Wednesday, June 21, 2017

The Taxonomy of Magical Weapons



5e has bounded accuracy as a massive mechanic, which has the effect of limiting magical weapon bonuses a lot more than previous editions. If PC's can't hit the monster more easily

SIDENOTE: increasing AC with increasing CR means largely that 20th+ level PC's have roughly the same chance of hitting a 30 CR monster as 3rd level PC's have of hitting a 5 CR monster without a ridiculous amount of buffs and modifiyan. I think. END SIDENOTE

 then they have to murderize it more easily. Ergo, PC have to do more damage to stay competitive, instead of just increasing every bonus (and monster AC) to ridiculous levels.  What this means to me is that magical weapons that serve the purpose of increased usability do so through damage. Since any given magic weapon with its +1 or +2 bonus won't massively increase the amount of times one hits the tarrasque, it has to have some sort of bonus that makes it worth using. Moar damage. Slap a +1 on a sword, give it the ability to deal +2d6 fire damage on a hit, done. Flametongue. Add ribbons (sheds light in x radius) to give thematic flavor, and you have a classic weapon. 


Monday, June 19, 2017


This is the poem that, rephrased, would eventually become my contribution to Synthexia. Thanks to +Arnold K.  and Usher for inspiration and +Patrick Stuart  for phrasing writing well. Patrick, this is where I went to fucking fly.

