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RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32. 114 posts. No reviews. No lists. No wishlists.


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RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

The Earl of Sandwich wrote:
This competition has kept me entertained for weeks. I hope the writer's strike ends the minute the winner is announced. Otherwise I might have too much free time on my hands. But the writers in this contest have kept me interested and entertained for the duration. I would like thank a few of the contestants who, while not making it to the final round, have added to my campaign and my enjoyment of gaming. Eric Anderson, William Cronk, Joel Flank, Hal MacLean, and Joe Outzen, please take a bow. Kudos!

Thanks Earl. Out of curiosity can I ask what you used?

WC

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

Wassail to the top 4.

I can not wait to see what you give us next!!!

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

Thanks Clarke, I appreciate the compliment, it means a lot. Hopefully next year if you do this again I will be able to rise a little further than I did this year :)

I have to admit, I have walked away from this with a greater love for the hobby and a lot more interest in making my writing that much better than it was before.

WC

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

We finally got MONKEY GOBLINS. And a low EL. Stolen. Voted. Gonna use tomorrow night.

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32

Radavel, I owe you an apology. With work and home life as it is, I have been unable to do just about anything. I really was hoping to be able to get involved in this game, but as you can see, this is the first time I have had to post, let alone make and post a character. I am sorry. Hope the game goes well.

WC

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32

Kislevite Kossar. Stats will be up tonight.

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32

i'LL HAVE MY CHARACTER INTO YOU TONIGHT AS WELL IF ALL GOES WELL.

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

Hey James,

Just wanted to let you know that I am using Stained Peaks (along with Neil's Vramaire and my land)in an upcoming campaign. I'll keep ya posted as to how it goes.

WC

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

Hey Neil,

Wanted to let you know we are about to embark on a game in this country. I'll keep you posted as to how it goes. The world actually has your land, the Stained Peaks and mine. It may have a few of the others as well as I'm still tweaking it :)

WC

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32

First of all, an apology. Sorry its taken so long to get back to you. Holidays, illness and work load. Enough said.

Second, I want to play, but work and life have thrown a number of curves and I am busy until mid January. IF you are alright for someone to join then, I can send a character off to you, if not, that's cool, and thanks for the consideration.

Let me know, and talk to you soon.

WC

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

It just goes to show that the best way to get new material is to say to someone, 'its all been done before, you can't find something new."

BTW did any of the top 16 use or have they ever heard of the Villains Handbook for Kingdoms of Kalamar?

I love this contest. It has made me look at my normal gaming style and push it that much further. And I gave become a Bommer fan :)

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

Looking forward to the monsters guys and gal. Great work and keep it going. Can't wait to see what your Dew riddled brains come up with next!!!

WC

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

Sharoth wrote:
Jason Nelson 20 wrote:
Sharoth wrote:
One of my friends drew / painted me a really cool Iron Man and his wife framed it for me.

Sweet.

That reminds me, the I don't know if the movie will end up being any good or not, but the teaser trailer for Iron Man: Awesome.

I am SO looking foreward to Iron Man the movie. Especially since Iron Man used to be onve of my favorite characters.

Definitely one of my favourite songs!!! Hey how about a War Pig for a monster :)

Best gift I got was the ability to spend time with all three of my nephews. it was a blast :)

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32

Cool. I have a huge Kislevite army and love it. Like the archer steppe nomad type. Can't help it. Will see what I can do, and as I said, let you know after Christmas. Have a good holiday by the way :)

WC

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32

Moff Rimmer wrote:
Kobold Cleaver wrote:
Really, the Golden Compass becoming a movie. I imagine that everyone is going to be having something to say about that, negative or positive.

I was wondering when this might get brought up...

I have not read the books. My wife has. All the research that I have done with these books seem to point that the author (Phillip Pullman) really, really, really has something against Christians. Even most non-christians that have read the 3rd book in the series feel that it really is a bit over the top.

There are a lot of other elements in the book(s) that I am sure will provide a lot of controversy (12 year olds having sex is a 'good' thing, familiars being called "demons", priests killing babies, etc.), but I don't know that I really care about any of that -- it is a fantasy story after all. I personally don't care what he writes -- I just will find it difficult to support someone that has that much of an agenda against Christians. (Which is really too bad because I am sure that it will be a fantastic movie.)

