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Topics - blingdenston

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1
Outside Realm / Some Tabletop RPGs I'm Excited About
« on: 06/30/18, 06:17:29 PM »
Hey! I'm looking at some tabletop RPGs that are (tangentially) related to Star Wars, and I thought I'd let you guys in on it!

Tachyon Squadron - https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/evilhat/tachyon-squadron-fate-core-rpg/

Tachyon Squadron is a Fate Core Playset based on military sci-fi/space opera stuff like Star Wars, Battlestar Galactica, Wing Commander, et cetera. Fate is a narrative RPG aimed at replicating the experience of specific genre pieces, and Tachyon Squadron is specifically looking to replicate the feeling of being in a plucky starfighter squadron up against massive, implacable foes. It's really cool! It's also got a really neat hack of the Fate Core conflict system that simulates starfighter combat in a really neat way...it involves positioning, maneuvering and blasting in a really exciting manner that I'm pretty jazzed-up about. I'm actually pretty excited to run this sometime soon!

Scum and Villainy https://www.evilhat.com/home/scum-and-villainy/

Scum and Villainy is a Forged in the Dark game where you play the crew of an outlaw spaceship trying to make ends meet at the edge of civilization, dealing with cutthroat crime syndicates, distant and powerful star-aristocrats, and strange mystics and aliens. 'Forged in the Dark' refers to games based on Blades in the Dark, and the core concepts are this: you play as some form of rogues who are part of a nascent, underdog group of some sort and you run jobs to support and build-up your power-base (in this case, a starship). You actually plan out the job (which could be a heist, a smuggling run, a bounty hunt, or whatever else your crew is interested in) IN play, so that you jump immediately into the action and 'fluff it out' in-game, with each character taking responsibility for an aspect of the job. Each session is a run of some sort, followed by downtime, recovery, and character/crew advancement. It's a REALLY cool concept, and Scum and Villainy is the first one I'm really itching to get into and run for myself.


2
高畑 勲 Takahata Isao, October 29, 1935 – April 5, 2018

Just got in after a miserable day to find out that Isao Takahata has passed on. Takahata was one of the founders of Studio Ghibli, director of the devastating and beautiful Grave of the Fireflies and the incredibly charming My Neighbors the Yamadas as well as a personal favorite of mine, Pom Poko.

While his long-time collaborator and co-founder of Ghibli, Hayao Miyazaki, specializes in fantasy tours-de-force, Takahata flitted from subject to subject and style to style...adaptations of European classics, family comedies, surrealist environmental pieces, meditations on war and loss, Japanese myth...he did it all. He was also laser-focused on the struggles of the oppressed and dispossessed, leading the unionization of the animators at Toei Studios in the 50s and focusing his storytelling efforts on victims, underdogs, revolutionaries and children.

This year and the year before, Fathom Events here in the States has been holding a 'Studio Ghiblifest', playing a Ghibli film a month in three showings (two dubbed, one subbed). I was lucky enough to finally get to see Castle in the Sky for the first time last year, as well as a blockbuster showing of Kiki's Delivery Service and (as kind of a side-benefit) a big-screen showing of Lupin III: The Castle of Cagliostro (directed by Miyazaki). This year, they're continuing the 'fest with a 2018 version, starting last month with the 10th anniversary celebration of Ponyo (which I quite liked!) This year, they're also doing some Takahata films, Pom Poko and Grave of the Fireflies.

I'm going to update this thread each month with info on the films before I go and see them, and I'll encourage folks to go see the ones I like (which is most of them).

https://www.regmovies.com/promotions/studio-ghibli-fest-2018

3
Inspired by @recoveringgeek 's Shoutbox find on the subject of the plan to rescue Han Solo in 'Return of the Jedi', I thought I'd start a thread on plans and debacles that YOU'VE experienced/taken part in/never spoken of again in your stories and games! I'll open up with a little story I'm calling...

Unmaking a Murderer

Dramatis Personae

The Slipshod Knights
Rhynn (played by J.) - CE elf fighter, possessed by the Darkbringer
Tarlin (played by I.) - CN (E) anatomist/priest of Loviatar, goddess of pain
Felmadi Aman (played by B.) - CN horse trader/horseback raider, barbarian/ranger/philosopher
Geall Barnevuolo (played by me!) - N minstrel, chronicler of the adventure, hardly important

Rhynn had gotten possessed by remnants of the fallen god Moander after getting drunk and partying with a bunch of demons in an offal pit somewhere west of the Moonsea. This, coupled with his generally obnoxious and violent attitude, had lead to him waking up every week or so with no memory of what had occurred the night previously, while the locals whispered fearfully about a terrible beast who was claiming the lives of the innocent in the twilight hours.

