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Old 09-23-2016, 01:15 AM
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Chronicle of the Forsaken Plane

Game NameThe Forsaken Plane: The Plane of The Elder Evils
Game SystemPathfinder

Dungeon MasterXian

ThemeHorror Fantasy Role-Playing - Preventing the End of Times

FlavourDark, gritty, Survival Horror with Gothic themes and overtones.

Plot SummaryThe War of the Elder Evils has ended.

Through great cost, we have forced the final Elder Evil into a slumber. For how long that they shall remain dormant, we do not know, but we do know that they will awaken before long lest something is done. While our realities survived our conflict with the Elder Evils this time, we are certain that it would not, it could not, survive another.

So it has come to this. Myself and the four others will be the pillars on which the new prison for the Elder Evils and bind them to these cleft portions of the planes. It is from our sacrifice and those poor souls that will be trapped here with us that the rest of Creation shall be spared from the ravages of the Elder Evils for once entombed there is no escape. For anyone.

I can only hope that those countless souls that will now be entombed with The Great Evils on this forsaken plane will one day forgive us.


------- The final entry of the Divine Journal of Yowenth The Architect


*************************************

"Evil is... a moral entity and not a created one, an eternal and not a perishable entity: it existed before the world; it constituted the monstrous, the execrable being who was also to fashion such a hideous world. It will hence exist after the creatures that people the world."

--------Marquis De Sade, L'Histoire de Juliette, oules Prosperites du Vice.

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Untold millennia ago, The War of the Elder Evils ended. An unlikely alliance of heroes, gods, and reluctant devils of the former age succeeded in defeating and forcing the final Elder Evil of the multiverse back into a slumber. However, the victory was costly and the survivors and their heroes knew that while the realities survived this time, they did not have power to oppose the Elder Evils again. Since no power in Creation could permanently rid the multiverse of the scourge of an Elder Evils, the gods and their allies crafted a prison to bind the Elder Evils while in their slumbering state. They bound the slumbering essences of the Elder Evils to cleft portion of the planes to create microcosm of reality, a place that would become known as the Forsaken Plane. The architects of the Forsaken Plane permitted the means to enter, but once within it would be impossible to get out, even for the architects themselves. Placed at the edge of time and reality and severed from the sources of their divine power, gods trapped on the Forsaken Plane would eventually fade and become mortal. Those races and beings on the cleft portions of the planes when prison of the Elder Evils was formed remained trapped there. However, with the exception of the architects of the prison, those that now inhabited The Forsaken Plane remained unaware that they had been separated from the "main" reality and continued to dwell and develop oblivious to the true nature of the Forsaken Plane.

As countless ages have past, the Forsaken Plane developed into a dark place and unlike any other. Even the gods could not divine how or why it happened. Perhaps it was the interaction of the evil intelligence of the Elder Evils imprisoned there. Or perhaps the baleful energies of the Elder Evils that infused the Forsaken Plane. Regardless of how or why, the Forsaken Plane began behaving like a sentient being itself as the constructed pocket realm endlessly prowls the edges of the known realities and the trackless expanses of the Ethereal Plane. The implacable powers of the Forsaken Plane drew and gained power from the hidden fears and darkness of the innumerable worlds that it touched and shaped itself to reflect its sinister sensibilities. It granted those with “evil” and dark natures with great power with which to thwart the good and the good were tempted with that same power to lead them to temptation and corruption. It would birth and bring forth horrors that plagued the inhabitant and gave power to those creatures of the dark.

Yet, it would also torment those that embraced their dark gifts… granting and denying simultaneously their heart’s deepest desires. Those that weather the horrors it brought forth would emerge tempered as great heroes. The Forsaken Plane also sought out beings outside of it and draw those selected by its inscrutable judgment, villains, heroes, and innocents alike, into its inescapable embrace.

So it is this place, The Forsaken Plane, that the bold adventurers will make their journey, chosen or abducted on seemingly the whims of some inscrutable power or intelligence. A journey, perilous with not just the hazards of the flesh, but of the spirit... for The Plane will test both and merciless to those found wanting. Yet for what purpose one can only speculate. The intentions of the Forsaken Plane have been and always will be as inscrutable as its nature.

