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PostPosted: Wed Jan 15, 2020 5:42 am 
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Aaarrrgh wrote:
Ooh, he's brought lemon seeds and/or saplings to his home plane, and he's convinced they simply cannot grow there, but really he just doesn't care for them properly.

I LOVE that :D

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 15, 2020 5:52 am 
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Aaarrrgh wrote:
Ooh, he's brought lemon seeds and/or saplings to his home plane, and he's convinced they simply cannot grow there, but really he just doesn't care for them properly.

I LOVE that :D

Meanwhile, outside his holdings in the neighboring areas, lemon trees have become an infestation of epidemic proportions, but he spends so little time with his neighbors, he's oblivious to said phenomenon.

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PostPosted: Thu Jan 16, 2020 1:32 pm 
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Okay, so, so far, it sounds as if we're all pretty much on board with with "Slow Mage/Spellbomb user" fact and we seem largely on board with the "Lemon/Sense of Taste" facts.

Are people alright going with those as "true" for now?

Additionally, we have a negative vote for "Hums to himself" fact, and I'll add in that I'll also vote no on that one unless someone wants to convince me. So are we good dropping that one?

In order to keep this relatively organized, let's focus on the other facts people have mentioned. They are, in no particular order:

1. Birds unnerve him.

2. He kept a small pet drake for a few months, but his housekeeper took it off his hands because he kept forgetting to feed it.

3. He has briefly met at least one of the canon M:EM characters. The interaction was congenial, but he does not care for this person.

4. While he appreciates its cross-planar value, he doesn't like gold, especially as an ornament. He finds it tacky.

5. He owes another Planeswalker some kind of debt (money or service), and he really doesn't like it. He's never been able to find that Planeswalker again to settle.

What is the consensus on these five facts?

* * * * *

To weigh in myself on #4, and this comment of Barinellos's: "As an alchemist, it'd be funny if turning lead into gold was an almost beginner level task, which means gold is virtually worthless as anything other than a catalyst. Especially if the amount of gold you get out of lead were hilariously impractical."

This reminds me of the game Opus Magnum, an alchemy puzzle game I enjoy, where one of the first things your character has to do is turn lead into gold, and the alchemist scoffs at how beneath him such a simple thing is. I kind of love the idea that whenever our dwarf goes to other planes and tells people he's an alchemist, they ask him to turn lead into gold, and he just gets more and more annoyed at it every time.

I would be in favor of this one, as I think it could be a really fun little character tic.


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 16, 2020 2:16 pm 
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I'm also in favor of easy gold.

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PostPosted: Thu Jan 16, 2020 3:46 pm 
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What is the consensus on these five facts?

I'm aboard for all 5. Did you consider the family+nickname facts as accepted?

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This reminds me of the game Opus Magnum, an alchemy puzzle game I enjoy, where one of the first things your character has to do is turn lead into gold, and the alchemist scoffs at how beneath him such a simple thing is.

I played it too! (when I was gifted a month of Origin premium) It may have played a part in *cough cough cough*

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PostPosted: Thu Jan 16, 2020 4:56 pm 
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Did you consider the family+nickname facts as accepted?

Not yet. As it was only brought up once and with more of a "these two seem connected" rather than any sort of thumbs up or thumbs down kind of thing, I thought I would circle back to that one after we cleared these five one way or another.


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PostPosted: Sat Jan 18, 2020 4:19 am 
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I vote true across the board on all those.

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 18, 2020 9:44 am 
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Barinellos wrote:
I had a dumb idea that I kind of love, but going off the idea of spell bombs, what if some of the shells he buys were also gnomes?
Gnome bombs!

Like ticking gnome or bottle gnomes.

This one I like. Part of it is my sentimental, nostalgic attachment to Bottle Gnomes, which ALSO fits with this guy's alchemist aesthetic, but I also think it would be a cool little calling card for him.

I do not suggest we go with this idea, but there's a part of me that wants him to hate the gnome casings, but whoever makes it for him won't give him anything else. "For what you pay, you get gnomes. Add a '1' and two zeros in front of your fee and we'll talk about a new shape."

Also, the case-maker is a distant cousin and "Gnome" might be his loathed family nickname? So that quote acquires a way more teasing tone. In time, our alchemist learned to appreciate casings that tiptoe their way to their intended set-off location, but would bite his own fingers off before he admits it.

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 20, 2020 12:07 pm 
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1. Birds unnerve him.

2. He kept a small pet drake for a few months, but his housekeeper took it off his hands because he kept forgetting to feed it.

3. He has briefly met at least one of the canon M:EM characters. The interaction was congenial, but he does not care for this person.

4. While he appreciates its cross-planar value, he doesn't like gold, especially as an ornament. He finds it tacky.

5. He owes another Planeswalker some kind of debt (money or service), and he really doesn't like it. He's never been able to find that Planeswalker again to settle.

