Pathfinder APs in Mystara?

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agathokles
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Pathfinder APs in Mystara?

Post by agathokles » Fri Aug 16, 2019 8:24 am

In the Greyhawk forum, Big Mac asked if it was possibly/easy to port the Pathfinder adventure paths (other than the D&D ones set in Greyhawk) to that setting. There are a number of reasons why this is reasonable at least to some extent -- Golarion, the default setting of Pathfinder and therefore of the APs -- is in part inspired by the early D&D settings (it even goes as far as containing a pseudo-Blackmoor region), although arguably more to Greyhawk than to Mystara (e.g., the focus on devils).

Cthulhudrew responded with an impressive list of APs divided by porting difficulty, commenting on the main issues and possible locales. It would be interesting to have a similar list for Mystara :-)

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Re: Pathfinder APs in Mystara?

Post by Robin » Fri Aug 16, 2019 10:18 am

While making the 1mile hex map of Karameikos.
I already use the locations of some Pathfinder??(not really sure) material located in Karameikos.
http://www.pandius.com/phndlver.html

Maybe interesting to know
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Re: Pathfinder APs in Mystara?

Post by Khedrac » Fri Aug 16, 2019 10:53 am

I have played a port of Savage Tide to a 3.5 Merry Pirates setting of Mystara. It did mean we were going more with a 3.5 outer planes setup than a BECMI setup, but we are using conversions of the Immortals to worship not 3.X deities.
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Re: Pathfinder APs in Mystara?

Post by Havard » Fri Aug 16, 2019 10:58 am

I know someone suggested using Rise of the Runelords for Mystara (Maybe Norwold?) when it came out.

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Re: Pathfinder APs in Mystara?

Post by Cthulhudrew » Sat Aug 17, 2019 5:50 pm

I'll have some more detailed responses of my own ideas later, but one that immediately comes to mind is using Kingmaker on the Isle of Dawn. The kingdom building and warfare aspect fits with the existing themes of the setting (as a dominion building region for PCs), and the fey aspects of certain parts lends itself well to existing regions like Redstone and the northern territories of the IoD.
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Re: Pathfinder APs in Mystara?

Post by agathokles » Sat Aug 17, 2019 7:46 pm

Interesting idea!

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Re: Pathfinder APs in Mystara?

Post by Cthulhudrew » Sat Aug 17, 2019 11:09 pm

So, I've given Mystara adaptations a lot more thought over the years (perhaps not unsurprisingly to some, given my longstanding interest in that setting). I'm going to try and keep this brief, but I may flesh some of these out a bit more based on my thoughts/notes at a later time:

Difficult (requires substantial tweaking of story elements to fit)

Jade Regent: This one is very tough, IMO, to work into Mystara, for two big reasons. First, the second half of the story involves adventuring in a Japanese style setting, for which there currently are only two Mystaran analogues: the rakasta empire of Myoshima, on one of Mystara's moons, or Ochalea, which is more Chinese influenced than Japanese. Ochalea fits better, since taking a trip to the moon is quite a different sort of journey, but both are tough fits because of reason #2: the first third of the AP involves caravan travel overland to the location. You could substitute this with another form of travel (sea or airship), but that would involve substantial rework of the second and third adventures, and trying to find a way to rework the locations and encounters into things you might encounter on the ocean (or in the sky). The third adventure in particular would be tough to redo, since it involves travel through the polar north, which isn't really on the way to either Ochalea or Myoshima, and given the planetary Hollow World polar opening, it would take the AP into an entirely different direction.
Iron Gods: I'm putting this in Difficult because there isn't currently a location on Mystara that really fits. Certainly the underlying elements (crashed spaceship, technological/magical setting based on scavenged technology) exist to place it due to Mystara's history of Blackmoor. It would just be a matter of figuring out where you want to put it, and doing any necessary work to fit it in/around other locations in the Known World or Alphatia or whatever.
Wrath of the Righteous: Like my suggestion for Greyhawk, from a thematic standpoint, this could work. The best place that immediately comes to mind is kind maybe not the first locale most would think of- Ylaruam (using the Dead Place in northern Ylaruam as the Worldwound). However, one of the premises of the AP centers around a Macguffin that is not present in Mystara (the wardstones of the Worldwound), but they could possibly be the glassy, obsidian substance that covers the Dead Place). (Upgraded to Difficult; see this post below for more information).