I've read all three books and consider myself a Christian. The first book was decent and I liked it, even though the 'Church' in it are the bad guys right from the start. The second and third books took this and hit you over the head with it harder than a mule kick. All in all, not impressed, not just because of my own beliefs, but because of the heavy handed treatment of the book. I like subtlety. Guy Gavrial Kay is my favourite writer. he is good at subtle, and is good at religious conflict and has a religion that is Christian in some lights. He does it well. Pullman, I don't know.

As for the D&D bothers, my dad has issues, but as he has said, it is my life, and i can do what I want. Where I have had more problems has been from working for Games Workshop. We had people continuously asking us if we were Nazis. It really gets to you after a while. We also had the evil demon worshiping spawn, and Warhammer and Warhammer 40k aren't even role playing games.

So to summarize, I understand where everyone here is coming from, but at the same time, a lot of the negative energy against gaming is due to lack of education, and in return, not wanting to be educated. After all, as we have seen in gaming, the story is better if there is a bad guy.

WC

*EDIT
Call me a hypocrite but I will probably see the movie, if for anything, the armoured bears.

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32

Our current low level campaign is very straight forward in its lay out:

All spell casters must roll a Spellcraft check (or if they are a divine caster a Ceremony check. Ceremony being a new skill for divine casters)vs a set DC based on the spell being cast. To gain spells the spellcasters have to study from existing books of magical philosophies or religious merit to gain their spells. Many low level spells are common, but as the casters want to learn higher level spells, things become harder, as the people who know the higher level stuff guard them with their lives, and usually want the characters to do quests in return for knowledge.

Creating a magic item costs a permanent amount of either Hit Points or Constitution or both (won't get into the math) as the creator is putting a piece of their life essence into the item to power it .

Also, magic items loose power over time.

That's the basics. its working well so far. No real changes to mechanics, just a little tweak here or there.

WC

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32

Well let me make sure I can commit, and if so, and if you want an extra person, I am in. Should be able to let you know by Thursday. Any particular races or careers you want? If not do you mind a Kislevite? Let me know if this is all kosher.

WC

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

Joyeaux Noel et Bonne Annee mes amis... Merry Christmas and Happy New Year my friends.

(As a side note, if English isn't your first tongue and you celebrate the holidays, tell us how you say Merry Christmas :)

Have a safe and pleasant holiday everyone.

WC

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32

Having never done this before, but owning a copy of every edition of WFRP and having worked for GW for eight years, I am very interested. I just need to know what kind of commitment and how we do this, that's all.

WC

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

Chris Mortika wrote:

There's an entry over there in the "villains famous last words" thread. Something like: "Here, hold my ale. This is going to be fun."

And it made me think of a big rough guy in a seedy dockside dive, about to go over and shove the newbie PC's around and show them who's boss.

And if he were, say, three levels higher than the PC's, and had some skill in intimidation and unarmed combat, and could get the ret of the patrons on his side, I think he'd be able to give the party a miserable evening.

And a couple of sessions later, when they needed information down at the docks, he'd be the crew foreman they'd wind up talking to. And he'd just turn them down flat, laughing at them as he walked away.

A couple sessions after that, they'd take a ship to a remote adventure site, and their equipment would have been loaded improperly. Expensive magical equipment would be missing or ruined, and their rations would have been despoiled.

They'd hate him.

But, yeah, a 5th level thug (that's SRD) dockhand would be a dull villain to stat up. And making him a half-fiend rakshasa assassin in disguise would ruin him.

I think this is exactly what the villains here needed. A bit of background and a step by step what they are up to, and then their motives.

Here this guys motives are 'be a bully' he is 'mean because he can be' and he is a recurring villain that will be a pain in the characters sides.

Why he is like this is background.

I think this can be done in 500 words, but I am unsure.

Maybe I'm off base, but it makes sense.

WC

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

Too many times I've played in games where the only guys that were interested in the Psionics were the twinks and power gamers who wanted to make their uber characters capable of destroying all, thus leaving us role players behind. I have never met a role player (save one and he was a min-maxer) who liked them.

That said, after looking at the villains and reading this thread, I may just have to look at them for my own games.

This has been an interesting thread guys, and something I think we have all discussed over a drink or two at least once.

WC

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

I keep finding myself rereading this one. I don't know why, but I do. I like it. I am unsure why, but I like it.

WC

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

I have an odd question, and this just might be me and my gaming style, but did it seem like most of the contestants went for odd monster and as many levels as they could of weirdness. Some of the contestants seemed to go for the most oddball combos just to prove they could do the math. I understand the reasoning for this, but still. I like the lower CR villain / critters personally (although Boomers has me, its SO over the top, that its cool).

