Rise of the Runelords

Notes from the game

Karzoug was the Runelord of Greed. While he was, himself, an Azlanti human, he was a powerful man indeed—said to be the most gifted manipulator of Transmutation magic in all of Thassilon, and to have lived for hundreds of years. He ruled a region called Shalast, part of the ancient empire of Thassilon, over 10,000 years ago.

Karzoug’s armies were composed primarily of giants who followed his every command—the giants were ruled by towering monsters known as rune giants, who were themselves runelord pawns. Karzoug counted other powerful creatures as his allies as well, such as blue dragons, eerie denizens from the nightmare realm of Leng, blooddrinking outsiders known as scarlet walkers, and immense lamia harridans who towered over most giants.

Karzoug focused his magic on the school of transmutation, magic associated in Thassilonian times with the virtue of wealth. Under his reign, though, this virtue of rule became more associated with the sin of greed. Among the runelords, his mastery of greed magic was uncontested, yet in the schools of illusion and enchantment (related to the sins of pride and lust), his skills had atrophied greatly. Many believed that weapons infused with illusion and enchantment magic, known as “dominant weapons,” would be particularly potent against Karzoug, yet no record of someone attacking the runelord with such a weapon exists within the library.

Karzoug warred with his neighbors, but none more so than Alaznist, the Runelord of Wrath and ruler of Bakrakhan. Between their nations, along a ridge known as the Rasp, Karzoug built immense sentinel statues to watch over Bakrakhan, while Alaznist built towers called Hellfire Flumes to prevent Karzoug’s armies from invading. Citizens of both nations worried that the war between Karzoug and Alaznist would soon escalate to the point where they could bring about the end of the world.

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As Karzoug and Alaznist’s war intensified, and as wars between other runelords threatened more than just their armies, the runelords devised methods in which they could escape the world and enter a state of suspended animation, so they could ride out cataclysms. In theory, their surviving minions would then waken them to reclaim their empires once the cataclysms had ended.

Xin Shalast

Xin-Shalast is a legendary lost city, rumored to be hidden somewhere in the Kodar Mountains. Stories hold that Xin-Shalast had gold streets and gemstone buildings, and sat under the gaze of a mountain that could see.

Xin-Shalast was the capital city of an empire called Shalast, one of seven that composed the ancient empire of Thassilon. Legend holds that Xin-Shalast lay at the headwaters of the sacred River Avah—which Varisian folklore says leads to an earthly paradise sacred to Desna. Unfortunately, no record of where this river may have once flowed exists today, and most scholars believe the river itself to have been destroyed during Earthfall.

In the final centuries before Earthfall ended Thassilon, Xin-Shalast was ruled by Runelord Karzoug, one of the lords of the Thassilonian Empire. The primary architects of the immense city were tribes of giants, themselves ruled by powerful beings known as rune giants.

The Spires of Xin-Shalast stand upon the mythical mountain of Mhar Massif. This mountain of legendary proportions pierces the skies above the Kodars, and is said to be the highest peak in the entire range of stupendously inhospitable mountains.

Mhar Massif is said to serve as a bridge to strange realms beyond Golarion—notably, to the nightmare dimension of Leng. The connections with the nightmare realm of Leng were said to have infused the region around the peak of Mhar Massif with dangerous eldritch and otherworldly energies.

Dream Dalliance Trap CR 6
XP 2,400
Type magic; Perception DC 30; Disable Device DC 30
Trigger proximity (alarm); Reset automatic; Bypass password (“elucidarian”)

Effect spell effect (dream dalliance, DC 17 Will save negates); single target (the reader)

Since the reader does not need to sleep while in the Therassic Library, they will not notice the effects of a failed save until after leaving the library. The clockwork librarian has read this book, but is unaware of this trap because it is immune to mind-affecting effects and does not sleep.


Runeforge was created as a place where agents of the seven runelords could gather to study magic.

The runelords wove wards around Runeforge that barred entrance into the complex to any runelord or his direct agents, in order to keep the research within free from sabotage at the hands of an enemy.

Runeforge’s magical enhancements sustained those within without the need to eat, drink, or even sleep.

The final project the runelords set Runeforge on was the development of ways the runelords could escape the imminent fall of their empire. Each faction developed a unique answer for its runelord, based upon the underlying principles of that faction’s magical traditions.

