Defender's Door


Open Call: Design a wondrous item, magic armor, or magic weapon

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 32 , Star Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9 aka Abandoned Arts

7 people marked this as a favorite.

Defender’s Door
Aura moderate conjuration; CL 7th
Slot none; Price 14,000 gp; Weight 22 lbs.

Description
This +2 darkwood tower shield is made to resemble a sturdy door. Once per day on command, the wielder may stand defender’s door upright on the ground or rest it against a wall as a standard action. When set, defender’s door becomes a real door and can be opened or closed normally. The wielder must remain still to maintain the door, which becomes a shield again if the wielder moves away from it.

Creatures that pass through the doorway are transported as if using a dimension door. If the door is set into the ground, creatures passing through the door emerge at any open location within range that the wielder can see. This location is set when the shield is planted, and is the same for all creatures. If the door is set against a wall, creatures emerge on the other side of that surface as long as an open space exists within range. If the wielder closes the door or passes through it, it becomes a shield again.

Construction
Requirements Craft Magic Arms and Armor, dimension door Cost 7,630 gp

Star Voter Season 9

This was one of my favorites from what I saw. So much flavor combined so well with the mechanics. I love it.

Dedicated Voter Season 9

A+ item, upvoted it every time.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

OOH YEEAAHHH!

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 32 , Star Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9 aka Abandoned Arts

Ahem.

AaAAAAAAAAAAAAAaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhHHHHHHHHhhhHHHHh.

Oh, man. Okay.

I've literally been waiting for this moment for - let's see - four years, now? A heartfelt thank you to everyone who voted for defender's door. I'm really proud of how this item turned out, but I look forward to seeing the judges - and all of you fine voters - pick it apart.

I guess it's time to finish that map I was sure I'd never need to finish.

By T... thursday. H... ha ha.

Dark Archive

This was a hard item for me. I really liked it, and voted for it numerous times. The wording, however, was a little confusing. You say "The wielder must remain still to maintain the door", which, to me, means they can't take any other actions, even if they stay in their square (so no attacks, spells, etc.). The rest of the text implies that they can do other things, as long as they remain stationary (which I think is the word you were looking for), contradicting "remain still". Because it wasn't clear to me, I had to vote against this a few times.
Beyond that, as I said, I really liked this, and you should be proud to make the Top 32!

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 32 , Star Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9

Congratulations Daron! It's always fun to see people who've been at it for so long finally break through.

There were a lot of items this year that tapped into the dimension door mechanics, so the fact that yours came out on top really speaks to how tight the mechanics work. Having the door be functional for more than one creature certainly opens up a lot more versatility for this item.

Bonus points for being one of the few designers to capitalize on the fact that the spell is "dimension door."

Can't wait to see what you bring to the table in round 2!


1 person marked this as a favorite.

very fun item - as well as the imagery of a heavily armored fighter running around with a wooden door as a shield!
Surprised I haven't seen that one.

Dedicated Voter Season 9

Great item, one of my favorites. I found the name rather amusing as the first use that came to mind were shock troops storming the ramparts with these things.

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2014 Top 16 , Star Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 7, Star Voter Season 8

Congratulations on earning a spot in the Top 32! Here's some thoughts on defender's door.

  • A fun item that can be used both in and out of combat.
  • You pay attention to action economy and set some realistic limits that ensure adventurers can afford this early enough to not be outpaced with other mobility-enhancing options.
  • It puts a fun and fantastic option into the hands of a martial character
  • You managed to stay on point with the theme of the base item without resorting to a predictable power set.
  • This would be great fun in the hands of both villains and heroes.
  • You've taken some care in describing how this item interacts with the environment and is interacted with, but I wonder about the "wielder must remain still to maintain the door" part. Does this mean the wielder cannot attack while maintaining the door? The next part of the sentence indicates that it only restricts movement, but you could probably rephrase this sentence to prevent some GMs from insisting that "still" means "perfectly motionless."

Well done! I look forward to seeing you entries in future rounds.

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

Congratulations Darren on making the Top 32! I love this item and can think of so many options it gives an urban heavy fighter. Mobility, utility, stealth...It's a swat team member's dream come true. Good luck in the map round. Let's see if the voters open the door to round 3 for you.

--Knock, Vrock. Who's there?

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 32 , Star Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9 aka Abandoned Arts

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Thanks for all your feedback, folks.

In retrospect, "remain stationary" would've been a better choice than "remain still." Or maybe even something like "remain adjacent."

If you're stealing defender's door for your home campaign: the wielder can attack and act normally while the item is in 'door form,' as long as he doesn't move from the spot.

