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Author Topic: Way of the Wicked (Pathfinder) Recruitment Thread  (Read 6754 times)

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Offline Pointless DigressionTopic starter

Way of the Wicked (Pathfinder) Recruitment Thread
« on: December 10, 2012, 05:49:47 PM »
Update August 8th, 2013: As of this, all positions have been filled.



I have opened this thread again to recruit new players due to losing a significant portion of the group due to a variety of issues. We've been running since mid December, and I enjoy this game way to much to let it go.

We still have three committed players, but we have room for 1-3 more. Here are various game and IC threads:

Prison Break!
Chapter 1; The Circle of Thorns
OOC Thread

For instructions about how to apply and what sort of characters I'm looking for, the posts that follow this one contain a good amount of information about the game setting and character creation. One thing to mention is that we have advanced to third level, so characters should be created at that level with appropriate equipment.



The Kingdom of Albion is the most noble, virtuous, peaceful nation in the known world. This is the story of how you burned this insipid paradise to the ground. It’s only fair. They burned you first.

They condemned you for your wicked deeds. They branded you. They shipped you to the worst prison in the kingdom. In three days, you die. In three days, the do-gooders pray they’ll be rid of you.

They’ve given you three days. The fools, that’s more than you need to break out. And then, it will be their turn to face the fire.



How many times have you saved the world? I’m serious. In all interactive entertainment – computer games, roleplaying games, maybe also live action games and choose your own adventure games -- how many times have you personally saved the world? I suspect that the answer is “too many times to count.” I know that’s my answer.

If I get sufficient interest in response to this thread, I hope to launch a game called “Way of the Wicked”. Here, the PCs are not trying to save the world. If anything, the world needs saving from them. In short, I want to run a evil campaign.

It is common wisdom in certain circles that evil campaigns never work out. It may sound like fun to be the bad guys but inevitably, the old saw goes, such games always turn into brutal player versus player vengeance fests. If the players do not simply assassinate one another, then they likely wander the world murdering everything unlucky enough to encounter them. If, miracle of miracles, they manage a motivation beyond repetitive carnage, the campaign is still likely to fall apart in the face of just how hard it can be to come up with an inspiring wicked scheme. Evil games, the naysayers contend, suck.

They have a point.

Evil campaigns face a raft of problems that conventional ‘good guy’ campaigns never have to wrestle with. If you are playing a pack of noble warriors, devout clerics and loveable scoundrels with a heart of gold – you may squabble, but there is little chance of such squabbles coming to blows. And while your game still has plenty of carnage, you do occasionally meet someone else who is inarguably also a good guy and roleplaying will break up the monotony of murder. And who needs a complex plan as a good guy? You have a simple plan – smite evil! How liberating! You work together, defeat monsters, accumulate treasure and levels and maybe by the end of the game save the world. Again. It sounds wonderful.

And it is. That’s a fine formula for a campaign. It’s such a great formula that I’m sure that if you have been playing RPGs for more than a year or two that you’ve explored that road probably more than once. In “Way of the Wicked” we are going to travel a darker road. We are going to put together an evil campaign that works. This entire endeavor is dedicated to the proposition that evil games don’t have to suck. Yes, they take a little more thought and preparation than a typical campaign. But when done well, they are immensely satisfying.

In this campaign, I've designed things to do my best to put the most common pitfalls behind us. I will give the forces of evil  a reason to work together. I will give them a purpose beyond simply murdering everything they meet. I will give the players with what I hope they will find a pretty neat wicked scheme.

So take a break from saving the world. Take a break from restless farm boys and loveable scoundrels who unite to fight an ancient evil. Put on your best black hat and get ready to walk the Way of the Wicked. By the time we’re done, the world will tremble in your wake.

Characters
Player                       Character            Class           
BanditaAnnaRogue (Knifemaster Archetype)
KdyamiMinganBarbarian/Beastmaster
RokettoJhonanWitch
« Last Edit: April 08, 2013, 07:59:35 PM by Pointless Digression »

Offline Pointless DigressionTopic starter

Character Creation
« Reply #1 on: December 10, 2012, 05:51:52 PM »
Step 1: Pitch
What I am looking for is something that gives me some idea as to the your general character background and motivation. Initially you need to provide the name, race and a brief outline on what you intend for the character to be like.  This will let us have a conversation about the best way to mold the character to fit in with the group and make sure that we see eye-to-eye on the direction the game will take.

If approved then I shall ask for a detailed background.  This can be a few paragraphs, or longer if you wish.  The more the better as far as I'm concerned, as it enhances the depth of your character and will give me an idea of your writing style. If you have any questions please ask.  I want the character to be something you enjoy and are motivated to play well.

Step 2, Ability Scores
Two methods to choose from. The first is a simple 25 point buy. It's challenging being a villain with the whole world against you.

The second is adapted from a house rule of my old tabletop group. Choose one ability score at which you excel. You receive an 18 in that score. Choose another ability score that is your character's biggest deficiency. You receive an 8 in that score. For the other four scores, roll 3d4+5 four times and assign them to your ability scores in order, then apply racial modifiers.. There are no rerolls or moving of ability score.

Mathematically, this method is stronger on average than a 25-point character. It compensates for this strength by making scores slightly random. Randomness will never completely hamstring a character the way it might have in some editions of D&D (since you can't get lower than an 8) and never gives them an ability score greater than their strongest attribute (since you can never beat that initial 18).

Therefore, your wizard might have a high Dexterity and Charisma as well as having a high Intelligence and a low Strength. My old group found that this tends to create slightly more interesting, unusual, and diverse characters. If the randomness and potential for character inequality bothers you, you can always use the point buy instead.

Step 3, Race
All races in the Pathfinder Core Rulebook are permitted. There are certain races that will be more difficult to play. Extremely unusual or monstrous races are likely to be troublesome. PCs of those races might find themselves uninvolved in certain parts of the story.

Step 4, Class
All classes are permitted except the Paladin. A few classes require special consideration:

Anti-paladin: Thematically appropriate, but they will be modified by a houserule that permits an anti-paladin of any evil alignment. This is due to alignment restrictions (see Step 7). The anti-paladin may have cohorts, followers, and henchmen who are of any evil alignment instead of the usual "chaotic evil" requirement. Also, a lawful evil anti-paladin may not use his or her fiendish boon to add the "anarchic" property to a weapon. Instead, they may add the "axiomatic" property.

