Saturday, April 28, 2007

Work's busy, so just a short one...although I'll try to take on Myspace sometime during the week.


It took a while, but I found it.

Sadly, there's no real description for the fic itself, so I'll do my best to sum up:

PC and Mac have finally found a program the two of them to agree on: Firefox! But has all of PC's favorite bookmarks (with subfolders) been transfered from IE? It's up to Mac to find out!


You have got to be kidding me.


Alright, let's do this.


The .44 magnum was heavy, but of course PC was holding it wrong. Mac knew this, but why would he give advice to the man who was currently pointing a gun at him? Besides, it would only make him madder.

PC's hands were shaking and a spew of spittle fired from his mouth as he blurted out, with emphasis,


The way PC was sweating, his glasses were surely going to begin to slip down any moment now. When they did, Mac knew he'd unconsciously fix them, holding the gun with only one hand. Being only a few feet from the barrel, all Mac had to do was grab the gun away...he just needed to keep him talking.

"What bookmarks and subfolders do you...

"YOU KNOW VERY WELL WHICH BOOKMARKS I MEAN...thinkgeek, the onion, myspace, that kind of thing..."

Mac smiled knowingly.


PC sneered, stamped his feet slightly, his glasses beginning to slowly slip down the bridge of his nose.

"And...the official Harry Potter message boards..."

Mac nodded thoughtfully and raised a finger, asking,

"What about"

"No, I don't keep that on...HEY!"

PC shook, his glasses barely staying on the end of his nose. His left hand unconsciously moved to fix them...causing Mac to leap forward.

PC attempted to fire.

Mac attempted to twist the gun so it was facing away from him.

They both succeeded.

A single tremendous shot ripped through the front door. An ominous thump followed. In a panic, PC lunged towards it and threw it open, revealing a fallen body, already dead, a single hole torn through its heart.

It was Linux.

"Oh thank God! I thought I killed a real..."

PC realized he was alone.

He cocked back the hammer of the .44 and did a quick sweep of the house, pointing the gun into each room until he found the computer room.

"WHAT ARE YOU...hey! My bookmarks!"

"That's right! I've easily translated your bookmarks into Firefox from Internet Explorer without any trouble."

"Has it kept my subfolders?"

"Of course! And that's not the only feature it has! There's also..."

Mac hurled the computer monitor directly at PC's foot, causing him to lose balance and fire into the air. Mac then lunged himself forward, wrestling with PC for the gun, firing shot by shot off randomly into the darkness of the room...until the gun gave off a single, hollow click.

Mac and PC glared at each other and backed off, knowing this would have to be gentlemen.

PC dropped the gun, tossed off his jacket and began rolling up his sleeves.

Mac gave a small smile as he stretched his neck and back.

PC shifted his feet and hands into a traditional Karate stance.

Mac reared himself up and then slunk down into Preying Mantis style.

PC sneered and flicked a few punched forward, whipping quickly into the air.

Mac, unimpressed, lunged forward and snapped a lightning quick jab in PC's direction.

Their eyes met.

They knew the time for play was over.

It was on.

Mac lunged forward, hands snapping out towards PC's throat, as PC stepped forward and thrusted a single, short kick directly into Mac's crotch.

Mac then scrunched up, toppled back, spun around, and then fell onto the floor.

PC adjusted himself as a croak came from the ground,

"You douchebag."

"Whatever, pussy. Now come on, we have to bury Linux."


Saturday, April 21, 2007

Before we start today's, deja vu...

You awaken in a bathroom stall, your head is pounding...

No, no, I must stay focused. Specifically, I must stay focused on HORRIBLE movies. Let's break down some of these movies, from best to worst, as promised.


I swear to god, one of the male reporters in the beginning of the movie is feeling up one of his fellow male reporters. It's kind of disturbing. It's not ridiculous, just the traditional overt 'casually touching the other person at every possible occasion' including a pat on his stomach/waist area. Like I said, weird to see in a movie.

Anyway, this movie was actually pretty good, but a straight comedy, not a drama. A few gangsters, just out of prison, decide to take up a million dollar bounty on Hitler's life. They enlist in the army, hijack a plane, and hilarious antics ensue. It got a little ridiculous eventually, but still, it was thoroughly watchable.

It only goes downhill from here. Perhaps we can just stop, and talk about Homestar Runner or something? No? Sigh...downhill we go...


Shatner, before Star Treak. I wasn't aware at first, but the foreign language everyone is speaking through the film is ESPERANTO. For those who don't know, Esperanto was an invented, universal, phonetic language, where you can tell exactly how to pronounce every word based on how it's spelled. So basically, it's like every language besides English. Anyway, no one actually uses it, except in a bizarre attempt to make a movie more surreal.

Incubus is filmed in black and white, and it's actually not bad, or in the very least it's interesting. The movie's about demonic women who tempt men to their doom (I think I've dated a few in my time), and the whole movie takes place in a old fashioned, vague coastal village. The best scene in the movie has a drunk standing next to a tree that's covered in birds. The camera cuts away to a close up of him, and when it cuts back to the tree, there's a pretty young woman in a simple dress standing on one of the branches, where a bird previously perched. Needless to say, it does not go well for him. Add a few bizarre scenes of a priest holding a frog and sucking on an egg (I don't know), and Shatner having some awkward sexual tension/flirtation with the character who's supposed to be his sister (I'm definitely sure that wasn't in the script...but you know, it's Shatner), and you've got yourself a delightfully bizarre movie.


