Brief Notes for January

A few things to enjoy and/or look forward to:

  • I’ve uploaded my article from the Journal for the Academic Study of Magic, “The Role of Grimoires in the Conjure Tradition,” to my Academia.edu account. It’s almost ten years old, but it might be of interest.
  • Scarlet Imprint has opened pre-orders for its latest book, Jinn Sorcery by Rain al-Alim, which includes translations of rituals to summon these creatures from a private collection.
  • I’ll be taping Roejen Razorwire’s Project Archivist podcast on Sunday.  Topics will be grimoires, including the Simon Necronomicon.
  • The Museum of Witchcraft and Magic in Cornwall is hosting a conference on ritual magic in May.  If you can get there, it might be worth checking out.
  • My classic D&D group has just arrived in Clark Ashton Smith’s Averoigne, one of the settings in a classic module not to be named here.  It’s funny to go to D&D forums and hear people lament the fact that they can’t get the articles on Averoigne that Richard Becker and I wrote for Worlds of Cthulhu.
  • Finishing up our Iron Heroes campaign. I like what the system was aiming to do, but I’m not fond of the execution.
  • My other group has been playing Shadow of the Demon Lord, which I’d describe as an apocalyptic fantasy game like a simplified 5th D&D, but adding complexity by assigning each character three roles as they progress through their careers. Some elements of it seem rough around the edges, but we’re already planning another campaign.
  • The snake is handling the snow and ice well, by simply avoiding them.

 

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Published in: on January 19, 2018 at 7:45 pm  Comments (1)  

Festooned with Fairies

I’ve been accepted as a presenter at the Scientiae: Disciplines of Knowing in the Early Modern conference at Oxford in July.  My presentation will be an expansion of my talk at the Esoteric Book Conference, just with the scholarship being more overt, and covering more ground.

When I say “more ground,” I mean comprehensively surveying as many of the known manuscripts dealing with fairy magic as possible.  There are brief references in various scholarly works, so I’ve been striving to follow up on as many as possible.  Fortunately, acquiring digital copies of books is quite easy; the staff at the British Library and Oxford’s Bodleian have been most helpful, as has Joe Peterson.  In case you’re wondering, scans of the microfilm are usually under $100, although you still have to deal with Latin passages, early modern script, and messy handwriting.  After all this, I have retrieved over a dozen magical manuscripts to which I’ve found references.

So far, I can say the following:

First, my hypothesis stated at the Esoteric Book Conference – that magic that involves fairies, or similar spirits, has some traits different from the calls to demons or other spirits – seems to be borne out so far.  Crudely put, the magician’s approach seems to assume more equality, whether through words or ritual actions that mime those between humans, than the exorcist conjurations of demons via divine dominance, and more likely to incorporate aspects of the landscape as important elements.  I hope my language above indicates that this is more of a continuum than a division; many rites, especially those devoted to Oberion, are much closer to the exorcistic model, for instance.  I’m still transcribing, so I hope there’s more interesting material to come.

Second, by sheer luck the selection of The Book of Oberon for publication has made the largest discovered collection of early modern rituals aimed to invoke the Fair Folk available.  This does not mean that is comprehensive, as I’m finding many other examples, but it’s turned out to be a great source.

I’ve also been reading up on the scholarly literature on fairies.  I’m enjoying Diane Purkiss’ At the Bottom of the Garden (apparently out of print, but also available under the title Troublesome Things) and using it to track back other contemporary references to fairies.  There are a great deal of pamphlets in Early English Books Online that speak to the sixteenth and seventeenth-century interest in these creatures.  Nonetheless, there are huge gaps in what we know about them, simply because the elite and learned did not write much about them until later.  If it hadn’t been for Kirk’s Secret Commonwealth, I think a great deal of lore would have been lost – even if, I hasten to add, Kirk was writing from a particular perspective in a particular place and time.

On my own, I’m also chugging away on collecting material on a few different topics – the table ritual, witch bottles, and wax images in particular.  All of these already appear in published or soon-to-be-published places, but I want to have all the material in place so I can one day rewrite them to be even more impressive.  I can dream, right?

No RPG writing is going on right now.  This summer will pick up, I think, with some work on the Delta Green supplement Falling Towers.  Right now, I’m simply enjoying running a game or two (D&D Rules Cyclopedia) and playing in two (D&D 5th edition, Star Wars: Edge of the Empire).

