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Urborg is nice, but Commander decks with 40 lands in already hardly need more land.
Kalervo Oikarinen wrote:
Now, of course, you get a 'special' review...;)
I regret to report that the following does not make sense to me:
...The shining blade bypasses the hardness of any wood or vegetable matter, even that which is alchemically treated, a special material, or magical in nature...
I just googled a selection of images of a 'sickle' to check I wasn't thinking in error of some other implement, but came up picture after picture of items with a crescent shaped blade that had a handle affixed.I just don't see how an item with a blade that shape is good for sundering, for example, a door or a castle gate.
Using a sickle on quarterstaffs, bow-staves, and very small trees, yes - all of these being items which the blade will naturally fit around.
Roughly circular objects with a diameter considerably larger than the chord (mathematically speaking) of the sickle blade or large flat objects, which at best the point will get stuck in, no. You need something with a different shaped blade to tackle those - an axe ideally.
From a point of view of common-sense, the item requires a limitation on the dimensions of objects it can be used to practically 'auto-sunder' - unless there's something or other in the rules already about using sickles to sunder items, in which case my apologies for the minor nitpick (it's been a while since I looked at the rulebooks) and carry on as you were...
Upon reflection, and reading some of the later posts in the thread by the designer, I retract the 'I would baaaaaaaan this item like heck!!!!' statement of earlier.
If that is the case, then it seems to me to be at odds with the entire 'shared fate' doom/ominous 'vibe' of the item which the name and the first few lines of item description (very) successfully establishes.It also seems to me that in that case it may as well be called 'Pugwampi's Poking Stick', since all that it's usually effectively likely to do is to force a single (enemy) target to take the worst (1-20 result) of two (d20) dice rolls. (Well unless several enemies are obligingly lined up in conga-line formation in a 5 foot wide corridor, so that multiple enemies might get hit and increase the number of rolls.) :D
Charles Evans 25 wrote:
Javelin/monster-summon-mook combination, that is; as earlier posters have observed giving something dangerous the saving throws of, say, a beetle is exceptionally advantageous to opponents.
And the clown-squad are back to being thrashed by Australia, this time in the fifty over format. Unsurprising for the clown-squad against Australia, playing in Australia.
If I were a GM I'd ban this item at my table or give it one-of-a-kind-artifact-status. As a commonly available item I could see it reducing too many high-level combats to which-side-throws-a-javelin-and-mind-control/death-effect-first.
Further to my previous post, 'Genesis' (Rare, Judgement set) is another possibility for a 'Devour for Power' modification.
On to 'Counterpunch':
At present I have inserted:
On the Rare front I'm tempted to remove the Hornet Queen due to the three-points-of-green in the casting cost, to either put the Storm Herd back in or to insert a new card with removal options (such as Crime/Punishment (Dissension) or Utter End (Khans of Tarkir).
Overlooked 'Jwar Isle Refuge' in previous comments regarding 'Devour for Power'. The deck, as sold, has means to regain 1 life, when the Jwar Isle Refuge (a land) comes into play.
As with the 'Heavenly Inferno' modification, I'm not sure it's the best like-for-like (by rarity) set of replacements that I could have made, and not all the 'replacement' cards have come up yet during dry-run play tests, so I'm not sure how effective they are. On the uncommon side, Deep Spawn (Fallen Empires) and Trophy Hunter (Ravnica: City of Guilds) are both possibilities for insertions; on the common side Essence Warden (Planar Chaos) if the environment seems survivable to such things; Sheoldred, Whispering One (Mythic Rare, New Phyrexia) might be a possible replacement for Wrexial, the Risen Deeep.
Correction to previous post:
Finally got around to digging the 'Devour for Power' deck that I've had for a while out of its box and dry-testing it.
Nooooooo! He was one of the few good (current) Australian test batsmen that the (non-female) England team had worked out how to (usually) get out cheaply!!!!
Death in Heaven:
DM Barcas wrote:
And then they follow it up with what might be the single worst episode in years. There was almost nothing redeemable about that episode.
