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Trip's Life (Recent episodes)

5 Most Recent Comments
2016-10-09:  "Re: Whoa There!" by Trip
2016-10-09:  "Whoa there!" by Jeremy
2016-09-11:  "Re: Story games" by marithlizard
2016-09-11:  "Story games" by Jeremy
2016-07-26:  "Re: now you are!" by Trip

22 October 2016 - Saturday

[ . . . ]

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21 October 2016 - Friday

A Closed and Common Orbit (Becky Chambers) is the sequel to The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet, but follows a secondary character as she goes off with some tertiary characters, and also the backstory of that tertiary character that predisposes her to this situation. As with the previous book (which I had to go back and reread), the worldbuilding and SFness is highly dubious in many places, but I like the characters, and character 1's adjustment to her new circumstances is interesting.

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19 October 2016 - Wednesday

This week in 13th Age, our PCs worked on getting out of the Stone Thief, deferring a lot of good deeds on the grounds that the campaign goal is more important in the short term. In the process, they mind-controlled an orc, started sneaking through a castle made out of castles, cut a gelatinous cube in two, froze one of the other pieces, exploded the other piece with light, and teleported onto the ethereal plane to sting the crap out of a phase spider (okay, that last part was just Anwë, but it was awesome). Anwë gained the ability to sting people who teleport near her by eating the eyes of the spider. The quirk for the magic item the power is based on is "terrified of being teleported", which works, but I think it should be "spiders are surprisingly tasty".

Also, burritos. I was good and got chicken, but the pork sounded pretty tasty.

Miss Kobayashi's Dragon Maid (coolkyousinnjya) is about a random office-job woman who accidentally helps a dragon who then assumes human form (sometimes) and moves in as her maid. Some crushing (in various definitions) may occur. It is silly.

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18 October 2016 - Tuesday

Apparently it has been too long since people got to drink on the company's dime, so everyone who was in the northern office went to drink and paint. Obviously I did not drink, but following the instructions to paint a picture of the Eiffel tower with lights and stuff was pretty fun, even though the the final product is fairly terrible. Some of my cow orkers leapt right into painting their own thing without waiting for the art leader? example? whatever you call the guy who was demonstrating the steps we should follow, because they are actually creative and not like me. I did end up with a terrible picture of the Eiffel tower that was different than other towers, which is... something? Maybe it serves me right for not drinking.

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16 October 2016 - Sunday

Bonus PAD&D5! Or really, next week's session early because Jeremy will be out of town.

However, this session mostly revolved around a GM-driven event, so all I can say is that it looked bad for the PCs but they eventually triumphed. Possibly even partially due to cleverness on our part!

We ended the session just short of level 4, so Jeremy let us go ahead and level up, although we're that little bit further from level 5. I think Lamthanc needs the feat that gives her +1 Str and 3 points of DR (which doesn't exist in this edition, so they had to give it special wording).

But now it's three weeks until we game again, sniff!

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15 October 2016 - Saturday

  • Durarara!!x2 3: People seem remarkably blasé about this character. Although some of them are so weird I guess it's not a surprise.
  • Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell 2: That's the problem with bookish wizards, they too often use Cha as a dump stat. Also, Strange does way more spectacular magic. It's no wonder a rift is bound to grow.
  • Nekomonogatari 1: Well, it's not quite as fan-servicey as the previous arc. Yet. But our theory is that Koyomi is a very unreliable narrator/some of what appears in the show is actually only in his imagination.
  • Sailor Moon Crystal 17: More kidnapping! More jealousy!

Nocturne is a "gothic horror" or at least spooky setting composed of a bunch of settings smashed together and spookified. The 13th Age variant has several custom spooky classes, like possessed-by-a-swarm-of-ghosts and whole-or-partial-construct, which look a little like the random Internet class I'm playing in Ken's game. Overall, it is pretty meh. Their Icons are particularly uninspired.

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14 October 2016 - Friday

No Avalon, only Zuul. But the concert she is working for is Ludovico Einaudi, who I have now added to one of my Pandora stations of lyrics-free writing music.

Hammers on Bone (Cassandra Khaw) combines a private eye with the Cthulhu mythos, but not in the way one might expect. It is awesome and also full of doom.

NK Jemisin story!

