Bad Item Stereotypes


RPG Superstar™ 2008 General Discussion

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Marathon Voter Season 6, Dedicated Voter Season 7, Marathon Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9 aka Clouds Without Water

Dark wrote:


Like some others have said, though -- if I take part next time, I'll really try to go crazy unique (and probably powerful) with my item. Now that I know mechanics, writing, usefulness (practicality), and format take a back seat to "Whoa that is some unique and crazy stuff!" I'll go all out and see if that gets me any closer. It is all about writing for your audience after all. I misjudged what was wanted from the judges (their priorities) and though still proud of what I entered, realize now that I should have dug around in my magical "box of strange" for my entry.

I think it's a bit more complicated than that. For one thing, they selected a number that weren't crazy unique, but filled a clear game need.

And of the crazy unique ones, they were all things that most players would enjoy in a mainstream game.

So there's a balance to strike there...

My Kylix, for example, was likely too far into crazy unique, and certainly was not a mainstream game item. It was an intentional choice on my part, but I can see that for purposes of this contest it would be better to have gone mainstream. My items will always be a little loopy, but some could certainly fit in with mainstream better than the item I submitted did.

Legendary Games, Necromancer Games

Threeblood wrote:
If Pathfinder items were seen as suck up items. Why were they allowed to be referenced in addition to the SRD? I didn't have to add the tie in to Pathfinder to my item, but decided that since it was allowable, the judges would look at it objectively. Not to say that my item would have made the top 32 had I decided to not include the tie in, but when I audition for a play or musical I either act out a scene from that play or sing a song from that musical. Not to brown nose the judges, but to show that I can perform in the parameters set. It seems to be a double standard to allow material into the contest, only to penalize that material on account that it seems to be 'sucking up to the judges'. Looking at the top 32 I noticed that none of the finalist referenced anything Paizo related. Out of curiosity was there a lot of these submissions, or was I one of the few? Thanks for taking the time to answer and even though this is a gripe I still love the idea of this contest and everything it represents. Good job to all involved with making it happen.

Pahtfinder items are NOT suckup items. That's not what we were talking about.


Hmmmm I'm wondering where my Discerning Eye fell under. Spun glass orb that auto-detects(detects not shows location of btw) magic within 40 feet and lets you see as arcane sight three times per day.

Maybe augury? *ponders*


Clark Peterson wrote:
Pahtfinder items are NOT suckup items. That's not what we were talking about.

Chances are good they mean ghoul related items for W.B., etc...

Legendary Games, Necromancer Games

Rambling Scribe wrote:

I find it interesting that the suck up items were bad, but on other threads it was stated that part of the contest was getting into the judges mindset and giving them what they wanted. I'm curious how fine that line was.

Don't get me wrong. I can see the extreme and understand that it could be a problem. I just wonder where in the murky area between the poles, good turns into bad.

I'm talking thinly veiled suck ups that refer to either Orcus or Necro products (for me) or to Wolfgang's recent publications (for Wolfie) or to blatant Greyhawk rip off stuff (for Erik).

Luckily there were only about 3 or 4 of these, if that.

And NO, reference to Golarion or Paizo was NOT considered sucking up at all. In fact, we got some real cool Golarion items.

Legendary Games, Necromancer Games

mwbeeler wrote:
Clark Peterson wrote:
Pahtfinder items are NOT suckup items. That's not what we were talking about.
Chances are good they mean ghoul related items for W.B., etc...

You are on to something... :)

Legendary Games, Necromancer Games

Zherog wrote:

The Thinly Veiled "Modern Item As Magic Item" Item

I'm gonna go ahead and guess my stone of echoes fell into this category...

I wish all the comments would be released. I understand why they aren't being released, of course; that doesn't change my desire, though. :)

Yeah, you got it. I think Mona said "Ok so it's a tape recorder." I should point out that he was supportive of the idea that items like this would likely exist in a magic world. But we all felt that such items were not the first refuge of a Superstar. We could be wrong, but that was our thinking. I was the one the hit the reject button. Sorry about that.

