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Everything posted by bigdamnhero

  1. From last night's historical fantasy game. As part of their efforts to build an alliance against the evil Prince Kor, Our Heroes have been trying to facilitate a marriage between the Holy Roman Emperor Otto III, and Princess Zoe Porphyrogenita, daughter of the Byzantine Emperor. Things are going well, until Robert, King of the Franks shows up... GM: The French King looks around the room, spots the beautiful Princess Zoe, and makes a beeline over to start chatting her up. Geralt: (Irish Holy Warrior) Oh hell no! I step between them and politely suggest to King Robert that this isn't the Princess he's looking for. GM: Great, make me a High Society Roll to see how badly you step in it. [Geralt rolls a natural 18] [headdesk] Geralt: (angrily) "What do you think you're doing trying to make time with the Emperor's betrothed!?!?" ...followed by an exchange of Who Do You Think You Are's and Don't You Know Who I Am's, ending in... Geralt: ...And I deck him! And that, children, is how in 1001 France declared war on Ireland and sat out the war against the Antichrist.
  2. Yeah, I think that's the one the Alchemist's player was trying to remember.
  3. It's not a quote per se, but throwing miniature cow patties at the Antichrist's emissary while he's trying to speechify was definitely the best "statement" of the evening.
  4. Ah, I hadn't caught that was your chapter. Well thanks for writing it - we're all enjoying the heck out of it!
  5. While I'm at it, I had meant to post my interpretation of an interesting race of creatures from Welsh myth called the Coraniaid: Coraniaid Val Char Cost Roll Notes 12 STR 2 11- Lift 132.0kg; 2d6+1 [2] 12 DEX 4 11- OCV: 6/8/DCV: 6/9 14 CON 4 12- 10 INT 0 11- PER Roll 11-/16- 12 EGO 2 11- ECV: 3 - 3 12 PRE 2 11- PRE Attack: 2d6 6+2 OCV 5 6+3 DCV 5 3 OMCV 0 3 DMCV 0 3 SPD 10 Phases: 4, 8, 12 12+2 PD 2 Total: 12/14 PD (8/10 rPD) 12+2 ED 2 Total: 12/14 ED (8/10 rED) 5 REC 1 25 END 1 11 BODY 1 25 STUN 3 Total Characteristic Cost: 39 Movement: Running: 10m/20m Leaping: 2m/4m Swimming: 1m/2m Cost Powers END Hearing-Based Abilities, all slots Hearing-Based (-½) 7 1) Accuracy: +2 OCV (10 Active Points); Hearing-Based (-½) 4 2) Accuracy: +2 OCV (10 Active Points); Only vs. Ranged Attacks (-1), Hearing-Based (-½) 7 3) Attack Tracking: +2 DCV (10 Active Points); Hearing-Based (-½) 6 4) Ranged Attack Tracking: +3 DCV (15 Active Points); Only Vs. Ranged Attacks (-1), Hearing-Based (-½) 7 5) Anticipation: Lightning Reflexes (+10 DEX to act first with All Attacks) (10 Active Points); Hearing-Based (-½) 21 6) Alertness: Danger Sense (immediate vicinity, out of combat, Function as a Sense) (32 Active Points); Hearing-Based (-½) 16- 11 7) Danger Sense Dodging: Resistant Protection (8 PD/8 ED), Hardened (+¼) (30 Active Points); Requires A Roll (Danger Sense Roll; -½), Instant (-½), Hearing-Based (-½), Nonpersistent (-¼) 0 2 8) Absolute Range Sense (3 Active Points); Hearing-Based (-½) 10 9) They Know Of Any Plans Made Against Them: Deduction 16- (15 Active Points); Hearing-Based (-½) Can Hear Any Sound Carried By The Wind 10 1) Enhanced Hearing: +5 PER with Hearing Group 0 20 2) Combat Hearing: Targeting with Hearing Group 0 18 3) Parabolic Hearing: +12 versus Range Modifier for Hearing Group 0 7 4) Discriminatory Hearing: Detect Respiration 11-/16- (Hearing Group), Discriminatory 0 30 5) True Awareness: Spatial Awareness (Hearing Group), Discriminatory, Analyze 0 81 6) Clairsentience (Hearing Group), Mobile Perception Point (can move up to 12m per Phase), Persistent (+¼), Reduced Endurance (0 END; +½), MegaScale (1m = 100 km; +1 ½) (81 Active Points) 0 1 Long-Lived: Life Support (Longevity: 200 Years) 0 Skills 4 WF: Common Melee Weapons, Common Missile Weapons 3 Defense Maneuver I 7 Analyze: Sounds 13- 3 Climbing 11- 7 Shadowing 13- 7 Stealth 13- 2 AK: Cymru (Wales) 11- 0 Language: Coranaid (idiomatic) (4 Active Points) 3 Language: Welsh (completely fluent) 2 Language: English (fluent conversation) 1 Language: Irish (fluent conversation; Similar to Welsh) Total Powers & Skill Cost: 281 Total Cost: 320 225+ Matching Complications 10 Negative Reputation: "The First Plague", Frequently (Extreme; Known Only To A Small Group) 5 Physical Complication: Small (4-5') (Infrequently; Barely Impairing) 15 Psychological Complication: Hates Humans (Common; Strong) 10 Social Complication: Mean, Nasty & Ornery Frequently, Minor 5 Susceptibility: Extremely Loud Noises 1d6 damage Instant (Uncommon) 30 Susceptibility: The crushed dust from a certain insect 3d6 damage per Segment (Uncommon) 95 Experience Points Total Complications Points: 320 TYPICAL EQUIPMENT CARRIED Spear, Medium Club Axe, Small Bow, Medium Sling Heavy Leather Armor Background/History: The First Plague that beset the reign of Lludd Llaw Eraint were the Coraniaid, a stunted race of beings who came to Britain and could not be forced out because their hearing was so acute that they could hear any sound the wind touches. Thus did they instantly know of any plans made against them. Indeed it is said their ears were so sharp they could hear arrows and other blows as they moved through the air and thus avoid all harm. Much woe did they cause among the Britons and all action against them seemed impossible. Thus did Lludd cross the water to Gaul and seek aid and advice from his brother Llefelys who was King there. And they did craft a long trumpet that muffled their conversation so that the Coraniaid could not hear their speech. And thus did Llefelys tells Lludd of a certain insect that when crushed up and mixed with water was deadly to the Coraniaid, but harmless to the Britons. Lludd returned to the country with many of the insects and did crush them up and mix them with water. And Lludd called a meeting of all his people and all the Coraniaid, and when all had gathered he threw the mix over the whole crowd, thereby killing the Coraniaid without harming his own people. Thus were the Coraniaid destroyed, but King Lludd did save some of the insects for breeding in the event the plague ever returned to Britain. Personality/Motivation: Mean, nasty & ornery, the Coranaid hate humans and wish to displace them from the land. Powers/Tactics: The Coranaid's main ability is their unnaturally-acute hearing. The primary narrative effect of their superior hearing is that they can hear any plans being amde against them, making them nearly impossible to surprise. It also allows them to "hear" attacks coming, making them hard to hit in combat, especially at range. They typically wear leather armor and carry a mix of spears, clubs and axes, although they prefer to fight at range with bows and slings. Campaign Use: Force your players to get creative in figuring out how to deal with them. Appearance: A dwarvish race of beings who average between 4' to 5' in height and stout. Their faces are misshapen and asymmetrical. Their hair ranges in color from dark brown and dark blue to black, and is usually worn long and stringy. Coraniaid.hdc
  6. BTW, here's how I ran the whole "Tortured by the Antichrist" session. Basically during the day they were either force-marched in chains along with the army, or held in coffin-sized boxes designed to make it impossible to get any rest. Oh, and they's also been slipped a tiny potion that made them all sick with diarrhea, so that was fun - especially since the poison was one their own alchemist had created. I handled the poison as a Drain vs CON, REC, END & STUN. Each day, each Hero had to make a CON Roll to keep going in the face of sickness, starvation, and sleep deprivation. Each night, Kor's daughter would bring the exhausted PCs into her wagon one at a time to question them. Since she was basically asking them all the same questions, I ran the interrogations simultaneously even tho in game time they were sequential. I handled this as a series of cumulative Interrogation Rolls opposed by the PCs' EGO Rolls; PCs with Interrogation or Faith (Power Skill) could use that as Complimentary. If the Interrogation Roll succeeded, then the PCs talked, although PCs could use Acting, etc to try and lie. The problem was because they had no way to coordinate their stories, even their lies weren't very effective. I mainly left it up to the players to