Disappointed in the villains


RPG Superstar™ 2008 General Discussion

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Scarab Sages

Clouds Without Water wrote:


I was in my local used bookstore yesterday, and someone had offloaded a LOT (50+) of RPG books. I snagged 4 of em, all Sword & Sorcery stuff.

One of the books was Relics and Rituals, which as a whole section of magic items, of course. Having read through many of those, it's my opinion that overall they're of higher quality than the 32 we got here. But not of the top 4 or 5.

Reading the items in that book, I can see that the standards are a lot higher than I thought when I made my own ill-advised Kylix, but I do think there's a good shot at getting someone out of this contest that can produce work at the level that book promises.

I just wish I'd been paying attention to that line of books sooner. I suspect at least one of the judges wishes we all did. :-)

No to threadjack here, but yeah, the S&S stuff had some pretty good stuff. Mind you not everything; some is downright unbalanced, even broken. Still, S&S books are worth looking into.

Paizo Employee Chief Creative Officer, Publisher

Clouds Without Water wrote:


I was in my local used bookstore yesterday, and someone had offloaded a LOT (50+) of RPG books. I snagged 4 of em, all Sword & Sorcery stuff.

One of the books was Relics and Rituals, which as a whole section of magic items, of course. Having read through many of those, it's my opinion that overall they're of higher quality than the 32 we got here. But not of the top 4 or 5.

Reading the items in that book, I can see that the standards are a lot higher than I thought when I made my own ill-advised Kylix, but I do think there's a good shot at getting someone out of this contest that can produce work at the level that book promises.

In a certain sense you're comparing apples and oranges. It is not fair to compare an edited, published product with an unedited item posted to a message board for a contest. I don't think even 4 or 5 of the Round 1 entires would make it into a Paizo product with no editing.

If this contest does nothing else, I hope it reveals to the audience the important role editors play in RPG publishing. Just about nobody gets it perfect the first time, and they shouldn't be expected to.

Paizo Employee Chief Creative Officer, Publisher

Avianna wrote:
Mactaka wrote:

But the stated bad-guys could have easily become villains if some of them had been given some stories or plots, and some ambition.

I see what you are saying. But how can they do all that... with 500 words? Especially when they are taking hints from last round to make their entries stronger. Its a puzzle game really.

Indeed.

Welcome to the world of professional writing.

I can see the votes as they come in, and it's pretty obvious to me that some contestants did not have difficulty creating a compelling and vote-garnering entry in 500 words or less.

500 words is more than half of a full page of text in a standard RPG book. That's more than enough room to convey the appropriate information.

Professional writers write to a word count. As do RPG Superstars.

Paizo Employee Chief Creative Officer, Publisher

Set wrote:

I've been finding it increasingly necessary to not read anything other than the submission before making my selections.

Sometimes, after voting, I've gone back and seen an entry in an all new light after reading judge or voter reactions to it, but I'm not voting based on what Erik Mona thinks of the submission, I'm voting what *I* think of the submission. To continue picking on Erik, he'll notice things I didn't, he'll gush over thematic details that I didn't find that interesting, and he often seems to throw points off for what I consider to be the least important aspects of the submission. All fine and dandy, 'cause he's not me and has different priorities, but I don't want my opinions of an entry colored by 1) agreeing with, or 2) knee-jerk disagreeing with, the judges (or other voters) opinions.

Sometimes I'm amazed to see other posters completely agreeing with me. Other times I'm amazed to see other posters violently disagreeing with my favorite / least favorite choices. And that's cool. 'Cause I'm just voting for me.

I think this is a wise policy. I almost never read Clark or Wolf's reactions before I post my own comments, and I'm often surprised by how different our comments are.

When all three of us harp on the same thing, though, it's usually a potentially fatal flaw in the submission. I've seen that happen numerous times in the contest so far, and it appears to be happening again.

Legendary Games, Necromancer Games

allen trussell wrote:
Clouds Without Water wrote:

One of the books was Relics and Rituals, which as a whole section of magic items, of course. Having read through many of those, it's my opinion that overall they're of higher quality than the 32 we got here. But not of the top 4 or 5.

