Subordinate your cellphone

I often sit and think back to how life was when I were growing up. In a kind of nostalgic way my mind drifts into the past where notifications were not a part of my life. Where people wrote letters to one another, where every single conversation mattered, and where my home phone was the only way to truly contact me. My mind drifts and I’m back in the 2000’s, and think about how gradually the need to be contacted overshadowed my life. So much so, that the only time my phone is ever switched off is when the battery dies (and we all know the panic to find the nearest working, correct fitting charger). Shocking when I came to this realisation. I paused, and considered if my privacy even existed. Or if my time really belonged to me when anyone can invade my space at any time they so choose and call or text me. And then I got so tired of being everything to all people at anytime, and switched my phone off. This wasn’t great at first because it wasn’t comfortable. Change is often uncomfortable, especially when you realise that you cannot use your apps just because you’re avoiding being disturbed. It was then I discovered ‘Airplane Mode’

My life changed. I set boundaries. People soon knew that they cannot call or text me after 5pm because I’ll be in the air. It mean’t so much for me and the great thing was I could still use my phone as I so chose to.

I choose when to respond I am the CEO of my time I protect my peace I am not distracted during my quality time with my family I didn’t feel like my phone was a huge part of my life again Now while I couldn’t exactly emulate my past nostalgia, I did learn a few things about phones. We make them so much more valuable than we need to. We are less productive the more we are on them. We cannot give people our undivided attention when our relationship with our inbox is more of a time investment than the important people in our lives. I learned the art of control, and my original discomfort turned into power. Knowing fully well that I own my phone and that it doesn’t own me changed the way that I communicated with everyone. My phone turned into a phone and not a lifeline, I became more focused on what is most important, and I didn’t care for the red notification bubbles and instant nature of communication as I once did. I became a 9–5 person in my private life and this means that I no longer overcommit, over work and over stress about responding. Those who matter will wait, those who don’t want to wait do not value your time.

Image courtesy of Pixabay The final point on Airplane Mode is… your battery charges faster when it’s activated. Gotta love it.

Try it sometime. Fly.

This is not how your story ends.

C# Text Adventure: Lesson 22

Approximating a functional CombatRunner()

The text of this lesson will be brief. Basically, I made some tweaks to Moba and then expanded the CombatRunner() method into a first approximation of a functional combat runner. The testgo5.exe that can be built from this lesson's progress demonstrates this new functionality. If you want to build the testgo5.exe test application yourself, you can download the build folder here.

Here's a screen shot of the test app in action:

By the way, you can specify an integer between 250 and 10,000 as a command-line argument when running testgo5.exe in the command prompt, and the value you specify will translate into the number of milliseconds of delay between each 'step' in the CombatRunner()'s processing of the combat.

For example:

testgo5 2000

at the command line, for a 2-second delay.

You can download the source files for this lesson by clicking here.

Return to Lesson 21 | Proceed to Lesson 23

Return to Index

Intensity 7 Devotions, Psionics & Spells

Pacifying Ward (arcane/psionic)
Intensity: 7
Range: radius of (Psi or Sorcery * 10 yards)
Casting Time: one minute
Requirement: minimum Psi/Sorcery 7
Requirement: cannot be centered on mobile object
Duration: permanent
Failure: cannot be attempted again for one week

A glowing ward of scintillating blue comes into existence and is visible to those with Psi/Sorcery 5+ and automatically sensed by those with Eerie 5+, hovering about fifteen feet above the ground.

All creatures entering the permanent area of effect of this ward are unable to take hostile action, be it so much as shoving someone. This effect can be overcome via incredible willpower by sacrificing 1 XP and sustaining 1 point of Shock to both Head and Torso (or 2 Shock to creatures with Corpus). These XP and injury effects occur per attack. A multi-attack of three sword strokes costs 3 XP and inflicts 3 Shock to both Head and Torso. Those without XP available to sacrifice cannot overcome this ward's effect.

