ZEITGEIST Question about starting Zeitgeist

skotothalamos

formerly roadtoad
My copy says "If the party does not obey the Titan's wishes (i.e., bloody Xambria/Sijhen at some point)..."

I think it reads easier that way (the "i.e." states the titan's wishes, not the party's actions), but it's still a bit ambiguous. But yeah, the Voice of Rot wants Sijhen bloodied.
 

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Empirate

First Post
Hi guys, haven't been posting much lately, but want to chime in to say I'm glad this PbP is still going strong! I'm still having a blast with my PF Zeitgeist campaign (due to moving, we're playing via Skype/Maptool, which works fine). We're past the mid point of Skyseer now, and I've run into a little problem.

During the intended-to-be-frustrating abandoned temple encounter, the group not only discovered the chimney exit before the bad guys were even there (!), they also one-shotted Cillian Creed pretty thoroughly: the group's Gunslinger/Paladin rolled a crit plus a hit with his two pistols, using Focused Aim (Mysterious Stranger archetype deed), Smite Evil, and being boosted by the Bard's Inspire Courage, for a whopping 85 points of damage! Even halved (incorporeal enemy), that's still enough to down Creed instantly. Just to be on the safe side, they lopped off the body's head and scrambled up the chimney, making their stealth checks easily for an unlooked-for complete triumph over the forces of bleakness.

So far, so awesome - I heartily congratulated, and the players seem to feel pretty good about themselves. They earned it, too: they really worked hard to follow all the leads, obey proper procedure, piss nobody off they'd need later on, and protect the innocent at the same time. However, I'm now missing a crucial boss for Dawn Square, don't I? I guess I could just put in a random technician controlling the flayed jaguars, but it just won't feel as good. You just sorta want a named character for this kind of role. However, there doesn't seem to exist an easy replacement, since Creed himself is just the right-hand man of Macbannin, after all.
 

hirou

Explorer
I'm running 4ed, so balance may be a bit off, but for my group the Dawn Square didn't need any 'boss' at all, the main question was whether jaguars were able to kill Nevard. Creed is supposed to appear during the final encounter at the villa, but (as my group killed him as well) I just skipped that battle part, with no visible consequences.
 

jacktannery

Explorer
Thanks Empirate - yeah still going strong! I should probably post up my latest handouts, for when my PCs returned to Flint after the zigurrat. Losing Creed in Dawn Square is no big deal if your PCs have tied up several of the other threads. Otherwise, just have MacBannin stand in for Creed in all subsequent threads until the end. You don;t need to worry about Creed changing the final encounter balance either - since PCs will usually sense it is the last encounter and go in all-guns blazing, they'll free anything that moves anyway I'd say.
 

jacktannery

Explorer
Some more handouts - these probably won't be as useful to other groups as my other handouts, but it should be easy enough to alter the names. Sorry about the size - I don't know how to put the attachments inside a
[sblock] spoiler tag [/sblock]
 

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jacktannery

Explorer
Some more skyseer visions from the ziggurat
 

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jacktannery

Explorer
We lost a player. If anyone knows anyone looking to play by-by-post Zeitgeist 4E (we are almost at Act 3 in adventure 3) point them in my direction.
 




hirou

Explorer
Damn, I like your organization of materials. If I may, a few questions from the fellow GM:
-you list all rituals as having 0 gp. Is this working well? There are some rituals that can potentially short-circuit whole plot in some adventures. Namely, Inquisitive's eyes allow to view a scene that happened at the spot a specific time ago, Hand of fate is low-level divination that is potentially game-breaking (depending on GM's interpretation), Tenser's disk is a potential base for indestructable gnome tank and so on.
-doubling bonuses for Aid another/Total defence/similar actions. Did it lead to them being actually useful for players/monsters?\
-inherent bonuses, how did you change RHC stipend in accordance with that? Did you change Gunsmith theme in any way with regards to that? (by RAW, gunsmiths gain scaling to-hit bonus, similar to inherent bonus)
-I think you only list common items as "RHC Standard Requisition Gear". Does it mean that uncommon and rare items are unavailable for requisition?

Once again, your game looks terrific
 





jacktannery

Explorer
Excellent then my concept might work.

I've had strong applications for the position and will be making a decision shortly, so if you are interested please apply quickly. I was surprised by the interest in this game, which is testament to the great AP the EN World team have produced.
 
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jacktannery

Explorer
Damn, I like your organization of materials. If I may, a few questions from the fellow GM:

Thank you hirou.

