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Messages - Diamondedge
« on: August 07, 2006, 04:57:33 am »
Woman or not, you need to start with what I consider the bread and butter of fantasy novels.
"In a hole, in the ground, there lived a hobbit."
You should start with The Hobbit. It has it's slow bits and it's fast confusing bits, but all in all, it is the grand-daddy of all fantasy genres coming after it's release. It is an easy, light read, deemed 'children's literature' or 'young adult's literature' although all people dearly love the book.
After reading The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkein, it is safe to move on to the Lord of the Rings, if you have a good long time to read. The story is told as if in Ent-speak.
After the Lord of the Rings trilogy, you can go in any one of several directions. I have never read a DragonLance book, and it's very likely that it'll be a long, long time before I do, so I can't really recommend reading them or not.
What I read directly following the Lord of the Rings trilogy was the Elminster saga. The first one, "Elminster: The Making of a Mage" is, in my opinion, one of the absolutely best D&D-based books ever written. Ed Greenwood is a talented and wonderful author whom does not get nearly enough credit for his amazing works these days, as R.A. Salvatore seems to be stealing the show.
I would not recommend the Dark Elf trilogies until you've got yourself acquainted with the Elminster saga. I'd at least read the first three books were I a newcomer to the fantasy realm, since, well, that's exactly what I did. Once you have read the saga, if you follow the road I have taken, move on to the Cleric Quintet. It is a wonderfully charged set of books that keeps moving at a good pace. Salvatore wrote them in what I consider to be 'his prime', after his first several books, when his style had become fairly founded.
After the Quintet, I would advise reading the Drizzt books; prepare yourself for stomach-cramping goody-goody drowness. The Drizzt books gave major birth to a huge following that is even evident upon Layonara: Good Drow Renegades, Turned Away From Their Homeland's Wicked, Vile Ways.
After the whole goody goody drow book, it's perfectly safe to move on to whatever's next. Y'know. I hear Terry Goodkind is good, although I couldn't force myself to read through her novel. I believe I read somethin by Harry Turtledove when I was younger, something of a parody of World War II if it had taken place in a fantasy-like realm. A dark series of books, but very inventive. No sword swinging, unfortunately, but rather, sticks charged with magical energy which I assume could be compared to rifles.
Beyond what I have listed lies a vast, vast realm of books for your enjoyment. These are only a few that I have 'put forth' for your leisure.
Every adventurer should carry a club or staff if your'e going to deal with Rust Monsters.
Turor's most hated and feared enemy? High level wizard PCs that either A) like to throw fireballs and ice storms and that stupid withering spell into the middle of the melee, or B) Aleister when he got cockey and casted them daze spells and whatnot on Turor, leaving him to fend for himself in the wilds... Turor buried an axe in the side of Al's house for that... Muah ha ha!
1. What would make the world a better RP (roleplaying) place to be?
2. What experiences have you had in Layonara that have made you want to stay in layo forever?
3. What was your favorite Roleplaying Moment in Layo? (if different from question 2)
1. There isn't a lot that could really make Layonara any better than it is, without getting into specific nitty gritty stuff.
- Despite his age (and the wisdom gained through it), people do not take my character seriously, nor his opinions into account, because he appears as 'effortless' to people. I think the community of Layonara can expand it's greatness further by taking into account those of lesser level, and RPing with them, as well as taking them seriously. I like to think that my character has a great deal to offer the people of Mistone and Layonara over all because he has wracked up a great deal of experience just by being at places, and doing things. He isn't the most powerful figure in the world, but he has 'been there' and 'done that', and very generally does know what he is talking about. Many other lower level characters also have the same amount of wisdom through experience and are simply overlooked by those of higher and indeed epic levels.
This is not to say that it is the case with everyone, mind you. There are several noteables whom I have RP'd with over the past year as Turor who do not overlook him, and indeed do recognize his opinion, wisdom and exhistance. Ozymandias, for instance, is a very constant RPer that doesn't overlook the little guy really at all. Brisbane has had a run-in with Turor and it ended up in a delightful bit of roleplay. I think that the epic levels should stop for a day or so a week and just RP with the 'locals', get to know the new players, and enjoy everybody's commitment to the world and all the fun and talent that they do bring to Layonara.
- The drow that I have seen running around Hlint would be lynched and their heads would be stuck on poles outside any gate if the DMs had the time to be around more often. Visual paragons of evil shouldn't be running around without hoods, and I believe this was the feature of much debate about a year ago. I don't know how to put it, exactly, but I find their very insistance on showing themselves off to the common citizenry very unnervingly bold. The thing that people need to remember, I guess, is that there are commoners that we cannot graphically see walking about taking care of their daily business. Isn't Hlint like a village of 500 people or something? Rural communities such as Hlint have a tendency to be a bit more conservative when seeing something strange, fearsome, or in many cases what could be considered distasteful. Layonara is not a tolerant world, and racism is rampant, as would be the norm if there was a group of people with very distinct features that habitually commited heinous evils. Sure, judging by one's actions is a good defense, but the commoners, the farmers, etc etc would not be so inclined. I guess the populous needs to take that all into account.
