Mr. Porkwaffle Wrestles A Very Large Lizard

…Lizard: 1, Porkwaffle: 0

The Doclopedia #551

Calling All Frogs: The Great Frog Of Goognor

Goognor is a small and mostly swampy kingdom. Those who live there are small and thin by human standards. They live in many simple villages on the islands in the swamps. In general, no other country would give a dragon’s fart about Groognor if it weren’t for the fact that it is home to the greatest density of Manastones on the planet. Now, you might wonder why some other country has not conquered Groognor in order to corner the market on the valuable sources of magical power. The answer is simple: The Great Frog won’t let them.

The Great Frog is an enormous monster that the Groognorians worship as a living god, and with good reason, since it has magical powers of the very highest order. With one croak, the Great Frog can call down a rain of fire onto anyone attacking his people. If fire doesn’t work, he can raise up an army of mud golems, terrible tornadoes, zombify the dead or any number of terrible spells. It has been 230 years since Groognor was last attacked.

So, protected by their 20 ton green and yellow amphibian god, the Groognorians trade Manastones for many imported items, but mostly for herds of cattle to keep The Great Frog well fed.

 

 

The Doclopedia #552

Calling All Frogs: Frog People From Outer Space!

If you had taken a poll in the fall of 2009 and asked viewers in the United States what they thought of a television series called “Frog People From Outer Space!”, most would have said “No way will I watch that.” The truth is, for the first three weeks, nobody did watch it. It was a ratings disaster…until clips from it began popping up on YourTubes. By the fifth episode, the show had jumped up 30 places in the ratings. By the eighth episode, it was the number one show on television.

The premise was disarmingly simple: several groups of science fiction nerds around the world get together and decide to fake an alien invasion of Earth using the internet, cellphone videos, phone calls to various authorities and people dressed up in costumes. Within a week of the first few posts, crackpots and loonies around the world take the idea and run with it, believing it all to be real. Soon, enough normal people (including several heads of state and military leaders) have seen the frog people to make the nightly news. From there, things only snowball.

The series was very funny and used every trick from satire to slapstick to get a laugh. There were many famous guest stars, including Vice President Barack Obama and physicist Stephen Hawking, whose response upon seeing a frog person face to face…”oh shit!”…is widely regarded as one of the biggest laughs in the entire series.

The series won tons of awards and ran exactly four seasons, which is what the creators planned on. The last episode revealed that actual aliens were planning to invade Earth, but ran off in fear of the mysterious frog people.

 

The Future Is So Bright, It Does My Taxes For Me

…and it can breeze through a crossword puzzle.

What’s all this then? Something that isn’t a 365 post?

Yep.

My new Dociverse website will hopefully go live in early February. When it does, this blog will go back to being more…bloggy. Most of the new 365 stuff, fiction, top ten lists, etc, will go up on the website with only a weekly taste of it appearing here or on Facebook. On here, I’ll go back to daily reportage on things Doc, polls, maybe some collaborative gaming or worldbuilding, The Girls, gardening, etc, etc, etc.

And now I must get back to work.

Seaweed Passion

…lust among the kelp

Dociverse 21st Century Update

Ok, so we were discussing the magical/fantasy aspect of the modern day Dociverse. Here are some random thoughts on the subject, since it’s early and my tea has not quite kicked in.

Enter here

Lightly Pounded Snakes

…just enough to teach them respect

The Dociverse: 21st Century Update, Part Three: A Tale of Two Harrys

This is where I point out that while the Potterverse brings a great many attractive things to my world creating table, it is still not without it’s flaws. First off, the whole Faery Realm is barely touched on. Demons? Hardly a word. Really ass kicking bad guys other than Voldemort? Few. The whole ignorance about how the Muggle world works thing? Pretty hard to swallow.

Fortunately, there is another wizarding world in print that, properly mixed with the Potterverse, gives me just about exactly what I’m looking for in a modern day magical realm. And it has a Harry, too.

