- Play Tryndamere or Garen
- Spin to win
- Traps everywhere.
- Get in a helicopter
The sun still rises in Equestria. Every day, without fail. Up with the dawn and down with the dusk. Every day. Even though Celestia is dead. Every day.
Just another one of those lies she fed to me, considered Twilight, resting down on her haunches from one of the dugouts west of Ponyville. Just another one of those lies, like most of her lessons. Friendship is magic? Fuck that. Magic is fucking magic and it’s the only reason the Borg haven’t completely destroyed the Pony Resistance in the last few months. That and Luna.
Twilight ducked down beneath the collection of leaves and grass camouflage she was conjuring around her position as a squadron of Borgasi swept past above. Twilight tallied it up, assuming them to be separate patrols. That’s 15 assimilated pegasi sweeping the area every hour, evenly spaced out. Less than 20 minutes to get in, rescue Rarity and get out. She wished Celestia was here with her, now. She wished upon a star and everything magical between pixie dust and love. But that was a hopeless wish, a meaningless one. Pointless, redundant. Just like everything she’d ever been taught.
When the message was broadcast, that great ponderous message. “We are the Borg. You will add your biological and technological distinctiveness to our own. Resistance is futile.” Twlight had been with Pinkie Pie and Fluttershy. Operation Weasel rescue was in motion after the old dam broke up stream, flooding the lower fields of Ponyville. All the other little critters had made it out except for a couple families of weasels. That message crashed through Equestria like Luna, or maybe Pinkie Pie hopped up on magical weeds and insomnia, there was chaos, confusion, panic. And then there was Celestia. Great Celestia rising up into the clouds to meet the ships. She tried reason. She tried appealing to the nature of love and kindness and the power of friendship. She fell first, without warning, she just…fell. They all saw it, everypony as if they were there, beside her. They saw her fall and they felt her cries of anguish as the green beam cut straight through her. As she fell, so did Equestria, so did almost every pony be they earth, unicorn or pegasi. The destruction was immediate and brutal. Ponyville was burning within seconds, the horrendous whinnies of terror still haunt any survivors dreams. They haunt Twilight most of all.
Sliding out beneath the illusionary foliage Twilight trotted quietly and quickly to the border of what was left of Ponyville. The herds of Borg had long since abandoned this region of Equestria which was why Luna thought it would be safe to reclaim Twilights library now. Luna isn’t very good at remembering not everypony is as mad or skilled as her when it comes to infiltration raids and so here she was, on this mad stupid magicforsaken mission to rescue Rarity.
Twilight hated this whole situation. She hated how much faith the six had in Luna, hated how much faith Luna had in the six and most of all, hated being sidelined for a mission and then having to clean up the mess afterwards. Another quick illusion later she cantered up to the library door, Borg augmentations evident across her muzzle and flank. The sentry ponies didn’t even seem to notice her. They considered her harmless. Not even a threat. That suited Twilight just fine. The canter was a particularly nice touch, she thought to herself. No self respecting pony would ever move in that way yet the assimilated ponies seemed to always go from place to place like it. They say the Borg pursue perfection but Twilight really couldn’t see how anything about the strange movement was better than a simple trot.
Another fifteen minutes before the Wonderbolt patrol hit Ponyville. The wonderbolts were one of the first ponies to be assimilated into the collective. They were with Celestia when she…when it happened and a lot of them were taken into the great grey ships. When they came back they were no longer the wonderbolts, but they were just as fast. Twilight had to be faster. In through the door, Three borgnies on the bottom floor, Two up top, the two sentries outside. Each one held the same cutie mark. The Borg only had one cutie mark, shared amongst all. Twilight shuddered at the thought of losing hers, hidden beneath the weave of illusions over herself. She hated this part of the war the most. The idea of dying wasn’t so bad, but to lose your cutie mark?
A flick of her tail and a ruffle of her mane and all five inside went down, the Borg cybernetics shorting out. Rarity was unconscious at the far wall, but a quick hooveslap brought her round.
