Archive for November, 2010

The Cyrodiil Look: Cahmel’s New Travels (Let’s Play Oblivion, Part 13)

29 Nov

When we last left our gifted hero, he’d impressed the thieves’ guild recruiter by being able to run a little bit faster than all of the other butterfingered ex-con prospective thieves. Having thus proven myself, I was admitted entrance into their ranks, which apparently satisfied their hiring quote indefinitely.

Now, wait a minute, how come they’re only going to allow one guy entrance? I mean, let’s break this down. Their rigorous screening process for potential applicants involves finding people anywhere on the continent who have gone to jail. Whether or not you had previously expressed any interest in joining a guild, you are then slapped with an invitation to come over to the Imperial City, whereupon your thieving abilities are put to the test—abilities, I might add, that were quite recently and conclusively tested by Johnny Law. Of those tested, only one can possibly be admitted.

More to the point: here we have a glut of desperate and woefully unskilled applicants being forced to compete to fill a very small vacancy, leaving most of them SOL and one of them very dubiously fortunate. It’s a hiring process that feels less Oceans 11 and more The Grapes of Wrath.

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Vatsy and Bruno Released; Herman Melville Rises From Grave, Enraged

28 Nov

A dead-tree version of Vatsy and Bruno is finally available for purchase, mothras! You can buy that nonsense right here.  For every purchase, I receive one shiny dollar that I may spend on anything I like, so long as that thing is either gambling debts or prosthetic kneecaps.

I know what you’re going to ask me: are you actually Richard III reincarnated? The answer is no, we just get our hair cut at the same salon. The less insane of you might instead be asking me:  is this an actual no-fooling professional styles paperback version of your book?

The answer to that is very mostly. It’s glossy, it’s got a kickass cover, it’s got the full Vatsy and Bruno story with An Excessively Vatsy and Bruno Christmas thrown in there as well. There are also a couple of formatting glitches, but apparently, fixing those would set back the release of the book by a month while I wait for another proof copy to come round. The glitches aren’t serious, and it certainly shouldn’t stop you from enjoying the story, something the story itself should already have locked down.

Of course, the gadget savvy amongst you will know you can also buy it on Kindle right here, and the miserly will know you can just straight download a free .pdf right here.

This is what it looks like, except way goddamned cooler in person.
 

Von Rutskarn’s Magical Murder Tour: Assassination Eight

27 Nov

And then suspicion fell upon Count Morton Castlemere. What he did to inspire such accusations is uncertain; it could have been the way he refused to meet one’s gaze, or his callousness towards the bodies in their midst, or perhaps it was that frosty edge to his tone and mannerisms, even under the hot breath of peril. Perhaps honest men are merely able to sense the liars in their midst. More probably, he was just sort of starting to get on people’s nerves.

Whatever the case, the foreplay of a good lynching was hardly set into motion when the good Count did what none before him had. He rose up onto a chair, plunged his hand into his waistcoat, and whipped out the speech he written in the bathroom for just this sort of emergency:

(Dyrian Ryans wrote:)

“Yes, I am an assassin. The League is entirely correct in its mystically placed assumptions. Just know that, though you kill me, I am not the last of us. There are several more in your midst, whose blades will find your soft, overfed bellies with both ease and pleasure. Enjoy your quail-egg buffets and delectable mini truffle cheesecake slices. For they will be your last! You foppish, inbred thin-blooded fools. Do you not see the service we are doing the entire WORLD by removing from the breeding pool?

You condemn me as a murderer, as a fiend who will extinguish life for mere pecuniary imbursement. The League speaks of me as an enemy to the innocent. The innocent? THERE ARE NO INNOCENT HERE! You are all guilty of misdemeanours, felonies, conspiracies and schemes. You are all condemned to death for the mere crime of drawing breath!

And, though I may kill for money. You have all gladly killed for free! We are all murderers here! And I hope for nothing less than the inhumation of each and every one of you!

Good evening,gentlemen!”

It was a good speech. He got as far as that first bit before they beat him down with chair legs.

Count Morton “Sprockets” Castlemere (Dyrian Ryans) was lynched. He was an Assassin.

Night begins now and ends Monday. The game will quite possibly end soon, in which instance, I will post an explanation of what’s been going on these past couple of turns.

Yes I am an assassin. The League is entirely correct in its mystically placed assumptions. Just know that, though you kill me, I am not the last of us. There are several more in your midst, whose blades will find your soft, overfed bellies with both ease and pleasure. Enjoy your quail-egg buffets and delectable mini truffle cheesecake slices. For they will be your last! You foppish, inbred thin-blooded fools. Do you not see the service we are doing the entire WORLD by removing from the breeding pool?

You condemn me as a murderer, as a fiend who will extinguish life for mere pecuniary imbursement. The League speaks of me as an enemy to the innocent. The innocent? THERE ARE NO INNOCENT HERE! You are all guilty of misdemeanours, felonies, conspiracies and schemes. You are all condemned to death for the mere crime of drawing breath!

