Articles from May 2011



Impractical Applications (Notes on a New Game)

Today marked the beginning of a short hiatus from my primary game while I take some time to plan ahead on my game and my boyfriend runs game for multiple people online for the first time. This should be an adventure.
My character was a bit of a bear to put together (having slightly contradictory suggestions [...]

Irritated by Athena

I read The Athena Project for two reasons: one, a patron had recommended it as something I might like, and two, I needed something to read as a painkiller and it was right there. You’d think the premise—an all-female special ops team vs. terrorists trying to reactivate a long-lost pseudo-occult Nazi project—would be right up [...]

Ravyn Freewrites: A Night with the Source Material

I came to a realization tonight. I play—I run—in someone else’s world, but I’ve developed an outright antipathy to the books, moreso than I had before, as I’ve gone farther into my own game. I’ll reference mechanics, sure. I’ll occasionally—though very rarely—look up specific things that I thought I remembered but wanted to be sure [...]

Tales from the Sketchbook: Sweet!

A picture paints a thousand words; a picture with context can say a lot about a game; but explanations of the random sketches of an artist-gamer can say the most of all. In this series, I look at the just-had-to-draw-them images distilled from my games: what they are, what they mean, [...]

Offices Without Doors

A while back, my boyfriend and I introduced one of our fellow gamers to the first two seasons of Babylon 5; this would be my second time going through the series. While there are many things that came up during my first watch-through, and in my third, there was one thing our friend noticed in [...]

Magic Between Cultures

I’ve noticed that in many of the books I read, magic is rather similar to physics, in that it works the same way no matter where you are and where you came from. Sure, you might get cases where it seems to work differently due to other factors, rather like the way gravity differs between [...]

The Generic Villain vs The Most Insidious Traitor

Sometimes, the traitor at your elbow isn’t one of your minions—no, not even that suspicious-looking one who showed up not long after the plot did and has somehow managed to avoid the loyalty test for the last few months. Instead, it’s us. And not in the misguided, we have met the enemy way, but just [...]

Impractical Applications (Squee-Worthies)

Earlier this week, I talked about the implementation of cute things in a storyline (particularly one whose milieu isn’t already full-to-bursting with cute things). As you’ve probably guessed from my intro, I use them regularly.
Shizuyo, for instance, gets most of her cute from her physical appearance; other than that, cute isn’t her style. She’s aggressive, [...]

A Week of Reading 5-13

Let’s see, what’s on the shelves this week?
The focus of my week’s reading was Moby-Duck: The True Story of 28,800 Bath Toys Lost at Sea and of the Beachcombers, Oceanographers, Environmentalists, and Fools, Including the Author, Who Went in Search of Them. This book reminded me of a discussion I’d seen in I-forget-which-speculative-fiction-sourcebook (it might [...]

Cute Things!

One of the interesting things I found about my game was if in doubt, I could generally stall for a game by introducing a cute thing. Small and fluffy, childlike, prone to noises that could’ve been speech if it’d had the intelligence to support it—it really didn’t matter. It’s a recognized pattern, I think—or at [...]