-you list all rituals as having 0 gp. Is this working well? There are some rituals that can potentially short-circuit whole plot in some adventures. Namely, Inquisitive's eyes allow to view a scene that happened at the spot a specific time ago, Hand of fate is low-level divination that is potentially game-breaking (depending on GM's interpretation), Tenser's disk is a potential base for indestructable gnome tank and so on.

Rituals continue to be underused, even with these houserules. Few players remember to use them. The few that do, do so for roleplay/character reasons only. Tenser's Disk is popular. If game changing antics were to arise (which could happen potentially but is very player dependent) then I would react obviously by altering this houserule. But so far, and in all of my 4E games, rituals are underused.

-doubling bonuses for Aid another/Total defence/similar actions. Did it lead to them being actually useful for players/monsters?

Useful for monsters, still totally useless for players. The reason, perhaps, is that in an online game the players very rarely get a chance to strategise combat situations. Aid another is great for minions.

-inherent bonuses, how did you change RHC stipend in accordance with that? Did you change Gunsmith theme in any way with regards to that? (by RAW, gunsmiths gain scaling to-hit bonus, similar to inherent bonus)

I use the following table, which I found on this forum. PCs get the last column in money each at each level.

Level Item Value (gp) Total earned per party Total earned per PC (5)
1 360 2240 448
2 520 2880 576
3 680 4160 832
4 840 6080 1216
5 1000 8000 1600
6 1800 11200 2240
7 2600 14400 2880
8 3400 20800 4160
9 4200 30400 6080
10 5000 40000 8000


This is the equivelant table if not running inherant bonus system (ie in the module) and you can see the difference. Works well enough

Level Item Value (gp) Total earned per party Total earned per PC (5)
1 360 3760 752
2 520 5360 1072
3 680 7600 1520
4 840 10480 2096
5 1000 14000 2800
6 1800 18800 3760
7 2600 26800 5360
8 3400 38000 7600
9 4200 52400 10480
10 5000 xxxxx xxxxxx

-I think you only list common items as "RHC Standard Requisition Gear". Does it mean that uncommon and rare items are unavailable for requisition?

Holdover from my last 4E game. Actually there are very specific common items NOT on that list, which I do not want in my game. Things like iron armbands of power and whatnot. The rule is that all PCs can automatically requisition anything on that list without rolling any time, but anything not on that list must be discussed with me first. Some combinations of items (frostcheese/ chargecheese) are annoying and I don't want players to aim for those.
 

hirou

Explorer
Actually there are very specific common items NOT on that list, which I do not want in my game. Things like iron armbands of power and whatnot. The rule is that all PCs can automatically requisition anything on that list without rolling any time, but anything not on that list must be discussed with me first. Some combinations of items (frostcheese/ chargecheese) are annoying and I don't want players to aim for those.

That sounds damn good, although I know that I'd never be able to draw a line between "cheesy" and "as supposed by RAW". Thankfully, noone in my party is using neither chargecheese nor frostcheese, but Arcana optimization by one of the players (+26 at level 10, he can boost it to +30 per encounter, I think) forced me to redo the DC table a bit...
 

jacktannery

Explorer
Digging for Lies update
We are still going strong! Some new players as some dropped out.

-PCs followed module pretty much as standard for Act 1
-Act 2 they went off and did their own thing. They captured Xambria immediately, since they worked out she was possessed. Meanwhile the B-team (because they sent a message to Ber to get Finona et al intercepted) fought and lost to Finona, but not before distracting her enough that she accidental unleashed a terrible portal to Mavisha and a huge elemental.
-Stowing Xambria safely in the hold (who promptly escaped and phased along the bottom of the seashore to eat Finona) they joined forces with Finona to seal the portal. This obviously involved using the prototype RHC submarine and going through the portal into Mavisha, accidentally seducing a merfolk prince, fleeing, defeating the elemental and sealing the portal just in the nick of time.
-They returned to find Xambria had eaten all of Finona's crew.

Act 3 begins at the Gala. They love meeting all their old friends and foes, so I have to do more of that in the future. They replace the artefacts with fakes and come up with some hairbrained scheme ('Plan Baker')to teleport the real artefacts into the basement of the RHC HQ and lure Xambria meanwhile into the Shadowfell (?!) or similar. Not sure what will happen, but at the moment Xambria is whupping their asses in the museum, which makes a bit of a change from the usual easy encounters.

One question to [MENTION=63]RangerWickett[/MENTION] (or anyone else) regarding the next encounter. The Zeitgeist website has a great version of the RHC HQ map for next encounter, but none of the RHC basement and subrail tunnel. The version in the module is really bad quality. Is there a better version of this map somewhere? (Encounter: this just got real, finale of Adventure 3)?
 

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