Blazing 9!


RPG Superstar™ General Discussion

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

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awww... the logo disappeared :(

Congratulations again, Monica!

And thanks to Chris, Brian & Kalervo for a VERY strong finish!
Ben, Scott, RPDQ, Gabriel & all the other Top 32 congratulations on your great run!!

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

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...but the fun isn't over yet :)

Quick question: You found this thread because...
a) you are addicted to RPG SS,
b) you are obsessive about RPG SS, or
c) you are dedicated to RPG SS?

Blazing Nine begins! :)

The goal here is to create a superstar items with a little help from some friendly critique. One a month is not too hard to practice, but making deadlines, BBC/Paizo formatting, and accepting critique rewriting can be. So that is what his thread is about practicing those bits we can practice.

Some suggestions:

1) Pick a day and post a new item every month by that day. Do that from now until December & you will have 9 solid items to lead your submission.
2) Do a rewrite a week after that. This requires comments so please critique others.
3) Focus on formatting, grammar, & rules knowledge. We practice this now so we can focus on mojo next year.
4) Do not post an actual submission. That will DQ it from the contest. :)
5) Do not limit yourself to wondrous items (see, we were ready for the twist already!). Try an archetype, a monster, a villain or any of the other rounds we have seen in RPG SS. Just follow the rules for that round. You can even post a link to a map if you want to.
6) Re-read all of JO's & SKR's guidelines, the previous Top 32, the critique my item threads. Space them out over nine months.

If you really want practice for RPG SS, ask the next poster to give you a submission category. Then give yourself one week to create an entry.

To start, I recommend trying a rewrite of your 2015 entry now that you have had some feedback. Also keep Wayfinder in mind, it is fairly easy to get 750 word article on magic items. :)

Ready? Set? Blaze!

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

Hey all! I'll definitely lurk here once in a while...but I'm actually super busy with some projects of my own!!

So...hopefully I'll get a chance to finish my item reviews and participate here!

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

Always look forward to the Blazing 9, even if I don't contribute that much to it anymore. Still, now that there's reason to do new types, maybe I'll come up with some new dog-themed items for this year...

Dogwood staff? Veterinary staff? Canine chain...


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Jacob W. Michaels wrote:

Always look forward to the Blazing 9, even if I don't contribute that much to it anymore. Still, now that there's reason to do new types, maybe I'll come up with some new dog-themed items for this year...

Dogwood staff? Veterinary staff? Canine chain...

dogforge

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

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Not bearded terrierforge?

Sovereign Court Marathon Voter Season 8, Marathon Voter Season 9

I'm not allowing myself to post anything in this thread until I finish posting the now-horrendously-backlogged Item back-stories. Life needs to stop tripping me, and my internet and computer at home need to stop being full of stupid.

But does this mean I can make the "Sand Witch" Archetype? Or does that belong in the Joke thread?

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

Blazing 9 has typically been for magic items, but I don't think there's any reason you can't post an archetype too. It tends to be a pretty small community, so any traffic is good. :)

Grand Lodge RPG Superstar 2014 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32 , Dedicated Voter Season 6, Marathon Voter Season 7, Dedicated Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9

Ah, Blazing 9! I'll update the link on A Sword for Hire.

I've been a bit busy lately, but I'll be sure to drop by every once in a while and comment on stuff. Besides wondrous items, other magic items, and archetypes, people should totally also practice monster creation here! I don't know if I'll be invited to join the judging panel next year, but feel free to ask anything about monsters and I'll try to answer.

Dedicated Voter Season 8, Marathon Voter Season 9

I'd love to have your feedback on monsters, Mikko, thanks.

I'll probably take this on, though I expect I won't do more than 2-3 magic items, then do 2-3 monsters, and 2-3 maps.

If I learn enough from each of those that I have any other time available, I'll do a complete encounter.

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

Nice Plan CrypDyke, if nothing else you can practice deadlines :)

Bring it on Brigg, the point traditionally has been to practice for open call with magic items, but it has grown into any RPG SS.

Thanks for the offer Mikko (and the link :) hmmm... Blazing 9 on SfH? maybe I do have guest blog cred in me

In the very first blazing 9 I did a magic bumper. It was basically bonus to a skill and no-one knew what a bumper was. Maybe I will remake it with a beard?

