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Round 2 Challenge Preview

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Greetings, potential superstars! There’s been some discussion about the Round 2: Organizations challenge, as smart competitors want to start working on a Round 2 submission early just in case they make it into the Top 32. While we haven’t finalized the rules document for Round 2 yet, we have decided the Organization format will match that in the Inner Sea World Guide, which looks like this:

Organization Name

Alignment: [two-letter abbreviation]
Headquarters: [location]
Leader: [character name]
Structure: [multinational corporation, military hierarchy, orders of crusading lawbringers, loose affiliation of like-minded explorers, religious cult, assassin’s guild, and so on]
Scope: [regional, national, or global (specify region or nation, if any)]
Resources: [property, valuable assets, castles, fortresses, equipment, network of local agents, informants, safe houses, and so on]
[100-word introductory paragraph summarizing the organization.]
Structure and Leadership
[100 words on this topic.]
Goals
[100 words on this topic.]
Public Perception
[50 words on this topic.]

Note that the organizations in the Inner Sea World Guide are approximately 1,400 words, so your submission write-up is a lean, stripped-down version of that. If you don’t have a copy of the Inner Sea World Guide handy, here’s the entry for the Aspis Consortium - (3.9 MB zip/PDF) from that book that you can use as a model for your write-up.

Your organization should be something PCs would normally oppose or come into conflict with, not an organization a typical heroic PC would join. The organization doesn’t necessarily have to be villainous, but it should definitely be a potential antagonist.

Full details (including a BBcode-formatted template for this challenge and an example organization from the Inner Sea World Guide) will be available next week. In the meantime, use the above information to guide your design for Round 2.

Remember, the deadline to submit your wondrous item is January 6th! You can’t submit an organization in Round 2 unless you make it into the Top 32 by submitting a wondrous item!

Sean K Reynolds
Designer and RPG Superstar Judge

More Paizo Blog.
Tags: Pathfinder Campaign Setting RPG Superstar
51 to 100 of 170 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | next > last >>
Dedicated Voter 2013, Marathon Voter 2014

gbonehead wrote:


I'm not going to burn energy on writing up an organization unless I need to, and 1/24 is a long way off. With the length of the submission, three days should be long enough to write it and finalize it.

Your point is well-taken, but I think that the ponder-and-agonize approach is viable in the real world, not just in artificial situations like this contest. For my SAT, for example, I spent an embarrassing portion of my prep time figuring out ways to write about Paradise Lost regardless of what the essay prompt happened to be. It paid off, as silly tactics sometimes do.

I'm writing five full organizations before the round 1 winners are announced. Even if I make it through, I expect I'll have to write a new one to account for the twist. But I'll have practice and some fleshed-out ideas ready to rework, which will make me feel better prepared. As a freelancer, I imagine I'd do much the same sort of prep; in fact, I've already begun more seriously formatting and organizing my home campaign materials so that I've got a ready-to-mine archive for future paid work.


I had originally thought that we would be writing faction-style organizations with Prestige/Fame benefits. This is going to be so much easier to balance! (if I make the cut...)

Marathon Voter 2013, Marathon Voter 2014

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Hmmmm,

Does antagonistic by proxy count? I have a wonderful idea but the organisation wouldnt be directly antagonistic, it would be the results of their endeavours that lead to PC problems.

Cant say any more than that, but I hope it's enough for a definitive yeah or nay.


I suppose as long as it is possible for the PCs to find who was ultimately behind the nefarious deeds and bash their heads in, it will work as an organization.

Marathon Voter 2013, Marathon Voter 2014

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

It is that :)

Marathon Voter 2013, Marathon Voter 2014

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Someone had to, so might as well be me - knocked up in five minutes, so dont expect anything too wicked. (this is for fun, it is not an entry).

Paizo Judges

Alignment: LN
Headquarters: Message Boards
Leader: Only the Judges know.
Structure: Order of Crusading Lawbringers
Scope: Global
Resources: All of us.
A band of recurring apocolyptic horsemen judges that ride through many writers dreams wreaking havoc with their vorpal reject buttons.
Structure and Leadership
The judges lay down the rules, they police the rules, they are god. They are also still deciding who the leader is.
Goals
Order 66.
Public Perception
32 people in every million love them once a year.

Star Voter 2013

It's good to see that the idea I had, way back when, fits so nicely into the requirements here. I just need to come up with a few details, like leadership and headquarters.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

Scott Fernandez wrote:
Yeah pretty much after the top 32 are revealed you can comment about your own wondrous item and the other 31's of course, but from that point onward it's best to stay mum on anything you're working on.

It's not just "best"—it's Rule #5.

Star Voter 2013

"Thanks for your comments! I look forward to being able to reply to them!" right?