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12 October 2016 - Wednesday

Got up even earlier to go to a different doctor in a different office, but hopefully my prescriptions will all be more usefully managed and not randomly expire.

This week in 13th Age: we still have no idea how we got into the Devourer and can't agree on what to do while we're here, but we have a revived 11th Age paladin (played by Grant in a surprise appearance) and did a pretty good job on the first platoon of undead to get in our way.

Also, Thai food.

Conspiracy of Ravens (Lila Bowen), the sequel to Wake of Vultures, continues the adventures of a monster-hunting biracial transgender cowboy. Figuring out his identity is taking Rhett at least as much emotional effort as defeating evil magic, but at least comes with smooches. There definitely needs to be a third book, and really as many more as Bowen is willing to write would be okay by me.

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11 October 2016 - Tuesday

Got up an hour early to go to the new ichor doctor (technically, endocrinologist) and get told I am doing well. Then I went to work at the near office, since it was too late to get to the far office in a reasonable way, and it's just full of coworkers anyway.

While I wasn't watching, the second and third books in the "The Spiral Wars" series (Joel Shepherd), Drysine Legacy and Kantovan Vault came out. Further human politics, alien politics, alien philosophy, space battles, over-the-top heists, and diabolic bargains, but also monocultural aliens (to be fair, the humans are pretty monocultural too but they did have a severe bottleneck), and I'm not sure thermodynamics works like that. Still, it will be interesting to see what kind of doom the next book has, and eventually find out just how badly the humans are being played..

Volume 2 of 7th Garden (Mitsu Izumi) is really quite anti-state and anti-church (even anti-theist) for shounen manga.

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10 October 2016 - Monday


My company is big on giving us time off, so we have today off even though it's a pretty sad excuse for a holiday. I donated to the anti-North-Dakota-pipeline fund to make up for it.

I wasn't quite as useful as I meant to be, but I did go for a walk along the creek, run some errands, and get my flu shot. I did not write, because I suck. I sort of went to bed early, or at least not late.

In the evening, I went to Chef Chu to have dinner with Liralen and Carl, and also Marith and Chrisber and Teo and Cat and Earl. Liralen isn't dead! In her retirement, she is doing 911 transcription and construction work and raising her kid who is 15 now and she is definitely still Liralen.

If I don't suck, I will go to Big Bad Con this coming weekend and meet gamers I have not known for twenty years, but what are the odds of that?

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9 October 2016 - Sunday

Hurray, PAD&D5! This week, we were attacked by pitifully incompetent [SPOILERS], failed to realize we should care about the dungeon under [SPOILER], found clues to the disappearance of [SPOILER] but couldn't get them to lead us anywhere, hunted [SPOILER] (and didn't die!) with [SPOILER] who seemed okay at first but were eventually discovered to be [SPOILER], and did not send Mara to stab anyone in their sleep even once. I think the hunting was the most murder-hoboish we got, and [SPOILER] had no generally-recognized legal rights, I'm pretty sure.

Whoa there! by Jeremy (Thu Oct 13 20:33:11 2016)

Whoa whoa whoa! You're giving way too much away!

Re: Whoa There! by Trip (Fri Oct 14 09:26:25 2016)

Oh, you're right, I shouldn't have made the first [SPOILER] plural. Well, too late now!

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8 October 2016 - Saturday

This week, Marith has not been oppressed by allergens, so we can start the new series!

  • Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell 1: I don't remember the books well enough to know if it's following the plot, but I remember the Gentleman Magicians.
  • Nisemonogatari 10-11: The end of Tsukihi's arc, in which we find out about the new characters who appeared earlier, and the Incestuous Toothbrushing Incident is never mentioned again.

Death and Relaxation and Devils and Details (Devon Monk) are murder mysteries in the small town on the Oregon coast where gods go on vacation from their powers (vampires, werewolves, etc also gather there). The police chief who just inherited the position (her two sisters are the rest of the police department; apparently the gods don't mind nepotism) is also in charge of mystically wrangling the divine powers that get set aside within city limits. Also there is a Guy. Nothing can go wrong.

Platinum End (Tsugumi Ohba, Takeshi Obata) is by the Death note team, and vol 1 seems like a cross between DN and Future Diary.

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5 October 2016 - Wednesday

Kelsey couldn't make it for 13th Age tonight, so we did something else.

Pizza is my enemy now.