Campaign Highlights
Type of Campaign: In terms of the type of campaign it is survival horror campaign with an eventual conclusion perhaps preventing the awakening of one or more of the Elder Evils. My focus will be more on atmosphere and character interaction... so it is really up to the players where they take this. Just as a note, in keeping with the survival horror theme, even as the characters progress there will probably be no time where they feel safe, even with higher level magic users. The very core of horror / fear genre is that the threat to a character's life and soul is always present and real. One of the things I enjoyed about Ravenloft was that it was almost a paradox that as you grew more susceptible and vulnerable became...

Update: The Forsaken Planes is a low magic setting, not unlike those found on the material plane. Spellcasters are rare, and common folk seldom witness the supernatural, understanding it only through folklore, though that folklore is very prevalent. Even "common" Core races, are a rarity on the Forsaken and often the subject of wrongful association with the dark powers. Those more "exotic" will find their lives and the lives of their team mates very difficult. Subtle and unknown to all but the select and rare few, the natural laws of the Forsaken Plane have been insidiously re-written. It is crucible for the virtuous to be tested and for the wicked to be tormented.

At the very core of the this theme I should have clarified is a Gothic core. The horrors of the Gothic tradition resonate and are horrifying and terrifying because they are inherently us. Innocence battles corruption, where love destroys and redeems, and where magic cannot overcome morality. Just because you are playing in a "horror themed" campaign it is not necessary for the character to BE the horror theme. Thus those that are selected by The Powers to play in this world are being selected to heroes, not to be one of its inmates. These heroes for the most part study the occult or mysteries beyond the mundane to pursue and combat the evil, not for pursuit of personal power or ambition.

Having said that because the players were selected to be heroes, does not guarantee that they will become heroes and nor should the path be easy. This references that characters that are so good/virtuous that they are flawless. As a Gothic crucible, The Powers selects those with faults and flaws that they can test and challenge. If the character was so virtuous and flawless that their morality could not be challenged, then they would not have been taken. There wold be no point. This goes to the question I posed to the players applying of why they as players believe that The Powers chose to bring their characters to the Forsaken Realm. What faults or flaws do you think that they are going to use you to test your virtue or villainy? To challenge your morality so that it is not answer that it simply black and white, for few, if any, dilemmas and things in the Forsaken Realms ever will be.


Campaign Framework and Goals: I have a general framework mapped to Level 20, but within those broad confines is a sandbox. I am very player centric and very comfortable adjusting and adapting story and pace to fit player decisions and actions, as well adjudicating rules to fit the reality of the gameplay (read I know the rules, but I am by nature NOT a rules Nazi). My intent is to have 50/50 role play and roll play, with my inclination more towards role play, especially given the environment where in general, the creatures have the advantage.

I enjoy narrative and interaction with other characters. Even combat posts, I like to see fleshed out with something more than just stating action and then displaying the dice rolls. Expect some exploration, but it will not be any hard core dungeon crawling and I am not a huge fan of puzzles, so do not expect too many, if any of those.

Desired Party Size: My desired party size for this game is 5. Depending on the strength of applications and interaction, may consider 6, but no more than this.

Posting Rate Desired: Expectation for posting is twice a week as an average, with the understanding that certain weeks and situations (such as initial combat) could allow for more rapid posting and vice versa during things such as holidays. Additionally, I will always reserve the right to DMNPC if required, but usually a little communication is all it takes to take care of things.

Mechanics: The primary system and rule mechanics used will be Pathfinder and generally all Paizo Pathfinder material is pre-approved, sans races, for use in this game. However, I was/still am a huge fan of Ravenloft and horror genre of RPG and much of those influences should be evident in the material as they are presented. In fact, many of the modules will be modified Ravenloft mods and will be allowing the incorporation of FEATS and Prestige Classes, as well as class mechanics from 3.5e Ravenloft and Heroes of Horror. I will also be using a modified system of hero points that reflects a Ravenloft/Dark side of the Force mechanic. As per my note above, my belief in the rules is that it is there as a framework to facilitate storytelling and not to be a impediment to it, so please understand that in rule play versus role play, role play will generally win with me. Communication is the key here as it is above.

