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  • #16
    Second Darkness 2: Children of the Void (Complete)

    Individual fragments of skymetal found throughout this adventure are worth 50gp each.

    --- PART ONE ---

    At the end of the previous chapter, the party discovered the presence of drow on a nearby island. Before the heroes travel to the Devil's Elbow, the mysterious blot in the sky over Riddleport falls to earth, striking the island with catastrophic effect. Several other groups sail to the Devil's Elbow to seek the precious sky metal that fell from the stars;
    ... a group of dwarven prospectors lead by Gravin Goldhammer.
    ... a gang of Riddleport thugs lead by Clegg Zincher.
    ... a research team of Cyphermages.

    If the party took over management of the Golden Goblin, ask what they plan to do about running the casino while they are off adventuring.

    Kwaya notifies his superiors in the Shin'Rakorath about the drow presence on the Devil's Elbow and arranges passage to the island aboard the Flying Cloud, captained by Josper Creesy.

    The night before departure, saboteurs working for Zincher set the Flying Cloud aflame with bottles of alchemists fire. One of Creesy's sailors is sent to the Golden Goblin. Dramatic Task to save the ship. If the fail, their departure is delayed by a week as Creesy makes repairs.

    --- PART TWO ---

    It takes 1 day to sail from Riddleport to the Devil's Elbow, an ominously silent, forested island mostly surrounded by dangerous reefs. Two towers rise from a tall ridge along the centre of the island and a huge crater has been blasted into the earth of north-east side. An eerie yellow light flashes from the top of the closest tower, spooking the crew (actually a distress call from the trapped Cyphermages). There is only one safe place to dock the Flying Cloud, but Captain Creesy is reluctant to stay moored at the island overnight and arranges to return for the heroes in seven days.

    Gravin Goldhammer and the survivors from his group spot the Flying Cloud and approach the ship as the heroes disembark, asking to buy passage back to Riddleport. They are desperate to quit this cursed island. Creesy is happy to take them home, then return for the party, but if the heroes try to stop them leaving, the dwarves get angry and attack.

    The dwarves know the Cyphermages are holed up in a tower at the top of the ridge. They scoured the crater, but did not find any sky metal. They were attacked by strange blue wolves (akata), their bite carries a strange disease that turns people into monsters (void zombies).

    WC - Gravin Goldhammer, use Dwarf, FC.

    Dwarven Prospector, 1x per hero, use Dwarf, FC.


    ---

    EXPLORING THE ISLAND: There are several major encounter areas across the Devil's Elbow, detailed below. When the party move between locations, draw a card as per the Travel rules in the SWADE adventure toolkit.
    Spades/Enemies: a mated pair of bears lived on the island prior to
    events of this adventure, they have both been afflicted with void
    death and transformed into dangerous monsters.
    Hearts/Strangers: a group of Riddleport thugs 1x per PC, see below)
    from Zincher's camp collecting fire wood and muttering about how
    much they hate this cursed island. They are attacked by a pack of
    1d6+2 Akata (see below) and transformed into void zombies if the
    heroes don't intervene.
    Diamonds/Treasure: the party find a smaller crater overlooked by the
    drow, where they can gather 3d6 fragments of skymetal
    Clubs/Obstacles: in the aftermath of the meteor strike, a shower of
    shiny, black space rocks fall over the island, Agility-2 to find cover,
    or 3d4 damage.

    Void Bear, x2, use Bear, SWADE, add Undead traits and Horrid Tongue Lash (Str+d4, range+1, roll Spirit or be Distracted).

    ---

    The Harbour: the only safe place on the island to dock a ship as large
    as the Flying Cloud. A couple of ruined buildings served as a base for
    Goldhammer's dwarves. They have abandoned some basic supplies.

    ---

    Witchlight: abandoned village, where the last surviving Cyphermage is
    besieged by void zombies. When the party first arrive in Witchlight,
    only a small number of zombies are present (1x per PC). Once they've
    been dealt with, Samaritha Beldusk lets the heroes inside the tower.
    Samaritha came to study the crater, but now she just wants to get off
    the island alive.

    Soon after the party enter the tower, a larger mob of void zombies
    attack, scrambling up the exterior walls to break in through the upper
    floors. Run a Quick Encounter to streamline the defence of the tower.

    Samaritha is an Ally, she grants the party use of the party +2 on any Academics or Research skill checks.

    Void Zombies, 2x per hero, use Ghoul, FC, remove Paralysis ability, add Horrid Tongue Lash (Str+d4, range+1, roll Spirit or be Distracted).