Another fine British horror movie starring Christopher Lee and the villain in charge of the Death Star in Star Wars (evacuate, in our moment of triumph?). Explorers find an ancient fossil that comes to life and fries people. Good stuff. The only downside of the movie is it follows a traditional British horror pattern. You have danger, excitement...and then we're introduced to 30 new characters, one by one, each one more boring and British than the last. Damn it.


Christian was right, this is by far the worst movie of the bunch. It was so bad, it was hilarious. Ninjas appear to fight our main character, wielding deadly weapons including plastic rings, and flamng gardening gloves...that's right, gardening gloves, like you'd wear while pruning hedges...on fire...threatening our main character.

After easily defeating these pathetic ninjas, the main character pulls on the least convincing mask in cinematic history. It's literally a white piece of cloth with a face drawn on it in marker.

Why'd they even bother? So they can splice in half of a much better Japanese martial arts movie. You see, the American actors wear masks and APPEAR to be these Asian people.

Yes, it's that pathetically hilarious, with emphasis on hilarious. It's too funny to really be painful.

Can't we stop here?


A Japanese James Bond beats the crap out of every single human being he crosses, including the pretty girls (if the first twenty minutes are any indication). The movie includes a hilarious flip through a ceiling and a telekinetic Mexican (don't ask). Ridiculous, but still all in good martial arty fun.


A dry yet delightfully creepy British ghost story which includes a young actress who is...hold on...born in is from 1972...whew! It's safe, she's really pretty. Her real name is Lynne Frederick and she eventually became our modern day equivalent of Anne Nicole Smith. She was very pretty (no figure, but a gorgeous face), appeared nude in just about everything, married a rich and powerful older guy (Peter Sellers if you can believe it), and then dropped dead at age 40 from severe alcohol and drug abuse.

Still, back in 1972, at age 18, she was absolutely gorgeous...which is when the movie came the movie was most likely filmed a year earlier...when she was...

Uh oh.

Let's move on.


Don't let the guys from Desert Storm on the cover fool you, this is a WW2 movie, filmed in the 60's or so, with no war footage, tanks, planes or anything, and they wander through the desert. It's basically the opposite of Hitler Dead or Alive, with German soldiers trying to assassinate the Allied leaders, only without the laughs. It's alright, with an interesting land mine scene, but nothing really worth mentioning...oh, except that their commander IS a living, breathing Lego guy. He's even got the peg where you can attach the hat.


Lee Marvin shoots about 30 people and then uses a rocket launcher to open a door. That's all that's really worth mentioning in this really shameful 'heist gone wrong' movie. Most shameful part? It's not the eight year old kid cursing at the cops (that was funny), no, it was the homely housewife calling to the black guy who's hiding (because he doesn't want to have sex with her). What does she call out as she hikes up her skirt? "COME TO MY WOMB!"


Not a bad movie...just nothing happens. I mean, it's one of the few movies in this bunch where the film is actually clear...but people just talk, wander through sparse woods that are supposed to pass for a jungle, trip, scream at spiders, talk about YAWWWWWWN...I'm just fast forwarding to the nudity. Still fast forwarding. Wow, that took forever. Okay, she's a European supermodel past her prime kind of way. Moving on.


Francis Ford Coppolla sure could direct them. This movie is haunting and beautiful, including a great scene where a body floats to the bottom of a lake with a radio floating down next to him, the sound being muffled by the water.

The plot is crap. The acting is crappy. The mood is tame and there has never been a less appealing kiss then between a man and a woman in cinematic history. Why? He's obviously really into it, but she isn't. The actress doesn't even pretend to enjoy kissing the guy. She just stands there like a statue while the guy basically tackles her and goes to town. I need a shower.


Leslie Nielson (of Naked Gun fame) stars in this serious, barely visible spy action movie where they train assassins through drugs to be the perfect killers. That and walking. There's about five minutes of him walking through parking lots. Still, it was worth watching Leslie Nielson take down a bunch of guys with karate chops.


Why did I watch this movie as long as this? I honestly can't remember. Let's see...attic, guy kills through burning rides into ditch...oh that's right! There's a delightfully creepy backwoods sketchy guy who gives them a ride. Wait...damn it! He didn't kill them! Come on!


Sherlock Holmes is back and he's more dull, smug, boring and condescending than ever! Remember all those drugs, murders and suspenseful battles? Well forget about that! This is a serialized FAMILY version of Sherlock Holmes. It'll be just like Wishbone, only without the fun. Moving on.


The first ten minutes weren't bad. It was a traditional Asian story of revenge and martial arts, with orphaned children on the run and heroic Buddhist monks. The hero finishes telling the backstory of his search for the missing children, and must move on to further adventures...and the credits roll!

No they don't. The movie grinds to a hault, new ridiculous subplots are introduced, and I pine for an ending credits. This movie wouldn't have been bad if they ended it there. Admittedly, it would have been short, but I wouldn't have been disappointed.


It's sad when movies can't afford actors. Everyone in this film might as well have been pulled right off the street. I swear to god, they're reading every single line off of cards behind the camera. Anyway, there's a mobster on trial and the only one who can save the main witness is THIS COOL BLACK GUY IN SLOW MOTION!

REALLY SLOW MOTION! Seriously, it takes him about a full minute to cross the room. Then we watch him take a martial arts class, which he isn't particularly good at. I swore to keep watching until he actually said anything. About twelve minutes in I got an 'okay' and I moved on.