Assassin: A great choice for the campaign. Yes, a prestige class, but a prestige class to consider working towards from level one.

Barbarian: Good choice, but since chaotic alignments are not allowed, neutral evil or neutral are the only two possible alignment choices. Barbarians have the challenge of coming up with a good reason why a class as chaotic and rebellious as this one would cooperate with a group of followers of Asmodeus.

Cavaliers: Be careful about your Order selection. Orders that defend the common folk (Order of the Shield) or pledge allegiance to the king of Albion (Order of the Lion) are not appropriate. Self-serving orders (Order of the Cockatrice) would be fine and dandy.
Clerics and Inquisitors: Are certainly allowed, but must worship a god who approves of the villainous path before you. Worshipping Asmodeus is strongly encouraged.

Druids: Permitted, but neutral good druids are not. Evil druids are perfectly valid, but you must decide why such a character would ever join an organization that honors a lawful evil god.

Gunslingers: Permitted if you really wish it, but as of now the setting assumes that firearms do not exist. I do not plan on placing guns in the treasure or feature adversaries that use them. If I end up with a gunslinger, I will have to modify the campaign to accommodate your character.

Monks: May not be lawful good and are recommended to be lawful evil. If you want to play a lawful neutral monk, I would like to have justification for his or her continuing presence in a strongly evil party.

Ninja and Samurai: Permitted, but the campaign as it is currently being shaped makes no special allowances for them, as per gunslinger above. If you wish to play such a character, you must justify why such a character ended up in a western nation like Albion. Much like the gunslinger, talk to me and work out these special character justifications.

Rangers: You will find that Humanoid (humans) and Outsider (Good) are solid choices for favored enemies.

Sorcerers: Any bloodline is permitted. Infernal-blooded sorcerers are a particularly good choice.

Step 5, Skills and Feats
House rule: characters get two more skill points per level. The PCs will be on their own for much of the campaign and will have a difficulty relying on others for skills.

Step 6, Starting equipment
The characters begin with nothing. They have no money, no weapons, no armor, no gear, no animal companions of any sort and no material possessions besides tattered, dirty, rough-spun prison clothes.

Alchemists begin without their formulae book, extracts, bombs, or mutagens. They will need to get access to an alchemical lab to have any of these abilities restored.

Bards begin without a musical instrument.

Cavaliers have lost their mount. Presumably their mount was slain or given to another during their capture. It can be presumed that their week of mourning has already passed.

Spellcasting classes begin having chosen all their spells for the day or with their full number of spell slots. They do not have their holy symbol, spell books, bonded objects, or any material components, however. Druids do not have their animal companions with them, nor wizards or witches their familiars. Presumably such a companion was killed during their capture or escaped and waits them outside the prison. Only if they escape from Bleakguard  will they have the chance to reunite or conduct the ceremony to acquire another. Summoners begin with their Eidolon unsummoned. They begin the game shackled, so they are unable to perform the necessary ritual until they are free.

Step 7, Finishing Touches
As normal except that good and chaotic alignments are not allowed. Every character must be lawful neutral, lawful evil, neutral, or neutral evil. Of those four alignments, lawful evil is preferred.

Further, every character must choose a crime that landed them in Bleakguard. They were not wrongly imprisoned or innocent victims - they are guilty of some horrendous crime if not of the particular charge that is on their prison record. We will use traits from the Advanced Player's Guide, so this counts as one of your traits.

There is a further requirement, and it is more intangible. Early in the game every character is going to have the chance to join an evil organization and swear allegiance to the master of that organization and his patron - Asmodeus. I am plotting this campaign with the assumption that your characters will say yes to this chance. Therefore, you should make a character who would say yes.

Offline Ershin

Re: Interest Check - Mature Evil Pathfinder Campaign
« Reply #2 on: December 10, 2012, 06:08:01 PM »
"Way of the Wicked"

Oh my! I've wanted to play this module for ages, ever since I first heard about it on another board (the game filled up fast). I've always considered reading up on it a bit more, but was always wary of spoilers. To see it pitched on here...

As it's just passed midnight in my time zone, may I express interest now and write up a proper application tomorrow when I have the time to? This leads into a follow up question, will players be chosen on a first-come-first-serve basis, or picked from a number ot potential ne'er-do-wells and miscreants? Also, is there any particular setting potential players should read up on prior to making a character's background?

Offline ExisD

Re: Interest Check - Mature Evil Pathfinder Campaign
« Reply #3 on: December 10, 2012, 06:13:33 PM »
Ohh, this seems very interesting indeed. Ershin asked a few of the question I had, but there was one more.

What degree of competence should we assume for pitches? I usually view level one characters as wizards fresh form their apprenticeship, farm-boys who grabbed their dad's scythe to adventure with, meager pickpockets, the un-blooded warrior on her proving quest to slay a bear, etc. This is mainly how I see their relation with assumed average potency of npcs in the world, I just wanted to know if this was true or are level 1 PCs significantly better?

Offline Pointless DigressionTopic starter

Re: Interest Check - Mature Evil Pathfinder Campaign
« Reply #4 on: December 10, 2012, 07:08:41 PM »
As it's just passed midnight in my time zone, may I express interest now and write up a proper application tomorrow when I have the time to?

Of course. I myself am about an hour away from bed, if that.

This leads into a follow up question, will players be chosen on a first-come-first-serve basis, or picked from a number ot potential ne'er-do-wells and miscreants? Also, is there any particular setting potential players should read up on prior to making a character's background?

The latter. I will choose based on group cohesion, my interest in the character pitched, and what I see in the writing of the player making the pitch. Those three criterion are not listed in any particular order, by the way.

What degree of competence should we assume for pitches? I usually view level one characters as wizards fresh from their apprenticeship, farm-boys who grabbed their dad's scythe to adventure with, meager pickpockets, the un-blooded warrior on her proving quest to slay a bear, etc. This is mainly how I see their relation with assumed average potency of npcs in the world, I just wanted to know if this was true or are level 1 PCs significantly better?

