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Ezren

Haladir's page

RPG Superstar 7 Season Star Voter, 8 Season Star Voter. Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber. 4,268 posts (8,361 including aliases). 2 reviews. No lists. No wishlists. 31 aliases.


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Pathfinder #100: A Song of Silver has the following technological item in the special section detailing bonus NPCs for earlier Adventure Pats. The item is in the section detailing an NPC for Iron Gods...

plasma blade


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*Eyes Skiron suspiciously...*


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So, how much Aethera is going to be run at Paizocon?

I ask because I REALLY WANT TO PLAY SOME!!!


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NobodysHome wrote:
Are you still older than me?

I haven't gotten my hands on a sun orchid elixir, so... I think so?


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DungeonmasterCal wrote:
Also, can I borrow a quarter?

Sure. What's your PayPal address?


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Skiron wrote:
Have you seen my pencil?

Maybe. Could you describe it?


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DungeonmasterCal wrote:
What's your favorite dinosaur?

Deinochysus.


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Tacticslion wrote:
Unrelated (he says, as he tugs on a long shirt), but, uh, does your thread happen to follow FaWtL rules? No reason...

Um... I don't know what "FaWtL" rules are. Would you explain?


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Tacticslion wrote:
Would you tell that story?

There are two times I was mistaken for a bear, actually...

About ten years ago, I was tent camping with my wife and young daughter at Acadia National Park. I got up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom. The moon had set by then, and it was very dark. On the way back from the bathroom, my flashlight completely died, and I was having a hard time finding our campsite. I went into what I thought was our site, but it wasn't... and I tripped over the other camper's propane stove that was still set up on the ground. That woke up the campers in their tent, and I heard a woman say, "Jim! Wake up! I think there's a bear out there!"

Then there was the time I went to a gay bar with some friends to see a band...


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DungeonmasterCal wrote:
My mom was born in 1928 and my dad in 1907 (yes, there was a large age gap between them and I was born late in my dad's life). They've both passed on long ago, but both told me tales of using corncobs in place of toilet paper. I can't attest to how well they worked, but I'd have a great deal of trepidation using something that rough on my.. well, you know.

My grandfather was born in 1908, and he used to say that they joked about "the outhouse is up to the sleighs!" That meant last year's Montgomery Ward catalog, which the family had been using as toilet paper, was about to run out of pages: sleighs were the next-to-last section.


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Tacticslion wrote:
So, is your face... a bear?

Um... no?

I was mistaken for a bear once, but that's another story.


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NOT Haladir wrote:

Hey, Haladir!

How embarrassing would it be to have to use a sock puppet account to ask yourself a question, just to get your AMA thread bumped?

Very embarrassing. Very embarrassing, indeed.


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Tacticslion wrote:
Thank you, Christ! That would be awesome functionality!

I think you just gave her a promotion...


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Whenever I start a new group, I always run a Session Zero, where we talk about the game. The idea is to get everyone on the same page...

    Out-of-game expectations
  • Start time/tardiness: How soon after the slated start-time will we actually start playing? When do we stop waiting for late players? What's the protocol for letting the group know if you're going to be late? Are there consequences for being late?
  • Parking: When arriving for the game, where to park, and where not to. What are the consequences for parking in the wrong place? (i.e. will your car get towed away?)
  • Player absences/quorum: If one or more players can't make it, do we cancel the game? If not, what's the minimum number of players to have a game? What happens to the characters of absent players?
  • Food: Will there be food? Will we be going in on a meal together regularly? Will we try to coordinate who brings what snacks? Is alcohol allowed? Is it OK to open the host's refrigerator/pantry without asking? If so, what's fair game to consume and what's not? Does anyone have food allergies?
  • Foul Language: Do players need to watch their language at the game location? If so, what's acceptable to say and what's not? Do any players have ojections to language beyond what the host deems acceptable?

    Game System/Rules Expectations
  • Game System What game are we actually playing? Which version of the game system?
  • Rules Options/Sources: Which game rules sources are available to use? Third-party sources? Are any common optional rules in play? If so, which ones?
  • Home Rules: Does the GM intend to introduce any home rules or unofficial interpretations of rules? If so, what are they, and are they documented anywhere (e.g. a campaign website)?
  • Alignment: If the game system uses alignment, how does the GM interpret it. Are evil characters allowed?