You want to play some goodly Drizzt clone, that's fine, but you have to understand that in those novels, Drizzt is the victim of a great deal of discrimination, too, and actually has to work and do good deeds for the communities in order to be at least tolerated by people, and that the honest word of a friend really doesn't weigh in very much. And now I feel almost like I'm flaming, so I'm going to back off away from that topic.
2. I have had many experiences in Layonara that have made me come back time and time again, RL permitting.
The people are great, the DMs do their jobs affectively, and the lead designer takes a very active role in the transpirings of the world, without being as restrictive as a Commi might. (And believe me, I've seen absolute freedom in servers, and I've seen absolute control. Layo is a very healthy middle-ground)
I will admit, most of my favorite experiences involved Aleister (Synpox) and the world really just isn't the same without him here. It's a shame he got the short end of a rather short-to-begin-with stick.
3. My very favorite roleplaying moment in Layo... That is difficult to say for certain, considering I've had so many of them.
Perhaps chasing after Aleister with a greataxe, or playing cards against him those few times I won, or maybe when Turor set the outside of Al's house ablaze, much to the chagrin of the old mage, or perhaps it was when Turor dressed Acacea up like a dwarf and took her ogre mashing, sword, shield and armor style, 'the way eht ought ter be dun'. Of course, many of the quests I've been on have been wonderful, too, one in particular that I remember being the one where we all sat outside of that tower near Haven and yelled and screamed at the hostage taker. That was plenty of fun.
Poor oxen, so easily destroyed. Sit down, fair adventurers, and listen to my tale of one ox who would not be the dinner of an ogre!
Bessie, the Giant-Slaying Beast of Burden
It was as cold a day as any other in the middle of Febra, some sixteen years ago or so. Snow covered the ground outside Haven Castle, and a chill, biting wind blew in from the woodlands to the south.
A lone dwarf stood at the entrance to the iron mine, recently infested with ogres. His black beard, freshly braided and neatly groomed hung down over the polished black copper plate that he wore, covering up the symbol of Dorand and the insigna of the Sunderstone clan. There was a brief flicker of light as the dwarf struck a tindertwig against the rough steel of his gauntlet, and the calming, pleasing aroma of Plains Exceptional emanated from his mahogany pipe which hung from his mouth, quite concealed by the open faced helm he wore.
Behind him, his ox gave a rather impatient moo, stepping up beside the dwarf and bumping him rather gently, urgently, in the side with her large, innocent-looking head. There was some manner of intelligence in those dark brown eyes, or so the dwarf thought. The ox was his companion, his best friend, as well as his ore cart.
"Aye," the dwarf grumbled, "It's about time we be gettin' on with our business." The dwarf enjoyed puffing on his pipe for a few more minutes before dumping the remnants of the leaf into the snowbank, before marching towards the caverns, rope leading the ox behind him.
The dwarf was a younger Turor Sunderstone, famous (and perhaps infamous) dwarven resident of Mistone whom caused more trouble than likely he was worth. Not that he minded, or cared for that matter. His ox's name was Bess, and he had kept her alive for more than a dozen trips into the various mines located near Hlint. It was a matter of pride, now, that Turor's ox was still with him, considering the perils he had single-handedly faced head on time and time again.
The first steps into the caverns were welcome as ever; the whistling chill that blew outside didn't make it past the initial few bending tunnels just past the entrance, and the mine itself seemed to have an eerie kind of warmth provided by the large furnaces on the lower levels, located near the veins of iron ore that Turor so strongly craved. He nearly found himself drooling at the thought of all that raw metal just waiting to be extracted, and so he began the longer trek deeper into the mine.
As he marched on, experience taught him well enough where the ogres would be waiting to ambush, and where the chieftain would tell them to congregate. The first room, some kind of sentry or warning room, was always the easiest; they were never ready for the dwarf's sudden fury. Tying the ox to a stalagmite, Turor burst through the stone door, his heavy warhammer felling two ogres in quick succession with co-ordinated strikes to the knees and skulls. He didn't waste much time here, either, for rarely does Turor concern himself with the personal affects of ogres while on his mining expeditions.
The next few batches of ogres had heard the commotion that Turor had caused (he was never known for his skill at being stealthy and unheard) and were a bit more prepared, but as before, Turor tied Bessie to a stalagmite and charged in anyways; the larger brutes took a bit more tactical skill than the smaller, weaker, runtier members of the ogre congregation. In the end, of course, Turor prevailed, relatively unharmed, and thanks to the plucky use of a few healing potions, he was on his way again.
In the hotter depths of the mine, Turor found less and less young, runty ogres, and more and more larger brutes carrying keen swords and giant battleaxes. Despite their obvious might, Turor found only a little trouble in dispatching the predictable, slow witted beasts. There were enough of them at one point to provide Bessie with an alternative 'carpeting' to warm her poor, cold feet.