That's not an easy question to answer. The best I can do is to say think of Luke Skywalker, circa the first Star Wars movie. Yes, he's the hero of the film and saves the day, but he'd still be outmatched if he'd tried to take on Darth Vader or thumb wrestle the Emperor at that point. Competent but untested, is how I'd think of you to picture the character's capabilities.


Offline Ryuka Tana

Re: Interest Check - Mature Evil Pathfinder Campaign
« Reply #5 on: December 10, 2012, 09:19:46 PM »
"I see the words 'Mature', 'Evil', and 'Pathfinder' so count me in. So long as the first word remains a clear and resoundingly important point."

Offline ExisD

Re: Interest Check - Mature Evil Pathfinder Campaign
« Reply #6 on: December 10, 2012, 10:07:11 PM »
One last question, how long do you expect the game to stay at low levels? I find the level 1 and 2 areas of playing to be the most boring, even more so than the level 13+ stuff.

As for concept. I'm thinking a sorcerer who wants to be an Evil Overlord, but she's rather overconfident so she got caught far too early into her career. She took over a small group of goblins using magic and convinced them to raid a village. In the ensuing slaughter, of her own forces, she got herself captured. I'm thinking an elf for race. The type who spends a ton of her time thinking about what to do rather than acting, at least at first.

Offline Featherfall

Re: Interest Check - Mature Evil Pathfinder Campaign
« Reply #7 on: December 10, 2012, 10:39:47 PM »
Sounds fun; color me interested with an application to be sent sometime Thursday after my finals.

Offline PhantomPistoleer

Re: Interest Check - Mature Evil Pathfinder Campaign
« Reply #8 on: December 10, 2012, 11:24:35 PM »

Brief description:  Griff is a human ranger.  His background is that of a member of the city guard who was dismissed from active duty and placed in prison for accepting bribes.  He escaped and was enlisted by a group of bandits that plagued merchant-rich roads, until one day, he met his Master.  His Master enthralled him, and made him do his/her bidding.  Griff killed the other bandits, and came to serve His Master.  He now lives only for His Master.

GM, I am submitting a lackey for one of the PCs.  He would of course be a PC, but he's not sovereign over his will.  He's nearly psychotic with platonic/sexual love for his master.  He would behave as if he was under the spell Command at all times when near His Master.

Offline Ryuka Tana

Re: Interest Check - Mature Evil Pathfinder Campaign
« Reply #9 on: December 10, 2012, 11:39:59 PM »
"My thoughts so far are to play an Aasimar (because everyone wants to play a Drizzt, I've always wanted to play his opposite), that is a ranger (well, most likely not that if Griff's in the party), oracle, inquisitor, or magus. If I play an divine caster, would a non-deity worshipping divine caster be acceptable, one that follows a concept or something of that nature?"

Online NicciKotor

Re: Interest Check - Mature Evil Pathfinder Campaign
« Reply #10 on: December 10, 2012, 11:56:56 PM »
I need to find a suitable evil catgirl pic for this. Naturally going for the evil sorceress look as well.

Muywhahahaha.

Offline Roketto

Re: Interest Check - Mature Evil Pathfinder Campaign
« Reply #11 on: December 11, 2012, 03:14:34 AM »
Step 1: The Pitch
Jhonan Thanatos Leroung (last name only holds weight if the setting is in Golarion), "Thanos" to his friends (if he had any)

The Necromancer. 

He's the irritable, anti-social, (accidental) master of the undead that really just wants to be left alone to practice his craft and advance his knowledge of the arcane.  This was not always the case.

In his youth, he and his brother were intrepid young adventurers (Pathfinders if in Golarion), sent to go retrieve some supposedly "ancient" and "powerful" artifact.  Along with the rest of their adventuring party, they fought their way through the dungeon, past the mid-boss and end-boss, and finally found their treasure.  Upon entering the artifact's chamber, the rest of the party became entranced by the object's luring aura (aka - failed their will saves).  As the adventurers slowly approached, shadowy creatures from beyond the grave reached out for them, beckoning them closer while the young rake screamed at them and tried to break them from their trance.  Unable to free them from the artifact's hold, and seeing no other way to save his brother and companions from the vile thing, he strode forward and let it take him, sacrificing himself to save the others.

For the most part, it worked, and as soon as the thing had him in its clutches, the others were freed from the spell, horrified to see the young man being corrupted by the artifact.  Luckily, his selflessness is what saved him, the act too pure, too good, to let him succumb to death or its control.  Horribly maimed by the artifact's corruption, only the young man was able to carry the foul thing, and they high-tailed it out of there with the artifact in hand and were the heroes of the day.

Hooray for them.  Yaaay.

Unfortunately, the artifact's corruption brought the young man far closer to the grave than he'd realized, and over time strange things began to occur around him.  Namely, as he devoted himself to the study of magic (as his body was now far less capable of wielding a sword), he seemed to have a natural talent for necromancy; an affinity for the dead.  At first he tried to deny it, pushing himself to his limits to make himself a wizard, but it just seemed that necromantic energies were drawn to him, whether he liked it or not.  When dead critters started just showing up around him, now shunned by the friends and family that had once called him a hero, he had to flee from the life he knew and out into the untamed wilds of the swamplands, just to get away from everyone else.  For several years he's worked on controlling his newfound powers, coming to terms with the fact that he can't change who/what he is, so he's accepted his talents in regards to necromancy, and has been practicing (in peace).  Until now.

An adventuring party just happened to be traveling through his domain, noticed all the undead activity and reported it to the local authorities.  Several dead adventuring parties later, the authorities actually sent out a competent bunch that managed to get past all the mindless dead wandering the swamp, through his meager tower, and beat the snot out of the poor man to drag him back to face "Justice". 

Turns out Necromancy is illegal.

Go figure...

Step 2: Ability Scores
25 Point Buy (via digitalightbulb)
Str:    7
Dex: 13
Con: 12
Int:   14
Wis:  12
Cha: 20

(Or rolled, based on how well my rolls turn out)

Step 3: Race
Human.  Plain, boring, ol' human.

