Phrases that are driving you bonkers


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

Garrett Guillotte wrote:
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?

Hmm, 25 is a good DC for activating blindly, but again, some of them are so outlandish that it seems low! :)

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theheadkase wrote:
Garrett Guillotte wrote:
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.

What about Use Magic Device?

Hmm, 25 is a good DC for activating blindly, but again, some of them are so outlandish that it seems low! :)

Ha! Fair enough.

There's nothing RAW, but if someone does luck up and activate blindly with Use Magic Device, I'd fudge and add a bonus.

Use Magic Device wrote:
You get a +2 bonus on your Use Magic Device check if you've activated the item in question at least once before.

Wouldn't be a stretch as a GM to let a PC who risked 2d6 damage to make the Wondrous Whatzit go off take a +2 bonus on Spellcraft, or add some or all Use Magic Device ranks to a Spellcraft check for activation. They seem to be compatible skills for figuring out where the trigger is on a Whatzit.

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Garrett Guillotte wrote:
theheadkase wrote:
Garrett Guillotte wrote:
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.

What about Use Magic Device?

Hmm, 25 is a good DC for activating blindly, but again, some of them are so outlandish that it seems low! :)

Ha! Fair enough.

There's nothing RAW, but if someone does luck up and activate blindly with Use Magic Device, I'd fudge and add a bonus.

Use Magic Device wrote:
You get a +2 bonus on your Use Magic Device check if you've activated the item in question at least once before.
Wouldn't be a stretch as a GM to let a PC who risked 2d6 damage to make the Wondrous Whatzit go off take a +2 bonus on Spellcraft, or add some or all Use Magic Device ranks to a Spellcraft check for activation. They seem to be compatible skills for figuring out where the trigger is on a Whatzit.

I only ever use Thingamajigs. Whatzits are of inferior quality. :P

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Please remember, do not discuss specific items.

Grand Lodge Marathon Voter Season 6

Boring names are killing my brain. The name of a mundane item is not sufficient as a name of a wondrous one. Salad forks, lounge chairs, and elbow pads need not apply.

On the other end of the scale, a clever and/or catchy name is a huge plus in my books.

Shadow Lodge RPG Superstar 2015 , Marathon Voter Season 6, Marathon Voter Season 7, Marathon Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9 aka mamaursula

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Not necessarily a phrase but a phase that I have been seeing that has really started to bug me - magical personal care items. When did personal grooming products become a thing? Magic shampoo that not only changes my appearance, it leaves my hair touchably soft and manageable? Good thing I have my pop-up castle with hot and cold running water to use on the adventure trail. Being a rough character doesn't mean you have to live rough.

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

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Friend wrote:
Boring names are killing my brain. The name of a mundane item is not sufficient as a name of a wondrous one. Salad forks, lounge chairs, and elbow pads need not apply.

But, a-ha what if the so-called "mundane" name is in actuality a PUNNE (or, a play on words)?!?!?!

The lounge chair causes foes to feel sleepy and needful of rest!
The salad fork allows you to fork your selection of salads, offering an ample variety of substitutes whenever you are rudely presented with only a single entrée!
What the elbow pad chooses to pad your elbows with is machine guns!

Grand Lodge Marathon Voter Season 6

The lounge chair's and salad fork's names would then be somewhat amusing, clever, and appropriate. Still a bit off though; there are real items that use those names. Chair of Lounging, and Salad Forker, might be better.

The elbow pad would be poorly named (if, on command, it brought the wearer to an extra-dimensional space containing an apartment suitable for a bachelor, then we'd have made progress). Again, still off.

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Standback wrote:
But, a-ha what if the so-called "mundane" name is in actuality a PUNNE (or, a play on words)?!?!?!

Then I have two reasons to vote against it.

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Eric Morton wrote:
Standback wrote:
But, a-ha what if the so-called "mundane" name is in actuality a PUNNE (or, a play on words)?!?!?!
Then I have two reasons to vote against it.

I know what you mean Eric, I have I think 31? more reasons on my book shelf, each containing on the cover somewhere the word "Xanth" :D

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We here don't like puns?

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The tone of the Pathfinder RPG rulebooks is serious rather than silly, so matching that is a good idea. Thus:

Not recommended:

Saddle of the Lounge Lizard
Autumn Mobile of Speed
Eye Pod of Recall
Blue Suede Shoes of Safe Stepping

:)

RPG Superstar 2009, Contributor

gbonehead wrote:
...Blue Suede Shoes of Safe Stepping...

Hey, hey! You can do anything, but lay off of my blue suede shoes!

