The Oliphaunt of Jandelay

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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber. Organized Play Member. 999 posts. No reviews. No lists. No wishlists. 10 Organized Play characters.




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Really good Gen-Con this year. Seating was quick, GMs were on the ball, and the scenarios were fun. I only attended the Saturday special, but it was a lot of fun as well.

The only downsides this year weren't anything Paizo could do anything about. The AC was a bit much, though in the end I didn't need to get my jacket, and the braut stand that used to be outside the Sagamore ballroom was missed.

All in all a very good job this year. Thank you!


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I read it in the 80's, though I could have been an older issue. The story was told in the form of official memos or emails. A couple of guys are discussing how to deal with abandoned neighborhoods in a "future" city (think modern Detroit) and one of the guys brings up the idea of using a nuke to clear the abandoned areas. He means it as a joke, but is horrified to find that the idea is taken seriously.

The bulk of the story is working out the logistics of nuking the abandoned areas while the ideas originator tries to get across that he was joking and that nuking an American city is a horrible idea, all told in the form of official memos.

Any help given would be appreciated as I'm working on a presentation for my Oral Communication class and would like to use the story as a reference.


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I finished Robert Conroy's latest, 1920: America's Great War a few days ago.

For those who haven't heard of it, it's another Invasion America book. It has Germany winning WWI early, then deciding to humiliate their last potential rival on the world stage, the USA. Germany puppets Mexico by intervening in their Civil War and ships an army over, which is soon invading California while their Mexican allies move into Texas.

The novel does have it's issues, the biggest one being that Conroy seems to have simply re-used the first few pages of outline for his superior 1901. Germany launches a surprise attack, check. War fought for limited, reasonably plausible objectives (Germany humiliates U.S. and annexes California), check. Pacifistic American President (an even more incompetent than IRL Wilson) dies, check. Square jawed American (and Mexican) men and women fighting the evil, pillaging, raping German's (and Nationalist Mexicans), check. Etc....

Another problem are all the Alien Space Bats zooming all over the place. Now, I'm more than willing to ignore some bats in my battles, but 1920 just takes itself a bit too seriously, and lacks the pulpy goodness of something like Harrison's Stars and Stripes Forever that would allow me to just sit back and enjoy the ride despite the blant historical absurdities.

Despite these issues, the novel is generally entertaining and worth a read, Conroy does write excellent battle scenes and, as far as my limited knowledge can tell, uses all the historical characters well. It's not worth paying full hardcover price for though, so wait for the paperback.


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Just what it says on the tin, build BRIAN BLESSED! as a Pathfinder character.


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The holy text of Besmara is rarely found in a consistent form. All known copies present often wildly divergent and contradictory versions of the various myths that surround the Pirate Queen. One of the few areas of consistency between texts is the presents of a list of rules for pirates, though even these will show regional variations.

Many extra-planar visitors complain that these rules seem to have been stolen wholesale from the writings of a author unknown on Golarion called "Howard Taylor".

Clerics of Besmara will point out that the proper term is "pillaged".

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1. Pillage, then burn.

2. A Chief in motion outranks a Officer who doesn't know what's going on.

3. A Wizard at a dead run outranks everybody.

4. Incendiary shot covereth a multitude of sins.

5. Magic support and friendly fire should be easier to tell apart.

6. If violence wasn’t your last resort, you failed to resort to enough of it.

7. If the food is good enough, the crew will usually stop complaining about the incoming fire.

8. Mockery and derision have their place. Usually, it's on the ship end of the plank.

9. Never turn your back on an enemy.

10. Sometimes the only way out is through. . . through the hull.

11. Everything can be launched from a catapult at least once.

12. A soft answer turneth away wrath. Once wrath is looking the other way, stab it in the back.

13. Do unto others.

15. Only you can prevent friendly fire.

16. Your name is in the mouth of others: be sure it has teeth.

17. The longer everything goes according to plan, the bigger the impending disaster.

18. If the officers are leading from in front, watch out for an attack from the rear.

19. The world is richer when you turn enemies into friends, but that's not the same as you being richer.

20. Give a man a fish, feed him for a day. Take his fish away and tell him he's lucky just to be alive, and he'll figure out how to catch another one for you to take tomorrow.