The arcanist/psionicist responsible for a particular Pacifying Ward is immune to its effect. Two such wards' areas of effect cannot overlap. If their radii would cause overlap, consider the area they share in common to be governed only by the ward cast earliest.

A single caster or psionic devotee cannot have more than Psi/Sorcery Pacifying Wards in existence at any given time. If the establishment of a new Pacifying Ward would exceed this limit, the new ward can be established but the caster/devotee must choose one of his pre-existing wards and allow it to collapse.

This spell/psionic devotion is quite potent, and in cities and towns its use is prohibited except in temples and governmental buildings. Such structures often do not have such a ward established.

The Exchange on the third floor of the Apex Arcology has a Pacifying Ward.

Intensity 9 Devotions, Psionics & Spells

Finality (faith)
Intensity: 9
Range: 90 feet
Casting Time: Combat
Requirement: minimum Faith 9
Duration: Instantaneous
Failure: you lose your highest rank in Faith

You snuff the lifeforce of up to Faith creatures within range. All of them collapse, lifeless. The only way a target avoids this fate is if it generates at least a Width-4 Body+Vigor success. If the target has any virtual dice associated with its Body+Vigor roll, the normal options regarding virtual dice apply.

If a target is inimical to the Omnipotent One, it suffers a 2D penalty on its Body+Vigor roll.

Those lucky souls who succeed in their Body+Vigor roll aren't killed, but have all but one Wound box in their head and torso filled with Killing damage.

In place of one of these Faith targets, you may substitute 9 Mooks, and they don't get to roll Body+Vigor. A PC using this devotion has to make his best guess about which combatants are and are not Mooks.

When the devotee successfully invokes this devotion, he gains 09 SEP, and may automatically invoke one of the 1st, 2nd or 3rd Intensity Faith devotions known to him.

Alphabetical Listing of Arcania

Intensity 6 Devotions, Psionics & Spells

Baleful Bolts
Mass Stroke

Baleful Bolts (arcane/psionic)
Intensity: 6
Range: 60' + 5 ft per point of Sorcery or Psi
Casting Time: Combat
Duration: Instantaneous
Failure: Body + Vigor Success or fall unconscious

The caster calls forth three baleful bolts of energy and sends each streaking toward a separate living target. Each bolt strikes center of mass unerringly, no Dodge possible. The bolt inflicts 3 Killing and 3 Shock, then jumps to the next nearest living target and inflicts 2 Killing and 2 Shock. If more than one target shares equidistance, determine the 'jumped to' target randomly.

If caster's Sorcery or Psi is 10+, a third jump occurs for 1 Killing + 1 Shock to targets.

If caster's Sorcery or Psi is 14-17, then after the third jump all targets that have been struck suffer an additional 1 Killing + 1 Shock.

If caster's Sorcery or Psi exceeds 17, then after the third jump all targets that have been struck suffer an additional 2 Killing + 2 Shock.

AR can reduce the Killing damage, but not the Shock. Casters tend to direct the bolts to a cluster of enemy combatants, in order to save comrades from becoming victim to a jumping bolt. Ideally, a cluster of three enemies is targeted.

The following schematic shows a cluster of three foes targeted with this spell by a Sorcery 7 caster. In this arrangement of foes, E1 through E3 suffer, respectively, 5 Killing + 5 Shock; 7 Killing + 7 Shock; 3 Killing + 3 Shock:

Fireball (arcane/faith)
Intensity: 6
Range: 60 ft
Casting Time: Combat
Requirements: Sorcery 6+ / Faith 8+
Area of Effect: circle of 25 ft diameter
Duration: instantaneous
Failure: it fizzles, but not before 3 Shock (random locs)

This isn't your daddy's Advanced Dungeons & Dragons fireball. Mages are able to cast this spell earlier in their careers than the Faithful (go figure). This ball of fire erupts from a point within range chosen by the caster/devotee and immediately expands to fill a circle twenty-five feet in diameter. Any living creatures caught within this area of effect suffer Width Killing to every body location.

