Monday, July 28, 2014

Roleplaying Game Publisher shows more compassion than most Christians

A transgender blogger is shown compassion from the Pathfinder RPG publisher with gifts. Here is the blog post that records Paizo's Wes Schneider's act of loving kindness.
Paizo, You’re Just The Best!
So a little while ago I made a post about coming out as Transgender, and the issues that came with that regarding my family and my friends.
Wes Schneider (I’m a tumblr noob and have no idea how to make that into a link to his tumblr), of Paizo Publishing sent me a message, and asked if he and his people could send some swag to make a hard time easier.
Well. It arrived.
That gesture in itself was amazing, but inside the cover of the Inner Sea Gods hardcover was this.

Annnnd! On the inside cover of Chronicle of the Righteous was this.

From Wes himself!~ And I’ll even show you the pages he marked off as things that might be of particular interest to me.
One of the Empyreal Lords in Chronicles of the Righteous called “Arshea”

Who embodies both and neither gender, and “Worshipers believe that one’s gender and role in society are not tied to one’s physical form.”
The second marked page was in “The Worldwound Incursion” and it was for a character named “Anevia Tirabade”

Who’s very opening line is “Born a man and originally named Anvenn”.
A deep, and.. just, I don’t really know how to put into words, amazing thank you to Wes and to Paizo. Not only did they think of me, and send me these awesome things! But personal thought was put into every little gesture.
It.. Yeah, I don’t know how to express how grateful I am for just a kind gesture in a difficult time for me. It wasn’t something that HAD to be done, it was something they chose to do. As an absolute fan of their work in general, I can’t begin to explain what it means.
Thank you Wes, and thank you Paizo.

Why can't Christians show the love of Christ like gamer geeks can?

Hats off to you, Wes and Paizo. God bless.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Lessons Learned by Toby Fraud

Yes. That Toby!


The baby from Labyrinth grew up to be a film maker.

Toby Froud’s New Puppet Film Returns Us to the Magical World of ‘Labyrinth’ and ‘The Dark Crystal’

The baby from ‘Labyrinth’ grew up to make his own fantasy film, and if the sold-out world premiere is any indication, audiences are ready to return to the enchanting realm of puppet goblins, faeries, and imagination.
Published Jun 23, 2014, 2:32pm
By Aaron Scott
Image: Handmade Puppet DreamsThe cast of puppets from Toby Froud's 'Lessons Learned'
In case you missed it last week, Toby Froud, the baby in the striped PJs from the movie Labyrinth, grew up, moved to Portland for a job at LAIKA, and premiered his own fantasy puppet film on Saturday in collaboration with Jim Henson’s daughter, Heather. He might not have been raised by Goblin King Jareth (a.k.a. David Bowie in an explosion of lace and locks) and his goblin hordes in real life, but he came as close to it as possible, growing up the son of Brian and Wendy Froud, the reigning artistic royalty behind The Dark Crystal, Labyrinth, and an entire illustrated world of faeries and goblins with an international following.

In the few days before the screening of Toby’sLessons Learned, the buzz grew so deafening that I think it’s worthy of its own phrase: the Froud Frenomenon. Our interview with himwracked up 100,000 visits in the first two hours, and has gone on to some 300,000. (For those who are interested, in our poll of favorite songs, “Magic Dance” is squeaking out “As the World Falls Down” by 3 percent, 38 percent to 35, after nearly 5000 votes from 45 countries and all 50 states.) 
The screening itself was an event: folks dressed in faerie horns flying kites on the sidewalk, people of all ages flooding the lobby, tickets so oversold that the Hollywood opened the upstairs theater for a second simultaneous screening, and at the center of it, Toby with both his parents holding court in front of the film’s spectacular cast of puppets.
In other words, just as Toby has embraced the Froudian legacy of his parents, so too have the people embraced him as the goblin heir, with the hope that the wondrous world the Frouds created might once again grace theaters and imaginations. Call it 80’s nostalgia or a backlash to soulless CGI, but hand-made, hand-operated puppets still possess the magic to enchant like nothing else.
Image: Aaron ScottBrian, Toby, and Wendy Froud
Lessons Learned screened as part of three puppet shorts produced by Heather Henson’s company, Ibex Puppetry, for its Handmade Puppet Dreams film series. It’s worth noting that the second short, “Melvin the Birder,” was a charming paper cutout work also created by Portlanders, Beady Little Eyes Productions, about a birder’s quest to photograph the elusive Mustard Billed Wood-pecking Belly Wiggler.
But the centerpiece was Lessons Learned, a 15-minute tale about a boy whose grandfather gives him a “lessons learned” box, a physical receptacle of sorts to collect all the things he learns in his life. The curious boy can’t help but look inside his grandfather’s box (now a trunk), only to be pulled into a musty storage room where his grandfather’s lessons (e.g. “when it rains, it pours”) are catalogued in boxes that come alive when the boy reads them. The boy eventually ends up in another world of stone spires and swirling mists, where he confronts King Time and Granny Fate as embodied by an old grey man and a female spider who is knitting the course of time, respectively, before his grandfather pulls him out.
Image: Aaron ScottKing Time and Granny Fate from Toby Froud's 'Lessons Learned'
Toby’s puppets pick up right where his parents’ creations left off (which is not surprising, given his father helped with their design and fabrication). They are fantasy made foam-flesh: pointed ears twitch, elfin eyes blink, our spider lady sports stacked spectacles for her eight eyes. The production values, too, are exceptional. No doubt thanks to the many LAIKA professionals who lent their skills, the camera work, editing, and sound design coalesce to create an expansive world that feels just as mystical and captivating as The Dark Crystal and Labyrinth.
More than anything, it felt like an exhilerating beginning. The short is more of a teaser for a bigger story than a narrative complete in itself, but it’s a story and a world for which audiences seem ravenous. We can only hope that Lessons Learned signals a new Froudian/Henson collaboration, where new tales will immerse us, and a new generation of fans, in the fantastical world of Froud.

Saturday, July 5, 2014

Star Command

I've become obsessed with a video game. I purchased it a while ago for my phone to find that it was too much for the poor phone to run. I recently bought a Nook and found my purchase was still good and the game runs fine on that.

What a cool little game. A simple and not serious Star Trek clone. My son enjoys watching, but it is a little much for him to control at this point. The setting is light hearted, but cool enough that it makes me want to run a paper and pencil RPG in the Star Command setting. Perhaps Vortex or convert Edge of the Empire.

Friday, July 4, 2014

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