Step 4: Class
Crossblooded Fae/Undead Sorcerer  (realized it worked better with the sudden appearance of magical talent)

Step 5: Skills and Feats
Feats:  Spell Focus (Necromancy), Skeleton Summoner
Skills: (to be decided later)

Step 6: Starting Gear
Tattered robes and his glasses (unless they were shattered/destroyed in his apprehension and following imprisonment)

Step 7: Finishing Touches
Alignment:  Neutral
He's not exactly evil, so much as he just doesn't really give two shits about good or evil, law or chaos.  He'd be content living a normal, uneventful, life, if it weren't for the fact that the whole undead thing is sorta an issue most places.

He'd be willing to swear "allegiance" to someone only if he absolutely had to, as he'd really just rather be left alone to do his thing, but seeing as how he's sorta a wanted criminal and all...  He may not have terribly much of a choice. 

If the above information is a bit wonky, I do apologize.  I'm horribly sick, and it's 1:30 am, so I may be a little out of it.  Yes, by his past deeds, he could have been a hero, but he's been rather disillusioned with the world, and isn't out for anyone but himself.
« Last Edit: December 11, 2012, 02:28:00 PM by Roketto »

Offline Joslyn

Re: Interest Check - Mature Evil Pathfinder Campaign
« Reply #12 on: December 11, 2012, 07:56:48 AM »
I’m very interested in this one, though I don’t have any experience with pathfinder (I do have some with 3.5). My idea is for a half-elf cleric of Asmodeus who has worked as a courtesan to spy and kill for her church/cult (I’m hoping to get bluff as a class skill and would be willing to trade off something else for it in order to fit the character concept). If what I have here is accepted I can start on the crunchy character sheet stuff.

Background

Juliette is the daughter of Lord Varian Bloodcrown, a human necromancer and warlord who once terrorized the land. She has no memory of her mother, an elven sex slave who died not too long after giving birth.

As a child Juliette (originally named Sophia) was pampered by her father, and assisted him in brutal magical experiments. She also helped him plan his reign of terror. Their relationship was unnaturally close. Five years ago Lord Varian was finally defeated and slain. Juliette faked her own death by killing a half-elf servant she had kept for that purpose. She changed her name and started life anew. The lesson she took from her father’s defeat was that his devotion to Chaos was his undoing—his treachery had led to isolation from potential allies and the peasants of his lands had been all too eager to help do-gooder invaders.

Juliette devoted herself to attaining power and avenging her father through more subtle means. She supplicated herself to Asmodeus with the goal of gaining his favor as a cleric. She became well-known among the faithful with a series of essays on political authority. The half-elf advocated for a theocratic empire run on a “bread and circuses” approach—disloyalty in the weak can be eliminated by keeping their physical conditions tolerable and distracting them with sex and entertaining violence.

In order to prove her loyalty to her faith, Juliette volunteered to work as a courtesan to bring in gold and stolen secrets. This went well for several years, until divination magic uncovered her seduction and murder of Lady Marissa Swift, a famous paladin. She was sentenced to death and shipped off to Bleakguard to be tortured for information on her activities.

Offline Roketto

Re: Interest Check - Mature Evil Pathfinder Campaign
« Reply #13 on: December 11, 2012, 10:32:16 AM »
Also wondering if character flaws (a la Unearthed Arcana) would be something that might be available?  I have a couple particular detriments I'd like to give this character (and will probably inflict them on the poor bastard anyways), and it'd be kinda nice to get some sort of benefit in return.  I'm totally open for discussion as to what he could gain in benefit, but I do know exactly what flaws I'd like to use.
« Last Edit: December 11, 2012, 11:37:57 AM by Roketto »

Offline Tydorei

Re: Interest Check - Mature Evil Pathfinder Campaign
« Reply #14 on: December 11, 2012, 10:48:53 AM »
I been trying to join a way of the wicked game for centuries! I can't miss this one.

Offline Kdyami

Re: Interest Check - Mature Evil Pathfinder Campaign
« Reply #15 on: December 11, 2012, 01:59:41 PM »
Most Half-orcs are monstrosities.  They are the product of some tragic birth which was the result of perversion and violence.  They are known only by their rage, in the fury of their passions or in the howl of battle. Conflict is all these brutal souls know; savages, hired muscle, masters of martial techniques, they are not soldiers or even professional warriors, they are battle possessed creatures of slaughter and the spirits of war. And Mingan was no different.  Mingan’s mother, a battle oracle, was kidnapped during a raid by Eagle Knights(or equivalent group) and sold into slavery where she was raped and tortured, eventually giving birth to a son. 

The son was kept and raised to be used as a live sword dummy. As soon as he was able he was chained in the parade grounds and given a blunt weapon he had to fight the soldiers.  Everyone had a go often more than one at a time.  Needless to say the soldiers were none too concerned as to whether his well being and often would leave him bloodied with cuts all over his body. He began throwing himself into violent rages, ignoring his wounds, and even breaking his chains on occasion. Eventually during a pitched battle the knights were under siege in their own castle and he managed to free himself and flee to the forest managing to kill his few pursuers.  He began to think.  He could leave and see if there were any others like him. He could live in the forest.  He could simply walk off and not look back.  But as he sat and thought his rage welled up inside of him and he wanted nothing more than to kill every knight he could. 

So he collected the weapons from his pursuers and waited.  He waited until the city had a market day and he simply walked back into the city.  Waiting in a dark corner Mingan saw one of the knight instructors who had told the trainees to fight with Mingan.  Rage filling inside of himself he cut the man down in the middle of the square, claiming the lives of several more guards before he was subdued.  The captain of the guard didn’t even bother sentencing him. Mingan was unceremoniously thrown in prison with a few other nefarious individuals awaiting their execution on the fortnight……begin story.

My thoughts:
 I see Mingan taking any opportunity to kill anyone who labels them self as "good".  To him "Good" is a serious evil and destroyed his life.  I'm angling neutral evil, "power is power, I care not where it comes from." He probably wont care about the religious aspect of the offer and merely wants the power.

Offline Roketto

Re: Interest Check - Mature Evil Pathfinder Campaign
« Reply #16 on: December 11, 2012, 02:06:39 PM »
... during a raid by Eagle Knights(or equivalent group) and sold into slavery...