“Wh-wh-where am I? Twil…twilight it’s you! What is going on I have to say this is…”.
“Shut up and move Rarity. No time for twenty questions and pointless outrage. We’ve got less than fifteen minutes and the evac is over five miles away.”
Twilight ignored Rarity’s bluster as she looked out towards the door, “And in much less time than that, they will of adapted to my spell. Did you get it?”
Rarity scrabbled to her hooves, swearing quietly at the state of her attire and the fact her mane was utterly a mess, “Yes, yes.”, snapping up a book with her magic, “This has to be it. It was the only book on memory rituals and how to restore personalities”.
Twilight nodded and turned to the door, “Can you gallop? Theres two sentries out there we need to outpace.”
“I might not be Rainbow dearest Twilight but you know full well the training I’ve put in these past few months. Let’s go, maybe with this we can save Equestria.” Rarity leapt out the door and sprinted towards the forest, the two sentries suddenly alarmed and chasing after her. Twilight shook her head a little and sighed, knowing full well that nothing in the book was truly useful, wondering what Luna’s purpose was in even sending Rarity on this mission, following hastily. Hooves bit into dust and mud as the ponies fled. The sentries, bulked down with metal components and hideous machines couldn’t keep up with the two unicorns once they reached Applejack’s farms.
It took the two ponies two days and much bickering to arrive at headquarters. There was tension in the tunnels, deep tension. The ponies allies were fragmented and failing. The moles had done their duty and now expected Luna to save them, as she promised. She was failing and there was fury and anger in the air. Understandable, Twilight thought, but pointless. They’ll kill us all soon enough, no point fighting amongst ourselves.
The two unicorns, two parts of the great secret Celestia hid walked into the great chamber as Luna was finishing one of her speeches. The book saddled in one of Twilights bags resting against her flank. The pointless useless book that so much had been risked for. What
was Luna playing at?
The crowd were loud, raucous even. Hooves stamped and whinnies could be heard from all corners. Luna was pacing up and down the stage, shouting loudly, flanked by two of the largest soldiers of the resistance, general Applejack standing off to one side.
“My fellow ponies. Our allies. Rejoice. Our salvation is at hand. Look now upon Celestia’s disciplines returned anew from the field. See them, our great warriors. Come come, Rarity, to me. Twilight. Fillies and Studs alike, hear me now. We have fought. We have paid a price in friendship and blood to get this far. To survive this horrendous onslaught by the forces of the Borg. Know this now. We will remain alive. We will remain free. These two ponies have returned with a great treasure, a great secret. The power to reverse the taking is in their hooves. In their possession is a book, a very special book. It tells of a way to defeat the Borg. It gives us the power and strength to fight so I ask you, one last time, be brave. Be strong, fight with me, ponies of Equestria. For freedom. For my sister Celestia. For our most dear departed friends. And know this. within those pages contains a spell, a hidden one. A power so great it was locked away forever. Magic that reveals the cutie marks of every pony in Equestria. With this we can free our enslaved kin. Break the shackles of assimilation and return to them their identities, their souls. Soon. We win this war.”
Twilight stared at Luna, at the pony who looked so much like her sister. Who in this time of triumph kept them alive. She stared, and she swore quietly to herself, head drooping in despair. What Luna proposed was madness. It would free the other ponies, if true…yes. But they’d be stranded up in those ships, with no way out, no escape…they’d die to the enemies other soldiers. Nonponies taken elsewhere, on other planets.
Luna was condemning all her lost friends to death.
Walking to dnd, listening to Marina and the diamonds, wearing my indy clothes, eating Tesco chocolate and mns cake, blogginating on my smart phone whilst reading a leather bound Hegel. I am the mish mash
Watching supernatural with loaf whilst eying her dolly mixtures. That’s not a euphemism.
1: Look awesome. Check.
2: Eat something tasty whilst she’s hard at work.
3: Be either overly friendly or completely aloof to her colleagues.
4: Blog whilst bored instead of pretending to be entertained.
5: Now this is the important one, don’t tell your girlfriend you’re Blogging instead of being entertained, this gets a grumpy face and an exasperated sigh.