Once that stuff is laid out, then we can start discussing the specifics of the campaign and the kinds of characters that would be appropriate. (e.g. on a seafaring adventure, a heavily-armored knight who rides a heavy warhorse might not be a good choice...) The GM may need to adjust what's being offered if the players aren't excited by it.

I like to present appropriate character options for the campaign, akin to the information provided in an Adventure Path Players Guide (e.g. the general themes/setting of the campaign; appropriate choices for favored enemy; etc.)


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To make a hyperlink here, the syntax is:

[ url=http://www.SITE-ADDRESS-EXAMPLE.com]display text[ /url]

(Except don't put a space between the open bracket and the tag.)

So, for a link to the Google main page, you'd write:

[ url=http://www.google.com]Google Main Page[ /url]

Without the spaces: Google Main Page

* * *
Back to food...

Miracle Whip is an abomination. Avoid it at all costs. It pretends it's mayonnaise, but IT LIES.

I'm not that big a fan of commercially-produced mayonanaise, but homemade mayonnaise or aioli is amazing.

In recipes that call for mayonnaise, I usually substitute in a combination of olive oil, vinegar, and plain nonfat yogurt. Except when making crema for Baja-style fish tacos. You really have to use some commercial mayonnaise for that.


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Orville Redenbacher wrote:
I think y'all deserve medals for watching that POS Shield show. I didn't make it past 3 episodes.

Marvel's Agennts of S.H.I.E.L.D. had a bit of a rought start, but the characters found themselves and the writing improved about halfway through the first season, and has been a pretty solid show ever since.

Honestly, it improved a lot faster than some classic genre shows, like Star Trek: The Next Generation and Babylon 5... both of which were kind of terrible for their entire first seasons. (First two seasons for ST:TNG in my opinion!)


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I always assumed that the word "Golarion" was Taldane for "The World."


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Since the people of Golarion call the star of their system "The Sun," those few individuals versed in astronomy would likely call their system, "Golarion's solar system" or just "the solar system." That's what it's called in Distant Worlds.

If distinguishing Golarion's system from other star systems becomes relevant, I'd recommend using the same terminology for the system that they will use in Starfinder... at least as soon as it's published later this summer.


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Pan wrote:
Haladir wrote:
I find the whole practice of theorycrafting completely dull and boring. I have no interest to build a character divorced from the story or adventure. I never read build guides, either, for pretty much the same reason.
How is this embarrassing?

Well, given that such a large percentage of threads on the Paizo boards are about build guides and theorycrafting, that did seem like an embarrassing confession.

...of which I am not embarrassed about in the slightest.


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I find the whole practice of theorycrafting completely dull and boring. I have no interest to build a character divorced from the story or adventure. I never read build guides, either, for pretty much the same reason.


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Frankly, rape as a plot point that's there just to show how darned evil the bad guys are is a much-overused trope that's simultaneously demeaning, sexist, and boring. I don't tolerate a cavalier attitude toward sexual violence in any game I play.

And by the way... The demon lord most associated with rape would be Socothbenoth ("perversion, pride, and taboos"), not Baphomet.

Book of the Damned Vol 2: Lords of Chaos, p.26 wrote:
Socothbenoth views all of creation as his personal arena of pleasure. His tastes, and those of his faithful, tend to run toward the violent and destructive.

...and that's as explicit as Paizo gets.

As for the comment, "it's not supposed to be easy or fun"...

Pathfinder is a game, and it is supposed to be fun. If the players aren't having fun, then the GM is doing it wrong.

I've been a player in this kind of situation before. I would recommend quitting this group and finding (or starting) another.


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DungeonmasterCal wrote:
I totally shocked every player once in a game of Cthulhu where my character realized he was totally on the road to madness. Without warning he pulled his handgun and shot himself rather than continue down that path. The room sat there in stunned disbelief for nearly a minute before anyone said anything.

I was a player in a Cthulhu game where one of the other PCs was a Catholic nun, who started reading magical grimoires and actually learned to cast spells... and slowly went mad.

