Water cooler stories

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Re: Water cooler stories

Postby Marcuse » Sat Jul 09, 2016 1:58 am

I've been playing Medieval II: Total War a lot recently because it still holds up as a fun game after all this time. I was doing a throwaway game with my best bois Russia (incoming rant about how Russia are the best faction in spoilers)...

Spoiler: show
Okay, so it's not like they're perfect, but as the game goes they're pretty damn effective.

Pros:
Missile cavalry - Oh yes Russia sports cheap and plentiful numbers of the most overpowered troop type in the game. Kazaks can be made from the beginning of the game in large numbers and an army of them can spoil even late game stacks' day. Boyar Sons are a nice intermediate between combat cavalry and spear throwing cavalry (remember of course that spear throwing is still needlessly overpowered in M2:TW), Cossack Cavalry is the same, but with better combat potential, a real all purpose light cav. But even better than that....

Armoured Missile Cavalry - As anyone who hacked Rome Total War to play as Armenia knows, armoured cavalry archers are boss. They commonly have the defense of heavy cav, with the ranged capability of elite light cav. What's not to like? Dvor are (I think) the only such unit in the game, and as such bring a unique element that makes Russia stand out as a good faction.

Varied militia - Some factions (lookin' at you Scotland) have crappy militias. Worse, some have crappy militia varieties, making it hard for a city to self sufficiently defend itself. Russia sports a militia tree that goes; archer, spear, crossbow, cavalry respectively, meaning large cities can maintain powerful missile units, solid spear militia and mobile cavalry without intervention from a castle, making it easier to make money with Russian cities than other factions.

Dismounted Dvor - Wait, didn't you mention these before? Yes, but dismounted Dvor are worth the additional mention as all round excellent garrison material for large castles. They have the ranged punch of an elite archer unit (I'd place them about as rangey and deadly as longbowmen) while having the profile to take on combat duties as well. They won't outfight cavalry or dedicated heavy infantry, but as general purpose infantry these are an expensive but rock solid option.

Cossack Musketeers - I checked around before I established this, but this unit is the single highest damage gunpowder infantry unit in the game (18, the only one that comes close is Portuguese Arquebusiers at 17, but the Arquebus has less range. Normal muskets default to 16). They do the most damage at the longest range. The best part is that they become automatically available in huge cities from the walls alone, so no need to build the top tier barracks to get them! I've run off armies of feudal knights with these guys without them ever even reaching my gun line.

Orthodoxy - Russia is one of only two Orthodox factions in the game. This has the practical benefit that you don't get the Pope demanding you make peace with your enemies every five seconds, and you get the Ikoners Studio that gives you a public health bonus.

Cons:
Location - The geographical location of Novgorod means that it's hard to expand in the early game, and nigh guarantees you'll have an altercation with either the Mongols or Timurids. I lessen this by making my play for Scandinavia and Britain, making the impact of losing places like Smolensk and Riga less important for my overall survival.

Stack rating and micro - Remember all those missile cavalry armies I mentioned? The game thinks those suck. A full army of kazaks will always lose an autoresolve to even 3 or 4 units of dismounted feudal knights, so you have to micromanage every battle they fight. Now in the early game that means you're going to be playing out a lot of skirmishes, but it's kind of fun if you don't get bogged down into a war of attrition, which you shouldn't.

Orthodoxy - while it has its benefits, it also has its drawbacks. Being Orthodox means that you only have one faction that will look kindly upon you for your faith. Everywhere you go you need to convert people to your religion, and the catholic kings will look down on you if you go to war with their bretheren. Often though you can make common cause with distant Muslim Sultans in order to keep your alliance system in some semblance of order (your strength is determined as a combination of you and your allies by the AI).

Overall, I think they're one of the best factions in the game and enjoy playing as them very much. One added random factor is that when you can't see the majority of Southern Europe, the game tends to go a little weird. In my current game the Papal States have conquered all of Italy proper and Milan have taken all of what should be France. Hungary has taken the steppe villages I didn't care to take, and I took over all three Scandinavian countries and Britain. It's a weird old game...


