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Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Q is for-

Q1: Queen of the Demonweb Pits. Really there wasn't any other lead off choice for me here. I love the module. I know a lot of people hate it because of the Spidership- but that's really a matter of presentation, right? I mean, if you were a demon-spider wouldn't you want a magically animated spider-fortress to tool around the vastness of the Abyss in? Anyway, I ran that adventure for several successive years at my parent's Christmas party for my mom's best friend's son Paul K., who I rarely, like almost never, saw otherwise. We had a good time as kids at a party that was mostly people in their thirties and forties and I remember it pretty fondly.

Q is also for Questing and frankly I don't think we do enough of it. I guess we do a lot of small q questing, where we get an adventure hook and run with it to see where it takes us, or we say we are on a "quest for riches and glory"; but capital Q Questing like for the Holy Grail largely eludes us. On the one hand I get that because it can be seen as anti-sandbox and railroad-ey, but it doesn't have to be. Unless you consider it to be a railroad if the villains win because the heroes did nothing to stop them. I am a big fan of the world in motion, it does not revolve around the PCs, if they choose to ignore a rising evil or fail to take advantage of an opportunity there are natural consequnces of their actions.

Q is for Quasqueton. I have to admit I almost skipped this iconic entry because I never played B1 or DMed it. I only got a copy of B1 sometime after 3e came out; sorry, they just appear to be rare as hen's teeth. From what I have read it seems like a pretty cool, trippy dungeon-crawl trainer for both the DM and the players, so I can see why it's remembered fondly and I have run a party through the HackMaster version of it and that was a fantastic lot of fun.

Q is for Quarrel, the alternate name for a Bolt, the term used for an Arrow when it is fired from a Crossbow; if I had been EGG, I probably would have just picked one word or the other to use exclusively to avoid confusion, but then avoiding confusion doesn't really seem to have been really much of a concern for him.

Q is for Quiver, the thing you hold your arrows in (unless they are quarrels), which I included simply to increase my Q content.

Q is for Queens. I have a couple of things to say about Queens. First, apparently we are still a bunch of sexist bastards because we'll kill or die for a king, but rarely think twice about taking a queen seriously. Princesses are are either in peril or prizes to be won or both, but their mothers? Bah! I try to combat this by having some really strong queens from time to time, women that are either the real power in the kingdom or are co-equal partners with their husband the king. Ruling a nation isn't easy and a king needs a strong partner. I want people to think of Eleanor of Aquitaine when they think of a Queen, sadly they mostly think of Marie Antoinette. Columbus' "discovery" of the new world was financed by a queen* after all.

Secondly, I still want to make my wife Queen of Aethelmearc. I have come pretty close before and I know I don't have a lot of good tournament fighting years left in me, but the hard training time starts as soon as the ground dries up here. I am not going to try for Spring Crown, but I plan to enter Fall Crown Tourney, and this time I plan to honor my lady wife by winning and making her the queen she deserves to be.

Pictured- the arms of my wife the lady Mattea Di Luna

In Glorias Aethelmearc!

*There are a great many myths about Columbus and Isabella ranging from her selling the crown jewels to finance the expedition against her husband's wishes, to Columbus using his superior Italian love-making skills to convince her to throw money his way. The fact is, that it was a risky venture, she talked it over with her financial advisors and went back and forth on the decision a few times before throwing the bare minimum at him that she could expect to see successful returns on; it was a gamble and it paid off huge.