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Old 01-08-2021, 05:42 PM   #2421
SolemnGolem
 
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Default Re: Real-Life Weirdness

Quote:
Originally Posted by David Johnston2 View Post
I wrote up the Brazen Head once. My version of it could do basic addition and subtraction on command but its real power was that, when the spoons hidden inside it's base were filled with dirt from five surrounding points, the head would detect the arrival of groups of men with hostile intent at the boundary sketched out by the points. It would rotate to face the direction at which they crossed the boundary and would say how large the group once it crossed.
I really like this - I was trying to do a similar "perimeter radar" style of magical defense (for a group huddling in a caravan fearing orc attacks). The best I could come up with was a quadrangle of totems that could detect creatures walking past them and cause a small warning noise on a device inside the caravan. But this problem is that the totems themselves are visible and could tip off an intruder.

(And in a nod to The Beast of War I had a herd of deer trigger the warning and the PCs all freaked out, massacring them in volleys of arrows blind-fired into the night.)
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Old 01-12-2021, 02:49 PM   #2422
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Default Re: Real-Life Weirdness

WARNING body squick

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So, uh. Did you know that you can have hallucinogenic mushrooms growing in your blood? At least if you're like this guy and inject hallucinogenic mushrooms in an attempt to get high?

Dude was in the ICU for 8 days of a 3-week hospital stay, needed intubation a time or two. So, nearly died yeah.

If someone was slightly less stupid about this, you could have a hallucinogenic mushroom species that could enter the bloodstream as a spore through a small open wound... followed by violent drug-enhanced rampages, hallucinations of any sort convenient to a plot, and for bonus zombie-danger if it's not just to be an individual or a regular happening tied to a particular location, infectious bodily fluids when severely affected.

Of course, if the mushroom starts off the experience with a burst of euphoria, and only an overdose causes the hallucinating rampage followed by death, well, it's not like thrill-seekers are proverbial for their self-control.
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Old 01-13-2021, 12:00 AM   #2423
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Originally Posted by William View Post
WARNING body squick
Saw the headline, skipped the article. Having a few relatives suffer from hard-to-diagnose fungal infections, that's it's own type of body horror for me.
<shudder>
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Old 01-18-2021, 11:22 AM   #2424
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Look I know there is an entire series of movies about this but if you think I am not going to open a beautifully-calligraphed, silver-inlaid 13th-century Persian combination-lock box constructed by "the astrolabe-maker Muhammad ibn Hamid al-Asturlabi al-Isfahani," and described in the contemporaneous "Book of Ingenious Mechanical Devices" by "the mechanical genius al-Jazari," well, you've never met a PC before.
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Old 01-18-2021, 11:32 AM   #2425
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Default Re: Real-Life Weirdness

Combination lock built by a master 12th/13th century astrolabe maker. Yeah, that's the way to make the stars right.
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Old 01-18-2021, 11:57 AM   #2426
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Default Re: Real-Life Weirdness

And the reply that the first thing the tweeter thought of was Pandora's Box. Like he's never even seen the Lament Configuration or something.
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Old 01-18-2021, 12:13 PM   #2427
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Default Re: Real-Life Weirdness

Personally, I liked the one calling it a Persian car battery.
And now because of a Youtube suggestion, I'm imagining an episode of The Lock Picking Lawyer going horribly horribly wrong.

Maybe the tweeter is a super fan and doesn't consider anything not cube shaped to be truly indicative of the box.
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Old 01-18-2021, 05:30 PM   #2428
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"This is the LockPickingLawyer, and today we have a fascinating antique which is less of a lock and more of a puzzle box. I'm not actually certain whether there's anything in this box, but I guess we'll find out."

"Ah, so it seems to be a music box? There's a little tune playing."

"It looks like as you manage to release more pieces, the tune gets more elaborate. I suppose the opening process is winding the spring; it seems to be going strong after quite a while."

"Now there's a bell. It sounds much louder and deeper than you'd expect for a bell in a box this size -- oh hello, there seem to be some people arriving."

(The feed is briefly staticky.)

"I have to ask, ma'am, is that meant to be a restraint? I bet it's more removable than you'd expect." (unclear female voice) "Oh no, it'll just take some simple tools. One moment..."

(The feed wavers again. There is a cut. The narrator returns. The LPL's voice is still calm but somehow a little ragged.)

"Sorry for the delay. I know I don't usually ever cut the video but we were just having a fascinating conversation. I've learned some amazing things which I hope to share with you in future videos. In any case, that's all I have for you today. If you do have any questions or comments about this, please put them below. If you like this video and would like to see more like it, please subscribe, and as always, have a nice day."
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Old 01-21-2021, 09:00 PM   #2429
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High in the Himalayas, many people believe that ammonite fossils are embodied gods (especially if they are collected from sacred valleys during a pilgrimage). An anthropologist based in the United States is publishing the art of interpreting these stones and how to detect the fakes offered to the poor but pious who can't make the trek themselves or want a different god http://www.peregrinationblog.com/ One of the five major colours is recommended to be only used by the very experienced because of its destructive energy.
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Old 01-29-2021, 01:37 PM   #2430
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Default Re: Real-Life Weirdness

Two from this week's Economist.

First, a use for the Mollusk Control spell: Polish water purification plant using clams to sense for pollution and contaminants.

https://www.economist.com/europe/202...sh-water-clean

Second, the following starting paragraph:

Patricia Highsmith had a thing for snails. She admired their self-sufficiency and found it “relaxing” to watch them copulate, delighted by the impossibility of distinguishing male from female. She collected them for decades, keeping hundreds at home and scores in her handbag, which she let loose when bored at dinner parties. Her affection for snails was matched by her ambivalence towards people, whom she often found baffling and kept at a distance. When a literary agent suggested Americans didn’t buy her books because they were “too subtle” and the characters too unlikeable, Highsmith responded: “Perhaps it is because I don’t like anyone.”

https://www.economist.com/books-and-...nduring-writer

If I ever make the Economist, I want a cool starting sentence like that. Second, I now need an NPC who collects snails and lets them loose at dinner parties.
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