...and my lands were invaded by the Timurids. Now the hordes in M2:TW suck, and I don't like them. They gave them several full stack armies and leaders who all uniformly have maximum dread. I know the hordes were a big deal but it tends to not work so well with the kinda wonky AI the game has. Either way, I'm prepared (more or less) and I have a strong army of dismounted boyar sons, spearmen and archers in a citadel armed with cannons to oppose them.

The siege begins well for me. The cannons kill their siege tower and scare some of their elephants into rampaging. I decide to pull my spearmen back behind my second line because their cavalry tend to fare poorly in urban fighting. But the very second my last spearman gets within the second line, a Timurid horseman follows him, captures the building and my second line is breached. To hold them I throw all four spearmen units into the gateway. The elephants they sent hilariously rampage their way through their own men and murder a lot of expensive heavy lancers, but my spearmen randomly keep breaking and running even as they're taking a heavy toll on the Timurid forces. At this point I've lost about 20% of my force and they've lost about 55% of theirs.

My boyar sons have been cooling their heels in the third line redoubt. I decide that it's time to relieve them and send out all but one of my boyar sons units, keeping the one with my captain within the final line with my last two units of archers (some of the others are still on the walls manning the guns, but aren't really doing much damage themselves). As they reach the spearmen on the front line, the spearmen break...as do all the boyar sons, to be ridden down without giving battle to the enemy at all. Great. I throw out the last unit in the hope it'll hold them back, only to see it flee as well and have nearly every unit I have cut down out of hand. The final stragglers are murdered by a tiny unit of about 8 mongol heavy lancers who managed to get through my last gate with the routing boyar sons and briefly took over the castle before my archers (remember them?) shot them down.

Now we have an impasse. I have two units of peasant archers. They have assorted remnants of halberd militia, and various horsemen units. Not a lot of them, but enough that they could kill these bow armed peasants in open combat. My third line is back intact, but they're bringing up a ram. I get lucky and a cannon shot annihilates the ram, and I sit while the turrets take care of the pushing militia. Now they only have one unbroken unit of halberd militia and no way to breach my walls. Usually that ends the game, except they still have rampaging elephant artillery outside the walls, which technically counts. Even though it doesn't.

So I send out my last unit with any ammo to shoot fire arrows at the last enemy to make them run away. I win!

Then several thousand other Timurids besiege my castle...
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Re: Water cooler stories

Postby BROWNRECLUSE » Sat Jul 09, 2016 11:28 pm

Recently when the Hearthfire DLC for Skyrim was cheap on BundleStars, I finally bought it and spent a night carefully constructing my home at Lakeview Manor near Falkreath. It was a little cumbersome at first, but turned into a lot of fun. I wish the settlement building in Fallout 4 was modeled after this.

Anyway, I had just started the Dark Brotherhood quest, so it was super awkward going to the Riften orphanage to murder the evil old woman who ran it, then going back inside to adopt kids for my home.

After finishing and furnishing my house and getting my wife Ysolda to move out there, and then completing more of the quests in the DB storyline, I stopped by my new house to offload some loot when I noticed my housecarl fighting bandits. I ran in and slaughtered them, and found a ransom note stating that Ysolda had been kidnapped and was being held in a nearby hideout.

I marched straight over and butchered every last one of those bastards and freed my lovely wife from their dingy cave.

Then I went home and chopped away at my adopted kids for not standing up for their new mother. They can't die, those bandits wouldn't have lasted if they just picked up one of the 500 weapons I have lying around and started swinging.

Sigh.
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Re: Water cooler stories

Postby CarrieVS » Mon Nov 14, 2016 10:39 am

I joined an RPG club (tabletop, not electronic) a little while ago and I've been spending my Sundays playing D&D. Here's some of the things that happened yesterday:

I attacked a trollkin. They're weak enemies, only a threat in large numbers, and it had taken one or two hits already, so it was mildly surprising that it was still standing. As it turned out, I wouldn't have needed to roll damage: it had three hit points and the minimum I could have got was eleven. I got a crit. The DM was about to tell me I'd killed it before I'd even added up the damage, but I rolled the extra even though I knew it wouldn't be needed without waiting for him to speak, because I just enjoy having eight damage dice on the table. I forget exactly what it came to but it must have been something around 30.

The DM wasn't quite so amused, and had me make a saving throw against being splattered with "troll puree". I made it.




Earlier, I'd been separated from the group and knocked out by a fire giant. I ended up being captured by the PC antagonist the giant was working for/with.

