Roll20: On To The Frontier

We picked up from last week with a bit of narrative blurring to cover getting the train re-coupled and back on track, leaving the adventurers with a day or so to recuperate and to make sense of some of the items retrieved from their attackers. While there was a small amount of coin on the bandits, the most interesting and useful part their treasures came in the form of well-crafted weapons and items made from unusual materials. In addition, the deceased goblin artificer had a number of useful gadgets that were quickly appropriated, including an everlasting stove, and a couple of fine mesh balls that are designed, when thrown against hard surfaces, to spring open into fine nets. They also recovered a docent from the artificer’s effects – a sentient device designed to plug into and enhance a warforged character’s capabilities. Ruin claimed the device and attached it – and certainly seems to have had his ability to spot unusual elements or suspicious characters enhanced.

The lightning rail duly pulled into the station at lunchtime the next day, and the party transferred to the House Orien caravan that was due to take them the rest of the way. Despite reassurances from the caravan master that the banners they were flying would ensure their safe passage, they did come under attack in the dreaded Marguul Pass by a mixed force of goblins and bugbears. They were driven off with minimal casualties, and were paid a bonus by the caravan master when they reached Rhukaan Draal and it’s infamous Bloody Market.

This is where the party had to get creative. They knew the name of the person they needed to persuade to take them to their target destination but had no idea where to look for him in a city of angry and borderline hostile goblinoids. We settled for describing the whole place as being not dissimilar to the fantasy equivalent of the court of Attila the Hun, with the measured temper of Klingons.

Deciding to mix the selling of some of the excess items they had with restocking supplies and asking questions, a good couple of hours went by before they had a lead that led them to a dark bar on the edge of the market. They’d been told to say a certain phrase to the barkeeper, and were about to enter when the group’s scout/thief/freelance locksmith came running up and dragged them away. He’d located the elusive guide, and was pretty sure that the group had been sent on a wild goose chase that would have led to violence. Given the number of smirking bugbears in the bar, they agreed to try his lead first – which led them to the Clenched Fist – known by the mummified ogre fist nailed above it’s door. If nothing else, the more varied clientèle going in and out made it seem a more likely destination.

Xbox One and TwitchTV

This week, I decided to have a go at broadcasting games on my XBox One through Twitch TV. If you’ve not encountered this site before, it basically allows people on a variety of platforms to stream their video game output alongside webcam footage and a chat client so that people can talk to you while you game and vice versa. It’s free to sign up to the basic level of access, and there are a couple of free software clients that they point people to if they haven’t invested in hardware solutions.

I’d been moderately fascinated by this practice, and I’m also a great fan of the Achievement Hunter Let’s Play series and the many, many videos produced by the EVE community. Halo 3 introduced me to the joys of sharing video clips with other players, and I think Bungie generally transformed people’s attitude towards sharing clips by basically making it easy and not reliant on expensive setups.With that in mind, one of the features of the new generation of consoles that caught my eye was their integration of game clip creation with social media. Xbox’s Upload software occasionally takes clips of notable moments and achievements in various games, but a Twitch client was also available at launch.This weekend I decided to go for it and see how easy it was to set up. The answer was: surprisingly simple. Launching the app presented me with a code and instructions to go to a section of the website.

This authorised a connection between the site and my console, and I took the time to also connect my account through social media accounts – as much to see what options that gave me as anything else. Back on the console, all I needed to do was launch the game – in this case Titanfall – and then launch the Twitch app, which sits in a sidebar on the right hand side of the screen. Tabbing between the game and the app is handled by double-tapping the glowing Xbox logo in the controller – and this allows you to set a broadcast name and a few options. In this case I chose to not use the Kinect camera and microphone. I may do some at some point if I feel the need to blather at the screen but its not my highest priority right now.

It pretty much does what it says on the tin. I got Lottie to check on the website while I was streaming, and the site renders and presents the video after a short delay. I’ve not sat down to count the seconds, but I think it’s in the area of thirty seconds or so. Stopping the broadcast was just a matter of clicking a button in the app, and there we were.

Saving the video streams requires a bit of messing around in the website, but essentially, once you’ve validated your email account, you can choose to highlight a stream that you have completed, and the website renders this so that it can be viewed offline by visitors to my profile. So – it’s all new enough to be a bit of a new toy, not entirely sure what I’ll do with it – possibly review new games as I get them – but I’m sure this isn’t the last you’ll hear me talking about Twitch.Tv on the XBox One.

Watch live video from Ludd72 on TwitchTV