Daylight Diadem


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

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

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Daylight Diadem
Aura moderate evocation; CL 9th
Slot head; Price 50,000 gp; Weight 1 lbs
Description
Four sunstone-embedded sunflowers adorn this golden diadem. When channeling positive energy, the wearer may activate the diadem by removing a flower (a move action) to augment her ability. Channels augmented in this way have their ranged extended to 60 feet. The removed flower is consumed upon use.

The wearer may use the full brilliance of the daylight diadem in a single burst. With a command word, any remaining flowers radiate a bright light in a radius of 60 feet that counters or dispels any darkness spell of 4th level or lower and is treated as natural sunlight for 4 rounds. While within the area of this light, attacks from weapons with metal striking surfaces are treated as good-aligned (bypassing the corresponding damage reduction) and ignite with divine flames dealing an additional 1d6 points of damage per flower. Half the additional damage is fire damage, but the other half results directly from divine power and is therefore not subject to being reduced by resistance to fire-based attacks. The divine flames only deal damage to creatures of evil alignment. After the four rounds have passed, all flowers on the crown burn away to ashes.

Once all four flowers have been used, the crown can no longer be activated; however, every 24 hours spent in natural sunlight allows a new flower to bloom (up to a maximum of four flowers).

Construction
Requirements Craft Wondrous Item, daylight, flame strike; Cost 25,000 gp

Marathon Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9

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I like how this item would work very nicely for a Sarenrite cleric, but its not FOR a Sarenrite cleric. The imagery is also quite lovely. Well done on making it to the Top 32!

Star Voter Season 8, Marathon Voter Season 9

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I adored this item. It had a unique theme and an excellent example of "charges without charges" item. You also used "diadem", a personal favorite word of mine, so that helped when it came to my vote haha
Seriously good work and I look forward to seeing what you do next.

Dark Archive

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I only saw this item once during the voting, but it stood out and I remembered it clearly; I like the various ways you can use this. Congratulations!

Marathon Voter Season 9 aka Janvs

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I loved the mechanics and imagery of this item! I normally don't vote for anything this expensive, but the cost is justified and it's such a cool item. Well done.

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

Thank you everyone! Got delayed between the excitement and then the realization that I had some reports to finish at work before I leave today.

I hope to bring forth more creative and well-made submissions!


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Very evocatice!
Havent't seen this one, but it earned the place for sure.

Sovereign Court Marathon Voter Season 8, Marathon Voter Season 9

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Mister Donald Robinson,

I just want to immediately and openly apologize for originally telling you not to submit this item. (Then again that was it in its early stages) You did a fantastic job of polishing this item, and I am pleased as punch to see you have made it here. Congratulations!

Now, show us a great map!

Scarab Sages

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So glad you stuck with this idea. Great job!

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

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Congratulations, Donald!

It's really tough to pull off an item that has a class in mind, but is still accessible to numerous types of players. Despite the cleric focus, this item can easily benefit parties with or without a divine caster, so hats off to you (or diadems, in this case). The flavorful recharge mechanic and ability to benefit the whole party just strengthen an already impressive entry.

Can't wait to see what kind of insight strikes you in round 2!

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

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While preparing for bed, i forgot some important thank yous.

Would like to thank my friends and wife for their encouragement. Also, big thank you for the people like Brigg and others that pointed out all the flaws with my design and asked that I submit one of my other ideas. The tough critiques really set me straight on how to make this item shine. Pun some what intended.

(I'll send personal thank you emails/pms once time permits).

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

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Didn't see this during voting.

This seems a tiny bit situational, but that's offset by being powerful in those situations where it's useful. Enough so that it would likely be a commonly purchased item in many games. That's a pretty good balance to strike.

The recharge mechanism prompts me to ask - 24 hours of actual sunlight? Would exposure to the sky at night count? Normally I'd say yes, but given what this item is doing, that doesn't feel right. Feels like it needs to be actual sunlight. Maybe change that to 12 hours and solve that nitpick.

Star Voter Season 9

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Congratulations on making it to the Top 32. I like the charges without using the word charges mechanic, however while the recharging mechanism is flavourful, it seems like it's going to result in a lot of arguments with some groups (do you need direct sunlight? What about on cloudy days? Why can't this item be used when traveling through the Darklands?).