We're playing a post-Ragnarok Norse mythology campaign and the PCs are all reincarnations or avatars or something of gods and heroes. Our antagonist is Loki. We each have a fund of 'Magic points' which can be used for various things and replaced by draining magic from enchanted items. Loki tried to drain all my gear, but he turned out to be only four points short of his maximum Magic. The first item he drained was my bow, and he wasn't able to fully drain it - it had five points in it (which makes it +2 with some extra abilities).

I had never properly identified it so the DM hadn't told me it was a +2 bow and I wasn't getting the bonuses. I got all my gear back, the rest of it unharmed, when I was rescued and now I know it's +1 (with one point left in it). He actually improved it for me.
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Water cooler stories

Postby unfowimmism » Sat Dec 10, 2016 10:02 am

Can we bring this back? i like reading the FM stories as it makes me want to play FM again
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Re: Water cooler stories

Postby mancityfooty » Thu Jun 01, 2017 8:54 pm

I really wish I could talk in Skyrim.
One of the things I would definitely say is, "Serana, stop with the damn rabbits, they don't do anything!"
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Re: Water cooler stories

Postby IamNotCreepy » Fri Jun 02, 2017 8:50 pm

I have a couple good storied. Where to start?

Fallout 4
I probably have forgotten more good stories than I remember.

On my Survival playthrough, I was hanging around Sanctuary Hills slowly gathering resources and gaining some levels. Unfortunately, I caught a disease from a molerat (you don't want to know how I got it). It was an infection, which drains your life over time.

Sleeping didn't help because I would keep losing health while asleep. Stimpaks were rare and would dehydrate me, and I didn't have any antibiotics. I was blowing through my food and water at an alarming rate, and I knew I had to leave the relative safety of my home base to go find a doctor.

The closest doctor was way across the map in Covenant. I packed up as may supplies as I could carry, and I headed off to fulfill my destiny.

During that same playthrough, when I encountered the Deathclaw in Concord, I quickly realized that even with power armor and a minigun it was going to eviscerate me. So, I caught aggro and let him chase me all the way past the Red Rocket stop and to the entrance of Sanctuary Hills, which I had fortified with a bunch of turrets.

Mmmm ... Deathclaw steak!


Burnout 3
This one is more about the story surrounding playing the game.

My best friend rented this game from Blockbuster (back when that was a thing). During the short couple of days he was renting it, we became quite good, especially at the "Road Rage" mode.

Basically, you had two teams of drivers. The blue team would have a head start and would try to make it to the finish line without being eliminated. If they crashed too many times their car would explode and they'd be eliminated.

The Red team has unlimited lives, and they have to chase down the Blue team and make them crash by ramming them. If you did this (called a Takedown) you would cause your boost meter to elongate, and it would fill up. If you got one Takedown, you would could then catch up to the next person and use the boost to ram them and then repeat the cycle.

We were really good at this, and we were rising through the worldwide ranks on Xbox Live. Then, we discovered something amazing. If you were on the Red team, if you did a Takedown on your own teammate, you would still get credit for it and get the boost.

So at the start of each match we would try to take down a teammate, get some boost, and go attack the other team.

We were doing so well, but he had to return the game. So we decided to stay up all night playing to see high we could rank. By the time the sun rose, we were ranked about number 30 in the world. This was shortly after the game came out and there were a lot of players at that time.

He ended up buying the game, but that night stood out as one of my all time favorite video game playing memories.
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Re: Water cooler stories

Postby mancityfooty » Fri Jun 02, 2017 11:53 pm

wayyy back in the day, there was some game I borrowed for my NES. no saves. I can't even remember what it was, just some guy with a shield or disc who could throw it like a yoyo. I'd play it for literally hours, but have to start over when the 'rents said "bedtime" or I actually left the safety and comfort of my bedroom.
So, one night, I realized that I could just pause it and turn the tv off. I came back to the same spot and played on and on and still never beat the damn game. *throws table*

Also, I remember my first playstation controller with those weird little sticks, and a button that switched where you controlled things. I spent two days out of a three day rental getting obliterated in a racing game, only to find out that if you used those weird little nubbin sticks, it made everything easier and I actually started to win.
But then I had to take the game back because it was beer or late fees.
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Re: Water cooler stories

