Castaway Diary, Day 0

So we started the new campaign. I say new campaign, although I don’t think it will be as long as ROTRL. Almost certainly not. But we’ll see how far we go. Last night’s session was character creation, which everyone whipped through quickly, I thought. I’m glad we had some time for the situational exposition dump I did.
The situation was told through a series of flashbacks, which is fine for dumping info, but you don’t get to play much. That’s fine, it was really still glorified character generation, just rounding out the basic personalities for people to grasp quickly. As for personalities, that was pretty easy, this is going to be a fascinating group to watch play Lord of The Flies. I’ll follow up on some things in the comments, re: languages and trying to find Tengu miniatures.
Good job everyone. That was essentially a session of nothing but paperwork, but it rolled along merrily. I thought the randomised traits threw out some interesting stuff. It’ll be fun to see which take root and which don’t.
Mike rolled Uun, the Barbarian.
Sean rolled Nobody, a Tiefling Gunslinger.
Ben O rolled Rolofson, a Halfling Sorceror. (I’m glad someone has finally played a Halfling).
Ben T rolled Victor Glorington, a Paladin.
Matt rolled Percy, a Tengu Cleric of Sarenrae.
Noe rolled Malicia BcCaw, a Tengu Rogue.
Rolland rolled Floki Blodvin, a Ranger.
Jim rolled Orny, a Witch. But a Manwitch. Not a warlock though. He has a goat, it is maybe called Bongripper, but I’m going to pronounce that like Bon Scott.
Dispensing with the flashbacks and recapping things roughly in order:
Gods bless the good ship Jenivere and all who drown near her!

Gods bless the good ship Jenivere and all who drown near her!

The cargo Barque Jenivere set out from Magnimar laden with glassware from the Lost Coast’s increasingly prestigious glassworks. Although not a passenger ship, it has a dozen small cabins that it sells for a fraction of the cost of passage on a dedicated  passenger vessel. So as it made its way down the western coast of the continents of Avistan and Garund, trading the glass for salt pork and then the salt pork for rum, it picked up passengers along the way on its final destination to Eleder, the port in the former-Chelish colony of Sargava.

Sargava’s settlement went the way those things usually do. “Thanks for the food, now how would you chaps like spending the rest of forever down a diamond mine for us?”

Sargava – and here is where I will condense the history lesson – is a colony that broke with Cheliax during its civil war and pay an exorbitant tribute to the pirates of the Shackles for protection from Cheliax. This instability makes it a great place for people to go and seek their fortune/a new life/opportunities. It isn’t quite the Florida of Golarion, but it is maybe the Oregon. At least until Sargava runs out of money and Cheliax turns it into a devil-worshipping police state. 
Here’s where it is worth catching up with our cast of… castaways:
Boarding in Magnimar:
Uun, the Shoanti barbarian; who spent the many months on board creating new and increasingly experimental booze and shoes. 
Victor, a paladin of Iomedae; who had signed up to be part of the crew, but who didn’t quite make the cut. Nevertheless he took his duty seriously.
Ileana, a Varisian archaeologist; was a bright and cheerful  soul until the ship hit its first wave, and has been cabin-bound with seas-sickness ever since. She hopes to study the ruins that dot Sargava.
Gelik, a gnome and disgraced Pathfinder; who once presided over the Pathfinder Society’s interests in Magnimar and purchased the location of the Runeforge from a group of very dashing adventurers. I wonder whatever became of them. He didn’t take their warning about the Halls of Gluttony seriously enough and two missing expeditions later, he was advised to go make himself useful to the society somewhere else.
They sailed south to Cheliax, docking at several cities before taking on two more passengers, only one of whom got to a cabin…
Floki , a ranger and Blodvin Marine; who signed up as an extra hand for a reduced cabin fee and took to the ordered life of a Jenivere crewman with ease.
The prisoner; a mysterious person who was brought aboard at Corentyn and immediately placed in the brig. No-one knows who he/she is, except the captain and a few trusted crew members. 
From Cheliax they went over to Mediogalti and the notorious port of Ilizmagorti. There they picked up:
Malicia, a Tengu erm… stealth specialist; who immediately set to stealing money here and there from other passengers, but otherwise kept to herself.
Rolofson, a Halfling Sorceror; whose amiable nature won over the normally distant crew as he gathered information on Sargava.
Sasha; an excitable young lady who dashed aboard as the gangplank was being raised. The boredom of the trip south eventually put a lid on how fascinating everything was for her. She was heading south mostly it seemed, to see cool wildlife.
Then it sailed into the pirate-controlled waters of the Shackles and the free ports there. In Port Peril, they took aboard:
Orny; a man-witch and his goat. Orny took care of the small amount of livestock on board. The goat just hung out, took some time for himself. Sailors are a superstitious lot, but the only thing worse than having a witch on board is refusing to let a witch on board. Still, boat hasn’t sunk yet, right?
Nobody, a Tiefling Gunslinger; exiled from whence he came, Nobody was content to see out the few weeks before arriving in Eleder by chatting to whoever was available.
Aerys, a Half-elven Fighter; she put a line under the fighter part of that when she broke a sailor’s nose for some comment he made, pretty much as soon as she stepped on board. Still, you know what they say – make someone your bitch on the first day… no, wait that’s prison. Well, anyway, she has been sullen and reclusive ever since.
Finally the ship made it to the Mwangi expanse where it picked up its last passenger and found one more.
Ishiro, a scruffy looking man of Tian heritage, who is terse and aloof. He is apparently a fisherman. That is all.
Percy, a Tengu Cleric of Sarenrae, attempted to stowaway – why would ships have a crow’s nest if Tengu weren’t allowed to sleep there? – but was found. Captain Kovack put him in a cabin (rather than the brig) and insisted something would be worked out vis-a-vis payment when they got to Eleder.
Your fellow passengers. Clockwise from top left: Aerys, Gelik, Sasha, Ishiro, as yet unseen prisoner, Ileana.

