Welcome to another edition of our…let’s say weekly mailbag. Again, all the letters below come from real spammers delivered via courier in the game Skyrim. We actually have three real questions this week, which is quite an achievement given there are only ten of you who read this blog.
If you would like to send a question, PM me here or email them to email@example.com. Just make sure to let me know this is for the mailbag and that you want your name public, or else I will attribute your question to spammers. On to the questions:
uroxatral generic asks:
Isn’t it time to retire the phrase, “I would kill for a steak right now?” Really? If I handed you a gun right now you would walk up to a stranger and shoot them in the head for a slab of meat? Substitute steak for just about anything in the world and it’d be just as ridiculous.
Well, I don’t know about that. I would kill for a time traveling machine. I would literally put my hands on someone’s neck and end their life. Then I’d go back in time and save his life, creating a paradox and dooming us all. I don’t really think these things through.
clozaril clozapine asks:
I stole the note off of Wander-Lust’s body because I wanted to read it. Am I going to hell?
You can always try and put it back. I’m not sure how religion works though. I’ve heard some are pay to win though so maybe just buy more L Ron Hubbard books and you’ll be fine.
over the knee boots suede or leather asks:
Duraz balks at the idea of the standard mercenary fee of 500 gold coins. What would be a more appropriate value?
Well, the 500 gold coins is in essence a gameplay mechanic. A real life mercenary would probably charge by the week as opposed to per hire. But given most players end up dismissing mercenaries anyway, you end up with a more realistic salary structure.
Duraz is talking more about the level of danger incurred. If I’m a mercenary, I’m charging more to fight a dragon than I am to clear a cave full of skeevers. The problem is, you can’t plan for dragon attacks. You don’t really know what’s lurking in some unknown dungeon. By keeping what she kills, it ensures she gets a pay commensurate to what she deserves, and ensures she doesn’t hide in a corner while the Dragonborn does all the work.
Mostly though, her ideas are less about revolutionizing the job as much as it is meant to establish she’s young, overconfident, and a tad naive.
At work the other day a few co-workers got into a discussion about toilet paper. One guy was saying it doesn’t make much difference, and the other swears by the 2-ply. Things is, I don’t use either. My wife installed a bidet that comes with a hot air dryer, and while at first I would always finish with toilet paper, I’ve found there’s no need. The bidet blasts the poop right off. Long story short, I ended up just staying quiet the whole conversation. But I gotta ask, does using a bidet make me less of a man?
If we use the Skyrim standard, there is nothing more manly than a big, burly Nord. Historians tell us the gods gave them two hands, and they used them both to wipe their ass, usually with the skulls of their enemies. That is how a real man wipes.
But a real, real man doesn’t need to wipe. He blasts off the poo with a mighty shout. So if you’re feeling feminine about using a bidet, just scream FUS RO DAH as you press the button and you will feel ten times manlier than your pathetic co-workers and their sensitive, two-plied anuses.
Does Rumarin really want to be buried in a coffin made of pie or is he just just highlighting what a big problem he has with gluttony in his own self deflecting and sarcastic way?
Probably both. Because I think Rumarin would get a kick out of people taking his words literally and burying him in a pie. It would be a way to finally get back at him for all his snark and there’d be nothing he could do about it. At the same time, he’s more or less in on the joke, so it’s a sneaky way to make his funeral light and fluffy and incredibly delicious. You wouldn’t even need to have a reception, you could just serve pieces of his coffin to everyone.
Just to keep the party going, who do you think will win in a fight, Anum-La armed with Chillrend or Frog (from Chrono Trigger) wielding Masamune?
Frog’s water magic would be pretty much useless given Anum-La was born in the swamp. And while Anum-La has street smarts, Frog is probably much better trained as a swordsman. Not to mention he has crazy hops. In fact, if this was basketball, Anum-La would get crushed.
But I’d say Frog’s biggest trump card is his crazy ass tongue. The guy literally licks your wounds. Sometimes, right in the mouth. Frog is the kind of guy who will cure your cold and give you herpes with one quick lash on the cheek. And while you’re busy scratching the cold sores on your mouth, his blade will go right through your stomach.
Will we ever see interactions between Inigo, Arissa and fan favourites like Rumarin or Anum-La? Without killing the dream, how do you think they would react to each other? Who do you think would get along with whom?
