Saturday, March 31, 2012

In Control - The Botchy Battle of the Dragonborn

I know I promised to deliver my thoughts of The Hunger Games as my next entry but a recent Dungeons and Dragons game has somewhat distracted me.  On Monday night my group met.  This was a special session as our usual playing date is Thursday nights.  The week before we had a very long session in which we only fought one dragonborn (that WOULDN'T DIE) and a few skill challenges.  Long story short the group was demanding some battles or a mutiny would be underway.

For the record, you'd turn and run if you saw this guy chasing you, too!
Our DM, being ever so compliant, accepted our request and scheduled a special Monday game to make up for lost battle time.  We all showed up, got out our sheets, and fired away.  Little did we know of the blood bath we were about to encounter.

Here's the set up.  Our group had previously killed a dragonborn who was recruiting locals into joining his cult.  After we got our information out of him and took him out, we went to the cult and had our thief do some quick record grabs so we could try to get to the bottom of things.  Our night started out with us leaving the cult, turning the corner, and BAM!  Before us stood the same dragonborn we had just killed, bandaged up and with a small army of 5 or 6 dragon borns.  We turned and ran into the nearest building, barring the door behind us.

 It was on.

The beginning of the battle was a success.  Our 340lbs. Minotaur, Zoob, held the door shut, so that left only the windows to guard.  Funny thing is there were some conveniently place vats of cleaning solution scattered throughout the bar.  They were small, about a pony keg, and we managed to tip one out the window and onto some of the less than intelligent dragonborn.  Meanwhile, at the other corner our group bard, Magnus, was having some troubles hitting his target.  The dragonborn was coming through the window and was practically prone but for some reason, Magnus kept missing.  I guess hitting things isn't a bards speciality, so no one took notice.  Little did we know....

I assume the barrels looked somewhat like this....
Magnus, and our assassin, nicknamed "Pony Boy" (because his names too long to remember) were taking care of the two windows.  I wanted to be of some use, but there was only room for one person at each window.  This is where Zoob and I got creative.  I'm an avenger shifter named Rosie and I have what we'll just call a gift for climbing.  I got a barrel of cleaning solution (we are calling it acid now because it's quicker to type) and set it by the door that Zoob was barring shut.  I took my grappling hook, threw into one of the beams above the door and climbed up it.  Once I was high enough to be above the door without being in the way, I tied the rope securely around my waist and had Zoob hand me up a keg of acid (it had a lid).

The DM seemed intrigued with where we were going with this plan and the rolls were in our favor.  Once firmly in place with my acid, we decided to open the door.  One of the dragonborn came charging in, unknown to him, right below the very happy Rosie with a very full keg of acid.  I let it drop and the damage was amazing.  Zoob quickly shut the door before more baddies could get in and disposed of our new guest.  All the while Pony Boy had successfully dunked the head of a dragonborn attempting to get through the window in another vat.  He fell out of the window, onto a comrade, and into where the acid had spilt.  This was getting fun.  The acid barrel was plugging up the window, so Pony Boy went over to aid Magnus  who was still having troubles getting a hit on another window intruder.

Round two for the door acid was about to start.  Zoob opened the door again.  This time I splashed acid, hitting the remaining enemy who had been banging his hands to ribbons by tying to knockdown the door with nothing but his fists (He had lost his weapon trying to breakdown the door).  This might be where you'd say things started to go wrong....okay....this IS where this went VERY wrong.  The new guy wasn't too much of a problem, but our two baddies outside the window decided after their acid bath to try to get in again.  They succeed on getting in (though they slipped on some acid in doing so) and Zoob was worried about having two guys freely walking around.  He charged the two dragonborn.  The charge was so strong that he knocked both of the bad guys through the wall and into the next room.  YEAH ZOOB!   The problem was, little Rosie was left all by herself and she managed to get herself grabbed.  Magnus and Pony Boy were still at the window and their rolls were going down, fast.  Magnus started rolling nothing but 3's 5's and 6's.  The dragonborn weren't too hard to hit, but when they hit, they hit with vengeance.  Pony Boy did his best to quickly get out of battle, try to save my ass, then get to Zoob who was now in a battle of 2 against one.  All the while the rolls were SUCKING!  No one seemed to be able to catch a break (Well except Zoob who managed to crit twice in one night) and we were getting our health drained fast.  After escaping my grab, Pony Boy went off to help Zoob, only for me to get grabbed again!  Magnus came over, but still his bad luck continued.  By some stroke of a miracle we somehow ended up with one enemy.  He started to make a run for it, but we gathered what was left of our strength and took him down with one last volley of attacks.
Ps:  This is Magnus's dice.  It shall now forever be known as The Demon Dice!

