TheAuldGrump

Spelljammer/Starjammer - Background - Megans Allowed!

87 posts in this topic

 I think you could probably get some good mileage out of the Great Old One warlock patrons like Hadar and Acamar - dealing with a sentient crystal sphere could be a whole lotta fun... (And how do you fight a Bad Guy when they're a planet? lol)

Pathfinder, not 4e. (Though PF witches have Patrons, they are smaller scale, and much less malignant.)

 

One of the Cryptic Clues -

The Dreamer's in his chamber.

The King's upon his throne.

The Queen is in the abattoir,

And dances all alone....

 

So, if the name of one of the locations is Carcosa, on the banks of Lake Hali, do you think that the PCs will figure it out?.... (Not the final locations - but one of the charts is there. They will need to go to a Masqued Ball.)

 

The Auld Grump

1 person likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

 I think you could probably get some good mileage out of the Great Old One warlock patrons like Hadar and Acamar - dealing with a sentient crystal sphere could be a whole lotta fun... (And how do you fight a Bad Guy when they're a planet? lol)

Pathfinder, not 4e. (Though PF witches have Patrons, they are smaller scale, and much less malignant.)

 

One of the Cryptic Clues -

The Dreamer's in his chamber.

The King's upon his throne.

The Queen is in the abattoir,

And dances all alone....

 

So, if the name of one of the locations is Carcosa, on the banks of Lake Hali, do you think that the PCs will figure it out?.... (Not the final locations - but one of the charts is there. They will need to go to a Masqued Ball.)

 

The Auld Grump

 

Spelljammer Cthulhu / King in Yellow. That sounds like fun.  As to whether they'll figure it out, it  depends on how well read your players are and how paranoid.  

3 people like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

 

 I think you could probably get some good mileage out of the Great Old One warlock patrons like Hadar and Acamar - dealing with a sentient crystal sphere could be a whole lotta fun... (And how do you fight a Bad Guy when they're a planet? lol)

Pathfinder, not 4e. (Though PF witches have Patrons, they are smaller scale, and much less malignant.)

 

One of the Cryptic Clues -

The Dreamer's in his chamber.

The King's upon his throne.

The Queen is in the abattoir,

And dances all alone....

 

So, if the name of one of the locations is Carcosa, on the banks of Lake Hali, do you think that the PCs will figure it out?.... (Not the final locations - but one of the charts is there. They will need to go to a Masqued Ball.)

 

The Auld Grump

 

Spelljammer Cthulhu / King in Yellow. That sounds like fun.  As to whether they'll figure it out, it  depends on how well read your players are and how paranoid.  

 

Two of the players have been in my Call of Cthulhu game - including my good lady wife.

 

But I do not think that either has ever had dealings with The Unspeakable One, or even the Yellow Sign. (I need to reread both The King in Yellow and Tales from Averoigne. I may borrow and convert Castle Amber to fit with  the game.)

 

The Auld Grump

1 person likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Spelljammer has always been one of my favorite settings.

 

If Pathfinder's Golarion is already a mix of classic fantasy settings, and Spelljammer expands it exponentially.

 

Some of the best ideas are already there. It's worth getting a copy of the Speljammer Monstrous Manual, as it adds populate space with very interesting races and monsters.

 

- Visit the core D&D settings or Forgotten Realms, Dragonlance and Greyhawk as they are neighboring crystal spheres.

- Visit the Rock of Bral, universal meeting point for everyone.

- Visit the living crystaline ships of elves.

- Visit dwarven asteroid ships.

- Regret visiting giant space hamster powered gnome ships.

- Flee from Beholders and there plentiful kin.

- Flee the Mindflayers and there slave ships.

- Flee the tiny Neoghis and the slave umberhulks.

- Avoid getting caught in the middle of that goblin space war.

- Realize that the Great Old Ones' domain is the empty space between worlds, and you just happen to sail there.

- Fight the Pirates of Gith (yes, in Spelljammer, they are the third race of the Gith that live in space).

- Be amazed at the Spelljammer ship itself. Gigantic, mysterious, on autopilot, and with various factions trying to control it.

- Whaddya mean that bug eyed monster with more teeth than I have hair follicles is a paladin!?

 

After having played Star Wars RPGs. Remove the Jedi vs Empire bit, and the SW expanded universe fits very well with Spelljammer.

