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Michael Miller
Attended Lehigh Carbon Community College
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Michael Miller

Rituals, Tales & Campaigns  - 
 
“Vermin!”
A Tale of #SundayAMSwords

Opening eidolon: http://s101.photobucket.com/user/cmbeckett34/media/BONE/BoneRatsinDarkForest.jpg.html

Our two rogues and two companions, Taryb & Tomás, Ba2 & Vanora, in the forest at night. The lightning revealing numberless rat-monsters. A rat-screech echoing through the night. Ba2 paralyzed and twitching in time with sound. Taryb teasing Tomás the cat with treats, higher and higher, Tomás growing larger with every stretch.

Ba2 activating white noise to cancel the screech. A crimson lightning bolt changing the tenor of the white noise. Dozens of rats piling on Ba2 in frenzy, her noise drawing the enemies to herself. What force commands the crimson lightning?

Vanora, hauled off into the darkness toward the rat-king: http://vignette2.wikia.nocookie.net/boneville/images/4/43/Kingdok.jpg/revision/latest?cb=20110808050210 Tomás stalking, hunting, terrorizing her captors. A Cheshire cat grin in the darkness. http://emblemsbattlefield.com/uploads/posts/2014/10/si0ty_1_1.jpg 

Vanora triggering the instinctive fear of fiery blowtorch.

The rogues before the rat-king. Taryb singing the dirge of the demise of the rat king, enthralling him. Ba2—a misaligned knee joint causing a limp—analyzing the magic: The rat king is absorbing the power of his enemies. You're smart... for a rat. Tomás killing all the rats he can sink his fangs into. The giant cat staring down the giant rat: High noon showdown between two giants.

FLASHBACK: The day before, the rogues pursued through the forest. Vanora hiding the Bane of all Vermin: “It looks like a liver, but it beats like a heart” If the rat-king gains it, he will better serve the ends of his master. Taryb, stumbling, finding a network of metal plates and runeworks throughout the valley. It serves to make into rats.

NOW: The reinvigorated rats piling on  Tomás. The cat shrinking and shrinking, hopping out from between the frenzied cats: Schrodinger’s cat. Ba2 settling into the vicious work of rat extermination. A kick realigning the knee-joint: The healing power of beating the crap out of your enemies.
The rat-king summoning his forces to him, merging with his flesh, growing to a terrifying height, possessed by his foul master. Tomás being swallowed ... and then ... bursting out from within. The massive corpse falling, the master banished.

On valley’s edge, Vanora fitting the Bane of All Vermin into the runic network. Bits of rat-flesh dripping  off, forming living forest animals. Only one, tiny rat corpse left.

+Miguel Zapico  was Overplayer. +Keith Stetson was Taryb & Tomás. I was Ba2 & Vanora. Our virtual tabletop: https://docs.google.com/drawings/d/1IXJpAUPFWCneXQva4OOgE5ex2FKphaSYHjVgvAb4LEI/edit?usp=sharing 
Christopher Beckett uploaded this image to 'BONE'. See the album on Photobucket.
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Michael Miller

The Alchemical Laboratory  - 
 
I just wrote this while working on With Great Power and had to share.

It's a Twist, which is the equivalent of Swords' Trick. Also, the "Villainous Phase" is very similar to Swords' Perilous Phase.

Sacrifice: “Although it will cost me all that I hold dear, I will end this!” Write down the one person, place, or thing that you value most. During any Villainous Phase, you may seize the dice and roll immediately, ignoring any stymies. However, you must also describe how your actions cause the valued thing to suffer a terrible fate. 

#angstforever   #WithGreatProduction  
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+Keith Stetson​, I think "erase" might be too kind. "The Villain Player may rewrite the element as he chooses" is better, I think.
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#igx2015
Second run of Dictionary of Mu at #DEXCON. Four players.

+Neal Tanner​ as the half breed warlord. He found the mixed band of slaves, both human and grey, that had been freed by the primite prince. He tried to win them to his cause, to the void, but they were doubtful. With the farrow's help, he got them on the ark. By then, Farrow was thirsty and the humans held so much blood, quenched through curse of the tomb.