Postby Anglerphobe » Sat Jun 03, 2017 6:23 pm

Fresh from Fallout 4:

arguable early game spoiler
I was roaming with a recently made character at something like level 10, Piper in tow, in eastern Boston looking for scrap and/or shit to fuck up.
I hadn't played in some time so my memory of the areas had faded considerably. In consequence, I moved on from expertly wiping a small raider hideout to bumble directly into Fort Independence in its full pre-reminutemenisation glory, a huge mirelurk colony. My gear consisted of a double shotgun with some damage mods, a scoped hunting rifle, grenades, molotovs, and a pool cue with a knife tied to it. Cue a span of almost three in-game days in which I sprint and skulk, hermit-like, around Castle Island taking opportunistic flurries of shots at the horde of radioative crustaceans I managed raise from the harbour mud, up to and including the appearance of the house-sized area boss.
At one point I was being chased by around a dozen tiny hatchlings and two adults, scooby-dooing them around a small ruined building and killing the leading one sporadically with a carefully timed gun-whack.
By the dawn of the third day, I had whittled down the queen to the point that I had a chance at finishing her, having completely exhausted my own healing reserves. I had been healing myself by eating the raw eggs and flesh of the mirelurks I had killed, and systematically getting rid of the resulting radiation sickness with chems. Now out of that, I took roughly a full health bar to the final standoff.
By now, I had no ammo for my main weapons, so I was running a .38 pipe pistol that I had returned to the bandit hideout to loot and stock up with about 150 rounds, some 70 of which were left. I took shots from the walls, ducking down to avoid the acid spray that answered them, throughout the in-game morning, and slung my last few precious molotovs in to finally erase the last of that titanic health bar. The queen hit the ground, and I emerged from the underground rooms like a landfill fox, ran up to her, and (one imagines) ripped the edible flesh from her with my mouth to return my own health from the brink of oblivion.
So, by late-morning, I stood in an old fort surrounded by dozens of dead mirelurks, and one corspe the size of a truck, wiping fresh-killed mirelurk meat from my mouth. I like to think my character completely lost his sanity in this episode.
Piper, who had spent most of the last three days underground in a downed state, came above ground and made some comment about how normal this might be for other journalists.
  • 7

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Re: Water cooler stories

Postby BROWNRECLUSE » Sun Jun 04, 2017 9:18 pm

mancityfooty wrote:wayyy back in the day, there was some game I borrowed for my NES. no saves. I can't even remember what it was, just some guy with a shield or disc who could throw it like a yoyo. I'd play it for literally hours, but have to start over when the 'rents said "bedtime" or I actually left the safety and comfort of my bedroom.
So, one night, I realized that I could just pause it and turn the tv off. I came back to the same spot and played on and on and still never beat the damn game. *throws table*

Also, I remember my first playstation controller with those weird little sticks, and a button that switched where you controlled things. I spent two days out of a three day rental getting obliterated in a racing game, only to find out that if you used those weird little nubbin sticks, it made everything easier and I actually started to win.
But then I had to take the game back because it was beer or late fees.


Was it Rygar?

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Re: Water cooler stories

Postby mancityfooty » Mon Jun 05, 2017 11:28 pm

yes, yes it was.
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Re: Water cooler stories

Postby IamNotCreepy » Tue Jun 06, 2017 3:43 am

Major spoilers for Fallout 4:

Spoiler: show
So I've sided with the Railroad, the Institute, and the BoS, so I figured I would do something different this time.

My character was very determined to find his son. He lied, stole, and murdered to get enough resources to be able to track down the who stole his son, and that led him to the Institute.

Then some old man lies to him and tells him that he's really my character's long lost son. When my character doesn't believe him, he is told to leave the Institute and never come back.

Shocked, he climbs back into the elevator and rides it down. Then he stops, turns around, goes back in the elevator, and shoots the impostor in the face before going back down and leaving.

He is now convinced his son is dead. The only ones who are willing to help his crusade against the Institute are the Minutemen. He has reluctantly allied with them ... for the time being.