Because of our peripatetic habits, we didn't notice the trail of carnage we had left in our wake until, one day, Rhynn entered the lodge where we were staying carrying a large bundle of bloody sheets and, in the middle of breakfast, hurled them into the roaring hearthfire and tried to head upstairs.

When the innkeep demanded to know what in the Nine Hells he was doing hurling giant masses of roughspun and linen into the fire while people were trying to eat, Rhynn (and his player, J.) was at a loss. He had spent the entire morning in the victim's house repeatedly rolling Search checks hoping to find secret doors and hollows. Despite the DM's assurance that it was a completely normal house, J. was convinced that there HAD to be a secret lair, or a hidden basement, or a false wall or something where he could hide the evidence. When that proved impossible, he decided upon the next best course of action: burn the evidence. And where better to hide the evidence of his crimes than the lodge where his entire party was staying, in the middle of the breakfast rush, with a dozen witnesses around?

After assuring the publican that our elf friend was suffering from an untreated truncheon blow to the head, we braced Rhynn in his room and finally got him to admit to his blackouts. When we demanded he accompany us to a local magician to get treatment, he grew agitated...he didn't actually MIND being a sleepkiller, just that he was so bad at hiding the evidence of his unconscious crimes.

The rest of we Knights put our heads together to ponder the problem. We had noticed signs of Rhynn's mysterious fugues, of course...plus numerous omens of the sinister Darkbringer, which had been plaguing our travels for months. We checked in with the local cult of Loviatar, Tarlin's patron goddess and the S&M mistress of pain and servitude. The high priestess was able to identify the source of the curse (the aforementioned demon-party) and the possession by a profane spiritual remnant of the god of rot and corruption, Moander. She affirmed that she would be able to perform a ritual that would cure Rhynn of his curse: a physical and spiritual scourging that would beat the taint out of him (no incense and baptisms for them)! All we had to do was get the burly elf into their hands, without his armaments and preferably tied up.

But, how do you help someone who won't help themselves? Especially when they're violent maniacs who continuously threaten their party members (like poor Geall, who he continuously called 'thief' and accused of rifling through his things, despite the fact that Sr. Barnevuolo was quite obviously a minstrel and scholar who just happened to know a thing or two about picking locks and slitting throats)? ESPECIALLY when they're violent maniacs who threaten their fellow party members and are immune to sleep spells and poisons?

Tarlin had more experience with Rhynn (and I. had more experience dealing with J.) than the rest of us, and knew just what to do. He dispatched Felmadi into the wilderness to find a rare type of poisonous toad, while he had Barnevuolo shadow the burly elf (to make sure he didn't get into any more trouble than we were already in), while he personally brewed a series of potions and poisons designed to break down the elf's resistance to sleeping draughts and put him out. Then, he got out his eeriest robe and wrote a threatening scroll full of instructions and had Barnevuolo take him to where Rhynn was prowling.

Standing atop a roof, the robed wizard used the message cantrip to eerily demand that Rhynn pay him heed, then used true strike to throw the scroll to him, making the parchment flutter down and land perfectly in his hand. Impressed by the display of weird prodigies, Rhynn read the scroll and, for reasons I cannot begin to explain to you, just did as it demanded. First, he journeyed into the town's alleyways, seeking a beggar (just some poor anonymous, uninvolved soul). Once he found one, he braced the man and made his demands: "You will take me into the wilderness, and we will find a toad, and then I WILL pay you!"

Terrified, the beggar did as he was bade and, miraculously, after much searching and endless threats from the elf, found the toad (just where Felmadi had planted it). The toad's poisonous flesh was the final component of the special sleep poison Tarlin had brewed (and infused into the squirmy little beast), but the subject had to willingly and knowingly imbibe it in order for it to be effective. The elf grabbed the fat toad and wrenched it in twain with his bare hands, then told his shivering companion: "You will eat half of this frog, and you will STOMACH IT!" Together, the two ate their poisoned meal, the poor beggar having difficulty choking down the warty meat ("STOMACH IT!" Rhynn roared at him, chunks of toadmeat flying from his lips). With that done, the elf paid the beggar the princely sum of 5 platinum tricrowns, and bade him depart (whether the beggar survived the poisoning, or made it back to town, we never learned).

And so, we were able to find the brutal murderer, napping in the woods. We bundled him into a cart, tied him up, and delivered him to the cultists, where he spent a long night being beaten and mortified while chants to the Willing Whip echoed in his ears. By morning, we were able to bundle the raw-skinned, but cured, elf into our cart and leave town before the local constables could question us in the murders.

