Tuesday, 25 November 2014


This last week we got into a bit of a pickle. Continuing on our trail of dead bodies we are currently up to our collective knees (currently even in number) in undead. It would seem that our keen deductive skills have led us to the conclusion that if you are looking for someone who is making Zombies, then perhaps a Crypt would be a good place to start.
Now, to be fair, its clearly an inside job from one of the priests running the place but they don't seem to think so. Evidence is not always something that would convince  a religious nutter but due diligence means we are now forced into a corpse audit. So, as a Paladin, I am of course concerned with what is right and wrong but does this extend to stock taking? Not sure, I would suppose it depends on how I feel about it but how does it work in the real world ? I know for example a library has to have a stock take - it shuts, counts the books, and reopens. But what about a graveyard or an aforementioned Crypt.. In the real world I suppose you wouldn't expect bodies to disappear but how would you actually know ? The whole point is to eliminate expectations altogether and audit properly.
Nevertheless, we started the arduous task of counting the graves and bodies. Didn't take long of course before we came across some loose brickwork and we are now fighting for our lives - in the region of 20 skeletons - worryingly some of which are standing at the back waving their arms and I don't think they are trying to get our attention.
Out of curiosity here is the link to the UKGov document on advice for burial ground managers.
I was just curious if audits were in fact mandatory in the real world or if three was anything else that may help us in our current quest, though I don't suppose that we can effectively fight undead with red tape. I do however note that :
"2.23 Burial authorities may contribute towards the provision or maintenance of burial grounds in which their inhabitants may be buried "
"may be buried" !?..... If there are indeed inhabitants of burial grounds that may not be buried there then who or what are we talking about exactly....

Wednesday, 19 November 2014

You gotta laugh

Despite the dark side of the comic book character genre there is also its rather more satirical side; a sort of caricature of a caricature Whilst I have played quite a few heroes system as such - GURPS supers come to mind as my preferred , hero/villain character generation just cries out for parody; it just seems to come naturally out of the advantage/ disadvantage or power/ vulnerability points systems. My last favourite character in this regard was a superfast explosive expert by the name of Mr Mollotov, who could flash into a scene, assemble complex explosives at superfast speeds and dash out again. Wonderful superskills in principal but balanced by severe DTs, chain smoking, caffeine addiction and insomnia -basically a nervous wreck. I'm sure everyone has their favourite.

 But for those who don't know there are onliners who have taken up this particular cause and created some wonderful comic strips in the meta. Thanks to Mike and Jules for chipping in some of these links.
The first I came across was Goblins: The trial and tribulations of level 1 miscreants and what they have to put up with on a day to day basis. Fumbles is an excellent name for a character by the way.
Webcomics: DM of the Rings. This one is like the Red vs Blue video satire but set in Middle Earth, where everyone is just trying to work out what is going on....
Darths and Droids. My favourite I think - such an easy read with the scene selection its an absolute pleasure to flick through.
Oh, and I note that The Knights of Basassdom is now finally out on demand. Horribly flawed for the casual film buff but enough in it to make it a worthy giggle for the gamer :-) 4 out of 5 stars.

Wednesday, 12 November 2014

Bite to the death.

So, I have a dental appointment at the beginning of Dec and hopefully wont be toothless for Christmas otherwise I'll be blending my turkey. What the fuck am I talking about ? God knows but it got me thinking about various biting issues I have come across. Now the bite is one extra attack in most cases so perhaps not as concerning in and of itself (Dragons aside) but, like a most orthodontic issues, there are consequences in the long run for not taking teeth seriously enough.
As a GM I have sneaked in the odd rabid dog into an adventure, which is particularly amusing when high level characters are concerned as they often try and brush off the details. I reminisce one particular Rolemaster party of 30+ level players that slayed their way through a cave complex to an insane Demon. Though they barely paused to wipe the orc blood off their clothes, one of them did pick up a scratch from some nasty guard dogs. Instant lycanthropy of course. Whilst the player hardly remembered the incident he was concerned to be having blackouts every month and finding his home both trashed and smeared with body parts. Oh how we laughed..
So, there have been plenty of dramas of late concerning the paradigm between the Werewolf and our other fiendishly fanged friend the Vampyre. I'm thinking of the Underworlde series of films but also Being Human come to mind as well as others I am sure you can think of. What happens exactly if and when one bites the other has been an interesting subject, however I do feel that humans are under represented here...
Now follow my logic - should a human be attacked by a werewolf of course its often a foregone plot device but I'm not so sure about this. A defenceless human being attacked by a werewolf would be quickly mashed one would think but what if the human got in the first bite ? Perhaps even with the help of a surprise advantage ? Why would this matter ? Well, for all of you burgeoning dentists and Van Helsings out there you will of course know that our fillings are more often or not made from amalgam, which  consists of: mercury (50%), silver (~22-32% ),  tin (~14%), copper(~8%), and other trace metals. Well its the 22.32% that matters they say and a possible fatal wound for the werewolf. Though the relationship between Silver and Vampyres is a little less clear I would say, I think its just a matter of getting the fillings blessed first and pretty much the same strategy can be adopted, though sneezing power is always handy in such a dilemma.
So to the moral of the story, if you come across any Goth like pale faced people eyeing you up in the evening or perhaps a particularly hairy person sniffing you from a distance in the local country pub after hours, don't hesitate, get your bite in first!

Thursday, 6 November 2014

Losing the plot

Occasionally I can give a GM a hard time though I learnt my lesson very early on in my roleplaying career... Twas the night before Cyberpunk when for too many weeks I felt we had the local press constantly turning up immediately after things went badly wrong for our Police Department - every time a bystander got shot they were there - every time the criminal got away, they magically turned up in their helicopter, every borked drug bust they were waiting around the corner yada yada. We were getting such a hard time as players... I got so pissed off that the GM was just making things coincidentally bad for us all the time that I had a massive go at him. Of course the real reason was that someone else in the party was a bad cop taking back handed bribes from the local media and radioed in each time we fucked up. No news like bad news. This little anecdote is a happy ending in itself really as I learnt a lesson early on both as a teenager who should have more respect and in gaming terms of course, never argue with the GM.

There is a wonderful set of videos by DawforgedCast on how to conduct yourself properly as a player as well as sterling advice on when it is suitable to ask to go to the toilet. A sort of Proper Chaps Almenac to RolePlaying.

There is even a Facebook page for Bad Roleplayers:
Though I cant quite work out what its about exactly.
These days, although always feeling a little hard done by, I do whinge more than I should but I know my flaws; and having lost so many characters now to various ridiculous situations I have thicker skin . If this a normal reaction then fair enough but what about less stable or well adjusted people ? when do our idiosyncrasies start to manifest at the low end of the psychotic scale ?

Would you bury bad dice for example ? Anyone broken a pencil... without realising it ??
Or do we know anyone who has gone the full Tom Hanks?

So what do you look out for if you are about to lose the plot completely? Well I don't know...but here are fourteen pictures of Rob as I caught him incessantly rolling his little D20..