Translated from Thassilonian among the ravings about Lamashtu:


Loot - final

Combat Gear +1 turtle shell of light fortification*, +1 huge unholy heavy flail, 2 potions of cure serious wounds; Other Gear wooden holy symbol *The runes of the magic are inscribed on the prophet’s natural turtle shell and keep their power even if the shell is removed from his body

The treasure consists of 3,306 sp, a carved mammoth bone statuette of a much smaller mammoth worth 700 gp, an eye patch with a mock eye of black star sapphire and moonstone worth 900 gp, a mithral anklet worth 1,000 gp, a jeweled gold crown worth 4,000 gp, a +2 deftnding bladed scarf, a leather pouch containing seven potions of cure moderate wounds and a potion of remove disease, and an efficient quiver containing 16 + 1 undead bane arrows and one ,greater monstrous humanoid slaying arrow.

A DC 25 Knowledge (nobility) check reveals that the crown is in fact the Lost Crown of the Pallgreves clan, one of the oldest noble families of Janderhoff The dwarves would gladly pay 10,000 gp for its return.

Huge spear
Hide-scraping and leather-working tools
Huge Hide armor

2x Large hide armor, greatclub

Although a carpet of coins covers the innermost section of Longtooth’s cave, most of these coins are copper pieces. In all, the coins consist of 360,055 cp, 23,145 sp, 3.403 gp, and 23 pp. In addition, the collection of treasure includes several gemstones: a water opal worth 1,ooo gp, a rich blue diamond worth 1,6oo gp, and a black opal worth 8,ooo gp are Longtooth’s favorites , though there are 53 additional gems worth a total of 3,500 gp. A fine linen tapestry depicting monks sparring in a courtyard is rolled up and leans against the wall-this tapestry weighs 50 pounds but is worth 6oo gp. Finally, a set of solid silver idols sits on a ledge on the innermost wall. These idols are each worth 6oogp-they depict a wyvern with a human rider, a human warrior trampling a demon underfoot, a centaur dressed

in plate mail armor, and a leaping fish with a wide mouth filled with teeth. A sixth idol is in fact made of platinum. It depicts a robed figure coverd in thassalonian runes, and is worth 5,000 gp.
Gear amulet of mighty fists + 1 , gold-and-amber ring (worth 500 gp), silver armband (worth 2,500 gp)

3 – Ring of Protection +2
Gear belt of giant strength +4, ring of the ram (45 charges)

huge greatclub

4 mammoth tack and harness – 300gp per set

The scroll tube is made of adamantine and is cleverly locked by a series of interconnected spinning discs that function almost like a combination lock.
The Runes are Thassilonian

Galenmir’s wealth is mostly invested in his gear, but he also has an impressive collection of scalps and war trophies, including the preserved head of a frost giant jarl, the beards of 100 dwarves (each neatly bundled and secured with a silver ring worth 10 gp), part of a marsh giant’s grossly elastic but impressively tattooed hide, and bits ofbroken and dented breastplates from the plate armor of a dozen different warriors (worth 20 gp each). Galenmir’s favorite collection is a neatly sorted grouping of 33 shields, each marked with the name of a human, elf, or dwarf hero Galenmir defeated in combat.

one of the shields belonged to Anstan Jeggare, an exiled bastard from the affluent Jeggare family of Korvosa. This shield alone is magical +1 arrow catching heavy steel shield.

Combat Gear necklace of fireballs (type IV); Other Gear +1 breastplate, +1 buckler, +3 shortspear, 11gp, 12sp, 12cp

3 x+1 hide armor, +1 ogre hook, 2 javelins

2 x huge greatclubs

2 x large +2 breastplate, +2 ranseur

Each disgusting guard carries a bag of filthy, troll-groped treasure at his belt-payment from Mokmurian for his work here. Hurek’s bag contains a large collection of colorful, striped, shiny, but ultimately worthless stones weighing 100 pounds in all. Without a DC 15 Appraise check to note the differences, the stones could easily be mistaken for valuable agate, onyx, and mithral ore of various kinds. Durek carries the real treasure-assorted bits of armor and helmets and a dire bear skull. The armor includes a suit of Small half ­plate, a masterwork breastplate, six chain shirts, and a +1 ghost touch gauntlet. Unknown to either troll, one ofthe chain shirts has a hidden pouch in its lining that can be found with a DC 30 Perception check-it contains an air elemental gem. +1 large full plate, runechill hatchets (2)

Slot none; Price 5,312 gp; Aura moderate necromancy; CL 5th; Weight 6 lbs.


