New Project Preview

So… I’m trying to build my first Raspberry Pi, and put in a case that I am 3D printing.  Supposedly it was snap fit.

How do you think that is going, based on the tools I have out?

Maybe it’s snap-fit when printed using SLA instead of FDM, but i’m having to carefully apply force at connection points, and edit others with the chisels.  I’m going to have to be really careful with this thing, and probably won’t be able to modify this thing after finally getting it in the case.  Adhesive may be required.

Preliminary Learning Goals

I want to up my game with my technomancy, so it’s time to educate myself more. This list is not fully prioritized or paced yet, but here’s what I currently have my eye on:

Raspberry Pi: I’d like to build a few projects using a Raspberry Pi, but I haven’t gotten around to doing one yet. There are all sorts of cool cases that can be 3D printed for them…. now I just need to find a use case for it.

Simplify3D: I need to learn how to make full used of this slicer software. I’ve been doing pretty well with it, but I recently found out that I’ve been doing something suboptimally, which costs more in print material, wear and tear, and most especially in time. Learning the software more thoroughly should help me save time and be able to print more.

Autodesk Fusion 360: I need to up my 3D modelling game for mechanical parts. I’ve got designs in my head, but I’m still unfamiliar enough with this software that it’s not always easy to render them quickly.

Potential Training:

OBS Studio: I’d like to share some of my gaming, particularly my VR gaming. Letting people see what I see in the hobby. Who knows, I might start posting some videos on a few topics I find interesting.

Potential Training:

Blender: For designing 3D models for prints and for possible game design.

Potential Training:

Unity Engine: For programming games in VR later.

Potential Training:

VR Game Design: I’ve got a couple game concepts I’d like to try to make.

Potential Training:

SCA Fencing Recertification: I used to be certified to fight in SCA fencing combat, but I didn’t attend for a while for various reasons. I want to start going to practice again, and re-up my certification.

Relevance: Gotta be ready when you run out of spell slots.

Japanese Language: I want to visit Japan at some point. I don’t wanna be fully dependent on my tech to navigate and survive. … and yes, it would be nice to be able to understand anime that hasn’t been dubbed in English without reading subtitles.

Relevance: Tech is great, but you gotta be able to survive if it doesn’t work properly.

Loot Drop: Unboxing the Dungeons and Dragons Adventure Game

I was wandering around a used book store recently, and came across one of these in the “rare” section, and was hit with a wave of nostalgia.  One of these kits was my first exposure to the game of Dungeons and Dragons, and it quickly caught my interest.  One of the guys in a kids group weekend outing had brought his copy along, and was teaching the other guys how to play.  I was forbidden by my parents to play (due to the backlash against D&D that was still somewhat present), so I just watched.  I was drawn in by the adventure and heroes, and still have some specific memories of it.

These sets were created to introduce people to very low levels of the 3rd edition game that was recently out.  You could start with this box, but if you wanted to play higher levels you needed to go get the rulebooks.  Seems like a pretty good hook to me, one I’ve seen used in various ways in other editions.  4e had it’s Red Box, 5e had it’s starter set (and now the Stranger Things Redbox, which I need to unbox here sometime).

Anyway, coming to the store reminded me of it.  I looked at their copy, found it was missing some pieces, and decided to hold off and look online.  Sure enough, I found a COMPLETE copy online, with the tokens unpunched.  A few days later, and my copy has arrived.

Box Lid  Box Bottom.jpg

Exterior

It’s a pretty large (if shallow) box.  Not too heavy, either.  To be expected, it’s only supposed to be paper products and a set of dice.

Box Interior.jpg

Interior

Heh. The bubble wrap is mostly pointless, but I guess it keeps the paper from moving too much.  The box is a bit dinged up, but good enough!  Can’t expect a perfect box 19 years after publication and probably at least a decade out of production.

Box Contents.jpg

Contents of the Box

As advertised, this thing had EVERYTHING still in the box.   Especially important to me, all the tokens are there!

Token Sheet Front.jpgToken Sheet Back.jpg

One had popped out of the sheet, but was still in the box.  The tokens were just as I remembered them.  Pictures of all the adventurers and creatures on one side, with their names on the reverse.  The noncreature stuff has two states for a lot of items, which is really useful.  For example, the door tokens showed you there was a closed door in the wall, and flipping them over showed when a door was open.  This was particularly important, as the way the game map is drawn there are no doors on the walls!  This allows you to use the same map different ways, and also to not spoil the layout early.  By the way, here’s the token I remembered most.  The GELATINOUS CUBE!

Gelatinous Cube!.jpg

In Dungeons and Dragons, Jello eats YOU!

I remember the party fighting this, and was impressed with this monster.  I love how the artwork even shows the last guy to tangle with it, still being digested.  As mentioned before, here’s the map.

Dungeon Map.jpg

Adventure Map

It’s got a bunch of numbered rooms on the map, but no doors!  I seem to recall this having been used with the walk down the hallway described, and then a portion of the map used as described by the book to play detailed encounters.  I’m pretty sure the gelatinous cube was somewhere in either room 19, 20, or 26.  The map’s backside is a simple grid.

