Common themes and items


RPG Superstar™ 2012 General Discussion

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Shadow Lodge Star Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 8

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The gamer community is developing world-wide telepathy.


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That is something I wholeheartedly approve of. I mean, come on, guys, it's about time.

RPG Superstar 2014 Top 16, RPG Superstar 2012 Top 16 , Marathon Voter Season 6, Marathon Voter Season 7, Marathon Voter Season 8, Dedicated Voter Season 9 aka motteditor

Interesting. I actually pondered a paired item a lot (but couldn't get it to come together on almost any level). Of course, I first thought of it for last year's competition when I never got around to applying...

Dark Archive

I'm surprised there was no large amount of horned helms that allow the wearer to push or trip people by shouting a command word.

Star Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 9

Nah, I think Skyrim was too new to fall into the obvious item category this year. I mean, it was barely out a month when the contest entry started.


I kinda wonder if there is a common gag item each year. Like the FUS RO DAH helmet or like the knee seeking arrows and such.

RPG Superstar 2011 Top 16 , Star Voter Season 6 aka Shadow-Mask

Set wrote:
Clark Peterson wrote:
By the way, I thought we would see an absolute TON of items taking advantage of Ultimate Combat and Ultimate Magic, since finding open design space is a sign of a good design.

Oh, I tried like heck to make an item that worked in conjunction with the vehicle rules (specifically something that would affect the maneuverability or speed or whatever of ships on the sea) from Ultimate Combat, but they beat me up and stole my lunch money.

I will be automatically intrigued by anyone who gave a shot to seige engines or words of power or performance combat, with their item design. I failed a morale check after the vehicle rules routed me, and didn't even want to take a stab at the hard stuff. :)

I laughed at this, Set. I was thinking about Ultimate Magic, myself - something to do with the words of power chapter or the magus. Unfortunately, my eyes began to cross and my brain to spin, and I opted to do something else.

Maybe next year. ;)


Well, there's certainly some encouraging stuff keeping my hopes alive here, though I still find myself worrying I'll have been auto-rejected, rather than having a legitimate shot at the 32. There's just not much I can actually say without killing anonymity, since I have no idea how unique my idea actually was.


Since Clint Eastwood's Gunslinger class just came out in Ultimate Combat, I could definitely see people playing off the rolling your own cigarette or a mouthful of snuff motif of the rugged cowboy/outlaw.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Pawns, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Now that we know what common themes were, and that the judges were surprised at the lack of stuff from new books, I'm curious if anything was suspiciously lacking from the entries that made it past the auto-reject pile? Like, were there no/very few Neck/Shoulders/Feet items?

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

This is funny to me, because I had a friend tell me there weren't enough magic pipes and Golarion was perfect for them, so I should design one. I tossed it early as it was too similar to sitting and smoking pipeweed while thinking hard on soemthing. Then I thought of a bag of eyeballs, similar to a bag of marbles, that had an eyebite gaze attack within their area and made the floor slippery. But I thought that might be viewed as just gross-out pandering for judges who like edgy stuff. Actually, I still kind of like that one.

Too late now, I actually submitted...

Spoiler:
yeah, right.

RPG Superstar 2011 Top 16

Heh. I went through 5 ideas before submitting my preferred option. However, the very first idea I came up with was this:

Spoiler:
Quill of the Binding Oath
This quill comes with no inkwell, and will absorb no ink. However, when used to write, it will automatically draw blood from the writer. The writer takes 1 point of CON damage as he begins writing, and an additional point per page written.
If the quill is used to sign a document (regardless of whether or not it was written by the quill), the magic of the quill binds the signer to fulfill his end of the agreement, as per the spell gaes.
The signer is bound to the literal terms of the agreement. Before signing, he should make a Linguistics check opposed by the document author’s Bluff or Linguistics check to make sure there are no catches or loopholes. The document author has no supernatural obligation to uphold his end the bargain unless he also signs with The Quill.
The blood of the signer remains bound up within the physical document. The document becomes a magic item in its own right (radiating moderate necromancy), and retains a sympathetic connection to all signatories for purposes of spells like scry. If the document is cut apart, torn up, or otherwise destroyed through mundane means, the gaes immediately ends and all signatories are freed. However, if the document is exposed to energy damage, such as being thrown into a fire or a Cleric channels negative energy into it, all signatories suffer the corresponding energy damage as if they were directly exposed. Depending on the physical materials of the document, this may or may not also result in its destruction.