And, though I may kill for money. You have all gladly killed for free! We are all murderers here! And I hope for nothing less than the inhumation of each and every one of you!

Good evening,gentlemen!C

 

JaR 3: JaR Harder

26 Nov

I don’t mean to spoil it, but this episode of Jibar and Ruts is the funniest thing anyone has ever recorded.

In this episode:

  • Jibar doesn’t misspell anything in his annotations
  • Synchronized suicide!
  • Jibar offers his suite of offensive American impressions
  • Synchronized game show hosts!
  • Liefeld: A Debate
  • Synchronized Jibar murdering clones with a bomb okay that’s all his deal
  • Not so synchronized loneliness
  • We break the terrible curse of the Swiss Shamans
 

The Pig Girl, Part 10

24 Nov

Wallace saw the silent blossom of light and smoke on the monitor opposite him, and saw the blur of the shell’s trajectory, but the things on the monitor didn’t seem real; it wasn’t until the vehicle shook that he realized, consciously and fully, that an attack was taking place.

At that exact instant, directly after the shockwave of the shell landing was felt, Victor threw some lever in the bristling dozens that kicked the engine straight into overdrive. Wallace was fighting for words, and just as he’d found a few, the acceleration pushed them right back down his throat.

“No need to be alarmed!” Reginald said over the sudden howl of the engine. “This happens occasionally.”

Wallace had to swallow back a touch of motion sickness before he could bring himself, even in his panic, to look back up at the monitor. The cannon had been left far behind; all he could see now were the fronts of buildings whirring by in a continuous, static-y blur.

He glanced back away from the screen and clenched his armrests.

“What the hell was that?” he managed.

“Cannon!”

Wallace grimaced, as completely off-balance as anyone could get. “Why was someone shooting you with a cannon?”

“Not sure! Perhaps it’s a cultural thing!”

“Not our place to judge, really!” shouted Victor, typing something into a miniature keyboard by his armrest.

Wallace planted a hand on the back of Reginald’s seat and leaned forward as much as he could without vomiting. From that perspective, he could just glance back and check the rearview camera—it depicted a blurred street, a departing plume of dust, and little more. Neither Reginald nor Victor seemed concerned by it, nor by their current speed.

“What do you mean, this happens occasionally?” Wallace asked, starting to carefully lower himself back into his seat.

Without warning, Victor slammed a hairpin left. The instant they were around the corner, he throttled down to cruising speed so rapidly that Wallace was nearly thrown off his feet.

“Well,” remarked Reginald without looking around, “you know how it is. Every area has its bad elements.”

Wallace adjusted back into his seat. “Well, yeah, but we’ve got…I mean, it’s punk kids with bricks, people hiding under bridges with knives…I’ve never actually been shot at, not since the days.”

“Sounds like an aggressively dull paradise. I don’t suppose there’s any time shares still intact out there.”

“None outside the Red Zone, no.”

“Hah! Well, suffice it to say, your violence is a bit tame to what we’ve got out here. Anywhere west of the C-20, you can’t move two blocks without running into some patrolling member of the Exciting Hairstyles and Lovingly Tended Artillery Collective. They get around, is what I’m saying.”

“Still seems strange they’d just shoot at random people,” said Wallace, shaking his head. “I mean, are they bandits?”

“I suppose,” said Victor. “I see them do more killing than stealing, mind. Frankly, the stealing part seems almost an afterthought.”

“What? Then, I mean, why?”

“I couldn’t tell you. The fun, perhaps.”

“I do believe they eat humans,” said Reginald. “I can’t confirm that from firsthand experience, but that is my very strong suspicion, given the evidence and circumstances.”

“It wouldn’t surprise me, but they can’t find kills regularly enough that humans would be a staple of their diet, so don’t adopt that as an excuse for their behavior either. Like the stealing, it’s probably just a bonus, albeit one accepted enthusiastically. At the end of the day, the act of killing is the alpha and the omega of their behavior. They’ll trawl about for weeks looking for any sign of travelers, remnants, even communities to prey upon. Grisly sight when they get their hands on one of the latter,.”

“They’ll charge in and butcher as many people as possible, often over the course of several days. Men, women, and children alike. Q!”

Wallace blinked hard.

“Didn’t see it,” said Victor.

“Sign back there, “Quill Furniture”. Check the feed if you don’t believe me.”

“Perish the thought.” Victor throttled up a little. “That leaves me with R, I suppose.”

“Cry me a sparkling and majestic river. Today marked the fourth I’d been saddled with that infernal letter. I was beginning to think it’d follow me to my grave.” Reginald cracked his knuckles, leaning back into his chair. “Well, that’s a load off of my mind.”

 
 

Oblividate

24 Nov

I can declare success on one front: Oblivion, although it is not working perfectly by any stretch of the imagination, is functioning. It crashes every ten minutes, but I’ve put up with worse for art’s* sake. Everything was in readiness for the triumphant resuming of Cyrodiil Look.

