Phrases that are driving you bonkers


RPG Superstar™ General Discussion

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RPG Superstar 2014 Top 32 , Marathon Voter Season 6, Dedicated Voter Season 7, Dedicated Voter Season 8, Dedicated Voter Season 9 aka michaeljpatrick

MicMan - I don't really see that as a disadvantage. Being easy to read makes it that much more clear what the item does. If it does something boring then that is a separate disadvantage in and of itself.

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

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Yeah, I seem to recall posts about paragraphs making things easier on the judges last year too.

It was also mentioned that paragraphs in game play help scanning item for a particular nuance or rule look up (i.e. as you say, skip the pre description fluff and get to the bones for rule referencing).

I will admit, and as seen in the practice threads, I was a bit of a paragraph nutter and is one of the things I have worked upon this year, but at minimum, it would be nice to have breaks in these places.

para 1 - description
para 2 - core power
para 3 - extra minor powers.

Getting me (and others) to vote for your item is part of the battle - making it a bit easier to read and follow really helps me/everyone (and therefore you) in that regard.

Champion Voter Season 6

PF GRD breaks up text, but Core Rulebook only indents for a second or additional paragraphs for the majority of items with the odd dot to differentiate. Mostly single paragraph descriptions in the Core Rulebook.

NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. To enter, submit an original wondrous item using the format shown in the Pathfinder RPG Core Rulebook (available for free in the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Reference Document). The entry must be no more than 300 words long and must include all of the proper mechanics and flavor (see pages 496-532 of the Pathfinder RPG Core Rulebook for examples).

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

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Demiurge 1138 wrote:
Shadowborn wrote:
MidknightDiamond wrote:


I'll still take all the filigree, Fleur-de-lis, gossamer, shadows of doom over the Doctor Who and Mary Poppins items I've seen.
Terry Pratchett...Venture Bros...
Haven't seen the Venture Brothers item. Have seen the Scooby-Doo item, though.

Now I have this horrible image.

Spoiler:
Of a glove that you grab the monster's face and pull it off, turning it into a human commoner. Requires polymorph any object

If that's the actual item and the mods have to delete the post, I'm going to die a little inside.

Marathon Voter Season 6, Marathon Voter Season 7

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It's been said before a couple of times, but the adjectives "nondescript" and "unassuming" are starting to irk me.

On the plus side, by this point I recognize at a glance almost every item that pops up, and I usually know which of the pair I think is better without having to reread them. Makes things go a lot quicker.

On the minus side, I suddenly realized yesterday that I made a simple, obvious rookie error in the way I wrote up my own item. That really vexes me, after all the time I spent checking the advice threads to make sure every "i" was dotted and every "t" crossed. Oh well...

Grand Lodge RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32 , Marathon Voter Season 6, Dedicated Voter Season 7, Dedicated Voter Season 8 aka Jiggy

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Ariax wrote:
It's been said before a couple of times, but the adjectives "nondescript" and "unassuming" are starting to irk me.

It's especially bad when you have "this nondescript [whatever] looks like a [thing a normal person doesn't carry around]".

Sorry, but if villagers are going to be staring, then it's not really "nondescript", is it?

Dedicated Voter Season 6, Dedicated Voter Season 7

CHEERS wrote:
...Mostly single paragraph descriptions in the Core Rulebook...

Yes, but the vast majority of core items is far less than 300 words while the vast majority of superstar applicants is above 200 words.

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

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It might also be pertinent to note that in the past the judges have said that the vast many to most of the items in the core rule book are not "superstar" enough to make the top 32 if they were entered into the contest.

Marathon Voter Season 6

If we're going to be publically voting next year, maybe removing the Submit button until you Preview it will be in order.

Yes, it'll remove the ability to smurf up the BB tags, but it'll help the voters' sanity!

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

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They've said a number of times before, there's no preview available for freelance turnovers; you just have to Do It Right. So it makes sense given the point of the contest (to identify people capable of being a freelancer) to not hold people's hands in the contest.

I'm okay with that.