Campaign World: I am simply going to use Golarian as the base world for the Forsaken Plane in terms of the location name, culture, and major cultural aspects. What will be different in each will be the tone. For those that recall the Crimson Masque offshoot of Ravenloft, essentially it would be like Golarian is now under the influence of Crimson Masque and the has Ravenloft like properties. Having said, that players will also be afforded the opportunity to flesh out the areas that they are from as part of the sand box aspect of the game. The in game reason for this is a bit more insidious, but will not or should not be relevant to the players themselves.

Character Submission Guidelines: See Below Post because it is experimental and a bit unorthodox.



Questions and Answers: (Please review regularly for updates and redundant questions) Thanks!

 
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DM:The Forsaken Plane: The Plane of Elder Evils
"The only way to do the impossible is to believe that they are possible."
I have taken the Oath of Sangus.

Last edited by Xian; 09-23-2016 at 01:30 AM.
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Old 02-21-2017, 12:09 AM
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The Tavern of the Dancing Elephant... The Morning After.
The group in their various ways had spent the rest of the night in conversation. Comforts were given and conversations ranging from the strange affairs of men in far off place known as Urth as the strangers found themselves together in a strange social. Each had their own reasons for staying there... for curious interests to simply the fact that many of them found themselves strangers in a strange land, yet at the same time the land was familiar. Those from Golarian would see that the map and the geography of what Kallev and Akadis had describe only as the "known" lands was identical to that of their homeward... only that the names had changed. Those like Alexis and the dark man named Rook, not even the map was familiar as they spoke of lands that no one in the group had ever heard described before. Between Kallev and Akadis, they would explain that the lands of "The Core" were the known lands. Other mysterious and yet to be discovered lands laid outside of the considerable borders of the map of The Core... the knowledge of those lands enshrouded in the mists, a mystery to even those that had lived there. What was going on... were they transported to some other plane or has something happened to the world that they were on?

For those from Golarian, Kallev's city of origin of Luminous was located on the map where Absalom would have been located and as such the city and the place was great interest to those from there, such as Kilara who had begun to ask, desperately seeking if she could find evidence of the Kinslayers and with that the means to locate them. Questions were levied to one another and answers were sometimes given... but most of the times, even Kallev or Akadis had not the means to answer them. The night stretched on for those that chose to linger... those that chose to retire were kindly and courteously escorted by the friendly wait staff and any suggestions of departure during the night were immediately dismissed as preposterous and the curfew of the city was invoked to those more insistent. In the end, all were ushered to their rooms... and in the homey comfort of those rooms slept dreamless sleep...

Except for a few... a dream... or was it a vision... from out of the mists of the dream nether emerged one by one, three cards....


It was to the vision of these cards, Alexis, Dennis, Kallev, Val, Ephram, and Raven awoke. Not a sudden return to reality, but a gradual and gentle return to consciousness as the image of the card lingered... uncomfortably... in their mind's eye.

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Each of the group dealt with the vision in their own way. Perhaps some would contemplate its meaning. Others perhaps would dismiss it as an errant vision or something undigested from the previous night's generous feast. Regardless of the method, each of the companions would make themselves down to the ground floor of the tavern where much of the staff had already begun their morning routines and had begun to serve their morning patrons with food and drink... of both the alcoholic and non-alcoholic varieties. Even Kallev's entourage was permitted to return to the tavern and they ate nosily in the corner... their loud voices clearly describing that they had been well taken care of last night. The only quiet corner was the area that the companions had gathered to talk the night prior. At the table was Alymora who was finishing her breakfast and quietly drinking her drink. Around the table were chairs... six chairs... for those companions that returned.

As they neared the table, on the table where three harrow cards.. or those that appeared to be harrow cards. Alymora looked to them and smiled as if to know that each of them would be arriving, but waited patiently for each of them... each of the six to arrive before speaking... the foremost of question was to the fact of the whereabouts of the others.

"The cards revealed to them what they needed, but the Harrows had a different path for each of them... a different path from those gathered, but fear not in the complex tapestry that is life, who knows when you may cross one another again, no? They each left not too long ago... in search of that thing that brought them here." Alymora said with a smile and a knowing wink as if all those things, while coincidence, seemed perfectly normal and sensible to her. "As for what the Harrow has for you... I cannot say. All that they revealed to me was that you are bounded to this fate together and destined... desired or not... to walk on the same path."

It was then that Alymora would reach over the table and flipped over each one of the cards for those gathered. Perhaps surprising to some and to not others, the cards were the exact same as those that appeared in each of their respective dreams. What is surprising is that the results of the drawing seems to interest Alymora as if it were something that she has not seen before or that she did not fully understand.