I guess that just goes to show you how quickly a battle can take a turn for the worse.  It's not one players doing, it's a collection of bad roles and unfortunate timing.  We started off creative, and being this was a battle of level 2 characters against level 5 enemies, we really beat the odds.  I think we could have had a smoother ending if we would have kept up our ingenuity because in a straight up fight, I doubt we could have made it.  Looks like you always have to be ready to find creative solutions, that and, well- a keg of acid always helps.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Babbles of a Fangirl - Dressing Like a Nerd

Today we are going to get a little girly; fanboys, you have been warned.  I've been trying to figure out my identity as the Patchwork Nerd these last few days and in doing so I've 
began exploring the different looks I'd like to have for future videos.  Unfortunately, it might be a while before we see that, but I thought what better to do than explore what I think makes a good nerd look.  So here we go!  These are some of the pieces I think would be perfect for the ultimate Nerdy Girl get-up!  

Let's start with a top.  I'm a steampunk/oldfashion kind of girl, so what better way to show that off than with high collars, flowy sleeves and puffy shoulders.  I picked the following two shirts to cover many different bases.  The black top will satisfy the need for long sleeves (for us gals afraid of our arms) and the black is always a classic. I adore the yellow, shot-sleeve top because it allows us pale girls to get some desperately need sun while giving us an adorable pop of color!  The upper part of the shirt is sheer, leaving lots of fun for our fanboy's imagination without causing the wearer to fall out of the top.  The pattern is fun an intricate.  I could easily wear either of these out, depending on the weather!

How do we show off those lovely lady legs?  Shorts!  Ladies don't run!  I used to be terrified of showing my legs.  It didn't matter what the weather was outside, it was long, thick jeans or not going out.  It wasn't until last year that I finally gave in.  My boyfriend is an active soccer player, with many outdoor games, in the sun...during the summer.  It only took a few games of steamy heat to convince me that I needed to find a better fashion choice. I fell in love with wearing shorts!  They are cool (temperature wise), flirty, and a great way to drive your fanboy wild!  I discovered that I actually have great looking legs (after much denial) and I loved letting the warm sun tickle my skin. By the end of the summer I had a full armory of shorts and (GASP!) a tan!  

Let's begin our decent into showing our legs off nice and slow.  How about a skirt that looks like shorts?  Or (even better!) a skirt with darling suspenders for that classically nerdy pop!  I think these brown shorts not only look perfect for dressing up, but dressing down for small get togethers or porch D&D games!  Give it a try, girls.  Breaking personal boundaries can be a jolly good time! 

Okay, okay.  If you aren't ready to show off those legs there are other options!  How about a cute pair of pants?  These grey trousers are a real winner for me because they are a clever, unique fit and the little peep of ankle is great for summer and for getting transitioned into a pair of shorts!  (Okay, no more pushing the shorts, I swear!) 

Now how about something a little dressier?  These mosaic styled leggings scream PERFECT to my inner patchwork lover!  Follow it by a dress that drapes so relaxed against your body with bright pops of color and you will be the hit of any party, con, or get-together you go to!  It doesn't hurt that the dress I found is from the King of Project Runway All-stars himself, Mondo.  I could wear every one of his pieces on every day of the week and never get bored.  

It's time for my favorite part: SHOES!  I'm a girl who is short with a stubby body, tiny waist, and wide hips.  Long story short I have a heck of a time finding clothes that fit (and flatter) all these areas.  Shoes, on the other hand (or should I say foot?) almost always fit as long as you know your size.  As a result, my shoe collection has blown-up into it's own monster.  What kind of shoe dominates my collection, you may ask?  Boots!  I live is a cold climate and boots never go out of style for long.  I'm pretty sure I own at least eight pairs and I don't see the number shrinking anytime soon!  I can't get enough of a good pair of lace-up boots with shinny buckles!  This pairs is a winner.

Still, summer is on its way and flats might be the better choice.  What better way to show off my inner Patchwork Nerd than by flaunting these patchy beauties!  

I had a hard time narrowing down what heels I wanted to show you!  I finally settled on these two for two VERY nerdy reasons.  The first pair is about as elegant as you can get and I'd wear these gals any day of the week (as long as there's no snow on the ground!) but this isn't the reason I chose them.  No, these are known as "Unicorn Shoes".  Google it.  I dare you.  I discovered a similar pair on the always amazing Modcloth online shopping website and I almost died with nerdy excitement.  If you want a great conversation piece for not only their look but also title, seek nowhere else!

The second pair I chose for the conversation as well.  That conversation centers on the materials.  The heels are designed to look like the spins of a book!  I'm not sure if they are made of recycled materials but I applaud it if they are!  
Well Ladies (and perhaps a FEW gentlemen!) I hope I've helped influence your nerdy looks.  Keep an eye out for my future article on Nerdy Accessories!  

Again, it's such a joy getting to "Nerd-out" to you all!  I hope you keep with me!  Next time we can look forward to something that is great for nerd regardless of gender:  THE HUNGER GAMES!

Let's talk people!  Do you have a favorite nerd item to wear?  Guys!  What nerdy stuff do you wear?  Post a comment or a picture.  I'd love to see!  Are there other items you'd like to see on a future list?  Feel free to drop me a line!

Until next time, stay nerdy! 

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Babbles of a Fangirl – Michael Bay’s Teenage MUTANT Ninja Turtles

I'm all for a gritty TMNT, but is Bay taking it too far?

