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Benny Profane
Feb 23, 2012



Reporting in from the Realm of a Million Eyes.

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Jay W. Friks
Oct 4, 2016

Six of one, half dozen of another.

Grimey Drawer

Benny Profane posted:

Reporting in from the Realm of a Million Eyes.

I rolled below 26, you get a random para-elemental plane: The Plane of Smoke, created from energies circulating between the elemental planes of Air and Fire.

http://www.rilmani.org/timaresh/Par..._Plane_of_Smoke

Felime
Jul 10, 2009


I have been meaning to do this for ages. Gimme a plane, and a flash rule. I might as well do this properly.

(6)

Jay W. Friks
Oct 4, 2016

Six of one, half dozen of another.

Grimey Drawer

Felime posted:

I have been meaning to do this for ages. Gimme a plane, and a flash rule. I might as well do this properly.

(6)

I rolled a 75 (75-76) You get the Elemental Plane of Air http://www.rilmani.org/timaresh/Elemental_Plane_of_Air

Flashrule: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G6F...PlWtQ&index=179

Antivehicular
Dec 30, 2011

I won a rosette in the Thunderdome


The only way to get to 6 wins is to keep on writing, so I'm in and will take a flash rule.

Jay W. Friks
Oct 4, 2016

Six of one, half dozen of another.

Grimey Drawer

Antivehicular posted:

The only way to get to 6 wins is to keep on writing, so I'm in and will take a flash rule.

I rolled above 92 and below 100, you get a random Quasi Elemental Plane, specifically

The Quasi-Elemental plane of Mineral

created by the energies of the Positive Energy Plane bombarding fragments of the Plane of Earth

http://www.rilmani.org/timaresh/Qua...lane_of_Mineral

Flashrule: https://youtu.be/wtXz3OlFwZA

Fuschia tude
Dec 26, 2004

THUNDERDOME LOSER



Sitting Here posted:

Week 307 crits

Thank you!

Maigius
Jun 29, 2013

THUNDERDOME LOSER


Heck yeah, I'm in. 6

Jay W. Friks
Oct 4, 2016

Six of one, half dozen of another.

Grimey Drawer

Maigius posted:

Heck yeah, I'm in. 6

I rolled a 51 (51-52) You get the Seven Mounting Heavens of Celestia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mount_Celestia

Beige
Sep 13, 2004


In. 6.

Jay W. Friks
Oct 4, 2016

Six of one, half dozen of another.

Grimey Drawer


I rolled a 31 (29-31) You get the Ethereal Plane http://forgottenrealms.wikia.com/wiki/Ethereal_plane

magnificent7
Sep 22, 2005

THUNDERDOME LOSER


Antivehicular posted:

The only way to get to 6 wins is to keep on writing, so I'm in and will take a flash rule.
You know, I really think I should get some kind of tiara/avatar (avatiara?) for losing 6 times now. I'm bitter/not bitter.

This is the only place that'll take the time to read and reflect and then critique my vague stabs at creativity, so I am eternally grateful for the feedback. I'm just super pissed that nobody has yet to say "my god this is the greatest thing I've ever read I shared it with all my friends and my cousin owns Super Duper Publishing and we're sending over a contract for a 9-book deal right now Jesus you are amazing." Fingers crossed every time.

I'm in. gently caress it. How bad can it get. 6.

OR - I'm always happy to judge, but honestly, how good can a 6-time TD loser be, as a judge? If you get nobody else to volunteer to judge, I'll be happy to pick up the slack... but just be aware that obviously I'm not the best judge of güd writting.

magnificent7 fucked around with this message at Jun 27, 2018 around 13:48

Kaishai
Nov 3, 2010

Scoffing at modernity.

magnificent7 posted:

You know, I really think I should get some kind of tiara/avatar (avatiara?) for losing 6 times now. I'm bitter/not bitter.

Unless I've missed one, it's only five!

Take a look at this list. Notice you're six losses from the top. Notice who occupies that top slot, and who won the last week. There's always the chance for a turnaround in TD (in either direction); hope and fear alike remain as long as writing continues.

magnificent7
Sep 22, 2005

THUNDERDOME LOSER


Kaishai posted:

Unless I've missed one, it's only five!