Moderate (requires some degree of tweaking of story elements)

Runelords triad (Rise of the Runelords, Shattered Star, Return of the Runelords): I think the easiest thing to do would be to tie the Runelords to Taymora, and have most of these adventures take place in/around Karameikos. It does require some rethinking of Mystaran history, and a couple of the locations aren't exact fits (the city of Kaer Maga, in particular, would probably need to be introduced as a new settlement, rather than try to retrofit an existing location). Alternatives could be to place this in Alphatia, with the Runelords some ancient (possibly pre-Landfall) Alphatian sorcerer rulers, or have the Runelords be ancient Nithian Pharaoahs.
Second Darkness: This one is similar to my take on a Greyhawk adaptation; while you could substitute the shadow elves for drow, it still relies on a description of their origins that isn't compatible with current canon. Some of the backstory would need to be modified accordingly. That said, I think part of this story (dealing with a meteor impact) would work very well in some ways with elements of the Wrath of the Immortals timeline- what if it wasn't Alphaks or the Master who called down the meteor that struck Glantri? Hmmm.
War for the Crown: The plot involves the death of a ruler and trying to secure the reign of his only (female) heir, so that kind of narrows down the choices considerably. Most Known World locations don't seem to fit the bill, having largely non-traditional feudal style kingdoms. Thyatis would be my first guess, but Stefania isn't Thincol's heir apparent- Eusebius is.
Tyrants Grasp: My initial thought is to have the Whispering Tyrant figure be the Thothian lich Haptuthep, and make this something like "Haptuthep's Revenge." I think it wouldn't take much to make that work. If you wanted to move this closer to the Known World, it's a little trickier but still probably doable. You'd just need to decide if you wanted to use the Whispering Tyrant as is and fit his history into Mystara's, or if you wanted to substitute some other known (canon or fanon) Mystara lich into his place. Halzunthram would be a possibility (see "Carrion Crown" below).
Hell's Rebels and Hell's Vengeance: Mystara has surprisingly few nations that are ruled by "evil" rulers. My best suggestion (off the top of my head) would be to set these in Hule, with PCs either rebelling against the Master or helping quash a rebellion elsewhere. Another one that could work would be to set this in the Heldannic Territories.

Easy (requires little tweaking of story elements)

Ruins of Azlant: This is actually a bit easier than the Runelords series, I think. You could either stick with the Taymora idea, and have the exploration of Azlant take place in the Sea of Dread, or you could move it to a post-Wrath of the Immortals era and have it be an exploration of the Ruins of Alphatia.
Mummy's Mask: This could be fairly easily transplanted to either Ylaruam or Thothia (with Nithian/Thothian historical ties, as appropriate).
Legacy of Fire: I think you could drop this into Ylaruam fairly easily as is, with little need to make story modifications.
Kingmaker: Mentioned up above. You could probably drop this a lot of places (Norwold being another location, as it is currently Mystara's "dominion-building" default territory), but I really like the IoD for this.
Council of Thieves: Elements of this AP scream "Glantri!" to me, but the political backstory would make a difficult fit for Glantri City- you'd I think need to move it to one of the smaller capitols of an individual principality. What might be a better fit would be one of the Darokin cities- Akesoli or Akorros, or even Darokin City itself.
Carrion Crown: This pretty much lends itself to a jaunt around the various principalities of Glantri. I would substitute Halzunthram for the Whispering Tyrant (even though he doesn't actually have a role other than being the MacGuffin that gets the plot rolling).
Serpent's Skull: This could certainly work as an adventure taking place on the Isle of Dread, although for a change of pace, you could probably stick it into the Serpent Peninsula as well. I might even suggest exchanging the serpent men for the carnifex (or lesser carnifex).
Curse of the Crimson Throne: Location is the toughest for this one. You basically just need a City-State, and one that is located near some kind of wasteland/broken lands. One of the Darokin borderland areas seems a good fit. Tenobar would probably work. The barbarian tribes from later in the AP could be Atruaghin clansmen, and the backstory of a villainous dragon could either be made to fit the nameless lich from Darokin's history (from module IM2: Wrath of Olympus), reworking the gold dragon from that same module into a villainous character, or just working the story of the NPC blue dragon from the AP into Darokin's past.
Skull and Shackles: A couple of locations lend themselves well to this AP. The Sea of Dread, for a Known World choice. The Sea of Dawn (eastern half of the IoD/Alatians) is another one that might not be immediately apparent. I could see substituting Koryn the Harpist (Ne'er-do-Well) or Thane McRhomaag (Caerdwicca) for the Hurricane King. A third choice, post-WotI, might be in the Alphatian Sea (smashed continent). The Sundsvall Maelstrom could work for the Eye of Abendego.
Ironfang Invasion: Paraphrasing my Greyhawk suggestion- Probably could be set in/around the Broken Lands, although the histories of the nations surrounding that region don't quite match with the historical conflicts of the regions it takes place in on Golarion.