    ---

    Crumbling Lighthouse: ruined and partially collapsed tower built
    precariously close to the edge of the cliff. Clegg Zincher and his
    cronies have set up camp and dug a pit in which to imprison
    captured void zombies. Zincher is open to a truce with the party until
    they can all get off the island.

    Shortly after arriving, the void zombies in the pit begin retching up
    the akata larvae growing inside them. The young Akata quickly
    escape the pit and wreak havoc in the camp.

    WC - Clegg Zincher, use Bandit Chief, FC, add Sweep edge, armed with giant pickaxe (Str+d10, -1 Parry).

    Riddleport Thugs, 2x per hero, use Bandit, FC.

    Akata Cub, 1x per hero, see below, add Small (-1 Size & Toughness).


    ---

    Crater: created when the starstone hit the island. The drow collected most of the skymetal fragments, but overlooked a few scraps. Each hero can gather 1d6 fragments (up to a maximum of 15 total) per hour spent searching the crater. While doing so, they encounter a clutch of strange blue cocoons containing hibernating akata. The aliens burst from their shells to attack the party.

    Akata, 1x per hero use Dire Wolf, SWADE, add Tentacle Slap (Str+d4, range+1), Void Hop (free action to Teleport 12") and Void Larvae (targets bitten by an Akata must roll Vigour save or suffer Void Death; Fatigue > Exhaustion > transfomation into mindless Void Zombie).

    ---

    Sea Caves: the drow on the Devil's Elbow are hiding out in the network
    of sea caves beneath the island. This area is detailed further in Part
    Three.

    --- PART THREE ---

    The sea caves beneath the island used to be used by smugglers and pirates, now they are occupied by the drow. Two sisters; Depora and Shindiira oversee the drow operations on the Devil's Elbow.

    Their ship, a sleek, black ship called the Savahara is moored here. The drow collected most of the skymetal from the crater, it is now stored in crates in the hold of their ship (10 crates, each crate contains 3d6 skymetal fragments). The drow have also captured 1d8+2 Akata in warded cages that negate their ability to teleport. The captain's cabin holds a locked/trapped (Notice/Thievery-2, deadly poison dart d8), chest containing Shindiira's notes on the test firing of what the drow are calling the Armageddon Echo. These notes indicate the existence of a drow enclave in tbe ruins of Celwynvian. A ballista is mounted on the prow of the ship (3d8, range 25/50/100, AP4, crew 2, reload 1).

    An adjacent cavern (previously used to store smuggled goods) was used by the drow mages to conduct the ritual that pulled a starstone from the heavens (Occult roll to work out purpose of the arcane glyphs scrawled across the floor/walls).

    A Giant Octopus (FC) lairs beneath the water, taking an interest in anyone who ends up in the drink.

    WC - Depora, use Veteran Mercenary, FC, add Drow traits.

    WC - Shindiira, use Veteran Mage, FC, add Drow traits.

    Drow Guard, 2x per hero, use Mercenary, FC, add Drow traits.

    Drow Wizard, 1x per hero, use Mage, FC, add Drow traits.

    --- PART FOUR ---


    Once the party have defeated the drow and recovered Shindiira's notes on the Armageddon Echo, the adventure is effectively over. Kwaya wants to report these findings to the Shin'Rakaroth ASAP. The party can return to Riddleport immediately, or continue to explore the Devil's Elbow.

    During the return voyage, the GM can run an optional encounter. The Araska's Teeth, a pirate ship ruled by Captain Grudge is waiting to plunder vessels laden with skymetal as they leave the island.

    This encounter could play out as a Chase (if the Flying Cloud tries to run) or a Tactical Combat, if the two ships come together. If the party defeat the pirates, they can steal their treasure, worth 1d10 x 500 gold. The GM may add magic items to this hoard, at their discretion.

    WC - Captain Grudge, use Bandit Captain, add Sailing d10.

    Pirates, 3x per hero, use Bandit, FC.

    Comment


    • #17
      Second Darkness 3: Armageddon Echo (Complete)

      --- PART ONE ---

      The heroes return to Riddleport, likely with a hold full of valuable space ore to sell. Allow one month of downtime for the party to pursue their own interests. After this time, Kwaya contacts the party and asks them to accompany him to Crying Leaf, where he hopes their testimony will convince his superiors in the Shin'Rakaroth to take action against the drow forces gathering in Celwynvian (ruined elven city around a massive crater).

