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November 22, 2014, 11:35 pm

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Attack on Titan/Tales of Symphonia Campaign Hybrid

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People live inside a series of walls. Outside the walls, there are Titans (giants, unless you actually want to use the Titan, which are fetching powerful). There's a spell that needs breaking to return everything to normal size. That can only be done by collecting the elemental devil arms. Hot dang.

I'm currently GMing a kind of hybrid campaign between Attack on Titan and Tales of Symphonia. This campaign is fairly high leveled (PC's started out at lvl 8), but I gave them super high ability scores. Here's the background info I've given my players up to this point:

"The three walls of Sylverant are the only thing you've known. Well, that and the Titans people talk about on the outside. Expedition after expedition, members of the Liberation Regiment come back fewer and fewer. More than 60% of the LR get devoured in their first hunting. So little is known about these Titans, other than their attraction towards eating humans. It doesn't seem like they have any ability to reproduce, and they don't seem all that intelligent. But, from what LR members have said, these creatures are absolutely terrifying. They move slowly, almost like a newborn learning to walk. But once they've spotted a human, they break out into a sprint to chase you down, wanting to devour you. The LR members still alive at this point are considered to have an extremely high survival rating - but no one is exempt to error. "One is all it takes," as is commonly said among LR members, many of whom who have lost close friends to these Titans.

The Liberation Regiment has instigated a draft for the defense of Sylverant. Every able-bodied human, at the age of 15, is forcefully required to apply. Many of these applicants do not survive the intense, three-year long conditioning process. Many merely turn into the equivalent of a housemaid for those who were actually formidable enough to pass through conditioning and into skills training. Based on your excels in conditioning, you will be discharged from the Conditioners and handed over to the Skill Experts. Skill training is broken into three categories: Melee, Ranged, or Magic Combat - of which all will learn the same baseline survival skills. The mental strain and turmoil applied to Trainee's is almost unorthodox, but the LR's requirements are set high for a reason. Only the best of Sylverant's gene pool will be admitted in order to maximize the percentage of success against the Titan's.

You brave souls are nearing the end of your training process and have been placed within the top 10th percentile of your respective skill training categories. You will soon be issued official Liberation Regiment equipment and gear, much better than what you've trained with. You, now almost officially under active duty, are planned to be included in the next expedition under the command of General Murdock. Strange Titan activity was reported outside the south-east end of the outermost wall from the last expedition. These Titans were not behaving as was thought to be traditional Titan behavior, merely standing outside the wall in place and panting. Your superiors have deemed it more important to capture these Titans for testing purposes instead of completely eradicating the group. Studying this bizarre Titan behavior may give a better insight than what we currently possess."

They've just completed the first Titan (have been using Giants) encounter, so I sent out this little piece as a precursor before the next chapter begins:

"Comrades,

Congratulations on surviving the Titan onslaught on the south-east outermost wall. We needed to officially test your combat abilities in a real situation. You all proved very effective, although you're combat methods will require more honing and precision if you wish to succeed.

I have commissioned you all to complete a greater task and have sent someone along to help you accomplish it. This information is kept confidential, and we expect it to stay that way. Most of the cadets are needed for the direct defense of the city; sending other troops would merely be a waste of valuable resources in our eyes. Most would perish under the circumstances you will soon encounter. But you are all different.

You may remember a small scroll of parchment, signed, "The Man". There is nothing to worry about. This came as a direct order from me. Cardas isn't very skillful or tact with language or convincing, but he is dedicated to the cause. I have known him for many years, and I trust him with my life.

You have also received 8 teleportation scrolls along with a 6,000 gold stipend (each) to help you prepare for the upcoming mission. The LR's resources are limited, but we give you what we can. You're goal is to collect the 4 Elemental Devil Arms, which are currently holding this devastating curse in place. We have tried many times to gather these weapons, but all who tried have tragically failed. It is only by bringing these weapons together that Cardas can lift the curse. Never have we seen a newly commissioned group of cadets entirely survive their first Titan encounter. This is why you are all very important to the cause. There is a bond between you all that I've never seen before and it must be utilized.

