Q:Ever play Magic Online? Would you recommend it? I'm loving Duel of the Planeswalkers on the iPad (other tablets are available) but it's a bit limited.
Magic Online is full on Magic, you can make your own decks and buy your own cards and everything.
I hear they’ve recently had a big GUI change and I haven’t played since that happen so I can’t make a recommendation at this point.
Anyone got any insight into this?
Imagine if one of the cogs eventually develops emotions and falls in love with another cog, but they dont know how to love it back.
Cogs do have some emotions, for one they have a very strong sense of community. If you recall waaaaaaay back in Four Against the Void, Arquebus tries to convince the rulership that getting involved is important because he is empathetic to meat beings.
Q:Mr. Rodrigo, Sir, I have a quick question. My roommate is trying to set up a 'Monster of the Week' game and one of the classes in that game is Luchador. He told me that you used to be a world champion Luchador way back when, and I was curious if you could give me some tips for playing a Luchador?
Yeah, let’s talk about luchadores.
First off, I’m guessing by “luchador” you mean “masked wrestler” there are plenty of mexican wrestlers who don’t wear masks and they are also referred to as “luchadores” since “luchador” literally means “wrestler”.
American media is very superficial when it comes to masked wrestlers, often focusing on the goofyness of it. All you have to do is watch movies like Nacho Libre or Despicable Me 2 to see that American media makers find masked wrestlers comical.
Although there are plenty of Mexicans that find masked wrestlers comical the masked wrestler occupies a different place in Mexican culture. Part superhero, part actor, part pro athlete, part rock star, the masked wrestler is culturally significant.
Here are a few things to keep in mind when playing a masked wrestler:
Rudo or Tecnico
Although similar to the Heel/Face division in American wrestling, the rudo/tecnico division is its own thing. Usually, within the context of the ring, a tecnico will never cheat or use underhanded tactics and instead will try to win legally and cleanly. By contrast rudos cheat and generally use rougher techniques like eye gouges and uglier submission holds. Outside of the ring rudos aren’t necessarily bad or mean (although plenty are) they just do what it takes to win, even if it involves illegal activities.
Masked wrestlers never take off their mask in public. Nobody knows what their face looks like, not even those closest to them. This is why you often see masked wrestlers in suits. If they go to a formal event they will still wear their masks. Once a wrestler puts on the mask he or she wears it until they lose it in a bout. Masked wrestlers who do not lose their masks are often buried wearing them.
Losing The Mask
Sometimes a wrestler will wager their mask against an opponent’s. Whoever loses the fight must unmask and can never wear their mask again. Maskless opponents can still challenge a masked wrestler to a battle like this, if they lose they must shave their heads.
Outside The Ring
As I stated before, masked wrestlers fulfill a lot of roles. Pillar of the community, mysterious vigilante, arcane protector, womanizing jerk. Masked wrestlers carry their kayfabe off the ring and into their movies, tv shows, and public appearances. If you create a masked wrestler character make sure you have this persona in mind, there have been masked wrestler scientists, magicians, martial artists and even zombies.
Most importantly, masked wrestlers are an important part of Mexican pop culture going back more than half a century. Thousands of Mexicans have grown up idolizing El Santo and his cool friends. It’s important to consider this when making a character, especially if the idea is to make the character for laughs. Mexicans already get relegated to secondary and comedy roles in media as it is, the goofy, posturing, heavily accented, masked wrestler is (often literally) adding insult to injury.
i got my tablet to cooperate so heres a trelle
- Stagzi: Usually I lead with I have a 9 year old wife, if that one floats, thennn I tell them about my weird eye.
- Trelle: You're awful!
- Stagzi: I really am! I'm a terrible person.
Yeah, nice kid, just not a very good concept.
Honestly I think that’s an example of problems with my early game mastering style. I should have worked with him to make a character that worked better (whether that meant tweaking his concept of working on something brand new) instead of letting him make a problematic character and then fighting him on it the whole year.
Q:I heard from the MS podcasts that you were the leader of a V:TM LARP while you were in college. If you have the time and interest, I would love to hear about your most memorable or most interesting characters, most interesting storylines, or anything else you'd like to share. (I'd love to LARP, but at the moment, I live in the middle of nowhere.)
My old college LARP (Live Action Role Playing) group is called Dead City Productions and it’s Northwestern’s ASG-certified LARP; although I can’t imagine the majority of student gov’t understands what it is.
DCP is actually how I got into tabletop roleplaying games as well, so in a sense Critical Hit owes its existence to DCP.
Unlike bigger LARPS like your One World By Nights, DCP had what was called a “Mainstage Chronicle” a story that took place over the course of one school year, usually culminating in some catastrophic event. Also the game happened largely in real time, that is to say one month in the real world was one month in game. This meant that we actually did a lot of playing over e-mail so that players could continue to advance their agendas.