      The party must travel north to Crying Leaf, beneath the boughs of the Mierani Forest. The journey will take seven days.
      Spades/Enemies: a group of Hobgoblin mercenaries (FC) marching
      to join the drow army in Celwynvian. They have a pair of tamed and
      muzzled Drakes (FC) with them.
      Hearts/Strangers: the party encounter a herd of Centaur warriors
      (FC) led by Windbraid, heading off to slaughter a troublesome tribe
      of goblins. If the heroes assist in a Quick Encounter, Windbraid
      rewards the party with a bow that ignores the Unstable Platform
      penalty.
      Diamonds/Treasure: an abandoned watch tower, before they were
      caught and hanged, a group of bandits buried their loot beneath the
      floor. Notice roll to spot disturbed earth. Buried chest contains
      1d10 x 100gp and an Amulet of Deflection (5PP), that did not save
      its previous owner.
      Clubs/Obstacles: a fallen tree spans the Velashu river. A single
      Goblin (FC) has set himself up as "bridge keeper", demanding a toll
      of 1gp (or something it can eat) to cross.

      --- PART TWO ---

      The party reach the Mierani Forest. Their arrival is noted by elven scouts hiding in the trees. Before long, the heroes are intercepted and interrogated by an elven ranger called Kaerishiel. Once she is satisfied that the party are friends, she escorts the party to Crying Leaf. The town is surrounded by a wall of living vines, which part to allow the heroes inside. They are taken to meet the elven leader, called Eviana.

      The heroes must convince Eviana that the drow present a real and immediate threat to Golarion. Her advisor Nolveniss argues otherwise, claiming the party are warmongers or spies. In truth, Nolveniss is a cunning drow wizard who has hidden his true nature to infiltrate Eviana's council. Treat this debate as a Social Encounter. If the heroes win, or Nolveniss' treachery is revealed, Eviana is convinced to go to war. If the heroes lose the debate, Kaerishiel raises her suspicions about Nolveniss and asks the party to investigate the treacherous advisor. Nolvenissis a Recurring Villain, so if the heroes do get into a fight here, make sure that he gets away.

      Run the battle for Celwynvian using the Mass Battle rules in the SWADE adventure toolkit. The elves can field more troops (10 tokens) than the drow (7 tokens), but the drow have a +1 tactical advantage by defending the ruins. Unless one of the heroes has the battle skill, Eviana commands the elven army, she has Battle d8. The drow general also has Battle d8.

      During the battle, have the heroes pass a statue depicting an elven wizard called Ilamin Silverwind.

      If the elven army wins, they corner the last remnants of the drow in the ruins of an ancient, partially collapsed observatory. If Nolveniss has not already been uncovered as a spy, he reveals himself now, by trying to assassinate Eviana. Kaerishiel intercepts the attack, sacrificing herself to save her commander. Once Nolveniss is defeated, he uses a wand to send the heroes into the past, to the day before Earthfall. Nolveniss expects the party to be annihilated by the ancient catastrophe.

      WC - Nolveniss, use Archmage, FC, add Drow traits.

      Drow Guard, 2x per hero, use Mercenary, FC, add Drow traits.

      Drow Wizard, 1x per hero, use Mage, FC, add Drow traits.

      --- PART THREE ---


      The party have 24 hours to get back to the future, before they are wiped out by the giant meteor speeding towards them. The city of Celwynvian is restored to its former splendour, but the population is in a state of panic as their doom descends from the heavens. To return to their own time, the heroes will need the aid of a powerful wizard from this age, Ilamin Silverwind (the heroes may recall seeing his statue in the present day). Ilamin and several other elven wizards are in the city library, searching for some way of averting the impending disaster.

      The heroes must convince Ilamin that they are from the future and that Earthfall cannot be stopped, run this as a Social Encounter. Ilamin takes the news quite well and redirects his efforts towards getting the party back to the present with as much elven lore as they can carry.

      A group of elven doomsayers storm the library, hoping to disrupt whatever efforts the mages are making to avert Earthfall. They plan to burn as many scrolls as they can. Run this as a Quick Encounter.

      Each hero is given a satchel stuffed with ancient lore and ushered into a magic circle. Ilamin and the other wizards cast a spell that returns the party to the present. They reappear (with the Drop) moments before Nolveniss kills Kaerishiel and have another chance to save their ally. When Nolveniss produces his wand, the heroes are ready to interrupt his action. The wand allows the user to cast Sloth/Speed with an Occult roll, 10PP.