Interestingly enough, the description of the film on the back of the DVD wasn't for this movie...and it didn't fit the title either. The movie was about the rage of a master though, as his dojo is destroyed by Thai kickboxers dressed in Hercules outfits and feminine wigs. Line of the movie: Bad guy points to guy in cape and girly wig "This is the kickboxing champion of all Thailand!" Points to dozen other girly guys in short shorts and wigs, "These are also famous boxers."

Of course they are.


No action. You see the results of the action. You hear the action. You see the severed heads that resulted from the action. But with the exception of one spear to the action. Walking though. Lots of walking.


GREAT opening speech by the villain. "You creature's of light..." There's also a great scene where the supposed hero is revealed to have killed (admittedly he killed an evil madman) in cold blood, and he's cursed by the madman's Igor-like assistant. It's a shame you can't see a damn thing though. The movie, as far as I can tell, was filmed in black & slightly less black. After watching a scene with no dialog and absolutely no visibility, I pined for the days of Ed Wood. At least he kept his films lit.


A REALLY HOT British girl naked in a pond. She kind of looks like Carol Cleveland (from Monty Python). Now there's a way to start a movie. Then a guy gets bitten by a spider and dies. Then he's alive again. Then he's an artist. Then there's a spy subplot. Then I moved on.


What's the point of having a women in prison movie if you're not going to have any nudity?! It plays out like a bad direct to cable movie, and the main hero doesn't make it any better. He only has one expression for the entire movie, and it's a cross between 'intense' and 'bored'. I have to agree with Amber, I think that actor was expecting gratuitous nudity and got more than a little bit disappointed. What a waste of perfectly good women in prison.


Standard British horror flick. A spy, who isn't the main character unfortunately, makes a great Phillip Marlowe-like escape from the cult (using his bonds as a noose), there's a slightly unappealing naked girl (had a 'drug proplem' kind of look to her) and then just like Horror express it grinds to a halt and we meet 30 characters. Not scary, just dull. The opening credits are hilarious with a corny silhouette of Dracula over a normal, daytime London street.


Richard Basart (Gypsy would be proud) did his best in this silly, made for TV version of Mark Twain's incredibly dull story. You know, until I watched this, and then tried reading it, I never realized how dull this story is. Apparently Connecticut Yankees were the peak of daring cultural figures a century or two ago, but to me he just seemed like an snobbishg, over-educated ass. Done.


The most disappointing movie of the bunch. Not the worst, just the most disappointing. No deadly Buddhist raiders. None.

There are deadly Buddhists. There are raiders. They might have meant deadly raiders who raid Buddhists...or raiders who raid deadly Buddhists...but anyway, it was dumb and I hated the fact that there were legitimately good martial artists in the film. In fact they were quite good. The problem was they were the villains. The heroes were played by young actors who barely knew martial arts, but were allowed to win, thanks to jump cuts and the real martial artists apparently aiming to miss them.

It's like watching Neo effortlessly block well thrown punches, not because he's better, but because he's 'the one' (with a lot of help from special effects).

Best line:

GUY 1: "I hope no one comes in and tries to take over our Dragon Herb plantation. It'll be worth a fortune if there's a plague."

GUY 2: "There's a plague."

GUY 3: "There's also some people trying to buy up evertying."

GUY 1: "I wonder what they could want?"

ALL AT ONCE: "Dragon Herb!"


Apparently this oily German creep eventually makes monsters. For the first part of the movie, all he does is drool over a girl. Watching him take her hand, gaze into her genuinely creeped out expression, and give a long drawn out kiss on her hand...ew...ew...ew...ew...ewwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww. I hope that actress got hazard pay.


Most movies that were actually failed pilots usually make some attempt to hide that fact. From the opening credits of the guy walking into his office to the credit of 'special guest star' (how the hell do you have a special guest star in a movie?) William Shatner, this is a TV show that wasn't good enough to air, so you can guess how well it works as a movie. It's basically young lawyers being young lawyers. I don't have the patience to wait for Shatner.


Another movie that didn't bother actually hiring actors. There is indeed a murder, but it happens in broad daylight, not midnight, and the only actual good actor in the film is the main killer...who appears in the first five minutes and then disappears. The rest is the dullest, slowest, by the book police investigation you can imagine. Even the main heroine squeezing her boobs, complaining that they itch, isn't enough to get me to watch any more.


I threw it in, just for kicks, and the special effects were good...then they started talking. Could these really have been the best takes? Anakin Skywalker REALLY JUST DOESN'T CARE. He mumbles out his lines like a teenager being paid minimum wage to do it. I got up to the scene in the completely modern looking elevator (right down to the metal cable) and when it stops, they say the line that broke me:

"Did you push the stop button?"

Futuristic space war. Energy swords. Robots everywhere. Acclaimed Sci-fi epic.

Lucas writes the line 'Did you push the stop button?'.

Lucas...please stop writing dialog...please...


I don't really need to watch the movie, as the ending's written clearly on the back of the DVD, and in a sense I can't watch the movie, because the whole thing looks like it was filmed through gauze, but from what I heard, it starts with a bizarrely upbeat children's song about boy's and their moms, ant then a woman leaves her son alone at the grand canyon (thanks mom), he gets kidnapped (you're mom of the year) and then instead of working with the police (the ransom note magically disappears for an unexplained reason) she runs off on her own (I'm getting her something special this mother's day.

As a bonus, thanks to the description on the back of the DVD, we already know the kid is already dead! Isn't this magical?