Making mistakes is what life is all about. If you learn from them, that's called "experience." Gamers might not always realize this because they usually only get experience for winning. ;-)

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

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Matthew Morris wrote:

Now I have this horrible image.
** spoiler omitted **

"It was just Old Man Aroden all along!"

"So that's why the old coot disappeared!"

"And I would've gotten away with it, too, if it hadn't been for you meddling Pathfinders!"

Champion Voter Season 6

MicMan wrote:
CHEERS wrote:
...Mostly single paragraph descriptions in the Core Rulebook...
Yes, but the vast majority of core items is far less than 300 words while the vast majority of superstar applicants is above 200 words.

For your convenience, the following text contains all the necessary message board formatting to make your submission comparable to those in the Core Rulebook. You may copy this text to help format your submission, but are not required to do so. Remember that improperly formatted entries may be disqualified. You should not use ALL CAPS for any part of your wondrous item submission. "ZZ" is a placeholder to indicate you should replace that text with appropriate information for your wondrous item.

ItemName
Aura ZZstrength ZZschool; CL ZZth
Slot ZZslot; Price ZZ gp; Weight ZZ lbs.
Description
ZZItemDescriptionParagraph
Construction
Requirements ZZfeats, ZZspells, ZZotherrequirements; Cost ZZ gp

NOTE: You must use the above format from the Core Rulebook, not the graphical magic item format used in Ultimate Equipment.

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

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens Subscriber

Oh, man, that means my entry is totally screwed — I took out all the ZZs and replaced them. How could I have been so foolish?


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thunderspirit wrote:
Oh, man, that means my entry is totally screwed — I took out all the ZZs and replaced them. How could I have been so foolish?

Which makes you a bit better off than the ones I've seen that didn't replace the ZZs with anything...

Marathon Voter Season 6, Marathon Voter Season 7

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Another small peeve that I don't think I've seen on this thread yet:

Items intended to be empowered/recharged by combat events, but in reality PCs will charge the item themselves out of combat, or get their friends to do it.

Liberty's Edge RPG Superstar 2012 Top 16 , Marathon Voter Season 6, Marathon Voter Season 7, Marathon Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9 aka Locke1520

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Cheapy wrote:

If we're going to be publically voting next year, maybe removing the Submit button until you Preview it will be in order.

Yes, it'll remove the ability to sm--f up the BB tags, but it'll help the voters' sanity!

My sanity is just fine...Isn't it Harvey? See even Harv says I'm fine. So if it makes it easier to pair out superstar from good and good from poor Harvey and I are all for it.

Marathon Voter Season 6

Ariax wrote:

Another small peeve that I don't think I've seen on this thread yet:

Items intended to be empowered/recharged by combat events, but in reality PCs will charge the item themselves out of combat, or get their friends to do it.

Highly related to the Bag O' Rats Test, but probably more recognizable to PF players as the "wyroot issue".

Marathon Voter Season 6, Marathon Voter Season 7

Cheapy wrote:
Ariax wrote:

Another small peeve that I don't think I've seen on this thread yet:

Items intended to be empowered/recharged by combat events, but in reality PCs will charge the item themselves out of combat, or get their friends to do it.

Highly related to the Bag O' Rats Test, but probably more recognizable to PF players as the "wyroot issue".

I am not familiar with either of these. Explain?

Dark Archive RPG Superstar 2012 Top 16 , Star Voter Season 6, Dedicated Voter Season 7, Dedicated Voter Season 8 aka FaxCelestis

Get a bag of rats. Get something that heals you on hit (there's a crusader stance, for instance). Get cleave (or whirlwind attack, if you feel like it). Dump the bag of rats, kill all the rats in one go, top off your health.

Marathon Voter Season 6, Marathon Voter Season 7

I'm aware of that stance, I had a Crusader/Paladin in Age of Worms who used it. Never crossed my mind for that particular use though.

What's wyroot and how does it replicate that?

Marathon Voter Season 6

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The example item here is in no way meant to refer to an item in the running.

