As promised, my dear players, I shall provide you with a description of “what the hell happened after?”. As our previous gaming session was interrupted quite unpleasantly, as people needed to, oh, you know, get back home and stuff. Cuz it was late and shit.
All of this will be copied and pasted into the adventure log, too, so I don’t need to type the same thing twice.
When we left:
Out of the 12 enemies that made it out of the clown car (read: enemy airship), 4 of them remained standing: The Skilled Sniper (a surprisingly misleading title), the Priest, the Secret Cultist, and the Sky Pirate Omona Stidhat him/herself.
The plank connecting the two ships was sundered into a lot of little pieces by the stupid Tainted Sorcerer that thought he could cross while large size, there were still three harpoons lodged in your airship keeping you from disengaging the enemy, and your pilot had maneuvered your airship… even closer. But he couldn’t get closer than 10 feet, due to the kinda donut shaped ship you were inside of.
Zero enemy remained standing on your deck, all enemies were on the other side.
So here’s the basic analysis of the enemies:
-Skilled Sniper: only had a +5 on attack rolls. Sure, he could continue taking puck shots at you, but really, you could heal his DPS way faster than he could dish it out. This guy had no interest in crossing over to your side.
-Priest: No ranged weapon, only a couple of support spells. Turns out he was a social cleric type of build, not a fighty one. Really, really useless in this fight. Nor was he any skilled at tossing a rope and crossing over to your side.
-Secret Cultist: Another Cleric, another frowning of the ranged weapons, and this guy had a bunch of spells that made him great to frame people for the murder of someone. And shit all to do with this kind of fighting. And again, no skill at crossing.
-The Paladin leader: I… never stat-ed it with any ranged weapon. I mean, I really should have, I have its character sheet and the whole nine yards, but I had always figured it was a Cutlass build. Never crossed my mind that their one way unto your ship was cut off, this one was fucked. Also, not going to make an acrobatics check to cross over when wearing full plate, even if its mithral.
So there you have it. Out of the four opponents, only one had a chance at dealing damage, and you could effortlessly out-heal this one, while Scott would whack his chain around and turn people’s organs into lunch.
They also couldn’t easily disengage the two ships, doing so would involve cutting the three ropes, which were inconveniently on a different deck. That would require risking manpower which under more sane circumstances, sounded like a bad idea.
In addition, I had built them all to be fanatics for their cause. They weren’t going to back down no matter what. No matter how doomed this was going to be.
So in the end, I said “fuck it”, and decided I’d steamroll the players into an easy victory. SO, HERE’S WHAT HAPPENED AFTER:
-Scott whacked everything in the face with his chain.
-Strato eventually ran out of (entirely effective!) burning hands, then moved to assist on the ballista.
-Pat also used burning hands here or there, got bored, and started using the ballista.
-Paul stood there like a champ, making sure he was the scariest of them all, to guarantee that the “skilled sniper” would keep targeting him, fail, and protecting the rest of the party. Also, the whole antipaladin thing really pissed off the enemies which included priests and a paladin. Really.
So in short, there was no way for the enemy to win, to retreat, or to surrender. The party could only win from this point on.
So they did.
Now, whether you decided to take prisoners or not is your thing, as a GM, I don’t entirely care. Still, I’ll tell you the results of the hypothetical interrogation:
-The whole White Power thing was literally that, this entire band of pirates were a bunch of white supremacist with anger issues that thought they were doing the world a favor by targeting guilds that did business with blacks (such as Drow).
-They didn’t leave any signs of their activities because they figured it’d be confused into them supporting the White Great Wyrm that owns the city. Which they don’t, because White Power doesn’t need to be logical or consistent. It really is just ultranationalist justification for hatred and violence.
-None of the crews of the other ships survived, unlike what your Pilot had guessed would be. These guys were out for blood, they were not backed by any other corp, they had stolen this airship of theirs.
-None of the cargo survived either. It was successfully hacked (oh, look at that, maybe Guild boxes are not as safe as the Guilds make them out to be?), then looted for consumables, or burned.
That should answer your basic questions as to the Why and the motivations of the pirates, as well as plugging a few plot holes. But wait, there’s more!
-The only way you managed to take control of the two ships was by using the co-pilot of your own ship, roping him unto the other ship (a very difficult procedure, may I point out), and get him to properly take command of that other ship, to slow it down. After cutting the ropes, of course.
-From that point, that second ship effectively became yours, because the Guild wanted NOTHING to do with a stolen ship from a rival guild. That shit is just begging for a very costly lawsuit, or worse. They obviously weren’t going to return it to the rival guild either, so the options were either to burn it to the ground, or to give it to the incredibly successful party of adventurers that were salivating at the notion of getting their own airship. Heh, sure thing kids, have the spare car.
-Therefore, the co-pilot graciously drove the thing back home for you, alongside the bait ship. It’s the least he could have done for you all, after discovering those damned pirates were just going to kill them anyways.
Actual explanations of the events surrounding the arrival of the airship back to your home city will be covered over the course of the next gaming sessions, and spontaneously made my life as a GM much easier to figure out what comes next.