And the snake seems more healthy, even if she does seem to be going through a mid-winter fast – if this long bout of high temperatures constitutes a winter in upstate New York.

Published in: on March 15, 2016 at 8:20 pm  Comments (8)  

Delta Green Kickstarter Final Days

We’re coming to the end of the Delta Green Kickstarter, with only 38 hours remaining.  For those who are wondering what they get, here’s a breakdown:

  • For $1, you get the free PDFs that come to all backers, including pieces on the King in Yellow, Atlach-Nacha’s minions, and body disposal, plus the CONTROL GROUP introductory campaign.
  • For a $20 pledge, you can get the Agent’s Handbook (player’s guide) in PDF, along with a bunch of PDFs, including at least one complete book of scenarios.
  • For a $150 pledge, you get the player’s guide in print, along with PDFs of the GM’s guide, the GM’s screen, Kenneth Hite’s Trail of Cthulhu campaign set in Vietnam, a King in Yellow campaign (with my writing), the CONTROL GROUP campaign, a Majestic-12 sourcebook, and (we’re about $400 away) a sourcebook on the British paranormal organization PISCES, plus a whole bunch of backer PDFs.
  • For $300, you can get all of the above in print, save the backer PDFs (still PDFs).  That’s 7 books and a GM screen, which is not bad for a bunch of gaming books these days, with a lot of bonus scenarios and other material.

Yet… if we could get another $40K, this would unlock:

A while back Dennis Detwiller, the creator of the Fate, told Scott and me that he figured that at some point after 9/11, Stephen Alzis vanished. There was no fanfare, no coup, no maneuvering. He just stopped showing up. And naturally all his followers started taking each other down, each of them wanting to be top boss.

So, Scott and I at Gen Con were talking about that. We started laughing at the thought of Delta Green agents in New York realizing what had happened, and how rabid they would be to jump in the middle of all that and take another shot at the Fate.

The more we imagined it, the more it sounded like a pretty bad-ass campaign to play.

That’s Delta Green: Falling Towers. 

If this runaway project hits $340K, we’ll publish it.

Falling Towers will be two things. First, a series of scenarios where Delta Green agents in the 2000s turn every available resource toward rooting out the fractious Network and destroying it. Second, a sourcebook for the mysteries and threats Delta Green faces in New York today. You can run a Fate-hunting campaign in the 2000s and use that as a launch point for an ongoing New York campaign today. The primary writers will be me, Daniel Harms, and Dennis Detwiller. Dennis will illustrate it.

So, if you’re on the fence , that might appeal to you.

Published in: on October 27, 2015 at 8:27 pm  Leave a Comment  

Delta Green Announcements

A couple of items just came up relating to Delta Green, the setting of espionage and covert battles against the Mythos.

First, I’ve just had my short story “Dark” published in the anthology Delta Green:  Extraordinary Renditions.  For the low price of $9.99, you can get a book with that story and a number of others by Kenneth Hite, John Tynes, Adam Scott, Glancy, James Lowder, Cody Goodfellow, and others.

Delta Green itself is getting its own tabletop game, and the Kickstarter has already funded to the tune of $130K.  US folks can get a print copy of the new corebook, with a PDF and a bunch of other free PDF releases, for $70.  When the Kickstarter reaches $180K, I’ll be helping out on Dennis Detwiller’s Impossible Landscapes, an entire campaign based upon the King in Yellow and Carcosa.  If you’re interested, please head over to the Kickstarter page and help out.

Published in: on October 5, 2015 at 7:28 pm  Leave a Comment  

What’s Going On

I’ve got a few posts in the works, but I also wanted to talk about what’s going on at this end.

Right now, I’m doing some intensive work on Frederick Hockley’s associate George Graham (1784-1867), in preparation for a book that’s a few years down the road at least.  Graham is probably the best-known of the people in Hockley’s circle, but that’s because he and his wife were amateur balloonists who made a career out of flying up into the air and having disastrous adventures.

I’d love to see more evidence for Graham as an alchemist or astrologer or ritual magician – there’s a bit out there, such as his ownership for a short time of the Book of Oberon.  Still, there’s scads more on him as an aeronaut, especially newspaper stories from the Times of London and other sources.   It’s quite compelling, although it is quite distracting from blogging, answering comments and emails, etc.

