Friday, September 28, 2012

Daily Cosplay

And this is just cool....

Armor Porn

Rune Lore Tiles

These are cool! Wooden tiles that have the symbols of the rune spells... You get these when you preorder Rune Lore. Great collector's item!

Octoberfest Behind the Bierleichen

Octoberfest began in 1810 in Munich, Bavaria. It was a fest to celebrate the marriage of Prince Ludwig, crowned as Ludwig I King of Bavaria at some point; it was held on the fields before the city's gates, named by the locals Theresa's Meadow, after the Prince's betrothed. The fest lasted several days and closed with a series of horse races. These races were held again the following year and thus Octoberfest began.

I Just Like Lions

Castles & Crusades Needs More of This

The Sundews, or better known as Drosera,comprise 194 different species of plants. They are small, found in many different climates. They are a carnivorous. They are best known for the sticky residue that coats their leaves or 'tentacles' which other creatures, usually small insects, become stuck to. The prey is pulled in to the center, where they are devoured.

The Drosera glanduligera, as reported in Science News, is a little different however. Their tentacles lay far out from the bowl of the plant, when prey walks across them, they stick and then are catapulted up and into the maw of the bowl.

In a world where these plants were giants . . . .

Where Water Once Flowed

Our intrepid adventurer has discovered evidence of a stream on our sister planet Mars. The stream flowed fast and for a great distance it would seem. ""From the size of gravels it carried, we can interpret the water was moving about 3 feet per second, with a depth somewhere between ankle and hip deep," said Curiosity science co-investigator William Dietrich of the University of California, Berkeley.

Perhaps, beneath the sands and shale there are great cisterns of water, built by the Fremen...err, wait, that's Arakis. 

Read full article. 

This is How You Die!

Thursday, September 27, 2012

The Point Buy for the cleric

The Point Buy for Spells

I am also proposing that the cleric be able topurchase spells through a point buy sysytem. Eachspell is given a value andthe cleric has x number of spel,points to use to purchase those spells. To reduce the machine gun effect, I am also proposing a failure system for repetative casting of the same spell. 

To make matters work for this evening I am proposing a simple numeration. Spell cost is equal to the level acquired +1. 0 level spells are worth 1 point, 1st level spells are worth two points, 2nd level spells are worth 4 points, etc. My cleric will have a purchasing power equal to his levels total point value in spells based on a different equation. See chart.

level   spell points
1             5
2             8
3             11
4             16
5             20
6             28
7             35

That would be 35 points with a 3 point kicker due to wisom bonus for a 38 total. The immediate problem that I see is the capacity to throw a lot of high level spells - four to be exact. Now, does this unduly unbalance the cleric. At first glance, I thought that it would, but on the whole, those spells are not very powerful and exclusive use of them would obviate some of the cleric's other beneficial uses and quickly reduce him to a combat grunt. So for tonights game, I am going to stick with this set-up.

nother rule I am plopping in is an attribute check for multiple uses ofnthe same spell. The checks are straight wisdom checks. The first use is succesful, the second has a -1 wisdom check to succed, then -2, -4, -6 etc.

That said, I will be changing some of the spells and adding or subtracting costs to them. For example, of the top of my head, I think I am going to bump healing circle to a 10 point cost. I will post on the results and see what Steve's take is on the whole deal.

Daily Cosplay

Octoberfest or More Happy Germans

Some Bar Maids you'll find in the Inne at Ends Meet...or in Germany!

And the "Bierleichen!"

What did You do today

This dude dove into a pod of Killer Whales to rescue one from the entangled ropes of cray pots.

I think I'll go watch some Sponge Bob . . . .

Armor Porn

Courtesy the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland!

Communism Aint Pretty

The trabant has been universally heralded as one of the worst cars of all time. Built by the East Germans after World War II in order to create a true "people's car" the trabant was made of reinforced fiberglass...often reinforced with wood fiber. It guzzled gas like madness, coughed black oil when it ran, and made a god awful noise. When the wall came tumbling down a great host of these car were driven across the ruins and abandoned in the Free West!

Lake Sørvágsvatn

It is quite apparent that TLG needs to move its offices to the Faroe Islands. Not only are their Vikings there but there is some of the most beautiful scenery in the world.

Lake Sørvágsvatn is about 6 km long and spills into the Atlantic at these cliffs. Several small towns stand on its shores.

Frodo's Finger . . . Not Exactly

This is a strange story from Grims Faery Tales. Several months back a fellow went wakeboarding in an Idaho lake. His fingers became hung in the line and as the boat powered up, the line cinched, and cut his fingers all over. They sank into the murky deep. Several months later a fisherman, gutting a fish finds a very well preserved human finger inside. One finger print analysis later and the dude has a finger back...only he didn't really want it.

