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Ashes Falling from the Sky
Articles  (Fiction)   (Gaming - Genre)
axlerowes's comment on 2012-11-07 05:41 AM
Poor guy, we barely got to know him. There is not much here though, but anytime you approach a person facing their own death or the death of others you can always add more ...if you want.

But you makes some points:
 1) Mechs works in 7-8 man squads and use a VR interface 
 2) Railguns are better than autocannons 
 3) The character is a solider because of the physical trappings not because of a philosophy, political belief or nationalist sentiment. As soon as the physical trappings of his life as solider are gone he refers to his role in the past tense. 
 4) Hot girls operate mechs. 
 5) Nuclear weapons are outmoded in the world of mechs but still horrible.

6) The character is likely very tired. Who gets out of a burning mech and thinks about their bed? This imagery gives another context with which to view the character's actions. 

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The Whirlwind
Items  (Ranged Weapons)   (Combat)
axlerowes's comment on 2012-11-03 09:24 AM
Nice extrapolation on the auto-cannon. I too had wolverines (How I loved table top mechwarrior) with a clip loaded autocannon, just because of the picture really. Go to Comment
The Commoner's Tools
Items  (Other)   (Magical)
axlerowes's comment on 2012-11-03 08:27 AM

Being that you are not seeking to tell a story with this, I take it you are looking at this as an academic exercise. I think before you continue on this path you need to define magic.

In Paul Radin's Book "Primitive Religion" Dover Publishing 1937 New York. He asserts that essence of magic is "coercion in the interests of our imperative organic needs-the satisfaction of hunger and the gratification of the sex instinct." He then points to the evidence that much of the religious material found in tribal hunter gather cultures or cultures with isolated and minimalist agricultural were focused on these areas. I assert that many of the cave paintings and stone age totems were attempt to appeal to supernatural force. The fertility goddess totems, the cave paints of hunts, may not have been records but reflected a desired outcome. Radin goes on to state that magic was "the only method predicated by man for establishing relationship between himself and the outside world."

So here are my question to you, where will your peasants in this imaginary world draw the line between magic and nature? When you cough is it because a spirit passed into your lungs? If you get a muscle cramp or indigestion, is it a curse? Will the sun rise if I don't sacrifice the heart of a warrior to it? Is magic an undirected force or does it possess a personality? Would you make a distinction between religious magic and secular magic? Why? Go to Comment
The Commoner's Tools
Items  (Other)   (Magical)
axlerowes's comment on 2012-11-04 07:36 AM
I like how you re-worked the discussion section. I think this is a great idea for adding flavor and depth to a setting. Go to Comment
The Kingmakers, Session 5
Articles  (At Table)   (Game Mastering)
axlerowes's comment on 2012-11-03 09:29 AM
I am enjoying this thanks Go to Comment
Sealed City of Roastone
Locations  (Ruins)   (Any)
axlerowes's comment on 2012-11-04 02:41 PM
I like the format and the setup a lot. I think you setup is strong: giving the short anecdote about the city, which is interesting, and draws us in. You then discuss the your personal inspiration behind it which places things it in a larger context. Finally you give us a couple of possible explanations of the event and possible game scenarios. The whole setup involves the reader more than many and is well designed for gaming implementation. 
 As for the geek content, I have always been a big fan of demons that don't want anything, they just want to be. The demons are like a force of nature. I like the first plot a little better and it is more easily expanded to other setting (don't feel bad second plot, nothing wrong with you, there has to be a 1st).

On a dwarven note, as much as I like this, it lacks the dwarf. Plot one and two could be done without dwarves. The descriptions of the city are so light that they fail to inspire us to put off shaving and pick up an ax.
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Sealed City of Roastone
Locations  (Ruins)   (Any)
axlerowes's comment on 2012-11-08 08:26 PM
I like the plot and all but I am shocked and according to my thesaurus I am also be stupefied, startled, astonished, bewildered and suffering from discomfiture that my illustrious guild leader Muro has not pointed out the lack of dwarven detail in this here sub.

By the beards of latent anti-slavic sentiment, the above plot could be played with any ethnic group or race profile and I say if we are to have the pretense of guilds as a sub-game to the citadel than let us give that pretense the obnoxious voice of self-importance and rigid genre requirements. Go to Comment
Sealed City of Roastone
Locations  (Ruins)   (Any)
axlerowes's comment on 2012-11-08 10:43 PM
You're stretching sir, oozes dwarvism says thee, tis a premise based on a lost british colony. Are dwarves a metaphor for the hubris of colonialism? Perhaps the suggestion of a community traveling deeper and deeper into the earth in search of riches and thus isolating themselves from the outer world or disturbing a demon in the deep brings us full circle to tolken. But have a missed another pore through which dwarvism is flowing?


 "The fact that it can be played with any ethnic group, only adds to its usefulness" Ah you are sneaky one Muro, This statement is a moot rhetorical distraction, I asked not if it was useful, (or good or entertaining or interestin, for it is all these) I asked if it is dwarven.

 But if the guild lord commands me to accept this as dwarven than I shall, I will be a Starbuck to your Ahab in this matter. You still say its dwarven?