Some of you fanboys and girls out there might have heard rumors floating around the sewers about the new adaptation of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and it’s producer, Michael Bay.  If you did, you know where this is going.  If you didn’t, strap yourself in for some fan-rage. 

Sources have confirmed that Bay is planning a unique adaptation of the popular franchise.  One might think this means more expositions, CGI, or serious tones than found in the original 1990 live action film.  Think again.  What does good old Bay of Transformers fame have in store for us?


The turtles are of alien decent.  To be exact they are aliens from another dimension. Since this news was confirmed a few days ago, Michael Bay released a statement but if his intentions were to smooth the feathers of fans, he’s not very good at it.  Bay said,

"Fans need to take a breath, and chill. They have not read the script. Our team is working closely with one of the original creators of Ninja Turtles to help expand and give a more complex back-story. Relax, we are including everything that made you become fans in the first place. We are just building a richer world."

According to fans might need to give the idea a chance.  In the original TMNT “…TCRI, which is the name of the place where the mutation causing ooze originated (it was TGRI in the second film), was actually a secret base for the alien beings Utroms….

Honestly, I don’t know how to feel about this.  I was a fan of the movie before the cartoon (because I was born after the 80s) and I’ve always adored the world created in the movie. The problem with remaking such a beloved franchise is that fans are probably going to get mad anytime a change creeps into the world they’ve loved and protected for so long.  TMNT fans have to be one of the most hardcore fan bases out there because you have to have a lot of backbone to support and defend liking giant, mutant turtles with surfer accents to strangers and haters.  It doesn’t help that Bay has had a history of inciting fanboy with his Transformers franchise.  I think the best way for Bay to get past this fan doubt is to give us something encouraging.  Release an early concept design of the turtles, tell us (for the love of God) that you will be using live action suited turtles and not CGI, give us character designs for the movie’s baddies.  Throw us a bone, a familiar bone with all the trimmings beloved by the original turtles fans.  It just might do wonders! 

Until then, I’m going to shelf my feelings.  But trust me, much more of this and you will see some fangirl rage.  We’re watching, Bay, we’re watching.    

PS:  Voice your thoughts on Bay's thoughts and ideas in the comments!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Babbles of a Fangirl - Good Morning Spring!

Spring is finally here!  So what better way to start the season off than with the merry singing of some very lovable ponies?  I've been waiting since my first viewing of this episode to sing this song at the top of my lungs with spring really starting!  If you haven't guessed by now, yes, I watch My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic and yes, I'm a girl.  As much as am crazy about my brony brothers I sometimes feel like us girl fans get over shadowed.  We fangirls finally have something nostalgic and awesome to lose our heads about (that doesn't involve sparkling men...."shivers") and we lose to a bunch of men hugging plushies.  I guess it's not meant to be a competition, though.  My Little Pony is meant to be enjoyed by everyone, young and old, male and female!  I'm so glad that we can all enjoy spring together too!

Then again....I don't get out into the sun much....haha!  We'll have to work on that this year!

This is probably my favorite episode of MLP (or at least in the top 10....I'll do a list later) because I can relate to it so much.  I never was a girl with conventional abilities.  I often had to find a way to fit in my creatively inserting my talents amongst the normal ones.  I'm just as big of a "egg-head" as Twilight Sparkle, so I feel her pain and desperation to belong.  I think this episode is great for little girls (and kids in general) because it encourages them to keep searching for their place and when they can't find something that matches everyone else, make up something new!  I also like how the other ponies don't belittle Twilight for not not having the same talents.  They are very encouraging.  It's only when Twilight realizes she has no passion or ability to keep going that she moves on.  The other ponies even make suggestions on other things she could try.  The only time that Twilight gets into trouble is when she breaks the rules.  This teachers kids that you have to still respect the rules of the people you are working with.  Creative solutions and clever thinking are what save the day.  And what better way to usher in spring than by coming together with your friends, having some self-exploration, and enjoying the sweetness of spring!

Monday, March 19, 2012

Site Changes

Now before I go into a major overhaul I wanted to give your few but faithful followers (yes, I'm talking to your precious three!) a heads up.  Beside the Controller is going through some changes.  Let me make one thing perfectly clear,  my BTC articles are NOT going away; they just won't be the only focus of this site. I've recently realized I have a lot I want to say about other mediums like movies, RPGs, and all around nerdiness, but I don't want to make 24254563 blogs for each focus.  Thus there will now be three main publications to this site, those being Beside the Controller, Movie Rants (Title Subject to change!) and Babbles of a Fangirl.  I hope that this will also help me produce a steadier flow of articles.  I hope that this doesn't turn anyone away from the site.  Everyone who has been watching my posts and reading my thoughts means a lot to me and I can not hope to continue my success without you.  I want to be able to give you more to read, a more consistent flow of articles, and more chances to read about topics that might interest you.  Now come along my freaks and friends!  We have some major nerding to do!

....Now if only I could come up with a new names for the site....