Dunno

Giantslayer: This one I do not own, so can't say for sure. Could possibly fit well into the Northern Reaches area maybe?
Strange Aeons: Going to cut/paste my Greyhawk one here- I honestly don't recall enough about this one to make a guess. This was the "Cthulhu mythos" AP and I very much was looking forward to it, but it felt very bland in execution. I think it probably can be fit without too much effort, but dunno.
Reign of Winter: (Stealing my Greyhawk entry for this) - This one involves a lot of jumping around to different areas of Golarion, as well as other planets, not all of which would necessarily fit into canon locales very easily. One key location- Irrisen- doesn't have a very direct counterpart on Mystara.
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Re: Pathfinder APs in Mystara?

Post by agathokles » Sun Aug 18, 2019 12:22 pm

Jade Regent: you could use an Hollow World kingdom. While the presence of the Hollow World is generally not known, Malamute Lupins and other arctic dwellers might be aware of it.
That could work, actually. I don't know why I didn't consider that it could be a cross-Outer/Hollow World adventure in conception. The geography of where/how to make that crossing physically is still a little dicey (I'm looking at a bunch of Thorf's and other maps of polar openings and it looks like you'd have to pretty much travel up the western length of Brun and still have quite a bit of sea (ice?) travel before you hit the more solid landmasses of northern Iciria. But you could throw a Japanese-like culture up there somewhere north of the Azca or Beastman lands to fit Minkai into.

Note: My original post is the quoted portion. The main text is Cthulhudrew's reply
Last edited by agathokles on Sun Aug 18, 2019 10:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Pathfinder APs in Mystara?

Post by agathokles » Sun Aug 18, 2019 10:57 pm

War for the Crown: Eusebius could die before Thincol, but Thyatis is not really feudal. Karameikos could work, since Stefan's heir is Adriana. Otherwise, Eusdria is a feudal nation and I don't think the king has an established heir.

Hell's Rebels and Hell's Vengeance: while most Mystaran nations are not ruled by "evil" monarchs (even less by devil-worshipping ones, since devils don't appear in the setting), most rulers are not really good either. Several have to face resistance movements which they characterize as terrorists, but could be equally seen as freedom fighters instead. Beyond Hule and the Heldannic Territories, we could consider Karameikos (especially in the early years), Minrothad (Oran Meditor was the target of at least one assassination attempt and the government is definitely not nice), and Glantri (there are several terrorist groups, from ELF and FAIRY to the Followers of the Claymore and the werewolves).

Giantslayer: as far as I understand, this is PF's take on Against the Giants. The Northern Reaches could work, but if a wide variety of Giants is needed, probably Norwold would be better since it provides a wider space.

Tyrant's Grasp: There are several liches in the Known World, including at least two canon ones (Brannart McGregor and the Nithian Lich in Alfheim).

Edit: I had to repost this due to a problem with my previous post. I've added more considerations as well

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Re: Pathfinder APs in Mystara?