It’s dream killing time. You see, back when New Vegas was out, one of the first mods I downloaded was the multiple followers mod. Cass, Raul, Veronica…I wanted nothing more in life than to travel the Mojave with all my new friends. Unfortunately, it wasn’t nearly as fun as it played out in my head, because traveling with a small army tends to break the vanilla game. I spent the rest of my playthrough twiddling my thumbs as my followers mowed down everything in their path: deathclaws, cazadores, Legate Laniuses…the whole thing was a walk in the park. In fact, the hardest part about the game was backtracking through a door.
Similarly, vanilla Skyrim isn’t designed for chatter. If Qa’Dojo and Valgus had tons of banter, you’d almost be forced to take them both along to experience it, and suddenly the game gets 33% easier. And that’s just two followers.
Now I realize you can use another mod to balance your game, but not everyone will be comfortable using that mod. The web of mods becomes more and more entangled the more variables you introduce, and so I abandoned the idea completely. The one exception being in quests where I control the number of enemies and can try to account for additional followers. In fact, you’re almost guaranteed to have banter in any quest that has multiple people in tow.
So while I love banter, multiple followers is just too much of a gameplay headache for me. The only way this dream will be made a reality is if someone with bigger balls and a fist full of aspirin decides to make it. Anna Castiglioni, for instance, took it upon herself to create banter between her Anna NPCs and characters she voiced like Amalee and Morndas. So it is possible. As always, I can provide actor contact info if you need to get a project up and going, and the forums are a good place to discuss it. I will just cheer you on from the sidelines. Maybe I’ll even bring some beer and mudcrabs and Malukah will serenade you from her perch atop a cloud. Whatever you prefer, it’s your dream.
then this happened. i saw someone else go off the edge of the dock so i went over to see who it is and it’s an argonian that i assume is part of interesting npcs so i talk to her and we float along and go under water, under boats, under ice, talking the whole time about her son and stuff. we floated/talked for a while after i took the last screenshot haha
luckily both argonians so no one drowned during the conversation
So, I think I wasted enough hours on Photofunia for one day. That site really does live up to the name though. There are photos, there is fun, and the suffix -ia accurately describes it as a type of infectious disease from which there is no turning back. I probably spent a good 3 hours putting Two-Tails’ face on various types of money.
I’ve opened a lot of roles in the casting call section, but most of these are unfinished. These are long term roles that will be built piece by piece once I get a better feel for how everyone is going to interact.
I suppose today would be a perfect day to discuss easter eggs ( or legalizing recreational marijuana). I’m not really sure anything in the mod quantifies since most of it isn’t designed to be hidden. For example, when Jerulith mentions the murder in Markarth, I want you to suspect Jeerah-Nur is the culprit. When Dro’bar talks about the High Elf who drank his wine bottles, there’s only one person that could be. Gorr will talk about his time in the dungeon because you’re supposed to make the connection to Larkspur with minimal effort. While you don’t want to shove them down people’s throats, concealing these eggs from the player would be foolish.
If there are easter eggs to be found, it would mostly be inventory items or minor rewards that depend on your responses. Here are some just off the top of my head:
- You can pickpocket the note from Wander-Lust’s son.
- You can pickpocket Godrod’s “Letter to Jarl Tullius” and “Letter to Ulfric.”
- Asteria has the birth certificate she mentions on her person.
- In Lorne’s Shack, one of the wine bottles has a poem inside.
- Inside Widow’s Watch, telling Arilwaen “We could sit down and talk for a bit” will open an additional reply option at the end.
- Morndas has a running gag where she comments on people’s “made up names.”
- Bringing certain followers near each other may result in additional conversations – these were made before I decided to stick to the 1 follower limit. This is mostly limited to a handful of super followers, but I believe even Raynes will have an idle commentary on Qa’Dojo.
- If the player is a member of the Bards College, they can recite the poem about Olaf and the Dragon to Beatrice. Beatrice will then respond with her take on the Lusty Argonian Maid as opposed to her standard poetry.
I’m sure there’s a ton more, but I can’t remember them all. There’s also this one I threw in there just for shits and giggles.
Hagravens can’t actually fly, and I don’t recall them ever using brooms the way most witches do – for delivery services and the occasional game of high stakes Quidditch. So I’m assuming this, having referenced things outside the game, would technically fall into the category of an easter egg. I think.