I just wish I'd been paying attention to that line of books sooner. I suspect at least one of the judges wishes we all did. :-)

No to threadjack here, but yeah, the S&S stuff had some pretty good stuff. Mind you not everything; some is downright unbalanced, even broken. Still, S&S books are worth looking into.

I've got to agree with that. :)

I am real proud of the SSS stuff I was involved in, in particular that early SSS stuff like R&R. Heck, I have a couple spells and items in there. :)

But Mona is right. All that stuff was done by submission and all of it was extensively edited and reworked. I remember Steve Wieck, who was doing the reworking of the spells, was exhausted when he was done. It was quite a job.

Legendary Games, Necromancer Games

Erik Mona wrote:
Avianna wrote:
Mactaka wrote:

But the stated bad-guys could have easily become villains if some of them had been given some stories or plots, and some ambition.

I see what you are saying. But how can they do all that... with 500 words? Especially when they are taking hints from last round to make their entries stronger. Its a puzzle game really.

Indeed.

Welcome to the world of professional writing.

500 words is more than half of a full page of text in a standard RPG book. That's more than enough room to convey the appropriate information.

Professional writers write to a word count. As do RPG Superstars.

We judges are veterans of the RPG industry. We know the pitfalls that come with submissions and freelancers. We tend to build pitfalls into these tasks.

Last round, the pitfall was not finding the villain seed and getting sucked into the stat block.

That round was really about creating a compelling 500 word villain. The stat block was really secondary. The people who got that and did it are the ones who I think are going to advance. And yes, 500 words for a villain is hard. But its doable. Particularly if you focus on that and make sure you are boiling your villain down to his or her essence and his or her conflict and need as an antagonist. Once you get that, the stat block will just follow.

Legendary Games, Necromancer Games

By the way, I tend to agree that the villains could have been better.

In my view, most of the contestants got so sucked into the stat block that they failed to really "find" their great villain and boil it down and condense it to a 500 word entry.

Had they focused on finding that great villain first and the stat block second, we would have had better villains, in my view.

Dark Archive Contributor, RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4

Clark Peterson wrote:

By the way, I tend to agree that the villains could have been better.

In my view, most of the contestants got so sucked into the stat block that they failed to really "find" their great villain and boil it down and condense it to a 500 word entry.

Had they focused on finding that great villain first and the stat block second, we would have had better villains, in my view.

Ha ha, joke's on you - I didn't even DO a stat-block! That spoiler-tag is hiding the words "Stat-block, stat-bloc, peas and carrots".

. . . no, not really.


Clark Peterson wrote:
Erik Mona wrote:

Indeed.

Welcome to the world of professional writing.

500 words is more than half of a full page of text in a standard RPG book. That's more than enough room to convey the appropriate information.

Professional writers write to a word count. As do RPG Superstars.

We judges are veterans of the RPG industry. We know the pitfalls that come with submissions and freelancers. We tend to build pitfalls into these tasks.

Last round, the pitfall was not finding the villain seed and getting sucked into the stat block.

That round was really about creating a compelling 500 word villain. The stat block was really secondary. The people who got that and did it are the ones who I think are going to advance. And yes, 500 words for a villain is hard. But its doable. Particularly if you focus on that and make sure you are boiling your villain down to his or her essence and his or her conflict and need as an antagonist. Once you get that, the stat block will just follow.

:)

I just wanted to say, that I don't doubt that it can be done in 500 words... its just hard for someone the first time to create one in 500 words.

I work on student made movies and an example of what I am trying say is this: The first movie I made with a new director... we worked on a shot for 3 hours. But I've also done shots with more seasoned directors that can take about an hour. And even then, other directors could get it down to a half an hour.

That being said. Even though one director took 3 hours and the other took 1 hour, you can still get the same dedication to creativity. The same idea of effort and imagination put into. You just have to keep in mind that the director, or in this case, RPG Superstar, isn't a seasoned professional. Look for the action behind their villain... even if they couldn't do a villain in 500 words up to par of a professionals author, you can still see what they are working towards as their end product.

Paizo Employee Chief Creative Officer, Publisher

I agree, and in some cases I even recommended entries that had significant flaws for advancement based on certain things they did well.