Post by agathokles » Sun Aug 18, 2019 11:27 pm

That could work, actually. I don't know why I didn't consider that it could be a cross-Outer/Hollow World adventure in conception. The geography of where/how to make that crossing physically is still a little dicey (I'm looking at a bunch of Thorf's and other maps of polar openings and it looks like you'd have to pretty much travel up the western length of Brun and still have quite a bit of sea (ice?) travel before you hit the more solid landmasses of northern Iciria. But you could throw a Japanese-like culture up there somewhere north of the Azca or Beastman lands to fit Minkai into.
Well, I suppose most of the polar openings would be frozen. Note also that there is the possibility to use the southern opening instead.

Of course, given that the AP starts from Varisia (a temperate region not unlike Karameikos) and leads the PCs to the Land of the Linnorm Kings (equivalent to Norwold) and then to the Crown of the World (the polar cap) to reach Minkai (a pseudo-Japanese land), the northern opening seem more appropriate. There is plenty of space in the Hollow World for more pseudo-oriental lands, although of course the primary M-Japanese region is Myoshima.

To use Myoshima, one could set the AP in Skothar instead, starting in Tangor and using a Pachydermion-built portal in the mountains. However, that would make the use of the viking theme rather difficult.

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Re: Pathfinder APs in Mystara?

Post by Cthulhudrew » Mon Aug 19, 2019 4:56 am

agathokles wrote:
Sun Aug 18, 2019 10:57 pm
Hell's Rebels and Hell's Vengeance: while most Mystaran nations are not ruled by "evil" monarchs (even less by devil-worshipping ones, since devils don't appear in the setting), most rulers are not really good either. Several have to face resistance movements which they characterize as terrorists, but could be equally seen as freedom fighters instead. Beyond Hule and the Heldannic Territories, we could consider Karameikos (especially in the early years), Minrothad (Oran Meditor was the target of at least one assassination attempt and the government is definitely not nice), and Glantri (there are several terrorist groups, from ELF and FAIRY to the Followers of the Claymore and the werewolves).
Hell's Rebels would be the easier one to place. I could see possibly using your Minrothad idea, or maybe Hattias on the Thyatian peninsula.

Hell's Vengeance is tougher, though, because the use of devils- and in particular, infernal contracts between rulers of the nation as well as the PCs in the module- makes it a bit tougher to fit in. Now that we're talking about it, though, I'm going to take a second look at it and see if possibly the Black Eagle Barony might work (scaling back the larger Cheliax empire to just a single domain).
Tyrant's Grasp: There are several liches in the Known World, including at least two canon ones (Brannart McGregor and the Nithian Lich in Alfheim).
I'd forgotten about the Nithian lich- (Hashaburminal, I think his name was). Brannart doesn't really work, as the whole shtick of the Whispering Tyrant is that he has been imprisoned for millenia due to his constant warfare against the living world, and his personal vendettas against a god. Hashaburminal might work as a stand-in.

And apologies for the issue with your earlier post. :facepalm:
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Re: Pathfinder APs in Mystara?

Post by agathokles » Mon Aug 19, 2019 6:06 am

No problem :-)

Now that you mention the Tyrant being imprisoned over a vendetta against the gods, if it being a lich was not especially critical, then Arik could work as well.

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Re: Pathfinder APs in Mystara?

Post by agathokles » Mon Aug 19, 2019 2:35 pm

agathokles wrote:
Sun Aug 18, 2019 10:57 pm
War for the Crown: Eusebius could die before Thincol, but Thyatis is not really feudal. Karameikos could work, since Stefan's heir is Adriana. Otherwise, Eusdria is a feudal nation and I don't think the king has an established heir.
I'm slowly reading up on the APs on Pathfinder's wiki. Taldor, the setting of War for the Crown, looks definitely more like Thyatis than Karameikos or Eusdria.
There are several reasons why Stefania could find herself in the position of being the heir -- for example, if Eusebius and his offsprings die.

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Re: Pathfinder APs in Mystara?