Spoiler:

Otherwise, I'll have to knock you down and step on your face. ;-)

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

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Neil Spicer wrote:
** spoiler omitted **

There is an item for that already...

Grand Lodge Marathon Voter Season 6

Ha. Sure. I think I can agree with that. NOBODY likes bad puns (or admits to it, anyways).

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

Friend wrote:
Ha. Sure. I think I can agree with that. NOBODY likes bad puns (or admits to it, anyways).

I once thought that way but I work with a guy who love to make puns and actually likes it if you make them...Of course he saves those for use on other people.

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

Friend wrote:
Ha. Sure. I think I can agree with that. NOBODY likes bad puns (or admits to it, anyways).

a) I love bad puns

b) You clearly have never watched My Drunk Kitchen.

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There is no such thing as a bad pun.

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Of course there isn't. That would imply that there's a good pun to compare it against, and those simply do not exist. There are only puns, and they are all bad.

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

Now, a pun has a place in life. I went through my Piers Anthony phase (as my bookshelf can attest) and I still enjoy a pun now and then, albeit much less now than I used to.

You have to work the pun in smoothly, is the trick, much like the Succubus in a Grapple thread :)

Grand Lodge Marathon Voter Season 6

Shame on you all. Ezra Pound is rolling over in his grave.

There is variation in pun quality. Atwood's "the pen is envy" (The Handmaid's Tale) and Hemmingway's "For Whom the Bell Tolls" are of a different caliber than "the Eye Pod of Recall" - sorry, gbonehead.

Hmm: bell of tolling, dirty tricks (steal) . . . NO! Bad Friend, bad punning Friend.

Speaking of boring/mundane titles being a peeve of mine: Run on sentences seem like the hard to swallow pills of today. Next year, more periods please. I promise to hear you out, even if you take a breath now and again.

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Lol, did you read that as bell of trolling, because I know I just did?

Dedicated Voter Season 6

The run-on tentances are getting to me way more than the titles. At least the boring titles. I'd rather have a boring title that at least tells me what the item does than an over-the-top title that tells me nothing. Or worse, gives me the completely wrong impression. If I read a title and I can't figure out what the item even is, much less what it does, there's a problem.

Sometimes you have to call a spade a spade. I don't necessarily think a Carpet of Flying would be somehow better or more interesting if it was called a Floor Runner of Amazing Aeronautical Ability. Especially because I'd still just call it a Flying Carpet.

I can't remember which judge or former judge said it, but I'm really seeing what they mean about titles (and prices, among other things) being something that you can afford to get not quite right. You just really can't afford to get it wrong.


I prefer my item names to have some level of originality. However, many entries seem to fall to one extreme of just a dull name or a thesaurus sampler on the other. I'm either getting the board of woodenness or the ocular visual enhancers of incarnadine tincture.

Star Voter Season 6

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agirlnamedbob wrote:
Sometimes you have to call a spade a spade. I don't necessarily think a Carpet of Flying would be somehow better or more interesting if it was called a Floor Runner of Amazing Aeronautical Ability. Especially because I'd still just call it a Flying Carpet.

How about... Aerial Area Rug?

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

Tels wrote:
How about... Aerial Area Rug?

I saw this episode the other day. Phineas and Ferb is a great show.

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agirlnamedbob wrote:
The run-on tentances are getting to me way more than the titles...

Really? I've always had a strange fascination with that sort of animation. What? It was supposed to be sentences? Oh, uh, was that out loud? Err ... nevermind.

Dedicated Voter Season 6

gbonehead wrote:
agirlnamedbob wrote:
The run-on tentances are getting to me way more than the titles...
Really? I've always had a strange fascination with that sort of animation. What? It was supposed to be sentences? Oh, uh, was that out loud? Err ... nevermind.

That's what I get for posting from my phone. *facepalm*

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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agirlnamedbob wrote:
gbonehead wrote:
agirlnamedbob wrote:
The run-on tentances are getting to me way more than the titles...
Really? I've always had a strange fascination with that sort of animation. What? It was supposed to be sentences? Oh, uh, was that out loud? Err ... nevermind.
That's what I get for posting from my phone. *facepalm*

That's ok. I think there might be a Sopranos version of Sar Wars out there we all need to see.

At least I'm pretty sure there "cold" be.

Liberty's Edge Star Voter Season 6

The one I'm hating is random object with not so good name, then in the text is says, "but <insert class/race here> call it <insert much better name here>"

Use the good name, people!

