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Codex 10th Anniversary - Short Story Competition

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Codex 10th Anniversary - Short Story Competition

Competition - posted by DarkUnderlord on Sat 28 July 2012, 23:04:58

Tags: Good Old Games; RPG Codex; Short Story Competition

On - or near enough to - this day, the 28th of July in the year 2002, the RPG Codex began life with its very first news post:


And so, in celebration of the Codex' 10th Anniversary - and in grand Codex tradition - we're holding a short-story competition. Help us honour this momentous occasion by writing a short story on one of the following:

1. 10 years inside the asylum (optional variation: 10 years in charge of the asylum).

2. A Date with the Codex: A mock conversation where-in a poster has created a "dating advice" thread, asking for assistance on how he can improve his relationship with the Codex.

3. A Decade of Decadence - 10 Whole Years of Decline. A retrospective look at the events of the last 10 years. What event struck you the most? What is your fondest memory?

4. Speculative fiction: What if we did scale to your level? A story on how the Codex might have turned out, if only things had been different...

5. Ten Prosperous Periods of Posting: A Poem.​

Stories should be approximately 500 words (although strictly speaking, there is no limit on length and all entries will be accepted).


Our esteemed panel of judges (DarkUnderlord, baby arm and probably the rest of the staff in some sort of group therapy session) will pick the 2 best entries from each category. Winners will receive a game of their choice from Good Old Games and +2 years of ad-free Codexian browsing (assuming you have an account here).

Teh Rulez
  • We have #10 games to give away so the "best" two stories from each of the topics above will win a prize.
  • Contestants are allowed to enter a story for all topics as well as make multiple entries within a topic.
  • You can only be the winner of one free game. So even if you have the "best" story in multiple topics, you'll only be winning one free game. Share the love and all, yo?
  • Winners will be able to choose the game they want from anything in GOG's catalogue.
  • You don't have to be a member of the Codex to enter, as we are accepting entries from anyone. RPGCodex staff members are the only people excluded from entering winning (they can submit something in honour of this great occasion should they feel so inclined).
  • Be sure to include the topic your story is about in your entry.
  • Judges decisions are final and no correspondence shall be entered into, though bribes may be accepted. Preferably by buying Codex T-shirts and / or Mugs.

How to Enter

Entries can be made in one of the following ways (in order of preference):
  • By replying with your short story in the comments thread for this item (thus allowing other members to brofist your entry, which may assist in swaying the judges).
  • Through the RPGCodex contact form.
  • Private Messaging DarkUnderlord.
  • Via e-mail to: darkunderlord at WHAT IS THE NAME OF THIS WEBSITE AGAIN LULZ dot net (replace the ALLCAPS part with rpgcodex).

We'll run the competition for a month, with entries closing on the 28th August 2012. Winners will be announced sometime after that, once we've bothered to read everything.

The Winners

The winners (below) were announced here.

1. 10 years inside the asylum
agentorange - With his never-ending and yet beautifully worded sentence.
Erebus - With a must-read guide to the Codex.

2. A Date with the Codex
Gregz - If leather fetishes and SURPRISE endings are your thing.
Erebus - For assisting HawkeTheChampion fulfil his romance options.

3. A Decade of Decadence - 10 Whole Years of Decline
CappenVarra - Because everything is shit.
Erebus - While it was the only other entry we actually got in this category, it is actually good.

4. Speculative fiction - What if we did scale to your level?
Grotsnik - I'm the goddamn Batman.
Chateaubryan - You are now entering... The RPGCodex Zone.

5. Ten Prosperous Periods of Posting: A Poem.
Telengard - The first entry we received in this category, and the best.
Darth Roxor - For a decline, unexpected and unabated.

Honourable mentions to commie and artakserkso in this category.


Accepted entries will be added here as the competition progresses.

1. 10 years in the asylum

It was not often that we residents of the asylum were allowed visitors, with the fear of our condition being infectious, that it would infect the visitors, that they would be turned like us to whatever it was we were; the doctors themselves when they came to visit us would shield themselves, both physically and mentally, they kept their distance, they would speak to us as if we were children, as if we should be pleased to hear what they had to say though it was never more than a prattling on of nothingness; descriptions of whatever new methodology or serum they had invented which would surely be the greatest of its kind ever created, greater than even the last project of theirs which had been up to now, with the creation of this new “thing”, the greatest of its kind, always the greatest – I and others in the sanitarium were even aware that many of these so called brilliant and cutting edge devices, they were always cutting edge, we were aware that these had in fact been seen before, created before, as much as decades ago, all these doctors had done was tamper with the precursors and brand their name upon its ass and call it their own; so we would discuss - what we called discussions though it usually was just one or two of us shouting until we destroyed ourselves and others nodding or shaking their heads or peeing or shitting in the corners - these inventions and mock them, in the large four walled room of concrete where we were allowed to interact with each other, for most of the day, we were free to come and go from the room just as we were free to come and go from the asylum itself; some did leave, they went through the front door and we felt the cold breeze and saw the gray skies and the mountains beyond and further the towns and cities, very few stayed gone, and it always was that it was when our shouting and shitting and pissing reached its cacophonous apex that they would come crashing back through the front doors and splay themselves on the concrete floors and ejaculate themselves into a state of numbness at the prospect having escaped back to these warm concrete walls, having escaped from the outside and the small people who live in their small villages and small cities and are happy with their smallness and content, to be content, how awful it was to be content, it was only in death that we would be content because we would be dead and we could agree on that maybe but probably not.
Welcome newcomer. What you have between your hands is my work, a guide meant to assist your first steps into this dark, labyrinthine place. It will not ensure that you keep your sanity in the long run (as I, myself, may very well have lost mine when you read these words), but it will increase your chances of not making a fatal mistake right from the very start. Read these words carefully : they are the fruits of the long years I've spent in this foul place.

I understand that you must have some burning questions right now. I will try to answer them to the best of my knowledge.

What is this place ?

It's difficult to answer that with any certitude. The "official" theory is that it started ten years ago as a place of free discussion and learning, but it may just be a myth or a fabrication. It's hard to find people who claim to have been here ten years ago and they may very well be lying, either in service to some unknown conspiration or because the pervading madness has affected their memories.

What I've just said may sound paranoiac to you, but that's because you're a newcomer. Here, everything can change and nothing is certain. When I came here, I was given an identity card on which the date of my arrival was written. I look at it now and I can no longer tell if the date is correct. Is it possible that the writing on the card has somehow changed at some point, in order to make me believe that I've been here for a longer or shorter time than I really have ? I sometimes feel like I've been here for a whole decade. Are my memories lying to me ? Check the date on your own card, newcomer ! And check it again every single day, to make sure that it's still the same !

As for what this place is like now, we'll get to that very soon.

Who are the inhabitants ?

Mostly people who were once very much like you. That shouldn't be a relief to you, however : years of living in this insane place have taken their toll.

Though calling them a community would be a stretch, of the inhabitants adhere by a very rough code of conduct. That certainly doesn't mean you should trust any of them easily : madness is even more dangerous when it's hidden.

This place has some rulers, though it can be hard to tell if they really have a special status or if they're trapped like the rest of us and are but self-appointed lords. Their behavior is often erratic and their sanity is unsurprisingly questionable, but their actions should seldom affect you directly as long as you don't draw too much attention to yourself.

How can I escape ?

That's the real mystery. There are no windows anywhere. This place has dank corridors, endless stairs and dark pits, but they move randomly from time to time, making a map pointless. There's no known way of leaving. Inhabitants sometimes disappear, but it's impossible to know whether they found an exit or whether some terrible fate befell them.

A quick note about language: You'll soon discover that the inhabitants of this place use some strange words and expressions. To help you, I've included a basic lexicon in the appendix of this guide. It gives the meaning of the commonly used acronyms such as "C&C" and "RTwP", tries to clarify abstruse words such as "popamole" and lists some of the countless possible uses of the word "fag".
During your exploration, however, it's possible that you'll meet people speaking an incomprehensible language that doesn't sound like anything that should come out of a human throat. While rumor has it that you can ensure the good will of those strange people by offering them a potato, I've always found it safer to leave their presence quickly and quietly.

Now we get to the meat of the subject : how you should begin exploring this dark place.

