I've always thought that one of the things that makes Sorcerers and to a lesser extent Oracles hard to build archetypes for is that they already have archetypes built into their structure in the form of Bloodelines and Mysteries. Other than designing additional Bloodlines or Mysteries, there's not a whole lot of options out there.
Thomas LeBlanc wrote:
Aw Dang! My secret's out!
You win this round, LeBlanc!
I'm hoping I can do a better job of sticking to the boards so I can work along side you guys in the Blazing 9. I made a ton of mistakes in my first year trying out, and I want to knock out those imperfections as much as I can so that I can deliver a higher quality product next year.
Smiths must remove the dross to make their metals pure. It seems like a lofty goal, but I'm hoping to remove some of my own dross, so that I can achieve a stronger level of creativity for next year's competition.
**Disclaimer: the following are observations based off of the information available to me at the time. It is not meant to suggest anything about any of the contestants, their entries, or the judges. It is simply a bit of boredom induced fun, while looking at the Round 2 threads.**
I was just sitting around with a little time on my hands, reading through the Round 2 posts, when a thought entered in my head. "If the judges opinions were the only ones that counted, who would be going to Round 3?" So, finding myself in between things to do I decided to crunch a few numbers. I assigned each judges declarations of "I do", "I don't", and "Meh" with a numerical value. "I do" = 2, "Meh" = 1, and "I don't" = 0.
Here's what I came up with:
First, if it were totally up to the judges, this is who our Round 2 winners would be: Awakened, Everbloom Monk, Floodwalker, Forecaster, Gralton Infiltrator, Green Knight, Huckster, Outsea Delver, Red Adder Magus, Riverhelm, River Wrangler, Skinchanger, Uringen Assayer, Wandering Judge, Water-Born Votary, and Water Snake.
Secondly, I constructed a breakdown of which classes got the most judge-love during this round:
Turns out the Magus gets the most love with a 100% recommendation across the board. Of course, that's sort of easyish since there was only one Magus to vote on. 2nd place goes to the alchemist, who received 88% judge-love between 5 entries.
On the other hand, the Druid and the fighter are tied for the least amount of judge-love as they received 0% recommendations and not even a single "Meh". Sorry guys!
Finally, I did a little stats in facts on our judges:
SKR is a hard man to impress (and rightfully so). He only recommended approximately 41 % of the contestants to Round 3. Although it is important to note, that he always had a firm yes or no stance in the judging. His fence is pristine, unsmudged, and I imagine, frequently dusted.
Clark was a little more generous recommending exactly 50 % of the contestants into Round 3, and his fence is slightly used, although I imagine it's still looking pretty good.
Wolfgang recommended 28% of the contestants into Round 3, and at first glance it would seem as if he might be a tougher judge than SKR, however, that is not the case. Wolfgang prefers to hang back and let the voters sort it out, and so his "Meh" pile totalled up to around 38%.
Well, all, that's it for the stats and facts, and of course I use those terms loosely, as I an not a professional statistician or any other word that seems wierder when you type it than when you say it.
A good day to all, and wishes of good luck to all of the Top 32. Not all of you will be going to Round 3, but you're all awesome gamers, of which I am proud to be an electronically based acquaintance thereof.
Jacob W. Michaels wrote:
I really appreciate the time you took to review my item, Jacob, and thanks just as much for the warm welcome.
I fully agree with what your saying about needing more descriptive text to "sell" the item to the reader. My entry is overly lacking in that area, and the tinker gnome concept was definitely a foul ball. I should have labled it as something from Numeria, but that would have only fixed one issue and still not made for a superstar item.
It seems that the goal with creating an item for the competition is a lot like coming up with a new product you want to sell on the open market. 1) Find a need that is not already being addressed by the currently available products, 2) Make it sparkle, and 3)Describe it in such a way that makes the masses want ten of them. Not always an easy goal.
I wasn't as aware of the template issues, and I'm really glad that you pointed those out. I will look over them, as well as, checking out Anthony's thread. He is a great source of advice, and I will do my best to take that information and everything you said to heart for next year. I have been brainstorming more "mojo" filled concepts, and I think I have some pretty good ideas, so hopefully between now and next year I can present a highly polished gem for the competition.
