Wednesday, March 31, 2021

Animal Companion Competition: Malcom Mallard Interview

 Best in Show Interview

This is Malcom Mallard: the Best in Show Animal Companion at this year’s Animal Companion Competition! Get to know this fabulous waterfowl a little better this week as we dive into his background and his goals for the future. 

  1. How did you meet your human companion Bogen?

How we met was a rather unusual affair. These two fellows were wandering around the woods. They didn't look like hunters, so I just waddled past, at which point they called out to me. They said they were looking for interesting animals to pair with adventurers. I was very skeptical of this at first as ducks are hunted animals, and said no thank you and started to walk away. And normally, humanoids just hear a quack and nothing more, but they seemed to understand. After a while of talking, they convinced me that adopting an adventurer would not be a complete waste of time, so I followed along. At which point, the Realm's Outfitters Shop hosted me and brought me around to meet adventurers. At one event, about a year and a half ago, this person named Cressida was introducing me to adventurers at one of these gatherings, and she introduced me to Bogen. I could see that this one was a particularly hopeless case that needed some care, so I agreed to adopt him. Bogen then paid off my debt to Realm's Outfitters (bread and lodging aren't free) and I went off with him. I have been his animal companion ever since.

  1. What is your best personal questing story?

Once Bogen and I were on a scouting mission to find a missing rank and file militia group, and instead of finding what ended up being a pair of trolls, they found us first. Or rather, They found Bogen. They didn't notice me in his pouch. I keep a vigilant watch on the situation as they killed Bogen and dragged him to their cave. I wasn’t overly concerned because at the time I knew he had regeneration, and when he was better, I subtly informed him of the situation and he then played dead. Trolls are not renowned for their intelligence, and these fit that bill, so our ruse worked. And when they dumped Bogen in a pile of bodies and set out to look for more people to kill, Bogen quietly got up and was able to dispatch the Trolls before either could raise the other. 

It turns out they were gathering people for a ransom, but Bogen was able to get everyone back to safety. 

I fear to think of what would have happened to him if I wasn't there. If I didn't prevent him from immediately berserking upon waking up, he would have most likely died again, which depending on the time frame of the ransom and rescue, could have easily left him to his true death.

  1. What do you like best about adventuring?

Honestly, I enjoy watching the events that later become stories firsthand. Seeing the defeat of the OOP1 (or the wretched conga line as Bogen calls it) and the live tournaments Bogen has gone to are very fun and much better than hearing about it afterward.

  1. Do you have any personal adventuring goals?

I want one day, there to be a key in a high-up hole too small for the humanoids to reach. Because I can fly and am small so therefore I could get it. Being an integral part of a quest would be quite a mark of prestige. Imagine all the bread I could get.

  1. What are some of your favorite things? (Food? Color? Bardic Style? Etc.)

For food, it is definitely a good Hawaiian bread with a honey butter spread. I am partial to the color blue, but as Bogen is a green person, Anything in the grue color range suffices. Other than that, I appreciate clever stories especially when they include good wordplay.

  1. What is something (or things) you have always wanted to do or try?

I would like to accompany Bogen on a mountain climb. As I am smaller than some other ducks, I cannot reach the same altitude as them, but it would be good fun to get up that high and glide around.

  1. Why did you enter the Animal Companion Competition?

Bogen was doing farm work in the Chimerion Militia Farming Commune and I frankly was bored. This did turn out to be great fun.

  1. What have you learned about yourself and Bogen while competing? 

I learned that while I prefer not to get dirty in combat and fighting, I do enjoy the adrenaline of these sorts of things. I learned that Bogen while having a relatively small skill set focused on survival and combat, along with some academia, but has friends that can do all sorts of things, which is very useful. His stitching is functional but awful. But he was able to work with Ypnn to get something nice.

  1. What advice do you have for other animal companions who are looking to follow in your footsteps?

Don't let your humanoid be an absolute master, instead work as partners. There are things Bogen is good at like combat and puzzles. And there are things I am good at like having a healthy amount of common sense and situational awareness. If I didn't shut him down occasionally, we both would be worse for wear.

  1.   Is there anything else you would like to say while you have the chance?

Always use the oxford comma when writing in the common tongue, Cake is too dense to be bread but is still tasty, and rolls should be soft, not hard. Thank you to all who cheered me on, and to all of my competitors, you were amazing, and truly any of us could have won.

