Paizo has culled the field of RPG Superstar finalists to the sweet 16…er, 17. What horrifyingly evil villainous concepts did the winners create, and what did Ed Greenwood think of them?
For this round of RPG Superstar, entrants had to come up with a concept for a villain. Submissions include a gaggle of evil wizards and sorcerors, a fiend or two, a couple of insane nobles, a warlord and at least one lich. You can find the entire list of winners and read the full entries over at Paizo. There are some really interesting and disturbing concepts and even a few flashes of brillaint writing. Here are two of my favorites:
Sartel Bollen, Mistress of the Headless Caravan (a hag sorceror) – “Mounted sidesaddle on a headless zebra, she is followed by hordes of decapitated servants, an army she has gathered to escort the god-head to its body. Rhinos, jackals, and rats march with men and ogres. Crows flock with vultures in the hundreds. None bear a head, but all are compelled by Ydersius to serve Sartel. With no mouths everything is eerily quiet. The stench of rot is overwhelming. Heads of scholars hang from her saddle ready to supply knowledge and offer council.”
Varrush, Master of the Palace of Abundance (a Rakshasha monk) – “Varrush is a malicious earthbound spirit of vice and corruption. In his natural form, Varrush is a lean, leonine creature. His flesh is the pale yellow of desert dust, and his shaggy mane falls about his shoulders in dirty-brown dreadlocks. His eyes, orbs of unreflective tar, lack any hint of mortal empathy. A sharp cinnamon scent hangs upon him, a mere taste of his numerous excesses.”
Best of all, you can read the comments made by the judges, including guest judge Ed Greenwood. It’s cool to see how much the judges liked some of the winners, but perhaps even more fascinating to find that some entrants were not well-liked, yet somehow still made it through. Why 17 instead 16? There was a tie in the voting. For the next round, the 17 winners will have to create a stat block for a villain.