Ooookay.  Just makin' sure here, but are we talking about the Eagle Knights of the Golarion setting?  If so, this is horribly, horribly, out of character for that organization, and much though I love to torment Andorans, every aspect of that nation is pretty staunchly anti-slavery.  Even when it comes to half-orcs and monsters.  Heck, they even view commanding the undead as the ultimate form of slavery, so...  Yeah.  I don't think that group is the group you're thinking of...

Offline CrazyIvan

Re: Interest Check - Mature Evil Pathfinder Campaign
« Reply #17 on: December 11, 2012, 02:16:34 PM »
General Thoughts
I really like the idea of evil campaigns, though I often think they do fall into the cliche type of evil and more into just the physical violence aspect. People often forget that the best villains aren't the ones you often times truly see as villains, they are the people that are liked or even inspire loyalty in those that follow them. They may do evil acts and be evil, but being evil/villain, doesn't mean that one has to be a murdering psychopath. It doesn't necessarily even mean that one can't have some good qualities about them, but that is just me since I don't like to follow the black and white diagrams of systems. That is one reason why I often did away with the alignment system when running evil or even good guy games. Just cause one is a hero, doesn't make them a good guy, just like being a villain doesn't make them an all together bad guy, they have there shades of grey and human sides to them.

The most compelling villains to me are the ones that are human and you can see what made them the way they are, that they aren't just bloodthirsty crazed villains. That they goals, alliances, followers, people they may care about, and even a warped sense of ethics or code of honor that they follow. That they are still human and that they might be saved, but never will be because they are intentionally evil, but they give you that hope or that sense of the tragic life that lead them to be what they are. Though this goes with my belief that no one is born evil or good that we are forged into who we are by what has been done to us and what we have done. That maybe one is evil not because they are truly that evil, but merely oppose the heroes and thus had been put down and then turn evil since they have nothing left.

Another thing people often over look is that killing/murdering what the "good guys" typically do all the time under the right light could be evil. All you have to do is give the villains or bandits a backstory and make them more than faceless npcs that are just there to die. They have lives and families and things they have to do and the "good guys" often just go in and whole sale slaughter them without batting an eyelash. Killing is grey and shouldn't be what defines an evil character what makes one evil is not the killing but their thoughts and what they see in the bigger picture. That they are smart and calculating and would rather take a village and make it loyal to them, as why just burn it down when you can have minions that will help protect you. That you can do some good acts so the general populace will allow you to do great evils and they support you and even come to your aid. That evil is far more insidious and hidden that it can hide and crawl into every corner of someone and they can look like a good guy, but really be evil.

One more important aspect of this is that good and evil often change depending on what side you are on. That not all evil doers see themselves as evil, but instead as good guys that are trying to help in the way they know how. That to the oppressive king, the good guys to him are those that help him maintain his rule, but to the oppressed they are evil. That most things are in fact grey and where "evil" games fail, in my opinion, is they just try to be black and white, which in that case makes evil repetitive and dull. It isn't fun to just play a rampaging death machine for an entire campaign, it isn't fun to just be behind the wheel of a psychopath as they have no real depth to them. It is just as important for the DM to create an enriching world and campaign as it is for the players to create more than just 2D characters that are the cliche evil or what is often thought as evil. That it takes actual thought and effort to create a villain or someone that is enjoyable and is a real character, not just a peg or fits into the black and white spectrum.

Once again these are just my own opinions, but this game got me excited so I thought I would contribute them as food for thought. I had a lot more, but figured that this was enough of a back story for my thoughts and ideas for evil games. I will also note that I have run evil games, good games, and mostly grey games where characters are more important than alignment.

Step 1: The Pitch
-Name-
Elizabeth Vancrest Stormlord (last name only holds weight if you accept the tweaking and somewhat separate world creation I do), "Liz" to those she considers close.

-Personality-
Liz is a somewhat dark person, though it is not all that uncommon considering her past. She longs for what she once had and will do anything to get it back. She bears a lot in common with her first ancestors that headed north, in that she will reclaim what is hers and if she has to will wait her time to get it. She enjoys the finer things, and even enjoys helping others sometimes if you earned her trust. She is very loyal to those she can trust and that put their faith in her. She carries a deep hatred though of most nobles and would gladly see their holds burn to the ground and their crops wither to nothing. She has a dark twist to her ethics and codes, but she can still be a nice person, she just will do anything to get what she wants. She is not truly evil, nor good, she is grey as her family has been taken from her and she has been left with nothing for merely existing.

-Stats-
Sex: Female
Age: 21
Hair Color: Red
Eye Color: Green
Skin Color: White with a slight tan
Appearance: http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-IH40jzxbULo/Tcld-vLiu7I/AAAAAAAAGz8/sKKUVmLaqr8/s1600/Warrior-Woman%2Bwith%2Bsword%2Band%2Bdragon.jpg


-Crime-
Her crime, the reason that she must die, the reason why the kingdom fears her, is no more than that she was born, that she came into existence is reason enough for her to die. That her family name is something to be feared and hated by those that live in the Kingdom of Albion and even beyond, but that is what history merely recorded, which isn't always the truth. To find the truth of this conflict and ideas one must look further into the past then most can remember or care too, or into old history books that are often illegal.

-Common History of the Stormlords-
Before the rise of the Kingdom of Albion and even larger powers of the current era one of the largest empires to exist was the Empire of the Storm, ruled by the Stormlords. They controlled large swathes of land, especially in the northern reaches where their personal castle stood, the Frozen Spire, which was said to be encased in a perpetual blizzard that was so strong that it blocked out all light. That this black storm protected the castle from any form of invasion and only with the help of the Stormlord or if you were a Stormlord yourself could you navigate through the never ending storm. It was from this castle that they ruled over the lands that stretched from the "Crown of the World" and even down into the central reaches of "Avistan".

History only records them as villains, as tyrants, that ruled over their land with an iron fist. That they killed anyone that opposed them and were nothing but bloodthirsty, greedy, humans that would not hesitate to kill you for merely looking at them. That it was virtuous kingdoms like Albion that brought this empire to its knees and freed themselves, and maybe the world from the darkness that they wanted to encase the world in. Albion's even have historic tales of their fights against the Empire of the Storm, even though by the time that Albion came along the Empire had fallen apart and was already in ruins, due to those that came before it. Albion though, was originally part of the traditional lands of the Empire and was actually at the heart of where the house of the Stormlords started. Due to this fact any Stormlord or anyone claiming to be a Stormlord was arrested and put to death as the name and house was designated to be wiped from the face of Golarion.

