Friday, August 29, 2014

Daily Cosplay (Steampunk Frozen)

Children of the Horned God

Before the forges of Klarglich were made, before the hounds of darkness issued forth from Austrag and long before the mogrl were crafted in the Pits of Woe, Unklar fashioned the ungern. When first he came through the portal, Unklar slew the high priest Nectanebo. After that, he fell upon the Emperor's Guard and the God-Emperor himself. All fell to the Horned God with an ease that made that beastly creature forever after hold great disdain for the folk of the All Father's fashioning. So immediately he gathered to him the substance of the Void and with the language of his Father, he crafted the ungern, the "black spawn." Some say that they were born of a union between the dark fey and wild evil men enslaved in Unklar's service. But this is not so; they are of the Val-Austlich, those creatures forged from the Language of Creation and the Val-Eahrakun, of which Unklar was one of the greatest. The Judgement of Corthain does not bind them and the ungern move freely about the planes as few other creatures can.

The Ungern served Unklar as soldiers and captains, and spread his evil throughout the lands. They were the battle lords that destroyed Kayomar, drove the elves of the Shelves of the Mist into ruin and plundered the dwarf halls. Their numbers were great and they led the armies in countless battles, ever in the service of their dark master. They filled the holds of Aufstrag with their evil and their numbers grew beyond scope. 

~The Codex of Aihrde

Upon Misty Fields

Word of the Day -- Paladin

The paladins, sometimes known as the Twelve Peers, were the foremost warriors of Charlemagne's court, according to the literary cycle known as the Matter of France. They first appear in the early chansons de geste such as The Song of Roland, where they represent Christian valor against the Saracen hordes. The paladins and their associated exploits are largely later fictional inventions, with some basis on historical Frankish retainers of the 8th century and events such as the Battle of Roncevaux Pass and the confrontation of the Frankish Empire with Umayyad Al-Andalus in the Marca Hispanica.

Paths to Treasure

While digging on Hardian's Wall archeologists uncovered a well-worked, wooden, seat, shaped like a ring with an opening in the middle. You guessed it, they uncovered a very old toilet seat. Which is pretty cool in and of itself, because these things are few and far between. Lying their in the clay for so many years, the seat is very well preserved. It is smooth and well used. And wooden. The only one of its kind that we have.

That's cool.

But what is even more cool is what might lie underneath. Often, according to the site manager, Roman toilets hold all manner of artifacts. Items dropped in the abyss, tend to stay there as few braved the tunnels of despair to fetch dropped items.

So the paths to treasure continue.

That should really be where a treasure horde the latrine. It might dissuade the characters from plunging in . . . though I doubt it.

Movie Round Up

New Trailer for the Seventh Son . . .


The Pyramid, into the deeps we go!

The Vikings (History channel show). If you haven't seen this, you should. Its very good.

In Dungeons Deep

Iceland's Barbarbunga Volcano

Iceland's Barbarbunga volcano has been rumbling for some time now and it looks like its finally broken the surface. Its not a mountain of an eruption but a large fissure (an old one by all accounts) has opened north of the volcano and is vomiting its contents upon the land.

The volcano is on red alert and it seems to be pushing up and out in multiple areas. Planes have been diverted as its almost impossible to know when the volcano will...if at all...blow. The volcano itself lies beneath the ice sheets in north Iceland and has been melting a great deal of its cap. The Grimstvon Lake has jumped from 16 to 32 feet in the last week or so.

We'll see.

This is not the volcano in question.

Trailer ~ The Flash (new)

Star Trek Fan Film

A Star Trek fan film may be on its way. The group raised $630,000 on Kickstarter and is set to begin production soon. The full length film will be at least 90 minutes long and chronicle the battle of Axanar. This is 21 years before Captain Kirk begins his legendary exploration of the galaxy and goes "where no man has gone before."

Axanar is a huge battle in Garth of Izar cuts his teeth, becoming the idol of the Star Fleet Academy and Captain Kirk's hero.

The preview looks good and has some recognizable actors in it, most notable Tony Todd!

See the preview here.

The Perfect Monster

Our weekly game has seen the party wandering through a horrid marsh, they are making no time and are constantly having to double back, circle around and push their way through all the muck and mire. Its a cursed swamp so they are being hounded at every turn, up to six encounters a night (less in the day).

