69 Responses to 672 – White Smoke Mountain • 40

  1. Young Bunker is soooooooo cute. I like that you going the good old ploy where the storyteller embelishes the story but the reader sees it how it is. Also if Bunker has been in a campaign since the second edition shouldnt he be, like, level 1000. Or does he just reset the level everytime he starts a new campaign but has the same character with the same background and personality. Is he really that unoriginal? Or just that lazy? Also, where is Morty in there? At first glance I thought Agnar was Morty. Is it the same DM? That would be my best guess on why we see what really happened. Also nice names for the other characters.

        • AD&D 2nd edition had many level-draining monsters lurking around dark corners for the sole purpose of “resetting” player characters down to level 1. And back then, there were none of those fancy-pancy Restoration spells to prevent a drained level from becoming permanent, no sirree! You died, you lost a level. You changed your alignment, you lost a level! Other RPGs might call it “character growth”, but not AD&D, no, if you dared to deviate from your precious alignment, you had to be punished! By the universe.

          Undead that made you older by stealing years of your life were even worse, unless you were playing an elf.

          Don’t ask me why losing part of your life force would wipe out some of your skills and abilities. That’s D&D for you. I once based a whole starting level character’s backstory around the idea that he had once been higher level but had been massively level-drained before the start of the campaign and that had cost him not only 10 levels of class abilities but also 10 years of memories of his adult life. The amnesia also prevented him from remembering where he had left his higher-level spell books.

          • I did exactly the same thing once Christina. I wanted a 1st level character with a big backstory full of impressive (and dark) deeds, who would redeem himself this go-round. Worked great for everyone, especially the DM, who had a host of pre-created villains to play with.

  2. =.= Eeeeshh. So much hatred for Paladins… There’s a character class made more difficult by previous players.

    So, who wants to bet big money that the ‘princess’ was played by a horny teenage boy? õ_o

        • … They’re the size of her head… each. But yes, her bra shifts 70% of each boob to another dimension, so they’re really better than twice that size.

          • 😆 You missed the opportunity to draw really mindbogglingly large, Japananimé-sized ta-tas, Kevin? 😆 It reminds me of how certain Japanese animés, especially those TV shows featuring teenage girls with oversized balloon boobs, are creatively “edited” for the American and German market… from triple-D cups down to something less hentai.

              • I will show great restrain and NOT post pictures or links to some of the truly huge garbanzos you can find in comics.
                Those of good taste will like this.
                All others, please don’t hate me too much. 🙄

                • Lets not forget that not too long ago, Kevin had drawn large number of exposed nipples into the comics. Those with good taste would have left by now. Beside its a link, if you give fair warning any one with good taste who still visits will simply ignore the link.

                  • Since you asked,
                    Remember Elf Life a few years back. Here’s where the writer/artist has been driven by, imo, bad decisions on rehashing the same story over and over and, likely, the business end of running a webcomic, too.

                  • I’m German, we’re not fazed by nipples or bare female breasts, or full frontal nudity in movies. We see breasts in movies, on ad posters in the streets… *shrug*

                    Age certification for movies works a bit differently in German movie theaters. If a movie is for 16-year-olds and up, you won’t be able to take your 14-year-old in there, not even if you’re the parent. (Although when I was 11, my mother convinced the ticket seller to allow me to see Star Wars II: The Empire Strikes Back, which was PG-12.) So all the stories about moronic American parents taking their 10 year old kids to see an R-rated movie like Watchmen and then complaining about it not being a kid-friendly movie would be impossible in Germany. They’d never get past the ticket booth.

                    But in general, the Freiwillige Selbstkontrolle (the people who rate movies and slap the certification on it or decide which scenes to cut) go down more heavily on violence than on sexual scenes, unless it’s something obviously porny. These days, nakedness in a movie without pornographic sex or graphic violence would be PG-12. Sex scenes and some splattered blood would make it PG-16. Graphic gore makes it the equivalent of R-rated (for adults aged 18+). Heck, Basic Instinct is rated for 16+ in Germany and France (and according to Internet Movie Database, an edited version exists in France that was open for 12 year olds and up). But Robocop was considered for adults only when it first came out, and that was the cut version! These days though it’d probably be thought OK for 16-year olds… times have changed. Still, when they recently showed Robocop on TV, they cut out even more of the violence than they did back then when it ran in movie theaters. Ridiculous. You see some guy aiming a gun, and then there’s a clumsy cut that omits the final second of the scene or so, and if you haven’t seen the movie before you wonder what happened to the victim whose head was blown off because you didn’t see what happened. But they mostly do that to be able to cram more commercials into the running time.

