“What D&D character are you?” (cool blogmeme)

I Am A: Neutral Good Human Wizard (4th Level)

Ability Scores:

Neutral Good A neutral good character does the best that a good person can do. He is devoted to helping others. He works with kings and magistrates but does not feel beholden to them. Neutral good is the best alignment you can be because it means doing what is good without bias for or against order. However, neutral good can be a dangerous alignment because it advances mediocrity by limiting the actions of the truly capable.

Humans are the most adaptable of the common races. Short generations and a penchant for migration and conquest have made them physically diverse as well. Humans are often unorthodox in their dress, sporting unusual hairstyles, fanciful clothes, tattoos, and the like.

Wizards are arcane spellcasters who depend on intensive study to create their magic. To wizards, magic is not a talent but a difficult, rewarding art. When they are prepared for battle, wizards can use their spells to devastating effect. When caught by surprise, they are vulnerable. The wizard’s strength is her spells, everything else is secondary. She learns new spells as she experiments and grows in experience, and she can also learn them from other wizards. In addition, over time a wizard learns to manipulate her spells so they go farther, work better, or are improved in some other way. A wizard can call a familiar- a small, magical, animal companion that serves her. With a high Intelligence, wizards are capable of casting very high levels of spells.

Find out What Kind of Dungeons and Dragons Character Would You Be?, courtesy of Easydamus (e-mail)

Second Life: a pet rock for the new millenium.

Are there really two million people using Second Life?

Bobbie Johnson
Thursday December 21, 2006
The Guardian

You’d think so. With glowing press coverage, virtual world Second Life would appear to be going from strength to strength: last week it broke through the 2m sign-ups barrier.

But not everybody is convinced by such milestones. Clay Shirky, the respected internet analyst and thinker, questioned how many of those 2m ever return after signing up.

…getting to the punchline below…

And it may be worse even than Shirky’s bleak estimates. Philip Rosedale, the founder of SL maker Linden Lab, last month said that churn was probably around 90% – meaning just one in 10 people who sign up use it in any meaningful way.

For comparison, the online fantasy game World of Warcraft had 5m subscribers – all paying a monthly fee – this time last year.

I haven’t yet found an MMOG I actually like, but I totally understand the appeal the when there’s a significant and enjoyable gaming to them. Something with only a dubious gaming nature, like say The Sims Online (do they even still exist?) I don’t really get the appeal of, but … de gustibus, and all that. When they’re just an online not-a-game, like Second Life, it seems like a glorified form of IM, and I do not get it at all… seems like a real wankfest to me (to borrow a Britishism.)

Video game edition…

First, file this one under “why am I not surprised:”

Ogre to Slay? Outsource It to Chinese

December 9, 2005

FUZHOU, China – One of China’s newest factories operates here in the basement of an old warehouse. Posters of World of Warcraft and Magic Land hang above a corps of young people glued to their computer screens, pounding away at their keyboards in the latest hustle for money.

The people working at this clandestine locale are “gold farmers.” Every day, in 12-hour shifts, they “play” computer games by killing onscreen monsters and winning battles, harvesting artificial gold coins and other virtual goods as rewards that, as it turns out, can be transformed into real cash.

That is because, from Seoul to San Francisco, affluent online gamers who lack the time and patience to work their way up to the higher levels of gamedom are willing to pay the young Chinese here to play the early rounds for them.

Second, I’ve discovered a webbed version of a cool old 80s game “Alter Ego” (linked review is scathingly funny, BTW) when trying to find a better downloadable copy of game. Sadly, rather than abandonware, it seems to be still owned by Activision even if they’ve long since stopped selling it. But the web version seems fun and pretty acurate to the original even if it’s a bit slow to play and not quite the same as the old 40-column CGA version.

Geez I’m lame – another one of those quizlet things…

I am a d12

You are the rare, the overlooked, yet incredibly useful dodecahedron: the d12. You are a creative, romantic soul. You often act without thinking, but make up for your lack of plans with plenty of heart. You easily solve problems that stump others, but your answers tend to put you into even deeper trouble. You write long, detailed backgrounds for all your characters, and are most likely to dress up as one or get involved in cos-play. You can be silly at times and are easily distracted by your own day dreams, but are at the end of the day you’re someone who can be depended on.

Take the quiz at dicepool.com

And for the record, I have NEVER gotten involved in cos-play or larping. C’mon, tabletop RPG guys have to have SOMEBODY to look down on.