Legendary Games, Necromancer Games

Watcher! wrote:

The ways you guys have listed the "Bad Sterotype" items by just name does make me wonder how much the poponderous of a general type of item played in the evaluation of the individual entry.

For example: are 15 pair of boots bad, or are they bad because they're 15 of them?

Watcher, I have to admit that you have made some real astute comments here on these boards and this is one of them.

In fact, we dicussed this issue specifically as to augury items.

One plus of this contest was the sheer number of entries. We has so much good stuff to choose from.

But, as is often the case in life, the plusses can have flip sides as minuses. Yes, I will agree that items that fell into large categories that were often not well designed certainly made future items in that same category get looked at with a "not another one..." type of view. BUT it also had another effect--when a good item in that category came along it seemed so fresh and good. Take Seer's Tea for instance (top 32). If we hadnt had 35+ horrible augury items, would that one have looked so good? Maybe not... Were there other augury type items that got dragged down in the augury swamp? I'd be lying if I said that was impossible.

However, we did recognize the potential for that problem and we all agreed to try our best to be watchful and not just reject an item because it was "another one".

You really raise an interesting problem that did actually crop up. Nice insight.

Sovereign Court Contributor

Thanks both to Lisa and Clark for clarifying that. although I didn't mention it in my post, I did wonder if Golarion flavour was seen as a negative (particularly since my item had Golarion flavour). But I also was just wondering in general terms what you guys meant. Certainly aiming stuff at particular judges does seem pretty cheap.

And btw (Now that I'm out of the contest it's not succking up, right?) As always, I'm impressed with how involved Lisa everyone at Paizo are in the community. But I want to particularly say a big thank you to Clark for how communicative and helpful he has been on these boards throughout this contest. In particular I'm boggled that after it being made pretty clear that giving feedback on all the items that didn't make the cut would be impossible, Clark has been out here giving feedback and answering questions. You have really gone above and beyond the call of duty.

EDIT: And he adds three posts to this thread between me starting and finishing this one!


Mine fell under the "Yet Another Crafting Item." :P

Marathon Voter Season 6, Dedicated Voter Season 7, Marathon Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9 aka Clouds Without Water

Rambling Scribe wrote:
But I want to particularly say a big thank you to Clark for how communicative and helpful he has been on these boards throughout this contest. In particular I'm boggled that after it being made pretty clear that giving feedback on all the items that didn't make the cut would be impossible, Clark has been out here giving feedback and answering questions. You have really gone above and beyond the call of duty.

I think he mostly can't help himself. Heheh.

But yes, thanks for all your communication throughout the whole process, Clark!

Dark Archive

Mine would be "Plot hook disguised as an Item" with a touch of "Home Campaign Item" I imagine.

Contributor

Clark Peterson wrote:
I was the one the hit the reject button. Sorry about that.

*shakes fist at Clark*

I'll get you, and your little dog too!

*ahem*

Anyway... mind if I pick your brain just a little more on this concept? I can totally accept something along the lines of, "I'd prefer not to answer that."

I saw at least a couple of items in the final 32 that had a "reject" post. Was it the "golden ticket" concept that got those items into the final 32, or something else behind the scenes that we're not seeing in the comments?

edit: and also, to be clear, I completely agree with Rambling Scribe. I think it's very awesome that you're in here answering questions and such. It's much appreciated.


Clouds Without Water wrote:
Rambling Scribe wrote:
But I want to particularly say a big thank you to Clark for how communicative and helpful he has been on these boards throughout this contest. In particular I'm boggled that after it being made pretty clear that giving feedback on all the items that didn't make the cut would be impossible, Clark has been out here giving feedback and answering questions. You have really gone above and beyond the call of duty.

I think he mostly can't help himself. Heheh.

But yes, thanks for all your communication throughout the whole process, Clark!

I concur, everyone's willingness to talk so openly have this opening round FANtastic and I expect it to continue throughout the contest.


Clark wrote:

I'm talking thinly veiled suck ups that refer to either Orcus or Necro products (for me) or to Wolfgang's recent publications (for Wolfie) or to blatant Greyhawk rip off stuff (for Erik).

Luckily there were only about 3 or 4 of these, if that.

