Critique My Item Please!

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

I'm about 1/2 way done with them critiques. I'm on Page 4.

The Fluttering Sphere is next. If your looking for more feedback on your items.

You can find the thread here. Not like it's that hard to find, I update it every once in a while.

Sovereign Court

I am late to the Critique, but any feedback is welcomed. Thanks.

Tankard of the goblin king
Aura moderate conjuration, enchantment, and transmutation; CL 10th
Slot none; Price 39,600 gp; Weight 1 lb.
Once per day when water is poured into this battered and unremarkable metal tankard, the liquid magically transforms into a thick stout with an ever-changing seasonal berry aftertaste. This stout contains everything necessary to sustain any herbivorous, omnivorous, or carnivorous creature for one day without further food or water. Also, anytime in the next 24 hours if the drinker falls below 0 hit points, he is healed 2d4 hit points as an immediate action. In addition to its nourishing affects, the beverage causes two annoying, catchy pub songs to be stuck in the drinker’s mind until sung. When the first song is sung or spoken, six creatures in a 40 foot radius begin singing the song at the top of their lungs and grab the nearest consumable liquid and drink. This effect last for 6 rounds and on the creature's next turn, it may attempt a new saving throw as a full round action to end the effect. The subjects can take only one move action while singing and drinking. The effects are negated with a DC 14 will save but the song annoyingly repeats in their head(s) all day. By singing or speaking the cheerful yet haunting second song, 2d4+1 Burning Goblin Skeletons are summoned to serve the consumer of the stout for 10 rounds. Each song may only be used once per day do create the listed effect but can be sung whenever the mood strikes the owner of the tankard.
Requirements Craft Wondrous Item, summon monster V, hideous laughter, goodberry, creator must have a charisma score of 16 or higher; Cost 19,800 gp

Marathon Voter Season 9

Tankard of the Goblin King
Odd, I don't remember that one at all.

Thank you for doing a drinking item that doesn't involve Cayden Cailean.

Even if it's a Goblin King, I'd expect it to be more than just a boring old tankard like any other. You could have done much, much more with that to make it fun. Cobbled together from pieces of jewellery with a handle of gold and silver rings, rubies, emeralds and ivory making a little goblin face on one side. Effects are of course a major part, but your description is something that people will still judge you on, and there are lots of battered and unremarkable items.

Could probably cut down on word count by just saying that the stout sustains any creature for a day without needing further food or drink; herbivorous, omnivorous or carnivorous is more or less everything.

I don't know what I think about the healing bit. I think it should be an immediate heal rather than taking an action to do it and it's a weak heal for the price. I'm not sure if you should scrap it or improve it, but I'd lean towards scrapping it. It doesn't especially suit your theme.

The songs are certainly very gobliny, and I think that's sort of cool. You haven't explained what the side effects of having the annoying songs stuck in your head are though, or made it clear that there are none.

From the sounds of it, song one can just bounce around perpetually. And it's a... standard action to sing it? I'm not sure, you don't really say.

While the second song is cool... why? It doesn't seem to have much in common with the theme, other than the goblins.

James Domachowski wrote:

I am late to the Critique, but any feedback is welcomed. Thanks.

Tankard of the goblin king
Aura moderate conjuration, enchantment, and transmutation; CL 10th
Slot none; Price 39,600 gp; Weight 1 lb.
Once per day when water is poured into this battered and unremarkable metal tankard,...

Here are my thoughts starting with the template stuff...

- although the layout is the template the bold and italics let you down.

- spells are listed alphabetically on every item in the core book, so goodberry should have been listed before hideous laughter.

- aura to spell mismatch - goodberry is transmutation, hideous laughter is enchantment, both are level 1 or 2 spells depending on caster, so we have two faint auras so the aura should have been faint enchantment and transmutation

- there is no spell listed that explains the conjuration aura so you might have considered adding a summoning spell to the construction.

Spells in magical items should be bent in unusual ways as magical items can also be described as "exceptions to the rules" - monster summoning spells do not give goblin skeletons, so it would fit nicely to add monster summoning I or II as a spell choice which then completes the synergy between the item effects and the spells used in its construction.

- wall of words - we have to vote on items, so items that have their powers start new paragraphs are so much easier to read and scan, so I think the wall-ness hit you hard in the voting

- order or powers - as voting fatigue sets in (and it does), those items who put their most exciting power first tend to have higher vote sustainability. Sustenance isn't exciting, but the song stuff is more fun.

- I personally would have lost the healing and sustenance completely and concentrated on the central and more exciting song power / skeleton summoning.

- It feels like this item tries to do just a little too much in one item for me - I wouldn't call it swiss army knife, but it's very close to being one.

Grand Lodge Star Voter Season 9

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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

Ok. I know I'm late to the critique thread, but here's what I've got. This is the latest edit of the item I submitted, that didn't even survive the first cull, and I'd like to know why.

Aura Faint Enchantment and Transmutation;CL 5th
Slot none; Price 10,310 gp; Weight 8 lbs.

This +1 Boar Spear's tarnished blade features a blood red sash fastened to its crossguard. Hidesplitter's steel blade is specially attuned to slaying woodland terrors and is considered both silver and cold iron.

Upon striking, the wielder may choose to embed Hidesplitter as a swift action, applying a -5 penalty to damage reduction or natural armor bonus to the target struck. This penalty can never reduce a creature's natural armor bonus or damage reduction below 0. This ability has no effect on creatures whose damage reduction is not overcome by Hidesplitter itself.

