Saturday, August 30, 2008
This movie came and went faster than Damone in “Fast times at Ridgemont High”.
It played in theaters here for like a week and then bombed out. It’s a Sword & Sandal movie starring Gandhi, Vorenus from HBO’s “Rome”, an Uber-hot Bollywood chick and half the cast of “Love Actually”. It’s a totally un historical attempt at melding The last days of the Roman Empire with the Excalibur legend. Forget history (trust me the writers sure did) and sit back and enjoy a cool team mission flick. Watch The Last Legion for the sword fights, the costumes, the hot Bollywood chick, and basically for the geeky fun of it.
If you’re a Sword and Sorcery Geek like me you will have no problem sitting through this one and having a good time.
Classic cinema? No way.
Cheesy sword-fest? Pretty much.
Worth your time as gamer flick? Oh yeah.
Check out Uber-hot Bollywood chick slice her way through a bunch of NPC's.
Friday, August 29, 2008
Helga of St Cuthbert.
Every DM has a favorite NPC that they whip out to give the party a hand when they need it. In the Greyhawk Campaign I ran in Hawaii that Helping hand was Helga.
Helga was a no nonsense, kick ass and take names follower of St. Cuthbert of the cudgel. She was a member of the order of the Chapeaux (hence the funny hat).
She was the quintessential Cleric- she acted as the moral compass for the party of supposedly "Good" aligned PC's, She treated their wounds (If you were a follower of St. Cuthbert you got the Cure light wounds, if you weren't a follower she used her Healing proficiency on you.), and she was handy with a mace when the Orcs breached the front ranks.
Helga hated undead almost as much as she hated the unemployed. She felt everyone should be doing something to contribute to the greater good. If you didn't have a trade or a job then you volunteered to haul trash or till a garden. She would not abide sloth or laziness.
Helga was great with kids and old-timers, especially veterans.
She began every morning and ended every evening with a prayer. and was a font of homespun wisdom.
On a mission she would always volunteer for last watch and have breakfast ready for the group come sunrise. She would keep the party from going overboard on the looting and pillaging and made it a point to keep a close eye on any rogues in the group.
For those of you interested, here is a write up of St Cuthbert by Gary Gygax (Dragon #67 Nov.1982). Courtesy of my Dragon Magazine archive software.
(. . . Of the Cudgel)
Wisdom, Common Sense, Truth,
Forthrightness, Dedication, Zeal
ARMOR CLASS: -3 (-8 if in his plate mail)
NO. OF ATTACKS: 2
DAMAGE/ATTACK: By weapon type, +8 (strength bonus)
SPECIAL ATTACKS: See below
SPECIAL DEFENSES: +3 or better weapon to hit
MAGIC RESISTANCE: 80%
ALIGNMENT: Lawful good (neutral)
WORSHIPPERS’ ALIGNMENT: Lawful good — lawful neutral
SYMBOL: Wooden billet, starburst, crumpled hat
CLERIC/DRUID: 22nd level cleric/ 8th level druid
MONK/BARD: 7th level monk
PSIONIC Ability: VI
Attack/Defense Modes: All/all
S:20 I:10 W: C:25 CH:19
St. Cuthbert appears as a stout, red-faced man, with a drooping white moustache and flowing white hair. He wears simple plate mail of +5 magic value. Atop his helmet is a crumpled hat, and a starburst of rubies set in platinum hangs on his chest. In his left hand he carries a billet of wood. This bronzewood cudgel is actually a +3 weapon equal to a Morningstar in St. Cuthbert’s grasp. Any human touched by this weapon must save versus magic or be beguiled for 5-20 turns.
In his right hand is the fabled Mace of St. Cuthbert. This weapon is +5, disrupting (as a mace of disruption), and any “to hit” score of a natural 20 permanently reduces by 1 point the intelligence of the creature struck (magic resistance check withstanding). This mace also has the following powers: bless (by tapping touch); know ‘alignment (once/day); tongues; exorcise (once/month); and
remove curse (7 times/week). St. Cuthbert hates evil, but his major interest is in law and order and the dual work of conversion and prevention of back-sliding by “true believers.” He seldom leaves his plane, unless some great duty brings him forth. When on the Prime Material Plane he will sometimes appear as a manure-covered yokel, a brown-and-green-robed wanderer, or a slight and elderly tinker. In these guises he tests the doctrine of the faithful or seeks new converts. He can gate to or from
lesser god. There are three orders of the priesthood of St. Cuthbert: Members of the order of the Chapeaux dress in varying garb, but all wear crumpled hats. They seek to convert people to the faith. When they attain third level, clerics of the Chapeaux order gain the ability to cast one shillelagh spell per day. Members of the order of the Stars wear dark green robes with a starburst holy symbol of copper, gold, or platinum (depending on their status). They seek to retain doctrinal purity amongst the faithful. Clerics of the order of the Stars gain the ability to cast one
Thursday, August 28, 2008
I never thought I was a D&D character, I never worshiped demons, I never had suicidal thoughts, I never looked to a game to solve my typical teenage problems.
But shit like this made being a teenage gamer a lot fucking harder than it had to be.
Thank God my mom was intelligent enough to see through all the hype and hysteria that was fueled by her friends, co-workers, and dumb ass talk show hosts.
Thanks to The Geek Orthodoxy Blog, which brought this to my attention.
Blogging strong there Reis!
