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Tankard of the Cheerful Duelist.


Round 1 - Open Call: Create a Wondrous Item

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RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32, 2010 Top 8 , Star Voter 2013

Tankard of the Cheerful Duelist.
Aura faint evocation and conjuration; CL 5th
Slot none; Price 11,500 gp; Weight 1 lb. (empty)

Description
This worn pewter tankard often bears the symbol of Cayden Cailean. When carried or worn (for example, hanging on a belt) the mug provides a +1 luck bonus to amour class. If actively held in hand, this bonus increases to +2.
In addition, up to three times a day as a swift action, the tankard can change a full tankard of wine into a potion of cure light wounds. This potion must be consumed from the tankard in the next two rounds (a move equivalent action that draws an attack of opportunity) or the potion changes to vinegar. This is a command word activated effect. Finally, any alcohol in the tankard will not slosh or spill, no matter how violently the tankard is moved.

Construction
Requirements Craft Wondrous Item, divine favor, cure light wounds, prestidigitation; Cost 5750 gp

Designer, RPG Superstar Judge

I like that it has one bonus when carried and a better one when held in hand, that encourages you to use your offhand for something other than a weapon or shield.

I wonder what an "amour bonus" is, though! (Be sure proofread your submissions as well as spell-check them!)

The potion thing is cute and clever.

The overall price is about right, too.

Keep!

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

This is kind of funny. Its a good excuse for a combat bonus item with a healing potion added for good measure so long as you fill it with beer or wine before the fight.

But is funny good enough? I dont know yet.

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

This is another simple but elegant little item. I like that it draws in Golarion and runs with the Cayden Cailean theme, the potion thing is a nice touch, and it doesn't feel broken in any serious way. All the cooler that it encourages you to hold it - that's a neat effect I've never seen before.

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

In the end, I agree with Wes.

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

I just kept coming back to this one.

It plays with some fun things. Yes, we got a couple "drink potions from a cup" items this year. But this one was the best. What I love is that it encourages you to actually carry it. Most cup items tried to find silly ways around actually having to hold the cup--like magically sticking to surfaces. No, if you are going to do this, then do it. Commit to it. An item doesnt have to do everything. It can have limits. Like if you want this, you gotta really hold it. And it makes for the drunk dwarf fighter schtick. RPG Goodness all the way.

Great fun item. Not the best, but very very good.

RPG Superstar 2009, Contributor

I like this item! A lot!

I read the description and I can immediately envision the avatar of Cayden Cailean himself using this item...or perhaps an earlier version of the hero before he ascended into divinity. Even beyond that, any priest or follower of Cayden Cailean could benefit from carrying this mug. Flavor-wise, I give it high marks. Integrating it so tightly into Golarion-themed lore and getting all those bits right, definitely helps. You took a risk there and it paid off.

On the mechanical front, I love both the luck bonus aspect to armor class...and, as the judges mentioned...the fact that the bonus increases the more risk you're willing to take by forgoing a shield or a second weapon in your off-hand. In essence, this lets you give up a shield bonus or Two-Weapon Defense bonus to AC in exchange for a luck bonus (which applies to both your touch and flat-footed AC). Very cool idea! And, again, very much in-character for the deity around which this item is based.

Also, the additional effect for changing wine into a potion of cure light wounds, but giving it a limited amount of time in which it can be consumed before it loses the effect, is spot-on. Again, it resonates well with the Cayden Cailean theme. And we get some more flavor text and style points with the mug's never-spill ability. That's Superstar-quality ingenuity from a writing perspective in my book!

About the only nitpicks I might have for this item would concern the "amour" typo that Sean cited. Also, you should alphabetize the list of spells in the construction requirements so that cure light wounds comes before divine favor. Same should probably go for conjuration over evocation in the Aura entry, too. But these are small details.

What really matters is you've joined the ranks of RPG Superstar now. You designed a really great item. I could see an immediate use for it in the game. It's flavorful and whimsical without being overly comical. And you've matched the right blend of rules-fu with entertaining writing and design. My only advice for future rounds would be to provide us with more of the same and watch out for those small details so you can polish your submissions to the highest professional sheen possible. Best of luck!

Osirion RPG Superstar 2009 Top 4 , Star Voter 2013 aka raidou

This is an entertaining item that does a good job joining flavor, utility, and simple mechanics. As already mentioned, it's not overpriced or over-designed. It's one of those things that makes you say "...of course those things would be found on Cayden Cailean's adventurers." We've seen mugs or tankards that create potions in other sources, I'm sure. So the core effect is not groundbreaking. It's the way that this combines the luck bonus with the Golarion flavor (and the prestidigitation effect) that really makes me like this item.

