We’re Back!

Northwest Amtgard is back! There are no more restrictions on meetings. I attended Silvermoon (Aumsville, OR) along with 54 other people. It was our coming back celebration combined with our mid-reign. There was a feast and a tournament.

The tournament was a three bracket bear pit tournament, short sword, two swords and sword and shield. I would say that was the main event of the day. The first bracket was 25 minutes but that turned out to be a little too long in the heat so the last two were only 20 minutes.

I didn’t participate in the tournament myself, but I did live stream it! I’ve uploaded the video to YouTube in three parts (Part 1, Part 2, Part 3). The YouTube quality isn’t the best due to it being taken from the VOD of the live stream. I was thinking that going forward I would bring two cameras, one to live stream and one to record for YouTube. Of course, that is if people would like me to stream when possible. Please let me know either way!

While I didn’t participate in the tournament I did give some advice to my Squire Indra’s younger brother, Adolfo. I’m not sure if he picked an Amtgard name yet, this was one of his first days. I gave him a few minute introduction to two stick and fought a few rounds with him. I got tired very fast, it was sad, but I think that was pretty common for most of the people coming back. Thanks COVID!

Adolfo got at at least one kill in the two sword bracket. I know this because he got excited and told me that he was able to use something I showed him to win. It was great to hear how excited he was. I was happy to have helped him have that memory.

After the tournament there was court, a very quick court, with lots of awards going out. Some had already gone out during the pandemic but they handed them out again so people could have physical copies. You can see a full list of who got what on the Silvermoon Facebook Group. For myself I got my 8th Dragon for the Shattered Kingdoms Wiki and my 4th and 5th Lion for my contribution to the online Amtgard experience over the pandemic.

The last part of the day was the battle game. It took a very long time to get started and then it lasted a long while too. I stayed near the shelter and talked with Indra and eventually we got in some short sword practice. I didn’t do as well as I’d like, I missed some blocks I shouldn’t have, but I still had speed and some footwork I got tired very fast but I pushed through it. I really need to up that endurance.

Photoshoots!

With us coming back to the parks I thought I would offer a new service, character portraits. My goal is to offer a professional product at a reasonable price. I figured if I’m going to be at the park and I’m going to have my camera, I might as well offer mini photoshoots. The base price is $30, this includes an approximate fifteen minute photoshoot and one edited image. I’m willing to travel to other parks, but there is a small charge to cover gas. Check out my Photo Services page for more details

I’m excited to start this endeavor! Please contact me if you have any questions or would like to arrange a photoshoot.

Live Streams?

I mentioned early that I live streamed and I’m wondering if people would like me to continue to try and live stream LARP days. I’d really like some feedback. I’m not 100% sure what this would look like yet. It’s best for streaming if I’m able to announce when I start and be able to stream for a few hours. This also requires a bit of work on my part, you shouldn’t just set up a the stream and walk away. I’d want to monitor the stream chat and be interactive.

Additionally the video quality of the stream is watchable, but for YouTube, it’s really not great. The only thing I can think of is to use my camera alongside my phone (that’s how I stream IRL content). This is a bit of a cumbersome workaround and is not ideal.

Chances are I will try to do this for a while, just to see how it goes, but I’d really enjoy some feedback.

Next Week

Next week I will probably go to Dragons Forge on Sunday, it’s their grand opening. I might also go to Silvermoon on Saturday too! I’m not sure if I’m ready to do two days back to back, but we’ll see. I’m sure to be out one of those two days.

Restrictions are over and we’re back at park, LARPing it up! I talk about my day, live streams and photoshoots.

Struggles and Hopes

It’s been a while since I’ve made a blog post, it’s long overdue. I want to talk about some of my struggles I’ve had to deal with over the last few months and what I’m doing and hope to be doing in the future.

Sad News

In my last post I was struggling too, mostly due to my mother’s health issues. Those health issues caught up with her and she passed near the start of April. It’s been hard, but not as hard as I feared it would be, still, it’s hard. I’ve been struggling with my energy level and my concentration. Both things are affected by grief. It has put a huge damper on content. I don’t know when I’ll be back up to where I was at the start of the year but I’m working on it.

Patterns and D&D

I’ve noticed some patterns with how I creatively work. It comes in waves. Sometimes I will hyper focus, sometimes I feel like I can’t even get out of bed to work on the computer. That, I’ve known for a long time and it’s depression, but it also comes in waves as to what I’m focusing on. Sometimes I will start writing a new story, sometimes I’ll skip to a whole new type of project.

In that regard, I’m also in a transition. My stories, while still on my mind, have been put on the back burner and I’m now hyped up for D&D. My one game I’m doing is fun, I’ve planned a lot out, but I have a refined idea for a second game.

