Unofficial Round 5 Exit Poll


RPG Superstar™ 2010 General Discussion

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Star Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 7, Dedicated Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9

Hey, I haven't even gotten to read into things yet, but why not start this party...

So, Round 5...who? why?

-Ben.

Dedicated Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 7

Thanks for starting this.

I'm pretty sure my vote's going to go to Cult of the Ebon Destroyers, but will let the thread know once I've officially cast my vote (- and why I cast it, as well).

(That said - 'ebon' ??? Oh gurl please! We should start another thread: the 'See how many 'this screams "Fantasy!"' words we can put in one title' one.

My entry: Ebon Aerie of the Cyclopean Ichor. 'Nuff said.)


Matt Goodall - Cult of the Ebon Destroyers (the name sucks)

Honourable mention goes to Jim Groves for his adventure proposal which I would love to see turned into a 3 module arc/series that could give the fleshing out it deserves.

Marathon Voter Season 6, Marathon Voter Season 7, Star Voter Season 8

I thought going into this round that I would end up voting for Watcher, because I have always like him, or McGee because I think his body of work up to this point has been the best... I also assumed that all of the adventure proposals would be roughly on par with each other... I was wrong...

I had to vote for Matt Goodall, for writing a very kick ass adventure proposal, head and shoulder above the others.

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

Jim Groves - "Doom of the Dream Thieves" gets my vote.

"From Time's Depths" is awesome, but I don't see any way to do justice to those encounters in 32 pages. I realise some are saying the same about "Doom of the Dream Thieves". edit: Wait. 6th level?

"Cult of the Ebon Destroyers" is technically very nice. Jalmeray was always going to be a hard sell for me. It's all a bit too familiar.

Dark Archive

Marcus Ewert wrote:

(That said - 'ebon' ??? Oh gurl please! We should start another thread: the 'See how many 'this screams "Fantasy!"' words we can put in one title' one.

My entry: Ebon Aerie of the Cyclopean Ichor. 'Nuff said.)

"Escape from the Dread Sepulcher of the Black Prince of the Fell Realm of the Umber Depths." Or "Rise of the Ebon Throne of the Dreamhaunt Host." Or "Expedition to the Everdark Crypt of the Eldritch Death Knight."

Add "With Lasers" to the end of any of those, and I'd buy it. :P

Dedicated Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 7

N'wah wrote:


"Escape from the Dread Sepulcher of the Black Prince of the Fell Realm of the Umber Depths."

>>Marcus kicks himself for not remembering to use 'sepulcher' - ! <<

Dedicated Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 7

Okay, so yeah, I officially & wholeheartedly voted for Cult of the Ebon Destroyers.

Which is funny 'cause I didn't vote for Matt once in any of the previous rounds. But he did great job in this round, and so...

Scarab Sages

Jim Groves - Doom of the Dream thieves gets my vote.

It just wows me the most. Hopefully, if it happens, they have him take one of the three awesome parts and make it into a 32 page module. Bummer that he didn't do it that way to begin with... but nonetheless, I really like it.

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32

I voted for Matthew McGee's From Time's Depths.

Star Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 7, Dedicated Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9

I went with Jim Groves. He's had solid entries all the way through, his proposal had some sandboxy elements, some action elements, a bit of investigation, and a whole lot of cool-fantastic in there. I think he's got the stuff.

-Ben.


I voted for Matthew McGee's From Time's Depths

I really enjoyed it, thought it had a real sandbox feel on the island. I also felt the judges weren't too fair on their assessment...I felt they were saying no to his idea, because it parallels with something that's suppose to come out soon. There were also points, such as the background information and the id ooze(Which can be a template), where apparently the judges skimmed.

The Exchange

I've voted for Matt Goodall.

I read the adventures in the order, MattG, Jim, Alex, then Matt McGee and that was because I expected to see better and better proposals as I read. And this is despite the fact that I think Jim and Alex are both really enjoyable writers, with the Ardorwesp my favourite monster ever. Finally I fully expected Matt McGee to knock it out the park like in the last round.

But Matt's scenario is so professional, so well done and filled with such beautiful detail that I'd love to run it.

I fully expect to see all of these contestants doing lots of work for Paizo. They all have what it takes.

