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Elemental Glyphstone


Round 1 - Open Call: Design a wondrous item

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Sheyd

Originally created by the Grand Collegium at Khiros the secrets of making these amulets made it across the Titan-span and survived the sinking of Dark Bhirtur. Carved from a single crystal and covered with glyphs, the color of the crystal varies depending upon the element to which the Glyphstone is keyed. Each Glyphstone has the following powers/abilities:

- Wearer gains a +2 insight bonus to save DC's of spells cast that are of the keyed element.
- +2 insight bonus to all saves verses the keyed element.
- Wearer gains the ‘Energy Substitution’ feat with the keyed element’s damage type while the amulet is worn.
- Wearer is unaffected by the environment of the keyed elemental plane.
- Once per day upon command the wearer gains the Elemental Subtype of the keyed element gaining all the benefits and penalties. Duration: 5 rounds.

While the amulet is worn all elementals of the keyed type have their initial reaction to the character worsened by one rank. More powerful Glyphstones are rumored to exist in the abandoned Bhirtur colonies on the elemental planes though none have been documented.

Strong Conjuration; CL 13th; Craft Wondrous Item, planar binding; Price 30,000 gp.

Founder, Legendary Games & Publisher, Necromancer Games, RPG Superstar Judge

I dont think "energy substitution feat' is in the SRD.

Clark

Founder, Legendary Games & Publisher, Necromancer Games, RPG Superstar Judge

That said, I think this is pretty cool. I hope I am wrong about that feat not being in the SRD.

Qadira Contributor; Publisher, Kobold Press; RPG Superstar Judge

Clark Peterson wrote:
I dont think "energy substitution feat' is in the SRD.

Of course it is! I think it's from D&DG. http://www.d20srd.org/srd/divine/divineAbilitiesFeats.htm

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

My first impression of this one is that it is the best so far. I like that the flavor at the beginning doesn't sound forced or like a glorification of the author's player character, and I like how it makes the user immune to the environmental effects of the associated plane.

This is a good magic item.

Founder, Legendary Games & Publisher, Necromancer Games, RPG Superstar Judge

That first sentence could be written less clumsily: "...of their making made it..."

Thanks for finding that feat. I am glad it is there 'cause I really liked this item.

This, frankly, is the kind of thing I am looking for. Suggestive, yet brief, fluff text. Cool effect. Not too uber, but still useful. Flexible. Limited, but attractive to players.

I do have to check the creation math for it, but it looks right at first glance.

Founder, Legendary Games & Publisher, Necromancer Games, RPG Superstar Judge

Boy, this one is really growing on me. And I already liked it alot to begin with.

Qadira Contributor; Publisher, Kobold Press; RPG Superstar Judge

Kept.

Osirion

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Tales Subscriber

Great flavor text, both initial and the re-mention at the end!

I do think the actual features are a bit iffy however - it references elements in place of energy types, which leaves [Fire] spells at an even larger than normal advantage with this one (as well as leaving open whether Air is Electricity or Sonic, should the DM be kind).

Also the price seems a bit low for insight bonuses, but very nice all around!

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 6 aka adanedhel9

I like the concept, but to me this item is too much of a "must-have" for elemental-based casters. I almost feel like, if this item were available, and I was playing an elemental-based caster, that I would have to buy this item to complete my character. I don't think that's very heroic at all. Maybe it's just my perception, though.

Andoran

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Quite a few "elemental" items made the list.

I like the background / flavour text on this. I was surprised by some of the judges' comments that implied background text was a bad thing - I'm glad some items that used this got in. Flavour and background text are the things that keep me reading the description of an item that I might not immediately "need", and can also inspire further ideas.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

All background text is not created equal.

Osirion

I'm a little puzzled by how much everyone likes this one. It strikes me as a little meh. A whole lot of grand sounding place names get thrown around, but I'm still left with very little idea of who made this or why (which, in my mind, is the only good reason for fluff in an entry like this).

It's an elemental glyphstone, but I don't even get a good idea of what it looks like or how it works. Do you hold it? Do you wear it on a headband? Like a backpack? What color is it? What makes one elemental glyphstone look different from another? What do the glyphs look like? It just seems woefully low on descriptive detail.

It just makes the user elementaly--and apparently more unlikable (which I think is odd too). The various elemental powers don't even seem that novel to me--just makes it easier to cast certain spells or to swap powers and some grants resistance to planar energies. Pretty generic stuff...

