Vancian Magic

AGNES: Tilly, shoot them with a magic missile.

TILLY: I can’t. 

AGNES: What do you mean you can’t?

TILLY: I forgot the spell.

AGNES: What do you mean you forgot the spell?

TILLY: It’s a thing. It’s not going to help us. 

RHIALTO THE MARVELLOUS, book IV of Jack Vance's influential fantasy series DYING EARTH.

RHIALTO THE MARVELLOUS, book IV of Jack Vance’s influential fantasy series DYING EARTH.

Click the above image of RHIALTO THE MARVELLOUS to read an informative blog post from The Evil GM on Jack Vance’s influence on D&D’s magic system (Vancian magic.) The basic theory behind this is that a wizard’s spells are so complex (s)he can only keep them in his/her memory until (s)he uses them, after which the spells are completely forgotten and must be re-learned. It is, indeed, a thing.

Also, the song “The Dying Earth” by the band “Wizard Eye.” Also a thing.

thunder . . . Thunder . . . THUNDERCATS – HOOOOOO!

KALIOPE: Why are you dressed so strangely?

AGNES: I’M dressed strangely? You do know you look like a Thundercat, right?

THUNDERCATS! Thundercats is an American-made Sci-Fi/Fantasy/Adventure/Alien Cat show that ran for four seasons from 1985-1989. This show’s got everything: Mummy Cats! Cats with Swords! Snarf Cats! Thunder Cats!

Most likely, Agnes is referring to the official Thundercats sex symbol, Cheetara. You can read more about her on the Thundercats Wiki (which exists).

Cheetara is ready for battle!

Cheetara is ready for battle!

Hansen, Usher and other VH1-worthy celebs crush on Cheetara on the above episode of I LOVE THE 80s STRIKES BACK (27:21)

Fans love Cheetara cosplay!

Fans love wholesome Cheetara cosplay!

Living in the World of SHE KILLS MONSTERS

We’re well into our first week of rehearsals in the spacious Plaza Theatre at the Boston Center for the Arts. This first week of rehearsal is all about building vocabulary: stage combat terminology and basic moves; a thorough understanding of the script and all its references; and an immersion into both the fantasy and real-world settings of the play. Director Shira Milikowsky assigned the actors a series of tasks to flesh out characters and the world of the play.

The first assignment was for each actor to bring in three objects/images that encapsulate the world of the play. Take a look at our collection!

STACKS of comic books!

STACKS of comic books!

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Monsters galore

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Dragons, George R.R. Martin Books and useful kerosene lanterns — X-Men cards in the back there!

SNES and FF3!

SNES and FF3!

 

Tilly and Agnes? Paige and Jordan? Theatrical boundaries blurring? Cute kid photos? So much going on here.

Tilly and Agnes? Paige and Jordan? Theatrical boundaries blurring? Cute kid photos? So much going on here.

 

Alignment!

LILITH: Are you good, lawful, chaotic, unlawful, evil?

AGNES: I’m a democrat. 

All D&D Characters have an alignment, based on two shifting axes: moral and ethical. Your moral alignment describes your inherent intentions in the world (good, neutral or evil) while your ethical alignment describes how you function as an individual in society (lawful, neutral or chaotic). Choose your moral and ethical alignment, put them together and you have your D&D alignment! Still confused? This graphic helps to explain everything in universal terms:

Now we all understand.

Now we all understand.

If you’re still stuck, you can read more about alignments on the Wizards of the Coast website and take an Online Alignment Test.