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Unread postPosted: Fri May 04, 2007 1:22 pm

Due to things in my life, my creativity is dimmed. But my players still want me to run my game.

Due to a lot of really nasty RL things, I lost a player, and the two groups I was running have combined into one. So I have 5 players.

One is a house OCC psychic warrior.
One is a necromancer.
One is a mutant human, whose (randomly rolled) abilities make her a perfect spy.
One is a house tweaked wampyr.
One is a chinese antiquarian.

Epic level campaign. Current universe is PF.

My games have never really involved much fighting, so I'm not worried about that. What I am worried about is that they are so well-rounded that nothing I throw at them is going to sufficiently challenge them. Everybody just fits so perfectly, filling in all the gaps. It's rare for the party to not have a needed or helpful skill, virtually everthing I ask for, at least someone says "I have that!"

The game has just shifted from the side stuff I've been sending them on back to the main plot (with a ramped up difficulty level), so the player dropping out was at an inopportune time. However, in a way it didn't affect much because I was already struggling and everyone was already complaining about how useless he was (in all the games with the various GMs he was in).

Got any clues for challenging them? I could use a little help.

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Unread postPosted: Fri May 04, 2007 2:08 pm


Joined: Mon Dec 19, 2005 10:50 pm
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The answer you seek is as old as strategy itself.

Divide and Conquer. They can't be in two or three or four places at once. Start dividing the group up and then bringing them back together towards the end of the adventure they're on.

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Unread postPosted: Fri May 04, 2007 2:56 pm


Joined: Wed Mar 01, 2006 2:00 pm
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Location: Newark Ohio, USA
Okay, this is just a thinking outside of the box idea for you, its really just a one trick pony but it might be novel for you and your group. Have you ever heard of being overqualified? think about what that means in real life and see if you cant devise a situation where you can stump your party because their too good at or too well known or just too epic to acomplish or work with the npcs. Like if albert einstein had showed up to teach 5th grade math/ subbing for a week at your school? think how disruptive that could be.

My second suggestion would be to come up with a problem that doesnt require brilliance or incredable skill rolls to solve, just adaquate skills and lots of time spent doing labor.

My third suggestion to you is some kinda cheesy magic puzzle box, something like this
"The Simpletons Jig"
this magical puzzle box is actually atunned to simplicity and low intelligence. take whatever skill the PC uses on the box and reverse their proficiency, if they have a 65% the box needs a 35% or under to solve and also takes the character much loger than someone who is less skilled, I would also subtract double any IQ bonuses from the roll. Worse is if a character devotes time or multible rolls trying to solve the puzzle, each time they should have less chance. the opposite to all this applies to simpletons and idiotes for whom the box/key should be solved or opened easilly and very shortly.
well I hope one of those Idea helps you out.

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Unread postPosted: Fri May 04, 2007 4:20 pm

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You could always take a week off and take some time to gather your thoughts.

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Unread postPosted: Fri May 04, 2007 6:20 pm


Joined: Tue Dec 05, 2006 3:36 pm
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Location: Canada
Ahhh i guess it would depends on what you have done with them previously. A few campaign ideas off of the top of my head?

1. They get caught up in the political movements of the western empire/eastern. Since they are new pieces to the board many of the lords are stumbling on themselves to gauge the new pieces in place and how to best use them.

1.1 Involved in a asassination attempt on a rivial, they have been arrested and given a few days to gather their defense and evidence.

1.2 A lords son wishes to meet a certain maid he meet the previous year and requests the groups help to secretly get out of the castle and meet her. His father is awair of his sons activities and seeks to put an end to it. Even if it means the young womans life to do so.

1.3 The council has decided to use the player group as a mediator in a dispute: could be a land title, could be an apointment of a new duke wealthy dukedom. The nobles are doing everything in their powers to get themselves selected. From bribes to threats. etc...

2. A new island has been discovered off of the coast and is inhabited by a rare race of elves. The Kingdom has decided to send the players as foreign dignitaries to this strange land.

2.1: learning the customes and cultures of an elvan race while doing their best to not offend with a word or a jeasture. Who knows that a handshake with a firm grip is a decloration of war...