It would be an easy mistake to believe the "News, Content and Feedback" ward to be the best place to get your bearings. Fortunately, it's not a fatal mistake.
The first two sub-wards are the closest this asylum has to a bureaucracy and that description gives you an idea of how exciting they are to visit. The people there will pelt you with a lot of information, some of which you might even care about. All in all, those two sub-wards are safe, but they won't prepare you for the rest of your exploration.
The "Site Feedback" sub-ward is much more lively and much less coherent. Insane inhabitants are sometimes carried there by their rampages. While there are much worse places, it's likely that visiting that sub-ward too early would only confuse you.

The best place to start your exploration is probably the "Playground" sub-ward. It's not exactly a safe place, as it will expose you to a fair amount of insanity and stupidity, but the controlled environment will help you adjust and learn. The people there tend to be rather helpful, but you should still be wary. The giant bee, for instance, is suspiciously nice and trustworthy. She has to be hiding something, probably bodies stung to death. And what's with android RK47's endless activity ? Is it all that's keeping it from fulfilling its "Destroy all humans" directive ?

The RPG ward is probably the oldest part of this place and you will have to spend some time there to build credence with the other inhabitants. It is essential that you be prepared before venturing there. Saying the wrong thing at the wrong time may have terrible consequences.
At the time I write these words, the ward is divided into five sub-wards, but it's quite possible that some of them will have disappeared by the time you read my guide. The comparatively long-lived "Workshop" sub-ward is a good place to go if you need a rest : it's quieter and less insane than its neighbors.

The Gaming ward is fairly similar to the RPG ward. On the whole, it's a little bit less aggressively crazy (aside from the "General Gaming" sub-ward).

The Hosting ward is largely a deserted place. Two sub-wards are empty of inhabitants. Another is a maze designed to hold (according to rumor) some sort of mythical creature. Only the temple of AOD is home to more than ghosts or monsters.

Finally, there is the GD ward. Once it was but a horrible vortex of inanity, profanities, intolerance and raw madness. Since then, fortunately, the "Library" sub-ward has been created as a reasonably isolated shelter. You can safely spend time there. The more recent "Science" sub-ward is also fairly safe (from insanity, if not from boredom).
As for the "General Discussion" sub-ward (and its bastard child, the "Politics" sub-ward), no advice I can give could possibly prepare you for it. If you simply cannot resist the desire to go there, however, I urge you to first visit the "Retardo" sub-ward. It is the graveyard of this place, where the worst creations of madness are preserved as statues. The monstrous things cannot directly harm you (though the horror of their mere appearance may be enough to damage your sanity). While you're watching them, however, you should remind yourself that the madness that lives in the "General Discussion" sub-ward is still alive and terribly active.

And that's the end of this guide. You will now have to make your own decisions and face their consequences. Unless you are much luckier than I was, you should prepare yourself to spend many years in this place.

As you may right now feel close to despair, I will leave you with an encouraging story. One day, I know not how long ago, I happened by chance to meet the fabled errant prophet Andhaira (wisdom be upon him). My limbs were tired and my soul was weary ; I could feel empty madness gnawing at me. I sat at his feet and asked : "O wise one, for what purpose are we all here ? Why does this place exist and what is it meant to accomplish ?" Andhaira reflected gravely for a moment and then he told me : "Searching for the meaning of life or searching for a mean to leave, which is better and why ? Discuss !!"
First, God created the internet and all was good. And then God farted, and a pea rolled out. The pea burst open and a baby troll emerged and skittered away before God could bring his heel down on it.

The troll grew and prospered, its gapy ausp of a grin growing larger with each prank it pulled, each lie it told. Eventually it was so big and fat it couldn't hide from God anymore, and down came old Yahweh's foot with a solemn thud of finality.

But when he lifted his foot nothing was there! And as he looked around he noticed lots of little tiny trolls skittering here and there, finding places to hide, growing stronger and more terrible.

He was puzzled for by definition, nothing he could do would be anything but good but the trolls fought each other, made fun of people, and generally upset pretty much everyone. No matter how slick someone was, how sly a speaker or how fancy their suit the trolls were always there to jape and jaw and jawmigger and caper and cavort in delight as they took the piss out of them. In fact the bigger the ego and more clever the person thought they were the more absolute and devastating the eventual fall.

Then he smiled a little smile and went back to bed.
10 years inside Asylum. by markec

Damn sun, Chris told himself as it shined trough the barred window on his sleeping face, waking him up. He liked to sleep since then he managed to dream and even when he had nightmares they were less scary then the real world, maybe because subconsciously he knew that from those nightmare he can wake up. He sit on the edge of the bed and looked at same view he saw for the past 10 years, brownish wall that was white when he came here and worn out floor that reminds him of time spend walking pointlessly from one end of the room to another, hoping something interesting will happen, but nothing ever did.

He started his daily routine which consisted of walking in circles, arguing with himself (since he believed it was the only way to have an intelligent conversation) about the value of writing in modern media and waiting for the feed tube to come from the ceiling for the daily dose of slop. After the meal he got nervous, standing by the metal door waiting for the moment he would be released for socializing with other patients, cold sweat poured down his forehead and his hand started to tremble as seconds felt like minutes. At one point he almost started to scream and scratch the door as his mind started to panic in a thought that he was forgotten, a fear he experienced every day for last few years. Luckily the massive door opened automatically and showed him the way outside which he took eagerly.

In the corridor several other patients were with him, he knew them well but didnt consider them friends, they are insane he would say to himself and better to spend less time with them since maybe then the supervisors would realize he was sane. As they all walked trough the long corridor to the public room he observed cameras on the ceiling that seemed like they were followed all of their moves, but were they? Chris often thought that cameras were there to only watch him and noone else, he was the smart and the sane one, he was the threat to them not the other guys. He moved at average speed, holding his head low to appear like his will was broken, he will fool all of them.

The public room is a rather large place with lots of tables with different items to provide entertainment for the patients, from board games to crayons and spreadsheet. On one wall there is even a television to allow a view on the current world events. It was placed high on the wall to prevent someone from damaging it or switching the channel away from government news. At this point Chris would usually play games or watch tv, long time ago he would even use the spreadsheets to create his own alter ego set in a imaginary world where his stats ans skill determined his progress. He never said that to anyone because everyone and especially the doctors and guards would think he was insane so when asked what he was doing his response was pretending to work in excel. He didnt want to end up like Tim, a friend who was here with him less then five years ago, who constantly argued that attributes like charisma and wisdom should be an essential part of every RPG and that all of them should influence the game. After a week of reeducation he now spends time constantly walking into the wall since he cant go anywhere without quest compass which he cant find.

Last few weeks Chris didnt play any games or watch tv, he was planning. He would walk around the room pretending to mingle with other patients but in reality he was designing a plan. There was only two doors out of this room, one leading back to the rooms and another to the freedom. The door which he needed to get trough opened only on few occasions, when doctors make personal visits, when guards need to calm down a situation or when a new patient arrives. His plan was simple, when door opens he will make a diversion and use a commotion to avoid the guards and flee. He didnt know the way out of the hospital but he counted on Lady Luck for help, since luck favors the brave. After few days diversion was ready, there were two small groups of patients that gather on opposite parts of the room, one argued that turn based combat is the best since it offered most tactical options while other that real time is more realistic and more entertaining due no limitations in combat speed. They rarely got mixed or engaged in arguments but Chris was about to change that, now he only needed for that door to open.

It seemed that luck is really on his side since day after finalizing his plan a opportunity came. The door opened just as he pretended to watch a new sitcom about a psychic gay jewish couple who solved mysteries a new patient came. It was a older man being dragged by two guards, while two more secured the door, he struggled a bit but the guards had a strong grip on him. Suddenly he yelled how Fallout didnt start with 3, it looked like the guards got pissed and started beating him with sticks, a situation, long time ago, Chris knew all too well. He pondered to help but he knew it would be pointless and he could not lose this chance. He went fast but not too suspiciously between the real time fans while everyone was focused on the beating and yelled that Jagged Alliance would have been a better game if it was real time. On the other side of the room the turn based fans stopped watching the brutal scene even when blood and teeth started to fly everywhere, and went to the place where those words were spoken.

As the new fight started Chris slowly moved toward the door staying near the wall, the two guards seeing the new fight quickly ran to prevent the escalation of the situation. As they left the door frame he slipped trough and entered in a place that would lead him to his freedom. He didnt know where he was going, he went from one corridor to another, there was no alarm sounded and no cameras in this part of the building, on a sound of few voices he opened a door and entered a small room. It was laundry room, he managed to find a slightly dirty guard outfit hoping it will help him to flee this place. Still there was no alarm activated, it was obvious that noone realized he escaped but soon the patients would need to return to their rooms and then they will realize someone is missing.

