F. Wesley Schneider wrote:
Also, just in case it wasn't clear, I'm moving on to exciting new opportunities and—while it does leave me misty eyed—this is an amicable parting. :D
Very best wishes to you! Don't be a stranger, we have a dedicated warning label for you and I'd hate to see it go to waste!
Askdal Aleheart wrote:
So back to the original post. If you find something distracting as a GM or it seems to be derailing the game (especially if you are on a tight time table) it falls to you as the GM to control the table. I don't mean with a chair and whip, but there are circumstances outside the GM's control that must be maintained. If someone brings a cigar to the table or other character affectation and it takes on a life of it's own, the GM can call a quick break and speak with the player in private. There are ways to lay things out for a player without making it personal. "Hey player, I really love that you are into your PC and you have brought the cigar, but for some reason it is really making it hard for me to focus on the game today. We only have 3 hours to get through this scenario. Can I get you to put the cigar down and get through this on time?"
For the bard - After the first couple of rounds, especially if the bard player can't sing, same deal - "It's great that you've got a bunch of songs prepared. We only have 3 hours to get this scenario run, so, let's get our actions prepared for each round and if you are going to continue singing, we know what that sounds like, we're going to have to go with 'I keep singing'."
This works best when you have a limited time slot and something is distracting and keeping you from moving through all the parts quickly. Get everyone on in the same out of game party - "We have a scenario, we all want to succeed at getting through this, right? This is what we need to do to get there." Buy in is key. Players sit down to play, let them know that their play is going to be negatively impacted over all if they "play around" at the table.
Generic Villain wrote:
While I cannot say if I am as screwed up or more or less so, I can say that I also suffer from mental health issues, including depression, anxiety, and panic attack disorder. I have been to therapists, been on medication, and generally am fortunate enough to consider myself in remission from the worst of my issues. I have had some very serious situations in the recent past though that make me nervous every time I feel down or nervous...because that's always a horrible feeling and gives me a little kick in the gut that says "maybe this remission is over".
Amanda Plageman wrote:
From what was said during the Starfinder panel, it seems that they would be completely rules and societally incompatible in a backwards sort of way. You could use PF rules stuff in SF, but there appear to be some things going on in SF that would make going back in time (in game) to PF era impossible.
Drahliana Moonrunner wrote:
Paizo is not purchasing Aethera at this time. If they are in negotiations with Robert Brookes for that IP, it is being played very close to the vest. However, as one of the freelancers working on the Aethera project, it is my understanding that at this time there is no designs for Robert to sell or Paizo to purchase.
Edited to add There is also NO collaboration going on between Paizo and Aethera to make the two games compatible beyond Aethera working within the OGL and using Pathfinder rules as can be used. Aethera's rules are written and the space flight rules were written by Thursty, who is a freelance writer for Paizo at times. Aethera was conceived by Robert Brookes, who is a Paizo freelance writer at times, and written in part by numerous freelance writers, who also freelance write for Paizo at times. But there is NO joint work going on between Paizo and Aethera at this time.
While that might change, I do not see that happening. Paizo has a team who will be writing Starfinder, but it is very much in the conception stages if the panel at PaizoCon was any indication. Aethera is in its editing process now, which means it is almost ready to roll to the publisher, rules are written. These are two separate and unrelated products.
Owen K. C. Stephens wrote:
I'm working on more fey for Zombie Sky Press for the immediate future. After that I believe there are some superheroes on the horizon. Somewhere in between I have some yarny projects to finish! And whatever Paizo has laying around that they need someone to write ;-)
Purple Dragon Knight wrote:
I think the answer to this one is "just as likely as anyone else is to dress in a manner in which makes them feel good about themselves." People do not normally get up in the morning and put on clothes while thinking to themselves "I hope the rest of mankind/orckind/elvenkind/gnomekind/koboldkind thinks I'm super sexy and falls over themselves in dying adoration and approval." Nope, we usually get up, put on clothes and think "I like the way this looks on me" or more often, in my case, "Oh thank goodness something is clean and fits."
It takes all kinds to make any world go around and I hope that as a matter of course that Golarion is the same way. Sexuality may or may not have a place in a specific table's dynamics, but allowing for the option for those tables that do want it is something that I personally would like to see as an option.
I assure you, this party is for everyone, no matter how long they require, THUNDERLIPS! I am glad you enjoyed yourself, please spelunk again ;-)
the Haunted Jester wrote:
Given the ISBN # and updated description I imagine the likelihood of the title changing is incredibly slim, oh well. Any idea on when we might get a glimpse of the cover art?
