July 31

TV – Walking Dead Season 5 Preview

Holy crap! Excuse me while I calm down….

OK I just watched the preview trailer for Walking Dead Season 5 that debuted at San Diego Comic Con and I all but fell out of my freaking chair! I know a lot of people were a bit critical about last season, but if this trailer represents what we can expect this season we are in for one intense ride! Last season we had the crispy burnt zombies. This season we have water logged zombies and they are so incredibly disgusting. I love how the Walking Dead crew keeps reinventing them. The last part of the trailer leaves you wondering if Beth is actually in Terminus and if not who the hell has her!

Daryl Dixon
Daryl Dixon

Is it October yet? I am not sure I can wait that long.

Later Nerds!

July 30

Blurb: RPGs and LGBTQ Community

I have to say growing up being gay in the 80’s was pretty tough. I mean I did it in Kentucky for God sake. Now do not get me wrong I had a few supportive friends and my sister to get me though some of the tough times. But… there was no LGBTQ friendly anything or many highly visible out people at the time. So there was no real support in society, actually there was nothing but damnation if I am to be brutally honest. At least that is how it felt.

I used, as many of you do, Role-playing games to escape real life. No I did not play female characters I had no inclination to do so. But what I did do was play characters that were the farthest from gay. I am not sure if it was self loathing or just the fact I felt that I needed to be “normal”. As the years passed (many years) and being a person in the LGBTQ community became more “normal” I actually started embracing who I was and started to play characters that were more like me. One of my favorite characters was in a Exalted game where I was a bad ass warrior who happened to be in love with another man. Who was murdered by a evil Storyteller (you know who you are Mike) that used him to taunt me….  ummm sorry… I digress.

In 2007 when I was reading through the first book in Paizo’s adventure path Rise of the Rune Lords I noticed what appeared to be a same sex couple. I thought it was just my own projection and reread it. No there it was in print a Cyrdak Drokkus (CN male human bard 6) & Sir Jasper Korvaski (LG male human paladin 3/expert 1) and in Jaspers description it stated “Despite his best efforts, his romance with Cyrdak Drokkus has become one of Sandpoint’s worst-kept secrets.” so I was not projecting at all! I can tell you that this inclusion of a same sex romance endeared me to Pathfinder.

Paizo did this without even a mention that it was choosing to be LGBTQ inclusive. So when I read Wesley Schneider’s blog this morning he gave a little insight on why they did not make a big deal of it.

As most of you know by now Wizards of the Coast D&D 5th Edition is out and one thing that is getting some notice is they are now following suit with being LGBTQ inclusive. In the Basic Rules download it states things like “Think about how your character does or does not conform to the broader culture’s expectations of sex, gender, and sexual behavior.” and “You could also play a female character who presents herself as a man, a man who feels trapped in a female body, or a bearded female dwarf who hates being mistaken for a male. Likewise, your character’s sexual orientation is for you to decide.”.

In closing… It is important to feel included and accepted so I am pleased to see that some of the leading RPG companies have taken action to do just that. To those companies I raise my goblet of elvish wine and thank you!

Until next time Nerds!

 

Category: Blurb, RPG | LEAVE A COMMENT
July 29

Review – Halo Belt

As some of you know I am part of a awesome group of people called the “Guardians of the Community”. We offer our first-aid, first response, and safety expertise to different local festivals. One of our pieces of gear is a nite-ize arm band that illuminates red. This allows us to be seen at night and designates us as a Guardian. So earlier in the year I saw a kick-starter for the something similar in belt form and thought how awesome that would be to use at festivals. They called it Halo Belt 2.0 and marketed for use as a safety piece of equipment for bikers, joggers, or anybody else that would be out at night and needs to be visible. So today I went to the mailbox and what was waiting for me? My red Halo Belt!

Halo - Skaters
Halo – Skaters

One of the cool things about this belt is that it is chargeable through a Micro USB connection (cable included). I am impressed on how sturdy the construction of this 2″ wide 3M reflective adjustable elastic belt is. The illumination strip is 16″ long which comes in 3 different colors red, blue, & green and can either flash or stay solid. It is weather proof and fits up to a 46″ waist. Right out of the box it is bright and consistent along its length.