Imagine you have an item that when you kill a creature, you get a stacking +1 bonus to-hit. This bonus lasts for an hour.

The intended use of this item is that as you kill enemies you face in combat, you get better at hitting them.

But now we have a wily player use this item. They realize that the item doesn't have any limitations on the creatures killed.

So they buy a bag of rats. Live rats. Squirming rats. And whenever they want a nice bonus, they grab a bunch of rats out of this big ol' Bag O' Rats, and kill them. They now have an excellent bonus to-hit, and they followed the letter of the item's rule.

Basically, when looking at an item or indeed any ability, think "Does this get more powerful if I have a Bag O' Rats?" If the answer is "yes", then the ability has failed the Bag O' Rats test.

Take a look at the spell deadly juggernaut. The clever designer of this spell got around this test by including the "qualifying opponent" section, which means only creatures >= the caster's HD -4 will trigger the effect. This defeats the bag of rats for most cases, by assuming that the range of HD in an encounter will be at a minimum equal to your HD - 4. There are some other abilities, I believe, that use CR as a measurement.

So that's the Bag O' Rats test.

The wyroot issue is the one that pops up in the rules questions forum. Essentially, wyroot is a special material that if you confirm a critical hit, the target takes no damage, but you effectively gain 1 ki point or arcane pool point. So the idea is that you just keep on whacking something until you fill your ki / arcane pool back up. The usual question in the Rules forum is about coup de grace and this special material, but the topic of even being able to cheaply restore your limited resources to full also exists.

Marathon Voter Season 6, Marathon Voter Season 7

Thanks.

I have the Rules forum hidden so I'm not familiar with the majority of the arguments there, since they no longer slip into the Ask JJ thread without him sending them away.

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

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You know, after reading so many of these items, I'm convinced that a lot of people have been screwed by their GM and have created the perfect "if only I had this item" entry to fix the situation.

Seriously. A lot of them look like reactions to one specific thing that probably happened in their game sometime in the past year.


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gbonehead wrote:

You know, after reading so many of these items, I'm convinced that a lot of people have been screwed by their GM and have created the perfect "if only I had this item" entry to fix the situation.

Seriously. A lot of them look like reactions to one specific thing that probably happened in their game sometime in the past year.

That's a good theory. There have been several items I've chalked up to plot items simply because they were useful in such singular situations, to the point of me having to say "I don't think I've ever been in a situation during a game where this item would be useful." And that's coming from someone with over 30 years at the gaming table.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8 , Star Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 7, Star Voter Season 8 aka DeathQuaker

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gbonehead wrote:

You know, after reading so many of these items, I'm convinced that a lot of people have been screwed by their GM and have created the perfect "if only I had this item" entry to fix the situation.

Seriously. A lot of them look like reactions to one specific thing that probably happened in their game sometime in the past year.

I'm getting the particular sense that a LOT (and I mean a LOT) of wizard players have nitpicky GMs when it comes to scribing and reading scrolls.

Because that's what we need. Items that make wizards more powerful.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 32 , Marathon Voter Season 6, Marathon Voter Season 7, Marathon Voter Season 8, Marathon Voter Season 9 aka theheadkase

I'm one of those people that do love my Craft skills, but I will also readily admit that it is NOT the most exciting part of the game. I could imagine a Superstar item that is about scribing or blacksmithing...but I would have to work really hard to.

RPG Superstar 2013 Top 32 , Marathon Voter Season 6, Dedicated Voter Season 7, Dedicated Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9 aka Phloid

One thing that annoys me are items that are actually several items. The main item is usually a case or container of some sort and it has several other magic items inside it. This might work if the items were very closely related, but there are a few items I've voted on that really seem like multiple items thrown together and called a single item.

Grand Lodge RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32 , Marathon Voter Season 6, Dedicated Voter Season 7, Dedicated Voter Season 8 aka Jiggy

Similarly, it bugs me when something is an existing item plus some other ability.

Like a belt/headband that gives a +2 enhancement bonus to an ability score and also does the dishes. Or an item that says "This functions as [item]. Also, it can do X."

