Actual Play – Trollocalypse (4/19/2014)

PathfinderCoreCoverGM: Dennis Jordan
Players: Regina Joyner, Karen Twelves, Mia Blankensop, and Sean Nittner
System: Pathfinder
Adventure Path: Kingmaker

Trolls! So many trolls.

Before that though, yay, we’re 7th level, and with 7th level comes a certain degree of badassery. 4th level spells like Atavism and Blessing of Fervor. More sneak attack dice. Feats. Big ass fucking wolves. Yeah, 7th feels pretty bad ass to me.

We got Mia back. After some tormenting texts sent to her last game, she wasn’t going to miss another.

Sean’s character might die.  – Karen

Noooooo, can I dial it in? – Mia

Kingdom affairs

Stagio (Luca’s younger brother) was put in charge of Oleg’s trading post. He walked in and declared the new sheriff was in town. A dozen duels and a dozen victories later and people finally started to listen. Lots of objections at first. Not so many now.

Kesten wants an army. Noting new there, but since Toti was still in The Tusk, he felt the need to impress the urgency of that on her again.

A delegation from the church of Abadar came to see how things were shaping u in the tusk. They were condescending and threatening. The pointed out that the high priest of Aldoria was follower of Erastil, and that a shrine of Erastil has been built before the shrine of Abadar. Toti, defensive and nervous responded by promising them the world! A giant cathedral of Abadar would be built, made of gold and slate! Come back in a year and you will see! Impressed, really impressed, the delegation left 20 priests behind to aid (read: spy, cajole, and direct) Toti in her dedication of Abadar.

A missive arrived that the Lord Mayor of Rostov was coming to The Tusk for a visit. Since the swordlord was off and about in the wilderness, Edward suggested that Toti find her and get her back before the the mayor arrives in three weeks time. To adventure!

 Exploration and adventure

Toti met up with her cousins as the tromped through the marshes west of Candlemere. They were searching for an surviving lizardmen and arguing (Merrowyn arguing, go figure) about how to handle them.

“That’s it Miquela. When you get back to the Tusk you’ve got to go stand up and tell the people we’re not going to allow this to happen again. We’re going to build an army to defend our walls and we’re going to hunt down and kill any creature that thinks it’s okay to attack our citizens. Fey, Lizardmen, Owlbears, I don’t care who they are. The hurt our people, we kill them, all of them!”

“I’m not killing children, Merrowyn. If we find them and they fight, we’ll kill them, but we’re not killing innocents.”

“What about Tig? They tortured him. He was a child. It didn’t stop them.”

“I’m not killing children, and I’m not going to let you either!”

It went on like that for a bit. Ending with some grunting and some posturing. Next time we see Lizardmen will tell the truth of it.

Toti arrived with news of the Lord Mayor arriving which got us all moving. There were still trolls to kill so we had better get around to it.

Exploring I3

A bog that eventually turned into thick forest. A perfect place for lizardmen to hide as evidence by the fact that we found none of them. There was one remnants of a “camp” they made. A meal eaten raw and then a camp quickly abandoned. We cleared the area and found no traces of them.

Exploring I2

More forest, denser now. Into the parts of the Narlmashes that wiser folk encourage you not to go.


Exploring J2

Atop a hill, with Elara’s eagle eyes (in eagle form no less) a watchtower carved out of stone was found. Using Flight and Dimension Door we quickly made it to the top and found two troll sentries inside. We made quick work of them, but knew we had been heard during he fight. There were stairs that went up into the mountain and echoing down form them we heard screams in crude Giant tongue.

So we decided to wait. Let the trolls come to us. And by Gorum’s Iron Stones did they! It took them a minute to gather their forces but once they did and onslaught of trolls came raining down like we could hardly imagine.

There was Hargulka, the leader, and his trolls. There was Nagrundin the two-headed half-troll half-ettin and his trolls, there was Kargadd the stone troll and his trolls, and oh yeah, for fun there was a few troll hounds added to the mix as well. It was Trollocalpyse!

The fact that we survived this fight at all seems predicated on few things. First, that we prepared with all of our most spells, potions, and wands cast or at the ready. Second, we dropped the leader Hargulka in very short order (I think two rounds thanks to Blessing of Fervor), and three that in Pathfinder -10 hit points doesn’t necessarily mean dead (Merrowyn was so close to croaking in that fight, I could feel my eraser mark in her hit points section beginning to rub through the page).

At one point I had the choice of fleeing or staying to take one more attack. Dennis was evil when he said chuckled “Gorum is watching.” Merrowyn attacked and eventually planted her giant sword right through that two-headed, four-testicled monster of a troll’s lower half. Even the wolf was impressed!



Once everything was dead and we had quaffed more healing potions, alchemical concoctions, and spontaneous cast cure spells than every before, we began scouting out these awesome dwarven halls, and then deeper, crudely carved out tunnels. Inside we found all manner of things both wondrous and terrible.


