Strolen\s Citadel content. 
Xaos Elemental, A Tale of Mysantia
Lifeforms  (Constructed)   (Any)
axlerowes's comment on 2015-01-11 05:03 PM
I am interested to hear more about this either as "How i used it in game" write up or a "What is the history of this thing in my game world and what does it say about my game world" type essay.

First, and I say this with the greatest humility with my forehead pressed to the ground in shame...
First this could use a good proof reading and some formatting. Also word choice, when you writing epic fantasy is tricky. For example when you write "created the first nightmare." it is tough to tell if you are being artistic in your expression or if they literally created the first nightmare. I get that it is word flourish but still it is little bit of hiccup as you are trying to write this with epic and poetic language.

Second, as for composition what is this post about? Is about the wizards? No. But you spent half the post on them and then tell us to forget them. Then you do not come to back them at all. Stick to your thesis.

Third the weakness of the beast does not have an apparent narrative component. Thus, it seems to b arbitrary. When three times? Why exactly the same way?

Nothing but love the ideas though! Go to Comment
The Heads of Zaid
Lifeforms  (Constructed)   (Any)
axlerowes's comment on 2015-02-01 04:32 PM
I read this long ago when it first came out but got distracted before I could comment on it. I think it is great. I like posts that give you a past present and future, I like stories of culture, I like giant stone heads, I like monkeys, I like detail Go to Comment
Civilian Craft in the Cosmic Era
Items  (Transports)   (Campaign Defining)
axlerowes's comment on 2014-12-04 02:14 PM
Only voted Go to Comment
Civilian Craft in the Cosmic Era
Items  (Transports)   (Campaign Defining)
axlerowes's comment on 2014-12-04 02:07 PM

With the exception of "Space Trucks" this is almost a point for point rewrite of the discussion of space commerce in the old Star Wars West End games source book. Nothing wrong with that though, the cosmic era is about folding in things from other genres and the convergent evolution of speculative fiction.

But lets get down to the juicy details. How much space traffic do you want there to be in the cosmic era? I thought that humanity had not yet left the solar system in the cosmic era and the alien invasion had not happened yet. Yet you mention stuff "Most of the container ships are involved in terraforming operations". How many terraforming operations are going on in the solar system? How many people live an extraterrestrial lifestyle? Are they self sustaining yet?

But also might space hauling be more like log flows. Let us say you have harvested and lumped together using some sort of ionic net 400,000 tons of carbon floating about 10 million miles from the rings of Saturn and you want to get that stuff to the Solar powered molecular fabrication plant (takes carbon and then builds super strong material from the atom up) sitting behind Mercury. How much energy do you need to get that 400,000 tons of carbon there. With a geeky dose of planning and one good push, couldn't that chunk just move that way without a lot of course correction? How much energy and time do you need to invest in order to ensure that there are course corrections? How long will it take?

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Lifeforms  (Constructed)   (City/ Ruin)
axlerowes's comment on 2015-02-06 06:53 AM
There is a lot here and it is a fun idea: robot zombies or possessed supernatural robots. I like the idea of these cult members that corrupt machines. If I was going to roll up Cosmic era character, I might to for a parapsychic that focuses on exploiting arcanotech in machines....kind of like evil technomancer. Though I like the ideas alot this does have the cult of done feel to it. But you did get it out there.

But at a more thematic level I am starting to feel that all roads in the cosmic era lead to arcanotech, which i am worried might give the cosmic era a center or source of corruption, I always liked the idea of the cosmic era being a hollow vapid culture that was corrupt and awful in its very nature. But not because there was single force behind it, but because taken as whole all the petty feuds, egos, delusions, and self-indulgent conceits of individuals synergized to rot society. I like the idea that society had become corrupt just because it indulged its own group think, and decadent corruption of the cosmic era was the end result of this herd movement. I think the cosmic era value set could still exists without arcanotech, but theme wise arcanotech seems to be the root of many problems. However if all roads lead to or out of hell (river of souls) and that is your theme, ain't nothing wrong with it. I had just been getting a slightly different vibe.