Post by ripvanwormer » Mon Aug 19, 2019 5:56 pm

agathokles wrote:
Mon Aug 19, 2019 6:06 am
No problem :-)

Now that you mention the Tyrant being imprisoned over a vendetta against the gods, if it being a lich was not especially critical, then Arik could work as well.

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How about the Egg of Coot?

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Re: Pathfinder APs in Mystara?

Post by Gecko » Mon Aug 19, 2019 6:25 pm

Cthulhudrew wrote:
Sat Aug 17, 2019 11:09 pm
Jade Regent: This one is very tough, IMO, to work into Mystara, for two big reasons. First, the second half of the story involves adventuring in a Japanese style setting, for which there currently are only two Mystaran analogues: the rakasta empire of Myoshima, on one of Mystara's moons, or Ochalea, which is more Chinese influenced than Japanese. Ochalea fits better, since taking a trip to the moon is quite a different sort of journey, but both are tough fits because of reason #2: the first third of the AP involves caravan travel overland to the location. You could substitute this with another form of travel (sea or airship), but that would involve substantial rework of the second and third adventures, and trying to find a way to rework the locations and encounters into things you might encounter on the ocean (or in the sky). The third adventure in particular would be tough to redo, since it involves travel through the polar north, which isn't really on the way to either Ochalea or Myoshima, and given the planetary Hollow World polar opening, it would take the AP into an entirely different direction.
I don’t know any of these adventures, but could Niponeria work for this Jade Regent? (Especially given that in my campaign I’ve moved it further north than Estlor had it).

For the one where you’re talking about needing a powerful and possibly imprisoned lich, don’t I recall an alternative take where the Adri Varma is just such a prison for a lich? (IIRC the name was something like Atri-Votz)

Don’t know if these ideas help or not, again I’m not familiar with any of these published adventures.

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Re: Pathfinder APs in Mystara?

Post by agathokles » Mon Aug 19, 2019 7:05 pm

ripvanwormer wrote:
Mon Aug 19, 2019 5:56 pm
agathokles wrote:
Mon Aug 19, 2019 6:06 am
No problem :-)

Now that you mention the Tyrant being imprisoned over a vendetta against the gods, if it being a lich was not especially critical, then Arik could work as well.

GP
How about the Egg of Coot?
Could be. Such a powerful entity could conceivably have survived until the modern day.

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Re: Pathfinder APs in Mystara?

Post by agathokles » Mon Aug 19, 2019 7:20 pm

Gecko wrote:
Mon Aug 19, 2019 6:25 pm
I don’t know any of these adventures, but could Niponeria work for this Jade Regent? (Especially given that in my campaign I’ve moved it further north than Estlor had it).
To some extent, yes. However, the main task in one of the adventures is to cross the north pole, which is why I was considering the Hollow World. With some adaptation, though, it could work with Niponeria as well, depending on your take on central Brun.
For the one where you’re talking about needing a powerful and possibly imprisoned lich, don’t I recall an alternative take where the Adri Varma is just such a prison for a lich? (IIRC the name was something like Atri-Votz)

Don’t know if these ideas help or not, again I’m not familiar with any of these published adventures.
I think you are right, here is the link: http://www.pandius.com/atzrivoc.html

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Re: Pathfinder APs in Mystara?

Post by NPCDave » Mon Aug 19, 2019 8:10 pm

I just wanted to say that I am very impressed with this analysis both for the suggestions on mapping these APs to Mystara as well as highlighting the difficulties involved. Not that my opinion carries any more weight than anyone else, but since I wrote the Threshold article that mapped the Night Below box set to Mystara and three-quarters of the two articles that mapped the Savage Tide AP to Mystara, I have a good idea of how much time it takes to really think things through and find the best match and deal with the puzzle edges that won't align.

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Re: Pathfinder APs in Mystara?