(EDIT: In before Oceanshieldwolf tears my item a new keyhole.)

Star Voter Season 9

If you wanted the pure mechanical name you should probably use "remain within reach" to cover different sizes.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 32, RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32 , Dedicated Voter Season 7, Marathon Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9

Congrats on making the Top 32! It's always nice to see some new unique options for sword and board fighter types. Good luck in the rest of the competition.

Grand Lodge Star Voter Season 9

One of my top 5, and in my opinion it has lots of flavour. I keep seeing a intellectually challenged Half Orc running around with an actual door that he has been told is a newly designed Defenders Door and getting irate when it does not work.

Dark Archive RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 32 , Star Voter Season 9

Daron I really like this shield. If I had seen it in the voting I would have given it an up. Designing an interesting bit of "armor" without it being dull or over the top is not an easy thing. You totally killed this one!

Congratulations! It will be an honor competing with you in Round 2.

Marathon Voter Season 9

Congrats!

I have a soft spot in my heart for shields, and this one did not disappoint. Good flavor, with obvious but fun effects. Its kinda hard to believe its taken this long to get a dimension door door I didn't have as much of an issue with "remain still", but agree the proposed solutions make it even better. My only real suggestion is to use a little more of your word count to say how/if the shield still functions as a cover granting shield while people have the "door" open, and potentially add language to allow you to plant the shield in a direction that isn't along a face of your square, as that not a current thing you can do with tower shields, and would allow you to let others use it without having to move through your space. I think a little more can be written about it without bloating it.

Best of luck in all future rounds!

Liberty's Edge Star Voter Season 7, Star Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9

A personal favourite, I voted for it several times. It's useful, evocative, and just plain fun.

Star Voter Season 9

First, congratulations on making the Top 32, Daron! As a GM, the flavor and visuals implied would make this a real fun item to see in play.

However, as a player, I have some mixed feelings on this item. The dimension door effect seems to leave the wielder at a disadvantage.

1) Playing on the name, and using the item to enable the escape of allies, what position does this leave the wielder in? If the wielder must remain stationary, they are unable to travel through, correct? If they can travel through, would the shield be left on the other side, where it was originally planted?
2) Once their shield is being used as a door, if we assume this is a sword-and-board build being a tower shield, doesn't this leave the character temporarily sub-par in their build?

Otherwise, I think this was a great item. Congratulations again on placing Top 32!!!

Sovereign Court Marathon Voter Season 8, Marathon Voter Season 9

First Impression haiku!

Tower shield? Risky!
Oh, it does dimension door...
Okay, this thing's cool!

Voted you up quite a bit. Love the entry overall, form visuals to the effect. Congrats!

Now, show us a great map!

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 32 , Star Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9 aka Abandoned Arts

Thank you for your thoughts and well-wishes, everyone.

Ghormagon wrote:
If the wielder must remain stationary, they are unable to travel through, correct? If they can travel through, would the shield be left on the other side, where it was originally planted?

Hey, Ghormagon. I wanted to answer your questions, on the off chance you (or someone else) would like to use the item at home.

The wielder can certainly pass through the defender's door. Buuut, if he or she does so...

defender's door wrote:
If the wielder closes the door or passes through it, it becomes a shield again.
Ghormagon wrote:
Once their shield is being used as a door, if we assume this is a sword-and-board build being a tower shield, doesn't this leave the character temporarily sub-par in their build?

Do they lose the benefits of the shield, you mean? They absolutely do. Using the dimension door effect leaves the wielder vulnerable (without the benefits of a shield) for as long as he or she holds the door in place.


I will be starting my reviews soon, and they can be bumpy at times, so here's a starter for 10 on Template ...

You almost nailed it!

Weapons and armor have a fixed price part which it looks like you got right in the cost but forgot to add it in to the price.

You also missed the semicolon at the end of the requirements part of the construction section. If you have no ranks part, ending at the end of the spells, you need to close with the sections closing semi-colon.

Yummy, the Fu is going to get fat again!

*munch*

Full review to follow in due course.

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

As promised yesterday, the GB&U this year is courtesy of me rather than GM_solsprial (he is busy drawing furiously). So without further ado, our amazing and awesome top 32+4 get the first set of The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly critiques, and then on to everyone else who requested a critique in the CMI official thread, or in my shiny The GB&U Season 9 thread.

Defender’s Door

The Good: I loved this item, this may be one of the most clever shields I have seen in a while. You not only avoided the traditional shield tropes, but gave us the new and improved portable hole for 2015, the tower shield edition (bonus points for using a tower shield, they get bagged on all to often)

The Bad: Pretty sure I can pull many shananagoats with this items power.