You will be the group to accomplish the task - I can feel it. When completed, not only will the curse be lifted, but you will be rewarded very handsomely for your efforts. Peace will once again flourish abundantly in our city.

You can expect to find yourselves in difficult elemental terrain over the course of these missions, so prepare yourselves accordingly. Based on previous attempts, we've gathered enough information to determine the difficulty of each terrain (in order from easiest to most difficult):

Earth

Ice

Water

Fire

Today is the day that those who write history will start the chapter of the true Liberation of Sylverant.

Await further instruction.

Cradshaw, Rank IV Chief General, Liberation Regiment"

They had kind of an awkward run in with Cardas (I hadn't thought far enough ahead to roleplay his character very effectively), and I was kind of stumped as to where I should take it now. I was thinking of having them gather all of the Devil Arms together only to have General Cradshaw be Cardas (JuDAS IsCARiot) in disguise. He would then attack them, having powers from each of the Devil Arms. Classic betrayal story.

This campaign was designed to be difficult with definite TPK potential.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

The first one (what I've written so far), is called The Mountainlands:

I've devised a map with 15 points of interest (label with x's and the corresponding number). Certain x's need to be completed to be able to enter the next part of the dungeon.

The party warps in to the dungeon. It's devised of 2,000 ft high canyon walls with roadways in between, all under an open sky.

x1: Immediately upon warping in, the party comes into contact with a horde of 6 small earth elementals and must be defeated (real easy).

x2: A small crystal on a pedestal will be sitting in the middle of the area (a door is blocking the next area). Whichever party member (and only that party member) touches it will be teleported to the isolated area of x2(1) on the map and must solitarily defeat a xorn. The other party members are then left to defeat 4 large earth elementals that break free from the surrounding cliff rock. All enemies must be defeated to return the party member at location x2(1) back to x2. The door blocking the area opens.

x3: Chest with a wand of cure moderate wounds (8 charges), earthquake spell scroll with "best to save this for later" inscribed on it

x4: Falling block trap

x5: Magic missile trap

x6: A mimic is disguising itself as the Devil Arm. Grabbing the sword turns it to life, along with warping in the monsters found at x7 (2 shaitans). After defeated, the next area becomes available.

x8: Chest with a wand of cure moderate wounds (8 charges)

x9: A large stone monolith (30 ft) with strange writing carved into the stone is seen in the middle of the area. Touching it will cause stone to crumble off of the top (falling rock trap) and also reveals 2 clay golems to fight. A wall shoots up from the earth and entraps the party members in the area. The wall crumbles once the golems are defeated.

x10: A large lever is jutting out of the side of the wall. Once pulled (simply), the lever falls to the ground and reveals an hourglass (for this segment, i'll be using a real, minute hourglass). Four buttons also emerge from the wall. After any four button combo, the party gets a magic missile TO THE FACE (4d4 +2). The timer then resets. Victory can only be won by allowing the timer to run out. The door then opens, revealing a chest. Upon opening the chest, a bone devil jumps out (i modified the bone devil to be able to paralyze with fear aura). Once defeated, the chest reveals a hearty surprise (which they'll need to the following encounters): Wand of Bull's Strength (1 charge), Wand of Bear's Endurance (1 charge), Wand of Mage Armor (1 charge), Wand of Blur (1 charge), and Wand of Summon Dire Bear (self created, lasts one encounter).

The party then moves into the next area which will take some more activations to have the next encounter happen

x11 & x12: Strength checks of DC 23 to move stone buttons into the earth.

x13: Essentially the area before they enter x11 & x12, but after the stone buttons are activated, and the party walks in to the respective area, four greater earth elementals break free from the surrounding cliff and fall to the ground, surround the party (crumbling stone will hit any party member within 10 ft of a cliff for +15 (7d6) damage).

x14: Once the elementals are defeated from x13, a chest appears before a gigantic door. Another wand of cure moderate wounds (8 charges) is found inside. Also, inscribed upon a button-like device, an ellipsis in quotations (in stone language). Activating the device will cause the doors to swing wide open, allowing them to the last encounter of the dungeon.

x15: Upon entering the area, only a small, singular bat can be seen fluttering around. Once killed, 5 stone giants can be seen emerging from the back wall, one wielding the elemental devil arm (the elder, who will have more hp and deal more damage). The elder begins to fly, lets out a scream, and turns invisible. The ground turns into mud, which halfs the movement speed of the PC's on ground.