I know I rallied against it, but perhaps this centering, that the arcanotech is providing, could be defused by bringing up some of the other forces of destruction, and divorcing them from arcanotech. Namely the alien invasion and super computer cabal that is running society. If you take arcanotech away from those two forces, but keep them powerful than when you lift up the metaphorical rock in the cosmic era you will find several disgusting horrors lurking beneath the surface, not just one lynch pin of awfulness. Furthermore, if the aliens and the supercomputers don't have arcanotech than arcanotech maybe humanities trump card or nuclear option. Humanity may be forced to embrace (sell their souls to ) arcanotech in order to resist the rise of the machines or the alien invasion.

How does a necrotizing freeze gun differ from a normal one? Go to Comment
Derran Thurswrat
NPCs  (Minor)   (Combative)
axlerowes's comment on 2014-12-26 09:31 PM
I read this some time ago and I was impressed with it as an Oekakai challenge and with the choice of character here. I have read a few other things you have done and I think you a have real knack for painting the human condition into genre fiction. Go to Comment
Courtesan's secret weapon
Items  (Clothes)   (Magical)
axlerowes's comment on 2014-06-08 01:03 AM

Why didn't you like what I wrote, and I why is what you wrote you superior to my ideas? You should have critiqued it then. You should not have claimed in another thread that you have written something superior. What could I do to make something more suited to your specific. I tried to live up to the possibility of the flirting dress or at least expand on the idea, and I feel concerned that custos found it uncool. Please elaborate on cool. It is also BS that you didn't read the original flirting dress post and only my flirting dress derivative post, because the flirting dress and its abilities were not described at all in the post you reference.

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The Demon's Grove
Locations  (Area)   (Any)
axlerowes's comment on 2014-12-16 12:07 AM
you nailed it,

the tone of the narrative is perfect, I enjoyed it.

Well done and more please! Go to Comment
Lifeforms  (Constructed)   (City/ Ruin)
axlerowes's comment on 2014-05-05 06:50 PM
It is "The Champ" with Robots. Go to Comment
Kolburn Pierre
NPCs  (Character Sheet)   (Travelers)
axlerowes's comment on 2015-01-28 06:59 AM
Solid Character, it is like most of my PC write ups.

You should give him a couple of quotes.

I feel like we could have a sub-heading for PC concepts (it wouldn't be much different than good NPCs) but the write up focused on RPing and future events as much as their current state and past.

Out of votes, catch this one later Go to Comment
Kolburn Pierre
NPCs  (Character Sheet)   (Travelers)
axlerowes's comment on 2015-01-29 10:26 AM
I liked it Go to Comment
axlerowes's comment on 2014-04-24 09:30 PM
It is interesting her experiences with animal intellect or so liberating, I am not a behaviorist, but I believe most (most) animal emotions are varying degrees of discomfort. A chapter told entirely from the animal perspective would be interesting, she has written books but only really alluded to the animal experiences. You touched on it a bit with her dog days in the city. But if the animal experiences are what is most important to her why the laundry list of events related to her human acquaintances? Do you intend for us to doubt the narrator's self-knowledge? Go to Comment
Lifeforms  (Intelligent Species)   (Water)
axlerowes's comment on 2014-04-21 08:50 PM

Sci-fi spell jammers in the deep. I love it. I think we discussed this before in chat: but i like the idea of these beings, and I think it adds different dimension of the setting. By writing from the perspective of one these beings you could use more hard science in you descriptions of life forms and structures. For example you could discuss things in terms of wavelength and ionic attractions ( stuff a being from a crashed spaceship could be aware of), and just having these in the setting expands the setting immensely.

The write up is a little terse. Almost like bullet points. What happened the Valadaar of six or eight years ago that opened up his posts with little in-world first person vignettes?

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Lifeforms  (Intelligent Species)   (Water)
axlerowes's comment on 2014-04-22 08:01 AM

Check out the Vorrkush sub

It is another mystical deep dwelling arthropod of Decathros with a Lovecraft vibe.

