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Old 09-14-2020, 11:20 AM
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Meet the Judges!

This thread is for each of the main judges for this year's competition to introduce themselves and share a little about what they think the ideal submission would look like. All contestants are recommended to read this thread carefully, and note down what their judges are looking for, and how they will score you. As per the last few years, there is a 'judging guideline' to help make the judgments not too surprising, create more consistency between them, and help lessen the work for those judging!

Think you have what it takes to help with judging the competition? PM me, and we'll talk about it


Last edited by Inem; 09-14-2020 at 11:20 AM.
Old 09-14-2020, 01:15 PM
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I am going to quote what I said last year since it still holds true, and I don't think I could write it up any better:
Originally Posted by Bhelogan View Post
Bhelogan here! Iron DM again, and here we are getting the stage set for another glorious competition. Inem is out, so we need to crown a new champion! What does an Ideal submission look like? I'll give you a few pointers:
  • It has to be clear, and easy to read. If I get confused, I'm likely to skip over parts. That isn't good for you.
  • It has to be engaging. I also don't have a very long attention span. As a DM I need to be excited about potentially running this.
  • It has to be fun for the players. If they wouldn't enjoy playing in it, little else matters.
  • It has to be complete. Don't leave gaping holes for me to fill in.
My general advice would be, focus on quality vs quantity. I would rather see a few ideas fleshed out well, then straws grasping at everything and trying to hastily glue it together.

Ingredients are going to mater. A lot. But, if they feel forced into the plot, rather than part of it, everyone will notice.

Lastly, brace yourself for some rejection. At the end of the day, only one person is going to win. You are going to get some criticism of your work. Nobody likes being told that their baby is ugly, but... you know what? There are actually a lot of ugly babies out there. Some of them yours. Don't take it personally. Emotionally detach yourself from your work, once it is done, and try to view it from a 3rd party perspective. You will get more out of the event if you can do that, and it will help keep the environment friendlier between competitors and judges.

Good Luck Everyone!
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Old 09-14-2020, 01:26 PM
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This pig is going with Bhelogan's quote here. What he laid out is perfect enough.

Also! Work hard. Keep hydrated. Have fun. I really look forward to your posts, guys. It's always an education.

Game On!

Last edited by PIG; 09-14-2020 at 01:28 PM.
Old 09-15-2020, 10:58 AM
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A veteran of the Iron DM Judge steps forward, Admin RonarsCorruption!

I'm not going to re-hash the judging criteria, they're all pretty clear and honestly close to how I measure everything already.

I'll say, regarding my judging style, that I might come across critical, but I will always try to be fair and constructive as well.

Good luck to all competitors, I always enjoy reading all of your entries.
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Old 09-17-2020, 12:11 PM
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Another long time judge steps forward, holding a well worn gavel in one hand and a small rubber duck in his other hand.

"The tournament is pretty simple, there are a few things I want to see.

First, is the ingredients. I want them USED and used well. To get my best scores here, you'll use the ingredients seamlessly, uniquely and it shouldn't be able to be anything else. For example, if your ingredients are a rubber chicken, don't try to remold it as a bath toy, because as we all know, that is a rubber duck.

Second, it needs to be formatted. I am Although not nearly as old as Dirkothold and struggle to concentrate. Do your best to keep the format easy to follow. Other judges get very picky about spelling and grammatical issues, but I personally don't punish too much for that. Easy of understanding is my key driver here.

Third is play-ability. I needs to be something I like and would want to play in. Keep it exciting and fun.

Finally, keep it INTERESTING. I am here to be entertained, so make sure it is something that I find enjoyable.

That's it, now go get to work!"
Old Yesterday, 08:43 AM
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A first time judge dips his toe into the floor, causing the solid ground to ripple slightly. A hesitant voice initially, grows more confident, "A-at least ... it's warm ... might as well jump in!"

I think the rubric for judgement lays things out pretty darn well, so I will just point out a few sticking points to me:

DM perspective: definitely include mechanics (per the rubric), but don't overwhelm me with them. If you are writing an adventure for a "crunchy" system, and my eyes cross every time I come to the mechanics, it is going to hurt your score. It takes hours to get them to uncross! Remember, not everyone is going to be familiar with every system. Don't scare me off with mechanics, please!

Player perspective: I play/run A LOT of those [OTHER] category systems. As a player, I have never put in an application because of the system, but I have learned a lot of new systems because of the story presented. I will be very pleased to see some of the "non-standard" systems pop up in this competition, but remember that over-emphasizing the system (standard or not) is more likely to scare away players than win them over. Don't scare away players; that will hurt your score ! If there is something important about the specific system that needs to be known, be clear and concise (you're on a word count anyway).
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Last edited by Roekahs; Yesterday at 09:48 AM.
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