That fear and hatred of family exist even to this day, and shows just how evil they must have been, at least that is what most believe. There are a few that don't believe the old tales and look further back and even look forward to the return of the Stormlords, but they are often considered evil. They hide themselves and some of them are in fact evil, but some know the true history which is even worse, as they hold the sercets of something more. Though to most it is a name that is best forgotten and eliminated as soon as someone with it appears, whether it be true or not.

-True Pre-History of the Stormlords-
The true history of the Stormlords is actually much deeper and longer than even their own records could record. They don't even know the exact date when they rose to power, outside of another kingdom, and when the first member of the Stormlord house decreed they ruled over their ancestral lands. What is known is that for a long time, maybe within the 1st millenium of the Era of Enthronement the house came to claimed its ancestral lands. The location of these lands, was not in the frozen north, as most would believe, but was in fact near the kingdom of Albion and within its boarders as they stand now. During which they were part of one of the large empires/kingdoms that ruled over its land and they were a respected house.

They came to power to fill a rapidly growing power vacuum that was left over in the region after the great wars of that time. Larger kingdoms and empires were falling around them, and in there wake was left nothing but in fighting, death, and war. Before this the Stormlords were apparently, according to their records, one of the vassals of one of the larger kingdoms and were trusted amongst the old guard. Though the old guard was now hated and the nations split in who should rule, who should be have what land, and all the peace that they had worked so hard was falling to ruin.

During the time of "The Great Fall" as it was known then the Stormlords were actually not within their castle walls, which helped to save them, they were historically noted to be out on a campaign for their king. Along with them were other respected and even noble houses that the king of the time sought to protect from the fall he saw coming. They were told to march south to quell a rebellion that was happening within the lands of one of the kingdoms allies, but when they arrived there was not only no rebellion, but they were greeted with open arms. It turns out the king had talked with his allies and setup a way of saving the families by giving them a chance to swear fealty to the neighboring lord, if they so choose. Many did, the currently ruling house of Albion remained behind, but a few house, the Stormlords among one of them, choose to remain loyal and took their armies and marched back north.

When they returned the houses found their lands in ruins, their king dead, and everything they had worked so hard for in flames. The peace they fought for, the respect they earned, and the people they had spelt blood for dead and buried underground left them angry and gave rise to a goal. That they would reunite the lands of their king, that they wouldn't allow this injustice to go unpunished, and it was with the help of a few other house that the Stromlords began this quest. Though before they could start it, they had to regain the power they had lost as well as build up a castle that could withstand more than any nation could throw at them. To do this they headed north, beyond the reaches of their ancestral land, towards what was thought of as a legend at the time.

The Frozen Spire, actually predates the Stormlords as a house, but it was little more than a tiny thing in recorded history. It was a legend of a place in the frozen north that was but a single tower that held within its small walls the ability to protect those that could claim it. It was a joke, or something that no one really ever thought was real, but the Stormlords had records dating back to near it founding from a member of their house that claimed to have seen it when he was exploring the north. It would be the Stormlords and their allies that would turn the small tower into the castle that came to be feared and known as the home of the Empire of the Storm.

-History of the Frozen Spire-
Within the books of the Stormlords there are a few that record specifically the history and changes to the Frozen Spire from them they first arrived to when they were forced to leave. Whether they are 100% factual is left to some debate still, but as they are the only records that remain they are mainly taken as fact at face value. When they first arrived the Frozen Spire was but a single tower that stood against the snowy white iced cliffs of the north. It was alone in a barren wasteland of snow and ice and though it was cold, no blizzard protected it at this point. The tower barely had enough room for a few dozen build and thus made a lot of men have to huddle in the caves that were near the base of the tower. This had to be the worst possible place to be during this time, but it was also the only safe place to be at the time, as if they left this waste land they would be hunted for their names.

It was in the caves that they found ancient manuscripts and other texts detailing what the tower could be and the magic that was hidden inside. It was over the next two centuries that the Stormlords reconstructed their power and along with the houses that followed them created a castle that would protect them for millenia and come to frighten children long after. The caves became carved out and that became where people lived all the time, the magic of the Spire awakened and protecting them from the elements so long as they had the protection of the Stormlords. The original Frozen Spire became part of the outer wall of defense and upon the frozen cliffs above is where what would be known as the Frozen Spire stood. It over looked all the frozen waste and the warm city that was sheltered from it by the magic and blood of the Stormlords.

It is written somewhere that the Stormlords played a blood price and bonded forever with the spire such that their kin and allies would always find warmth and comfort within her walls. That so long as a Stormlord still lived and breathed no one else may take the oath and the Frozen Spire must obey to serve its true lord. Though whether it is actually true is left up to debate as there hasn't been a Stormlord to set foot in it for nearly a millennium since they were last forced out of the castle.

It was also them that made the blizzard with the same pact that offered them an fortress whos walls would never be breached, sadly for them this did not hold true. It was also known that they experimented with their defenses and the rumors of monsters and other great beasts protecting the exterior do indeed seem to be true, according to the records. Most of them beasts were actually fairly friendly and they were often provoked by invaders who some them and became frightened at the sight of them. Either way it was under the Stormlords that the Frozen Spire became a safe place for their allies and a place of freezing death for their enemies.

-History of The Empire of The Storm-
It is around the late 2nd millennium of the Era of Enthronement that the Stormlords reappear and begin to mark a large swath of land as theirs. Many of the ruling houses who remember their name did willingly swear loyalty as the long and bloody wars had left them defenseless and they needed someone to protect them. It was only the few remaining revolters that posed any sort of real problem to their return, and from them that some of the cruel stories come, though not always true. It is true the Stormlords didn't real give second chances, but it wasn't often times them that started the conflicts. The Stormlords tried to minimize the amount of blood that had to be spilled and tried to do things politically, but when that failed they would come in and crush the other force.