Then, two days later, I had to kill Rhynn when he tried to cut my throat in the middle of the night with a hatchet (?) for messing with his pet cat. (The cat had tried to eat Sr. Barnevuolo while I was turned into a canary, but that's another story).

~Fin~

And that's one story of bizarre plans, nonsensical choices, and comical outcomes! What's happened to YOU? What're YOUR favorite misdeeds, heists, plots and peccadilloes?

4
The Trading Floor / ECW Anarchy Rulz
« on: 07/18/17, 08:25:00 PM »
Hey! I'm looking to get my hands on one of those new 'Anarchy' guns (not the Mischief one, no thank you). If you get a spare, or just wanna trade/get paid, contact me and we'll work out a deal. Thanks in advance!

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Roleplay Workshop / Fighting is Storytelling
« on: 11/06/16, 11:19:41 AM »
(By request from @Seraphie and @Imazi)

Roleplaying can be many things.  It can be therapeutic, providing an outlet for deep-seated feelings.  It can be garnish, adding spice and interest to a romantic encounter or a miniature wargame.  It can be an avenue for comedians to crack jokes (see the Campaign podcast for more on this: http://oneshotpodcast.com/category/campaign/).  But one thing that it almost always is is, in some way, telling a story.

You have characters who have lives and goals, beliefs and neuroses; you've got an imaginary world of entities, polities places and histories that, inevitably, those characters must deal with in some way.  And, quite often, you have conflict between the characters that can erupt into violence.

Violence, combat, disaster and adventure are all potent storytelling tools that can jazz up a languid scene, add shock and devastation to a peaceful one, or form the backbone of a break-neck action piece.  However, in situations like the one we have here, you run into some problems: firstly, the backbone of our community roleplay, like it or not, is a combat-based MMORPG where everyone, ostensibly, is playing a powerful warrior of some sort.  In the base game, we get used to a small handful of powerful characters cutting their way through masses of faceless, nameless opponents until getting into larger, more difficult battles with more important foes.

That said, not everyone WANTS to be an exactly-equivalent world-beater.  Some folks want to be smaller, more humble characters.  Others want to notably powerful and important figures.  Our solution, often, is to avoid the in-game dueling system and use a similar approach in combat as we do in conversations and negotiations: free-form, descriptive battles with no 'hand of the rules' tabulating hits and misses, or with a simplistic system to append victory or loss to characters based on some element or random chance.

Often, though, (and I acknowledge a bit of stereotyping, and apologize for any offense), you can get into the mindset of wanting to 'win', wanting your character to stand tall at the end of the fight and be the victor.  I, myself, have found myself grumbling after an encounter and tallying my win/loss ratio like some TF2 fireteam leader.  This is not 'wrong'...there are very few ways to play a freeform storytelling game incorrectly...but I DO think it misses an important point: the 'victor' of a fight in a story isn't the characters...it's the readers.

We take on the role of author and audience in each interaction we have...usually taking the role of a single character and playing them as though we WERE the character; sometimes playing a hostile force, or environment, or 'villain'.  But our responsibility in this mutual storytelling isn't, really, to put notches on an imaginary gunbelt, but to tell an interesting story where conflict erupts and the characters beliefs are tested, well-being is risked, and goals are moved towards.

It's the difference between a mass-market potboiler where some generic avenger savages a generic criminal cartel to get revenge for his generic lost family, and a truly gripping thriller or fantasy story, where the characters become 'real' to us and the risk has effect.  Would you care what happened to Ned Stark if he'd wandered into King's Landing and started swordfighting some orcs?  Would you worry for Harry Potter's safety if he was a polymath ninja who beat up Crabbe and Goyle and fist-fought the troll in the bathroom?  Would you care about Obi-Wan if you saw The Phantom Menace first, and knew him as a dopey extra-robe-guy who gets vengeance for Rob Roy at the end?]

More than that, in the genre of adventure stories, in the oeuvre of Star Wars, and through the medium of free-form text-based give-and-take interaction, a more cinematic form of combat-storytelling can be evinced to turn a fight from a scrap to figure out which character is the toughest to a proper scene, wherein every character's personality can be expressed, they can make progress towards fulfilling their needs, and the story can be progressed through emotive, exciting action.

If we're both author and audience, we win a fight scene by expressing our character and setting in stimulating, interesting manners and satisfying interest in each other by showing how our character's go after their interests, what they're willing to give to achieve them, and how the way they react to danger expresses their nature and desires. 

