')) Exilian
Welcome!

Welcome to Exilian! We're one of the friendliest communities on the internet, democratically run and existing to help facilitate a range of projects in fields including game modding/content creation, programming, drama, music, debating, writing, RPG and wargame design, e-learning, and more. You can also come here to chat, discuss the news, post poetry, play forum games, and just to meet a diverse range of people from all over the world.

Enjoy your stay!

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UK Politics 2022
Jubal January 20, 2022, 11:26:49 AM

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Jubal January 19, 2022, 10:18:46 PM

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Tusky January 19, 2022, 09:56:13 PM

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dubsartur January 19, 2022, 05:54:23 PM


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Posted on January 01, 2022, 07:04:29 PM by Jubal
Updates from the Forge 44: New Year 2022

Issue 44: Winter 2021-22

EDITORIAL

Happy midwinter, one and all! Your regular editor Leafly is currently having a break, so you're back to yours truly, Jubal, and the imaginary editorial llama, to bring you this issue of Updates from the Forge.

We've had so many major bits of news demanding their own posts in the meantime that it's hard to know what's left for the newsletter in some ways - in particular, we can congratulate our very own Tusky on the successful release of Tourney: The Medieval Tournament Simulator, a game that allows you to create your own medieval tourney grounds with a wide array of different objectives and a fun little storyline. We've also announced our second Coding Medieval Worlds workshop after the success of the first last February, and had some new content out including an autumnal riddles article.

In other site news, we've got a new policy on Non-Fungible Tokens, which you can find details of here. In short, Exilian's voting members have decided that we will not be supporting NFT-based projects for the foreseeable future, as a result of the environmental and cultural negative impacts of the technology.

Finally, make sure you remember to enter our winter creative competition, this year on the theme Winter Sunset and judged by friends of Exilian, conservator and podcaster Jenny Mathiasson and author & game writer Victoria Corva! We're looking forward to releasing the showcase of everyone's works in a month or so.

And without further ado, onto the Updates themselves...

CONTENTS:

  • Editorial
  • Game Development
    • Halloween Mode in Son of a Witch
    • Infinitas Zero Hour: Shein's Revenge and Tulathrone
    • Wonderdraft: Making Fantasy Maps
  • Arts & Writing
    • Missives from a Fallen City: Audio Drama by Jubal
    • Tales from Infinitas
  • Miscellany
    • What've you been playing?

GAME DEV

Halloween Mode in Son of a Witch



Bigosaur's four player beat 'em up roguelike, Son of a Witch, now has a special Halloween mode! Available to replace the main game, the mode is automatically activated during Hallowe'en each year, and at other times of year can be accessed via the /hwon and/hwoff console codes in the character select screen. Son of Witch's Hallowe'en includes a number of changes - more skeletons, ghostly skins for regular enemies, and a significantly more direct route to hell than in the standard game. This seasonal mode, besides being a fun tweak for the time of year, will also thus be great for achievement hunters seeking those all too difficult wins against the bosses of hell. Check it out!




Infinitas Zero Hour: Shein's Revenge and Tulathrone

BagaturKhan's Command and Conquer: Zero Hour modding and maps, created by him and DarkkozDarka, present his massive World of Infinitas project in game format. These especially challenging maps for veteran players are designed to present the challenges and dangers of the Infinitas setting in a fully interactive way, and there are two new recently released maps for CnC: Zero Hour fans to have a go at.


The first of these is Revenge of Shein, in which you as President Zanzibhar Shein must take on the pro-Acheronian forces of the rebellious General Shului to avert a catastrophic civil war in the Nargon Republic. Meanwhile, in Death of Tulothrone, a rogue AI a million years old has awakened and seeks to complete its mission to subvert technological systems and destroy all organic life in its path. Only you can stop it in its tracks and save yourself and the folk on which Tulothrone seeks to wreak bloody havoc.

Try these and more via BagaturKhan's Exilian thread for the Infinitas Zero Hour project!





Wonderdraft: Making Fantasy Maps


Spritelady has recently been sharing her experiences and tips on using the fantasy mapping software Wonderdraft, which she's found useful in creating a range of maps for TTRPG campaigns. Its features like being able to cycle through a range of preset symbols when painting, generation tools for landmasses, and easy area-paints make it ideal for creating certain map types, and Spritelady's thread takes us through the details of how some of the magic is done.