Tuesday, March 30, 2021

The View's Gauntlet Showdown, with Jason

by Jason "Aeston" Rosa

I was very appreciative of everyone's suggestions for a game to transform into a war maneuver. I thought about a lot of them for a while and while I'm only going to publish one of them right now, some of them were inspiring enough that I reserve the right to return to them and write more tournaments. But in the end I decided to try and tackle:

Ashenmarkian Live Uno

Suggestion by Nick Quadrini


This war maneuver is for up to four teams. Each player on each team must choose one of the following weapon combinations and may break restriction in order to do so. Single Short, Mixed Florentine, Sword & Shield, Hand and a Half. No armor or spells are allowed in this tournament. Players may not switch weapon combos during this tournament.

This tournament requires four colors of bead necklaces (the mardi-gras type that we use for Luck of the Draw at QoH). Red, blue, green, and yellow. These colored necklaces must be distributed as evenly as possible, one per team member on each team.

Each team must have one member who is the commander. The commander does not fight in the tournament but gives commands to the other players. They do fight at the beginning of the tournament to determine the order of play.

Each team creates a line around one side of the tournament field. These lines are not queues, all players should be side-by-side facing the interior or the field. Next to each team is a sitting area where players will sit in a queue order. The player who sits first is at the beginning of the queue, and others sit down behind them as they move to the sitting area.


The commander of each team moves to the center of the field and fight against each other in a melee. The winning commander gets to decide which team makes the first move (it does not have to be their own). The order of teams afterwards is clockwise around the field. The commanders step back behind the lines.

From this point onward combat does not stop, the field is live though the only players that can participate in combat are those that have been released onto the field, or “played”.

The commander who goes first picks any of their team members to “play” by sending them into the middle of the field. Whenever a player enters the field they should loudly announce their color and weapon combo. Play then continues clockwise to the next team. A marshal starts a five-second count, by the end of which the next commander must choose a player to send onto the field. That player must have either the same colored necklace or the same weapon combo as the player who was sent by the previous team. As soon as that player is announced it is the turn of the next commander and a new five second count begins for them.

If it is a commander’s turn and they still have a player on the field during the entire five-second count, they may not send a second player onto the field. If their player dies during the five second count they have until the end of the count to send in another player. If a commander’s turn is skipped the next commander will then begin their five second count. When a commander is sending a player on the field they are always matching the color or the weapons of the last player that entered the field, regardless of what team they were on.

If a commander must send a person onto the field and they do not have a player that matches either the color or the weapon they must have people in their sitting area enter back into their standing line, one by one, until they have a player they can send in. This temporarily pauses the five-second count until it is completed.

When players die, multiple things occur.

A player who is killed returns to their team and stands back among the other members of their team. This player may be sent in again whenever their color or weapon combo comes up. A player who makes a kill also leaves the field. They retire to the sitting area of their team and sit in queue order.

The reverse rule: The reverse rule occurs whenever there is a simultaneous kill (be it two players killing one another or two players simultaneously landing a kill shot at the same time). All players who were involved in the kill (be it killers or killed) return to standing in their lines, no one sits down. Additionally, the order of play immediately reverses after the current five-second count. If it is clockwise it becomes counterclockwise and vise versa.

The uno rule: When a commander has only one player remaining and that player is sent onto the field, the commander must yell UNO! before that player either dies or makes a kill. If the player dies or makes a kill before the commander yells UNO the first five players in the sitting queue must enter back into the standing line.

A team wins the game the moment that their final player enters their sitting area.

Variant idea: The number of colors of necklaces should be reduced to equal the number of teams that are involved in the tournament, this will make the tournament move more quickly for a smaller number of teams.


Final thoughts: Of course this was fun to design and while I'm sure there are deficiencies that would be revealed through play testing, I am confident that it would be an enjoyable, competitive, and fast-paced tournament to engage in. Hopefully Ashenmark decides to run it at a future event!

Lastly, If you or someone you know might be feeling inspired to take on a gauntlet challenge of your own, reach out to any View Staff member, and we can help you get the process started! 

