Ptolus: The Legend of Longcoat





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  1. #1
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    Ptolus: The Legend of Longcoat

    It is the first day of Moons in the 720th year since the founding of the Tarsisian Empire. It is raining in Ptolus.

    Those that make their living on the Whitewind Sea had hoped that winter would bring relief. It was a rough summer: Unusually warm weather meant more Nallsman longboats than normal raiding up and down the coast, along with increased pirate activity. The dwarf pirate Firebeard sacked and burned a ship moored in the Bay of Ptolus. And the neighboring sahuagin kingdom beneath the waves used summer storms as cover for yet more raids on coastal settlements and sahuagin were repeatedly found within Ptolus itself.

    But in the Docks quarter of Ptolus, winter has brought no relief. Savage murders are taking place and the dockworkers, shipwrights, fishermen and prostitutes are all saying the same thing: After more than 100 years, Longcoat is back.

    In IA 596, a serial killer killed five prostitutes living and working down on the Docks. Dubbed "Longcoat" by the city's broadsheets after the description of an alleged eyewitness, Longcoat was never caught and, after the fifth murder, vanished without a trace.

    The shade of his last victim, Coraithe Whitetree, has been known to wander Salt Spray Street near her now-empty hovel, but of Longcoat himself, there never was any sign.

    But when the savage attacks began over the last four weeks, his name was the first to spring to many lips.

    The City Watch can't be bothered to do anything about it: "It's just whores," they say. But this time, the murders haven't been confined to prostitutes. Others are dying as well and even the rowdy crowd at the Savage Shark stagger home in pairs.

    "Someone" has to do something about it, everyone says.

    That someone is you.
    The Legend of Longcoat is a Ptolus adventure for six first-level characters. It's going to be tough, so six alternates will also be chosen and called up if the first line die.

    The adventure based on Goodman Games' The Legend of the Ripper. A number of elements have been changed to fit the adventure into the Ptolus setting (and for my personal tastes), but even so, if you own, have read or have played the Goodman Games module, please do not submit a character.

    The Ptolus Players Guide is mandatory reading and is available as a free PDF file at DrivethruRPG or for a modest sum at many game stores. All player characters are presumed to be natives of the city, although if someone wants to play a non-native, come up with a plausible reason for the outsider to be living in the Docks quarter. Non-Ptolus characters do not get the free skill bonuses listed in the Player's Guide, though.

    Character Creation:

    Characters for this adventure are 25-point buy.

    I'm looking for mostly an old school feel here. All the classes and races from the Players Handbook are allowed, although please see the Ptolus Player's Guide for tweaks to elves in particular. For those wanting to go beyond the core books, the Darfellan race from Stormwrack is available, as are spells and feats from the book. Rogues also get automatic proficiency with cutlasses from Stormwrack.

    For both the main party and the alternates, I will be choosing one fighter, one cleric, one wizard or sorcerer, one rogue and two additional characters of other classes. (Sorry, no urban rangers or urban druids this time around.)

    Although this is an urban adventure, it is based on a Dungeon Crawl Classic, so expect dungeon crawling of a sort at some point. Do not make characters whose sole area of expertise is social interaction, as they'll die horribly early on.

    Your characters start with maximum hit points and average gold for your class. Should you level up (and those that survive should), you will gain average hit points for your class, rounded up to the next nearest whole number.

    Any alignment is available, but a focus on cooperation will be necessary. No Chaotic Disruptive characters: Your goal is to stop the killings on the Docks and you will need to be able to work together to get that done.

    For clerics and other characters that need a religion, Lothian or any other god from the setting is available. If you do not want to choose Lothian (detailed in the Players Guide) but don't know what god you're looking for, let me know what sort of god you're interested in, and I'll provide several appropriate choices to choose from.

    Don't go nuts making a detailed background -- the focus here is on playing, not crafting a novel-ready background -- but do establish how your character would be likely to know the others, including the alternates.

    You also need to know why your character would be one of those stepping forward to uncover the truth about the murders and put an end to them. Maybe you know a victim, maybe your gang gets protection money from the prostitutes, or maybe you're one of the few truly dedicated members of the Watch.

    I'll be picking interesting characters that have a Ptolus and/or Docks "feel" and my knowledge of how prolific a poster someone is (some people from other boards might also be peeking in here) will also play a factor.