Computer hackers bicker, and then begin a slot machine scam through computer hacking. It's every bit as exciting as you imagine, and as a bonus, they play slots for about five minutes of screen time with nothing happening.

What will happen? Criminals will take the money away from them. How do I know this? I read the back of the DVD.

I have never before, in all my years, seen LESS happen in the first eight minutes of a movie. This beginning of this movie makes the beginning of Manos look like the beginning of Raiders of the Lost Ark.


This director was just plain sick. It's a standard slasher movie story, but every scene involving the serial killer has this jazzy cool soundtrack along with it, as he disposes the corpses of teenage girls.

Okay, perhaps it's just a dumb slasher movie, and none of this is to be taken seriously.

The movie goes on to show the girl's grieving family, the long drawn out police process, and then after the tearful funeral it's right back to the serial killer doing his grisly work all to jazzy 'renegade cop' kind of beats, all to give the impression that the serial killer, and all serial killers, are really really cool.

This movie insults me on a spiritual level. Still, it's not the worst.


There isn't a single member of this cast that I wouldn't punch in the face. I don't care if they're dead now. I don't care if the little boy is now seventy, I'm decking the lot of them.

Everyone in this movie is PAINFULLY cheerful, PAINFULLY nice and PAINFULLY noble, and they're up against the dullest, most generically evil villains that must have come right out of the old black and white Superman TV show.

I find myself clawing at my ears as the kid happily praises his soon to be father, who is presented as the absolute pinnacle of working class perfection, I vainly attempt to end my own life with a CD case as the heroine leaps into his arms and comes just short of proclaiming him the born again promised son of god, returned to us at last.

I find the scenes with the dull villains rather soothing as they get ready to frame the hero for a crime he doesn't commit, and of course he must take the blame or else his best friend will go to jail, which is just SO FUCKING BLOODY NOBLE YOU WANT TO PUKE!!!

Please don't make me finish that movie.

If you want me to, I'll beg.

What amazes me is that these movies aren't simply bad...they're each UNIQUELY bad. It's like a colorful rainbow of crap, with the merely boring and dull at the top, and the disgusting and agonizing torture at the bottom.

Why the hell did I do this? What was I thinking? I was thinking 'wow, this will be fun!'

I have a plan. It involves time travel and a hammer, and until I can pull it off I beg of you all to take these movies away. I'm keeping the Shatner DVD and American Ninja Warrior, but you can have the rest...or you can give them to someone else...or...dear can force me to finish them. Please, be merciful.

Vinny gets 5, Steve gets 4, Amber gets 4, Christian gets 2 of the three remaining, and Frank wants me to...well we'll get into that later (if you make me watch them, it should probably be both movies on the DVD...waste not, want not...WAIT I DON'T WANT THEM NOW! SURELY THAT'S GOOD ENOUGH REASON NOT, it was worth a shot)




-King Arthur/Amazing Mr. Blunden

-Virgin Terror/Spider's Venom


-Project Kill

-Hitler Dead or Alive/Prison Break

-Horror Express/Satanic Rites of Dracula

-Dog Day/Code Red

-Ransom/Desert Commandos

-Snake Crane Secert/Rage of the Master

-Slave of the Cannibal God/Stateside Motel (not in competition, not a bad movie)

-Street Fighter's Last Revenge

-Dementia 13/Murder at Midnight

-Adventures of Sherlock Holmes (2 Discs)

-Legend of 8 Samurai/Deadly Buddhist Raiders

-The Dead Walk/Monster Maker/old cartoon (a pretty good strange one)

-Death Journey/Deadly Impact

After brain's burnt. I'm going to take a breath and play Puzzle quest, then restart Puzzle quest as an easier character, and then after that I'll get to the competition. Wish me luck!

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Hello! Before we start the challenge, I'd like to give the results of my horrible movie watching spree. Why? Because I must share the pain.

What the hell was I thinking? These movies aren't 'guy in a rubber monster outfit' bad, they're just BAD. These movies look like they were filmed through gauze. The dubbed movies all have one voice dubbing every character, including the women. To make it even worse, the exploitation movies barely had any exploitation in them at all! They were just boring! Who ever heard of a women in prison movie without any nudity?!!!

Needless to say, I was crushed, mashed, BUT NOT DEFEATED! I WATCHED EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THESE GOD DAMN ABOMINATIONS...and some weren't that bad. Here's the list, with results of how long I could bear to watch them before turning them off (with a surprise last minute entry of Star Wars, Episode 3) from best to worst:

1. Hitler, Dead or Alive 18min 41 sec

2. Incubus 18min 20sec

3. Horror Express 17min 47sec

4. Ninja American Warrior 17min 00sec

5. Street Fighter's Last Revenge 16min 46sec

6. The Amazing Mr. Blunden 14min 35sec

7. Desert Commandos 14min 35sec

8. Dog Day 14min 24sec

9. Slave of the Cannibal God 14min 22sec

10. Dementia 13 14min 09sec

11. Project Kill 14min 05sec

12. Mutant 12min 28sec

13. The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes 12min 20sec

14. Snake Crane Secert 12min 11sec

15. Death Journey 12min 02sec

16. Rage of the Master 11min 54sec

17. Legend of the 8 Samurai 11min 51sec

18. The Dead Walk 11min 12sec

19. Spider's Venom 11min 10sec

20. Condition Red 11min 07sec

21. The Satanic Rites of Dracula 10min 37sec

22. Conneticut Yankee/King Arthur's 10min 34sec

23. Deadly Buddhist Raiders 10min 18sec

24. Monster Maker 9min 40sec

25. Incident on a Dark Street 9min 38sec

26. Murder at Midnight 9min 32sec

27. BONUS: Star Wars Episode 3 9min 31sec

28. Ransom 9min 20sec

29. Deadly Impact 8min 18sec

30. Virgin Terror 8min 12sec

31. Prison Break 7min 30sec

There were definitely different levels of 'badness' in these movies. The opening credits usually took about two minutes, and movies seemed to either last 15 minutes (not bad), 12 minutes (okay), 10 minutes (eh...), 8 minutes (bad), 7 minutes (very bad), 6 minutes (incredibly bad), or in one case barely over 5 minutes (shoots DVD player) after that.