Runefrost hatchets are sized for Large creatures, but resizes so it can be wielded by Medium creatures as battleaxes or Small creatures as greataxes. Their blades are jagged and carved with ancient runes, and the weapons always feel cold to the touch. A runefrost hatchet otherwise functions as a 1 battleaxe, but once per day as a free action, its wielder can cause the runes on the blade to flare up with flickering cold blue light. For the next 5 rounds, the axe deals an additional +1d6 points of negative energy damage on a hit. Any creature that takes any amount of this additional negative energy damage must also succeed at a DC 12 Fortitude save or take 1 point of Strength damage. An undead creature struck by a runefrost hatchet does not gain this negative energy as healing, but instead must make a DC 12 Will saving throw or flee as if panicked for 1d45 rounds.


Craft Magic Arms and Armor, chill touch; Cost 2,812 gp

Apart from his impressive collection of books on spellcraft and all of the spell components and laboratory equipment scattered throughout the room (which is worth a collected total of 1,500 gp, but weighs several hundred pounds), the chest under his desk contains the bulk of his remaining wealth, including 12,000 gp, 1,100 pp, an amber and sapphire necklace worth 4,000 gp, a set of ivory runestones worth 1,400 gp, and a scroll of contact other plane.

scroll of limited wish, wand of bear’s endurance (13 charges); Other Gear +1 defending spell-storing (vampiric touch) club, bag of holding (type II), fog-cutting lenses, robe of runes, key to area C7, 500 gp in diamond dust, spellbooks

Our last session was on 10-4-16. Our first new session will be 2-21-17.

We finished Book 4 of Wrath in 4 and 1/2 months… a record!

The players are getting burdened....

By loot!

a single perfect diamond the size of an apple worth 6,000 gp.

Headband of vast Intelligence +2

Combat Gear (8) rapier, masterwork. mighty (+4) composite shortbow, masterwork. studded leather, buckler; Other Gear 1d4 gems, 1d10 x 10 gp


Combat Gear +1 large thundering battle axe, +1 large handaxe

Blessed Leaf
Aura faint transmutation; CL 5th
Slot none; Price 1,000 gp; Weight 1lb.
This leaf-shaped wooden holy symbol enables clerics,
druids and paladins to turn and rebuke plants as a cleric four
levels lower even if they don’t normally have this ability.
Clerics who can already turn or rebuke plants gain +1 to
their level for purposes of determining turning effects.
Requirements Craft Wondrous Item, nature domain; Cost
500 gp

• Brooch of shielding (with 15 hp remaining)
• 1 blue diamond worth 2,000 gp.
• 73 semi-precious stones worth 511g (total)
• 616 gp, 7,218 sp, 8,369 cp

Combat Gear bonded amulet, dagger, wand of hold person (36 charges left), potion of displacement, potion of fly, potion of barkskin +3; Other Gear drawing tools, magnifying glass

Combat Gear bonded ring, robe of bones, amulet of natural armor +1, potion of cure moderate wounds, potion of invisibility, scroll of fly, scroll of wall of force and wall of stone; Other Gear drawing tools, magnifying glass

Fizelbin’s spellbook: 0-all; 1st-alarm, charm person, hold portal, magic weapon; 2nd-darkvision, continual fl ame, locate object, mirror image, web; 3rd-greater magic weapon, keen edge.

Liasana’s spellbook: 0-all; 1st-chill touch, hypnotism, ray of enfeeblement shocking grasp, fl oating disc; 2nd-invisibility, summon swarm, command undead; 3rd-haste, ray of exhaustion.


• Plate armor of the deep
• Lion’s shield
• +1 heavy mace
• Cloak of charisma +2
• Scroll of raise dead
• Scroll of summon monster v (arcane)
• 800 gp

Lion’s Shield
Aura moderate conjuration; CL 10th Weight 15 lbs.; Price 9,170 gp


This +2 heavy steel shield is fashioned to appear to be a roaring lion’s head. Three times per day as a free action, the lion’s head can be commanded to attack (independently of the shield wearer), biting with the wielder’s base attack bonus (including multiple attacks, if the wielder has them) and dealing 2d6 points of damage. This attack is in addition to any actions performed by the wielder.

Plate Armor of the Deep
Aura moderate abjuration; CL 11th Weight 50 lbs.; Price 24,650 gp


This +1 full plate is decorated with a wave and fish motif and often has tiny fins and scales worked into the design. Although the armor remains as heavy and bulky as normal full plate, the wearer of plate armor of the deep is treated as unarmored for purposes of Swim checks. The wearer can breathe underwater and can converse with any water-breathing creature with a language.