Once defeated, the Elemental Devil Arm (which also will require a will save to resist it's evil effects) may be collected. Teleport back to Sylverant.



Additional Ideas (2)

If you're running a story based around Tales of Symphonia, and assuming at least a fair amount of the party are familiar with the story, might I suggest taking it in an unexpected direction instead? Don't have the one giving them their orders be the traitor, because the Tales players will expect the Remiel-equivalent to betray them.

In fact, a more unexpected escalation would be that someone in the Liberation Regiment lets the Titans in, and leads them to where the party is all set to use the Devil Arms. The Titans take control of those Devil Arms and it grants them even greater power, making them avatars of sheer terror even amongst other Titans. Perhaps with this power the Titans become embroiled in their own war, temporarily alleviating pressure on the humans but ultimately threatening the world; whether because their conflict can destroy it, or because if any one Titan Lord gains control of all the Arms the war will end, and humanity will be utterly doomed to extinction..!

Those are just suggestions though, there are a lot of ways you could take this. Including many that involve your original 'traitor-boss' plan. I'm also curious as to whether you're going to incorporate any of the dual-world elements the story of ToS was built around. It's even possible that everything people know about Titans is a lie, and that truth could be just as world-altering as anything a villain could do.
0xp

2014-11-22 11:40 PM » Link: [8019#92698|text]
Some seriously awesome suggestions.

I'm not super worried about them knowing about how the betrayal will happen (none of them have played ToS), but making it less predictable is always better.

With your suggestions, it would be an excellent segway to elongate the storyline. "Who let in the Titans?"

Thanks for the input
0xp

2014-11-22 11:46 PM » Link: [8019#92701|text]
Noishe is working with Cruxis.
7xp
Ted

2014-11-22 11:46 PM » Link: [8019#92700|text]
I audibly lol-ed
0xp

2014-11-22 11:46 PM » Link: [8019#92702|text]
I cannot upvote that thought enough.

....do any of the PCs have an animal companion...?
0xp

2014-11-22 11:54 PM » Link: [8019#92704|text]
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Comments ( 13 )
Commenters gain extra XP from Author votes.

SplatterBox
November 22, 2014, 23:34
0xp
Update: Added The Mountainlands
Voted Arracor
November 22, 2014, 23:41
Only voted
Voted Lady Wolf
November 23, 2014, 1:14
2xp

I will be honest here, I don't really find the sub to my tastes personally, taking a video game plot and turning it into a sub feels uninspired and a bit of a amateurish short cut. (to me at least)

While I can respect the concept I feel as if it takes very little effort to open a video game wiki, grab the plot summary and then tweak a few things to present as a game for your group.

Is that a quick way to make a campaign/adventure if you need one for a weekend? Sure, is it original enough to be worthy to present here as a sub? I don't really feel that it is .

I come to Strolens in search of original ideas, stuff I can't find anywhere else on the web and never would have thought of otherwise, so to me this feels a bit like copy/paste +10 min edit wizardry than true creativity, but again, that's just my take on it.

The other thing that doesn't really do it for me is the Pathfinder stats and rules, while it may be helpful for you and others that play Pathfinder, for everyone else the stats are worthless and just take up space that could be better used.

Perhaps I would find that part more useful if it was phrased like 99% of the other subs on the site in system neutral terms, so that people can use it without having to sort through needless stats and rules that only serve to distract them from the idea at hand.

Voted MoonHunter
November 23, 2014, 1:25
2xp

Normally, I am avoid commenting these days. But. But. ....

I find your execution a bit ... lacking.

If you are going to "borrow a plot" and a "setting" , you need to present it in a story/ description mode. If I didn't look up what you were talking about, I would of had no clue as to what was really going on. (You may or may not need to credit the original sources.)