Post by Chimpman » Tue Aug 20, 2019 12:41 am

Cthulhudrew wrote:
Sat Aug 17, 2019 11:09 pm
Curse of the Crimson Throne: Location is the toughest for this one. You basically just need a City-State, and one that is located near some kind of wasteland/broken lands. One of the Darokin borderland areas seems a good fit. Tenobar would probably work. The barbarian tribes from later in the AP could be Atruaghin clansmen, and the backstory of a villainous dragon could either be made to fit the nameless lich from Darokin's history (from module IM2: Wrath of Olympus), reworking the gold dragon from that same module into a villainous character, or just working the story of the NPC blue dragon from the AP into Darokin's past.
I actually started a conversion for this one that placed the location on Ochalea.
http://pandius.com/coctmyst.html
I may have to revisit and finish that adaptation up.
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Re: Pathfinder APs in Mystara?

Post by Gecko » Tue Aug 20, 2019 7:27 am

agathokles wrote:
Mon Aug 19, 2019 7:20 pm
Gecko wrote:
Mon Aug 19, 2019 6:25 pm
For the one where you’re talking about needing a powerful and possibly imprisoned lich, don’t I recall an alternative take where the Adri Varma is just such a prison for a lich? (IIRC the name was something like Atri-Votz)
I think you are right, here is the link: http://www.pandius.com/atzrivoc.html
Yup, that’s the one. Atzri-Voca.

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Re: Pathfinder APs in Mystara?

Post by Cthulhudrew » Tue Aug 20, 2019 8:59 pm

I am reviewing Council of Thieves the last couple of days. Akesoli is an almost perfect match. Some of the background elements would need to be modified (replace tieflings with half-orcs, possibly [which the Darokin gaz mentions], or make them Rakshasa-blooded tieflings and tie them into the history of Chambahara rule of Sind). The murder play in the second volume probably needs a little tweaking, and I think the mayor's palace in the 4th volume can be replaced without too much trouble by Itheldown Isle. Otherwise, it would be a great location for this module with little changes needing to be made.

EDIT/UPDATE: Another location that strikes me as being good for this AP would be Landfall, in Norwold, post-Heldannic Invasion. Heldann would make a great "Cheliax" equivalent (absent the diabolic worship); the various sects of the Heldannic Order can be made to map to the Hellknights of Cheliax, and the relationship between Landfall and Heldann is not dissimilar in ways to that of Cheliax and Westcrown. Also, while still very recent arrivals, the diaboli that come to Norwold in 1010 AC might be a good tiefling substitute/analogue. I still prefer Akesoli, because I think a lot of elements work really well there, but Landfall is a good option.
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Re: Pathfinder APs in Mystara?

Post by agathokles » Wed Aug 21, 2019 8:30 am

Interesting solution. Given the issue of managing the infernal elements in Mystara, probably replacing the Devils with the Chambahara makes sense.

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Re: Pathfinder APs in Mystara?

Post by Cthulhudrew » Thu Aug 22, 2019 9:17 pm

I'm revising my initial estimate of Wrath of the RIghteous from "moderate" to "difficult." I had forgotten that this AP was based around the Mythic Adventures system. That system allowed for PCs to gain "mythic power," allowing them to perform feats and magic rivaling that of the most powerful monsters (and deific creatures) of the game. The best equivalent- in BECMI and Mystara terms- would be the Immortals rules.

The trouble is, Mythic Adventures wasn't intended to be only an "end-game" add-on; it was designed to be added when and wherever a DM would allow and a campaign would dictate (as low as 1st level, potentially). Wrath, as a result, was not only the sole AP that dedicated its 6 AP length to getting PCs to maximum level (20), but it also was intended to get them all the way to Mythic Rank 10 (the highest), and each installment got the PCs a little bit more mythic power as a result.

So if you are using any system other than Pathfinder to run this game on Mystara, you will have some difficulty with a translation if you are trying to incorporate the concepts of PCs steadily gaining more and more power to be able to confront the toughest threats. In BECMI, getting PCs to 30th-36th level in 6 adventures would be tough enough, and the current rules of initiation to and acquisition of Immortality wouldn't easily allow you to get them those sorts of powers until they had done so (you could possibly modify rules in HWA3: Nightstorm to accommodate this?).