The Ugly: I really wish the wielder of the shield could move and still have the door ability function, I really WANT to punch someone through it, you have no idea!

Grand Lodge Marathon Voter Season 9

1 person marked this as a favorite.

I'm a bit confused by the price. A use activated dimension door is enormously powerful, I would think this would cost 60k at minimum.

RPG Superstar 2014 , Dedicated Voter Season 6, Dedicated Voter Season 7 aka Belladonna Blue

Welcome to the Top 32, Daron! Your submission has overcome the magic item horde and the many culls to emerge at the top of the heap. Congratulations!

I'll be one of the judges for this first round, offering my humble commentary which I hope will be helpful to you moving into Round 2. I will be considering each item based on three factors: functionality (does the item fill a useful niche within the rules?), mojo ("wow" factor--would I point out this item to someone else, or immediately get some cool concept to go with it?), and writing (is the formatting and text clear and error free? Is the prose interesting and evocative?)

Combining these elements successfully is, I feel, key to defining that elusive "Superstar" quality that we all want to see.

So you know what I'm looking for, now let's move on to the good bit: your defender's door!

Functionality and Usefulness
This is a wacky shield.

So this absolutely does something new in the shield niche. Well done.

As a shield, it isn't terribly impressive, but it works because its star ability needs it to be a shield for its size and shape.

As for that ability, it's Hoggle's door from Labyrinth on a tower shield. Sweet.

Being able to strategically dimension door your allies around the battlefield as they hop through the door is pretty fantastic. Being able to turn it into a door to access the other side of any surface is amazing. I wonder what happens if you put the door against a surface where there isn't clear space on the other side? Will the person who goes through take damage and get shunted out, or does it just fail?

I am assuming that the wording "that the wielder can see" means the dimension door location is determined by the wielder, and not the person passing through. I like the tactical implications of that, but I'm not certain it's correct.

I appreciate the wielder has to stay with the shield, and adding verbiage that he must remain within reach is a good idea. Also, the fact that it reverts to a shield and is left behind if the wielder passes through is rough, but it is a defender's door. It makes sense, but I don't know that players will like that part much.

There are quite a few shenanigans that could happen with this. The once per day limit helps, but putting a creature/pound limit of what all can pass through might be wise as well.

The Cool Factor/Mojo
It's a shield! It's a door! It's a dimensiondoorshield!

This is clever (erring a bit towards punny) and useful and opens up some neat strategic possibilities. It's something that does feel like it should exist already, which is always a good indicator on the mojo scale.

You made some smart calls: 1/day limitation, keeping the wielder next to the shield and unable to zip about the battlefield himself, and specifying it becomes a normal shield if he's not there.

It's an item that sets the imagination firing. Some of that imagining is concerned what players might get up to with this if left unsupervised, unfortunately. :) A higher price point and some kind of factor limiting how many people/things can go through the door would help mitigate that.

However--this is, at its most basic level, a SIAC. You put it in a useful and fun can, but I'd like to see your innovation push a little more going forward.

Prose and Editing
Specificity on what the wielder can do while maintaining the door would be good, as well as determining if he's holding it, touching it, standing in reach of it, etc.

This is put together well otherwise, no major issues. It's a good thing it's such a fascinating item, because the description leaves something to be desired.

Overall
You went to a interesting design space and did well with it. You didn't innovate quite as much as I'd like, but you did something rather cool with what already exists. I recommend stepping up on the mojo and work on your prose a little more as you move forward.

I am honored to have been allowed to provide feedback this year. I look forward to your entry for Round 2, Daron, and can't wait to see what kind of clever map you bring to the table.

Congratulations again!

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 32 , Star Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9 aka Abandoned Arts

Thanks, Victoria! (And Jeff, and Template Fu, and Mort, and anyone else who's posted since I last thanked everyone!)

I put a lot of thought and effort into making this entry as concise as possible - browsing the Hall of Fame, this seemed a winning strategy - but I do wish I'd spent a few words more on one or two details (e.g. keeping the wielder stationary, or just within reach, and letting the wielder keep the door after passing through, even if it does end effect and become a shield again).

I also wish I'd second-guessed the too-low price point as a few folks have pointed out, though that's something that an editor could address with a few keystrokes. Still, better that no-one needs to do that.

Even so, I'm heartened to see such positive feedback from Victoria and really from everyone. Thanks again, my fellow humanoids.

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

Okay now that we have a few days before Top 16 reveals I've decided to comment on my competitors work. First, congrats one being a people's choice top 36. To me connecting more directly with the pathfinder community as an audience is even more impressive then clicking for a group of judges.

