Archive for January 2015

Random Fact about Will 004

I count things…

As I go through my day I am just about always counting something. My footsteps, the number of steps in a staircase, how many trees I drive past… something.

I do absolutely nothing with this information, it is discarded immediately, it is of no use to me in any way whatsoever. Most of the time I barely notice I am doing it until I hit a number that strikes me as interesting for a fleeting moment. Being asked what number I was on would probably cause it to evaporate.

Brains are weird.


D&D and me part 6: My New Dice

Previously I talked about the loss of my special dice and how I had never since had a set that I really cared about.

for all these years my dice have been a semi-disposable tool, a means to an end that I enjoyed but never really connected with. I bought them in bulk and used whatever fell to hand. I didn’t love them.

a couple days ago my holiday present to myself arrived… And I have learned to love again.


After a long search I found these guys at DnD Dice at a very reasonable price. They are a good size, very heavy aluminum, and despite a few nicks and flaws that I forgive utterly, very well machined. The D4 might be one of the deadliest things I own, I dearly hope I never step on it.

My only criticism of these is a personal one rather than a practical one, and again it is utterly forgivable.

On many dice a small dot or underline is used to show the difference between a 6 and a 9. This makes perfect sense of course… Unless it is on a D6… Where it the only way to roll a 9 is to tear reality as we know it asunder and fling your die into some non-euclidean dimension where a solid shape can have a variable number of sides.

Other than that, I love them!

2015 Goals: Musings and Milestones

I am starting to map out goals and milestones, and as I go I find that they all intertwine quite a bit.

For goal 3 I do not have a lot of milestones since it’s a fairly nebulous goal, but I have a couple plans.

First, I have entered a weight loss competition at work. The one who loses the most weight by percentage wins some fabulous prize. I doubt I will be winning it, but it’s a little nudge of motivation. Second, When winter has died a little I am going to give my poor neglected bicycle an overhaul and set a few regular rides. It’s beautiful bicycling country out here so that should be fun.

Goals 2 and A and E are all twisting together as they all require that I clean and downsize and get my material life under control.

In order to get out of the mold pit (the house I currently live in) I will need to clean and pack and get rid of a great deal of stuff in order to fit into a much smaller space without suffocating under the weight of my possessions.

Goal E also requires this downside… not really to give me somewhere to work since I have Bloominglabs for that, but to give me access to the stuff I do keep. The tyranny of clutter is that you end up not able to find all the things you want to be able to use and so you end up with more things to replace those things and then you die horribly crushed under stuff.

Goal A seems unrelated, but is in fact foremost in my mind right now.

I have planted my flag in the earth and am going to do Kublacon in May, and in order to do that I need to be able to find all my necessary gear, and more importantly have my place in a state so that my kitties can be fed without me feeling the burning shame of the messy.

This also lights a fire under me for Goal 1 as I would like to have something to show off/sell when I am there. My current plan is to have the Surreality Engine core book done and done and in my hand when I arrive.

Other goals are still being tickled at and I will blather further when I have more news.

D&D & Me part 5: Dice Magic

Dice have had giant buckets of ritual, ceremony, and superstition since before there were dice. I have no doubt that cave-men were blowing on their knucklebones before tossing them into a circle of goat entrails and that roman soldiers were rubbing their dice on whoever was winning to pick up some of their luck.

Gamers are no different and despite the fact that many gamers are rational people who understand things like probability and the most basic physics of tossing a geometric shape onto a hard surface, we have created a whole lot of our own.

Here are a few I have personally witnessed:

Priming new dice by rolling them with the old ones… Sort of an initiation to your collection.

Never mixing new dice with old… I’m not sure when new dice become sufficiently old to join the general population.

Only use dice for their particular game… Never use your D&D dice when playing GURPS.

Never letting these sets of dice see each-other in case they got jealous.

Placing dice with the most desired result face up and keeping them that way until the roll.

Placing dice with the worst possible result face up and keeping them that way until the roll.

Rolling dice for ‘practice’ before playing.

Not rolling dice when not needed so you don’t use up the good rolls.

Rolling the dice a whole lot pre-game to use up the bad rolls.

Switching to new dice when one is rolling poorly.

Removing dice from your collection when they roll bad so they don’t infect the rest.

Not letting anyone touch your dice.

Making someone else use dice that are rolling poorly so they change their luck.

Buying a new set for each new campaign.

Keeping sets of dice for different purposes within the game… one set to roll stats, one set to make attack rolls, maybe even a specific die for a specific skill roll.

Rolling different dice of the same type to select the ones that roll best for that nights session.

Destroying poorly performing dice in front of the rest as an example… I knew one person who had a special sledgehammer specifically for this purpose.

Pleading with your dice while shaking them.

Threatening your dice while shaking them.

Kissing or blowing on the dice before each roll.

Having a pretty girl/boy kiss them.

I even knew one person who convinced a priest to bless his dice, no mean feat in the 80s when a lot of people thought that D&D equated murdering your friends while worshiping Satan in storm drains.

I had one superstition I tried to get started at one point, but it never got much traction… Touching your dice to a published game designer, the bigger a game line the better your dice would do. This may or may not have resulted in one or two people tagging Gary Gygax at conventions. I had managed Mike Pondsmith myself.

In short; People are crazy, gamers are people, therefore gamers are crazy.