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Scheduling for IRON DM 2013!


Once A Fool
The time has come around again. Do you have what it takes to succeed in three grueling rounds of intense and competitive adventure-writing, in order to become this year's IRON DM?

What is IRON DM?

The founder says it best:

el-remmen said:
Simple. We get 8 people willing to play (and 3 alternates). I pair people off as competitors and give them a set of 6 "ingredients".

The ingredients are elements that must be used in the designing of a scenario/adventure - which should be written up in overview form - players can be as specific as they like - but detailed stat-blocks and the like are not weighed as heavily as uniqueness and playability of the ideas.

The results are then judged by me and the winner moves on to the next round. . .
Who am I?

I'm the judge, that's who! In the past, I judged the IRON DM Summer 2003 Tournament and was a judge in the IRON DM 2011 Tournament. I also used to be a frequent competitor, back in the day and I was the Spring 2002 IRON DM!

Who can enter?

Anyone! [MENTION=34958]Deuce Traveler[/MENTION], as the current IRON DM, has automatic entry into this tournament. The field is open to everybody else!

So, I gotta ask:

Are you creative enough?

Are you disciplined enough?

Are you good enough?

Sign up and prove it!

Current Contestants:

1: IRON DM 2012 Deuce Traveler

2: Wicht

3: EP

4: Mike Myler

5: MortalPlague

6: Radiating Gnome

7: Imhotepthewise

8: Dragonwriter​
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Mike Myler

Mythological Figures & Maleficent Monsters KS soon
I'm an Adamantine DM - am I barred from entry? If not I am definitely interested in participating.


Once A Fool
We're up to 3. Anybody else?

Mike, is that a real thing, or a joke? If it's real, I've never heard of it. And, if it's a joke, well, I've no sense of humor. Or so folk tell me.
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Mike Myler

Mythological Figures & Maleficent Monsters KS soon
I've got DR 3/- but it's just from egotism, not a title bestowed upon me.


Once A Fool
[MENTION=34958]Deuce Traveler[/MENTION], even though your spot is reserved, I'd like for you to check in if you intend to defend your title, if you would.


Do we not have four more brave souls eager to prove their creative abilities in a test of DM savvy and plot-building skills?

For those of you who have never seen or been a part of the contest, let me encourage you to participate. There are few better ways to get the DM juices going than to be given a list of quasi-random ingredients and have to arrange them into a pleasing adventure plot. Iron DM is, truthfully, one of the reasons I keep coming back to EN-World and some of my best memories of this Forum are tied up in the contest. I urge you to give it a shot.

Adventures do not need to be game or even genre specific and you are free to create any sort of viable game adventure with the ingredients you are given, including horror, modern, fantasy (the default), super-hero, etc.

Radiating Gnome

Since I'm not judging this time around, I'll join, but only if it's all right for my first round to not take place until 7/8 or after. If that seems like it's going to be a problem, then I'll just sit in the back play the home game.



Cute but dangerous
I'd like to join in again, but for health reasons I am not sure if I could. I am going to get minor radiation therapy soon and was already told I'd be tired on those days, and I'm not sure what appointments I'll get. :erm:


Once A Fool
Now we're talking!

[MENTION=150]Radiating Gnome[/MENTION], I had hoped that the first round would go pretty quickly, but we ought to be able to push the final match out that far. I'll count you in.
[MENTION=53286]Lwaxy[/MENTION], I hope your radiation therapy goes well. I can understand not wanting to commit under the circumstances; the tournament does take a lot of energy.
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Radiating Gnome

Cool. Since I've created the Iron DM Wiki here on EN World, I will now go rewrite the rules to favor me. All contestants over 4 feet tall get only 2 hours to complete their entries......
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Once A Fool
While we're waiting on our final slot to be filled, I'll go ahead and post the rules for this year's tournament. When it comes time to actually start, I'll start another thread for entries, judgements, and commentary. That thread will also have the following rules therein. This thread will continue to be used for scheduling of the matches.

The Basics:

The tournament is set up in a single-elimination bracket style, with each match determined based on scheduling availability among the eligible contestants.

Each match will consist of two contestants given a single set of six ingredients with which to construct a brief adventure in any game system or genre. You should waste neither time, nor words, on overly detailed stats, but you should also not assume familiarity with any given system or genre. Explain what you need to explain, and stop there!

These entries will be evaluated on their own merits and those evaluations will then be compared to determine the winner of a match, who will then proceed to the next round.

All matches will be given a time-frame to submit your entries within. Entries that are late will still be accepted, but, seriously, don't do this! The later the entry, the more severely it will be penalized in the judgement process. If given a match with an incomplete entry and an entry that was late, I will go into judgement assuming that the latter (later) entry has something to prove. Every fault found in such an entry will be magnified.

Seriously, if you haven't finished with an entry in time, post what you've got! Even if you don't win (and, who knows, you might!), you may find the judgement enlightening for future IRON DM tournaments, anyway!

All entries are expected to make good use of all of the ingredients submitted--that is, they should be creatively applied, well-integrated, and fundamentally necessary to the adventure that they are used in. This is the crux of the tournament, so don't think that maybe (for example) doing a good job with three ingredients will be enough, as long as you can craft a better adventure! I wouldn't count on it, if I were you.

Finally, most of the previous tournaments in the last 11 years have used some optional bonus ingredients in Round 3. This tournament will not make use of such bonus ingredients. Each match will have exactly six ingredients.


All entries are to be submitted with the list of ingredients at the top and are not to be edited, once submitted. Let me repeat that last part: DO NOT EDIT YOUR POST, ONCE YOU HAVE SUBMITTED IT! Check your work before you send it in. Then check it again. I will not look favorably upon any entry that has been edited.

Please do not expect me to follow links within your entry; I will not do so. You may include links for others to follow if you choose to do so, but understand that, during judgement, I will only be reading (and re-reading, and re-re-reading) what is in the actual posted entry.

Along those lines--I will be reading each entry several times. Please don't make that difficult for me. Don't bore me and don't make my eyes bleed. Please.


As I said before, each entry will be judged on its own merits and then the two competing entries' critiques will be compared for the final judgement.

I will endeavor to be Nemmerelesque in my judgements--that is, critical, but also fair and constructive in that criticism. That said, understand that not everybody will agree with every decision I make--that's the nature of the game. Traditionally, second-guessing the judge is all part of the game--and that can lead to some undesired outcomes. It can sting sometimes (believe me, I know!), but it is a game. Let's have some fun with it!

That said, those wishing to gain a little insight into my thinking will need to do a little research to do so, but the information is out there. Be warned, though! I may have changed my thinking on some of these things within the last 11 years!

Tournament Structure:

Round 1:

All matches in the first round will have a 24 hour time-limit! That's right--we're going old-school! These matches will not be restricted in length, but, please, don't bore me! Contestants who win their Round 1 matches will proceed to Round 2.

Round 2:

All matches in the second round will have a 48 hour time-limit. These matches will have a 3000 word limit (not including the title and ingredients list). Contestants who win their Round 2 matches will proceed to Round 3.

Round 3:

The third round match will also have a 48 hour time-limit. This match will have a 2000 word limit (not including the title and ingredients list). The contestant who wins this match will be the IRON DM 2013.


Once A Fool
One more thing: Commenting on fellow posters' entries is both welcome and encouraged, but please, if I haven't posted a judgement on the relevant entry yet, hide such commentary within spoiler or sblock tags!

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