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OK, this is funny. I was just over on the Pathfinder Online Kickstarter home page, and the daily deal of the day (January 8th) is the Cinder Blade. Apparently it is "highly prized among the soldiers of the River Kingdoms."

I laughed out loud! :)

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Feros wrote:

OK, this is funny. I was just over on the Pathfinder Online Kickstarter home page, and the daily deal of the day (January 8th) is the Cinder Blade. Apparently it is "highly prized among the soldiers of the River Kingdoms."

I laughed out loud! :)

Oh dear, from the name it isn't a wondrous item, and the description is priceless. Their cost should be to review it against all the advice threads and try again :D

RPG Superstar 2013 Top 32 , Marathon Voter Season 6 aka Breelo Babblebock

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After a lot of voting, I am starting to become annoyed by ALL of the items including the better ones. I honestly don't know how the champion voters didn't go crazy. The more I vote, the more jaded I seem to become. However....

While it is true there are a lot of items with similar themes or ideas, the annoyance is compounded by seeing them over and over and over and over again. Since we are seeing everything, we are seeing a lot of parallel development as people are trying to fill an untapped niche in the wondrous items arena. I would submit that there are many good items in this year's field and a few very good items.

I think this year's round of voting will certainly improve the quality of future submissions for anyone who has cast a large number of votes.

Marathon Voter Season 6

Only having to see each item once must be a luxury.

Scarab Sages

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One thing I'm getting tired of is blood and self-hurting. I'm seeing a trend of blood-related items.

Grand Lodge RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32 , Dedicated Voter Season 6, Marathon Voter Season 7, Dedicated Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9

Deidre Tiriel wrote:
One thing I'm getting tired of is blood and self-hurting. I'm seeing a trend of blood-related items.

Well, spilling blood is a natural part of an adventurer's life. :P

...unless you have to spill it in unnatural, unsound ways...

Self-harming does seem to be in vogue.

I don't mind blood (or shadow, filigree, etc.), and the presence or absence of it won't affect my voting. What does matter is whether it's done in good taste and with style. A lot of blood, shadow and filigree items fail in this respect.

Grand Lodge RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32 , Dedicated Voter Season 6, Marathon Voter Season 7, Dedicated Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9

Anthony Adam wrote:
Feros wrote:

OK, this is funny. I was just over on the Pathfinder Online Kickstarter home page, and the daily deal of the day (January 8th) is the Cinder Blade. Apparently it is "highly prized among the soldiers of the River Kingdoms."

I laughed out loud! :)

Oh dear, from the name it isn't a wondrous item, and the description is priceless. Their cost should be to review it against all the advice threads and try again :D

Heheh yeah it's pretty funny. :) But to be fair, it isn't an RPGSS submission, so our rules don't apply. However, I'm sure people will enjoy picking it apart, so here's the text:

Cinder Blade

This hot to the touch shortsword is the product of a fortuitous accident when a siccatite skymetal chunk was accidentally smelted along with several pieces of iron. The resulting weapons absorbed and contained the heat used in their forging, becoming permanently hot to the touch along the blade. They remain highly prized among the soldiers of the River Kingdoms.

?!? "This hot to the touch shortsword" doesn't flow well and there's no hyphenation? Long backstory? Highly prized? :D At least they didn't give the lucky weaponsmith's name...

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Mikko Kallio wrote:

Heheh yeah it's pretty funny. :) But to be fair, it isn't an RPGSS submission, so our rules don't apply. However, I'm sure people will enjoy picking it apart, so here's the text:

Another one to pick apart Backstory Galore and Did someone mention blood and gore?

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Deidre Tiriel wrote:
One thing I'm getting tired of is blood and self-hurting. I'm seeing a trend of blood-related items.

Ah yes ... the emo and S&M items ... I think these are more in the vein (yes, that pun was intended) of wanting to "push the boundaries" to get the items noticed as, in many cases, it really is just fluff ("it needs yer blood but ya don't take any damage from it, it's just thirsty"). Other cases have some impact on the wearer, some of which would push the item over to the realm of cursed items IMO.

So they are getting noticed, but not necessarily in the manner which was intended by their creators, I think.

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

I know I remarked on the masochistic items previously.

It definitely seems a lot of people think along the lines of, "If a kyton would like using this item, or it'd be the focus of a Hellraiser film, the judges will lurve it."

I don't and based on past instances of the contest, neither do the judges.

Dedicated Voter Season 6

The blood and gore and death items have a place. And if there were just a few of them I don't think it would be nearly as bad. I've just seen so many (and some of the same ones over and over and over...) and quite a few of them don't seem like something a player would want.

