Friday 26 March 2010

Dickass DM

Remember good, old-fashioned gamebooks? They promised all the fun of a role-playing game, with none of the social interaction - what more could an teenage boy desire? The thing is, that while the gamebook became a great gaming experience in its own right, the only RPG it could possibly have simulated was one being GM'd by Satan himself. 90% of decisions led to certain death, and combat was often fatal.

Satan wasn't available, so Brad will be GMing Rob through an RPG based on the classic Keith Martin Fighting Fantasy gamebook Vault of the Vampire.

Brad is the GM, and Rob plays his character, Abraham Van Bragging.

Previously on Dickass DM: Whilst travelling through the village of Mortvania, the fearless adventurer Abraham Van Bragging learnt of a supposedly vampire infested castle, and the hot yet relatively trampy babe the evil Reiner Heydrich had recently captured. Journeying deeper into the crypt, he has encountered the ghost of Siegfried, a legendary vampire hunter of yore...

Read Part One
Read Part Two
Read Part Three
Read Part Four

Siegfried: You already possess what is needed to destroy Reiner in his coffin. He rests to the south of here; you know where to find him. But we have more work here. Pick up that globe and concentrate upon it. If you are of sufficient faith, it will serve you well.

Rob: OK...
Brad: You feel a surge of well-being from the blessed item. Don't you hate it when a video game gives you a load of power ups? They might as well just have a sign saying "Raperaperaperaperape".

Siegfried: You possess all that is needed to destroy Reiner in his coffin, but can you fight him?
Van Bragging: Probably?
Siegfried: You have the Book of Swords. My sword is imprisoned within it. Reiner's magic used blood to put it there, and blood is needed to free it again.

Brad: Siegfried points to an ornate silver chalice on the table.

Siegfried: You must give up blood to release Nightstar. It will cost you stamina, but the weapon is a peerless one.

Rob: Do it.
Brad: Trembling you open a vein and allow blood to run into the chalice. As the scarlet liquid drips into the bowl, red runes glow before your eyes and seem to dance round it's rim. RED RUNE...RED RUNE...You snap into alertness as a cold hand touches your shoulder.

Van Bragging: Frosty...?
Siegfried: You nearly fainted. But the magic is woven. Behold!

Brad: He points to a matchless longsword, glowing with bluish white light lying on the table before you. Nightstar is a magical sword of considerable power.

**Van Bragging has Acquired Nightstar**
**+2 Against Vampires**
**+1 Against All Other Creatures**
**+1 To Faith**
**+2 To Luck**

Brad: Don't you hate it when a video game gives you a load of power ups? They might as well just have a sign saying "Raperaperaperaperape".
Rob: Uh-huh.
Brad: You ascend back into the coffin and leave the Undertomb; the ghost fades as you depart. You climb the stairs back to the T-junction.
Rob: Let's go east.
Brad: You descend the stairs eastwards until you are standing before a black door with a silver plaque which reads, simply: "Adolf". My predictable gag sense is tingling.
Rob: Hmmmmm....I'd best arm myself with my trusty Pocket-Stalin.
Brad: ...
Rob: ...
Brad: I can honestly say I didn't see that coming. Opening the door, you step into a small chamber; in it is a stone sarcophagus on top of which is s sculpted stone warrior holding a longsword. Around the walls of this chamber are a number of weapons - swords and bows - and a pair of shields with faded heraldic designs.
Rob: Faded, eh?....Interesting...No,wait...that other thing. Dull.
Brad: They are rusted and no use in combat.
Rob: Fine, I have my Turbo-Churchill as well. He never surrenders...really fast? Let's get that sarcophagus open!
Brad: You prise open the heavy stone lid just far enough to be aware of the glimmer of soft light inside.

Van Bragging: Is someone reading in here?

Brad: The skeleton within, clad in rusted chainmail, has a glowing longsword in his hands. Gently, you remove it. You put it back as it's not as good as Nightstar.
Rob: I've got sword refusal powers, Epic Win.
Brad: Yeah, we all know what Charlie would do...
Rob: By "we all", do you mean me, you, Blake and Paul?
Brad: So that's, what...just John McL and Omer we'll need to explain the gag to?
Rob: Sounds about right.
Brad: You leave and descend the Southerly stairs. You open the door with your keys and enter a bare stone antechamber, decorated with wall-carvings of rats, bats and wolves. Opposite you is a door and, from a narrow slit along its base, baleful red light spills out from a chamber beyond.

