Design a Country- What are you all doing?


RPG Superstar™ 2008 General Discussion

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 , Star Voter Season 6 aka exile

Alright, so my wondrous items is submitted, and I have no idea if it'll be cool enough to net me a spot in the top 32 or not, but I had a heck of a fun time writing it up. As such, I'm starting to design my country now. If I am lucky enough to make the cut of 32, it'll form the basis of my submission, if not it's another fun creative exercise.

The problem is, I (we, really) have no clue what kinds of stipulations will be placed on the country design project or even what kind of format to use. Right now, I'm going with the format used in the Living Greyhawk Gazetteer. Does anyone have what they think is a better format for organizing/presenting their work in this vein?

Chad

The Exchange RPG Superstar 2011 Top 32 , Star Voter Season 8 aka Sect

exile wrote:

Alright, so my wondrous items is submitted, and I have no idea if it'll be cool enough to net me a spot in the top 32 or not, but I had a heck of a fun time writing it up. As such, I'm starting to design my country now. If I am lucky enough to make the cut of 32, it'll form the basis of my submission, if not it's another fun creative exercise.

The problem is, I (we, really) have no clue what kinds of stipulations will be placed on the country design project or even what kind of format to use. Right now, I'm going with the format used in the Living Greyhawk Gazetteer. Does anyone have what they think is a better format for organizing/presenting their work in this vein?

Chad

Since the format is the same that I've seen presented in following publications, I don't see a problem with that. Just watch out for word count.

Paizo Employee Managing Developer , Dedicated Voter Season 7, Dedicated Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9

That'd be a good start, maybe. You could also look at the format used in their current product for cities and towns. I've already taken to writing up statblocks in my home game using the new Paizo format. It is a very nice format.

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 , Star Voter Season 6 aka exile

Excellent advice from both of you. I'm gonna pull some Paizo products from my library and use them as a model today. Has a word count for the country design been announced yet?

Chad

Dark Archive Dedicated Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 7

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber

It would be nice if they put out an example for those of us, like me, who don't any of those examples you were talking about.

RPG Superstar 2013 Top 16 , Marathon Voter Season 6, Marathon Voter Season 7, Marathon Voter Season 8, Dedicated Voter Season 9 aka Darkjoy

exile wrote:

Excellent advice from both of you. I'm gonna pull some Paizo products from my library and use them as a model today. Has a word count for the country design been announced yet?

Chad

No wordcount has been announced. Although practice makes perfect, to me preparing a country seems a bit premature. I expect that there will be some very specific instructions from Paizo that the lucky 32 will have to work into their submission.

I am keeping an open mind until then.

Scarab Sages Marathon Voter Season 7

Pathfinder Card Game, Rulebook Subscriber
Darkjoy wrote:
exile wrote:

Excellent advice from both of you. I'm gonna pull some Paizo products from my library and use them as a model today. Has a word count for the country design been announced yet?

Chad

No wordcount has been announced. Although practice makes perfect, to me preparing a country seems a bit premature. I expect that there will be some very specific instructions from Paizo that the lucky 32 will have to work into their submission.

I am keeping an open mind until then.

That's been my assumption too. Is it landlocked or ocean side? How big, how little? Desert, jungle or tundra? I have the feeling they will have some details for us and until I know what they are or are not, no sense doing a lot of work only to have to redo all of it anyway.

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 , Star Voter Season 6 aka exile

While I agree with recent posters that it is important to keep an open mind, it is clearly not too early to start brainstorming and even putting good ideas to paper. I fully suspect that there will be requirements for the assignment, but I'm not sure they'll be much more specific than those for the wondrous item. Any specific stipulations may lead to tweaks of course, but I think it'd be nice to have something in progress; there are after all only five days to get the next entry submitted.


I agree with that. I got out country/culture that I've done a lot of work on already. I'm just trying to find the highlights (what makes it unique and cool) and make sure everything makes sense. Then if I have to change the format it's no biggie, at least I have the base ideas. If there are some strict stipulations then I may have to come up with something new but in the mean time I'm improving one of my creations.


I don't think there's any harm (and potentially great value) in doing some prep work.

The turnaround time on submissions is quite quick. So, since you're likely competing against work projects or school projects or holiday planning with the family or whatever else is going on--doing some early work just in case, will almost certainly payoff if chosen.

I know I've already decided on my historical/literary influences for the country, as well as what twists I might add to give it that all important sense of originality.

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 , Star Voter Season 6 aka exile

Ragwaine, Propeliea,

I find myself agreeing with both of you. I have also settled on some literary, historical, and visual inspiration for my country. It's not something that I have ever written up before (except what I put to paper last night), so I can't say that I am improving on one of my creations, but I am actually having a blast creating RPG material (not long before the start of the contest, I wrote up a new monster template) rather than simply consuming/buying it.

I pray that whatever stipulations are put on each round of the contest, they are at least shred with the community at large. If nothing else they'll make for some fun creative exercises.

Chad


I already have the culture and other parts of the country figured out already. Like the rest waiting to see if I get into the top 32 and what the actual rules for that stage of the contest are going to be. I should be able to make it fit into just about any framework I think.......and it leads into the other stages of the contest as well in one way or the other.

Sovereign Court

Enh. I'll probably just take one of the countries from my homebrew setting, change the names to protect my IP, and slap the info into the template that want us to use.

Dark Archive Contributor, RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4

cappadocius wrote:
Enh. I'll probably just take one of the countries from my homebrew setting, change the names to protect my IP, and slap the info into the template that want us to use.