Again, like with everything, there are exceptions. I have seen a few intriguing ones.

...And a few ideas I might save for the next time I feel like putting together a campaign that draws heavily on The Book of Vile and Libris Mortis.

So, I guess, even if it doesn't make the top 32, if your item inspired me enough to consider it as a DM tool, it did something right.

Star Voter Season 6

agirlnamedbob wrote:

The blood and gore and death items have a place. And if there were just a few of them I don't think it would be nearly as bad. I've just seen so many (and some of the same ones over and over and over...) and quite a few of them don't seem like something a player would want.

Again, like with everything, there are exceptions. I have seen a few intriguing ones.

...And a few ideas I might save for the next time I feel like putting together a campaign that draws heavily on The Book of Vile and Libris Mortis.

So, I guess, even if it doesn't make the top 32, if your item inspired me enough to consider it as a DM tool, it did something right.

I'm not sure how I feel about items that are more usefull in the hands of the GM than in the players. A lot of these types of items seem great for a themed villian but very poor for PCs.

Dedicated Voter Season 6

Caineach wrote:
I'm not sure how I feel about items that are more usefull in the hands of the GM than in the players. A lot of these types of items seem great for a themed villian but very poor for PCs.

I don't think an item that seems like it would be almost exclusively useful to a GM and of little or no use to the players is Superstar material. (Conversely, some of my favorite items I've seen so far could be used as a plot device but could also be used by PCs.)

However, if an item (and this goes for non-blood and gore items) has something in it that makes me go "Huh, I could see using this in the next homebrew campaign I put together, even if I'd never want it as a player" then it's not all-together horrible. It probably missed the mark in places, but it has some mojo or interesting mechanics or some redeeming quality. Thus, I wouldn't call it a "bad" item. I could see something similar appearing in a module in the hands of a villian/NPC or a specific evil organization. ...Just maybe not in Ultimate Equipment.

So, essentially, I'd love to see more work from the designer, and perhaps if they submit something in the future with broader appeal they'll totally wow me.

Star Voter Season 6

agirlnamedbob wrote:
Caineach wrote:
I'm not sure how I feel about items that are more usefull in the hands of the GM than in the players. A lot of these types of items seem great for a themed villian but very poor for PCs.

I don't think an item that seems like it would be almost exclusively useful to a GM and of little or no use to the players is Superstar material. (Conversely, some of my favorite items I've seen so far could be used as a plot device but could also be used by PCs.)

However, if an item (and this goes for non-blood and gore items) has something in it that makes me go "Huh, I could see using this in the next homebrew campaign I put together, even if I'd never want it as a player" then it's not all-together horrible. It probably missed the mark in places, but it has some mojo or interesting mechanics or some redeeming quality. Thus, I wouldn't call it a "bad" item. I could see something similar appearing in a module in the hands of a villian/NPC or a specific evil organization. ...Just maybe not in Ultimate Equipment.

So, essentially, I'd love to see more work from the designer, and perhaps if they submit something in the future with broader appeal they'll totally wow me.

Exactly. Those types of items have an important place in the game, and players may find ways to put them to use in less traditional campaigns. But they wont win you this contest and the good ones will still fall to the middle of the pack.

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I'm getting frustrated by items that are too useful for PC. They seem to be created by thanatophobic player characters. I call this group of items: "The Ring of I Don't Die"

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Don Hastily wrote:
I'm getting frustrated by items that are too useful for PC. They seem to be created by thanatophobic player characters. I call this group of items: "The Ring of I Don't Die"

And conversely, I've seen a couple of items that you'd only want if you PLAN to die. Which isn't very heroic, except in very specific situations.

Dedicated Voter Season 6

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Don Hastily wrote:
I'm getting frustrated by items that are too useful for PC. They seem to be created by thanatophobic player characters. I call this group of items: "The Ring of I Don't Die"

You know, in one game I was in, we actually made an item like this for a specific player... Or, more accurately, cobbled together items, feats, and prestiege classes in an attempt to give the party and GM a bonus to saves against "SERIOUSLY, MARK?! AGAIN?!?!"

Liberty's Edge Dedicated Voter Season 6

With all the gore/pain items we're seeing, I dunno - I haven't seen anything as useful as that nipple ring from BoVD. There just seems to be a glut of masochist items. It's getting a liiiiiittle weird.

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

agirlnamedbob wrote:
I don't think an item that seems like it would be almost exclusively useful to a GM and of little or no use to the players is Superstar material.

These are plot device items and the judges have a long-standing history of saying precisely that; items that are simply plot-devices for the GM are not superstar.

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