And NO, reference to Golarion or Paizo was NOT considered sucking up at all. In fact, we got some real cool Golarion items.

Cool beans! Thanks for taking the time to answer. I should have known that this was the case.

I guess you guys thought that the hard part was over after you picked the top 32. I really don't envy you judges with what you had to do, and now having to defend what you have already done. Makes me sorry I even bothered you with posting my gripe. But on a positive note I am sincerely impressed with your professionalism and outright concern for this community and this contest. Watching you and the staff of PAIZO field almost every question thrown at you is inspiring and has won me over. It's not often that the little guy gets a shot at the big time, and its even more rare when the little guy gets handled with respect and concern when he failed in his first shot at the big time.

THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU.

Paizo Employee Chief Creative Officer, Publisher

Rambling Scribe wrote:

I find it interesting that the suck up items were bad, but on other threads it was stated that part of the contest was getting into the judges mindset and giving them what they wanted. I'm curious how fine that line was.

Don't get me wrong. I can see the extreme and understand that it could be a problem. I just wonder where in the murky area between the poles, good turns into bad.

I certainly didn't count anything that referenced elements of Paizo IP as a "suck up" item. Unitl the two late disqualifications one of my favorite item had "Urgathoa" in its title.

Clark got a little paranoid when people tried to emulate 1e items that they were targeting him specifically for his vote, but I really sort of doubt it. 850+ gamers have 850+ opinions of what's cool in D&D, and some of them are bound to be close to ours.

--Erik

Paizo Employee Chief Creative Officer, Publisher

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Zherog wrote:


I saw at least a couple of items in the final 32 that had a "reject" post. Was it the "golden ticket" concept that got those items into the final 32, or something else behind the scenes that we're not seeing in the comments?

edit: and also, to be clear, I completely agree with Rambling Scribe. I think it's very awesome that you're in here answering questions and such. It's much appreciated.

I can take that one.

At the beginning of the contest, all 856 items were in a "general" folder only the judges could see, sort of a private messageboard. We commented on items like we were posting to a thread, but at the top of the thread there were two additional options next to Edit, etc. One was KEEP, and the other was REJECT.

We waited until at least two judges had chimed in with a Keep or Reject before clicking those buttons, which moved them to another folder.

By the time we got to the end of the general folder, I believe we had 71 items in the Keep folder. I went through and counted out the ones all three of us had voted KEEP on, which was something like 21 items. We then looked at that core and removed 5 items that managed to impress us only because they appeared very early in the competion, which left us with 16 items. Via a message board thread that will not be made public, we then started posting lists of our favorites, and each of us took another look to see if we could reach consensus. Some of us were dead set against some items in the folder for one reason or another, so those items did not make the final list, at least up until we got to 26 agreed-upon items.

Then, each of us got two "golden tickets" that we could assign to two items still in the Keep folder. That meant that, by judge fiat, we could promote any item from the Keep folder we liked, even over the objections of the other judges.

We also selected 6 alternates, in case any round 1 winners needed to be disqualified or in case any of them failed to turn in a Round 2 submission.

Hope that helps.

Contributor

It does. I sort of expected it to be conversations we couldn't see, but it's good to confirm. Thanks, Erik.

Dark Archive Contributor , Marathon Voter Season 6, Marathon Voter Season 7, Dedicated Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9 aka Boxhead

Erik Mona wrote:


The cloak that billows on its own accord (I'll bet half of all submitted cloaks did this)

Sweet! This was me! And here I thought the everflapping cape was just the sort of thing to win it for me...

The Exchange

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

There are so many categories my item could get counted in *shudders*


I guess I can be happy that mine didn't fit those categories

Legendary Games, Necromancer Games

Clouds Without Water wrote:

I think he mostly can't help himself. Heheh.

But yes, thanks for all your communication throughout the whole process, Clark!

You are right about that. I cant help myself.

I absolutely love D&D. Always have. I love the creation process. So when Erik called and sheepishly asked if I wanted to be involved--telling me all the long hours and no pay--I jumped at it. It is just my cup of tea (seer's tea, in fact).

I love this process.

