Friday, June 14, 2013


So Paizo’s Fey Revisited didn’t show up in time for the rusalka entry, but it did show up in time for the satyr.  Pathfinder fans will be glad to know Jerome Virnich adds to the lore nicely (and creates a solid CR 7 version for more advanced parties to face).  Meanwhile 3.5 and other D&D fans will be happy to know the book is stats-lite enough that they can get plenty of use out of it, too. 

Of course, there are also plenty of other satyr resources to draw from—I’ve mentioned Dragon Magazine #155 and Tall Tales of the Wee Folk before for those of you with the time and energy to dig into the 1e/”basic” D&D archives.  And let’s not forget the original Greek and Roman myths!  (Unlike, say, oreads, there are plenty of satyr stories from which to draw inspiration.)

So let’s take it as a given that you know how to play satyrs as seducers, rakes, drunkards, and flighty, mercurial fey.  A satyr wants something the party has, uses his pipes, the party makes or fails their saves, etc., etc.  Right?

But there’s nothing saying that in a cosmopolitan campaign you couldn’t deëmphasize their more licentious aspects and have them be just another race in the throng.  How cool would it be to have the guy at the bar next to your fighter sporting hooves instead of boots?  One could easily imagine them in the more bohemian districts of your fantasy cities, hanging out with barbarians, taking mercenary jobs, and generally living it up.  They also might be sought after as lovers, slaves, or entertainers.  They are nature’s lust and appetite personified, its greedy, Bacchanal aspect writ large…and that aspect translates into many facets of the adventuring lifestyle.  So why keep them in the woods?

A bard goes looking for a famous instrument maker, only to discover he is a satyr.  Worse yet, the goat-man objects to the stink of metal on the bard and his companions, and he instigates the local woodland defenders into attacking them.  The party must pull their punches to avoid untoward bloodshed and win over the satyr.  Sadly the local fey, animals, and plants have fewer scruples.

A faun goes looking for his absent satyr father.  The boy is quite optimistic—his memories of his father’s occasional visits are fond ones, and his very existence speaks to the real love his parents shared.   But his father’s mind is not his own anymore.  Warped into evil by an intelligent magical scimitar, the satyr now serves as a counselor and (thanks to his pipes, very persuasive) lobbyist for a local warlord.

Satyrs are prevalent in Kadrian as mercenaries, hired hands, and entertainers.  They enjoy staying in the rough-and-tumble districts for a season—hanging out with the Sark barbarians, drinking in pubs, and taking odd jobs and as many lovers as possible.  Strangely, these liaisons seem to be largely fruitless—certainly, one does not see many young satyrs or fauns in the streets.  But closer investigation reveals a striking number of lower-class women and artists who vanish from their beds in the dead of night, typically after a visit from one of the red-curtained coaches that may or may not have a connection to Kadrian’s power-hungry archduke…

Pathfinder Bestiary 241

PS: We’ve already talked about this before, but it still boggles my mind: In Pathfinder, satyrs in loving relationships produce weak fauns, while satyrs engaged in seduction or rape produce satyrs.  *facepalm*  Has anyone informed Todd Akin?

No comments:

Post a Comment