What is Paizo going to *do* with all this content?


RPG Superstar™ 2008 General Discussion

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

I've just spent the last few hours looking at discussions of RPG Superstar on other websites, and I've realized that a lot of people have incorrect assumptions about Paizo's plans for the content that the contestants are generating.

All of these wondrous items, countries, villains and so on—they're a means to an end. Owning all of this content is not one of the goals we had for RPG Superstar—it's just a by-product of the contest process. (We're taking ownership of submissions for our own legal protection. Check pretty much any contest rules that involve creative submissions, and you'll find text along the lines of "all submissions become the property of so-and-so.")

We're not planning on creating a new RPG Superstar campaign setting by mashing together 32 countries, populating them with 16 villains, and so on. (Frankly, we're busy enough creating our own Pathfinder Chronicles campaign setting.)

We're not even planning on selling a product that compiles the top entries. (For one thing, why would you buy it? You can get that content for free right here, along with comments from the community on how to use it in your campaign.)

We're glad people are enjoying creating this material, and reading it, discussing it, and using it in their campaigns, but our goal is not to find new content—it's to find a talented designer.

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 , Star Voter Season 7

Vic Wertz wrote:
(For one thing, why would you buy it?)

Nifty art? Better editing? A memento to rediscover later? To donate money to our favorite publisher?

Sovereign Court

Vic Wertz wrote:
For one thing, why would you buy it?

For the same reasons why we get both the PDF and hardcopy versions of Pathfinder and the Gamemastery modules.

Paizo Employee Chief Creative Officer, Publisher

If we published any of this stuff it will be because of the popularity of the contest, not because we started the contest to generate a bunch of publishable material.


Release a "RPG Superstar Contest 2007" PDF with shiny art and clear layout for $5 when it's all said n' done. Please? And stuff? :P


Lilith wrote:
Release a "RPG Superstar Contest 2007" PDF with shiny art and clear layout for $5 when it's all said n' done. Please? And stuff? :P

We have a winner. I'll buy that for a dollar. Plus four more.

Plus... allow the writers to work with the editor's to punch their stuff up a bit and give it some art.

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

I don't normally do the PDF thing, but if it were the only way to see my work in a published format, I'd definitely bite. Even better, would be a printed compilation. I'd totally buy one for myself and all of my gaming buddies.

Chad

Dark Archive Contributor, RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4

exile wrote:

I don't normally do the PDF thing, but if it were the only way to see my work in a published format, I'd definitely bite. Even better, would be a printed compilation. I'd totally buy one for myself and all of my gaming buddies.

Chad

Sold, American!

Dark Archive

I think I wouldn't buy a compilation of stuff already published here without a theme that puts all these things in a context.
That doesn't mean that I don't find the items or countries (well, many of them) worth publishing; I think we've already seen lots of great stuff in the contest.
And I wouldn't mind buying already published content to support Paizo, but the question is:
What should we do with f.e. 1000 word outlines of countries? It's not enough to actually use these in campaigns without a lot of work and they don't even have maps!

What I'd really like to see, is seeing some of the material, be it item, villain, monster, whatever... in future products.
That would be really cool!
I'd really like to see the migrus locker or the gloves of force shaping in future Pathfinder- or Game Mastery modules, where they are put into the context of a story, edited and maybe featured with great artwork.
This would be really, really cool and could be done easily, because Paizo owns the rights anyway.
And I think all of the designers would like to see their creations published with a small line of credit.
Could this be an option?

Dark Archive Contributor, RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4

Erik Mona wrote:

If we published any of this stuff it will be because of the popularity of the contest, not because we started the contest to generate a bunch of publishable material.

Fair enough - your objective was not, as you've made clear to the scaredy-cats, to steal all the ideas from little kids and then hold them all for yourselves, and we can't have them back, ever ever ever, NYA!

And I very much respect that.

Still - if my work can generate a single dollar for Paizo, then more power to you. And to me.

Hooray, me!


I'd buy something like that. All in all I'd prefer it to be something more along the lines of the Dragon Compendium, with the items, countries, enemies, encounters, etc. all grouped together rather than trying to weave this stuff together a la Seven Swords of Sin.

