Patreon: Thoughts and Musings

As I get nearer and nearer to 300 subs on Youtube, I start to ponder where I should be going with it. Granted, my recent shift in focus to RPG content in general seems to be perfect. People love my RPG stuff (I think?) and I am doing well overall.

I think one the coolest things I have gotten into is reviewing RPG products. Recently I released my first review, on the campaign setting the Ice Kingdoms, and it was (I feel) pretty well received. I got a few more things to review already, and I really enjoy sharing these products. Its also easy to do (For me at least).

However, I have one limiting factor in all this. Its the same thing that limits me upgrading my equipment such as a better camera, or getting new games for reviewing, and so on.

Its money.

Now Patreon is a BIG THING in the internet world. Its basically crowdfunding artists and creative types. I know a ton of people who have em, and for a while I even backed a couple (minimally, had to stop cause, well, money!). Hell I even have seen a guy create a patreon before he even has a prodcut / show / blog / anything! Its a big deal. Popular folks even live off patreon like it was a full time job (Which given some creators, it actually is!)

I like the idea of patreon as well, personally. I like the idea of the fans of something / someone helping to support it. I love how fans can pledge as much or as little as they want, with limits built in. I like how Creators can have rewards for pledge levels, goals, and even setup if its monthly or per “creation”. I have had a few folks I know tell me I should create one… But the fact of the matter is, I don’t know if I should.

Most Patreon accounts have reward tiers. Stuff like “Pledge $10 an episode and get a free sticker!” and shit like that. Thing is, when thinking about my own show / videos, I dont really have anything to offer. I have no merch, although my wife is working on a shirt design at the moment, I have no time to do things like game nights and the like. I just dont have anything to offer BUT my work. It seems silly, and a bit rude, to ask for cash for no other reason then to do so.

Then there is the issue of reach. I have roughly 290 subs on Youtube, 1500 followers on Twitter, and a smattering of folks elsewhere (here on the blog and tumblr ect). I seriously doubt any of the folks following me would in fact support my weird ass little youtube endevour for no reward at all.

Granted, all I would use the Patreon money for would be things to support the show. Stuff like more products to discuss and the like, maybe giveaways and things. Or paying my net bill (cause I need to keep my upload rate!)

I dunno. Just thinking out loud I suppose. Sometimes I need to do this so I can put my thoughts on paper.

What do you think about Patreon?

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The DISCWORLD MUD – A Review

Discworld.

A world created by British author Terry Pratchett which contain a variety of funny and interesting novels.

There is also a MUD based on the world created by good ol Sir Terry. The MUD is what we will be discussing today in my little review here.

As a note, a MUD is a text based online RPG, think the precursors to the modern MMO. Everything is written in text. Don’t be afraid, its like playing an interactive book at times. You use commands (look, kill “name”, north, ect) to perform actions.

I have been playing this single MUD off and on since 1998, back when I was in high school. I have tried numerous other MUDs, including some of the bigger ones like Aardwolf, Genesis, and the IRE Family of MUDs and no matter what, I always end up coming back to the Disc. Why you might ask?

Well for a variety of reasons. Lets break down what makes the Discworld MUD unique, and why I think anyone who is looking for something fun and different should give this world a try!

Unlimited Growth and Character Building:

The single biggest factor, for me, is their unique character growth and advancement system. This game has 6 guilds (Priests, Wizards, Witches, Thieves, Warriors, and Assassins). Those guilds are broken up into specializations which determine what your guild skills are, and possibly what abilities or rituals you have access to. For example, the Priest Guild has one set of skills (The Faith Tree) but each god gives its priests different rituals.

This game uses a skill system rather then class system for advancement. Skills are broken up into Trees (Fighting, Faith, Magic, Covert, Crafting, Adventuring, People) and further broken up into types. For example, if you wanted to get good at swinging a sword, you advance Fighting.Melee.Sword. You use Experience Points (XP) to advance in your guild, or to learn from other players.

You gain XP by doing pretty much everything, and XP is the currency you use to advance a skill. You get XP for fighting and killing NPCs, performing spells or commands (Such as stealing), and just being logged in. With money you can train those skills in your guild to their maximum, and if you have no cash or are trying to go beyond what your guild can teach you, you can teach yourself or learn from other players.

Your guild and speclization determines the skills you can advance to level 300. Here is an example of one of the Warrior Specializations, the Ankh-Morpork Palace Guard:

crafts.smithing.black.weapons
fighting.defence.blocking
fighting.defence.parrying
fighting.melee.flail
fighting.melee.heavy-sword
fighting.melee.mace
fighting.melee.sword
fighting.points
fighting.range.thrown
fighting.special.tactics
fighting.special.weapon
fighting.unarmed.striking
adventuring.evaluating.armour
adventuring.evaluating.weapons
crafts.medicine.firstaid

However, nothing stops a player from advancing non guild skills. Lets say that fighter there wants to be able to use Wizard Spells! Well, he just has to advance his Magic skills up. However, once his guild trains him as high as they can go (5 levels max for non wizards in Magic btw) he has to go and learn from other players, most likely a Wizard of some sort. I play a priest, and if I wanted to learn to steal I can simply by training my stealing skill higher. Basically, your guild has unique commands / spells / rituals for you, but you can diversify to your hearts content, and there is no max level to a skill. Your guild can teach you to 300, sure, but some of the long time players have skills up in the 800+ range.