I've seen several such items.

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

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Jacob Kellogg wrote:

Similarly, it bugs me when something is an existing item plus some other ability.

Like a belt/headband that gives a +2 enhancement bonus to an ability score and also does the dishes. Or an item that says "This functions as [item]. Also, it can do X."

I've seen several such items.

Or "This item...(does exactly the same thing as item x from the CRB, only better) plus six other things, and costs less than said CRB item.

Dedicated Voter Season 6

Cheapy wrote:
Basically, when looking at an item or indeed any ability, think "Does this get more powerful if I have a Bag O' Rats?" If the answer is "yes", then the ability has failed the Bag O' Rats test.

I don't know if the GM is very smart if he lets the PCs buy a bag of rats, though if course there are wondrous items that summon monsters you can feed to the hungry item. Anyway, looks like this test is a smart thing to do when you're designing an item. :)

So the best way to pass the test is to not let the effects to stack? And maybe also use a something that makes makes rats, weasels, chipmunks and what have you useless, such as making it dependent on HD or some other stat? Haven't seen many items in this contest that have tried something like this without failing the test, but I think there have been a few.


Demiurge 1138 wrote:
Shadowborn wrote:
MidknightDiamond wrote:


I'll still take all the filigree, Fleur-de-lis, gossamer, shadows of doom over the Doctor Who and Mary Poppins items I've seen.
Terry Pratchett...Venture Bros...
Haven't seen the Venture Brothers item. Have seen the Scooby-Doo item, though.

In order to not say too much about the particulars of the item, I'll simply state that while the powers of the item have nothing to do with the show, the item sounds and looks very much like something that appeared in a couple of episodes.

Liberty's Edge Dedicated Voter Season 6

Shadowborn wrote:
Demiurge 1138 wrote:
Shadowborn wrote:
MidknightDiamond wrote:


I'll still take all the filigree, Fleur-de-lis, gossamer, shadows of doom over the Doctor Who and Mary Poppins items I've seen.
Terry Pratchett...Venture Bros...
Haven't seen the Venture Brothers item. Have seen the Scooby-Doo item, though.

Hey lookie, I found a Harry Potter item.

Darnit, I should have made a small red and white ball you throw at monsters to capture them and release them under your control. I'd be sure to win!

Liberty's Edge Dedicated Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 7

Xanthestar wrote:


Hey lookie, I found a Harry Potter item.

Darnit, I should have made a small red and white ball you throw at monsters to capture them and release them under your control. I'd be sure to win!

Amusingly, you wouldn't be the first. However, I have seen a couple items reminiscent of the infamous Pokeball this year, though nothing quite overt.

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

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Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Anyone else starting to spot strange mesmerizing patterns in their item pairs.

Just had a stint of

hand vs foot
neck vs waist
eyes vs ears
eyes vs head
ears vs head

O-0

The "related body parts" pattern seems to have gone away again, but it was there for like a good 10 to 15 pairs.

I think I'm cracking up :D

Liberty's Edge RPG Superstar 2012 Top 16 , Marathon Voter Season 6, Marathon Voter Season 7, Marathon Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9 aka Locke1520

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Anthony Adam wrote:

Anyone else starting to spot strange mesmerizing patterns in their item pairs.

.....

O-0

The "related body parts" pattern seems to have gone away again, but it was there for like a good 10 to 15 pairs.

I think I'm cracking up :D

Yesterday I had some fun pairings:

hands vs hands
feet vs feet
two cloaks
and a near palindrome pair xxx of the blah v. blah of xxx.

Liberty's Edge

Jacob Kellogg wrote:
Ariax wrote:
It's been said before a couple of times, but the adjectives "nondescript" and "unassuming" are starting to irk me.

It's especially bad when you have "this nondescript [whatever] looks like a [thing a normal person doesn't carry around]".

Sorry, but if villagers are going to be staring, then it's not really "nondescript", is it?

Depends. I mean if you live in Geb, a mummified hand around your neck might be nondescript, right?