Back when Paizo had Dungeon and Erik was running things I told him I wanted to do an artilce for Dungeon called "Page to Table," where I talk about practical tips for running the various adventures in that monht's mag at your home game table. There were many problems with doing that--mostly manuscript deadlines and me being able to get my comments into the same issue. Plus he just didnt think it was that big of a pull for his readers, they wouldnt care that much what I had to say. I'm not Monte after all. :) (see, i can take criticism). But the whole idea grew from my belief (and continued belief with Paizo) that they (Erik, James, Lisa and Co) are the caretakers of adventure design and they have an obligation to be sort of a textbook for DMs--a master class in adventure design. I wanted them to add more content to the mag to actually go out of their way to TEACH DMs how to design stuff not just by example but by analysis--why certain encounters work, etc.

In any event, that same desire and belief that we have an obligation to help people learn this stuff is what makes me weak and give in to requests for comments.

Plus I like hearing myself talk. That's probably the bigger and more honest reason :)


Mine fell into thinly veiled campaign plot. I was hoping it would spark some interesting plot usage ideas. But that wasn't what you all were looking for. And apparently I wasn't alone, and that makes me feel better. Many Great minds thought alike, and that brings me some comfort.

And I now have a plot for game that just fell into my lap thanks to my Cauldron of Pliant Flesh.


Clark Peterson wrote:
If we hadnt had 35+ horrible augury items, would that one have looked so good? Maybe not... Were there other augury type items that got dragged down in the augury swamp? I'd be lying if I said that was impossible.

That's one of the most frustrating things about the contest; you're like to think your item was being judged objectively, based solely on its merits. But in reality, the criteria shifted based on whether you submitted your item early or late, or whether a bunch of other people had similar themes, or any of a hundred other things that were totally out of your control. I don't think there's any way to avoid it in a contest like this, but it certainly doesn't feel very good.

I'm probably lumped in with the 35+ horrible augury items, but I don't think I hit any of the obvious pitfalls.

Just for the record, this was my entry:

Spoiler:
Shatranj Chessboard

A Shatranj Chessboard is a portable chess set. It may be used as a normal chessboard, but if a player sets up a game and begins playing without a partner, the board itself will begin to play against them.

A careful player may pick up hints about what the future holds by watching the patterns and the strategies the board employs against them. This magic functions once a day. A game requires an Intelligence check; players with 5 ranks in Profession (gambler) or a related skill gain a +2 circumstance bonus. Use the following table:

Game ...... DC ..... Game Duration ...... Effect
Short ......... 7 ..... 1d4 minutes ............ Augury (CL 5th)
Medium ... 15 ..... 1d4 x 10 minutes ..... Divination (CL 10th)
Long ........ 23 ..... 1d4 hours ................ Discern Location (CL 15th)

A player may play a shorter game if they wish (by accepting a stalemate). Succeeding at the DC 23 check means they have won a game against the chessboard; the board refuses to play against that player ever again. Those who play frequent games notice the chess pieces begin to resemble their friends and enemies.

Strong divination; CL 15th; Craft Wondrous Item, discern location; Price 22,000 gp; Weight 5 lb.

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

CNB,

At present I feel that the chessboard gives away its treasure far too easily. The skill checks are easily attained.

I believe Erik had a nice system for determining who had won a dragonchess game, and you could use something similiar here. I am thinking about using Bluff, Knowledge arcana and proffesion (gambler). The DC's should be set higher.

Also, what happens when the board wins??


I don't think my scapular of the heroic slayer fits in any of those categories (although I did list augury as a prerequisite to craft the item.

But I am pretty sure there hasn't been any other scapular submitted. In 20 years of D&D, I don't recall actually ever seeing a scapular.


Clark,
Any chance of “Page to Table” ever seeing the light of day? That’s exactly the sort of thing I wish there had been more of in Dungeon.


Darkjoy wrote:
At present I feel that the chessboard gives away its treasure far too easily. The skill checks are easily attained.

The skill checks for the short and medium game aren't intended to be especially difficult; as it stands an average character has a 30% chance of being able to play a medium game, and a fairly smart wizard (Int 20) has a 55% chance of being able to play a medium game. Using "Take 10" would allow the wizard to auto-succeed, which doesn't seem that bad. "Take 20" isn't an option, since you can only try once a day.