Off the fallen Trolls themselves

  • 234 sp
  • 589 gp
  • Large Darkwood Thundering Morningstar +1
  •  Necklace of Fireballs (1 x 8d6, 2 x 4d6, 3 x 2d6)
  • Large Hide Armor +1
  • Large map detailing the trolls lair, all of our holdings, and the places the trolls had been raiding.

Deeper in the lair, among there holdings we also found

  • A crude sand table with a map of our kingdom
  • A headless halfling
  • A giant larder filled with supplies, our supplies, worth 4 build points.
  • A severed head
  • 1902 sp
  • 888 gp
  • Ioun Stone – Dusty Rose Prism (Toti)
  • Amulet of Natural Armor +2 (Merrowyn, her’s going to Tad)
  • Corpses, both animal and human.
  • Statue of a Dragon (200 gp)
  • Gold Necklace (500 gp)
  • Jewelry (750 gp)
  • Five gems (500 gp)
  • Dwarven Wine (45 gp)
  • Troll Hound
    Troll Hound

    Dwarven silver tankard (50 gp)

  • 1484 cp
  • 3550 sp
  • 652 gp
  • Challenger’s Gloves (to be gifted to the Mayor)
  • Composite Adaptive Shortbow +1 (Merrowyn)
  • Beast bond-brand (Elara)
  • Light Crossbow +2 (Toti or Tad)
  • Handy Harversack (Toti)
  • Boots of Elvenkind (Miquela)
  • Shawl of Life Keeping
  • Meridian Belt
  • Did I mention heads and bodies… ugh.

We were going to need a bigger backpack! While Toti, Miquela, and Merrowyn stayed behind to clean up the fort and lay the dead to rest (thankfully were able to match up heads and bodies), Elara flew back to the Tusk to commission a small caravan to come  meet us at collect all the supplies.

Exploring H4

Realizing that there was one area the caravan would have to pass through that we hadn’t cleared, we ventured back to the Tusk to make sure there was a clear path. And by Erastil’s Horny Antlers, glad we did!

We’re just some adventures minding our business, murdering trolls and taking their things, wandering back home, when some crazy old cook jumps out of a tree and stabs Miquela. Stabs her super hard… where it hurts… in the stabby parts. Him and his crazy puma!

Thinking this might be Bokken’s brother (and guessing that correctly) we tried not to harm him, but the man was out of his mind! Eventually we subdued him and took him back with us but overtime realized that he was not only crazy, but a serial killer. Sadly, with no cure available for his madness, we opted to try him for his crimes (at the very least assault of the swordlord, but by his own confession the murder of many, many people including his mother. He was sentenced to death and executed summarily by Edward. Merrowyn most notably was happy to have her father handle that task.

He had loot as well, which, crazy as he might be, we were still happy to take.

  • Potion of Cure Light Wounds (CL5)
  • Potion of Invisibility (CL5)
  • 165 sp
  • 31 gp
  • Tarnished silver locket (10gp, wanted by Bokken)
  • Treasure map to the barrow we previously found.
  • Whip +1
  • Leather Armor +1
  • Ring of Protection +1 (Tad)
  • Masterwork Shortsword

 Thoughts on this Game

Kingmaker has some hard breaks. Lots of problems that I don’t think there are good solutions to. A dead boy (discussed in the last actual play report), many murdered citizens, and finally a crazed serial killer that there was no rehabilitating. Rough stuff with few options to solve (most of them involve “can you find a high level cleric and pay them enough money to fix this problem”). I like that we don’t have that power in our hands right now (or every solution would be a cleric spell), it keeps the business of running a kingdom full of difficult choices (and sometimes none of them are good).

I really enjoy our debate over lizardmen, and frankly what to do with any external threats. Miquela is trying to keep a very firm hand on the reins of the kingdom, commanding that we try peaceful interactions first and only resort to violence when that fails.  Much like Elara though her convictions are constantly challenged. Each time we make a peace offering that blows up in our faces that ideal gets a little bit harder to hold. Now Merrowyn has abandoned it completely, so it’s not just the pressure of the anonymous citizens asking for security in their homes, it’s her own family and boon companions. I look forward to seeing how this progresses.

Dennis does a great job of keeping the kingdom pressures constant. In a vacuum running a kingdom is easy, but when monster attack and your military officers demand and army, when high priests come by and look down on your paltry shrine to their god, when your ex-ship captain treasurer says that the city needs a waterfront, all of those things compete for time, attention, and build points!

As much as 7th level was a big deal for the arcane casters, 8th will be a big deal for everyone. Boosting a stat, iterative attacks (for everyone now), Shattered Defense for Merrowyn. Good times ahead.

Merrowyn gets hurt… a lot!. I kind of love it. – Sean, character masochist


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