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Hugh Neilson

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Hugh Neilson last won the day on February 26

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About Hugh Neilson

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    SETAC Gadfly
  • Birthday 01/15/1966

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    Chartered Professional Accountant/Tax Consultant

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  1. As long as it stops your droplets reaching anyone else, it prevents the person wearing the scarf spreading the illness they do not know they have.
  2. The core combat mechanics, skills mechanics, etc. are not overly complex. Toss on a pile of optional rules and that changes. Relative to other games, how complex is CharGen? Let's assume you want to play Pathfinder, or D&D? How complex would that feel if you had to read every class, race, spell, feat and special ability in the game before you could make a character? What makes these seem simpler is that the abilities are bundled. OK, I want to play a warrior-type, so I don't read any class that doesn't get +1 BAB every level, or any race that doesn't have bonuses suitable for combat. No need to read any spells I can't get at first level, or many feats, and I only need to read low-level class abilities for the class, or classes, that catch my eye. A "powered by HERO" game would, or at least could, provide similar pre-bundled, pre-fab abilities with no build data, just game effects.
  3. OK, I am looking for the skeptics and those with expertise to refute my hypothesis. I am now looking at Worldometer with the theory that the extent of testing in a country can be gauged by the ratio of critical cases to active cases. The greater the ratio, the less the testing. REASONING: The less testing, the more it is limited to the worst cases. They are getting tested. The milder cases are not. EVIDENCE: My understanding is that the three countries with the highest testing are the UAE (745 active cases; 2 critical), South Korea (3,979 active cases; 55 critical) and Canada (7,866 active cases; 120 critical - less certain this is #3 in testing as the intel came from sources in our gov't, so objectivity is lower). World is 703,547 active cases; 36,205 critical, so just over 5% critical. The big testers are 1.3 - 1.5% (I'm calling UAE an outlier because their numbers are smaller, so more likely to skew from a statistical norm). My recollection is the fatality rate is about 2%. The big testers are probably lower, sadly, because active cases last to the earlier of full recovery or death, and critical cases are the most likely to end early. US is 13% critical. Italy is 5%. Spain is 8.3%.UK, oddly, is 0.55%. That contrasts with almost 8% deaths as a proportion to total cases. THOUGHTS?
  4. OK, this repeated spelling error is driving me crazy. It's "Make America Grate Again!" - and no one is better at that than Trump!
  5. Sadly, that seems to describe more and more politicians in modern times. Clearly, a lot of voters (in a lot of countries) are buying what they are shilling.
  6. I'm on the "essential services" list, and there is no way I have time to pull down my workspace and transport it home. I also rely too much on paper to make that work. I and several colleagues are trying not to get swelled heads. It helps to note that pet food vendors, landfills and toxic waste disposal, and laundromats are all listed before we are Or we could behave like we are on the internet
  7. I can't speak to the other three, as I am sufficiently challenged to keep up with Canada's activity. If you wish to judge my success, you can do an online search for "life in the tax lane" "covid-19". I can tell you that Canada has not sent a single cheque yet. We have very limited details of who will qualify or how the payment will actually be determined, although we have some brief legislation, passed last week in emergency sessions of Parliament and our Senate, with unanimous approval by all parties to get this out fast, and allow for a very small group of representatives to make it happen. It was not a smooth or pretty process, but I credit them with coming together and quite literally working through the night to get this done. From that legislation, we do know there is a "prior year" income test (at least $5k from employment, self-employment, or a few other sources). It allows for 16 weeks' payments, in four week blocks falling between March 15/20 and Oct 3/20. The worker must cease work for a continuous period of at least 14 consecutive days due to COVID-19 (which I assume is set due to the self-isolation recommendations) in that four week block. An employee who quits voluntarily does not qualify. I believe we know which government branch will administer the program. We are still waiting for an application process and anything beyond a political soundbite on how benefits are determined. On Friday, at a press conference, a brave soul told our Finance Minister she needed a "clear answer" to a question (it must have been her first day on that beat...). She gave up after three tries. The question? A worker in a retail cashier position is concerned about her health risks, and therefore ceases employment. Does she qualify because she left her job due to COVID-19, or is she carved out because she left her employment voluntarily? This concludes the educational portion of our broadcast. Sadly, I think we can attribute his position, at least in part, to being better at politicking than most in that field. The character traits of a successful politician often scare me.
  8. I'm not sure where Canada is on this. Parliament convened Tuesday and, after all-night negotiating, passes a 10% of wages; $1,375 per employee and $25,000 per employer maximum" wage subsidy. Yesterday, the Gov't announced a completely undetailed program which will cover "up to 75%" of wages provided the employer maintains all staff and was significantly affected by COVID-19. No easy answers. And remember that, whether they call it a benefit or a loan, it has to be paid for somehow. Practically, the need to repay tomorrow seems preferable to there being no "tomorrow".
  9. Like mine, this requires some creative interpretation, here of the recoverable charges. I am pretty sure that was not intended to mean "well, next turn you can use them all again". I am confident that, if stunned or KOd, you cannot activate another charge. With that in mind, I think you need a single recoverable charge that lasts longer.
  10. A power running from an END reserve, RAW, does not need Persistent to continue to draw on the reserve when the character is KOd. Of course, that can be great, or it can suck when you wake up with no juice left. I'm not sure when AoE surface cropped up. This could make a gun superheated with Heat Vision, or a wall freezing cold (or sticky). It is 6e when a Constant AoE Surface, no range to cover the character's body replaced Damage Shield as a separate advantage. It's not "always on", it's "can't shut off until battery drained", which I would consider pretty much the same limitation. It is not Constant if you just buy 0 END, nor is it quasi-Persistent. But I specifically said "if you find -1/2 stingy", because that is the acid test of the comparability of the costs.
  11. As Massey points out, I am assuming this is one power, and only kicks in if attacked by fire/electricity. Let's consider. First, we have the END reserve. That costs 1 point (4 END, no recovery) only because nothing costs under 1 point. Next, we need some Absorption. 20 BOD (for 20 points) should be plenty. Let's pay +1/4 so the Reserve can get 40 points maximum (so 40/2 x 5 = 100 END), -1/4 for "only fire/electric" (on the basis that, as Massey notes, onlywe will see it all the time). Now we need the Damage Shield. Let's call that an 8 DC attack power, AoE Surface (+1/4), Constant = 70 AP, no range (-1/2), No Conscious Control (-1) = 28 points. I am using the -1 NCC as the character cannot control the power once it is activated by fire/electricity, and must burn through the END reserve. I'm not forcing Persistent as the battery pays the END. So 1 + 20 + 28 = 49 points, pretty rigidly applying RAW. Last 1 phase per 7 BOD absorbed ALTERNATE: 8 DC attack power, AoE Surface (+1/4), 0 END (+1/2), Constant (+1/2), Persistent (+1/4) = 100 AP, no range (-1/2), only after hit by fire/lightning for a limited period based on BOD (-1/2) would be 50 points. If you think that -1/2 is overly stingy, the RAW rules are overpriced.
  12. I'm pretty sure there are three left. I'm just not sure what Johnson grabbed.
  13. If more countries make it clear they will not be sending athletes, the IOC may get the message. While a small thing, it is one more media hit on "this is real, take it seriously".
  14. I'm with LL on this. Anyone remember Chaosium's Stormbringer? You rolled for your ethnicity with each nation having its own bonuses and penalties. All were human, except the Melniboneans.
  15. IIRC, you don't get to pay 1/5 the cost for the vehicle, then divide that by 5 again for the Summon. That keeps it under control. And even slavishly loyal Summons have a task limit before the Summon must be refreshed.
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