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I really wanted the Gundam Unicorn OVAs on blu-ray but they are ridiculously expensive (episode 7 is listed for over $200 bucks on Amazon). I bought the DVDs instead (a little over $70 for the whole series) and the picture quality is amazing.
Rightstuf is advertising a preorder of Turn-A Gundam. Has anyone seen this and have an opinion on it? My only knowledge of it is from the Mobile Suit Gundam Dynasty game.
John Bennett here, line developer for Shadows over Vathak. I'm very excited to run an official Shadows over Vathak game at PaizoCon.
Anyone who plays in the game will receive a free print copy of The Colonies: Player's Guide and a print of the Shadows over Vathak game map.
Don't know what Shadows over Vathak is? Well, it is available here as Pay What You Want.
Feel free to ask any questions!
How about we plan for Sunday at like 1:30 we all try to meet at Dave's Diner? That'll give those of us running PFS games that morning time to finish up and get over there, and we won't spoil our dinner for the banquet Saturday. :)
If my Shadows over Vathak event doesn't conflict, I'll be there.
Since we don't know the event schedule yet, does anyone have a preference between lunch on Saturday or lunch on Sunday? Is there one day that usually has more or better events in the afternoon than the other, that some of us might not want to miss?
I remember last year that both days were both pretty busy. The banquet is the big thing on Saturday.
Also, for me personally, I am not travelling with anyone so I'm pretty much open for lunches/dinners (except the night of the banquet) any time Friday through Sunday (leaving early Monday).
Yeah hopefully we can plan something for right near the convention hotel. Just doing a quick search, it looks like Dave's Diner and Brews is within walking distance. I like food and beer, so that would be my first choice (though I'd prefer to find a place with more microbrews). There's also Mango Thai within easy walking.
Either of those is fine with me as is walking.
Also, last year, there was a lot of mingling at the hotel bar in the evening/late night. This is a different hotel than last year, but I'm guessing they'll have some sort of bar area.
Raging Swan Press does adventures with an old school feel that might work for you.
Here's a listing of their adventures here, many of which are also in print on other websites as well- Raging Swan Press Adventures
"Against the Cult of the Bat God" (which I wrote) is for 5th level adventures and pays homage to the original.
"Dark Water Rising" (Ron Lundeen who does adventure work for Paizo) is for 6th level.
"The Sunken Pyramid" (Marc Radle from Kobold Press) is a well-reviewed 7th level adventure.
All adventures have free samples at Raging Swan Press which you can check out.
GM's Miscellany-Dungeon Dressing has a bunch of traps for each section. It's a compilation of a bunch of smaller dungeon dressing PDFs which includes Fiendish Traps 1 and 2- those have some interactive traps (used one recently). If you don't want the big book, you can buy the individual PDF relatively cheap.
It's fairly new, I believe, as I've only seen it recently.
NH is odd with their beer so look for it in a package store or grocery store known for its beer selection.
And usually, we have one on each side of the road! Speaking of NH, I've been buying a local brew by Henniker Brewing- a roasted coffee stout that is quite delicious.
Blayde MacRonan wrote:
I was able to rent it this weekend through my Playstation 3- loved it!
I have Hell Girl in my Crunchyroll queue. I'll have to watch that soon. I'm binge watching Cowboy Bebob since I haven't seen it in awhile and I'm thinking about doing a SAO 1 and 2 marathon.
Tomorrow, I need to call Netflix and talk to them- I've just sent back the same Mobile Suit Zeta disc twice because it was cracked all the way through when I received it. This is on top of pretty much every other disc in the series so far coming to me obviously damaged. I've run into this problem with quite a few of the Sunrise Bandai discs (since they aren't in distribution anymore, figuring there's only so many copies and they can't be replaced) but a QC check would be nice before they shipped it off.
I submitted an event for Fat Goblin Game's Shadows over Vathak setting. I'm looking for playtesters for a new, short adventure that can be run at cons and possibly offered at a future Free RPG Day. I'm planning on having some free product for anyone who attends the event.
In my Kingmaker campaign, my players (rulers of a lawful good kingdom) needed to cause a distraction in the evil king's city in order to infiltrate the castle and kill him.
I incorporated the Technology Guide based on the evil king's background and the players had recently defeated groups of gearsmen armed with arc rifles.
Upon entering the city and making contact with the mafia-like merchants guild, I was asked by the players if the merchant guild would help them in exchange for the arc rifles.