Your skill level determines your bonus, and everything in this game works off these bonuses. Higher is always better. The sky is the limit with these skills!

A Huge Player Driven World:

The world is, no joke, massive. Tons of areas to explore, and find secrets, do Quests for XP and Cash, own property and run your own store or have a house, play board games, become a Player Killer and have PVP fights (and steal from each other and all that jazz), events that occur both guild specific (such as the House Games of the AM Assassins Guild or the Witch Trails) or general, such as a monthly sight seeing event in Ankh-Morpork.

All the guilds are Player Run as well, each branch having their own rules and codes of conduct. Cities frequently have player councils, deciding laws and even court cases and such.

There are even player run Newspapers you can read! Or write for (and get XP and Cash for that!) Nevermind the sheer size of the world. Here is one of the major cities in Thumbnail size

That city is surrounded by terrain by the way that you can wander. Also, this game is fairly populated, compared to many MUDs, with an average 70+ players on at most times of the day. The player base is mostly american and UK.

Tis a Silly Game:

At the core though is the humor. I mean lets take a look at the gods the players can worship, as an example:

Pishe: Goddess of Slight Showers and Healing
Gapp: God of Fine Clothing and Fashion
Gufnork: God of Fluff and Fluffy Things
Sandelfon: God of Corridors
Fish: God of Fish
Hat: God of Unexpected Guests (and Parties!)
Sek: Seven Handed God of Destruction!

The player base tends to take a silly view of things as well. Assassins in AM tend to wear pink underwear, and other such nonsense. There are RPers (I am one) but mostly the world is about having a good time, eating lots of pie (them WIZARDS!) and just enjoying each others company.

Overall, the Disc has been around for over 20 years now, and its still going, still active, and still a ton of fun. And I wouldn’t have it any other way.

To play simply visit http://discworld.starturtle.net/lpc/ and click the Play Now link to open the Java client!

If you do decide to play don’t fear the game, there is an extensive tutorial town for you to wander in safely, as well as a NEWBIE channel to use. Also you can browse the official wiki (https://dwwiki.mooo.com/wiki/Main_Page) for more information, and once you join a guild the players of your guild will be happy to help you. Hope to see you in game. If you do join, I am called Vranick.

Want your Nerdy Item Reviewed? Here are the Rules

This is also now a page at the top. But I figured I would post it as well.

So I have gotten a couple of random requests to review things again. I figure I can open reviews up for those who are serious about it. I will only review certain things, and with certain guidelines and rules regarding them. Here are my rules, and how you go about requesting a review.

Be aware reviews will be done in video form. I no longer do written reviews.

Things I will review (Specific Rules Below):

1) Books
2) Games
3) Music
4) Comics
5) Movies
6) Loot Crates (of the Nerdy Variety)

Now, here are some specifics about the above categories. In ALL CASES you must be willing to provide the item you want reviewed. I am not spending what little money I have to buy a copy. Sorry guys.

Books:

I will accept books in EPUB or MOBI format. I do not do anything of an overtly sexual nature. I primarily read sci fi and fantasy. I will read the book until I either finish OR it loses me. Sorry but if the book can’t hold my attention that is a problem in and of itself. The book “getting better later” is not a valid excuse for poor pacing.

Games:

For video games, I need a copy of the game via Steam Key, GoG Key, or Humble Bundle Key. I do PC Games only, as I do not have any consoles. I tend towards almost anything but sports titles and anything akin to Dark Souls. Sorry, I have no tolerance for “git gud” games. I am also not a huge fan of MOBA styled top down games. Beyond that, I promise to play the game for a minimum of 2 hours. If I want to keep going after that I will. However, I have a 2 hour rule and if the game cannot hold my attention for those 2 hours, well, thats the end of it.

For Physical Games, I need a copy of the game. I can provide an address for it to be sent to, if need be. Beyond that I am pretty open to trying anything.

For Tabletop RPG games I prefer physical copies of the rules. If you prefer, you can give me a EPUB or MOBI formatted copy. I do adventures or systems. These will take a while however as I have to find time to play using the rules after reading em / play the adventure.

Music:

No Rap, Regge, Hip Hop or Country. I am willing to try anything else. I will review it song by song. I tend to prefer albums. MP3 or Physical release is acceptable. If digital, give me some album art please.

Comics:

Electronic format PDF / MOBI / EPUB or a physical version. Either or.

Movies:

Electronic format is fine. I don’t do horror or anything politically driven. Not my thing.

Loot Crates:

I like gaming, nerdy shit, tabletop games, wrestling. If your loot crate has nothing to do with these things please do not approach me. The answer will simply be no.