If you're referring to 'In the Forest of the Night' it was fun children's television, at its most fluffy and 'awwwwww'. You may very well have seen future stars there, as child-actors.Now as to whether it's Doctor Who?...
(The immediately previous two episodes, 'Mummy on the Orient Express' and 'Flatline' both seem to have had the same writer, 'Jamie Mathieson'. 'In the Forest of the Night' was apparently written by 'Frank Cottrell Boyce'. Different writers, different styles of story.)
Erik Mona wrote:
I have a feeling that Katapesh might have more scope for the bizarre in characters/personalities - and feature considerably fewer potential continuity banana-skins than Absalom for the writers/editors of such a book to have to worry about slipping on.
Mummy on the Orient Express
So much for Clara's big 'you suck, I'm out of here' scene at the end of 'Kill the Moon' the previous week. Despite her 'I-don't-think-I-can-put-up-with-ever-travelling-with-you-again' declaration we didn't even go one episode without her. Out of universe, I wonder if it means the scriptwriter had no idea what had gone on in the script for the previous episode? One of the hazards of having multiple writers, maybe... And another episode about soldiers. Fast becoming the biggest theme of the season, after the ubiquitous Clara.
Charles Evans 25 wrote:
...For all that know, though...
Ahem. Sorry about that. That should have been '...For all that I know, though...' Eczema on hands giving me trouble at the moment. Anyway, carry on with the previews/teasers.
Sean K Reynolds wrote:
But crossbows and bows are weapons - they're not there to look fancy, but to kill/subdue people. It seems to me that if a crossbow and a bow have the same ease of use, the same range, the same rate of fire, the same accuracy, and dish out the same damage to a target hit, then practically everyone ought to be using the cheaper option if there's any difference in price; if for no other reason then on the grounds that the cheaper weapon allows you to outfit more impressed (or hired) men/women with it (or to spend it on other stuff like the baronial castle or pretty looking armour which makes the wearer feel more secure).It seems to me not to make economic sense for two weapons identical in effect to be in use at broadly similar levels in a game world unless the price of them is identical too. (Well not unless governments or other powerful organizations are involved... 'you will not buy those cheaper foreign Kojivini crossbows here in Smooglewood, but will pay twice the price for our own Smoogle bows' or maybe 'the Vorgonian bow is undoubtedly considerably cheaper than any crossbow on the market, and at least as effective; unfortunately the method of making them is a jealously guarded secret of the Church of the Heretic Egg Boilers, and they only make the weapons available to their members and affiliates'.)
For all that know, though, bows and crossbows may be identically priced in this game though, in which case carry on... :)
Trying to be vaguely on-topic regarding crossbows/bows, then if
... the differences between bows and crossbows are cosmetic as far as the rules are concerned...
presumably crossbows and longbows are identically priced too. If they aren't, but they're otherwise functionally identical, practically everyone (NPCs and PCs) are going to end up using the cheaper one, bar the odd character with a weird fetish for the more expensive weapon.
I found an archery thread on the Steve Jackson Games forums where some of the members discuss Lars Andersen and his technique: *Link*
General consensus there seems to be what Lars is doing is showy rather than combat-effective.
GM Xabulba wrote:
Nevertheless, that was two episodes which were about little other than romantic doings of the lead character, played by David Tennant. In the midst of a run of episode after episode where romantic sub-plot was the theme of the day beneath whatever the villain-of-the-week was. Or at least that's the enduring impression I have.There was a time when meaningfully gazing into someone's eyes on Doctor Who usually involved hypnosis, quite often carried out by The Master.
At this point, I'd like to see a lot less soap-opera-in-time-and-space, and a lot more adventure-in-time-and-space; Less tragic my-heart-is-breaking-tinkly-music moments and more tense dun-dun-dunnnn or full orchestra wooo-wooo-woooooo moments.
GM Wulfson wrote:
No, not unique. They just operate under a different name. Here in the states they're referred to as Harlequin romance stories.