Expectedly, she turns to the group to see their reactions and for the questions sure to come.

The Starting CreditsTHE SAGA OF THE FORSAKEN PLANES Starring:
  • Digorig as Valtyra (Val) Shunso, Outworlder Aasimar Cleric of Torag
  • pianoman90 as Dennis Crispin, Outworlder Human Alchemist and Conisuer of Unusual Things
  • PopCultureBard as Ephram Du'chaine, Outworlder Half-elven Former Rogue turned aspiring Knight
  • GeoAvanti as Alexis Lightbringer, Outworlder Shifter Feral Hunter and former gladiator from the World of Eberron.
  • OneDarkness as Raven, Scarred Outworlder Human Inquisitor of Dou-Bral - aspect of Zon-Kuthon
  • kaylara as Kallev Littleton, Homeworlder Aasimar Sorcerer and Magical Heiress.


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Posting Status: Hospitalized... Posting impacted.
DM:The Forsaken Plane: The Plane of Elder Evils
"The only way to do the impossible is to believe that they are possible."
I have taken the Oath of Sangus.
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Old 02-25-2017, 01:18 PM
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Epilogue
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Darkness fell again on the smoking and charred remains of the house... the fire has burned hotly but a majority of the structure remained. Within the skeletal remains of the burned house... those foolish enough to look would see the apparition of a woman as it moved through the ruins... unimpeded by the physical obstacles. Though a riveting beauty... surely such sight would drive most sane people mad if they saw in the night... a night like this. She descended down into the darkness... down into the bowels of the house where the charred remains of the hag now remained. She looked down at the hag and then laughed deep and long... as she looked around at the House as if it were a person itself.

"Did you really think that you and your pathetic Frederick could contain me... forever?" the woman said her voice a musical, though the malice could be heard as she laid her hand on the charred body of the hag. "I drove him mad you know... made him miss you so much... ever since you and he channel your mind and soul into this house to bind me... to imprison me here. But neither of you could keep me out... and in the end I made his longing so intense that he would make this... this mockery of you in the hopes of talking to you... of being with you again. Oh the things... the bloody things he did in your name... in the name of love until the corruption and the madness taking him completely."

"I know that is why you sought to ensnare another... another guardian to replace dear, mad Frederick. To your credit, I thought that you would turn at least one of the two calibans to your cause, but their conscience seemed to have gotten the better of them. How deliciously ironic..." The apparition proclaimed, even as she began to draw more mist from the remains of the house itself. "You even tried to corrupt my own blood after I had worked so hard to insinuate into our bloodline to ultimately lead her... inexorably here. I suppose she never asked why she was even in these lands so far from the comforts of home... to what end... to leave her family and friends."

Then the greenish fog rose from the ground and the apparitions of those fallen, to include Darius and the guardsmen that accompanied Kallev to this place, rose up and fell in behind her. A formidable host of specters, ghosts, and other undead, the victims of the house.

"They follow me now... but it would rude for me not to acknowledge the wonderful works you have wrought bringing these fine... ladies and gentlemen... to my glorious cause." "So farewell and adieu my dear Camille... it is a pity that you will not see me erase this false reality, to expose the lie of existence here... but first things first, I believe a family reunion is long since been in order."

The apparition and her army "marched" out into the mists to their glorious purpose. She would not be denied again... even if she was insane.

Cassiel Littleton was free and she was going home.

OODMAlso starting from Page 14 (the first secret texts, I believe) I have unsecreted everything as fieldsets in all my DM updates this Prologue. Onward!


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Old 09-23-2017, 10:59 PM
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The Reaping...
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Tensions ran high and heated words were exchanged with the stone faced inquisitor who replied unemotionally and almost in a deadpan tone when compared to the passionate and accusatory outcry of the accused It was nearly an admission of guilt to the inquisitor and likely to any of the townspeople that were watching and listening, and being practiced, Luris waited patiently as the accused merely cast absurd accusation at him in front of the very people he had organized to save the town. He had witnesses as well of course, as if his firsthand testimony and witnessing were not sufficient, of the events and while emotions ran high, Luris would not permit himself to be drawn into that. Emotions clouded judgment and he was not high inquisitor of Dementileau without good reason. No emotions and personal feelings were to be set aside when it came to service to the law. Justice demanded it be so.