He moved causally nodding the staff he passed, and again the luck was on his side. On a wall was a layout of the hospital and easiest was to exit was marked in case of fire, he memorized the way and started moving, as he walked his steps got faster not because of fear but hope of freedom. After going down two floors he had the main entrance in his full view. A large six way door made of glass and beyond them a long 200 meter long paved way to the some eight meter tall wall with large antique iron gate leading out of the compound. There was a control point with three guards whos job was to prevent visitors from bringing contraband to patients. He hoped that they wont mind him too much since their job was to look out for things that get in not get out. While he moved toward the door the guards turned their attention to him, Chris bowed his head and started coughing really loud, in hope they would think it is a sick guard going on a leave and wont ask him to lift his head. His plan seemed to work as he walked, coughing and waving his hand to them. He opened the door and stepped outside, for a moment he stopped and took a full breath of air and smelled what was for him a smell of freedom. As he approached the main gate he tried to control himself from running, he was smiling for a first time in a very long time. While only few meters away he heard the sound of the alarm, but he didnt care anymore, he has reached his freedom. His hand grabbed the iron gate, slowly opened them and he stepped out to a world he was not part of for a ten years. Chris looked infront of him and his smile faded, a huge billboard advertisement stood before him "Planescape Torment 4: The Reckoning a new game of award winning first person shooter series".

Chris screamed as he fell on his knees, he forgot but now he remembered and while the guards dragged him back he cried.
Darth Roxor:
The Larpham Asylum

Another day in the pit. But someone has to keep this place running.

Putting some trusty old record on the gramophone, I go check up on the clients. An interesting collection we have here, yes sir, and I'm reminded of that each time I move from cell to cell, opening the peepholes to damnation and lunacy.

The western ward, G-RP, is the first stop. These fellows are usually moderately nuts, and can be left for themselves most of the time. But not always, no. Sometimes it takes only one word to turn a regular meal time at the cafeteria into a free-for-all. Casualties are often high in the aftermaths, which creates a lot of unnecessary red tape. These people have also developed some sort of strange rituals for these skirmishes - once the fight is over, the perpetrator of the whole mess is singled out, a paper bag is put on his head and he is symbolically cast out of the whole community. At the same time, if someone has been greatly touched by this gentlemanly argument and keeps bringing it up every time, he takes up the mantle of the "Eversore", whatever that is supposed to mean.

The last time this happened, all hell broke loose. One of the big fish among the inmates, Vince, started babbling that running back and forth from his cell to the cafeteria was completely pointless, and should be shortened to a quick teleport. The uproar was already horrible, but he kept talking. When he reached a point about how dumb the idea of silverware and food being "interactive" was, and how instead everyone should just be told to eat, the patients have gone totally mad. Some fell sobbing to the ground, realising this was all they've ever wanted, others took up arms and wanted to dethrone the tyrant. Many had to be moved to the R-DO ward that day.

Yes, R-DO, the eastern ward. The place where nightmares are born and devoured as baby meat. All the cases here are terminal. The clients are not allowed to leave their solitary cells at all time, no common room or cafeteria can be found here. I walk up to the nearest cell and look inside, this poor guy is one of the oldest cases. He heard once that all male-to-female transexuals used to have slightly bent erections. He laughed at the idea, but then one day he took a closer look down when he pissed... and the next morning he was here with severe trauma to the crotch.

The next cell's peephole I had to close really quickly, as the madman inside must have sensed my approach. The moment I slided it open, a torrent of spit flushed on my face, when a mouth with horribly rotten teeth hit against the door and started yelling "WHICH IS BETTER AND WHY". Subject condition nominal.

No anomalies in the other cells, either. All inmates were fine in their own twisted ways. Jewish conspiracies, laments of decline, love for excrements were all the daily mail here. I turned off the lights, disabled the gramophone and returned to my office. Making sure that no one else from the staff noticed me, I locked the door, took off all my clothes except for the black shirt I kept hidden in the closet, put on a monocle and sat in my comfy chair, thinking how I could rock the boat a bit more in this fine establishment, CGI flames burning behind me.

Something tells me this day might be... majestic!

2. A Date with the Codex

A Date with the Codex, by Gregz

I had already spent several months with her, and although we shared many interests I found our relationship stagnating. We played the same games, enjoyed the same old favorites, and wiled away the hours reminiscing about the good old days...yes, I'd say Rpgwatch and I had a good thing...but it just wasn't going anywhere. We'd meet 2 or 3 times a week, hang out, maybe play a game or two, then have lots of safe nerdsex. I say safe because she insisted on keeping the lights off, only did missionary, and made me wear a condom every time.

This was the way I thought it was supposed to be. She was my first after all, and I was inexperienced. Besides she had lots of friends, bland as they were, and everyone agreed that I was lucky to have her. They also told me how lucky I was not to be stuck with that other woman; Rpgcodex. I had never met Rpgcodex, but everything I heard about her was unpleasant. She sounded like a vile miserable person.

One day after the usual in-and-out with Rpgwatch, I met up with Google and had a few I don't usually drink because it brings out the worst in me, but I guess I was tired of how flat everything seemed...wasn't there more to life? What happened to me? How did I become this listless suburbanite? It was in this self-indulgent piteous state that I drank with Google to drown my sorrows. Now, Google doesn't do evil often, but he sure as hell rubs elbows with it, so I'm drunk and stupid enough to ask him about Rpgcodex (something I had been told repeatedly never to do). Before I knew it, she was at our table, as if she was lurking in that sleazy bar all night just waiting for an invitation.

I had heard the stories about her of course...and yeah, I could see how she got the reputation. The mock Nazi tattoos, the scars across her wrists, but man...what a body...and the way she dressed...she was nothing like my girl Rpgwatch. All leather and style with everything about her oozing sexuality and adventure. By now I had forgotten all about Google. I had my beer goggles on and they were working just fine. Rpgcodex winked at me and invited me back to her place. Now, I had never cheated on a woman before...and Rpgwatch had treated me well...but Rpgcodex was so irresistible, what could I do?

Before I knew it I was in her car. She was sending me mixed signals the whole way, flirting with me one minute then calling me a newfag and rolling her eyes the next...but I didn't care, I would weather whatever this babe threw at me for one night with her. And so it was that she led me to her place. We spent some time discussing games, and I was mystified by how hot and smart she was, this was my lucky day! Wait...what's the, smart, sane...pick 2? Never mind, this girl has it all and I'm going for it!

So after some very prestigious discussions she led me to a door with the letters G & D carved in relief. "Shall we?" she asked coyly. Eagerly I followed her down into what appeared to be an S&M dungeon with all the trimmings. Oh boy! I could hardly contain myself, this was one wild chick! She grabbed what looked like a cat o' nine tails off the wall (except the ends of the tails had bulbous knobs on them making them look strangely phallic) and commanded me to strip in front of a pole in the center of the room. The pole had a chain hanging from it with two wrist manacles (she pronounced them 'monocles' lol...I almost corrected her but reminded myself that nobody was perfect, and if I played along I was going get me some strange tonight!). She secured my wrists, smacked my ass, and started flogging me with that nasty whip. Now, that shit really hurt and I wasn't into it, but she was so hot and this was a once in a lifetime chance, so I endured it as best I could.

After copious role playing, 'let's plays', and lashes from her MHD (don't ask me what it means, I still don't know) she eventually unchained me. I was sore and staggered, but determined...I was finally going to get me some of that sweet Rpgcodex ass! She led me into her adjacent bedchamber by candlelight (which was quite emotionally engaging) and while undressing started kissing me purposefully. Losing all control I began exploring her (rather muscular?) body. She then took my hand and guided it down to her THROBBING HARD COCK!?! WTF!?!

The end.
@Gregz: What a marvelous tale my dear sir. But do allow me to mod it.


After copious role playing, 'let's plays', and lashes from her MHD (don't ask me what it means, I still don't know) she eventually unchained me. I was sore and staggered, but determined...I was finally going to get me some of that sweet Rpgcodex ass! She led me into her adjacent bedchamber by candlelight (which was quite emotionally engaging) and while undressing started kissing me purposefully. Losing all control I began exploring her (rather muscular?) body. She then took my hand and guided it down to her THROBBING HARD COCK!?! WTF!?!