21. If you can see the whites of their eyes, somebody's done something wrong.

22. If the damage you do is easily fixed, you didn't do enough damage.

23. Don't be afraid to be the first to resort to violence.

24. The enemy of my enemy is my enemy's enemy. No more. No less.

25. A little trust goes a long way. The less you use, the further you'll go.

26. Only cheaters prosper.

27. That which does not kill you has made a grave error

28. When the going gets tough, the tough call for heavier artillery.

29. There is no 'overkill.'

30. Just because it's easy for you doesn't mean it can't be hard on your victims.

--------------------

(Please note that I take no credit for the creation of these rules. They are an slightly edited form of the Seven Habits of Highly Effective Pirates created by Howard Taylor for his excellent webcomic, Schlock Mercenary.)

http://schlockmercenary.wikia.com/wiki/The_Seventy_Maxims_of_Maximally_Effe ctive_Mercenaries


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A film that should be required viewing for anyone playing in Rise of the Runelords or any other game that uses giants as the antagonists: Jack the Giant Slayer.

This film (just released on DVD) does evil giants right. They're evil and uneducated, but not actually stupid. They come up with reasonable plans and during the final battle use actual tactics.

And more than any other movie I've ever seen this film shows just how dangerous giants are in a fight. In one scene - (minor spoiler) - a character starts running flat out to escape from a giant. The giant watches for a moment while the character is getting further away, then takes three steps to catch up and capture him. Giants in this film are only killed by blind luck, good tactics, and/or heavy weapons fire.

This film should have done a lot better in theaters than it did and should be watched by any fantasy rpg fan.


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The Three Sisters

While their worship is new to Golarion, the Three Sisters are relatively old (though still young by godly standards). Daughters of an unnamed LG deity their childhood was spent attending to duties in the heavens, only occasionally being sent down to the material plane. However, during the last few centuries their increasing activity and fame amongst mortals has brought them active worshipers and an organized church.

Unusually, and as a reflection of both the newness of their faiths and the closeness of the sisters, many of their worshipers honor all three sisters as a single faith. This is especially prevalent amongst Bards, who regard the sisters as patron of music, Witches, who worship them as aspects of the maiden, mother, and crone (the last never openly referred to as such where Urd might hear...which is to say it's never openly referred to), Druids, and oracles. Those who take levels in cleric must chose one of the three however.

Another reflection of their faith's newness and closeness is that, with the exception of personal household shrines, the sister's churches normally all share the same building. Though regional and personal differences will often guide which of the sisters have primacy within a specific temple, with Urd often dominating in Cheliax and Skuld in Numeria for example.

Of primary concern to the church is it's adversarial relationship with Asmodeus and Urd's mother, Hild. Urd's mother is an infernal goddess in her own right, who's area of influence encompasses several worlds, and Asmodeous believes that the rise of the sister's faith on Golarion is part of a plot on her part to weaken him. For their own part the sisters suspect he's right, but feel they have no choice but to see things through.

Herald: While each of the sisters (save Urd) have their own personal planar allies, often a request for aid will summon the ascended mortal, and husband of Belldandy, Kenichi (20th level Driver Rogue). Once an ordinary student at a university on an unnamed world, Kenichi bound the then-still archon Belldandy to his side with a impulsively made wish, believing the offer of a wish as a practical joke being played on him. Over time genuine love sprang up between the mortal and the nascent goddess, driven in part by their shared love of racing, and after many adventures together they married, with him eventually ascending to heaven at her side. While not actively worshiped himself, his name as often invoked for luck by engineers and good-aligned folk about to make a wish through magical means.

Appearing as a short human of Mikian heritage he is by no means a great combatant (though after so many adventures he's hardly helpless), but by nature an engineer with a love of racing machines who prefers to either deal with a situation diplomatically, with a competition, or to MacGuyver a solution.

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Urd

NG Goddess of Fire, Magic, The Past, Tieflings

Domains: Magic, Knowledge, Fire, Rune

Favorite weapon: None

History:

Eldest of the three sisters, Urd is the result of a affair between her father and the devil goddess, Hild. Raised in the heavens, Urd faced some prejudice as a result of her tiefling heritage, impulsive behavior, and violent temper. But the love of, and for her sisters, as well as her determination not to fall under the influence of hell, has kept her from falling under the power of her mother, with whom she has a contentious relationship.

Though eldest, and more powerful than her sisters, Urd is below Bell in the heavenly hierarchy. This is not due to any doubts about her heritage (she has long since proven herself) but while her loyalty is not doubted, her ability to conform to the strict tenants of law is. Her willingness to bend the rules and tendency towards impulsive behavior being legendary. Also, she believes that she can better protect her sisters if she isn't so bound by the strict rules of the heavenly hierarchy.

Unlike most gods, Urd does not have a favored weapon, preferring to rely entirely on her enormous magical skills in combat, with lightning strikes being her first, second, and (ohgodpleaseI'vesurrendered!) third choices.