2.2: not all is as it seems in the new land, it is under a curse that dates back to the drawf elf war. On the third moon of the new year the entire island and its people will disapear into the mists of legend to never been seen for a 1000 years again. etc...

3. Having doen a service for a king in waiting, he rewards the characters with their own dutchy and title.

3.1 The dukes arround the land are upset that the fertile lands were not given to them. So begins a round of political intreague and deathly smiles. Which lords are happy for the characters and which are not?

3.2 Unrest is in the town and the dukes men fule the flames trying to incite rebellion against the players. How will they deal with the angry citizens? by the sword or will they try the quill to win the people over? etc...

4. A previously undiscovered dwarven city has been located on an ancient map. The characters are to be first among to walk its ancient halls in 20,000 years.

4.1 Is the city as empty as it appears? or is their something dark living in its once shining halls. Whispers in the dark, strange shadows play on the walls and each night one of the scholars that came with the party dissapear each night. etc...

Hope these help you out.

One day, One Hour or One Minute, Live this time well for it will not come again. But know those arround you shall remember that time. They will recall your words, your deeds and be comferted to know you await them.

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Unread postPosted: Sun May 06, 2007 3:41 pm

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Off the top of your head Nethel? Wow. Wish my head worked like that! Instead, it works like this....

The party stumbles on an ancient, unidentified temple to a God they have never heard of. There are statues, tapestries and books lying about to describe the various deities and important figures of the religion, but is nothing the characters have ever heard of. (Religion Lore does no good!) While exploring the temple they discover a crypt beneath its marble floors with a solitary sarcophagus at its center. The whole place is creepy, but the group is experienced enough to know that there might be something worth finding in this room. The natural thing to do would be to attempt to sense magic, or perhaps traps. It is the use of either PPE or ISP that awakens the thing in the Crypt and sends it after the group. (Any undead creature from any book should do, just up the power levels a bit. I would recommend LOD 2 if you have it. There are some real nasties in there! :-D ) This creature could come back to plague the group again and again if its played right. Also, they will have the added moral dilemma of having been the ones to release this evil on the world. On top of all this, there is the mystery of the temple and its unknown religion that could lead to a whole adventure in and of itself! If you need some ideas on this, just ask me. This is a twist I've thrown at my own groups a few times, each time with a different outcome so that it didn't seem like the same thing. It was a hit each time. 8)

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Unread postPosted: Sun May 06, 2007 7:41 pm

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If the group is doing so good, they could definately come to the attention of other benefactors who will now go out of their way to try and hire the group. This could create some infighting between the various groups vying for the character's attention. It could also anger whatever other groups were around before, who were being relied upon to take care of problems. They might work to sabotage the efforts of the players.

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Unread postPosted: Sun May 06, 2007 9:31 pm

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They're in PF without a Diabolist. That right there opens up a lot of doors for challenge.
Summoners in their lair are serious opponents, too. On top of that, they have minions (especially at high levels). These minions can spy, manipulate (demons and such), attack, harass (faeries), or otherwise make life difficult for the players without putting the actual enemy (i.e. the Summoner) in any danger.

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Unread postPosted: Mon May 07, 2007 8:50 am

Thank you, definitely helping out. :)

I especially like the diabolist/summoner bit. I had been planning the main, long-term focus to be magical in nature (sort of a guild war that could escalate into planet-killing if our intrepid heroes completely botch their roles as pawns between the two groups).

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Unread postPosted: Tue May 08, 2007 12:40 am

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Have you considered adding more combat to your campaign? To me, it looks like your group is optimized for skills and stealth. The problem with just adding any old combat is that these guys probably pick an entrenched foe apart. To neutralize this, put them on the defensive. Make them protect a person, item or location. Giving them an artifact that is highly sought out would paint a nice bull's-eye on them.

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Unread postPosted: Tue May 08, 2007 6:18 pm

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Joined: Fri Dec 16, 2005 8:29 pm
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Well there's always the chaos priest. Your PCs arrive in town and some of the townsfolk are acting strange. Some of them are suicidal, some are sexual assaulting others, and the others are killing each other out of jealousy or rage. Maybe have one of the PCs get affected by it.

I love Touch of Evil.

I have always disliked the treatment circles and wards receive from most players. They are the two most powerful magics available with the exception of rune magic.

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