When TESV chose to go with a new Argonian voice type, it seemed to best fit with the Shadowscale motif. Dark, sinister, and smooth as Tennessee Whiskey. It’s an awesome voice, but it seemed mismatched with the abundance of vanilla Argonians who were more likely to pour you a drink than spill your blood. While FedoraAndRapier’s voice embodies all of that cold lizard smoothness, there’s also a bit of compassion in his timbre, and it’s that which made him perfect for everyone’s favorite vampire hunter, Among the Hist.
If only I could clone him and utilize his voice talents again, the mod would be enhanced and wars would cease and children would never go hungry. Unfortunately, while his busy schedule has prevented this utopia from becoming a reality, he did find time to do this interview, and I thank him.
Introduce yourself. You know, name, location, belly button type, whether you snore in your sleep.
Certainly! My name is Øystein and I’m a 21 years old student and aspiring actor from Norway, and on the internet I often go by the alias “FedoraAndRapier.”
I’m the proud owner of a standard issue navel that thankfully don’t need much emptying. I do not snore when I sleep, but I’ve heard it runs in my family (through two thick walls actually). I also have it from good sources that I talk in my sleep, though they rarely tell me what I’m saying. Must be something I don’t want to hear!
Talk about your acting experience, if any, and what got you into voice acting.
I’ve been practicing drama and theatre for the last five-six years now, but I already showed great interest in acting as a little kid; always wanting to be the center of attention and loving the sound of my own voice. I took drama and theatre classes through high school, did one year of theatre at a folk high school (a Nordic thingy) and I’m now studying drama and theatre at a university. Add to that a vast amount of productions (both amateur and through school) and you get some very busy and grueling moments. By the end of December I’ll be done with my sixth theatre-production this year alone.
Voice acting holds a special place in my heart however. I grew up with a lot of cartoons and Disney movies (dubbed to Norwegian), and I would spend a lot of time remembering the lines and recite them whenever I pleased.
It’s funny, because we grow up with this huge gallery of wonderful and inspiring characters, brought to life by someone whose name and face we rarely bother to take note of. My huge respect for the field is what pushed me to try myself as an amateur voice actor while in high school, doing fandubs and such. It’d be a dream come true to make a living out of this, but it remains to see if it is meant to be (10 points for rhyme).
How did you find the mod? Was Among the Hist your first choice for a role?
I have had fairly little time to voice act these last two years, so when finding this wonderful project on VAA I didn’t intend to audition for anything. I realized however that the opportunity of playing Skyrim while ALSO be listening to the sound of my own voice was too good to miss.
I was actually looking for an Argonian to voice, since they are my favorite race in the game and I love to strain my vocal chords. Seeing as A-T-H was the only male lizard available I pounced for him. I also auditioned for the part of the hedonistic Dravos, but he was unfortunately taken.
Discuss Among the Hist. What you think about him as a character? Do you share any similarities to the character? Any differences?
Among-The-Hist is a solemn, sombre and deeply conflicted character worthy of his own novel. I also find him to be extremely brave, charming, very funny at times and I absolutely dig the hell out of him.
He presented a dual challenge for me; both in getting the right amount of gravel and solemness in my voice to sell the part of a virtuous Argonian, while simultaneously getting into the head of a mind so vastly different from my own. He’s a man on a mission, guided firmly by his religion and principles. To me this was difficult to relate to, but it was rewarding to try and experience and express it.
The doubts he harbors when we meet him were much easier to relate to, and it made him much more human (or Argonian). He is actually willing to question his code and choices who has guided him his entire life, a quality we don’t often find in people as devout as him.
What’s your opinion on vampires?
Not my favorite monster, but I can’t say I dislike them either. Ironically, I’ve starred as a vampire in the Sims 2 machinima “Venin Abyss”. Judging by some fan reactions I seem to have become the Robert Pattinson of Sims machinima, be that for good or worse.
Is it true about jellyfish stings and urinating on them? Would the same trick work for a vampire bite?
A quick google search will reveal that there is little proof of urine actually healing jelly-stings, but who knows. Maybe the thought of someone relieving themselves on you makes the pain tolerable in comparison.
I doubt it’d work on vampire bites though, seeing as jellies sting the surface of the skin while vampires usually punctures the jugular. Peeing into the wound doesn’t seem like the most productive thing to do at the time.