And then my goddamned DVD drive stopped working.

I’m not sure what I’ve done to invite these shenanigans. It’s a good rule of thumb that at any given time, one thing will be defective with one’s computer, but it’s rare that so critical a component as the DVD drive should fritz completely. I’ve no idea what the issue is, although this break (commencing tomorrow) should prove a fortuitous time to fix it and catch up on some other side projects, not least of which is the V&B edit.

I’ve little to give you tonight. Pig Girl shall come tomorrow, and Oblivion the instant I can furnish it. In the meantime, I guess I’ve got this.

It’s rather loosely Hobospy related.

And now to take a combine harvester to the scum buildup in my throat.

 
 

Oiler Sparning

22 Nov

Some dread nega-infection has set up base camp in my favorite throat, and in consequence, I don’t have a stiff enough buffer of gameplay for the LP post. Instead, I’ll do something I’ve been meaning to get around to for a bit: link the new season of Spoiler Warning, starring commentators Shamus “Escapist Sellout” Young, Josh “Twitch Hunt” Viel, Mumbles “Bees” Mumbles, and Rutskarn “The Guy Writing This” Squirrelington.

For those of you who’ve never heard of it: this is a series where we play through a game–in this case, Mass Effect 2–and give jokes and commentary.

For those of you who’ve tried it before, but were put off by the ungainly Viddler load times, appalling length, and awful puns from me: We’ve fixed two of those things.

 
 

Von Rutskarn’s Magical Murder Tour: Incident Eight

22 Nov

God DAMN is this late. This isn’t a matter of being too busy or anything, or not having it done on time, this is just a matter of me completely forgetting to put it up. Sorry for the delay, everyone.

There’s  a theory that every so often–when injustice is perpetuated on a broad enough, cruel enough scale–a Stranger is called. Sometimes, the individuals inside a community find themselves paralyzed and unable to act, even when the alternative is to watch their friends and family cut down in a crossfire. Sometimes it takes an outsider, someone with no face or name, to step in and make everything right.

And perhaps that’s what would have happened here, if the anonymous passenger hadn’t had to go to the bathroom, and if an assassin hadn’t been waiting in the adjacent stall.

It wasn’t much of a fight. The assassin slipped in just after the passenger and planted a blade somewhere soft, then–when the victim found themselves unable to move or defend themselves–quickly sliced the throat. After that, it was a matter of carefully picking up the body and carefully seating it on top of the commode, then locking the stall door. Simple, foolproof, cunning. And that, the assassin reflected, was how one did it. None of this gunfire nonsense, none of this hacking apart targets in the dark–you just picked them off, one by one, quietly and personally. It wasn’t the most efficient way, perhaps, but it demonstrated craftsmanship. A true craftsman would outlast all of their pragmatic, journeyman, hack-artist peers.

This was the last thought that went through his brain before a bullet tore through the stall divider and knocked a hole in his skull.

Anonymous Passenger (Flammarion) and Anonymous Assassin (king.com) were both assassinated. They were an Aristocrat and Assassin, respectively.

Day begins now and ends when a.) at least five days have passed, and b.) a majority vote is reached.

 

The Pig Girl, Part 9

20 Nov

EDIT: Cheese dollops, this post is what you get when you edit too at Too Damn Late O’Clock. Consider it tightened up.

Reginald gestured towards another vehicle. “Might as well give it one last go, just to make it a round three.”

This time, Victor managed to notice Wallace’s wince.

“Something appears to be bothering you,” he observed politely.

Wallace glanced at both of them. Their expressions were open, attentive, and genuine.

“I guess there isn’t, no.”

“Isn’t there? Really.”

“Well, I don’t really like seeing you listening in on other people’s messages, but that’s not my judgment to make. I guess whatever helps you keep, you know…” He shrugged helplessly. “Spirited.”

“For the devil’s advocate, well put. Besides, it’s not as there’s much legitimate use to put the device to nowadays.”

“Well, I’d argue that there really never was one. Registry of Rights dictates a right to privacy.”

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JaR Episode 2: Blood from a Clone

19 Nov

Here’s the second video in our Let’s Murder Each Other, Also Terrorists series, whose first thrilling episode can be found here.

In this episode, we go to an alpine village in Switzerland to save two hostages/lovers from the clutches of the Snow Gang, an evil band of ice terrorists who have merged their DNA with snowflakes to create a race of frozen hybrids bent on conquering the okay I didn’t read the mission briefing.

In this episode:

  • We exorcise the devil
  • I headbutt a flashbang
  • Jibar asks me to shoot him
  • Experimental editing takes place
  • My butt is surreptitiously shot
  • Jibar channels Demon Barry White
  • I use the words “squirrely” and “crackerjack”
  • Jibar misspells “Boss Hogg”
  • We pitch teh baist game ebar you guys

…not in that order.

Don’t miss it!

I just realized that I forgot to mention this, you guys, but we get paid for you watching this.