I tried to resist, but something was wrong. My mind was getting fuzzy. She had served me too many lulzy drinks that night. So after destroying my sobriety, she proceeded to plunder my ass and pillage what was left of my dignity. Today I know that it was her plan all along.
It was a very rough night, but the next day I was back at her place for moar.

As for rpgwatch, well, I told her the truth. She bursted in tears and could hardly believe on what she was hearing. In a sobbing voice she whimpered "How could you!? I never asked for this."
I looked her in the eyes and told her to deal with it. I put my sunglasses on, mounted my fusroh-dan dragon, and flew into the sunset :fuck yeah:
My date with the Codex

She was the girl of my dreams when I met her. At first I didn't have the courage to introduce myself to her, so I spent some time just silently watching her. Although she was a bit weird and had a :monocle: I knew she was the one for me the moment I saw her. She had refined tastes, Mensa size intellect, was not afraid to speak out and she shared my views. All this time I was silently admiring her and would leave internets at her door every morning. But I knew that this could not go on forever.

My introduction to her was fast and painless and even though she closely monitored my actions, deep inside I knew she was happy to see me. I would listen to her for days and was always amused, even though sometimes in the middle of conversation she would start saluting some heroes or talk about dick with multiple heads. Then she would go into rage for no reason and calm down just as fast, but these blackouts were temporary so it didn't bother me much. My feeling was that she consisted of multiple personalities, but her inner conflict was well concealed at first. It started to grow bigger as the time went by, but she was the closest thing to a soul mate I have ever found and I was dying to take her out.

So I gathered all my courage and asked her out to know her better. She was dressed in red that evening. Her eyes where sparkling with love when she shared her memories of memories of old days even though she would occasionally lose track of time and would start praising the present for some unknown reason. She had a refined sense of humour so we laughed a lot, even though people sitting at nearby tables were terrified by her humour and even threatened to call the authorities I loved every minute spent with her.

We had a few drinks and decided to crash at her place. We drank wine, shared our views and were starting to get closer. I didn't even notice how I ended up on her couch. The atmosphere was becoming hotter as we started slowly moving towards each other. Then I suddenly noticed that as she was getting more and more aroused and the hump started to grow bigger and lift the dress. She met my amazement with laughter and put her arms around my neck while whispering into my ear:
-"You know you want to pop this mole!"
Hey guyz ! I've installed the "Monocle" DRM and I've started replaying the game (for the seventh time lol) with Codex as a companion. This guy is seriously OP, but I just can't manage to trigger his romance. I'm sure I read somewhere that he's a possible LI ! Am I missing something ??
Codex is definitely a LI, but romancing him can be difficult. First of all, what's the gender of your main character?
He's male, why ? Are you telling me you have to play a woman to get the romance ? I thought that kind of BS belonged to the past !!
Playing a man or a woman doesn't really change anything, but the romance would have been a tiny bit easier if you'd been a hermaphrodite or a transsexual.
Don't worry, dude, it's really not that important (though it will make the sex scene a bit less cool). How high is your Wisdom score ?
My what?
You know, the hidden score that increases each time you refuse to choose one of the visible options on the dialogue wheel because you've realized they would all lead to the same result?
You can do that ???
...Okay, that's not good. Let's try something else : did you get the dialogue where Codex tells you how things in the present aren't anywhere as good as things in the past ?
Yeah, he went on forever about that.
What did you tell him ?
I told him that being bitter and pessimistic wasn't the solution, that kind of stuff.
Dude, have you paid no attention at all to the stuff he says all the time ? Being bitter and pessimistic is pretty much the root of all his personality ! That was the worst possible answer to give him. I don't think you can romance him anymore.
Somebody plz help ! I don't want to restart the game just because of that !
Don't worry, HawkeTheChampion, you can still salvage the whole thing. You're off to a bad start, but the romance doesn't become unavailable just because you made a bad choice here or there.
Thanks, man ! What do I need to do ?
First of all, you need to pay a lot of attention to everything you say to him from now on. Never choose the "feel-good" dialogue options, Codex really hates them. Being edgy and negative works much better, as long as it's not too heavy-handed. Never pass an occasion to make a tasteless joke when Codex is around (insulting other companions can be worth extra points).
When you're having a discussion with Codex on any subject, you should usually agree with whatever he says. Disagreeing with him can sometimes work, as long as your answer manages to be more negative than whatever he said. NEVER try to tell Codex that something he doesn't like may not be as bad as he says it is.
OK, what else ?
In combat, you should never use cover when Codex can see you. Ideally, you should also stand perfectly still when your enemies are moving or attacking you (activate Codex's "TB" skill beforehand, so the enemies will be paralysed when you're acting).
Uh, okay... Anything else ?
If you've done things correctly, when you reach the Altar of the Tentacled One, Codex will ask you what you think of your adventures so far. The right answer is the one with a lot of profanities, in which the R-word appears five times.
And that's it ! Enjoy the steamy scene !

3. A Decade of Decadence - 10 Whole Years of Decline

Your Wisdom Is My Dump Stat

I. What is an RPG?

The RPG that can be defined is not the eternal RPG
The definition that can be posted is not good enough
The definitionless is the origin of blobber and tactical
The defined is the mother of myriad mods of neverwinter
Thus, turn-based with a party, one observes its essence
Real-time with pause, one observes its manifestations
These two emerge together but differ in definition
Stats going up are said to be the mystery
The bringer of incline, the door to all wonders

II. Everything is shit, says Skyway.

Popamole of popamoles, saith the Skyway, popamole of popamoles; all is popamole.
What profit hath a developer of all his labor which he taketh in the basement?
One decade passeth away, and another decade cometh: but the Grimoire abideth forever.
The mod also ariseth, and the mod goeth down, and hasteth to his Vault where he Dwells.
All the threads run into Retardo; yet the Retardo is not full: unto the place from whence the threads come, thither they return again.
All threads are full of whining: the eye is not satisfied with pre-release screenshots, nor the ear filled with soundtrack samples.
The RPG that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is profitable is that which shall be re-released: and there is no new RPG under the Sun.
I have seen all the games that are created under the Sun; and, behold, all is popamole and engagement of emotions.
That which is biowared cannot be made straight: and that which is wanting cannot be numbered.

And I gave my heart to know codex, and to know madness and folly: I perceived that this also is engagement of emotions.
For in much codex is much grief: and he that increaseth postcount increaseth butthurt.
My dear colleagues,

It is with great pride that I inform you that I've finally been able to decipher large parts of the ancient archives that chance has put between my hands. The information they contain casts an invaluable light on the cataclysm that wiped out the civilization of our ancestors.

The archives come from a doomsday cult known as the "RPGCodex". Its red-skinned (judging from their crude depictions of themselves) members were not as blind as their contemporaries to the upcoming apocalypse, but sadly, they only used this foreknowledge to fuel insane rants and sterile debates. It even appears that, as the end came near, they engaged more and more often in highly degenerate acts, possibly as a way of worshipping the multi-headed demon they called "Dick".

The archives cover slightly more than 10 years, starting in 2002 and of course coming to a very sudden stop in 2012. (Some very interesting parts of the archives may help put an end to the long-lived debate about the starting point of the calendar used by our ancestors. It is with some degree of confidence that I can now assert that their "Year 1" was the year of birth of a great, semi-legendary figure called "Avellone".)

While the cult's existence only began in 2002, the philosophico-theological discussions found in the archives often mention previous cataclysmic events. There are many references to a time of nuclear fallout, followed by a time of unescapable torment (the cultists often sound shockingly elated by the mere mention of those events, which apparently played an essential role in their insane beliefs). There's also mention of a very important yet mysterious event in 2001, called the "Arcanum" by the cultists ; descriptions found in the archives are contradictory, but it seems that what should have been a great mystical accomplishment was marred by several tragedies, probably of a violent nature ("terrible combat" is often mentioned).

The archives paint a grim picture of the last decade of a civilization. While the RPGCodex clearly professed a highly negative and warped philosophy from the very first day of its existence, it seems to have had for a while the belief that salvation was possible. Then, in 2006, a traumatic event chillingly called the "Oblivion" shattered the hopes and minds of the cultists. In the following years and until the end, the references to the general decline never stopped increasing in number. A mysterious illness only described as the "butthurt" spread like wildfire and the cultists routinely engaged in fratricidal witch-hunts, accusing each others of being infected.

