• Words of Wisdom

    A single gigantic roast beef-like thing which was eventually transformed into other dishes throughout the week as it slowly decomposed with the help of a small colony of flies”
    Musashi, Food Critic  Read more: What I Did On My Summer Vacation

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Such a dreary day, thought Musashi as he trudged along the streets of Magincia, another load of cloth weighing him down.  Even though his house had been broken into and looted by a vile thief while he was away tending to other business at a pleasure palace in Nujelm, he still needed a place to sew in peace and quiet, and so had taken to purchasing cloth in towns from his various suppliers, weaving them on the spot, and hauling the completed bolts of cloth back to his house where he could sew without the constant pressure of selling constantly, or the evil looks from his competitors.  There was an unspoken, deep rivalry amongst tailors, oh yes, and things might get ugly if any of them could actually fight.  (Actually, some could, which was another reason Mu was happy to take his leave of the shops when his business there was concluded.)

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"Hmm, lots of newbies here" thought Mu as he stood in front of the loom at the smaller of Britain’s two tailor shops, mindlessly passing shuttles of thread back and forth as his foot worked the pedals with the practiced ease of someone who has been doing this way too much.  Around the shop, an assortment of new citizens of the realm, obviously looking to earn some easy money, were wandering to and fro looking at the shop’s wares and trying to figure out how to proceed.  As they asked their questions ("How do I make cloth?… What should I sell?… Why isn’t there any thread in this shop?") Mu did his best to answer them, secure enough in his position in the market to be able to show some goodwill to these apprentices.

As he stood there, unconsciously passing the thread back and forth, a young, shabbily dressed man came up and stood near him.  "Hmm…" thought Mu; thieves sometimes liked to prey on those near the loom, and Mu kept a sharp eye on his pack.  However, he was somewhat startled to see the young man draw a rather cheap-looking dagger from its sheath and assume a combat stance.  "Wonder what he’s up to…" Mu thought, as the young man lunged at him.  Instinctively, Mu reacted by hurling a fist at the hapless attacker.

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Grimly, his muscles aching from the strain of continuous katana wielding, his face pale from the stress of being wounded and healed repeatedly in a short period of time, his breathing ragged and shallow, Musashi glared at his enemy.  Sorely wounded, his vile opponent had reduced Musashi to near-death several times; only his recent trip to Maegara’s Greater Heal potion vendor and comfortably margined expense account had saved him thus far, as evidenced by the assortment of bottles that lay strewn about the greenery they battled upon.  However, his supply was almost gone, and with each exchange of blows it was Musashi who fared the worse; unless he could receive some assistance, he feared he might not walk away from this conflict.

"Help!  Prithee, assist me against this vile creature!  Aaahhh…"

Sighing, Kagero turned around briefly from the tree where she was carving kindling, and without looking, slashed once with the skinning knife she was using to pare deadwood from the branches.  One slice into the neck of the surprised hind and the inoffensive woodland creature fell gurgling to the forest floor.

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"Now Mu, you have everything packed right?"

Musashi sighed.  How many times was his ridiculously overprotective mother going to go over his inventory?  Maybe he should have scheduled a different ship to the mainland of Sosaria… like a year later.

"I’m fine.  I have everything I’ll need.  I hear this is a rich and profitable place… surely my 100 gold coins, silly pathetic dagger and scant reagents will be enough for me."  Mu looked at his forlorn belongings and sighed.  These clothes he was being encouraged to wear, the short pants, short sleeved shirt and dopey shoes, were thought of as "typical Sosarian wear"; the more he thought about it, the more he thought he might as wear a big sign that said "Please Kill Me".

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All of these screenshots were taken on Kali at about the time the AI enemies were ruining online play. For about 2 weeks I couldn’t get a fight and just started taking screenshots with friends. All taken in Direct 3D mode, 640×480 original screen resolution (these are cropped), using a Monster 3D card.

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This is one of those games I spent WAY too much time playing.  It was, in fact, the reason I even bothered to get an internet connection in the first place.  Buggy as all hell and filled with apparently imbalancing features and weapons, it is in fact the most tactically rich combat sim available to date, complete with character advancement and death, fascinating design possibilities, and an online virtual war (which never worked).  I highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys combat simulators or mecha games.

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