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Froggy the Great

Randomness XV: 'tis a silly place.

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22 hours ago, Unruly said:

 

In the US we have caffeinated everything. Including soap.

Yup. I remember a while back I had a shampoo that had caffeine in it.

 

19 hours ago, Cyradis said:

Open question: 

What is the right balance between light hearted and the world going down the pooper for your D&D worlds? I want to give my group characters they like, and victories to cheer for. I also want to demolish them and knock them and the world on their buttocks. Do you use say.... Buffy as an inspiration? Monster of the week, lots of funny, occasional saving the world? Or do you use Attack on Titan and Game of Thrones, where victories are fleeting and the world is in dire peril, often with little knowledge of how to stop it? 

 

2 hours ago, kristof65 said:


image.thumb.png.5d5aeef64f8a3959c9ef383fac616989.png

This is NOT storm damage. 

 

No  kidding.

Someone really let the magic smoke out of that baby. It's actually rather impressive.

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31 minutes ago, Chaoswolf said:
22 hours ago, Unruly said:

In the US we have caffeinated everything. Including soap.

Yup. I remember a while back I had a shampoo that had caffeine in it.

What was that supposed to accomplish? Keep your hair awake?

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3 minutes ago, eldamir said:

What was that supposed to accomplish? Keep your hair awake?

 

Caffeine can be absorbed through the skin. The idea behind the caffeinated soaps and shampoos is that you get your morning boost without needing a cup of coffee. The problem is that for you to really absorb much caffeine, you've got to be in contact with it for a decent period of time. So for soaps to work, you'd have to stand in the shower fully lathered up for a couple minutes before rinsing.

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9 minutes ago, eldamir said:
41 minutes ago, Chaoswolf said:
22 hours ago, Unruly said:

In the US we have caffeinated everything. Including soap.

Yup. I remember a while back I had a shampoo that had caffeine in it.

What was that supposed to accomplish? Keep your hair awake?

That's exactly the joke i cracked to my wife when I got it.::D:

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On 5/14/2019 at 6:12 AM, Werkrobotwerk said:

So... ICv2 is reporting that there's 25% tariffs on minis made in china coming. 

 

From Reddit: "I am a licensed Customs Broker in the US. I literally deal with these tariffs ALL day long. People sit here and complain that "Well a 25% price increase is going to kill businesses". 

Here is some news for you to get a better perspective on this situation: So let's say a game publisher has a game with an MSRP of $60.00. The actual cost they declare to Customs is around $8-$11, on average. The rest of the cost goes to paying for things like ocean freight charges (which are non-dutiable and thus, the tariffs do not impact), and warehousing and trucking and profit and labor costs and other local charges, none of which are dutiable and thus the tariffs do not affect. That means, on a game that has an import cost of $8.00, the tariff adds $2 to the price of importation of that copy of the game. $2 to a $60 game is a total increase of 3.33%. That sort of cost can be absorbed with barely any notice to the consumer. 

And if you think I making things up, these tariffs have been in place for virtually everything from China since September. How many things have you noticed huge cost hikes on? Anything that jumped 25%? Any small businesses that were thriving prior to Sep 4 that are now out of business? Most people here seem to think of this like a VAT, or a Value Added Tax, which is a flat tax added at the time of sales tax, which means you are taxed on all the freight and trucking and warehousing and whatever charges. That is not how tariffs work. So that $95 copy of Gloomhaven, were it imported from China after these tariffs, would (assuming the cost was fully passed on) cost about $98-100. Again, not a 25% cost increase. And the reality of this is that the additional tariffs they take in from China and a few other countries help offset the ridiculous runaway spending that Congress does so that it offsets some of the money we end up borrowing from China to pay for their nonsense." 

https://www.reddit.com/r/boardgames/comments/boej7d/toys_board_games_dice_included_in_proposed/enhgp0r/
https://www.reddit.com/r/boardgames/comments/bphyo3/board_games_are_about_to_be_hit_with_a_25_tariff/

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  Light vs Dark...

 

Depends entirely on the group.