Man, I think I was tired looking back at the grammar of that first post. :P

Scarab Sages RPG Superstar 2015 Top 16 , Dedicated Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9 aka Rusty Ironpants

Hey everyone,
I will be hanging around here to post some things and give some feedback to things that other people post as well.

Grand Lodge RPG Superstar 2014 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32 , Dedicated Voter Season 6, Marathon Voter Season 7, Dedicated Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9

@CripDyke & Scott: I suppose I could organize a monster challenge, where you first pitch a few ideas, then we discuss them here, and finally, you develop one of them into a complete monster entry.

I think the pitching/outlining phase is important as it's usually easy to tell how cool the resulting monster will be. If you can't sell an idea in 100 words, it's unlikely to get more interesting when it's 600 words long.

Scott, I thought you knew about the link, it's been on ASFH since April 2014. And yes, if you're interested, you can certainly write a guest blog! :-)

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Hey all you peeps working on your blazing 9 entries, here's some very interesting bits of writing you might like to have a look at

Grand Lodge RPG Superstar 2014 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32 , Dedicated Voter Season 6, Marathon Voter Season 7, Dedicated Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9

Hah. :D

Anyways, anyone interested in designing villains should have a look at this announcement here!

Scarab Sages RPG Superstar 2015 Top 16 , Dedicated Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9 aka Rusty Ironpants

Okay I have a question for you template gurus. This is regarding advancing an existing monster by adding racial hit dice to the monster.

What is the proper way (if any) to indicate the extra racial hit dice in the monsters name?

For example if you add a simple template like Advanced or Giant to an ogre it becomes an Advanced Orge or a Giant Ogre. Or it becomes an Advanced Giant Ogre if you add both temples.

If you instead advance the Ogre's hit dice from 4 to 6, what do you call it? I am thinking "Advanced HD Ogre" but I am not sure because I don't think I have ever seen an example stat block where this was done.

Lantern Lodge Dedicated Voter Season 8, Marathon Voter Season 9 aka Jayson MF Kip

Russ Brown wrote:

Okay I have a question for you template gurus. This is regarding advancing an existing monster by adding racial hit dice to the monster.

What is the proper way (if any) to indicate the extra racial hit dice in the monsters name?

For example if you add a simple template like Advanced or Giant to an ogre it becomes an Advanced Orge or a Giant Ogre. Or it becomes an Advanced Giant Ogre if you add both temples.

If you instead advance the Ogre's hit dice from 4 to 6, what do you call it? I am thinking "Advanced HD Ogre" but I am not sure because I don't think I have ever seen an example stat block where this was done.

Ive seen "Female Reduced HD Sphinx" in the type-line of a creature. Maybe cheat and give it a name?

Scarab Sages RPG Superstar 2015 Top 16 , Dedicated Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9 aka Rusty Ironpants

yeah, I am making some unique named Ogres, but I am putting the name up top above the description. Like so...

Bob the Ogre Boss

Bob is a big scary ogre. You can tell he's the leader of the ogre gang because he has a name.

Increased HD Ogre CR8
XP 4,800

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8 , Dedicated Voter Season 6, Marathon Voter Season 7, Marathon Voter Season 8, Marathon Voter Season 9 aka Amanuensis

I think 'unique' is a term often used in connection with increased HD creatures, though most 'unique' creatures also have other special features.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 32 , Dedicated Voter Season 8, Dedicated Voter Season 9 aka Tothric

Hi all, I'm guessing this is the best place to state that "I'm back". I've been gone a while. Had some personal tragedies going on. But now, I'm back, ready... and looking to do some pretty good work in that there Blazing 9.

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

Sorry to hear about the tragedies, Tothric. Welcome back, though.

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Welcome back !

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 32 , Dedicated Voter Season 8, Dedicated Voter Season 9 aka Tothric

Thanks Adam and Jacob! :-D So the blazing 9 Started, and I've NEVER participated in it before.

So I have a newbie question about it: would we just post our item submissions on THIS particular forum? Create a new forum for our own items and the Feedback involved?