My reply was, "You are asking the mafia if they want guns? Yes, yes they want guns."
And that's how the lawful good Kingdom of the Eternal Light got into the gun running business.
This cinematic encounters work great for movies but are much harder to pull of in RPGs (as my own R4 entry can attest to). The crane is a neat addition but I worry that 7th level PCs will rely on their own class abilities (especially the spells they have access to at that point) to save the day.
The map is excellent but the overall location when compared to some of the other entries is not that exciting.
Not much else to say besides this is an excellent encounter- cool location, your monster choice is tightly woven into the encounter, and some fun stuff going on as the players try to get through this area.
Love the idea of the dead purple worm but agree with making it twitch a little just to scare the players.
The opening paragraph got me very excited for this location- strange crystals, warping time and space, and eyes peering out from alien dimensions. However, afterwards, there is a long backstory not quite grabbing my attention. When I get to the actual encounter, there are some neat ideas there (slip crystals) but ultimately it's "a player falls into a pit to be eaten by the geomaw" scenario. Where's that city in amber and those other dimensions?
With the word count, I realize you can't get to all those cool things you mentioned in your opening paragraph, but I feel like too much word count was spent on the backstory and not enough on the encounter where you could have fleshed out one or two of the ideas.
Great idea but needs tighter execution.
There's a lot going on here so I applaud you for trying to create an interesting, dynamic encounter. Unfortunately, there are some missteps in the design that hurt it as the judges pointed out. I think the focus being on the tentamort and not the wimblewyrms is a mistake. My players would be focused on saving themselves first before worrying about trapped wimblewyrms and slavers. I'm also concerned that if the PCs do go rushing in to help and trigger the trap, they will think the whole thing is a ruse, turn around and walk away or fireball and forget the area.
The actual location isn't very exciting as compared to many of the others.
Again, I appreciate the big ideas here but this needs a second rewrite (and I say this as a former contestant that ran into similiar problems in my own R4 entry).
This is definitely a cool and twisted location- I really like the idea of the planters. The traps that go with them is an also an excellent idea but it seems a little weird to me to have a CR 1 trap and a CR 10 monster encounter. I think you could have upped the lethality of the trap.
The map is pretty good but I'm unclear as to what those different colored areas are (the yellow, blue, brown colored portions of the map). Is that representing the gardens below?
Love the map and the inclusion of one of my favorite races- duergar.
I agree with the other comments that I don't like the idea of all the duergar fleeing at the sight of adventurers.
The duergar feel more like the center of this encounter than the geomaw.
Overall, I think there are some great ideas here but some missed opportunities as well. Why not use the deeplit monster? Maybe Droskar gets a little ticked off and some deeplits start bursting out of the magma or fire?
Still, you get one of my two votes based on your body of work because I want to see your adventure pitch.
I like that the crystals have an environmental effect on encounter. Also, I have a soft spot for trogs so I'm glad to see them get some love. I do like the idea of the trog holed up Rambo style but the trap may have been better served tying into the stronger geomaw encounter (perhaps on the altar?).
The map is very clean and easy to read.
I like the interactive environment with the acid tubers.
Being able to get information from the captives during the fight is a cool idea. For my group, I'd probably have to play it up a bit as they would be more likely to kill all the monsters first and then worry about the captives (if they didn't "accidently" set them on fire first).
Good work on this!
Edit: Forgot to mention- there's a couple of uses of the word "that" which is a pet peeve of mine. You can usually find ways to expand "that" and save on word count.
Scott LaBarge wrote:
Speaking about competition vs. collaboration- you may be competing now, but if you do decide to pursue a freelancing career, more than likely you will be working with your fellow competitors at some point on a project together or for the same 3PP. This competition is a good place to network and build connections.
Also, attending PaizoCon is an excellent idea if you are considering pursuing freelance work.
Scott LaBarge wrote:
I wouldn't say I "obsess" over it, but part of my design process is to work ideas out in my head (and then sometimes sketch them out in a notebook). When I sit down to actually write, I want to be able to type away instead of trying to come up with ideas at the computer. Also, I usually have multiple projects I'm working on concurrently, each of which require their own brainstorming sessions.
Ok, so maybe I do "obsess"...but it doesn't keep me up at night :).
While out on a business trip, found a bar that had a good selection of beers. Found myself ordering some pints of "Hoptical Illusion" by Blue Point Brewery- a rather flavorful IPA. Hoppy but without being overpowering or too bitter- very drinkable.