Just rehearsing.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 16 , Marathon Voter 2013, Marathon Voter 2014

This may have been answered elsewhere, but:

RPG Superstar FAQ wrote:


In previous competitions, there has been a "secret twist" revealed when the round starts. Is that happening this year?

Yes, although we're revealing the "twist" when voting closes for a round, rather than waiting until the next round begins, to give the contestants more time to prepare. There is no "twist" to the Open Call (wondrous item) design task.

Does the part I highlighted mean that the twist for round 2 will be announced as soon as round 1 closes for submissions?

RPG Superstar 2014 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2013 Top 32 , Dedicated Voter 2013, Marathon Voter 2014

JaceDK wrote:
Does the part I highlighted mean that the twist for round 2 will be announced as soon as round 1 closes for submissions?

Sean said that the rules for Round 2 would be available sometime this week, and I'm betting the full rules will be revealed (with the twist) right around when the wondrous item submission window closes on Friday. Just a guess, though!

Andoran RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32, 2011 Top 16 , Star Voter 2013, Star Voter 2014 aka JoelF847

Last year, there really wasn't a twist for the archetypes in round 2. The twists came full force starting round 3. They could always shake things up further this year and provide additional restrictions in round 2 this year, though.

Marathon Voter 2013, Star Voter 2014

Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber
Joel Flank wrote:
Last year, there really wasn't a twist for the archetypes in round 2. The twists came full force starting round 3. They could always shake things up further this year and provide additional restrictions in round 2 this year, though.

I have it on good authority that every Organization must have either a gunslinger or a mute oracle as a leader, and that it must be centered in Galt, Wanshou, or the Mana Wastes. Furthermore, there must be an explicit requirement for feats from Ultimate Combat, Ultimate Magic or any of the Player Companion books for entry, and all organizations must have a fortress in either the Worldwound or somewhere on the coast around the Eye of Abendego. Bonus points if aboleth, oni, or goblins are on the council of the organization.

Really! It's all true!

Star Voter 2013, Dedicated Voter 2014

Joel Flank wrote:
Last year, there really wasn't a twist for the archetypes in round 2. The twists came full force starting round 3. They could always shake things up further this year and provide additional restrictions in round 2 this year, though.

Archetypes were a much less frequented territory than societies, monsters, and villains ever were. Not just in PF, but gaming as a whole. Archetypes practically disappeared in 3.X with the abundance of prestige classes. In a sense an archetype WAS the twist.

Societies (especially secret ones) have been around since before the Scarlet Brotherhood was monks only. Much, much before, if you consider things like SETI, Skull and Bones, French Resistance, Underground Railroad, Freemasons, Mannerbund, Illuminati, doodads. I better stop mentioning secret societies in a public for- *ack*

Marathon Voter 2013, Marathon Voter 2014

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

He he - and following on from the organisation fun entry, I got "creative" of sorts again for more "fun while waiting"...

Enjoy.

(Scary these, and I know they are close to artifacts but what the heck, I think you may like them...)

Vorpal Reject Button
Aura strong abjuration; CL 17th
Slot body; Price 50,000 gp; Weight -
Description
A large red button, sewn into coat or similar upper torso clothing, twice as large as the Divine Keep Button.
This button allows the wearer to automatically reject any written missives without need to offer explanations or compensations. It is most often used to cancel marriage contracts, work orders, financial demands and even adventuring requests on the village bill boards.
It has unlimited charges.
Construction
Requirements Craft Wondrous Item, Blood of Clark, Tongue of Sean, Ground Neil Spices, Hair of Ryan, A Great Big Red Button; Cost 25,000 gp

Divine Keep Button
Aura strong divination; CL 17th
Slot body; Price 50,000 gp; Weight -
Description
A small white button, sewn into shirts or other upper torso clothing.
This button allows the wearer to automatically enforce any written missives. It can also be used to counter uses of the Vorpal Reject Button.
It can be used just 32 times per year.
Construction
Requirements Craft Wondrous Item, four souls of judges, a perfect small white pearl button; Cost 25,000 gp

Designer, RPG Superstar Judge

Tsk tsk tsk, don't list specific objects in the construction section of a magic item...

;)

Star Voter 2013, Marathon Voter 2014

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

It might be premature to ask, but- I see there are many references to the Inner Sea World Guide, primarily for use as guidelines, but is our organization restricted to the Inner Sea regions?


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Unfortunately I submitted a lackluster item in round 1 before I realized what the RPG Superstar was all about. I might still post an orgainization in the comments just for fun. I'll wait to see if by chance I made it in the top 32 first though.

Sczarni RPG Superstar 2010 Top 32

illuminar wrote:
Unfortunately I submitted a lackluster item in round 1 before I realized what the RPG Superstar was all about. I might still post an orgainization in the comments just for fun. I'll wait to see if by chance I made it in the top 32 first though.