Monday, March 29, 2021

Meme Monday

 by the Meme Team

Friday, March 26, 2021

Home Questing: Task 25

  by Christopher "Janus" Donnelly

It has been known that I have made a mistake or two in the past (a major one being that I thought this would be done by now) so I made a game about me being wrong called “Everything Janus Says is Wrong”.  I told our five participants this week various trivia statements which they had to correct beginning with the phrase “um...actually.”  I hope you have fun playing along and watching from home.

The final scores, after a point for participation are:

See you next week with a new quest!

Thursday, March 25, 2021

The Cry of Midgard Week 2

Welcome back to Rhiassa Games Presents: Echoes of Ragnarok: The Cry of Midgard

Thank you all for your participation in the poll last week. I'm glad several people typed in their own commands and I appreciate the attempts at frivolity that were in there. Side note, this is an Apple IIgs so ctrl-alt-delete won't do anything, there isn't even an alt key in the first place.

Anyway, I decided to allow four input commands this week because it will help move the story along. Here is what you all input and what happened with each of them.

And as promised, here is your much more interesting status screen:

So there we go. Since you've already been to the area to the North, if you so choose you can make two movement actions at once in one command this week: so N then N, N then E, or N then W. Like last week, go ahead and vote for/enter in whatever commands you want in the poll on Facebook. Remember, you can vote for as many commands as you like.

Wednesday, March 24, 2021

Morning Coffee Break

Got your morning cup of coffee and a few minutes? Great! We're trying out a new feature at the View - we're going to be asking a series of questions and we want to know your answers! The question is posted below. So while you sip your morning beverage of choice, ruminate on this one:

Can you remember a story, be it comedy or tragedy, that involves getting lost or having car trouble on the way to an event? Especially during or even before the time of MapQuest?

Head on back to the Facebook post and let us know in the comments?

Tuesday, March 23, 2021

Animal Companion Competition Results!

 Animal Companion Competition (ACC)

First, thank you to all of our amazing competitors! You made us laugh and brought smiles to our faces every week. You were stealthy, strong, surprising, stylish and you showed off some amazing talents! Thank you for giving it your all and for stepping up to compete in this new competition.

The competition was fierce and the votes were insanely close, but the winner, by one vote is…

Malcom Mallard!!!

Congratulations Malcom on your newly earned title of Best in Show!  We invite all our viewers to tune in next week to learn more about this sassy duck with a more in depth victory interview.  

Monday, March 22, 2021

Meme Monday

 by the Meme Team

Friday, March 19, 2021

Home Questing: The 26th Task

by Christopher "Janus" Donnelly

Here is the form for your more impressive nature-based summoning circle:

If you would prefer to send something to me directly rather than uploading to youtube or some other video hosting site, please email it to



Hi all, Janus here and welcome to home questing.  This week I’m asking you to build the most impressive nature-based summoning circle. You have until next friday at noon, and your time starts now.



Thursday, March 18, 2021

The Cry of Midgard Week 1


Hello all. Welcome to a new View from Valehaven feature, The Cry of Midgard.

This game plays like a classic adventure game from the 80's like Zork, Adventureland, and Transylvania. The game presents you with information and you enter commands by typing them in. In this case, you will all be playing it together by typing commands into a Facebook poll and voting on your favorites.

Each week you'll be presented with the next screen in the game as you move around from area to area. You can choose to enter a command into the poll or just vote for commands that someone else entered.

After the poll closes, I will pick up to three of the highest voted commands to execute. These commands cannot directly conflict with one another and I will execute them in the most logical order. For example, if the results of the poll are as follows:

  • 1st place: Go north 
  • 2nd place: Pick up rope
  • 3rd place: Go south
  • 4th place: Investigate tree
  • 5th place: Complain loudly
I would resolve the commands in this order.
  • 1st: Investigate tree (makes more sense to look at things before you do things)
  • 2nd: Pick up rope
  • 3rd: Go north (leaving the screen will normally be the last thing on the list, if it happens at all)
I would ignore the command to "Go south" because it directly conflicts with a command that got more votes than it.

I want to stress that you can attempt to enter command that you like. The command won't always "accomplish" anything (except, perhaps, comedy) but the result will never be "That command doesn't work". Every command will have an effect on the game (I say this now and expect that I will come to regret it).

Anyway, I'll show the results of each executed command and then let you decide what commands to input next. Also there is a status screen I'll show you each week as well.

Okay, enough explanation. You'll figure it out as we go along. Go ahead and hit the space key so we can start a new game.

