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Old Mar 15th, 2022, 12:19 PM
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Hall of Fame Nominations 2023

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It's that time of year again, time for one of the most anticipated events in the RPG Crossing calendar. It's time for the Hall of Fame!

The Hall of Fame is already home to some of the greatest games this site has seen, but we know there are more out there that deserve to join the esteemed ranks of the HoF. It's time to let us know about them.

All of our Hall of Fame games are nominated (and often seconded) by our members from games that have either been running for at least a year at the time of nomination or are already completed. These rules get laid out at the beginning of our nominations phase, after which everyone on site is invited to vote for two of the nominated games. The top results of the popular vote then are offered to our Community Supporters, who get final say in which games get inducted into the Hall of Fame. (Details at the bottom of this post.)

Good luck!
~Aethera
NEW in 2023!This year we are introducing the Hidden Gems category and the Extraordinary category, both of which will consider the same nominees (and additional honorable mentions, if any) to accept another two games each year. (There are usually three accepted, barring tied voting.) These new categories will double-down on our "quality, longevity, good implementation" definition of what makes a game worthy of Hall of Fame notice, and a game with only two players is just as worthy as one with fifteen groups. Unique game concepts, decade-long games, and games with repeated Post of the Month nominations will get another consideration for Hall of Fame induction even if the popular vote eradicates them from the running. If you have questions about this process, please PM Aethera and she will update the Q&A section at the very end of this post to clarify.

These categories will be judged by a judges panel led by Aethera, the current Hall of Fame moderator. This panel was selected from volunteers that are a mix of new and familiar faces, a mix of name colors as possible, and they will have a rubric in front of them. If you would like to be a Hall of Fame judge for the Class of 2023, it's not too late to apply. You may not be in the running as a GM to be a judge, and we'd prefer you weren't a player either in any of the nominated games. Click here and fill out the brief form. Applications to judge will be closed on April 15th when nominations close or if Aethera fills a well-balanced group from those who have already volunteered.


Game Criteria
  • Solo Games must have at least 300 in-game posts.
  • Group Games are eligible if they meet one of the following requirements: the game must have been active for at least a full year on this site (this means the game's first in-game post must be dated on or before March 15, 2022); or, the game must have at least 750 in-game posts and have reached its intended conclusion (please demonstrate how it's reached that conclusion).
  • Games which have already been inducted into the Hall of Fame are ineligible for repeat nomination. However, previously nominated games that didn't get in are eligible.
  • Staff-run games are no longer eligible for nominations.
  • Inactive games are eligible for nomination! Just because a game is finished or has died off, it doesn't mean that it's not a prime example of what we like to see.
  • You can nominate any game that meets the criteria, even if you were/are a GM/player! It's not arrogant. It's nominating a game that you loved and thought was great – and that's what we want to see.
  • You must have at least 100 posts to nominate a game.

  • Any unsportsmanlike behavior will invalidate a nomination, whether that nomination was posted by the bad sport or not, to be judged by Aethera. This includes, but is not limited to, PMing everyone you know to vote for your game, leaning on people to vote a certain way, as well as pretty much anything that wasn't said publicly. Posting a message in OOC threads in which you're involved saying one of your other games has been nominated is fine. That's spreading the word, especially if you ask everyone to come read all the nominations. Spending time in private trying to determine which game you think should be nominated (instead of other equally good games) just to try and ensure a game gets into the Hall of Fame is gaming the system. (PS - engaging in bad behavior on the part of someone else's game just to trigger this rule is also verboten.)

    Instead of any of the aforementioned bad behavior, perhaps your time would be better spent finding the best sections of the game to demonstrate its quality? Please don't make me be the bad guy.

What we are looking for in a game
  • Quality posts – good role-playing is always a plus.
  • Longevity – dedication to a game on this site is one of the highest aspirations of a GM and players.
  • Good Implementation – whether it's a very unique game idea or it's a classical game idea done very well, a masterful GM and players make any game fun.

Nomination + Seconding FormatName: (include a link)
DM(s): Self-explanatory.
Current Players: include past players if you wish

Reasons for nomination: Describe your reasons for nominating the game and why you think it deserves a spot in the Hall of Fame.

Links: You must provide at least one link to a section of ten posts which you would like reviewers to read. This link is allowed a paragraph of up to 300 words to set the scene. You may only provide two of these linked sections. (Please stick to only two links, as it's unfair to others if your game gets more points of contact from reviewers. You can always have someone second the nomination to get two more! Thanks.)

Post of the Month Nominations (optional): If any of the players or GM(s) were nominated for POTM, feel free to provide links to those nominations in addition to the links above. (POTM has an archive of every nomination thread; it shouldn't take too long to find the thread for the month related to your nominated posts.) The two-link rule as stated above does not apply to linking to nominations made for Post of the Month. If someone in your game won Post of the Month, definitely make a note of that! All that a post must have to qualify for this second link category is a nomination, not necessarily a win. (We know that completed games may not have POTM nominations that you can easily figure out, don't worry, you won't lose points for that.)