Read the full story.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

First official cleric change request

For the home game. In short, Steve has been running our egular game for two to three years now and I am playing a cleric. As per my previous entries, I have ben pondering some changes for our game to liven up the cleric so I can better play the character in the manner I prefer.

As such, my first official rules change request will be to have spells on demand rather than memorized. I am not opposed to Vancian Magic but feel it is innapropriate for my cleric. My character needs to be able to fulfill the gods wishes and, as I see it, for the character to best be able to do that, he should be able to use any of the spells the gods have given him the power to use, as needed.

Would this change much? I don't see it as a significant change. The spell lists are limited and most of the spells are suport spells and, other than the buffs and a few other spells, have little immediate impact on play. However, seeing the possibility for abuse, I have decided to self limit certain types of spells and make the casting of others more dificult.

As such, the cure light and serious and heal spells will become ritual spells. In fact, I will likely conflate them into one spell with effects dependent on level and casting time. The buffing spells will be dealtbwith similarly.


Difference Engine

Charles Babbage invented the Difference Engine in 1822...he worked on perfecting it for the next 2 decades. The machine itself was a large mechanical calculator designed to tabulate polynomial numbers. 

Steampunk is a 'what if' scenario. What if the difference engine had been fully developed, mingling these massive machines with the Victorian Age. It all sounds very very cool.

Armor Porn

Daily Cosplay


Mining Enceladus

Saturn tethers the small moon Enceladus holding her in the midst of her gigantic rings. It is cold on the moon, roughly -200 degrees Celsius or -300 Fahrenheit. This is largely due to her tremendous reflection of sunlight. The plates on her frozen surface shift, grinding against one another to form several distinct plains and ridges. This may indicate liquid beneath the surface, a thought reinforced by her volcanic activity for she vomits frozen ice and water vapor above her south pole. Much of this settles back on the surface though some drifts out into the rings.

Getting there will be challenging as the frozen rings of Saturn must be navigated first. Huge ice breakers, slow with massively thick hulls must perchance push their way through. Once on the surface mining will pose its own challenges. With no atmosphere to speak of, frozen temperatures, active volcanoes and earthquakes the miners living conditions will be harsh.

Windows Looking In

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Armor Porn

Courtesy Red Fang!

Daily Cosplay

Mammoth Bones Game Time!

I'm pretty sure this needs to go in my next game session somehow, not sure what I'm going to do with it but this just proves my long standing argument that the neanderthals were just flipping cool. They found a home built by our slightly taller cousins in the Ukraine made of mammoth bones. The structure is 25 feet at the base and made entirely of the bones of that wild wooly beast. They dug post holes and had fire pits.

Read more.

Those Dang Britons!

Hugh Thomson has a fascinating article on early agriculture in Bronze Age Britain. The record shows that much of "England" was cleared by 1000 BC (I'm not certain if this includes Wales, Scotland or Ireland . . . and my guess would be no as those areas possess slightly more rugged terrain). Those ancient forests that pre-date the dawn of time just aren't accurate. It takes only a few centuries for a forest to regrow, weeding out smaller trees and become "old growth"; it would seem that Enland's old growth came after the Romans.

 The myth panders to our need for a sense of loss. There is an undercurrent of regret running through our history. A nostalgia for what could have been: the unicorn disappearing into the trees; the loss of Roman Britain; the loss of Albion; the loss of Empire. We are forever constructing prelapsarian narratives in which a golden sunlit time — the Pax Romana, the Elizabethan golden age, that Edwardian summer before the First World War, a brief moment in the mid-1960s with the Beatles — prefigure anarchy and decay. Or the cutting down of the forest.

Read the whole article.

I'm Pretty Sure There's a . . .

. . . Pillow salesman behind this article. But it seems all the sleep we lose during the week can't be made up on the weekends. Apparently, sleeping in on Saturday messes up our circadian rhythm and makes our Monday's a little more difficult.

Read more about your weekend.

Happy German

How to Fight Giants

Monday, September 24, 2012

Kick Ass!!

No, really. Kick Ass!! Kick Ass 2 is set to come out next year, June 28th. Filming has already begun. In Kick Ass 2 we have Justice Forever, a band of super-heroes gathering to fight the Red Mist. This first Kick Ass has one of the best Jaw Dropping fight scenes of all time in it, when Hit Girl kills all the gangsters. Lets hope movie 2 keeps up the heavy hitting. A lot of the same actors are returning so that's a plus. Gotta love some Kick Ass!

Red Mist's new look.

Night Bitch!

