Help play-test the pencil 'n' paper roleplaying game I'm writing for my undergraduate honors thesis!
/msg me today! More information is available on my homenode.

The end of the first week of the second term of my last year of undergraduate study.

I am slowly starting to make progress on the roleplaying game that I am writing for my honors thesis. For a long time, I was worried that the original ideas I had for a setting couldn't be reflected sensibly in the format of a game.

The original mood I had for my game was post-apocalyptic steampunk. When the idea sprang into my head, I quickly wrote a short story, but it occurred to me that my ideas might very well make for potentially good fiction, but trying to build a system of rules around them would be impossible.

My problem was, essentially, in a blasted world ruined by mad science, could I create the possibility to play a wide variety of character types, and reflect the 1% inspiration, 99% perspiration feel of mad science, and not steal too heavily from the "Englightened Science" of Mage: the Ascension, the spark of Girl Genius and the general feel of Perdido Street Station. It's a mighty thin line between inspiration and copyright infringement at times.

My eureka moment occurred last night while looking through the "Dorwing" archives of Avid Liongoren at A picture from September 2000 called "this robot" depicting a stoic robot with one arm covered in a pink floral print. A smiling mechanic with a giant spanner slung over one shoulder stood behind him.

So then I thought, "Hey! How about the characters repair old creations?"

I'm still working out some "original invention" rules, but they can be more demanding, since the mad science flavour of the setting can be experienced by activating old technology introduced only as the Game Master chooses (making the game "stable"). This also captures the obsolete excellence so characteristic of the steampunk genre, ensuring that the setting maintains that yummy steampunk flavour.

I'm now stealing from Sorcerer instead of Mage, I guess.

I have a hum-dinger of a schedule this time around. Here's what's on tap.

MTH 341 "Probability & Statistics" TTH 8:00 AM ~ 9:50 AM
Last time I took a math class was 2 years ago, with Calculus IV. I got a C. If I want to have any chance of graduating cum laude at the end of the year, I need to get at least a B.

JPN 410 "Intensive Reading in Japanese II" MWF 9:20 AM ~ 10:30 AM
Japanese is traditionally a B class for me, but when I took "Intensive Reading in Japanese I" last year, I got a C, probably because I kept getting stressed out getting the lab assignments done. I would like to get an A in this class, just to prove I can. It will also be my last Japanese class.

CSC 420 "Operating Systems I" T 6:30 PM ~ 10:00 PM
Even though this class is taught by my favorite CS professor, I'm only taking this class because it's required. Operating Systems are not a particular interest of mine. This class is notorious for being rough on CS majors.

SCT 245 "Musical Theatre Dance II" MWF 1:20 PM ~ 2:30 PM
I had so much fun in Dance I last term that I just had to get a little more value out of all that money I spent on jazz and tap shoes. Also, I can blow off some steam from the stress generated in my other classes.