Your fellow passengers. Clockwise from top left: Aerys, Gelik, Sasha, Ishiro, as yet unseen prisoner, Ileana.

*You know what is hard to find on DeviantArt? Pictures of Gnome Dandies. And you call yourselves deviants! Thanks to Toshiro Mifune for being the only scruffy Japanese guy on film ever. Seriously though, if you are ever looking for character portraits, trawling DeviantArt is a great resource. Send ad money their way! 
On the last leg of the voyage they were invited to dine with the Captain. Uun smeared his torso with his finest fish oil and several others primped and preened – actually, I think just the Tengu actually preened – and got ready for a good meal.
A good meal it was too, and chat around the table revealed everyone’s plans for their life in Sargava. Gelik seeks to salvage his reputation by resetting his “Find weird stuff” level back to Easy and going to fantasy-africa. Sasha isn’t sure what she’ll do, but she hopes it involves zebras and mandrills and parrots and giraffes and sugar gliders. Ishiro wants to be a fisherman. Aerys doesn’t know and doesn’t care. Unless Ileana’s plans are changed she wants to look at ruins, but she missed the dinner because she can barely keep anything down as it is.
Thanks for taking care of those game hens, Orny!

Thanks for taking care of those game hens, Orny!

They ate roasted stuffed game hen and seafood gumbo, flaming brandy pudding. They made toasts to their future (except Ishiro, who doesn’t drink, apparently) with a jug of port. The Captain was called away on some matter as the cheese plate arrived, but by then everyone was feeling full and a little woozy. They retreated to their cabins, getting worse by the minute and fell into deep sleeps, with the last thing any of them recalling being raised voices.

Your ship is in trouble. Bongripper OUT!

They were woken by being flung violently from their beds. The ship was in some grave peril, tilted wildly. The First Mate, Alton Devers (bearing several noticeable slash wounds), hauled them from their cabins and told them the ship was going down. He sent the confused and reeling passengers up to the main deck, where they were bundled into lifeboats clutching what few belongings they could.
The lifeboat didn’t make it far. As the Jenivere was wrenched apart by whatever trouble she was in, a mast split and clipped the little boat, capsizing it. Everyone in the lifeboat was pitched into the sea.
As they woke, slowly, they were largely incapacitated by the burning sensation in their chests. When their faculties returned to them, they found themselves baking on a pale sand beach beside a lagoon. Other bodies littered the beach, some stirring, some not. Beyond the beach rose a curtain of dark green jungle in both directions.
Then something started eating their feet…



15 Comments on “Castaway Diary, Day 0

  1. If you wanted to be called Oon, you should have rolled shittier, Uun.

  2. We kinda flew by the seat of our pants with RotRL. This was fun because it led to stuff like killing a dragon by dropping a ceiling of flesh on its head. We were able to pull this off in part because we had a house rule that made it a lot easier to not die (negative total hit points before death). Now that we’re playing by the rules as written (dead at negative constitution score) I think we need to do more planning or we’re going to TPK. I think it would be a good idea to try and use Dodecaheathens to formulate our plans. This would in part satiate my desire to play Pathfinder all day every day, maybe pull in more ad revenue for Duffin and most importantly reduce the amount of time we sit around the table talking instead of acting.

    It looks like we’re going to be playing Survivor once we get Bongripper to stop nibbling at our toes (stupid goats eat everything). This is something that Floki is well suited for. He’d be useful in doing the following:

    Piecing together an idea of where we are (Profession Sailor, Knowledge Geography)
    Building shelter (Survival)
    Finding food and water (Survival)
    Determining the best location for a camp (Survival, Profession Soldier)
    Securing the perimeter of the camp (Profession Soldier)
    Perhaps, building a raft/fishing net (Profession Sailor, Survival)

    Floki doesn’t have any ranks in the charisma based skills though. Unless George RR Martin is writing for Paizo I think we can assume that the NPCs we met during supper with the Captain are going to wash up on shore too, maybe along with some sailors. We’re going to need to convince them to work with us/bend them to our will in order to set up a productive colony. Failure to do so could lead to fighting over resources or just plain old fighting. I know we have a few characters with high charisma scores. Did anyone take ranks in Diplomacy, Bluff or Intimidate? If so I think it would be nice for that person to fill the role of party face at least until we can put together a secure shelter and iron out the logistics of staying alive.