I also did a small local workshop on witch bottles, based upon my upcoming article on the topic in my publication of Liverpool cunning man William Dawson Bellhouse’s manual.  While prepping, I found a good number of other articles that I’d have loved to have found about two years ago.  I’m documenting them and writing them up for my compendia of notes that I keep for a large number of published projects, in case I ever decide to return and expand them.

I haven’t written much for Call of Cthulhu lately, although I’ve got a good amount of material still waiting to come out.  I can give a few reasons for this:

1)  My reluctance to continue to engage what has become a Kickstarter-obsessed culture among gamers and companies.  KS can give those who work with established companies or names great opportunities to finance projects.  Nonetheless, it also trades excitement and drama for predictable results, and it makes it more difficult to publish small-scale material that isn’t a huge spectacular campaign.

2)  My ambivalence about 7th edition.  This is a shame, because there are many aspects of the new game that I like.  Most of it comes down to my seething hatred of the new stat block.  From what I’ve read, this was adopted simply to allow easier comparisons between stats and skills – in short, situations that very rarely rear their heads in any game that I’ve run or scenario that I’ve read.  And I’ve read most of the non-monograph output from the game’s creation until very recently.

Some will say, “All you have to do is multiply the old numbers by five!”  There’s a lot of people who can’t do math in their head, and that creates a barrier to people using the older books.  That’s especially true as it creates situations where some numbers have to be multiplied by five and then divided by five.   I can do that, but I still find it annoying.

Also, it makes life more difficult for me and other authors.  Huge amounts of material, written by me and other people who have genuine love for the game, is now going to need to go through a great deal of work before it can ever be published so that someone can occasionally compare – what?  Strength and Martial Arts?  Spot Hidden and Dexterity?

It’s also problematic for editors.  I spent five minutes a few months ago trying to figure out the implications of an item that added 10 POW to a character’s stats.  Once I recognized that this would be 2 POW in the old system, things clicked into place, but I was bothered that I actually had to figure it out.

On top of all of this, there’s a reluctance to put in the time and effort to master a 400+ page system in all of its intricacies.  For players and Keepers, that’s not so bad, because you can just keep the parts you want and ignore the rest.  When you’re writing for the game, you don’t have that option.  I’ll probably do it eventually, but I won’t be happy about it.

3)  A general malaise regarding the Mythos and its use.  Example:  I picked up a recent product (which shall remain nameless), and I immediately encountered one of those cults that’s apparently been playing cards in a back room somewhere while languages changed, empires fell, and major faiths arose, doing nothing but awaiting the day when someone could steal an artifact and they could come forth to slay infidels in a white-hot rage.

After so many excellent scenarios with plausible, well-written villains, some authors still see cultists as simply being fanatical murderers.  It’s even sadder when you realize that these writers are only getting away with this because those cultists are people of color from Third World countries.  No one would believe that crowds of people from Islington or Sheboygan would run headlong at gun-toting investigators while waving knives, but plenty of readers accept it if those people are from Africa or India.   Those are the parts of Lovecraft’s legacy that we’re supposed to be ashamed of, remember?

I’m also feeling less of a desire to be a consultant on Mythos projects.  Keeping up with the gaming material alone is hundreds of dollars and dozens of hours each year, let alone fiction.  When you’re got enthusiasm, it’s fine, but it starts to become a chore otherwise.   After comparing that with the amount I usually get offered for consulting ($0), I’ve concluded that it’s much more fun reading newspaper articles about 19th century balloonists and writing something I hope to be paid for.

(Edit:  to be fair, I don’t ask for a fee for doing such work, but I also think a fair fee would be hardly enough to purchase any CoC materials.  I’d rather do something I really want to do at this stage.)

4)  The overall feeling that I want to be doing something different.   Don’t ask me what that means.  I just know I want to write creatively on topics other than the Mythos, but that relies on that blend of folklore and history and otherworldliness that Lovecraft carried off so well.  I’ve been exploring the genre of folk horror, and I’m finding much that appeals to me there, although at its worst it tends to recreate patterns similar to those I just discussed regarding marginalized peoples.

Wow.  I feel better now.

I hope you’re all having a great day.  If you have any opinions on the above, please leave them in the comments.

 

 

Published in: on August 2, 2015 at 3:21 pm  Comments (5)  

Call of Cthulhu: Where We Went Wrong, Part 2

Given that the first post on this topic was well-received, I thought I might try another.  Despite putting this in as Part 2, it actually goes back to the original publication of the rules, and it represents my own interpretation of how they were supposed to work.