It was then that Kallev pronounced judgment on them as she shifted into the form of one of the Black Wolves using her magic, which frankly Count Luris was not at all expecting and perhaps none of her companions.

"The witch... the witch is one of them! One of the Black Wolves!" The voices of the towns people murmured as the mob was clearly beginning to form. "The high inquisitor spoke true! The witch was is league with the enemy... Her friends are in league with the enemy! They brought this upon us! She healed us... yes, only to dupe us again... "

Luris whistled sharply and then declared loudly in his clarion voice.

"Citizens! Stand-down, NOW! This is a matter to be handled by the law... not the passions of an angry mob." Luris declared threateningly. "I will not permit such contravention of the law under my watch... so stand-down or you shall be prosecuted accordingly!"

The authority and respect that Luris garnered was clear as the angry mob quieted as the armed men drew down on the transformed Kallev and the others.

"You provided further evidence that you are in league with our enemies... and as such I am now forced to consider all of your companions accessories and accomplices to that end." Luris said with a cold hard voice but with tinge of regret seeped into his voice as he leveled his black blade in a ready position now at Kallev's transformation. "I would have spared your companions whilst you face judgment and trial, but now you have condemned them to face judgment with you."

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kallev
"Yes, blame the people who aided you, let the darkness come. See what you did, you brought this."
So Kallev calls out to the darkness and beseeches the aid of her knight... her beautiful shining knight to save her... to kill man of law in front of her, even as her companions looked on. The Darkness answered...

The light of the day disappeared... even though it was nearing noon, the sun was gone and a unnatural moon was in its place and ear piercing whinny of a horse could be heard in the distance. There was a thundering of hooves and Kallev turned to see her prince in shining armor galloping towards her as she makes ready her escape, but like the rest of her companions, Kallev finds herself transfixed where she stood... unable to move... only to watch as the horseman approached. Kallev watched as her knight approached... and like ashes visage of her princely savior blew away in the wind as he approached and revealing what the others had always seen. The nightmarish spectral knight atop of a hellish horse... the skull on top seemed to grin even as it burned and as it closed, he grasped it in a hand and held it aloft as he came in and in his other hand was a wicked looking sickle as he prepared to reap as his blade flashed down repeatedly leaving only decapitated bodies in his wake. However, the knight was pleasant compared to the horror that followed him... behind the horseman came heads... flying disembodied heads. They seemed to be in varying states of decay... some fresh and newly killed... others skulls with dried gray strip of flesh barely clinging to them. Alexis in particular recognized some of them as they passed... they belonged to the Black Wolves that he had left town with. It would appear that the victims of the macabre horseman were doomed to join his infernal entourage.

It was this monstrous host that descended upon those in town that had not been mercifully killed already by the horseman. They fell upon their victims tearing and devouring them. The dense stench of fresh slaughter and screams of horror and pain surrounded the companions as the host finished their gruesome repast as they swarmed leaving only devoured corpses in their passing. Yet the companions were untouched... both by the host and the horseman. For what seemed like an eternity, the companions were made to witness the slaughter... unable to look away... unable to run.

The Dark Powers had decreed that they bear witness to the fruit that they had wrought and teach that they are not evoked without a price. Eventually, the infernal host finished their gruesome work... and the horseman turned to his summoner. He raised his sickle and cut a scar across Kallev's face... a scar that no magic would heal. It was the mark of the Dark Powers... a scarlet letter that she would bear regardless of what shape she would take. With the final act done, the horseman rode away with his host... and light returned to the world and the town. The companions were unharmed and could move and speak again... but no other living soul was in sight. Only thing that the companions surveyed were decapitated and devoured bodies as far as their eyes could see. Only body or head notably missing was that of Luris.

It was a slaughterhouse.

There was always a price for power.

OODM: Onward!

 


I have included a map of Hofstra on G-Drive here. A you go through your investigation and you want to add "push pins" and other notes in the form of comments you can and you can also designate where the party is doing and I can time skip you to that location. The Duke's mansion where you are all staying at is Push Pin 1.
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DM:The Forsaken Plane: The Plane of Elder Evils
"The only way to do the impossible is to believe that they are possible."
I have taken the Oath of Sangus.
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