But the winner of this contest is going to be someone who consistently outperforms his or her competition, and being able to follow instructions and work within a tight word count is part of doing that.

If you cannot write a compelling villain in the space provided, you are not what we are looking for. Maybe next year, maybe on a different day, but not now.


Erik Mona wrote:

I agree, and in some cases I even recommended entries that had significant flaws for advancement based on certain things they did well.

But the winner of this contest is going to be someone who consistently outperforms his or her competition, and being able to follow instructions and work within a tight word count is part of doing that.

If you cannot write a compelling villain in the space provided, you are not what we are looking for. Maybe next year, maybe on a different day, but not now.

I couldn't agree more. I was more posting because of my frustration towards people who were criticizing contestants rather then critiquing. :)


Clark Peterson wrote:
That round was really about creating a compelling 500 word villain. The stat block was really secondary.

While I agree that a great, well executed villain should win the round, is it true that stat blocks are secondary? Let's look at the written instructions for the round. A significant amount of written text is devoted to discussion of stat blocks. (Far more so than anything else.) I include a portion of the text here, but I've snipped out a huge block of text where the stat block is explicitly laid out.

RPG Superstar Rules wrote:

For this round, contestants must create a villain for a fantasy campaign world, as might appear in a published adventure or campaign sourcebook. The submission consists of three parts, only one part of which has a word limit:

Part 1: The villain's name and descriptive title (essentially, the title of your submission)

Part 2: The villain's stat block. This part has no word limit, but you may NOT use the Tactics section or other sections of the stat block as a way to avoid the 500 word limit of Part 3. In the stat block, you must "show your math," meaning that for any numerical entry or other data requiring a demonstration of how you arrived at the particular entry you must include that information in brackets with a brief list of the various bonuses or penalties that led to the final number, as needed. You are not allowed to explain design choices or provide additional details other than to show your math. Download the blank formatted stat block here and use it.

Part 3: A description of your villain, which can be no more than 500 words.

Your villain must be CR 20 or less.

The following content MUST be included in the description portion of Part 3: physical description, motivation(s)/goal(s), and scheme(s)/plot or adventure hook(s). Aside from this mandatory content, everything else is up to you within the given word limit.

Unlike Round 2, you MUST use the accompanying sample stat block format as closely as possible for your particular villain, though we acknowledge that each villain will be a bit different and may require slight variances. Failure to use the provided stat block format may result in disqualification.

You are free, however, to use whatever format or headings you desire for the text description section for Part 3 so long as it includes the mandatory content above. In fact, you may break up the content from Part 3 and place some content before and some after your stat block as you so choose. Keep in mind, though, that all content that is not from Part 1 or Part 2 counts towards your Part 3 word count, no matter how you split it up.

Buried down in the FAQ is a statement about what's truly important in the round:

RPG Superstar FAQ wrote:

OK then, what are you really trying to test this round?

While in the end it is up to the voting public to decide what entries advance and to decide what criteria to use to make that decision, the point of this round from the standpoint of the judges is really three-fold: (1) villain concept, (2) stat block execution, and (3) ability to hook us with descriptive text. We are not looking for the ultimate overpowered villain.

Stat block execution gets equal billing with concept and descriptive text. Poor writing isn't listed as a disqualifer (though it can be implied because you may not gather votes). Stat block execution is listed as a disqualifier.

Paizo Employee Chief Creative Officer, Publisher

I think what Clark meant is that if the concept for the villain is lame, it doesn't matter what the stat block looks like.

I imagine some people will cry foul about that (they certainly did in round 1), and to that I say: tough.

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

Erik Mona wrote:

I think what Clark meant is that if the concept for the villain is lame, it doesn't matter what the stat block looks like.

I imagine some people will cry foul about that (they certainly did in round 1), and to that I say: tough.

What I was getting at in referring to the items in R&R is that they all show a greater quality of concept than what I had in mind when I worked on my item. Indeed, better concepts than most of the items in the 32. Not that they were submitted in publishable form or anything, and not that they didn't undergo some concept revision in the editing process. And not that any of the 32 here were publishable as is.

But that the basic ideas behind them were very good ideas.