N.B. This year, "Post of the Month Nominations" is an optional category. Next year it will be required; this is your fair warning.

All of this makes it easier for the community, the Community Supporters, and the judges panel to review.

SECONDING nominations should contain their own nomination and description so that the thread isn't cluttered with people just posting "I second this!" Nominations that are a simple 'I second this nomination' will be deleted. Please do not "third" or "fourth" or "fifth" a nomination. It's annoying. Two is plenty.

On April 15th (a month from now), there will be a public poll to narrow the list down. Approximately a week after that, these games will be brought over to the CS Forum where the Community Supporters will decide which games make it in!

Want a hand in the final voting process? Go ahead and become a Community Supporter!

You can peruse all the previous Hall of Fame inductees here.

Q & A
 

Last edited by Aethera; Mar 13th, 2023 at 02:15 PM.
  #2  
Old Mar 25th, 2023, 11:33 PM
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For your consideration

Name: Battle of the Bards (A homebrewed one-shot for the fifth edition of D&D)
DM: Fillyjonk
Game Setting: Medieval Modern
Elevator Pitch:
You're a band, with a shot at winning the kingdom-wide Battle of the Bards! At the beginning of the adventure, your band has been sabotaged, kidnapped, stripped of your possessions, and locked in a basement. It might be a rival, it might be an old enemy, it might be your own manager. Your job will be to find out, escape, and make it to the competition with a whole, functioning band.
IC Timeline: Countdown to the big show
OOC Timeline: Daily DM updates with daily posts from seven players for five months (Dec 2020 - May 2021)
Status: Complete
POTM Nominations:
February 2021: Meet Mordanda
March 2021: Spyder You Die
April 2021: Durza and the Orc Ancestors
May 2021: Minstrel/Maxtrel Final Performance
Players:
1) AnotherDragoon Violent, Anti-Pantheon, Unrepentant fallen aasimar whose heart of gold belongs only to the band.as Lofwyr
2) bananabadger Ancient, Ill, Vegan, Hurdy-Gurdy and Pyrotechnic-special-effects Gobin-Artificer, bound and determined to explode himself at the Slasher's next Performanceas Baron de Boom
3) bothers Dancing Half-Orc with shamanistic tendencies whose Manc dialect and history reinvented orcsas Durza
4) ElderOblex Style-over-substance Glamour Bard Eladrin who brings the sparkle and the wordplay.as Justin
5) Lazer Underdark chic on a lute-playing geek, this Drow is full bard, an actual musician!as Spyder
6) lostcheerio An Aberrant-Mind Eladrin Sorcerer, tentacle-infested, all-ID, near sociopathic, sensory-seeking nightmare-baby who ONLY loves Band.as Dagger Jane
7) stepanxol Disquieting halfling warlock with too few hairs on his feet and too many voices in his head. Hangs out with shadowspawn.as Hingalon



Reasons for Nomination:
Have you ever wondered what a party of all bards would look like? Of course you have. Or what would happen if all the player characters were each other's ride-or-die, down-for-life best friends with a shared history collaboratively created before the game even started? That's a fever dream, you say. Have you ever thought about what kind of personal Big Bads the players might develop? The players did just that, each created a suspect, and Fillyjonk took those (no matter how ridiculous or inconsequential they seemed) and RAN! Can a Demilich be (mostly) reformed through the magical powers of friendship? Are you still with me? Well then, have you ever wondered if a party could start out in an escape room, in total magical darkness, with nothing but their skivvies?

Now what if we took all of that, mashed it together and gave these malcontent merry miscreants just three days (3 long rests) to free themselves, find their gear, figure out who orchestrated the whole disappearing act, and still win the battle of the bands?

Impossible! You might say. There's no way to cram so much curiously crazy content into a one-shot. Well, what if I told you that not only did this game achieve such a feat but did so with a party of seven and posted daily? Come, my friends, and gaze in wild wonder upon the Battle of the Bards.

I could go on all day about why I love this game, but that's not why we're here. So, let me get right down to why this particular one-shot should be forever enshrined in the honorable Hall of Fame. I've already mentioned the daily posting, something that is most definitely an exception to the rule of PbP. Even with such a breakneck pace one hundred percent of the seven starting players finished.

In five months, I must've given out rpxp at least twice as often as I was posting, and I was posting a lot. These daily posts weren't just a few sparse sentences or a pair of paragraphs slapped together last minute. No, everyone brought consistent quality content. Post of the Month nominations were made (4 to be exact) across three chapters and 791 in-game posts. The OOC thread held over three thousand posts by the time we finished! Bonds were forged many of us still talk about a reunion tour. But you don't have to take my word for it...


Link 1How it started

Where do you begin when you know the whole thing is solid gold? Let's take it from the top, shall we? That's the best way, I believe, to get a feel for what happened here. We can look at the first brush strokes as they appeared on the canvas and fleshed out a world. We can witness the player characters becoming the greatest band (in their own minds) in that colorful world. All of the players fully leaned in and created a shared history for their characters as well as the band and I think it shows from the very first posts.

