Monday, November 30, 2015

The Plot Twist

Progress continues.

On some things anyway. Rather having fifth thoughts on Arketer Labs of Tyria. Specifically the Field Tests and whatnot.

I rather think no one particularly likes Roleplaying that uses dice in any meaningful way. Even when it's not, in fact, particularly meaningful.

Mind you, I quite understand. Dice interrupt the narration, the immersion and color. Their only charm is in ensuring true unpredictability.

But, for that to be the case, you have to be comfortable with accepting the consequences.

My goal in doing these Field Tests was to create a context in which those consequences should never be terribly unpalatable, no matter how bad they are in practice.

Of course, I truly do hate dice (barring some methods of alteration). It's only fair you know, they hate me. They hate you, too. It's rather as if probability itself resents having it's time wasted.

So, since dice compound the difficulty of interesting anyone in playing with remote-control Clockwork Simulacra- those are getting shelved and quite possibly the shelves tossed into the incinerator.

The other major aspect of difficulty- Remote-Control Clockwork Simulacra being too far-fetched for this highly realistic fantasy world with teleporter objet d'arte and fully autonomous Clockwork Simulacra, Giant World-Eating Dragons of unusual patience and a massive intelligence network (Pact, The Order of Whispers in Particular) that couldn't manage a guess that the humanoid plant people and plant wolves, the only such creatures of that sort, were linked to the Giant Plant Dragon- which was freed by one of them...

Well, that particular aspect of difficulty must endure.

Progress continues.

Thursday, November 26, 2015

The Thwarted Arrow

Progress Continues.

Not quite at the pace I would prefer, but does it ever? To be fair the only person I can blame is myself.

I can allow no excuses.

Meanwhile here's a thought that has bothered fine minds before. How does anything ever get done?

Take for argument an Archer is shooting at a turtle, either because he's a hunter with an irrational fear of turtle bites that must feed his family- or because he's just a jerk picking on one of natures less fortunate creations.

So he lines up a shot, perfectly aimed, and releases an arrow.

To hit that turtle, the arrow must travel halfway to the turtle. Then it must travel half of the remaining distance. It must, in fact, cover half the distance again and again- infinitely.

How then, does it ever actually strike the turtle? Because strike the turtle it must and observably does.

I am led to believe many a philosopher has been inclined to muse over such paradoxes. The Dichotomy Paradox, in this case.

For some reason I am absolutely convinced the truth is thus:

The Archer only thinks the Turtle is the target. What does the Arrow think is the target? According to physics it would be the center of Earth's gravity, would it not?

The arrow isn't perpetually closing half the distance to the turtle, it's perpetually closing half the distance to the center of the earth, only some utter asshole has arranged for a turtle to be in it's way!

But in all fairness to the archer, that arrow was never going to reach the center of the earth. While it perpetually closed the distance between itself and the center, something was always going to get in the way. Dirt, trees, other wildlife, someone the archer hated more than turtles...

Thank goodness arrows are immune to existential ennui born of futility. Our ancestors would have starved.

Now, if only I could put this curiously non-drug-induced revelation to some practical effect...

Also I am considering reducing this blog to being the heavily narrated creative-writing record of Arketer Labs of Tyria's Field Tests. Just as an aside.

#0 never lets me use it to comment on the more interesting things happening around here anyway.

Progress continues!

Friday, November 20, 2015

The Terrible Power of Jar Jar Binks

Progress continues.

Jar Jar Binks is powerful.

As in Multiply By Zero powerful.

He is the cinematic equivalent of a kazoo.

Indeed, much like there is not a song yet written that- when played on a kazoo- does not become a laughable mess I cannot imagine a single movie in which putting in Jar Jar would not make it absurdly terrible.

Just picture any memorable quote from a movie, and JarJar it to damnation. That link takes you right to a handy translator, if you have mercifully managed to forget how that horrible snail-eyed gecko-donkey spoke.

A few examples :

"Missa wish missa knew howa to quit yousa."

"All thesa moments ganna be nocomebackie in time… likein tearsies in rain!"

"Ever since missa ganna remember missa always wanna be a gangsta. To missa da was bedda than be da chancellor of da unit states. To be a gangsta was to own da biiig empire."

"Franklies missa dear, missa no giva damn!"

"Goes ahead, makes missa day."

Jar Jar truly does possess a dark power.

Progress continues.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Constant Reinvention

Progress continues.

As you can see, I am back. I am not sure entirely many people quite noticed I was gone to start with, but that's just one of those things a mature person has to bear with good grace.jerks

That said this little period of silence has only lead to, hopefully, a renewal of personal purpose and refinement of priorities.

I am not the man I was two and a half weeks ago. But then, who of us is the same person they were two and a half weeks ago?

Certainly not you. That you from two and a half weeks ago doesn't have two and a half weeks worth of memories that you do. It's quite possible they would not in fact make all of the decisions you have thus far today the same way you have.

They had an untold number of hairs you presently lack, however replaced they may have been by new growth since.

They're sporting a layer of skin you've sloughed off, and lack the new layer you've got under the rest.

This isn't to say you're entirely different. Hardly enough time has passed for there to be significant turnover of body cells and that old whopper about every cell in your body being replaced in around seven years is patently false.

Indeed, you have a number of neurons in particular that have lived and will live precisely as long as you do- or a few seconds longer depending on how you end.

But that is entirely too morbid.

Rather than dwell on the fact that the persistence of being is quite possibly illusory, it's best instead to note that we as sentient beings are not only profoundly mutable- as time renders us all- but unlike all the other creatures of creation (in nature anyway) we are capable of conscious self-alteration. Which means we can at any given point in time start pursuing self-improvement to counteract the mindless destructive change that is entropy.

For a time anyway.

Alternatively at any given point we can choose a new direction for ourselves and set out on that path. Ten years to master almost anything. It's not too late to become an expert on anything you like, if you can find the focus.

So, let us all set out today to become a person whom our present and past selves would look upon enviously.

At least until that future person becomes toothless, wrinkled and/or senile. At which point looking back fondly is probably going to be inevitably preferable barring a solid faith in a pleasant afterlife.

I am definitely no longer this reputable-looking gentleman sporting that vase of perfectly safe fog-concealed halloween candy.

Progress continues.