I want to get two or three players, I want to keep it a small game, and I want to focus on character background and character development. The story will heavily incorporate the player’s backgrounds, making it a more personal game. Additionally The players will be required to keep a diary in their character’s perspective on the companion webpage. I want it to be something of an interactive art exhibit, featuring the Dungeons and Dragons 5th edition system as the vehicle to tell a story.

This second game will also be set in Shattered Kingdoms and will be ran alongside the first game within the same world and timeline. This will allow for some possible interaction between the parties down the road if their stories cross. I’m really excited about this.

While I have not written much down about this new project I’ve thought a lot about it and have done a lot of YouTube based research for developing character backgrounds and personalities. I even created a playlist with the videos so I can point them to potential players so they have an idea of what they are getting into. You can view the playlist HERE if you like.

This feels like a natural progression of my story telling. Before I was really hyper focused on doing it through my writing, now I’m focusing on it through running D&D. The most difficult thing is trying to hand pick players. I’ve only been looking for a few days but I’m being rather particular.

Near Future

I’m trying to get back into streaming but I won’t be doing any regular game streaming anymore, at least not on a schedule, but I’m not giving up on streaming.

I plan to slowly incorporate a once a week writing into my schedule again. This could take the form of short story writing, editing, D&D writing or any other text based creative art that appeals to me.

Additionally I am continuing my current D&D game, although it’s been hard to schedule everyone. In fact the next episode will be streaming June 5th on Twitch. The second game I spoke of I hope to have going in the next month or two.

Then I also want to do a beer tasting, I’ve done one before, and I’ve been planning a new one for months now. I think it’s about time to get that done. It’s more involved than my last one, which was just a stream. I plan on making a introduction YouTube video, a beer tasting YouTube video, edited from the live stream and then a third video with highlights from the whole stream.

Distant Future

Things I would like to add are in real life streams, something I’ve done a few times this year already. I want to do more and do it more regularly but it really depends on the state of the world. This could take the form of beach trips, group hangouts, game nights, trips to bars, bear tastings and of course LARP Stream.

Hopeful

I hope to get back to working more regularly, this is my first attempt at pushing myself to get back on the grind. It will take more time to get back to where I was, but I know it’s possible. In fact I’m sure I will supase where I was productively at the start of the year.

I look forward to see where things will take us over the next six months. I hope you will join me on the journey.


D&D and a Soft Rebranding

I’ve had a lot of ups and downs the past few months which has affected how much content I put out. Sadly the blog has gone to the wayside due to the pandemic and the LARP i go to, Amtgard, being shut down. I’ve spent most of my energy on growing Twitch and my writing. I’ve also since changed my Twitch handle from Synthdad to BaelnornTV.

I’m conitinuing that trend and removing all traces of the Sythdad branding. This is mostly minor things, but will consolidate my brand and make it feel more cohesive. The focus will be on Gnomes!

For starters, all of you wonderful readers, patreons and channel subscribers are part of The Gnome Nation and I’m rebranding the different Patreon levels into gnome levels. That’s about it. Additionally I’ve changed the channel points on Twitch to gnome hats.

Now that is out of the way we can talk about something more entertaining, Dungeons and Dragons!

Dungeons and Dragons

I am going to be running a D&D game set in the world of Shattered Kingdoms. The world I created for the Amtgard LARP event of the same name. We originally were going to start in January, but life happened and I went into a deep depression there for a few days. Needless to say, I had to reschedule, but everyone was understanding.

We have reschedule the game for February 28th at 12pm PDT. It will be streamed live on my Twitch Channel. The players are Gustav, Darb, Kormac and Uriel. The game is using 5th Edition D&D and we are starting at 3rd level.

I wanted to make the game more interactive for the viewers so I’ve set up a comprehensive website that will be constantly updated with story progression and new information as the campaign continues. Additionally I’ve created a new way players can participate in the story. We will be using a fate system and viewers can spend channel points or bits to give the player’s bonuses in the game and even increase or decrease the difficulty of an encounter. The system is outlined HERE.

There is even a dice cam, which was purchased by popular request. I have three sets of dice and people can pay channel points to change out the dice to one of the three sets.

Purple and Gold dice and Green and Gold dice

I’m really looking forward to running this game. I hope you’ll join us. If you’d like to join the Facebook Event so you can keep track of the event you can find the link HERE. I hope to see everyone there!

Dark Choices

I also recently finished my first short story that was primarily written while streaming. It’s called Dark Choices and is set in the same world as the Philip Clowes novel I’m writing. This short story takes place in chicago in the 1960’s. Christopher, a young man, is confronted with the reality of becoming a vampire and he has a few hard choices to make.

If you do purchase the short story, I’d love to get an amazon review!

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