Are the skill checks really too low?

Darkjoy wrote:
I believe Erik had a nice system for determining who had won a dragonchess game, and you could use something similiar here. I am thinking about using Bluff, Knowledge arcana and proffesion (gambler).
Alas, any d20 rules for chess aren't SRD. An Int check seems to be the closest thing; I tried to approximate the flavor by offering a synergy bonus for Profession (gambler ) (and given how few characters have that, added the "or related skill" so it could be tailored for the odd Profession: Board Gamer character).
Darkjoy wrote:
Also, what happens when the board wins??

The board always wins, unless you play a shorter game than you were entitled to (in which case you stalemate) or you play the long game. There's no in-game difference. The idea was, by watching the way the board played you, you began to pick up hints about the future; the longer you play, the more hints you get (e.g. "Hrm, I offered to sacrifice my knight for its rook, and the board refused. Maybe it is a good idea for the paladin to attack the fortress today.").

At 200 words, I was forced to be a little more terse than I would have liked. I really needed about 15 extra words to really do it justice. C'est la vie.

The Exchange

Darkjoy wrote:

CNB,

At present I feel that the chessboard gives away its treasure far too easily. The skill checks are easily attained.

I believe Erik had a nice system for determining who had won a dragonchess game, and you could use something similiar here. I am thinking about using Bluff, Knowledge arcana and proffesion (gambler). The DC's should be set higher.

Also, what happens when the board wins??

It's not a skill check; it's an Intelligence check. Perhaps the DC 7 is too easy (for the lowest benefit), but is a DC 23 Intelligence check (for the highest benefit) really easily attained?

Liberty's Edge RPG Superstar 2010 Top 16 , Star Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 7, Star Voter Season 9 aka Dementrius

Meds wrote:
Heathansson wrote:
So my Skullcap of Monaesque Intellect stood nary a chance.

Item That Doesn't Deliver on an Awesome Name?

;-)

The problem was that it gave an enhancement penalty to Int.

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

Barendd Nobeard wrote:
Darkjoy wrote:

CNB,

At present I feel that the chessboard gives away its treasure far too easily. The skill checks are easily attained.

I believe Erik had a nice system for determining who had won a dragonchess game, and you could use something similiar here. I am thinking about using Bluff, Knowledge arcana and proffesion (gambler). The DC's should be set higher.

Also, what happens when the board wins??

It's not a skill check; it's an Intelligence check. Perhaps the DC 7 is too easy (for the lowest benefit), but is a DC 23 Intelligence check (for the highest benefit) really easily attained?

Yes, after 20 d20 rolls and an intelligence of 16 you should win against the board.

A skill based system with higher DC's would have been better, IMHO.

Paizo Employee Chief Creative Officer, Publisher

CNB wrote:


Just for the record, this was my entry:[spoiler]Shatranj Chessboard

I remember liking that one. The chessboard idea is a good one, and all three of us liked that aspect of your submission. I was personally turned off by the fact that the board refuses to play you after you beat it, as that basically screws the owner out of using an item he'd probably really enjoy. One of the judges also though Profession (gambler) was a strange choice for a game that was more about skill than luck, though I think that's a bit of a quibble.

--Erik

The Exchange Contributor, RPG Superstar 2008 Top 6 , Dedicated Voter Season 6

Erik Mona wrote:


One of the judges also though Profession (gambler) was a strange choice for a game that was more about skill than luck, though I think that's a bit of a quibble.

--Erik

Maybe he got the idea from Erik Mona's choice for the dragonchess skill? :)


Forgot my pricing info. Could the ancient Helm of Resurrection have made it if not?


Lisa Stevens wrote:

From reading the private comments that the judges had when reviewing the wondrous items, I can't remember a single time that a magic item would have been rejected because it used Golarion as its setting. There was always some other flaw that got it rejected. I did notice that items that used Paizo IP tended to focus more on the Paizo IP and less on the actual wondrous item, which made the actual item seem like an after thought. This could have had an effect.