It just seemed to me that a lot of the villains work just as well being human. Again this is personal playing style and not really a grip. I know that as a low level, few monster, role player that many of the over the top (to me) critters and such seem a little too much.

That said, it was a hard round, and everyone submitted on time, so something has to be said for that.

WC

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

Quite decent and rather pleasant. I like it. This has a lot of potential in my own campaign with a few tweaks. Cool.

WC

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

I like this villain. I like her a lot. It must be the fascination I have with Victorian England, but I do like her. Now, is she worthy of a vote. I'll let ya know when I am done reading the others, but she is on her way.

WC

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

This (and that Boomer kid) are the first time I have EVER wanted to use psionics. Kudos indeed. Vote garnered and earned!

WC

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

I like her, in some ways. She reminds me of a nature loving slaneeshi daemonette. That said, I am still mulling her over. I'll have to see. Cool idea though.

WC

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

I like it Boomer. Not my usual taste for bad guys (low level magic games, that's me), but... I like it... This will probably get a vote from me.

Oh, and I too loved the wishes.

WC

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

But you're not my faithful underling...

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

Matthew Morris wrote:

Nto to further derail, but under Clairmont's X-men run in the 80's I learned Shakespear, Spartans, and countless other cultural references. I also learned patience and how plots can take years to develop.

Oh, and subtlity, like how Rogue's powers weren't 'always on' when Carol was in control of the body.

...and you were left with a million unanswered plot lines and boring characters like... DAZZLER...

My 2 cents worth (Dark Horse and the Indies baby)

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

Good luck to you all!

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

jocundthejolly wrote:
I'm guessing someone might try the non-evil villain. Maybe even a good-aligned villain, like a fanatical LG priest of Pholtus whose mission is to stamp out heresy at any cost.

Ah... but then he'd be LN and not LG, as the LG person would look at the situation, and in the end, compassion would prevail.

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

I looked at the website as well, and it seems to be legit. I'll also send off an email. Like Clark said, no harm in contacting them. In the end you can always say 'No'.

WC

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

Not to be the bad apple, but, does anyone know anything about this particular company? Always good to do a bit of research before you go throwing your hard work at someone. If they are legit and look good, then by all means, sign us up. I will see what I can find out, but if anyone knows anything, please let us know.

That said, thanks Joel for posting this. It is very cool and it may be a chance to put to the test some of the lessons we have learned.

WC

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

I threw my rewrite in the thread of my country so as to not clutter the board. Your call really though.

WC

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

Now that we (the contestants that have not carried on and the community in general) are aware of what the judges and community wants, I believe Paizo and the publications that the Judges are part of (Wolfgang :) are probably going to get a lot more queries for their slush pile. Of course I could be wrong :)

WC

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

@Starglim and Mythfish

Thanks for reading the rewrite, glad you liked it.

Starglim, I agree, but I had so much feedback that the item was 'unbalanced' that I changed it. My point for the stones had always been that the goddess was dead and that because a bit of her essence was in the stones, the stone GAVE the power of cleric levels. Hence, if you lost the stone, you lost the connection to the goddess. It made for some cool role playing stuff, but I guess I was the only one that saw the stones that way. Oh well.

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

magdalena thiriet wrote:
Spar wrote:

Thanks for giving the rewrite a read. As for the Nanai, I know a little bit(heard the name in a gaming supplement called Frost and Fur) but not a lot. Looks like I may have to look a little further :)

Main idea is that Nanai, shamanist people in eastern Siberia, have a ritual called Kasa Taori where the shaman guides the spirits of the dead to Underworld. The problem is that Stalin had qualified Nanai shamans killed in mid-30's (same happened with many other people around the same time) so after that spirits of dead have walked among the living and world is generally going to worse, their lifestyle is failing, more and more people commit suicides etc.

(even though Kasa Taori was performed to specific dead spirits, all the dead were supposed to follow when it was performed so it wasn't done separately for every dead person).

Makes me wonder, why there isn't more ancestral worship in RPGs, it comes in many interesting flavors...

Very interesting. This is a lot closer to the original concept I had for my country. As for the ancestor worship in RPG's, I have a world that I have been working on for a while that has a major empire that is nothing but ancestor worship. Their whole society revolves around lineage and knowing one's ancestors. They believe the only way to be immortal is to be remembered, and that their ancestors are the foundation of who they are. They are a VERY traditional people who use necromancy to talk to dead relatives and make sure they stay true to the path their ancestors had founded.