While Hidesplitter remains embedded, the target may not take a 5ft step and may only move with a successful drag maneuver against the wielder. Attempting this maneuver does not provoke attacks of opportunity, though any subsequent movement provokes as normal. Hidesplitter's wielder may release the weapon as an immediate action, avoiding this drag maneuver, though Hidesplitter remains embedded.

Creatures can remove Hidesplitter from themselves by succeeding a DC 10 strength check as a standard action that provokes attacks of opportunity. Hidesplitter's wielder may remove it without a strength check as an swift action that does not provoke attacks of opportunity.

While embedded, Hidesplitter can not be used to make attacks, but provides a +2 shield bonus to your AC against the effected creature, as if it had been used successfully against a readied charge.

Craft Magical Arms and Armor, hold person, versatile weapon ; Cost 5310 gp


Marathon Voter Season 9

Based on what you have there, I have no idea why that was knocked out as early as it was. There's nothing obviously wrong with that at all and nothing around to disqualify it that I can see.

I quite like this. The abilities work well on a boar spear particularly.

Reducing natural armour or DR by 5 is plenty, very appealing and quite suitable for the flavour. I'm assuming you get to pick when you do it, but you might want to clarify that. Likewise it's not clear if you can reduce natural armour of creatures that don't have DR (they don't have DR to overcome, so can you embed it properly or not?). Reducing natural armour is, in my inexpert opinion, better, so maybe making it closer to a -3 penalty or something?

I know what you're getting at with the movement prevention, and that honestly feels like it should be more part of the actual boar spear thing. It's quite strong as it is. I would probably reduce it to the entangled condition, and removable as if you'd used a Dirty Trick to inflict it (which also rewards martials who invest in this).

Personally, I would prefer this as a +3 weapon rather than counting as both silver and cold iron. Alternatively, giving it an adamantine head might suit thematically.

The shield bonus is a clever extrapolation from the basic ability of the boar spear.

All up, I would have expected to see this into at least the fourth cull, and likely in the top 100. I'm as surprised as you are that it didn't get futher.

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

1 person marked this as a favorite.

I agree with Wolin. I think you had a neat core idea, though I would quibble with some of the particulars, but I'm surprised as to why it would be culled so early

If I had to guess, though, the amount you let it reduce a creature's AC/DR (and not making it clear which was reduced), especially for the cost, was a major factor. I think it was still better than other items eliminated in the first cull, but I wouldn't have been able to vote for it too deeply into the voting. For 10,000 gp, you're basically letting a creature almost every fight have its AC reduced by 5 -- or in effect giving everyone in the party a +5 to hit that stacks with their own buffs (or a +5 to damage for every hit if you reduce the DR). That's hugely powerful, and the downside -- effectively losing the weapon -- are minor enough that people aren't going to care for the benefits.

Some other thoughts:
You've got a number of formatting issues -- the aura should be lowercase; you need a space before the CL; magic items should be lowercase (+1 boar spear, hidesplitter), you've got a space before your final semicolon; the cost should be bold; and you need a comma in the cost; 5ft step should be 5-foot step; attributes (i.e. Strength) should be capitalized...

Focus on making the core item more visually exciting -- this is basically a plain boar spear, and it seems odd that every one would have a red sash tied to it (does it lose its powers sans sash? It can't have a blue sash?). This is where you can really show your writing ability, so make it visually distinctive.

I agree with Wolin that the item counting as silver and cold iron feels a bit much, and it starts to feel a bit SAK -- just let the core power of the item be great and don't worry as much about ancillary aspects.

Dedicated Voter Season 9

I like the core idea; a hunting spear fashioned against fey creatures. That the wielder only reduces one of AC or DR seems clear enough to me in the text, however I think it's a misstep. Themes tend to remain very tight and simple in top 32 items; since you start with a spear which bypasses DR, I would have continued focusing on that.

If it counts as silver and cold iron for the purposes of overcoming DR, then while embedded in creatures it should make attacks against those creatures also count as silver and cold iron -- leave numbers completely out of it.

The secondary effect would have been much cleaner if you had simply reused the grapple mechanic, currently it reads like a very messily reconstructed hamatula strike.

As written, I would have voted on it through the third cull -- without seeing the original I can't comment why it was culled so early; given the formatting errors discussed above I would think some minor issue caused a DQ.

Past that I'd have several issues; the item does very little which is unique or interesting, the item is pidgeon-holed into campaigns against fey/woodland creatures (it's made for a book of magic items/campaign, not the core rules setting/a competition - basically the player in me won't vote for it), the item removes player agency (imposes action restrictions) instead of adding it (giving them fun new combat options).

Grand Lodge Star Voter Season 9

Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

Thank you for the critique. It was my first time entering and I honestly got really frustrated by the lack of feed back while voting was going on.

I hadn't considered the restricting player options angle. You're right though. It's an item you 100% want a cohort to use, and that's a pretty big red flag.

I had wanted the description to be simple but I see that lacking at least something appealing to latch on to, it was easily lost in the submissions.

Funny about the grappling mechanic; it originally did precisely that, but I edited it out thinking it would seem out of place on a spear.

As for the formatting, I posted it to this forum from my phone so I'm sure that's where the space problems came from.

Thank you to everyone comments!

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

Juniperkistu!? I didn't see your item, it will be added to my list here shortly! Monday morning likely.

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