A Lazy Sequence

Relationship roll advice for 13th Age

Because of the role the Icons play in the world, the Relationship Rolls have a LOT of power. Or they should. The Icons are really the movers and shapers of the world and the PCs end up being their proxies or their enemies or both. And so those relationships write the story on a fundamental level. The adventures should be ABOUT those relationships.

But that’s tough to pull off if you’re asking your players to roll these dice at the beginning of the game. Because, really, to do it right, to do it justice, you should come with a blank sheet paper, roll the relationships, and make up the session or adventure on the fly based on those die rolls.…

The key is in a throwaway remark at the bottom of page 179. If you’re not comfortable improvising whole adventures out of nothing, roll Relationship Rolls at the end of your sessions.

That’s the trick.…

Via Douglas.


26 August 2015

Who won science fiction's Hugo awards, and why it matters.

Amy Wallace for Wired:

Just before 8 PM, in a vast auditorium packed with “trufans” dressed in wizard garb, corsets, chain mail and the like, one question was on most everybody’s minds: Would the Puppies prevail?

… Not a single Puppy-endorsed candidate took home a rocket. In the five categories that had only Puppy-provided nominees on the ballot—Best Novella, Best Short Story, Best Related Work, and Best Editor for Short and for Long Form—voters instead preferred “No Award.”

Via John Siracusa.


23 August 2015

Why everyone gets Robocop but nobody gets Starship Troopers

John Perich:

These were all people who’d seen RoboCop and Verhoeven’s other works. They knew how the man thought. Yet they didn’t give Starship Troopers the benefit of the doubt. They admitted, begrudgingly, that the pseudo-fascist future might be satirical, but perhaps wasn’t satirical enough.

In short, the critics got it wrong.

So the critics were right and they still got it wrong. Starship Troopers is fascist propaganda – for a fascism that does not yet exist. The problem isn’t that Verhoeven got his fascist propaganda all over your action movie. The problem is that your action movie springs directly from fascist propaganda.

Via Mallory Ortberg.


05 August 2015

Premier Guitar interviews Brent Paschke, Pharrell’s go-to guitarist

“With Pharrell, time is very limited,” says Paschke. “We can be bouncing from room to room quickly, so I have to adjust to his workflow. If I had to tell him I need five or 10 minutes to adjust mics and check out different amps, I’d totally kill his vibe—and that’s the first thing to keep intact.”