Do head over and join the discussion: do you use this, or other software for map generation? Do you have hints and tips to share or questions to ask? A cartographic world - or possibly quite a few of them - await...




ARTS AND WRITING


Missives from a Fallen City: Drama by Jubal

In the world of Failbetter Games' Fallen London, men with the faces of squid roam the streets, the waves of the Unterzee lap upon London's darkened shores, and factions from the Ministry of Public Decency to the Rooftop Urchins and even Hell itself vie for advantage in the fallen city. From that world comes Jubal's Missives From A Fallen City - a fifteen minute audiodrama of torrid romance, arson, ambulatory fungi, and cake! When Maisourias Sponderwick, Esq., gentleman of negotiable action, calls upon the heiress Astrabella C. Willoughby, all seems to be set for a tale of possibly-forbidden lust and excessive asjustment of moustaches. This is Fallen London, though, and here, everybody has secrets...

Through thirteen letters of Astrabella, Maisourias, and their acquaintances, uncover their tale, have a listen and give some feedback!





Tales from Infinitas

BagaturKhan's Infinitas universe is having increasing numbers of tales available to read on Exilian with the release of the Tale about the Doge Bertolino and his wonderful house-pet and the continuing process of translating the immense story Revenge Of Tyrants - Darkness Is Coming from its original Russian. These stories, with wide arrays of nations and characters, deal with politics, love, and war across a universe of stories epic in scale. From the fate of the huge stellar Empire of Hyborea to the majesty of giant battle salamanders and the question of whether a kettle can have a soul, there's a great deal to be found in the Infinitas tales - good reading for a dark winter's evening, perhaps?



MISCELLANY


What've you been playing?

It's rare to find someone who makes games without appreciating playing them too, and a good place to see what fellow Exilians have been playing and join in with discussions and inspiration is the Exilian Arcade, our forum area for general gaming discussion. Threads on Wildermyth, the Witcher series, Dragon Age, and other popular games are hubs to share ideas, tips, and thoughts about those games and gain new perspectives on them. Learning more and sharing thoughts can be really important for sparking fresh creativity - and is also just a fun way to get to know folk and find new ideas about your favourite games.

Meanwhile, feel free to post about what you've been playing or ask for recommendations - there may well be an Exilian member out there who has the perfect idea for what games you'll love to play in future.





2021 wasn't an easy year around the world, and 2022 will doubtless have its own uncertainties. There is always hope to come, though, and even the passage of sunsets are promises of dawns not yet broken. Through all these issues we'll be here on Exilian, running virtual meetups and competitions, providing space to chat and listen, and hopefully building the space for creativity and geekery that's often so needed and hard to find in difficult times. We look forward to having you with us on another year of that journey - happy new year, dear reader, with sincere hope that 2022 is kind to you.


...
Posted on December 20, 2021, 04:57:47 PM by Jubal
2021-22 Creative Competition: Winter Sunset!

Creative Competition: Winter Sunset
 

Dreamy Pixel, CC BY 4.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0>, via Wikimedia Commons

It's time for one of our ongoing series of creative competitions, where we challenge members and friends to come up with the best creative response to a particular theme! This winter, the theme is WINTER SUNSET - it may be a time of great beauty, or a moment of encroaching darkness, a chance to rest by the fire or to light a blaze to guard against the cold. It is a time of turning, and we're looking forward to seeing how you approach it!



The rules are as follows:
1. Produce your entry. It can be a game,artwork, story, poem, recipe,  rules supplement, sculpture, dance piece, music, whatever - any sort of creative response to the theme.
2. PM your entry (or a link thereto) to Jubal, and post in this thread to say you've put your entry in. Entries that don't have both the post and PM in will not be considered, and you must not post your entry publicly during the contest (so as to ensure judging is name-blind).
3. Each person is allowed up to two entries.
4. Entries must be in by 23:59, January 30, 2022.
5. The judges will score each work out of ten on two grounds: how good a response to the prompt it was, and how well executed the result was.
6. Winners will be announced by or before February 15. All entries will then be posted in a public showcase.