Combat Gear cloak of the manta ray, bracers of armor +3, pink and green ioun stone, pearl of power (3rd level); Other Gear spell component pouch, surgical tools, manacles

Treasure: The following items can be found lying on the table:
• 3 scrolls of summon monster II
• 2 potion of water breathing
• 250 gp worth of various spell, scroll and potion components
• The lungs and wind pipe of a human, a demon, a high, an aquatic elf and a dryad
• The fins of a various fishes and a sahuagin, and a snake

The false drawer (Perception DC 25 to locate) holds 1,350 gp worth of various semi-precious pearls

Combat Gear +2 greataxe, 2 potions of cure light wounds; Other Gear necklace of human and elf ears

• Staff of binding (lesser) 10 charges
• +2 bastard sword
• Amulet of mighty fists +1
• Salve of slipperiness
• Arcane scroll of detect poison, true strike, and delay poison
• Arcane scroll of rage, and animate dead
• Potion of darkvision
• Potion of hide from undead
• 4 deep blue spinels worth 400 gp each
• 12 bloodstones worth 60 gp each
• 935 pp, 3,283 gp and 21,461 sp

ring of protection +1, periapt of health

Staff of Binding
Aura moderate varied (lesser), strong varied (standard and greater); CL 8th (lesser), 13th (standard), 17th (greater)
Slot none; Price 10,000 gp (lesser), 47,400 gp
(standard), 116,000 (greater); Weight 5 lbs.
These staves are made from stout oak and are banded with the cuffs from iron manacles
(with short bits of chain still dangling from some). These magic items are popular with prison wardens and court guards, but also with slavers and pirates. Staves of this kind focus on magic that paralyze and bind.
The lesser version of this staff allows use of
the following spells:
• Hold portal (1 charge)
• Hold animal (2 charges)
• Hold person (2 charges)
• Hold monster (3 charges)

loot from last session

shillelagh staff, sling, 20 bullets, masterwork, hide armor, scroll of 3 cure light wounds, scroll of summon nature’s ally II

masterwork club, masterwork. hide, heavy wooden shield, wand of cure light wounds (3rd level), 2 scrolls of cure moderate wounds

Shillelagh Staff
Aura faint transmutation; CL 3rd
Slot weapon; Price 8,300 gp; Weight X lb.
This simple-looking 1 quarterstaff is a weapon favored
by elven druids, rangers, and monks everywhere. This
masterwork oaken quarterstaff can be activated three times
per day by speaking the command phrase “death to the
enemies of nature!” which causes the staff to glow with
green light and grow leaves. While so enchanted it inflicts
1 points of damage and counts as magic weapon for
causes of overcoming damage reduction for three minutes.
Requirements Craft Arms and armor, shillelagh; Cost
4,300 gp

bracers of armor +4, cloak of resistance +2, golden necklace with rubies and emeralds (worth 2,200 gp)

• Helm of comprehend languages and read magic
• Fire elemental gem
• +1 dragon bane greatsword
• 3 potions of cure moderate wounds
• 9 rubies worth 500 gp each
• Emerald statue of a tiger with golden pearls worth 1,200 gp
• 5 crimson garnets worth 300 gp each
• 13,786 gp and 19,461 sp

+1 Large keen scythe, bracers of armor +1; Other Gear masterwork gardening tools

elven chain, mwk buckler, 1 composite longbow (2 Str), mwk rapier, spell component pouch

8x – chain shirt, heavy wooden shield, masterwork scimitar, 3 javelins; Other Gear 4d6 gp – JD I lost my notes on gold from this encounter – do you still have the amounts or do I need to re-roll?

4x – mwk rapier, mwk shield

6 x -chain shirt, heavy wooden shield, masterwork scimitar, 3 javelins; Other Gear 4d6 gp

4d6: 4 3 4 3 = 14
4d6: 6 5 5 3 = 19
4d6: 5 5 5 4 = 19
4d6: 2 3 1 6 = 12
4d6: 2 5 3 2 = 12
4d6: 4 3 5 1 = 13

Dragonhide plate, darkwood shield, masterwork shortspear, dagger, 2 divine scrolls of bear’s endurance, scroll of summon nature’s ally V, scroll of cure moderate wounds and cure serious wounds
Treasure: the objects strewn on the floor include 9 bedrolls, 17 winter blankets, 2 travelers’ outfits, 3 daggers (one of them masterwork), 17 longbow arrows, a shortspear, 4, 3 +1 flaming arrows, elixir of love, a book of local history (worth 10 gp), 43 gp, 27 sp.