Van Bragging: Hmm, the vampire seems to have started a sex shop...

Brad: As you cross the room, one of the stone wolf-heads snarls at you and seems about to rear from the wall to strike at you, but you evade the magical guardian and get to the opposite door safely.

Van Bragging: Ah, better put away my Pocket-Stalin, it seems to have the wolves wound up.

Brad: You step into a palatial chamber, lit by glowing oil-lanterns with red crystal lenses. Black, crimson and silver wall-hangings obscure the walls...well, what else would wall hangings obscure?
Rob: Yeah....
Brad: ...and you can see no other exits.

Van Bragging: Well, fire safety was clearly never a concern...

Brad: The room is magnificently furnished with teak and walnut, and silverware and marble gleam in the soft light. Some twenty feet away is a raised balcony at the top of marbled stairs with gilded bannisters, and there stands a dark-haired man with blazing eyes, wrapped in a cloak of the deepest black and crimson. The Count!
Rob: AH-Ah-ah!
Brad: Behind him you can see a chained girl, her long auburn tresses tumbling over her bare shoulders, struggling without hope to free herself.
Rob: She hot?
Brad: Yes, she's hot.
Rob: Sweet. Not a wasted trip then.
Brad: Her lovely fair face turns to you and she cries out for help. But your eyes are fixed on the terrible, dark, charismatic Count; his green eyes are afire as he gazes at you and parts his lips in anticipation.

Van Bragging: Hey bitchbag, I don't think there's an item in my bag that won't kill you!

Brad: The Count has tried to cast his vampiric charm upon you, but he has failed to control your mind and now you can fight freely!

Van Bragging: Ha, I've developed an immunity to Rohypnol!

Rob: Time for Holy Water...
Brad: You throw your Holy Water at the vampire.

**Holy Water caused 2 Stamina Damage to the Vampire**

Brad: The vampire is maddened; its skin seems to be on fire. Football!
Rob: Not that kind of "Maddened", I imagine. I leap in to attack with my sword.


Rob: I am using Nightstar right? That seems stupid if I'm not.
Brad: Yeah, you are.

Reiner Heydrich pokes you in the eye
You stab Reiner in the balls.

Rob: No sparkly vampire babies for you, you bitch!

You call his mother fat.
You chase him with a dog-poo on a stick.
You compare him to Edward Cullen.
You give his 360 the RLOD
He spills coffee on your tax return.
He hates your face.

Rob: I hate his face. Stupid face.

You lazily proof his essay.
He puts forward his theories on why the original series was better than Next Generation.
You caricature his Nan.
He gets bored of this malarky and punches you in the face.
And treads on your neck.
You kick him in the bollocks.
Before you can finish it off, the hateful undead thing transforms itself into a gas could and floats away.

Van Bragging: Cocks, I didn't bring my Dyson.

Brad: Do you want to cast Forcewall?
Rob: Ooooh...fuck, yeah!
Brad: The Count's escape route is blocked by Forcewall hemming him in! He returns to human form, snarling with fury, and races to return to the attack.

You punch him in the throat.
You come up with a witty Arnold Schwarzennegger style one-liner.
Whenever you're ready.

Rob: I hit an all-time personal best on sales yesterday - Pressure seems to be what puts me off...
Brad: That's the worst Schwarzenegger one liner ever.
Rob: Second-worst. "You're Luggage" to the crocodile in Eraser wins.
Brad: You drive home what you know is a killing blow. With an inhuman shriek the Count's body crumples and is slowly transformed into a cloud of gas.

Van Bragging: I'm not falling for that one...Shake N' Vac, bitch!

Brad: The gas cloud seeps slowly behind a wall-hanging, and you reveal a secret door there. Opening it, you uncover the last of Reiner Heydrich's coffins; throwing back its lid, you find the slowly re-forming body of the Vampire.
Rob: How slowly? Slow enough that I can put my dick where his mouth will be?
Brad: Aw, you so would, wouldn't you?
Rob: Totally! At least until his teeth formed.
Brad: Yeah, if you pulled out at the gums, he'd at least taste it a little. And then you could just flop your balls on his forehead. And Twitpic that motherfucker. With the symbol of the cross on the crucifix, you drive the point of Nightstar through the evil heart of Count Reiner Heydrich. Spots of black blood spalsh onto the white silk lining of the coffin and on your hands, but you don't relax your grip. An unholy shriek comes from his mouth and the clawed hands of the expiring Vampire grip the coffin rim, then slowly go limp. The body gradually crumbles to dust.