A lot of these just feels like they should be their own settings, or rather should have their own settings written around them. The tone and flavor of a lot of the entries just seem too different. Some are high adventure reminiscent of Beowulf. Others are soul-chillingly bleak. Others are strange and wonderous. It'd be hard to blend all of that without it just feeling disjointed.

If I had my druthers, I'd juice up the price a bit more than $5 (hard to imagine contracting art and having editors work over the peices with the contributers for that low a cost). I'd also give the chance for the contributers to add in whatever extra errata they had lying around to help flesh out their settings. I can pretty well guarantee most folks had to cut out a lot of good stuff to get down to 1000 words.

But yeah. Whatever form it takes, sign me up for a copy.

Paizo Employee Chief Creative Officer, Publisher

I'd give the authors a chance to improve and expand upon their entries, I wouldn't print all of them, and everything I would print would be edited.

I'm thinking about it. We'll see.


Erik Mona wrote:

I'd give the authors a chance to improve and expand upon their entries, I wouldn't print all of them, and everything I would print would be edited.

I'm thinking about it. We'll see.

Excellent. Dude, I'll preorder that idea right now.


Erik Mona wrote:

I'd give the authors a chance to improve and expand upon their entries, I wouldn't print all of them, and everything I would print would be edited.

I'm thinking about it. We'll see.

*flutters eyelashes, looks like a sad puppy*

Pwease?


All and all a book of random stuff from paizo is probably gonna get me to buy it a whole lot more than the lines of things, I know I'm not the only one who doesn't like prepublished adventures that much or is committed to a supported campaign setting.

I mean whats their names puts out a book of artifacts that if your luck someone will use two of, I think the market may be out their for an item/country/villian/etc splatbook that emphasises interchangibility (No Varisha or wwhatever you call it creeping in) and quality. I know I'd consider it if it was one of the RotR size and price, and definitely would get it if it was a little less (A little smaller/Cheaper)

Kind of a alternative example NPC/ITEM/Country booklet of the kind that you get in the PHB and Dmg

Just my two cents, I'm sure you know the market more than I do but a second look/consideration might reveal surprises. (Even a PDF only product if very reasonable priced might get me, and I abhord PDF RPG stuff.)


Vic Wertz wrote:

Owning all of this content is not one of the goals we had for RPG Superstar—it's just a by-product of the contest process. (We're taking ownership of submissions for our own legal protection. Check pretty much any contest rules that involve creative submissions, and you'll find text along the lines of "all submissions become the property of so-and-so.")

OK fair enough, but the fact is you do own the copyright of the submitted items, that being the 850+ wondrous items and 32 countries so far. I understand why you have retained these rights with respect to the top 32 wondrous items and the countries (and the future stuff as it occurs)but are you contemplating surrendering your copyright claim in favour of the original owner (the author) with repect to the 820+ losing wondrous item entries?

Dark Archive Contributor, RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4

Erik Mona wrote:

I'd give the authors a chance to improve and expand upon their entries, I wouldn't print all of them, and everything I would print would be edited.

I'm thinking about it. We'll see.

This is an important decision, and not one to be rushed. No matter what, all of us out here in internet-land will love and respect you.

But I should hope that you get turned on by the idea - because I, like (presumably) all of the other contestants, am not competing for the money. I already HAVE money. I want to be a part of Paizo, the best thing to happen to D&D since the invention of the d20.

Win or lose, I'd love to have Paizo use my work.

As for your VERY valid concerns, well - an opportunity for improvement, expansion and editing are exactly what each and every one of these countries need, whether to be commercially viable (the "isn't this already availible online for free?" concern) or just to be worth printing up on paper.

And thank you, again, for giving all of us a place to play.


Say, "Thank you sir, may I have another?"

Sovereign Court

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure, Companion, Lost Omens, Maps, Rulebook, Starfinder Accessories, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

I didn't enter, so I'm kinda' talkin' outta my bum, but I'd bet a lot of the authors would just be happy to see their names in a published Paizo product.

I suggested somewhere else that profits from this could always go to charity, that way nobody "profits" but somebody still benefits.

And FYI, I'd spend about $5 on this, especially if it were printed and had the GameMastery logo, etc.

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

thatboomerkid wrote:


But I should hope that you get turned on by the idea - because I, like (presumably) all of the other contestants, am not competing for the money. I already HAVE money.