 

 I've had campaigns that started off at a tavern with the PCs being the ones in the dark hoods sent to burn the place down and kill any survivors.

I also had one campaign where one of the major running gags was that literally every session started off with the party finding itself in the middle of a tavern on fire (often trying to figure how they'd gotten there since they were somewhere else at the end of the last game)...

 

 

 

Edited by Mad Jack
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I was finally able to place an order with Hasslefree! It only took like 3 months of trying...

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9 hours ago, TheAuldGrump said:

Look for the Die Hard Effect -

1234347198_1e9b7b8e34.jpg?v=0

 

A hard earned victory is savored more than an easy victory - but the players do want to win. ::):

 

The Auld Grump

Indeed, the PCs are supposed to win, the DM *wants* them to win, it's their story after all. But the most memorable stories are the challenges that were overcome by battle, hardships, cleverness, or a combination of mishaps and unbelievable dumb luck.

 

If you have a well established group with players that consistently show up, then having story lines that intertwine with the character backgrounds can make games feel much more personal.

 

One special thing I did (inspired by a free 3e D&D adventure), was ask the board I used to hang out on to give me ideas for a rumour table for the town they were in. I got something like fifty different items, and all were potential local story hooks. From the prison warden secretly being a werewolf; to cultists in the field; to the mayor's daughter wishing to be a singer in a tavern (with father's disapproval); to the rivalry between two brothels owned by a brother and sister; to rats that seemed unusually well organized, etc.

 

I had put down so much work in designing that single town (planned to be home base in any case) that the players didn't want to leave it. I had full sessions without a single combat (and this is with a half-dragon barbarian in the group) as the PCs wanted to take over the town... by roleplaying! I basically had to force the players to go on the "real" adventure (you know, dungeon crawling, fighting monsters, looting, etc.), as keeping up with their shenanigans in town was exhausting to keep track off. Yet 15-20 years later, I still get positive feedback from my friends from those game sessions.

 

[Sigh] I miss gaming. Adulting and remote living do not make social geek hobbies very viable.

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Ouch, a really nice guy who runs another forum I frequent every now and then (but don't post to anywhere near as often as I used to)....  Died...  A month ago.  Can't mention the name of it because I suspect it would be against some part of this forum's rules, but it's a modular synth forum.

 

Been a while since anything's hit me this hard, to say the least.

 

Wherever your path takes you next Mike, may it be a memorable and enjoyable journey.  Thanks for the help, advice, and memories.

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2 hours ago, Unruly said:

I was finally able to place an order with Hasslefree! It only took like 3 months of trying...

 

Now to wait 5 or more months for them to send it? They're good people with good sculpts, but geez are they in over their heads right now. 

 

2 hours ago, Cranky Dog said:

Indeed, the PCs are supposed to win, the DM *wants* them to win, it's their story after all. But the most memorable stories are the challenges that were overcome by battle, hardships, cleverness, or a combination of mishaps and unbelievable dumb luck.

 

If you have a well established group with players that consistently show up, then having story lines that intertwine with the character backgrounds can make games feel much more personal.

 

One special thing I did (inspired by a free 3e D&D adventure), was ask the board I used to hang out on to give me ideas for a rumour table for the town they were in. I got something like fifty different items, and all were potential local story hooks. From the prison warden secretly being a werewolf; to cultists in the field; to the mayor's daughter wishing to be a singer in a tavern (with father's disapproval); to the rivalry between two brothels owned by a brother and sister; to rats that seemed unusually well organized, etc.

 

I had put down so much work in designing that single town (planned to be home base in any case) that the players didn't want to leave it. I had full sessions without a single combat (and this is with a half-dragon barbarian in the group) as the PCs wanted to take over the town... by roleplaying! I basically had to force the players to go on the "real" adventure (you know, dungeon crawling, fighting monsters, looting, etc.), as keeping up with their shenanigans in town was exhausting to keep track off. Yet 15-20 years later, I still get positive feedback from my friends from those game sessions.