Of course, I speak of the Dresden Files series. It is, in some ways, kind of like a Harry Potter Grows Up series, but with a much harder edge and a more fully realized (and yes, fully Americanized) world. In Dresden’s wizarding world, Voldemort would be about 2 steps up from a street punk and if the White Council didn’t catch him, you can bet someone from the Black Council/Faery Realm/Vampire Courts would soon make him their bitch. And speaking of the White Council, if they catch a wizard screwing up, they don’t send him to no steenking Azkaban prison…nope, they cut his fuckin’ head off!

So anyway, the wizarding/magical/monster aspect of the new improved Dociverse is damned near equal parts Potter and Dresden. Next post, I’ll tell you how that shakes out.

The California Kid And Spider Go On A Road Trip

…in disguise

The Dociverse: 21st Century Update, Part Two

Another thing that inspired me to update the Dociverse was the release of the Sixguns & Sorcery supplement for Castle Falkenstein. Admittedly, much of it’s attraction has to do with a Native Californians belief that the world would be a better place if the Bear Flag Empire of California did exist, but the whole idea of North America being divided into several countries also has a big roleplaying attraction.

So, in the new improved Dociverse, the Bear Flag Empire exists…along with the Republic of Texas, the Native Nations Union, Canada, French Canada and The United States of America. Relations between these countries range from very friendly (California, Texas and the NNU) to cordial (Texas and the USA) to businesslike (NNU and the USA) to strained (Canada and French Canada, California and the USA).

The rest of the world is also a bit different from our own. Germany is larger, as are France, Portugal and the British Empire. South America is laid out a bit differently and Mexico doesn’t exist because it was absorbed into California and Texas.

Next post, I’ll get back to the integration of the Potterverse into the mix.

Ten Crazy Dog Moments

…including much wrestling

The Dociverse: 21st Century Update

For those of you who are uninitiated to it, the Dociverse is what I call the universe in which all of my roleplaying games and much of my fiction take place. I first started writing about it way back in 1990 in the pages of Alarums & Excursions, in which I did a timeline detailing its history. Just about every fictional/historical character/genre that I liked found it’s way into the Dociverse. The great pulp heroes, toons, supernatural creatures, steampulp, fantasy, sci-fi…they were all there. Perhaps the biggest influence was the Wild Cards universe featured in the series of shared world novels. Indeed, several variations of the Wild Card xenovirus were responsible for why the world was so jam packed with strangeness (except for the toons, who were no doubt drawn here from the Tooniverse by that omnipresent strangeness).

Without going into great detail, a timeline of the 1990-2004 Dociverse would look like this…(and yes, I know this differs from what I wrote in A&E in 1990)

Up to about 1710: Normal world history
1710: First Takisian xenovirus creates supernatural creatures
1780: Second Takisian xenovirus mutates some humans so that their children will be superior to normal humans, yet not have superhuman powers). This is my take on the Wold Newton Family/Universe.
1850: Third Takisian xenovirus creates what we would call Weird Scientists. The age of Steampulp is soon born.
1928: A rift between dimensions is opened and Toontown springs into being.
1948: The Fourth and final Takisian xenovirus creates the Wild Card mutations.
2254 (approx.): Something happens to the Magic/Tech balance of the world and technology becomes virtually impossible. Magic increases. Dawn of the Fantasy Dociverse.

And so, with ongoing tweaks and additions, went the Dociverse until the summer of 2004. It was during the drive home from GenCon (and our 50% Vacation From Hell) on Route 66 that I decided that the Dociverse needed to be divided into at least two separate, but connected universes. The influence of the Wild Cards series would still be fairly strong, but a much stronger fictional influence had occurred to me and was, on that long and fun drive, incorporated as the main shaping influence for the new improved Dociverses.

See, on the trip, Grace and I had been reading Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix to each other as we drove. I think I was driving through the Texas Panhandle (and Grace was napping) when it struck me that J.K. Rowlings wizarding world could solve a whole bunch of my Dociverse problems.

But more on that in the next entry. For now, I must walk the dogs.