    Even if you have a copy of your character stored somewhere else online, the official characters for this adventure are to be posted in the Rogues Gallery thread.

    This is not a first come, first serve character selection process. Character sheets will need to be pasted into this thread by November 27. (I will post the simplified format I'm looking for in the next day or so.) I will make the selection of the six characters and six alternates by December 1 and begin the game that weekend. Everyone should be prepared to hit the ground running by December 4 so that the adventure can be underway in earnest well before the height of the holiday season.

    House rules:

    We will not be using a battlemap, or a grid or any similar tools. Any maps you make will be your own and will be your responsibility. If a description is unclear on my part, ask me to clarify and I'll gladly do so.

    We will be using almost no Attacks of Opportunity, other than moving through an enemy's space or casting spells within melee range.

    Initiative order is based on how fast you post: By the time I return to the post to add the enemy's action during combat, anyone who posted will be going first and in the order that they posted. If you didn't get there before me (and I will be allowing a few hours between combat posts, except when everyone has already posted), then your action will take place after the enemy's. This isn't intended to penalize people who get busy in their offline lives, but it's to encourage people to check regularly. Empty placeholder posts don't count as posts, although posts consisting of readying an action do.

    Wizards and sorcerers can have their familiar for free, including any of the ones from Stormwrack but penguins. (Sorry, penguin lovers.) I advise against choosing a familiar that can't leave the water.

    I will do all the rolling and post successes and failures, along with a running damage tally.

    Posting:

    I'm looking for everyone to post at least once a day on weekdays and to try and post at least once every weekend and at least every other day during the thick of the holidays. This is not going to be one of those ENWorld pbp games that never reaches the end. The party, possibly with alternates having swapped in, will reach the end of the adventure.

    Although we're still playing by D&D rules (as modified in the House Rules above), coolness counts. If you come up with a cool way to describe what your character is doing or you come up with a clever solution to a problem (including in combat), it will result in a bonus (normally +2, but if you dazzle me, it could be much higher).

    If you want to use colored dialogue for your character, as per ENWorld convention, knock yourself out, but please make sure it reads clearly on a dark background.

    This isn't a paper for English class, but use whole words in all posts. This isn't an IM conversation with your buddies.

    The characters

    FIGHTERS: Jossen Vanter, Ada Lichtermann
    CLERIC: Maugra Ironcrane, Milana
    ROGUE: Garn (Grant MIA in the haunted house)
    SORCERER/WIZARD: Garnet, Yaztromo Denmel
    OTHER #1: Jarem Thurinor
    OTHER #2: Vanden, Aramil Nailo

    MIA: Grant, Akilu
    Last edited by Whizbang Dustyboots; Friday, 23rd March, 2007 at 08:14 PM.
    http://www.enworld.org/forum/4e-discussion/213067-unified-theory-gnomes.html

 

  • #2
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    I'm interested in a Ptolus game, I'll check out my player's guide when I get a chance. If I recall correctly they mention Littorians in the PG but don't provide stats. I have Arcana Unearthed but not Ptolus, would the Littoran stats from there be OK?
    PBP games:

    Death in Freeport IC OOC Adversaries RG Info
    Wildwood IC Old IC II OOC RG Info Old IC Monsters
    Dwarven Vengeance Monsters

    ToEE Sir Merrick OOC IC Old IC
    RToEE Inquisitor Miltiades OOC IC Old IC
    Ptolus Longcoat Garn OOC
    Against the Giants Voadam IC OOC
    Pool of Radiance Kordunn IC Combat OOC Info
    Invasion of Mori Snargle fiendish troll rogue IC OOC
    Red Hand of DoomSir Conrad Cyr Tiefling Soulknife


    Old Games

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    If not then I'll look over the player's guide for their variant elves, or just make a half-orc rogue.

    Son of one of the murder victims should work well for a straight forward background.
    PBP games:

    Death in Freeport IC OOC Adversaries RG Info
    Wildwood IC Old IC II OOC RG Info Old IC Monsters
    Dwarven Vengeance Monsters

    ToEE Sir Merrick OOC IC Old IC
    RToEE Inquisitor Miltiades OOC IC Old IC
    Ptolus Longcoat Garn OOC
    Against the Giants Voadam IC OOC
    Pool of Radiance Kordunn IC Combat OOC Info
    Invasion of Mori Snargle fiendish troll rogue IC OOC
    Red Hand of DoomSir Conrad Cyr Tiefling Soulknife


    Old Games

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    Oh I've been waiting for you to start this game! I'll put together a character soon. leaning towards a cleric of Tuen.