This included the most disturbing scene I've ever played in any RPG over my 30+ years of gaming. The investigators found a screaming young child of five or six that had been possessed and/or infected by some kind of weird Thing From Beyond. He screamed as his arms were turning into tentacles: the process was excruciating.

The nun embraced the child, seemingly to comfort it, and said, "It's alright, child. The Lord loves you, and will be with you always." While hugging him, she placed the barrel of a .45 to the child's head and pulled the trigger.

Stunned silence.

We had to end the game there that night.


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A hand of glory lets you use a ring on the neck slot.

EDIT: Ninja'd!


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The past year or so, my IRL gaming has mostly been with the rules-light systems Fate Accelerated and various Apocalypse Engine games (mostly Dungeon World).

While playing Pathfinder in PbP is fun, I've been missing the D&D family of games at an actual table with people I actually know (and can cook for). Last week, I emailed all of my local gamer friends to try to put together a new D&D group. I specifically said that I wanted to run something in the D&D/OGL family of games, and while I would prefer running Pathfinder, I'd be willing to run the game in D&D 5e, Swords & Wizardry, or True 20 if that's what a majority of players wanted.

One of my friends suggested, "Anything but Pathfinder."

Her actual quote was: "I'm interested, but based on my past experience I can't say I was thrilled with the Pathfinder system. We seemed to spend more time looking up rules than actually role playing. I would rather use a system where we spent the majority of game time role playing."


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Darigaaz the Igniter wrote:
Our group adopted the policy of make a quick ruling then look it up at the end of the session or between sessions.

This has been my policy since I was playing AD&D back in the '80s...


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All the GM needs to say is, "No. That's final. Stop asking."


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When I proposed to my girlfriend (now wife of 20+ years), I didn't have a ring when I asked her to marry me. I figured that we'd pick something out together later in the week.

We did just that: a .75 carat ruby ring with two .25 carat accent diamonds. (Ruby is her birthstone). We were just out of college, and it was the recession of the early '90s, and we were both in low-paying jobs. I think we spent all of $200 on the ring.

That whole "two month's salary" thing isn't traditional in any real sense: It was quite literally invented as an advertising campaign by the DeBeers marketing department back in the 1980s!

My wife and I can certainly afford much more expensive jewelry these days, but she said she's never replacing it.


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Ravingdork wrote:
SmiloDan wrote:
... black pudding, ochre jelly, yellow mold, green slime, blue diamonds, and purple horseshoes.

Blue diamonds and purple horshoes?

They're magically delicious!


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DungeonmasterCal wrote:
Had a player leave rabbit entrails lying on a rock in the sun to attract more game for them to eat. Well, all it attracted were vultures and a hunting party of wemics (lion centaurs) who promptly attacked the party. The rest of the party was all like, "What sort of game were you trying to attract with smelly guts, anyway?"

Very similar thing happened in a game I ran a while ago! The PCs were lost in the woods and were running out of food. After they successfully caught some rabbits, instead of just cooking them, they tried to use them as bait to attract more game.

I said, "Okay, whatever," and said that after a few hours, three grizzly bears lumbered over to the bait. The PCs were like level 3, and had no desire to fight three grizzly bears... so they pretty much just lost a day's worth of food!

After the bears leave, one of the players gets a look of sudden realization on his face, slaps his forehead and says, "Wait! Deer don't eat meat!"


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I use Google Translate and various actual languages, and then put the English text behind a Spoiler tag.

Toklein was a linguist. He based Sindarin heavily on Finnish, which is what I use for Elvish.

An example wrote:

The elf looks you up and down, and mutters, "Mitäs täällä? Ulkopuolisille!"

Elvish:
"What have we here? Outsiders!"


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I've run PFRPG conversions of AD&D modules. (So far, I've done I6: Ravenloft, U1: The Sinister Secret of Saltmarsh, and L1: The Secret of Bone Hill.) That said, I'm not familar with The Apocalypse Stone at all... this is the first I'd heard of it.

I usually keep it pretty simple: I just run the AD&D module straight, and simply substitute in the PFRPG version of any monsters, items, or traps.

