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Sean Mattox
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A small note: It looks to me like the units that the Empire gains as its Warfare rating increases got dropped in editing. At least, I can't find them anywhere anymore.

And a complicated question: How is it that the Severing is supposed to work? Is it three missions over three subsequent seasons, or three missions all as part of one 'quest' season? Do they each have their own challenge phase? Hero selection? Rest and recovery? If a mission is failed, is it possible to try the whole thing again?

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So, the header for Charms has always irritated me, in an OCD sort of way. I dislike how the information is organized and presented. I'm not really much of a layout person, but I really want to come up with something better to stump for.

I've tried a simple rework of a few of the Ex3 preview charms. Original layout is on the left, my attempt at a revision on the right. Take a look, tell me what you think?

If I was less lazy and more inclined to web programming, I'd like to make a stupid browser game like Cookie Clicker or Candy Box that leverages the human obsession with getting bigger bars and greater numbers to some productive end, probably grid computing. The more cookie-whatevers you generate, the more CPU cycles get donated to charity. Couching productivity in the form of a game has significant research precedent for promoting adoption, and I'd like to actually be able to do more than roll my eyes as people boast how many billion whatevers they're generating now. :P

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I'm not really a kids person, but this is probably the most compelling argument for them I've ever seen. :P

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hatewheel is seeking some help paying his medical bills. This is relevant to our interests.

Gravity was probably the best film I've seen in years. Not deep or profound by any means, but it was an incredibly powerful visceral thriller with quite possibly the most striking visuals I've ever seen in film. Very cool.

Something I would like to see: A software platform, similar in intent to Neverwinter Nights, designed for software-mediated RPGs. However, PCs are intended to observe and interact with the world via the Occulus-Rift, while the GM uses a traditional machine to interact via god-mode.

There are a number of issues immediately obvious with that, but it seems like it could be fantastic fun.

From Holden, when asked about example Getimians:

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Minuend used to be the feared and worshiped sorcerer-queen of a wealthy, upstart kingdom in the deep South, until she woke up one day and wasn't. She aims to reclaim what was taken from her, and to punish those responsible.

An-Ko-Shi has dedicated his fists to justice. He particularly focuses on delivering punishment to the wicked in absence of a derelict Heaven. He eagerly builds his strength for the day when he can cast down Fakharu, the corrupt censor of the West.

Apkallu was a gambler who lost and won his freedom, won and lost a fortune, then gained Exaltation. Despite his roguish background, he holds the preservation of Creation against the vices of the mighty as his most pressing concern, and so has forsaken Rakan Thulio's dream. He works as a special consultant for the Bureau of Destiny.

I've been backing (probably too many) board game Kickstarters for the last year. They all seem aimed to launch at or around Essen, so I'm set to finally get a huge deluge of them over the next few months. The first one arrived last week, and I thought I'd review it.

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/435243061/eons-a-strategic-universe-development-game-from-gn

The game is 'EONS', which has the unusual theme of casting the players as 'cosmic architects', shepherding a shared galaxy from its formation to its eventual death. Along the way, stars and planets are born, life and civilization will arise, and most of the above will probably tragically expire before the game is through.

The core mechanic is nothing novel; each player has a hand representing cosmic scale entities that they can create or upgrade. Each one provides varying amounts of 'Essence' income, and is worth a certain amount of points if it still lives at the end of the game. There's a nice inverse relationship between some of the higher VP cards and income; the most VP is awarded by degenerate bodies like black holes and neutron stars, requiring players to extinguish their essence-generating live stars as the game draws to a close.

One of the more novel mechanics in the game are its non-essence resource. There are five elements that exist in the galaxy: hydrogen, carbon, oxygen, iron, and uranium. All of these exist in fixed quantities, divided between player's supply and a central stockpile. Creating stars ties these resources up. Each round, every star must 'undergo fusion', transmuting/swapping some of their own elements for those in the stockpile, which the player can then harvest or keep within the star. Stars must perform at least one fusion transformation per round, and they require the elements they are going to covert to to exist within the stockpile, which makes a fair portion of the strategy about trying to strategically lock up certain resources to kill opponent's stars. As stars die, the 'entropy level' of the galaxy increases, placing restrictions on how many resources each player can have, and eventually ending the game.

Overall, the game is fairly simple, pretty strongly thematic, and pretty fun I found. The default runtime is a little bit longer than I think its simplicity should merit, but the manual has some handy advice as to how to adjust game length to taste.

I am now officially engaged.
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