Take a look at this list. Notice you're six losses from the top. Notice who occupies that top slot, and who won the last week. There's always the chance for a turnaround in TD (in either direction); hope and fear alike remain as long as writing continues.

Okay FINE I feel better. Still waiting on my assignment for this round.

Jay W. Friks
Oct 4, 2016

Six of one, half dozen of another.

Grimey Drawer

magnificent7 posted:

You know, I really think I should get some kind of tiara/avatar (avatiara?) for losing 6 times now. I'm bitter/not bitter.

This is the only place that'll take the time to read and reflect and then critique my vague stabs at creativity, so I am eternally grateful for the feedback. I'm just super pissed that nobody has yet to say "my god this is the greatest thing I've ever read I shared it with all my friends and my cousin owns Super Duper Publishing and we're sending over a contract for a 9-book deal right now Jesus you are amazing." Fingers crossed every time.

I'm in. gently caress it. How bad can it get. 6.

OR - I'm always happy to judge, but honestly, how good can a 6-time TD loser be, as a judge? If you get nobody else to volunteer to judge, I'll be happy to pick up the slack... but just be aware that obviously I'm not the best judge of güd writting.

I cannot decide for you to be a judge or a writer in this week. One or the other.

magnificent7
Sep 22, 2005

THUNDERDOME LOSER


Jay W. Friks posted:

I cannot decide for you to be a judge or a writer in this week. One or the other.
I'll write.

Pham Nuwen
Oct 30, 2010



it's been well over 6 months since I've last played but what the hell, I'll do this again.

In(ner planes?)

Jay W. Friks
Oct 4, 2016

Six of one, half dozen of another.

Grimey Drawer


I rolled below 26. You get a random para-elemental plane: the Plane of Ice created from energies circulating between the planes of Water and Air. http://dungeonsdragons.wikia.com/wiki/Plane_of_Ice

Jay W. Friks
Oct 4, 2016

Six of one, half dozen of another.

Grimey Drawer

Pham Nuwen posted:

it's been well over 6 months since I've last played but what the hell, I'll do this again.

In(ner planes?)

I rolled a 65 (65-66) you get the Windswept Depths of Pandemonium https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pande...ns_%26_Dragons)

Pham Nuwen
Oct 30, 2010



Jay W. Friks posted:

I rolled a 65 (65-66) you get the Windswept Depths of Pandemonium https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pande...ns_%26_Dragons)

Great now I have to take great care to avoid ripping off Harlan Ellison

Solitair
Feb 18, 2014


I'd like to judge, please.

Jay W. Friks
Oct 4, 2016

Six of one, half dozen of another.

Grimey Drawer

Solitair posted:

I'd like to judge, please.

Thank god-i mean, thank you Solitair.

Yoruichi
Sep 21, 2017

Time for tea and Thunderdome

In

6

Jay W. Friks
Oct 4, 2016

Six of one, half dozen of another.

Grimey Drawer


I rolled a 73 (73-74) You get the Elemental Plane of Water http://dungeonsdragons.wikia.com/wiki/Plane_of_Water

Bad Seafood
Dec 10, 2010

If you must blink, do it now.


In.

I'll even roll 3d6 in order.

Jay W. Friks
Oct 4, 2016

Six of one, half dozen of another.

Grimey Drawer

Bad Seafood posted:

In.

I'll even roll 3d6 in order.

Dm's choice. You get the Tarterian Depths of Carceri http://www.rilmani.org/timaresh/Carceri

Lippincott
Jun 28, 2018

You weren't born to just pay bills and die.

You must suffer.

A lot.


I'm in!

6

Jay W. Friks
Oct 4, 2016

Six of one, half dozen of another.

Grimey Drawer


I rolled above 92 and below 100, you get a random Quasi-Elemental plane, The Plane of Radiance http://www.rilmani.org/timaresh/Qua...ane_of_Radiance

Created from parts of the plane of fire being bombarded by energy from the plane of positive energy.