Its an interesting trek, but one that's going to get a whole lot more interesting.

Introducing the siphonophores. This creature lives on our own planet, living in the deep waters. They grow by cloning body parts and rapidly become a sprawling mess of specialized body organs. One set of body parts might provide locomotion, another set for reproduction, another set for feeding, etc. The cloned parts act more like a colony than a single bodied organisms. But these miss-mashed creatures can extend up to 100 feet.

It looks like next weeks adventure is going to get a whole lot more interesting. They might kill part of it, but there will be a little more.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Daily Cosplay

The Fall of Al Liosh

In the end Frafnog came to the lands of the Long River and Al Liosh. Coming from the south, he set all to ruin along the Udunilay, burning any and all, plundering, devouring, slaying all who challenged him. When Al Liosh at last stood before him, with her long walls of white stone, towers and temples, he hesitated. He flew slowly over the city looking upon the glory of its majesty. All there could see the weight of him and his size was beyond imagining. Four hundred feet long, and half as wide, wings that blotted out the sun. Frafnog, first born of Inzaa, his eyes emblazoned with his mother's ire.

When all had seen the dragon and the stink of his fear soiled the hearts of men, Frafnog fell, plummeting like a mountain into the city. The buffet of his wings tore roofs from buildings, the tail slap brought towers to ruin, his roar broke the hearts of men and drove them mad, and his breath washed over them like the fires of damnation. The dragon raged in Al Liosh for days, killing and burning. When the wages of his rage were at last paid, Al Liosh lay in ruins, the Red Men fled to the north, their temples cast down. Frafnog called the God Emperor forth. And Antek IV came, for such was the power of the dragon that none could resist him, and with him came the remains of his court.

~The Codex of Aihrde

A Dragon's Ire

Mysterious Rocks Moving

As you've no doubt heard there are rocks in Death Valley that leave trails behind them as they crawl through the sand. Wait? What? Rocks leave a trail? Indeed he says professorially.

Its been a mystery for some time, but not anymore.

A team of knuckleheads got together and figured out how and why. "A rare combination of water and ice combines to move the rocks, the researchers said. The playa lake needs to be deep enough for floating ice, but shallow enough to leave the rocks exposed. The surface ice should be thin "windowpane" ice, but strong enough to break into big panels that can bully the rocks. Finally, the freezing nights need to be followed by sunny days with light winds, which drive the cracking ice across the lake."

Live Science has the full article and its pretty funny, some of the comments said. Enjoy it here.

The world is just a little less interesting.

Towers of Adventure

Movie Trailer ~ Hybrid

Comic Con Heading Out?

It seems that Comic Con San Diego has been growing alot in recent years. They have filled up the convention center, flooded to overflowing the hotels and pushed their venue out from the convention center. Requests to San Diego to expand the center seemed hopeful but have apparently not been successful as the City Council voted to not expand the center.

That's probably a very bad move. I'm not sure of the economics, but having 10s of thousands of people flood your local community for a week or so every year has to pump up the wallet, and governments (everywhere) need cash like a drug addict needs a fix (all the time and however they can get it).

Because if the convention center doesn't expand, the show's owners are thinking of moving the event elsewhere.

Wow. The San Diego Comic Con not in San Diego. Makes since, Geneva Con is now Gen Con and lies in Indianapolis. Its the nature of success.

For the Star Wars Collector

Marvel is following its Howard the Duck omnibus with a Star Wars collection, or rather collections.

This sucker is going to weight in at 440 pages, which is pretty cool and retailers for 35 smackers. Not a bad price for all that. It joins a few other collections that Marvel is doing. All this to bring everything to the fore for the release of the three new comic book titles they have planned for the near future (to coincide with the new movie).

There's a bunch of them and I'll let ICv2 give you the full skinny. Read about it here.

Armor Up (Templars)

Six Degrees of King Arthur

Oh, wait, not degrees, but movies. Apparently Warner Brothers has hatched a plot to produce six King Arthur movies. The script for the first one is complete and off to production we hear. That is cool enough, but it looks like they've also scored Charlie Hunnam for the role of the greatest of the world's many Kings.