Cheers

Contributor, RPG Superstar 2010 Top 16, 2011 Top 32, 2012 Top 4

I enjoyed all of the proposals, and I'm sure we'll see these guys in print in the years to come. I didn't vote for the best written or most gonzo proposal. Instead, my vote came down to two main criteria:

#1 - I wanted an adventure set in new location in the Pathfinder campaign setting, or at least a location that hasn't been dissected to the Nth degree yet.

#2 - I chose the proposal I was most interested in running as a DM.

So, much to my surprise, my vote has gone to Alexander MacLeod's Wreck of the Mastrien Slash. Thanks, Alexander, you had me at "Geb".

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

I didn't think there was a clear home run in this group, one adventure that really knocked my socks off. All of them have some neat points, and all have some problems, some worse than others.

In the end, I went back to body of work and looked at what people have come up with earlier in the contest, because RPG Superstar is of course a contest with a prize of getting to write ONE Gamemastery module, but it is also about digging around and finding freelancers with talent, imagination, creativity, and all the rest of the designer's skills that might be a good addition to Paizo's stable of freelancers writing not just adventures but also sections of PF Companions and Chronicles books, rules bits for hardbacks, and on down the list.

So, looking back at what folks have done earlier in the contest, added to an adventure idea that I think is solid and workable (though, as many have pointed out, would work better if you kicked the expected PC level into the teens), my vote goes to:

Matthew McGee

Star Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 7, Star Voter Season 9

Congratulations to all 4 finalists for reaching the endgame, but...

Here's the scenerio: I've got $20 to buy a new pathfinder adventure to run this weekend; I drive the 45 minutes to my closest hobby shop (yes some of us actually still support the brick and morter shops despite the convienience of ordering pdfs online) and these are the only 4 choices available; I leave the shop with...some packs of magic cards and drive back home to convert an old dungeon magazine adventure.

Wreck of the Mastrien Slash: both of my groups would just hack and slash thru the undead plantation since thats the true location of the adventure, and only 1 of them would even bother to resue the daughter -since thats not what they were hired for.

From Times Depths: timestorms = very cool; everything else = very lame. this might have been cool if the pc's had to go to the sunken island to prevent it from rising in the 1st place, but as written, not so much.

Doom of the Dream Thieves: there's way too much going on, and none of it makes any sense. why wouldn't the hags simply take the souls AND keep the cornicopula?, why wouldn't the demons simply slaughter the hags and then take the cornicopula? etc...

Cult of the Ebon Destroyers: this one had cool backgrounds and locations, but the adventure itself was pretty lame.

I was really hoping for some truly awesome (preferably high (12th-16th) level) proposals, but if i have to choose from amongst these 4, it'd have to be the one that i could scavenge the backgrounds and locations and then re-write my own adventure into...

Matt Goodall - Cult of the Ebon Destroyers.

Owner - House of Books and Games LLC , Marathon Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 7

My vote goes to Jim Groves — Doom of the Dream Thieves

All of them have merit, but this is the one I'm voting for. If I got two votes, From Time's Depths would get second, but alas, only one vote.

ALL of them will require serious rework in order to be publishable, and looking at it from that angle, Doom of the Dream Thieves will work out best, I think.

Liberty's Edge RPG Superstar 2010 Top 8 aka AWizardInDallas

My vote goes to Jim Groves: Doom of the Dream Thieves.

I think it's the most creative and fun, has the best selection of monster and themes too. I just love the ethereal skiff, night hags and shadowy feel way too much to pass this one up. Londaro has real potential too and I'm too curious to see what Jim does with this guy.

Jim, I think you're to be congratulated whether you win or not! I think you've done a bang up job!

From Time's Depths would get my second vote if I had one. :)

Paizo Employee Director of Game Development , Dedicated Voter Season 7, Dedicated Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9

I voted for the mighty Mr. Groves.

Liberty's Edge RPG Superstar 2011 Top 32

I voted for Jim Groves — Doom of the Dream Thieves.

Good luck all.

Contributor, RPG Superstar 2010 Top 4

Thanks guys! I'm delightedly shocked. Please keep 'em coming.

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

16 voters
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.
.
.
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1 - Jim Groves - Doom of the Dream Thieves - 7

2 - Matt Goodall - Cult of the Ebon Destroyers - 5

3 - Matthew McGee - From Time's Depths - 3

4 - Alexander MacLeod - Wreck of the Mastrien Slash - 1

Silver Crusade

All of the submissions had elements that caught my eye: unusual terrain, extraplanar antics, or echoes of lost Azlant. But Matt Goodall's proposal got my vote with its tight focus and it's evocation of memories of Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom:

death cult with crazed fantatics: check
nobility and potentates that are not what they seem to be: check
temple with a grand showdown: check
banquet with monkey...eww, glad some things didn't make it in there ;)

Congratulations to all though. I hope to see more from each of the final four.