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 , Star Voter 2014

I don't like this. It makes assumptions about rules that don't exist in pairing energy types with element types. It also heavily favors Fire as the good element:

Saves against air effects are less good than saves against fire.

The fire subtype has rules. Air and earth don't.

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Sheyd

It's sad to see the flaws in your submission only AFTER you submitted it. I've used house rules on the Air and Earth elemental subtypes for so long that I actually forgot to look at the Air and Earth Subtypes as written in the SRD. I figured on that basis alone I'd not make it into the top 32.

The fact I did made me dance around in my chair for a half hour before I could even look at the Paizo site.

Founder, Legendary Games & Publisher, Necromancer Games, RPG Superstar Judge

I have to admit, I am a bit surprised to see top 32 people capping on people's entries :)

Ah, its a funny world...

This is, if nothing else, a very interesting experiment.

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 , Star Voter 2014

Clark Peterson wrote:

I have to admit, I am a bit surprised to see top 32 people capping on people's entries :)

Ah, its a funny world...

This is, if nothing else, a very interesting experiment.

I'm allowed to comment like everyone else. (And I'm hyper and giddy (yes, even 5 hours later) from making the first round, and I'm drowning in trying to keep up with the discussion of 32 different items.)


I really didn't care for the flavor stuff on this one. The only thing we really learn from the first sentence is that it's an amulet. The rest is just dropping of names that are meaningless.

The item itself seems okay to me. Useful but not too interesting to me. I think elemental stuff is way overdone, but this one has a slightly different take on it.

Marathon Voter 2013, Dedicated Voter 2014

mythfish wrote:

I really didn't care for the flavor stuff on this one. The only thing we really learn from the first sentence is that it's an amulet. The rest is just dropping of names that are meaningless.

I'm with you on the flavor text.

The parts I do like are immunity from elemental planar effects and the negative reaction from those of the elemental type. Those add in some nice twists for me.

Taldor

Flavor text seemed intrusive.

Can a glyphstone be re-keyed? Dunno.

Monster in a Box.

Why do elementals dislike the newly elemental user?

Is the duration for all abilities, or just becoming an elemental?

I see why it made the cut, but I, personally, don't care for it.

Founder, Legendary Games & Publisher, Necromancer Games, RPG Superstar Judge

Ross Byers wrote:
I'm allowed to comment like everyone else. (And I'm hyper and giddy (yes, even 5 hours later) from making the first round, and I'm drowning in trying to keep up with the discussion of 32 different items.)

Ross, I agree. You are. But please understand that all three of the judges have spoken to each other this afternoon and we have all said that we are surprised that top 32s are openly criticizing other entries. Not calling you out. Not criticizing. Dont take it that way. But we were all just surprised. And I was, perhaps, trying to give a little nudge-nudge-wink-wink-word-to-the-wise. :) Remember, you have a ton of readers out there who are forming opinions about you. Those people will be voting on your next round entry. Like I said, nudge-nudge-wink-wink-word-to-the-wise.

But that said, its America, baby! Free speech. Say what you want.

Again, not criticizing. Just trying to help.

I totally get that you are geeked and hyped up. Heck, I have been amped about this contest for days. So I know where you are coming from. Enthusiasm is a wonderful thing. Its powerful and motivating.


Clouds Without Water wrote:


The parts I do like are immunity from elemental planar effects and the negative reaction from those of the elemental type. Those add in some nice twists for me.

Ditto. I could take or leave the flavor text but it does really make me want to see this guy's country.

RPG Superstar 2013 Top 16 , Marathon Voter 2013, Marathon Voter 2014 aka Darkjoy

I don't like the flavor, it is probably keyed to a home campaign.

I feel like this falls in the swiss army knive category even with its focused elemental theme.


I think this is now my favorite item.

The falvor is generic and odd, but that's a good thing! Now I can add those things into my homwe camapgin if I want to (i am, at least, stealing some names).

It's five items in one. (Of course there is no Acid subtype I am aware of, nor Sonic. Exactly which elements was this supposed to work with? Just fire and cold?)

It's cool and useful wihtout being overpowering. (Although being immune to all damage from one elemnt for five rounds is a big deal -- this thing may be underpriced).

Still, cool and yoinked for my own games.

Osirion

I do like this item good luck in the next round.

Cheliax RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4, Contributor

Dungeon Grrrl wrote:


It's five items in one. (Of course there is no Acid subtype I am aware of, nor Sonic. Exactly which elements was this supposed to work with? Just fire and cold?)