A vampire, a werewolf, and Among the Hist walk into a bar. I don’t have a joke here, but who comes out alive and why?
Among-The-Hist naturally, all thanks to his tactical skills! It’s all about starting a fight between the vamp and the were, leaving ATH free to take out the weary survivor. I’m not sure how ATH would spark a conflict, but I’m sure it entails him dressing up in drag.
Did you follow Ralof or Hadvar? Did you join the Stormcloaks or the Imperials?
I followed Ralof, but only because the Imperials dropped cooler swords. Also they tried to execute me. Still haven’t taken a side yet, but I’m really not liking the “Skyrim for Nords” BS the Stormcloaks are boasting.
If you’ve played the mod, do you have a favorite character outside the ones you’ve voiced, and why? If you haven’t played the mod, why are you such a horrible person?
I only tried the mod recently, so I’m obviously not a great guy ;) I was trekking over to Windhelm with Among-The-Hist following behind me, when I met Morviah Hlaalu just outside the gate. Was really captivated by the strength displayed despite her story of tragedy. Definitely a woman to admire.
I was also charmed up to High Hrothgar by Wander-Lust at the docks. These two were both played by Lila Paws, right? Terrific actress ^^
Haven’t spent enough time with the mod to find a favorite yet, but I’m getting there. :P
What type of character do you typically role play?
I often play the dashing and wise-cracking hero with a heart of gold, but I love rolling characters that are extremely arrogant and cynical, while also being charming and passionate as hell. These guys will save the world just because it conveniently fits into their schedule of snarking and flirting.
I tend to go for melee classes with one handed sword or dual wield so I can get up close and personal.
In fantasy RPGs I love to play dwarves or beast races like argonians, and I try and avoid playing humans at all cost. It’s more fun to see the world through the eyes of a different culture or creature. I doubt I would’ve showed so much distaste for the Stormcloaks if I hadn’t seen my fellow Argonians being treated as second class citizens.
If you could have one dragon shout and use it in the real world, what would it be and why?
Blowing people away with Unrelenting Force sounds fun, but I doubt that “Fus-Ro-Dah“ would make a good argument in court. Aura whisper sounds much more useful to me as you can never be sure that you’re totally alone. Locating the party in an unfamiliar neighborhood will be much simpler too; just follow the red cluster of light. Would however be scary to see how many things are actually living in my room with me at night. :S
Do you wear a Fedora in real life? Do you own a Rapier? Or does it mean rapier wit?
I wear fedoras on special occasions and I like to think they suit me. Have a wonderful dark-brown one I inherited from my granddad. I do not own a rapier, nor do I fence, so let’s go with rapier wit.
You have 2 arrows and diplomatic immunity. In front of you is Nazeem and the guy who works for Belethor, at the general goods store. What do you do?
Ask them to hold my arrows while I think of a clever answer.
What other projects are you working on? Mods, fiction, acting, etc. Where else can people hear your talents?
I’m wrapped up in theatre right now and as such I’m doing very few projects at the moment, so this mod is the best bet for people who wants to hear my voice before Christmas (unless you happen to live in Trondheim). I have a youtube channel that hasn’t been updated in three years that you can check out, though I wouldn’t recommend it. Also there is Venin Abyss which I mentioned earlier.
There are a couple of short films I’m in, but they are in Norwegian. :)
How does a Skyrim bee survive in a jar?
I don’t think it survives as much as it dies very slowly. I don’t see any breathing holes in that jar.
What kind of mic do you use and what difficulties did you run into making your recording environment?
I use two microphones. One is a M3 condenser microphone from Røde Microphones, which I used for this mod. I used Pro Tools to record here. The other is the small Apogee MiC USB microphone, which I use with simpler programs like audacity. My biggest difficulties involve finding a place to record where people ain’t stomping around. Doesn’t help that I have paperthin walls where I live. When they all finally shut up the hard part’s over.
What sort of character type, mod or elsewhere, would you like to voice/play next?
As an actor you can’t get picky, and I’d accept any role given. In this case however I’d maybe want to voice a character with a different mindset than Among-The-Hist. I love playing comedic and over-emotional roles, but I also have tons of fun voicing villains and monsters. A comedic and over-emotional villain that happens to be a monster, perhaps?