Jurgen as the Khan of Khans, quickly and easily bested in ritual combat the lesser Khans that would doubt his justice. He then faced down the Tsarina, dueled a doppelganger of himself, and won. She did not bow before him, but her people were scattered to the winds and greater conquests awaited.

The dice were not kind to +Daniel Scribner​ as the Tsarina. She faced a long, hard challenge to her rule from her best huntress, Sima. Finally bested, Sima was taken before the mirror for it to drink in her execution and give rise to her doppelganger to carry it. The coming of the Khan set back her plans. Although she forced him to disk his own doppelganger, and summoned the scavengers to beset his people, in the end it was she that needed to flee and fight another day.

+*****​ as the primite prince freed the slaves, fought his father over it. The tough old king stumbled and would not go down! With the help of his sand and stars breathing dragon, he destroyed not only his father, but the very concept of primite kingship and bound it as a new demon, a halo of pure-silver fur that her would wear on his liberation crusade.
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That's ok. The Khan's armies will wither and starve as they futilely chase my people across the Plains!
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Michael Miller

Shared publicly  - 
 
Complete schedule of Indie Games eXplosion at #DEXCON: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1HwRPtruJTZJzWR-QoR6JvpCCMBJJT-Ul84KiZ14Wv6A/htmlview?pli=1

#igx2015

Map of table locations: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0ByZtT-LLC8cqVnZIX05Fd3VmR1U/view?usp=sharing&pli=1

This is a public post. Feel free to reshare. Have fun, everybody!
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Michael Miller

Rogues, Eidolons & Simulacra  - 
 
Ba2 — “bah-too”

Eidolon: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/380343131005413407/

All That Deserves A Name:
Directive 002 — “Minimize human suffering,” the fundamental basis of her programming.
InSITE-3000 — Onboard sensor suite that can detect the quantum-level fluctuations of magic.
The Saffron Queen’s Armory — The place where Ba2’s soul is held in bondage, awaiting rescue.
Vanora — Trusty mechanic sidekick: http://www.swagonline.net/sites/default/files/images/Pete%20-Shadowdeep-/2003/Mar/1151.jpg

Feats Heroic:
Glum — Activating her sonic resonator, Ba2 triggers her foes’ thalamus to put them to sleep.
Jovial — Moving faster than organic eye can follow, Ba2 leaps past her foes’ defenses.

Trick:
Inevitable Foe — The Grey Tinker, who seeks to enslave me for his profit: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/168251736054333733/

Tales:
"Vermin!" — Ba2's first tale: https://plus.google.com/u/0/+MichaelMiller1000/posts/G2sM9b8PFNX
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#igx2015  
Indie Games eXplosion at DEXCON 2015

Look upon our amazing slate of 74 games and drool with anticipation!

http://ipressgames.com/index.php/igx-dreamation-2015/

Only two and a half weeks until the convention!
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Hooray! I'll be there with the good stuff on sale!
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Michael Miller

Rituals, Tales & Campaigns  - 
 
“Dawn of Beauty, Dusk for the Wizard-Whales”
A tale of beauty of #SundayAMSwords

Opening eidolon: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/503629170806180169/

A sheltered inn. Sleep will not come. Tales around the hearth. Tapper’s tale of awaking in a strange castle, failing to find a love one and a threat. His wif’e’s sacrifice to save him. Gammon showing the inn-folk the stars they have never seen. Constellations being form from embers in the ceiling of an inn. Chucho, Dario’s faithful dog, the only one to see an immaterial giant enter. His mournful howl shifting to a yip of recognition.

Dawn strides in, resplendent in her prismatic finery. Upon her throat, a scrimshaw bone spur. What terrible thing have the Wizard Whales bound her to do? Long ago, the Dawn was promised to the Wizard Whales—they mean to collect!

At sea, at an island of flotsam: http://i.telegraph.co.uk/multimedia/archive/01867/boat_1867948c.jpg Glowing life attracted to the island of flotsam. A wheeling and diving of gulls around a distant ship. Dario seeing the pattern of the constellations hidden in the forms of the trash. Following a path based only on theory is not wise: One misstep and light and shadow swirling around underwater in complete silence. The boat pulled down, down.