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

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I like this item a lot. Having to remove the flowers to activate and recharging only in natural sunlight really adds to the flavor. Congrats on making it into the Top 32 and good luck in the next round!

Grand Lodge RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 32 , Star Voter Season 7, Dedicated Voter Season 8, Star Voter Season 9 aka Snowblossom

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This was another one of my favorites and I upvoted it every time I saw it pop up. In fact, I believe I may have squealed with delight every time, as well. I would love to use this in a home game. Congratulations!

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Donald Robinson wrote:

Daylight Diadem

Aura moderate evocation; CL 9th
Slot head; Price 50,000 gp; Weight 1 lbs
Description
Four sunstone-embedded sunflowers adorn this golden diadem. When channeling positive energy, the wearer may activate the diadem by removing a flower (a move action) to augment her ability. Channels augmented in this way have their ranged extended to 60 feet. The removed flower is consumed upon use.

The wearer may use the full brilliance of the daylight diadem in a single burst. With a command word, any remaining flowers radiate a bright light in a radius of 60 feet that counters or dispels any darkness spell of 4th level or lower and is treated as natural sunlight for 4 rounds. While within the area of this light, attacks from weapons with metal striking surfaces are treated as good-aligned (bypassing the corresponding damage reduction) and ignite with divine flames dealing an additional 1d6 points of damage per flower. Half the additional damage is fire damage, but the other half results directly from divine power and is therefore not subject to being reduced by resistance to fire-based attacks. The divine flames only deal damage to creatures of evil alignment. After the four rounds have passed, all flowers on the crown burn away to ashes.

Once all four flowers have been used, the crown can no longer be activated; however, every 24 hours spent in natural sunlight allows a new flower to bloom (up to a maximum of four flowers).

Construction
Requirements Craft Wondrous Item, daylight, flame strike; Cost 25,000 gp

That's 2-3 days to recharge each flower. Is that what's intended? If it was once a day, I'd rephrase it as such. The diadem regains one flower each time it's exposed to the dawning sun.

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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Congrats, Donald. I liked this item. That said, I find the "any remaining" mechanic a tricky one; it means I get the same use of it if I use up one flower as if I use up all four. I feel like that almost encourages me to not bother fully recharging it ever (though the 60' range on channel is nice, and I could see someone using that more than the big burst ability).

Looking forward to seeing what you can do in Round 2.

Marathon Voter Season 9

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Congrats on making the Top 32!

I like this item a lot. I like channel energy as a tactic, and this is a wonderful item to have. Each aspect of it feels well crafted, to the all at once burst, to the slow recharge time requiring natural sunlight. It all really comes together. The only thing that I wasn't sold on was the price, as for that amount of money it competes with some other great items in its slot. Still, a real forerunner in the competition for me. I really look forward to seeing your map.

Best of luck in all future rounds!


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

You nailed it - ack! no, you didnt, I spotted it - you almost got away with it...

lbs. is plural but you have only one. There can be only 1 lb. when this weight is used. Oh, and the dot was missing too!

*perking up, Fu snatches a victorius snack from this entrant's plate*

*munch*

Full review to follow in due course.

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

Template Fu wrote:

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

You nailed it - ack! no, you didnt, I spotted it - you almost got away with it...

lbs. is plural but you have only one. There can be only 1 lb. when this weight is used. Oh, and the dot was missing too!

*perking up, Fu snatches a victorius snack from this entrant's plate*

*munch*

Full review to follow in due course.

Doh >.< I knew I forgot something(s) when I dropped it from 2 lbs.

Thank you everyone for your comments and encouragement. I can't remember if it is bad form to answer questions on these. So, in order to prevent hurting my chances of progressing, I will be refraining from giving answers about the design (flaws, plans, etc). Again, thank you all for dropping in with critiques and comments. All of them are appreciated. :)

Hope you guys enjoy my map and vote for me in the next round! Thank you!

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

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Welcome to the Top 32, Donald! 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 daylight diadem!

