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More fun than a box of rubbing alcohol - Tactical Ninja

Jul. 23rd, 2013

09:48 am - More fun than a box of rubbing alcohol

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Yesterday I only felt 3 earthquakes. I know there were loads more, since Dr Wheel seems to be Earthquake-Sense-O-Guy and he's been all "Earthquake!" every half hour or so for the last few days. But I seem to be oblivious to anything under about 4.5. Until I get to work that is. 5 storeys up, they suddenly get a lot more noticeable. When I got here, the little cardboard Evil Genius statue thing on my filing cabinet had fallen over. CARNAGE!

The jury's still out on whether the one on Sunday was the big one, or whether we are still building up to a big one. I am taking a fatalistic viewpoint, we are as prepared as we can be and now we just wait, I guess.


I don't think I even left the house yesterday. Even the gym was closed so I got a reprieve from training (which I have to catch up today), and spent the day fiddling about with stuff. In the morning, I cut out all the pieces I needed to make the gauntlets and knee guards for the latest creation. Then I treated it with this preparation stuff that's designed to remove coatings and get the leather ready to take dye. This is because I need all the leather to be the same colour and right now it isn't. Here's what I now have:



And this morning, the other leather I need to make all the straps (about 11m of it) arrived, pre-cut because I'm crap at straight lines. That also needs dyeing, so guess what I'm up to tonight? Yay!

And then I got to spend the afternoon moulding plastic. It's nowhere near as hard as it sounds. This stuff is literally amazing in its versatility. You zap it with a heat gun (hair dryer will work but my little $15 jobbie was too slow) till it's soft, then it'll stick to itself or pretty much anything else, and is mouldable. By the time you've got the adhere-ey bits to stick to each other, it's cool enough so that with a layer of greaseproof paper between your skin and the stuff, you can place it on your body. As long as you hold still for about 5 minutes, it'll cool to a fairly rigid shape that matches. I made a breastplate:



The gryphon is made from craft foam, which just stuck straight to the plastic once it was heated. I also made two pieces of a 12-piece leg armour set. Only 10 to go. Each piece takes about half an hour, but once it's done, it's pretty much ready for painting. So fast, and so easy!

Also, I just realised I haven't actually said what I am making. It's this:



The Regalia of Weisshaupt armour set from DA2:Legacy - Robes of the Silent One for mages. Because it's not often a mage gets armour that actually looks like armour, and I've never seen this one being cosplayed. It also appeals because of the amount of different skills and crafts that go into making it - there's variety there which keeps it interesting. And one of the things I love about the DA gear is that they've clearly thought about how these things would work in physical reality. The only cheating they've done is the magical magnetism that sticks weapons to people's backs. If you look at that picture (and the other views I have), how the armour is attached is actually shown and it will work when reproduced as a costume. Anyway, yes, my dorkiness knows no bounds and I am revelling in the opportunity to make this thing real.

Why? Because I can. Also, why not?


And for my own reference, things I need to be making progress on over the next few weeks:

1. Bioware blog - almost ready.
2. Yorick - well in hand.
3. Legacy armour - ongoing.
4. Brainfart - stalled on a hard bit, so I need to set aside a day to get over that hump and just force myself to do it. I nominate this Saturday.
5. Daggers - approaching painting/final touches stage.
6. Magister Staff - now split into 2 projects, a light-free but strong Magister replica, and The Original Staff of the Glowy Moon Thing With Leaves, which is what I'll use the UV gubbins for. On the back burner for now.
7. Article about BZP for publication. Dedicate August to this. Well, some of it. At least one day a weekend and some reading time in the week, anyway...
8. Blade of Mercy - about to move from thinking stage to drawing stage.

All this has to be done by shearing season. By which time I'll have more things to do, because that's how I roll. And then I really ought to apply for a scholarship and enrol in university like an adult. But right now, I'm having far too much fun making stuff and I'm not keen to go back and be all serious about serious things. Maybe I'll get over that?

Maybe not.

Comments:

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From:tatjna
Date:July 22nd, 2013 10:51 pm (UTC)
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It's totally a competition. Therefore I win at a) having the most LEDs and b) having the widest variety of stuff making a mess in my house.

Also, I'm not convinced the being on MDMA while trying to do some of these things would necessarily lead to the things being any good. But I am pretty sure I'd be happy while doing them. Yep.
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From:c_maxx
Date:July 22nd, 2013 11:28 pm (UTC)
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Either that, or it's Jane and the Dragon after she gets knighted.

Don't watch Qubo channel?
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From:tatjna
Date:July 22nd, 2013 11:30 pm (UTC)
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I don't know what Qubo channel is. Or who Jane and the Dragon are either, for that matter...
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From:strude1
Date:July 24th, 2013 01:07 am (UTC)
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Ooh I know this one - or rather the second part.

