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Template Fu wrote:
That's almost as bad as my joke this evening as we explored a ruined building. 'One does not simply walk through more doors'.
From season 0 - Mists of Mwangi
I've hardly played any of season 6 yet, so can't really comment on it. There are lots of other scenarios out there that I really like, but that's one from each season. Temple of Empyreal Enlightenment is probably still my favourite PFS scenario.
What about the ever-hungry goblin who hangs around hot dog stands? You know, the gobblin' goblin...
I think a few people have been taking part in RPG SuperStar for a while and are very familiar and comfortable with it. SIAC, SAK and so on are well understood. They see a lot of items that fall foul of the advice without, in their opinion, meeting the 'you can ignore the other rules if you're item is great' catch-all.
I think a new person, who's entered for the first time, could take the snark (perhaps legitimate, if the rules and advice haven't been read) not as a criticism of the item, but as a criticism of themselves. It's not hard to work out which item is being disparaged in some cases, or it could be one of a small number. It might be meant as a playful snark, but could be taken as a bit of a kick in the teeth.
The ultimate aim of RPGSS is to find new writers for Paizo, but I'd hope it's also to encourage everyone to try their hand at writing. The first time people enter, their items might well suck, but they might improve into a really good writer whose work we all enjoy and appreciate - with a little encouragement. A snarky comment might be enough to put them off trying again in future.
A few people have said this on the boards, but I think we do need to be a bit less specific in describing items we've seen and a bit more forgiving of mistakes.
I have a question about B6:
Is the damage done by the touch of idiocy trap healable by lesser restoration? The trap and the spell both refer to a penalty to Int, Wis and Cha. Am I right in thinking that to get rid of all three penalties, you'd need three lesser restorations?
I ran this scenario yesterday and both players and I greatly enjoyed it.
To pick up on what Scott said, I didn't tweet much because I didn't want to run foul of the self-promotion rule.
I tend to agree with Joana - not having a single woman on the judge-o-matic was a bit odd.
I wouldn't reduce the voting time for round one too much - two weeks might be good - just because it's easy to have a week where you don't have the time or inclination to vote. A running total of the number of votes cast would be good.
In terms of rounds, I might suggest moving the monster round forward; it's one that sorts the sheep from the goats. Perhaps there are now enough archetypes that there is little design space and that's a challenge that could be rested for a bit.
I think I let myself down with this one and I'm assuming I'm not going through. As a few people have mentioned, the editing was poor; I'll freely admit that editing my own work is not a strong point for me, but I still could have done better. I'm particularly annoyed about using English English rather than American English; I set my word processor to 'colonial' mode but I did quite a lot of it on the road without changing the language setting. When I brought them together, it kept the language settings from the tablet version and so the spellcheck didn't pick up the mistakes.
In my defence, I'd never even tried to design a monster before getting through to this round. I came up with four ideas, half developed two and this is the one I liked best.
So, my apologies for the editing and my thanks for everyone who took the time to comment.
The idea I had was that it would use its sonic ability to deafen people (maybe I should've gone for stun), disgorge a swarm and then run up a tree. The Con damage it did to itself was because I didn't want it to keep using it and I wanted it to be self-limiting without a hard cap. Clearly, this was the wrong way of doing it.
Some thoughts on people's thoughts:
Jacob - I realise I'd done that about two heartbeats after submitting. Yeah, it was stupid. With regards to the sound, bear in mind that the loudest thing in the ocean is shrimp - they can block out sonar! Still, it was perhaps a bit much.
Mike - I agree about the editing. It gives me some hope that the idea for the monster could, with more work, have been decent.
Sean - I didn't think of that. D'oh! Maybe it should've been a flower or leaf.
Eric - but it would give their position away :)
Dale - yes, I am absolutely a novice. I appreciate the constructive criticsm from someone who does this professionally. Thanks for the specifics - I'll learn from them for next year.
Joel - fair points. I thought of the 'thicket' form as its sort of default, but that didn't come out as written. I was hoping that a loud plant that threw out a swarm would be unique enough :)
Clouds - thankyou! I was actually quite pleased with 'Thunderer of Gozreh' as a name and tie-in to Gozreh's portfolio.
Solspiral - thankyou too!
Zhangar - it would do, but not if it thunders before disgorging.
Ronar - I take the point, and will remember it for next year, but that's why it can go up as well as along and can throw a swarm out there, too.
Bobson – That's just a good, old-fashioned screw-up from me. I'm glad you found it interesting, though, and it does makes me feel that perhaps there's something in there.
Alexander – as above, I wanted it to be self-limiting, but clearly didn't do it in the best way. I take the point on the description – it was the first one I'd done and I was short on words.
Last but not least, the judges:
Clark – frankly, I think you're being generous in your grading, but it's a real boost to me that you were able to find so many nice things to say!
Wolfgang – well, I figured no-one else would go for a plant that does sonic damage and spits out a swarm. I hope I have the right gist of what you're saying – that there were a lot of problems, particularly with the execution, but that the idea behind it had something to it.