In the remaining years, several great figures apparently attempted to avert the nearing catastrophe. They wore mystical-sounding titles such as "the Warden", "the Champion", "the Dragonborn", "the Shard-Bearer" and "the Shepherd". The RPGCodex, sadly having embraced complete despair, derided their heroic attempts as "popamole RTwP BSB with no C&C for weeaboo consoletards" (a difficult to translate yet clearly pejorative description).

During the same years, the cult became especially preoccupied with a dire prophecy announcing the coming of an "age of decadence". While the prophecy mentioned the very day it would be fulfilled, the cultists still seem to have been caught unprepared when the apocalypse came.

And that is all I feel confident enough to say for now. But have no fear, my fellow Loremasters : at the invitation of House Aurelian, I'll be holding a conference in Maadoran next month. By then, I trust the RPGCodex archives will have revealed to me more clues as to the terrible doom that struck our ancestors.

4. Speculative Fiction: What if we did scale to your level?

If now was the future, and the future was cliché cyberpunk bullshit…

…Establishing neural hub connection
…Connection established, authorized scanpattern confirmed

A: Do we have an update on the project?
B: While the prototype used to simply cause brain damage in most cases, the learning and self-replication subroutines we ported over from the two main rogue AIs on the hub have surpassed every expectation.
A: Surpassed how far, exactly?
B: The most recent iteration is clearing a 99.93% kill percentage and climbing rapidly with every successive test. I don’t want to jump the gun, but it might just be time to take it out of the lab and into active use.
A: I was thinking the same thing. It is long overdue for our project to begin. We should start with unrelated cases, create a smokescreen for when NeuroNet Public Security finds the source. However, after that prep is complete, we can start on the real targets. In fact, I believe I have located the first mole to pop.
B: I’ll tell the team. Glory unto the Incline.
A: Glory unto the Incline.


A balding man lies back in the control chair, its hub-cord connected securely to the port in the base of his skull. Following his daily routine, he navigates quickly through the datastream of the NeuroNet, searching for the latest in virtual reality gay elf porn. He happens upon a hub that, though unfamiliar, appears promising. Full sensory stimulation? A hundred lovingly detailed elven cocks? Too good to pass up. He clicks.

But no hot elf sex greets him. Instead, he is quickly redirected through a string of neural hubs, eventually ending up at a seemingly ancient one, by all appearances at least a decade old. He spends a moment taking his bearings.

“Prosperland, subsection of R… Oh no.”



Reliable All-World NewsCorp: ‘When something happens in the world, RAWNews is there for you!’


Famed game designer David Gaider died earlier today, at his home in the Canada province of Greater Kwanzania. Known for VRRPGs such as the Dragon Age series and its bisexual erotica game spinoffs, Gaider was found dead in his NeuroNet control chair this afternoon. Friends and loved ones have noted nearby vaseline and tissues, and say it seems he died doing what he loved. Cause of death is still unknown, and being investigated by NeuroNet Public Security.


Officer: Finch, David R.
Case#: HM2319
Log#: 1
Initial investigation turned up little information, until the corpse was cross-referenced with the autopsy database. Turned out our guy Gaider shares seemingly minor damage to brain tissue with a number of earlier unexplained. They didn’t show up initially, since there didn’t seem to be any connection between the victims. However, a common thread unites them: All were jacked into their control chairs. It sounds ridiculous, but someone may have actually created a weapon that can kill across the NeuroNet. It shouldn’t be possible. Next step is to get a warrant and take a look at what these guys were doing on the net.

Officer: Finch, David R.
Case#: HM2319
Log#: 2
Well, this is looking like a definite homicide. Turns out every one of these dead guys was redirected through a chain of hubs to the same final destination. The control chairs’ black boxes all seem to have been damaged, making it tough to find detailed info about what hub or subsection these guys ended up at, but it seems to be one resting under the umbrella of a decade-old hub called the ‘Codex’. Officer Lewis and I have decided to go undercover and investigate this hub further, perhaps discover a potential motive for all these attacks.

Officer: Finch, David R.
Case#: HM2319
Log#: 3
This place is a powderkeg. It’s awash with unlicensed AI routines, many malfunctioning. For instance, one called Wyrmlord, seemingly some sort of attempt at a learning AI, and another called Drog, uncontrollably self-replicating. More troubling is a vast number of potential suspects, thanks to the hub’s large number of users who cannot be described as anything approaching sane. Lewis and I have been investigating suspects in the most likely subsection, GD. However, I’ve been venturing more and more into the game discussion subsections of the hub, for personal pleasure even. VRRPGs have long been a hobby of mine, and some of these guys actually seem recognize the pathetic decline of the genre and games in general. Uh, sorry about the aside there, forgot I was drafting a log for a moment.

Officer: Finch, David R.
Case#: HM2319
Log#: 4
Yeah seriously, that game is fucking decline incarnate, though I guess just about everything is now. Oh wait shit, accidental log recording; tech guys, go ahead and delete this.


[Note found next to the body of Officer David R. Finch, NeuroNet Public Security, Sector 4: Kwa Division]

By the time this is found, what I say may already be common knowledge, but it only seems right to write it. I killed Lewis. He was a fellow cop, my best friend, and I killed him in cold blood. Two shots to the chest, one to the skull. I am also dead, probably found in similar condition to the bodies we were investigating, since my subdermal armor implants make my sidearm ineffective, and an alternate means was needed.

I killed myself for killing Lewis, I killed Lewis for solving our case. As it turns out, most of the dead were just a smokescreen to attract our attention to the den of crazies in GD. The only important victim was Mr. Gaider. Lewis told me that he managed to gain access to one of the private chats among the Underlord of the hub, and my friends, the gaming-centric users we had assumed to be innocent. He discovered that they had long been developing a weaponized AI, codenamed Prosper, capable of doing such severe damage to one’s sanity that they would die on the spot. Their intention? To halt the decline of games by removing all those responsible. Their plan was to be set in motion today.

Lewis wanted to report it. We’d be able to round up all the members in under an hour, and prevent a great atrocity. However, I realized something. The VRRPG genre has lost most of its basic nature. I asked myself, ‘What can change the nature of decline?’, and the only answer I could come up with was the same the Codexers had: A purge. Over the last few months, I have come to understand the horrifying scope of the Decline, and I could not let Lewis allow it to continue.

By now, Prosper will have been distributed worldwide. The Decline is being ended as I write. However, Prosper will claim one more victim: Me. Perhaps history will judge me more kindly than I judge myself.

Glory to the Incline.
CRAPMAN (obvious spoof)

A meeting is taking place in a shadowy room. These are the members of ''Gaming Illuminati''. The boss. ''Skyway'', gives his statement.

Skyway: So, hehe, until VaultDweller resurfaces, hehe, I am acting president of Gamer Illuminati Cabal and I say, starting with this year's E3, we run this popamole industry into the ground.
Blobert, the fat man, says: BRO WAI WE DOUN'T HEEER THIZ FFROOMM VAAAAULTT DVELLERZ!!!!!!@!!!!!!!333
AndyMan: Yeah, and what's with that stupid grin.
Skyway: Arma's cock has been good to me, haha.
Andyman: What if we say no.
Skyway: Well, Andy, nobodys wants a war. If you don't want to join my crusade, we will just shake hands, and that will be it.
Andyman: Yeah?
Skyway: Yeah.

Andyman shakes Skyway's hand. Unexpectedly to Andy, he receives 1000V's of voltage through him, burning him to crisp right after shaking his hand with Skyway's. Skyway is laughing maniacally.

Suddenly, four men runs into the room, with tommy guns, aiming them at the ''Gaming Illuminati'' cabal.

Blobert: BRO YOURRR''Z @#@#@#@%^^! CRAEZYYYY!!!##$$%%@!
Skyway: Have you ever heard about the healing power of ARMA's cock? NOW GET OUT OF HERE. AND THINK IT OVER. HIHIHI HAHAHAHAH HHUHUHU!!!

Gaming cabal members leave the room at gunpoint, leaving Skyway with charred corpse of AndyMan.

Suddenly, Brian Fargo appears. Brian is Skyway's right hand man.

Skyway: Brian, I want you to go to Bioware's office, take your camera, see what this Stanley Woo knows about this mysterious knight who stands for the name and glory of popamole, his name is ''CRAPMAN'', and Brian, my number one............GUY.

Brian Fargo: Yes Sir.

Brian puts his glasses on, and walks away like a boss.