PRIZES

Main Prize:
1x copy of TOURNEY, the Medieval Tournament Simulator by Tusky Games
1x copy of SON OF A WITCH, the beat 'em up fantasy roguelike by Bigosaur
1x original song on a topic of your choice to be written by Jubal

If you'd like to donate a prize and thereby sponsor the competition, please get in touch :)


THE JUDGES

Jenny Mathiasson is a conservator, creative, heritage enthusiast, artist, podcaster, and freelancer. Originally from Sweden, she has worked as a museum conservator across the UK and is currently based in Wales. Armed with a love of archaeology and a no. 15 scalpel blade she hosts conservators' podcast The C Word, as well as being an artist and crafter as the need and inspiration arises. You can find more links about her and her work here.

Victoria Corva, alias the Crow Witch, is an audiobook narrator, author, twitch streamer and game writer. Producing, as their website puts it, "writing with warmth and weirdness", their stories include the small town libraries-and-necromancy fantasy Books and Bone and the queer portal-fantasy Non-Player Character. They put their narration skills to delightful public use regularly when streaming narrative RPGs regularly on twitch, and their game outputs include the interactive fiction game Wyrden and the Tabletop RPG Kin. You can find more about all of their work on their website.

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Posted on November 23, 2021, 07:27:27 PM by Jubal
Announcing Coding Medieval Worlds 2!
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Posted on November 17, 2021, 05:03:02 PM by Jubal
Our NFTs Policy

NFTs: Why We're Not Supporting Them

As many of you will be aware, there has been a recent boom in the use of non-fungible token blockchain technologies. These technologies offer unique digital signatures, which can be used to authenticate sales of individual items. However, there are numerous concerns around their use. The fact that they only usually offer a verified unique link to a piece of intellectual property, not the unique right to use that property, often causes intentional misunderstanding about the nature of the goods and rights being bought. There are also intellectual property concerns around the minting of NFTs for properties that the NFT minters do not necessarily own.

Besides these concerns, there are also problems with the environmental impact of NFTs, with current technologies and even their replacements proving significantly higher in energy usage than conventional methods of authenticating sales. A single proof-of-work transation on the Etherium system commonly used for these transactions requires enough power to serve a household for two days, or drive a car 150 miles, producing thirty kilograms of CO2 emissions at a time of climate crisis.

As of today, we are acting on those concerns: Exilian's voting members have unanimously endorsed the position that Exilian does not support the use of NFT technologies. This means that as of today we will not be providing newsletter space, social media plugs, article slots, and other resources to promoting those technologies or any projects that use them. We will additionally be taking into account companies' NFT usage and policy when commissioning or purchasing services on Exilian's behalf, and avoiding where at all possible providing income to companies that are using these technologies.

We on Exilian's staff are committed to ensuring that we uphold our public interest goals as an organisation, and to keeping members democratically in the driving seat: we've done both here, with a considered discussion and multiple viewpoints raised among voting members along the way. We think our aim to inform the public and members on topics related to creative projects makes it important that we raise awareness of the problems with NFTs and their impacts.

We hope that you'll support us - and as ever we're happy to answer any questions. You can find the motion passed by our voting members here.

Jubal (Megadux/Basileus)

...
Posted on November 05, 2021, 11:53:38 PM by Jubal
Tourney released!


Tourney, the medieval tournament simulator by Tusky Games, has been released! The game places you in charge of your very own tournament ground, complete with knights, jesters, apothecaries, peasants and nobles. You can put the knights through their paces across archery, jousting, and melee events, building viewing stands and food and drink outlets to keep the commoners and nobles alike entertained. As you advance through the main campaign, you'll pass through fields, castles, and even the mystical lands of Atlantis and Gulansharo, city of flowers.

If you want to get closer into the detail of running your tourney, too, there's plenty available: whilst you can certainly enjoy the fluttering banners and mighty battle cries of the overall experience, a careful tournament owner can tip the scales in favour of their own knights: sending filth collectors and jesters to vex unwanted knights, pumping up the alcohol content at the wine bar or the grease in the hog roast, and jacking up the souvenir prices can all be used to help things run more - or less - smoothly!



We've been watching Tourney grow and take shape here on Exilian for some years now, from the first steps on the road in 2018, through the successful Kickstarter campaign, to the release now. We've even got a mention in the credits! So, do go and give Tourney a go, let Tusky (and us) know your thoughts, and be sure to leave Steam reviews and tell your friends as well. Let the tournaments commence!