Friday, November 16, 2018

The View Retrospective: Kathy's Bardic Circle

Scan by Jeremy Grayson. Originally published in The View From Valehaven, 2nd Ed, Volume 3, Issue 5. June 2006.

Thursday, November 15, 2018

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Why I Want to Go -Order of the List Invitational 7

by Keith "Saegan" Cronyn

Why do you play the game? What lured you in?

Did your parents bring you in? Were you a theater kid that liked Lord of the Rings, and the idea of improv got you? Were you a D&D kid that just wanted to take it a step further? Maybe you had some friends that said they loved it, and you just went along for the ride?

I don't know. But I'll tell you how it happened for me. When I was a young 4th grader, my dad brought me along one night to play Shadowrun with his coworkers. He promised me characters and adventure, and roles. Elves and machine guns. Ninjas and dragons. You know, the good stuff. My wild imagination lead me to believe we’d be playing in some warehouse, that was set up in a way that was not unlike a paintball course.

Imagine my surprise when we sat around a table, rolling dice.  And yet, there was love. I fell in love with role playing. Absolutely, unabashedly, unrelentingly in love. It was formative. And I've never turned back.

Later, perhaps sixth grade, I discovered LARPing because my best friend’s uncle was dating someone that played the Realms. He showed us the swords, and we spent hours in the backyard hitting each other, with little concept of the rules.

Later yet, high school, my friends played Realms in their backyard, running mini quests almost every weekend, until eventually those mini quests lead to real events.

I took some time off for college, but then after that I felt a longing to adventure, and I found my way back to the Realms.

All stemming from that one seed of imagination that was some weird paintball warehouse in a child's mind. A seed that has grown into a savage hunger for combat and adventure.

What's more, I look for the challenge. I look for the moments where I feel like I could win, but there is a strong likelihood that I'll get beaten. The best fights for me are the fights I have no business winning. The rough part being the more fights like that I win, the harder it is to find them.

Enter Order of the List. Now while this has been a wild tangent, the truth of it is, it's all lead up to why I want to go to Order of the List. The answer; it's the best place for me as a fighter to go if I want to challenge myself. It's the best place to go if I want to spend my day getting roughed up, beat down, and challenge myself to stand back up again.

It's the best place to go to see the pinnacle of fighting in our game. It's the best place to go to learn how marshaling should be done. For the competitors of order of the list it's the culmination of a seasons worth of hard work, fighting in tournaments, going to practices, making weapons, and doing whatever it takes to hone their skill.

Why should you go if you're not one of those competitors? Well you can watch. You can gamble on them. There are newbie tournaments to participate in if you're new enough to the game. This year the order is doing a donation bucket for Wreaths Across America, which they intend to match donations too.

I hope to see you there, cheering on your favorite fighting, filling the stands. It should be a good day.

See you on the field

Keith “Saegan” Cronyn

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

From the Editor's Desk - Welcome to View Staff!

The View staff would like to welcome three new editors - Renee Booke, Ryan Welch, and Hannah Blood-  to our ranks!

Renee "Kindrianna" Booke
A talented writer, Renee has made her mark on the View as a contributor through her regular submissions of poetry and fiction. Always well-received, her pieces bring a creative and dramatic touch to the body of View content and are a refreshing change of pace from our regular features. Hailing from a prominent nation of role-players and questers, Renee will bring a unique voice to the staff and we are excited to work with her.

Photo by Casey Lemay

Ryan "Orion" Welch
As a regular contributor to our "What You Missed" series, Ryan has demonstrated his talent for writing and attention to detail time and again in the quality of his work. Descriptive and complete, his pieces are always a good read. His gathering and self-publishing of monthly rumors is a great initiative and important service to the community. As an active quester and member of a storied nation, Ryan brings his own perspective to the staff and we are eager to see him grow in his new role.

Photo by Dave Harvill

Hannah "Nhadala" Blood
Having contributed a variety of submissions over the years, Hannah has consistently demonstrated her ability to produce well-thought out and well-written work that time and again proves to be popular with all of our readers. As someone possessed of a strong voice, we look forward to her perspective in our regular features such as "Ask the Editor" and we look forward to the many other ways her ideas and initiative will add to the View.

Photo by Casey Lemay

The support of each of  these people has been invaluable to the View in the last few years and it brings us great pleasure to welcome them aboard!
- Jen, Lani, Keith, and Kelly

Friday, November 9, 2018

On This Day

Once again on this Flashback Friday lets take a look at what was published on the View in years past on this date!

2015 - An Atypical View

The Silent Scribbler took on the idea of monster weapon immunity, pulling no punches... er... slashes.

2012 - Happenings on the Emerald Path

Nuptials, birth announcements, and more important happenings within our community were announced this day.

2011 - What You Missed - Feast of Blackwood II

To say you missed just a little bit of snow would be an understatement. Here are a few pictures from the event.

