Two rangers and a rogue walk into Tethyamar…

Even Now

… and the rogue says, “OW! I hit my head! All the doors here are made for dwarves!”

Indeed, the architecture in Update 36, aka Duel in the Underdark, definitely looks as though it were designed for dwarves, by dwarves, one especially low portcullis in particular.

Vic, being elven and somewhat taller than the average dorf, had to mind her head a few times… and being somewhat squishier than Even, should have minded her red bar a bit better as well. Two days earlier, Even and the Flower Sniffers had had a relatively smooth, painless trip through the four U36 flagging quests on LE. Our gimpier toons, though, had a few struggles on LH.

Melee DPS and/or crowd control and/or better hjealing than Garret and Erytheia might have helped. Two arcane archers and a ranged trapmonkey don’t give you a lot of variety when it comes to dealing damage.

But…

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Age Doesn’t Make a Game Dated

VIRTUAL BASTION

It was thanks to Cary’s recent post, Playing Games Past Their Prime, that I had a revelation concerning a few questions I had been asking as of late.  It largely boils down to: why do some old games feel dated, while others from the same era do not?  Furthermore, how is it that even new games can, on occasion, feel dated right from the start?  It’s a strange paradox, isn’t it?  One might expect all old games to feel dated by virtue of being old.  And that means it’s not possible for a new game to feel dated until enough years have passed.  Right?  No, not right.

Dated, put simply, means old-fashioned.  Of course, you all know this.  In less simple terms, it means, I outgrew this, or society as a whole has outgrown this.  It means, this would have been acceptable years ago, but we’ve advanced beyond this…

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Held Hostage, Part III of III: Taking Action

AmbiGaming

Welcome to our third and final part of this Held Hostage miniseries on the effect of violence in video games on gamers/children. For part one (an introduction to the topic), click here, and for part two (delving into the research pertaining to children), click here.

Backstory

Over the past few weeks, we’ve discussed the differences between violence and aggression, posed ideas about desensitization and observational learning, and jumped into research pertaining to whether or not video games make adults and children more aggressive or more violent. Long story short, the answer is that video games do cause increased aggression in children and adults, which can lead to violence, but video games, by themselves, have not been shown to cause an otherwise non-violent human being to become violent.

Image result for ice cream and swimming Remember, instances of drowning doesn’t increase ice cream consumption.

But there’s so much more to the story than what…

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Am I missing out by not having a collection?

Bio Break

Time and money. Money and time.

Two things I’m often very short on these days and work against the idea of harboring a collection. But it hasn’t stopped me from being wistful that, as a geek, I don’t really have a collection. I kind of wish I did. I have collected things to varying degrees over the years but not seriously and not extensively. I have some SNES games, but not really a collection. Star Wars Legos. MMO memorabilia. I tried vinyl collecting for a hot month last year. But not really having time to commit to cultivating a collection and the funds to support it keep killing it.

I feel like I’m maybe not as interesting or fulfilled without one, sometimes. I have a friend whose “thing” is collecting PEZ. He’s been doing it for decades now and has an amazing collection. He’s even got a tattoo. Everyone knows…

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Revenge of the Ghoul Prince

Dyson's Dodecahedron

Beneath the recent ruins of an unnamed fort in the rough mountains north of Dawnharbor is the “Hall of the Ghoul Prince”. Tales in Dawnharbor mention that the fortress was assaulted and partially destroyed by an angry mob of townfolk and a couple of adventurers when it was discovered that the nobleman living there had been engaging in cannibalism and other base horrors for some time.

Revenge of the Ghoul Prince Revenge of the Ghoul Prince

The main hall deep under the fort was said to have the remains of a dozen local farmers and a few young nobles hanging from the walls. The tales go on to describe that the mob found a deep chamber attached to the hall where the nobleman (now only remembered as “the Ghoul Prince”) kept a foul demon bound and enslaved that he “milked” for its blood and other ichors.

The miasma of foul ichors released by this demon…

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[Rumour] New Wii U Update Spells the End for the Wii U Miiverse!

Miketendo64! The Place To Go For Anything Nintendo

With the likes of the Nintendo witch and 3DS getting some updates this year, this week was the Wii U’s term, only it seems the update itself is rather sinister.

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The Beauty and Ugliness of the Fighting Game Community

3rd World Geeks

Esports is a thing. Even though there are still a lot of people that can’t wrap their head around the competitive side of video games, esports is a thing. And it’s an incredibly huge business that should be taken seriously by everyone, especially those in media. Not only are the prize money getting bigger, but the viewership numbers are just ballooning each and every year.

While most of these numbers come from MOBA games like League of Legends and DOtA, I do believe that a good chunk of those figures comes from fighting games. While MOBAs generally pull in bigger numbers than fighting games, it does seem like games like Capcom’s Street Fighter and Nintendo’s Super Smash Bros are more mainstream. In fact, just last week, the EVO finals for both of those games were broadcast live on non-gaming channels. The EVO finals for Street Fighter V was shown on…

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Ataribox Debut: Current and Retro Gaming In a Sleek New Build

Musings of a Mario Minion

Just a few short weeks ago the Ataribox was announced. Atari’s first hardware release in 20 years, the comeback retro gaming console is an enigma as it stands today. New photos and some more details of Atari’s plans for the console released today, however, may clarify further.

Ataribox Retro Gaming

With 4 USB ports, 2 SD card slots, and HDMI and ethernet ports, the Ataribox is ready to take on modern audiences. We weren’t entirely sure what Atari’s new console was going to shape up to be, and to be honest we’re still pretty clueless. But what we do know is that Atari look to approach new audiences through their software as well. The Ataribox will run “classic” and “current” titles on release using “modern internal specs”.

So we know it’s not exactly just another retro gaming console built to cash in on some of that Nintendo-brand nostalgia. Yes, the success of the…

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The Golden Age of JRPGs

PlayingWithThoughts

-by Dylan DiBona

Not too many genres really get a “golden age” within gaming; a golden age being a time period where plentiful high quality games of a specific genre come out. Some would say the Nintendo 64 singlehandedly ushered in a golden age of 3D-Platformers with Super Mario 64, Banjo-Kazooie/Tooie, Donkey Kong 64, Conker, etc.

At the 2017 E3 Conference, JRPGs were absolutely not in the spotlight, in fact the only ones I believe were present were remakes of Radiant Historia and Shin Megami Tensei: Strange Journey on 3DS. It’s a tough pill to swallow but this genre is back to being niche and no so relevant with American audiences. It’s an odd thought because of all genres, JRPGs may just have had the longest and strongest golden age in gaming history.

The 16-Bit Former Half

While I acknowledge and endlessly respect the…

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Fifth Edition Character Sheets

Dyson's Dodecahedron

Fifth Edition Character Sheets Fifth Edition Character Sheets

So, after years of requests, begging, and even a nice bit of bribery here and there, I’ve finally put out the first hand-drawn Fifth Edition character sheets that I’m happy with.

This package contains two versions of a single-page 5e character sheet. One has all the skills in a single box, the other has the skills divided up between the ability scores. The one with the skills in one box moves the saving throw marker from the skill list to a small box attached to the side of the appropriate ability score box.

Otherwise they are pretty much standard 5e sheets.

If reception is good (ie: it brings in a bit of money instead of just being downloaded a few hundred times for free), expect a back page to be added to the package soon, and then probably some other variants and maybe a spellbook page.

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