Grab your shades!

Zagazunt
Mar 4, 2018


Plane me, bruh. Here's a 6.

Zagazunt fucked around with this message at Jun 28, 2018 around 22:44

Djeser
Mar 22, 2013



I can judge you so right babby

Jay W. Friks
Oct 4, 2016

Six of one, half dozen of another.

Grimey Drawer

Zagazunt posted:

Plane me, bruh. Here's a 6.

I rolled a 35 (35-36) you get the Infinite Layers of the Abyss. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abyss...ns_%26_Dragons)
The planar catch-all for evil at its craziest.

Jay W. Friks
Oct 4, 2016

Six of one, half dozen of another.

Grimey Drawer

Djeser posted:

I can judge you so right babby

Ahhhh yeeeaaaah

Ironic Twist
Aug 3, 2008

THUNDERDOME LOSER



in, 6,

Jay W. Friks
Oct 4, 2016

Six of one, half dozen of another.

Grimey Drawer


I rolled a 68 (67-68) you get the Heroic Domains of Ysgard https://1d4chan.org/wiki/Ysgard
Fight, die, get up, and laugh.

Jay W. Friks
Oct 4, 2016

Six of one, half dozen of another.

Grimey Drawer

Invisible Bartertown last crits

Final part of my Bartertown crits,

Part 3: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1Nz...iew?usp=sharing

Contained within are Thranguy's "Farthest from the Moon: an Abbreviated Lexicon", Kaishai's "They Sing in Venata", Flesnolk's "Every Night In San Rafael", Sebmojo's "Before the Big One", Crabrock's "987 words", and Badseafood's "Head of State"

Part 2: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1Et...iew?usp=sharing (Note the final story should be Fumblemouses NOT Thranguys)

Part 1: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1N9...iew?usp=sharing

Kaishai
Nov 3, 2010

Scoffing at modernity.

In.

Jay W. Friks
Oct 4, 2016

Six of one, half dozen of another.

Grimey Drawer


I rolled above 92 and below 100 you get a random Quasi-elemental plane, namely the Quasi-elemental plane of Vacuum: a plane that exists in the intersection between the plane of air and the plane of negative energy.

http://www.rilmani.org/timaresh/Qua...Plane_of_Vacuum

Otherwise known as the plane of not-quite-but-almost nothingness.

Jay W. Friks
Oct 4, 2016

Six of one, half dozen of another.

Grimey Drawer

Sign-ups closed.

Get writing berks.

Sitting Here
Dec 31, 2007


Blood Empress of Thunderdome

Tap to emit spores


Clapping Larry

here's 4 more week 306 crits. I'll have the final four done this weekend.


Antivehicular

Summary that I’ve been dreading a little bit, sorry if i miss some details:

The first part of the story focuses on Only-Rarely-Satisfied (known as ORS from here on out), who is in the last days of his life. He’s doing his last, slow dance around the so-called cathedral of the Ancient Ones, which is basically where squids go to have their death ceremony. As he spirals toward his final rest, ORS contemplates the titular Ancient Ones, wondering why they concern themselves with squid things and build cities for squid to live in. The Ancient Ones only communicate through their liaisons, the oracles, so this is a question ORS will never know the answer to. We get the sense that these Ancient Ones are not terribly concerned with the wellbeing of living squid, but meddle in their existence nonetheless.

Finally, ORS’s dance ends and he goes inside the cathedral where he’s greeted by a creche-maiden (which I assume is like a cephalopod funeral director) “dressed” like a nautilus. She gives him offerings to bring to the death chamber. Inside, he meets an oracle, and ORS is initially a bit standoffish to her. She serves the Ancient Ones, who ORS was never able to understand, and he also seems to think of her as quite stupid. In the end, however, he realizes that he is content to let go of his questions and embrace the simplicity of his last moments. He dies in a sandy room made of polished pearl, and his body is i guess carted off to become food for the Ancient Ones.