Functionality and Usefulness
I can see why some see this as niche. My games always seem to involve a ton of demons and undead, making this an item that would see use all the time. In some games, though, it might hardly see use.

It works at its full potential for classes with channel energy, but is still of interest for other classes for its daylight blast effect. That kind of versatility is good, and I appreciate when items have a slight slant towards a particular class type.

There are a lot of blaster type wondrous items already and this looks like it could've gone that way. I'm glad you went in a different direction with this. The call to make it generate an aura that enchants weapons in the area is a good one. The darkness dispel and natural light aura have some additional strategic uses in specific situations, too, but are not what the item hinges on.

I think there's always room for good buff items, especially in a slot that doesn't usually lend itself to providing party buffs. But a sunstone-embedded diadem that can radiate a light to buff weapons caught in the radiance is something I see working.

I do have a couple of qualms that impact its usability: There are four flowers and the radiance burst effect has numeric values based in fours. It seems obvious for those values to scale based on how many flowers are remaining, but they explicitly don't. As it consumes the remaining flowers, it'd be silly to do the blast with it full up. Better not to use it until it's down to one since it doesn't change the values. It's an odd decision as it seems contrary to the way it's written.

The recharge mechanic is lovely, but begs arguments: does it need 24 hours of continuous sunlight? Does it need 2-3 days to recharge a flower? What exactly constitutes natural sunlight? Would a daylight spell count? Ambiguity could be cleared up by giving it an 8-12 hour recharge as long as it receives at least one hour of direct sunlight or of a daylight or stronger spell. This allows the diadem to be recharged even in subterranean environments (which is where I feel it's utility would be strongest; drow would hate this thing).

You specify the divine flames only damage evil creatures. I assume you mean the divine half of the damage is what only damages evil creatures, but the phrasing makes it seem the weapon enhancement only works against evil creatures. That would be something to clarify.

The Cool Factor/Mojo
It's kind of a hippie flower power crown. There's a magic item market for these vaguely Disney princess-y kind of items, though, and this one packs a spectacular punch with needing to do a single point of direct damage. I like it, I don't know that it grabs me much, but I can see its appeal.

The extra 1d6 of damage on metal weapons doesn't seem like much, but spread across a whole group, it can add up. Yet it's not overpowering and, in fact, feels really well-balanced. Being able to offset a cool idea with the right mechanics to keep it reined in enough takes wisdom and restraint and you display both.

While the overall design shows skill, I'm not certain I feel the overall concept took the most creative approach. To me, your best innovations were the flower charge mechanic and turning this into an aura weapons buff from the head slot. The darkness dispel, natural light aura, and giving the weapons divine fire are all somewhat obvious choices for the theme. It's still cool and I see the mojo at work here, I just think the theme could have taken a slightly different direction and remained cohesive while going out of the box a bit.

Prose and Editing
Borrowing the text from flamestrike is good to avoid reinventing the wheel with the rules language, but it does basically mean the weapons have mini-flamestrikes on them. Which is cool and effective, but a bit expected within the design.

For the most part, this is written well other than the aforementioned ambiguities in the text. Template Fu already caught you on the Weight. ;)

Saying "metal striking surfaces" is an awkward way to indicate only metal weapons are affected. Just say metal weapons. Off the top of my head, I can't even think of a weapon that has metal components that aren't part of the striking surface.

The description is simple, but enough.

Overall
You made a really useful item and did take a few unexpected turns with it. That keeps me interested. You have a pretty strong grasp on how to balance out an item. The diadem is really expensive but I think it works--sunlight and good-aligned/fiery weapons aren't going to spontaneously drop out of usefulness. It does have a niche as it's not an all-purpose kind of item, but within that niche, it serves well.

Be cautious about ambiguities in your mechanics and in going for expected choices to tie together your theme. It's a balance, because you don't want to contradict it, either, but it's a place to try to stretch a little.

I am honored to have been allowed to provide feedback this year. I look forward to your entry for Round 2, Donald, and I'm sure I'll see a map with the same thoughtful consideration and evocative usefulness you displayed here.

Congratulations again!

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

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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.