    Other thoughts that I have are:
    What did other people take in the way of Craft and Profession skills?
    Who else has Survival skill points?
    What are you Knowledgeable in?
    How can you help in our current situation?
    What roll do you see your character filling in battle?

    • Orny is a city mouse. None of that survival nonsense, and only his “detect poison” spell is the kind of thing that will yield much survival use. Most of his other spells are crowd-control stuff, so he can be the party Ambien if people need a Slumber hex.

      Bongripper might be useful as a scout, as long as we can make sure we can keep him from being eaten by an alligator. Familiars are expensive to replace.

      Skill-wise, he’s got some crafting skills that might help arm people if we’re willing to allow a cutler to make flint tools.

      • So I’ve been going over every one’s sheets and I had a hell of a time trying to find how many spells Orny knew. With Wizards, it’s right there under spells, they keep the spells they know in their spellbook, but it took me ages to find it on Witch.

        Because THE GOAT IS THE SPELLBOOK. Which is fucking hilarious. Orny communes with his goat every day, the goat contains all his spells and new spells are added to the goat whenever Orny levels. It is a goat full of cantrips, like a little magical pinata. I can’t really imagine any goat communing that isn’t funny.

        Anyway, that said, I agree that this makes the goat a not-great choice for scout.

        • Oof. Leaving the patron specific stuff out, Bongripper will start off knowing 6 1st level spells. But if he has to be replaced, the new familiar gets two spells of each level that the witch possesses (“A new familiar begins knowing all of the 0-level spells plus two spells of every level the witch is able to cast.”)

          So Bongripper the Second would have four fewer spells known than Bongripper the First. Harsh.

          • Yeah, sorry about that sheet. I keep my spells on my phone.

        • Also, teaching the goat spells is going to be hilarious. You just feed it rolled-up scrolls, then it human-screams a magic word that you remember.

          • I’m picturing Orny and the Goat harmonizing bleats for the Cackle hex.


  3. Charisma and Diplomacy. you say? That’s where I’m a viking! Or rather, a paladin, which is considerably better than a viking when diplomacy is required.

  4. Languages: Below is a list of the languages spoken that you can choose from. Sargava, the place you are going to has two languages commonly spoken: Common and Polyglot.

    Common (Taldane) is spoken by the Chelish elite and those who want anything from them. It is the de facto official language.

    Polyglot is a trade language used between the various tribal people of the Mwangi Expanse. Far more common outside the city. I can’t think of a single reason any of you would have learned it, with the exception of Rolofson, who took the Mwangi Scholar trait. If you can come up with some compelling reason, go for it. But it is as likely as you learning Bantu before you move to South Africa; a) you’d be hard-pressed to find a Bantu speaker and b) you wouldn’t bother, they speak English.

    Anyway, other than Common and Polyglot:

    Northern Human Languages: Hallit, Shadowtongue, Skald, Shoanti, Varisian. (Typically marginalized by Common.)
    Southern Human Languages: Osiriani, Kelish. (Not typically marginalized by Common.)
    Eastern Human Languages: Vudrani, Tian. (Not typically marginalized by Common.)
    Nonhuman Languages: Boggard, Draconic, Elven, Dwarven, Giant, Gnoll, Goblin, Gnome, Halfling, Orc, Sylvan (Fey).
    Dead Languages: Ancient Osiriani, Azlanti, Jistka, Thassilonian.
    That-is-not-dead-which-can-eternal-lie Languages: Aklo, Abyssal, Infernal.
    Darklands Languages: Undercommon, Canto, Sakvroth (Drow Sign Language).
    Other Languages: Four elemental tongues (Ignan, Terran, Aquan, Auran) and Celestial.

  5. RE: Tengu miniatures. Yeah, you’re kind of boned there. I’m going to look through my plastic Skaven… I had a ton.

    Meanwhile, the WotC iteration of birdmen is the Kenku, for which they made those shitty rubbery miniatures. Still, in a pinch and with a fresh coat of paint, you may be in luck.

    No matter what any Kenku miniatures tell you though, Tengu players, Tengu do not have wings or tails.

    • In minis-related news, I only just now realized that the goat I ordered in pieces from Reaper’s bits inventory (it’s an undead one that I thought I could have some fun green-stuffing into something normal-looking), is scaled to be a 28mm mount for a rider.

      Those little weird outcroppings that I thought were flash in the catalog photo are a saddle.


    • Okay, got a Nobody made – if I could, I’d put beastman heads on all my miniatures.

      And I have minis (not yet painted) for the castaways. Tengu are next, I found a suitably small sneaky skaven frame for Malicia and then a more dignified looking skaven with kind of robes for Percy, our cleric of Sarenrae. I’ll green stuff those guys tonight and see what I end up with.