These movies weren't just bad, they insulted my very existence. Some, I can see being made...

DIRECTOR: Hot chick dances around naked in pond and then kills a guy.

PRODUCER: Great, print it.

but others...

DIRECTOR: Okay, my movie starts with a two computer hackers bickering...


DIRECTOR: Then they spend eight minutes of screen time playing slot machines...

PRODUCER: *Shoots him*

Granted, these movies had no chance of being great, but they could have so easily been 'bearable'. A shower scene here, a bug eyed monster there and we have a movie! But no, each of these movies are UNIQUELY bad, each in its own way...but I'll have to go into the grim details later. My mind can't handle it right now.

For now, the winners:

WORST MOVIE: STEVE with Code Red. Not the worst movie, but it was the worst of the ones chosen as worst...and is the aforementioned Women in Prison movie without nudity.

BEST MOVIE: AMBER with Hitler, Dead or Alive. A fairly funny comedy, I must say.

BEST OVERALL: VINNY with a difference between his BEST choice (Street Fighter's Last Revenge) and WORSE choice (Snake Crane Secert) of 4 minutes, 35 seconds.

Congratulations to the winners! You each get to choose any 4 of the horrible DVD's I watched (but not Ninja American Warrior or the Shatner ones, they're too good to give up).

Most of the DVDs have two movies on them (let me know which movies you want and I'll tell you what they're packaged with), or you could instead, if you like, force those movies upon the other players instead, and we'll harass them into actually watching them, or instead force me to watch them all the way through to the end (be merciful...please...)

I'll go into further detail on exactly how bad these movies are next time. For now, let's move on to the first part of the fanfic challenge...


Vimes didn't need to know the details, all he needed were a few words.







Say the word and Vimes came running...but only when you said the right word.

Vimes knew the front of the police scene would be overcroweded with onlookers, all desperately attempting to see a sight that no man should ever see. Vimes could even see a few people pirching their children up on their shoulders for a better look...and then carefully shielding their innocent eyes away.

Vimes flicked the end of his cigar away, and carefully squeezed between two piles of rubbish in a nearby alleyway. A little bit of crawling, scraping and cursing later, and he found himself smack dab in the middle of the crime scene, standing right over a body.

It happened.

It was bound to happen one day.

Someone decided to make Dibbler's nick name a reality.

The infamous sausage peddler was sprawled out, motionless upon the filthy alleyway floor, a gruesome red line neatly accross his throat. There wasn't any blood, but that wasn't much of a surprise, given the light rain that fell upon his head. Dibbler's fingers were still wrenched upon his box of goods, which did not come as a shock. Vimes had never seen him without his wares, and it was only a matter of time before someone unwittingly gave one a try, and Dibbler's death came as a result. A lesser man might have been shocked, but Vimes had seen a lot in his time, and he was prepared for just about anything except what happened next.

Dibbler sat up, thrusted his merchandise under Vimes' nose and proclaimed,

"Instant 'cutting me own throat kits'! Don't be the last on your block to commerorate the brutal back-alley throat slasher! Fun at parties! Ladies, want to meet some handsome policemen? Well this is...I'm sorry, are you alright?"

"Just fine Dibbler, just shaking off a major heart attack or two."

"Oh sorry about that sir, just couldn't help but show that even a policeman can't tell..."

"You're not dead."

Vimes spoke the words in a way that suggested it could possibly be arranged. Before Dibbler could continue his spiel ( he never gave up on a possible sale), Detritus tapped Vimes on the shoulder and pointed at the real victim.

The copper inside Vimes wrestled control away from the maniac in Vimes, and focused away from Dibbler and completely on the body. Sidney Lopside. The only man actually paid by the government to wear a bag on his head. His face wasn't so ugly, just...arranged wrong. Very wrong. If his face were a building, the contracter would have been hung.

His attacker, whoever they were, had cut a slash right underneath his chin...and then must have realized that that wasn't where his throat was. A second slash, more to the left, wasn't much more accurrate. The deep cut accross his forehead must have been out of desperation. When it was all said and done there were about a baker's dozen slashes accross various parts of Sidney's head.

Vimes knew exactly what this was...

This was attempted murder.

"Hey Sidney."


Next time, Vimes was going to wait to hear the details.

Thursday, April 05, 2007


Hello everyone! Sorry it's been a while since my last update, but work's been kind of crazy that I STILL haven't continued my challenge against the internet! Then again, I'm also waiting for Pat, Steve and Amber to send me the DREADED FANFICS! Will they go for quality? Will they go for sheer pain? Well, Amber will certainly, but what of the others? We must see!

Still, I wouldn't want to leave you with nothing, so here's a letter I'm sending to Wizards of the Coast, to reinstate my status as a full fledged card carrying geek (it was briefly suspended for not picking up on a literary reference to '1984').