determine what information they gave and how. (My players are awesome, so I knew they would roleplay the hell out of it.) Also the PCs had to make CON Rolls each torture session to avoid taking damage. My favorite bits: Edmondo the priest totally broke down on like Day 2 and told them everything he knew, but by that point he was pretty delirious and wasn't making a lot of sense. And Thyri the Viking made all her CON Rolls (of course) but failed a couple of EGO Rolls, so she told them everything she knew about Byzantine politics...which was basically jack-all! After 3 days of this, they managed to escape. I had been more than a little nervous about how the players would react to this session. But it turned out the LOVED it for the great roleplaying opportunity it was!
  7. Really well; thanks for asking! I stopped posting recaps because it didn't seem like anyone was actually reading them, but in summary: From Constantinople, they headed East over the Caucasus, and met up with Kor's army near Rey. (Current-day Tehran.) They infiltrated the army and were getting good intel, but they slipped up and got captured. They spent a session getting tortured by Kor's daughter, before eventually managing to escape. I was surprised at how much the players loved this session! While hiding from Kor's army, they stumbled onto a portal to Faerie and spent a few days there. (See above post.) They left Faerie through another portal and found themselves outside of Kiev. Grand Prince Vladimir had fallen under Kor's influence, but the Heroes were able to free him. They learned that Othar Trygvasson, the King of Norway who was thought to have died last year, had headed through here several weeks earlier gathering warriors as he went. Having reason to suspect Trygvasson is also the Horseman of War, they decided to go after him. They caught up with Trygvasson as he was attacking the fleet of Danish King Sweyn Forkbeard and the mercenary Jomsvikings. Trygvasson's forces seemed to be winning, partly due to his inhuman strength. The Heroes joined the battle, engaging Trygvasson and his chief retainers on the deck of his own longship. After a long, fierce battle, Aeddan pinned Trygvasson's kidney to the mast with an arrow, and Thyri cut off his head. One Horseman down! In the aftermath, Thyri fought a duel with her nemesis, the Jarl who killed her family, etc. Thyri killed her enemy, but not before he nicked her with a poisoned blade. With Thyri dying, they called on their Fey friends to take her off to Faerie/Avalon/Whatever until she could be healed. [The player was moving out of town.] The Heroes got information that the two Fey swords they had promised to recover were somewhere in Ireland, so they headed that way. They stopped off in Aeddan's homeland of Wales first, defeated a plot to destabilize Wales by turning Aeddan against his King, and defeated an ancient Welsh enemy called the Coraniaid. (Who are really cool and you should totally Google them!) Hopping over to Ireland, where Brian Boru is challenging the rule of High King Mael Sechnail. The heroes pick up a new PC, a semi-crazy pilgrim carrying a ton of Holy Relics (most of which are completely bogus...), and succeed in recovering the two Fey swords from a dungeon that may have been built by Odin? Afterwards, having figured out that High King Mael is going blind, the alchemist and the herbalist try to restore his sight...rolling not one buy two natural 3s in a row! They not only restore Mael's eyesight to 20-20, but he now also can see into the future! Mael realizes that Brian Boru is the leader Ireland truly needs right now, and abdicates in his favor, ending the civil war and reuniting Ireland. The crowning of the new High King at Tara is interrupted by an army of wicked Fae, led by several monstrous Fomorians. With the Heroes holding the center of the line, they are able to kill or drive off all the wicked Fey. About that time, a messenger arrives from Rome, announcing that Emperor Otto and Pope Sylvester have called a great Council of the Kings of Christendom, to be held in the City of Venice, to discus the threat posed by Kor. But the Heroes don't have the time to