Well, that handsome fellow is giving you all the exposition you're going to get. What? You were expecting a cut scene? It's the 80's! After listening to the floppy spin in the drive for about ten minutes the first screen of the game finally loads.

Oh, and hitting "i" brings up your Status Screen. Here you go.

Not much to see in there yet, but I expect that to change shortly. Okay, that's the start of the game. Enter or vote for commands on the Facebook poll and we'll see what happens next week. Happy adventuring!

Wednesday, March 17, 2021

The View's Gauntlet: Aeston's Challenge

 by Jason (Aeston) Rosa

The Inspiration: Having thrown or been a part of Queen of Hearts for like the last billion years I'm sure it's no surprise that I have some experience designing war maneuvers (insert your Hadrian's Wall jokes here, I didn't event make that one up I stole it from SCA). What should also come as no surprise is my affinity for games in general. You can play the Realms' only Nintendo (Realmtendo) game on the Rhiassa website after all (shameless plug: link here) as well as the many Realms-themed board games available at the Gilded Lion merchant table (also online at this further shameless plug: link here). So, long story short, I love designing both war maneuvers and games of all kinds.

The Throwdown: I bet you, the Realms community, that I can design a balanced, high energy, and engaging war maneuver using any video game or board game as the inspiration.

The Parameters: The war maneuver I create will be suitable for running at an event like Queen of Hearts that have teams that are 20-30 people in size with fights that run from ten to twenty minutes on average. It might be a two-team game or a multiple-team game depending on the inspiration. It might require some unique props but I will try to keep those to a minimum and stick with materials that are easy for anyone to get their hands on.

How You Can Help: Post on facebook under this article your idea for a video game or board game that I can adapt or use as inspiration. Ideally it will be a multiplayer game but hey, you do you and we'll see what I can do with it.

We hope you are inspired to take up your own Gauntlet. If you have an idea for a challenge or skill you’d like to bring to the community for a View Gauntlet of your own, let us know!

Tuesday, March 16, 2021

Animal Companion Competition: Style Challenge

ACC Challenge E - Style (Garb)

The final challenge was a big one this week…

Style Challenge: Get ready to make it work! You and your person have to work together to make (or dig out of wherever in storage it’s gotten too over the last year) garb and accessories that best show off your personal style. You then need to model it in a portrait (otherwise known as a photo). 

We were thrilled by all the stylish and practical garb brought to the table! Order of the Peacock eat your hearts out! 

First up this week, Aara!

“My style today has something new and something old. For something new, Kovaks made me a new collar to hold my name tag. It's sharkmail, just like their armor! They were going to make me a whole suit of sharkmail, but I like my old armor. Everyone recognizes me by my armor, so I'm going to talk about it! I'm a little bit (well, a big-bit) afraid of the dark, but that's ok because some of the links on my armor glow when it's dark! Even better is the fact that the glow rings make a rowan branch on my back, so people can bring me home if I get lost in the dark. The chainmail weave is “you're a-peeing six-in-one”, whatever that means. Kovaks tells me it's harder to do than some armor and that it means the rings are closer together so it's safer. It was custom made just for me, so it feels like a warm, glowy hug!”

Cressida: The chainmail collar is the perfect function meets fashion! I also feel inspired to incorporate some glow into my gear so when I get lost at night people can find me. 

Cimone: I love that your armor helps protect you from more than just sword blows with it’s glowing.  And a beautifully upgraded collar as well.   

Next up walking the ACC runway: Cleopatra!

Cleopatra: “I like garb! I prefer to be nekkid, but during quests I wear a pink-ish rainbow harness most of the time to help keep me on Hildie-guard’s belt. For this challenge, we both wanted to try a new look! And Hildie-guard is so good at sewing! Unfortunately, she couldn’t help me too much with the sewing part of this challenge because she hurt her wrist from crocheting a million blankets to keep the plague-related depression away.”

Hildegard: “It was my healing wrist :( ”

Cleopatra: “So I had to do a lot of the physical work myself. But Hildie-guard was so kind as to give me scraps from her wedding dress for me to make into something pretty!”

Hildegard: “I barely even got to wear it. Stupid plague :( ”

Cleopatra: “We decided to collaborate, so she made a simple design that I could follow, and I hopped on the sewing machine!”

Cleopatra: “And then Hildie-guard helped me sew it! Then ta-da!”