Enjoy! (Or shake your head with pity...or both, your choice ^_^)

On April 1st, in the spirit of April Fool's day, Wizards of the Coast printing some 'impossible to answer' questions. This was my response.

Dear Sages,

Hello, my name is Robert Freeman, and I've been playing Dungeons & Dragons, and running my own campaigns, for over 10 years now, and I'd first like to say that I love what Wizards of the Coast has done for the game. Back in the days of second edition, I didn't have a single clue what was going on, and now, thanks to the new edition rules, I know how everything works.

Over the years I've even become that 'guy' who everyone calls to ask questions about the game and how to min/max their characters. Because of these years of gameplay (and I am not necessarily proud of this, mind you) I think I have the answers to all the impossible questions listed on April 1st.

Yes, I know the whole thing was just in good fun and not to be answered, but as a Dungeon Master I've been pelted by equally insane questions on a more or less weekly basis, forcing me to actually come up with reasonable answers for completely unreasonable questions.

Thus, I'm giving this a shot, paraphrasing for space, and skipping the beginning questions which were more a matter of opinion or silliness (although I love the idea of lopping off monk limbs to get their attack there'd be a dancing weapon worth having).

Q. If a creature has more than one head, shouldn't gaze attacks be more effective against them?

A. Should they? Probably, but in the same sense, any creature that has more than two eyes should be more effected, and any creature with a single eye should be less effected, but the rules would get REALLY tedious if you worked out the math for every monster in the book. I'd draw the line at multiple eyes, but there's no reason an Ettin shouldn't be forced to make two checks. They are two independent minds after all.

Q. What should the CR adjustment be if the characters don't have their equipment?

A. That depends on if their class abilities rely on their equipment. From experience, if you take away a cleric's holy symbol, a wizard's spellbook, a bard's instrument or a fighter's weapons, they probably aren't going to have much luck fighting anything with a challenge rating more than their level minus 2. If they don't depend too much on equipment (like a monk, barbarian, rogue or sorcerer), or if their high level characters are being forced to use mundane equipment, then a challenge rating one less than their level should be fine. Personally, if I were running the game, I wouldn't lower the CR any. Making sure you're not separated from your equipment is all part of the game.

Q. Can an illusion help flank an opponent?

A. If you go strictly by the rules, then no, because an illusion can't threaten a square. However, if the target is reacting to the illusion as if it were a threat, then I'd probably allow it, as it makes sense. You could, of course, just as easily summon a monster to the same effect, and get actual real attacks against the target as well. If, however, the wizard made Conjuration one of their prohibited schools...what the hell's wrong with them?! It's the most useful school in the game! Still, if they felt they had to, they can use Shadow Conjuration to the same effect.

Q. What's the effect of flour on invisibility?

A. Far less than you'd expect. The flour that lands on the invisible creature becomes invisible as well, just as any unattended item picked up by an invisible creature does (if items upon the character didn't disappear, they'd have to run around naked in order to be invisible). True, if there was flour in the air you might be able to see him, but the flour would have to literally fill the air, and even then it'd be difficult to see the hole in drifting flour for the same reason it's difficult to see through fog. Your vision is partially blocked by the flour itself. Instead, I'd either dump paint in the area, and look for the footprints, or if you want something re-usable, have someone turn on a decanter of endless water (which is useful on its own anyway) and look for the splashes and empty spaces on the floor.

Q. Can lycanthropsy if transmitted through kisses?

A. Lycanthropsy is a curse, not a disease. You can only get the curse of lycanthropsy through a bite. Kissing that were-rat probably will get you filth fever though.

Q. What happens when a mule is bitten by a lycanthrope?

A. Nothing, lycanthropsy only affects humanoids and giants.

Q. Do owlbears excrete like owls or like bears?

A. That's a tricky one, but I'd say that owlbears are far more similar to bears than owls, especially the part of their body that houses their digestive system, so I'd say they excrete like a bear. If you want more proof, we can look at the world's only real life bird/mammal hybrid, the duck billed platypus, and they excrete like mammals, not birds.

Q. Can you drown in a vat filled with healing potion?

A. Who the hell keeps vats full of healing potions? Anyway, you most certainly can. Drowning is an effect that replaces your hit points, regardless of any healing or modifiers (such as rage or aid), so healing potions won't help. Say your hit points are at 0, you get healed and they're above 0, but next round, regardless of what your hit points are, your new hit point total is -1, and the even if you heal that, next round you're dead. Healing does not interrupt or reset the three round drowning process, which is 0, -1, and then dead.

Q. Can invisible stalkers see each other?

A. No, I guess they can't. They certainly would need a special ability to be able to do so. The hilarious possibilities are endless! Just imagine a group of player characters summoning two invisible stalkers to defend them from monsters. They come into existence, win initiative, and then suddenly a loud thud and crash erupts in the center of the dungeon, as the two stalkers run into each other and topple to the floor. That's enough to scar a player for life.