Go to Comment
Lifeforms  (Intelligent Species)   (Water)
axlerowes's comment on 2015-01-20 05:24 PM
This is really good. Go to Comment
Lifeforms  (Intelligent Species)   (Water)
axlerowes's comment on 2015-01-20 05:25 PM
Don't think about it as gaming then. This was part of a world building challenge, and these creatures really add to the world. By having creature in the world a whole new avenue of sci-fi orientated story lines and perspective on story lines is accessible. Go to Comment
axlerowes's comment on 2014-04-24 09:24 PM
I read this one a couple of days ago, it kind of reads like a laundry list of events, but it is missing any real meat to it. Go to Comment
Elizabeth Sheybad and the Flirting Dress
Plots  (Crisis)   (Encounter)
axlerowes's comment on 2014-04-18 04:30 PM
I have been told many times that the citadel is an Rpg site, not a fiction site. And that RPG fiction should end right before or right after something really awful or dramatic happens, that way the players can pick up where the author left off, so we continue this in a forum RPG, or write me another weird item and I will try an incorporate into another thread of this narrative. Go to Comment
axlerowes's comment on 2014-04-16 06:55 PM
Suspension of disbelief regarding the bird getting on to and out the the airplane in such a way as follow chic around a major international airport:


Suspension of disbelief regarding a talking song bird (even if its polymorphed bird):


Nice story, stuff happens, I was interested.

I would drop the second to last paragraph. The story ends once the woman leaves...and it is better that way. Go to Comment
Ellen Lancaster
NPCs  (Minor)   (Artistic/Performance)
axlerowes's comment on 2014-04-24 08:33 PM

I was looking for something to read on the fly and so I clicked on this thing. This has everything I have ever wanted to see on the Citadel. It is written with a consistent perspective, and it builds its world subtlety around characters. This might be the best thing I have ever read on the Citadel. It certainly has a lot of the qualities I have aspired to and experimented with, I truly admire this piece. Forget those banal self-important distinctions of whether or not this is “useful” or the content ascribes to my biases or preferences regarding genre; I love what this represents in as much as it has the ambition to be a completely immersive piece. The bar at the Citadel keeps getting raised (which may shrink and change depending on the community), and I believe that you have raised the bar. I would say this is transcendent: You have character driven world building and story-telling in a speculative fiction genre (with a big bit of wish fulfillment thrown in). This is well-realized character and world, and you have communicated a great deal here with a single narrative. Thank you.

As for the content, I just want to note that I respect every choice you made in writing this.

The author/narrator clearly has a lot of respect and almost adoration for his subject. Only when noting that she may not have resented being so positively featured in the documentary does he ever dig into his subject or question her at level beyond face value. It would be an interesting experiment and very telling of the conflicts in your world to hear about the events alluded to and described from the opposition's perspective. Could you paint a sympathetic picture of one your villains or antagonistic characters?

Another thing I found jarring (another word would be notable), but not in a bad way per se, was your take on superheros here. The Silver Age fantasy of the superhero is some mild mannered or over looked person who can suddenly burst out and do something fantastic. The super powers become allegory for the overlooked potential, emotional turmoil, super-ego or inner life of the nerd or the put upon individual. Here your characters (including Silver’s) are Grammy winning artists, best selling authors and beautiful young people living hipster lives in NYC. In many many ways they are departures from the lifestyles of people who plan than their lives around live chatting RPGs on a Saturday night. Are you really writing what you know?

Finally there is one thing I just don’t buy. I don’t believe that this Juilliard educated woman in her 30s who is thoughtful and considerate of meaningful communication, AND born in 1988 or 1989 could reference Rocky III with esoteric precession and complete assurance that her reference would be caught and understood. Even if she was some how a fan of early 80s pulp cinema, it was incredulous that this New York Times author and his editor were both on the same page and felt no need to explain this reference to his audience. In that moment I saw the aging fanboy behind the text. (But I completely loved it.) This is not believable...unless your alternate history promotes Rocky III to the ranks of Pooh Bear, Shakespeare, and Star Wars in terms of Western pop culture allusions. If Rocky III is a universal classic in your world... then well done sir.

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