Ways i've dealt with this:
1: he get's killed by his assasin brothers
And honestly: did the PC's know his family at the point? if not it's a pretty weak threat even if he did care for them.
Being born in 1990 made it hard for me to be a nerd in the 80's :)Still it sounds good and i'm definitely looking it up. besides who here aren't awed by the tomb of horrors? :D
This is it. I have posted my first ever entry to RPG Superstar. After only just realizing it's existence last year, just a tad bit too late to apply, i followed it anxiously marveling at the ideas i never could have thought up, frowning at the ones i thought i could have done better/would have done differently. And i can only wait. There is nothing i can to make my situation better, only ponder on whether i chose the right item. i have been thinking of ideas from when i first saw you asking for entries, having come up with about 15 or so items. some great, some quickly rejected, and some just not fit for this competition (forgive a GM for wanting to equip his bad guys). The hardest part of this has clearly been limiting myself. picking the one item out of the many, keeping the description text precise, rules lawyery enough, and most importantly NO BACKSTORY (so tempting, yet so stupid to go into after all the forum warnings). Well i hope my item will not just be seen as a spell in a can, but as something original and idea-inspiring, something brilliant in it's simplicity, something that will let me go on into the more description heavy, where i can really let my inner story teller free. But that's all just hopes. Even if i don't go on i doubt that i will be able to resist trying my skills again next year. No matter what i hope that i will be able to get my item(s) reviewed afterwards, so that i may be better equipped next year. But for now i can only prepare for the next round and hope for the best.
The best of luck to all entrants, new and old.
I think the correct answer would be that a top 32 item should have both a great name that inspires people to how they could use it and at the same time keep it relatively clear what it does. for those two names you suggest i would pick the first, but that's because of the "Mal's" part of the second name. I believe i was Sean who pointed out in his advice thread that an item shouldn't include too much back story as a wondrous item is different from an artifact in that there are several of them in the world. thus a back story becomes largely irrelevant. in some of the items i've come up with i've noted very shortly how the first of the item's kind came to be, but if i where you i'd keep it very brief. Write about what your item does, not who did it.
Well, i don't know how much you care about optimizing but i have a character that i think could be really fun to play, and so might you:
It is a Bleachling gnome menhir savant druid with the void domain. Again this has to be O.K.'d with the GM, but if he's okay with the dragon this should be fine as well.
A bleachling is a gnome that has been fully bleached, and yet hasn't faded from the world. in the eyes of gnomes that is a bit like a human lich (in the eyes of humans that is). Mechanically that means no Cha bonus, but a Wis bonus instead (house ruling). the reason this gnome has bleached is because he for some reason got to see the world behind worlds (the void), thus granting him the void domain as druid (although this is not normally available for druids. again house ruling). this has ripped the gnome apart from the world essentially making him a true neutral sociopath in addition to bleaching him. I haven't made his BG completely yet, but i think he could be an interesting addition to most teams.
As i see it, it is much like the greeks with their pantheon: Everyone has their personal god that they feel respond mostly to their own beliefs, for example a blacksmith would probably have torag as his deity of choice. however they also pay tribute to other gods in cases where their portfolio comes into play, for example when the blacksmith is about to have a child he will probably make some prayers and possibly sacrifices for pharasma, so that the birth will go well