reach Italy by normal travel, so they decide to take a shortcut through Faerie. Unfortunately, they lose their way (due to some mischievous illusions cast by one of the wicked Fey who survived the battle). They wind up at the castle of a gigantic Fomorian named Cathaoir, formerly their fiercest warrior, but who has taken an oath of peace out of love for his "improbably beautiful wife" who may be the goddess Bridgit and/or the Irish Saint Bridget of Kildare. Unfortunately they are told that by using the Fey swords to kill Fomorians at Tara, they accidentally violated an ancient treaty and started a war between the Fomorians and the Fey. (Whoops!) They convince Cathaoir and Brigit to go try to persuade the Fomorians not to wipe out the Fey. [Results TBD] Leaving Faerie, they find themselves outside of Rome, which is in revolt against Emperor Otto (who is German). They find Otto camped with his army outside the walls of Rome, desperately in need of both a military and a moral victory here to solidify his credibility as Roman Emperor. But it seems the City's defenders have some supernatural help. Sneaking inside the walls, the Heroes find the leader of the opposition is their old frenemy Count Gregory (from way back in episode 1), along with some demonic forces sent by Kor. The Heroes manage to kill Gregory and the demons, and do so in such a way that the Senate sees the light, throws open the gates, and welcomes Otto in begging his forgiveness. The heroes grab a quick couple hours of sleep, because in the morning they have to ride like hell to get Otto to Venice in time for the Council he called. Whew! And that's where we're paused at the moment. 33 bi-weekly game sessions, 6 months game time. I'm seeing the Venetian Council as the end of Act 2 and start of Act 3, as the Heroes gather together the allies they've made for the final battle against Kor...
  8. I loved Wynn's geek-out Especially since I had just finished telling almost those exact same words out loud. And hey, did anyone else catch Wynn dropping that I don't know if that was a studio-mandated concession or what; didn't bother me much, but I could hear the howls of nerd outrage even offline.
  9. You’re also more likely to get a good performance out of them if it’s a direction that resonates with them and one they feel they had input into.
  10. Yeah, the technobabble this week was less-plausible than normal, and that’s saying something. But honestly, who cares when it’s this much fun!
  11. Agreed. First Class and Days Of Future Passed were pretty good tho, and Logan and Deadpool were both amazing; throw in shows like The Gifted, Legion and they've definitely had more hits than misses. But I think the author was mainly talking about Fox's newfound penchant for variety over formula; again, Logan, Deadpool, Legion, and now New Mutants were all pretty bold breaks from the superhero norm. I also liked the author's point that Marvel was forced to be clever about how they built their early movies, because they had licensed off all their best-known characters. I agree with you there.
  12. I didn't mind Brainy's color; it just looked patchy to me. But that's a minor nitpick in my book. (Hmm...I wonder if they avoided making him green because it interacts poorly with the green screen?) I will admit being a little disappointed with the costumes. Not because I have any particular affection for the original comics; let's face it, everything about the original LSH was goofy as hell even by Silver-Age standards. But if ever there was an opportunity to go completely nuts in the costuming department, surely a team of superheroes from the 31st Century is that opportunity; and they went with... X-Men black leather? I was a little underwhelmed by their big fight scene too. I get that that the Legionnaires were way out of their weight class. And I'm sure the show blew half their sfx budget for the season in the previous episode. But still. After all the build-up, Saturn Girl gets in one (ineffective) attack, Mon-El gets to run 10 feet, and Braniac just plays spaceship gunner. Bit of an anticlimax, especially after the DEO did reasonably well in their own fight.