I have not seen the cover art myself, but I have seen a couple of pieces and I am personally thrilled.
the Haunted Jester wrote:
Any chance the name of the module could change based on the feedback from the judges? Down the Blighted Path just doesn't seem to capture the essence of the module for me.
Now that it is written and out of my hands, I hope that you feel the title and the story are more in line with one another once you (and I) see the final final product.
I just want to say something to the Top 4 -
Do NOT take the comments on your pitch threads personally.
To the voters and those commenting on those threads -
How about not hitting below the belt? You guys are getting rough and it's not cool. No one says you have to like the pitches, no one expects you to like all the contestants, but for heavens sake, act like you care about the people sitting on the other side of the computer screen.
Dear Season 9 Top 4,
Congratulations, you have done something that only 32 other people have done before you, you have turned over your first adventure pitch to Paizo after having been scrutinized by every person who felt the desire to speak their mind while you had to sit all alone, in your own mind, second guessing yourself, wondering if you screwed up, hoping your super star was shiny enough, and waiting the final reveal of the last voting round of RPG Superstar you will ever compete in. Your work here is done. You have completed all that you can and now you need to take this weekend off. Go hug your family members, hang out with your friends, do some long abandoned laundry, probably clean the bathroom, because who had time to do all of that while you were wracking your brain coming up with amazing things to catch the fancy of the judges and voting public.
You are all awesome, regardless of who holds the title at the end. I hope you have taken the time to get to know your fellow Top 4, because they are the only people who have had as close to the same experience as you have had.
Welcome to the survivors club, welcome to the Land of Freelance Writing. You walked through the most public gateway into the realm. Hold your heads high and be proud of all that you have accomplished. You are all amazing. Rest well. When this is all said and done, if any of you have any questions or are looking for guidance on where to go next and how to continue your freelancing career, you have only to ask, there's several of us around who would be happy to help you get as much out of this experience as you can handle.
Incoming non sequitur-
I have had to resort to using Cold Turkey to avoid distractions while I write. But I can't put Paizo on the list because I need access to the PRD. Then I remembered there's this contest going on. So now I'm over here wasting time. This freelance and working a full time job thing is just not working very well. I'm going to have to quit my day job so I have more time to play on the forums and still write.
Feedback is critical to all designers, freelance or otherwise. Sometimes the designer fails their communication check and sometimes a reader fails their comprehension check . It is a smart designer who looks at what is said about their work and tries to learn something from the feedback, even if the failure to accurately communicate doesn't really fall on the writer.
Readers have a reasonable expectation that the writer will convey information easily and clearly. That kind of skill comes from practice. RPG Superstar is Paizo's way of finding people who are creative and untried, so as a by product of the design of the contest, the contestants are not going necessarily going to have honed this skill. But, they also cannot defend the choices they've made, by the contest rules. It does't make their design weak, it may simply mean that their communication skill is not as high as it could be.
There is no shame in having a reader not understand your work, the shame is not listening to that feedback and not trying harder the next time. I have sighed more than one sigh of relief for some stranger coming to the defense of my work during the last season because someone didn't understand something I did. I don't feel it made my design weak, it just meant that a misunderstanding was cleared up and I didn't have to sweat it. I may not be so lucky when my adventures get published, so I take all comments to heart and I hope that this season's contestants and voters do too.
The Raven Black wrote:
So, using your best judgment is part of participating in the contest. There have been 9 seasons now and some of the rules sets get edited and reused, when in doubt - ask a question, if you don't get an answer in a timely enough manner, use your best judgment and err on the side of caution.
I know the waiting is almost over, but if you have squandered your time just sitting around thinking about how hard it is to not talk about your monster, you're not taking advantage of the gift of silence. You must to be working on your next project/round. I've talked at length on what I did during the voting periods, if you really want to make this work, you need to be working ahead on what you know and not worrying about what's already out the door. Good luck Top 15.
Jacob W. Michaels wrote:
As I told one of the people who asked me to review their maps for this round - Do not rely on those 50 words. They are a crutch for a weak map, not a bonus over last season's introductory run. I personally feel that the 50 words are not necessary and potentially distracting and detrimental to the round.
With only the results of last season's run and not this seaons's votes to further support my opinion, I feel that there were several maps that lack polish or even attractive aesthetic that were engaging and presented excellent gaming locations that carried/will carry their contestant through to Round 3.
The mapping round is crucial, speaking as a person who just had to come up with 4 pages of maps for a 32 page adventure. This round should not go away and it would be a disservice to future RPG Superstars to not test their abilities to convey in images what they are able to craft in words. Fortunately in my case, two of my maps for my adventure were already "done" because of the way the contest limited things to a theme. That may not be the case for this season's contestants and they will need to be ready and able to provide what is likely a full page map of a location, 4-6 flip maps, and possibly another full page map. That's a lot of real estate in a 32 page adventure that has previously gone unvetted.