      WC - Nolveniss, use Archmage, FC, add Drow traits.

      Drow Guard, 2x per hero, use Mercenary, FC, add Drow traits.

      Drow Wizard, 1x per hero, use Mage, FC, add Drow traits.


      Once Nolveniss and the other drow have been defeated, the ruins of Celwynvian are reclaimed by the elven army.

      Comment


      • #18
        Second Darkness 4: Endless Night (Complete)

        SUMMARY: The heroes infiltrate the drow city of Zirnakaynin, disguised as dark elves. They pose as lowly servants within the compound of noble house Vonnarc. When General Allevrah Azinrae visits the Vonnarc matriarch, the heroes learn of her plot to destroy the elven homeland with another big space rock. They must then escape Zirnakaynin with this intelligence.

        --- PART ONE ---

        The elves eagerly study the scrolls rescued from pre-Earthfall Celwynvian. They discover the secret to activating the ancient elf gates across Golarion and suggest opening a portal to Zirnakaynin, the drow capital in the Darklands. Rather than sending an elven army, Eviana wants the heroes to infiltrate the drow city and uncover their plans.

        Each hero is given a spider brooch that permanently disguises them as a dark elf and grants low light vision, as long as they are wearing it. The magic will only last seven days. The players retain their normal stats, but can pass as drow, although their mannerisms might still give them away.

        Eviana activates the elf gate, opening a portal to Zirnakaynin. She gives the party a Sending Stone, which they should activate when they are ready to return.

        --- PART TWO ---

        The drow city occupies an enormous cavern, shrouded in inky darkness. The elf gate opens into a dank grotto near the edge of the city, dimly illuminated by glowing fungi and mostly forgotten by the drow. A small number of bored guards are surprised as the portal opens for the first time in centuries. They are suspicious of the party, despite their disguises. Social Encounter to persuade the guards the heroes are not enemies, or straight up combat if the party are in no mood to talk.

        Drow Captain, use Veteran Mercenary, FC, add Drow traits.

        Drow Guard, 1x per hero, use Mercenary, FC, add Drow traits.

        Drider, 1x per two heroes, use Centaur, FC, add Bite (Str+d4), Poison (-4), Wall Walker & Webbing (Shooting roll to fire sticky web - small burst template - range 6", target Entangled - or Bound with a Raise).


        ---

        Once the heroes enter Zirnakaynin, a Networking roll reveals the following intelligence;
        the recent drow incursions onto the surface world were ordered by a drow general called Allevrah Azinrae.
        General Azinrae is meeting with matriarchs of the major drow families in Zirnakaynin to gather support for the next stage of her plot.
        House Vonnarc is hiring new servants, after their previous staff were sacrificed in a demonic ritual.


        Hopefully the players will allow themselves to be steered (some might say railroaded) into seeking employment in House Vonnarc.

        --- PART THREE ---

        House Vonnarc is ruled by the extremely elderly Matron Pravora. Her two daughters, Alicavniss (a cold, calculating wizard) and Faidaeva (a sadistic nymphomaniac), are getting tired of waiting for her to die. Matron Pravora also has two sons, Erdrinneir (priest of the demon lord Areshkagal) and Tiryin (commander of the guard).

        Six days after the heroes arrive in Zirnakaynin, General Azinrae visits the estate to discuss her plans with Matron Pravora and establish how much support she can expect from House Vonnarc. Once the heroes learn of this meeting (likely by reading private correspondence or eavesdropping on the family, ect...), they simply need to bide their time and maintain their cover until the meeting.

        At any give time, House Vonnarc is occupied/patrolled by;

        WC - Matron Pravora Vonnarc, use Archmage, FC, add Drow traits and the Elderly Hindrance.

        WC - Alicavniss Vonnarc, use Archmage, FC, add Drow traits.

        WC - Faedaeva Vonnarc, use Mercenary Captain, FC, add Drow traits.

        WC - Erdrinneir Vonnarc, use Death Priest, FC, add Drow traits.

        WC - Tiryin Vonnarc, use Mercenary Captain, FC, add Drow trait.

        Drow Captain, 1x per hero, use Veteran Mercenary, FC, add Drow traits.

        Drow Guard, 3x per hero, use Mercenary, FC, add Drow traits.

        Drider, 1x per hero, see above for stats.

        Slaves, 2x per PC, use Commoner, FC.