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axlerowes's comment on 2012-10-30 04:47 PM
I was thinking of the Scorpion when I wrote this. Go to Comment
axlerowes's comment on 2013-06-10 02:26 PM
that is really all I hope for :) Go to Comment
Opprimere
Items  (Melee Weapons)   (Sentient)
axlerowes's comment on 2012-10-29 11:37 PM
This is great, I like your style of presenting a story and not just facts. In fact the "Use" section could be seen as condescending. My opinions of this have changes for the years and I think if you are going list facts, you may as well toss in game states. I like that the sword bonds with people, and I would like to read more. What did the sword feel like when it hit the dragon for the first time?

The lost and found, lost and found cycle gets a little repetitive. I think that is more a matter of writing style and you could maybe get those encounters to pop a little more than they do. But the pay off is worth it. However would suggest adding some stuff about the kids, make the reader bound with them some.

Perhaps the kids get the sword down to play with it one day when dad is away. Then the sword has to make choice, get all fun and bloody or protect the kids by blunting his blows and shifting his balance. The fact that the sword would choose the kids well being over his own desires would add some weight to story.

Two questions:

Who is the sword talking to?

And how come the dragon gets a name and Hubert's kids do not? They seem more important to the sword's growth. Go to Comment
Opprimere
Items  (Melee Weapons)   (Sentient)
axlerowes's comment on 2012-10-30 09:09 AM
I get the repititiveness may be accurate for the story you are trying to tell, but perhaps a slight tweek of the language might make it a little more engaging. You start two paragraphs in a row with "XXXX picked me up next". This is a minor point, but it is one little thing you could polish up. Go to Comment
Opprimere
Items  (Melee Weapons)   (Sentient)
axlerowes's comment on 2012-10-30 04:38 PM
Damn that goes down smooth. Well done sir. Go to Comment
The Kingmakers, Session 4
Articles  (At Table)   (Game Mastering)
axlerowes's comment on 2012-10-26 10:34 PM
The first part, before the dialog was a little hard to follow. Go to Comment
The Kingmakers, Session 4
Articles  (At Table)   (Game Mastering)
axlerowes's comment on 2012-10-28 08:31 PM
That is clearer, thanks. Go to Comment
30 Things That Grow in a Dwarven Beard
Systems  (Agriculture/ Husbandry)   (General)
axlerowes's comment on 2012-10-26 03:45 PM
This is a fun list, if only we had illustrations, cause I think this would make a great coffee table book!








.....for shameless dorks. Go to Comment
30 Things That Grow in a Dwarven Beard
Systems  (Agriculture/ Husbandry)   (General)
axlerowes's comment on 2012-10-26 04:19 PM
Only voted Go to Comment
The Kingmakers, Session 3
Articles  (At Table)   (Game Mastering)
axlerowes's comment on 2012-10-26 04:07 PM
I too love the delusion of the Captain, a somebody pretending to be somebody who is pretending to be somebody....woah Go to Comment
30 Sob Stories
Articles  (Humor/ Editorial)   (Gaming - In General)
axlerowes's comment on 2012-10-31 07:08 AM
It reminds me of the character generation lists in traveller. Just a nudge more towards satire and this list would be really funny and amusing, but I chuckled a couple of times. Nice list. Go to Comment
Cela Ardonyth
NPCs  (Major)   (Mystical)
axlerowes's comment on 2012-11-17 09:15 AM
I do not have much to say, it is fairly complete and a really good idea. I really like her journal excerpt. Though it does remind me of the princess bride, "All dead or mostly dead" . Mr. Mark, I think this is a great idea Extremely useable and you should add more (because I am sure you have more). It is not nearly close to being too long.

Content:
As a painting of a person, we a get a feel for intellectual motivations, but not for her personal style, tone or behavior. Does she make eye contact or have a distant look in her eye? Does she laugh or keep a poker face? She takes an interest in perserving life, but she does take an interest in the content of those lives? Is she interested in the maundane stories of peoples life, their grief, their romances and their observations? What does she do when she needs to unwind? You have a whole section on personality and you don't describe a personality. It is just an extension of her motivation section. If my half-Orc barbarian comes up to a isolated country well, a strings of ears around his neck and sees an albino chic making notes in codex, how will she respond when he wants to regale her with his war poetry? Or other less specific examples....

Minor Questions:
How does she deal with aging?

How does she eat? Does she gather and hunt, does trade in cash?

Style:

The attack:
I think the rape and murder scene would be more horrific and thus effective if more details were added. Is this her talking in these scenes? Does she start referring to herself in third person after the event? If you gave the rapist and the event more details I think he would be more disturbing. What if he is a boy, what does she see in his eyes, is he smiling while he does these awful things, does he have a mustard stain on his shirt, does he thank god when he enters her? Is their a member of her clan, who is not quite dead, who she sees as she is being attacked, and thus this second violation becomes not just of her but of her family members last memories.

First Paragraph:
Rain fell and thunder crashed. This sentence would be interesting and necessary only if rain and thunder did something unusual….

“The rain was standing suspended in the air and the lightening appeared to hold its breath unable to speak its thunder clap after pushing back the darkness for this field of slaughter”

As it is I would drop it, we don’t know if it is day or night, winter or summer, hilly or flat, costal or inland (though we learn later it must be the plains). The only important details are that the ground is trampled, telling of us that was much activity, and it is flowing the blood. The first sentence should make you want to read the second sentence. I would drop the first two sentences, and start with rivulets of blood. This paragraph is about what Cela is observing, so you could start the paragraph with what is important her. Building a scene, by giving the readers details and then revealing the horror or the beauty of the scene at the end, work best when the reader is already invested in the outcome of the scene. Perhaps a better opener would be scene of Cela and her clan before the attack.

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