Q. If a character dies while wearing a ring of invisibility, are they invisible forever?

A. Who said that wearing a ring of invisibility makes you permanently invisible? A ring of invisibility has to be activated in order to gain the benefits from it, and then you receive the benefits as per the spell, which is 1 minute of invisibility per level of the caster, which is 3rd, so activating a ring of invisibility only makes you invisible for 3 minutes. Afterwards, you'd have to activate the ring again. If you read the description of magic rings, all magic rings are either use activated or continuous, not both. It becomes a little uncertain as to whether the invisibility stops immediately upon death or if it lasts the full 3 minutes, but I'd say it stops immediately. Even though objects, like dead bodies, can be effected by the spell invisibility, the ring only works for its 'wearer' and a corpse, from a technical standpoint, can't wear anything, so the effect ceases as soon as the dead body stops 'wearing' the object. If you continued to gain the effect of invisibility even after the ring was taken off, then you could split a single ring between an entire group, or use the ring, take it off and replace it with another one and still get the benefit of invisibility for three minutes. The game would be imbalanced if you could gain the benefit of a use activated magic ring without actually wearing it.

Q. If you completely surround a vampire with water elementals, are they trapped, since they can't pass through running water?

A. Yes, but not because they count as running water. Vampires can't pass through water elementals because nothing can normally pass through a water elemental. They're solid. If a water elemental wasn't a solid, cohesive object, then you wouldn't be able to hurt them with weapons, and they'd immediately fall apart and die. Elementals are made from the elements, but that doesn't mean they aren't solid, in their own fashion. This is all magic, of course, so it's not entirely going to make sense, but think of it this way: human beings are about 98% water. Can we be used to put fires out? Would a vampire be stopped by a running group of people (who are essentially made of water)? Of course not. Just because a water elemental is created from water, doesn't mean it's the same thing as water.

Q. If you polymorph cows into stone, build them into a castle, and then dispel the spell, turning them back into cows, what damage would they do when they land on the people inside the castle?

A. The only way you could change cows into stone is either through the spell flesh to stone, or polymorph any object. Flesh to stone can't be dispelled, as it's an instantaneous effect, so those cows would have to be turned back one at a time with the stone to flesh spell, giving everyone plenty of time to escape. Going by the chart in the book, if you use polymorph any object, then they'd only be turned into rocks for 20 minutes, nowhere long enough to build them into a castle. Isn't there an easier way to kill these guys? Couldn't you just like, poison them or something? If you must, what I'd do is use polymorph any object to change giant round boulders into perfectly square boulders, so when they're dispelled, they'll all slip off each other and crash down on everyone inside. If your heart is set on using cows, then I'd make a variation on the theme and polymorph the cows into mice/cats/rabbits/birds or a similar tiny animal (you can even use baleful polymorph for that) lure your enemies into the room, shut the door behind them and then cast dispel through a small opening in the the door. The resulting cow expansion should be more than enough to do in the troublesome party. As for damage, I'm either calculate it by weight, listed through the telekinesis spell, or consider it the equivalent of a giant falling block trap, 20d6.

Q. Can you have lich phylacteries inside golems?

A. Of course! I've even had lich phylacteries hidden inside the bodies of living bodyguards of the lich. If you want to be mean, you could even hide it deep inside the body of a helpless good person or creature (like a small gold dragon) and then set them loose. The heroes want to destroy the phylactery? They're going to have to cut open that good person/creature to get it.

Q. What would an appropriate mount be for an Illithid Paladin of Tyranny?

A. Mind flayers enslave just about everything, so the sky's pretty much the limit, but if you wanted something appropriate to the underdark, then giant lizards are usually the mount of choice down there.

Q. If a unicorn gains levels in paladin, what would the mount they summoned be?

A. Unicorns usually don't progress in class level, but in Hit dice instead. Still, if a unicorn did manage to progress in the class of paladin, I'd imagine they'd summon a standard warhorse (or its equivalent for the environment that the unicorn is in), but that mount is going to be really confused when they arrive. There's no chance of the unicorn riding it, but it would be a devoted companion to the unicorn, much like a cohort. In fact, it'd be a mount in all regards except for the fact that the unicorn wouldn't be riding it.

Q. Could an intelligent animal be made into a familiar?

A. There are no intelligent animals. By definition, an animal cannot have an intelligence above 2, is not capable of language, reasoning, morality or complex thought. By becoming intelligent, they no longer qualify as animals. Even if they somehow could, only unmodified animals can become familiars.

Q. If a druid restricts themselves to only ape forms, and they get a special ability that gives their alternate forms flight, what shape can they use and still be restricted to ape forms?

A. Flying monkeys. It's a fantasy world, make it up.

Q. If a person transforms into an ooze in a way that they attain all the special qualities/abilities of the form, and they're split in two by a slashing weapon, what happens?

A. Well, either they split or they don't. If the DM decides they can't split, because that'd be forcing their mind to be in two places at once, then that's the end of that. If they do, then I'd assume it falls under the characteristics of the spell 'Polymorph Any Object' which states that damage taken by the new form that can result in injury, or change through physical force, can result in injury or death of the polymorphed creature. So if their body is split in two while in that alternate form, then their normal body is split in two as well. An ooze can survive while split in two. A person cannot. They're dead.

(My sister, Amber, would like to offer her counter idea, where the transformed person becomes two smaller people, each with half of the original person's mass and experience. And that's where halflings came from. That cracked me up.)

Q. Can centaurs climb walls and sheer cliffs?

A. Centaurs don't make much sense in general, I'm afraid. They're large, but their human half is medium sized. They have incredible strength, but logically that strength is in the horse half, that isn't used for swinging weapons. I prefer to imagine centaurs as they were in...ahem, well that story about the kid who goes to the wizard school. Those centaurs had proportionally larger human halves, which are closer to the size of ogres. That makes a lot more sense. Going back to the question, there's no reason they couldn't climb up a sheer wall or cliff, it'd just be very very hard. They probably could use their front legs to help them climb, as if they were normal human legs (if a satyr can do it, a centaur should be able to as well), but the rear half of their body would simply hang off, pulling them downwards. Personally, I'd take their weight, subtract the average human weight for their relative height/gender, and force them to consider themselves encumbered with that much extra weight upon themselves. It might be difficult, but if a man with no legs can climb, then an incredibly strong centaur should be able to as well.