Cleopatra: “It’s a butt cape!”

Hildegard: “I mean, I guess you could call it that.”

Cleopatra: “And I like it because it’s got lace and it flows like water! It makes me feel elegant. And if I wanna be nekkid again, it’s easy to slip out of!”

Cimone:*suppressing giggles* and a lovely butt cape it is.  Trains can be a lot of fun to swoosh around in, and using leftovers from Hildegard’s dress makes it extra special for you.

Cressida: I think the butt cape is the next big trend and I personally look forward to seeing everyone follow in your tiny footsteps Cleopatra! Maybe I will wear a butt cape to Black and White this year.

Next up on the cat walk, er, dog walk? Wolf walk? It’s Kedol Maas!

“We generally do function over this is what we will provide you with.”

Cressida: I love that you two match! Matching colors are a good way to show everyone that you came to the feast together and they can help you in a crowded feast hall to find each other! 

Cimone: They do say if it isn’t broken, don’t fix it.  Your armor is a solid look and you seem to like it.  And matching your person definitely doesn’t hurt as Cressida mentioned.  

Our next fashionable contestant is Jharru!

“Hi! Jharru here - I'm really excited this week because Aranel made me leather ARMOR! Now my vulnerable belly and chest are more protected from monsters and bad guys. And don't I look fierce??? I'll admit, she's not 100% done with the armor, but it's pretty much done, only “minor tweaks”. Aranel says she just wants to add a strap to the top to make it easier to carry me, and then maybe paint some designs on it if I want. But I like it so much as it is that I wanted to show it off to you all anyway without the strap (I think it looks cooler without it, but I understand why Aranel wants to add one). Can't wait to wear it on adventures in person with all of you!”

Note from Aranel: If you want to see progress pictures, here's a link: 

Making armor to perfectly fit such a little guy is no joke, and took more work than you would think to get it just right. 

Cimone: I am super impressed.  Well fitted leather armor is not to be underestimated in usefulness, comfortableness, or difficulty.  You look well ready for questing to restart.  

Cressida: I can’t wait to see all of these fashions in person and this armor is impeccably made. Jharru looks so comfortable and happy, while also being safe from a blow to the chest! 

Out strutting their stuff, or rather flapping their stuff, it’s Malcolm Mallard!

“This week with the style challenge I have two items of clothing. The first is my new cloak. Bogen helped fashion it out of this strange repellant metal that is also somewhat flexible. It is in the fashion of his cloak so we match, which is important (I tried to get him to switch to blue but that failed). This is both fashionable and useful as it will protect me from whatever strange environment Bogen brings me to next.

The second item is my doublet. When I was working with Bogen, he quickly realized that he does not know how to do anything other than basic patchwork, so he went to Ypnn for help. With a seamstress on the team, we were able to fashion this wonderful garment together.”

Cressida: Do ducks need raincoats? Based on how cute Malcolm looks, I have to say yes! The cloak and doublet are both fantastic.

Cimone: I’m very impressed.  Those upper limb holes in the doublet look well fitted without being binding, which is never an easy feat.  and that cloak looks ready to take on almost any bad weather. … wait, I recognise that cloak material. Well #EverydayPunday I suppose, well played Mr. Mallard, well played.  

Last to show off their style, HelperPink!

Cimone: I’m seeing a hat, an upper body covering, and some sort of sword?  It looks surprisingly well put together, and the hat matches HelperPink’s skin tone so well I almost didn’t realize it was there.  Well done.   

Cressida: Good eye there Cimone! I had missed the hat at first glance. HelperPink is fantastic with camouflage, as we know from the first challenge, so having clothes that work with that skill are both functional and fashionable! Also I would not mess with this crew, they look so tough! 

That’s it everyone! The final challenge has come to a “clothes”. *muffled groan from the booth* I thought that was an excellent pun... Anyways, as always let us know your stylish thoughts in the comments. You can also make your thoughts know for the entire competition by voting for the winner here:

Remember to vote for Best in Show by this Saturday, March 20th at midnight! We will announce the winner next Tuesday, so make sure to come back and see who wins!

Monday, March 15, 2021

Meme Monday

 by the Meme Team

Friday, March 12, 2021

Home Questing Task 24: Results!

 by Janus "Christopher" Donnelly

Hello, and welcome to Home Questing, the 24th task, where I challenged people to make the cutest snowman possible.  And it appears we got some very cute snowmen.  So, let’s take a look.

