naamah_darling: Cartoony picture of a black panther with curved horns and a red ball in his mouth. He wants to play. (Jandar Sad)
I am just not having a good time.

So, rueful laugh, I managed to lose/delete three pieces of digital artwork that were important to me in that they made me very happy and I was sort of proud of them.

One is the large version of my character portrait for Rukh Jandar. I have a smaller version of it on Flickr, so I'm sort of okay there.

One is the full version of my horned black panther icons, which are jandar-the-animal icons. I know I have a smaller version of it uploaded somewhere because I posted it in a comment in a community or on someone else's journal but I have no idea where or when that was, and can't find it in any of my photodump sites. I can't summon up the LJ notification email for that comment because that comment was never replied to.

And one is a drawing of an adorable little fennec catbunny thing called a kizza, from the same setting. I have no version of it anywhere, and cannot remember if I ever emailed it to the gaming group. And it's the one I am most upset about, because it was the best one.

I am not the sort to swear and kick things and throw stuff and yell and have a hissyfit, but I am so fucking displeased, seriously. I almost NEVER lose things like this. I have three thumb drives, a backup drive, and two computers. Most stuff is archived SOMEWHERE. I cannot remember, literally cannot remember, the last time I for-real lost a file.

Also, I went to get some beads to fix up a necklace I got (FOR JANDAR NO LESS) and got the wrong damn size of beads.

In our weekly game, Jandar's luck is . . . dreadful. I mean, really dreadful. Golan/Torin/Amaris/Sunder's luck is almost as bad, but is spread out over, like, three personalities, so Jandar's is probably still worse. It's such a notable effect that I wrote a parody song about what it's like when the dice fucking hate your character, but you are too stupid to kill him off and roll up another. (Dice of the Jandar, to the tune of Eye of the Tiger, and aside from the specific character reference in the chorus, it could apply to any campaign that fucks you and fucks you and then fucks you some more.)

And now Jandar's Luck is apparently spreading to real life.

I am not okay with this. I think maybe I need to get back to playing the guy who can roll below a seventy-five.

And right now, that guy is telling me to get my ass into bed. Sigh. I obey.

I want my friggin' kizza. And I am going to concentrate on that fiercely, so that I am not thinking about the other huge and important things I am missing and want back.

Goddamn, can it be next month already, pleeease?
naamah_darling: Scruffy hot guy with yellow eyes and claw-scars on his right cheek. (Rukh Portrait)
We have established that the Baron has never met a die roll he couldn't slap down to a critical success. He has insanely high skill rolls that he has never needed because the dice apparently think his cock tastes like chocolate. If he had only a five percent chance of doing something, he would roll a two. Every time.

Well, I think I have found his opposite number. I have found where all of the shitty rolls are going. I've found the other end of the black hole. You know. The end that sucks.

Those of you not in our tabletop roleplaying campaign will not be familiar with Jandar. I want to say this is unfortunate, but it's probably for the best, because Jandar's luck tends to rub off, and you don't want to get it on you.

He's a cool character, really, he is. The kind of bold-strokes unsubtle character that really only works in a roleplaying game, because the days of pulp fiction are sadly behind us. Slave, gladiator, pirate, mercenary, now on a quest for vengeance against the man who betrayed his clan, destroyed his family, enslaved him . . . and probably also stabbed some puppies and kicked a few old ladies and was likely responsible for killing the dinosaurs. He has the tragic backstory and the awesome scars to match, and since he has a wild psionic talent, he can cause you pain (or pleasure) just by looking at you. And he's really, really hot.

And he's kind of crazy.

One of the animals from this setting is a jandar, which looks a lot like a winged black leopard with horns. Jandar, before he was Jandar, fought and killed one with his bare hands.* He believes that it was actually a mazikeen, an evil spirit of vengeance, sent to kill him for fucking up and getting his whole clan killed. He believes that it possessed him when he killed it, and is using him to effect its particular kind of justice. It's in there with him, you see, all the time. Looking out through his eyes. Waiting. And since his psionic power manifested for the first time during that fight, he believes that it is the source of that power. He has communed with it, and asked it to make him stronger, and he has become stronger. (Game mechanics are fueling his delusion.)