Once he finishes off the Institute, he just wants to see the world burn. He hears there is a nice place called Nuka World that would serve as a great base of operations ...
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Re: Water cooler stories

Postby octoberpumpkin » Tue Jul 04, 2017 8:13 am

Not so much a cool story but still pretty fun

I was playing L.A. Noire and I had to start driving around a bus route looking for a bus. I didn't want to miss it so I turn on the siren and start speeding around the place. Like ten minutes pass, which is a long time when you're sitting there driving in circles, and the bf wonders if it's because I already have my siren on because the walkthrough says when the event triggers my partner will tell me to turn the siren on.

So I turn my siren off but I still don't want to miss the bus and I'm blasting through town but this time it is much more challenging because cars don't move out of the way without my siren on. Another 10 or so minutes pass and I'm starting to get bored and annoyed, especially since I wanted to finish up the mission and go for a walk

After 20 minutes of chasing this stupid bus, I eventually crash hardcore in to oncoming traffic. The car catches on fire and my partner and I have to get out. The MOMENT we get out of the car, I hear my partner "There's the bus, put on your siren!"

:x :x :x
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Re: Water cooler stories

Postby CarrieVS » Tue Jul 11, 2017 5:34 pm

So we've just started a new campaign in my D&D group.

It's an Evil campaign, which is a first for me, and kind of fun. We're all Drow. Me and one other player are both playing Rogues, the DM suggested our characters be related, and we decided they were twins. Not technically identical twins (his character, Malice, is male, and mine, Vemon, is female) but they look identical, as long as they're fully clothed.

We also have a spooky mental link thing. Not actual telepathy but if one of us is feeling something intense, the other will too. We didn't ask for this, the DM suggested it. We agreed to it because it could be useful if one of us is in trouble and the other can know about it, but that's not the context in which it was suggested:

slightly NSFW
We were turning over an establishment that's essentially a high-end brothel, for valuable information and/or just plain valuables, but we'd been separated, and it looked like Mal was about to get ... side-tracked.

It occurred to me just now that taken to the logical conclusion it probably applies to solo adventures too, if you know what I mean. Which sort of... escapes being Twincest on a technicality. We're creepy twins.


It wasn't my idea! I accepted it because I didn't want to pass up the option of a useful special ability.
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Re: Water cooler stories

Postby Deathclaw_Puncher » Sat Oct 07, 2017 5:10 am

So, after Assassinating President Kimball in my Legion playthrough, I fled Hoover Dam and forgot to change out of my NCR trooper armor. The Gate keeper shot at me and Raul killed him. but the Legion didn't become Hostile. I am now the Dark Heroine of the Legion,and I get to keep my goddamn weapons!
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Re: Water cooler stories

Postby Doodle Dee. Snickers » Sat Apr 07, 2018 4:24 am

Still working my way up to that Platinum Trophy for Bloodborne to get mah bragging rights. On NG+ and doing the chalice dungeons, where I encountered the actual hardest boss in the game: the Defiled Watchdog of the Old Lords. There was nothing I could do about this fucker. I summoned NPCs, I summoned peeps, they'd always get wiped out and I eventually lost interest in the fight and went to go do Micolash and get a blood stone to upgrade my Kirkhammer to its highest level. I also got another trophy for the hunter tools and upgrading a weapon to the highest level, leaving me three more left.

So I decided to get one more battle in with the Watchdog just cuz, because I wanted to see how the Kirkhammer fared against it. I couldn't find a player to join me, so I instead just grabbed up my trust Queen Killer, who died before the thing was even a third of the way down (Seriously, considering the Defiled dungeon cuts your health in half, this asshole has twice as much health as he needs). I considered the fight over by then but still managed to hang on until he was at half, then at a quarter, and at that point I got super focused.

It ended like my fight with the final boss in the first playthrough. I had no health vials left, had shot all my bullets at it, and had it down to a sliver whereas I was at full (But ineffective) health. I got that heavy slow hammer out and just let him bite me while I smashed him in the face with the hammer, and I won like that--tanking a hit from a boss who has moves that can one-shot you. I basically dropped my controller on the floor and just sat back on the couch for a bit in blissful silence to revel that I'd killed a boss mostly by myself that had waxed me about fifty times.

Man, I'm loving this game more than I thought I would. I doubt I'll ever play it once I get that platinum trophy, but whatever game that was FromSoftware was teasing last year (rumor has it a sci-fi deal), I'm up for it.
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