Skyway, goes to the charred corpse of Andyman, and starts to talk to him: ''Your pals, they are nice people, well, except Morgoth, who, imagine this, thinks that Max Payne 3 is better than previous two. Maybe we could give them a couple of days to think it over, huh? No? Erase them now? Ok. You really are a vicious bastard. I am glad you're dead, HAHAHAHAH, I AM GLAD YOU DEAD, HAHAHAHA!!!!!!!''

The end!!!!!!!!!

(This story is not following modern time canon etc. or depicting ARMA accurately, just so you know that).

The gamespot office is packed with game interviewers and video game show crews. The man talking is Gamespot's president Daniel Floyd (who with his Extra Credits show has apparently wormed his way up there somehow). Behind him there are other important video game people, like Hideo Koyima, newly appointed EA's master strategist Herve Caen etc. This is the special announcement, streaming online on

Daniel Floyd: This year's E3 has been indefinitely postponed. We simply cannot quarantee out triple AAA-package release schedules, because of the recent attacks on our DLC factories, so we've decided to postpone our release schedules, so you could get your 1-day DLC for your gaming pleasure.

P.S. (As it turns out, his voice is just as irritating as in his videos, so that's no editing trick).

Video noise wips half the image away. On one side of the image there is Skyway, sitting very relaxed and lucid.

Skyway: Skyway here. Now you guys have said some pretty mean things. Some of which I admit were true, under our old management. We had a massive delays, in our AOE project, but with me taking over, that's changed now. Our old boss was a dictator. That's not what I am, I am an artist.
I also love a good party. So truce. COMMENCE U FESTIVAL. I also have a suprise for you, my dear sheeples. On thursday, at Central Park, I am going to drop 20 million Age of Decadance copies on the crowd. Don't worry about me I've got enough.

Daniel Floyd: We are not going to discuss review deals past our working hours.....

Skyway (interrupting): You heard it folks, 20 million. And there will be entertainment, the BIG FIGHT. Me in one corner, and in the other, the man who has brought real teror to gamer's hearts, CRAPMAN.


A man looks at PC monitor in a dark cave. This is a CRAPCAVE, the secret hideout of mysterious CRAPMAN. The man, watching the live stream, press pause button. This mysterious man, is revealed as Bobby Kotick.

He starts to remember, the earlier days, when he was larping in ungrateful and unapproachable video game world. He had another innocent LARP session in ARMA 2. It was Christmas Eve, and everyone was LARPING friendly, with no violence and shooting allowed in this holy day. Bobby goes to his LARPER home after the LARPER theatre show made by LARPERS. He goes with his only two LARPER friends with nicknames ''NarutoNinja9XX'' and ''HikaruSWORDMASTER110.'' They take a turn into a shadowy corner, and young Kotick hears quiet steps following behind him.




Suddenly in front of them from out the bushes jumps out an Chernarussian Movemen of Red Star soldier with the nickname of ''BFarg'' and behind the LARPER trio, from the shadows, there comes the LARPER's nightmare, with the nickname ''Sky.'' He is standing at one side of the duo, ''Bfarg'' is standing at the other, both of them 3m away from them with their guns pointed at their heads.


Sky, unexpectedly to Bfarg, opens fire at NarutoNinja and HikaruSWORDMANSTER, killing both of them, and after that he jumps on the two corpses, while acting maniacally. Bfarg only thought that this would be an innocent scare, so he is suprised.

Sky: Tell me kid, you ever LARPED with the devil by the Christmas nght? (With devil he's obviously referring to himself).

Young Bobby is watching with tears in his eyes.

Bfarg: C'mon....... let's go man.

Sky is slowly moving away, and spare the young Kotick, saying: See ya around, kid.

Nothing was ever the same. Young Bobby's friends never logged into ARMA again, and since their were his only buddies, he was left alone in this ungrateful game world. He tried to find ''Sky'' again and gain his revenge, but to no results.

But he swore, that one day he would be the president of a company, which would one day make the most succesful military video game series, made by only his standarts. He would reinvent the FPS genre. He hoped he could bait ''Sky'' into the open, but again, it didn't helped. But now he is thinking in his mind ''Sky = Skyway, Sky = Skyway'' and then he come to realisation.
Sky was the nickname for Skyway, and Bfarg was Brian Fargo.

Sky was the man responsible for the birth of CRAPMAN, CEO of Activision by day, CRAPMAN, boogie man of abusive hardoce gamers, by midnight.

Bobby Kotick: There will be blood.

He knows no quarter will be given. Revenge is coming.
4. Speculative fiction: What if we did scale to your level? A story on how the Codex might have turned out, if only things had been different...
Speculative fiction: A Horrific Alternate Reality

I woke up this morning like any other day. The alarm clock went off the usual time, my house was the same, hell, even the drive to work was the normal chore. God... I just don't know what happened. That's why I figure I should start recording everything that's gone wrong. The only thing is that, the only thing that's wrong is this website I go to a lot. You might have heard of it, it's called RPGCodex, only it's not the site you think it is.

Well let me explain, I try to log in when I finally get to work only to find my login doesn't work anymore. What the hell? Did DU ban me? Is this a joke? I create a new account and log in. I head straight to Site Feedback to find out just what the hell is going on. That's when I see the first strange thing... a thread started by Bryce?

Please stop all the racism in General Discussion!
What the.... It's gotta be a troll post, right? I click on it and see

The user 'Lockaliber' is spamming GD with threads titled 'N*GGERS N*GGERS N*GGERS.

Please ban! I thought we took a zero tolerance approach to racism here?
This is a joke. A sick joke, it has to be. Is it Aprils Fools? No... what is going on? I quickly head to the other sections only to find more insanity. A few examples:

I'm simply TIRED of dragons. I hate scalies with a passion and I refuse to play another game featuring dragons. HoMM3 can suck it!
Look guys, you just aren't giving this game a chance. Obsidian has always produced quality work in the past, just give it a chance, it's a great game.

Only a matter of time before we Dutchmen kick out the mudslime scum, just you wait, VOTE GEERT WILDERS
It's been surreal reading through these... somehow everyone on the Codex has become... reversed? Like some kind of alternate reality, but only for this one website? No. It turns out this madness has infected other sites as well. I read this post and saw that I had a lead to figuring out what is going on.

I agree, I know that I'm known as something of a ladies man here, seeing as how I've slept with over 300 women, but that RPGWatch site is just vile. I've never seen so much hate and anger on a site before.
So I head over to the Watch... to find madness there!

It turns out that Konjad is the site admin there. Corwin is a staunch and rabid atheist, Vault Dweller, instead of working on Age of Decadence (which doesn't appear to exist!) is working on a Arcanum mod, has supposedly castrated himself, and is chronically banned for making troll posts and alts.

I went back to the Dex determined to find DU and get some answers, but what I found instead was a little sub forum tucked away called "Dark Underlord's Magic Dungeon" which had a million threads with random gibberish and crap. DU is now an autist of some sort!


I went back where I started in Site Feedback... and noticed some bizarre thread with a familiar poster as the last post.

I think this thread has run its course. We're 2 pages in so this has gone on long enough, I'm locking the thread.

By the way guys, this is a bit off topic, but what do you guys think about my new model for my Fallout mod? Is it too generic?


RPG Codex Administrator
The Dark Underlord Rises

‘...What do you want me to do here? Nuke the place? Because that's the only option left. But the sad thing is, that even if I did, you'd all just find somewhere else to be retarded. You'd retard up Facebook or Twitter, or the BioWare forums. It turns out that human beings are simply just fucking retarded.’

The Dark Underlord stopped typing, and sighed. From somewhere outside his apartment came the sound of a thousand wild bogans beating an infant to death and planning to blame it on the dingos.

He could not deny it. Ten years had changed him. He no longer felt the same pleasure watching over Codex City; in fact, it had driven him to despair. The problems refused to go away. Doctor Prosper was caged - for now - in his own private cell, free to dabble in his own bizarre experiments. Jim Profit had gone, God knows to which foul corner of the internet. But there were always more retards, exploiting the unmatched licentiousness of the city and turning it to their own diabolical advantage. And one man was not enough to stop them.

Time, he decided, to retire; leave the site in the hands of the moderators. Let them shut down all the nonsense, take a zero-tolerance on any stupidity or shitposting. They could call it ‘The Vault Dweller Act’. He himself could live quite comfortably on the cash that he and Taluntain had siphoned off from the various faked site crashes and ‘fundraisers’ over the course of the past decade for the rest of his life. Yes. Time to abandon Codex City to the chaos.

A sudden, hideous wailing; a staff alert. Someone, somewhere, had been reported.