I played my freshman and senior years and was a storyteller (one of the game masters) sophomore and junior year. I was also president for a year, I think.
At Northwestern most people get an e-mail address that is [first letter of your first name][last name]@[host, usually northwestern.edu] The pattern is so common that most people won’t even ask for your e-mail address, they’ll just send you an e-mail and assume that the pattern holds up. And it usually does, unless your last name is common enough. And mine is super common. My e-mail address was rlopez4 but a lot of our LARP players would send me vampire emails to rlopez which was, in fact, Rachael Lopez, the student body president. Eventually she realized that all emails in which the sender wanted to permission to hunt down the unwitting human chattel “in between games” should be forwarded to me. She was always very pleasant about it.
In those days Vampire: The Masquerade was played using a rock-paper-scissors system, which means we had a regulation way of playing rock-paper-scissors. You make a fist with your dominant hand, then hold out your other palm underneath it. You go ONE, TWO and SHOOT (not one, two, three shoot) using the sound of your fist on your palm to synchronize with your opponent. It always took a while for the new kids to get it and any challenge involving multiple rhythm-challenged people was always an issue. But all-around it worked pretty well.
My freshman year I played a Malkavian scientist, I don’t even remember his “derangement” since it rarely ever came up. I did pretty well for myself because no one payed attention to me and also because the storytellers liked me.
My senior year I played a Nosferatu, which was a lot of fun. I got taken out by a secret Lasombra, as is often the case. Fun fact, Mike, the kid who played that Lasombra also killed me in an Eberron tabletop game we were playing that year. So that kid killed me twice that year.
In those days DCP was played in Park Hall which was a set of classroom additions onto a chapel. No one cared that we were pretending to be vampires very near a church. I’d like to think it was enlightenment, but it was mostly apathy.
We had a progressively better mix of girls and dudes every year. My freshman year there was probably 1 girl per 5 guys. By my senior year there was probably 1 per 3. I hear that continued to go up, maybe nowadays they’re even.
Every year people would try to get away with crap here are some of the ones I remember
- One guy wanted to play Marvel’s Daredevil. So he made a blind guy who had plenty of Auspex (the sensory discipline). However, the book explicitly says that while using auspex you also become hypersensitive to stimuli. Meaning he spent a lot of time in the fetal position, holding his ears when gunshots started happening.
- One guy walked in with super low social traits and took the flaw “Mistaken Identity”. Of course his mistaken identity was “Antonio Banderas” so he made a character with crappy social traits (what usually covers attractiveness) but somehow had a character who was very handsome. Of course we totally turned it on him where he was constantly being hounded by paparazzi. Which, he was surprised to find, makes it very difficult to secretly feed on the blood of the living.
- Every once in a while we’d get someone who pitched the split personality dual-character sheet concept. Basically a vampire (usually a malkavian) who had two personalities, each with a distinct set of powers. That one was so common we almost wrote a clause against it in the bylaws. But we were lazy so we didn’t.
- We would also frequently hand back a submission with “how is this guy a vampire?” written on it, where the character had some sort of job that could only be done during the day OR basically had a back story that ended with “And then he became a vampire” and nothing else after.
My senior year half the players walked into the game with the “Unbondable” merit. Which I’m sure the storytellers found hilarious as everyone tried to blood bond everyone else and failed.
We had a lot of running jokes.
- Item Card: Death Star - Concealability: Forest Moon of Endor
- “Have you seen the movie ‘The Daredevil’?”… “HAVE YOU seen the movie The Daredevil?”
- Meteor Attractor- 10 Point Merit: Sometime during the game your character is hit by a meteor and dies.
That’s about all I got for now.
Q:I'm running a 4e game in which one of the players wants to be a samurai, but I don't know how to do that without actually creating a new class (which isn't going to happen) unless he just flavours a fighter or something similar as one (which he doesn't want to do). Sorry to bother you, but I don't really know what to do.
You’re not bothering me.
I think your player has three options:
Option One: Play a armored samurai guy, in which case you can reflavor a fighter. There are lots of fighter powers and fightery feats that fetishize heavy blades giving you that all important Katanas-are-the-be-all-and-end-all-of-weaponry feel.
Option Two: Play an unarmored samurai guy, in which case you can reflavor a rogue, give him a rapier and call that a katana.
Option Three: Not play a samurai because you’re not going to sit there and redesign a class. The whole point of fighters is that anyone with ample combat training (and no magic) is a fighter. Thugs, city watch, knights, samurai, spoiled rich kids who can afford a combat tutor, all fighters.
Really this is more about putting your foot down that the actual options. Tell this player what his options are and stick to your guns.
(And yes, I know that samurai could do both armortimes and non-armortimes, but D&D is not very flexible in that regard)
Hope that helps.