To begin, I’d like to quote from Sandy Petersen’s description of the evolution of Call of Cthulhu:

Now, Chaosium didn’t fully respect Lovecraft, and wasn’t interested in his work as horror fiction, but it really liked the idea of making a period piece RPG. Lovecraft was writing in the 1920s and 1930s, which for him was modern day, but the folks at Chaosium decided that the Twenties vibe was cool, and it kept Chaosium interested during the editing process. It also meant Chaosium could put out period supplements, which it really liked! Chaosium wanted to write about what was going on in the cities, the social structure, that was what Chaosium found interesting. The horror wasn’t as important!

Of course, I wasn’t there to witness any of this, but if this is the case, it signifies a fundamental break in how the game rules were structured.  Let’s take a look under the hood.

If we look at the character creation chapter of early editions of Call of Cthulhu, the occupation list looks something like this:

Author
Doctor
Historian / AntiquarianJournalist
Lawyer
Parapsychologist
Dilettante
Professor
Private Eye

Nonetheless, if we go to the “Sourcebook for the 1920s,” we find the following list.

Anarchist
Professional Athlete
Farmer
Gangster
Hobo
Policeman
Missionary
Politician
Soldier

Take another look at that initial list.  What they hold in common is that they are all characters who are investigating the mysterious events in Lovecraft’s stories.  They are typically highly-educated, often have academic specialties, and usually have Read/Write Other Language or a similar skill on their list.  With such a group composition, it makes sense to have a large number of academic skills, to base those skills on Education, and to give base amounts for non-academic skills that make it somewhat possible, if generally unlikely, to succeed.  (After all, why start with a Physics of 0% and a Jump of 25%?)

So this group goes out to investigate, and what do they find, aside from blasphemous horror?  Tomes, written in a number of different languages.  Sandy Petersen once noted on the Yog-Sothoth forums (I can’t track down the exact quote, sorry) that tomes were built in as the game’s reward structure.  Given the skills of the group, it is likely that someone will be able to read these, thereby accumulating Cthulhu Mythos skill.  And, as I pointed out in my previous post, Cthulhu Mythos was intended to be helpful to determine the scope of the threat against the investigators, and as such had a clear and definite purpose.  Given the low amounts gained through insanity, reading tomes was the most clear method to accumulate this necessary ability.

Now, scroll up to that second list of occupations.  Although some of these do appear in HPL’s stories, they are rarely the investigators themselves.  The intent here is not to model a literary genre, but a time period.  If you are doing that, then providing ways to make characters of a broad swath of occupations in order to model those that were available at the time.  This has become the usual trend throughout Cthulhu, and the scenarios have been written to accommodate it.

Still, this explanation does answer a good number of questions that have come up over the years from players and designers alike:  “Why are my lounge singer’s capabilities to entertain tied to her formal education?”  “Further, why would my lounge singer work with a gangster, a sailor, and a professor?  That sounds like a bad sitcom premise.” “Why do we have all these academic/medical skills that no one has points in?”  “Should we combine some of these skills?”  “What are we supposed to do with this tome?  Nobody speaks the language.” (followed by) “Should we just burn it?”  “What’s with all of these different categories for monsters?”   “Everyone’s Cthulhu Mythos is so low.  Why even bother rolling it, or including it in a scenario?”

In making the above points, I am not trying to say Call of Cthulhu is not a vastly entertaining game.  Instead, many of the questions we have been asking for years about it are the result of a decision made early on in the design process:  to repurpose a game that simulated Lovecraftian investigation to one that simulated Twenties society.  That legacy is still with us today.

Published in: on April 4, 2015 at 3:12 pm  Comments (5)  
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Call of Cthulhu: Where We Went Wrong, Part 1

I’ve been holding back a good Call of Cthulhu rant for some time now.  Let’s get into it.

One of the changes in the new 7th edition rules is the removal of categories for Mythos monsters.  In older editions, each creature was accompanied by a short descriptor to indicate where it fit into the Mythos – Lesser Independent, Greater Independent, Lesser Servitor, or Greater Servitor.  That they have done so is not unexpected, as writers and players alike have wondered for years what purpose they were supposed to serve.

Nonetheless, I would assert that they did serve a purpose, and that it was integral to the structure of the game.