I don't think the move-equivalent to drink from this is quite right. It's a standard action to drink a potion, and I'm not sure this magic item needs to be an exception to that. Also, the +2 luck bonus probably requires a caster level of 6th. (minimum caster level for the base Divine Favor spell). However, these are both minor personal quibbles on an otherwise fun and functional item.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 4 aka K. B. Carter

Congrats on making it to RPG Superstar 2010! I asked myself the same three questions for each of the top 32 items. Here are my responses to your item:

Would this wondrous item unbalance or over-complicate my game if my PCs were to find it and use it?
I don't think this item is unbalanced, but, hmmm, I don't like things that give permanent luck bonuses, mostly because the next logical extension of this kind of design is to keep inventing newer and newer abstract categories of bonuses that come from more and more wondrous items... karma bonuses ... constellation bonuses... divine favor bonuses... and eventually you have defeated the whole elegant purpose of having a limited number of AC bonus categories in the first place. I'm not saying you can never have an item confer a luck bonus; I'm just saying it should be done sparingly and carefully. Since the tankard seems meant to be used in place of shield, why not just make it a shield bonus instead… or even an armor bonus (since Cayden's followers often fight bare-chested anyway)?

Would my PCs be happy with this item if they were to find it during an adventure?
The x3 free healing potions a day reminds me a lot of 4E's healing surge system, which my players actually like a lot (it's a great way take the burden off the healer who otherwise has to use all his spell slots on the walking wounded). So yes, I can see this item going over well with my PCs, though it would largely be used out of combat to recover between battles. I think it’s great for this reason.

Do I like the mojo? Does the item spark other ideas for my campaign?
Alcohol is actually a mild poison, so I'm not sure why it's healing people in this case. I know Cayden makes alcoholism work for him, and I get that this is magically transmuted booze, but in my experience, alcohol doesn't fortify anyone; it does the opposite in fact (though it is a lot of fun). Seems like a slight mechanic-thematic mismatch here.

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

Matthew, you rock man! Reaching top 32 two years in a row, I can only saluate you!

By the way: maybe you should design wondrous items professionaly?


Well done! Amour Class indeed!

Hey, if your are say...a pewter mug toting Iconic who worships Cayden Cailean, this is the item for you! I could certainly picture Valeros or any number of other worshipers TWFing with Sword and Mug...

This actually makes me want to see a TWFer with this Mug and the Catch Off-Guard feat. And to think, you need never worry about spilling your drink! And you can change it into a healing potion in a pinch as well..provided you don't wait too long.

Great item, great theme.

Osirion

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Hey...Wine has resveratrol in it. That's supposed to make you live longer :)

This is my favorite item out of what I have read so far and fits in nicely with Golarion!

Contributor, RPG Superstar 2010 Top 4

Congraulations Matthew! You did it again! Glad we both made it, and I wish you the best of luck!

Paizo Employee Developer , Dedicated Voter 2014

I like this one a lot! Well done, Matthew.


Easily one of my top 3 items this round. Good work!

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 , Star Voter 2014

Valeros's Lucky Tankard gets stats!

Qadira

This item is fantastic.
This incites visions of many a memorable roleplaying moment.
Tavern room brawl? No problem, you need not even put down your cup!

The first thought I had was of Porthos (Three Musketeers) dueling valiantly with this in his hand.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32, 2010 Top 8 , Star Voter 2013

Thank you for the criticism. Guess I should have stuck with Armour and not tried to fix it. *hangs head in shame*

This has been in the back of my head since last year, and yes, Swashbuckler and Valeros came to be my inspiration.

I'd not thought about bludgeoning folks with this.


Umm, this item looks like a variation of the Tankard of the Drunken Hero (Page 60, Gods & Magic) to me.
Apparently the judges consider it sufficiently different to be original, however.

Edit:
Congratulations, however, on reaching the top 32. I may be unduly biased due to a recollection of some controversy surrounding your item last time.


This would also be fun for any drunken master style monks.

Very great item, now I just need to summon a tiny beer elemental to sit in it and assist me in fights, assuming I don't drink him by accident.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32, 2010 Top 8 , Star Voter 2013

belial33 wrote:

This would also be fun for any drunken master style monks.

Very great item, now I just need to summon a tiny beer elemental to sit in it and assist me in fights, assuming I don't drink him by accident.