If you want me to review something, you can either contact me on Twitter via DM (@cbsa82) or by email at cbsa82@gmail.com

Be aware I may not accept it. If you just send me something randomly, there is no promise I will review it. If you want to see if I am willing its best to just ask me first. And I am picky. You need to WOW me.

Timeframe wise I promise that if I accept is I WILL review it. Just might not be immediate. I work a 40 hour a week job and have a personal life.

Also be aware I am a harsh but fair critic. I will tell you what I like, what I don’t like, and why.

For examples of my review style I present the following. First, my written reviews are a good idea of how I judge things.

A List of Books I have previously reviewed
Game Reviews I did for Vox Ludicus

And all video reviews will be in a format similar to the below video, and posted to that channel:

Personal Update: 2016 Year in Review

The end of 2106 is nearing and its been…a wild year hasn’t it. Deaths, controversy, madness. In my own life I had to buy a new car, reviewed and then stopped reviewing games (although I might start this up again). I started doing youtube, deleted my channel, and then restarted it as Terminally Nerdy to match my blog. My job went through a huge merger and has had a ton of shakeup there. No Mans Sky released and fell flat. The Walking Dead started back up. Ect ad naseum.

I figured with the year coming to a close I could sit down, and reflect on some of my choices I have made. I know, its not really the end of 2016 but its close enough for me, and this is on my mind. And when things are on my mind, I like to get them out. It gets crowded in here ok?

1) WoW Legion: So Legion released, my wife and I dove in, and played for a while. But despite changes that made the game more fun, it just couldn’t hold our attention for long. Both of us find that growing as characters, leveling up and exploring a world vastly more fun then any amount of end game content, and because of that WoW only managed to hold the two of us for two months. Granted, legion is an AMAZING expansion, the artifact system is fun as hell, and the sheer amount of crap you can do solo is amazing. And Suramar is an amazing city zone that feels like a real life city.

2) My Car: So back in May, I had to trade in my old PT Cruiser (Pretty Lady) and get a new car. It was on its last legs and would literally take more money then it was worth to repair it. Got a 2016 Kia Soul and could not be happier. Its a solid dependable car, and my wife and I have had no problems with it. Granted, we dont drive nearly as often as most people do, but hey, I am just happy to have a new car. It also costs me nearly double what I used to pay but we manage that as well.

His name is BONESOUL by the way. Just for the record. All caps is required.

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3) My Twitter Growth: HOLY CRAP Just look at this picture!

twitter

I never ever thought I would reach over 1k followers.  Granted, very few of them follow me on Youtube or anything or even here, but still, thats a ton of reach and possible interaction.  Its quite scary to be honest.  And every day I lose one or two and gain a few, and its been steadily going up and up.  I have met quite a few cool twitter folk too, like NPC By Day, Wally D2, Ric M the GM, Chandler I, Deven Rue, Chaotic Anarchy, DunnGeon Jim, DM Shadow, Yuemi Star (I think thats her name!), Parks Guy and Parks Gal, Dusty of Podunk, Kevin Mason, and plenty plenty more.  More then I could EVER name here.  Its been unreal and I really enjoy it.

4) My whole Youtube thing: This has been prolly the biggest thing for me, personally. Its not life changing or anything, but this is one of the rare times I have stuck with a project for so long, have not lost interest, and have seen actual returns. Yes, I did book reviews last year in 2015, on this blog no less. And they were insanely popular all things considered. I did game reviews on another site, and they were pretty popular. Those projects lead up to the rebirth in part of my youtube channel. My story was simple, I had an old channel, and it was full of nonsense with no direction, tons of dead subs, and so on. So I deleted it. I was ready to just not bother, but then folks who I had made friends with on reddit refused to let me quit. They bothered and badgered me and would not let me go, and thus Terminally Nerdy was born, with a greater focus. As I previously stated, growth has been pretty good. As of today, I am at 140 subs, which is a small number, but good enough for me. I am back to where I was before I deleted point of fact, and I have done it in less then 4 months.

Given my lack of advertising I find this to be really amazing. Perhaps if I promoted my videos more often I would generate more views and subs, but who knows. One day, perhaps I will get over my aversion to doing that.

The friends I have made however doing Youtube are worth a ton more. These guys are some of the coolest people I have met. Lil Big Gamers, Walking Virus Gaming, Doc Shattered, BraxBox, Shelbutt, Ivan, Adman, the Golden Bolt, Mikkomar and others are just fun to talk to. Each of them are also insanely creative and work their asses off for their channels as well. Truthfully, I feel they are better then me. And deserve a look.

Overall, my year has gone fairly well. Sure, it could have gone better. Everything can always get better. And it sure as shit could have gone worse. But for once, I am actually pretty pleased how 2016 turned out for me.

Here is to 2017! I hope to write a bit more on the blog here as well. Maybe start posting my once every 2 week videos with some text about how the video came about. I need to focus on you guys a bit more. You have been around for a LONG time.

Thanks for sticking with me folks. Lets stay Nerdy, and get AMPED BUDDY WHOOOOOOOOOO!

Oh and as a note: Mass Effect Andromeda is getting closer and closer.  GET HYPED.