Weapons, fighting styles, super-powers, set pieces...these are all special effects used to illustrate something about our characters.  Han Solo's big, black blaster, carried in his gunslinger's holster tells us he's a man who's always ready for a fight; Captain America's shield tells us that he's more interested in protecting others than winning fights, and that he's so incredibly skilled that he can use a tool for defense as a weapon at range; Hannibal Lecter's slithering nature, vicious linoleum knife attacks, and evil intentions demonstrate his demoniac, inhuman nature; Korra's rough-and-tumble, overwhelming 'bending attacks show her confidence, her arrogance and, when threatened, her fear of inadequacy and loss.

To demonstrate what I mean, I'd like to share a few scenes with you from various movies.  Pay attention not merely to the fighting, but to the way they're staged...how the actors use their bodies, the frames the shots and follows the action, and how the music and sound effects impart the movement with a second level of interface that 'activates' the scene in your mind's eye.

First, from Wheels on Meals, pay attention to how Jackie Chan and Benny Urquidez let their fighting prowess, their facial expressions, and the entire set to describe their characters' personalities, their relationship, and the constantly shifting momentum of the fight: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H6eC-BAsVdQ  Pay close attention to how Jackie's demeanor shifts from cocky and dancing to frightening and dodging as his powerful opponent lays in, and how the momentum changes and shifts, the music swelling and dancing along to the fight's rhythm.

Next, from Batman Begins, our first REAL look at the titular character in action.  Watch how, rather than a superhero, the scene treats him more like a horror movie monster...more like Ridley Scott's alien than Tim Burton's wadding, rubbery Frankenstein: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mq85kxJfcLA

Third, from Die Hard, watch how John McClane, alone and outmatched, lets loose his anger and desperation to survive an ambush by the 'terrorist' Karl, who blames him for the death of his brother Tony: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wykwob6IL-Y Pay especial attention to how the setting, which has been meticulously laid out throughout the course of the film thus far, becomes part of the resolution of the fight.  See how the tide sways based upon who has the advantage in position; who has the guns; and how clever and brutal use of the setting and its pieces complicate and resolve the brawl.

Finally, observe the final, devastating action beat from 'Sanjuro' (the sequel to 'Yojimbo').  Hanbei (on the right), the right-hand man fooled again and again by Sanjuro, demands satisfaction.  Sanjuro (on the left), reluctant to fight, tries to beg off, claiming to fear dying at Hanbei's hands and pointing out the uselessness of their combat.  When Hanbei refuses...watch the sudden and irreversible display of violence and how it ends a life, shocks a crowd of young samurai, and defines a swordsman in a single, breathless moment: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-NNaj5YUxco

Fighting IS storytelling.  Even in a dice-based, random-chance, stats-versus-stats game, a narrative forms of devastating rejoinders, one-in-a-hundred shots, and tragic and devastating losses.  Just like you'd use a cool costume to demonstrate your character's position and personality...just like you'd use a funny accent to indicate a character's origin and education...use a fight to flesh out your character.  You may never have another opportunity like a battle to demonstrate who your character truly is...a hero, a coward, a sneak, a fool, a technician, a brute, a person.

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The Trading Floor / Goodies Search!
« on: 05/07/16, 12:13:27 PM »
I'm in search of several items from the latest pack!  If you have and are interested in selling the following items, gimme a message of some sort and I'll gladly spread my shekels 'round the community!

I'm looking for:
  • Shadow Corsair's Supplementary and Lower Armors
  • Triumphant Predator Upper and Supplementary Armors
  • Corellian Stardrive Spark
  • Diagnostic Wall Terminal (Planetary)
  • Treasure Crate (received one, could use a few more!)
  • Underworld Cooking Stove (already got one, could use more!)
  • Underworld Housing Container (already got one, could use at least one more!)
  • Underworld Shelving
  • Zabrak Pirate (Female) (already got one, would like more!)

Thanks to @livia, @Seraphie, and @Niarra for their generosity!

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Cantina / Patch 4.3 Naming Tricks
« on: 04/05/16, 10:15:11 AM »
This thread is intended to gather together information on titles, ranks, and descriptors allowed by the naming engine after path 4.3.  I'll try to keep this master post updated with verified allowed and disallowed titles/names/etc.