I'll let you guess what picture from the ISWG provided the inspiration for that one. :-p

I didn't submit this one (or even refine it that much, as evidenced by the lack of template and general lack of SuperStar-ness), but it's fun to know that my first instincts were "on meme".

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 16, RPG Superstar 2013 Top 32, RPG Superstar 2012 Top 16 , Dedicated Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 7, Star Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9 aka Hodge Podge

My list o' mundane items contained a calligraphy brush. Didn't know what to do with it that wasn't obvious:
"Paint a door in a wall and it makes a door!"
"Paint your face and you look like an orc!"
"Write a contract and its binding!"

Meeeh~. 15 days people. 15 days.

Shadow Lodge Star Voter Season 6, Dedicated Voter Season 7, Star Voter Season 9

Erik Freund wrote:

Heh. I went through 5 ideas before submitting my preferred option. However, the very first idea I came up with was this:

** spoiler omitted **

I'll let you guess what picture from the ISWG provided the inspiration for that one. :-p

I didn't submit this one (or even refine it that much, as evidenced by the lack of template and general lack of SuperStar-ness), but it's fun to know that my first instincts were "on meme".

Problem with this is that Harry Potter would have hunted you down and killed you. If you don't know, it resembles a quill used in detention in HP.

Star Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 9

It's still a neat item, but maybe not of universal usefulness. "Here, just stop stabbing me and sign this. I promise it'll be awesome."

Sovereign Court RPG Superstar 2013 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2011 Top 16 , Dedicated Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 7 aka primemover003

I was absolutely set on developing an item that took advantage of the Spellblight rules in Ultimate Magic but it basically evolved into a chime of interruption alternate so I scrapped it. Overall I'm far happier with the item I submitted.

--Vrock you like a hurricane


Could just be that lots of people are kicking the habit of cigarettes today, and many switch to pipesmoking. Everything isn't pop culture...


Seth White wrote:
It could be subliminal pop culture. The Sherlock Holmes movies had quite a bit of pipe smoking. Of course, the Hellboy movies had iconic cigar-smoking and those were a few years back. I guess it's hard to know why certain items align like they do each year.

The first Sherlock Holmes movie inspired a whole bunch of ideas for my campaigns! In opposition, Hellboy didn't.

I actually think pipes and stuff related to smoking are very underused in most RPGs. In things that have inspired RPGs throughout the ages though, like Tolkien, they are very common. I can't think of Gandalf not holding a pipe, for example. Still I don't think I've had more than a handful of characters who were smokers.
Of course it has to do with the anti-smoking propaganda we have today in opposition to all the advertising and cool aura smoking had a few decades ago.

(PS: Don't smoke, kids!)

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32 , Dedicated Voter Season 8 aka artofcheatery

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The lack of pipes and smoking in modern gaming might have to do with the whole 'it's unhealthy for you' etc etc. Back when LotR was written you could smoke up a storm in a classroom and no one would look at you funny. Ever since the 'truth' about smoking has come out it's all but illegal to show someone smoking in the media.

That said, most of our characters probably do smoke, and probably get over charged my the damn halflings (cause according to Tolkien, all tobacco was farmed in the Shire. Meaning the Shire is really Virginia). Should count as part the monthly cost of living charge (if anyone ever remembers to do that)
-X

Liberty's Edge Star Voter Season 6

Anthony Adam wrote:
I aimed for a wider audience of wondrous item myself. I didnt want to tie it down to a one or few classes/themes, I wanted it to be more utility item like and something every pc would want - much more fun for the "I want it" moments in treasure divvy up.

Ditto +1 :)


artofcheatery wrote:

The lack of pipes and smoking in modern gaming might have to do with the whole 'it's unhealthy for you' etc etc. Back when LotR was written you could smoke up a storm in a classroom and no one would look at you funny. Ever since the 'truth' about smoking has come out it's all but illegal to show someone smoking in the media.

That said, most of our characters probably do smoke, and probably get over charged my the damn halflings (cause according to Tolkien, all tobacco was farmed in the Shire. Meaning the Shire is really Virginia). Should count as part the monthly cost of living charge (if anyone ever remembers to do that)
-X

I can agree that some of them smoke and given the fantasy nature I can certainly see pipes having a magical use, however tobacco isn't likely what they'd be smoking; maybe colt's foot for a cough or other herbs for magical dreaming (dream scrying) etc. Either way though it's not a wide spread item because smoking tobacco at least does hurt/kill you eventually. It's a PR thing to not touch on that, so perhaps magical instruments like pan pipes?

I am just glad I do not fit into the common themes of items submitted. Cheers folks to those who did something different.