In the past, people who didn't make the top 32 posted their Round 2 ideas and talked about them in a thread dedicated to that. But they usually waited a while so they didn't steal the spotlight from the top 32 contestants.

Marathon Voter 2013, Marathon Voter 2014

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion Subscriber
Sean K Reynolds wrote:

Tsk tsk tsk, don't list specific objects in the construction section of a magic item...

;)

LOL, in my defence, that was 2 items very close to proper formatting in under 10 minutes :P


I hope that 1) my item hits the top 32 and 2) the twist isn't too crazy (or that I've already inadvertently fulfilled it). I already have a write-up for my organization.

Marathon Voter 2013, Marathon Voter 2014

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

I too have an organisation in skeletal form, but thats only for the next hour or so as I still have to cross reference the PRD to make sure it's not already in existence in existing organisations.

If it is, I'm back to that proverbial.

Sczarni RPG Superstar 2010 Top 32

I've got an idea in the back of my head, but it may be a tad complex for the word-count. Once we get the actual rules I'll start putting it down on paper, and see how it fleshes out. And if I don't hit top 32 that's ok because I'll just drop it into my home game.

Marathon Voter 2013, Marathon Voter 2014

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion Subscriber
Anthony Adam wrote:

I too have an organisation in skeletal form, but thats only for the next hour or so as I still have to cross reference the PRD to make sure it's not already in existence in existing organisations.

If it is, I'm back to that proverbial.

Oh dear god, there's 103 organisations on the Pathfinder wiki.

About half way through and so far, I'm looking to be original.

Still a few to get through though.

Fingers crossed.

For those wanting a quick link, here you go : Organisations


Oh dear god, there's 103 organisations on the Pathfinder wiki.

About half way through and so far, I'm looking to be original.

Still a few to get through though.

Fingers crossed.

Not to worry. At least some are noble houses (which I doubt classifies) or not (under normal circumstances, anyway) antagonistic to PCs.

That said there's probably more than 80 you want to avoid.

And, to avoid the issue of checking each you could try searching the wiki for "organization" and "key word central to your organization" a couple of times with all the different keywords/synonyms you can think of. I know I'm going to be spending some time doing the same for a google search for a while once my own idea solidifies a little more.

Best of luck, and sincere regards,
Siv

Marathon Voter 2013, Marathon Voter 2014

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion Subscriber
Luthia wrote:

Best of luck, and sincere regards,

Siv

You too, and everyone else.

To be honest, my Golarion knowledge isnt my strongest asset, so Im using the next couple weeks to do some greater research and update myself from "my Golarion" to "core Golarion" if that makes sense.

So reading them all is probably not a bad move and may even illuminate on inter organisation jiggery pokery possibilities too.

Marathon Voter 2013, Marathon Voter 2014

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Whoot - 103 now all reviewed and none of them encroach on my organisation idea, so I'm pretty much set should I be one of the elusive 32 spots.

Osirion

Just wondering with the somewhat limited word count for this Round, are the judges expecting us to describe how PCs may "interact" with these Organisations or should it just be implied that through the Organisation's "goals"?


So, - gods willing I make it to round two - I've started outlining my organization.

What's up with the leader section? Is it just some character's name, or can more than one leader exist? I assume that the leader is supposed to be explained somewhere, but given the limited word count, I'm finding it more difficult to discern the importance of the leader, and how elaborate that should be.

I'm sure it's all important considering it was asked for, but some structures lend themselves to multiple leaders or no leaders at all.

Any thoughts on this?

Star Voter 2013, Dedicated Voter 2014

Jay159 wrote:

So, - gods willing I make it to round two - I've started outlining my organization.

What's up with the leader section? Is it just some character's name, or can more than one leader exist? I assume that the leader is supposed to be explained somewhere, but given the limited word count, I'm finding it more difficult to discern the importance of the leader, and how elaborate that should be.

I'm sure it's all important considering it was asked for, but some structures lend themselves to multiple leaders or no leaders at all.

Any thoughts on this?

1) look at the published organizations. linked above) 2) look at the word count of that section compared to the others. :)


Man, this looks like fun. Can't wait to see the submissions.

Marathon Voter 2013, Marathon Voter 2014

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Just wondering, have the Rd 2 template and rules been finalised yet. I'm starting to get that "must write it up now" itch again...

RPG Superstar 2009, Contributor

Are you asking, "Are we there yet?" Because, until we're there, we won't be there. Meaning, I don't believe Paizo has finalized it yet. But, when they do, you know Sean will ensure it gets out there for everyone at the appropriate time. For now, you have far more insight into what Round Two will entail (with at least a preliminary example) than anyone's ever had in prior year's of the competition. So, make the most of it...