It wasn't pretty, but it brought back peace and a larger empire then had existed before. It is true that they did bad things, but overall they were generally loved by the people that they ruled and for a long time this peace lasted. Far longer than under the previous kings and empires that had existed. Though the older noble houses wanted to come back in and rule, the ones that had fled and run away when times were tough. They wanted the Empire of the Storm to give back the lands that they claimed were rightful theirs, though by this point the people enjoyed the rule of the Stormlords over their previous lords. The Stormlords were fair, if cold at times, but they were equal and fair in how they ruled, they were unlike another noble that had ruled in the land. It was the nobles that began to spout of the cruelties of the Stormlords, not to the people, but to themselves. That they were nothing but selfish and greedy bastards that stole the land and now claimed it as their own.

The Stormlords were fine with them coming back, but not giving up land, especially when the people didn't want to be ruled by the other side. It was this tension that would eventually bring down the Empire. Though for nearly two millenia the Empire of the Storm would exist and rule the land with loving care and justice for all. they were far from the monsters that they would eventually painted out to be.

-Small note on the rulers and health of the Stormlords-
All Stormlords, after the founding and bonding to the Frozen Spire were blessed with unusually long life spans. It is never actually recorded of one of them dying of old age, they often died in battle, fire, or some other cause. They lived well into beyond their 100s, with the oldest being nearly 170 before he died due to boulder. Some records even say that the original founding member that did the oath with the tower lived until the fall of the Empire, though that is considered myth by most. The tower did seem to have some affect on their bodies and slow the aging, but after the lose of the Spire they seemed to age normally again, though still a bit slower than most. Not really anything of note though.

-The Fall of The Empire of The Storm-
The fall of the Empire came from both within as well as from outside of her boarders. The foreign nobles had promised power to certain key nobles if them helped them in reclaiming their old lands. Thus in the late 3rd, early 4th, Millenia the last snow fell upon the ground of the Frozen Spire and the Empire fell. It was then that the foreign nobles did unspeakable acts and pinned it upon the Stormlords, but since they won they wrote history and it became fact. It was at this time that they would be branded, hunted, and exiled from all the lands they once owned. It was also now that they ruined all foreign ties they had and spoiled the name, making sure they would never come back.

The fall was a brutal and bloody affair and those who swore loyalty to the Empire wouldn't go down and merely fled into the shadows with their rulers till the day they could come back and reclaim the empire they had. This was a horrible mess that left the north angry and caused discontent that still remains today in the northern reaches. Some say that there are still agents of the Stormlords at work, but most people just pass it off and think nothing of it. For most they are nothing but a passing nightmare, which was untrue, it is their current lords that are worse.

-After the Fall-
After the fall of the empire a massive power vacuum, larger than the one that lead to the Empire, occurred as each house and noble sought to claim what they saw as theirs. It was nearly half a millenia before the fighting and chaos started to die down and let some semblance of peace return to the region. It has now been a millenia since the last of the Stormlords claimed the Frozen Spire, since the Empire fell, and since anything good has been said about them in public.

-The House of Storm-
After the fall and the chaos started to die down, the Stormlords started to rebuild their first ancestral lands, within the lands of the kingdom of Albion. They had slightly changed the their name kept who they were hidden from the rest of the world. In fact the kingdom of Albion had let them come as long time allies and friends as a way of saving them from the rest of the world. It was here that they found some peace, they didn't want to retake the world, just to live in peace and see peace return to the region.

The intention of the Albion nobles was originally to keep them safe, but it couldn't last as either outside forces wanted them to be gone, or wanted to see them return to power. Either way the house lasted for a few hundred years before it fell into its current state and the last of the Stormlords was born.

-The last of the Stormlords-
Liz was raised inside the castle walls of her family, she was the last child born to the House of Storm, the last of the Stormlords. She was raised like a noble and is well versed on both the public and private history of her family. She was loved by her servants and was actually a rather nice child. She was a quick learner and was quick with a sword and like the rest of her family good in a fight. But that childhood didn't last long as the armies of Albion closed on their walls, sacked the castle, and took away everything she loved. She watched her servants die, those stories of her family burned, and the supposed "good guys" destroy everything cause of their last name.

She had to watch as everyday one of her family members were killed in front of her, as she was the youngest she was the last to die. One by one everything she had was taken from her, but those that claimed to be just and good. She vowed she would escape, she vowed she would avenge them, and she vowed she would go make them all regret what they had done. If the Stormlords were villains she was going to show them just what type of monster they had reawakened, a beast that was fine to just stay out of everyone way. First she needs to free herself, then take over Albion, then go back to the Frozen Spire, and from there, who knows maybe the world this time.

Step 2: Ability Scores
Still working on this

Step 3: Race
Human. May ask or talk with you about some changes as they might fit, but mostly human.

Step 4: Class
Still thinking, but leaning towards either fighter or rogue. What do you think would best?

Step 5: Skills and Feats
Still working on cause need to narrow down class.

Step 6: Starting Gear
Tattered clothes

Step 7: Finishing Touches
Alignment:  Neutral... maybe neutral evil... more likely neutral though
She wants revenge against those who wronged her, but to those that would follow her or willing be with her, she wouldn't hurt them unless they betray her. She isn't always evil, but she has a mean streak and there for a bit more pragmatic/cold hearted about somethings.

Her crime is stated earlier that is her name, lineage, and everything else about her. That is her crime as well as maybe killing a few men of the kingdoms soldiers as they came to destroy her castle, but could easily be spun anyway the kingdom wanted.

As for allegiance she would swear it at least for a time and so long as he helped her accomplish her own goal. She is fine to put certain things on hold as she knows she won't get anywhere alone and needs protection right now or else she will just die. So she might be a bit reluctant, but not having much choice she will most likely say yes, and considering her name and backstory if you choose to accept it, he would most likely being willing to have her on.

Closing notes
Well I know it is a lot to read, and it is not all the way done, but I figured I would give the idea that was really burning in my head a shot, even if it might not really fit in. If it doesn't fine I can always go with one of my other ideas, just figured might as well go big and see if it works, if not oh well I can try again turning it down a bit. Either way it was fun for me to write this, hopefully you find some enjoyment in reading it.
« Last Edit: December 11, 2012, 02:22:49 PM by CrazyIvan »

Offline Pointless DigressionTopic starter

Re: Interest Check - Mature Evil Pathfinder Campaign
« Reply #18 on: December 11, 2012, 03:18:30 PM »
I'm going to declare that a sufficient level of interest has been expressed, and I will put this game together. This is 11 December, and the holidays are coming up. A good way to get this game to die an early death would be to try to start before Christmas. Expect to begin between Christmas and New Year. This will also give people a chance to pitch characters and work together to generate common backstories or play up character compatibility.