First, from  Cressida is this well dressed snowman:

Next, from DelHemar is this very nature based snowman:

And finally, from Janus is this (and mostly edible) snowman:

So, looking at this task, I was wondering who would be good at judging what people built, so I asked Kovaks to lend her expertise on the subject.

Take it away Kovaks:

In first place (5 points), I find Janus’ snowman to be the cutest. The toothpicks give a sense of scale and are a nod to the traditional stick arms that most snowpeople have. This is also the snowman with the best face.

Second place (4 points), Cresseda’s snowman. Great use of color for the clothing, although I find cuteness to be  based in facial features, and other than the baby carrot nose, there aren’t an easily identifiable face.

Third place(3 points) is Del’s snowman, which also lacked facial features except for a pair of clove eyes, which are a nice choice but not particularly cute. If the judging criterion was photography and framing of the snowman, then Del would have won.

Thank you so much for that Kovaks.  

From my side of things, I am going to have to disqualify Janus for using chronomancy and submitting a snowman late on time.  Sorry.

In second (4 points) place is DelHemar’s snowman.  The berries definitely add to the nature feel of it, and the (what I believe are) clove eyes are adorable, but not quite as cute as our first place entry.

In first place (5 points) is Cressida.  The body and head were really well crafted and the hat, carrot nose, and scarf really drove the cuteness through the rough.

So including a point for participation that gives us Cressida with 10 points and DelHemar with 8 points.

And that leads us to our overall scores so far:

DelHemar - 229.5

Cressida - 217

Laika en'Naur - 39

Aeston, Areni, and Gwen - 26.5

Saka - 22

Iawen - 20

Bart - 19

Kovaks - 15

Orion - 13

Keras - 13

Tuilli - 11

Vawn - 10

Syruss - 10

Jerrick Jerrickson - 10

Luc-Dubois Coupant - 9

Osa - 8

Axel - 7

Kwido - 6

J'reth - 5

Nalydros - 5

Rosetta - 5

Sagart Hawkshade - 5

Tarun Ul-Sikar = 5

Thayet - 5

Vanduke - 4

King Alexander Cecil - 2.5

Jace - 2

Kara Nithisdottir - 1.5

Thoril - 1.5

See you next week for the next challenge!

Thursday, March 11, 2021

The View's Gauntlet Showdown, with Lani

 by Lani "Gwen" Jones

Recap of the Throwdown:

A few weeks ago, I bet you, the community of the Realms, that I could create a delectable vegetarian version of your favorite comfort food, which traditionally includes meat.

Hi friends! It’s Gwen, back with the results from my Gauntlet Challenge. Thank you for your fabulous suggestions, they all were thoughtful, fun, and posed future challenges for my culinary curiosity (I’m coming for you--meatloaf!!!!) I spent quite a bit of time pondering each suggestion, but ultimately decided to do my best with whatever challenge I already had the ingredients mostly on hand for. I also decided to tackle this challenge sans mushrooms, because I know there are many mushroom skeptics out there, and I wanted this recipe to be approachable for everyone’s taste buds. (But please, give mushroooooooooms a chaaaaaance.) I’ll post the recipe first (no need to make you scroll for it) but if you’d like to hear more about the process and how to customize this recipe to suit your needs, please feel free to read on, dear Realmsies.

Gwen's Pantry Chickpea Pot Pie (Served Deconstructed...)
Serves: 4 generously
Time: Definitely under an hour (I get distracted pretty easily when I'm making dinner)


1 can of corn with green and red peppers
1 carton/can of chickpeas, drained (reserve liquid)
2 red potatoes
1 onion
1 carrot
4 oz butter
4 oz AP flour
16 oz vegan chicken broth
8 oz whole milk
2 oz cream cheese
1 can of crescent rolls (or pie crust/starch of your choice)
Seasonings: Olive oil, Montreal chicken seasoning, garlic powder, oregano, salt, pepper (to taste)


1. Preheat oven to 425F. Drain, rinse, and pat dry the corn. Drain the chickpeas, reserving the liquid. Pat chickpeas dry. Toss chickpeas and corn with olive oil and Montreal chicken seasoning to taste. 

