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InfestedKerrigan

3.5 Planescape

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Playing DnD with my buddies has gotten me interested in running a campaign.  It's been close to 15 years since the last time I was a DM.  The initial thought of the campaign I want to run is Epic Level.  I want the players to be able to take on lesser gods, old dragons, etc.  In deciding how to make this a reasonable/feasible campaign idea, Planescape came to mind.  3rd and 3.5 didn't present a lot on Planescape, but I do have all of 2nd editions books on Planescape.  As far as I know, the players involved have limited to no knowledge of the Planes or Sigil.  As such, I'm going to be able to draw upon the Planescape Adventures/Modules from 2nd edition for a lot of the campaign.  I believe I'll have 3 to 4 players.  When I started conceptualizing and laying out the pieces, I only had two players, so an additional player or two will help the story move along better when using premade adventures without the need of scaling conflicts.   

 

I plan on using time passing as a plot device to increase levels between sessions to help get the characters to the levels I want them at for the campaign.  I know a lot of people feel 3.5 starts falling apart after level 9, but I don't feel the people I'll be playing with are familiar enough with the system to power game it in such a fashion.  Even if they are trying to power game, moving the setting to Planescape should help negate that.  These bashers are from the prime.  They don't have chant to say about living in the Planes.  With the Blood War raging, the Great Modron March happening, and the Factions always bickering with each other, I'm not worried about the "strength" of the characters, a bigger basher is always around the corner.  

 

That brings me to my questions.  Are any of you familiar with Planescape and have any suggestions about what Mods you enjoyed or didn't enjoy within the setting?  How do you feel about the Spelljammer settings?  Is there a particular Plane you really enjoyed playing on?  What was compelling about it?  

 

 

Once the PCs are around level 15-19, I'm going to spend less time guiding them into adventures and more time allowing them to decide their fate.  Perhaps they'll have joined a faction, or possible started their own.  Maybe they will travel back to the Prime World they came from and rid it of undesirable beings or monsters.  If they choose Evil Dragons, for an example, that would be a great way to get them involved with Tiamat, Falazure, Garyx and ultimately Io on them, drawing them into Baator, Hades, the Abyss and the Outlands.  Perhaps if Io gets involved, they can either kill him, or follow his advice and allow the Chromatic Dragons to exist using the "How can you know how good the Metallic Dragons are if you don't know how Evil the Chromatic ones are?" line of thought.

 

Thoughts?  Ideas?  Feedback?

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Have you looked at that epic level handbook? Some good stuff in there for high level gaming.

 

As for playing games with characters that can contend with gods, one thing of note is time shouldn't be such a factor. A god should be able to wait-out any mortal adventurer, so characters really shouldn't be overly time constricted. If the god isn't waiting, then a reason should be constructed - if they have all of time to do something, why now?

 

Plans for gods should be impressive, in terms of power, but also in scope. It isn't far fetched for an entire civilization to live and die off for the sole purpose of placing this one ruin, device, or spell which will aid the god in an epic battle long after the entire civilization is deceased.

 

I will also note, that if dealing with gods, many battles will be around stalling their opponent, rather than directly slaying them. A maze, petrification, coma, or similar approach would probably be the choice solution to a god, especially when the god doesn't consider death a permanent solution (given they probably have a death or life god for an enemy). Mazes and such don't need to be presented like this. A simple peasant that gives bad directions because they were told to in their prayers could just as easily function as the walls of a maze.

 

I strongly suggest against allowing characters to slay gods. It is unfluffy and not really something that should be allowed. That said, imprison, trap, defeat, ensorcel, seduce, and so forth are all perfectly acceptible options.

 

Also, the gods have their enemies. If a character is actively opposing one god, it's enemies may aid the character. That said, should a character defeat a god, it's also possible that the other gods will see the character more as threat to unite against, rather than just an enemy of their enemy.

 

This is mostly general stuff. For planescape, I've not done much in that setting. I'd personally suggest borrowing key cities from the setting, but creating the planes yourself. They are already themed, so really it's just deciding which things belong in that plane. Spelljammer I've heard of, but heard many mixed reviews on the setting. I really think you'd be better off creating your own magic planeship, rather than using theirs. In both cases, start with a simple map of the plane/ship, and just have the characters "discover" additional areas whenever convenient to the plot - you can chalk this up to the planes being inconsistent in physical appearance - or the planeship lacking complete blueprints. Update the map when new areas are found and that should work for consistency.