        ---

        GETTING HIRED: If the heroes seek employment in House Vonnarc, they are taken before First Daughter Alicavniss to be interviewed. She asks each candidate to list their skills and may ask for a demonstration of whatever prowess they claim to possess, before assigning them to whichever role she feels is most appropriate.
        There are several positions available on the estate;
        1x Acolyte (assisting Erdrinneir with sacrifices to Areshkagal).
        2x Bed Slave (satisfying Faedaeva's perverse kinks).
        2x House Guard (patrolling the house and grounds).
        1x Research Assistant (assisting Alicavniss in her sanctum).
        x Spider Handler (pretty self explanatory).


        Every day, each hero makes a roll to determine their performance in their 'day job'. A failure results in the hero being punished (Fatigued), or severely punished (Exhausted) with a critical failure. A Raise on this roll impresses their drow overseers and could result in promotion.

        The time the party spend posing as servants is treated as a sandbox. A list of events is detailed below, pick and choose which events you want to run. There is no set timeline to these optional events.

        ---

        One of the Giant Spiders (FC) in the Vonnarc stable is sick (spider diarrhoea!). Her name is Lady. Another slave (Gadak, if he's still alive) has been feeding her halfling meat, which is too fatty. Any Spider Handlers in the party are tasked with finding out what is upsetting her tummy and fixing the problem. Healing roll to diagnose the illness.

        Several desperate slaves attempt to escape. The heroes are charged with bringing them back to the estate, where they will be punished. Survival roll to track the escaped slaves, who have blundered into a nest of Giant Spiders (FC) and been ensnared in their webs.

        Another slave (Gadak, if he's still alive) spies on the party and learns something incriminating. He rushes to share his discovery with Alicavniss, hoping to gain her favour. The heroes must chase him down and shut him up, before he blows their cover.

        Faedaeva goes to the spider races to gamble. She executed her last rider for coming in second and picks a new rider from among the party to compete against the other drow families (Dolour, Movias, Rasivrein, Sardavic, ect...). The other jockeys are Drow Guards with Riding d8. Run the race as a Chase.

        Erdrinneir needs more victims for his next ritual to Areshkagal and sends the heroes to the slave market to buy some sacrifices. One of the slaves for sale is the heroes old friend Kwaya (who was captured by the drow after the battle for Celwynvian)! If the heroes get into a bidding war for their friend, they lose all Erdrinneir's coin on the one lot and have to explain to the furious priest why they returned empty handed. If they don't bid for their friend, he is sold to House Rasivrein, who operate a gladiatorial arena.

        On his night off, Tiryin visits a bar/brothel called Venom Kiss. He gets into a drunken brawl and kills a son of the Movias family. Vengeful drow from House Movias are on their way to Venom Kiss to kill Tiryin. The heroes are sent to extract the second son of House Vonnarc.

        Drow Captain, 1x per hero, use Veteran Mercenary, FC, add Drow traits.

        Drow Guard, 2x per hero, use Mercenary, FC, add Drow traits.

        Drow Wizard, 1x per two heroes, use Mage, FC, add Drow traits.

        --- PART FOUR ---


        On the sixth day, Allevrah Azrinae visits the Vonnarc compound to meet with Matron Pravora. The party will hopefully be aware of this and have made plans to spy on the meeting. If not, they only find out as the the Azinrae contingent are escorted into the estate.

        In the matron's private suite, Allevrah explains her plot to call down a meteor over the elven nation of Kyonin and eliminate the surface elves from the face of Golarion.

        The heroes should recognise that this is information they need to deliver to their allies on the surface. The party must abandon their posts and return to the elf gate. The heroes may wish to attack Allevrah now and sever the head of the snake. They are welcome to do so, but Allevrah is a Recurring Villain and guaranteed to escape.

        WC - Allevrah Azinrae, use Unholy Knight, FC, add Drow traits.

        Drow Captain, 1x per hero, use Veteran Mercenary, FC, add Drow traits.


        ---

        After the elf gate activated at the start of the advnture, the drow have assigned a larger force to guard the area against further incursions from the surface. Arcane sigils have been etched into the floor, dispelling magical effects (such as Disguise or Invisibility) on anyone approaching the gate. Once the party activate the sending stone, it takes 2d6 rounds for the elf gate to open. Once the fight starts, drow reinforcements (GM's discretion) turn up every round until the gate opens and the party can retreat to Crying Leaf.

        Drow Captain, 1x per hero, use Veteran Mercenary, FC, add Drow traits.

        Drow Guard, 2x per hero, use Mercenary, FC, add Drow traits.


        Drider, 1x per hero, see above for stats.

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