Tuesday, February 2, 2010

The Intro (Part 2): In which I ramble on about dwarves and video games

Yes.  As I mentioned last week, I am indeed a geek.

My wardrobe comes from ThinkGeek, and from various webcomics.  My current favorite shirt is from Three Panel Soul, and references both a pair of their comics and the Bay 12 Games flagship project, Dwarf Fortress.  That game is easily one of my top three favorites of all time, and reading through the TVTropes page on the game (fair warning to those who do not know TVTropes: you click on that link and it will devour your life and free time for a very, very long while... possibly also cause insomnia) will tell you much of why.  It lends itself possibly better than anything else I've ever seen to fanfiction and stories otherwise based on the game, and by far the best parts of being a fan of the game are being able to read about the more-remarkable successes and failures of the many and sundry fellow players.  Of these, my favorites are (and one only needs a cursory understanding of the insanely-complicated game to appreciate these stories):

Boatmurdered -- The now-infamous story of an early succession fortress (the save file was passed between different players for each year of the fortress' fairly short lifetime) in which things were going okay until someone decided to implement a doomsday device that flooded the world with magma.  Everything went totally insane from there and eventually ended in every single dwarf going insane and/or killing each other in an oddly hilarious fashion.  This came in spite of (or possibly because of, depending on your perspective) the fortress starting off with everything that a player could possibly want (magma, underground and outdoor water sources, plenty of wood and food sources aplenty, plus three good seasonal trading partners).  Essentially the fortress started off as well as it could, and then failed spectacularly in every way the players could think of.  Word to the wise reader: the story thread was originally posted at SomethingAwful, and as a result some rather foul language is bandied about with little to no restraint throughout the thread.

Nist Akath -- This fortress is probably the exact opposite of Boatmurdered.  The game was more or less the opposite of Boatmurdered, in that the fort started on a haunted glacier (virtually no resources and animated skeletons everywhere) with an aquifer, meaning only very limited stone for the first while.  It was also opposite in that in a game with no victory condition somehow the player behind Nist Akath managed to actually win.  Needless to say, much awesomeness and hilarity ensued after play got serious.  Currently the story is on the verge of wrapping up once and for all, in what promises to be the most epic showdown between undead and dwarves in the history of the game.

The other two games in my top three are Darwinia and NiGHTS Into Dreams (both of which are linked to in the previous post).  If you have the means, and the dare to get into something really great, then I strongly suggest taking a long look at all three of these titles.

To reiterate a point I made near the top, TVTropes is a massive, massive time-waster.  I can prove this by example: I made the mistake of clicking on the link I posted to make sure it worked.  It's been three hours since I did that and I'm only just now getting away from it.

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