Just where oh where do our posts go?

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

Just post your practice item in this thread, and we'll give you feedback!

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 32 , Dedicated Voter Season 8, Dedicated Voter Season 9 aka Tothric

Shrouded
Price +1 bonus
Aura faint illusion; CL 1st weight

DESCRIPTION

The wielder of this weapon is granted a +5 bonus to stealth checks when attempting to snipe using this weapon.

REQUIREMENTS
Craft Magical Arms and Armor, blur Cost +1 bonus

Let's kick this off with something nice and simple. I didn't find a good enhancement bonus to build a sniper off of the other day.

I humbly offer my idea as a snacrifice.

Sovereign Court Marathon Voter Season 8, Marathon Voter Season 9

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Tothric wrote:

Shrouded

Price +1 bonus
Aura faint illusion; CL 1st weight

DESCRIPTION

The wielder of this weapon is granted a +5 bonus to stealth checks when attempting to snipe using this weapon.

REQUIREMENTS
Craft Magical Arms and Armor, blur Cost +1 bonus

Let's kick this off with something nice and simple. I didn't find a good enhancement bonus to build a sniper off of the other day.

I humbly offer my idea as a snacrifice.

Hi Tothric!! Been a while. ^.^

The first thing that stands out is that "Sniping" isn't really a game term. You would need to use elaborate rules language so as to leave nothing to question. Not quite sure how to reword it just yet.

Second: You've got 300 words to work with. This combined with my first observation, you have plenty of room to expand on this idea.

Third: I don't see how blur coincides with this enhancement's abilities.

Fourth: I don't think "Weight" is placed in entries for enhancements.

Fifth: Need an un-italicized Semicolon between the spell and the word "Cost" in the requirements.

Sixth: Blur is a 2nd level spell. CL for the enhancement would be 3rd at minimum.

This is what I see at first glance.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 32 , Dedicated Voter Season 8, Dedicated Voter Season 9 aka Tothric

You be right Brigg.
To counter-point the first thing: Sniping is a game term it is part of the stealth rules entry.

To quote the Pathfinder SRD:

Sniping wrote:


If you've already successfully used Stealth at least 10 feet from your target, you can make one ranged attack and then immediately use Stealth again. You take a –20 penalty on your Stealth check to maintain your obscured location.

It's a little known rule, I know... but it's a feature of the game that is often overlooked as it's not as exciting.

Other then that, I see I'm guilty by ALL accounts.

Dedicated Voter Season 8, Marathon Voter Season 9

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Also...

Your +5 bonus is untyped.

Although costing a +1 enhancement probably makes it worth it, I'd probably specify "circumstance bonus" (since they generally stack) or otherwise make it clear that it would stack with, say, competence skill bonuses from other items.

If you were running up against word limits, it IS untyped, so you might let that stand. As short as this is, there's no point in not being clear.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 32 , Dedicated Voter Season 8, Dedicated Voter Season 9 aka Tothric

Thanks CripDyke, and Brigg!

Grand Lodge RPG Superstar 2014 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32 , Dedicated Voter Season 6, Marathon Voter Season 7, Dedicated Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9

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Tothric wrote:
Shrouded

Was this intended to be an RPGSS practice item? Unfortunately, if shrouded had been an entry in RPG Superstar 2015, it would have been disqualified:

Round 1 rules wrote:
Magic armor and weapons should be presented as a specific armor or specific weapon, not stand-alone special abilities (such as keen or bashing).

It's very likely that round 1 will be about specific magic items next year, too. Other than that, a skill bonus item is nowhere near as creative as an RPGSS entry needs to be.

There's also a third problem: the sniping enchantment already exists.

I do think sniping as a rules element is a decent choice as such. It's a niche that hasn't been explored a whole lot. How about an item that lets you do something you normally wouldn't be able to do while you're sniping?

Such as, if you're near a hidden ally while sniping, maybe the enemy notices your ally instead of you? Now I think we're onto something that might work for RPGSS. Though I think it sounds more like a betrayal feat than a magic item to me.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 32 , Dedicated Voter Season 8, Dedicated Voter Season 9 aka Tothric

Mikko Kallio wrote:
Tothric wrote:
Shrouded

Was this intended to be an RPGSS practice item? Unfortunately, if shrouded had been an entry in RPG Superstar 2015, it would have been disqualified:

Round 1 rules wrote:
Magic armor and weapons should be presented as a specific armor or specific weapon, not stand-alone special abilities (such as keen or bashing).