Way to open doors for yourself as a designer by literally designing one! I liked this shield a lot in part because it brings non-combat utility to a class that typically has none. I'd have like to seen more uses per day but that's just me. Best fo luck with the next round.

Sovereign Court Marathon Voter Season 8, Dedicated Voter Season 9

An interesting and evocative item. I enjoyed this one quite a bit. I can't really think of anything to add that others have not already addressed.

Great Job and Good Luck!

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

Daron Woodson wrote:
Defender’s Door

Congratulations Daron!

I love the Scooby-Doo effect this can create with people entering one door and exiting another. I felt it was a little too gamey in that it makes adventuring safe. This not only allows one to ignore a rooms hazards, but said person can ignore too many doors/traps. Dim-door for a whole party can go pretty far too. I think the designer comes out in the limits that are in place, (single location, once/day and especially it ending after the wielder goes through.

Well done, good luck in maps.

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

Daron Woodson wrote:
Defender’s Door

Congratulations for making it into the Top 32!

Seeing as that's how I had to start this, you're already a potential "Superstar" so keep that in mind!

That out of the way, I'm going to treat your item the same as if I saw it in the Critique My Item Thread, which means I'll be using the following comments, and assuming you're submitting this item as your "sample" for an Open Call to Fat Goblin Game's Call to Arms book line.

Feel free to disagree with me and DEFEND YOUR CHOICES!

Revision Needed — Now you're playing with Portals! That's not a compliment :P Every year, people try to take advantage of portal-items, and every year there are people that point out the numerous problems with them. Your own is kind of basic, and I would argue this is the definition of a spell-in-a-can, though your "can" is a shield that is underwhelming alone. As a once-per-day effect, and a fairly boring shield, this is perfect way to give my fighter type character dimension door. Also, some of the mechanical write up is tricky, as for instance, having the wielder "remain still" should inherently preclude anything like walking through it themselves. Also, this thing is way better than the normal spell as I could open it and march an army through it, instead of needing to recast, etc. over and over again... and being just a line of sight, not effect, has added trickiness.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 32 , Star Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9 aka Abandoned Arts

Thanks, Lucas. Sorry you didn't like defender's door more.

Unrelated fun fact: Abandoned Arts is actually an imprint of Fat Goblin Games, these days.

Dedicated Voter Season 8, Dedicated Voter Season 9

I think this was my favorite shield, some of the wording could be tidied up, but there isn't anything major that I would want to change.

RPG Superstar 2009, RPG Superstar Judgernaut, Contributor

Daron! Welcome..to the Top 32!

As one of the judges who'll be along for the entire ride of the competition, it's my duty (and pleasure) to offer up some commentary on your winning submission, as well as a bit of advice for the challenges to come. First up...your item...the defender's door...

Okay. The name fits, but I'm annoyed that we don't call it out as a shield. Of course, that loses the alliteration, and a shield-defender's door might not have the same ring to it.

Mojo. Big-time mojo to have a tower shield act as a door that lets you travel around the battlefield.

Cinematic. Great visuals on how this item does its thing.

Usefulness. A bit too useful for the price considering a bazillion people can pass through it as long as the wielder stays near it. There should be a limit on how long this thing stays open or how many people it can transport during its 1/day use. Otherwise, you could dimension door an entire city from the castle wall across the moat to escape all your enemies storming the inner bailey.

Mechanics. I was looking for a range on the dimension door effect, but all I see is within visual range of the wielder. If placed on a wall, the text says it creates a doorway through to the other side (like passwall?), but it also says as long as there's an open space "within range." Unless the user can see through walls, I'm not sure what that means. Lastly, I think the price is off on this shield. The group dimension door is potent despite the 1/day limitation. And the base shield's cost should already be using up a lot of the total cost before the latter ability gets layered on.

Polish. Pretty tight. Not a lot to quibble over.

Other than that, this item got you into the Top 32 with a unique ability but the possibility for abuse. Regardless, now it's all about seeing what you've got for us in Round 2.

My two cents,
--Neil

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 32 , Star Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9 aka Abandoned Arts

*grasps Neil by the lapels*

JUST TELL ME HOW TO WIN RPG SUPERSTAR.

Ha ha. Just kidding. Ha. Right, so. The range on the dimension door effect produced by defender's door is based on the caster level of the shield.

the Core Rulebook; Magic Items wrote:
Caster Level (CL): The next item in a notational entry gives the caster level of the item, indicating its relative power. The caster level determines the item's saving throw bonus, as well as range or other level-dependent aspects of the powers of the item (if variable). It also determines the level that must be contended with should the item come under the effect of a dispel magic spell or similar situation.