Marathon Voter Season 6, Marathon Voter Season 7, Marathon Voter Season 8

Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Lost Omens Subscriber
John Spalding wrote:
I voted for Jim Groves — Doom of the Dream Thieves.

+1.

John Spalding wrote:
Good luck all.

+1...again. I actually enjoyed elements of all four proposals, and thought each would be pretty good in its own right. I think all four finalists have done a fine job.

Scarab Sages

I voted for Alexander MacLeod. He's been my favorite every round.


I voted for Jim Groves' Doom of the Dream .

May have a hard time fitting in 32 pages, but it feels the most solid,
and if Paizo ends up printing a 2 or 3 part adventure series from it, I won't complain.

Dark Archive

I voted for cult of the Ebon destroyers.

RPG Superstar 2010 Top 16 aka tejón

Cult of the Ebon Destroyers gets my vote in the end, though it was excruciatingly painful to rule any of them out.


My final vote of the contest went to Matt Goodall.

In every previous round I had voted for Jim Groves and Alex MacLeod, who are the only two contestants in the contest I can say that about.

And if I was voting on body of work, my vote would have went to one of those two contestants.

But I'm voting for the best entry in the final round. IMHO, that was Matt Goodall.


Alexander MacLeod gets my vote!

RPG Superstar 2011 Top 16 , Star Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 8 aka Anry

Cult of the Ebon Destroyer


I voted for Mr. Groves. If he wins I suspect he'll have to cut his proposal down to size....this could easily be a three part module series. (Not a bad thing!)

I disagreed slightly with the folks who thought the he had to really hit us over the head with the "Wow" factor. (My interpretation of what some folks said). But I understood he felt he needed to kick things up a notch. He did – but what has impressed me throughout is the quality of his stuff and how if you gave his submissions some thought – possibilities popped into your head. Even his first submission - Seducer’s Bane – which I didn’t personaly think much of – wasn’t flashy or showy but you could easily see some interesting conversations/complications/betrayals/surprises with a NPC/PC who had it on them. And it’s that kind of quiet quality that impressed me about all his well-thought out stuff.

Good luck Watcher and congrats to the top 4 for having made it this far!

Dedicated Voter Season 8, Dedicated Voter Season 9

My vote went to Matthew McGee - From Time's Depths.


I think I'll be voting for Mr. MacLeod this time though it is a difficult choice between his adventure proposal and Mr. Goodall's.
Alexander's proposal sounds like it can be fashioned into just the sort of adventure my players would enjoy. I plan to emphasize those parts that give it the "Heart of Darkness" feel, more popularly and cinematically turned into the movie "Apocalypse Now." The motivations of the party may vary due to the choices of what to do with the rewards once obtained, what those actual rewards might be depending on the character, and what to do with their employer once they come back to him (or not). This gives rise to fun role play moments for them. I also like that the beginning in no way resembles what occurs in the beginning sequences of the aforementioned movie and would at least initially mask where I would be taking them. If it does not involve a river trip to get to this plantation, I will most certainly add one. Ambushes from cannibalistic undead as they progress upstream would inevitably give rise to shrieks of "Never get out of the boat!" Now I know that Mr. MacLeod didn't allude to that directly, but I intend to add it on my own. In fact, on the unfortunate possibility that he doesn't win, I will just whip up one of my own. And the final sequence with the Ogre Mage and the girl needs to be at the plantation itself, IMO. If it isn't, I'll just make it be so.


Voted for Jim Groves - Doom of the Dream thieves.


Count so far as I can tell: 29 voters
.
.
.
.
Jim Groves - Doom of the Dream Thieves - 11 votes

Matt Goodall - Cult of the Ebon Destroyers - 10 votes

Matthew McGee - From Time's Depths - 4 votes

Alexander MacLeod - Wreck of the Mastrien Slash - 4 votes


I've been partial to Jim Groves every round. Despite an excellent showing by Matt Goodall, Jim wins a close decision and gets my final vote.

Jim Groves - Doom of the Dream Thieves

Contributor , Star Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 8

My vote went to Jim Groves. He's a solid designer with an exceptionally creative mind, and the bones of his adventure are the strongest.