It's very likely that round 1 will be about specific magic items next year, too. Other than that, a skill bonus item is nowhere near as creative as an RPGSS entry needs to be.

There's also a third problem: the sniping enchantment already exists.

I do think sniping as a rules element is a decent choice as such. It's a niche that hasn't been explored a whole lot. How about an item that lets you do something you normally wouldn't be able to do while you're sniping?

Such as, if you're near a hidden ally while sniping, maybe the enemy notices your ally instead of you? Now I think we're onto something that might work for RPGSS. Though I think it sounds more like a betrayal feat than a magic item to me.

Huh, I searched for about two or three hours the other day, and couldn't find that enchantment. Hence why I made something short and well... lumpy, and threw it up here. I also know that once someone throws themselves into the fire, others will follow suit.

It was to practice my over all design and Paizo writing style skills. Of which I learned a few things. My intent wasn't something superstar, just to get closer on the Formatting and Writing guide. Of which, Well, I failed. Shows I have a long way to go.

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

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Tothric, thanks for getting us started! I've been playing with an idea for a (I hope fun) practice item, but haven't gotten there yet.

You've gotten some good advice so far, so I don't want to pile on, but a few other thoughts:

- Make sure you use good description. You ended up doing a weapon enhancement, so that's not really conducive to that, but even there you can explain what's happening to give the bonus. Something like "Shadows wrap around the wielder..." Anything that gives me some idea of your writing ability is going to make me want to vote for you.

- Stealth (or any other skill) should be upper case.

- I think the snipe discussion is a good one. It's a lesser-used rule set, which I think as Mikko points out makes it a good one to play with. That said, you might want to do something to make sure people know it's a real. Sometimes that might be referring to where you can find it in the rules, sometimes it might be in how to word the power, but that's one of the biggest things I'd take away from the discussion, IMO. (Sure, there are some concerns about formatting/style as well, but practice can really help with those.)

Grand Lodge RPG Superstar 2014 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32 , Dedicated Voter Season 6, Marathon Voter Season 7, Dedicated Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9

@Tothric: the weapon special ability is from a recent Player Companion, so it's entirely possible it was added a day or two after you searched.

And sorry if my comments sounded harsh! Welcome (back) to Blazing 9!

Grand Lodge RPG Superstar 2014 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32 , Dedicated Voter Season 6, Marathon Voter Season 7, Dedicated Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9

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Anyway, it's time for a ...

Practice Challenge: Pitch a monster!

Post a monster pitch! Or two. Or three. Use the following format:

template wrote:

Monster Name CR x

AL Size type (subtypes)
[Description, max. 100 words]

Sample pitch:

Angel, Eclipsed CR 9
NG Large outsider (angel, extraplanar, good, shapeshifter)
This angel can mask its alignment (as misdirection), change its appearance, and imitate some fiendish abilities in order to better spy on fiends and their mortal allies. Even in its true form, it doesn’t look quite as lovely as most angels: it’s skin and wings resemble cracked black marble, and its eyes are dots of white light, not unlike distant stars.

Q: Why a monster pitch? That's not a round in RPGSS!
A: A pitch/outline is a good way for you and your pit crew to separate the wheat from the chaff even before you start writing the actual entry. Don't write a 600-word monster and then realize the concept sucks. Test the concept before you put any significant amount of time and effort into it.

Deadline: May 15

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 32 , Dedicated Voter Season 8, Dedicated Voter Season 9 aka Tothric

Mikko Kallio wrote:

@Tothric: the weapon special ability is from a recent Player Companion, so it's entirely possible it was added a day or two after you searched.

And sorry if my comments sounded harsh! Welcome (back) to Blazing 9!

No hard feelings were taken. Yeah, upon further examination: I found that the Ranged Tactics Toolbox was not added. New book to go onto my bookshelf! Thank you all for the feed-back.