**+2 Faith**

Brad: Slumped over the remains of the Count, you are awakened from your exhausted reverie by the voice of Nastassia calling to you. You unchain her.

Van Bragging: So exactly how grateful are you for being saved?

Brad: Her deep blue eyes look into yours, and then she throws her arms round you, calling down blessings on you or saving her from a terrible fate.

Van Bragging: Saving you from one terrible fate...

Brad: By a stroke of good fortune she is a healer, and she attends to your wounds expertly. You tell her how glad you are that you have freed her from the evil Vampire Count; but Nastassia's eyes grow wide and she cries out:

Van Bragging: Not there?
Nastassia: Oh no, it wasn't he who was going to kill me!
Van Bragging: I'll shift my hand lower, how about here?
Nastassia: It was his sister!

Brad: You have a sinking sensation in the pit of your stomach.
Rob: That'll be those provisions, they're quite stodgy
Brad: And then she is here, standing in the room before you, gazing stright into your eyes!

Van Bragging: Where are those other bozos when you need them?

Brad: The woman who stands before you is tall and slim, with flowing black hair and mysterious, emerald green eyes. Doesn't she sing for Evanescence?
Rob: I think she does.
Brad: She is stunningly lovely, but very pale.

Van Bragging: It's called "foundation". Heard of it?

Brad: The ivory pigment of her skin is emphasised by the jet-black dress she wears. Cold silver and glinting emerald jewellery adorn her. This is Katarina Heydrich, the Count's sister, who is gazing deep into your eyes! You resist the hateful woman's attempt to control you and strike out with your sword. Katarina holds a needle sharp dagger in her left hand - and she is exceptionally skilled in its use!
Rob: I use the Silver Mirror.
Brad: ...Your logic being?
Rob: It must be used for something...
Brad: Katarina laughs, brushing aside the useless object, and slashes at you with her dagger. Fail.
Rob: Balls. Fine, let's slash this bitch up.

**Running Combat**

You question her taste in music.
She laughs at your shoes.

Van Bragging: They're red Converse All-Stars, what's so funny about them?!

You cunt-punt her.
You set fire to her horse.
You tell her she's adopted.

Rob: No way she'd fall for that one.

The lifeless body of the would-be ruler of Castle Heydrich falls to the floor.

Rob: My mistake.
Brad: There is no hideous shriek, like the soul-rending cry of the Count dispatched to hell, but simply the choking sigh of an evil woman meeting her just end. As she falls, her appearance changes. The illusion of her youth disappears, and a wizened old crone lies at your feet. Nastassia gasps in horror and looks away, burying her face in your chest.

Van Bragging: Lower...

Brad: You put an arm round her and lead her slowly up the stairs, away from this evil place. Turning as you leave the crypt, you see the shade of Siegfried standing behind you, waving a last farewell.

Van Bragging: Bye, then.
Sigfried: At last I can rest in peace.
Van Bragging: Best of luck with that, I'm selling the castle to a traveller family.

Rob: I completed another one?
Brad: I can honestly say I was not expecting that.

Join us again on 9th April when Trent Foster AKA The Silver Braggart learns that with great power there must also come great dickassery!!

Just Cause 2 Out Now!

Rico Rodriguez is looking to start another revolution and he's not using the usual diplomatic channels. This time it's the fictional South Pacific island of Panau that needs liberating, both from the dictator Baby Panay and Rico's ex-boss Tom Sheldon.

A mix of Grand Theft Auto and Mercenaries, once you're parachuted onto Panau it's up to you how you complete your mission or whether you just set off exploring. However you play your most important piece of equipment is the new dual-grappling hook, which lets you latch onto enemies and vehicles and then attach them to something else.

Watching a soldier shoot into the air when you snag him onto a plane or pulling the wheels off a car when you tether it to the ground is just the start, as you learn to use your refolding parachute to slingshot yourself around the island. Political change has never been this much fun.

Thanks to our friends at Square Enix, we've got two Special Edition Passport to Panau copies of Just Cause 2 to give away! For your chance of winning one, send us an e-mail to with your name and postal address before midday on Friday 2nd April (UK time). The first two names drawn out of the electronic hat will win a free copy!

IMPORTANT!!! Please specify on your entry whether you would prefer your copy in PS3 or Xbox 360 format!!!

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