Bracelet of Shields


Open Call: Design a wondrous item

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Sovereign Court RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32, 2010 Top 8 , Star Voter Season 6

Aura: Moderate Abjuration CL: 8th
Slot: Hands Price: 8280GP
This leather thong holds eleven small bronze shields of Osiron make, inscribed with the names of ancient wizards. After wearing the bracelet for 24 hours, it is attuned to the wearer and begins to function. When the wearer casts a shield spell it is automatically extended. As an immediate action, the wearer may cast a shield spell and instead of the spell’s normal effects, it surrounds the wearer in a resilient sphere until the wearer’s next action. Each time this is done, one of the shields on the bracelet is expended, becoming blacked and twisted. After the last shield is expended, the bracelet loses all magical properties.
Requirements: Craft Wondrous Item, Shield, Resilient Sphere, creator must know Extend Spell. Cost: 4140 GP
(Cost is estimated by rod of lesser metamagic extend, adhoc only works on shield, unlimited use, + 11 charges of resilient sphere at 8th level)

The Exchange Kobold Press

I didn't really want to like this, but I sort of do. The idea of using a spell amplifier is a great twist to bring to this, and (though we've seen other Metamagic items), making this a linked set of shield and resilient sphere is pretty cool.

I wish the designer had spelled "Osirian" right, though.

Keep it around?

Legendary Games, Necromancer Games

This one irks me because it includes the parenthetical costing info and the math behind it.

Its like explaining your joke. If you have to explain it, it wasnt that funny. Be confident that we can figure it out.

That said, these are pretty interesting. They make a simple low level spell alot cooler and they have good limitations. I like the metamagic angle. This is done in a good way.

Contributor

{Its like explaining your joke. If you have to explain it, it wasnt that funny. Be confident that we can figure it out.}

I disagree ... if you have the wordspace to include how you derived the price, it lets me see your logic and check your math without working from a totally blank slate.

The bad formatting makes me cranky, though--capped spell names, gp is capped, no commas in numbers. But that is me being nitpicky about stuff I'd have to fix if this were a designer's turnover.

Let's say keep ... formatting is something you can learn.

The Exchange Kobold Press

Ok, if they make it to the Top 32, that next item's formatting better be FLAWLESS.

Keep.

The Exchange Kobold Press

Kept.

Dark Archive Contributor, RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4

This is a very, very slick item!

I'm impressed with the clever use of metamagic effects as well as the spell-substitution effect (which, from a creative standpoint, opens the door to similar charge-based "replacement spell" items), and I like the way the entire item functions.

Well done, and congratulations! I look forward to seeing more as [b]Superstar![/i] continues!

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

Wolfgang Baur wrote:
Ok, if they make it to the Top 32, that next item's formatting better be FLAWLESS.
Clinton Boomer wrote:
Well done, and congratulations! I look forward to seeing more as [b]Superstar![/i] continues!

Oh no, Booms, look out. Your formatting... your FORMATTING!!!

The Kobold Wolf is gonna getcha! :)

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

Congratulations on making it into RPG Superstar 2009!

I think this item is very clever. It is very focused (viva la shield!), but that's not a bad thing. The name is bland but the description is very good (excepting Osirian > Osiron). I like the "each extra shield is a charge" mechanic - Rob used the same trick last year on his coin belt of beguiling; perhaps that's a good omen for you!

I like the specific metamagic trick, and I think the spell swap using the shield-charges is a good thematic choice and works very well (although the "until his next action" phrase made me think OH NO 4TH EDITION!!! for a moment). The immediate action thing might be a little tricky in specifying when during someone else's action you can interrupt them (in between movement and attack? before they roll to hit? can they retarget?), but that's more a matter of DM adjudication of immediate actions rather than your problem as a designer. Immediate actions work as the rules and the DM let them work; you have used the mechanic and it's a perfectly valid one and I think have worked in a cool costing system and a limitation of the effect (they only work once, and only until your next action), so I give you the big thumbs up.

Summary: I like the item a lot. I think it's a fun and useful low-level item. It's a nice effect but not overpowering, with a clever use of mechanics to back it up. Good job!