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

I just wanted to say thanks to those who did vote for Malar. I hope you have fun with the rewrite and enjoy the other countries. If any of the Top 16 read this, Good Luck. If the Judges read this, Thank You. This has been a blast all.

WC

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

Congratulations to the top 16. WAY TO GO!!!!

WC

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

magdalena thiriet wrote:

Yes, rewrite improved things considerably.

And I am still amused of the idea of restless dead souls. Are you by any chance familiar with shamanism in Siberia? Because I saw once a documentary of Nanai people who (believe they) have that very problem...

Thanks for giving the rewrite a read. As for the Nanai, I know a little bit(heard the name in a gaming supplement called Frost and Fur) but not a lot. Looks like I may have to look a little further :)

Thanks Magdalena,

WC

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

SargonX wrote:

William, as a fellow hobgoblin devotee, I thought Malar had great potential. As others have said, the choice of Malar as a name was unfortunate, but of course you can't expect everyone to know about everything that's been published.

I also think the hobgoblins should have been mentioned right from the outset. I can see why you may have done it as a surprise reveal, and can understand the appeal of that, but since they provide the key context for everything else, it should have been clear from the start. (Of course, I don't know your real reasons for doing it that way, so feel free to ignore me if I'm completely off base.)

I did enjoy the new take on hobgoblins, and even better, this wasn't an obvious militaristic, expansionist, hobgoblin empire, but the remains of one. That was an inspired choice, and made it much more interesting.

I haven't had time to read your rewrite yet, but I definitely will. Good luck to you!

You're right, I went for the shock value of the nation being hobgoblins. Very sloppy I realize, but I thought it might work. It was a gamble.

As for the hobgoblin nation, my players have played in a similar area where the crumbled empire wasn't elven or dwarven or human, but goblin. I had set up a world that had been conquered and reconquered by the hobgoblins a number of times, and all the great ancient ruins were to the hobgoblin pantheon. It made for a fun game and I wanted to try and catch some of that here. Oh well. Looking forward to your take on the rewrite. Thanks for sharing.

WC

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

Waiting is a major part of life :)

Good luck everyone, looking forward to what will appear next :)

WC

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

Well said Joel, well said!

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

Chris Mortika wrote:
Spar wrote:

As promised, the rewrite. Please tell me what you think.

Kunrasha, “The Shattered Empire”

I think it's tremendously improved. Nice job.

I wonder, though, about your first DM secret. You now have anyone in possession of a shard gaining thedemonic template.

Even non-hobgoblins? Does the change happen instantly? Does it affect my alignment? Do I get rid of the template if I set the shard down, or have atonement cast on me?

I thought the idea that it would be a cleric's focus worked pretty well. This makes those shards super-charged.

Good point. I saw them as slowly taking over the character. Also, because the character has the template, the Kovor of Bashkeran will be looking for people who seem to have gained the template. Who knows what he will throw at the characters to get the stone back.

That said, I have always felt that the DM secrets area should be suggestions, not hard and fast rules. Let the DM set the tone for his world based on the idea in the section. My two cents worth.

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

As promised, the rewrite. Please tell me what you think.

Spoiler:

Kunrasha, “The Shattered Empire”

Introduction

Two hundred years ago, the powerful Kunrasha Empire crumbled in a bloody year of conflict. The empire had begun when the tribal hobgoblins of the Myra Hills began to organize around a cleric of the goddess Kunra. She was a harsh and jealous goddess who demanded complete devotion; but in return she gifted her people with knowledge and power. Her clerics became powerful leaders amongst her followers who began to call themselves the Irkunri, Kunra’s Children. As their confidence in their own power grew, the Irkunri began to raid their neighbours. Raids soon became wars. Kingdoms fell. The Empire grew until it covered a third of the world. Conquered lands were forced to follow Kunra’s teachings, abide by her clerics and speak her language.

Many of the conquered peoples despised the tyrannical Irkunri, praying secretly to their old gods. It was these prayers that sealed the fate of the Empire. It is said that the gods approached Kunra and demanded she release those that she had so harshly enslaved. She refused, stating that if the gods could not protect their people, then those people deserved to be conquered. Enraged by her arrogance, the other gods slew her. She fell from the sky as a great burning orb, impacting with the Myra Hills in a shower of debris and flame that destroyed her. Deprived of their god, Kunra’s clerics became powerless. Leaderless and confused the Irkunri faltered as the other gods rallied the conquered peoples. The Empire fractured and collapsed as Kunra’s faithful fled to the place where she had died.

Today, Kunrasha is a shattered empire stubbornly clinging onto the old traditions of a dead deity.