The Ancient ones are of course nautiluses. I think the oracles are octopuses who’re able to communicate through scent like the nautilus (I had to google ‘argonaut’) as well as visually like the squid. The next scene in the story features Tenth Son, a nautilus and presumably one of the revered Ancient Ones, cutting up ORS’s corpse, setting aside the tastiest bits for some matriarch. After a bit, the oracle from before enters the room and inquires, in her prosaic way, if all is well. Tenth Son is pretty dismissive of her, just like ORS was, but confirms all is well among the Ancient Ones and the squid. The oracle informs Tenth Son that she’s leaving, and that another oracle will come and replace her. After she’s gone, Tenth Son resolutely reminds himself that he’s a worker and doesn’t need to think about the order or purpose of things.

The final scene is from the POV of the oracle, Distant-Southern-Light (DSL from now on). Basically, she is from some sort of octopus Bene Gesserit. She and her sisters have seemingly manipulated squid and nautiluses into a kind of symbiosis, where the vulnerable squid are protected and the aged nautiluses have a purpose (I forgot to mention that they can shape coral, which is why they are the architects of the cities the squid live in). Now, though, the city under DSL’s care is happy and healthy, so she is able to pass its caretaking on to another sister. She’s relieved to be away from an environment where she has to act like a subservient idiot and speak in pidgin.

Her final task is to pass on all that’s transpired in the city to the next oracle, and her last thought is about how important this duty is to statecraft.

Wew.


Expression of intelligence:

These cephalopods live together in a multicultural society, so they’re pretty advanced. As I was reading, though, the most interesting thing that stood out to me was the oracle’s bilingualness. Not only is she able to communicate in two languages, she can use two totally different modes of language (visual vs scent).


Comments:

So like I said, there’s a lot going on here that I don’t think I properly got to in my summary. It’s clear you put a ton of thought into this hybrid society. I felt like I was seeing a slice of three complete stories. Which was both a strength and a weakness; this story reminded me a lot of Djeser’s entry this week, but his was a little tighter in scope, which would’ve given it the edge if we’d been trying to choose between the two stories for the win. Still, i found myself wanting to read descriptions of coral architecture, to spend more time in this little civilization you’ve imagined. I would no poo poo read a whole book about this setting.

Structurally, the story reads like the end of one interesting character’s story and like...the middle of another character’s story. It’s an interesting way to go about things, and I kind of approve, but I dunno if this was the right word count to pull something like that.

I personally liked the reveal that DSL was a lot smarter than she acted. I had no idea that an argonaut was a type of octopus though, which is the fault of my own ignorance. Once I looked it up, I was like, ugh i should’ve known that, seeing as I’m running this week and all. Still, I think it would’ve helped to have a little more visual description for the oracles.

Overall, a nice piece that really took the prompt and ran with it in exactly the way I was hoping for, more or less.



steeltoedsneakers

Summary:

I’m not entirely sure what sort of bird this is. A corvid, of course, but the description of the coloration wasn’t enough for me (an idiot) to guess exactly what kind. Maybe some sort of crow? Anyway. This story is about a mama bird providing for her babies.

Her nest is in some sort of urban area, close to I guess buildings or cars. Also nearby is a lit clearing, where a human regularly comes and tosses some sort of edible substance on the ground. This corvid mother watches attentively, absorbed in the color and light of her surroundings, waiting for the human to show up with food.

Eventually, the human comes and tosses out the edible slop. Except there’s another bird, competition for food. The mother bird waits anxiously, watches the other corvid take the food and cache it. Once it’s done that, the mother bird flies over to the cache and takes the food. There’s some sort of commotion behind her, squawks of alarm, but the mother bird puts them out of her mind; she launches herself into the air and flies back to the nest.


Expression of intelligence:

The bird has the ability to plan, time her actions strategically, and has a deep appreciation for color and seemingly beauty.


Comments:

I want to adjust the description:plot ratio on this piece. I loved all the descriptions of the colors shining in the rain, and I think you’re onto something when you have your crow (or w/e) fixate on all the sensory input. I’ve often wondered what urban life is like for animals (especially intelligent ones). I kinda wish you’d dialed back the description maaaybe 15% and increased the plotness like 25%. Not that I was looking specifically for narrative arcs this week; I just felt this piece was a little imbalanced.