Hunnam plays Jax in the FX show Sons of Anarchy. If you haven't seen it, I recommend it. Its very good...though pretty violent, be warned. But what makes the show really successful are the actors. The stories are interesting. The show is well done, but the actors are through the roof. the All these guys give it there all and Hunnam is right there with it.  

He's got the look and feel for a King Arthur . . . he sort of plays one in Sons of Anarchy.

Good news all the way around!

Word of the Day -- Cosmology

Cosmology (from the Greek κόσμος, kosmos "world" and -λογία, -logia "study of"), is the study of the origin, evolution, and eventual fate of the universe. Physical cosmology is the scholarly and scientific study of the origin, evolution, large-scale structures and dynamics, and ultimate fate of the universe, as well as the scientific laws that govern these realities.  Religious cosmology (or mythological cosmology) is a body of beliefs based on the historical, mythological, religious, and esoteric literature and traditions of creation and eschatology.

The Hubble eXtreme Deep Field
Physical cosmology is studied by scientists, such as astronomers, and theoretical physicists; and academic philosophers, such as metaphysicians, philosophers of physics, and philosophers of space and time. Modern cosmology is dominated by the Big Bang theory, which attempts to bring together observational astronomy and particle physics.

Although the word cosmology is recent (first used in 1730 in Christian Wolff's Cosmologia Generalis), the study of the universe has a long history involving science, philosophy, esotericism and religion. Related studies include cosmogony, which focuses on the origin of the Universe, and cosmography, which maps the features of the Universe. Cosmology is also connected to astronomy, but while the former is concerned with the Universe as a whole, the latter deals with individual celestial objects.

When Satellites Collide

We hear about all the space junk floating around above our lovely planet and the dangers it poses to flying craft, but we rarely hear of some it colliding. Apparently back in February that's exactly what happened. Two satellites smacked into each other at 15,000 miles per hour.

That's a pretty good bump.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Daily Cosplay

Torture Your Dog for Yourtube!

This just annoyed the crap out of me. I don't even like to put leashes on the dogs (they are whistle trained, well one anyway, the other one's an idiot). But now you can buy some giant harness to put on your dog's back and make funny youtube videos. This is worse than putting hats and sweaters on dogs, at least those serve a purpose (or attempt to).

I was watching this show the other day where they tagged this shark with a camera and tracking device, clipping it on his dorsal fin. And I thought, what a mean thing to do. That poor shark has to swim around with some crappy computer attached to him. We should do that to a few biologists. Make them run around with a camera attached to their ankle.


Look at the following pictures and find the happy dog:


Now this is a suit of armor. Not sure how realistic it is, not being an armorer. But it looks cool and as if its not over done as too often the movies tend to do. Armor can be pretty heavy, seeing how its all made of metal. 

This is Leelee Sobieski from the movie Joan of Arc.

The Hollmgrads

This is a low range of mountains that creep out of the great northern wastes and edge up to the Inner Sea. The mountains are thickly forested in evergreen. The mountains are not high and are gently sloped, having been scraped raw by the glaciation during the Winter Dark. The mountains frequently give way to highland plateaus, areas where the elevation is sufficiently low enough to allow for longer summers. They are very wet, dominated by bogs and pete marshes.

Winter lasts throughout much of the year and snow can fall at any time. In the short summers many creeks and streams of frigid water wash through frosty vales and across the cool plateaus.

Many creatures of the north dwell here, sea lions on the coasts, musk oxen, white bears, wolves and snow deer, yak, elk, caribou and moose. To those who know the secrets of the Hollmgrads, it is a bountiful land and one full of promise. Winter is the only enemy, for they harsh. Frozen winds from the Inner Sea mix with the chilly storms of the north in a battle in the sky, bringing icy rain, then snow, all carried by bitterly cold winds.

The men of Holmgald call this place home, and many wander into the Hollmgrads seeking fabled creatures, snow-beasts and white dragons. An old dwarven highway remains, the Andrus Road, beginning in the Gruswald, wandering the whole length of the mountains to end in the Moravan Plains. It is narrow, made for foot and mule traffic only and frequently consists of little more than stairs carved into the mountain, or peg cliffs designed for climbing up vertical walls. It is sprinkled with old hostels, stone ruins now, a testament to when the dwarves wandered the road on an almost daily basis.