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
Boskar is called the “City of thieves” by many. It is located just inside the Sikkar Plains, in the foothills that separate the High mountains and the Druss mountain ranges. This is another city founded by “adventurers” (see Hogar) who happened to be in the right place at the right time. It began as a trading post established by a group of merchant adventurers from Teve who secured permission to establish a trading settlement from the local tribe of Sikkar. This Trading post soon grew to a decent sized town as the people from the free cities of the coast began acquiring an appetite for Sikkar Bison. A profitable trade in livestock was going on when a group of settlers came down from the nearby hills with huge gold nuggets. Boskar’s main industry went from Livestock to mining overnight.
Mines: the discovery and mining of precious metals has enabled the “Bosses” to afford material and manpower to build improved defenses for the city and hire troops to man the walls.
Boomtown: People from all over are flocking to Boskar. Dozens of caravans and groups of people with “Gold fever” enter the city everyday. The demand for goods and services has far surpassed what the original inhabitants can provide, so now the call has gone out for artisans, laborers and other professionals to come to Boskar and seek their fortune.
Greed and corruption: Those that aren’t able to stake a claim of their own are doing their best to take advantage of those who have. Corrupt officials, dishonest merchants, ladies of questionable virtue, and charlatans of every stripe, prey on each other like piranhas. Taverns, Lotus dens and brothels provide their services at a premium price. Even a decent meal and a bed for the night could leave a man broke the next day. People are complaining, but the council of men who run Boskar (collectively known as “the Bosses”) are slow to react as they are making coin hand over fist themselves.
Wide open town: In such an environment it’s not hard for the enterprising adventurer to see opportunity at every turn. Law enforcement exists for those who can pay for it and consists of gangs of toughs working for the different bosses.
Gold! : Many people try their hand at mining in the hills. For some it’s profitable. For most it’s deadly. Hill tribes, bandits, wild animals, other miners, and nature herself will all conspire to end any dreams of riches.
The Sikkar: If worrying about everyone else in the city wasn’t bad enough, there are still the Sikkar outside the walls. The wagon people are seriously starting to rethink this whole trading post idea. Seeing the large influx of people and the wooden stockades being replaced by stone walls is not helping their disposition. There are many calling for a council to gather the tribes for war and rid these dirt diggers from the “Sea of grass” permanently.
Radu: All of this prosperity and growth hasn’t escaped the attention of Shen-Ka the ruler of Radu. He has sent emissaries to the Bosses with pledges of friendship and military aid in case threats from the Sikkar become more serious. The Bosses aren’t too keen on any “help” from a sorcerer, and while they haven’t turned Radu’s ambassadors away they are wary of them.
Friday, August 22, 2008
Thursday, August 21, 2008
Here are a couple of interesting Articles on the Sword & Sorcery genre. Sort of a point / counterpoint.
There is a preview article over at the Quarter Bin about a new Sword & Sorcery series with an East Indian flavor.
Bill Wards Blog offers up a review of an intriguing novel called The Blade Itself. Personally I haven't read the book, but I am intrigued enough that I'll be picking it up soon.
Is the Warlord returning? Can DC comics redeem itself from that fucking travesty that they created the last time they wanted to re-launch the Warlord? Well if they are, they've taken a step in the right direction by getting the father of Skataris himself, Mike Grell back on board. Read about it here.
Tuesday, August 19, 2008
“She who must be obeyed” and I went to go see Tropic Thunder the other day. It was less than I expected. The movie just did not deliver. All the buzz and hype over this film was really overrated in my opinion. People accusing the producersof racist overtones over Downey playing in “black-face”, Others crying about the insensitive depiction of the developmentally disabled. Much ado about nothing- the damn film wasn’t even that funny. “She who must be obeyed” nodded off during the first half of the movie, and she’s a big Ben Stiller fan.
Jack Black delivered a few laughs. Stiller fell flat. While watching “Tropic Thunder” I kept wishing for the Ben Stiller that had me in stitches, not this guy.
The supporting players saved the movie from being a total wreck for me. It just took way too long to get to any big laughs. When I go to see Jack Black and Ben Stiller I want big laughs, a lot of big laughs. Otherwise why would anyone go see them?
Tropic Thunder had a couple of big laughs, a hand full of chuckles, and whole lot of waiting for something funny to happen.
Saturday, August 16, 2008
Friday, August 15, 2008
Thursday, August 14, 2008
Who you may ask is Hank Houston?
Hank is the creation of a team of artists and writers at ECV press.
ECV is also known as Empire Comics Vault- The sole provider of comics to The Lair of the Evil DM!
My buddy Ben Schwartz and his team have put together a great Sci-Fi Pulp epic starring Hank Houston. They have submitted their proposal for consideration to the Platinum Studios comic book challenge-2008. Hank Houston has made it into the top 10 and now it's up to the fans to decide if Hank gets a shot at his own title. YOU have the power my friends.
Here is a great opportunity to get a pulp title on the market.
Please join me in supporting Ben, ECV, Independent publishing and Pulp by voting today.
It's free and easy just click on this link.
Tuesday, August 12, 2008
This is a very sweet site with plenty of content. Flashback Universe is specifically geared to bringing back that old Marvel comics feel (back when a buck could get you FOUR great comics). There is a ton of free content including a nice selection of original comics in .cbr format. It’s free but if you want to donate a couple of bucks to show your support you’ll not only be supporting their efforts but you’ll also get access to special “members only” sections.
Check em out, enjoy the great comics and toss a couple of bucks their way via PayPal and support the movement!
Saturday, August 09, 2008
Looking for a little old school D&D? Well the Phoenix Barony offers you a nice concise setting for you gaming pleasure, it's useable with ANY system with just a touch of tweaking. David Bezio has made his Phoenix Barony available for free at Lulu. But show Dave a little Gamer Karma and pick up the donation version. It’s only $1.50
It’s well worth every penny!