I would be very concerned about anyone trying to break into the gaming industry for the money :)

Dark Archive Contributor, RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4

Russ Taylor wrote:
thatboomerkid wrote:


But I should hope that you get turned on by the idea - because I, like (presumably) all of the other contestants, am not competing for the money. I already HAVE money.
I would be very concerned about anyone trying to break into the gaming industry for the money :)

Well said, sir. Well said.


Russ Taylor wrote:
thatboomerkid wrote:


But I should hope that you get turned on by the idea - because I, like (presumably) all of the other contestants, am not competing for the money. I already HAVE money.
I would be very concerned about anyone trying to break into the gaming industry for the money :)

Well, I would point and laugh. "Clueless!"

Putting the country entries together to make a world would result in very disjointed mess which probably wouldn't be good for anyone.

But I do hope Paizo is planning to use at least some of the stuff here in their future products...these would be fun to come across.

I doubt Paizo is giving up IP rights for items which didn't make it in top 32, because that would open issues...namely if I came across an item in future products of Paizo which is more or less like my entry, I could sue Paizo.
Something like this has actually happened to others which is why many authors are not big enthusiasts of fan fiction and even if they allow fanfic cultures to form they stay away from them.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

magdalena thiriet wrote:

I doubt Paizo is giving up IP rights for items which didn't make it in top 32, because that would open issues...namely if I came across an item in future products of Paizo which is more or less like my entry, I could sue Paizo.

Something like this has actually happened to others which is why many authors are not big enthusiasts of fan fiction and even if they allow fanfic cultures to form they stay away from them.

You are exactly correct; that's why most contests that require creativity in the entries require that surrender of ownership. As I said before, it's for our legal protection. (And in this case, it also provides protection for our two outside judges and their companies.) So, no, we won't be flexing on that. Our lawyer would not approve.


Also just on the idea of charging for free things online, one could also consider a charity scheme, i mean plan. If the PDF/Splat i buy is also partly funding sick kids chemo research or something of the like it helps add extra to the thing without all that extra being in the form of the georgeous products that paizo puts out (which quite frankly I have come to expect rather than consider extra). It also seems odd to me that for such a seemingly tight nit group or E-Community that charity for good causes hasn't comeinto something or other (I'm kinda a newb so maybe it did)

L


magdalena thiriet wrote:
I doubt Paizo is giving up IP rights for items which didn't make it in top 32, because that would open issues...namely if I came across an item in future products of Paizo which is more or less like my entry, I could sue Paizo.

Here's a little for instance of this. Remember the big contest, where everyone got to pitch setting ideas to the guys at WotC (otherwise known as How Eberron Came to Be)? Yeah well one of my submissions was called the Twilight Realms, and was more or less a ghostly domain on the edge of the Negative Energy Plane that was a dark and distorted version of the real world. Sortova' Planescape for dead people. The premise was that if you lose a character in another D&D game, you can take the same dead character and use them as a ghost in Twilight Realms.

Something like six months later, Ghostwalk comes out. Now I'm not saying anything fishy happened. Ideas run in strange circles. Even if they had taken the idea and run with it I would just be happy I'd contributed. The point though is gosh wasn't it a good thing that WotC had decided to lock down ownership of the entries? If they hadn't, and if I wasn't such a goodnatured soul, that could have meant big trouble.

So yeah, I totally see why Paizo wants to keep the IP as theirs.

Grand Lodge Dedicated Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 7, Dedicated Voter Season 8

Grimcleaver wrote:
magdalena thiriet wrote:
I doubt Paizo is giving up IP rights for items which didn't make it in top 32, because that would open issues...namely if I came across an item in future products of Paizo which is more or less like my entry, I could sue Paizo.

Here's a little for instance of this. Remember the big contest, where everyone got to pitch setting ideas to the guys at WotC (otherwise known as How Eberron Came to Be)? Yeah well one of my submissions was called the Twilight Realms, and was more or less a ghostly domain on the edge of the Negative Energy Plane that was a dark and distorted version of the real world. Sortova' Planescape for dead people. The premise was that if you lose a character in another D&D game, you can take the same dead character and use them as a ghost in Twilight Realms.