Here we have a band that just needs that one big break, ya know? They'd been moonlighting as adventurers to make coin but now, now was finally their time. They won a prime spot in the Battle of the Bards and had just arrived in the big city of Vallos. After a late night of practicing (partying), the band wakes up in complete darkness. Here we see the players coming together like a seasoned party from the get-go.

Chapter 1: This Game Goes to 11, posts #1 - 10


Link 2The Battle of the Bards

Now, we're going to skip ahead. I know you want to know if they won but, this isn't about that. Here we have the band with an assortment of NPCs that were collected as they found a way out of the dungeon they were locked in and pieced together why. They are running across town to, maybe, make it to their proverbial One Shot. One character, Baron de Boom, intends for this to be his personal farewell performance. In this scene, the band finally figures out who orchestrated everything (and the web is quite tangled) all while saying goodbye to a friend and preparing to give the people of Vallos a performance they'd never forget.

Chapter 3: The Battle of the Bards, post #269 - 279


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  #3  
Old Mar 31st, 2023, 11:43 PM
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Posts: 21,614
Name: The Knick Knacks of Doom
DM: DraconigenaArma
Current Players: dbaque, ricktur63, triedtherest; past players: Arcanejazz, AwesomeEllie, Battlechaser, Bio, brann_miekka, Caecielien, Cancer, Captain K, Cristal08Darkmoon, dalarangreen, DoubleL1987, Dragune185, goplayer7, Hound, Jocularity, Kaylara, MagicallyMusing, Mythrandil, Numen_Wraith, Scimmy, Silk, silverfeathers, SolarDragon, The Iron Dragon, Tyeal, Unforgiven, Valistar, WorldPerfect,

Reasons for nomination:
The Knick Knacks of Doom campaign world has been active on this site for its 11th year having started in January 2012 and is hosting its fourth campaign story, which builds on the lore created in previous campaigns. The first generation of Knick Knacks of Doom started with what is now called the Trinket Hunters story, and was a thinly veiled rewrite of the Masks of Destiny Campaign from dndadventure.com with some cosmetic changes. As the game progressed I developed my voice and story. The campaign became a completely unique multi-chapter arc which resembled the MoD Campaign only in spirit. The campaign has weathered player attrition, my career changes and military service, real-life tragedies, the migration from DnDO to RPGx, the transition from 3.5 to Pathfinder, the conclusion of one story and the adoption of another, side games, and is currently succeeding at what I assumed was a folly venture: a stable epic, mythic, and divine play campaign. I can only attribute much of that success to the stupendous players I am lucky to have, including dbaque who was one of the first players of the first game and has been around for everything the campaign has accomplished since.
It has the fourth-highest post count of any Pathfinder 1e game on the site and has consistently been in the top 3 – 5 since 2014, which is no small feat considering the game has for most of its tenure had 3 or so players at any one time. Still, it has been active enough to compete with multi-DM games with multi parties full of PCs not in spurts, but for a decade. It has been a game with incredible activity over the years with threads making it into the site's top lists for many consecutive years since 2013. Its players over the years have included Easter Egg Hunt Champions and Post of the Month winners.
What I enjoy most about the Knick Knacks of Doom is how it has explored and championed the unique, literary aspect of roleplaying games which play by post can do in a way no other medium can. In this campaign series I have been able to experiment with and perfect many cultural norms which enterprise on the aspects which can only be done through play by post gaming. Knick Knacks of Doom has shown collaborative storytelling can be done with game systems as a framework, and not a goal in and of themselves. In the game style I laid out with Knick Knacks of Doom I have found players are more inclined to spend time on side stories, puzzles, interpersonal conflicts, and the like without using these side quests as mindless experience grinding. The campaigns include private threads for side quests and personal missions and my favorite feature: threads dedicated to side plots and conversations which may otherwise stall the game. Non-combat adventures have as much bearing on their characters as combat ones. It has had a positive impact on exploration of the campaign, since playing two or three combats can happen in a day at the table but one combat can take weeks on site. Knick Knacks of Doom has become more than a long story, it is a dense and complex tale with personal stories, parallel plotlines, recurring characters, love interests, and a wealth of established and ever-expanding lore.
KKoD has a unique world, with exclusive cosmos, calendar, and topography. The effects of the campaign have influenced the backstory and lore of the campaign world, and influenced the events of other campaigns set in the future of the same universe. This custom world has provided room to build and explore off-shoots and side games over the years. The disc has hosted off and on again projects such as the Rabid Halfling Swarm and the Ultimate Dungeon. The custom world has been further explored and expanded on by players who have taken on projects for themselves, creating art and stories of their own to flesh out the world. I take it as an honor, and a rare treat, to see players taking ownership over seeds I have planted.
Despite any changes or theory I impose upon the game, much of it has flourished because of the enthusiasm of the players embracing the concepts. Their influence is much of what makes this game one of my favorites. My experiences on this site has shown "build it and they will come" is insufficient to make a game great and enjoyable. It takes players who run with these ideas and make them their own to go from playable to incredible. I love how my players care about the ramifications of their actions, and not because I demand they do so. More than any other game I have participated in Knick Knacks of Doom is the epitome of collective storytelling over mindless gaming and all I did was open the door for my fantastic players to take my ideas and improve on them.
Additionally, I have striven throughout the years to be as adaptive and receptive to the game my players want to play. By encouraging an environment where the players are comfortable to voice their opinions and engaging in honest conversations about the quality of play I have been able to adapt what I wrote in my notes into an enjoyable and playable result. I owe much of the thanks for this rapport to my players over the years who have made great contributions to the OOC thread, creating more than a place to discuss the game and instead establishing a community where the players can communicate as friends. Platitudes aside, many of the players from this game became legitimate friends who I still communicate with today through messenger, Facebook, text, and others. I have not experienced a transition from site-friend to personal-friend in the same way as I have with many of the players of KKoD.

