This is a Pathfinder RPG campaign. The only book you need is the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Core Rulebook from Paizo. It combines what was previously the Players Handbook and DM's Guide into one book.
There is also software to help you create a character: If you have a little money to spend, Hero Lab does a good job. I personally use a free tool called PCGen that also does a good job, but may be less polished. Also checkout HeroMachine, a cool character picture generator.
- Characters can be any of the standard races, but the Empire considers humans the master race. Natives of the Morphic Lands are not so prejudiced.
- Most of the company are legionnaires—soldiers or support roles—with a few other citizens of Empire as civilian advisers or camp followers. A few natives of the Morphic Lands were hired as guides.
- Citizens of the Empire worship the Empire's Gods: Legionnaires generally worship the God of Empire—Ademis. A few characters may secretly worship the goddess Inos, Ademis' mortal enemy, while publicly claiming a different affiliation.
- Natives of the Morphic Lands are less organized about religion, often worshiping their ancestors or local spirit gods. Non-humans may worship their traditional racial gods. The Empire's God of Nature—Janier—is also a popular patron god.
- Legionnaires and other Empire citizens consist of soldiers (e.g., mostly fighters and rangers, possibly a few paladins or rogues), a small number of spell casters (e.g., wizards and clerics), and possibly a bard or monk. They are generally not sorcerers or barbarians.
- Local guides would generally be barbarians, rangers, or druids. They could also be fighters, sorcerers, clerics, monks, or rogues, but with less civilized backgrounds than the citizens of Empire.
- There will be more NPC legionnaires then player characters, providing a base of support, even if they are not directly involved in the campaign.
- Some characters will have hidden agendas to make game-play more interesting. Secret instructions will be handed out at the start of the game.
- Second in Command – A fighter or paladin, almost certainly male, who is second in command of the company. This character is in an obvious leadership position, and would have some control over the NPC legionnaires. He will know more about the company's purpose and orders for this mission.
- The Intercessor – A cleric to Ademis, almost certainly male, responsible for the company's spiritual correctness. This is a position of significant spiritual authority, even able to call out the company commander, if he goes against the will of Ademis or the Empire. He will know something about the company's purpose, although his instructions may be different from the commander's.
- The Wizard Lieutenant – The wizard in charge of magical support for the company. This character commands a small number of lesser wizards, and oversees use of the company's magical arsenal. This character may have some knowledge of what the research expedition was hoping to find.
- The Guide – A native of the Morphic Lands. This character may
know the area, have local connections, and know some local history.
- Optionally, this character could secretly be a lycanthrope—one of werebat, werebear, wereboar, or werewolf. Because of a lycanthrope's innate power, this character would be lower level than the others. Ask me for details if you are interested.
- The Spy – This could be anybody, and there may be more than one. This character is a secret worshiper of Inos, with a hidden agenda that may be at odds with the official mission goals. If you want to play this character, don't tell anyone—say you are playing something else and contact me (email at eschnarr-at-ron11.com).
- Other ideas are welcome...
- Use the "point-buy" method for ability scores -- for now, use 15 points to create a character for a Standard Fantasy campaign.
- Stick to the classes described in the Core Rulebook—i.e., the so called "core classes": Barbarian, Bard, Cleric, Druid, Fighter, Monk, Paladin, Ranger, Rogue, Sorcerer, and Wizard.
- Level-up your character to 5th level. You can roll hit points when we get together.
- Start with 10,500 gp and buy your equipment, including magic items. Simple magical weapons and armor (e.g., +2 longsword) can be purchased with this starting wealth, but please ask about other kinds of magic items.
- Generally stick to the skills, feats, spells, equipment, and magic items from the Core Rulebook. If you really want something from one of the other books, then let's talk.