Same here. But I'm changing the name to:

"Mystic Lair of the Super-Death-Ninja: Country-Edition!"

Sweet, huh?


Man, a whole country of Super Death Ninjas! How can any of us hope to compete with that. I'm deleting my submission right now.


Just so you know, changing the names isn't good enough. If you were to publish a virtually identical country at a later date, your "prior art" is now a "derivative work."


Yea but no one can really put a copyright on vikings, or pirates or samurai, or whatever you've stolen from history. So I doubt you would have to change much to be okay. I mean word for word except for names is bad but you could really just reword it and not worry. What's the rule? It's got to be 20% different?

The Exchange RPG Superstar 2010 Top 16

Actually, a city of ninjas would , well, actually work.

Unlike viking warriors or visigoth raiders, the whole idea behind ninjas are that they're secret. So the local miller would be a ninja, pretending day after day to be a miller, actually milling grain as part of his cover. And the wainwright would be a ninja, making wheels as part of his disguise.

Everybody would secretly be a ninja, and none of them would know that the others are ninjas, too. Kind of like "Mr. and Mrs. Smith" on a really large level.

And then in comes the PC's. Remember the episode in "Lone Wolf and Cub", when Yagy? Retsud? activates all the deep sleeper agents of the clan, throughout the country? I wonder how a party would react if they were visiting a town where everybody's a ninja, and that call comes over the mountains.


If you are going that route...then...

A nation of seafaring privateers that is in endless competition with the local black market run by a huge syndicate of Yakuza who use a clan of deadly ninja's as their muscle and enforcers. Ruling this syndicate is the foul and corrupt Dragon Mikmikator.

Ruling over this coastal city state is a jaundiced cyclopean monstrosity in a dark blue cloak and no other clothes. The great Cyclopean Master Arakmuna. Arakmuna lords over the Kingdom of Paizol with the blessings of his patroness deity...Listevans, Patron Goddess of Slightly Twisted Publishing and Resonably Priced Love.

The Court Jester is a strange mummified dog...a Lichuahua named...err..Heathanssonis.

The Court Minister...a barister by the name of Sebastimaster.
Who's foul lawyerlyness is hated by all who oppose the great kingdom of Arakmunalund.

Within the deepest dungeons below the citadel...lurks even greater horrors...and woe betide those who venture here.
Lurking through the foulest recesses lies a faceless creature so revolting that its face cannot be looked upon without a simple glimpse slaying the viewer...it is called Richarpett.

The master Gaoler of this dungeon, who often throws the unwary down to have their faces eaten by the Richarpett is a depraved creature..whose delights are things that would drive saner minds to shatter. This being is the revolting Nichologue the Depraved. His cells are filled with the vilest of acts preformed on all those unfortunate enough to find themselves under his power.

Perhaps more shall be told of this sordid and foul land where even the bravest of adventurers fear to tread. Btw...the reason there are so many privateers, out raiding ships with little to no women on board is far superior to staying on the mainland in the horror of Arakmunalund.


Thinking about it. The inspiration hit me at the same time as the wondrous item for the entry. Every day more little details come to mind. However, putting it to paper now? Too soon.


varianor wrote:
Thinking about it. The inspiration hit me at the same time as the wondrous item for the entry. Every day more little details come to mind. However, putting it to paper now? Too soon.

I agree with you, aside from my joking contribution above, I've had some ideas leaping around inside my skull since I finished my magic item.

I think part of the idea is to not give us the information on how to write up the country in question so that Paizo can see how well we work under a deadline.

Knowing how well someone can design something while working towards a deadline will certainly be important to whomever actually wins the contest. Especially if they do well enough to become a recurring contributor.

Dark Archive Contributor, RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4

Chris Mortika wrote:

Actually, a city of ninjas would , well, actually work.

Unlike viking warriors or visigoth raiders, the whole idea behind ninjas are that they're secret. So the local miller would be a ninja, pretending day after day to be a miller, actually milling grain as part of his cover. And the wainwright would be a ninja, making wheels as part of his disguise.

Everybody would secretly be a ninja, and none of them would know that the others are ninjas, too. Kind of like "Mr. and Mrs. Smith" on a really large level.

Oh my God, that's awesome. Thank you.

Marathon Voter Season 6, Dedicated Voter Season 8

I wonder if they will but out a map with cities and say: Create!

Dark Archive

Chris Mortika wrote:

Remember the episode in "Lone Wolf and Cub", when Yagy? Retsud? activates all the deep sleeper agents of the clan, throughout the country?

You mean when Yagyu Retsudo called up the "Grass" to spring him out of lock-up because he was betrayed by the poisoner Abenokai? That was so cool.

You should try "Path of the Assasin."


Quote:
Man, a whole country of Super Death Ninjas!

Now that you said it, I hope to see it in the next round.


I suspect our esteemed judges will use very specific guidelines to allow the contestants to focus and make it easier for the voting public to compare side-by-side. I am going to go so far as to speculate that they will post a map of a nation that the contestants have to use. They likely will provide a format that they want it; a format provided up front would accomplish both standardizing the entries (so that they do not get one that is a series of haikus) and to make sure that the contestants cover the areas of country development that are important to them as judges. I'm guessing we'll see a 600 or 1200 word limit on it. Just my idle speculation... But because of these suspicions, I'm not investing too much time in a particular train of thought on a country for the contest.

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