Links
Chapter 4 – Down by the Sea: NegotiationsThis is a blast from the past, a set of posts I still really like despite being from 2013.

They have a habit of setting buildings ablaze before ascertaining who is inside it. During the invasion of a keep they set the barracks on fire, but inside were the worker slaves the orcs had chained up. So the scene I am linking to starts the moment they escape the burning building with the last of the slaves. They have broken free as the building is coming down around their ears. Out in the courtyard, enjoying the blissful winter air, they are given no rest as a villain they overlooked before, a winter wolf on a chain, is free and standing between them and freedom. Plus, it is threatening the slaves they freed with icy-breath death. Instead of risking the lives of the innocents, the PCs try to negotiate. The mechanical act of negotiating is not difficult, a number of the party members have the diplomacy skill and the bard in the group can talk almost any enemy into entertaining a conversation. What I love about this game is how they took everything a step further. They did not negotiate away a fight, they pumped the wolf for information and even broker a tenuous peace treaty for the nearby town they have liberated. They took a simple guard-dog on a chain which was supposed to be a speed bump fight (or a way to bolster one of the main encounters if I wanted it to last) and transformed it into a story element which can influence the game chapters ahead.

Post 395 – 405


The Big FightA more recent series of posts, this is from the chapter which concluded right before the current one. This is the very end of the fight between the party and no other than the Archdevil Mephistopheles himself. It is a special kind of pleasure to say the party fought, survived, and defeated an archdevil. This series of posts includes not just the exciting end, but the beginnings of their delightful reactions as the ramifications of their actions set in.

Post 100 – 110


Post of the Month nominations:
December 2013
January 2016
January 2016
March 2016
April 2016 (winner)
March 2023
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The Knick Knacks of Doom

Last edited by DraconigenaArma; Apr 1st, 2023 at 10:37 AM.
  #4  
Old Apr 8th, 2023, 05:25 PM
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Second Nomination

Seconding the Nomination!

Name: Battle of the Bards
DM: Fillyjonk
Players: AnotherDragoon, bananabadger, bothers, ElderOblex, Lazer, lostcheerio Stepanxol
Reason for Seconding:
When Fillyjonk put this game ad up, she was advised that a daily posting rate was unreasonable, because she wouldn't be able to sustain it. Instead of backing off, she took all seven of the lunatics that threw their characters into the thread, and off we went. Maybe when you hear about a game running for five months with all players and the DM posting daily, you think that sounds crazy. Yet we cleared multiple levels of maps, vanquished a lot of bad guys, solved a mystery, and each had our own personal epiphanies and growth moments. How did we find it possible to coordinate such consistent forward movement at such a frenetic pace? These are the reasons I think it worked:
  1. Team Timing. Every day, Fillyjonk got up in the morning and posted immediately, resolving all the previous day's posts. Then there would be a flurry of OOC chatter while the time zones overlapped, where we figured out what our objectives were for the next round. As the posts came through, we would incorporate and build on each other's moves, until by the time the last person was posting, all group objectives were pushed along.
  2. DM Enthusiasm. Our DM was truly our biggest fan. Fillyjonk laughed with us and cheered us on throughout. Knowing that there was someone sitting there eager to read our posts and cackle at our jokes and antics, and hit the balls back that we were tossing, had us racing to the page, motivated to write.
  3. Team Spirit. We got in some bad situations and had some emotional moments. The sense of being "in it together" bled through from the game itself to the OOC and back again. In game, we had started with the premise that we were each other's ride or die, so our characters were already family. OOC, we knew we were doing this exceptional thing together, and that our time was limited, because Filly had said we only had until May. Walls came down between players like they did between our characters, until we were living and breathing this game.