That has sort of been the fundamental theme of this contest, round to round, though it seems more assumed than explicit at times. That execution without an exceptional concept is sort of pointless.

The standards are higher than I realized, and I suspect they're higher than some of the 16 realized as well. But it's not going to get easier.

As it stands at the moment, I see 3, maybe 4 people with a real shot at winning this thing. Unless one of the other 12 or 13 see how high the standards really are and step up to it.

So whatever else this contest does or does not accomplish, it's certainly shown what it takes to publish in the indie rpg world represented here. I wasn't aware of the level of thought that is required, and I suspect many others weren't either.

Anyway, all that just confirms for me that I'm sticking with 2 votes this round. Two stand out for me, and those are the two I'm going with.

Dark Archive Contributor, RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4

Erik Mona wrote:

I think what Clark meant is that if the concept for the villain is lame, it doesn't matter what the stat block looks like.

I imagine some people will cry foul about that (they certainly did in round 1), and to that I say: tough.

My good friend's wonderful wife recently compared this competition (favorably, might I add) to "America's Most Smartest Model" on VH1.

Her arguement was, basically, that contestants have to be smart, but they obviously also have to be really, really pretty . . . or, you know, "creative", in our case. Plus, because they're simultaneously being judged on a number of other levels - like charm, screen-presence and raw ability to do the job they're being hired for - it's a more complex alchemy of criteria than "Win Ben Stein's Money" or "America's Next Top Model" alone.

I'm simply impressed by the level of transparacy that the judges for Superstar have given us about how difficult it has been to keep this contest fair.

Kudos and thank you.


Clouds Without Water wrote:
Monkeywithashotgun

An aside. My apologies. Clouds Without Water, do you produce short films? I ask because of your homepage link.

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 16 , Marathon Voter Season 6 aka Core

Clouds Without Water wrote:
The standards are higher than I realized, and I suspect they're higher than some of the 16 realized as well. But it's not going to get easier.

Actually I think the following rounds are more 'natural' and would be easier to write for. I mean when you ask someone 'think of a good villain' it is usually something from a long novel, film or character piece. The short version felt rather artificial, even the top ones presented here.

Anyhow, your only as good as the last project you do, as they say. I think the people who do not have a bad day and put out the consistent work will get to the last round. Picking the winner for the final 4 though I think will be very subjective - we will probably get 3 or 4 really good entries and it will simply boil down to a matter of taste and popularity on which one wins.

Liberty's Edge Star Voter Season 7, Star Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9

WormysQueue wrote:
It seems that I kind of disagree with most of the people posting in this thread as I'm not generally disappointed at all.

Right there with you. It's obvious you and I are in the minority, but I enjoyed reading the entries, and I think the top 8 (as it's looking on the "who ya votin' for" thread) are pretty darn good.

A lot of people have complained about the 500-word limit, but when DMing you don't need, or really want, more than that to get the villain's concept and start elaborating on one's own. Running a good villain usually comes down to a lot of "winging it." And I'd wager few published works have villain descriptions over 500 words anyway.

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

The Jade wrote:
Clouds Without Water wrote:
Monkeywithashotgun
An aside. My apologies. Clouds Without Water, do you produce short films? I ask because of your homepage link.

Yep. Monkey is a sort of side project for comedy shorts, the main group is SoCal Film Group (socalfilm.com).

And now back to RPGs. :-)

Dark Archive Contributor, RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4

James Hunnicutt wrote:


A lot of people have complained about the 500-word limit, but when DMing you don't need, or really want, more than that to get the villain's concept and start elaborating on one's own. Running a good villain usually comes down to a lot of "winging it." And I'd wager few published works have villain descriptions over 500 words anyway.

I most whole-heartedly agree - the best villain (read as: most interesting/most hated by the PCs) I ever ran was initially a throwaway Halfling Wizard named Arrin Tenroe, a strongly-Lawful, mildly-Evil aristocrat with some big ideas, a funny voice, a lot of legal leverage and a general distaste for "pirates".

Dear Lord, my chaotic, free-wheeling-swashbucker PCs hated him so much they could TASTE it. In destroying eveything Tenroe loved out of purest spite, they pushed that man all the way into fascism - he allied with monsters and devils to get his hands on them.