Time to look deep in my brain for an absolutely awesome monster idea.

Lantern Lodge Dedicated Voter Season 8, Marathon Voter Season 9 aka Jayson MF Kip

I suppose a few practice swings are in order.

Golem, Molten Lead CR 11
N Large Construct (fire)

This amorphous construct is a roiling mass of liquified lead. It radiates immense heat (10 foot aura as waves of fatigue; creatures with fire resistance 5 or greater are immune to this effect) and sticks to struck foes (for extra damage the following round).

Sovereign Court Marathon Voter Season 8, Marathon Voter Season 9

Stage Hands CR 9(?) (Not too good at calculating CR yet...x.x)
N Huge Construct

Designed by some of Oppara's top engineers, this six-armed stage prop blends seamlessly in with backdrops and curtains as it assists with scene changes and special effects such as smoke, sparks, or character flight. Has 6 slam attacks, At-will fog cloud, invisibility, pyrotechnics, and spark.

Dedicated Voter Season 8, Marathon Voter Season 9

If easter-eggs were not prohibited, I'd propose an ambush-aberration that falls on your head and resists all attempts at removal despite pirate legends it can be removed by acids, alternately named the "Keep-put" for the land-lubbers or the "Yar! Ma' skuh!" for the sea-dogs.

Strangely enough, once it's there it doesn't really seem to do much.

Dedicated Voter Season 8, Marathon Voter Season 9

so...

...what format does one use to add a link to one's comment text?

square-Bracket b close-square-bracket works just fine to get bold, where <b> is the html I'm used to hand-coding.

But replacing greater-than/less-than with square brackets for the <a href="link"> html doesn't work when the time comes to insert a link.

What, precisely, should I be doing to get this right?

Thanks. I'll be cross posting this in the paizo website-feedback/help section of the message boards.

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

Thanks for kicking us off Crypdyke!

The code is in the spoiler tag below but it looks like this: Go to <url=http://paizo.com]Paizo Inc.[/url> or rather Paizo Inc. (when switching beginng and end to brackets. (you can see coding if you reply to this post).

The most likely hiccup is closing the bracket, adding the text, then closing with the [/url ]

Dedicated Voter Season 8, Marathon Voter Season 9

So, I should link to paizo.com by using this itty bitty bit of code?

That seems to have done it.

Good. Now I can post my bit of good-humored formatting-practice cum reference.

Look for that next.

Dedicated Voter Season 8, Marathon Voter Season 9

An 255 word exercise in (and, perhaps, a tentative guide to) formatting:

Whack of Words, Formatted
Aura strong imagery; CL 11th
Slot --; Price 2 cp per word; Weight 500,000 electron rest masses.

Description
A formatted whack of words is a finely crafted item description and a masterwork of words no more than three paragraphs long, accompanied by a few specific lines providing a name and certain data — it is also frequently recognizable by the correct use of an em dash, when the less–experienced might use an en dash. More than a result of the skill Craft (writing), a formatted whack of words found in the marketplace will always have the mojo special quality.

Mojo in a whack of words should never be relied upon to give a piece of prose 4 tentacle attacks, a Literary Maneuver Bonus of +22, and grab. No, mojo draws a reader deep into already fluid prose, allowing a single tentacle of thought to fascinate a reader on its turn (Will save negates, DC 18), and another to do the same a moment later. Together, these small portions of a whack of words so effectively encourage the reader on that by the time the unifying body of your work is revealed, she is already delighted to be rapt in your kraken–arms; grab would be superfluous when good mojo causes a reader to willingly submit to this charm (as charm monster or editor) effect.
Construction
Requirements Craft Mojo, symbol of persuasion, Craft (writing) 10 ranks; Cost 20 good years of your life learning to turn flights of fancy into clear writing

Dedicated Voter Season 8, Marathon Voter Season 9

While I'm happy to concede that there are probably many errors here which passed me by unnoticed, there's also one tricky bit about whose formatting I am uncertain.

Note the use of the phrase "good mojo" in the middle of the last full line of the description.

Should "mojo" here be italicized as the special quality? Or, as used in the phrase "good mojo" should it be left un-italicized?