4 people like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Spelljammer has always been one of my favorite settings.

 

If Pathfinder's Golarion is already a mix of classic fantasy settings, and Spelljammer expands it exponentially.

 

Some of the best ideas are already there. It's worth getting a copy of the Speljammer Monstrous Manual, as it adds populate space with very interesting races and monsters.

 

- Visit the core D&D settings or Forgotten Realms, Dragonlance and Greyhawk as they are neighboring crystal spheres.

- Visit the Rock of Bral, universal meeting point for everyone.

- Visit the living crystaline ships of elves.

- Visit dwarven asteroid ships.

- Regret visiting giant space hamster powered gnome ships.

- Flee from Beholders and there plentiful kin.

- Flee the Mindflayers and there slave ships.

- Flee the tiny Neoghis and the slave umberhulks.

- Avoid getting caught in the middle of that goblin space war.

- Realize that the Great Old Ones' domain is the empty space between worlds, and you just happen to sail there.

- Fight the Pirates of Gith (yes, in Spelljammer, they are the third race of the Gith that live in space).

- Be amazed at the Spelljammer ship itself. Gigantic, mysterious, on autopilot, and with various factions trying to control it.

- Whaddya mean that bug eyed monster with more teeth than I have hair follicles is a paladin!?

 

After having played Star Wars RPGs. Remove the Jedi vs Empire bit, and the SW expanded universe fits very well with Spelljammer.

Yup

Yup

Yup

Yup

Yu... wait a minute.... ::P:

4 people like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Setting - Regency-Space, or The Regency

A good deal of time a go, King Laurence duAumber III went quite mad, and was deemed incapable of administering to the realm

 

For until he either recovered, or the event of his death, his popularly much disliked son, also named Laurence duAumber, was made Prince Regent.

 

During his Regency, the Prince Regent spent far beyond his means, with the burden being taken up by the Office of the Treasury.

 

Time passed, as time does, and the Prince grew old - faster than his allotted time, it appeared, and died.

 

But meanwhile, the Mad King seemed curiously untouched by time.

 

The Prince's own son took up the reigns of government, and in turn grew old and died, seemingly before his time - yet still the Mad King sat alternately drooling or ranting upon his throne, as years passed away.

 

The grandson was, in turn, replaced by great grandson - and in the thirteenth year of that Prince Regent's time, the Queen unexpectedly swelled with child, the son of the old King, years after the Regency had passed from his direct get.

 

The Queen herself was much disliked in that court - her short temper and willingness to use the immutable right of the Crown to justice both high and low, led to summary executions for the most petty of personal offenses.

 

When first the years ceased to weigh upon her husband, it seemed that it had not turned its attentions from her - she aged, with the first lines appearing at her eyes and jowls, followed by a greying of her hair.

 

Yet then those signs of age began to recede - hair growing dark with renewed luxury, and the lines clearing away - only to return and recede with the passing of each year.

 

This last son was granted the title of the Regency - the former Prince Regent and his line retreating to the family holdings with a strange lack of reluctance.

 

This new son is neither as untouched by time as his father, nor is his aging cyclical, but rather it seems that he ages slowly, though spending much of his time in slumber.

 

The Gallery of the palace holds many paintings of the Princes Regent, their wives, and their children - but it holds no such paintings of the King, the Queen, nor of the current Prince Regent.

 

At the end of the Gallery, alone upon its wall, is a curious painting of the Palace, with its facade reflected in a crystal lake, where no lake exists. Also reflected in the lake is a city that bears no likeness to the city in which the Palace resides, and indeed there is no painting of either the reality or of the reflected city in the main body of the work.

 

Where the artist's signature would normally be seen is a strangely disturbing symbol, painted in saffron upon the green of the lake.

 

The Auld Grump

2 people like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I was badly confused by Spelljammer when it first came out. Fish or fowl? D&D or Star Trek?

Answer: Think "planetary romance" and read up on John Carter of Mars, Carson of Venus, and then go back and reread the Monster Manual.

It all fell into place after that. Having a background in Burroughs helps.

2 people like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I ran a Spelljammer campaign a few years ago. great fun.

The party helped stop a war between the Aarakoa and some gnome colonists that would have spread beyond the sphere.

