Thursday, September 16, 2004

Let me take you back.

To the days when you were carefree, young, and single. You had a social life, you had fun that didn't include the word family, you could read a book or a magazine at your leisure, you could sleep late and not have to make excuses for it.

And you could go out with a friend you hadn't spent much time with -- at her suggestion, because you hadn't hung out in a while -- and even though you'd previously asked this person out, she would insist on telling you all about the cute boys she met recently and how badly she wanted to make out with them.

So you see, it's not all footloose and fancy free.

Anyway, yeah, that was fun. What a great way to spend a free evening.

I haven't felt much like writing here this week and I don't know why. Nothing has really happended to put me off blogging, I just haven't felt the urge.

Monday evening I met with some old co-workers down at a bar in Seattle called Axis. It was a very cool place. Nice decor, good drinks, tasty snacks, and plenty of room to sit with people and chat. I left work a little after five and didn't get home until a bit after ten, so I must have had a good time.

Tuesday was session two of The Worlds Largest Dungeon. We ventured into a section of the dungeon we shouldn't have and were nearly killed before Seth, the GM, said "You will die if you proceed this way. Let's jump back and go from there." Ultimately that was probably a good idea, but it really broke the flow of the game. It was a very weird feeling for me. It was like we'd broken the fourth wall in the game -- something I've never experienced quite as sharply before. Remarkable considering how long I've been playing games, and especially considering there is no fourth wall and players are constantly bantering about one thing or another that has nothing to do with the game during the game. Like I said, it was weird and I didn't much care for it. Happily, once we "restarted" things went very well and we all had a good time. Next week we'll skip that game in favor of something else, then I'll run a few sessions of the Dungeon so Seth can play.

I have a new assignment from the people I did some editing for back in December/January. (Hey, I should get a check for that soon! Woohoo!) I received the file this week and I have to dig into it soon. It looks like an awfully fun book.

Wednesday was the deadline for the next expansion for my game line. And I'm already starting on the next two releases because we've reworked some of the schedules to give us a bit more development time. It makes me pretty crunched right now, but it will pay off in the long run. Luckily this weekend I have a fair amount of freetime, so I can clean up my desk and get some work done that I can't do while everyone is around.

I read a news snippet today about: A new system of sign language developed by deaf children in Nicaragua that may hold clues about the evolution of languages.

The world is a fascinating place.


At September 17, 2004 10:45 AM, Blogger Seth said...

Re: The World's Largest Dungeon and the Room of Certain Death

Yeah, I didn't like breaking down and informing the players that they were about to do something remarkably dumb, but given the choice between 1) alienating them for one evening by breaking the fourth wall, and 2) alienating them from playing WLD forever by killing the entire party en masse, I went with option 1.

In my own defense, I would point out that I threw as many reasonable obstacles in your path as possible before coming to that point: a locked door, a trap that _nearly_ killed half the party, several rooms increasingly choked with rubble, and a minor earthquake. Unfortuantely, the entire party made their saves versus subtlety and brought us to the moment of impasse.

In retrospect, I feel I was too slavishly following the text of the adventure. The open door that you followed into that section of the Dungeon was as described in the book; I should have just closed it and not let the party discover it in the first place. Switching off running will make it difficult to be better prepared, but I'll do my best in the future.

At September 17, 2004 4:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

As I'm reading through the most recent iteration of the PARANOIA rules, I suppose I'd have been inclined to let the players proceed at their peril. Of course, D&D3e doesn't really include the "activate the next clone" option--I blame Commie mutant traitors for that.

At September 19, 2004 7:47 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think, based on reading your party blog that you guys may have gone some same ways that we have. But our GM decided to start us out at 2nd level instead of 1st, so we may have a little more in the way of survivability. We also have a few very tough race/class combos, which may give us an edge, as I understand that you guys have restricted yourselves to stuff in the PHB.


At September 19, 2004 11:34 PM, Blogger Jon said...


You are correct. we're running straight everything out of the book. Normal beginning races and classes that are in the "Player's Handbook".

I think we're going to post some Gamemaster comments in the party blog as well -- we're just trying to figure out how to do that. Probably in italics for GM comments and normal type for the narrative. I'd like to get a list of the characters, races, classes, etc. and track that through the dungeon, however far we make it.


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