WotBS advice needed (SPOILERS galore)

Lylandra

Explorer
Oh Balance already hints at Gate Pass... "We ourselves left home twenty years past, passing through the Gate to the sunlit world, where we sought a home, a quest which eventually led here."

it is very well hidden, but Balance reveals quite a lot about the Trillith if you take their words implicitly. If you wish to name more Trillith, you could let Balance name Freedom, as she was one of the (if not the) first Trillith, and maybe Agony. Balance is a pretty old Trillith, so they won't know about the recent plans of their kin.
 

trencher7

Explorer
Something that really bothers me but maybe I am just not clever enough to grasp it.
In Adventure 5 The Monastery of the Two Winds on page 3 it says "He even briefly tricked the Ragesians into allying with him for the destruction of Seaquen, which got him close enough to the leadership of the empire that he was able to learn ist weak points.

I know that Pilus somehow created the Orb of Storms and handed it over in order to help the Ragesians to destroy Seaquen but I can´t see his motivation behind that. What usefull information did he get by doing so?
I fear that when my Players meet him they will ask this very question first and I´d like to have a viable answer.

Thanks in advance!
 

Mrpereira

Explorer
Pilus's motivation is to bring down Ragesia - he hates them. I don't have the book right here, but I recall that the brothers were slighted by them and have hated them for years. As fas I recall he hates bullies. Later on he starts to perceive the alliance as being too strong, which is why he changes sides again.

So if they ask him, answer them: Keep your friends close, keep your enemies closer
 

Tormyr

Adventurer
The Ragesians burned their home village to the ground. He saw getting information on the Ragesians as more important that worrying about Seaquen. His excuse is that he did not realize Seaquen's value until recently.

Pilus will admit to things if caught out but will not volunteer information. His excuse is that he does not know who to trust, so he is cautious.
 

trencher7

Explorer
I think I messed up... :oops:
So after some time we finally had time to play again. The session before the group entered Eresh, got to know that something/ someone was messing with the minds of the inhibitants and we concluded when the group had had the first meeting with Balance.

So what happened? The Group found out about Eril and he told them about the fate of his Group. After that they decided to pay a visit to the Monastery, battled the Wind Elemental Guardians and met Caella who told them to just go away. If they wanted to see the masters they would have to lift the curse which has taken over the village. So they went back and talked to Balance again. So they got some Information about the origin of the Trillith, that they pass into the material world in GatePass, they even concluded that the Dreaming Festival might bear some importance. Balance told them that it was dying and that it had not much time left until the calm it provides would disappear.
At the same Moment the 2nd General Magdus reappeared with his troops so that there are now 300 Ragesians in the camp in front of Eresh.
The Group then suddenly decided to put Balance on a cart and bring her to the forbidden valley. On the way they were ambushed by the West- and East Wind Monks and the Mantidrake and defeated them. Balance was injured by the Mantidrake´s Sound burst and the Paladine allowed her to enter his Body. We ended there.

The Paladine´s Player and I talked about that and he decided that he wants his Mount (a giant stag) to serve as Balance´s new Body, so he will lose his Paladine Mount which will give him some (we hope) cool RP opportunities within the Group.

So what will happen? I really don´t know.
As Long as Balance is around there will be no fight for Eresh. In order to get to speak to the Masters of the Wind the Group has to lift the "curse" which, as far as I get it, will inevitably lead to a Ragesian attack. Now that the Group is several hours away from the village they can´t participate should the fight break out.
Is there a way to get to speak to the Masters without the fight between the Ragesians and the villagers?
Maybe you could share so insights?
 

Tormyr

Adventurer
Balance's super calm emotions only works over the distance of a mile. Once they were brought outside of that distance, the link was broken, and Balance can get better and grant their boon.

Eresh can either be invaded when the heroes return, or it can become an assassination mission against the general.
 

Mrpereira

Explorer
I think, I would let the Ragesians attack the village and lay siege to the monestary. While Balance is away he/she/it will start to get better, but when they return to the shattered balance, I would let he/she/it die.

I think I would make the Ragesian fight a bit easier, but without any help from the villagers, as they already lost.
 

Lylandra

Explorer
Yep, taking Balace to the Valley is actually discussed in the adventure and they would start getting better immediately as soon as they left Eresh. So both the Rags and the villagers will come out of their stupor by that time.