The Main Feature

pistons screech
hair spins in a wild, wild halo, prismatic beads of oil and synth-sweat and blood frothing over the strands as I dance
and dance
and dance
feel us throb and pulse to the half-rotted ventricles of our hearts and the wavering dust of our high-giving beat as we writhe and wave and froth to the beat
beats love
beats life
beat pulses beneath my skin, sinuous and amoebic and rainbow colored like the crysgolems as they pound across the floor jerkily
can you do this?
Our decaying flesh wafts under our noses like a hot summer breeze after a slaughter
fills your mouth with saliva as you gag
we don’t care
we’re gods on beat
we’re gods on beat
if you can’t feel the pulse, pulse, pulse of the floor and dance to the beat, beat, beat, you’re dead to us
if you can’t keep up we’ll trample you
put you out of your hollow, beatless misery
So dance
dance with me
dance to the beat
feel it fill your cavities and sinuses
doesn’t it just light you up?
burn your candle at both ends
you need to replace these fleshy tendons anyway
they fray and snap and need food
sashay your way onto the dance floor
cross that party line!
no you can’t go back
watch that the PASTE doesn’t shred your organic feet
don’t worry, stop screaming
here I’ll surf you to a meatsmith
he’ll give you some swag legs
just tell him you don’t want to be a bloodspeaker
well, I guess the meatsmith wanted to make a bloodspeaker
the PASTE twines around my metallic legs and my recently used mercystills still glistening with putrid bloodsludge
mercystills are for putting down fallen dancers
swift thrust silent death hsssh whisper krch thump
lose myself in the flash
in the spectacle the gleam the spark of madness
dodge the lazers ripping out of the neoniron girding
manned by ten million rubbery green scampering gretchlings
keep up with the beatmasters each limb they have revolves, revolves, revolves with their thrashing separators
That Old DJ has 18 arms and 20 legs spread out between 4 torsos and 3 heads
he ripples and flashes and blurs like an ocean while getting down to the beat
the beat polishes his fluid synth-skin, pulsing and animating it to the soundwaves that come from the speakerhives
fat techno-bees scurry around the bloodspeakers in the speakerhives, draining them of boiling pus and producing dust-paste to drop into our ravening frothing champing mouths
we don’t eat
that’s an organic thing
we indulge
one of the techno-bees pulses too close to the Disco Balls and is vaporized by soundwaves pulsing out from it, shaking any dancer who approaches it to bits
legend has it the First DJ entombed themselves in there, all his organics disintegrated but his brainship still extant, still calling out the steps and still shuffling the songs
others say the Beat Crystal now calls the beat
who can say no?
yes is the only way to go
do you wanna dance? Yes
want some beat paste? Yes
want to surf to a meatsmith? Hella yes
wanna taunt the PASTE? Yes
if our dance is an ecosystem, the PASTE is the scavenger and natural selector
we call out as we step to the beat that a fragment of a dying hemorrhaging brain called out to its biochip to move its limbs and as connexions broke down the chip reached out to the nanobot-infused half-congealed blood and made it ripple in a giant slushy wave
and then again
and again
and then the connexors responded to the dead-beat’s call and tore themselves out of synth-sockets and joined the blood paste
now the PASTE feeds off our corpses and the weak
strips them of metal and meat in a darkly pulsing, screeching maelstrom of metal shards moved by slurried blood
and surges on like a wave, coiling around our ankles and knocking an unlucky few of us off our feet
they get pulled into the PASTE by its trailing metallic undertow of slivers and die screaming upwards, the stars hide their faces
I haven’t seen starlight in millennia
who wants stars when we have lazers and pulse-beams and stickylights?
lazers to flash brighter than an organic eye can take (don’t use meat eyes!) and shine on, light up, show off, throw down
pulse lights to strobe to, flashing several times a second
if you can sync yourself to the pulselights you are Applauded
stickylights to slow you down like flies in amber
they muddy your thoughts and mire your limbs
its like swimming through green, molten honey
watch the metal mechapods flash
flex in 10 different places, rippling like the heat waves generated from our bodies
good meatsmiths can add up to 10 joints in a limb
then you can flex jump twist and rotate with the best of them
if you’re not careful around a meatsmith, they’ll replace as much as they want
so back off after they’ve finished a part
lest you become a roboshell that shambles or a brainless husk
if you got no brain, you got no beat
and the hypomen will pump your head full of beat
ooh, beat zombie!
then they try to eat you
take the gore with the heat
the good with the bad
the splat with the gasp
hypomen will do that to a dancer
hypoteeth and hyponails glistening with freshly spilled beat
if they so much as see fresh meat they all converge on it and rip it to shreds pumping beat into the organic as they bite and claw
killing each other
this is a meat party
stay away from it until the PASTE comes and eats the mess
or until a crysgolem comes and backhands the offenders away
mousy faces smashed and twisted, tumbling three hundred feet through the air
skin and gibbets flying beat splashing in long lazy loops
blood spraying and marking you for the PASTE
dance away, dance away from a meat party
the PASTE or flesh-maddened hypomen will rip you apart
or you’ll get too much beat and go NOVA
going NOVA is when the beat passes your metabolic rate for the lastime
then the beat converts all your organics to heat and metallics
heat up hundreds of degrees
and NOVA is scary because it can make other dancers go NOVA too
3400 years ago, the crysgolems and and gretchlings had to contain and fry 5000 dancers before we all went NOVA
gretchlings work the lazers and pulselights and stickylights
they conduct well
both lightshows and electricity
they have a very static shock and a nasty bite
they can fry you or sting you or pulse you if they like
they hold the gantry and the lights together and power the speakers
do not call them beatless
they will kill you at the speed of light or freeze you in a stickylight and taunt you
we call these dancers fliesinamber
they will never get out
gretchlings have long memories
crysgolems announce themselves with a stamp stamp stamp and a pound pound pound
they revolve all their joints as they move fast enough to heat air and rip skin
they flash
sparkle each joint a jewel, each jewel has 100 sides, each side flashes with their bright inner light
each golem has its own spotlight trained on it
hypomen scurry
bite rip tear inject
beads of beat flying
weaselly faces flashing mute desire
they have to pump beat
they need to pump beat
they want to pump beat
gretchling pivoting riding and gliding and fixing lazers and other lights
the big neon purple crystal in the center giving off beat haze as the reverberations hit it like waves on a shore and thumping out our muzak from its million speakers
the speakerhives slowly sliming across the dancefloor trying to elude the paste
the PASTE hunting for blood and fresh meat and fallen dancers
the Beatmasters leading the dancers
the meatsmiths lurking or modifying fresh sprays of blood erupting from their rustytools
a scream as a fallen dancer is put down
a scream as a bloodspeaker is made
a scream as a dancer flips 100 feet in the air before gliding towards the center
the beat throbbing pulsing thumping pounding ecstasy as our spirits soar
glowing shining slithering writhing wet agony as our flesh rips
light flash
strobes pulse
twist pump turn dodge spurt
lose yourself
live forever
we’re gods on earth!
The Great         Rave        of        Synthexia!

Lightning and the Thunder

The moment before their arrival lingers, heavy with a faint musk of fresh rain off concrete, that elemental smell so peculiar to the city. The ozone in this instant almost condenses on the tongue, an acrid taste, alien yet reminiscent of vomit.

I've only seen a red liminal twice during thunderstorms
And then, a Brobdingnagian boom resounds throughout your body and soul, shaking you down to the toes and up to the hair. Your eardrums have probably burst by this point, which would have happened soon anyway. The pain is sudden and dazing, another crimson pall cast over your vision in addition to the cerise light spilling over the horizon, painting everything the eerie color of almost-blood. 

10,000 Chambers of the Cnite King

Deep within the turgid reaches of the Samarkand Desert, a lone crag of withered sandstone presents a visage long scoured by time.  Samuele B...