Map Reverse.jpg

Map Reverse

It’s blank grid could be used for drawing your own dungeons.  I personally won’t be using that side, I don’t want to mess it up, and I have a perfectly good Chessex mat for that.

Next is the general game documentation.

Read This First.jpg

D&D Readme

This page introduces the general premise of the game for people completely unfamiliar with it.

Books.jpg

Ancient Tomes of Lore

The box came with a Rule Book for everyone to learn the game, and an Adventure Book to provide the first adventures for the DM to run without having to prepare anything.  I haven’t had time to read through these yet, but I hope to introduce some of my 5E adventuring companions to this edition with this at some point.

Now that we have the rules, we need some characters to play with.  Do we have to learn how to build characters in this set.  No!  We don’t want to get people to play, not get bogged down with character building rules to start.

 

Character Sheets.jpg

Alternate Characters.jpg

Our Traditional Heroes!

Some of you who’ve played 3.0 or 3.5 may recognize several of these characters, thoughtfully provided to start the game quickly.  These were the example characters mentioned in at least the 3.5 rulebooks as exemplars of their classes.  There are 6 main characters, and 2 optional ones that are buried in the paperwork for the others.  There is also a rules summary cheat sheet to aid quick play.  I was as impressed this time as I was back then with these bright, descriptive character sheets, with a helpful dice guide for new adventurers.

And no adventure is complete without:

Dice.jpg

DICE!

Dice!  Gotta have some dice to play the game.  By the standards of many players I know, these would probably be a tacky collection to have.  Why not have a matching set?  Well, if you look back at the character sheets, these are color-coded.  They are all different colors, because as we’ve all seen with new players, people get confused trying to find the correct die for a while when they first start playing.  The sheet will tell you which die you need, and you don’t have to count sides, as the color is the easiest way to identify them.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this.  I know I’ve certainly enjoyed taking a trip down memory lane, and I hope to actually get to play this set after almost 20 years since I’ve first seen it.

Beat Saber Fully Released on Oculus

Yes, I know it’s been a while since I’ve posted.  I didn’t intend to be on hiatus like that.  This might be a bit of a stream of consciousness post, as I am reading and looking up things as I write, and don’t plan on going back and making the earlier portions more concise/accurate/up-to-date.  Beat Saber has finally gotten to version 1.0, and is out of Early Access!  I am cautiously excited.

Sadly, as in previous updates for Beat Saber, the updates are still not working correctly.  I had to completely uninstall the game, and reinstall it.

This version apparently comes with a built in tool for customizing levels.  I’ve only messed with it slightly, and I’ve come across a few concerns already.

The level editor is accessed from within the game, rather than as a program you can access externally.  However, as soon as you open it, it tells you to take the headset off and use the program on your monitor.  That’s not an efficient design.

I’m gonna have to try again, but so far I don’t see a tutorial for it.  I would think I’d be able to add in my own music to make brand new levels for myself, but I don’t know how to do that yet.  I’ll have to update this once I’ve had a chance to learn the system.

So, here goes.  I’m watching a video on how to use the level editor (here for reference).

Apparently my first mistake is that I don’t have my music converted into a .wav or .ogg format.  Great, I’ve gotta convert the music files, and can’t pull them straight in.  Strike 1 for this editor.

I’d prefer if this thing had a kind of automatic pregeneration option, that would at the very least mark beat locations in a track for you to add the boxes to, and then you add your own customization on top of that.  This appears to be completely manual.

At least the visualization of the sound wave on the left makes it easier to see what is going on, and they have a reference line across the screen that helps you line things up.

After watching this a while, I get the feeling I’m not going to make many if ANY levels in Beat Saber.  This is a tedious and time-intensive process, without any real aide from the software.  It seems like a decent tool, but I was hoping for some sort of algorithm to help with generation, and being able to switch to an advanced mode IF I wanted to customize to an extreme degree off of the preselected beats.

Update:

At time of writing, just finished another Beat Saber workout.  I hadn’t played lately, but I was still able to finish the campaign!  Go figure that the last mission has a minimum requirement of bad cuts.  Those kinda suck.  Now that I’ve beat the campaign, I guess it’s back to trying to get the new songs up to faster speed on Expert level.

Printer Back Online

I was having some issues with getting files to transfer to my Monoprice Select Mini Pro, but I finally figured it out… the microSD card appears to have been full for some reason, with a possible glitch with the cache file.  I cleared some space by removing the Cura install file, and removed the erroneous cache file.

Here are some of the things I’ve been printing with it.  I figured I’d start filling out a collection of archetypal minis.  These are all from Valandar’s models on Thingiverse.  I’m running through a few of them.  The gnome bard was the first one, and I’m wondering if I’ve somehow introduced a calibration error, slicing error, or just the filament had been left out too long.  Anyway, I’ve got a bit more cleanup to do on these, but I think they are coming out alright.

Gnome Bard Front.jpg

Gnome Bard

Barbarian Front.jpg

Buzzcut Barbarian

grumpy-ranger_front.jpg

Grumpy Ranger

 

 

 

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