    Voadam, unfortunately the Ptolus Litorians are +1 LA as are the Harrow Elves. The Cherubim Elves are +2. The Shoal elves are regular elves.
    Erekose13
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    [Living 4th Edition]
    Callen Stewart Human Wizard 8
    Beyrk Verkunder Hobgoblin Bard 3

    [Living Eberron]
    Gogmorthak d'Tharashk Orc Barbarian 6

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    Just wanted to say good luck with what will more than likely turn out to be a wonderful game. I would have very much liked to put in to participate, but I just cannot afford the download at the moment. Good luck to everyone!

  • #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by CanadienneBacon
    Just wanted to say good luck with what will more than likely turn out to be a wonderful game. I would have very much liked to put in to participate, but I just cannot afford the download at the moment. Good luck to everyone!
    CB, the player's guide is a free download. Go to www dtrpg . com instead of rpgnow.com for this and look under Malhavok then ptolus.

    On rpgnow it is $3.00 on dtrpg it is free.
    Last edited by Voadam; Wednesday, 15th November, 2006 at 10:13 PM. Reason: enworld changed my link to the rpgnow one
    PBP games:

    Death in Freeport IC OOC Adversaries RG Info
    Wildwood IC Old IC II OOC RG Info Old IC Monsters
    Dwarven Vengeance Monsters

    ToEE Sir Merrick OOC IC Old IC
    RToEE Inquisitor Miltiades OOC IC Old IC
    Ptolus Longcoat Garn OOC
    Against the Giants Voadam IC OOC
    Pool of Radiance Kordunn IC Combat OOC Info
    Invasion of Mori Snargle fiendish troll rogue IC OOC
    Red Hand of DoomSir Conrad Cyr Tiefling Soulknife


    Old Games

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    Delighted! For some reason when I read Whizbang's OP, I transposed things in my head and came away thinking that the PDF was available for a small fee. Must have got fee and free mixed up. Thanks for the correction and the link(s).

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    Bizarre. My link worked previously but now points to RPGNow. Sorry for the confusion; I meant to link directly to the free version of the file.

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    Bill "Longshanks" Schnitz
    Human Fighter 1 (with intent to go straight sorcerer in future levels)
    Neutral (leaning toward adding a good descriptor, but will depend upon what group of people Bill falls in with)

    Stats:
    Spoiler:

    Str 12
    Dex 14
    Con 12
    Int 10
    Wis 9
    Cha 15

    Skills: Intimidate, Climb. Future sorcerer skills will be: Bluff, Concentration, and Spellcraft.

    Feats: Dodge, Mobility, Combat Casting.

    Equipment: Bill currently wields the scimitar given him by the syndicate. As a fighter, he's proficient in the weapon's use. It's not a fancy weapon but it serves its purpose. Other equipment to follow if Bill is selected for play.

    Spells: At 2nd level, Bill will take his first level in sorcerer. He'll select the following spells at that time:
    0-lvl: Detect Magic, Read Magic, Disrupt Undead, Light.
    1-lvl: Ray of Enfeeblement, and one other 1st-lvl spell to be determined depending on party need/Bill's character development.


    Background:
    Spoiler:
    A native of Ptolus, Bill Schnitz is a boy of 16 whose legs are as long as his attitude is recklessly brash. Often called Longshanks, 'Shanks, or just plain Schnitz by his fellow syndicate members, Bill's father labors driving wagons and carts in Midtown for the Cartwright Guild. The Schnitz family, consisting of Wilhelm Sr.--the father--, Hilde Schnitz--the mother--, and Ingrid, Bill's older sister, reside in a small hovel in the Warrens. Piteously poor, Wilhelm and Hilde are nevertheless honorable folk who scrap hard for their living and are quiet in the manners. To the family's horror and constant nitpicking disapproval, the younger Bill not only lacks the will of his father to work his knuckles to the bone in an honest day's trade but also insists on stealing to satisfy his petty yearning for the many small, pretty things so lacking at home.

    Last year, at the age of majority, Wilhelm Sr. issued Bill an ultimatum. Get a job with a guild, or get out. To the family's shock, Bill complied. Bill, or Schnitz as he is so often called, went to work as a messenger for the Killraven Crime syndicate. Tossed on his arse in a gutter by his father, Schnitz spent the first half of last year running messages throughout Ptolus for the crime network, 'til one day his ambition at thievery presented an opportunity not to be missed.