Jane and the Dragon is an animated tv series partly made in New Zealand (care of Weta) about a girl in medieval times who becomes an apprentice knight (instead of the lady-in-waiting training she was meant to receive) and becomes friends with a dragon.
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From:c_maxx
Date:March 3rd, 2015 06:08 pm (UTC)
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Qubo is a kids TV channel, and Jane and the Dragon about a young woman who decides to become a knight and goes into training as a squire, her difficulties and the friendship that develops with the dragon...
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From:tatjna
Date:July 23rd, 2013 01:48 am (UTC)
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Heh, this is true, and something I hadn't considered. I keep a pair in my bag at all times, which you're welcome to use if you need them.

Meanwhile, yes the controller does turn our XBox on from your place. ;-)
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From:fairwells
Date:July 23rd, 2013 02:52 am (UTC)

crafty

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I like the The Regalia of Weisshaupt armour set from DA2:Legacy. That looks amazing. I wish I had the skills to craft the items you're making in your projects. They look really professional. Thank you for the add and I look forward to interacting with you here :)
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From:tatjna
Date:July 23rd, 2013 03:00 am (UTC)

Re: crafty

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Nice to meet you too! ;-)

I consider myself lucky to have the resources to be able to muck about with these sorts of things and learn how to do them. I do wonder though, what I'll do with all the finished costumes I'm making. It's not like we have a lot of opportunities for cosplay in New Zealand, so mostly I guess I'll just look wistfully at them and maybe go to the odd con in Australia. ;-)
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From:fairwells
Date:July 24th, 2013 11:22 pm (UTC)

Re: crafty

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I'd love to visit Australia. You could always sell the costumes too.
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From:tatjna
Date:July 24th, 2013 11:24 pm (UTC)

Re: crafty

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I have thought about selling them, but I'm not sure how that works with copyright, because the original designs were someone else's idea. It doesn't seem to stop other people from doing it though. Hmmm..
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From:fairwells
Date:July 24th, 2013 11:26 pm (UTC)

Re: crafty

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I didn't know about the copyright. I guess I'd have to research it first to be on the safe side.
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From:tatjna
Date:July 24th, 2013 11:29 pm (UTC)

Re: crafty

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Yeah, and so far I haven't bothered to find out what the deal is. Soon enough though, I will run out of room and then I'll have to. ;-)

Thanks for the idea!
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From:fairwells
Date:July 24th, 2013 11:31 pm (UTC)

Re: crafty

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Any time :) And at least for special occasions like costume parties, you have a treasure trove to choose from :)
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From:ingenious76
Date:July 23rd, 2013 05:06 am (UTC)
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I experienced an earthquake when in Alaska. Scary...but also pretty amazing.
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From:tatjna
Date:July 23rd, 2013 05:16 am (UTC)
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Gosh. I never would have thought of Alaska as the sort of place to have earthquakes. Shows how much I know.

And yeah, it's nature's grandeur at its .. finest? Freakiest? Something, anyway.
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From:meathiel
Date:July 23rd, 2013 07:12 am (UTC)
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Pity you don't live anywhere near me ... I'd so order some Steampunk outfit from you ... haha ...

And eek ... earthquakes ...
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From:tatjna
Date:July 23rd, 2013 09:07 pm (UTC)
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Heh. It seems most people who do cosplay around here are currently into steampunk. At least, the thing I went to the ratio of steampunk:non-steampunk was about 2:1. I've never tried making steampunk stuff, but I can definitely see the appeal! ;-)
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From:meri_sielu
Date:July 23rd, 2013 09:36 am (UTC)
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The armour you are making is awesome! :D
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From:tatjna
Date:July 23rd, 2013 09:07 pm (UTC)
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Thank you! I hope it turns out looking something like what I want, because I've pretty much never done anything like this before and it's going to take a LOT of time to get finished.
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From:pundigrion
Date:July 29th, 2013 03:29 am (UTC)
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Ooooh, that is pretty awesome mage armour!
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From:tatjna
Date:July 29th, 2013 03:30 am (UTC)
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Seriously, how often to mages get to wear armour that actually looks like armour?

On the flip side, the outfit's going to weigh about 10kg, and that's with the plates made of plastic instead of metal. Since mages are notoriously squishy, maybe they don't normally get armour because they can't hold it all up! ;-)
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From:pundigrion
Date:July 29th, 2013 03:32 am (UTC)
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I feel like there must be a spell for that...
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From:tatjna
Date:July 29th, 2013 03:35 am (UTC)
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There totally is. But it costs mana to upkeep so you run out faster and then you're doubly exposed. I've always found kiting to be a better option. But this armour is too cool not to make!
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From:pundigrion
Date:July 29th, 2013 03:39 am (UTC)
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I have to admit I was never much good at kiting. I tend to go with the glass cannon approach.