Sean – I'm going to be echoing what I've said to Wolfgang and Clark, and to Jon Brazer above, but I will learn from this for next year. If I get to the monster round next year, I will make sure that the stat block is done much, much better.
This was my first entry into RPG Superstar, so I'm delighted to have reached round three. Given that I wasn't going to win, now is the time to go out, otherwise I wouldn't've been able to enter again! I'll be having another go next year and I'll improve over the intervening months. Thanks to everyone who took part in RPG Superstar as a contestant, voter or judge. I look forward to playtesting the entries for the next couple of rounds!
A bush, covered with thorns and hinged leaves, twists itself at your approach into a vaguely humanoid form, ready to defend its marshy home.
Thunderer of Gozreh CR 3
----- Defense -----
----- Offense -----
----- Statistics -----
----- Ecology -----
----- Special Abilities -----
A Thunderer of Gozreh traps insects and spiders with the pollen it produces in tiny flowers at the base of its snapping leaves, either digesting them, releasing them to reproduce or as a defense.
What appears to be a mundane plant gives a noise when threatened that seems as if it should come from a far larger creature, aided by the buzzing of newly released and angry insects. Forming itself into a biped mass of stems and stalks, it will release its insect prey and move quickly to escape danger.
Druids and devotees of Gozreh will travel great distances to harvest its leaves at dawn on Firstbloom for use as offerings to their deity; to plant a Thunderer of Gozreh on their grave is to accord them a high honour. As a plant living where the water meets the land, whose shout seems to come from the heavens, it is thought to be favoured by the Sky Father.
I'm very glad that this discussion is going on and that it's being conducted in a civilised manner. I'm very much aware of the appalling way in which Anita Sarkeesian was treated when she started looking at misogyny in video games. That having been said, it may be that things are starting to shift, given that a lot of people have also come out in opposition to that kind of misogyny.
The political scientist in me, though, does agree with the people who have said this discussion would be easier with data. I seem to remember a community survey last year. It might be useful to have something on there, both for Paizo and as general advice for everyone in the RPG community, about what would bring more women into gaming, and encourage more of those already involved to take part in things like RPG Superstar. It'd be even better if Paizo did it themselves.
The idea of a women in gaming panel at Paizocon or Gencon sounds terrific.
Water Snake (Ranger)
Class Skills: A water snake gains Acrobatics as a class skill and does not gain Knowledge (Dungeoneering) as a class skill.
Slither (Ex): At 1st level, a water snake becomes adept at moving silently through the water and hiding amongst aquatic flora, gaining +10 to Stealth while in the water. This replaces wild empathy.
Death from the Shallows (Ex): At 2nd level, a water snake is accustomed to using currents and tides to his advantage and gains the ability to make sneak attacks, as the rogue’s ability, as long as he is in the water. This extra precision damage is 1d6 at second level and increases by 1d6 at 6th, 10th, 14th and 18th levels. If the character already has sneak attack from another class, his effective rogue level is half his water snake level for stacking. This replaces all combat style feats.
Dive Down (Ex): At 3rd level, a water snake can hold his breath for longer, adding twice his water snake level to the number of rounds before making Constitution checks to avoid drowning. This replaces endurance.
Swim (Ex): At 4th level, a water snake gains a swim speed equal to half his normal movement. This replaces favoured terrain.
Breach (Ex): At 7th level, the water snake may charge through water, even though it is difficult terrain, so long as the charge starts in water. Each square of water still counts as 2 squares of movement. This replaces woodland stride.
Hold Under (Ex): At 9th level, a water snake can hold an enemy under the water until they fall unconscious or drown, squeezing the air from their lungs. While in control of a grapple when both he and his enemy are in water, a water snake can pull himself and his enemy underwater. The water snake can maintain the grapple without incurring the usual penalty for taking a standard action while holding breath; the penalty is doubled for any standard action his opponent takes. The water snake does not gain the +5 bonus to maintain his grapple. This has no effect beyond a standard grapple on creatures that do not breathe or can breathe underwater. This replaces evasion.
Ghost Ship Binnacle
Upon a command word being spoken, the binnacle causes the the entire crew to be affected as if by ghostly disguise and the ship appears to be a rotting hulk. This effect lasts for 9 hours each day; this duration does not need to be consecutive, but it must be spent in 1-hour increments.
If a wayfinder is placed in the binnacle, its light effect is replaced with a corpse lantern (Pathfinder Society Field Guide p57) appearing every ten feet around the edge of the ship's rail. This effect lasts for 9 minutes each day; this duration does not need to be consecutive, but it must be spent in 1-minute increments. If an ioun stone is set in the wayfinder, any AC, spell absorption, or regeneration effects apply to the ship; any other effects are lost while the wayfinder is in the binnacle.
Once per day as a swift action, the binnacle can be made, with a command word, to generate a gust of wind behind a ship's sails as a standard action, giving the ship a +10 bonus on its next upper hand check.