Dark Archive Contributor, RPG Superstar aka Leandra Christine Schneider

This item is very solid. It has a fair bit of flavour, a nice mechanical perk and a good combination of all the minor things that make of an interesting and well balanced entry. While it didn’t grab me that much, I thoroughly enjoyed the submission and I wouldn’t mind discovering something like it in a supplement.

Positive:
Great plus on the substitution thing. It reminded me of beefed up spell components from other supplements, but taken to a higher and more dedicated level.
Nice combination of charge based and constant effect item.

Negative:
I didn't like the pricing info that much because other entries might have included it too. They likely didn't know it would be welcomed because the authors assumed it to be against the rules.
….and yes, that name misspelling has to be mentioned again and again :P

After reviewing all other items:
Now, after being surprised by a few ridiculous prices, I would have liked the rules to include a requirement line where costs have to be explained.
I still like this item quite a bit and think it to be above average in overall score. Good luck in the RPG Superstar 09!

Paizo Employee Creative Director, Starfinder aka Robert G. McCreary

Shields as charges is a mechanic I like (as Jason pointed out with my last year's coin belt of beguiling), and it's certainly new to see a metamagic device not as a rod. The one thing that concerns me, however, is that you're getting up to 11 4th-level spells using 1st-level spell slots. In effect, it's actually turning the metamagic mechanic on its head, because instead of using a higher slot to cast a lower level spell, you're getting a higher level spell for a lower level slot. And you get it for free when you cast shield as a standard action, not a full round action as with a metamagic rod. And it's unclear whether the resilient spheres are extended like the shields.

That's a pretty big bump in power, and I'd like to see the pricing reflect that better. Thanks to your pricing explanation, we know you ad-hoc'd it off the price of a lesser extend metamagic rod, but here's the rub - lesser rods work up to 3rd level, and resilient sphere is a 4th level spell. I'd rather see the price based off a normal extend metamagic rod, which is 11,000 gp, and a corresponding rise in the price of the bracelet.

Then again, it only applies the metamagic to one spell only, and the spell bump is very limited - 11 times, and no more bracelet. So maybe I'm being too nitpicky. But you got me looking really closely at some of the details, which means it interests me. In short (too late!), I like this item, I like the originality of the abilities, and I like the mechanics, even if I'm not 100% sold on totally turning metamagic on its head.

So good job! I'll be interested to see what bring to the table in the coming rounds. Congratulations on joining the ranks of RPG Superstar!

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

Rob McCreary wrote:
Shields as charges is a mechanic I like (as Jason pointed out with my last year's coin belt of beguiling), and it's certainly new to see a metamagic device not as a rod. The one thing that concerns me, however, is that you're getting up to 11 4th-level spells using 1st-level spell slots. In effect, it's actually turning the metamagic mechanic on its head, because instead of using a higher slot to cast a lower level spell, you're getting a higher level spell for a lower level slot. And you get it for free when you cast shield as a standard action, not a full round action as with a metamagic rod. And it's unclear whether the resilient spheres are extended like the shields.

They're not extended. In fact, the sphere use only lasts until your next action.

Dark Archive Contributor, RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4

Jason Nelson wrote:

Oh no, Booms, look out. Your formatting... your FORMATTING!!!

The Kobold Wolf is gonna getcha! :)

Me fail formatting!?!

THAt"S unpossible!

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

Clinton Boomer wrote:
Jason Nelson wrote:

Oh no, Booms, look out. Your formatting... your FORMATTING!!!

The Kobold Wolf is gonna getcha! :)

Me fail formatting!?!

THAt"S unpossible!

ding

The perfect response, as always... :)

Sovereign Court RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32, 2010 Top 8 , Star Voter Season 6

Thank you for your comments gentlemen, and lady.

I was fully expecting to post this item in Clark's thread to have it ripped to pieces after the fact.

I'm sorry about the formatting errors and spelling errors. I thought I'd spellchecked them correctly. Though I did say the idea came to me in the shower. :-)

Sean, may, I, put, extra, commas, in, this, post, to, store, for, future, use?

I'm still in shock and giddy. Sorry.

The Exchange Kobold Press

Matthew, congrats on a great item and making the Top 32. You gave metamagic a great twist.

Boomer! Demerits to you on formatting! Yes am possible!