They stopped the Cult of the dragon from turning a 500 mile long sleeping space dragon into a dracolich under the cult's control (they saved about 50 unicorns in the process as well).

They solved the mystery of a haunted, shifting dungeon and prevented whatever horrors the long lost race that built it, locked away in the black hole at the center of the sphere.

And the captain got bit by a were crocodile and then tried to eat the rest of the party.

 

Sadly it went the way of most campaigns and eventually petered out as it became harder and harder to find time and ways to get together to play it. I may still eventually partially pick it up for my wife and her friend and have them just have adventures where they left off hunted by ogres on a planet full of dinosaurs deep in mindflayer space.

 

We never did find a way to run ship battles that felt fun for everyone though. we did them a few times when the game started as they seemed essential to the feel of the game but it really seemed to drag on and the boarding action rules seemed entirely to random and costly to your crew. We failed to find any alternatives that we liked as well.

Edited by EvilJames
2 people like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Adapting Sky Galleons of Mars, Aeronef, or Space 1889, ship-to-ship rules might be a thought.

 

Boarding actions are best fought the same as a big land battle the PCs get caught up in. IMO.

 

I had a really fun gaming session once where an entire town was attacked after midnight by Orcs and Goblins who had secretly tunneled in and undermined the site. I did a periodic check to see how the overall battle was going. But the action focused on the PCs. I had a special encounter chart with about twelve items on it; check every turn.

 

The chart told me only what immediate opponents the PCs had. Fight a normal encounter with them. Then the PCs get to move a little. Next turn = new encounter.

 

If the PCs kept winning their small encounters, it counted as bonuses when I did the "overall battle" dice roll.

 

If the overall battle went badly it might double-up the PC encounters per turn...

3 people like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That's a pretty good idea!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

At some point I am likely to create a deep background/plot thread - one where Megan et ali. are not allowed.

 

Looking at the original Spelljammer material before getting too deep into Spacejammer.

 

Already made some decisions in regards to play - my person setting assumes that star travel is relatively commonplace.

 

The Regency is a three planet 'empire' - think a blend of Regency England and France just before the Revolution.

 

I want there to be a feeling of something very rotten in the court, and a dark mystery for why the ruling family is living so very long.

 

Tech... I am thinking flintlocks, not laser cannon or crossbows. (Guns Everywhere option, from Ultimate Combat.) Ships are armed with cannon, not ballista. (Sky Galleons of Mars was also running through my own head - I loved Space 1889, and the initiative system in Soldier's Companion was the most brutal that I have ever seen. (Both sides roll initiative, adding bonuses for experience. Winner moves and fires. Then both sides roll initiative.... Regular troops can roll right over green troops, without breaking stride....)

 

I had a nice long post about Letters of Marque and company Charters - but the interweb at work ate it. If you want to be an Adventuring Company, you need one or the other - and they cost money. (200GP - or a character Trait.) Letters of Marque are granted to an individual, Charters are for a company - but Letters of Marque also grant a minor noble title....)

 

The Auld Grump

2 people like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think you could probably get some good mileage out of the Great Old One warlock patrons like Hadar and Acamar - dealing with a sentient crystal sphere could be a whole lotta fun... (And how do you fight a Bad Guy when they're a planet? lol)

"Mogo doesn't socialize."

1 person likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Grump, have you thought about having some of the other players create star systems and then letting them run those systems when the PCs get there?

 

I would not want to run a full campaign, but I think I could handle a three planet system and the adventures for them. :B):

And now Pathfinder has its own official space game.

I love what I'm reading! PLEASE tell me it will be ready soon!

1 person likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The problem with that approach is coordination between the GMs.

 

The part I am fleshing out right now runs to about level 9 or 10.

 

Which means new GMs picking up about the time it starts getting more difficult - not a lot of fun for the new GMs, I think.

 

One thing I definitely want to change from the core of the settings - I want ships that require a lot of crew, not ships that are manned solely by the party. We are talking 50 to 100 spacemen.

 

Which means that when a ship makes port, all those people are dropped - with pay - into the local economy. Ports are going to have a lively economy.... ::D: (Those Liverpool Jennies have got us in tow.)

 

The Auld Grump

3 people like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

50-100 mouths to feed times four/five weeks in space between planet systems is a heap of food.

 

And a Decanter of Endless water is pretty much a must have. 

3 people like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now