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July 9th, 2006

Note to Myself: Celedras Uses a Bow

Tonight was the second session of jamesbarrett's rebooted D&D campaign; this one was pretty much pure fight, fight, fight, as we made our way through the besieged paladins' citadel. Celedras got to do some fun acrobatic archery stunts fairly early on, but then when we got to the "main event" of the evening (arriving at it @ 10:45 p.m., which was unfortunate but just one of the hazards of gaming) due to a bad choice on my part I spent most of the fight in a one-on-one side battle where I was completely ineffective and pretty much doomed if I'd kept going the way I had.

The premise was that there was this chapel being desecrated by undead, with a gallery up above. While most of the party charged on in, I figured that there were going to be archers or whatnot up above, so I had Celedras run up the stairs. My plan was that I'd take out the support troops up there fairly quickly and spend the rest of the fight raining arrows down on enemies below to help out the rest of the party.

This, alas, is not what happened. What instead happened was that there was a single wight up there and very limited maneuvering space, so I had Celedras drop his bow and pull out his short swords so as to not constantly be avoiding attacks of opportunity. Unfortunately, this lowered his attack progression from +11/+6/+11 to +9/+4/+9 -- which doesn't seem like that much, but believe me, it made a huge difference. Add to that the fact that the swords don't do as much damage as the bow, and what you had was me flailing pointlessly at the monster, while it whittled away my hit points ... and the rest of the party was basically left to fight the battle without my help. (These particular wights were fighting with weapons, not their level-drain attack, which was a good thing, believe you me!)

After the third round of my attacks bouncing off and the monster's attacks hurting me, I decided enough was enough. Not only was I completely not helping the party, I was rapidly becoming a liability. So in a "cut and run" maneuver I risked the attack of opportunity to pick up my bow (fortunately the critter missed) and leg it down the stairs. At this point, the rest of the party had managed to defeat the big threats in the room, but by the time sirfox's monk could come to my aid, I had my bow back and quickly dropped the wight.

So, note to myself: Celedras uses his bow. NOT his swords. Unless he has no other choice!

Before the session, the gaming group assembled more or less en masse at Game Parlor. This trip had been arranged to pick out a new miniature for camstone's paladin; unfortunately, something came up and he couldn't make it to the session tonight. The rest of us more or less "group picked" what we hope will be a figure Cam will approve of, and I'll try to get it ready for next week, in the hopes that things will be better for him by then.

We handled Baylor as an NPC pretty much, with different players or Frisk making the attack rolls for him. He took a little bit of a beating from various foes, but on the whole wasn't in too bad shape by the end. Certainly better than Celedras was! ;)

Alas, the session ran long. Now I must get me to bed!

-The Gneech

Oh, and sirfox, here is the link you wanted.

Yo Ho Ho and a Bottle of ... GAH!

Saw Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest ... 'tis excellent. Don't know what those reviewers are thinking.

It's definitely an Act II (i.e., a "middle chapter") and unable to stand on its own -- it requires the first one to establish the context, and the next one to finish the story.

But that's not a bad thing ... it's just as true of, say, The Empire Strikes Back.

I particularly like that it just picks up where the first one left off and addresses the ramifications of the first movie's ending; you can't just let a condemned man walk and not get heat for it, even in a Disney movie. ;) This transforms PotC from a one-hit wonder into a very cool piratey epic, which the world has needed badly for years!

I will also say that the big surprise at the end was a very good twist. Usually I can see movie surprises coming a mile off, but this one got me. It works perfectly well, it's not so far out of left field that it makes you want to say "I Call No Way!" -- but it was something that I just would not have thought of.

So yeah, it's good, go see it! Just wear plenty of eye protection, 'cause there's a ton of plot threads flying around!

-The Gneech

PS: The trailers before the movie were decidedly disappointing. The only one that didn't leave me hostile to the movie in question was Transformers, and all I have to say about that one is that they seem to be taking it awfully seriously for a movie about robots from space that disguise themselves as cars.

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