Marathon Voter Season 6

KatDangerous wrote:
Cheapy wrote:
Basically, when looking at an item or indeed any ability, think "Does this get more powerful if I have a Bag O' Rats?" If the answer is "yes", then the ability has failed the Bag O' Rats test.

I don't know if the GM is very smart if he lets the PCs buy a bag of rats, though if course there are wondrous items that summon monsters you can feed to the hungry item. Anyway, looks like this test is a smart thing to do when you're designing an item. :)

So the best way to pass the test is to not let the effects to stack? And maybe also use a something that makes makes rats, weasels, chipmunks and what have you useless, such as making it dependent on HD or some other stat? Haven't seen many items in this contest that have tried something like this without failing the test, but I think there have been a few.

Yep, something like that. Most GMs won't allow such uses (I hope), but it's a useful design pattern to think about. It shows that you're able to think of the reprecussions of your ability in situations removed from the intended situation.

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

Sulaco wrote:
"Upon closer inspection..."

"these are loofers"

RPG Superstar 2013 Top 32 , Dedicated Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 7 aka Standback

Anthony Adam wrote:
Anyone else starting to spot strange mesmerizing patterns in their item pairs.

At one point I got a pair of magic handkerchiefs.

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

Anthony Adam wrote:
Anyone else starting to spot strange mesmerizing patterns in their item pairs.

A few days ago, I got a pair of items whose names could both be used as euphemisms for something naughty.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 32 , Marathon Voter Season 6, Marathon Voter Season 7, Marathon Voter Season 8, Marathon Voter Season 9 aka theheadkase

This touches on some other things said, but, how on Golarion would somebody ever figure out some of these "true powers"? That is a big detriment to me, if the only reasonable way a character would figure out some of these powers is if the GM tells them.

Star Voter Season 6, Dedicated Voter Season 7

At least the items got better after the bottom 25% were chopped off.

RPG Superstar 2013 Top 32 , Dedicated Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 7 aka Standback

theheadkase wrote:
This touches on some other things said, but, how on Golarion would somebody ever figure out some of these "true powers"? That is a big detriment to me, if the only reasonable way a character would figure out some of these powers is if the GM tells them.

I'm assuming Spellcraft.

In 2011, I submitted a magic coin that, whenever passed from A to B, creates a reciprocal effect between them. I sweated hard figuring out how to make sure that B is actually likely to find out that he's got a magic item and that he can do something we it. Oy! But for most "normal" cases, you cast detect magic, and as soon as you know it's not just a normal (innocuous-looking, commonplace, unremarkable...) thingamajig, you've got several in-game methods of actually figuring out what it does.

Marathon Voter Season 6

theheadkase wrote:
This touches on some other things said, but, how on Golarion would somebody ever figure out some of these "true powers"? That is a big detriment to me, if the only reasonable way a character would figure out some of these powers is if the GM tells them.

Spellcraft. Or however the item says.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 32 , Marathon Voter Season 6, Marathon Voter Season 7, Marathon Voter Season 8, Marathon Voter Season 9 aka theheadkase

That's what I mean, though. Spellcraft will get you the properties but the GM is going to have to tell you the third or even fourth true power of the thing and the outlandish conditions that have to be met to use those powers.

I have seen a few, likely Superstar,items that handle this well. Just had a long streak of both items having long and complicated powers with equally long and complicated activation methods.

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

Standback wrote:
theheadkase wrote:
This touches on some other things said, but, how on Golarion would somebody ever figure out some of these "true powers"? That is a big detriment to me, if the only reasonable way a character would figure out some of these powers is if the GM tells them.

I'm assuming Spellcraft.

In 2011, I submitted a magic coin that, whenever passed from A to B, creates a reciprocal effect between them. I sweated hard figuring out how to make sure that B is actually likely to find out that he's got a magic item and that he can do something we it. Oy! But for most "normal" cases, you cast detect magic, and as soon as you know it's not just a normal (innocuous-looking, commonplace, unremarkable...) thingamajig, you've got several in-game methods of actually figuring out what it does.

What about Use Magic Device?

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