-Lisa

That's good to hear Lisa - I didn't think we'd get a reversal like that.

My Ear Cuff of Shelyn probably wasn't lousy on any front, but probably took some knocks in the "Name", "Swiss Army Knife" categories :). I am curious which category might have swallowed it up - other than blandness and maybe the "billowing" thing :)

Spoiler:
Ear Cuff of Shelyn

This silvery ear cuff fits snugly over the upper ear. Songbirds and other tiny charms are etched into its surface. When the ear cuff is worn a soft breeze flows around the wearer and through his hair. The breeze will strengthen quickly to deflect any incoming missiles, granting a 20% miss chance from all ranged attacks.

The ear cuff also brings whispers to the wearer's ear and and provides a subtle air of mystery. This gives a +2 competence bonus on Listen checks and all Charisma-based checks. Additionally, the ear cuff can be lightly stroked to cast a charm person spell (Will DC 11 negates) once per day.

Favored by Shelyn's charming priests, one in ten of these ear cuffs is crafted to use suggestion instead.

Faint abjuration; CL 5th; Craft Wondrous Item, entropic shield, charm person or suggestion; Price 13,200 gp (charm person), 18,800 gp (suggestion).

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 , Star Voter Season 7

Erik Mona wrote:
One of the judges also though Profession (gambler) was a strange choice for a game that was more about skill than luck, though I think that's a bit of a quibble.

Seeing as profession (gambler) can assure a profit, I've always ruled that it does only apply to games with skill components. If it was all luck, practicing doesn't help. Unless, you know, you cheat, that that's Sleight of Hand and Bluff's territory.

Poker, chess, pool: Yes.
Craps, roulette, slot machines: No.


I think my Torq of Soul Stealing got tossed on...

The Deeply Disturbing Evil Item That No Hero Wants, and That Makes Even Villains Hesitate

I might, possibly, concede that it did not live up to its name as well.


Can I get a sense from one of you patient judges which foul my item fell into? Perhaps the "Food"? The "Item of the Overdone Backstory"? The "Silly Cliche"? All of the above?

Spoiler:

Magister Reglynn's Restorative Tonic

This elixir is often sold by itinerant peddlers and grandstanding salesmen as a cure to aches, pains, and other maladies. Although an alchemist named Magister Reglynn initially concocted the formula for this elixir, other crafters are just as likely to include their own name as that of its original creator. This muddy liquid removes any fatigue effect on the imbiber and improves an exhausted condition to fatigued. In addition, the imbiber is protected by an endure elements effect for the next 24 hours.

Faint conjuration; CL 3rd; Craft Wondrous Item, endure elements, lesser restoration; Price 200 gp.

Unfortunately for prospective purchasers, an inferior version of Magister Reglynn's Restorative Tonic with the same muddy color also exists, called Simulative Tonic. Simulative Tonic merely suppresses any fatigue effect on the imbiber for 10 minutes and has no effect if the imbiber is exhausted. This inferior version is cheaper and easier to make, and often passed off as genuine tonic by unscrupulous charlatans and quacks who intend to be long gone before the duplicity is discovered.

Faint necromancy and transmutation; CL 1st; Craft Wondrous Item, mending, touch of fatigue; Price 50 gp.

The Exchange

My Pixie pot probably got booted out under the cute=naff name.

Or maybe it was the game balance issues revolving around the cheapness of the little wishes it gave.

But then it could have been the fact that there were coins involved...

Ho Hum

Great contest, great fun and its only Round one.


Clark Peterson wrote:


Back when Paizo had Dungeon and Erik was running things I told him I wanted to do an artilce for Dungeon called "Page to Table," where I talk about practical tips for running the various adventures in that monht's mag at your home game table. There were many problems with doing that--mostly manuscript deadlines and me being able to get my comments into the same issue. Plus he just didnt think it was that big of a pull for his readers, they wouldnt care that much what I had to say. I'm not Monte after all. :) (see, i can take criticism). But the whole idea grew from my belief (and continued belief with Paizo) that they (Erik, James, Lisa and Co) are the caretakers of adventure design and they have an obligation to be sort of a textbook for DMs--a master class in adventure design. I wanted them to add more content to the mag to actually go out of their way to TEACH DMs how to design stuff not just by example but by analysis--why certain encounters work, etc.