If the creature can generate a Body + Endurance roll success whose Height matches or exceeds the Fireball's success roll, it only suffers Width Shock to every body location.

If the creature generates a success on Body + Endurance, but not one whose Height meets or exceeds that of the Fireball's roll, a single point of the Killing damage can be changed to Shock instead. The creature gets to choose the location.

For every point of Faith or Sorcery above the minimum required to cast (8 or 6, respectively), the spell inflicts one additional point of Killing damage. The creature affected gets to choose where to apply these. These additional points are unaffected by the success or failure of the creature's resistance roll.

Mass Stroke (psionic)
Intensity: 6 (variable)
Range: within 30 feet of devotee
Casting Time: Combat
Duration: instantaneous
Failure: You suffer -1D penalty to all psionics until rested

The Intensity of Mass Stroke varies with the number of targets you attempt to affect. For each individual you seek to affect, up to six maximum, the devotion is +1 Difficulty, to a maximum of Difficulty 6.

This attack will, potentially, prove effective on any creature with an organic brain and circulatory system.

Roll your Command + Psi. If you get a Success that meets or exceeds the Height needed for Difficulty, each individual targeted may be affected:

If target produces 3 or more Gobble Dice of sufficient Height with (Command + Psi) or (Body + Endurance) pools, target is unaffected.

If 2 Gobble Dice of adequate Height are produced, target still suffers 2 Killing to Head and 4 Killing to Torso.

If a single Gobble Die of sufficient Height is produced, target suffers 3 Killing to Head and 6 Killing to Torso.

If no Gobble Dice are produced, or at least none of sufficient Height, target dies instantly of cerebral hemorrhage.

Only psionicists with Psi 6+ can learn this devotion.

Alphabetical Listing of Psionic Devotions

Intensity 5 Devotions, Psionics & Spells

Beseech Boon
Cindering Burst

Beseech Boon (faith)
Intensity: 5
Range: personal
Casting Time: 3 minutes
Duration: until used, expires after 1 week
Failure: benign

Because it is of high difficulty (Difficulty 5 to succeed), this devotion is most usually undertaken by 3-5 devotees (five max), who join hands while beseeching. When multiple devotees attempt the devotion jointly in this fashion, Group Effort may be applied. This devotion may also be the recipient of a single successful Beseech Blessing devotion, or a lone Greater Blessing, but not both. If Group Effort is to be applied, all members of the effort must have minimum Faith 3.

If successful, a boon in the form of a +5D bonus is gained by the devotees involved in the beseeching for one specific purpose within the next 7 days' time: defeating the Necromancer of Lonce, or destroying the Cult of Ithrulg's stronghold in the city of Illuria. To be clear, this +5D is gained by each devotee involved in the Beseechment.

If the purpose given is specific enough, and the roll successful, those devotees who participated in beseeching the boon have +5D of bonuses they may use solely in pursuit of that stated, specific purpose within the next 7 days' time. If the purpose isn't specific enough, i.e., to be victorious over criminals we encounter or to triumph over wilderness challenges, then the boon is not granted.

Each devotee may choose to use the entire +5D on a single roll, or may split this into multiple rounds (+2D on this roll, +3D on that roll).

This devotion may be attempted as often as once weekly, but there can be no more than three such Boons granted to devotees in a year's time. Once that limit is reached, those devotees cannot participate in, or benefit from, another Beseechment until sufficient time has elapsed. Additionally, anyone seeking to participate in this devotion who is not a first-time participant must have increased their Faith skill by at least one point since the last time they were involved in this devotion.

Cindering Burst (arcane/psionic)
Intensity: 5
Range: 20' radius
Casting Time: Combat
Duration: Instantaneous
Failure: 2 Shock to Head

The caster or psionic devotee causes an intensely hot sheet of flames to spring up at a two-foot radius around his body and immediately race outward in a circle, to a range of twenty feet. It moves too fast to be Dodged.