What is the consensus on these five facts?

Okay, so it sounds like nobody has any problems with these five facts, so we'll accept those as "true" for the time being. We can always refine these things later, by the way, when we finalize the character.

Did you consider the family+nickname facts as accepted?

Quote:
Quote:
He has an embarrassing nickname everyone in his family is way too fond of.

Quote:
He has no immediate family, but has 20-30 distant cousins and near as many other assorted relations. That branch of his clan has a very widespread reputation, one which he consequently doesn't really share in, but is nevertheless associated with. With no immediate family, he mostly only makes appearances at clan gatherings a few times a year where he'll be regaled by his peers of their accomplishments and nagged by his aunts and matriarchs when he'll add another wee one to the clan.


These were the other two facts brought up, so they should be our next topic of discussion.

Also, the case-maker is a distant cousin and "Gnome" might be his loathed family nickname? So that quote acquires a way more teasing tone. In time, our alchemist learned to appreciate casings that tiptoe their way to their intended set-off location, but would bite his own fingers off before he admits it.

"Gnome" itself might be a little on the nose, but I do like the concept, and I think it could definitely work.

What does everyone think?

[EDIT] - I have updated the other post, listing all the "facts," by coloring the accepted facts green and striking out the ones we've shot down. That post is here.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 21, 2020 3:56 am 
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I think he probably spends as little time with his extended family as possible, so I don't think they do any favors for him.
I do think he has a really irritating nick name that had stuck despite being more than middle aged.
I think even the younger generation of his family associate him with the name despite probably not even knowing what it means.

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 25, 2020 2:07 pm 
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I don't know about you all, but all this talk of
casings that tiptoe their way to their intended set-off location

makes me think of


(Sorry, I don't think I have anything meaningful to add right now.)


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 27, 2020 3:31 pm 
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Barinellos wrote:
I think he probably spends as little time with his extended family as possible, so I don't think they do any favors for him.
I do think he has a really irritating nick name that had stuck despite being more than middle aged.

I don't know about "more than middle aged", I wouldn't go past 40-50 as equivalent human age.

About family: I'm not saying the relative is doing him a favor, I envisioned they're the best/fastest/cheapest/most convenient artisan for that kind of product, the relative knows it and teases him just because.

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 01, 2020 4:20 pm 
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Alright, so I'm feeling better, and we're clearly losing steam on this project, so let's see if we can put some energy into this character and move on toward the final stages of his development.

It sounds like people are basically on board with the embarrassing nickname/ only extended family thing, so let's knock out the remaining facts and move on.

How do people feel about these:

1. He has developed a game of strategy played with marbles that he has never lost.

2. He carries what look worryingly like living creatures suspended in jars. The "creatures" are actually frozen in time.

3. He dislikes sunlight, even more than other dwarves.

4. He has experimented with blood in secret, discovering a few powerful formulas with disgusting side effects.

5. He served the required 2 years in the Dwarvenguard, which taught him basic hand to hand fighting, but he spent most of his time guarding a customs office and saw little to no combat.

6. He despises boats and most everything associated with sailing.

7. Somewhere, he tricked a dragon with fake precious metals and gems. He still has to return to that plane from time to time.

* * *

To weigh in myself, I'm in favor of voting "no" for 1, 2, and 4. I think both the experimenting with blood and having creatures in jars pushes him too much into Frankenstein levels of mad scientist, which we already have in the Archive with Tevish's Isaac Carmine, so I'd be in favor of dropping that. I also don't get a gamey vibe from me, so I'd chuck the game of strategy.

I'm also not getting a martial feel from him, so I'd also drop 5. It spells out some elements of his backstory, so I could definitely be talked into it, but for now, I'd lean toward "no."

I do like 3 and 6 as little notes on his predilections. I somewhat imagine that his eyesight is not great, and that his eyes are particularly sensitive to light (but not enough to stop him from going out in the day when he needs to). As for the ships and boats, I'm just imagining that one time he was trying to work on some experiment below decks on a ship, and in rough weather it, uh, went poorly.

I'm torn on 7. It's an interesting story hook that we could potentially utilize, but there's something I can't quite put my finger on that feels just a few degrees off to me about it.

What do others think?


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 02, 2020 1:39 am 
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Yeah, I don't like 2 or 4 either. So far this is a pretty fun and light character, and those things would just add a lot of darkness to him in a way that feels unnecessary.

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PostPosted: Sun Feb 02, 2020 2:56 am 
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1 hints to a genius intellect I'm not too enthusiastic about, at least for this character. The alternative is that the board game has so little spread that the invincibility claim is cut down to size, but that sounds a bit silly to me. I could see him liking board games in general, however, and being quite good at them. As far as I'm concerned, it could be one of his hobbies.

