the room and its contents, including the destruction of the main table by Doug the dwarven paladin. Inside the box they discovered 3 garnets, a ring of feather falling, and silver dagger, which Sheila allowed them to keep.

Pugwampi paradox box small

Sheila then detailed the reason for calling them to Magnimar, which was to hunt down an informant of hers, Natalya Vancaskerkin. The woman disappeared recently, after acquiring some item that Natalya had said would be of great interest to the Society. The characters were given three leads regarding where they might find information that would help them locate Natalya: a man named the Amazing Zograthy, rumors of Nidalese slavers abducting people late at night, and the city guard, which may have taken Natalya to the Arvensoar, the garrison for the city watch.

The characters set out to talk to the Amazing Zograthy, who told them that people have been going missing, but that the Sczarni are not involved. He also informed them that Natalya was recently a member of the Tower Girls, a gang of cat burglars.

The characters then visited the Arvensoar, where they learned that the city watch did not have Natalya in their possession, but that she had been last rumored to be staying down in the Underbridge region of the city, with a disreputable local named Fenster the Blight. At this point they headed to the Dancing Stag, an inn of common standing.

People and Places
Arvensoar
Darklands
Heidmarch Manor
Koriah Azmeren
Magnimar
Paradox Box
Pathfinder Society
Sheila Heidmarch
Venture-captain

Items
Ring of Feather Falling

Thoughts

The session went pretty well, given that we hadn’t played anything in over a year, and were playing an entirely new rule set. Everyone was fairly patient, and things should be smoother as we progress.

Keep in mind that the action, while largely driven by the players, is also partially in my control. At times you may feel like things are moving too slowly, but rest assured that the pace will pick up as needed so there’s no need to rush along and not enjoy the adventure. Sometimes the most fun is had when a player or three goes off the rails onto some rabbit trail. Sit back and enjoy the ride, the train eventually makes its way back onto the tracks.

I thought it was great that everyone made a good effort to roleplay while playing a Roleplaying Game. The more into your characters you get, the more into the NPC’s and monsters I’ll get, so keep it up. I’m working on a way to reward players who roleplay as much as possible.

We’d like to play longer next time, we had to cut it short this time due to work obligations the next morning for some. I think if we could play until at least 10PM, that would justify the longer drive many of us have.


Housekeeping

This week Itor, Doug, Nerisaris Darksbane, and Theon Baelish selected their character Traits, and I added them to their character sheets in Hero Lab. Now we just need to get Iolar Madaxe and Elsbeth set up and we’ll have all the initial character creation stuff out of the way.

Iolar Madaxe

You may choose (1) campaign trait for the Shattered Star campaign.
Shattered Star Traits

You may choose (1) basic trait (Combat, Faith, Magic, Social).
Basic Traits

Elsbeth

You may choose (1) campaign trait for the Shattered Star campaign.
Shattered Star Traits

You may choose (1) basic trait (Combat, Faith, Magic, Social).
Basic Traits

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