6x – Combat Gear chain shirt, masterwork battleaxe, masterwork
handaxe, 3 hand axes, potion of cure light wounds; Other Gear 1d3

gems = 10gp each


potion of bear’s endurance, potion of cure moderate wounds; Other Gear +1 elven chain, +1 orc double axe, handaxe, handaxe, handaxe, handaxe, keys

• Rust bag of tricks
• Brooch of shielding (with 73 hp remaining)
• A gold, silver and ruby statue of the sun god worth 1400 gp
• A jewel-encrusted ritual sacrifi cial dagger worth 600 gp
• 4 fi re opals worth 200 gp each
• 7 golden topazes worth 150 gp each
• 6,474 gp and 12,381 sp

Loot - 4-25-16

huge size: Gear +2 hide armor, +1 dwarf bone heavy pick, +1 light pick, ring of protection +1, war horn


Recent Loot:

perfect ice (1);
+3 full plate,
+1 icy burst bardiche[APG],
+1 impact transformative phaleros,
onyx rhomboid ioun stone (2),
amulet of natural armor +2,
bag of holding iv,
bag of tricks (tan),
belt of physical might +2 (Str, Dex),
cloak of resistance +3,
tattoo holy symbol of Glahunder[UE],
gold piece (59),
200 pp

Over the river and through the woods....

The heroes managed to fend off the ghoulish attack – finding that one of these ghouls was in fact a more powerful version – a Ghast! Rod’s horse died under the onslaught from the ghast and was nearly killed himself – however the party was able to save him. Kensington found his efforts particularly hampered as his faithful mount refused to charge the undead monstrosity.

Searching the farmhouse they found another body with a star carved into it’s chest – and another note left for Tyrek.


They also found an iron key on the Ghast’s chest – with the Foxglove family seal on it. Under a floorboard in the bedroom of the farmhouse they found a wooden coffer with 34 leather pouches – each holding 100sp.

Deciding the clean up the rest of the farmland they did a sweep of the cornfields finding more ghouls dressed up as scarecrows – killing each as they came upon it the made a horrible discovery – one of the scarecrows was in fact Lettie Guffmin – still alive – or she was until the party peppered her with arrows ending her life. Being more careful they found one other survivor – a boy named Horran – having no resources to save the boy ready they took him to Father Zantus in Sandpoint to try to cure the ghoul fever. Kwame made sure to mention that the party was very sorry for killing the boys mother – at the news Father Zantus stood in shock unsure what to say, the party departed before hearing what he might have said.


Heading back to Foxglove manor the party was able to enter the house using the key they had found on the Ghast – fearing the worst they entered cautiously. They found the manor in bad shape – mold growing everywhere – dust covering most surfaces. Some of the party heard faint crying coming from up the stairs – prompting Tyrek to rush up the stairs to the second level – and that’s where we ended the session.

Wait... did you say scarecrow?

The party finished at Habe’s and started back to Sandpoint when they noticed something flying over their heads. At this point they spotted a Giant Locust that was circling above them – descending rapidly. Once the Locust landed they were assaulted by the plants themselves as the ground sprouted around them and attempted to hold them fast.

At that point it was relieved that a Buckawn was attempting to entangle them – and then where there was one – there were two….

The party had a vicious battle which found a Druid of Ghlaunder who seemed to be leading the fae and insect against them. A tattered note half burned was found among his belongings – it was written in a language that Kwame had never seen before.

After heading back to town the party decided to avoid telling more than needed when relating the fight at the sanitarium to the sheriff. They stood with mouths agape when Kwame proceeded to proclaim every detail of what happened – the sheriff was stunned – but seemed to hear the news about a necromancer and experiments which (thankfully to the party) stood out in his mind.

They sold and bought items – then retired for the evening.

The next day they planned to head out to ‘The Misgivings’ to investigate if it had anything to do with Grayst Sevilla’s ramblings. On the way out of the city they ran into Farmer Grump who was pleading with a guard to do something about the ‘walking scarecrows’. After mentioning that they had eaten someones Dog Kensington decided that they would look into the matter.

The party agreed to investigate and went to check on these ‘scarecrows’ – what they found were ghouls – tied to the stakes. Heading towards the farm they found a barn with the remains of people, livestock, and dogs – heading towards the farmhouse Rodmin Quicksilver and Krugga decided to circle around the place – when they got to the back door it burst open and more ghouls ran out and started attacking.

Rod managed to get off his horse before they viciously cut it down and started to feed on it. He was also paralyzed when struck – and is in grave peril. The rest of the party recovered from the shock and were heading to help him when we had to end the session.

Items found:
Ring of Mind Shielding
Belt of the Snake King
2 vials of Moonseed poison
2 daggers (small)
11 darts (small)
medium Lamellar, horn armor
1 sickle
Potion of blur
2 Potions of cure moderate wounds



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