It's cool and useful wihtout being overpowering. (Although being immune to all damage from one elemnt for five rounds is a big deal -- this thing may be underpriced).

I wondered the same thing. One of my players who really wants one pointed out this page:

http://www.d20srd.org/indexes/typesSubtypes.htm

The subtypes of Earth, Water and Air actually give some very cool benefits like movement modes and bonuses or the ability to breathe underwater.

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Sheyd

Dungeon Grrrl wrote:
Exactly which elements was this supposed to work with? Just fire and cold?

Well when I came up with this item, I actually used the house ruled versions of the Elemental subtypes I use in my home campaign. I've used it for so long that it never occurred to me to actually look in the SRD to see what the subtypes really gave. I just assumed my house rule was the actual rule because I use house rules so sparingly. It came to me AFTER I submitted it that I'd changed the rules there! I checked the subtypes afterwards and while it wasn't a complete foul-up I realized the Energy substitution feat favored Fire and Water (cold) greatly... I really didn't expect to make it because of that oversight.

My house ruled version of Earth and Air is Acid for Earth Subtype and vulnerability to Electical and Electrical for Air Subtype and vulnerability to Acid.

I'm glad you liked the item and I hope your players get many hours of enjoyment from it. :)

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Sheyd

thatboomerkid wrote:

I wondered the same thing. One of my players who really wants one pointed out this page:

http://www.d20srd.org/indexes/typesSubtypes.htm

The subtypes of Earth, Water and Air actually give some very cool benefits like movement modes and bonuses or the ability to breathe underwater.

It was after I had the horrible realization I'd assumed a house rule was an actual rule that I went and read that very page. It wasn't the way I originally envisioned the item but it did at least not completely foulup. I've already gone back and fixed the energy substitution issue in the version I have saved on my Harddrive. If I didn't it would bug me to no end. :)

Cheliax RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4, Contributor

Sheyd wrote:


It was after I had the horrible realization I'd assumed a house rule was an actual rule that I went and read that very page. It wasn't the way I originally envisioned the item but it did at least not completely foulup. I've already gone back and fixed the energy substitution issue in the version I have saved on my Harddrive. If I didn't it would bug me to no end. :)

The energy substitution issue wasn't a bit issue, because I have a very similar house-rule, myself.

My players are actually obsessed with the Earth, Air and Water Glyphstones mostly because of the movement types: burrowing through the solid stone, flying with perfect manuverability or swimming, with water breathing, at base land speed is really enciting for them.

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Sheyd

thatboomerkid wrote:
My players are actually obsessed with the Earth, Air and Water Glyphstones mostly because of the movement types: burrowing through the solid stone, flying with perfect manuverability or swimming, with water breathing, at base land speed is really enciting for them.

Well with no intention to make a fellow DM's life harder I have to say the idea of anyone elses players being even close to obsessed with an item I made warms the cockles of crusty old heart. :)

All kidding aside though I can see how that could make logistics for a DM difficult especially the burrowing through solid stone. When I used this item in my own campaign the party found only one and it was keyed to Air. The Wizard PC never bothered to make anymore but he nearly destroyed the stone twice trying to decypher the glyphs on it. I had the other three created but what they really needed to get was in the air elemental colony site.

Cheliax RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4, Contributor

Sheyd wrote:


Well with no intention to make a fellow DM's life harder I have to say the idea of anyone elses players being even close to obsessed with an item I made warms the cockles of crusty old heart. :)

All kidding aside though I can see how that could make logistics for a DM difficult especially the burrowing through solid stone.

All of the kids in my gaming group THRIVE on complex logistics - we're the freak-shows who throw every rule we can find from Unearthed Arcana into the mix, along with chunks of Forgotten Realms, Oriental Adventures, Iron Kingdoms, "Tome of Magic", "Book of Nine Swords", Monte Cook's World of Darkness, Psionics, all the "Complete" books and, on occasion, the Chicago Sun-Times.

My boys want to be able to burrow into the earth, I'll figure out a way to let them do it. And you've given me a way to do that.

For which, might I add, I thank you.

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Sheyd

You are most welcome. :) It's nice to know an item of mine will outlive the campaign it was designed in/for.


Very creative and interesting item. Have some of the same mechanical concerns already mentioned. Good luck with your country I'm looking forward to seeing it.

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Sheyd

CastleMike wrote:
Very creative and interesting item. Have some of the same mechanical concerns already mentioned. Good luck with your country I'm looking forward to seeing it.

Thank you and I hope you like my country. :)

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