The Peoples

The Irkunri are mostly hobgoblins, though humans, goblins, orcs and half-orcs also call themselves Kunri’s children. They are a sullen people, blunt and stand offish, but hard working with a driving need to prevail. Their pride is evident when dealing with others. They adhere stubbornly to tradition and are reluctant to change their ways, even if it means that they may be saved.

The Land

Kunrasha is a barren, rugged, and rocky scrubland, bordered by the Borund Ocean to the west, the Wyrmhewn Mountains to the north, and the desolate Akthelan Plains to the east. Armies of the once conquered realms march across the Akthelan Plains to finish off the Irkunri, but none have succeeded yet. South of the mountains in the Myra Hills, the great Kadabora Crater resides. It is here that the goddess fell. The crater has become the most holy of sites for the Irkunri. Those who are loyal to the memory of the dead goddess visit the crater.

The Cities

Kunrasha’s few settlements are port and mining towns or defensive strongholds. Most Irkunri live in rural areas as nomadic herders. Four great cities still remain. Bashkeran, a coastal city, was the capital of Kunrasha at the Empire’s peak. Once housing over 300,000 people of all races; it is now but a mere 20,000, its great estates and temples lying in ruin. The expanding port city of Kulkeran holds an estimated 17,000. It is a cosmopolitan city of merchants and traders from every kingdom, intent on trading for the superior Irkunri steel. The stronghold of Tarkimet has a garrison of 4,000 that defend the Novkor Pass, the only route into Kunrasha through the Wyrmhewn Mountains. Finally, the capital city Kadaboran, a massive ramshackle city of over 200,000, that has grown around Kadabora Crater’s edge to house the influx of pilgrims to the crater. The city is sorely lacking in amenities and infrastructure.

The Government

The immortal Bropok (Widower) Undard Volorkis, the last cleric of Kunra, rules the Irkunri. He is a serious and focused individual, festering with the hatred of the gods that had killed his beloved Kunra. He is the final authority on all things. His advisors are made up of the Kovor (Governors) and the Hepar (Generals). The Kovor rule the cities and the settlements in the cities’ immediate vicinity with a firm hand, while the Hepar rule the strongholds with strict military efficiency. The rest of Kunrasha is split into tribal districts, each ruled by the most prominent local family. The general alignment of the realm is lawful evil.

DM’s Secrets

When Kunra impacted with the Myra Hills, her essence was infused into pieces of the crater’s debris. Anyone possessing one of these essence stones gains the fiendish template.

The souls of the Irkunri no longer have a deity to guide them to the afterlife. They walk the world as ethereal undead, looking for a way to cross over. They feel compelled to go to their deity’s final resting place. Thus, the crater is full of the souls of two centuries worth of Irkunri dead and many undead are seen walking the lands.

The Bropok gains his immortality and clerical powers from the crater of souls. He must remain within a few miles of the crater or his power fades.

The Bropok’s head advisor, the Kovor of Bashkeran, Tragurn Kovolik has come to the conclusion that the essence stones may be able to bring the goddess back by placing them in the crater. He is trying to collect all the stones so he may see his plan through at all costs.

The Kovor of Kulkeran, Ravreg Vars is becoming more and more disillusioned with the old ways, and sees the Bropok as an outdated figurehead. He is hiring foreign mercenaries in a hope to defend the city when he secedes from Kunrasha.

Cults of foreign gods have begun to appear in Kulkeran and Ravreg is doing nothing about it.

The treasures of the old empire still lay buried in the ruins of some of the great temples in Bashkeran.

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

I'll try to have the rewrite up by Thursday morning. Work is taking up a lot of my time. I also plan to make a more detailed explanation of thought process and what I was aiming for.

WC

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

Clouds Without Water wrote:


You guys are cracking me up. I suspect I'd enjoy gaming with all of you.

Sadly, however, I can only vote for 5.

To make it fair, I think I'll just go in and click 5 random buttons.

YES!!! We should all do this!!! Anarchy!!!!

WC

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

@Basiliv and Alex Martin

Thanks for the feed back and review. You have both made good points and I can see where you are coming from. Alex, I particularly liked your breakdown of what a country is for, very nice3. Thanks again to both of you.

@CastleMike

Thanks. Coming from you I consider this a high compliment. I have come to appreciate your insight into things, and having you like my country is an honour. Thanks again CastleMike.

Once again, to everyone who has taken the time and read the thread, thank you.

WC

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 aka Spar

Stained Peaks.

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