Q. If Demogorgon and Asmodeus had an all out fight, who would win?

A. Every good aligned plane.

Q. Is dragon meat edible?

A. Humans eat everything they possibly can in order to survive, so since they don't (as it isn't listed in any of the rules), then they can't. It's not poisonous or else it'd be listed as a poison. More likely, it's just indigestible, like mud. Of course white chocolate is indigestible and people eat that, so it's probably both inedible and revolting to boot. (Let's face it, you don't see many real world recipes for cooking lizard)

Q. Could you store a hundred 1st level wizards in bags of holding, with bottles of air, to help you cast epic spells?

A. Possibly, but how would you ever convince them to go along with it? This goes far beyond the normal call of spell fees and I could see them each charging at least 50-100 gold for every day carted around like that. Even then, the cost of all the bags of holding and bottles of air would be tremendous, and even if ALL that worked, how are you going to keep them alive? 1st level characters tend not to last long in epic situations. Still, it's most likely possible, just not practical.

Q. What is the break DC of the planet?

A. The planet is not an object that can be targeted, but even if you managed to shatter it, it would just pull back into the same place because of the sun's gravitational pull. If you were large and powerful enough to circumvent gravity and treat the earth as a single object...then that would require an entirely new rule system to facilitate.

Q. If you moved the Tarrasque back in time to fight itself, what would happen?

A. Time travel isn't possible in D&D. Even spells like Time Stop merely slow down time to the point that it appears that time isn't moving. I imagine if it were possible, there would be a LOT of the traditional time travel problems (killing your ancient ancestors, spreading diseases, becoming your own grandparent, stepping on butterflies, etc, etc). In a best case scenario, I think the two Tarrasques would just beat each other until they got bored, or until one fell unconscious and the other left.

Q. Could you use a ring of 3 wishes to give the Tarrasque a gender, create a second Tarrasque of the opposite gender and then use the third wish to get them to mate?

A. Wishes are mostly up to the discretion of the DM, but let's face it, if you could wish a Tarrasque into existence, then every epic wizard would have a Tarrasque army following them! I doubt that even the spell wish could permanently change the Tarrasque, but it isn't completely unreasonable to assume you could use a wish to give the Tarrasque a gender and get it to mate, but to create a copy of a legendary monster out of thin air with a single wish is just ridiculous. Besides, if you could create a Tarrasque out of thin air with a wish, you wouldn't need to get them to mate. You'd just need wishes.

Q. Could you use the Rod of Rulership to force the Tarrasque to eat a thousand Icy scroll sheets at once, doing 6d6 damage apiece?

A. The rod of rulership doesn't give you complete control of the target, it just makes them completely devoted to you, unless you give them a command that is contrary to their nature. The Tarrasque's nature is to kill everything around it. The first time you order it not to kill you, the spell will be broken. It might be possible to direct its killing with a rod of rulership (kill them first, then get to me later), but if you want to drop it with icy sheets (which is a very good idea), I'd instead have all the icy sheets carried by a target (an animal, or a brave adventurer who's been promised a resurrection) and trick the Tarrasque into swallowing that target whole. That'd do it.

Q. Would suffocation, starvation, orb of annihilation, etc. harm the Tarrasque?

A. The Tarrasque, by the words in the monster manual, is immune to all death effects and permanent injuries. Although it doesn't list every single thing it's immune to, it's quite clear that it's immune to effects that immediately cause death, or permanent injuries. The monster manual makes it very clear that the Tarrasque cannot be killed or permanently altered in any way, save for a wish spell when it's driven into unconsciousness. This means that the Tarrasque is immune to all effects that cause instant death, including orb of annihilation, suffocation and starvation. If that isn't enough to satisfy you, then face facts: if any of those things could have killed the Tarrasque, then they would have done so already. The Tarrasque is a legendary unkillable monster, fought throughout time, and there are relatively low level spells, and much easier monsters, that cause suffocation upon targets. If suffocation could drop the Tarrasque to unconsciousness then it would have done so, and the same goes for starvation, and even powerful magic effects. The Tarrasque is immune to all death effects, and anything that causes death for any reason besides damage is a death effect. Still, the Tarrasque isn't immune to teleportation or mind control, so what I'd do is cast polymorph any object on him to turn him into a small rock or something (it'll take several tries and only last 20 minutes, but it'll be worth it), put the rock in a bag of holding, and then stab the bag. The bag will be destroyed, but all the contents will be lost forever (as per the item description). Goodbye Tarrasque. Or better yet, gate or plane shift with the small rock to the plane you like least, drop it on the ground and plane shift back/gate back. That plane will officially have a new hobby in about twenty minutes or so.

Q. The Tarrasque is a woman, right?

A. The Tarrasque has no gender. In fact, it fits under absolutely no other category than Tarrasque.

Q. In the second edition monster's manual, it states under the description of the Tarrasque that creatures with a negative Thaco can only be hit by rolling a 1. What does that mean?

A. You got me. I never understood second edition.

Well, thank you for taking the time to read this, and again, thank you for producing an update to Dungeons and Dragons. We, who spend far too much time thinking about it, thank you.

Take care,

Robert Freeman