For two campaigns, Tenroe was possibly the greatest villain I've ever had the pleasure to roleplay.

The Exchange

I can remember playing in a campaign where we used henchmen to boost the party size. Over the course of several levels we lost a fair few henchmen. Unfortunately they were all halflings.

Enter the villain. A halfling relative. In fact he sent his cousin an assassin and we killed him. And so it went on every few adventures another halfling killer tried to avenge the family and we would kill him.

Halfling villains make me smile. Alot.

Cheers

Scarab Sages Contributor, RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4, Legendary Games

Core wrote:
Clouds Without Water wrote:
The standards are higher than I realized, and I suspect they're higher than some of the 16 realized as well. But it's not going to get easier.

Actually I think the following rounds are more 'natural' and would be easier to write for. I mean when you ask someone 'think of a good villain' it is usually something from a long novel, film or character piece. The short version felt rather artificial, even the top ones presented here.

Anyhow, your only as good as the last project you do, as they say. I think the people who do not have a bad day and put out the consistent work will get to the last round. Picking the winner for the final 4 though I think will be very subjective - we will probably get 3 or 4 really good entries and it will simply boil down to a matter of taste and popularity on which one wins.

I think you're right. You can have entries that are great, but it's probably better as far as advancing to have all of your entries be solid rather than some great and some iffy or lame. Some people will give you a pass based on earlier work, some will grade round to round, but it's hard to survive a bad (or just unpopular) entry.

Once we get to the final four, whomever that is, it'll be pretty much a crapshoot as to who will win. People might vote based on past work, because they like how you put together your adventure proposal, or just because they like the adventure proposal itself, and all of those are perfectly valid things to judge on. Some might also just decide they like your personality. Could be anything.

It's been fun, though, and it'll be interesting to see how it all plays out.

Scarab Sages

It seems there may be some general writer fatigue occurring. That will truly seperate the men from the mice, no offense Christine. The strengths and weaknesses of each writer are becoming clearer. I think it is possible to create a villain within the limitations given and most of the writers did satisfactory. Nothing really getting me excited this round, unlike the countries of which there were a couple that were very intriguing. I don't see any bad guys I would use in a campaign setting. The problem many of the villains seem to have is that, for the most part villains grow and develop personality as the campaign or adventure progresses. It is nigh impossible to capture the true flair of a villain upon initial development. Imagine J.K. Rowling trying to describe Voldemort with only 500 words. Some folks seemed to have very grandiose villains causing the back stories to seem weak at best.

Scarab Sages RPG Superstar 2013 , Dedicated Voter Season 6, Dedicated Voter Season 7, Dedicated Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9 aka Steven T. Helt

thatboomerkid wrote:
Her arguement was, basically, that contestants have to be smart, but they obviously also have to be really, really pretty . . .

i really really hope future superstar events do not require the contestants to be pretty. Admittedly, I could probably gin up some very competitive 'lovely assistants' if the need arises.

Maybe they could pretend to fight...in slow motion...with Prescience Pillows.

In fact, I think I'm getting a vision right now.

I gotta go....

Dark Archive Contributor, RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4

ancientsensei wrote:


i really really hope future superstar events do not require the contestants to be pretty. Admittedly, I could probably gin up some very competitive 'lovely assistants' if the need arises.

Maybe they could pretend to fight...in slow motion...with Prescience Pillows.

In fact, I think I'm getting a vision right now.

I gotta go....

I want to party with YOU, man.

If you need me to, I can snag Holly (player of Lidda), Darlene (player of Mialee) and Katie (player of Athaina) for your . . . vision.

Scarab Sages RPG Superstar 2013 , Dedicated Voter Season 6, Dedicated Voter Season 7, Dedicated Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9 aka Steven T. Helt

heh. I have never seen any of your videos,but I am strangely motivated to go check them out. be back soon.

Scarab Sages RPG Superstar 2013 , Dedicated Voter Season 6, Dedicated Voter Season 7, Dedicated Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9 aka Steven T. Helt

he. i have to go to work (AGAIN!), so i'll see the rest later. But right now, if creative juices could put together a pillow fight (that's Prescience Pillow C TM all rights reserved...except it's not mine anymore) with malcanthet, misty and the signature knight, I'd be pretty happy.