I went with no italics, imagining that if I was talking about smacking monsters around instead of charming editors, I might say "good impact" made grab unnecessary when talking about the killing potential of a weapon with the impact special quality.

"Impact" would be italicized, I believe, but "good impact" would not be.

I could, of course, have avoided this trouble by choosing my words differently (and if I had been entering this in RPGSS last december, I would have done), but in this venue I thought it was worth it to bring up the issue so that the right answer could get crowdsourced.

I'm hoping, after all, for this to end up a bit of writing to which one (including myself) can refer later. No point in realizing that there exist some confusing ambiguities and not tackling them head on if the point is to create a clear guide!

=============

Also, I'm not sure if I have the format correct with the blank line after "weight" and before "description" but no blank line after the description and before the word "construction".

But it's a place to start...

Dedicated Voter Season 8, Marathon Voter Season 9

Ooops.

One more thing I deliberately included to have a chance for feedback:

Quote:

this charm (as charm monster or editor) effect.

This reads in a very clunky way, but it seems to be the style intended by paizo, or at least a style preferred to:

Quote:

this charm effect (as charm monster or editor).

Also: yes, yes, I included the word "effect" on purpose to clarify 'effect' vs 'affect' as well as to get feedback on this clunky yet common style.

Further: yes, yes, I can count to one. Why do you ask?

Even further: yes, yes, I know that "charm monster or editor" is redundant.

Finally: yes, yes, I know that I am alienating every potential employer that ever reads this.

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Well, lets have an early panic poke... :P

Today, 1st May is 7 months exactly away from 1st December...

So the next season is not as far away as you might think! ;)

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 32 , Dedicated Voter Season 8, Dedicated Voter Season 9 aka Tothric

Monster Pitch

Pungent Pustule CR 5
L Ooze
This odd creeping odorous entity is filled with a puss that is abrasive to the touch, much like a weeping blister. As it slides along, it spews its nauseating fluids at movement it detects nearby (acidic spray as a special attack, caster level 3). It’s fairly easy to notice, but it is not comfortable to be around as it’s smell can hinder even the most fortuitous of foes (Horrific Stench aura), allowing it the chance to gain ground on potential victims.

Cripdyke wrote:

Whack of Words, Formatted:

Aura strong imagery; CL 11th
Slot --; Price 2 cp per word; Weight 500,000 electron rest masses.

Description
A formatted whack of words is a finely crafted item description and a masterwork of words no more than three paragraphs long, accompanied by a few specific lines providing a name and certain data — it is also frequently recognizable by the correct use of an em dash, when the less–experienced might use an en dash. More than a result of the skill Craft (writing), a formatted whack of words found in the marketplace will always have the mojo special quality.

Mojo in a whack of words should never be relied upon to give a piece of prose 4 tentacle attacks, a Literary Maneuver Bonus of +22, and grab. No, mojo draws a reader deep into already fluid prose, allowing a single tentacle of thought to fascinate a reader on its turn (Will save negates, DC 18), and another to do the same a moment later. Together, these small portions of a whack of words so effectively encourage the reader on that by the time the unifying body of your work is revealed, she is already delighted to be rapt in your kraken–arms; grab would be superfluous when good mojo causes a reader to willingly submit to this charm (as charm monster or editor) effect.
Construction
Requirements Craft Mojo, symbol of persuasion, Craft (writing) 10 ranks; Cost 20 good years of your life learning to turn flights of fancy into clear writing

This was so well formatted, I thought it was a legitimate item for entry. So you fooled me. Not that I'm particularly hard to fool mind you. So... in short... I failed my will save. I laughed when I realized how fooled I was.

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

Cool monster challenge, Mikko. We'll have to see if I can come up with something for it.

---

CripDyke
It's a little tough to fully critique your whack, since you're making up some game terms and whatnot, but I'll give it a shot. I'd probably encourage you to go with an actual item for practicing your formatting, since we'll be able to give you a better look at style and whatnot (it looks like you've got a good handle on it, but it's a little hard to tell). Obviously don't make it your best idea, since posting it here disqualifies it for Superstar, but even if you just give us a spell in a can/swiss army knife, that's find for practicing formatting.

