Weather

The Verses

While accurate measurements of weather severity are difficult to come by in the Shackles, seafarers living there have developed a kind of eyeball scale by which to judge and describe incoming storms. They call this scale “the Verses,” a term originating from one of the songs from Hymns to the Wind and the Waves, the holy text of Gozreh. The scale ascribes an increasing number of verses to increasingly dangerous weather fronts, from one verse for a minor gale all the way to nine verses for the most powerful and deadliest of storms. In the very worst of weather, when the wind and the sea tear life and livelihood from the coast, battered residents are even sometimes known to wail of the “tenth verse,” but it is considered bad luck to invoke the term at sea, where even the eighth can easily claim any vessel. The Verses are used to measure storms throughout the rest of the Inner Sea region, but it is rare for any to speak of weather that exceeds the sixth. The final three are uttered almost exclusively in the Shackles, where only the mighty blasts of the Eye of Abendego can do them proper justice.

Pirates of the Shackles often speak of the Verses in both casual conversation and in their salty yarns. A minor squall might be described as “a single verse,” or the “first verse.” A tropical depression might fall between three and four verses, and tropical storms can be described as anywhere from the fifth verse and above. The crew of any sailing vessel, Shackles or otherwise, knows to hold on for their lives if the captain starts yelling about “the whole bloody hymn!”

Weather Effects

Heat Wave
• Save DCs against fatigue increased by +2

Heavy Rain or fog (Verses 1-2)
• DC 5 + spell level concentration checks (rain)
• Visibility range reduced by ½ (rain); limited to 5 ft (fog)

Building (or weakening) Storm / Tropical Depression / Rough Weather (Verses 3-4)
• -2 on all rigger skill checks
• DC 15 Swim checks
• DC 5 + spell level concentration checks
• DC 15 sea sickness saves
• Strong winds

Tropical Storm (Verses 5-6)
• -4 on all rigger skill checks; -2 on other skill checks
• DC 20 Swim checks (can’t take 10)
• DC 20 sea sickness saves
• DC 15 + spell level concentration checks on deck (DC 10 + spell level below decks)
• Visibility range reduced by ¾
• All deck spaces become difficult terrain and subject to periodic higher ground (ex. port high, even, starboard high)
• Severe winds

Windstorm (51-74 mph) (Verses 7-8)
• No ranged weapons; -4 Siege weapons
• -4 perception checks (-8 for checks involving sound)
• -8 fly checks
• Medium creatures checked1; Small creatures blown away2
• 75% chance of putting out protected flames

Hurricane Winds (75-174 mph) (Verse 9)
• No ranged weapons; -8 Siege weapons
• -4 perception checks (no perception checks involving sound possible)
• -12 fly checks
• Large creatures checked1; Medium creatures blown away2
• Puts out all flames

Tornado Winds (175-300 mph) (the whole bloody hymn Verse 9+)
• No ranged or siege weapons
• -8 perception checks (no perception checks involving sound possible)
• -16 fly checks
• Huge creatures checked1; Large creatures carrier away3
• Puts out all flames

Strong Winds (21-30 mph)
• -2 ranged weapons
• -2 perception checks
• -2 fly checks
• Tiny creatures checked1
• Puts out unprotected flames

Severe Winds (31-50 mph)
• -4 ranged weapons
• -4 perception checks
• -4 fly checks
• Small creatures checked1; Tiny creatures blown away2
• 50% chance of putting out protected flames

1 DC 10 strength check to walk or DC 20 fly check to move forward against the wind
2 DC 15 strength check or knocked back 1d4 x 10 ft and fall prone taking 1d4 nonlethal damage per 10 ft if walking or DC 25 fly check or knocked back 2d6 x 10 ft and take 2d6 non-lethal damage if flying.
3 DC 15 strength or DC 25 fly check or carried away – 6d6 points of damage per round for 1d10 rounds, then expelled taking 6d6 falling damage

Weather

Stuff and Shackles Carthorse