... Mamaursula has spoken of this before now and it really should be repeated often: READ THE RULES. All of them. Completely. Even the fine print. Know what you are doing and compare that to the rules. Make sure you are in compliance with the rules...
Most importantly, when in doubt, don't ask your question or make your statement publicly. Something that this contest does in a sneaky way is it tests your ability to keep your mouth shut. As a freelance writer you are given a backstage pass into the upcoming publications of a company that is looking to make money on whatever it is you've written. They have a plan for how they want that information to be publicized and if you steal that opportunity from them, you will not be given that chance again.
PLEASE DO NOT TALK ABOUT YOUR ENTRIES. Even if you think it's okay, it's not.
In all seriousness, after having competed last year, without a full time job, it was easily one of the most exhausting experiences I have ever endured. RPG Superstar isn't a sprint and the current Season's competitors are working hard right now (or at least they should be) on monsters, but I hope they're each taking time out to relax and unwind. There were many nights when I tried to go to bed, only to find myself back up unable to sleep and still needing to get the thoughts down on paper.
Take care of yourself, Feros!
Philip Tucker wrote:
I was in the position to see several people participate in RPG SS before I entered. It was hard to see how the critiques laid some of my friends low. For the most part the community is considerate in their feedback, but you can only be so gentle and still point out the flaws of someone's creation. Welcome to Survivor's Club, otherwise known as RPG SS Guild Hall.
Something I would like to ask anyone who has achieved Guildhall status to consider - putting your RPG Superstar entry links on your profile page. I went looking for some stuff and it is terribly inconvenient for me to go looking through all the contests to find your entries when I can find you so easily.
Maps are up, Feros and I are both apparently agog and failed to update the beginner's guide!
The solo map round was new last year, so this is only the second time we have seen maps without accompanying adventures. Last year this round really frightened me because we'd never seen it before, so the 2015 blazed a new trail on this round.
These maps are turn over maps, not cartographer maps. No one expects the designer to be able to craft a cartographer quality, print ready map. However, the map should be able to convey all the things you want it to have when it gets to print. That's very hard to do if you, like me, mostly draw in stick figures.
Most of the maps this season are better resolved than last season's, mostly because 2015 set a decent bar and now everyone needs to achieve or exceed what was considered acceptable.
Maps should be exciting and intriguing. No one needs a map of a room that is 20 ft. x 20 ft., has a fire place on the east wall, a door on the west wall and a chair in the middle of the room. These maps need to be of places that your party wants to explore, of a place that the GM wants to reveal. A beautifully rendered map of a room, with a door, a chair, and a fireplace is probably not going to be that place.
Keep in mind that a hand drawn map can be every bit as exciting as a map rendered on professional mapping software. Look at what you're being shown, is it a place that sparks your interest? Do you want to suit up and head out? Does it tickle your inner adventurer?
We vote through next week, Monday I believe, and then the Monster Round contestants are revealed next Tuesday.
Fiendish Zen wrote:
One of the things that keeps me especially engaged on this forum is that it's the biggest "gaming workshop" you can hope to participate in. There are hundreds of people offering their feedback on other people's items. Anyone who takes the time to read those threads, take in the information, and apply it to their work is likely to see some improvement.
I don't think most people realize how fortunate a place this is for would be game designers. I have attended Paizo panels and been a panelist for a couple as 2015 RPG Superstar and initially I was surprised how few people came to the RPG Superstar panels and how well attended the GM and playing panels were.
RPG Superstar is just one door you can walk through to get into the land of game design. Anyone who wants to publish games and is only hanging their hat on this contest as their ticket in is doing it wrong. Definitely you should compete in this contest, because amazing things can happen, even if you only make it to the Top 32, but winning is not necessary to becoming a freelance writer for Paizo.
I was a long time viewer and voter of RPG Superstar before I entered. It was always hard to watch people become upset about the Top 32, and it is always amazing to watch entrants reach a moment of catharsis and growth. Some of you have been here for 9 seasons as well, and I've watched your progress. I'm happy for those who are this year's Top 32 +4 and my heart is a little heavy for those who are not. In 2012, one such cathartic moments was beautifully done. I present Hilter wants to be an RPG Superstar. Maybe next year, Adolf. Keep designing.
Neil Spicer wrote:
You have no idea how jealous I am of you right now, Neil. I could be tormenting people too. Wait, they don't know I can't see the entries.
Hmmmmm, you went with that, huh?
Nice Champion tag, btw :-)