    Just after delivering a sealed document to a scrivener's shop in Delver's Square, Bill noticed a dwarven merchant armed to the teeth with all manner of finely wrought weaponry hauling a cart down a main thoroughfare. Drivel, a kid of ten placed with Bill by the syndicate as his partner-in-training, witnessed Schnitz make his best theft yet. Boldy reaching into the dwarf's unattended cart and extracting a scimitar, Bill grinned to Drivel and secreted the blade beneath his tunic as the pair ran off down the street to return with the prize to their warren.

    Once he was beaten soundly by his syndicate superior for a blatant act of theft that could well have brought the Watch to the warren's door, Schnitz was given a dumbed down version of the fine prize he stole--a scimitar of his own. And a new job to go with it. At the command of his syndicate, Schnitz has spent the last six months guarding the tombs of a wealthy noble family in the Necropolis. Forced to also live in his working quarters, Schnitz spends his nights jumping at every shadow within the extensive city graveyard and longs for the chance to flee both his job and his syndicate. The lad fairly well dreams of his mum's meat and turnip pie and oftentimes, as rash youth who regret bad decisions are wont to do, cries himself to sleep nights.

    Schnitz fancied one of the whores who was recently slain down by the Docks. Though the lass was beyond even his meager means, Bill was obsessed and figures to do her justice by discovering her killer.

    Bill doesn't know it yet, but his future holds a surprise. He's on the cusp of unlocking his own sorcerous ability.


    Personality:
    Spoiler:
    No longer a boy but not quite a man, Bill Schnitz is caught in those tumbling middle years of uncertainty. Though in later months his recent experiences as a smalltime syndicate hireling have tempered his reaction to the world and Bill has become capable of humility, Bill oftentimes still exhibits the worst qualities of a teenage boy: arrogance, ignorance, and recklessness. Never wise to begin with, Bill is strong of arm and capable of defending himself. His muscle, combined with his lack of years, has led Bill to numerous fisticuffs. Bill's brash and bold nature has made him popular within the lower levels of the syndicate. With grooming, Bill could become a syndicate leader but his natural flamboyance is perceived as a threat by his superiors. Politicking within the syndicate assures that Bill will stay firmly entrenched in the guild's lower echelons. Bill is oftentimes sarcastic but is loyal to friends. Though he would never say it aloud and is currently uncapable of apology, Bill longs to go home.


    Appearance:
    Spoiler:
    Bill is a reedy boy of 16. His trunk is short, and his legs are tremendously long, giving him the appellation "longshanks." Bill's hair is a mousy brown. His eyes are dark brown, to the point of black. Without a mother to nag him to bathe, Bill is dirty and smells. Bill doesn't earn a lot of coin working for the syndicate (certainly less than he was orginally tempted by), and his clothes are neither new nor in good repair. Bill's best quality is perhaps his outgoing nature and ability to befriend just about anyone, despite his shabbiness. Bill's prized possession is a plain jane scimitar given him by the syndicate. He practices with the blade often and admires the weapon for its exotic curving quality.


    A note to the DM and players: I've taken fighter as Bill's first level because I feel it fits his background as a syndicate ruffian. I'm sure survivability will count and because I want this character to make it through to subsequent levels of sorcerer, I wanted him to have enough HP to survive. All future levels, however, will be devoted to sorcerer. If need be, I can easily switch fighter to rogue or some other urban-feeling class. Heck, I can even switch out sorcerer for another arcane-based class for Bill's future levels. Conversely, I am not opposed to keeping Bill's 15 Charisma and having him take straight levels in pure fighter. In essence, I'd like to play and am flexible about the character class combo for Bill. Thanks for reading.
    Last edited by CanadienneBacon; Friday, 17th November, 2006 at 10:54 PM. Reason: Swapped Improved Init for Combat Casting

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    Hey Whizbang,
    Sure enough, at least one somebody from another board has followed a link to this thread. I'm interested and will keep an eye out for your character creation rules. I must confess (as my post count shouts ) my ENWorld ignorance, so if there is some proficiency to be gained at doing things here I lack it. That said, I'm willing to learn. Soooo... looking forward to applying when your char sheet rules go up.

    Regards,

    Pitch

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