Allowed:
Grand
Moff
Sergeant
Agent
Baron
President
Chancellor
Private
Count
Dame
Exarch
Paladin
Executioner
Commodore
Marshal
Admiral
Padawan
Inquisitor
Syndic
Officer
Imperial
Instructor
Scholar
Supreme
Leader
Detective
Inspector
Millionaire
Margrave
Priestess
Confessor
Herald

Rejected
The
Captain
Darth
Master
Lord
Baroness
Emperor
General
Major
Colonel
Lieutenant
Sir
Commander
Knight
Duke
Duchess
Corporal
Miss
Bard
Ransom

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Events and Occasions / Jedi Night 1/28 - Hoist the Jedi Roger
« on: 01/27/16, 05:53:28 AM »
1500 droids on a dead man's chest...

With the Custodian's Watch suffering nearly 5 years of damage after battle against the Eternal Empire and adventures through the Unknown Regions, a safe port is both necessary...and unreachable.  Unable to return to the Republic and with options running low, only the miraculous or the uncommonly bold will save the ship and the Jedi Custodum.

Miracles being in short supply, boldness will have to serve.  A Jedi scout has discovered
Titanomachia Base, a massive spaceborne superstructure.  Constructed by and host to highly advanced scavenger droids once operated by the Gen'Dai pirate known as 'the Locust', these mechanical menaces blindly follow their master's last directive: strip planets and comets clean of valuable resources.  After five years of looting and plundering, these droids have set their sights on the valuable mineral resources of the Adega system.

With a horde of valuable resources, starship slipways, and construction equipment,
Titanomachia is perfect, aside from two small details: first, the massive Cron Drift asteroid field which cuts the Auril sector off from the rest of the Galaxy; second, the massive swarm of adaptive pirate droids unwilling to relinquish their haul.  But, balanced against total annihilation...what's a little peril?

Hoist the Jedi Roger is a Jedi Night event, detailing a desperate attack against a heartless foe, with the future of the enclave entire resting on the edge of a blade!  It will be divided into two possible pieces:  Flashpoint runs for those interested in going toe-to-toe with the inhabitants of Titanomachia (with all enemies and story events being treated as battles against the droid opposition within the base itself), and ship-based action roleplay dealing with the wounded Custodian's Watch facing a swarm of Locust-droids intent on defending their treasure...by turning the Watch into more of it!

The event is open to all members of the Jedi Custodum, and those aligned with the Jedi and in good standing.  The event starts at 7:30 PM on January 28th, just like a regular Jedi Night!

(Special thanks to @Joshmaul for teaching me how to read a calendar!  You're the ace!)

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Cantina / Special Offer/Guest Star Recruitment
« on: 11/20/15, 08:45:18 PM »
As we head towards the switchover period between the 'SoR' continuity and the 'KOTFE' continuity, SmugCo's big 'Eyes in the Dark' story is also coming to an end.  I plan on hosting the finale for the story next month, which will ALSO be providing Pehn with his 'timeskip' rationale, as his ship trips the light fantastic and ends up plopped right into the Chapter III-IX area of 'KOTFE'.

As such, I'm offering berths to folks who want something a little more unique than 'carbonite freezing' to engage in the timeskip!  SmugCo members are, of course, well-placed to come aboard (or not!), and others can join, so long as they're involved in some way in the big finale to 'Eyes in the Dark'!  If you are interested (in being 'lost' for 5 years, in coming back to a Galaxy changed utterly, to be thrust into a new world with only the clothes on your back and maybe some caf from Pehn's commissary...), let me know!

BEFORE that, though, next week, a big (or a couple of big...) post(s) in the 'Eyes in the Dark' thread will go up...and I'm looking for YOUR help to spice it up!  Force-users (Jedi, Sith, and otherwise) will get a chance to have an 'Obi-Wan vapors' moment as the Grasper's secret desire is unleashed on the Galaxy!  I'm looking for short posts of people having that 'pause of dread' to intersperse with the revelation.

Use this thread to let me know your interest/desires on the timeskip and vision trick!

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Cantina / Commentary and Discussion - 'Hyse on History'
« on: 10/15/15, 08:56:48 AM »
This thread will serve two purposes: a revisiting of my history lectures of the last year, and a forum for discussion about Star Wars lore.  Every week or so, I'll post my commentary on a different thread...feel free to post your own thoughts, questions, and gripes!