I'd subscribe to this magazine. Especially if you brought in all sorts of authors to give various other tips and points on running RPGs (many different styles of gaming after all).

Whens it coming out again?


Erik Mona wrote:
I was personally turned off by the fact that the board refuses to play you after you beat it, as that basically screws the owner out of using an item he'd probably really enjoy.

Ah, maybe that could be clearer. The idea was that you could use it as a once-per-day Divination, but if you were ever really stuck in a bind you could blow the Discern Location effect, knowing once you used it the chessboard would be useless to you. You'd never be forced to take the Discern Location over the Divination effect.

It made it near impossible to price; there's nothing really covering a once-per-day item that's also a one-shot item, but can be used by every character once.


Welby: Maybe because you have two items instead of one?

Liberty's Edge

My Medallion of Final Words was a classic example of Plot Hook Disguised as an Item … It didn’t occur to me until sometime after the submission that this might be a bad thing. As a DM, I like a good plot hook, and I have creative players who will find a use for just about any wondrous item, beyond the obvious or designed one. I guess that shows I’m always the DM, never the player.

But yeah, on reflection I can see why plot hook items do not excite. Add to that, Clark probably interpreted a bit of the Modern Item Disguised as a Wondrous Item in mine too … it was not destined to fare well!

Thanks for the insight into your thought processes judges. I’m taking notes for next time.


Lilith wrote:
Welby: Maybe because you have two items instead of one?

Possibly; but there's precedent for closely related items in the SRD (e.g., bracers of archery). I thought I was getting clever, but perhaps I was just getting disqualified!

At any rate, a very fun contest, and I'm having a great time looking over the winning--and the losing--magic items.


I suppose I should be happy I got the props for cool name.

On the other hand, I question the underlying assumption that the SPOON of the witch queen needs to be ubercool or powerful, I mean, it's still a spoon, an item of utility. Which is what I made the item.

PS - Clark, if you're going to post someone else's comments, you might want to sanitize them first. For all you know, I might know wolf, making publication of that comment awkward for him. He might be a werecabbage or something.

Liberty's Edge

Koldoon wrote:


PS - Clark, if you're going to post someone else's comments, you might want to sanitize them first. For all you know, I might know wolf, making publication of that comment awkward for him. He might be a werecabbage or something.

You make an excellent point Koldoon - which is probably one of several good reasons why they are not posting comments for everyone's item, and this comment clearly relates to yours. Although I suspect that the comment after that item in Wolfgang's list was in fact Clarks. I could well be wrong, but the terminology and phrasing sounds more like Clarks than Wolfgangs.


Well, I'm going to say that flaw #1 on my item was stupid name. maybe not the only one, but the top one. My group liked the item itself, but hated the name. Hell, I even hated the name. But I just couldn't come up with anything better than Portable Portal for an item that creates a door.

Liberty's Edge Contributor, RPG Superstar 2012 , Star Voter Season 6, Marathon Voter Season 7, Star Voter Season 9

Tallghost wrote:

Well, I'm going to say that flaw #1 on my item was stupid name. maybe not the only one, but the top one. My group liked the item itself, but hated the name. Hell, I even hated the name. But I just couldn't come up with anything better than Portable Portal for an item that creates a door.

I like the name, but I'm a fan of alliteration.

I found out my item, Tears of the Sun, used the same name as a forgettable Bruce Willis movie from 2003 (Here's the link--if you're interested).


taig wrote:
I found out my item, Tears of the Sun, used the same name as a forgettable Bruce Willis movie from 2003 (Here's the link--if you're interested).

Hey! i saw that movie! If it is any consolation, your item probably impressed the judges more than that movie impressed, well... anyone.

Liberty's Edge Contributor , Star Voter Season 6, Marathon Voter Season 7, Star Voter Season 9

Tallghost wrote:


Hey! i saw that movie! If it is any consolation, your item probably impressed the judges more than that movie impressed, well... anyone.

It could have been worse, I could have named my item "Glitter".

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