If you’re like me, and the thought of bringing your ideas to a role-playing universe that is read and played by thousands of gamers the world over appeals to you, then this year’s RPG Superstar 2013! run by Paizo, the creators of the Pathfinder game, gives you just such a chance.
For the past five years, the fledgling role-playing company has been scouting out the terrain of would-be designers through their RPG Superstar contest. It is an opportunity for hopeful amateur authors, and Paizo fans to compete head-to-head, and gain immediate feedback on their ideas and allow them direct access to the developers at Paizo.
Paizo is notorious in the role-playing community for these types of fan interactions, a fact that seems to produce rabid loyalty. Through their Message Boards, trolled by devout Paizites, or at their self-stylized Paizo-con, or through their close affiliation with indie-mag’s like the recently shut-down Kobold Quarterly, and their endorsement of fan-created content like Wayfinder, Paizo has done a great deal of positioning themselves as the fan-centric roleplaying alternative to Wizards of the Coast.
It is no small wonder then that this year’s RPG Superstar 2013! Contest is quoted as having the highest number of entrants yet. It’s a fact sure to bring in even more players and a great way to test your chops at game design. This year’s contest is being judged by veterans of the gaming industry, including Wolfgang Baur, Editor-in-chief of Kobold Quarterly, Sean K. Reynolds, a major contributor to role-playing games since Dungeons & Dragons 2nd Edition as well as a Paizo developer, and Clark Peterson, co-founder of the prolific Necromancer Games. Guest judges will also weigh in on entries which will consist of five rounds of design challenges where entrants are whittled down to a single champion who will be given the opportunity to write their very own Paizo Adventure Module, which is a mini-campaign booklet.
The twist this year is that the first round is largely going to be decided by Paizo fans, as the initial entries for the first challenge, designing a magical item, will be voted on by the public at large through Paizo’s website. Once again, Paizo is opening its doors to fan participation much more intimately than most. And since the voting has begun, speculation about voting numbers, repeat viewing and quality of entrants has already sprung up a plethora of threads and discussion on the Paizo boards.
As a competitor this year, my first I might add, I’m now one of these fans, voting for others like myself who’ve submitted their ideas for a chance at becoming a part of the Pathfinder universe. My own item is up for comparison on the Paizo servers, and I look forward to contributing to the selection process, and hopefully making it to Round 2!
If you’ve got some free time, head over to Paizo.com/rpgsuperstar and cast your vote!
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