If there are monsters or items for which there are no PFRPG versions (usually due to TSR/WotC Product Identity), then I'll use their D&D 3.5 stats instead...usually increasing monster hp by about 50%, as 3.5 monsters are slightly underpowered vis-a-vis their PFRPG equivalents.

For stuff that can't be directly converted... I pretty much just ad hoc something and/or wing it.

Sometimes I will monkey with the AD&D version a little, if there are PFRPG concepts that didn't exist when the module was written which would be thematically appropriate. For example, I added a bunch of haunts of my own design when I ran I6: Ravenloft in Pathfinder.

Good luck!


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If it's any consolation, I didn't notice the "BBCode" tab on "Output Hero Statblock" either until you just mentioned it.

I've been doing it the hard way for years as well!


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112) He should've turned left in Alburquerque.


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Claxon wrote:
Yeah, I've always wished there were scaled up versions of magic missile.

Back in 3.5, I played a wizard who researched a spell called greater magic missile. It was a 3rd-level spell that was the same as magic missile, except that it created 1 missile per caster level (max 10 missiles). The spell counted as magic missile for any and all effects that affected magic missile (e.g. shield spell).

We did not find this spell game-breaking or otherwise imbalanced.


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Always have a "session zero" with your players to chat about expectations, the themes and setting of the campaign, and which rulebooks are in play. You should use this session tell the players how to generate ability scores/hit points, how you're going to handle advancement, how you interpret alignment, how the worship of deities works, and any optional rules or home rules you plan to use (e.g traits/drawbacks, background skills, words of power, stamina, skill unlocks, unchained afflictions, corruption, etc). If you can, write this all up as a player's guide for easy reference later.

Use this time to talk about character concepts and whether they will be appropriate for the campaign. (E.g if you plan to run a city-based urban intrigue campaign, a wilderness specialist or a dungeon-delver probably won't be fun to play.) You should also let the players know which character options would be most appropriate (i.e. favored enemies/terrain, bloodlines, animal companions, etc)


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Kirth Gersen wrote:
Haladir wrote:
Movie 43 piles on the gross but isn't actually, y'know, funny.

(shrugs) I thought it was. I didn't expect sophisticated, highbrow humor, and didn't get any.

Besides, your complaint was that the genre had died. And although it mostly apparently did, it's not quite extinct yet -- I cited a recent example. (The fact that you -- and, admittedly, pretty much everyone other than me -- didn't like that recent example doesn't make it not exist.)

I wasn't the one who complained that sketch comedy movies had fallen by the wayside. (That was John Woodford.)

My only complaint was that I didn't like Movie 43.

Then again, I was the guy defending Jupiter Ascending, so what the hell do I know from movies?


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Thanks, folks!


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I am not a lawyer and the following is not legal advice...

You also said that your material is based on another series of books. Please be aware that the original book series is itself mostl likely protected intellectual property, and you'll probably need a license from that author and/or publishing company to use any IP related to the setting, story, characters, etc.

Before you try to publish anything (commercially or not), you'll probably want to hire an attorney who's familiar with intellectual property law to go over what you want to do before you do it. It would be very disheartening to do a ton of work on a website and then get hit with a "cease and desist" order... or (worse) a lawsuit for damages.


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Malwing wrote:

The real questions are;

1, Will Aethera be mechanically compatible with Starfinder?

2, Will we have to wait until GenCon 2017 got get Aethera?

To preface, I'm not actually involved in the project, other than being a backer at the Cantor level.

Re: Point #1:

In Kickstarter Update #40 (26-Aug-2016), Robert Brookes wrote:

First, I'll get this out of the way, we've decided to not support the Starfinder rules with the Aethera Campaign Setting. After a series of talks with the wonderful folks at Paizo and a little eye in to the game mechanics, we're certain that as of right now it appears that Starfinder is going in a direction that we don't want to take Aethera, play-wise, and if we do wind up offering support for Starfinder it will be in a limited conversion-guide capacity to start some time in the indeterminate future.

Starfinder looks wonderful, but it isn't Aethera and we don't want to compromise on our vision and sell all of you folks short on the awesome book you all helped make...