Daylight Diadem

The Good: Interesting take on sunflowers as a theme, it is nice to see a light/sun related item in circlet form without being a helm of brilliance knock off.

The Bad: The darkness spell dispelling power is limited in use to some degree.

The Ugly: As per the daylight spell, it does not affect creatures vulnerable to damage or death from bright light as sunlight normally does. Granting that effect here (unless I am reading the natural sunlight bit incorrectly) increases the power of the item quite a bit.

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

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Donald Robinson wrote:
Daylight Diadem

Congratulations Donald!

I found a number of mechanical issues in this while voting, but it still got upvotes quite often from me. For example in the secondary ability one remaining flower offers the same range & weapon alignment as four flowers, and either way affects your opponent's weapons as much as your allies. Tighter writing will hopefully be all that is needed. The image and the ability itself is quite interesting; flame strike is nearly unique in that divine damage and it is cool to see it get some use. Nice job. :)

Good luck in the maps!

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 32 , Star Voter Season 9 aka LightSprite

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I liked the visual on this one, it really stuck with me. Congrats on getting into the top 32!

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

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Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Pathfinder Accessories, Rulebook Subscriber

One of the items I saw thanks to the workshopping. And the only one of those I did not see while voting.

Wow, you did a complete overhaul from the version I saw and went for something far more effective IMO. Very well done :-)

And I still think that your other item (you know the one I think) was even more full of mojo ;-)

Go astound us all with your map skills now :-)

Sovereign Court Marathon Voter Season 8, Marathon Voter Season 9

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Dayight Diadem haiku (First impression seeing it in voting.)

Flower adorned crown
pushes the evil guys back!
Much better than first!

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

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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.

I'll admit I twitch downvoted this a few time before re-reading it. The name is the cause as I've seen more then a few light themed circlets over the past few years of voting an they generally suck. This did not suck at all and I upvoted it a bunch once I reread it. Good job and good luck.

Sovereign Court Marathon Voter Season 8, Dedicated Voter Season 9

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Voted for this several times, but in my voting it wasn't generally against some of the other great items out there.

Solid useful item, Love the sunflower theme.

The 24 hrs of sunlight I think would have most people thinking this will take multiple days to recharge each flower (not sure if this is intentional or not). I like LazarX's suggestion that one flower is recharged when exposed to the dawning sun.

Congrats and Good Luck!

RPG Superstar 2009, RPG Superstar Judgernaut, Contributor

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Donald! 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 daylight diadem...

Okay. The name achieves the desired effect of telling us what the item is, and includes a few hints towards the nature of its power--the power of daylight. I like it.

Mojo. This thing extends the reach of your positive energy channeling ability, and it can superheat your allies weapons to put the beat down on evil, sun-fearing creatures. And then it's got the interesting regrow your charges. Pretty nifty, out-of-the-box thinking.

Cinematic. I can see this causing a ton of turmoil in the Darklands or any vampire lair. 'Nuff said.

Usefulness. Pretty potent, as-written. Especially against evil creatures and those which suffer penalties (or death) in natural sunlight conditions. It's got utility, offensive enhancing effects, and some defensive capabilities, too, to guard against darkness effects. Nice.

Mechanics. The language stumbles a bit in some areas when trying to describe the innovative regrowth of the sunflowers. And the potency of the divine flames is pretty major considering it gets applied to all metal weapons within 60 feet for 4 rounds. At 50,000 gp, that's certainly a cost offset, but imagine all the swords within 60 feet your could turn into scalding brands against evil creatures. Take this into the Worldwound and the crusades should be wrapped up in short order as the knights of Sarenrae and Iomedae put the smack down on the demon horde big-time. To dial this back a bit, and turn it to a slightly less potent (but still thematically-appropriate) effect, I'd suggest trading out the divine flames for a bit of a heat metal. Then, use the same mechanic within that spell to determine the extra superheated damage the sun's rays from the daylight diadem grant all those weapons. At least that way, it's a static, diminishing amount over more than 4 rounds rather than multiple dice of damage. Still, keep the divine nature of it, so fire resistance can't hold out against it, and should be square.

Polished. Template use looks pretty good. You did your homework and made sure you polished it all up as professionally as you could.