2 and 4: I don't mind contrasting fun/lighthearted traits with darker ones and I wouldn't think those facts would make him too reminiscent of existing characters, but that's not the hill I'm gonna die on.

3 and 6 I like, especially if it the aversion isn't brought to phobia level. But sunlight and sailing as "hell naw"s for an underground-dwelling character makes sense.

5: I wouldn't mind him having some sort of military training, but I would push it more in the Sapper direction, with maybe one or two combat experiences or at least in-depth training. There could be a short conscription period for all young dwarves in his native plane. If he saw actual combat, it may even be the reason his Spark ignited: he liked the training just fine, but he was traumatized by actual bloody combat.

7: this I like. Is it the fact he specifically tricked a dragon through precious materials the thing that sounds off to you, Raven? I think that could be tweaked.

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PostPosted: Sun Feb 02, 2020 3:59 am 
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1) Yes but with the caveat that the reason might be bad game design -- he hasn't played it with others MUCH.

2) No

3) Yes. Cave adapted much?

4) No. This and 2... I feel like I'd like his alchemy to be based in the inorganic. It might be possible for him to make a homunculus, but I don't think from flesh and bone.

5) Yes. I like this one a lot. I feel like it adds flavor without a huge impact.

6) I'm fairly neutral on this one.

7) Gives him a story hook, which I kind of like.

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PostPosted: Sun Feb 02, 2020 9:40 pm 
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1. He has developed a game of strategy played with marbles that he has never lost.

Spoiler

I'm not even joking, "made up his own game" and "he has never lost" gives me heavy vibes of "he makes up the rules so that he can never lose. I don't get any "grandmaster" feelings from that idea. I'm in favor of it if it's not actually a good strategy game, and bonus points if he pulls out a "oh, I forgot to tell you," just before he makes a big move.
====
I don't like 2 for reasons others have stated: it feels less like "alchemist" to me and more "mad biologist" to me. Also I don't much equate time manipulation with alchemy.
====
I really like both 3 and 4 for the same reason: I think that these would be critical alchemical ingredients in some concoction or another.

Like, okay, I don't mean that he'd be crazy about either, but imagine a typical tunneling dwarf walking into his lab, and with dawning horror realizing that our alchemist has a single ray of sunshine being directed and magnified to a point, the colors -- oh, ye gods, what are those colors? -- split and selected, here and there collecting in bottles that are positively fluorescing while fire and smoke emanate from the focal point of the largest beam. It would be heresy!

Meanwhile, regarding blood, I'd imagine something like basilisk blood (really, basilisk anything) would be really important to work with to make poisons and antidotes, while dragon's blood is kind of a staple of fantasy spellcasting/ritualwork/alchemy. If we want to define "working with blood" as "working with humanoid blood," then again I see little problem to make it weirdly taboo, if the purpose becomes bent toward the medical. If we're steering toward the Absent-Minded Professor type, then imagine that he's accidentally made some medical breakthroughs, like maybe he came across the idea of separating blood serum, but can't do anything with it because he thought it would do something completely different if he swung it around enough, like maybe compress into diamond or something silly like that. Or, again medically, perhaps he uses blood so that he can safely see if a medical serum he's working on won't accidentally kill the drinker.
====
Quote:
5. He served the required 2 years in the Dwarvenguard, which taught him basic hand to hand fighting, but he spent most of his time guarding a customs office and saw little to no combat.

In favor, especially as part of his origin story; Einstein famously worked on his Theory of Special Relativity by working in the patent office, and just working through problems in his mind because of how bored he was.
====
I'm not getting the same kinds of immediate buzzing ideas from 6 and 7 as I did from a lot of the other options, but I do like them. I think someone could take these ideas and make something good from them.


To recap:
1) :dance:
2) :nonono:
3) :fonz:
4) :laugh:
5) :woot:
6) :hand:
7) :nod:


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 02, 2020 11:21 pm 
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You know what, you've kind of convinced me of the letter, if not the spirit, of 4. Various strange bloods would make for potion bases.

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 03, 2020 1:00 am 
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Right, yes, monster blood. I can totally get behind monster blood as an alchemy ingredient.

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PostPosted: Tue Feb 04, 2020 8:55 pm 
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Weighing in:

While I think biological components might factor in to past experimentals, I dont think they're a common ingredient and most of the time those sorts of potions and unguents fall outside his actual expertise.

I think his military training is more a cultural aspect, something every dwarf has to do. I don't think it was a particularly exciting time for him since it's described as being a guard at a customs office. He was probably bored out of his mind, as most workers there were, listening to one half awake agent asking travelers repeatedly "no fruits, no animals, do you have anything to declare?"
Except that one guy in the office who really truly believed he was making a difference. Everyone hated that guy.

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