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I wonder if characters who were smokers would be more likely to get attacked first or last by creatures with scent?


Clark Peterson wrote:
By the way, I thought we would see an absolute TON of items taking advantage of Ultimate Combat and Ultimate Magic, since finding open design space is a sign of a good design. But, speaking for myself only, I was surprised by how few items I read that were related to those books. I figured we'd see an easy 30% of items related to stuff from those books. I'd say it was more like 10%.

I figured that content from those books, especially firearms, would be over half of the submissions. That is surprising.


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goodwicki wrote:
I wonder if characters who were smokers would be more likely to get attacked first or last by creatures with scent?

I would probably attack them first from range, but avoid them in melee. Treat 'em like a troglodyte.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 16, RPG Superstar 2013 Top 32, RPG Superstar 2012 Top 16 , Dedicated Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 7, Star Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9 aka Hodge Podge

speed66 wrote:
I figured that content from those books, especially firearms, would be over half of the submissions. That is surprising.

Well, maybe not firearms themselves (because they're weapons), but firearm-related things like cartridges, yeah. I hope a few people made utility bullets which don't do damage and instead have other effects.

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

I submitted a smoking item last year-- a hookah that, when filled with a potion, allowed all those who smoked from it to benefit from the effects of the potion.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 16 , Marathon Voter Season 6, Marathon Voter Season 7, Dedicated Voter Season 8

Hodge Podge wrote:
speed66 wrote:
I figured that content from those books, especially firearms, would be over half of the submissions. That is surprising.
Well, maybe not firearms themselves (because they're weapons), but firearm-related things like cartridges, yeah. I hope a few people made utility bullets which don't do damage and instead have other effects.

Uhm...isn't the whole thing with firearms that most of them never leave the anti-magic zone where they are created? I would imagine that would kinda limit the market for gun-related magic items.

Sovereign Court RPG Superstar 2010 Top 16, 2011 Top 32 , Star Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 7, Star Voter Season 8

The thing with gun-related items is that there's not a lot of them and they cater very specifically to groups/characters that use guns. A subset of a subset, if you will. The key is to making items that are cool and available to a lot of different characters.

RPG Superstar 2010 Top 32, 2011 Top 4 , Marathon Voter Season 6, Marathon Voter Season 7, Marathon Voter Season 8, Marathon Voter Season 9 aka DankeSean

James Martin wrote:
The thing with gun-related items is that there's not a lot of them and they cater very specifically to groups/characters that use guns. A subset of a subset, if you will. The key is to making items that are cool and available to a lot of different characters.

I don't know if that's really an insurmountable issue- people submit items all the time that are class specific. In theory, a firearm related item is even less limited than, say, a monk-specific item; firearms appeal to a class, plus several non-gunslinger archetypes that use guns, plus any players that just want to use guns. In practice, that's still probably appealing to a much smaller percentage of players overall than play monks or druids, but I still don't think the range of appeal is so limited to smoosh a firearm-realted wondrous item outright.

For me, the problem would be making a firearm item that isn't just a weapon in disguise. There are already a few accessory-type items out there, of course; scopes, powder horns and the like, so there's some precedent to build on.

Legendary Games, Necromancer Games

Chad Patterson wrote:
I submitted a smoking item last year-- a hookah that, when filled with a potion, allowed all those who smoked from it to benefit from the effects of the potion.

If I recall correctly, I liked that item! (I hope I am remembering correctly)


artofcheatery wrote:
That said, most of our characters probably do smoke, and probably get over charged my the damn halflings (cause according to Tolkien, all tobacco was farmed in the Shire. Meaning the Shire is really Virginia).

Ha! Can't wait to inform my roommate he's secretly a hobbit.

Star Voter Season 7

My submission was nothing like these but I don't expect that it will be chosen.^^ That's not humility. I couldn't think about NOTHING good for all my brainwashing, so in the end I submitted the first silly idea to come in my mind. ^_^
Maybe next year I'll be more creative.


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Eh, my wife just came up with the item she wanted to submit to Superstar. I told her to hold it and develop it for next year!

Dark Archive

Chad Patterson wrote:
I submitted a smoking item last year-- a hookah that, when filled with a potion, allowed all those who smoked from it to benefit from the effects of the potion.

Ooh, I like that one!

Alternate potion and scroll delivery systems (injectors you strap to your arm for potions or weapon hilts with compartments that hold a potion or scroll to make it a weapon-delivered effect or scrolls that manifest as tattoos or floating glyphs that orbit the 'user') are always cool.