Thursday, November 8, 2018

What You Missed - Pick Up Realms II

by Ed "Tuilli" Drummond

*a letter is intercepted on the road to Voraniss*

I hope this finds you in good times, but I bring interesting news.

I recently spent some time in Ivory, where a new game was afoot.  The Terrific Triumvirate Tournament was going on, which was a particularly advanced game of “put the ball in the hole”.  For some reason, while we were playing, our power varied from my usual, I was able to swing a 5’, but also had some very rapid regeneration at other times.  That said, while in the middle of this tournament, we were ambushed mid-game by a pair of werewolves. They seemed to be beyond reach, reason or speech. Someone managed to identify them as “super-werewolves”, but I’m unsure as to that meaning. There appears to be some flavor of stone that has been changing people into other things like said wolves.

I don’t sense forces like that of the Night Pack, but I fear this new force could be dangerous. Some of those ambushed had blood drawn by the attackers, so I worry about that as well…

I should be to your lands in a few days, I sent this message ahead to warn you.


We all had a pretty solid time playing what felt like a pretty fleshed out game.  Felt somewhat similar to Jugging, only with spells.  The sudden ambush of werewolves was a great touch.  Chim casino was there, the Noodle emporium, solid variety of puzzles about as well.  All in all a good, solid event, good use of the space and glad kiddo and I were able to make it!  Thanks to Becky and Janna for a fun day!

Wednesday, November 7, 2018

From Katasha's Kitchen

Grimloch Beef Pho (6 servings):

Served at Feast of Grimloch
Recipe created by Tanja "Katasha" Johnson

(2) beef shanks and/ or oxtail (approx 2 1⁄4 pounds total)
(3) onions, halved
(1) 6” piece of ginger, halved lengthwise
(1) head garlic, halved crosswise
(2T) veg. Oil
Kosher Salt + 1 1⁄2 T
(1T) Coriander Seeds
(6) Whole Cloves
(2) Cinnamon Sticks
(1T) Sugar
(2) Star Anise Pods
(1T) Fennel Seeds
(3) Qrts Low Sodium Beef Broth
(3) Qrts Water
(1/3C) Fish Sauce

Additions When Serving:
1⁄2 lb very thinly sliced (against the grain) brisket/flank steak
1 lb Rice Noodles
1 bunch thin sliced green onions
Basil leaves, torn in small pieces (Thai Basil if available)
4C Bean Sprouts
Hoisin Sauce
Sriracha Sauce

Preheat oven to 450 Degrees. Toss shanks, onions, ginger and garlic with oil and spread in a single
layer on a sheet pan. Sprinkle salt lightly over the pan. Roast 30 min, flip over items after 15 minutes.
While roasting items in the oven, toast the Cinnamon Sticks and Anise pods in a small pan over
medium heat for 4-5 minutes.

Transfer roasted items from oven and stovetop to a large stock pot. Add beef broth, water, broth spices,
fish sauce and sugar. Bring pot to a boil over medium high heat then reduce heat to a simmer. Simmer
1 1⁄2 -2 hours, skimming foam and oil from the top if it gathers.
Remove from heat, strain broth in a very fine mesh strainer. Remove shank beef etc. pieces and shred
beef. Add shredded beef back to broth. Broth can be made up to 2 days ahead of serving. Broth also
can be frozen for future use (thaw overnight in refrigerator before reheating).

Cook noodles according to package directions. Run noodles under cold water after cooked. Place
desired amount of raw beef, basil leaves, noodles, sprouts and green onions in each serving bowl. Pour
hot broth over the items in bowl. Add hoisin sauce and sriracha sauce to taste.

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

What You Missed - Carnage 21

by Jon “Trent” Jessop

First a little bit about Carnage. Carnage is a gaming convention held annually for the past 21 years, most recently at the Killington Grand Resort in Vermont. Carnage attracts gamers from across the country, and includes prestigious championships for many board games and war games. Estimates for this year were 1200 people spread across multiple large rooms, in multiple buildings. This year felt full, it felt busy, but it never felt too crowded. As you can imagine, not many people are into playing tabletop games outdoors, which gives us a lot of freedom to use the paths and trails. (Disclaimer, this year, due to snow, rain and severe winds, we stayed indoors as much as possible,especially during Saturday afternoon). Carnage has a wide age range, from the youngest of children playing board games to the older folks playing war games with minis they've had for decades.

This year's concept for the convention was Space/Sci-Fi, so what could we possibly do to fit Realms into that theme? We had an idea but first, we needed to recruit. We drew people in with our fancy garb (OK,  mostly Sara (Zarine)'s fancy garb), fliers that we distributed in various gaming rooms bumping into old friends and making new ones, great looking poster boards at our info table that was staffed by Andy Disbrow and Alan Skumautz, and our great crew that was willing to basically do whatever the con-goers asked, be it fighting displays between seasoned combatants, showing them the importance of support casters (Zarine, in her fancy garb – I don't how she didn't fall and die) and showing the new people the basics of our combat system, and magic system.