Other than that, this item has a neat concept. Instead of dealing direct damage to foes, it grants the ability to do extra damage to other weapons in the area of effect. And, it's got some great utility for always have the daylight on the side of good. Keep bringing the mojo and you should do well. So, congratulations once more and I wish you good luck with your map in Round 2.

My two cents,
--Neil

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

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Donald Robinson wrote:
Daylight Diadem

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!

Superstar — I remember seeing this item during voting and thinking "well this very well might be in the Top 32," and here you are. Well done. I wish that it mattered more how many flowers I had left, but the added +1d6 etc. isn't bad. It very much seems like a specific use item though, something I might have an NPC carrying all along and then BOOM time to fight the vampire/demons/shadows and need to win handily.

Marathon Voter Season 8, Marathon Voter Season 9

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Pathfinder Starfinder Society Subscriber

Congrats on making it into the top 32!

I really like the visuals your item has, especially the aspects on it which are underused (the term diadem, sunstones, sunflowers) and the consumption of the sunflowers to utilize its powers. I like that they regrow, but agree the wording it sticky here (one regrows each day? every few days? does the spell daylight count? etc.)

The abilities you chose were unexpected and I loved it. Augmenting the channeling was cool, but not overpowered, and the second ability was even better. I love that you chose to enchant other weapons with the diadem instead of dealing fire damage directly or something (although this probably should function for a number of rounds equal to the number of flowers burned to activate it instead of always 4 rounds).

Great job, and good luck in the next round!

Paizo Employee Assistant Developer , Star Voter Season 6

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Hello, Donald, 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 daylight diadem. 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: Strong, cinematic visuals and a tight theme -- the righteous power of daylight against evil -- are carrying this item a long way. I could see a cleric of Sarenrae salivating over this diadem, which feels like it's coming straight out of the Wrath of the Righteous AP. That's some great stuff right there.

Deeper look: Mechanically, this diadem has quite a bit going on, and I think that's where the design stumbles. The amount of bookkeeping here is higher than I'd like to see in an item with heavy combat usability; and the recharge mechanic, while nice in that it prevents the crown from becoming a consumable, is pretty unclear as written.

Measured feedback: Don't get me wrong -- this diadem accomplishes quite a bit, and its concept and intention is quite lovely. I really like that its divine flames only damage evil creatures, for instance. In the future, I'd advise you to focus on simplifying your mechanics into designs that are as streamlined as they are thematic.

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

Dedicated Voter Season 8, Dedicated Voter Season 9

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Jacob W. Michaels wrote:

Congrats, Donald. I liked this item. That said, I find the "any remaining" mechanic a tricky one; it means I get the same use of it if I use up one flower as if I use up all four. I feel like that almost encourages me to not bother fully recharging it ever (though the 60' range on channel is nice, and I could see someone using that more than the big burst ability).

Looking forward to seeing what you can do in Round 2.

I think Jacob said exactly what I would have.

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

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Good job on earning your spot in this year’s Top 32, Donald. I’m here with some thoughts on your item, the daylight diadem.

  • Alliteration is fun, and awesome, when used well. You have used it well in this case.
  • Including a major and minor use for the flowers was a good idea. The wearer can play it safe if that fits their playstyle, or burn all the flowers going all-out. Items that require resource management that aren’t one-use are fun.
  • Wonderful recharge mechanic, even if it does need to be a little more defined.
  • I would have to work pretty hard to give an antagonist this item. I generally prefer items to be more GM friendly. Player-only items just tend to make the game easier for them and less fun for the GM. Be wary of that trap going forward.
  • That said, this could work well as a quest item, or something found on a good NPC’s corpse.
  • It’s a flavor-rich treasure, no doubt, and if anything’s going to make the game easier for the PCs, I would like it to be done with exactly this kind of flair.
A sense for the theatric will serve you well in future rounds, just as a sense for the rules will. This item gives some good, flavorful options, and remains useful to more than one class. Good work! Let’s see what you do in the next round!

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

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Congratulations Donald!

I loved this item! While I can see where people are coming from on a mechanical standpoint, I voted for this every time.

Good luck in the rest of the competition!

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