This has potential. While it skirts on the edge of some cliches, it doesn't jump in and wallow in them.
It appears that the author had a strong vision of the decadent city brought to ruin; he presented his vision, but didn't answer many of the questions that the introductory tale inspired.
Knightscream, describe the weapon as if the tale of Delgora Maldine's fall had not been included. Have a friend read it and get their input as well. It's much harder to see your own errors and omissions than to see others. Go to Comment
The Steel Cathexis most resembles a parody of all those massive, clumsy swords featured in modern fantasy, not just video games. I've always been scornful of characters in comic books, gaming art, or miniatures that wield absurdly large weapons; this item is the perfect punishment for that "bigger is better" image.
I like it; I can picture some powerfully-thewed barbarian waving around his treasured weapon at the slightest provocation, eager to show off his clumsy-looking blade.
It would benefit from more background information: It seems too powerfully enchanted to be a commonplace item, as a previous commentor had suggested. I picture a master weaponsmith, a grizzled curmudgeon brusquely ordered to produce a weapon so stoutly constructed that it would be virtually impervious to battle damage. Aggravated by his patron's tone, he decides to craft a weapon as lethal and desirable as it is homely... Go to Comment
I imagine that the spell to summon it is suitably vague: In a few moments it was done. I had completed the incantation, the ritual to summon 'Ye Chiurgeon fromme Beyonde ye Veil'. Now if the description was right, the powerful entity would cure the deadly, gangrenous wounds and fever that had my fearless comrades on their deathbeds. Slowly, a foul-smelling mist filled the room, causing my allies agonized, labored breathing to echo strangely. A voice rang out hollowly, a voice as painful to hear as nails dragged across a field of broken glass. “Whattt woulddd yewww have of meeee?” it questioned. “Yourrr fellowsss arrrre dyingggg. Woulddd youuu havvve meeee improvvvvve themmmm?”
Much more effective than a simple “Cure Critical Wounds” spell… Go to Comment
I see that you have visited the site since those other responses were posted, so it is possible that you may see this comment.
I started gaming in 1977, when I was 10 years old. I was fortunate that when I was young, I was able to write articulately and the standards of what was considered a good gaming scenario were much lower than they are today. I remember many a gaming scenario that featured two-dimensional demons described in two sentences, quests that started out “The Princess has been kidnapped!” and crawls through the most unlikely dungeons imaginable. I wrote adventures that were such utter rubbish that I don’t understand why I couldn’t see that at the time.
They weren’t mocked, because we didn’t know better then. People are much more jaded these days and are very critical of these old clichés.
Everyone starts somewhere. Don’t let the discouraging response and mockery that this submission has received stop you from learning and writing more. Much of the criticism that this demon has received was because it draws upon some of the most common themes and ideas found in fantasy writing today. Go to Comment
Agony has returned periodically. His writing shows a great deal of creativity, demonstrating abilities that would never have been guessed from this first try. Some are still quite flawed, but Agony shows a willingness to learn and a refusal to be discouraged that I admire. Go to Comment
I like this plot, but setting it up could be ticklish, as others have commented already. In order to make the player characters more inclined to take the mission, I would present Carl as very conflicted, with his political responsibilities to his House and his Monarch forcing him to put aside his affection for his nieces. If House Tremane is presented as a truly dubious bunch (pointing up their ties with the rebels, the way that their lands are a haven for bandits, their willingness to use children as hostages, etc.), then Carl's reluctance to deal with them becomes quite reasonable.
If it's clear that he wants to get the children back but can't because of his allegience to the Iron Throne, the player characters may be led to feel that they are actually doing the man a favor if they work behind his back. Also, the more unpleasant the partisans of House Tremane are, the more likely that the heroes will want to take action to save the little girls from them. As they are all liegemen of the Iron Throne, a bloody raid on the Tremane's stronghold would be a bad idea, potentially triggering open war between the two estates. Go to Comment
A building to symbolize the tragedy of false hope and self-deception, left desolate to fall to ruin.
And yet... Few structures are left alone forever. Perhaps, someday, an ambitious ruler will look upon the faded maps of his forefathers and ask, "Why has not this 'Grand Fortress' been restored to use? Surely men of the modern age do not fear children's tales! Send for my architect at once; I have an idea!" Go to Comment
While I appreciate that macaroni is making people aware of a little-known weapon, the whole piece is made of two snippets quoted from texts on armor and weapons. This would be better treated as a stub entry.
I like this young eccentric. She doesn't seem to be TOO far out there, just a bit scatterbrained and inclined to believe odd ideas, (like the idea that her statue is alive).
She has plenty of roleplaying hooks, even if they're not written up as such.
My only real beef is that she is written in a very disjointed and backwards fashion. When I meet an NPC, the way she looks and he obvious demeanor are the first things I'll learn. After that, I may learn her background and what her odd special items are. Go to Comment
If I were running this plot, I'd try to add some extra element of moral ambiguity to the dragon. For example, Jaelric the Black has been around for hundreds of years. Suppose that in that time he had aided the ruling house of the kingdom, giving fealty to them when they went to war in exchange for exclusive hunting rights in a large swath of undesirable fen land and a fair-sized herd of cattle.
Now the dragon may still be evil, and may eagerly devour any poor peat-cutter that trespasses on his swampy demesne, but he is a leigeman of the Crown, and not someone to be lightly slain. Many a medieval noble was quite as rapacious and murderous as a dragon could be. Go to Comment
This isn't a bad item, but there are some things about it that I would change.
I would prefer to make this item scale with the power of the warrior wielding it. In the hands of a novice swordsman, it might display its lesser powers, only coming into its full abilities when in the hands of a legendary hero.
The reason that I would want its power reduced is that I would also prefer to reduce its curse's potency. While a potent curse of idiocy is interesting, I prefer curses that can be overcome with heroic effort. It shouldn't be easy to defeat the curse, but having a curse that can't even be broken by the wielder's death seems a bit harsh. Go to Comment
A Cloak of Shadows that causes mushrooms to grow in its own shadow. A crouching theif might find himself in a ring of poisonous toadstools, an interesting thing for a sentry to find after the thief has left hiding place.