Eventually we had a well trained crew, The Green Mountain Militia, a good group of folks that were ready to defend Carnage from all enemies. Which, low and behold, was a good thing, because while we were on a break a portal or gate of some sort had opened and Carnage was being infiltrated by what I can only imagine were scouts testing our defenses for a major invasion.

It was time for the Green Mountain Militia to put all their training to good use, and prevent that from happening.

There are many stories that will be told about the time fighting the aliens, I'm sure much of it that I didn't see. (Seriously, this Con is huge). But some highlights were fighting up the stairs in the hotel lobby, a plant being knocked off a table in the hotel lobby and the hotel staff not getting mad (thank you hotel staff), two families adventuring as families, flanking the Aliens using the hotel elevator, Eric Marques possibly falling into a storm drain to stop a kid from falling into the storm drain, and the best story to tell of all, a bunch of smiling kids.

At the end, the Green Mountain Militia drove back the Aliens, closed their gate permanently (but not before it summoned an alien monster that was much tougher then the scouts) and saved the weekend at  Carnage. As I thanked them for their hard work and service to Realms I was told that they didn't work for free and that they should get paid. So not only did they have a great time, but they left with heavier pockets and many memories. (and also website addresses and Facebook groups to maybe get them to come to more events.)

Friday, November 2, 2018

On This Day

Once again on this Flashback Friday lets take a look at what was published on the View in years past on this date!

2016 - Sorcery 101

The third part of Gerry Chartier's primer to casting Sorcery magic ran on this day, along with links to the first two installments of the series. This issue discussed different options for Sorcerer builds.

2012 - Realms Pick-Up Lines

If you're in the mood to groan a lot, take a look at this humorous and punny post.

Thursday, November 1, 2018

What You Missed - Black & White 2018

by Katie "Hildegard" Cannamela

Captain's Log - October 27th, 1018

I was wet in the most unpleasant of ways. A cold kind of wet. A sweaty cold kind of wet.  I'm an inexperienced captain who forgot to properly waterproof her boots for the cold wet season. Yuck.

You know, I've never done much adventuring at Black and White. Not since the first time I attended, before I got my ship and crew, when I was Elouan's tagalong, got cocky with a sword I didn't know how to wield, and was killed by a silver-masked bandit. I've been a coward since then.

However, it's been several years and many more adventures. I no longer wield a sword, but my miniature lions. I have a ship and a crew, and even brought along a potential new member. I was ready for adventure. I was even ready and willing to face Blue. I was ready to show my friends and allies that I am not Hildegard the Cowardly, but Hildegard the Captain!

And then the rain.

Avoiding cold rain is not cowardly. Avoiding cold rain means avoiding potential sickness, and avoiding unhappy lions with quickly matting fur. Unhappy lions can be more dangerous than fever sometimes. Even if they're miniature.

Once we arrived, we immediately set up space in a corner of the tavern. Food was already coming out, so we sampled. It was amazing. My favorite course was probably the tomato soup and mini grilled cheese sandwiches. Those hit the spot and chased away the chill. Much appreciation to the kitchen staff!

Knowing that, once again, I wouldn't be outside adventuring, I wandered in the tavern. There were shops, tables for gambling, and the raffle tables. After the cold I experienced, I had my eye on the fuzzy socks, which someone else won, and the Rhiassa-red blanket, which my new potential crew member Benadetta won.

Order of the List happened, though I didn't watch any of the matches. Major kudos to those who braved the weather to compete.

Blue appeared, as per usual. I heard rumors that Thoril wanted to absorb his power somehow. So, once again we sigh and say a resigned, "What the heck, Thoril." Except without the "heck." But you know how rumors are.

There was also a meeting about what to do about Garm. I didn't attend that meeting, as I worship no gods.

New adventurers were called to go into the Dreaming to find out about a missing village. I opted to pass, but Elouan followed Kara and witnessed the adventure.

Court was held. The Order of the peacock announced next season's color (scarlet) and Elowen is now being mentored by Hyger.

The knights of Eagle's Rook knighted Sir Iawen (hooray!)

The Lunar Aegis, a knighthood for/by women, presented themselves and their intent.

Lako of Gau Dring announced he was stepping down as lord, ceding power to Consulars Kyara and Enlon.

Rosetta was fostered into the Chimeron family,  and Tyrvanel was made a full member of Chimeron.

This year, the general raffle was held before dancing. The black ticket one was held after, but my companions and I decided to leave early, as we all felt the effects of the cold.

Well, I need to end this log abruptly. Napoleon was trying to be a magic missile instead of an implement and spilled ink everywhere, now he, Leofy, and Cleopatra all need baths.

And now we sail again.

~ Captain Hildegard, squire of Rhiassa, and her lions Napoleon, Leofy, and Cleopatra.