Another to Groves. It was a tough choice between Dream Thieves and Ebon Destroyers, though.


Tough decision- Ebon Destroyers was very good, and Groves' submission seemed to have a special spark as well. MacLeod has been solid all contest but I didn't particularly like his work this round. In the end; I voted for Matthew McGee-- while I think that Ebon Destroyers may have been a bit better this round than Mr. McGee's work... his work has just been so far above and beyond every other round that he won a lot of points for that.

Star Voter Season 6

I ultimately went with Cult of the Ebon Destroyers. I liked the progression through the cult heirarchy, the twists of the employment and the race at the finish. It felt most like an actual module. I don't think it would take too much to shape it for publication.

My second favorite was Doom of the Dream Thieves. It was very imaginative, but too complex for its own good, I think.

The other two weren't bad by any stretch, just didn't grab me enough.

Two things that turned me off because they felt familiar (hence not as exciting to see this time around) were the concept of From Time's Depths. It reminded my of Fafhrd and the Grey Mouser's adventure in Simorgia. Not that Fritz Lieber as an inspiration is a bad thing at all! But I wanted something new.

The second was Act One of Cult of the Ebon Destroyers - the commotion in the town square felt too similar to the start of an adventure in Monte Cook's Ptolus. Again, a great source for inspiration, but it didn't feel novel - I would agree that it could be cut.

In the end, I guess I went with the proposal that felt the most coherent, with a strong middle and end (and beginning, ignoring Act One).

(If these sources that felt familiar to me weren't actually used for inspiration, then I guess great minds think alike. These are good ideas, but didn't feel fresh enough to me.)

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

Put me down for Dream Thieves.

Dark Archive

I voted for Mr. Groves's Doom of the Dream Thieves. It was a close call between that one and Mr. Goodall's Cult of the Ebon Destroyers (not that the other two proposals were bad).

Ebon Destroyers seemed like the most solid proposal in terms of polish, appeared like it would fit well in 32 pages, and had some excellent bits of cultural flavor and scenery in it, but Doom of the Dream Thieves stood a head above the rest in terms of what I'd actually like to run (as I love planar modules, I am interested in the locations it visits, the dream-boat part was an excellent idea and evocative, and it was the highest level of the bunch), so I decided to go with it trusting that Paizo's editing team can make it work in the page requirements.

Owner - House of Books and Games LLC , Marathon Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 7

Wow. I see this being a close one, and I wouldn't count on the exit poll counting for beans this time around.


Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Lost Omens Subscriber

This one will be close, and I'm sure I will enjoy any of them if they win. I have to vote for Dream Thief because I cannot resist planar goodness. I have also been a fan of Jim's work since the beginning.


put me down for Matt McGee's From Time's Depths! I think the "puzzle solving" aspect of timestorms is really cool and something that can be expanded on should he win.


Lord Gadigan wrote:
I voted for Mr. Groves's Doom of the Dream Thieves. It was a close call between that one and Mr. Goodall's Cult of the Ebon Destroyers.

I couldn't have said it any better. There were two good submissions in this final round, and two rather ... 'meh' submissions. At first, I thought I would vote 'Ebon Destroyers', because it conformed to the rules of the contest best. After re-reading and re-re-reading the submissions, however, one thing became more important than that:

Dream Thieves makes me WANT to run it. Ebon Destroyers is a solid piece of design work, but Dream Thieves just has more of that 'Superstar' factor.

So, +1 for Watcher, it is.


Not an easy choice for me. But in the end, I think Goodall has the chops:

+1 vote for Cult of the Ebon Destroyers

I really like Doom of the Dream Thieves, but it's just not a 32-page module. It's not even a single adventure path issue. The ideas in it are great, and I'm really hoping Paizo picks it up and makes it into a full adventure path in couple years time, or a couple modules that are linked together.

But Matt Goodall's writing and theming won me over in the end. Cult of the Ebon Destroyers is tightly put together: good pacing (except maybe the initial chase scene - but keep the festival!), interesting elements, characters I can see being developed into some interesting NPCs...it has the goods!

The other two adventure proposals also had some great moments. I hope to see all four names in the credits of future releases.

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

In the end I voted for Matt Goodall's Cult of the Ebon Destroyers.

Sorry Watcher, just liked Matt's proposal a tad more.


My vote went to Jim Groves.

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