You should of created a setting post. You should of created a separate post for the plot (and all the future plots).

You CAN NOT include game mechanics in your posts. I don't play the game you are obviously writing to. I can guess some of these... but that is only because I know about 30 some odd game systems (without an emphasis on generic adventure fantasy).

The Description for the material is lacking. I have to make up everything and that is not the point of a submission here.

As with all writing, you CAN NOT ASSUME your readers KNOW ANYTHING BESIDES WHAT YOU TELL THEM. There is no data here that I don't have to look up the original sources for to get.

It has potential. Put this back in your work space... edit the crap out of it... pump up the description... and then you will have a great post and a set of them.

Voted Silveressa
November 23, 2014, 1:43
1xp

It's hard to add to the excellent points Wolf and Moon and already made, but one thing sticks out in my mind here.

I've devised a map with 15 points of interest (label with x's and the corresponding number). Certain x's need to be completed to be able to enter the next part of the dungeon.

If you mention a map in your sub, then include the map for the readers. Nothing is more useless than a reference to a non existing part of the sub, it makes the idea of zero value to the reader and will only serve to frustrate them when they look in vain for the non existent map.

I concur whole heartedly with Moonhunter to put this back in your working folder and give it a complete overhaul, it has potential, but not in its current rough draft format.

Longspeak
November 23, 2014, 4:25
0xp
Art: No Point. Borrowed ideas with no attempt to make them your own.
Craft: Half Point - Major formatting problems and a few grammar issues. Good use of spell check, though.
Style: No Point - Dry, linear, and no effort to give it a flavor, a sense of the world, a feel. What style I might give would belong to the original creators.
Substance: No point - Not a lot to sink my teeth into. Vague setting material with over the top in places. 60% mortality rate on the first mission? Why are there still people? And maybe it's just the lack of a map others noted, but the adventure reads more like a rail shooter than anything, goinf from A to B to C and so on. While not a deal break by itself, use of game specific stats and terms is annoying and reduces usability by others.
Extra Mile: No Point

There's nothing wrong with drawing inspiration from other sources. Everyone here has done it. But make some effort to make the material your own. Bring it to life with a few interesting characters, a bit more plausible stats, some new elements.

Format the work to enhance readability. Have someone suggest grammar fixes and maybe a few rewrites, also to enhance readability. I suggest text boxes or block quotes for the large swaths of narrative text. And then make those shorter.

So... no vote. Fix it.
Scrasamax
November 23, 2014, 10:26
4xp
Harsh.

I will admit I've never played any of the Tales games, but I've seen the pilot for Attack on Titan. The premise of building a game around AoT really does just make sense, and the giants are the obvious template to use, and it would just be a matter of scaling them up and down to match the relative abilities of the various sized titans. Personally I would suggest more 'filing off the serial numbers' so that it isn't a blow by blow copy of AoT, and give it your own personal flair, and maybe throw in some other elements of giant mythos, such as Jack the Giant Slayer, David and Goliath, etc to show how the tiny humans are able to overcome the giants/titans.

The campaign to find the 4 Devil Arms has a good old school dungeon crawl feel to it, and I like that too. The notes being left for the heroes gives it a very set up feeling, which would be interesting later on if revealed to be a xanatos gambit from a powerful villain, perhaps one strong enough to control the titans with their magic, and the Devil's arms have been a distraction, something the pull the best giant slayers off the line, allowing him to break a few walls, and attain whatever his nefarious purpose is.
SplatterBox
November 23, 2014, 14:49
1xp
I appreciate the critiques, although I anticipated that they would be a bit more constructive than belittling (I don't mean that offensively).

I hope you do all understand that I am new to this site and wasn't aware that members only want polished work posted. What I have posted is very much in the beta stage.

This post wasn't meant to be qualitatively able to be published as literature - merely points to a plot. It has little to no artistic value in that sense and was vague.