Halo - Jogger
Halo – Jogger

I was barking mad when I went to their site to find that they are now making dog collars as well to keep your canine companion visible when you decided to walk them at night!

Halo - Dog
Halo – Dog

So if you are out prowling at night and want to be seen I recommend looking into getting one of these. I hope you will check it out!

Later Nerds!

July 28

Movie – Mad Max & the Hobbit

So I saw two awesome movie trailers today. The first was Mad Max: Fury Road and let me tell you something. This movie made me squeal like a little girl. I so loved Mad Max trilogy when I was younger and the fact that George Miller is directing it tells you it is going to be good!

Mad Mas – Tom Hardy

The other trailer was the sneak peak of  The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies and man o man is this gong to be an epic ending to a awesome triology!

Comic Con Hobbit Poster

Watch and enjoy Nerds!

July 26

RPG – 5E: Players Handbook ToC & Sorcerer Pages!

I am not sure how much more of the 5th edition Players Hand Book Wizard of the Coast is planning on releasing. Here is the latest 3 pages and the first is the table of contents that shows us just what we are getting! It appears that they will repeat some of the rules that are already in the Basic Rules download. However the word on the street is we will receive more detail on how to create a character using rules for sub-races, for example the Drow. What I am most excited about is the feat descriptions and cannot wait to get my hands on them.

5E PHB Table of Contents

The Sorcerer class looks pretty fun. I have played a couple of them in the past and love that they do not use spell books. I am glad to see that has not changed.

5E Sorcerer Page 1
5E Sorcerer Page 2

Well I am not sure how much more they are going to show us before it’s release next month but I am liking what I am seeing for the most part!

Until later Nerds!

July 24

RPG – 5E: Tavern Brawler Feat

I figured for completion sake I should post the little tidbit that was released showing off one of 5E’s feats. I present to you the Tavern Brawler feat. This at the very least gives us a idea how feats are going to look and effect game play.

5E Tavern Brawler
5E Tavern Brawler

Until next time Nerds!

July 24

Blurb – The Hobbit and Friends at San Diego Comic Con!

If you are like me you are stuck at home wishing you were in San Diego with the rest of  our fellow nerds. I have been watching with envy on my twitter account and here are a couple of Hobbit things that caught my eye!

Comic Con Hobbit Poster
Comic Con Hobbit Poster

 

Smaug
Smaug at Comic Con

I may post again tonight it I find anything else that tickles my fancy.

Later Nerds!

 

Category: Blurb, Movie | LEAVE A COMMENT
July 23

Software – Syrinscape: Adding a little ambiance to your RPG…

I have used music in the background of my gaming sessions to give them some ambiance. During a Pathfinder panel at GenCon last year I heard about a piece of software that had promise it was called Syrinscape. This piece of software allows you purchase different sound sets that you can use to set the mood of an encounter. For instance they have a “Dragon Battle”, “Bugbear Battle”, “Witchworld”, and “Brindol Town”. There are many more to choose from (23 to be exact) and more coming out each month!

Brindol Town Sound Set
Brindol Town Sound Set

How does the software work? Well as you can see above, it is like a soundboard. Choosing a sound set displays what scenarios are available to you. When you choose a scenario like the “Busy Market Day” it will begin to play, melding all the tracks together continuously. You can set the volume or turn off and on any of the tracks giving you control of what is playing. A feature I like is when you turn it off or pause the scenarios does not abruptly stop but tapers off . Another feature is you can also choose to use sound bytes to play during the playback. These are located at the top of the sound board (see above). Brindol Town includes a roster’s crow, a cow’s moo, and a horses snort. Also at the bottom you will find other sound bytes, like a Lightning spell or a fireball spell. You get the picture.

So when I opened Syrinscape today to see what was new I noticed something that made be giggle with glee! They are now offering sound sets for Pathfinder’s – Rise of the Runelords adventure path! The first bundle is out and has been made for the Burnt Offerings adventure. I love this so much and cannot wait to run the adventure path with a new group of players so I can use them! To see it in action and hear what the “Glassworks” sound set is all about you can go to their YouTube page!

In closing this is a great piece of software that delivers. If there was one thing I would change it would be the ability to make my own sound set. But these guys have that down to a science!

Give it a try and let me know what you think!

Until next time Nerds!