I did like how...emotional? this story was. I definitely got a sense of the bird’s internal life and feelings.

I didn’t like how the other corvid was “the other her”. It was kind of weird because you use that description to refer literally to another bird who looks like her, but then you also use similar phrasing when you describe her contradictory impulses at the end of the story.

This is another story that I feel suffered a bit from the inherent disadvantage of writing about corvids. Where the cephalopod stories had these insane narratives, almost all the corvid stories featured well-known corvid behaviors, just viewed from the POV of a corvid. This piece was no different, although you at least did interesting things with sensory details.

Not a bad piece of writing, though.


Yoruichi

Summary:

The story is from the POV of a rook who lives among lots of other rooks in a rookery. At the beginning of the story, a man “flies” down into the forest (it’s obvious he’s being lowered from a helicopter) and delivers a bunch of delicious meat to the nests of recently-hatched rooks. The rooks are indignant and then curious, even amazed, at this turn of events, but can do little except groom each other and wonder.

A few weeks later, most of the rooks are dead, including the POV rook’s mate. The only living babies are in a nest evidently missed by the flying man. Our rook decides to look after them, because she’s lonely and the few other surviving adults peace out pretty quickly. It’s a forlorn existence, so the rook is kind of excited when the flying man turns up again, this time in a truck.

He proceeds to pick up the dead rooks, stuffing them in a bag. Our rook is more than happy to go along behind him, snapping up the bugs that are presumably falling off the rook corpses.

When the man is done, he offers the rook some break. She seems to think he looks lonely as shefeels, and even accepts a bit of bread straight from his hand. The man laughs at this, and the rook is pleased for the momentary companionship.

Then the man goes for the last nest. He climbs up into the tree and the rook harries him, impatient to get at the sweet food in his bag. She doesn’t seem to connect that this very thing is what killed off most of the rookery. In her impatience, she hops around the man as he’s climbing the tree, trying to get at the food even as he bats her away. At one point, she even lands on his shoulder, which causes him to lose his grip and fall to the ground.

The impact kills him and the rook thinks he doesn’t look so sad anymore. Then she eats his eyeballs.


Expression of intelligence:

Hmmm it’s kind of subtle. I would say facial recognition and perhaps a budding ability to read emotions. Caring for orphaned young is something social animals often do. Sadly, cause and effect seem to be beyond our rook’s grasp.


Comments:

This is an odd one. We’re definitely seeing things from the rook’s perspective, but the narrative makes her seem rather well...kinda simple, like a normal animal. The most sapient thing she does is observe the man’s facial expression and guess at its meaning. In a lot of ways, this is more the guy’s story, told through the bird’s eyes. The problem is, the lens of the bird’s perspective doesn’t bring anything unique to a story about a guy poisoning birds. The rook seems weirdly aloof to all the death around her, even though the narrative points out that she is lonely without the hubbub of the rookery.

Maybe we’re supposed to feel some sense of justice in the end of the story; the rook plucking out the eyeballs of this poisoner seems like fair turnaround. But the rook isn’t even aware she’s basically killed the one who massacred her community, and anyway as soon as she gets into the guy’s bag of poisoned food, it’s all over. The problem is that there is no catharsis, no revelation for any of the characters, no poignance in any interaction. I think that Team Corvid would’ve done a lot better if more of the stories had more emotional resonance.

I’ll say the same thing about this story that I’ll say about many corvid stories: the prompt is partly at fault. Corvids are so similar to people, I think it’s harder to go out on an imaginative limb.


Solitair

Summary:

Skydiver is ranging for some easy garbage food when he spots a human acting a little weird. He hones in on the human, hoping for a free meal. What he finds instead is the corpse of his friend, Tweakgrass. This discovery is painful for multiple reasons, not the least of which is that Tweakgrass’s mate is back at the nest, despondent, waiting for Tweakgrass to return.