Now. Party rewards, beyond the obvious airship:
First off, I’d like to show you what you guys were actually up against.
Battle Mage: http://www.d20pfsrd.com/bestiary/npc-s/npc-2/battle-mage-elf-wizard-3
Veteran Buccaneer: http://www.d20pfsrd.com/bestiary/npc-s/npc-2/veteran-buccaneer-human-warrior-4
Murderous Halfling: http://www.d20pfsrd.com/bestiary/npc-s/npc-3/murderous-halfling-halfling-fighter-4
Warrior Novice: http://www.d20pfsrd.com/bestiary/npc-s/npc-2/human-monk-3
Tainted Sorcerer: http://www.d20pfsrd.com/bestiary/npc-s/npc-3/tainted-sorcerer-gnome-sorcerer-4
Expert Bodyguard: http://www.d20pfsrd.com/bestiary/npc-s/npc-5/expert-bodyguard-human-warrior-7
Skilled Sniper: http://www.d20pfsrd.com/bestiary/npc-s/npc-2/skilled-sniper-half-elf-rogue-3
Secret CUltist: http://www.d20pfsrd.com/bestiary/npc-s/npc-2/secret-cultist-human-cleric-3
WHITE POWER Paladin: Level 5 Paladin, which I stated personally.
Total XP just from the kills: 9,200 XP (2,300 per player)
That clown car was a fucking blender, a clusterfuck, a gauntlet of enemies that there is no way you should have been able to just take down by simple force of arms. You were supposed to figure out a way of outsmarting these opponents, and you sure did. Good going guys! You are remembering that it pays to be creative in my campaigns.
YOU ALL GAIN A LEVEL. I know these enemies aren’t quite enough to move your XP to the next level (for 3rd level), but when I factor in arbitrary RP XP, plus story arc XP, plus the fact that this was an insane fight, you win, you now have just enough XP to reach level 3, and I won’t be bothered with any further math for that thing.
You earned your 3rd level, that’s for certain.
Most of your enemies fell down from the sky, so you don’t get the shit they are supposed to drop. But some of them did stick to the ship, so here’s the list of things you get from them: (skipped over is the mundane equipment, I’m only including masterwork stuff)
-Elixir of swimming
-Potion of bull’s strength
-Potion of cure light wounds
-Potion of cure light wounds
-Potion of jump
-Masterwork heavy crossbow
-Potion of barkskin
-Potion of bear’s endurence
-Potion of cure moderate wounds
-Tanglefoot bag (2)
-Masterwork banded mail
-Masterwork light steel shield
-Masterwork light crossbow
-Scroll of cure light wounds
-+1 studded leather armor
-Apparently he’s poor
Murderous Halfling (small sized equipment)
-Feather token (whip)
-Flask of acid
-+1 chain shirt
-Masterwork daggers (2)
-Oil of magic weapon (2)
-Potion of cure moderate wounds
-Potion of invisibility
-Masterwork studded leather
-Masterwork composite longbow
-Masterworked spiked chain
-Black adder venom (2 doses)
-Apparently he too is poor
-Oil of magic weapon
-Potion of cure light wounds (2)
-Scroll of death knell
-Scroll of owl’s wisdom
-+1 leather armor
-Masterwork war razor
The crazy Paladin (small sized equipment)
-Mithral +1 full plate
-Potion of eagle’s splendor
-Potion of lesser restoration
There is NOTHING ELSE OF VALUE ON THE AIRSHIP (for god’s sake, I think I gave you enough already, this was crazy).
As for the airship itself, I don’t have a map! Scott, be a darling and provide me the magical links to the things you were discussing about, so I can pick and choose the right airship for you.
OTHER CONSIDERATIONS if you want to keep the airship:
You need skills to fly it!
YOU MAY: go through flight school individually to learn how to fly this thing.
Cost for every rank of training in Airship Piloting: approx 500 GP (Profession)
Cost for every rank of training in Airship Engineering: approx 400 GP (Craft)
Cost for every rank of training in Airship Technical: approx 200 GP (Profession)
You may join a school at your leisure, but that’s how much training is going to cost. You may NOT learn this stuff “on your own” (though you may reserve skill points on your character for when you get to do this), this stuff is way too esoteric to just pick up on the fly.
Also, you may add stuff to your character sheet right now, but keep in mind that it will be “virtual” skill points spent. Action will resume as quickly as your airship will land, you will not have proper time to train this sort of stuff. Theoretically, in fact, your level up should not happen until after the session starts, keep your character sheets NOT levelled up.
OR YOU MAY HIRE A CREW!
A pilot is worth 500 GP per month and has a +12 at piloting.
A co-pilot is worth 400 GP per month and has a +10 at piloting.
An engineer is worth 400 GP per month and has a +12 at engineering.
A technician is worth 200 GP per month and has a +10 at technical.
YOU CANNOT RUN A SHIP WITHOUT ALL FOUR OF THESE ROLES FILLED. And there is nothing lost at hiring extra crew. SUCH AS MERCENARIES THAT ENSURE YOUR SHIP DOESN’T GET STOLEN WHILE IT’S AT THE DOCKS. Just sayin’.
I think that’s good enough for now. See you next Monday!