He believes that once he's taken his revenge, the spirit of vengeance will usurp his consciousness completely and Rukh Jandar, the Jandar who wears awful clothes and sings surprisingly well and likes to lose a hand of Queen Mazikeen every now and then, the Jandar who counts smooth stones before bed and recites the names of his family into the wind, the Jandar who was once a boy named Kade, that Jandar will be gone forever, and nothing but jandar-spirit-of-venegance will remain.

I think what he believes is reasonable given what he's been through and where he's from and what his people believe, but he sure as hell sounds cra-a-azy. He'd be the craziest member of the party, except for . . . well . . . most of the other members of the party. As it is, he just seems mildly eccentric, since he doesn't talk about his co-pilot much.

All this is a recipe for a really fun character with the potential to be not just cool but genuinely scary.

Yeah.

Well.

Most gamers probably eventually experience the Character Who Is Smarter Than You. The Baron's got 20 IQ points and years and years of experience on me, yet I never have a problem figuring out what he's going to do. He goes into a situation and owns it. Dice aside, he has come out way smarter than I ever expected.

Gentry was like this, too, a deceptively nerdy little bully trap who once built a bomb out of his shirt, some kerosene, and several sticks of dynamite. He thought of things ahead of time, planned as much as possible, tried his best, and despite a lack of experience and indifferent dice, he generally kicked ass.

Playing a smart character like this is like having the lid taken off your brain. I don't know how it happens, or why, but it does, and it's amazing.

The CWISTY has a derpy little brother, though, and that is the Character Who Is Far Stupider Than You Could Ever Be. I've had a few of these, but Jandar is by far the worst.

Ever.

I mean it.

It is like, when I am playing him, I become incapable of thinking things through. My brain just turns off. If having a CWISTY is amazing, the CWIFSTYCEB is deeply disturbing. Because I try. I do.

This wouldn't be so bad if he could fucking hit anything. A character who sucks at thinking fast can still be a reliable combatant. But no.

The dice fucking hate him.

His stats are good, especially his combat skills, three times now he's been knocked cold in the middle of combat, he can't climb a goddamn rope to save his life, and during one memorable session the best he managed to roll was an 88 on d100, when his to-hit was, like, 85. I love him, but the dude has luck like the last poolboy at a cougar convention . . . i.e., he thinks it's good luck; it's really, really not.

His other problem is that he didn't come out at all like I had intended, personality-wise. He's a mess who fails at being as mean and intimidating – and as fashionably cool – as he wishes he were. ("Hello, ten-year-old hostage girl! I brought you . . . KITTENS!" "Hey! Ember! Check out these awesome stripy chaps!" "Do what I say or . . . actually, I'll go into the other room and let these other people torture you, because despite being an amoral killer for hire, I find suffering curiously disconcerting.")

His consistent inability to do anything but fail miserably has been a cause of some concern, especially because our party appears in imminent danger of death, and Jandar can't hit anything to save his life.

The worst problem is that he has no goddamn sense at all. We don't use a Wisdom stat, but if we did, his would be a 5. Out of 18. He has an INT of 11, so he's not dumb, but he's irresponsible, hotheaded, easily distracted, overconfident, and way too optimistic for his own good.**

After Gentry, who was quite passive, I decided I needed to make a character who could be party leader if it became necessary, and I tried . . . Jandar has all the ingredients. And yet, somehow, he is not that character.

I adore him unreservedly, largely because he has no idea how screwed he is. He thinks life is wonderful, and having him in my head is a lol riot. I can't ditch the guy, he's stuck, but oh, lord, this could have gone better. He is so not the character I meant to play.

And sweet mother of death, the Baron does not like him at all. Thank all the gods that ever were they are not in the same universe.***

I rolled the usual 50-50 split of crits-to-hits for the Baron tonight. The dice are back to kissing his ass. It's reassuring to know that it's not the dice that are the problem . . . it's Jandar's luck. And somehow, at the same time, it is not reassuring at all.

I apologize, sincerely, to the rest of the party.

* I have no goddamn idea how he managed to do this, given that the dice hate him so much.

** To be fair, he's also passionate, driven, playful, and pretty darn loyal. But these will not keep you from getting yourself killed.

***They just have to share my head. It gets pretty heated sometimes.

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