wordy

Tue, Aug. 9th, 2011 07:40
jarissa: (Default)
 Around the end of May this year, I dug out an old file I had for the way a forum-based RPG session could have gone, if the GM hadn't resumed paying attention when he did.  The plot went in a much more heroism-packed direction as it actually played out, and I'm glad of it, but I was always pleased with a couple of the images I created for that alternate scene.  I saved it to one of my reference disks around 2004 and more or less forgot about it.

I was actually looking for something else when I found it again, but realized that my character's actual motivation for visiting Plot City had never gotten addressed.  There's a note at the end of another file somewhere, winding up subplot threads and summarizing results in the dénouement, implying that my character found her original target that night or the next day, imparted information without actually starting a fight, and they very civilly walked away from each other for once.

I actually don't have any other notes that the NPC has ever appeared on-screen again.  And given that he was technically not on-screen for that dénouement, either, and that he'd been designed as a counterpoint to my character's origin before he developed some wonderful personality of his own and then vanished off the face of the campaign....

So I started writing.  At first I was merely cleaning up the original "alternate version of reality".  I figured it'd make a nice writing exercise, antagonistic, slightly smutty, with a lot of body language and some squabbling between people who used to work together and really don't like each other.

Just after the ides of June, I'd done as much with that writing exercise as I reasonably could ... but the story was still going.  The next logical step was waking me up at three in the morning, distracting me when I tried to push my way through the next writing exercise in my list, and working its details out on the main screen in my head while I scrubbed the floors.  Finally I promised myself that I'd go back and remake the first four paragraphs to fit "second attempt to find NPC, day after Adventure, other end of the neighborhood in Plot City."

(I still need to do that, by the way.)

And then I let the story go where it was trying to go.

More than sixteen thousand words later, I realize that "where it was trying to go" is a farkin' novel!
It's utterly unpublishable, of course.  Too dependent on a particular continuity, too many characters in the background and foreground integral to the logic of the piece but owned by someone with better lawyers, too tiny of a niche audience.  And in that audience, nobody's going to be thrilled to read a story centered on Fellow Player's Character.
It's also just getting to the point that the adventurers are starting to get enough of a clue about the A plot so they could maybe dig their way out.  I'm not even halfway done.  In fact, I stopped writing so I could do a little research and worldbuilding:  I'm maybe ten paragraphs away from introducing new characters, a specialized theft-for-hire set who're absolutely not remotely like Leverage, being rather villainous mercenaries of the "Robert B. Parker"+"Dark Champions with some powers" career path.

I've got about a month and a half before my turn at the gamemastering chair is expected to complete, but there's Dragon*Con in the middle of that.  I'd really prefer to be finished with this before the next patootie settles into the GM spot, because I'm starting to wonder if I'm going to be able to focus on any other character or adventure while this book is being made!
jarissa: (Default)
I started playing City of Heroes in October 2004, and of course made my favorite original PC from our superhero-genre tabletop campaign as my first character -- mostly as a baseline, to see what the game system can do.  I'd tried a few other superhero games and MMOs, and not really been impressed; CoH had just that right combination to keep me coming back, on my usual very casual basis, to see what storylines have been added while I was distracted by purse muggings.

And not only am I a casual player, but I'm also highly likely to go back and work through lower-level content, often in support of a SuperGroup teammember, but sometimes just because I want to see the story.

Today, Jarissa (CoH Edition) hit 50.  I still have a batch of storylines to finish, and I've never done most of the Task Forces, and I'm adoring the Tip system, and there's something new happening at almost every holiday.... but, since the beginning, I've known that 50 is the end of the game; so I've viewed the approach of 50 as a bittersweet landmark, much to be avoided.  Now at last, I'm finishing a game I've enjoyed for six years.

Or maybe I'm not.
jarissa: (Default)
 I'm up early because a friend's house is getting emergency repairs against last Saturday's storm, and I'm the contact person in case it's worse than it looked from the ground.

This morning I was dreaming about magnets.  Different shapes and strengths, all in large quantities, each small enough that a bunch of the same style would fit in my hand at one time.  I kept finding these magnets mixed in with other things, and sorting them out to add to my inventory, because I had to solve a "how to fix the chair" puzzle and a "how to sneak past that amateur golfing-as-combat class without breaking any of the glass statuary" puzzle.

Apparently I play an awful lot of puzzle-based games.  You'd think I'd be dreaming about the guy who tried to murder me back on the 17th, or at least about trying to control a vehicle in adverse conditions, but nooooo:  I'm dreaming puzzle-solving games, almost entirely on foot.

And even in the dreams, I'm so tired that what I really want is just to go to sleep.  I have to solve these puzzles to accomplish a Major Goal so that I will have the liberty of taking a nap.
jarissa: (Default)
 Today is shaping up to be not long enough.  I've got A/C Replacement:  Part II happening today; the delightfully courteous, dignified pair of older gentlemen who are removing our old units and replacing them with better ones are scheduled to show up in fifteen minutes or less.  They'll be doing some work in the attic, some in the main halls of each floor, and a bit outside to finish up.  

Meanwhile, I'll be doing light housework:  clean off the dining room table and prepare for guests, remove the damaged chairs from the downstairs hallway so they can easily get at the thermostat, sweep the dining room.  I will NOT be scrubbing a door today, I think, nor washing dishes or running the dishwasher, nor running laundry.

Obviously I won't be running a maintenance subroutine on my legs today, either, but I might resume the eternal struggle to paint my toes and have it look nice.  Apparently people do this ALL THE TIME with no difficulty.  Surely I can do so?

Thanks to the men, and last weekend's pre-parental-visit bout of spring cleaning, I won't have to do much guest bathroom maintenance.  Since I'm the GM, though, I do need to review my notes and make sure the physical puzzle is ready for more puttering.  (I'm presenting these wooden 3-D puzzles without instructions, of course.  The villain isn't including the instruction sheet; this is a contest of intelligence!)

I need to depart to go collect one of the guests, who lives a bit over an hour away, at four o'clock.  I'd really like to have a nap before then, but I suspect the day isn't going to have enough hours in it for a nap to fit.
jarissa: (Default)
I've got Vista on this laptop, and it came with the HP Game Console that uses the Wildcoins system.  On it, I've been paying real money to get pretend coins to pay to play a game called "Sky Kingdoms", by Alawar Entertainment and some other folks; it's a Zuma-esque game with a few entertaining twists.

One of the big draws that persuades me to pay more (real, then virtual) money for a chance to play this game again is that each completed superset of levels will reward the player with a drop dead gorgeous fantasy-based wallpaper.

What I want to know is:  where are these wallpapers at, on my computer, once I've earned them?

Y'see, once I select a wallpaper and tell the game to make it my desktop background, that works perfectly right up until I:
-- go into the Personalize menu for Vista, and choose either "Desktop Backgrounds" or "Theme".  The image vanishes, and now I'm looking at a plain, solid color (black, as it happens) for my desktop.

-- exit the game.  About five minutes later, the desktop image vanishes, regardless of what else I do, including play another game through the HP console.

And in Vista, of course, I can't right-click the desktop and get image location info under "Properties".

I've Googled all the combinations I can think of for "Sky Kingdoms", "wallpapers", "directory", "Alawar", and "how do I find it?".  I even tried "walkthrough".  Several reviews mention the wallpapers, but no forums or help sites -- including Wildcoins and Alawar -- has any mention of my problem.

Would I have to buy the game directly from the creators, install and replay it, just to get these wallpapers?  I've earned five of 'em so far.

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