The Dark Underlord, with a certain aged weariness, rose.


‘I keep telling you, I can’t give you full staff access to the site, I only moderate Weeaboo Discussion - aiieee!’
The moderator slumped to the ground, lifeless.
Above him, horrifying and imposing, stood a peculiar figure; improbably-muscled (surely the result of years of steroid abuse), vaguely of Middle Eastern origin, with the mad gaze of a fanatic.
‘Search the corpse,’ the monster growled to one of its underlings. ‘The passcodes will be there. And with them - entrance into the staff forum.’
Wham! Pow!
A familiar dark-caped figure, wielding his trusty boomerang, crashed through the windows and onto the scene.
‘Andhaira!’ he cried.
Andhaira (for it was he) let out a low, throaty chuckle.
‘Dark Underlord. I knew you’d come to try and stop me. You’re looking tired, old man. Could it be that ten years of running this cesspit have finally taken their toll upon you? Discuss!’
The Dark Underlord screamed, and attacked.
But somehow - as if according to some dark art - he could not bring the troll down. He struck at Andhaira once, and his opponent rose again from another side, grinning and relentless. And the Dark Underlord, despite every bone in his body crying out that this monster had to be stopped, found himself beginning to weary of the fight.
And Andhaira struck, lifting the Australian high and slamming him down against his knee with a hideous snap.
‘You’re beaten,’ he sneered. ‘Fool - you thought that the Codex could be both a bastion of open, knowledgeable discussion about RPGs, and an anything-goes community encouraging biting satire and button-pushing humour. Now I will show you what this city really is; a colossal General Discussion, filled with racist nutters brofisting each other as they masturbate to naked pictures of Putin and feverishly defend Christianity against imaginary hordes of libruls, repetitive memes, trolling, and - most importantly - in-depth analysis of the spiritual decline of the West.’
The fallen man could only moan,
Andhaira loomed over him.
‘When the Codex is devoted to the glory of Islam,’ he whispered, ‘you have my permission to die.’


Andhaira was as good as his word. RPG Discussion, the Playground, and Gaming Discussion were detonated; the denizens of Codex City were warned only to post in General Discussion. If they attempted to venture out of it, he warned, the entire site would be nuked.
‘You are free,’ he declared before the flashing cameras, ‘free from the abuses of over-zealous moderators, free from bannings and ‘discouragements, free to do as you will - at last the Codex is liberated to fulfill its full potential!’
Civilisation, as you might expect, collapsed. Trolls trolled trolls. Doctor Prosper, released from his prison, was put in charge of bannings; Commissioner Jaesun, who had not only earned the wrath of many of Andhaira’s army, but whose sexuality seemed to personally offend most of them, was forced to hide underground in the secret pocket of resistance that was the Workshop. Outsiders who had once been sympathetic to the chaotic but vibrant city could only shake their heads in despair.
And the Dark Underlord, broken and beaten, could only watch all of it from the same dark and bottomless prison that had once held Andhaira - the abyss of RPGWatch.
There was, he knew, only one way out of such a hellish place; the same desperate route that so many banned trolls had taken before. He had to create an alt.


The moderators, bloodied and bruised from their beating, stood before the courtroom of Site Feedback.
‘What is this?’ yelled the young rookie hothead known as Phelot. ‘This your idea of due process?’
Doctor Prosper, balancing the judge’s wig upon his head, gave a cheery bearded grin.
‘You have a choice banana monkey refridgerator,’ he declared. ‘Banishment...or Retardo Land.’
Several of the prisoners paled.
‘There’s no way,’ someone insisted, ‘that we’ll go to that hellhole willingly.’
‘Banishment it is, then,’ Prosper cried. ‘ Retardo Land.’


The condemned moderators stood in the darkness, gazing out at the frozen horrors of Retardo Land.
A flare landed at the feet of the moderators.
‘Light it,’ growled a familiar voice.
And as the flare shot up into the sky like a beacon of hope, it caught on a trail of carefully-spilt gasoline, which spread and swelled across the nearby bridge - expanding into the fiery shape of a colossal troll.
From the top of a nearby hastily-constructed minaret, Andhaira gazed on in horror.
‘Impossible...’ he murmured.


Andhaira fell back, his mask shattered, his breathing ragged and tired. From outside, the sounds of the moderators and trolls joining battle, banning upon counter-banning, could still be heard.
‘I don’t understand,’ he wheezed. ‘I defeated you once before - and it was so easy, too. How is it that you defeated me so easily this time around?’
The Dark Underlord placed his boot upon the broken man’s chest.
‘You don’t scale to my level,’ he growled.


It was never made certain exactly what happened to the Dark Underlord after the reclaiming of Codex City. Certainly a shadowy figure continued to moderate the site and pointlessly create new forums - 'Discussion of RPGs made in the month of September' 'Discussion of RPGs with the letter 'Z' in the title', shit like that. But rumours continued to circulate that the Dark Underlord had given his profile to a chosen successor, left the duties of moderating the cesspit to them, and escaped from the site for good.

And it was Taluntain, that old faithful retainer, who swore he'd seen a familiar man in a brothel in Sydney, surrounded by cocaine and suspiciously-masculine prostitutes with bulging Adam's apples, forking out wads of cash from a bag marked 'For The Attention Of B. Fargo' and spending it on rounds of tequila. But Taluntain, partly out of respect and partly because he was himself, like, really fucking high on crack bought with money from an envelope marked 'Essential Site Maintenance', did not think to approach him.

The RPGCodex Zone

And now, Mister Serling :


Meet Volourn, a rather tasteful yet timid gentleman with a love for good role-playing games and a craving for discussions. He just discovered a peculiar forum on the Internet where he hopes to converse in a dignified manner. Little does he know that he has in fact stumbled on a very special place, a place where the shadows of strange deranged minds dance on the fabric of sanity itself and where reason is just as fragile as a house of cards. It is an area we call, the RPGCodex.

Volourn’s ordeal begins innocuously with the writing of a passionate piece about old-school gaming where he details how Choices & Consequences allow the player to consistently explore a virtual setting, by providing a multifarious approach to a single narrative object. The article is a humble man’s honest tribute to a long forgotten greatness. As he finishes weaving a solid net of examples and rock-steady references to Planescape:Torment and other Black Isle games, his heart starts to race, for he dearly wants to make a very constructive first post. After a cautious sip of distilled water, a deep breath, he slowly lays his cursor on the Post Thread button. Then clicks.

Not much time passes before the first answers pop up.

‘Sup Drog.
Volourn smiles as he figures out that those enigmatic greetings are probably inside jokes and presses on his reading to the next reply.

Go back to ArcanumNexus, you sorry piece of fuck. We don’t want this determinist filth here.
He’s slightly taken aback. Is it a joke? Is it something he wrote? He does have a liking to ArcanumNexus though, with all their nice multibranch quest mods and stuff. As a matter of fact, he is getting mildly aroused by the perspective of sniffing out new fresh mods. “A last refresh before going to the Nex’, old boy.” He muses. Then, it happens.

Ok, it’s probably a troll but I’ll bite:
Planescape is shit, the romances are grindy and anticlimactic. You can only kiss three women in the whole game, one being a old hag (granted, she puts up a good cosplay) and the other by using a workaround (use Grace’s skill on TNO.) There is no proper sex-scene: the only fade-out you get is with a prostitute you can’t properly romance anyway. There have been speculations that Anna is a tranny, but it’s mostly Avellone fanboys wishful thinking. Put it through your thick skulls, bros: the tail is behind.

If you want to know how a proper game romance is written, play Dragon Age 3 and PAY ATTENTION. Basically, Gaider and his team nailed it. From the love-triangle-triangle, the awesome talking Mabari dog giving you precious advices, to the heart-wrenching endgame revelation that MAIN ENDQUEST SPOILERS all the female LIs are pregnant, everything is perfectly done in a tasteful way. MAD PROPS to these guys.

I take the risk of repeating myself, but progressive writing is the main feature of RPGs, flavor numbers are fluff, C&C is BS and Skillchecks are not a potent means of conveying emotions. Well, I admit that Morte drops some good sex jokes from time to time, but we are still far from consistent characters like Zevran or Isabela who regularly deliver amazing one-liners during the game. Fuck, anybody saying they never quoted a Bioware character in real life to get their romantic life a boost is a fucking hypocrite. That’s just how great Bioware is.