Re: Point #2: In the most recent KS update, Robert said that they made the decision to have the book printed in China, and that they expect to have the physical product available for sale in late summer (i.e. August). He didn't say whether or not they'll have the book ready for GenCon, but the timing looks to be really tight in that regard.


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It's objectively terrible, but I have a soft spot in my heart for the 1977 Rankin-Bass animated version of The Hobbit.

I first saw it on TV when I was a 7-year old kid. It was my first exposure to Tolkien.


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Pan wrote:
Scythia wrote:
I have to agree with UHF, it's absurdist comedy in a vein I quite enjoy. Always seemed strange to me that the Naked Gun movies did well and UHF didn't, when they're both over the top silly.
Other than being zany comedies, Naked Gun has every single advantage over UHF when compared. Id say a better similarity would be Amazon women on the moon to UHF.

...and I also totally loved Amazon Women on the Moon!


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Tabernero wrote:

According to Paizo's "brilliant" rules, casting a Evil spell is always a evil action, no matter the motivation, effect or consequences...

Truly a superbly designed and well-thought rule. XD

It actually makes perfect sense to me.

Both the intent and the means matter. The ends do not justify the means. It's harder to be good than it is to be evil.

Using Evil means to a Good intent is still an evil action.

But the reverse is not true: Using Good means for evil intent is also an evil action.

Here's how I interpret it:

Evil intent, evil means = evil action
Evil intent, good/neutral means = evil action
Good/neutral intent, evil means = evil action
Netural intent, good/neutral means = neutral action
Good intent, good/neutral means = good action.

That's how it works when I'm behind the GM screen. Your miles may vary.

And, for the record, I'm not a big fan about the attempt at codifying alignment and marking it along a chart that was in Pathfinder Unchained. I prefer to leave it more open-ended and subject to GM interpretation in the context of the GM's campaign world.


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My biggest pet peeve is RPG companies that don't sell PDF versions of their current-edition rulebooks.

I'm looking at you, Wizards of the Coast!

I'd happily pay $25-30 each for PDFs of the 5e Player's Handbook, Dungeon Master's Guide, Monster Manual, and campaign books like Curse of Strahd, but WotC does not make them available at any price.

I know I could download pirate copies for free, but I do not pirate intellectual property. Legalities notwithstanding, it's a matter of personal integrity and professional ethics. (Part of my job is IP compliance.)


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One movie that I thought was hilarious but completely bombed commercially was the 1989 Weird Al Yankovic movie UHF.

I was home from my first year of college, and I'd dragged three of my high school buddies to see UHF at the movies about three days after it opened. There were only two other groups in the theatre when we got there. I was roaring in laughter throughout the film, but I realized that none of my friends were... and that after the movie ended, the other two groups were gone: They must have walked out!

I have a goofball sense of humor, but I really did not understand why none of my friends liked it.

Another problem was that it opened opposite the 1989 Tim Burton film Batman starring Michael Keaton, Kim Bassinger, and Jack Nicholson... which out-grossed UHF by a factor of 20.

I watched UHF a few years ago with my then-14-year-old daughter, and I thought it held up surprisingly well!


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Another possibility could be that the entire library is one giant intelligent magical artifact that can create the illusion of a human librarian at will within the walls of the library. The magical library would have the ability to speak through the illusion. This essentially makes a magical hologram that can interact with the party.

That shows that the Thassilonians have access to powerful magic that's different from the magic of today. It would also be a callback to the illusion of Karzoug giving an address to the troops that's caught in a playback loop way back in Thistetop.


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Happy St. Patrick's Day, everyone!

Enjoy some green beer!

On second thought, just enjoy some beer... and don't dye it green.


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My take:
The carrionstorms are mainly there to provide a sense of dread: There is no escape from this haunted house!. They're not actually that tough for PCs of this level.

As for the haunts: Remember that the real purpose of haunts is to provide information to the PCs in a creepy and disturbing way. They're not supposed to just be "weird traps that a Rogue can't disable," like so many people complain about. It's really important to build the proper atmosphere for the whole Misgivings encounter area. Once the players start cracking jokes or quoting Monty Python, it's just not going to work.