 

[Sigh] I miss gaming. Adulting and remote living do not make social geek hobbies very viable.

 

I do want them to win; I just don't want it to be easy for them. Too easy and they won't feel the challenge. Too hard and there are no good options. I have been intertwining character backgrounds; each of them gave me their backstory that I can use. Sir Cyr's is actually the toughest, because he has the least history. His character is only a few months old; he's a sentient rat in a warforged suit. He has some memories of the wizards who created him, The Cheese Incident, and his butler training. The others are quite splendidly fit in. There is the librarian who needed to see the world. The dog cleric was once a druid's animal companion until she fell to vampires, so he howled until a god gave him the power to protect his pack. And then we have the halfling scout who gambled away multiple fortunes, ended up trying to scrounge mushrooms in the forest, and befriended the dog. 

 

Uplifting plan for them is to set up a trap for bad guy thieves... in the form of a grand noble soiree and dancing festivities. The thieves will show up to sneak in and steal the treasure in the mansion. The group has to stop them. The poor librarian is the only one who will fit into a dancing crowd, despite lack of ability (he's only human - others are suit of armor, dog, and halflings aren't inclined). The halfling and the dog can patrol. The rat-fighter-butler can be on the lookout as part of the catering crew. I think I can have fun with this. :devil:

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15 minutes ago, Cyradis said:

I do want them to win; I just don't want it to be easy for them. Too easy and they won't feel the challenge. Too hard and there are no good options

The Case of the Ballroom Debacle (that you have planned) sounds like good fun. 

 

To figure out (plan) what kind of campaign to run ongoing poll them with story hooks; the type they go for is the sort of campaign they want. Perhaps present in groups of three: Dire/Serious, Lightheart/BuffyTVS, Muddled/Pure Mercenary. 

 

 

5 hours ago, Unruly said:

Caffeine can be absorbed through the skin. The idea behind the caffeinated soaps and shampoos is that you get your morning boost without needing a cup of coffee. The problem is that for you to really absorb much caffeine, you've got to be in contact with it for a decent period of time. So for soaps to work, you'd have to stand in the shower fully lathered up for a couple minutes before rinsing.

How do you know this??  ...wait, ...not sure I want to know the answer. 

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The situation is dire, but maintaining order until they can tackle The Big Bads can be more mixed perhaps. They're about to go back to town anyway so there is a reprieve from the house of horrors that they were just in. I'm sure that the halfling is going to try to flirt with/swindle the elf blacksmith... lol. 

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Maybe what you need is a rival group of adventurers or two. These are active agents in your world setting who act off-camera. Your PCs hear of their deeds via Bards and Rumour. 

 

Use their activity to help help guide things, keep the world going, kick the can down the road...  ...it will make it seem less like the PCs are the only real folk in the world. 

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I really messed up today when dming. When I started, i wasn't ready, partially due to my printer being a piece of broccoli. Then, I just wasnt feeling it so I couldn't get into describing the party. Finally, during their grand battle, I just...still didn't feel it. On top of it all, the players lost the grand arena battle, but I didn't see it happening until it was too late. I didn't realize how little healing paladins get. 

 

I wasnt feeling it, my players were obviously not having fun...

 

I completely flubbed it. 

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23 minutes ago, TGP said:

Maybe what you need is a rival group of adventurers or two. These are active agents in your world setting who act off-camera. Your PCs hear of their deeds via Bards and Rumour. 

 

Use their activity to help help guide things, keep the world going, kick the can down the road...  ...it will make it seem less like the PCs are the only real folk in the world. 

 

I was thinking that one of the upcoming quest options would be that there was a rumor bringing a certain adventurer into town - the brother of the dog's departed druid. He'd join them to go slay some vampires, but that other adventuring groups would go out for other nests.... some might come back, some might not. Hits the player's background a bit, and other people exist bit. Also brought in one of my friends via Skype for one session as a messenger; he'd helped me develop the world, and was a player for a short run (that try didn't take off due to scheduling and long drives). But it meant that he was able to mess with all the characters and interact a bit, with stories from other "adventurers".

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