2. Wash, dry, and chop red potatoes into small (½” square) pieces. Wash, dry, and slice carrot in half lengthwise (no need to peel.) Then, thinly slice carrot into ¼” half moons. Peel and chop onions. Toss with olive oil, salt, pepper, and garlic powder. 

3. Roast both pans of veggies for about 15 minutes or until browned and cooked to your liking.

Prep Phase

4. Begin making a roux by melting 4 oz (½ stick) of butter in a saucepan over medium-low heat. Add oregano to taste and stir for 30 -60 seconds. When butter is melted and just starting to bubble, whisk in the flour (keep it moving!) until it has turned into a light blonde to light brown color. Slowly add in about half the vegan chicken broth (keep whisking!) until you have a smooth, even consistency.

5. Breathe. Then, slowly bring the temperature to medium and add in the rest of the broth and reserved chickpea liquid. Allow the sauce to come up to a simmer slowly, stirring on the reg (but no need to constantly whisk.)

6. Add in the whole milk, and repeat step 5 until you have a sauce that resembles the thickness that you want your pot pie filling to be. Then, add your cream cheese and stir until it is fully incorporated into your sauce. 

7. Incorporate your roasted veggies and adjust seasonings to taste. 

So I really want to drag this out any longer?

8. Decide how you want to serve your pot pie. I had full intentions to make crescent roll muffin cups (I had already given up pie crust from scratch on a Monday night as a bad job) but instead I popped those right into the oven following the package directions. Hence “ ‘Deconstructed’ Pantry Chickpea Pot Pie”

Naaaaah...Dipping is just as delectable

Some final thoughts: 

We thoroughly enjoyed this dish, and although it might not have been a perfectly traditional pot pie, I think that had a lot more to do with my “pantry raid” bonus challenge as opposed to the meat substitute. After completing this throwdown, I can say that I’m most proud of pulling this dish together on a regular weeknight using ingredients that I tend to keep around and buy at discount stores like Ocean State Job Lot when I have a chance to stop in. You can create your own spin using whatever frozen or canned veggies have been languishing in your pantry. Normally I would have gone with a much different flavor profile (I’m partial to Scarborough Faire’s: Parsley, Sage, Rosemary, and Thyme in this dish, usually), spicy canned corny was easy alternative that didn’t require getting dressed and going to the store. Even the cream cheese was a last minute addition, mostly because I had some open already and I wanted to add some additional tang and richness to the dish. I encourage you to play fast and loose with your pantry next time your looking for a cheap and quick alternative to delivery. I hope this inspires you to try a meatless spin on a Leviathan classic. I’d love to hear your thoughts, suggestions and feedback on this dish and I look forward to reading them in the comments.

If you or someone you know might be feeling inspired to take on a gauntlet challenge of your own, reach out to any View Staff member, and we can help you get the process started! 

Stay safe and be well,


Wednesday, March 10, 2021

Rumors for March 1021

[Eagle’s Rook]

All's been sleepily silent from within the borders save a couple of villages, the outposts, the forests, and the city's citadel itself. Outpost militia warns outside travelers to turn away at this time.

[The Fae Wildes]

"Did you hear? The Spring Court is hosting a big tea party next month."
"Really? But didn't the Winter Court just get their time?"
"You know how these new Courts are..."


Recently the group of the Neden boys (Sir D, Sir Nymbous, Dresden, sir Naj, and Cabby) led by Lord Syruss vanquished some Dragon Cultists and the Acid Dragon boss. These villains had blocked all trade routes around Neden forcing merchants on one trail leading to Neden Castle proper. At first Lord Syruss thought this was a marketing ploy by Jayce but as it turns out it was a clever idea to funnel money to the Neden economy so they could rob it all after accumulating a certain amount in the vaults. The villains crossed the line when they also robbed the local cideries of all the hard cider. This would not stand and Syruss and his men made short work of these cunning culprits.
More of Naj's portals can be seen opening through the lands more frequently and the adventuring team seems to be in full gear going to wherever these portals may lead.

Tuesday, March 9, 2021

Animal Companion Competition: Talent Showcase

ACC Challenge D - (Talent) Showcase

The next challenge for our competitors …

Showcase Challenge: This week’s challenge is very open ended. Tell us about and/or demonstrate an interesting talent you have. It can be combat relevant, quirky, something you do to make your person smile, or something else entirely. The sky, as they say, is the limit. (although if you’re doing something actually high up, remember the judges need to be able to see what you’re doing if you provide a demonstration.) Keep in mind, the judges may be less impressed if it’s a skill you’ve already shown off in the past three challenges. 