Thanks again, Jacob. It has been a pleasure rubbing shoulders with all of the other very talented people who participated in this contest, and I can't wait to do it again next year!
I mean, Hi! Thank you so much GM Solspiral for looking at my item and giving it a review.....sorry, those silly Dragonlance gnomes took over again!
I'm glad you liked the item, enough to possibly tweak it and use in your own game. There was definitely a Dragonlance Gnome inspiration to the item as well as a Doctor Who inspiration.
This was my first year participating in the competition, and I just kind of pulled from what I knew for the item content so I could concentrate more on the mechanics and crunchy bits of the design. If you have any suggestions in that arena they would be highly appreciated as well.
I definitely see what you mean about the description of the item was a bit vague so it's hard to picture it in your mind. I will work on that in the future.
Thank you for taking the time to share your insights with all of us in Critique My Item land!
Clouds Without Water wrote:
Thanks for taking the time to look at my item, Clouds Without Water, and for giving me a little feedback.
The fact that tools are an underdeveloped area of focus in the Wondrous Item world was a bit of an accident. I wasn't particularly thinking of that when I made my item, however, it's a great point, and probably deserves some additional attention in the future.
The humming quality of the item, comes from a few places. First, we always hear about how magical items look, sometimes how they smell, but not as often how they sound (unless they are some kind of horn or musical instrument).
Secondly, my favorite gnomes from literature come from the Dragonlance RPG setting. They were a race of tinkerers who were constantly coming up with bigger, "better", and often more complicated inventions. Noise was a common feature of these items, and frequently you heard them before you saw them.
Thirdly, a borrowed the physical appearance and shape of the item from the sonic screwdriver as presented in the television series, Doctor Who, which also makes sound when it is used, so I just went ahead and tossed that in as well.
From a construction side to it. Nothing in the required construction involves a spell or a material that makes a lot of noise. I am wondering if I should have added a sound related spell to the construction requirements....although I'm not exactly sure which one I would have used.
Saint Caleth wrote:
I very much appreciate you taking the time to look at and review my item, Saint Caleth.
In my mind, this item was not really intended to be a joke item, although I certainly understand some people feel that it is. In this, my first year of the competition, I was very concerned with being able to follow the template design and master the various elements of professional grammar, punctuation, proper use of capitalization and italics, as well as making a mechanically sound item with a price that seemed to fit the function. Admittedly the content of the actual item was a bit secondary.
I am a long time fan of the Dragonlance setting. In that fantasy world, gnomes are much more mechanically inclined than they are in the Pathfinder setting. I do, however, imagine that a gnome, who was obsessed with mechanical type things in Golarion would probably want to invent one of these items, and would covet it's secrets highly.
I also borrowed the the physical shape, appearance, and special effect from the sonic screwdriver, because it is theoretically the ultimate multitool. To me, this item was basically the same thing. The tool to end the need for any other tools, so that is how I skinned it for general consumption.
I definitely appreciate, your thoughts, and thank you again, SC! If anyone has any comments regaring the mechanics of the item, the construction of the template, or other thoughts behind the crunchy bits, please let me know. I want to refine these areas during the year and then couple that with a much more original and fleshed out item for next year's RPGSS.
Hello to all!
I am finally just getting to submit my item here because apparently my only copy of the item I can find is the first draft I left at work. So, after updating it to the best of my memory to how it should have read when I submitted it, here is my item: The Gnomish Humming Spanner.
Gnomish Humming Spanner
This was my first year submitting to RPGSS, so I didn't really expect to get too far in. Thanks in advance for your thoughts, suggestions and constructive criticisms.
The message I'm receiving here is that Paizo's customers are too immature, childlike, unstable or not possessed of the requisite critical faculties to deal with competition. Have I misunderstood?
I think it's a bit more complicated than that, Raphael.
As some of our peers here have stated, one factor is that, while many of those competing in RPGSS have the maturity to take criticism, that can not be said for all of them, as has been made plain in previous years of the contest.