Then your beer elemental takes levels of bard...

"He smacked me! With a mug! That was... singing?"

Qadira RPG Superstar 2010 Top 16, Contributor

Matthew,

Very cool item, I would have never thought to make a libido enhancing item for an RPG SS item but you put it all out there and made it work!

Ok seriously, typo aside, great item. Even if you don't appreciate the Cayden tie in this item is really just cool. The pricing seems pretty spot on and the overall, more important I can see my character picking this up and wouldn't be concerned about giving it to my players.

Good job and I look forward to your upcoming entries!

Osirion RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4; Contributor; Publisher, Legendary Games

I've only had time to read a couple of these so far, but this one really tickles me and makes me want to drop it into a treasure hoard soon. It puts the fun in FUNctional! :)

RPG Superstar 2010 Top 16 aka tejón

There's a cleric of Cayden in the group I'm playing with right now.

If he reads this, he'll want one. Of course, he'd have to trade pretty much everything he owns for it...

...yeah, he'll want one.

RPG Superstar 2013 Top 8 , Marathon Voter 2013, Star Voter 2014 aka Demiurge 1138

I like it. It's similar to the tankard of the drunken hero in that it's a magical mug of Cayden Calien, but they're different enough that I think they could both fit in the same world. Or in the same adventurer's belt pouch, if he's a two-fisted drinker.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32 aka Lord Fyre

Sean K Reynolds wrote:
I wonder what an "amour bonus" is, though! (Be sure proofread your submissions as well as spell-check them!)

I don't know. Have you seen Cayden Cailean's herald? With a babe like that, I definitely would want all the "amour" bonuses I could get! :)

Otherwise, this is a great item that finds inovative ways to expliot some low level spells.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32, 2010 Top 8 , Star Voter 2013

When the wine goes on in, and dribbles down your chin, that's amour.
When the mug goes clank and Cayden you thank, that's amour!

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 16 , Marathon Voter 2013, Marathon Voter 2014 aka MythrilDragon

Matthew Morris wrote:

When the wine goes on in, and dribbles down your chin, that's amour.

When the mug goes clank and Cayden you thank, that's amour!

LOL!!

This item is all about the fun you can have with your character. GREAT JOB on making it in agian, Good Luck this year!

Osirion RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32 aka flash_cxxi

Ross Byers wrote:
Valeros's Lucky Tankard gets stats!

First thing I thought of.

I really like this item a lot. I've never had the urge to play a worshipper of Cayden Cailean before, but this item has changed that so hats off to you for that.

Congratulations Matthew on making it in a second time.

Andoran

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Very clever and inspiring item Matthew. I like this a lot, and as others have commented, can totally see Valeros using this!

Well done on making the Top 32 (again!) and good luck in future rounds.


Congrats, Matt! Now I just need one of these in RL for those tailgating festivites during college football season. :D

"C'mere ya wolverine. Have a sip...."

Andoran RPG Superstar 2011 Top 32 aka Bats Kabber

Well Done!!

I must admit, I want one of these!!


Congratulations on making top 32 again.

Charles Evans 25 wrote:

Umm, this item looks like a variation of the Tankard of the Drunken Hero (Page 60, Gods & Magic) to me.

Apparently the judges consider it sufficiently different to be original, however.

Edit:
Congratulations, however, on reaching the top 32. I may be unduly biased due to a recollection of some controversy surrounding your item last time.

Agreed, I instantly thought the same thing

Shadow Lodge Contributor, RPG Superstar 2010 Top 8 aka Benchak the Nightstalker

This item just plain fun! I think Golarion needs more drunk PCs.

Taldor RPG Superstar 2010 Top 16, 2011 Top 32 , Star Voter 2013, Star Voter 2014

Drunken sword fighting makes James happy! I have a character that would LOVE to have this. Congrats!

Qadira RPG Superstar 2009 Top 8 aka Tarren Dei

Xaaon of Korvosa wrote:

Congratulations on making top 32 again.

Charles Evans 25 wrote:

Umm, this item looks like a variation of the Tankard of the Drunken Hero (Page 60, Gods & Magic) to me.

Apparently the judges consider it sufficiently different to be original, however.

Edit:
Congratulations, however, on reaching the top 32. I may be unduly biased due to a recollection of some controversy surrounding your item last time.

Agreed, I instantly thought the same thing

Matthew's item is significantly different from the Tankard of the Drunken Hero. It's a similar type of item--the same way my 'Horn of the Dark Hunt' was a horn--but it is a different item.