There will be plenty of griping...but let's start at the beginning


Lecture I - The Jedi Forged  http://begerencolony.org/index.php?topic=3223.msg35374#msg35374

  • I didn't go into greater specifics about the contents of the Dawn of the Jedi series for a few reasons...mostly because I don't think the little-over-a-decade the Jedi have been exploring Tython would be long enough to uncover all the lore and secrets of a civilization 20 millennia gone, but also because of the absence of many DOTJ elements in the game as it stands (such as the lack of Tho Yor, the non-mention of the Je'daii Rangers and their lore, and the origin of the Flesh Raiders as degenerate mass-produced Rakata shock troops).  I think it's fine as 'legendary' backstory, but I find it distracting to the vital Jedi/Sith conflict that serves as the centerpoint for SWTOR.
  • I used non-SW-canon-native 'capitalized noun' terms like 'Light Within' and 'Sin' for flavor purposes; to give this earlier understanding of the Force a primitive, superstitious aspect.
  • You'll notice that, especially in posts dated 'tens of thousands of years BTC', that the Jedi's alignment with the Republic fluctuates wildly.  This is me attempting to reconcile numerous conflicting/poorly-aligned sources on when, precisely, the Jedi joined the Republic.  Just assume that the Jedi and Republic are like teenaged lovers, breaking up and getting together all the time, listening to the soundtrack to Breaking Dawn and moaning about it to their friends at the local taco stand.
  • I love Caamasi.  Friendly tapir people would be more than welcome if BioWare wants to throw some in.
  • The lore of the First Great Schism is compiled from numerous wacky sources.  'Xendor' often came up as an oath and curse (as in 'Minions of Xendor!')  by characters from A.C. Crispin's Han Solo Trilogy.  'Legions of Lettow' was what the Sith were called in one of the pre-shooting versions of 'The Star Wars', which was retrofitted (as is, you'll find, almost anything George Lucas ever wrote down) into the 'backstory' of the Expanded Universe.  Finally, General Xendor's girlfriend Arden Lyn, pictured with him in the article, is a character from the amazingly bad Masters of Teräs Käsi 3D fighter for PlayStation...which means that the origins of the Sith are cobbled together from smuggler curses, George Lucas' birdcage filler, and a game where a Sand Person can leg-sweep Princess Leia to death.

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Cantina / Time To Talk About Timeskip!
« on: 10/12/15, 04:42:38 PM »
With the expansion breathing down our necks like the Minotaur with a schnozzfull of Athenian, we oughtta really discuss what we want to do.

Some folks have proposed jumping in as soon as KOTFE goes live.  Others have suggested a month, while still others have suggested we wait until January 1st!  These are all options, and I think they're all good ones.

What do YOU think?  What different modalities of timeskip reckoning should we use?  When do YOU intend to throw that switch and get skippy?

12
Storyboards / [End of an Era] - There Is No Death
« on: 10/09/15, 03:01:35 PM »
This thread follows in the aftermath of the 'End of an Era' event last week.  A Jedi burial for Yarwin and the other lives lost during the joint Aylaa/Yarwin/Jaade assault, it serves as a chance for those close to Yarwin to meditate on his fate, as well as for other Jedi to spend some time dwelling on death and the Force!



The Masters' Retreat, The Gnarls, Tython

The great stone edifice of the Masters' Retreat blocked the light from Tython's moons, but the flare of torches defied the deep of night as the funereal patrol finished their work and walked, somberly, back to the gathered crowd.   The mirrored surface of the lake, hemmed in on all sides by spires of rock and ancient Tythonian masonry, reflected the starry sky above, giving the ceremony an air of otherworldly sobriety.

Ran-del Qardaak stepped forward and picked up a resin-coated torch from a small starburst set on a flat rock.  He held it, straight, and approached the fire-tender, who moved aside to allow Ran-del to light the brand and step forward.  The sound of moving feet, of breathing (and, in some cases, carefully hidden sounds of mourning) was joined by the crackle of ignition as Ran-del and other Jedi moved out onto the spar.

There, in the shape of an arrowhead, were set several pyres of varying sizes.  He headed towards the point, passing by the remains of the slain Jedi, some tragically small and all of them still.  He breathed carefully, controlling the flow of energy through his body, controlling the pain of his recent wounds, and the pain of the lost lives.

He reached the point, circling around to the far side of the pyre and looking down at the armored figure in repose there.  His hooded cloak was drawn up, but Ran-del knew that the neck was bare, for he had taken the head himself at the end of the fray.  "No water, no peace," the monster had said.

A deep and bitter rage flowed through him as he looked past Yarwin's pyre and to the other biers, topped with fallen Jedi and with other torch-bearing Knights taking their positions near it.  She played us like a electroharp...the whole thing, a set-up.  All of this, to steal an old book...  He scowled, face ghoulish in the light of the torches.

He looked down at Yarwin's gauntleted hands, placed in repose above the scarred breastplate.  He let go of the anger, letting it dissipate with a painful breath and feeling the soothing peace of meditative focus resettle over his senses.  There would be time for justice...not vengeance, but justice...in due time.  Now was the time to mourn, and to heal, and to rest.