A few quotes from others on the Battle of the Bards team:

 


 


 


Link 1Bugbears Got Talent

Chapter Two, posts #84-93

This was my favorite moment in the game, and although we've decided it's mostly impossible to summarize, I will give it a go. We had just finished a big battle in a sewer with some trash golems, and had decided to lure the mercenary bugbears who were holding us captive down into the sewer to compete in a talent competition called "BELOW GOT TALENT." Through an insane amount of "yes, and" collaboration and some lucky rolls, we ended up convincing a bugbear named Rarar to confess to having had "The Time of My Life" and do a Dirty Dancing style lift onto somebody's Mage Hand. The Mage Hand absolutely failed to hold her up in the air, since she weighed more than ten pounds, triggering a hilarious combat.


Link 2The Rat the Whole Time

Chapter Three, posts 80-89.

This sequence shows the mastery of Fillyjonk's DMing. I had created a character so flawed and ridiculous (and stupid fun), I had no thought that she'd achieve any kind of redemption or growth, especially in such a short adventure. Jane was an absolute mess, who had pushed away her sweet eladrin family relentlessly in favor of her tough best friends in the band. Fillyjonk secretly had Jane's twin sister, who Jane had always hated, follow her into the dungeon in the form of a rat. This rat was with us from very early on, bonding with Durza (played by bothers) until this moment, when the rat reveals she is really Lythienne. Jane, my character, is in deep denial about the fact that she's been shunning her family just to protect them from her aberrant mind. Tragedy strikes, but because of Fillyjonk's mad plotting and patience, and the collaboration of the whole team, Jane finds a way forward. Oh, and while this was going on, we had also Polymorphed a bugbear into a caterpillar, and Justin (played by ElderOblex) was Alter-Selfed into his girlfriend. It was a whole bug thing.


Thanks for considering Battle of the Bards for the Hall of Fame. For all of us this game holds such hilarious and emotional memories, and for many it's a high point of our gaming experience. I hope we've hyped it well enough to help you see why.

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Old Apr 10th, 2023, 11:33 PM
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Name- The Closing Calamity in the Crags

GM- Drachenspirit

Players- SnakeOilCharmer, zevonian, Alemar, Notelix, Treble83 (current) --- Krazy, AlyssaTheLamb, DurinVII, Schism, Ursinorum (former)

Reasons for Nominations- Noting that I have offered similar sentiments elsewhere, I'm bringing this one up not just for good, fun gameplay, but for rarity. It's not only a game that has lasted over a year, it's also one that got going through an ad in Players Seeking Games. That's right, a GM popped in to provide a game for folks in need.

Link 1- You want to see the end of a Boss Fight, complete with party "last room of the dungeon" victory saddled by the loss of a party member? Posts 932-941 can be clicked to right here.

Post of the Month Nomination- Here's one from earlier this year.
Here is another one.

Last edited by zevonian; Apr 13th, 2023 at 09:08 PM.
  #6  
Old Apr 11th, 2023, 10:08 AM
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Nomination
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Name: The Reach of Empire
DM: RuffDove.
Current Players: dbaque, FromAbove, Kenjitsu, OneDarkness, and Dylan Scott (former player: Imveros and GeneT)

Reasons for nomination: RuffDove is an excellent GM dedicated to his games and brings the Starfinder universe to life.

Links: The Opening Introduction is where the team meets each other for the first time and gets their mission from the Starfinder Society. Each character comes to life and some unexpected shenanigans gets introduced by the players.
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Old Apr 11th, 2023, 11:39 AM
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Nomination: Coils of Veles
Name: The Coils of Veles


The gathering of heroes
North Team South Team
  • kymrel as Asbjorn Grimsson
  • Retry as Father Renfield Weavers
  • Odyssey as Zephyr
  • UngainlyFool as Arkady the Mad
  • Syne as Lucia Ayamath
  • Lazer as Azar al-Muhaqiq
  • hafrogman as Zenda
  • Vislands as Batoyangi
  • DaysUntold as Nae'laa
  • Strangemund as Kazimir
  • with
  • WaywardTraveller as Khamyra

The narrator of this tale:
4eyedbadger as the Dungeon Master

Reason for nomination: A collective of individuals through twisted strands of fate both good and ill, find themselves in the Temple City, Valera. Caught between political clashes and worldly events unforeseen the group are called upon to travel to the ends of the world to stop a looming doom.

Coils of Veles is an adventure that takes place within the flat world of Midgard, a setting published by the third-party publisher Kobold Press. The group is a collection of misfits - as most adventuring parties tend to be, who are split into two separate groups and sent north/south. How they reach their destination is up to them, however time is of the essence.

4eyedbadger (often simplified to 'Badger') is a brilliant narrator who always finds ways to breath life into a scene. Be it through the environment, NPCs, or otherwise. He doesn't pull punches with combat and it has resulted in wild and fantastical fights.

Its one thing to deliver such quality story telling to one group or more that may be running parallel to a group. However Badger is running our game with two vastly different groups causing mischief in two separate parts of the world and still having them connect seamlessly!