Impersonations (Walter Jon Williams) is a novella continuing the "Dread Empire's Fall"/"Praxis" series, and returning to the ancient Earth history and impersonation themes of the female lead. She is still a stone killer.

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2 October 2016 - Sunday

Today I did nothing useful, or maybe slightly less than that.

NTR Netsuzou Trap (Kodama Naoko) is not entirely wholesome yuri. "Your mouth says 'keep your hands out of my pants' but your body says fade-to-black."

Sacrifice (Cindy Pon) is the sequel to Serpentine, in which our snake-monster heroine gets embroiled in further Hell-related goings on and questions her existence. Also, cute boys and goddesses. It has a relatively happy ending, though.

The Fall of the House of Cabal (Jonathan L Howard) is the fifth novel in the Johannes Cabal series, and five is a very important number in the plot as well. Fortunately, to fill out his team of five, Cabal has to summon Zarenyia (from "A Long Spoon") again. Zarenyia is awesome. Extended magical rituals are awesome. Even Johannes Cabal is kind of awesome, although he is also kind of a git.

Revenger (Alastair Reynolds) is set in the far future, when the solar system has been converted into a thin Dyson swarm, which has been depopulated and repopulated multiple times by civilizations with widely varying tech levels and aesthetics. In this environment, two sisters set off to make their fortune in space, using the remains of dead aliens to help pillage the ruins of the past. Then space pirates attack, and everything is awful, and our protagonist must execute an extremely cunning and subtle plan to get revenge. Also maybe she has had her intelligence boosted, or maybe she is just crazy.

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1 October 2016 - Saturday


There was singing and cake! Also, there was pumpkin-related fun, including an actual corn maze! And finally, sushi! Jus was very pleased with her birthday.

(I'm not supposed to eat rice, but the Shining Tunahedra were not too expensive.)

Marith had to flee the allergens, but we cruelly watched anime without her.

  • Durarara!!x2 2: Apparently some things run in the family.
  • Nisemonogatari 8-9: Sometimes, a toothbrush is not just a toothbrush.
  • Sailor Moon Crystal 15-16: A little free with the mind control, isn't she? Fortunately it only works on NPCs.

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30 September 2016 - Friday

This has been a terrible month for writing, or perhaps a month in which I was a terrible writer. Aside from the quality of my output, I mean.

Starting things is easy...

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28 September 2016 - Wednesday

There was some 13th Age and Korean food, but also a lot of socializing instead of gaming. The price of weeknight gaming and kids, I guess. We did level, which makes things larger if not better. (Mostly it's spellcasters who get fun options when levelling up.)

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27 September 2016 - Tuesday

I kind of like Jem and the Holograms (Kelly Thompson, et al), but the second volume definitely suffers from not having Sophie Campbell's art. (But isn't having an AI with holoprojectors kind of cheating for a performer?)

Witch's Pyre (Josephine Angelini) concludes the trilogy started in Trial by Fire and Firewalker, about high-powered psions, interdimensional duplicates, engineered organisms, political intrigue, and romance. The conclusion does explain some stuff about the world, although I don't think the questions had been properly raised earlier.

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25 September 2016 - Sunday

Hurray, it's PAD&D5! This session had things going on, but they were sort of going on around us while we tried to figure out what they were, so it was kind of an investigatory episode until we found the [SPOILER] and [SPOILER] in the [SPOILER]. Then a proper but very cramped fight broke out and Lam got beat up a lot.

If the 2d10 extra radiant damage from using a paladin spell slot comes up 17 twice against the same target, I think it's fair to declare that creature an enemy of the Moon.

In Lam's opinion, spiders have way too many limbs.

The Adventurer's Guide to Successful Escapes (Wade Albert White) is mostly kid's fantasy but has weird future bits, and also evil orphanage rulers.

Volume 3 of Mysterious Girlfriend X (Riichi Ueshiba) has more fanservice, and also Oka seems like she wants to dump her boyfriend and switch to the yuri genre, but I still like it a lot.

Kill 6 Billion Demons (Tom Parkinson-Morgan) is now available in print, just sitting there on the new graphic novels shelf at B&N! I picked it up to be supportive and also because it is awesome, although the art is a bit dark for paper. Volume 1 covers up through Allison embracing her fate.

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Previously in Trip's Life

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