He nodded to the other torchbearers and lowered his brand to the wood.  Licks of flame turned to a bonfire, and the fire began to consume Yarwin and the other fallen Jedi.  "No water, no peace."  The smoke rose from the biers and was caught by a wind, carried over the lake and into the air.

13
Cantina / NYCC 2015 Cantina Code Sharing
« on: 10/09/15, 05:22:30 AM »
This time, get the cool lookin' black-and-red Prinawe Union!

http://www.swtor.com/user/ce/13wv4t

14
The following is a repost and supercession of the content from my original 'Starhunters' thread (intro post here: http://begerencolony.org/index.php?topic=3681.msg40680#msg40680 ).  The purpose of this is to seek attendees for the 'Yellow Shift' event next Saturday, September 26th, at 7:30 PM server time!  Please read the rules carefully and submit your character/ship to me via PM!

-Yellow Shift-



Coruscant's Galactic City is a place of wonders as tall as the smog-streaked sky, and shames as deep as the long-shadowed dirt.  Amongst the most interesting of these quirks is the fact that much of 'the Works', the lower-levels of Galactic City, are run by ancient Gree technology which not even Republic scientists truly understand.  The recent reemergence of the Gree onto the scene of galactic politics has been a balm for the ailing planet, which was heavily damaged during the tragic Sacking of Coruscant over a decade again.

It has also offered an opportunity for those possessed of sight to see it...as the Gree have set upon Coruscant to repair their antediluvian devices, they've been able to gather intelligence from the millennia-old databanks of the Works...intelligence dating all the way back to earliest conflicts between the Republic and Empire.  Should the Gree abscond to their space with those archives, it can be certain that none of we unfortunate enough to be born non-cephalopodic will ever see them.  As such, I am now offering a bounty for the contents of the Gree Information Tug 'UloK HidG-RaM'...the droid-brain of the drone-ship.  Whoever can bring me this information will prove themselves as a hunter, as a pilot, and as an ally of the concept of freedom of information.


'Yellow Shift' is a four-player free-for-all Space PvP event, wherein four ships and their crews will have a standoff to see who can claim the prize aboard the drone-ship UloK HidG-RaM* for their own.  In the pursuit of a frenetic, action-and-intrigue filled encounter, it is required that none of the players start as allies...though, should things get desperate, short-term alliances may be made!  But remember...only ONE victor will be allowed!

The BC.org Space RP system will be used (http://begerencolony.org/forum/index.php?page=6), with each PC building a ship as detailed within.  As a variant, the 'Recharging Shields' maneuver will be rolled, using 1d100+Discipline, with failure granting no restoration, a critical failure causing an additional lost action, success meaning 1 Shield Point restored, and an exceptional success meaning that 2 Shield Points are restored.  Fate Points will not be used as part of the event.  The loss of all Hit Points indicates destruction/defeat.  When one character remains present with a functional ship, they may lay claim to the prize and be considered the winner!

The victor of 'Yellow Shift' will receive the entire 1,000,000 credit bounty from the Grasper!  The other pilots will receive a consolation prize of some old GSF gas canisters and paintjobs I have lying around, and some pink speeders because that's what's in fashion now!

*Pronounced 'oohlah-kay hihd-gee rah-emm'

15
Rancorous planetfall +13 hours

"It is, quite frankly, out of the question," said the Muun, steepling his fingers.  The hologram's blue glow briefly whitened with static...signal noise rendering the instantaneous interstellar communication scratchy.



"With respect, Mister Demdal...this is no longer simply an IGBC concern," said Ran-del Qardaak, hands clasped before him.  "The Rancorous is an Imperial warship, and it will attract a response from the Empire....and Mygeeto is not merely an InterGalactic Banking Clan protectorate, but a Republic world.  Giving us access to the telemetric data from your sensor network could give us a vital leg-up on rescue operations."

"Under the Munificus Carta, resource-rich celestial bodies discovered and claimed by the Clan are subject to our Statutes of Secrecy.  We could no more share such secrets with you than we could the contents of a safety-deposit box on Aargau."  Frenn Demdal leaned forward, patronizing hauteur evident even through the hyperwave hologram.

"Besides, we are not completely unfamiliar with the Empire.  I'm certain that we'll be able to come to some sort of equitable, peaceful compromise with both them and the Republic."

Rancorous landing +60 hours

The comms in Ran-del's ear hissed, turning Supremacy Three's whistle into a popping mess.  "Sith's blood, look at it!  It's like Denon all over again..."



