Saturday, 11 December 2010


With our regular Pathfinder campaign paused in order to give GM Ben a bit of time to recharge, we've been taking the opportunity to try some new games. Last week Stuart blessed us with another excellent Cold City scenario -- it remains a brilliant game -- and last night I picked up the baton and ran a one-off Pathfinder scenario, as Ben had mentioned that he was keen on seeing what it was like to play the game from the other side of the GM screen. I picked Paizo's Carrion Hill, as all my games seem to turn into Call of Cthulhu at some point, and this gave me an excuse.

I think I ended up running the thing by default, as no one else was in a position to volunteer, and I have to admit I was a bit concerned. My tastes in game design are for more simple rulesets, not the five hundred page monster that is the Pathfinder rpg, but I think it turned out okay. While the game does seem to have a rule for everything, in most cases you can get away with picking a target number, and getting the players to roll a d20 and add the result to whatever ability you just decided on a fraction of a second before.

One might think that having a prepared scenario helped, but I've discovered that Carrion Hill, which seemed so strong on a read through, has some real problems. I won't go into them now, as we're only half way through and I don't want to spoil anything for next week, but suffice to say that it has some serious design flaws, some of which a half decent editor should have spotted.

All that said, my first attempt at running the game didn't seem to be as huge a disaster as I'd imagined it would be, but I'm still not sure it gave Ben the experience he wanted! He has been nudging me into running Swords and Wizardry or Runequest though, both of which are much more my kind of thing, so we'll see what, if anything, happens on that front.


  1. It's been great to play some Pathfinder Kelvin. Fantasy/ S&S is my favourite genre - more so than anything else.... even more than westerns and noir (but those come a close second).

    Running PF does seem like a 'mare at first - but you get used to it - and Manoj, our very own walking bio-bank, as well as the PFRD is all very handy!

    The forums on the Paizo site may be of value in terms of discussing issues with the story - if you haven't already looked. I find they are invaluable for planning the APs in Kingmaker I run for you all. An excellent resource and sounding board if you need one.

    Looking forward to more Call of Cthulh.... I mean more Cake from Cthulh... I mean Pathfinders of Nyarlathotep..... as you Carri-on up my hill on Friday evening. ;)

  2. The story is fine, but it's the details that are broken. There are bits of Carrion Hill which are impossible under the rules as written. I am just going to ignore these bits. ;)


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