Ah right. Different company name, probably for tax and/or copyright reasons or something.
In Human Nature/The Family of Blood the Mills & Boon element of the story was actually the main-plot, as far as I recall...
'Romantic fiction' produced on an industrial scale in terms of titles and authors. Probably count as 'light reading'. Strangely attractive hairdresser/orphaned heiress/hospital nurse meets wealthy Arab prince/builder with Adonis-like body/hunky doctor, and in face of some apparently insufferable problem (prejudices/awkward parent/political situation) they still end up as 'an item'.I thought given the space that they occupy book-shelves here in the UK that they might be a universal phenomenon, but maybe they're unique to the UK.
(edited, original series episode name corrected)
Aaaand I hope that that's the last that we see of Clara. After several seasons of Amy and Rory, following on from large doses of Rose and - to a lesser extent - Martha, (with Donna as all too short a break) maybe now we can get back to storylines which aren't cluttered up by 'romantic' sub-plots. I'm not convinced that the latest developments on the moon in 2049 would fit in in the continuity of what the original series had going on in 2070 in the 'The Moonbase' story, and as Clara herself all-but-pointed out it's rather odd that something on such a scale could happen to the moon with people that they've subsequently met not mentioning it, but I'm prepared to put up with a certain amount of handwaving if the rest of the season - and ideally most of the next couple of seasons - stay firmly out of Mills & Boon territory. Unfortunately I suspect that Moffat and company are rather addicted to their Mills & Boon sub-plots, and it may turn out that they can't last even until Christmas before either bringing Clara back or photocopying in some near-identical replacement. That 'someone trying to put us together' regarding the newspaper advert in the first episode of this season rather suggests to me that Moffat probably has some grand-plan to bring Clara back and resume the Mills & Boon status-quo in rather short order... :(
Although oddly I didn't find River-Song very Mills & Boon at all; possibly because she seemed more of a 'woman of action' than anything else...
This reminded of part of a conversation in academia in Gaudy Night by Dorothy L. Sayers...
Chapter 22 wrote:
...And that reminds me. Miss Lydgate's History of Prosody was marked PRESS with her own hand this morning. I fled with it and seized on a student to take it down to the printers. I'm almost positive I heard a faint voice crying from the window about a footnote on page 97 - but I pretended not to hear...
The conversation which is taking place is fictional, but I suspect that the situation arises in real life. Some writers keep on tinkering with something, making endless genuine improvements, even once something is more than sufficiently suitable for publication; it needs a firm hand from someone in their orbit to finally get said opus out the door...
...Generally, from what I've heard from various authors, I'd expect that the basic roadmap is laid out, which often includes a fairly detailed conclusion. The exact path used to get there is usually more general and the details will often change as characters come to life and evolve...
Actually, according to the 'LITERATURE' section of the TV Tropes 'Writing by the seat of your pants' page, there are some quite well known authors who apparently *don't* (if the tropers have their facts right) always have where a story is going to go planned out...;)
Also on the subject of other writers finishing a series, Tor/Orbit Books brought another writer in to finish 'The Wheel of Time' series off, after the original writer died.
(edited, expanded slightly)I quote James Sutter from his opening post on his thread:
James Sutter wrote:
...While Paizo doesn't publish epic novel series, the parallels between something like that and Adventure Paths are numerous. :)...
James Sutter sees parallels between publishing adventure paths and novel series. And I'm pretty sure that there have been instances when, if a Paizo Adventure path writer didn't look like delivering an installment in a timely fashion, that Paizo went ahead and and found another writer to finish or do the job.And in Paizo's novel line I'm certain that it's been said that for reasons of unfortunate events Elaine Cunningham was unable to complete Winter Witch, so Paizo enlisted Dave Gross to help finish the novel off.
To my mind publishers clearly can see that a product is delivered to readers - Paizo do.
It seems to me that if a book comes out with specifics on the cover such as 'part 1 of 3', that that's on the publisher for making such a promise, not the author.