Any creature caught in the path of this effect suffers (Width + 2) Killing to each body location and — if the target is still alive and it fails to generate at least a single Success on a roll of (Body + Vigor) — dies.

Intensity 4 Devotions, Psionics & Spells

Divine Amelioration
Mystic Shield
Summon Guardians

Divine Amelioration (faith)
Intensity: 4
Range: self and allies within forty feet of caster
Casting Time: Combat
Duration: instantaneous
Failure: benign

When succeeding with a Difficulty 4 Success, the person of faith removes 4 points of Shock from any combination of locations on his body, or may convert 4 points of Killing damage to Shock instead. You can mix and match. Example: You could convert 2 Killing in your head to Shock, then get rid of those 2 Shock. Or, say you have suffered 2 Shock to the Head and 1 Killing to the torso. You could get rid of all of it.

Any penalty dice under which the faithful one labors are done away with. If any of those penalty dice were caused by spells or psionic effects by which you've been affected, any other effects of the spell(s) or psionic devotion(s) continue, but any penalty dice are canceled.

Additionally, each ally within a forty-feet radius of the devotee is cured of 1 Killing and 2 Shock in the Head location. If the Head doesn't need this healing, then the chest gets it; otherwise, the limbs. Unconscious allies regain consciousness and can act next round.

Finally, the devotee raises the Height of his next combat action by 4, to a maximum of 10. This bonus can only be applied to an action in the very next round. If the devotee's combat action fails to get a set, then instead of raising a set by 4 Height, you instead get a {4,4} Success.

This devotion may benefit from Beseech Blessing.

Mystic Shield (arcane/psionic)
Intensity: 4
Range: self and allies within twenty feet of caster
Casting Time: Combat
Duration: Psi or Sorcery rounds
Failure: benign

This devotion requires a Difficulty 4 Success to activate. When activated, the devotee and all allies within twenty feet gain 3 AR to all body locations. If some locations already had 3 AR, they do not gain further protection.

The protection afforded by this devotion moves with the activating devotee. Any allies that do not stay with a twenty feet radius of the devotee in succeeding rounds of the devotion's duration immediately lose this protection.

While this devotion is activated, the psionicist gains a +4D bonus to any rolls to resist arcane and psionic effects. If this bonus would raise their pool above 10D, the extra dice become virtual dice and can be used per the virtual dice rules.

Recall (faith)
Intensity: 4
Range: special
Casting Time: Combat
Duration: Instantaneous
Failure: see below

With a Height 4+ success, the devotee is whisked away and deposited at the church, temple, shrine, or abbey which (a) he has actually visited, (b) he is within 400 miles of; he and whatever he is wearing/carrying (up to his weight in gear) are instantly transported.

For every point of Width in the success that invokes this devotion, one additional willing individual may be transported along with the devotee (Width 2 = devotee + 2 others; Width 4 = devotee + 4 others).

Failure Results (apply only to devotee):
Height 3: the devotee is whisked 80 ft straight up
Height 2: the devotee is whisked into the nearest lake
Height 1: the devotee is whsiked into a boulder, dying

Summon Guardians (arcane)
Intensity: 4
Range: caster only
Casting Time: Combat
Duration: Sorcery rounds
Failure: benign

You summon two shades of your ancestors. Each appears as a misty, translucent warrior armed with sword and shield. Treat each as AR 1. They stay near the caster, in order to intercept melee attacks directed toward him. They have Corpus 18, and each guardian disappears when its Corpus is depleted or when the spell's duration has ended. The only thing these guardians do is Parry melee attacks aimed at themselves or the caster. If it's a choice of parrying one or the other, they always choose to defend the caster. They Parry with an 8D pool.

These guardians can be harmed by corporeal and eldritch attacks, and by an effects of these types created via psionics. They are, however, immune to psionics that affect the mind/will. Even if the caster is successfully targeted by such an effect, his guardians continue to protect him to the best of their ability, for the duration of the spell.

Each time one of these guardians parries an attack aimed at the caster, the caster received 01 SEP.