Archiv der Kategorie: News of the world.

Dungeons & Dragons Via Web – This Is How We Roll

Yesterday evening I played Dungeons & Dragons 3.5. Now for those who know me that might not come as a surprise or even be mildly unusual. I DO role playing games since I am 13 years old, I DO consider Dungeons & Dragons a very enjoyable rule system and I DO like 3.5 over 4th and 5th edition so no big thing, right? But it was. For the first time I didn’t play in with everybody being in a cozy room with lots of coffee, chocolate and some booze. We played on the internet.

The group consists of friends from Jena, Gera, Nordhausen, Würzburg, Stuttgart and myself in Berlin. Most of the guys know each other since they were kids with me being the occasional intruder that is only knowing them for a decade. 😉 We decided to play Dungeons & Dragons 3.5 and to give a try as a platform.

Why Dungeons & Dragons

Everyone in the group played The Dark Eye earlier. I switched to Dungeons & Dragons later and suggested to use this. I did this because I feel D&D 3.5 is everything that (at least former editions of) The Dark Eye is not. D&D is painless to pick up, the fights play very smooth and it’s easily adjustable to the needs of your group. Also there are campaign settings available if you like to play in a pre-defined world but you can choose to create you own campaign. Which we did. The one thing that is a problem about this choice is that most of the wonderful rule books (basically everything that is not the three core rule books) are out of print and it can be a bit pricey to pick them up used. We may later have to venture into D&D 5th or Pathfinder for that reason alone.

The Platform

Registration at is free and so are all the basic features and some space to save your own graphics and stuff. Subscribing to one of the packages that support the site is not necessary to get your group playing as even with the basic feature set seems to support a plethora of different systems. So you are perfectly fine to start out without having to pay anything.
It’s easy to draw maps of your surroundings on the screen and visualize the story. The players also join in to a video conference on the main screen. The video conference feature uses Google Hangout and the site supports putting the players in different „rooms“ if the party decides to split up or somebody wants to talk in private. On the main screen All skill checks, attack rolls, etc. can be rolled with a single click after filling out your character sheet and the all-mighty Dungeon Master can even do so for every player without them noticing what skill he rolled on or what the result is. As a DM this is a very comfy setting as you can concentrate on the story and don’t has to think about technicalities too much.

Roll20.Net Interface playing Dungeons & Dragons

The Experience

First of all for most of the group playing the game was a blast from the past. The guys played in the same RPG group long ago then scattered all over the country and stopped playing altogether. Bringing back the fun that is role playing with your friends was a beautiful experience in itself. From the technical side it wasn’t too much of a hassle too. Of course Germany can feel like a third world country when it comes to internet connections and one of the players suffers from such terrible internet connection. He faced some problems with the video getting stuck and his voice not getting transmitted but there is no one to blame but his awful 2 Mbit connection.
Over the course of the evening the play screen stopped syncing for two or three times but was always back in sync after something like a minute. What I would love would be to put the video conference on one screen and the maps on one of the other screens. All told the experience was very enjoyable and we will for sure continue to use Roll20.

Vin Diesel – Because Reasons

Last and certainly not least for all those of you who think Dungeons & Dragons is not a cool thing to do for a bunch of grown up men: Well this charming chap begs to differ.

Tasty, tasty murder.

This one goes out to all the people who think it’s absolutely necessary to annoy us by constantly changing their relationship status on some community sites or even tweeting about it.

Go and check our the wisest web comic there is at

Lads, please get it: We are not interested! You know, in every relationship there are good times and bad times and some ninety percent of the time it’s somewhere in between. There is no need to report each and every of your relationships indigestions via Facebook, Twitter or whatsoever.

So be warned! The next time I recognize somebody setting his relationship status to „It’s complicated“ I might come around and stab him in the face. No seriously, I will!

Hell’s bells, you got me ringing

One of the many things I particularly hate about Berlin is the winter maintenance program. Being grown up in the foothills of the Erzgebirge functioning winter maintenance is a matter of course to me. But obviously this isn’t the case in the lowlands. One day of snow does always mean something like a decade of icy walkways.
While at least the most important streets are free of ice and snow after two or three days, the sidewalks continue to be death traps for weeks. After a few days of people helplessly sliding over these walkways the former snow evolves to a massive icy plating that crushes each and every human bone it gets hold of. I need a car and I need it badly!
But now for something completely different: Yesterday I learned about the Leica S2 a mid format DSLR with the size of a 35 mm DSLR. Since I used my holidays to read a lot about photography I think this is a good time to start over with a brand new camera. Is there anybody out there willing to buy me this little beauty? With a flash light and two or three lenses it shouldn’t be much more than 35.000 Euro anyway. 🙂


Some days have passed since the whole staff dismissal thing happened. While things slowly seem to get back to the „snafu“ kind of shittiness, more and more stories of what happened to one or another colleague start to circulate.

Yesterday I learned about this one guy who really got mad at the company when he got booted out. Well, let’s put things straight: Most of us are sensation whores and so am I. Of course I was eager to get to know what he did in his anger. Did he yell to those HR/lawyer guys? Did he tell them all the funny things each of us wanted to tell them once in a while? Did he delete important data from his box? Did he smash his computer hardware? Did he maybe even give them „bad buys“ a good beating?
Finally, this whole tragedy seemed to have a fun part and once again I was ready to spit in life’s face and have a good laugh even if there’s nothing to laugh about.

When the colleague told me what really happened I was shocked. Who could have imagined that this guy is _such_ a mean bastard? He did nothing of the things mentioned above, but he wrote an very angry blog post on Facebook. Wait, he did WHAT? He actually BLOGGED about being absolutely super pissed? Where’s the whole getting mad thing in this getting mad thing damnit? It’s not as if this guy had a billion followers on Facebook who would spread the word, alarm the freaking mass media and ultimately ruin the whole company. It’s just some kiddo telling his fiftysomething so called friends on Facebook (80% of them happen to be co-workers anyway…) that he’s displeased with the whole situation.

Well then, maybe it’s true that it’s never been easier for employers to deal with us employees then today. Not only are we swallowing every bitter pill we get offered, but we’re doing it with a big grin on our face. And if somebody has the guts to oppose, the very best thing he can imagine is doing a blog post on Facebook. We are ready to fight for our right to party . We sign online petitions to get our favorite kind of chocolate back to the shelves. But when it comes down to forming a work council we drop our heads in shame. Fucking nerdrage. Fucking nerds.