I'd recommend reading the GM tips for running a horror adventure from Horror Adventures before you run Misgivings.

Misgivings is one of the best haunted house adventures I've ever encountered in a published adventure for the D&D family of games. Enjoy it, and good luck!


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It's the lazy writing that I'm upset about.

At this point, the "Kill off/rape the male lead's girlfriend to prove how BAD the bad guy is, and to get the male lead really MAD!" trope just needs to go away.

It's demeaning to women, yes, and it's usually presented as shocking or edgy. But it's not. That trope is so damned overdone, it just screams "I'm the screenwriter and I'M A HACK!!!"


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Okay... this one took a LOT of setup on the GM's part.

This was the biggest RPG mind-fark I've ever experienced. It was simultaneously terrifying and amazing.

It also requires a bit of background to understand...

The game was Amber Diceless Role-Playing, set in the GM's interpretation of the Amber multiverse (based on Roger Zelazny's Chronicles of Amber novel series.

For those unfamiliar with the Amber universe:
There exists One True World: the Kingdom of Amber, which sits in the center of the multiverse. There are an infinte number of lesser worlds, each imperfect reflections of Amber. These lesser worlds are called "Shadow worlds" or just "Shadows," and each Shadow has its own independent laws of magic, physics, and chemistry. Those of the Royal Family of Amber have the ability to manipulate Shadow and to move between adjacent Shadows. To one attuned to the multiverse, it's possible to seek out anyting one desires in Shadow.

My character was an Amberite named Aleister. He was raised on Shadow Earth by adopted parents, and did not know of his heritage. After he was found and brought back to Amber, he came into his birthright, and then stepped out to explore Shadow. Since he had been raised in late-20th-centry Earth, and since he'd been a science fiction fan, he sought out a Shadow where the United Federation of Planets actually existed, and he joined Starfeet Academy, becoming captain Aleister Sheffield of the USS Essex. This was all in the character's background story.

Over the course of the adventure, Aleister did return to the Star Trek universe for a few things... primarily high-tech healing, but also to access a starship's computing power.

Eventually, the PCs obtained an extremely powerful artifact that granted its weilder the ability to manipulate the fundamental laws of reality. [ADRPG game mechanics**: It allowed anyone with Pattern to use the abilities of Advanced Pattern]. To make a long story short, Aleister ended up using it in a magical battle with the Big Bad of the campaign, who was weilding a similar artifact. In the battle, Aleister was using the artifact to summon greater and greater magical power, until...

The GM said, "Suddenly, you all hear a beep, followed by a disembodied voice say, 'Captain to the bridge.'"

At that, one of the other players said, in character, "Computer, freeze simulation." At that, the universe all froze, with the exception of the other PCs. Another player said, also in character, "Arch!" and the GM described the arch of a Federation holodeck appearing. Another of the players turned to me, and said, "Duty calls, Captian. I guess we'll have to return to our holonovel later. Computer, end simulation." At that, the entire world disappeared, to be replaced by a large black-colored room with a yellow grid pattern.

At this, the GM and two other players each pulled out copies of the Last Unicorn Games Star Trek: The Next Generation Role-Playing Game rulebook, and all of the players took out character sheets for the officers of the USS Essex. And then the GM handed me a character sheet of Capt. Aleister Sheffield, for the ST:TNG RPG.

I was completely dumbfounded, and was just looking at the other people in the room with an incredulous look on my face.

At that, one of the other players fixes me with a serious look, and says, "Sir, you should get up to the bridge. Is everyting all right?"

To which I said, "Uhhh..."

And then everyone burst out in laughter.

It turns out that the GM had conspired with all of the other players that if I ever turned up the artifact's power level to 11, then something would happen that would cause us to be playing Star Trek: The Next Generation RPG for a few sessions, and NOT to tell me about it.


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In my "Champions of Old Korvosa" semi-homebrew campaign, I introduced Sihedron medalions again. This time, I was ahead of it: I wrote a custom HeroLab package that included my campaign traits, plus a few magic items and custom spells, and I handed that package out to all of my players who used HeroLab.

One of the items in the package was a replacement of the standard Sihedron medallion that was identical other than removing that line about Runelords being able to scry on them...

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