Wait, dammit, Boomer isn't in the contest! Bah, force of habit!


Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Matthew Morris wrote:

Aura: Moderate Abjuration CL: 8th

Slot: Hands Price: 8280GP
This leather thong holds eleven small bronze shields of Osiron make, inscribed with the names of ancient wizards. After wearing the bracelet for 24 hours, it is attuned to the wearer and begins to function. When the wearer casts a shield spell it is automatically extended. As an immediate action, the wearer may cast a shield spell and instead of the spell’s normal effects, it surrounds the wearer in a resilient sphere until the wearer’s next action. Each time this is done, one of the shields on the bracelet is expended, becoming blacked and twisted. After the last shield is expended, the bracelet loses all magical properties.
Requirements: Craft Wondrous Item, Shield, Resilient Sphere, creator must know Extend Spell. Cost: 4140 GP
(Cost is estimated by rod of lesser metamagic extend, adhoc only works on shield, unlimited use, + 11 charges of resilient sphere at 8th level)

Congratz Matthew!!!!!!


Love it Matthew, great job!

Pricing a spell substitution effect (sphere for shield) on wand charges was brilliant!

RPG Superstar 2011 Top 32 aka Gamer Girrl

Question--Hands slot? As a bracelet, shouldn't this be wrists? Or am I off an addition or two?

I'm also a bit confused as it seems to repeat itself...here's the snipped part.

When the wearer casts a shield spell it is automatically extended. As an immediate action, the wearer may cast a shield spell and instead of the spell’s normal effects, it surrounds the wearer in a resilient sphere until the wearer’s next action. Each time this is done, one of the shields on the bracelet is expended,

So is that "extended" supposed to be expended? If so, you can drop that line entirely ... if not, I'm not getting what you mean about it being extended.

A cool little item, and I like the visual use FX you put in.

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

Gamer Girrl wrote:

Question--Hands slot? As a bracelet, shouldn't this be wrists? Or am I off an addition or two?

I'm also a bit confused as it seems to repeat itself...here's the snipped part.

When the wearer casts a shield spell it is automatically extended. As an immediate action, the wearer may cast a shield spell and instead of the spell’s normal effects, it surrounds the wearer in a resilient sphere until the wearer’s next action. Each time this is done, one of the shields on the bracelet is expended,

So is that "extended" supposed to be expended? If so, you can drop that line entirely ... if not, I'm not getting what you mean about it being extended.

A cool little item, and I like the visual use FX you put in.

Extended. As in, affected by the Extend Spell metamagic feat.

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

One more nitpick: blacked-->blackened. Sorry, couldn't resist.

This is nifty item. Automatic upgrade or cool upgrade at a cost. I like having to make choices like that.

Congratulations!

RPG Superstar 2011 Top 32 aka Gamer Girrl

Jason Nelson wrote:
Gamer Girrl wrote:

Question--Hands slot? As a bracelet, shouldn't this be wrists? Or am I off an addition or two?

I'm also a bit confused as it seems to repeat itself...here's the snipped part.

When the wearer casts a shield spell it is automatically extended. As an immediate action, the wearer may cast a shield spell and instead of the spell’s normal effects, it surrounds the wearer in a resilient sphere until the wearer’s next action. Each time this is done, one of the shields on the bracelet is expended,

So is that "extended" supposed to be expended? If so, you can drop that line entirely ... if not, I'm not getting what you mean about it being extended.

A cool little item, and I like the visual use FX you put in.

Extended. As in, affected by the Extend Spell metamagic feat.

*smack* Okay, d'oh, got it now on that part :)

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

Novel mechanic. Resilient sphere isn't generally that broken a spell, so given a semi-charged item the ability to cast it doesn't bug me. I might well tweak up the casting, though.

I found it somewhat jarring that the item's description (and burning out) is a riff on Harry Dresden's original shield bracelet. Not sure if that's coincidence or an homage.

One of the better items I've read today.

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

Russ Taylor wrote:

I found it somewhat jarring that the item's description (and burning out) is a riff on Harry Dresden's original shield bracelet. Not sure if that's coincidence or an homage.

Something in the back of my head was telling me this was familiar.