Another factor, is that while many people would be interested in seeing where they stood out in the rankings, many other people would not like to have that information, for whatever reason, and those wishes should be respected as well. There is a lot of stress that goes into competing, and there's certainly no reason to add another level of it for those who do not want it.
Finally, with the judges only releasing the Top 32, it allows us all to focus on celebrating the winners of the competition, and does not allow for part of the community (no matter how few they may be) to dwell on those who were the lowest ranking competitors. I have a feeling, that even done under the best intentions this would lead to arguments or other unsavory behaviour that is unfitting of this community, and it would detract from what makes this competition so cool and fun to participate in.
Anthony, Kudos to you sir! I am contemplating participating in The Blazing 9, after my first year submitting an entry for RPGSS, and I think your input would certainly help in eliminating some of the weak points in my design.
Not only is your offer "fair enough", but I'd say that dedication is more than many of us could ask for. If you haven't gathered from the response so far, your friendly candor and extracurricular activities on these boards are a bit of an inspiration.
And, I thank you!
Sounds a bit like the Doctor's sonic screwdriver!
Admittedly, I am a fan of The Doctor, so a bit of the design was very similar to the Sonic Screwdriver. I pulled from a few sources when I wrote it up.
Thomas LeBlanc wrote:
I remember your item now. It channels gnomes as depicted in Dragonlance and not Golarion or even the vanilla Corerules. Post it in the critique thread come Friday for more feedback.
Thanks for that, and I will! It's actually a bit of a relief to hear that someone saw it, and it wasn't immediately DQ'd.
The humming spanner was a bit of a multi tool. It offered a competence bonus on certain types of crafting checks (trap making, gunsmithing, etc.) as it would magically seal small working pieces together. It also allowed you to close something as per Hold Portal and unlock things as per knock. Finally it gave a competence bonus to disable device checks, and if you had the ability to disable magical traps from another source then you could use the spanner for that as well. It could be used by anyone, but were created specifically by gnomes.
Thanks Raphael. It's must appreciated. I have to admit it was a little bit of a SAK, however, it came from a couple of places that I loved. One of them being the old Dragonlance games we used to play where Gnomes where more tinkerers and engineers, rather than illusionists and fey creatures. Unfortunately, it would seem that my item must have gotten chunked in the BAD pile fairly early on. Oh well. There's always next go around.
Jack Burton wrote:
...and then you can rule the world from beyond the grave,...
Lo Pan wrote:
Jack Burton wrote:
...or check into a psycho ward, whichever happens first?
Sorry, everybody, I just love the classics! :D
And then there's always parallel universes.....
...oh I know, I can just have all of the "Me's" from all the parallel earth's vote for my item. I'll be a shoe in!
...Wait, what? I have to vote for all of the submissions made by all of my alternate selves, or they won't do it?
That's right! Vote for your item! That other contestant shouldn't have been coming up with something better than your idea anyway! You'll vote for your item, and that will knock him out of the running and they will rue the day they ever thought they could outsmart you! RUE, I say!
Wait, what? You mean they did the exact same thing and voted for their own submission too?
On the whole subject, of neat new ways of using the things we find in games:
I was running a game, where the halfling rogue of the party came across a ring of jumping, but had no clue what it was. Being the spontaneous sort that he was he just started pointing the ring at things making (various Green Lantern poses) and eventually made a Use Magic Device check, and failed horribly. As a result I had the ring throw him into a nearby wall.
From that point on, the halfling had convinced himself that he had found a ring of the ram (albeit one that worked in reverse). After various attempts to use the ring in the way he thought it was intended, he accidentally succeeded on his Use Magic Device check and ended up jumping on top of a nearby building. The act saved his life, but he was always a bit disappointed with the ring after that.
In my case I knew exactly what I wanted to make, until I broke down the cost for all of the different abilities, and saw how unfeasible everything was. A few trips to the drawing board later, and I finally ended up with something that looked like it might end up in somebody's module.
I guess it just goes to show you, some ideas are great on paper, and others are great until you put them on paper....or a word processor....whichever the case may be, lol.