Tapper thrusting Dawn behind him, “There will not be another sacrifice.” The horse-sized minions of the Wizard-Whales: http://vignette3.wikia.nocookie.net/dragonvale/images/d/d2/Leafy_Sea_Dragon_3.jpg/revision/latest?cb=20140519115054 The touch of their leafy fronds like a thousand biting needles. The ship drawn by a massive, ancient Wizard-Whale, its barnacles like icicles, adorned with gold and gems. Harpoons hurled toward the blinding light of Dawn.


Gammon bounding moonlike across the trash, until a haunting whale song counterspell plunges him. Dario’s wordless spell prompting a duel of wills and seizing control of a threat. Men and sea-dragons merged like centaurs.

The Wizard-Whale spewing a cloud of ambergris to smother Dawn’s light. Chucho clinging to flotsam. The immaterial giant returning, as Tapper hurls Dawn from the water. The giant and Dawn, ascending to the glowing sky, free of the trash.

The ship’s captain—a woman of mighty thews and sharp blade—lunging for Gammon as he approaches the Wizard-Whale. Flashback: Gammon on the moon, entrusted with a shard of moonrock to end the threat of the Wizard-Whales, in theory. The captain’s thrust snagging the moonrock and thrusting it into blubbery skin. Wizard-Whale and moon-man glowing like the full moon itself. The light fading, and both are gone.

Dawn’s light burning brightly but oh-so-gently. The tranquil sea-surface, free of trash, offering hope to Chucho, Dario, and Tapper.



Our virtual tabletop: https://docs.google.com/drawings/d/10fZhyowatQSByyuXpqEE2FkY93IO8gm2zC_4KyvhGX8/edit?usp=sharing
Miguel as Dario. Aaron as Tapper. Me as Gammon (for the last time—for now!). Eppy as Overplayer.
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We used the rules for "A Tale of Beauty" and it worked really, really well!

Also, coming next Sunday, +Miguel Zapico offers up #espadassindueño  
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Michael Miller

Shared publicly  - 
 
So, yesterday on +Kira Magrann​'s thread, I disagreed with +Brand Robins​ about the prevalence of meaningful, thematic play in broad-genre, long-term actual play of RPGs. In my experience, it happens so infrequently that I consider it a statistical fluke, like the monkey with the typewriters producing the script to Amazing Fantasy #15. In Brand's experience, from what I gather, it happens more often than not. We're both right.

I think that's why RPG discussion is particularly slippery and difficult to talk about. All media have to deal with the whole "author is dead" thing that audiences brings their unique perspective to the work. But RPGs have the added layer that "the work" itself is only known by a handful of people. I can't go to my FLGS and buy D&D, I can only buy a book that will help me create my own D&D. And only those who play with me will experience that rendition of D&D.

Which is what made the endeavor that was The Forge so valuable. The language developed there was designed to analyze idiosyncratic instances of actual play and draw generalized lessons and insights out of them. If everybody's gaming history is a beautiful unique snowflake, Forge theory and terminology was the chemistry of water molecules and the science of meteorology that examined the process by which snowflakes form.

Just last week, +Kathryn Miller​ and +*****​ and I were discussing how that language, and its theoretical underpinnings,  may still serve those who already know it, but it is not being passed to a new generation. The community is not taking new members. If you missed it, go read a bazillion threads in the archives, kid.

I think that's a waste. Maybe it's time to do something about it.
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Hopefully not too far off topic; +Vincent Baker, what's the Conan rule in Swords Without Master?
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Michael Miller

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Just ran Sorcerer Dictionary of Mu. Got a round of applause after the session. It was all very metal. The most credit goes to +Ron Edwards​ and +Judd Karlman​. It's been ten years since I ran Sorcerer. I think I'm finally getting an idea of how to do it. Better late than never.