: }

chicken!


Clouds Without Water wrote:
The Jade wrote:
Clouds Without Water wrote:
Monkeywithashotgun
An aside. My apologies. Clouds Without Water, do you produce short films? I ask because of your homepage link.

Yep. Monkey is a sort of side project for comedy shorts, the main group is SoCal Film Group (socalfilm.com).

And now back to RPGs. :-)

As the Brits say... brilliant!

I enjoyed that video of yours where a class teaches privileged white women how to speak Spanish to their housekeepers.

Between you and Clinton Boomer with his Creative Juices (SNEAK ATTACK!) we've quite the short film contingent in attendance.

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 , Star Voter Season 7

I can't say I've read all 120-odd posts in this thread, but I was surprised in the villians this round. I was expecting...I dunno. More. Better, maybe. I put down two votes, but nothing else is leaping at me. I was expecting a tough decision.

Come on, superstars, step it up! You didn't send me home for nothing!


Ross Byers wrote:

I can't say I've read all 120-odd posts in this thread, but I was surprised in the villians this round. I was expecting...I dunno. More. Better, maybe. I put down two votes, but nothing else is leaping at me. I was expecting a tough decision.

Come on, superstars, step it up! You didn't send me home for nothing!

can anyone help me find out where these entries can be viewed. hard to post on something i haven't seen. MERRY XMAS

Dark Archive Contributor, RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4

fineous99l wrote:

can anyone help me find out where these entries can be viewed. hard to post on something i haven't seen. MERRY XMAS

No problem, brother - check out:

The Big Board right here.

All of us contestants are listed alphabetically by first name, with where we're from, our villain (as a link), our country (as a link), and our item (as a link).

Read at your leisure, throw four votes towards the very best of the best - and ENJOY!

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32 , Star Voter Season 7

Not quite at your leisure: Voting for this round ends tomorrow at 12 noon PST.

Dark Archive Contributor, RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4

Ross Byers wrote:
Not quite at your leisure: Voting for this round ends tomorrow at 12 noon PST.

Good point - VOTE! Vote NOW!

If you can't decide who's best, just . . . well, vote for the first four listed contestants! That seems fair!

*grin*

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

thatboomerkid wrote:
Ross Byers wrote:
Not quite at your leisure: Voting for this round ends tomorrow at 12 noon PST.

Good point - VOTE! Vote NOW!

If you can't decide who's best, just . . . well, vote for the first four listed contestants! That seems fair!

*grin*

The last four. They're closer to the Vote button. Valuable labor-saving device.

Dark Archive Contributor, RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4

Russ Taylor wrote:


The last four. They're closer to the Vote button. Valuable labor-saving device.

Actually, the very easiest would be the LOWEST four - James, Jason, Walter and William.

Sigh. Looks like I can stop worrying about thematically-linked monsters . . .

Scarab Sages RPG Superstar 2013 , Dedicated Voter Season 6, Dedicated Voter Season 7, Dedicated Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9 aka Steven T. Helt

just stay away from my theme. I am thinking of keeping it for next year. : }

Dark Archive Contributor, RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4

ancientsensei wrote:
just stay away from my theme. I am thinking of keeping it for next year. : }

I can do that, I think.

. . . wait, what IS your theme?

Legendary Games, Necromancer Games

Erik Mona wrote:
I think what Clark meant is that if the concept for the villain is lame, it doesn't matter what the stat block looks like.

Yeah, that is a better way to say it. I guess what I am saying is the stat block follows the villain, not the other way around. Dont create a cool monster and stat block first, create the villain first, then the stat block to describe him. Yes, this did test stat block "execution." But the key here was good villain, not good stat block. I dont think that was unclear. Of course, you cant have a good villain and then stink up the stat block. But villain idea first.

Legendary Games, Necromancer Games

I think some people got caught up in what might make a neat stat block on paper and didnt focus on the coolest villain possible.

Scarab Sages RPG Superstar 2013 , Dedicated Voter Season 6, Dedicated Voter Season 7, Dedicated Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9 aka Steven T. Helt

thatboomerkid wrote:
ancientsensei wrote:
just stay away from my theme. I am thinking of keeping it for next year. : }

I can do that, I think.