Recently picked up a six pack of cans- a rye pale ale by 603 Brewery here in NH (603 is NH's area code). Pretty good- I would drink it again but wouldn't necessary go out of my way to drink it. Widmer Bros. Alchemy Ale is still my go to pale ale.
Jeff Heikkinen wrote:
I thought I would just speak about this as in a few weeks there will be four permanent 2015 Top 8s (as four of the Top 8 will move on).
Obviously, from my tag, I am a top 8- neither getting the module or scenario job or eligibility to repeat.
I've given advice elsewhere about how to break into freelancing but I'll quickly sum up my experience as a Top 8.
Placing in the Top 8 definitely gave me a sense of accomplishment and confidence to pursue freelance design work. Having never done any design work, being in the Top 8 served as my initial selling point to third party publishers (3PPs). In fact, when I pledged to a Kickstarter for Zombie Sky Press's It Came from the Stars, I was approached to contribute which shows that 3PPs do watch this contest. It also helped that I had recently done some design work.
If you want to work for Paizo, though, do not rest on your laurels. I didn't get my first Paizo job until I reached out to them, via attending PaizoCon, meeting the Paizo employees, and stating my interest in doing design work for them. I recommend that if you can attend PaizoCon, do so and bring a stack of business cards. Afterwards, follow up with an e-mail.
You might get lucky and Paizo and other 3PPs contact you out of the blue, but if you are seriously interested in doing design work, it is best to be proactive and approach the companies you wish to work for and establish a working relationship with them.
Summary- reaching out and networking after the contest will yield more design jobs than hoping companies contact you out of the blue regardless of how far you advance in RPG Superstar.
Now, I've been away for a week, so I have to read all your monsters!
Really enjoying the 2nd season of Psycho-Pass.
I watched season 1 a few months ago and enjoyed it but so far I like this 2nd season a lot better. The metaplot is made apparent almost right from the start and so far has a lot of cool twists and turns. There seems to be less focus on character backstories (since we know the main characters already) which means more time devoted to the story. Akane gets to be front and center and she's definitely changed after her experiences in season 1.
Blayde MacRonan wrote:
A new season of Knights of Sidonia already? So, so, so happy...
Almost finished with my annual rewatching of Angel Beats. I think its a contender for my all-time favorite anime.
I'm creating this thread so we can post our thoughts on the Round 2 maps and maps in general to help future contestants if Paizo decides to keep this component in further contests. My hope is to offer advice to help future contestants should this type of challenge appear again.
First, I have to say is that there were definitely more maps I liked than I had votes for, so excellent job 2015 contestants! Secondly, for me, maps aren't easy- I've done quite a few professionally to know this and I learned a lot from going through all the submissions.
As a voter, my criteria were
1. clearness and readability- could I understand the map.
2. story- was there a theme or hook that made the map interesting and made me want to use it.
3. usability- lastly, did you create a map that I could swipe for my home game? I own more gaming material than I can hope to run, but I've been known to take maps from published sources and tweak them for my own needs.
Breaking the maps into categories, here are some of my overall thoughts-
1. Mini-regional maps- the maps which detailed a small region were pretty difficult to get my vote this round (I had only one I voted for). However, I think a mini-regional map has great potential to get a story across. However, they need to be clear and list interesting locations that spark my imagination which I can flesh out later. Very "Old School Renaissance" which I appreciate but make sure that features are easy to read and offer interesting places for adventure.
2. Settlement maps- I've done a bunch of these myself and they aren't easy. When designing one, you need to make sure that the cartographer can easily determine what is he/she is looking at. A lot of the maps I've turned over professionally are often cleaned up and made nice looking by the cartographer and kept much of my detail. So it is important that they are well-detailed, defined, and look interesting. Also, the real important locations need to be labelled as these are the places players will be going to. Don't label half of them and leave us guessing as to the others. Out of my 8 votes, I only voted for two of these type.
3. Locations- I love the direction that Paizo has taken with many of their "Unleashed" Campaign Setting books- offering up mini-dungeons centered around a particular creature or NPC. If your doing a map like this, it is important to have enough details for the GM to use it. You are working on a smaller scale here and the details are important to help me, a GM without a lot of extra time, to run it. Also, it should not be something that I could come up with in 5 minutes with a piece of graph paper. Interesting structures and overall shape that fire the imagination help without making it too confusing to read or reproduce. Location maps received the rest of my votes (5) but the ones I voted for had a good story hook.
Noncontestants, please feel free to post your own thoughts.