6: Don’t ask girlfriend how you spell exasperated…
We’re all going on a summer loliday.
No more trolling for a week or two.
Fun and Laughter on our summer loliday.
No more ganking for me and you!
That’s right peoples of the internet. I am off. OFF OFF AND AWAY! Well, kind of. Regular viewing schedule for this morning, then down to Loaf’s, then back to Reading, then up to Derby, Longleat, Alton towers, Newcastle, back to Reading. I’m like a bouncing travelling yoyo man, his continuing mission to explore strange new trolling methods, to seek out new life(welll it is newcastle) and new civilisations(again : Newcastle).
And stuff. I’m looking forward to it. It means a raiding break in WoW. This is good news. I have the burn out there. It means my brand new sexytastic PC will be…ignored by me and filled with sims games by my housemate. Awesome. It means I get to spend an inordinate amount of time feeling travel sick in the back of a car with a DS in my hand and earphones in my head. Fantastic.
Who’s ready for a summer loliday?
OH! And I might stop off at Kettering, great Kettering. Home town, location of my birth. Great jewel upon the east Midlands. Once upon a time it was home, home to horror and thrill seeking. Mostly it would be to scare my online Dark Heresy GM in the face with Zicon and I’s sudden yet inevitable betrayaHHHHHH^H presence. So, if any of you reading this actually remember me, and live in Kettering, send me an email at Djones0823@gmail.com and I will see what I can do.
It’s ten to seven in the morning. It’s raining, I’ve had five hours of sleep. My bus is late. I don’t give no kinds of shit. Life sometimes is fucking awesome. The sky looks like a freeze frame flash of divine conflict, black scars winding around great beings cast violently against the blue beautiful sky. The rain feels like soft beats of a celestial song, pitter patting its heavenly rhythm against hard tarmac and gentler green. Against tired skin, refreshing against scarred and clear flesh alike. Soothing.
I have ratatat caressing my inner ear with a beat so solid, so profound. So complete in its precipitous and so very desirable insidious reach, crawling around my spine in a near orgasmic flutter as each song hammers home and through to the soundtrack of thunder and patter.
Life is awesome. I have the most beautiful girlfriend whom I dream about so often, love so intently that my very being quiver in anticipation of inane conversation. Eyes are their own reflection, what you see is your own window to the soul.
I might be tired, wet, late, but the world is beautiful. You are beautiful so I say with expertise and authority.
FUCK YEAH SEAKING.
FUCK YEAH PIKACHU.
FUCK YEAH RATATAT.
FUCK YEAH WORLD.
FUCK YEAH LIFE.
Bring it all on. Cuntbags and dickshits and arseholes and all.
In a pen and paper rpg, there are many components that seem present in many of the mainstream games, and certainly exist in most full stop. You have conflict resolution, you have social encounters and, somewhere along the line, you have subterfuge and stealth.
I’ve Gm’d quite a few games over the years. Paranoia, In Nomine and most recently DnD Fourth edition. As we all know, 4e is serious business and as such stealth can have a dramatic and meaningful impact on the general flavour and often success of a game. Many games have some kind of stealth skill or power. These allow players to actively engage in dubious behaviors hopefully without getting caught red handed with the hand in the vorpal magic cookie jar. These attributes often provide depth and flavour to a character and enable a party to achieve many goals through means other than direct involvement. Similarly it enables GM’s to be much more creative with how the party experience the world giving another set of variables to play with, on top of straight up sword to shield sexiness.