In response to those who disagreed with using idea's from video games/show's, etc: I honestly see no problem is using something already successful and well established as a baseline for a campaign (or even a full campaign, for that matter). Changes can be made accordingly to fit your campaign, and the campaign is under no "oath" to directly follow any set storyline, including the borrowed storyline. Kudos to those who can create a full campaign with no help from outside resources for ideas or concepts.

Cheers.

Longspeak
January 17, 2015, 17:51
0xp
This belated reply is courtesy of me just noticing this and Scras' note. I speak only for myself, and I'm still one of the newest members to stick around, so my voice should not be taken as representative.

I apologize if my comments were belittling. It wasn't a deliberate attempt. I've struggled here to contribute, not just writing, but to the dialog. I hate to just vote without providing a thoughtful comment, but in the past I've avoided commenting unless the comment was positive, specifically to avoid appearing belittling. But I value honest feedback, and so I finally decided I had to be equally honest in my feedback. I sometimes forget not everyone wants to be judge on the same criteria.

I want to know when something I write falls short. Simple as that. I tend to apply that line of thinking to others' works. I devised my own system for rating work here, based on qualities I value in writing. It was the only way to be objective when much of the material I read just isn't something I'm interested in. Dwarves? Bah! But good writing and good ideas deserve to be recognized even if I think Dwarves are stupid.

But some people just want to share ideas, not be judged on their grammar and whatnot. So I applied my criteria and judged your work on things you were not looking to be judged on. So in spite of the intent the outcome is indeed harsh. Perhaps even more harsh than my own criteria should be. There may be ways to phrase criticism better, to encourage instead of belittle. I'll work on that next time.
MoonHunter
November 23, 2014, 16:48
0xp

This post wasn't meant to be qualitatively able to be published as literature - merely points to a plot. It has little to no artistic value in that sense and was vague.


We don't require literature (Have you read some of our posts?). We do request/ require reasonably clear and descriptive writing. The Post is, in its current form at this time, a bit too vague to be really useful for anyone besides you. That includes explaining what the game mechanics/ game system dependent terms mean in story terms so those of us who don't play a particular game can follow along.

You need to give us the story/ plot's flow so we and others can use it. I think that was one of the bigger complaints many had. You can't assume we know what you are talking about. I had to look the games up on the internet to get the references. However, you need to give us a background so we don't have to look stuff up on external sites to follow the post.

You have the basis of a really good set of posts here. With some work, it could be really good.


You can edit it live or move it back to your work space (if you need help on how, find some of us in either the chat or forum). Again, good basics. Now that you know we actually want editted/polished submissions, you can easily bring it up to speed.

Do me a favor and read a number of posts on the site. Randomly even. See where these people are coming from and where the bars are set on the site.

Also Check out the entire site, including the forum. We have an entire section on the forum to work out ideas before they get posted.

Voted valadaar
February 14, 2017, 11:52
1xp
I have long considered Attack On Titans a great idea for a campaign - and I really need to push back against the reception this post received.

I want to put to bed the idea of the Golden Standard being the be-all and end-all of content. What we should be doing is bringing and sharing ideas, and if some of us want to produce polished works which can earn HOH's and Goldens, and 5 votes, so be it. Don't look at everything with that eye - it should be fairly obvious if a submission is of the 'share the idea' variety or the 'fine art' quality. Consider the default to be 'share the idea'.

Especially from a new poster. The feedback here turned someone who could have been a promising member into a 1-day wonder.







Random Idea Seed View All Idea Seeds

       By: ephemeralstability

The village sits on the edge of the deep fjord, often engulfed in mist or rain. Its people are fishermen, who work even through the sea-ravaging winter. And they pray to the gods of the deep.

At the beginning of every winter they hold a summoning ceremony. Three boats are taken out into the fjord, a hornsman on each. The mournful horns are blown in the language of the whales, the gods of the deep. The whales sometimes appear in answer to these calls, and it is taken as a good omen when they do.

To a party of PCs wandering the misty hills and valleys nearby however, the doleful whalesong of the horns can be disturbing and misinterpreted...

Ideas  ( Locations ) | September 24, 2002 | View | UpVote 0xp


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