James Sutter wrote:
Isn't an adventure path a multi-part game though? I'd have thought that in some senses that produces a different method of interaction between the user(s) and the product than the interaction between the user and a novel.That might also result in different expectations of a product (an potentially of the context in which said expectations may be set).
All of which might feed into whether James Sutter, Adventure Path writer, would have different 'obligations' (perceived or otherwise) to his customers than James Sutter, Novel writer.
And yet more paradox-y time-travel. It's getting to point where things are so tangled that the whole thing's in danger of a meltdown in terms of making any kind of overall sense, short of the producers 'resetting' practically everything 'New', with Eccleston's Doctor waking up on satellite 5 and thinking 'Urgh, what a horrible dream... Now down to business: How do I beat these Daleks?'
GM Xabulba wrote:
Spoiler:I apologise if that spoiled your viewing experience, however. :(
Nowhere in my post did I say what happens to the sheriff in the end. I implied that I was expecting him to be shown seemingly shuffle off this mortal coil with a very specific end result, and indicated that that turned out not to be the case. Yes I did reveal that a character turned out *not* to be in an episode, but I do not consider that a major spoiler.
Hmmm. (Possibly inspired by the earlier women's match?) Eoin Morgan led the England men to a twenty-twenty victory over India to wrap up the England summer.
GM Xabulba wrote:
I thought that these days episodes were airing the same day (or even the same time) overseas as in the UK? (There was certainly a lot of tarantara in the UK media to that effect when The Day of the Doctor came out.)And with the episode title being 'Robot of Sherwood', to say nothing of (at least here in the UK) the trailers, the BBC hasn't exactly been subtle on the 'This Will Have a Robin Hood Theme!!!!!' front... :D
3-0 to the England women, and they take their series in a clean sweep!
Third episode (Robin Hood episode). No 'Missy' section this time (I was more than expecting the Sheriff to get one, but it turned out that that was not to be the case). Went on about 'The Promised Land' instead. (Is 'Promised Land' supposed to be Gallifrey, maybe, since as of 'The Day of the Doctor' it turned out it might not have been 'permanently' blown-up/time-looped/whatever after all?)
The shooting an arrow into the exterior of the spaceship to somehow magically put it into orbit bit where it could apparently blow up 'safely' made little sense to me, even by Doctor Who standards, unless it was supposed to be a magical arrow????
I thought the episode was halfway-decent, but (at least for me) it could have been done better if the Robin Hood portrayal had been slightly less played-for-laughs, and done with slightly more gravitas.
Annnnd, England women take their twenty-twenty series with one game still to play, with a win by 42 runs. Charlotte Edwards scored seventy-five not out (off a mere sixty-one balls at that) in the England innings.
????? ! ?
I'm kinda getting bored with daleks. For supposedly indestructible masters of extermination, they get obliterated every five episodes or so. Sure they always survive, but still.
They didn't get obliterated this time.It was on Russell T. Davies' watch (as producer), to my mind, where the dalek stories got really silly, with them coming up with ever more grandiose plans and supposedly being all wiped out (only to subsequently come back through yet another loophole) every other season.
To give credit to him, Moffat's overseen several episodes where the daleks didn't all get wiped out or where insanely high stakes were involved; in one (Victory of the Daleks) they even arguably got the better of the Doctor.
Second episode was interesting. I would have liked it better if Moffat hadn't slapped in that 'Missy' segment. I have a nasty suspicion that we're going to end up seeing one of those per episode now, with someone who's 'killed' during interaction with the Doctor, until it's revealed that 'Missy' is either the Doctor's insane daughter and/or an evil alter-ego/future/alternate Clara.
India (men) continuing to show all the style and panache that so mysteriously disappeared in the last matches of the test series.
Men's one day series, England VS India, second match:
That said, Peter Capaldi seems like he might bring some gravitas to the role. And having sat on the sidelines and watched everyone else get all the action in Musketeers he actually got in on some horse-riding last night (unless it was a stuntman double, of course)...