With such an open ended challenge, we’re excited to see what the competitors decide to bring to the stage!

First up, Cleopatra:

“A talent? Well, not many people know this, but I can bake! It’s kind of hard because I’m small and the things I bake tend to be larger than I am, and my oven is on a ship, and sometimes the ship rocks and makes things spill, but I manage. I even made Elly-wan’s birthday cake this year! I can’t wait to see them eat it!” 

(Elouan later confirmed that the cake was delicious, and the divot filled with frosting was a pleasant surprise.)

Cimone: Baking is a solid skill to have and share with others. At sea even, that’s got to make quite a mess sometimes. I see no problem with extra icing - I hear there is even a thing to do that purposefully in cupcakes.  

Cressida: Yummy! Who doesn’t love baked goods made with love? I appreciate anyone talented enough to feed me delicious treats! *Whispers from the booth* What do you mean the cake wasn’t for me?! 

Aara is up next:

“You don't get to spend time with Kovaks without picking up a lot of trivia and lore about the Realms. Don't tell them, but when they're off at fight practice I sometimes read their books. I think I'm the only one in the Realms under one foot tall who can properly spell ‘Rrathclwynn’.”

Cressida: Aara is the most studious pupper! I know from personal experience just how smart Aara is. If you don’t believe us here, just check out the Trivia Contest aka Home Questing Task 25 when it premiers on the View in a few weeks!

Cimone: Loremaster in training I see.  I probably should have expected nothing else.  I salute your ability to spell things I would hesitate to try and pronounce if I hadn’t heard them said before. 

Malcolm Mallard has been practicing his talent:

“This week, you asked to see some sort of skill or talent. While, I have not quite perfected it, I am accomplished enough to show off for this challenge. While every bird worth their bread can fly. Only the hummingbird can HOVER. Until now. I have been practicing this skill so I can stay in the air near Bogen, so I can help him when he is in particularly close combat. I get out of the way, then, If he survives I congratulate him. Or he dies, I then giving him a report of what happened while he was down (Death Watch) once Bogen is raised. Being able to hover near by enables me to get a better view for him, so I can explain things in more detail to his simple mind. Attached is video evidence of this hovering.”

***(Note: Bag, string, etc. is OOC)

Cimone: Looks like you don’t have the stationary bit completely down, but that’s still a very impressive given ducks can’t usually stay any kind of stationary in the air.  (OOC props for building a contraption that worked as well as it did.  It looks like quite the craft store engineering feat.)

Cressida: Incredible talent! Who knew one could learn to float by sheer force of will and the tenacity to never give up? 

Kedol Maas is ready to show off, don’t blink or you’ll miss it:

Kedol Maas has learned how to blink to avoid swords!

(Trouble with this video? Click here to watch it on YouTube.)


Cressida: I had to see this talent a few times because you truly do miss it if you blink. Such a useful talent to have when facing enemies with swords or projectiles! 

Cimone: Did he blink, or did I?  (both?  both.) An unexpected and useful talent to have.

DaniDanger and HelpPink take to the floor with a very special guest star this week:

Cimone: Oh hey, singing and dancing.  I do enjoy a good bardic routine.  Didn’t HelperPink use dancing as a distraction last week though?

Cressida: I want to party with all of them! As a bard, I am always down for a party that can break out into a brawl at any moment. 

Jharru thought it best to show you the talent he has learned while adventuring with Aranel:

(Trouble with this video? Click here to watch it on YouTube.)

Cressida: I can confirm that Jharru can in fact speak fluent Common as we have had many riveting conversations. He is quite the chatterbox if you get him going! Also having a Draconic translator on hand could save one from a fiery situation. 

Cimone: Multiple languages is something I’ve tried and mostly failed at before myself so I’m very impressed.  An excellent demonstration. 

We saw many talents this week that amazed us! The competition is really tight going into the final challenge next week! It will all be up to you at home after the next challenge so sound off in the comments on which competitor’s talent blew you away. Can you dance, blink, or float? What is your secret talent? We want to know! 

Make sure to come back next week for the FINAL Challenge: Style!