Ran-del's Flashfire rolled a 180°, exposing his canopy to the high-albedo surface of Mygeeto 'above'.  The sun's radiance bounced almost completely from the surface of the ice-planet, but the blinding light was interdicted by the vast number of starships in orbit around the planet, turned from an icy glare to fingers of radiance reaching out between the engines of empire.

"Empire, Republic, IGBC...I don't recognize all of those cruisers to port," Ran-del murmured, flicking his eyes to his flight metrics to ensure that he remained in formation with the rest of Supremacy Squadron.

"Erinian and Chiss, Supremacy One...all the Galaxy's new and freakish friends, brought together to duke it out over the big doonium corpse down there," said Anra Keeg, the Duros ace known as 'Supremacy Two' and Ran-del's wingbeing for the action over Mygeeto.

Ran-del nodded, sighing.  How did they get here so quickly?  Mygeeto is Republic territory...an entire Sith fleet shouldn't have been able to get this far this fast!  He angrily reached up and switched on his canopy polarization, blocking out the planet's albedo and leaving his pale face cast in the blinking lights of his readouts.

Ever since he'd caught wind of the distress call, he'd had what Master Pallivik called 'the Itch'...the pressure of immanent action that he'd honed, through Jedi discipline, into precognitive insight.  It was the same Itch he'd gotten before the Dark Nexus Incident on Nar Shaddaa...when Eldarus Villem, for his own arcane reasons, planted  a collapsium bomb on the mantle-level of the Smuggler's Moon, threatening to crack it like an egg and kill everyone from the swamps to the skyscrapers.

He'd lost track of the ruthless martinet after then, absorbed in the attack on Tython by the Revanites, as well as more immediate targets than the untouchable Admiral.  But now...with his ship scuttled (revenge, perhaps, by the Erinians for his assaults against them?, he mused), there was a chance to bring the old man to justice.  Or, at least, to stop him before he did something desperate...something that could threaten Mygeeto as he had Nar Shaddaa...

"Kinrath One-Two!  Incoming missiles!" Ran-del snapped out of his reverie as Supremacy Seven's voice barked over the comms.  His eyes flicked to the scanner...hi-burn proton torpedoes...no enemy contacts. They couldn't be locked onto them...their sensor masks and small size meant that you had to get damn close to a starfighter to lock-on, and that gave them plenty of warning.  "Intercept!  Countermeasures and point-defense guns...keep that fusillade from hitting the Heroes of Karideph!"

Supremacy Squadron scrambled, moving with tactical precision, a baker's dozen white-and-red starfighters diving between danger and death.  Ran-del waved off the targeting computer, relying instead on his instincts and the quiet strength of the Force to guide his shots.  With the Heroes of Karideph at his keel and the incoming protorps at 11-o'-clock-high, he pulled back slightly on the yoke and breathed in, then let his breath hiss out as he worked his index finger, firing a line of blue bolts from his nose-cannons.

The first burst was a wash...he missed the comparitively miniature target by meters.  Around him, Supremacy Squadron hit the afterburners, trying to intersect with the missiles' paths and deploy anti-torpedo mines and ECM-blasts.  Ran-del worked his controls lightly, decreasing speed and breathing in again, the Flashfire's nose wiggling in the space before him as he filled his lungs, then slowly exhaled and flicked the trigger.

FLASH.  The torpedo went up in a shower of bouncing photons and scorched tibanna gas, the proton core undetonated.  Ran-del didn't stop, though.  As the rest of his squadron set about trying to interdict the torpedoes, he played his little breath-game, letting the Itch guide him, letting the echoes of the Force reverberate from infinity and into his nerves, orienting his shots by the will of the Force and the power of the Jedi.

He was able to sputter out enough laser-bolts to take out another two protorps before his flight carried him past the plane of attack.  He moved his finger away from the activation stud, and began breathing normally again, quickly checking his scanners to find the rest of the squadron and moving into formation with them.  Reports came in from the Heroes of Karideph...

"Shields at 82%!  Damage minimal.  Supremacy Squadron, Captain Sheridoth wishes you good hunting."  Ran-del smiled a bit at that...their combat patrol had just become an attack run.  He moved to position with Keeg as Supremacy Squadron oriented itself towards the Imperial lines and set out to find whoever had fired those torpedoes and make sure they couldn't do it again.

As he set his course and reallocated power to his engines, though, he looked up again at the ship-shrouded planet 'above'.  He felt the Itch...and knew, in his heart, that he would make planetfall sooner than later.

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