~The Codex of Aihrde

The Long Slopes

Blade Runner Sequel A Go

Ridley Scott said in an interview that the Blade Runner sequel is a go and its "damn good" to quote the man himself. The first of course is an iconic film that is perhaps one of the best, if not the best, science fiction movie ever made.

Very loosely based on the Philip K. Dick short story Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep, Blade Runner finds Dekker, a police officer, hunting down dangerous androids, who themselves are looking for a way to extend their life spans. Fantastic film.

The sequel picks up years later and stars Harrison Ford in his iconic role. We'll see if he can capture that mood of tough ambivalence that he portrayed before.

Mermaids & Yaks

Two of the greatest things in the world. Mermaids . . .

And Yaks . . .

And by default this Musk Ox . . .

Arnie Makes the World a Better Place

We know that Arnie is deeply committed to the new Conan franchise. We hear a release date of 2015 and we also hear there may be more than just one, which would be fantastic. Though Conan the Destroyer wasn't as good as Conan the Barbarian (largely a script issue), it does not land on Arnie's plate. He played the rolls given him.

And Conan the Barbarian was just plain cool.

Now we have Maggie. An Arnie Zombie flick set for release in 2015. It was supposed to debut earlier but Lionsgate picked up the movie and is promising a full release next year.

This is good news for Arnie as his box office draw has not been great recently (though his latest movies have been really good) which probably means that digital sales have been strong.

Its better news for us, because we have a better chance of seeing Arnie Kill Zombies!!!

Beneath the World

I like this concept. Not sure what for, maybe a dwarf realm, more open and natural than I previously conceived them. But this is painting screams adventure!

Wait? What?

When you rely on someone else to do the work that you need to do, they might be able to hold it over your head?

According to former NASA Chief, who seems to have a suddenly read the history of any year in the 4000 years of recorded human history, has discovered that the Russians can hold transport to the International Space Station over our heads

Back a few years ago we retired our fleet of space shuttles and decided that the Russians, the only ones doing manned space flight and whom we just came out of a 60+ year war with, would offer a kindly surrogate.

Turns out they don't always agree with the west and can now hold that over our heads, barring us from the ISS. Who could possibly have anticipated this?

Of course NASA's budget has been cut to a nub, of course NASA has massive spending habits. 

Thank god for the billionaires!

Word of the Day -- CAPTCHA

A CAPTCHA (an acronym for "Completely Automated Public Turing test to tell Computers and Humans Apart") is a type of challenge-response test used in computing to determine whether or not the user is human. The term was coined in 2000 by Luis von Ahn, Manuel Blum, Nicholas J. Hopper of Carnegie Mellon University and John Langford of IBM. The most common type of CAPTCHA was first invented by Mark D. Lillibridge, Martin Abadi, Krishna Bharat and Andrei Z. Broder. This form of CAPTCHA requires that the user type the letters of a distorted image, sometimes with the addition of an obscured sequence of letters or digits that appears on the screen. Because the test is administered by a computer, in contrast to the standard Turing test that is administered by a human, a CAPTCHA is sometimes described as a reverse Turing test. This term is ambiguous because it could also mean a Turing test in which the participants are both attempting to prove they are the computer.

Yes, that's the history of these annoying things!

The Fire of Orc

This is your Sun . . .

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Dailiy Cosplay

The Vale of Jariel

They dwelt there together for a long season.

When summer came Aedgen’s thoughts turned back to his people. He implored Tefnut for aid in bringing them hither. And so it was that in the far north, upon the headwaters, that the people first encountered Tefnut. She rose from the water one midday, and called to them to follow her. Aedgen’s people were amazed, for such beauty and power they had never seen. For all that Tefnut was, came of the flowing waters and deep pools of the world, and her power was little spent in those days and much of what had, lie in the Ethvold itself. Not until that forest was lost was her power diminished.

The Ethrum followed Tefnut south. She calmed the river for them and brought them, after many hardships, to the deep vale that lay in the long valleys of Kayomar, that men would later call Jariel. And that land became the heart of the tribes of Ethum for many ages of the world they worshiped Tefnut and the gods of the Ethvold, that were later called the Og Aust, the Old Gods.

~The Codex of Aihrde

Into Morning's Fog

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,...