I'll field some questions, then return with another programming note.

One last question, how long do you expect the game to stay at low levels? I find the level 1 and 2 areas of playing to be the most boring, even more so than the level 13+ stuff.

Not very long. Firstly, we'll use the fast experience track system from Pathfinder, this is to represent not only the old adage that the way of the dark side is quicker and easier, but because I too find early level grinding tedious, and secondly because I intend to award story based and character bonuses, which I think I'll be doing quite a lot of based on the quality of the submissions I've seen thus far.

If I play an divine caster, would a non-deity worshipping divine caster be acceptable, one that follows a concept or something of that nature?"

I'll allow it, but does serving a dark god not appeal?

Also wondering if character flaws (a la Unearthed Arcana) would be something that might be available?

I'll allow it. Don't forget that we're also using campaign traits, though.

I been trying to join a way of the wicked game for centuries! I can't miss this one.

I had no idea that adventure path was so popular. I've been on other RPG forums and I've name dropped it and gotten no response whatsoever. Here on E I've had two people tell me they recognize it! Yeah, I've been aching to run an evil campaign for ages with my tabletop group, and I really like the campaign flow, so I decided to adapt it for use here. You may have already noticed that the name of the kingdom has been changed, and even if you've read the modules it's going to be different from my adaptions.


Offline Pointless DigressionTopic starter

Re: Interest Check - Mature Evil Pathfinder Campaign
« Reply #19 on: December 11, 2012, 03:26:00 PM »
Elizabeth Vancrest Stormlord (last name only holds weight if you accept the tweaking and somewhat separate world creation I do),

Step 4: Class
Still thinking, but leaning towards either fighter or rogue. What do you think would best?


I'll respond to what you've written in more detail later. But I'll answer the immediate questions now. Yes, I will accept tweaking to the setting and history. In fact, I encourage it!

As far as class choices go, I'd say that a rogue is the way to go on this.

Offline Ryuka Tana

Re: Interest Check - Mature Evil Pathfinder Campaign
« Reply #20 on: December 11, 2012, 03:35:18 PM »
Quote from: Ryuka Tana
If I play an divine caster, would a non-deity worshipping divine caster be acceptable, one that follows a concept or something of that nature?"

I'll allow it, but does serving a dark god not appeal?

"I'm an anarchist, in real life, so my characters tend to avoid being servile to anything. I can play it, and don't think I'll be instantly defiant if we're expected to be in the service of some entity, I just tend to avoid it on a personal level. However, in the end, given how much interest there is in casters so far, I'm thinking of going with Magus, leaning on the 'Fighter-y' side... Sort of..."



"Before I progress to a few characters questions. How many of us do you expect to take on? If I counted right, there are 11 people interested, and as much as I love interest and character interaction, 11 people in one group is... pretty ridiculous. I'd hate to suggest throwing people out, but (and this is just my thought if you even remotely care) I wouldn't take more than 8, even that could be a bit much."

"Crap, it seems I have chores now, so I'll send you my other question by PM, as I'd rather make my character idea public only as soon as I'm sure what it's going to be."

Offline Joslyn

Re: Interest Check - Mature Evil Pathfinder Campaign
« Reply #21 on: December 11, 2012, 03:48:30 PM »
I'm going to declare that a sufficient level of interest has been expressed, and I will put this game together. This is 11 December, and the holidays are coming up. A good way to get this game to die an early death would be to try to start before Christmas. Expect to begin between Christmas and New Year. This will also give people a chance to pitch characters and work together to generate common backstories or play up character compatibility.

I have a suggestion--maybe there could be an optional earlier IC start of the PCs just cooling their heels in the prison together? It would be a chance to start exploring the interpersonal relationships before the action begins after Christmas.

Also, I have a question about the setting: would a religion dedicated to Asmodeus be out in the open or more of a secret cult? It can be hard to tell with Lawful Evil types. Any other info about the setting would be helpful as well.

Offline Kdyami

Re: Interest Check - Mature Evil Pathfinder Campaign
« Reply #22 on: December 11, 2012, 03:56:44 PM »
Ooookay.  Just makin' sure here, but are we talking about the Eagle Knights of the Golarion setting?  If so, this is horribly, horribly, out of character for that organization, and much though I love to torment Andorans, every aspect of that nation is pretty staunchly anti-slavery.  Even when it comes to half-orcs and monsters.  Heck, they even view commanding the undead as the ultimate form of slavery, so...  Yeah.  I don't think that group is the group you're thinking of...

Yeah pathfinder beginner, spent more time D&D, hang on have no idea what Golarion is............Oh!! Look at that.  No. I didn't mean those Eagle Knights.  I was using a pun on an aztec group, the Eagle Warriors.  They are one of the earliest recorded examples of religious zealot.  They would raid other tribes and not kill anyone but capture them all to be used as sacrifice or sold. Sorry for the confusion.

Offline PaleEnchantress

Re: Interest Check - Mature Evil Pathfinder Campaign
« Reply #23 on: December 11, 2012, 03:58:56 PM »
Oh hot damn. I'm really liking this game pitch. I almost exclusively play evil campaigns and I'm quite good at making them work. I really prefer starting the game with a partner though.


Anyone want to play a strong male submissive to go opposite my prettyboy male spellcaster?

Offline Roketto

Re: Interest Check - Mature Evil Pathfinder Campaign
« Reply #24 on: December 11, 2012, 04:01:34 PM »
Yeah pathfinder beginner, spent more time D&D, hang on have no idea what Golarion is............Oh!! Look at that.  No. I didn't mean those Eagle Knights.  I was using a pun on an aztec group, the Eagle Warriors.  They are one of the earliest recorded examples of religious zealot.  They would raid other tribes and not kill anyone but capture them all to be used as sacrifice or sold. Sorry for the confusion.
Ahh, ok, that makes a whooooole lot more sense.  I've been playing in the Pathfinder setting for just over two years now, so I'm fairly familiar with it.