Daily Cosplay

Armor Porn

The Autumnal Equinox

An equinox occurs twice a year (around 20 March and 22 September), when the tilt of the Earth's axis is inclined neither away from nor towards the Sun, the center of the Sun being in the same plane as the Earth's equator. The term equinox can also be used in a broader sense, meaning the date when such a passage happens. The name "equinox" is derived from the Latin aequus (equal) and nox (night), because around the equinox, the night and day have approximately equal length.

This shindig happened on Saturday.

Shelob has found a new home . . .

Upon the Horizon

In 2009 a new cloud formation was put forward for acceptance, the undulatus asperatus. These unusual cloud formations tend to form in the Great Plains of the U.S., after a storm. They not presage storms themselves, they only look bad ass.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Armor Porn, the future is now

You can actually buy this suit or could at one time. The inventor is Troy Hurtubise from the great nation of Canadia :) If you have never heard of Troy, please check out his wiki entry for a start on one real amazing dude.

Troy is how I imagine Canada. But with more red.

Daily Cosplay


Friday, September 21, 2012

the cleric part two

So, reimagining the cleric for my game is leading me down several different paths and along some unexpected tangents. In short, I have begun to reframe magic such that dilineations between spell casting characters can be made through the nature of the spells they cast.

My first premise is that there are two types of magic in the multi-verse; arcane and divine. The differences between the two are somewhat nebulous in the details though as a superstructure I am thinking the arcane manipulates the multiverse whereas the divine, for lack of better words, creates or reshapes the multiverse. Further, the arcane has little direct effect on sentient beings whereas the divine can have direct effect.

I'll try and give an example.  Let us imagine a thick wooden door. The arcane spell caster could cast something like 'sunder' and shatter the door. The divine caster has few options. The door is not sentient and the wood is long dead. I am imagining a spell like 'Force of the Gods' by which the divine caster could cause the door to give way. That would be dependent on checks though (I am currently imaginging quite a few checks).  Then again, it may be the case that the door should simply not open forthe cleric. 

Another example is fireball. I am imagining    Code the arcane caster as needing fire (say a torch) in order to cast the fireball from. On the other hand, the cleric could actually create fire though  not create a fireball.  Anyway, just some thoughts I am throwing around now.

Not sure, still working these through and should be focusing on the cleric alone.

So, the cleric, as I am considering it, should have domains. By domains, I mean spiritual arenas that reflect a patron deity or pantheon.  Or better yet, the cleric would choose a domain to focus on - or not.

The domains I am thinking of fall within the framework of religions. For example, the domain of life, the domain of death, the domain conflict, the domain of honor, etc. The domain selected would influence both the manner and effect and even outcome of spells.

So, lets say one cleric chooses the domain of life and another the domain of death. Then, lets thow out a heal spell. Both could cast it, but the cleric with the domain of life would have better heals that the cleric with the domain of death. The reverse, of course, cause wounds or whatever,  is better suited to the cleric with the domain of life. A cleric with no domain gets an average result.

Sop that is the direction I am going now.

Here are some spell ideas I am kicking around as well.

Soul Search: allows the caster to follow the trace of someon's soul

Will of the Gods: Allows the caster to influence people to undertake an action the cleric is involved in

Force of the gods: allows the caster to cause something to happen like a door opening a bell ringing or something like that

Spiritual Presence: detects holy place

know religion: allows the caster to know the spiritual affiliation of the targeor area - this should be, i am thinking, an innate ability.

alter fate: changes a failed check to a successful check on the target

healing: varies with domain and level but goes all the way to ressurection

Voice of the gods : causes wisdom damage

holy armor: the cleric calls forth an armor that magically encases their body

blessing spells: various effects by level

Daily Cosplay

Moive Magic

I loved the remake of King Kong. I remember sitting in Gary Gygax's living room having a lighthearted argument about; he was a fan of the original (which is truly a great movie I could not deny) but I was very fond of the remake and remain so. King Kong is a classic tale of man against nature and himself, the modern world's clash with the primitive. It is our tale.

This is a rip roaring clib of titanic battle.

Armor Porn

Fire Elemental

A rift tore between the fabric of the plane of elemental fire and earth not long ago. An elemental tore through the rift and attacked a local man living in Australia. Chris Tangey armed himself for battle...with his camera...and got some great footage.

Here's the video

A Danish Ax

From our Viking friends came the Dane Ax. A long-hafted ax with a curved blade. Contrary to many held believes the blade on the Dane Ax was thin and the overall weapon light; its design was not to batter through armor or shields, but to cleave flesh and bone. Use of the ax was a skill, it was not just a meat cleaver.

Memories from the Office of a Game Publisher – Office Space

Everywhere I look across social media I seem to be encountering two things. Economic news about the pending commercial real estate collapse,...