In short, Black Isle is about some good ideas, but sloppy realization. Let’s hope that with the recent fusion with Blizzard North, they will get some incline, but my hopes aren’t very high.

:GaiderInTux: :Alistair: :Alistair: :EmotionalThreesome: :AlistairClimax:
“By the love of God, what is this, I don’t even” mutters Volourn. Without a second thought, he sends his hands dancing on the keyboard in hopes that his answer will clarify a possible misunderstanding.

What about stimulation, curiosity, the feeling of discovering something unsettling, and being challenged by a logic you do not fully understand yet? What about content?
Another codexer answers.

BITCH PLEASE, all that shit is for hypocritical poseurs and hipsters. There is a shovelful of pre-2000 games about this and it was considered as a dark age, but then Bioware came and showed the world how it’s done. But I’ve got one thing to say : yes, Dragon Age 3 is good, but it’s got nothing Mass Effect : Reborn didn’t do before. DA 3’s got that tight situation that makes you really ponders about sexuality’s gray areas, but it was all explored in ME:R before when you discover you can make your own clone of the opposite sex, and romance every LI BOTH WAYS and get with a love triangle with YOURSELF.
The way they allowed you to export both your MaleShep and FemShep IN THE SAME GAME was BRILLIANT. BTW, I heard someone is doing a mod allowing you to romance your clone. In short, go back playing your ORPGs. We are discussing thought-provoking games here.
As he desperately tries to form an answer, a bridge to close the gap between them and him, Volourn’s fingers tumble on the keyboard, crooking his words, concatenating them into improbable mashes of senseless drivel. As he persists in explaining his views to his mocking, insulting audience, sentences get harder to write and ideas to gather. Against such blatant and continuous dishonesty, Volourn finally gives up. He doesn’t care that much. He doesn’t care anymore if his tastes are shit of if everything in the world is. He has no desire to dignify this crowd of fuckers with anything more than a minimalist drop of random letters. As his own mind sinks into a river of bile, he figures out the only reply he can post while still being true to himself :

“FFS. Why do you lie?”

That’s when his topic is retardo’ed. That’s when, click after click, Volourn discovers where he really is, and what the world true face is. Then he discovers GD.
Hours pass, days perhaps, before he abandons his chair to lie on the floor, trying to chase the thoughts that crush his mind by lulling himself into a gentle, steady roll. When joy and laughter finally come back to him, his sanity is long gone.

That was the story of Volourn. But one may ask oneself : is he the Volourn we know, or is he another, a Volourn of a parallel dimension? And if he’s another, who is the Volourn we know?
Maybe it is simply you who entered upon the wrong place. Did you notice how your own opinion on RPGs changed since you came here? Are you sure you love your RPGs now for the same reason you loved them before? And most of all, are you sure you’re not an alt?

Questions. So many questions.

The only thing that is sure is that the answer is there, somewhere, in a layer between nightmare and reality, in the RPGCodex.

5. Ten Prosperous Periods of Posting: A Poem

In a land once filled with RPGs,
That now holds only shooters, filth, and disease,

There he stands, that ancient troll
Against the rising tide of popamole.

Listen closely, and you will hear
The cry he sobs endlessly into his beer:
It's all shit!

I approached the troll, greatly daring,
To see how the RPG is faring.

Good Troll, I hear that the Dragon Age
Has lately become all the rage.

Can things have really gone to hell
When the heirs to Black Isle do so well?

Ha, Bioware, he snorts.
With lesbian elf romances their only schtick,
Bioware can suck my dick.

Well, okay. But can things really be so grim
When the world has so many copies of Skyrim?

Bethesda, bah!
Skyrim is wholly in Oblivion's wagon.
The only difference is: "I want to be a dragon!"

Very well, then what of Diablo III's six million sold?
Surely that is a worthy feat to behold?

Ah, Diablo!
The troll did stand and give a salute,
And he even bowed his head to boot.

A thousand dollars was spent on a single game,
And that is only the beginning of their fame.

That their pickpocket skill was raised to such a degree,
Deserves a great deal of respect from me.

But as for playing that auction house simulator,
I'd sooner use their box as an anal vibrator.

Well then, I sighed, what of the Witcher's first sequel?
I hear that it truly has no equal.

Oh yes, he cried, the Witcher II.
I can win by pressing ENTER too!

Forgive me for being so crass,
But CD Project can just kiss my ass.

I sit in shock for a while,
Having been stunned to hear so much bile.

He stares emptily into his beer,
The only place left where he finds cheer.

No! I cry. Can things really be so bleak?
For a moment, he seems so sad he cannot speak.

But one last words he tells to me,
With a final sob, he says: Fallout III.
Darth Roxor:
The Spiteful Spirits
an elegiac poem somehow stolen from the Exeter Book.

Long ago, this was the land of our fathers, stern and strong
Where the wild winds would roar along the valleys long
Where mighty and magical mountains merged with the very sun and skies
Basking their incandescent inclined summits while men were rolling dice.

Through the trails tales travelled of wizardry and witchery
That filled their followers with seldom seen glee
Avatars and star trails descended upon the world in these times
And the Gods gave the goods without resorting to cries and crimes.

A golden age like no other.

But time tottered and tarnished the harps of happiness, silencing them forever.
First was the fall out of favour causing a pandemonium in the pantheon
When some deities desired debauchery, splitting from the patron paragons
Forsaking their followers for the pagan peons
Who had laughed at dice in the previous aeons.

Demanding disgusting sacrifices and sanctions
For single spells that earlier encompassed entire incantations
They still sternly suggested "support" as their sacrament
And discarding their divinity, have become salesmen in a great establishment.

A decline unexpected and unabated.

With the Arcanum of existence all but ablated
And the Torment taciturnly tearing this travesty
We are left sour, severe, seething with profanity
As dragons descend upon our dying lands
And statistics are substituted by rubbishy romance
The rage ravages us
Into trolls it turns us

Alone, abandoned, we had once sought atonement for sins not committed
Believing we have somehow strayed, that we were to be blamed
But now we know that we are destined to be night howlers
Outcasts and outlaws, harrowing the humans like harriers
Waiting for our wasteland to wade into their kingdom's dust
So that we may claim their lands, laughing loud and laughing last.

We are all branded on the bum
And God bring all of us to Kingdom Come.

Another one fights the rust

Recently I took to a pastime
as futile as it was last time.
An outstanding game wanted,
my memory haunted
by traumatic nu-RPG grime.

Presumably The Decline is to blame---
what a terrible shame.
Still, you'd think that online
one should be able to mine
a deep enough, challenging game.

Grazing old forums---one, ten, then twenty
none of them help plenty.
But---lo and behold
one breaks the mold
where advice and brofists are many.

Canon, they say,
nothing like these to make the foray.
Games by the volley,
some declare folly,
that one sucks/no, it's must-play!

Onto the elusive, magical quest
of picking out and acquiring the very best!
Boxes and cloth maps may not be pivotal,
so games that are shipping-free, digital
put my tactile craving to the test.

Dredging through reviews and opinions and rants,
I sit cogitating in my underpants.
"What'll it be",
my wallet beckons to me
forty bucks all a card within grants.

Effervescent in disposition,
I evaluate my position.
Considering general hypes,
individual gripes,
Paypaling my way to roleplaying perdition.

Xeroxing some maps to get in mood for the action
in the week holding out for the boxed Gothic collection.
I fire up a GOG-bought MM1---
incredible fun!---
the Geneforge series up next for download/extraction...



Beatnik ode to the RPG(5):

I saw the freaks, the loners, the myopic haters and perverts descend,
like scurrying rats seeking the dark,
to Codexia they came, each a shell of a shadow, men(boys?) without form, hopeless not hope less,
tormented by the squalid reality of an age that held nothing for them,
daring to dream of something more, an age that could never come

Snarling they sit, ghostly glow of their monitors, shadows dancing upon their misshapen brows, mouths,
their throbbing members in their hands,
circlejerk a refuge, inspiration soaked up with a tissue, not by the false agents of promise, pointing fingers, awesome buttons;
yet they too would have their victories, finding the desperate prepared to give up their honor,
a taste of the future, not as bad as thought

Dark men, fading youth, middle age approaches, dreams into the ether,
the long day is ending yet they still cling together, raging impotently,
turning on each other, cursing and tearing, pathetic Ouroboros,
hope existing in the necroed avatars from a golden time, promises made, designs shown, money thrown by desperate fools,
STILL daring to dream of something more, an age that MUST come.

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