+Ben Morgan​ played the Khan of Khans, wonderfully.
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Woo hoo!!
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Michael Miller

Rituals, Tales & Campaigns  - 
 
“Tomb of the Paterfamilias”
A Tale of fathers of #SundayAMSwords

Opening eidolon: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/503629170807205516/

The rogues, burdened by statue of paterfamilias and his 13 young children. The grinding of stone on stone as the massive doors begin to close. Bronn and Tamen Na straining against the doors. The bas-relief carvings of 6 grown sons on the west wall step off, brandishing spears. Living statues. How could you not love ’em? Captain Finn’s double swords, keeping spearpoint from war-penguin Brikor’s chest feathers.

Tapper sending Little Yil to run, spurring the wagon-laden yak to action. Rampage of the powerful yak, smashing stone asunder! Broken statues and 2 sons still stand. Bronn’s greatsword parried, skidding across the floor. 7 grown daughters stepping from the wall. The eldest singing An alluring and drowsing preternatural lullaby.

Tamen Na pushing the paterfamilias statue between the closing doors. Enchanting song turning to painful shriek. Bronn’s sword, recovered and striking. A song ending in a shattered head.

Captain Finn charging Brikor into the paterfamilias statue. It budges not. Finn flying through the doors, penguin stunned. Doors cracking statue like an egg. Choking dust fills the room, heralding an arrival: An even bigger living statue, the gigantic paterfamilias, large enough for the ceilings. The living sons and daughters statues healed by the dust.

A deal is made: Tapper the Trader offers his favorite daughter Little Yil to the father-god in exchange for passage. Fleeing with Yil at the last moment.

A desperate race through newly-illuminated passages. Captain Finn finding  A stone carving of present events as if they were history. The next panel: Brikor consumed by the hungry father-god.

Bronn finding crack in the wall, large enough for man, but not yak or warpenguin. Smell of safety on the other side.

Tamen Na’s hammer striking the crack 13 times, and him, the living made statue. What foul magic does the father god command?

The daughters’ song of bitter, undeniable exhaustion. Finn lunging into father-god’s grasp, so he might sleep devoured instead of Brikor.

Bronn’s raucous song of the north, countering the lullaby and stopping the sons and daughters.

Tamen Na remembering the deal between his ancestors of the father-god, offering himself as the seventh son. Stone peeled from skin like flakes of pastry.

Tapper and Little Yil, leading yaks down the mountain, laden with other treasures, other statues. A mighty haul!

Our virtual tabletop: https://docs.google.com/drawings/d/1znlfMJbVMi-VmX-VEeCdKaNV7IrVt-_13V7wyA78esE/edit?usp=sharing

Captain Finn played by +Epidiah Ravachol . Tapper played by +Aaron Feild . Tamen Na played by +Keith Stetson . Bronn played by +Jason Desormeaux  Myself as Overplayer.
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This sounds awesome! I'm sorry I missed it. :D
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Michael Miller

Rituals, Tales & Campaigns  - 
 
Let Us Tell a Tale…
…of New Foes

• A tale in which the rogues face enemies none of them have ever heard of.

• Before the last thread is reincorporated, there must be at least one Discovery Phase in which the rogues are battling their new enemies.
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I'm grappling with With Great Power's Scheming phase (inspired by Swords' Discovery) and realized this is how you could do the Wesley vs. Inigo fight from Princess Bride. Or the first Drow series of D&D modules.
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Michael Miller

Shared publicly  - 
 
#igx2015  
Indie Games eXplosion at DEXCON 18

Link: http://ipressgames.com/index.php/igx-dreamation-2015/

We are at 59 events and I have a few people who have asked for extensions because they were too busy gaming at Origins! That should be all firmed up in a day or two.

I've reformatted the page so it has all the info in list-format at the top and the same info in table format at the bottom.

The question: Which do you like better?
19 votes  -  votes visible to Public
List
21%
Table
79%
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Is there still time to submit events to you?
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In his circles
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Basic Information
Gender
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Story
Introduction
Game designer, typesetter, and more.
Bragging rights
Self-published With Great Power... RPG, published Serial Homicide Unit RPG
Education
  • Lehigh Carbon Community College
    Paralegal
  • Pennsylvania State University
    History
  • University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown
    History
  • Catasauqua Area High School
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