  13. Oh, for those of who like me have had struggles with depression, the book that has had the biggest impact on my life this last year was The Upward Spiral: Using Neuroscience to Reverse the Course of Depression One Small Change at a Time by Dr. Alex Korb. I don't typically read many self-help books, and calling any book “life-changing” is usually such a hyperbolic cliché, but in this case I feel it’s justified. Unlike so many self-help books, this one starts from "Here's what the latest, best research says about how your brain works" and proceeds from there to "...so here are some concrete things you can do about it."
  14. Just finished Thanks Obama: My Hopey Changey White House Years by former White House Speech Writer David Litt. Absolutely hysterical, and a great look at what's it's actually like to work in the White House. (Or at least, in the Executive Office Building across the street...) Highly recommended. I also recently finished Weapons of Math Destruction: How Big Data Increases Inequality and Threatens Democracy by Cathy O'Neil. A very informative look at how corporations, government, etc are increasingly using algorithms to make decisions about our lives, and how badly flawed many of those algorithms are.
  15. First up: YAY! Hysterical, tho I think that clip is actually a couple years old. (The "Coming in 2016" was a clue.) But was I the only one thinking "C'mon, we know Ultron is in love with the Wasp! He'd never abandon Janet for Natasha!" ... Just me then? OK. You underestimate the pop-culture fu of your average Millennial. Moose & Squirrel is part of common knowledge now, even among people who've never seen an actual Bullwinkle episode. It doesn't mean this specific script is the one that will get filmed, sure. But it means they're serious about making a BW movie. I wouldn't call it a done deal, but after all these years of "maybe, some day, love to but reasons..." this is a huge step forward. The twit in this case being Ike Perlmutter, from all accounts. Who Disney pushed out of the way in 2015. I wouldn't say it was unnecessary, personally. But like a lot of things in AoU, it just wasn't handled as well as it could've been.
  16. That's what it was reminding me of! I couldn't quite put my finger on it! Tho fortunately (my childhood crush on Joan Severance notwithstanding) Annable is both a better actress, and a much more convincing athlete. (And/or has better stunt double and better fight choreography.) And Brany's hair didn't bug me so much as his makeup job. I'm sure it was done that way on purpose, but to me the uneven coloration just made it look like...well, a bad makeup job.
  17. I am running a GAC game at GenghisCon next month, and will make sure to wave the book around prominently!
  18. Finally saw it - WAY funner than I expected!
  19. This is the only gaming forum I'm on; sorry.
  20. Last night's Historical/Fantasy Hero game. The Heroes are trying to find a way through a partially-collapsed building. So they turn to the Priest, whose VPP is primarily modeled after recorded Biblical miracles: Alchemist: "Wasn't there anyone in the Bible who walked through walls or moved a bunch of rocks or anything?" Priest: "Well, I can think of one example. But it'd take three days and we'd have to die first." Alchemist: "...OK, but aside from That Guy...?"
  21. Word. "We didn't know every plot detail going in! How do you expect us to enjoy something like that!"
  22. Ralph Bakshi's Wizards. Or at least the first 20 minutes or so. I vaguely remembered trying to watch it 30ish years ago, and didn't get much further then; now I remember why. [shakes head sadly]
  23. From a conversation last night with a non-gamer friend who is super-outdoorsy. Gaming came up somehow... Me: "I know it's geeky as hell, but I do enjoy it." She: "Aren't all hobbies a little geeky tho? I mean what do I really get out of my hiking obsession?" Me: "Besides good exercise, being really healthy, looking great, getting lots of fresh air, connecting with nature..." She: "Well...yeah." Me: "I mean I appreciate what you're trying to do. But not all hobbies are equally geeky; I'm cool with that" She: "OK, fair enough."
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