Oooh, I did finally get to try an incarnation of this game you speak of. I played Dragon Age Origins while dogsitting and rather enjoyed it!
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From:tatjna
Date:July 29th, 2013 03:41 am (UTC)
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Mwuahahahaha, taking over the world, one dogsitter at a time!

I learned to kite playing Origins. Mostly because the companion dynamics give you the damage mage and the healing mage, so I found it easier to play with crowd control, and that gave me lots of opportunities for kiting. I wish I'd learned playing WoW, it would have saved me a lot of priest grief. Heh, less said about that the better I think...
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From:pundigrion
Date:July 29th, 2013 03:43 am (UTC)
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I keep waiting for an updated WoW instead of just expansions.

Although....Skyrim is getting cheap enough I might consider buying it this winter! (Yeah, yeah always late on the bandwagons) I found the controls a little clunky on Oblivion though so I need to figure out if Skyrim has improved things.
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From:tatjna
Date:July 29th, 2013 03:48 am (UTC)
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Not really. Although, I finished* Skyrim and I never bothered to finish Oblivion. I got most of the way through Morrowind but in the end the lack of decent teleportation pissed me off too much and I got sick of running. They've definitely fixed that in Skyrim.

But yeah, spellcasting is still kind of clunky by comparison to games that have a spellbar across the bottom (for PC, I've no idea about console if that's your buzz).

* I don't think you ever finish Skyrim. But I did finish the main plotline and a couple of the major sidequests.

At the moment I'm mucking about with Darksiders 2. Apart from obviously being designed for console (wtf four left mouseclicks for a scything kick?), it's fun and reminds me vaguely of WoW. It's not very clever, mostly just zap pow kill monster, but it's the kind of game I can drop in and out of and still enjoy it.
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From:pundigrion
Date:July 29th, 2013 03:51 am (UTC)
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Awww, that's too bad. Fallout is played heavily by the desk behind mine, which seems to have better mechanics, but it is a bit too much FPS for me. Torchlight 2 was nice for mindless blasting away while still having spells, but the game isn't very long/large.

In the console world I love Atari 2600s and it is a good thing we don't own one. My thumb is sore enough from gardening! Not so much a fan of modern ones.
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From:tatjna
Date:July 29th, 2013 03:56 am (UTC)
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Heh, yeah. I've been a PC gamer since about 1983, and apart from a brief stint playing Road Rash and Spiro the Dragon in the late 90s, I've never really used consoles. Trying to play Portal 2 co-op with Dr Wheel as my first go on console was.. frustrating mostly.

Then my kid handed me one while he was playing Red Dead Redemption* and I managed to fall off the horse and then someone came along and nicked it! So much for that. Consoles make me feel like a klutz and the general move by developers in that direction really worries me. I shall have to learn to use one eventually, but while PC games still exist, it's just better for targeting, for spell selection, everything.

I've also noticed the blending of FPS and RPG genres. Mass Effect gets this right, I think, but I'm still not a fan. I like strategy rather than just BLAM BLAM BLAM.

* Just realised I left an asterisk open. Red Dead Redemption is a game I'd definitely play to death if they made it for PC.

I reckon Skyrim's worth a go. I've heard good things about Gothic as well, but haven't played it. It's on my shelf, waiting. And Two Worlds 2 has an interesting magic setup..

Edited at 2013-07-29 03:57 am (UTC)
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From:pundigrion
Date:July 30th, 2013 06:12 pm (UTC)
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I've used consoles, but mostly the Atari ones and the very first PlayStation after Atari gave up on the Jaguar.

I do think adding RPG elements to FPS makes them far more interesting, but like you I really want more then just BANGBANGBANG even if there is a cool storyline.

This post brought to use by the following video, which might not be good to open at work and features stick person sex: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z5kkf0hyfKs
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From:tatjna
Date:July 30th, 2013 08:47 pm (UTC)
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*mental note to watch this when I get home tonight*
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From:tatjna
Date:July 31st, 2013 07:23 pm (UTC)
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OK I watched it, that was...

.. reminiscent of every FPS wanker's complaints about any game that isn't full on FPS actually.

I don't know why those people moan, it's not as if they aren't well catered to.

I played Unreal Tournament back in the day, but I got bored really fast. Now I play almost exclusively RPGs, RTSs and puzzle games. If there's a mix, even better. ;-)
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From:kehleyr
Date:July 29th, 2013 07:25 pm (UTC)
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Oh very cool :-)
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