Skydiver does the only thing he can do: he dives at the human, harrying him fiercely. Skydiver has no intention of getting himself smacked, but he wants to put the fear into this human who surely must’ve killed Tweakgrass. The human seems pretty old and frail, though, and they fall over trying to shuffle away from Skydiver.

Later, Skydiver turns up with some other magpies. They pay their respects, taking turns recounting the times they had with Tweakgrass. When it’s Skydiver’s turn, he is at a loss; Tweakgrass was a dear friend, and he can’t possibly sum up all that Tweakgrass did for him. When the magpies are done paying their respects, they fly off, leaving Skydiver alone with the corpse. He lingers, but then thinks of his own mate, and imagines her home alone waiting for his return. He can’t give up life for the dead.

A while later, he returns to the human’s house. Tweakgrass’s corpse is gone, appears to have been buried in a shallow grave. Of course Skydiver mistakes this for a cache, and thinks the human foolishly hid Tweakgrass’s corpse for later consumption. He flies up to the window of the house and sees something gleaming inside. Among magpies, there is a belief that such gleaming items contain trapped magpie souls, who are prevented from moving on to the afterlife. Skydiver surmises that Tweakgrass’s soul is trapped inside this shiny object, and resolves to get into the house somehow.

After a few days, Skydiver lucks out and finds a window partly open. He manages to get inside and furiously attacks the case containing the shiny object, which turns out to be a necklace. The human comes in to find this little magpie trying to break into a jewelry case, but instead of attacking, they curl up on their bed and cry. Skydiver seems to understand that this reaction is incongruous with his previous interpretations of the human’s actions; perhaps they miss Tweakgrass too.

In the denouement, Skydiver contemplates human burial rituals and the fact that Tweakgrass must’ve really cared about the human. He ultimately ends up hanging out at the human’s house regularly, and the shiny necklace that initially invoked Skydiver’s ire seems to have lost its gleam. Skydiver contemplates this, and decides that the necklace enver contained Tweakgrass’s soul. Rather, Skydive was looking for someone to blame for the loss of a friend, and the gleam of the necklace suited.

The story ends with a burgeoning friendship, and two very different people helping each other through grief.


Expression of intelligence:

Skydiver and friends are empathetic, emotional beings with a concept of an afterlife. Skydiver in particular seems to be thoughtful and open-minded, and not above being wrong. All hallmarks of advanced thinking.


Comments:

I think this is one of those stories where I ended up enjoying it more after the fact, when I was coming up with my summary. Spending more time with it helped me pick up on the nuances of Skydiver’s change in attitude toward the human. I think this could’ve HMed in a week with fewer HM candidates, but this was a fairly strong week.

I liked the idea that the allure of shiny objects goes beyond something cosmetic for magpies. They have a mythology regarding gleaming objects.

I enjoyed that we don’t really see any of Tweakgrass and Skydiver’s relationship, but we can infer a lot based on Skydiver’s reaction. He’s a credible emotion being and his grief is pretty believable.

….TBH it’s hard to say why this didn’t make my HM shortlist. I think it’s because it still falls into the same basic formula as most of the corvid stories, insofar as it focuses on the lives of corvids coexisting with humanity. We didn’t see many stories that dealt exclusively with intra-corvid issues; there were a couple, but even those didn’t go to the lengths that many of the cephalopod stories did. Still, you can feel good about this.

Sitting Here fucked around with this message at Jun 30, 2018 around 18:15

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Flesnolk
Apr 11, 2012


Jay W. Friks posted:

Invisible Bartertown last crits

Final part of my Bartertown crits,

Part 3: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1Nz...iew?usp=sharing

Contained within are Thranguy's "Farthest from the Moon: an Abbreviated Lexicon", Kaishai's "They Sing in Venata", Flesnolk's "Every Night In San Rafael", Sebmojo's "Before the Big One", Crabrock's "987 words", and Badseafood's "Head of State"

Part 2: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1Et...iew?usp=sharing (Note the final story should be Fumblemouses NOT Thranguys)

Part 1: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1N9...iew?usp=sharing

Thanks! I was hoping more people would offer crits.

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