The furnace room was likely the most difficult of the expedition. All those years ago, the chieftain had thought the ogre mages to be expendable, and thus left one or two to guard the iron ore. These were not overly intelligent ogre mages, and as compared to other more crafty ogre mages within the lands, the Haven ogre mages could be considered quite beyond stupid. But, stupid or not, they did know how to cast spells, and after two blasts of freezing cold energy, Turor's beard was quite thoroughly frosted, and much of his plate mail was covered in a blanket of ice, quickly melting thanks to the heat of the nearby furnace. Strangely enough, Bess had managed to avoid the blast of sudden cold.
Turor finished the ogres off with calculated swings and a strong shield arm. It took a great many more potions of healing to keep the dwarf on his sturdy feet this time, and Turor wasted no time in swinging his pick against the veins of iron, ready to mine his share before reinforcements would make it to the furnace room.
After packing his ox more than full, and carrying a rather heavy load himself, he began the slow, and steady job of heading back out of the mine, Bessie immediately behind him. Turor avoided many encounters with the ogres through the use of tactics such as sneaking and distraction, and was quite quickly heading towards the surface.
This use of tactics, however, would not prevent the inevitable ambush made by a group of ogres whom had come back from a hunting trip to find their comrades' dead bodies littering the floor. The dwarf was almost completely unprepared for it, though he managed to quickly enough draw forth his warhammer. Bess wasn't tied down this time, and so Turor began working so as to protect his ox.
And then, in an almost inexplicable move made by the ox, Bessie let out a fearsome war-moo, and charged one of the bigger ogres ambushing them. The ogre took a swing at the ox with his large sword but Bessie managed to duck out of the way before slamming her front hoofs into the ogre's abdomen and driving her horns into his chest, felling the ogre right then and there.
Turor was left in such shock that he almost forgot about the impending doom of his little expedition as several more ogres stepped in to take the place of the large ogre whom was so recently and unexpectedly deceased. Bessie proved twice more that the ogre's death was no fluke, and Turor praised all the gods whose names he could think of for the blessing of some seemingly holy possessed ox of death-dealing ogre slaying.
With her help, Turor quickly managed to finish off the remaining few ogres, before leading the ox off to the surface at a hurried pace now; ever the pragmatic, he figured he wouldn't rely too heavily on a blessing that may have been a stroke of sudden and well-timed fortune.
The biting cold was as much a blessing as ever as it greeted Turor and his beast-of-burden companion head on. They both took their fair share of breaths, shared a few knowing looks, and headed on their way to Hlint. Turor had a batch of iron to craft, and a grand story to tell over several ales and perhaps a bale of hay.
The only thing I miss is the ease with which one could travel from Hlint to Port Hampshire. The undead were too often farmed for XP, but now I think things have gone the other way; you have to sneak along the treeline if you want to get to Fort Hope without dying. And I like Fort Hope.
If the drow do not conceal their identities, then there will be more conflicts in the future. The conflicts will slowly become bloodier. The commoners of the land, the people that till the earth, grind the grain, build the homes and raise the cattle... they grow more on edge every day that a drow walks through their midst without covering his features.
Mobs will arise, and the so called friends of these drow will be forced to either put to death entire townships, or to let their comrade drow be lynched, exiled or executed. It would save the world a great deal of strife, and indeed keep a fair deal of souls nice and sturdily on the ground, and all it would take is about two or three gold per drow.
You claim to uphold the virtues of good and wonder, to be adventurers seeking no ill will towards the common folk... so why would you be so willing to put these people through such terrible times. I know of two drow already who keep their identities a secret from the world. It is stubbornness beyond idiocy to continue to be so selfish as to think that you can come to the surface and be so readily accepted by everyone. By virtue of birth, you will not be trusted. Why put yourself in danger?
Turor will be more than happy to teach you the animal language.
Of course, you might be speaking a different animal language than all the other people in Layonara... Might sound like grunting, laughing and belching...
This sounds like the classic mis-click. What's happening, I guess, is you try to kill something and think you click right on it, but the avatar of one of the other characters hops in your way at the wrong time or something to that effect. Just be glad you're not pitching level 20 firearrows at them.
And smite evil won't do the smite damage to a non-evil character, but you'll still do physical combat damage. All it really is is charging your weapon with intense good energy which would be discharged into the target; it would hurt evil characters but do nothing to a non-evil character. You're still hitting them with something hard and possibly pointy.
5) Anyone ever tell you how much I hated all things trigonometric?
6) 157.1 m^3
9) I know it's wrong, but I'll go with a guess here and say [5 -12]?
I had to use a calculator. So all the ones that actually require a brain, y'know... they aren't correct. And that's most of them!
But yeah... I used a calculator to speed up the calculations. It's pretty hard to do it any other way for me, when i've been doing math using a calculator for the past... 9 or 10 years, except the days/weeks/months when I forgot the calculator at home
Combined with a damaged short term memory due to it being 3 in the morning and the math needed having been learnt 3 or 4 years ago, I must say I did not do nearly as well as hoped.