Dark Archive

I love the idea of expending a shield spell to create the one round resilient sphere effect. It's a neat idea, using one's own spells to power a different effect. The extending of Shield spells is also a welcome sight, since that spell never lasts long enough for me to bother casting it.

Sovereign Court RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32, 2010 Top 8 , Star Voter Season 6

Shield is one of my favourite utility spells. The Behind the Spell compendium made it that much cooler.

Yes, the idea of the bracelet and being fueled by the caster's magic is a nod to the Dresden files. I'm surprised that no one has commented on the number of charges though.

And looking back, this does benefit sorcerers more. I'm OK with that, spontanious casters need some loving.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16

Matthew Morris wrote:
Yes, the idea of the bracelet and being fueled by the caster's magic is a nod to the Dresden files.

I thought so. Boundary Chalk was originally inspired by Dresden Files too: it mutated considerably during development.

Congratulations on making it to round 2!

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32

Matthew Morris wrote:
Yes, the idea of the bracelet and being fueled by the caster's magic is a nod to the Dresden files.

It's more than a nod - it's practically the same item! I give you credit for converting it to D&D stats, and I think you did a good job with the mechanics of it, but it's almost exactly the same as in the books.

Sovereign Court RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32, 2010 Top 8 , Star Voter Season 6

Paul, I respectfully disagree with you. Inspired by? Yes. Direct copy, no.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32

That's cool - it's a great item. I'd definately want one. There's a few Dresden-style items out there, it's really interesting to see the impact that the books are having on gaming culture.

Sovereign Court RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32, 2010 Top 8 , Star Voter Season 6

I think it's a 'good enough to have, not too good item'.

One thing I wish I'd made clear (in hindsight) is that the globe can't be dropped earlier when it goes off, so your next action is spent in a resiliant sphere. It's a calculated risk. If you burned a shield to use a sphere to block, say, a lightning bolt, you can't return fire immeidately. You're going to buff, or down a potion, or do something defensive (well, unless you use it to block a disintigrate, since that will knock down the globe anyway).

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16 aka Clandestine

This is a shield booster, and one of the few purely defensive items I see on the contest. It's a solid idea, with a straightforward approach to a magic item - an asset that makes whatever you do stronger.

Being clean and to the point - as this entry is - is a great Superstar quality.


Matthew Morris wrote:
As an immediate action, the wearer may cast a shield spell and instead of the spell’s normal effects, it surrounds the wearer in a resilient sphere until the wearer’s next action.

Bad news, Matthew... I am by now nicely warmed up and operating in full 'lawnmower' mode, as per Campaign Setting errata thread. :D

As far as I can understand, you are saying that the wearer activates the resilient sphere by casting a shield spell....
Except the casting time listed for shield in the Beta is 1 standard action; if I understand correctly you are saying wearing this bracelet allows you to cast a standard action spell as an immediate(swift) action, but I do not see that you included the Quicken Spell feat in your item crafting requirements.

Oh, and congratulations on reaching the top 32.

Contributor, RPG Superstar 2009, RPG Superstar Judgernaut

Cool item, cool effect, tight design. I'm not familiar with Dresden, so I'll let others be judge of how much creative spark you borrowed from him. Regardless, this item is useful to the game. It harmonizes well with all the spell effects you chose. And it's worthy of Top 32. So good luck in the next round...

My two-cents,
--Neil

Sovereign Court RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32, 2010 Top 8 , Star Voter Season 6

It's a kludge Charles,

the idea was to have a varient on a spell trigger item, if you can do X, Y happens. I never considered quicken spell as a requirement as it's not really quickening it. *shrug* I liked it or I'd not have tried it. Thanks for the critique though.

Neil, when you get a chance, (if you do, Christine seemed to disappear from the boards after she won) definately read the Dresden files. Since its own RPG isn't out, you'll want to get MCWod to get a system that can emulate the magic.

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 16 aka amusingsn

The Bracelet of Shields seems like a good magical item for a wizard to make for himself, and that fits pretty much any campaign setting.

The writing has some problems, but is mostly clear. The formatting is significantly off.