Anything that takes a pre-existing item and turns it around and adds a new dimension to it, appeals to me, like bundling wands together into a fasces or something.

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

I hope so. I was quite fond of the idea myself.

Clark Peterson wrote:
Chad Patterson wrote:
I submitted a smoking item last year-- a hookah that, when filled with a potion, allowed all those who smoked from it to benefit from the effects of the potion.
If I recall correctly, I liked that item! (I hope I am remembering correctly)


Clark Peterson wrote:


An example, the year after Pan's Labyrinth we had a TON of chalk items.

Hence the reason I scrapped my chalk item idea this year and sent it to the reject thread instead of the submission bin. I liked it, but I was afraid you may have been inundated with them in a prior year's contest.


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Dragonborn3 wrote:
The gamer community is developing world-wide telepathy.

We are the Gamers. Your individual role-playing uniqueness will be added to our collective whole. Resistance is futile.


Kerney wrote:
Erik Freund wrote:

Heh. I went through 5 ideas before submitting my preferred option. However, the very first idea I came up with was this:

** spoiler omitted **

I'll let you guess what picture from the ISWG provided the inspiration for that one. :-p

I didn't submit this one (or even refine it that much, as evidenced by the lack of template and general lack of SuperStar-ness), but it's fun to know that my first instincts were "on meme".

Problem with this is that Harry Potter would have hunted you down and killed you. If you don't know, it resembles a quill used in detention in HP.

Or 'Once Upon A Time's' Rumplestiltskin. Who knows what he'd do to you ...


Bardess wrote:

My submission was nothing like these but I don't expect that it will be chosen.^^ That's not humility. I couldn't think about NOTHING good for all my brainwashing, so in the end I submitted the first silly idea to come in my mind. ^_^

Maybe next year I'll be more creative.

I hear you there!

Though, actually I went with the second silly idea .... a necklace of permanent domination and slavery to an evil deity is more like an artifact. Scary as such an item would be.

Marathon Voter Season 6

I am both generalized and marginalized by this thread.

My only hope for this competition is that my mechanical flaws were overcome by flavor.

Is this vague enough to avoid disqualification?

Marathon Voter Season 6

Oterisk wrote:

I am both generalized and marginalized by this thread.

My only hope for this competition is that my mechanical flaws were overcome by flavor.

Is this vague enough to avoid disqualification?

Nope, it's quite clear that you are the one who submitted the portable sacrificial altar with it's own goat.

Marathon Voter Season 6

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Cheapy wrote:
Oterisk wrote:

I am both generalized and marginalized by this thread.

My only hope for this competition is that my mechanical flaws were overcome by flavor.

Is this vague enough to avoid disqualification?

Nope, it's quite clear that you are the one who submitted the portable sacrificial altar with it's own goat.

Dagnabit! Well, since the proverbial Goat is out of the bag, I might as well post it.

Altar of Reincarnation, Portable
Aura Medium Necromantic; CL 7th
Slot None; Price 6,100 gp; Weight 200 lbs.
Description
This stone and wood construction that looks like a poorly designed altar has a pair of wagon wheels on the sides and an hitching apparatus on the front. There is also a ceremonial dagger that fits in the top of the altar up to the hilt. The altar/wagon is too small to hitch to a large animal, but is suitable for any goat sized creature to pull, if you can convince or train them to do so.

Any time you use the ceremonial dagger included in the Altar to kill the goat, or similar animal who you convinced to pull the wagon for you, you gain a +5 circumstance bonus on the DC's and Caster Checks to bind a devil that day. The goat (or similar animal) is reincarnated as a goat the next morning at dawn. The reincarnation power is usable once per week, but the circumstance bonus is usable only once per day.
Construction
Requirements Craft Wondrous Item, reincarnate; Cost 3,050 gp

Spoiler:
Attn: Gary

This is a joke item. Any resemblance to my or any other's item this year is purely circumstantial.


For a "joke" item, it's not half bad. A bit esoteric, but I'll bet you it's all the rage in Cheliax.

Sczarni RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32 , Champion Voter Season 6, Champion Voter Season 7, Champion Voter Season 8, Champion Voter Season 9

Buckinin wrote:
I'm surprised there was no large amount of horned helms that allow the wearer to push or trip people by shouting a command word.
RonarsCorruption wrote:
Nah, I think Skyrim was too new to fall into the obvious item category this year. I mean, it was barely out a month when the contest entry started.

Along the same lines, I wonder what movies, games, or other media heavily influenced entries this year? I subconsciously made a few item based on Skyrim. And a couple of my rejected organization ideas were all rip-offs as well.

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