Marathon Voter 2013, Marathon Voter 2014

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion Subscriber
Neil Spicer wrote:
Are you asking, "Are we there yet?" Because, until we're there, we won't be there. Meaning, I don't believe Paizo has finalized it yet. But, when they do, you know Sean will ensure it gets out there for everyone at the appropriate time. For now, you have far more insight into what Round Two will entail (with at least a preliminary example) than anyone's ever had in prior year's of the competition. So, make the most of it...

Apologies if my query bugged you. I was just wondering was all and fully understanding that you are all ubah busy at the moment.

Designer, RPG Superstar Judge

2 people marked this as a favorite.

Official R2 rules aren't posted yet. When they are, you'll see them on the official RPG Superstar page. :)


Sean K Reynolds wrote:

Official R2 rules aren't posted yet. When they are, you'll see them on the official RPG Superstar page. :)

I await patiently, which by my standards is somewhat rough at times. So that said I have only briefly touched on an organization, mostly keeping positive and unwaiveringly hopeful I have a reason to work it into a full deal. Here's to being in the 32 and to all of you whom submitted.

Qadira Star Voter 2013, Star Voter 2014

I'll toast to that!

Marathon Voter 2013, Marathon Voter 2014

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

On the off chance that I do squeak into Top 32, I have a couple questions on the format of the entry.

You show in the main post for leader the entry as...

Leader:

But the Apis example shows:
Leaders:

Do we add an "s" if there is more than one leader (e.g. a triad for example) or is it a template typo :)?

Also the Apis example follows the Leader entry with

Prominent Members:

Is this deliberately not required or a see who's paying attention (as if you would do something so sneaky :p)?

Osirion RPG Superstar 2013 , Dedicated Voter 2013, Dedicated Voter 2014 aka Steven T. Helt

I think with lots of questions about the fine details, if your entry is the bomb, it's not going to matter if you added a 'prominent members' category. While I don't intend to offer any information there's not precedent for, I'm going to submit a complete organization. If it smacks more of swinging for the fences and less of just writing what I want to write, I think I'll be fine. If it looks like I'm rebelling against the template, I'll make changes.

Would like to see official round two rules, though. 8 days! Would like to get on to the encounter design. : b


Do the section titles, such as "Structure," "Scope," and "Resources" count in the final word count?
Also, what about the words we put in those sections?

Designer, RPG Superstar Judge

Nitpicking over Prerequisite/Prerequisites, Leader/Leaders and so on is something even the editors don't want to do.

Yes, Adam, those words count toward the word count.


Adam Frary wrote:

Do the section titles, such as "Structure," "Scope," and "Resources" count in the final word count?

Also, what about the words we put in those sections?

Good question. I thought that only the words I added counted until now. I have to cut back even more. I hope the official rules give me a little more room.

Marathon Voter 2013, Dedicated Voter 2014

Oh, so the introductory paragraph indicated with, "100-word introductory paragraph summarizing the organization." includes all the headers before that line? I had thought all those headers with information, then a free-standing introductory paragraph of 100 words. Good to get that sorted out in advance.

Designer, RPG Superstar Judge

The full rules will explain all of this, but FYI:

Overall, you're given 50 words to cover the words of the stat block (Leaders, etc.) and the text you put in those categories.
The later sections (100 words on this, 50 on that) are separate from the 50 alloted to the first part of the stat block.


This is my first year participating, but it seems to me that all prior rounds of all prior years have included the "template words" in their word count. This makes sense to me, both since they take up space on the page and because I find it unlikely that anyone at Paizo is going to go through submissions subtracting the number of "template words" from the word count that the forum automatically generates rather than having just increased the allowable word count to account for them.


Somewhat off topic, but Sean, I've been reading the monsters from 2010 and you often provide a link for "advice for using the word will." That link doesn't seem to work anymore (it redirects to Paizo home page). Can you repost it for the benefit of us rookies?
Thanks

Star Voter 2013, Marathon Voter 2014

Adam Frary wrote:

Somewhat off topic, but Sean, I've been reading the monsters from 2010 and you often provide a link for "advice for using the word will." That link doesn't seem to work anymore (it redirects to Paizo home page). Can you repost it for the benefit of us rookies?

Thanks

Here

Marathon Voter 2013, Dedicated Voter 2014

Sean K Reynolds wrote:

The full rules will explain all of this, but FYI:

Overall, you're given 50 words to cover the words of the stat block (Leaders, etc.) and the text you put in those categories.
The later sections (100 words on this, 50 on that) are separate from the 50 alloted to the first part of the stat block.

Thank you for the clarification.


goodwicki wrote:
*stuff about word count*

After rereading my post while more awake I realize that this comes off as a bit sardonic, which wasn't my intent. Certainly it's easily inferred from the template given that the word counts for each section do not include the template itself.

Designer, RPG Superstar Judge

Well, it is true that I don't want to manually or mentally subtract out the words built into the template from everyone's total word count. :p

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