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Comments: 9
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Rating: 3.2
Condition: Normal
ID: 6765


June 4, 2012, 2:41 pm

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Skarsnik Nil


"We don't understand why such things are even spread about us, we are not at all like that!"

Cautiously, he approached the end of the pier. Watching the Goblin in the boat, his eyes glinting like stones of jet, spear in hand, watching, waiting, for any sign of movement below the water.

Sure enough, they came. A quick thrust! Another! A third! Within the space of maybe a second, the Goblin had speared three fish. Large, succulent fish. He longed to try some, but no one dealt with Goblins. Goblins are abominations, daemon-spawn even. The warning of their village priest echoing through his mind. Could he be wrong?


A well designed and crafted spear. Its shaft long and thick, made of a dark, oily wood. Growing only in the deep caves of the Skarsnik Goblins territory.

Fixed to the top end of this pole is a dagger, not just any dagger though. This particular daggers has barbed edges and is longer, as well as thinner than a normal dagger. Specially designed to fish with.

A line of elegant writing runs along the spine of the blade. Highly unusual for goblins. However, these are no ordinary goblins. The same style of writing can be found along the length of the spear-pole.


Skarsnik Nil may appear to be a normal fishing spear, aside from the elvish writing running along the spine of the blade and along the shaft.

The shaft and the blade can be disconnected. Making it easier to retrieve the catch. Much like any other fishing spear. When the parts are separated it ceases to show any sign of magic, the dagger is just a dagger (albeit with barbs), the pole a walking aide. Even the writing fades into obscurity.

Only when the two halves are screwed together and the spear is used to fish do it magical properties become apparent.

This spear will always provide fish, even in ponds, rivers or other bodies of water where there wouldn't usually be any. The wielder will never catch mor than five fish at any one time, to prevent over-fishing.

In addition to always providing slippery, oily nourishment. The spear will not tolerate being used as a malicious tool, or for sport. Should the person using it try to do such a thing, he will very soon find himself wondering why there isn't anything to catch.


Crafted by the tribes master carpenter and blessed by their shaman. This spear was specially made as a gift for Guznal Skarsnik, a young goblin scholar. Seeking to learn more about the other races and attemping to teach them about their customs, views and general way of life. As a way of maybe dispelling the ongoing animosity between them and the rest of the 'civilised' Kingdom.

The current location of Skarsnik Nil is unknown, as is the location and possible fate of its bearer.

I know that I have not made an excellent start here at Strolens Citadel. Allow me to apologise, officially, in writing, here on this submission.

I also hereby dedicate this submission to Silvressa, whose submissions I spitefully down opted in retaliation for my discovered plagiarism. Maybe this will be the start of something new.

Enjoy the submission. Comments and criticism are most welcome.

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Comments ( 9 )
Commenters gain extra XP from Author votes.

Voted Cheka Man
June 4, 2012, 17:32
A useful item.
Voted Forganthus
June 4, 2012, 18:24
This kind of goes against the trope of fantasy standard version of goblins being shrieking mobs of hero-fodder, probably too much so (goblin scholar?!). A very important question this sub doesn't answer is: are Skarsnik goblins normal goblins in this setting? If not, why?

Why does the spear have elvish writing along the handle? Why does Guznal share a last name with his tribe?

Having said that, you have an excellent style of writing. Descriptive and to the point. You have a lot of sentence fragments, though, and that hurts the readability a little.

I especially like the detachability of the dagger/staff combo. It'd be cool if the staff helped make long journeys, or the knife with skinning rabbits, just so that all three pieces could share a theme.
June 5, 2012, 0:09
Goblins are actually quite an intelligent race once you look past the somewhat 'ugly' exterior. Well, the goblins of the Skarsnik Clan are at least. The other goblin clans having succumbed to their being despised by 'civilisation', driving them to commit the acts of atrocity that they are hated for.

As for the elvish writing, more on that in my upcoming submission about the Skarsnik Goblins.

All goblins share their tribes name. This is supposed to fill them with a sense of pride and belonging.

I don't quite understand what you mean by "sentence fragments", could you explain?
June 5, 2012, 0:41
Ah, cool! You should throw in a sentence about Skarsnik goblins being exception as the most decent goblin tribe.

Sentence fragments occur when you don't have a subject and a verb between two periods. Like these, taken from the first paragraph:

Growing only in the deep caves of the Skarsnik Goblins territory.

Specially designed to fish with.

Those are just phrases. If you change them to "It grows. . ." and "It is. . ." then you have full sentences, because you added a subject ("it") and verbs ("grows", "is").
Voted Dossta
June 4, 2012, 18:59
A good start, though it could use some revision. Forganthus gives a good list of questions to consider when reworking this item to make it more internally consistent and interesting to GMs. Try reading your submission out loud to catch the fragmented sentences. I would also consider giving the person in the summary a name, so that we know he is a non-goblin, creeping up on Guznal -- that part was pretty confusing when I first read it.

What I enjoyed most was the Nil's simple utility. There should be many more simple magic items like this. More tools for easing life. I also like how the dagger and staff are detachable. Well done.

P.S. It took courage to admit your mistakes publicly and still come back to post. I'm glad that you did.
June 5, 2012, 11:35

I like it, well done Dionysus. I also agree with forganthus and Dossta, with a few slight changes this can fulfill its potential. So I will hold off from voting for now.

Voted axlerowes
June 6, 2012, 17:21
Was Guznal Skarsnik the one seeking to learn more about cultures? Was the spear supposed a tool to help him do that?

Does the spear "make fish" since you can use it to catch fish in a pool that would not normally have any or do you just wish to keep that vague and mystical. Vague is fine, but if that is the case then you may wish to remove the point about it limiting the the fisherman to five fish per "use". Because what counts as a fishing trip? And if it manifests fish from nothing, than what if the fear of over fishing.

I think you want this write up and the item to be means by which we can get a side long veiw of goblin culture. I like that idea, but I don't think this has succeeded. If you don't want this to be a novel window in the goblin way of life then try taking this up with the 100 word challenge.
June 7, 2012, 3:18
Yes! Write about goblin culture! Break a few stereotypes.
Voted chilled
June 7, 2012, 4:54
Liked it,very original.

Random Idea Seed View All Idea Seeds

       By: Priv8eye

A group that wished to be 'ever-living' instead was cursed with 'never-dying'. Thier flesh rotted and fell fromthier bones but still they lived on. Now as skeletons they continue thier quest to remove thier curse. As skeletons they differ in that they do not need controlled or summoned. They are fully fledged NPCs with drives or ideas of thier own. Stabbing and slashing weapons would not affect them.

Ideas  ( NPCs ) | April 28, 2005 | View | UpVote 1xp

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