The alignment restriction on Paladins, while iconic, has always done more harm for the class than good (no puns intended). I rarely see people pick paladins because few enjoy being shoehorned into a specific alignment - especially when LG is so hard to play without becoming obnoxious to the rest of the party.
It's refreshing to see the Green Knight break that mold while still respecting some of the core concepts (e.g. devoted champion w/ a code of conduct). One thing though... why swap out one strict alignment for another? The CG alignment is fine. But if you want to make a Paladin that's more appealing to players, why not allow the Green Knight for any good alignment?
Great archetype Charlie. I'm definitely using this in my games. Cheers.
It's not harsh at all. It just depends on the character being played. A character wearing that robe might gain fame in Hell and infamy everywhere else.
I agree with your point. The visual effect of an item is important and can absolutely affect game play.
My real concern so far is that so many items don't seem to think through the visual effects of their items. If I walk into a random town with a robe made of dead orphans, a hat made of mutilated angel feathers, and wielding a sword that appears to all people to be formed a thousand tortured dragon souls...how in the 9 hells can one expect to have any meaningful RP with the world around him.
I would give you fame for that. Have fun RPing as the guy who kills angels, dragons, and little orphans named Billy.
Or they honestly thought their item was good enough to go against his advice. And that's ok. It's worth it to sift through all the failed attempts to find the few who pulled it off.
More things I've learned:
If the item theme ties into an established culture (real life or in game), please display a rudimentary understanding of said culture.
Transportation / Camping / Eating / Drinking are often boring aspects of the game. These items are an uphill battle because you have to first convince people to care.
Usefulness and creativity are king.
Mechanics alone cannot save an item.
Paizo judges have vast reserves of sanity.
We should be thankful that SKR's list of design traps & advice stops at 27.
But does it come in red? I heard the red ones cast faster.
I'd like to give a round of applause to the judges who do this each year - particularly those mad enough to volunteer. It's a wonder you guys can read through all those items and still manage to retain professional sanity.
Sifting through these entries is a marathon, but it's worth it. I've seen some great items so far.
Ross Byers wrote:
Got it. The buttons were relabeled while I was posting. It's much clearer now. Thank guys.
I frequently get two mediocre items paired together. After several rounds of that, I'll suddenly get two awesome items paired together. It's disheartening to think that I may be helping rank several mediocre item higher than a great one... simply because one designer got a favorable pairing and the other did not.
I would suggest adding a "Vote for Both" button alongside the "Vote for Neither" button. It's counterintuitive to see one without the other.
Andrew Christian wrote:
Of course they have to exist somehow. And somewhere. But that doesn't mean they must be sitting in every city waiting for a PC to wander in for training or to purchase a magical item. That would make for a boring one-dimensional world.
There are dozens of alternatives to this and nearly anything will be more interesting than "go to the local store". Just think a few answers up, pick your favorites, and don't forget to change it up every once in a while (because not all requests from the PCs are equal). That's the beauty of building a world... you get to use your own imagination to fill in the blanks.
Andrew Christian wrote:
I would conjecture that allowing 6th through 9th level spells in metropolises, is an implication that there are NPC's who can cast such spells in those cities.
Cities are rarely self-sufficient though. Trade could be strong with other regions, adventurers may have sold off scrolls/spellbooks after a dungeon, or a wandering mage could have passed through and made a few bucks training spells.
Some good points about working within stated & implied boundaries.
So do I have this right? Campaign setting NPCs set the power balance of the world, the adventure paths are allowed to be higher level in order to provide credible world threats, and players can level even higher in order to meet said threats?
That makes sense, but it does force players into retiring at the end of an adventure path (otherwise the PCs trivialize the power balance defined by the campaign setting NPCs).
They seem like bards who spend their time stealing secrets and re-weaving facts/memories to hide what they have stolen and/or changed. But I can't be certain that's what this organization is doing.
Perhaps the Artisans have spent a bit too much time sculpting memories and have subsequently forgotten what their organization is on about?
This organization is only adversarial to evil characters that choose to be tyrants and conquerors. That's not a bad thing. But here's where it misses the mark...
My best evil players would actually join this organization. Performing a few benevolent acts is a small price to pay for access to all notable leaders and political decisions.
Vengeance is extremely personal and always has a specific target.
What happens when the Syndicate accomplishes said vengeance for their Mistress? Do they break up? Do they continue to oppose more innocent pathfinders for the fun of it? Or would they just get over it and become a common thief guild?
I can see this organization forming as a means to carry out said vendetta, but they're missing a long term goal once that's been accomplished.
This organization is only neutral in the sense that they'll deal arms to both sides of a war. Since their profession and profitability is based on war, it's in their best interest to ensure that peace never comes - because peace will not provide for them.
That alone can make the Steelhawks incredibly antagonistic.
They may not be a front line adversary, but it'd be incredibly easy for the Steelhawks to make hordes of enemies given their trade.
I like this organization for being several different kinds of gray, with just enough room left for a DM to either use them as legitimate merchants, common arms dealers, or stone cold warmongers.
Wow, this is definitely one of my favorites.
At first it seemed like an item that would get put in a player's backpack and only come out when the occasion called for it. Then I remembered the old Yuan-Ti Psychic Warrior I played back in 3.5 who would graft gauntlets on and punch/claw his enemies.
For any brawler types, this is definitely a signature item that would never come off.
The more I think about the refill mechanic, the more I like it. Since the flask is hard to refill on dark campaigns/adventures, the player gets an interesting tactical item and the DM doesn't have to worry about it being overpowered. Interesting balance there.
The term "exposed to natural sunlight" provides an image that the flask charges any existing liquid with sunlight, so I'm not sure I like fact that it directly refills itself. Either way... great item.