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So, I'm not sure why this fell apart, but I am in a new gaming group and still want to persue this.  2 of the players are familiar with the setting, and 2 started playing in 3rd or 4th. 

 

Pax, Godhood has to do with faith. As long as a rotting corpse has followers and petitioners...gods are just like the Emperor. Cutting off the food source, is in part, needed to get a god killed. It's not like a 4 day battle against a world dragon. So, yeah, if they want to persue godhood, they can, by getting followers, or converting people. ^_^ how do you think Jesus did it?

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6 hours ago, InfestedKerrigan said:

Pax, Godhood has to do with faith. As long as a rotting corpse has followers and petitioners...gods are just like the Emperor. Cutting off the food source, is in part, needed to get a god killed. It's not like a 4 day battle against a world dragon. So, yeah, if they want to persue godhood, they can, by getting followers, or converting people. ^_^ how do you think Jesus did it?

Without getting into religion and turning this into an RoC thread....

Godhood isn't just faith in an RPG. Yes, a modern religion can be just faith, but in an RPG setting with spells that reveal truth, you can't just make up a religion that has no basis in the setting's reality. The PCs need to both DO godly things AND be WORSHIPPED. Merely doing godly things won't make you a god. And merely having followers won't make you a god. You need both. Yes, at 20+ level, any character should have already done Godly things, so they really only need the worshippers to be on the Godhood path, but the PCs should always be outliers in the setting. 

Regarding existing deities in an RPG setting, that's up to the GM (which you are, I think). That said, even if the PCs can destroy their divinity, the former deity should still be very powerful. At least a level 20+ character equivelent. Evil deities, in particular, probably had their faith started around a particularly dangerous creature (which was dangersous prior to divinity). I do think deities will be easier to destroy in an RPG setting where the GM is an atheist (I don't recall if you are, this is a generalization)...just seems like a given that the GM's mindset regarding religion will influence the setting's take on deities. 

Anyway, I need to go get some food before we get too into this one...

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So as someone familiar with the AD&D books, 3.5 Books, Dragonlance and the planes. What exactly are you wondering? 

Starting level? If it's 1st then I would start with a normal campaign and introduce them to maybe a planar incursion or a wizard messing with the planes that then gets them drawn into the planes. The planes are crazy powerful and I think you want the players with some gear, some levels and familiarity with each other and their characters before they adventure on the planes. 

If you start higher I really think an adventure in the astral planes would be fun. Put them on a "sky" ship and you can have ship battles and have them explore exotic dead gods for ancient treasure and it'll allow you to have some politics/factions involved in the different ports of call and different captains. If you wanted to you could also give the ship the ability to be upgraded (maybe by quest) to travel between planes. 

I'd love to help in anyway I can. I have been thinking about doing a planescape campaign as well. 

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Well, wanting to be as cohesive as possible, and I think I want to run the first 15 or so character levels from the Campaign Books, dead gods, tails from infinite staircase, well of worlds, great modron march, etc, and wrapping up with the Faction war. Idealy, I'll have a timeline mapped out, so depending on what they have started, they may miss out on something, or give the pcs something to do while the modrons destroy the planes.

Well of World's has the PCs start in any back water planet in the Prime, and immediately end up running from infernal beings before ending up in Sigil. 

 

As for Dragonlance, I was asking Pax, as some of my favorite stories have to do with the One True God.

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On February 12, 2018 at 9:47 PM, InfestedKerrigan said:

Have you read Dragonlance at all?

Maybe one of them. Wasn't memorable enough to recall. I think last I tried reading them I may have been too young to enjoy them properly. I could use a new book. What's a good starting point for the series? 

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1 hour ago, paxmiles said:

Maybe one of them. Wasn't memorable enough to recall. I think last I tried reading them I may have been too young to enjoy them properly. I could use a new book. What's a good starting point for the series? 

It has a linear story with several Eras that can create spoilers. There are enough books to keep you busy for a year. 

I'd do the main story archs and a couple of the bound volumes of short stories. Would put you at 15 to 20 books, that'll last you a couple months. They are pretty light reading, comparatively, but still fun.

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