With her infernal heritage, Urd is extremely sympathetic to the plight of those who struggle with the temptations of infernal or demonic blood, and such people can always find aid and a sympathetic ear in her temples. This has made her faith the largest of the sisters in terms of numbers, if not popularity with the authorities.
Urd appears as a beautiful young woman in her mid-twenties of Ulfen decent, the only obvious signs of her tiefling heritage being her dark skin, white hair, and that in her archon form half of her wings are jet black.

As befitting her blunt nature, signs of Urd's favor are often quite obvious. A potion discovered just when needed, or slipped into one's food or drink. Her disfavor is usually even more obvious, taking the form of a lightning bolt from the sky.

Church:

Urd's faith contains more arcane casters than those of her sisters, with Sorcerers dominating, especially those good-aligned Sorcerers with infernal or demonic bloodlines. Many Witches who follow one sister above the others claim her as a patron, with the rest following Belldandy. Alchemists who follow the sisters tend to split between Urd and her youngest sister, with those who concentrate on healing and the crafting of potions following Urd.

Urd also has a considerable following amongst Rogues who appreciate her looser interpretations of heavenly law, but good-aligned tieflings and other half-breeds of any class make up the largest, and fastest growing, segment of her faith.

Planar Allies:

Unlike her sisters, Urd doesn't have specific allies that respond to summonings for aid, preferring to materialize as an avatar to deal with problems herself. Both because she enjoys visiting the material plane and as a "legitimate" way to ditch whatever duties she's been assigned in heaven. When she can't attend to a summoning herself, Urd will normally simply send Kenichi or trick one of her sister's allies into handling the problem, though this often results in the summoner having to deal with a surprised and annoyed ally, as well as whatever issue they were attempting to deal with.

This state of affairs is something that younger worshipers often consider quite impressive, but which the older and wiser view with experienced trepidation.

Relations with other faiths:

Urd is on generally good terms with the other gods of Golarion. In part this is due to the diplomatic efforts of her sister, Belldandy, but also because the other good-aligned gods recognize the fact that her temples provide a place for good-aligned folk who, despite the god's own feelings on the matter, are not welcomed by their followers because of an evil heritage.

Asmodeus is the only Golarion god actively antagonistic to Urd, but that antagonism is tempered with calculation. While he believes her presence on Golarion is part of a plot by Hild and dislikes her acceptance of infernal-blooded worshipers, he is also mindful of the fact that despite a lifetime of attempts Hild has never managed to bring Urd into the embrace of hell. He believes that if he can corrupt her it would provide him a lever in his planar competition with Hild.

Urd's only other "adversarial" relationship is with her youngest sister, Skuld. Their teasing, practical joke-filled relationship has been transmitted to their followers, often leading to somewhat explosive, though never fatal, results.


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I was futzing around building a Kitsune Wizard on Herolab and when I went to pick my arcane bond the Kitsune's bite came up as an weapon option.

It can't possibly be RAI, and I doubt many GMs would allow it, but I can't find any actual RAW that disallows it.

Did I just miss it, or has this not come up before?


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Not by any measure worth the price of seeing it in the theater.

The heroes were dull, the villains were dull, the fights were dull, the entire movie was dull, dull, dull....

If I hadn't been watching it with family I would have left and snuck into a different theater.

If I had to say anything nice about the film it would be that at least the fight scenes weren't done with that shaky-cam garbage that's ruined almost every movie fight the last few years (they were still dull), and that I was pleasantly surprised when Mary Todd Lincoln didn't become either a DiD or Action Girl at any point during the film.

In fact, if not for the historical inaccuracy of her character bugging me I'd call Mary Elizabeth Winstead's performance as Mary Todd the best thing in the film.

Doesn't save the film by any means though, definitely a rental at best.


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I have to admit, despite going in with very low expectations I quite enjoyed Battleship. Despite the usual sci-fi silliness, military faux-pas, and stupid physics it's well worth seeing on the big screen.

It's not going to beat Avengers (and it hasn't) but it's a good popcorn flick to go see if you've already been to The Avengers.


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Can someone provide me a link to the FAQ entry (if any) about what happens to Eidolons in antimagic field?


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So I noticed that Sons of Ellyrion, the sequel to Defenders of Ulthuan has been released.

High Elves are one of the armies I play in Warhammer Fantasy Battles, so I'm always interested in new fluff on them (or any fluff on them given that they're one of the least well represented races in Black Library publications), and Graham McNeill is certainly capable of writing a good novel. But Defenders was such an outright bad book that I'm hesitant to pick up the sequel.

Can anyone tell me if there's been any improvement in the story or am I better off not bothering?