                    That’s why every time there’s some shooting spree somewhere in the world, preditably conservative German politicians will try to score points by loudly demanding “tougher standards” against violence in video games, blablabla, to the point that if they had their say you might not be able to legally buy adult rated First Person Shooters here in Germany, even if you are over 18 years old. Because fictional guns kill people.

                    • Censoring violence in Germany is well known, even strategy games where you don’t really see that much because it’s small etc.
                      From what I’ve heard they edit games so “people” being killed are now “robots”. At least that’s what they did to several, if not all, C&C titles. I mean, c’mon, the original C&C in all it’s pixelated, low-resolution glory, was edited.
                      Because killing intellegent, humanoid machines are OK to kill, I guess. And then they’d ask “why?” when the cylons exterminate humanity…

                    • While watching the new BSG my husband and I were rooting for the Cylons to exterminate humanity because the humans in the fleet were such jerks and kept fighting among each other like total morons. Hello? Last remnants of the human race? Make love, not war? No? Anyone home? (Well, after that WTF finale I expect they all died of malaria soon afterwards, so whatever.)

                      At least Gaius Baltar’s pretty hair was saved.

                    • The problem isn’t parents bringing their 10 year olds into the PG-16 movies. The problem is them complaining about it. That’s going to be the least problematic failure in their parenting. Much farther up the list will be teaching their kids to whine and complain about everything.

            • Why is that a question? If not for magic brazier, biggie ta-tas would be encumbered by her own breasts and would die and then they would decay and they wouldn’t be bg anymore. So small ones now means large ones forever.

              • You seem to be labouring under the misconception that I like the character enough to want to see her live. ^^ Dying of chest encumbrance would teach her player a valuable lesson. “Don’t bring your private sexual fantasies to the gaming table”. Unless the DM has publically announced they’re using the Book of Erotic Fantasy, in which case they have no one to blame but themselves.

  3. Is Angar 10 ft tall or something? Is that even legal or did the DM indulge him? And I’m guessing that’s a battleaxe he’s wielding like a handaxe there.

    Also, Bunker is just like in the start of HOLE…does that mean he hasn’t changed gear(or cloths, yuck) for 1.5 editions?

    • “a long time ago, back in 2nd edition D&D” :mrgreen:
      I love it when D&D comic characters use previous editions to refer to the past like we refer to past historical events. They’ve done it over at Order of the Stick and Goblins, too, and it always cracks me up.

    • Orald, Bunker could only afford standard, off the rack paladin armor. 😉 That way, he was never confused about what to wear each morning.

      But 2nd edition Bunker looks awfully skinny. That sword looks far too heavy for his pipe cleaner arms, the poor boy. He must’ve rolled a 09 for STR.

    • Hasn’t HOLE at least partially transfered to 4e? So he hasn’t changed his armor(or cloths) for 2 editions.

      • I was refering to his look at the start of HOLE, when it was, I presume, 3.5e.
        He already had his yellow “chicken suit” by the time they upgraded to 4e…or at least that’s my understanding.

    • Here, here! One of my players, back when he played a paladin in my 3.5 campaign, couple years ago, every time the group stayed at an Inn, and the others spent the evening drinking, he specifically mentioned that his paladin would be in the stables rubbing down his horse, or oiling his sword, or cleaning his armor.
      And no, those weren’t allusions to something more… suggestive. *cough* He meant it. And he was doing it for himself. (dammit!) That is, he didn’t want anyone else handling his holy sword. (sorry, sorry, I’ll stop now.)

      I think the question is, when was the last time you heard a warrior-type D&D player character say, “My squire/varlet/henchman will clean my armor.”?

      • The same character I referred to above was a wizard and made magic items for the party. He always included a prestidigitation spell for the purposes of keeping them clean and fresh-smelling.

        • Wow. That is just… super. ^^

          Incidentally, this reminds me of one of the very first games I ever GM’ed. The party went through the bad part of town and picked up some fleas, to which I alerted them when they returned to their inn. =_= They spent a significant portion of the session arguing whether they should get into the hot tub they ordered to evict their pests with or without their clothes…

          And a fun time was had by all. ^^ In the sense that we were all laughing, that is.

        • Doesn’t that spell just make an illusion of cleanliness for a limited time, or is that only in 4e? If so those are still dirty, smelly cloths.

              • Prestidigitation used to be one of the coolest low-level spells (1st level in AD&D, 0-th level in 3E) you could have as an arcane caster. So useful. It could clean, add spices to your food, dye your clothes, play some music, and more. (Except for mending your clothes, which for some reason you still needed the Mending spell for.) Unseen Servant is a must-have, too. Does all your menial house work for you, like cleaning your library, your clothes, retrieving items from trapped chests, and whatnot.

                • Prestidigitation had another name in AD&D 2nd Edition, though, if I remember correctly. Damned if I can remember what it was.

