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 Post subject: Dragons in the Dark
PostPosted: Sun Jan 24, 2016 8:48 pm 
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It is the era of history known as the Dark. This short period of four centuries marks the ever encroaching Ice Age. The devastation wrought in the recent past led to the fall of many civilizations. The survivors in the north are bitterly opposed to magic. Tiny, insular villages dot a wasted, goblin-infested landscape. Fanatical priests control a few powerful city-states. Preachers and witch-hunters hunt the countryside for the few remaining wizards. Those who practice magic utilize dangerous and innovative techniques.

In the south, the harsh climatic changes cause the survivors to struggle. The fae and humans are breeding primitive but adaptable subspecies, which eventually turned on their creators and terrorized the people. The merfolk are suffering an invasion of crustacean-like homarids, which benefit from the cooling oceans. Barraged by invaders, the civilizations of the south were eventually destroyed, and the continent fell into darkness.

You, along with your companions, will brave this world of arcane persecution, obtaining mighty artifacts of power, carving out a domain for yourselves, defending those to whom you choose to extend your protection, building up your might, that you might one day kneel before your king or queen and claim a lordship of your own. Perhaps you will study the dangerous and forbidden magic of this time, or raise up a church to one of the grim deities that preside over a power on the wane. The choice is yours. Oh right, and you're dragons.

Dragons in the Dark is a Pathfinder campaign run by Kain Darkwind. 3-5 PCs will take on the role of wyrmling dragon clutchmates, born in the early years of the Dark. Over the course of their adventures, they will age, through the era, eventually into mighty mature adults as the Dark comes to a close. It is an age of persecution and darkness, but we will see if draconic might can shape the world to come.

What this is.
Dragons in the Dark is a heroic to mercenary game, based around traditional RPG adventuring. Challenges will be met personally, by and large, and overcome personally, as a team. As dragons, you will be largely set apart from the general populace, but not from each other. As eventual shapechangers, you may walk in the world of men and elf in their own skins, but you will not belong. Nor, as active and socially aligned younger dragons, will you truly belong to the world of general dragonkind either.

The game takes place over a period of almost four hundred years, while you grow from a wyrmling to a mature adult dragon. There will be considerable downtime in between your adventures. Whether you wish to make the most of this time to flesh out your character or not will be on you. DM support will be made available to those who wish to.

The game will introduce players to the draconic society and the Dark era of Terra's history. It will take place initially in northern Oerik, although no knowledge of Greyhawk is required, given that it takes place around ten thousand years before the earliest histories of the campaign setting.

What this is not.
Dragons in the Dark is not an evil game. While PCs who choose chromatic dragons will be allowed to have an evil alignment, disrupting the party will not be tolerated. Working against the party's goals is strictly forbidden. Nor should every decision boil down to a choice between vile darkness and something else. Dragons in the Dark is also not a kingdom game. You will not be forcing armies of orcs or humans to do your bidding in your stead. At least, not in general.

Dragons in the Dark is also not ready yet. While a rough campaign outline exists, it is months away from being able to fly. Expect it to be a weekly game starting up in the summer of this year. At this time, the DM is gauging interest and encouraging development of the players' characters. In most campaigns, this DM does not care much about backstory. In this one, the DM is flat out giving it to you. Your egg was gifted to draconic elders dedicated by the faiths of Bahamut and Tiamat. As such, your clutch will not necessarily contain dragons that are the same color, and may indeed be mixed between metallic and chromatic. You were raised by the elders as brothers and sisters, and those of you who play characters in this campaign will have such as your past. The opening adventure will be the first time you were allowed 'out' unsupervised. As a player, you will need to develop your own dragon's personality, name, connections to the rest of the clutch and all of the rest that goes along with a Pathfinder character.

Your dragon will begin with the alignment typical to its race. That may change over time, but begin with such in mind.
Your dragon will begin with zero items. That will quickly change. Keep in mind that there are no magic item shops, there are no magic item creation feats allowed, and you will be wanting to start a horde, so coins won't be going towards magic item purchase anyways.
Your dragon will begin with 15 point buy, modified by racial modifiers.
The DM will apply racial HD or templates, largely of the advanced, young, giant or class variety, to balance out any large gaps in dragon ability, so feel free to pick from gold to white, based on the sort of character you want to be. The DM will also not be super concerned with a precise sort of balancing on this accord, and expects the players to get on board with his attitude regarding that. This is Pathfinder with dragons, not How to Nickle and Dime your Strength Score.
You are encouraged to ask the DM questions, but realize that as baby dragons setting out for the first time, even you have much to learn about draconic society and the world around you.


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 Post subject: Re: Dragons in the Dark
PostPosted: Sun Jan 24, 2016 11:00 pm 
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You usually have my attention. Now you have my interest.


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 Post subject: Re: Dragons in the Dark
PostPosted: Sun Jan 24, 2016 11:18 pm 
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Posting tentative interest.

Are metallics and chromatics the only dragons on the table?


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 Post subject: Re: Dragons in the Dark
PostPosted: Sun Jan 24, 2016 11:31 pm 
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Glabrezubane wrote:
Posting tentative interest.

Are metallics and chromatics the only dragons on the table?