If all you are looking to do in other systems is to use the basic storyline (invasion of demons needs to be halted) and framework of the piece to set the story, then it would probably still just be "moderate," however.

*Side note: Even Paizo's own use of mythic rules in this AP was controversial, and members of their staff have publicly said the response has kept them from attempting another mythic AP any time soon, and that things didn't quite work as well as they had hoped.
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Re: Pathfinder APs in Mystara?

Post by Cthulhudrew » Thu Aug 22, 2019 9:22 pm

agathokles wrote:
Mon Aug 19, 2019 2:35 pm
I'm slowly reading up on the APs on Pathfinder's wiki. Taldor, the setting of War for the Crown, looks definitely more like Thyatis than Karameikos or Eusdria.
There are several reasons why Stefania could find herself in the position of being the heir -- for example, if Eusebius and his offsprings die.
So I was thinking about this more last night; one additional problem with this that would need to be modified affects the very first module in the series. I"m going to spoiler this, even though the AP has been out for a while:

The would-be heir's father attempts her assassination, which kicks off the whole "war for the crown" in the first place. Thincol's kind of a bastard, but my feeling is that this would not be in his character and would need to be explained away or modified somehow.
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Re: Pathfinder APs in Mystara?

Post by NPCDave » Sun Aug 25, 2019 11:56 pm

Cthulhudrew wrote:
Tue Aug 20, 2019 8:59 pm
I am reviewing Council of Thieves the last couple of days. Akesoli is an almost perfect match...

EDIT/UPDATE: Another location that strikes me as being good for this AP would be Landfall, in Norwold, post-Heldannic Invasion. Heldann would make a great "Cheliax" equivalent (absent the diabolic worship); the various sects of the Heldannic Order can be made to map to the Hellknights of Cheliax, and the relationship between Landfall and Heldann is not dissimilar in ways to that of Cheliax and Westcrown. Also, while still very recent arrivals, the diaboli that come to Norwold in 1010 AC might be a good tiefling substitute/analogue. I still prefer Akesoli, because I think a lot of elements work really well there, but Landfall is a good option.
This post inspired me to review the first four adventures of the Council of Thieves AP and I really like the Landfall location as a substitute for Westcrown. In 1019 AC, Landfall is the site of a major siege in the Heldannic Civil War that results in much of the city being destroyed as detailed in the storyline of the fan-made Mystaran almanacs. Cheliax and Westcrown suffered a civil war 70 years prior to the AP. So setting the AP 50-70 years after the Mystaran almanacs is an excellent match for the background, giving plenty of time to set up the rebuilt city to more closely mirror those elements of Westcrown:

1) The mayor of Westcrown becomes the governor of the province of Landfall, who serves at the pleasure of the Heldannic Empire.
2) The thieves guild is believed to be destroyed during the civil war but actually survived and transformed to become the council. They survived by abandoning the obvious gambling and corruption and building wealth slowly through more subtle illegal means.
3) The hellknight orders are just various Heldannic Knightly orders that have special authority in Landfall.
4) A sizable diaboli community has migrated to Landfall and has second-class status.
5) Soon after the city was rebuilt the shadow curse fell on the city with shadow creatures appearing at night and the nightly curfew goes into effect.
6) The city has managed to build up an arts and entertainment culture with many of the populace visiting the theater. But they also still like their gladiatorial combats as many Thyatians live in the city.
7) There is no Pathfinder organization but an adventuring guild of some sort thrived in the city until the civil war. After the civil war, the adventurers were dead or fled, and the Heldannic Knights spent some time trying to loot their complex before closing and locking up the site.
8) The evil Heldannic faction during the civil war built the Infernal Engine with the help of a powerful and evil diaboli wizard. When Landfall was rebuilt the few who knew about the Infernal Engine decided to leave it alone and assign the governor the responsibility of maintaining it, building the governor's complex over it.

I would replace the tieflings with diaboli in most circumstances, with a couple of exceptions. One of those exceptions would be the final villain who really is a tiefling due to his devil father. I would keep devils in the AP to avoid unnecessary change, and explain them as the counterpart fiends that plague diaboli like demons plague humans and demi-humans.

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