So, in regards to what happens next, there are a few variables to consider:
  • did the party close the wooden gate to Eresh? And if they did, did they lock it?
  • did the party reduce the number of Rags in Eresh? (forcing them out, beating them unconscious, locking them up, killing them?)
  • did the party tell Caela about the Ragesians?

So what could happen, in my opinion:

  • Both sides come out of their stupor
  • the Ragesian commander Kormus realizes that his boss (Signus) will call for his head if he cannot deliver results, so he rallies his troops to attack. He does so without rational thought as his emotions flood back at once.
  • if the gate is still open, Kormus will storm into Eresh and take the village with relative ease (you'd have a lot of casualties among the villagers as tensions are very high after Balance's disappearance. See poor Tashalanos.)
  • if the gate is closed and secured, the villagers might have enough time to set up defenses. Still, the remaining Rags in Eresh may cause a massacre as they're the ones who experience a blood rush and many villagers are stupefied. Should the Rags finally regain a bit of clarity, they may then try to open the gate from the inside.
  • if the party removed some or all of the Rags, then Eresh will have a much more easier time defending the village
  • if, however, Eresh is taken by the Rags, then Pilus may summon his storm at some point to eradicate all of the village AND the Ragesians.

All in all, what happens totally depends on the party ;)

oh and pst, it's Signus. You probably don't want to kill off Magdus at this point.
 

trencher7

Explorer
oh and pst, it's Signus. You probably don't want to kill off Magdus at this point.
You are, of course, right! ;)

The group disarmed the Rags in Eresh and hid their weapons.

I think at this moment I will go with the Eresh has fallen and the Monastery is sieged by the Ragesians combined with the Kormus has to quickly deliver a success so that the Rags did not take their time to kill every villager but to just drive them away so that they could flee to safety.
My players fear that this will be the "Burning Forest pt. II" and I don´t want to follow this route right now.

Thanks so far!

The next thing is that I wanted my group to get to know some more about what is really going on. They say that they feel at a loss right now and it appears that they are only "Troubleshooting" and reacting to events that are thrown at them. So I´d like to give them some more background info. Now that the Paladine will be Balance´s host for some time I think this might give him some insight into the Trillith.

So what Information would you give the Player concerning the Trillith in order to make him (better) understand what´s going on?
 

Mrpereira

Explorer
I am probably not really the right one to ask about that - I kept my players mostly in the dark until chapter 9 :devilish:

You could drop some information about Trilla and how their mother sleeps while she creates her children. You could maybe even mention that she was saved and brought to her new home by some Drows (or even drop some names of the brave heroes - who will turn up in chapter 7). Balance left long ago, so the information wont be up to date.

Mentioning Trilla will give a link the the statue of her mother in Castle Korstull and the visions in chapter 7.
 

trencher7

Explorer
It´s question time again. Thank you all so far for contributing to this thread.

I am in the midst of preparing Adventure 6 in which the PCs will come to Castle Korstull and find some information in the form of the fevered visions of Darius. I have a couple of questions regarding the visions and hope that you can enlighten me (again).

- The devil of the east wind, his mask only a smile, hides a thunder child in a prison upon a tomb.
Who is this thunder child?

-Serpents writhe in an eight-armed stone, and soldiers shall feast upon the rubble of madness.
What does that refer to?

- O wintry song of agony, o longwalking betrayer, as balance shatters like waves against the shore, your vengeful wing guides the motes of the burning sky, strong by search and guile, to seek annihilation at the Heart of History.
Is the meaning of "Heart of History" and ist location common knowledge? Where exactly is it located on a map. Is generaly known what happened there between the Stormchaser Eagle and the Dragon? Is it just a myth?

Thanks in advance!

And Rules question: In Adventure 6 the Dark Pyre Undead have unnatural presence which states "beasts entering..." and "The creature...". Does this also affect the PCs? I guess not but I thought to better ask.
 
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Honestly, I think maybe 'thunder child' might just be a reference to a song from the BBC musical War of the Worlds radio drama.

Or it refers to The Tempest? But I don't remember what the prison or tomb were supposed to be.

The serpents thing was a reference to what already happened in adventure four - Madness got all serpent-y, and Dassen loves its 8 lands and its dirt.

I do not think the Heart of History would be a commonly known phrase, though I don't remember if I put in any source later on that would cue the PCs in to its importance. The myth of the stormchaser eagle and the dragon is pretty well known, though.