Links
  • Set 1: North Team- {LINK} posts #229-239. Please suffer this bit of selfishness as this string of posts was the start of one of the most memorable encounters I've ever faced. The team is dealing with an unstable temporal obelisk that is set to explode. Our fighter had fallen into the obelisk leaving us behind and the group left me behind to combat a darn triceratops because I couldn't fly!
  • Set 2: South Team- {LINK} posts 103-113. Posted at the most fitting time (Halloweenlate Oct), the southern group approach a town of Gramvar. A town that has been razed by the dragon empire and its minotaur denizens left to be the 'rotting herd.' Dark, i know. Yet this sets the tone for the mission to come - in the necroplis of Gramvar.


PotM linksNominations:
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  #8  
Old Apr 13th, 2023, 10:47 PM
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  #9  
Old Apr 14th, 2023, 01:36 PM
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For Your Consideration
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Name: Rise of the Drow 5e Group A
DM: Atrayn
Players: Binnford, Berith, lostcheerio, Starflier, and Vislands + Fillyjonk and hafrogman
Game Setting: Fantasy version of 17th century Tsarist Russia with Drow and Quasi-Vikings
Elevator Pitch: A band of mismatched adventurers, some from the colonizing Klav Empire, some from the subjugated Vikmoredere, and some refugees from the Underdark itself must somehow come together to defeat evil Drow who have blotted out the sun.
Status: Began March 1st, 2020, and still going strong after three plus years

POTM Nomination: A Drow Revealed

Reasons for Nomination:

---Camaraderie: The DM's commitment to fostering good player relationships and protecting player agency makes the game feel safe and fun. Atrayn is a kind, collaborative, empathetic person, and it is such a pleasure to play at his table.

---Setting: This is a unique, creative setting, and the DM renders it in exquisite detail. The political upheaval and the tensions between the colonizers and the people they defeated uniting against a common enemy makes for fun play, especially as the DM encouraged the party to be a mix of factions.

---Combat: Consistently creative and challenging encounters that require strategy and teamwork. Monsters have surprising abilities, or the terrain or the light makes standard moves impossible. Players need to search their character sheets and dredge up all their abilities to thrive, and this keeps combat from feeling like a stale series of fire bolts until the the party wins by math.


Game Sample One, Chapter 1, A Light in the Dark, Posts 66 - 70 and 72 - 76 (This is ten consecutive game posts, as 71 is an accidental post meant for the OOC) The party is gathered in a chapel where the charismatic cleric Juriendor is leading a group of followers when he is attacked by an Archon. The party must band together to try to protect him and the village of Rybalka in one of this DM's fresh, fun, and challenging encounters.

Game Sample Two, Chapter 2, A Dawn Without Light, Posts 330 - 339: The party picks up a sniveling little goblin guide named Fergraz. He comes across as an ingratiating little weasel, weak and eager to please . Once they have camped in an abandoned shack (one he led them to!), and used pitons to barricade themselves in with him, and mostly gone to sleep, he reveals to the watch that he is actually a deadly Barghest. He could simply slaughter them all or....well. He has a rather interesting proposition. A well-laid trap, masterfully sprung.
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Last edited by Fillyjonk; Apr 14th, 2023 at 03:13 PM.
  #10  
Old Apr 14th, 2023, 06:04 PM
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First Nomination

Name: Rebirth of Power: A GURPS superhero/villain campaign
DM: Rukellian
Current Players: : Humble Athena, FoggyKnight, Greaven.
Past players: ProfPaulBlemma, BattleFries, ItsaVerb, Kapera, phrozenflame, LittleBlueNA

Reasons for nomination:

Ruke has managed this game for over seven years now. Throughout that time, our characters were given life and allowed to grow and change over the course of an in-game year of school. We were allowed to pursue our goals and interests within the setting, with each of us focusing on different pursuits and Ruke has been admirable about juggling three or more situations going at the same time in one thread. If we want to pursue evil-doers, we can. If we want more slice-of-life, he’s good with that too. My character didn’t pursue super heroics for over a year, despite the title of the game.

When we want our characters to collaborate together, he comes up with a common enemy. There have been curve balls and stumbling blocks in the learning curve that challenge the characters in very personal ways as well as the city they operate in and it is an enjoyable part of my day to see a new post and read how the world is reacting to us.

Links:
Chapter Three: Those who are left behind by progress...
The villain students of Undercity has just attacked Atlas’ more heroic University campus in a bid to transform innocents into super powered citizens, and then kidnap them all to brainwash and turn them to the dark side. This is the first time that all of the active characters have worked together to face one large threat, and they have descended to the subway tunnels to confront those trying to get away. A believed friend shows her true colors and a villain makes a heroic choice.

Heroics don’t have to be super...but when they are, they are epic!

The Midnight Fairy confronts the Laughing Genocide that has eluded police for months and attacked the medical clinic close to the character’s hearts in the poor end of the city. Josh watches over a baby treant during his shift at the florists. While Laughing Genocide goes down in a cloud of glitter and rhymes, Josh foils a would-be kidnapper.