Anyway, to the nitpicking...
No period after the weight (unless of course you're ending it with "lbs.").

Try to avoid passive writing, as in "it is also frequently recognizable by the correct use of an em dash, when the less–experienced might use an en dash."

"she is already delighted to be rapt in your kraken–arms." Rapt should be wrapped, though I suspect you intentionally used the homophone.

And for your questions:
I think I would italicize mojo in the use of good mojo. It's referencing the weapon special quality, so should be treated as such.

The template has a blank line before before the Description and Construction lines, so I would follow that example. Honestly, though, I don't think it's a huge issue as long as it's legible. I think having blank lines between paragraphs is important for Superstar because it makes items easier to read (and you don't want to do anything that will cause voters to make a snap judgment based on anything but the item itself) but the type of posting you do on the message boards won't necessarily reflect what you turnover to a publisher.

Re: your charm effect question, I'm not sure I've seen the "this charm (as charm monster or editor) effect" construction, though that doesn't mean I haven't just missed it. I'd definitely try to follow Paizo's example, though. I'll often search Paizo PDFs (using the ctrl-F function) to see how they word something so I can follow their lead.

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

CripDyke wrote:

An 255 word exercise in (and, perhaps, a tentative guide to) formatting:

Whack of Words, Formatted

Together, these small portions of a whack of words so effectively encourage the reader on that by the time the unifying body of your work is revealed, she is already delighted to be rapt in your kraken–arms; grab would be superfluous when good mojo causes a reader to willingly submit to this charm (as charm monster or editor) effect.

I enjoyed the writing Crypdyke, you have that going for you. As an exercise yours is good. My comments will take away from the writing and focus on superstar entry (in the way 'rapt into wrapped' would change your exercise).

Yes I know we should treat them as one and the same...

*"you" should be avoided in magic items. Instead try wielder/user/wearer/etc. and the appropriate pronouns. I think it can be argued 'you' should be avoided in game design as it assumes actions on the players part, but obviously spell descriptions use 'you'.
** I see nothing in charm monster about a target willingly submitting to the effects. If this implies voluntarily giving up a saving throw, then it applies to all saves and not just this spell specifically called out.
***last sentence is a bit of run-on. I think the first subject should be 'mojo' instead of 'whack of words.' The 'portions of' and a 3-in-1 subject threw me (as a reader) out of the sentence. One 'reads on' (readers don't 'on') and personally I rarely find the word 'that' as useful as writers tend to. I would end the sentence after kraken-arms. (do krakens have arms? :) As pointed out above, the rest of the sentence may not even be needed.

Again this advice will hurt your writing, which I really enjoyed, so take it with a grain of salt.

Dedicated Voter Season 8, Marathon Voter Season 9

Thanks, Curaigh, for your feedback! Everything helps.

There's always a tension between making something artistically powerful and making something that is functional, in a clear, efficient way. I acknowledge that and I acknowledge that in parts of this I was writing more for artistic power than for clear, efficient functionality.

It's not that doing both is impossible, but doing these things are different exercises, and it can be very hard to keep both goals in your head at the same time, so you often have to write for one thing, then edit it with an emphasis on the other. Possibly then even rewriting it to try to get back what you lost in editing without losing the benefits of your edits.

It can be a difficult process, for sure. But what can you do but try, fail, review for possible lessons, and try again?

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 32 , Dedicated Voter Season 8, Dedicated Voter Season 9 aka Tothric

Here's another practice item.

Take out your frustrations on this new item I put together. The more you nit-pick this, the better I'll get.

Coronal-Mass-Ejection Round
Aura moderate evocation; CL 7th
Slot --; Price 1563 gp; Weight 1 lbs.

Description

This +1 bullet when loaded into a gun starts a transformation. It transforms into a molten ball of magma. When fired, it covers the target in lava which rapidly cools over the round. The target takes 2d6 points of damage and then 1d6 points of damage for 1d3 rounds; as if the target had touched lava.

Each time this kind of ammo is fired from a gun, it increases the misfire chance by 1.

Construction
Requirements Magical Arms and Armor, fireball, molten orb, Craft (Alchemy) 7 ranks; Cost 758 gp

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