Earlier versions of the game include the following example for the Cthulhu Mythos skill:

Harvey Walters has worked his Cthulhu Mythos up to 15% and sees a smeared spot on the road, heavy with goo and slime.  He makes his Mythos roll and is told that whatever made the smear was at least a major monster.  Harvey goes in the other direction.

This example may reveal the fundamental intent behind both the monster categories:  to gauge the strength of the opposition.  Players could encounter signs of a Mythos creature, and, with a successful Cthulhu Mythos roll, get some idea of what they were in for.  They could then make a decision about whether they wanted to proceed, if backup was needed, or if they should simply give up and run away.  Further, this assessment could be done without giving away the mystery of exactly which creature they were encountering.

As it did so, it also confirmed the importance of the Cthulhu Mythos skill in the game.   Increasing it gave players an increased chance of avoiding danger, but it also decreased maximum Sanity, leading to a lesser chance of dealing with such encounters.  As such, the decision to read a tome brought with it difficult choices.

One of the key difficulties with this approach is that – to my memory – it rarely entered the scenarios themselves.  This led to two difficulties with the game.  The first was the confusion as to what exactly those categories were supposed to do, but this would prove minor.  The second was to unmoor the Cthulhu Mythos skill from any particular relevance in the setting.  Sure, it’s nice to know that Cthulhu or Glaaki is involved in a given situation, and that might contribute to the mood by giving a delicious frission to the players.  Nonetheless, little mechanical advantage exists for the skill, and the original rules indicate it was once otherwise.

 

Published in: on April 3, 2015 at 10:49 am  Comments (14)  

A New England Sojourn

I spent part of last week in New England, with Donovan K. Loucks, keeper of the H. P. Lovecraft Website, and his lovely wife Pam.  I arrived on Tuesday, driving up to Providence after work and ending up quite exhausted.

I wasn’t too exhausted, however, to head into Cambridge to visit the Harvard University Archives, trying to obtain some background that might be useful for future projects dealing with the Widener Library.  My carefully-copied archive number turned out to be illusory, but the staff were very helpful in figuring out what documents might be most relevant for my search – although they’d have to be called the next day.  That was fine with me, and I filled out the rest of the afternoon visiting the Boston Public Library to consult old directories to fill out my knowledge of the place in the Twenties.  After that, I returned to Providence to attend Donovan’s birthday party for H. P. Lovecraft, complete with a one-man retelling of “The Call of Cthulhu” by dramatist David Neilsen and Donovan’s own walking-while-sitting tour through Lovecraft’s Providence.  Also, there was cake.

Lovecraft Birthday Cake

The next day, I was back at the Archives, which I finished rather early.  Having learned the previous day of the outrageous parking rates in Cambridge, I realized it was in my best interest to hang out some more, visiting various bookstores and the Peabody Museum.  On my way out of town, I stopped out of curiosity at the Seven Stars bookstore, only to find perhaps the best store for books on the Western mystery traditions in this country.  I walked out with a few items to fill out my collection, including Kenneth Grant’s Outside the Circles of Time, which will give readers some idea of the place’s comprehensiveness.  I then returned to Providence, and my memory fails me as to what occurred that night.

Friday, we all headed out for the North Shore, in order to investigate the places that might have inspired Lovecraft’s “The Shadow over Innsmouth.”  We headed north and then worked our way south, beginning with a lengthy stopover in Newburyport, and then heading south through Ipswich, Rowley, Essex, Rockport, and Gloucester, with a lengthy detour at the latter to visit the rock formation, Mother Ann, which served as the inspiration for “The Strange High House in the Mist,” despite the lack of mist and the fact that it was neither high nor house-bearing:

242

We made our way back, stopping in Manchester for groceries and a bookstore, and in Salem for Italian food and a nighttime ramble through the Charter Street Burial Ground and past the house that inspired “The Unnameable.”

Saturday, we had had enough of jetting about, so we played games for most of the day.  We couldn’t sort out A Study in Emerald in time, but we did play Elder Signs and quite a bit of Rock Band.  That evening, we headed downtown to visit the Providence Public Library’s Lovecraft Readathon, after which we headed over for Indian food at Waterfire, which was spectacular as always.

