Casting a data point into the origins of the Polybius myth.

  conspiracy_theory video_games modern_myths urban_legends origins history rpg data

A couple of days ago (a couple of minutes ago, as I happen to write this) I watched a documentary on Youtube about a modern urban legend, the video game called Polybius.  I don't want to give away the entire story if you've not heard it before, but a capsule version is that in 1981.ev a strange video game called Polybius was installed in a number of video arcades in the Pacific Northwest.  The game supposedly had a strange effect on some of the people playing it, ranging from long periods of hypnosis to night terrors, epileptic convulsions and …

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Real life seems like Shadowrun - so why can't I throw fragging fireballs?!

  life media history art_imitates_life military rpg shadowrun cyberpunk

From time to time I sit down with my gaming buddies, and we both lament and observe how well reading and playing cyberpunk games has prepared us for life in the twenty-first century. I don't think that many people expected real life to track quite so closely with many a cyberpunk world penned by the masters, from William Gibson to Neal Stephenson to Bruce Sterling. Strangely enough, many of the lifestyle strategies depicted in these stories have helped keep our own lives (and those of our families) stable and, for the most part nice to live as human history has …

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Virtual Adept rotes for Mage20

  rpg mage20 rotes virtual_adepts

Since the 20th anniversary edition of Mage: The Ascension was released by Onyx Path Publishing a couple of us have been playing around with it for old time's sake. You can take the players out of the game but you can't take the game out of the players, so of course things went real wild, real fast. So, to that end, here are a couple of rotes for the Virtual Adepts.

(Disclaimer: White Wolf Games came up with Mage and the (Old) World of Darkness originally; Onyx Path Publishing has the rights to publish and extend the oWoD; I'm just …

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Free RPG Day 2011!

  announcement free gaming podcasts rpg

Tomorrow is Free RPG Day once again, a day to let your nerd flag fly by paying your friendly local gaming store a visit to see what they have in stock. If they're worth the Cheetos and Mountain Dew on their gaming tables they'll have some nifty new games for you to take home for the asking (it is Free RPG Day, after all). If you're lucky you'll be able to try them in the store with your closest friends (or people you don't even know, which can be just as fun). Or maybe you heard about tomorrow well in …

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Eclipse Phase NPC: Paul - El Pulpo Magnifico!

  eclipse_phase gaming npc octopus rpg

System: Eclipse Phase
Character name: Paul - El Pulpo Magnifico!
Apparent age: 3
Character concept: Psychic octopus, professional sportscaster

Prior to the Fall of transhumanity people always said that there was something a little.. off.. about an uplifted giant Pacific octopus whom the Somatek geneticists decanted. Given the name Paul, he soon distinguished himself from his broodmates by becoming something of a historian. It's widely agreed that the first thing Paul saw after awakening to sentience was probably a sportscast of some kind; maybe it was microgravity rugby, maybe it was superconducting hockey, it might even have been centripital soccer. One …

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Busy times, crazy life.

  hacdc aprs bios cracking dclug dental_work eclipse_phase filling gaming ham incident infosec life radio reprap root_canal rootkit rpg shortwave synaesthesia tor

It's been a really busy week or two so I haven't had time to write much. I realize that it's only common sense, but I still find it amusing that I have the least time to write about what's going on when the most is happening. Funny, how that happens. Anyway, once the opportunity presents itself I like sitting down to make an attempt at describing everything that's been happening. I've mostly been posting hit and run messages to Twitter lately (like everybody else on the planet these days) because I can do that without looking up from everything else …

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Mage rote: Portal Gun

  artefact correspondence mage portal rote rpg video_games

Game: Mage: the Ascension
Rote: Portal Gun (alternatively, Artifact *)
Spheres: Correspondence
*
Tradition: Sons of Ether
Commonly used focus: Self explanatory

Effect: The Virtual Adepts came up with it but it took the Sons of Ether to make it practical. Nobody's quite sure if Valve only has Sleepers on staff or if there are a couple of VA's among their coders, but everyone agrees that having a device that can forge Correspondence portals in the blink of an eye is a handy thing, albeit horribly vulgar. While gamers eat this stuff up like cake using one of these badboys outside is …

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Mage rote: ...as they really are.

  absinthe cult_of_ecstasy mage rote rpg whitewolf

Game: Mage: the Ascension

Rote: ...as they really are.

Spheres: Matter , Mind , Prime , Spirit *

Traditional focus: Absinthe, though any reasonably high proof spirits would do.

Effect: This is a sensory rote developed by a Cult of Ecstasy chaote named Amber who made a habit of communing with the genius loci of wherever she happened to crash for the night. Following an old saying by Oscar Wilde that the first drink of absinthe shows us things as we wish they were, the second as they are not, and the third as they really are, she would prepare three doses of absinthe …

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I now pronounce you nerd and nerd.

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Lyssa and I are really married now - we've combined our collections of gaming books into a single bookcase.

Here's the end result:

In descending order, the most represented gaming systems in our library are Mage: the Ascension, Advanced Dungeons and Dragons, Vampire: the Masquerade, and Werewolf: the Apocalypse. The two shelves of miscellaneous games stand unto themselves.

I'm not counting these in the duplicates category because it really does help to have multiple copies of the core book for a game you're running. Nevermind the fact that we have four copies of second edition and two of third.

These are …

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