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Old Apr 14th, 2023, 10:51 PM
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Second Nomination

Name: Rebirth of Power: A GURPS superhero/villain campaign
DM: Rukellian
Current Players: : Humble Athena, FoggyKnight, Greaven.
Past players: ProfPaulBlemma, BattleFries, ItsaVerb, Kapera, phrozenflame, LittleBlueNA

Reasons for nomination: Foggy has pretty much hit the important notes here. Ruke has proven to be a creative GM and talented writer from the moment he posted in Misc. Advertising on Jan 16th, 2017 offering up our choice of a story, until today. Though the game has slowed down some (due to inevitable RL stuff), the core group of players still look forward to having new wrongs to right, and mysteries to solve.

Links:
Obligatory Beach Episode

While this game has had plenty of tough stuff for the characters to do, they've had time to relax and have fun, too! Though in a world of supers, even a simple beach day means something more. The day starts out with an act of community service, the price of attendance for Lillian Ritzen, psivamp student on probation after a close call with a dark side stumble. An encounter with wildlife interrupts the fun, but after the team brings that to a peaceful resolution, they make a new friend.

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Last edited by Humble Athena; Apr 15th, 2023 at 01:00 AM.
  #12  
Old Apr 14th, 2023, 11:05 PM
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Name: Nothing Ever Happens in the North

DM: LostCheerio

Players: ElderOblex as Roofs the Tiefling Warlock, Yoshimi as Sigur the Knightess, PlaidPeregrine as Thistle the Forest Gnome Watery Druid, and for part of the game:
Quixotic42 as Palona Greenbottle the Forest Gnome and Morathor as Eva Dale the Barbarian

Game Setting: D&D 5e game that started off with "You find a poster calling for adventurers!" or "You hear about the need for adventurers to the Fort up North." The PC's travel to the Fort, go to the Tavern and learn that they are to enter a Dungeon of some sort that hasn't been opened for a zillion years! The sealed door pops open in the morning! The PC's need their rest and a nice breaking fast at sunrise. Sounds like your typical Dungeon Crawl situation, but …not exactly.

Reasons for nomination: Nothing Ever Happens in the North is not your typical dungeon-y game, because it was not created by a typical DM. We started with five players and ended up with three. This became a rather intimate game that truly allowed us to explore and develop our characters. The layers of thoughtful storytelling by LostCheerio were woven and tailored to her players while keeping us challenged on all fronts - combat strategy, who were our characters in these tense and potentially deadly situations, and how were they going to get along with such differences and survive where everyone else before them failed and died.

LostCheerio not only challenged us with malicious creatures, but we had puzzles to solve. These puzzles were sometimes more than cleverly finding the answers. We faced philosophical challenges, like Thistle with the Trolley Problem (save an injured child or run off to warn a village that it's about to get flooded) due to a long-dead Queen demanding we experience everything she and her King went through. Sigur was challenged by a Demonic serpent-killing sword as well as by the challenge of growing into her own womanhood to become a true leader and Knightess. Roofs the Tiefling had strange visions and flashbacks throughout the game that we didn't understand until we were in the last Chapter. We learned, as she did, about her Father's deal with a Dao and how she was made to murder her beloved brother. A poem the PC's found at a bloody murder scene after breakfast helped focus us through the chapters; we had a mysterious murder, minus the body of the supposedly dead Paladin who was to guide us to the secret dungeon.

This game is nominated for being written with such care, thought, and cleverness that left the players excited and engaged.

Links:

Posts: 112 to 122
"Skail's death was not your fault! It was your father's deal, Roofs. He made a deal with the Dao for your brother's life a long time ago. We knew Skail too, you know. He was a brave kid. But marked. It was your father's deal. But when it came time to pay the debt, he couldn't do it." To put this series of posts in perspective, Roofs had just found out from a pair of very nice Dao that are inside a jug she's carrying around that she did indeed kill her brother, and how this nightmare all came about.

We also watch Sigur in tears unpuzzle a line from the poem:

Feed the devil, eat the snake
Throw the body in the lake
If you finish all of these
You will find Diomedes
Tell his story, take his crown
May his glory never drown


The body was that of an infant that was thrown into a lake by a King. Sigur gathered up the manufactured bones of skeleton babies and pieced one together so one was whole. Thistle helped wrap the skeleton child respectfully since the PC's believed the Queen was somehow watching them from beyond, and it was her child that was sacrificed to a Demon via her husband, the King. The King who made a deal with the infernal to obtain a magic sword to save the Kingdom. An acid pool we found, full of bones not only child-sized, was the 'lake' we had to toss something (or someone) into. It was quite a dramatic scene for Sigur to put the skeleton together piece by piece (and we never did toss it in feeling it was a horrible thing, though symbolic, to do).