Something like six months later, Ghostwalk comes out. Now I'm not saying anything fishy happened. Ideas run in strange circles. Even if they had taken the idea and run with it I would just be happy I'd contributed. The point though is gosh wasn't it a good thing that WotC had decided to lock down ownership of the entries? If they hadn't, and if I wasn't such a goodnatured soul, that could have meant big trouble.

So yeah, I totally see why Paizo wants to keep the IP as theirs.

I'll agree with that. My submission was remarkably like Sarlona.


The Jade wrote:
Lilith wrote:
Release a "RPG Superstar Contest 2007" PDF with shiny art and clear layout for $5 when it's all said n' done. Please? And stuff? :P

We have a winner. I'll buy that for a dollar. Plus four more.

Plus... allow the writers to work with the editor's to punch their stuff up a bit and give it some art.

Agreed--with editing, I'd gladly--gladly--fork over cash for some of these entries.


I'd definitely buy as well. I do urge you to not put too much work into it, as it's clear that the more y'all figure you want to bite off, the less likely it'll appear as a product. Heck, you could take a poll - I would be happy with:

- All the submissions just dumped unedited into a PDF with sections per type (item, country, villain) with the winners "at the top", for free download, with prominent Paizo/RPG Superstar branding on it for advertising/goodwill. Stick a Pathfinder ad with subscribe link in the last page! Sales leads, goodwill, and practically zero cost.

- The top 50 items, plus all the submissions for the subsequent rounds, edited. You could put the onus of the first round of editing back on the authors (they've gotten a lot of feedback etc through the process) and then just do copyediting in house. Charge a couple bucks, 2-5 I reckon.

- Winners only (32 items, 16 countries, etc), with some kind of "common thread" added - heck, let the overall winner do it as a test of skills. Edit fully, charge a normal PDFey $12 for it.

I'd be down with any of these! Who else?

Grand Lodge Dedicated Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 7, Dedicated Voter Season 8

Ernest Mueller wrote:

I'd definitely buy as well. I do urge you to not put too much work into it, as it's clear that the more y'all figure you want to bite off, the less likely it'll appear as a product. Heck, you could take a poll - I would be happy with:

- All the submissions just dumped unedited into a PDF with sections per type (item, country, villain) with the winners "at the top", for free download, with prominent Paizo/RPG Superstar branding on it for advertising/goodwill. Stick a Pathfinder ad with subscribe link in the last page! Sales leads, goodwill, and practically zero cost.

- The top 50 items, plus all the submissions for the subsequent rounds, edited. You could put the onus of the first round of editing back on the authors (they've gotten a lot of feedback etc through the process) and then just do copyediting in house. Charge a couple bucks, 2-5 I reckon.

- Winners only (32 items, 16 countries, etc), with some kind of "common thread" added - heck, let the overall winner do it as a test of skills. Edit fully, charge a normal PDFey $12 for it.

I'd be down with any of these! Who else?

I suppose if the later rounds are in there, it would have to cut back to the top 50 magic items, though I was thinking earlier the top 100 would be about right. I don't know if the judges ranked non-advancing items in a suitable way though.

I agree the authors should get a chance to revise them but some won't be available to meet a reasonable deadline.

For $12 I would expect art. That's extra cost and time.

I don't think the common thread concept is workable between the countries that were submitted. I expect there will be equally serious clashes between entries in later rounds.


Starglim wrote:
For $12 I would expect art. That's extra cost and time.

What, did you miss the flyer on the "RPG Megaartist Contest?" ;)

Sczarni

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure, Companion, Lost Omens Subscriber
Starglim wrote:
Ernest Mueller wrote:


- Winners only (32 items, 16 countries, etc), with some kind of "common thread" added - heck, let the overall winner do it as a test of skills. Edit fully, charge a normal PDFey $12 for it.

I agree the authors should get a chance to revise them but some won't be available to meet a reasonable deadline.

For $12 I would expect art. That's extra cost and time.

I don't think the common thread concept is workable between the countries that were submitted. I expect there will be equally serious clashes between entries in later rounds.

It would be fun if those who got into the book to get a little store credit or something.. splitting it up between 32 people (plus artists) for cash would be a nightmare. but $5 credit per round plus your name in the book would prolly suit most people. (if this happens, then next RPG superstar, you would have to not count this as being published)

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