Friday, July 29, 2011

Finding a balence, crippling and empowering.

I've been so slow with this blog lately. I'm going to try and kick it back into gear. I have no excuse right now, being on internet with a bandwidth limit doesn't give many other options for things to do anyway.

I've been hard at work though. Within the next two weeks, I'm hoping, I will finally be finishing up the very long campaign I've been running. Trying to figure out how to get things going. I can only hope I'll get something climactic enough once it's done.

And once I'm finally finished with it, I'll be free of the Cthulhutech system, at blood last. It had its problems, but I tend to love it for them, but after running two very long campaigns, an attempted third and playing in another, I won't be touching it again until I hear a very appealing concept.

....Instead with my new game, I'm jumping into Mutants and Masterminds 2nd edition, a game in which two of MY friends are finishing up long running campaigns soon. Maybe when its over, if these plans don't ruin all my friendships I'll have finally thought up ideas for a more original system to offer my friends.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

The Din of Celestial Birds, by Brian Evenson

The review for Petrified Forest will be delayed, I think. I've been busy and unable to focus on the story, its a bit more abstract then I'm used to. I'm quickly discovering I'm bad at reading books. I can't imagine where I picked up that habit from in the last, I dunno decade of dealing almost exclusively with computers.

In the meantime, a much shorter and great story! Spoilers for the story inside.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Stat by stat, putting it together~

Stat by stat,
Putting it together
Power by power,
Only way to make a true monster.
Every little idea for a complication
Only satisfactory when it makes evil laughter.

Having just the concept is frustration
Gotta have the points make it real
Statting it all-
That's what counts.

Awful song parodies aside, they have it very right at times when it comes to finishing one campaign and starting another and you want to make both work right and impress and/or horrify your players.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

The Office of Doom, by Richard Bowes

Spoilers, what little I can divine anyway.

One of the writers of the last story and I have something in common, we love the titles of Lovecraft's stories. The Colour out of Space,  At the Mountains of Madness, The Shadow over Innsmouth, they both describe everything and nothing about the story.

This sounds like the episode title to something from Invader Zim...

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

A surprise in the mail and a review: The Crevasse

I've finally beaten Alice: Madness Returns, I tend to be slow with games when I have multiple, and the steam sale and getting back into pokemon and Magic: The Gathering have eaten a lot of my time. Much of what I said before still applies, but I'm gonna mull things over before I say anything more substancial. So many great ideas for Psychoka, however. And if I see another eyeless doll head for a month I'll claw out my own eyes. They really did overuse them by the final boss.

A bigger bit of news, in the mail today arrived a book I ordered. Only near as I can tell I didn't order it nor did any friends or family. It arrived in a box full of newspaper clippings and a statue of some horrible creature... It's called Lovecraft Unbound, being a Mythos obsessed nerd, its the type of thing I want, but it was only ordered on the 24th of june, and my memory isn't that bad, so I have no idea where it came from. It's a collection of short stories that aims for original lovecraftian horror, as opposed to the normal pastiche, a noble endevor I can support.

I've had the idea that I'll try and read a short story and do a review of each a day, as on getting a seemingly free book, the least I can offer is some critique and advertisement. No promises on such speed though, I'm a slow reader. I will summarise the plot in these, so expect mild spoilers. Awesome information, exact details and the like will likely be spared. In this case the spoilers are pretty heavy. That said these are short stories in an anthology, I doubt it'll be much of an issue. Onto the first review;

The Crevasse, by Dale Bailey and Nathan Ballingrud

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Coping with (Player Character) Loss

Another post made a day after the events of my game that trigger it. (Two if I don't get this done before midnight~) Conflict is a very common thing in games, for similar reasons to video games, it works well for resolving things and entirely non-combatant games are hard. (Not impossible by any means, just hard.) With conflict comes the ever present possibility of death taking any player character, and that is the topic of this small rant.

I don't want to get on the topic of how frequently PCs should die or how justified or unfair PC deaths can be, those are each their own topics I could probably write novels on if I tried.Rather this is about how PCs and games approach the subject of their characters losses in the first place.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Dive Into The Sky

Hey everyone! As may be obvious, a major hobby and time waster of mine is tabletop RPGs, most of these are made by professional companies of people that know what they're doing, but not all!

Myself but far more so some friends of mine have been working on creating a RPG based on the Mecha Musume genre, and heavily influenced on the manga and anime Strike Witches, and the one who started the project has just opened up a blog dedicated to its development.

Nyanpyoun illistrating the basic premise of the genre and anime.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Late Night Madness

Sorry I've not posted in some time, Haven't been feeling well. I have however been keeping myself distracted with video games. Good news is this gives me a chance to talk about them. The steam sales may be partially to blame. Best news is Alice, Madness Returns finally arrived, and I've been waiting for that for a long time.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Luck of the dice

I have a few topics, but after my game yesterday this is the most prevalent in my mind.

Within my own game, a couple things I've been hinting at a few things that near as I can tell, completely flew over the PCs heads. (though probably more esoteric then normal, because ultimately unimportant.) I've had a character always unsure of if the PCs were secretly sort of allies of his own group, or an enemy group, the truth is they're the latter, but the two parties have never really talked honest enough for this to slip and turn into a fight. Then, as a joke at that, one of the PCs made a very, very good roll, at their seduction skill at that!

Friday, July 1, 2011


Ahh, it's good to have the internet again. For the last week and some change, my internet ran out, leaving me with just 56k speeds, or about 2kbs for the last two days, it's a problem with living in Australia. We have limited bandwidth if you want a decent speed. Going to be the second biggest problem with Australian internet soon as I understand but ranting on that could legitimately get me in trouble.

Instead, I've been doing as much as I can offline. Working on Psychoka notes, Pokemon (Finally beating the main game and getting started on catching them all.) and working on minecraft. The first thing I did with my internet returning at the beginning of this month for mortify myself with a stream of my going insane, trying to build a redstone gate. I may include pictures of the map I'm on soon, once I get it prettied up.

There are some good parts to all this though. I've finally gone through with dropping out of my IT course. Now I have everything I wanted to know from the course, its work is just superfluous and a complete waste of time. Especially with the teachers. I've seen bad teachers in my time, but at least they did things. Teaching is a complicated subject and a important one to me, and there are a lot of reasons why expectations may be unfair, but when they'll literally spend entire days ignoring the classes requests for help or don't attend classes themselves? It's not worth dealing with.

Now it's time to focus on psychology for next year, while I look into keeping myself from getting in trouble by volunteer time spent with a local suicide hotline. A very nice ordered textbook arrived from America today and a couple more are in the mail.

Another short bit of news for future blog posts, I'm rewatching a bit of the DC Animated Universe cartoons. I've always held these are great, especially for learning a number of lessons important to RPGs, and a friend has encouraged me to try and do blogs of RPG talk based on each episode. An idea I like. I may work on the first tonight, while I debate between sleep or staying awake for my own game tomorrow, after arriving ten minutes late for his today...