Posts: 164 to 174
These are the last 10 posts of the game which are meaningful to the last players of the game. The three of us - Yoshimi, ElderOblex, and myself, PlaidPeregrine, added to the last two posts. After our characters went through such changes from innocent and/or naive wanna-be-adventurers for their own individual reasons - to run away from their past, to become a wise hero, to make one's noble parents proud - we needed to write an ending where we left the Fort and ended up at Thistle's Forest Gnome Village. And then we needed to move into the future, because we knew our characters would continue to grow with the strength of spirit that they gained through their adventure of not only survival, but of being tested as to what sort of people they would develop into.

Post of the Month Nominations:
March 2023 (Won) - Epilogue II: Thirty Years Later
November 2022 - In The Jug
April 2022 (Won) - A Fighter's Gentility
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  #13  
Old Apr 15th, 2023, 03:30 AM
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NominationName: Great Old Ones
DM: Reliq0770
Players:
Wishkamon as lydklein as NightCheese as hafrogman as Oghain as Touketsu as
Agetha Rhyneheart aka Maria Conchita Ignacia Guadalupe Constancia Jiménez de la FuenteBetty aka Duramora Evelbean GrumblefudgeFudgie John Alias Kurt Z. Schloß Milo Dunnwood

Reasons for Nomination: Role-playing games as a whole and play-by-post games in specific have long been a medium through which players can weave works of great pathos, deep storylines of infinite majesty and heart-wrenching sincerity. This was not one of those games. This game was just utter nonsense. The original advertisement landed (appropriately enough) on April 1st, 2020. Shortly after the pandemic became all too real for many of us, we were ready for a game pitched as "an escape from reality". And reality was quickly left behind as the game devolved into a morass of lamp-shaded tropes, over-the-top absurdities and larger-than-life characters. This game was pure and simply a joy to be part of. The core premise is "What kinds of things would a bunch of retired, elderly adventurer's get up to in a retirement community?"... and away we go!

Links:
The ChaseChapter 1: Bingo Heist! 117-126
A simple mission to distribute flyers for Bingo Night quickly got sidetracked by an arena match between Exotic Joe and Merrill Baskins (2020 was crazy, y'all). There's also a plot involving mind control jelly cubes. Anyways, the members of the Township Activity Planning Committee find themselves on the run from, and Reliq0770 runs a chase scene while entertaining our characters' particular... foibles.


The Fast and the FuriousChapter 2: The Siege of All-Mart 34-43
The committee has added two new members, and a film crew making a documentary. We hit the road with our new artificer's steel defender driving the bus. Why would you let any of these degenerate misfits behind the wheel of an automobile? Who can say. Anyways, one of Milo's exes appears riding locomotive land sharks. Bullete Trains.


Post of the Month Nominations: We only got around to making one of these. But that was just slacking on our part.

The aforementioned arena match.
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Old Apr 15th, 2023, 07:25 AM
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Last edited by Aethera; Apr 15th, 2023 at 12:45 PM. Reason: spoilerbuttoning for unfortunate ineligibility
  #15  
Old Apr 15th, 2023, 01:34 PM
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Name: Nothing Ever Happens in the North

DM: LostCheerio

Players: ElderOblex as Roofs the Tiefling Warlock, Yoshimi as Sigur the Knightess, PlaidPeregrine as Thistle the Forest Gnome Watery Druid, and for part of the game:
Quixotic42 as Palona Greenbottle the Forest Gnome and Morathor as Eva Dale the Barbarian

Game Setting: D&D 5e one-shot game for level 1, leveling up to 2.

Reasons for seconding the nomination: Level 1 one-shot adventures provide a unique challenge to character growth and team bonding. Lostcheerio fostered both in several ways. First, the DM offered challenges in which each character had a chance to be the hero, whether in combat or in a skill test or puzzle and then other challenges where we had to put our heads together. Second, the tragic backstory of the dungeon developed little by little as the characters unraveled its mystery, and the impact of the surprise ending was high. There were definite horror elements in addition to traditional fantasy, and this caused the characters to open up to each other and lean on each other. Third, elements of our application backstories were seeded into the plot here and there, allowing for rapid character growth in the short time allotted.

The game was serious and lostcheerio ran it seriously, but did not take herself too seriously. This approach allowed everyone to be comfortable being creative, being humorous, messing up, or offering constructive feedback. Out of character discussion was common, and the players also used PM's and a Discord channel set up by the DM to collude on ideas including the POTM-winning epilogue.


Links:

Posts: Posts were already given in PlaidPeregrine's nomination. But if I can add one more group of 10, I would offer posts 8-18 of the first chapter. The characters have all just met in the tavern, and Sigur and Roofs (who later become lifelong friends) do not get each other at all, and it's horribly awkward for both. And meanwhile Thistle is just interested in everybody and everything, which is a key part of how everyone starts to bond later. She asks Sigur (my character) for her hair ribbons which is the real start of Sigur's heroic journey, and comes back around in the "Thirty Years Later" epilogue.


Post of the Month Nominations: These were already stated in PlaidPeregrine's nomination
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