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The Path of Cunning and Cold Shard Mountains

Issue #3 of the GURPS fanzine The Path of Cunning is out. It contains some notes I wrote on Cold Shard Mountains . Part of it expands on how it runs contrary to the premise of the Dungeon Fantasy line, and some of it gets into the sources of some of the ideas I used as the basis of parts of the setting, including this:
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More Dice

With the addition of a pressure pot, I've got the basic technical infrastructure for dice-making mostly in place (just need to figure out polishing; my attempts so far have been...unsuccessful), so i can concentrate more on the artistic side. Several of my latest have been more work on dice representing places using the Terrain2STL-based technique described here .  First, the cliffs of Moher: When my lovely and talented spouse and I visited Ireland, we stopped at the cliffs at a spot near a Medieval tower, which I added to the landscape. Monument Valley: This one likewise needed a little help. The section of Monument Valley I did here included West Mitten Butte, East Mitten Butte, and Merrick Butte. However, the resolution of the GIS data was sufficiently coarse that it excluded the chimneys on the Mitten Buttes. I had to add them back in. This involved a lot of dry brushing to get the layered earth tone effect. And the Grand Canyon:   This needed no help on the modeling. Print, pa

GURPS Research

At the GURPS session of today's Fnordcon , there was a question about how much research a GURPS book required. The answer is, of course, that it varies with the length and nature of the book, but I'd like to point out another key factor: the author.  I write historicals in large part because I've got a social science and humanities background. I'm already oriented in various historical periods and in the language of history, archaeology, and anthropology. There's basically an investment of research humming along under the surface there. Consequently, I do less research specifically for any given work than one might think. Indeed, there have been some things where there's a specific place or idea that comes up in my reading which looks like a good idea for a GURPS work and only a fraction of the resulting work comes from research specifically for it. The rest is contextualizing and providing background from stuff I already know.  Consequently, I can write somethi

Dice of Place

Another thing I've enjoyed seeing out there is dice which give a sense of place: tiny landscapes, galaxies, and so on. So naturally I've been putting together some dice which work with those ideas, with a big boost from 3d printing for some of them. The one that didn't use 3d printing involved the use of a series of hemispherical molds. I started with making a mottled blue and green hemisphere with tinted resin. Then I glued the flat side to a stick and suspended it over a slightly larger hemisphere filled with clear resin. Once that was set, I painted clouds directly on the resin, so the cloud layer is slightly above the "ground" surface. That went into a mold half-filled with black resin with a few bits of glitter thrown in for stars, then topped off with more clear resin for night and day sides. One of the nice things about this is that it's all resin, save for a trivial quantity of paint and glitter, so it's as balanced as the mold allows. The remain