Sczarni

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure, Companion, Lost Omens Subscriber
Matthew Morris wrote:

Since its own RPG isn't out yet,

fixed it for you, since there is a dresden RPG in the works (or at least there was). I think it's a little more limiting than it was in the books, but that could be negated with good roleplayers. I like it, and it gets my vote

Scarab Sages RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32 aka flash_cxxi

I don't mind this item. It's tightly focused and usable with a minimum of fuss.

Congrats on Top 32. :)

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16 aka NChance

When I first saw the name, I thought "Hmmm, did someone submit a variation of my phalanx bracer as an entry?", but I must say I was pleasantly surprised at your item. It puts higher level magic in the reach of lower level casters. Nice job. Congrats and welcome to the Top 32.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 16, 2012 Top 32 , Marathon Voter Season 6, Marathon Voter Season 7, Marathon Voter Season 8, Marathon Voter Season 9 aka Epic Meepo

My only concern: it's a good enough item that now all the designers out there are going to say, "Hey, there isn't a metamagic item for this spell yet." You've set a dangerous/wonderful/clever precedent with this one. For that, I salute you.


Metamagic items seem a tad overdone to me in general, though I have not seen any others in the contest. Its a decent item, but very vanilla. Not bad.

Grats on top 32!

Dark Archive Contributor, RPG Superstar aka Leandra Christine Schneider

Off-topic:

Matthew Morris wrote:
Christine seemed to disappear from the boards after she won.

On the contrary! I never appeared at the boards :P

I don't have a knack for involving myself actively in communities and I always struggle to avoid being too brief when I have to.
But maybe we can work on that. This drew me out of my shell after all.

On-topic:
I still like this bracelet and now I am curios about these dresden files.
In my opinion, seeking inspiration from books, movies, games or other kinds of fiction is important to avoid designing in a stagnant and constrained vacuum, that dulls and limits ideas.

Sovereign Court RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32, 2010 Top 8 , Star Voter Season 6

Leandra Christine Schneider wrote:

Off-topic:

Matthew Morris wrote:
Christine seemed to disappear from the boards after she won.

On the contrary! I never appeared at the boards :P

I don't have a knack for involving myself actively in communities and I always struggle to avoid being too brief when I have to.
But maybe we can work on that. This drew me out of my shell after all.

On-topic:
I still like this bracelet and now I am curios about these dresden files.
In my opinion, seeking inspiration from books, movies, games or other kinds of fiction is important to avoid designing in a stagnant and constrained vacuum, that dulls and limits ideas.

I'm flattered you still like it. As to the Dresden Files Mr. Butcher's website is here including a couple short pieces on Harry.

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

And I didn't yet comment on your item.

It is clean and fun, it just is (in a good way).

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

I get these. I like things that let you roll off low-level spells quickly. As long as they are expensive enough. It gives a little extra punch to the higher level characters.

Good luck next round.

The Exchange RPG Superstar 2009 Top 8 aka Tarren Dei

Matthew Morris wrote:

I think it's a 'good enough to have, not too good item'.

One thing I wish I'd made clear (in hindsight) is that the globe can't be dropped earlier when it goes off, so your next action is spent in a resiliant sphere. It's a calculated risk. If you burned a shield to use a sphere to block, say, a lightning bolt, you can't return fire immeidately. You're going to buff, or down a potion, or do something defensive (well, unless you use it to block a disintigrate, since that will knock down the globe anyway).

I like this. I like things that give players opportunities to make strategic decisions.

Liberty's Edge RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32, 2011 Top 16 , Star Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 7, Star Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9 aka JoelF847

Love this item. There are a few minor quibbles, most of which have been mentioned - slot should be arms/bracers, and the formatting is a bit off. I'm fine without the quicken spell feat, since if that was required, I'd expect more from the sphere effect than 1 round. Trading the casting time for a 1 round duration is supported in many of the splatbook spells from WOTC, and I didn't think they were unbalanced.

The only change I'd make is rounding the price up to 8,300 and the cost to 4,150 therefore. I know I'll be looking for one of these for most of my wizards or sorcerers.

Good luck in the villain rounds.

Liberty's Edge

whoa, i definitively love this item, great work Matthew

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32

I really like this spell substitution mechanic. I really like the flavor of the bracelet. So there's a lot to like here.

Nice work!

-S

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