I look forward to seeing what Matthew comes up with for his monster.


Wow!
Now, THATS what i call a god-themed item, Not just some cleric or spell in a can item, that somewhat lends its powers from the domains or dogma or realm of one specific god, but an item the actual God, were he a simple mortal Adventurer ( this one was in fact) would carry around, specifically crafted for him, of course.


K. B. Carter wrote:


Do I like the mojo? Does the item spark other ideas for my campaign?
Alcohol is actually a mild poison, so I'm not sure why it's healing people in this case. I know Cayden makes alcoholism work for him, and I get that this is magically transmuted booze, but in my experience, alcohol doesn't fortify anyone; it does the opposite in fact (though it is a lot of fun). Seems like a slight mechanic-thematic mismatch here.

That was the one thing I thought when reading the description, that maybe an Aid spell might be more appropriate?

Overall I liked the item, it has a nice sense of flavor about it.

Cheliax

This is a nice item.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber

The roleplay potential of fighting with a saber in one hand whilst holding an unspillable tankard from which to sip a cure potion is too wonderful. Great item!

Andoran Contributor, RPG Superstar 2012 , Star Voter 2013, Marathon Voter 2014

Nice tie-in with the Pathfinder campaign world without forcing it. I saw just the name and immediately thought "Cayden Cailean", and I was rewarded nicely when I read the item.

This is proof that you don't have to have something way out there to make it to the top 32.

Congratulations and good luck on the next round.

Osirion

My favorite aspect is the ale or wine not sloshing if used in combat. :)

But the armor class bonus is perfect, rewarding the character for not carrying a shield.

Grand Lodge

I guess I can console myself in the fact that "great minds think alike".

*shakes fist*
Damn you for thinking similarly yet better than me.

*cough*
Very nice item.


Matthew Morris wrote:
Tankard of the Cheerful Duelist.

Not much to add to this one, except that I really liked this item and am placing it in a treasure hoard for my own game tonight. It's well-priced, useful, has some quirky mechanics (I love the vinegar-producing drawback) and fits into virtually any campaign setting. Bravo.

Osirion

This item was exactly what the name told me it was - full of win!

Osirion

This one is neat. It makes me wonder if this is the tankard that Cayden is holding in his avatar picture.

congrats on the top 32, good luck next round!

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32, 2010 Top 8 , Star Voter 2013

How we got here: Tankard of the Cheerful Duelist.

Blame the Marx Brothers.
In A Night at the Opera there is a scene where Harpo is to be killed by a Nazi with a rapier. Harpo dresses for combat with a full set of catcher’s garb, which the bad guy promptly slices off. Much slapstick ensues culminating in Harpo falling into a defensive routine where he’s standing there, fending off the attacks of the Nazi while eating a sandwich he pulled from his trenchcoat of holding. As a fan of all things Marx (Brothers, not Karl) I loved this image. So when Wayne Reynolds drew Valeros with his mug, and you had a god of swashbucklers, I knew this would be the next item. This gag also shows up in Mel Brooks' Men in Tights, so maybe it should only work on kosher wine?

Pity the poor duelist.
TWF gives you attacks galore. THF gives you extra damage. Sword-and-board gives you a good AC, and a bunch more armor abilities. What does the poor duelist get? Jacked, that’s what. So the idea was to reward the Errol Flynn type. The luck bonus (found in the Pathfinder RPG, since it already exists, the ‘making new kind of bonuses’ argument falls flat) gets that done. The reduced luck bonus while carrying is to make the cup something that everyone can benefit from, not just yelling “yoo-hoo! One weapon fighter, I choose you!”

Alcohol makes me stronger *hic*.
Again, not far of the Marx. The cup allows the fighter to heal himself, at the cost of not moving and sacrificing a full attack. The swift action to make, move action to drink combo allows the swashbuckler to fight defensively but not have to withdraw. As to the alcohol is a poison bit… well Transubstantiation is a common theme in religion, and it’s magic.

Special Effects.
Who wouldn’t want a mug that doesn’t spill? We’ve had countless designs in the real world to create such a thing, and many a comedy skit is based on trying to keep something from spilling. The vinegar ‘expiration date’ bit is designed to keep the tankard from being an out of combat potion factory, and to show the displeasure of letting good wine go to waste. ;-)

Overall, thank you everyone for critiquing my item. Those who use it in their games, I hope it goes over as well. Look soon for the ‘grease paint of leadership’ that when used to make eyebrows and a mustache gives the wearer a charisma bonus and a wisdom penalty.

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