. . . wait, what IS your theme?

can't tell ya. someone will use it for SURE!!

maybe it's time we shared an email. you know what to do. i think.

Dark Archive Contributor, RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4

ancientsensei wrote:
thatboomerkid wrote:
ancientsensei wrote:
just stay away from my theme. I am thinking of keeping it for next year. : }

I can do that, I think.

. . . wait, what IS your theme?

can't tell ya. someone will use it for SURE!!

maybe it's time we shared an email. you know what to do. i think.

I think I do. Check your Inbox.

Scarab Sages Contributor, RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4, Legendary Games

thatboomerkid wrote:
Russ Taylor wrote:


The last four. They're closer to the Vote button. Valuable labor-saving device.

Actually, the very easiest would be the LOWEST four - James, Jason, Walter and William.

Yes, an excellent suggestion! Hear hear!

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

thatboomerkid wrote:
Russ Taylor wrote:


The last four. They're closer to the Vote button. Valuable labor-saving device.

Actually, the very easiest would be the LOWEST four - James, Jason, Walter and William.

Sigh. Looks like I can stop worrying about thematically-linked monsters . . .

Nah, that's on the contest page. The voting page is single column, alphabetical by first name :)

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

The Jade wrote:


As the Brits say... brilliant!

I enjoyed that video of yours where a class teaches privileged white women how to speak Spanish to their housekeepers.

Glad you liked that one. It's do pretty well, people have been stealing it and reposting it elsewhere, which is always a good thing.

We don't do so well on youtube for some reason, but we've had videos featured on the front pages of yahoo, myspace, funnyordie, and several other sites. Plus we just got a deal to make a series of shorts for cell phones. Not a lot of money, but enough to buy more RPG stuff. :-)


Congrats to the winners! I was only batting .750 with my picks, as Hetty beat out Elsie for the crazy old lady slot (though I did have them both tied at +1 in my rating scheme!)

And I guess people don't share my distaste for psionics since the "other 4" were mostly ones I docked a point for psi (Voeren, Arthelia).

In general I agree with the results (though I do think Elsie got ripped).

Can't wait for the next round!

Dark Archive

Ernest Mueller wrote:
In general I agree with the results (though I do think Elsie got ripped).

Elsie, with some tweaking, as I mentioned in her thread, I could use as a villain. Hettie? Not so much, since none of the PCs get knocked up in my games, so they aren't real likely to run into a psychotic midwife.

Anyone can lose a hand, but having a PC lose a baby takes somewhat more specific campaign circumstances ("An Elf and a Human who love each other very much get certain urges...").

But usability, while one of my ironclad voting points, doesn't seem to have been a heavily weighted factor in general voting.

Scarab Sages

Erik Mona wrote:


In a certain sense you're comparing apples and oranges. It is not fair to compare an edited, published product with an unedited item posted to a message board for a contest. I don't think even 4 or 5 of the Round 1 entires would make it into a Paizo product with no editing.

If this contest does nothing else, I hope it reveals to the audience the important role editors play in RPG publishing. Just about nobody gets it perfect the first time, and they shouldn't be expected to.

Hear, hear!

Scarab Sages

Set wrote:
Ernest Mueller wrote:
In general I agree with the results (though I do think Elsie got ripped).

Elsie, with some tweaking, as I mentioned in her thread, I could use as a villain. Hettie? Not so much, since none of the PCs get knocked up in my games, so they aren't real likely to run into a psychotic midwife.

Anyone can lose a hand, but having a PC lose a baby takes somewhat more specific campaign circumstances ("An Elf and a Human who love each other very much get certain urges...").

But usability, while one of my ironclad voting points, doesn't seem to have been a heavily weighted factor in general voting.

I found that Elsie would take more work to incorporate into a campaign than Hettie as Elsie had some significant inconsistencies in her back story and a dead-end gimmick (for the lack of a better word). With Hettie, you do not need to have the PCs be one of the parents that looses a child. A favored NPC can fit the bill nicely. And once the PCs catch Hettie at it, they now have to deal with the kids. Once Elsie is captured, all you have are hands.

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