The exact location is, like, north of Sindaire, in southwest Ragesia.

Unnatural presence I think is derived from an ability specters or wraiths had in 3rd edition D&D, which I believe only scares animals.
 

DarkRevenant

Villager
- The devil of the east wind, his mask only a smile, hides a thunder child in a prison upon a tomb.
Who is this thunder child?
The only prison/tomb combination I can think of is the one in Act 5 of Shelter from the Storm. Lee Sidoneth - who is hiding there at the end of the book - could probably be described as a "thunder child" considering his position in the campaign, abilities, and goals.
 

Tormyr

Adventurer
It´s question time again. Thank you all so far for contributing to this thread.

I am in the midst of preparing Adventure 6 in which the PCs will come to Castle Korstull and find some information in the form of the fevered visions of Darius. I have a couple of questions regarding the visions and hope that you can enlighten me (again).

- The devil of the east wind, his mask only a smile, hides a thunder child in a prison upon a tomb.
Who is this thunder child?

-Serpents writhe in an eight-armed stone, and soldiers shall feast upon the rubble of madness.
What does that refer to?

- O wintry song of agony, o longwalking betrayer, as balance shatters like waves against the shore, your vengeful wing guides the motes of the burning sky, strong by search and guile, to seek annihilation at the Heart of History.
Is the meaning of "Heart of History" and its location common knowledge? Where exactly is it located on a map. Is generaly known what happened there between the Stormchaser Eagle and the Dragon? Is it just a myth?

Thanks in advance!

And Rules question: In Adventure 6 the Dark Pyre Undead have unnatural presence which states "beasts entering..." and "The creature...". Does this also affect the PCs? I guess not but I thought to better ask.
  1. I would also suggest that the thunder child might refer to the orb of storms which was in the tomb at the end of Shelter from the Storm. It was created by Pilus and could be considered to be his child.
  2. RangerWickett got this one.
  3. The myth of the dragon and the eagle would be known to PCs; it is in the player's guide. I don't think the heart of history should be known to them though. It is a cavern complex entered by passing through Two Dragon's Arch on one end of the Opaline Wastes. Leska and Etinifi found the Heart of History through necessity after a year of searching. She would then have been very careful to keep its location a secret.
  4. The Unnatural Presence trait on burning pyre creatures is brought over from 3.5. It only affects creatures that are beasts and does not affect the heroes directly. However, pets, mounts, and companions that are beasts (such as horses, wolves, bears, and birds) would be affected.
 

trencher7

Explorer
I am so looking forward to Castle Korstull right now!!!
My players are meeting tonight, unfortunately I can´t attend, to discuss their next steps. We ended last session when the PCs brought Balance on a cart out of the village and were on their way to the forbidden valley. Balance took the Paladine´s body as a vessel after the PCs fought against the East- and West Wind Monks. When they looked down into the valley they only saw heavy fog and heard an unnatural wailing coming from the fog. Because they more or less used all their abilities in the fight they are nearly empty and don´t know how to proceed. They were discussing going on into the valley after a rest or returning to the village because they fear that the calm might have been lifted. But before that the Paladine will offer his steed (a giant stag) to serve as Balance´s new body. History repeats itsself :)
We will see what they are about to do...
 

Mrpereira

Explorer
A bit late, I know - have been vacationing :)

I always thought of the first to points were refering to Chapter 3 (Lee - in the prison with the pyromancer tomb) and chapter 4 (Madness) thereby establishing his credibility by telling things that they have already faced.

Until it became clear to the PCs ingame (out of game it was more obvious to the players) I kept the story of the eagle and dragon a myth, and the myth told that it happened somewhere in present day Ragesia.

I also made the story of Rhuarc (the one that Rangerwickett posted a long time ago) a myth that was told to the players. I cant recall if it was during the introduction to chapter 6 or 7 that I managed to throw that one in. But it made meeting him later on a lot more tense and meaningful to my players.
 

trencher7

Explorer
I also made the story of Rhuarc (the one that Rangerwickett posted a long time ago) a myth that was told to the players. I cant recall if it was during the introduction to chapter 6 or 7 that I managed to throw that one in. But it made meeting him later on a lot more tense and meaningful to my players.
That´s also a great idea. I will try to implement Rhuarc´s Story as well!
 

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