In the campaign I am running at the moment, the party were entrusted with a secret mission. They must infiltrate a group of farmers being shipped out to the feywild to help them get past the guards around the portals, then move on covertly to ambush a very important convoy. What I noticed in this process is that the party’s level of success ultimately derived from their inaction. Over the night situated in a crowded warehouse full of other workers, when stuffed in the cargo hold of a zeppelin and shipped over, had they done much in the way of cause a ruckus, the game would be up and they’d have to find other ways to secure access to the feywild. There, certainly, isn’t necessarily any problem with that. Had the party wanted to commit mutiny on the airship, kill or capture the crew and take it over, becoming skyfaring pirates I would have been happy to oblige and it certainly would have been an entertaining adventure or two. It would not, however of been the adventure planned nor would the quality of such an encounter be to the same degree as the planned exploits I have for them. Even from the most accommodating and quick thinking GM, players departing the path of stealth are actively penalised and sometimes this is appropriate. When the players choose to do something silly or stupid it is somewhat reasonable their path be less than smooth, player actions in rpgs should have consequences for their characters, otherwise there is no sense of immersion or impact.
Yet, how does one construct an adventure around a stealth mission, where in fact the process of inaction yields the best results? At all stages of the infiltration, the party had to remain in character pretending to be simple peasant farmers, not reveal they were in fact, the Architects of Loss, a brave group of fearsome warriors(apparently) and in this process a part of the rpg experience is lost. It becomes a process of meta game over character principles where the players choose to remain silent where perhaps their characters might not, all to hold to the mission rather than play the game itself. In light of these experiences it does seem to me that there are a few things about stealth missions that should be actively considered when plotting out one.
Firstly, that a stealth mission should not require inaction to succeed, rather it should require action. Instead of casting scenarios in which the players actions will reveal them, pose scenarios in which the players inaction will reveal them. Where my players were stuffed in the cargo hold along with the other farmers, acting anything other than scared, powerless farmers would have gotten them into quite a world of trouble. Getting players to infiltrate somewhere via the powerless will strip the power from the players, thus providing a vehicle of stealth that retains some authority and strength will enable the players to maintain motion and momentum, provide them with the tools to make choices, some of which might unmask them, others may strengthen the facade.
Secondly, it is important not to necessarily punish the players for acting as their characters would, despite the imperative towards stealth. The Lawful Good Dragonborn Fighter is not going to be able to step aside when you’re ordered to butcher the surrendered citizens of Unlucky Town number Seven. Placing the party in a situation where they must choose between their characters morality, ethics and religious beliefs and their stealth can be an incredibly useful tool, but not one that should be used incidentally or without an endgame in mind. Taking these things into account can help prevent that dilemma between the meta game and the reality of their characters.
Thirdly, stealth is not for everyone. Whilst it is a useful tool there are some players that just aren’t interested, or very good at it. Whilst I personally feel this principle should come under the same general principle that bad Rpers shouldn’t be punished, good ones should be rewarded it is all too easy to punish the group because one player isn’t very good at phrasing things the right way. Paranoia as a game is a particularly good example of how using the wrong words can get a person killed. However, even in that game its important to distinguish between what a player says because they’re not very good at getting into the role or understanding the setting and what a player says because they’re role playing a character not very good at stealth.
Ultimately stealth is a fantastic tool for the GM and the party. It lets them see sights they wouldn’t ordinarily see, influence events in worlds supposedly beyond their power but it is a tricky tool to use, one I am still getting used to and many of the mistakes I relate above are ones I’ve committed myself at one time or another. Certainly there are many other ways of making stealth an effective interesting and dynamic part of game play and I’m interested in any other ways Gm’s and players might use stealth in active enjoyable ways for everyone.
<Loaf> To recap
<Loaf> I’m a dwarf with a worrying obsession with his hammers, based on Brian Blessed, who now rides Pinkie Pie, who eats pretty much everything, including rats.
<Loaf> And people say D&D is serious?
<Djones> And you squashed Tinkerbell
<Loaf> …that was Tink?
<Loaf> I am a terrible person.
Here’s a short list of how to dps a dungeon, any dungeon(hell or raid) in WoW.
Don’t stand in fire.
Don’t pull aggro.
Don’t be a bloody moron.
Don’t be a dick.
Don’t stand in front of mobs if you’re melee
Don’t attack something the tank hasn’t attacked.
Don’t stand in fire.
Interupt shit, yo.
Don’t burst aoe on the pull.
You can’t do dps if you’re dead.
Following this short and simple guide will allow you to achieve all your goals.