It is pretty abuse-able in terms of passing armies through it (and the cost definitely is much too low), but since PCs don't tend to have armies, I elected to keep the word count tight for the purposes of RPG Superstar submission. Would I have submitted a longer, loophole-free version if I were submitting an item to my editor instead of to the Superstar voters?

Well, yes. It's just that none of last year's 32 really even approached as many as 250 words, and most were much shorter.

Still, in hindsight, "Defender's door magically shuts after 1 minute if not closed before then" wouldn't have eaten up too much space.

In any case, thanks for your observations! I am relieved to see that you liked the item, overall. You can be a pretty tough judge!

EDIT: And thanks again to everyone else for taking the time to share your thoughts and encouragement!

Also:

Curaigh wrote:
I love the Scooby-Doo effect this can create with people entering one door and exiting another.

This made my significant other giggle.

RPG Superstar 2009, RPG Superstar Judgernaut, Contributor

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Daron Woodson wrote:

*grasps Neil by the lapels*

JUST TELL ME HOW TO WIN RPG SUPERSTAR.

The way to win is:

Spoiler:

EXPLOSIVE RUNES!!!

RPG Superstar 2009, RPG Superstar Judgernaut, Contributor

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Neil Spicer wrote:
Daron Woodson wrote:

*grasps Neil by the lapels*

JUST TELL ME HOW TO WIN RPG SUPERSTAR.

The way to win is:

** spoiler omitted **

Actually, the real way to win is:

Spoiler:

...to find your own way to win, and be awesome while doing so.

It's in the doing that you discover how to win. No one can really tell you what it takes. There's no silver bullet for it. It varies from individual to individual. And, ultimately, the real "win" that you take from RPG Superstar is what it enables you to go on to do. That's why I always say, it's far more important what you do after the competition than just what you achieve during it.

Paizo Employee Assistant Developer , Star Voter Season 6

Hello, Daron, and welcome to the Top 32!

I'll be a judge for this round, and I'm honored and pleased to offer feedback on your defender's door. I hope this feedback provides some helpful insight to you as you move forward in the competition.

As an assistant developer at Paizo, I'll offer you three levels of commentary that approximate the development process: some first impressions, a deeper look, and some measured feedback.

So, let's get started!

First impressions: It's a shield! From the name, I was not expecting that at all. I was thinking ... aiudara-themed wondrous item? Surely at least some kind of slotless wondrous item? Seeing this name in a table with no context would have stumped me. Take care going forward to include an indication of what your designs actually are in their names.

Deeper look: That said, the item's theme and mechanics are very creative. I love the different ways that you play with the theme of a doorway, both in a literal sense and from a teleportation standpoint. You've got to put a limit on how long the dimension door lasts, though. That was likely just an oversight, but it's important to call that out, both to answer the obvious question and to avoid abuse of the item. The price is also quite low, and the term "open location" is way too vague for a mechanic that's so important to the item.

Measured feedback: You've created a great, multi-layered concept here and, broadly speaking, it achieves its intent pretty well. There are some rough edges that need cleaned up, though, beyond just a little imprecision. Going forward, it's important to pay as much attention to exactly how the words you're writing accomplish your design ideas; if you think a phrase is a little vague and might cause confusion, you're right. If you plug those holes as best you can, and if you keep coming up with such creative and nuanced ideas, you'll do really well going forward.

That said, thanks for reading, and best of luck in the contest!

Marathon Voter Season 6, Dedicated Voter Season 7, Marathon Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9 aka Clouds Without Water

I confess I didn't vote for this one. I kept getting stuck on a fighter running around with a door strapped on his arm, and it seemed too whimsical. And I thought it was very spell-in-a-can when it came down to it.

However, I can also see that what I didn't like does have an appeal. The whimsy and the basicness of it can feel like something out of a fable, or Harry Potter. If I move my head just a bit to one side, I can see it that way too.

Well done!

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 32 , Star Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9 aka thornnm

Daron, congratulations on making it through the first round! This was a really interesting item, and while it didn't get my vote every time I still thought it was quite cool.

Good luck in the rest of the competition!

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 32 , Star Voter Season 6, Star Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9 aka Abandoned Arts

Thanks, Amanda! (And R.D.! And John!)

Now I almost wish I'd tied this item to the aiudara, though I'm not sure it'd have made top 32 without the door imagery.

I really struggled with the name quite a bit - there just didn't seem an elegant way to say "shield" and "door" in a way that was concise or alliterative. Shield of egress, maybe?

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