                    • But only lasts an hour at most, with some effetcs lasting much less, in addition to being pure illusion, so your cloths are still smeared with mud and horse-manure, you’re just pretending to everyone else they aren’t.

                      But I guess an hour’s still enough time to pay the shopkeeper for those expensive magic items with your magically faked gold/platinum coins and split town.

                    • The 4e prestidigitation spell has a whole list of effects, none of which are illusory, and only one of which, (a brief “sensory effect”) has any kind of duration even listed. If you use it to say, spice your food, it is actually spiced, and it stays that way. If yu use it to warm a drink, it lasts until the drink cools down.

                    • I’ve read it quite a few times now, and while some effects(like moving items) are “real” and permenant, the cleaning/coloring is one hour long and thus “illusionary”. If it doesn’t stay that way then it’s illusionary for me. Maybe I’m using the wrong word here, but “temporary cleansing” is not true cleansing.

                      Still, it’s a fun spell to use and could do so much more in the hands of a capable player. Too bad some stuck up, suspicious DMs and players are afraid of anything that isn’t a “hit for xDy HP in a radius of z squares” spell, or any other creative uses for spells.

    • Christina just answered it. I’d expect a paladin to at least keep his gear shiny, they’re all about the “knight in shining armor”, after all.
      Besides, not carousing like the rest, what else do they have to do in their free time?

      • Who says a Paladin can’t carouse? They just have to make sure not to drink to the point that they start doing stupid things, and make sure the wenching is acceptable to the young lady — and accept the consequences.

        • Filthy scoundrel, I’ll have non of your insulence and lies about the Faith! Paladins are all true knights of valour and chivalry, fighting to banish evil wherever it is found! Such decadent activity is beneath them!

          Well, except for the evil paladins, I guess. I hate you, 4e.

        • Exactly. As I pointed out to the player, ale is not evil, and paladins are not required to be chaste and celibate (unless you join a sacred order that specifically bans all hanky-panky). It got so bad that I had NPC paladins subtly advise him to lighten up a bit and take the stick out of his butt. The player was so anxious to have his character do the “right thing”, he started falling into Lawful Neutral “Police Paladin” territory IMO.

          There were some incidents with male NPCs that made me start wondering if the paladin was secretly gay (but in the closet) and the player didn’t want to admit it to the rest of the group for fear of stupid jokes from the other blokes. But I didn’t feel like pressing the issue.

          Heck, I would’ve been perfectly fine with a paladin straight out of the Theban regiment of elite soldiers called the Army of Lovers a.k.a. The Sacred Band of Thebes. (Ancient history omitted from the pile of crap that was 300 the movie.) But his paladin was more of a lone avenger guy.

          Or maybe I as a female gamemaster was misinterpreting some signals?? Perfectly innocent male buddy bonding rituals? But I’ve seen him play other characters, in Shadowrun, in Cthulhu, and damn, they all made my gaydar go off at some point[*], in a “rugged maleness, muscles and leather, women can be my best buddies but I never look at their boobs” kind of sense. I’ve always felt more comfortable hanging out with male buddies than female friends, so I thought I have some insight into male behaviour? 😐

          It doesn’t help that the player in question looks and sounds a lot like Vin Diesel.

          [*] I could go into details, but I won’t. trust me.

          • A gay Vin Diesel? I’m sure that’s a fantasy for many. Sadly enough, not my cup of tea.

            Oh, and ale IS evil. I’m probably the only reader of this comic that abstains from drinking alcohol…rather funny given the emphasys Kevin’s “Church” gives to boozing up, drinking games etc.
            The characters I had the chance to play also abstained, unlike some player/DM who had his characters and NPCs all drink/sound drunk all the time(which might sound funny but gets old and annoying quite fast).

            • No you are not the only one abstaining from alcohol. Beside the fact that I can’t legally drink , when I do I will keep being abstinent.

            • You’re not the only one. Never got the taste for alcohol, and life is weird enough without drunken stupors and voluntarily killing off my own brain cells. I also doubt a hangover would improve my mornings.

  4. Hm. Bunker claims he was a paladin as far back as AD&D 2nd edition, but in
    he claimed he was a paladin as far back as edition 3.0?

    Anyway. I went back throught the archives to check the story arc where Bunker first mentions his evil brother, but couldn’t find any reference if said brother is an older or younger brother, or a twin? If Bunker is 39 but was de-leveled, his brother might be quite powerful by now.

  5. Your drew my Hammer too small… and axe shaped… no, no, no… that isn’t me at all!

    My barbarian beard is much larger than that.

  6. So, if Bunker already knew Morty back then, whom did Morty play? (I can’t quite imagine Morty’s player playing Angar or that well-endowed priestess.) Or wasn’t he into D&D yet?