For PC choices, yes. While you may (will?) meet others throughout the adventures, your core team concept revolves around being cared for by the Bahamut/Tiamat elders.


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 Post subject: Re: Dragons in the Dark
PostPosted: Mon Jan 25, 2016 2:48 am 
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What exactly has the elders of two gods who hate each other working together? Yes, I know they were mates at one time, but there's a lot of bad blood since then.


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 Post subject: Re: Dragons in the Dark
PostPosted: Mon Jan 25, 2016 7:09 am 
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Because their Lord and Lady have ordered it. At the end of the day, Bahamut and Tiamat both wish to see their chosen branch of the draconic race prosper, and in their own way, care far more about the opposite branch than they do about say...humans and elves. They are draconic paragons, not Lawful Good/Evil ones. This is a time where no one of a cosmic perspective is even certain that mortal kind is going to pull this world out of the nosedive it has recently taken. And with humans going out and exterminating any they deem different, dragons could be in serious trouble. They're going to have to work together to survive. Something no dragon excels at. Which brings us to your clutch.


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 Post subject: Re: Dragons in the Dark
PostPosted: Mon Jan 25, 2016 7:34 pm 
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Yeah, I can buy into that.


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 Post subject: Re: Dragons in the Dark
PostPosted: Mon Jan 25, 2016 7:59 pm 
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Oh, also Bahamut and Tiamat are not worshiped as gods by dragons in this time. The temple in question was founded by them, hence the name.


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 Post subject: Re: Dragons in the Dark
PostPosted: Wed Jan 27, 2016 9:38 am 
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A few questions I've been asked.


1. I'm not sure I can commit to the game in the summer but I'd like to play if possible, what should I do?

A: Make a character. Ask questions you want to know about the world. Flesh things out. Honestly, summer's a long ways away, none of us can know what or if our schedule will be. If for some reason you cannot play when we begin, your character will become an NPC. The clutch is bigger than just those who will be PCs.

2. What sort of dragon should I pick?

A: A silver. Half joking there. Obviously, you should pick a dragon whose alignment and personality suits the type of character you'd like to play. Ideally, you'll be around CR 5-6, but like I said, we will tweak a dragon that exists outside those boundaries to fit. The difficulty will be if someone wants to play a super weak white and someone wants to play a super powerful gold, that's a 5 level gap. If the entire party plays strong or weak dragons, there's little difficulty involved. Please do not take this as an active discouragement from playing a black or white dragon...if that's the kind you want, we'll figure out how to make it happen.

Other considerations are the environment. It will be cold, you are in the north, in the Griff Mountains near Stonehold. That's not to say that a red or brass out of their preferred environment can't thrive in the campaign, just that it might be something you want to take into your decision. Heck, a red backing a silver makes a good combination, and there are advantages and disadvantages to pooling or diversifying your talents.

The chief reason someone might want a silver dragon in particular though is the ability to immediately adopt humanoid shape. Make no mistake, most of your dracoform interaction with humanoids will be violent due to the intolerance and fear that grip the world. As all dragons gain the ability to change shape by juvenile, I am not designing any adventures where one must hit up a town peacefully before that point, but one never knows what sort of things players might want to do.

So to me, from an objective standpoint, the silver offers the most up front advantages. Myself, if I were a player instead of a DM, would likely take up a blue or bronze, because those are what I like the most.

3. Will there be class levels?

A: Likely, yes. I intend to use the class templates and/or actual class levels to serve as advancement within the scope of a given age category. Some ages will be less, for instance, you'll probably hit very young before you have any class levels. If class levels are going to disrupt your idea of a 'pure' draconic PC, you are welcome to take a bonus dragon HD (with d12, full attack bonus, all good saves and 6+int skill points) instead.

4. Can we use mechanics from the Draconomicon?

A: No. At least, not during character creation. I may introduce material such as metabreath into DM custom feats, but things like suppress vulnerability you should resign yourself to never possessing.

5. What Pathfinder Sources are allowed?

A: Core Rulebook, Bestiary, Advanced Player's Guide. Ultimate Combat and Ultimate Magic with permission.

6. Do our dragons have spellcasting and what kind?

A: Dragons have sorcerer spell casting, which is without a bloodline. Just spells per day/known. Dragons can scribe spellbooks, allowing them to prepare their spells known. If you prepare a spell in place of one you knew, and you lack the old spell in the spellbook, you cannot get it back. Dragons add their age category to their caster level. (Not spells known or such)
Sorcerer levels stack with draconic spellcasting, but the bloodline abilities are limited to the actual sorcerer levels. Expect significant limitations upon your allowed bloodlines based entirely on flavor. If you do not like this idea, don't take sorcerer levels when you level.
Wizard spellcasting does not stack with draconic sorcerous spellcasting, but the wizard's spellbook can be used to change out spells for the dragon.


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 Post subject: Re: Dragons in the Dark
PostPosted: Wed Jan 27, 2016 4:20 pm 
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I'm interested! Seeing as how there's an entire season or so to wait before play starts it gives me time to get into the pathfinder rules. I'm partial to White Dragon with an eye to taking Barbarian or Rogue Class levels eventually, to be honest. A simple-enough place to start a character, I guess.


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