WaterFire Providence

After that, we came back to receive a crushing defeat in the game Witch of Salem, in which you must fight back the forces of darkness while assisting Bob, the Witch of Salem.  The game is much like Arkham Horror in that you’re trying to close gates, save that you are unable to communicate to the other players whether a gate exists at a location.  I speculated that the Witch of Salem was a drama queen who enforced our silence to enhance his own self-importance.

The next day, we played some Rock Band and I drove home.  It’s always great to see the Louckses, and this trip raised my number of “stories inspired by sites in Providence” by two, so it was all for the best.

Published in: on August 24, 2014 at 10:59 pm  Comments (2)  

Double Kickstarters

Somehow I’ve managed to get myself entangled in not one but two Kickstarters at once.  Both have already reached the initial funding goal, so if you jump on board, you’ll be getting something neat and adding to everyone else’s neat stuff.

First, the Call of Cthulhu book Tales from the Crescent City features my adventure “Needles,” in which your investigators take on a New Orleans legend and uncover the terrifying truth behind them.  At the Algiers level, you’ll get that scenario, plus another five by some great authors, including a rewritten version of Kevin Ross’ classic “Tell Me, Have You Seen the Yellow Sign?” and his all-new sequel, in both print and PDF.  Tales also has  a New Orleans neighborhood guide written by locals, a two-page Roaring Twenties map of the city,  and a writeup of HPL’s mystic Etienne-Laurent de Marigny, in both print and PDF.  The next stretch goal is the book’s seventh scenario.

On top of that, you’ll get a Mythos scenario in PDF format, another four scenarios based upon New Orleans folklore (and more with more stretch goals) in PDF, and a set of Mardi Gras beads.  I told Oscar Rios of Golden Goblin Press to charge you more than $35 for all this, but he didn’t listen.

Second is the fiction anthology Delta Green:  Tales from Failed Anatomies, a collection of stories of paranormal investigation and creeping horror by Dennis Detwiller.   More stories are being written as stretch goals by Kenneth Hite, Adam Scott Glancy, Cody Goodfellow, and Greg Stolze.  When the campaign reaches $10,000 (it’s at $8700 right now), I’ll write a Delta Green short story called “Dark,” set during the NYC blackout of 1977.   Maybe I’ll weave in something else that was going on in the Big Apple at that time.

For $15, you’ll get the e-book, plus all of the stretch goal stories, plus a coupon to buy a paperback of Detwiller’s book for about $10 or hardback for $25, plus a coupon to buy my story and the others in a book for another $10 if we reach enough goals to fill it.  (They’re giving out the coupons for purchase later in order to speed up delivery.)  For another $15, you can be an alpha tester for the new Delta Green RPG as well.

In either case, you’re getting a lot of quality material for not too much from companies with good track records.  Donate a little so you can read something great.

Published in: on February 15, 2014 at 10:00 am  Comments (1)  

A Happy 2014 Update

It’s really cold up here, so some shovelling of snow is in order.  Apparently someone liberated my snow shovel in the past few days, so I went out to get one of those orange colossal ones that can cut through a mountain.

  • The notes for the Book of Oberon have returned, so the team is working our way through them.   For my part, I’m tackling the introduction, which was written in a much more technical style near the beginning of the project and now needs to be more friendly as well as rigorous.  (I don’t think we often have to choose between the two, although how is sometimes difficult to determine.)
  • The Boston book goes along very slowly.  I’ve got some more sources to consult, once I brave the cold once more.
  • I’ve been working with Steven Kaye on two more articles on the worship of various Mythos entities.  Some of you may remember the one on “The Worship of Tsathoggua through the Ages” in Worlds of Cthulhu.  These will be hitting some more prominent gods/aliens/monsters/folks.
  • Delta Green game:  Agents were sent to Alaska as Secret Service, and ended up hunting (and being hunted by) hairy hominids out in the middle of the wilderness.   Now one of them has a hominid head in his freezer, and another has a tracking device once implanted into these creatures.  I’m still working on the next game.
  • Yig is fine.  Some people want me to blog more about Yig, but really, she’s a snake.  She crawls around her cage and sticks her head out of her caves to look for food, which she is rather unsuccessful at obtaining.  I know it’s a matter of heat, but sometimes I look at this snake dropping her food into the water dish (which takes some effort, given that it has two-inch sides) and wonder how this species survived for millions of years.

I hope wherever you are is warmer than here.

Published in: on January 3, 2014 at 9:53 pm  Comments (3)