Monday, November 28, 2016

Fungi, God and Me. PRIME CUTS inc.

Oboy have I been reading about Fungi and the Bible over at " Answers in Genesis" and did you know that "The Curse" is the reason disease and evolution exist? 

I just wanted to see if there were mushrooms in the Bible, honest.
There's a bit where an apostle cries about a chicken and everything.

Get ready for more Capitalisations than Usual.

So when Adam got all sassy around the time of The Fall, God simply let creation off the leash to show that newly mortal sap what happens when divinity does not guide the way of nature. Corruption ensues!

Perfectly harmless nutrient recycling mechanisms like fungi and virus' got all corrupt and started eating our faces off and bible-acceptable Evolution started ruining shit for errbody all the time since that point. (6000 years mind you!) .

Apparently God bound nature (Circa Creation thru. Fall Of Man) can murder itself horribly all day because it has no immortal soul, but by heck humans are above that kind of degradation. That is until the Curse of Evolution corrupted their defined roles and all that replication got a bit wonky and oh god thats ebola what the hell dog!

By the way fossil strata merely represents the specific order in which The Deluge murdered things, one smack-down at a time as sediment, not the plodding layers of deep geological time.


Think about that. What took brutal nature billions of years to kill, God KO'ed in 40days/150days/about-a-year (depending on your interpretation, which I guess is the crux of this post). Not only that but he presumably phoned them one era at a time and gave them the old "I will find you and I will kill you" speech because he killed individual ecosystems world-over on different layers, almost like they were epochs or something. Like, if he had reaped them East to West or continent by continent there would be a layer of fossil (or... oil? not a geologist!) everywhere but like alphabet soup fossils from Alpha to Omega all jumbled.

EDIT: for the purposes of this blog I do not seek to be anti-religion or pro-evolution but simply "is it badass RPG fodder" and by the gods yes it is. Not to say I ain't heavily biased, but that's pretty obvious.

Lifeforms that don't evolve are called Baramin (Bara-Created Min-Kind) and everything else is just ruined garbage like sinful humans which I think is cool.

Lichen is Baramin, perfection in perpetuity, probably crocodiles too, but its an article about fungi.

Any natural thing that does not respect the manifest primacy of humans has had the sass to evolve (Read: Corruption) and therefore is not Baramin. Then again, it IS a Curse, so like, we deserve it.

All these creationist articles are like science fiction written by wizards. I keep forgetting that biblical language inspired fantasy and not the other way around. 

PRIME CUTS: Fungi from the Biblical Perspective Design and Purpose in the Original Creation. Ira Loucks, 2009

"In the biblical creation worldview, fungi were created by God during the Creation Week approximately 6,000 years ago as a variety of different reproductively isolated kinds or baramin (bara = created, min = kind; Marsh 1941). The Bible does not describe precisely when these organisms were created, but we can logically deduce when they were likely created based on the reasoning that each created system at the end of each day was complete or “good” (Genesis 1; Gillen 2008)). In this way, we can deduce that the mycorrhizal, endophytic, and land-dwelling, saprophytic fungi were likely created on Day 3 along with plants, while other fungi (that is, animal-associated Candida spp. and the aquatic Chytridiomycetes) were created on Days 5 and 6. Alternatively, all of the fungi may have been created on Day 3 with the other “plants,” given the traditional Hebrew inclusion of fungi and bacteria in the plant kingdom (Gillen 2008; Kennard 2008). Irrespective of their day(s) of creation, discerning the individual baramin of fungi may be possible based on their mode(s) of reproduction and physical characteristics.."

"...It is possible that the loss of mycorrhizal associations by these plants is part of the original Curse (Genesis 3:17–18), and may be part of the reason these weed species devolved from their original created state.."

"..Heat tolerance was conferred on tomatoes upon infection with the virus-containing endophyte, demonstrating the broadness of these higher-order interactions and suggesting that this kind of interaction was likely present during Creation Week. Indeed, these symbioses appear to have been designed to enable re-colonization of the varied soil types found in the post-Flood world..."

"..Presumably, these insects were originally designed to use leaf litter as compost for growing fungi, with recent corruption of this purpose resulting in the destruction of living plant tissue (Mueller and Rabeling 2008). The beetle-fungus and wood wasp mutualisms seem to have been created for a different purpose. These mutualisms take advantage of dead or damaged trees and may have been originally created to exploit nutrient recycling in completing their life cycles. These symbioses have also been corrupted since the Fall, resulting in damage to living trees and causing significant economic loss (Anonymous 2006, 2009)..."

"...These interactions are testaments to design. The relatively small number of pathogenic interactions compared to the total number of fungi allude to the original created order. Experimental evidence showing the effects of gene mutation in numerous systems demonstrate the ease by which these complex interactions can be corrupted. Future research in plant pathology and medical mycology may further illuminate the impact of the Curse on fungal mutualistic processes, and may help us better understand how different the current world is from the original, perfect creation..."


Perdition RPG Review: how to make friends and influence people

I wanted to do a setting writeup as there is very little explanation online and the book pitch does little to convey the awesome scale of the setting and its implications.
I am a Player Character, so not having read the actual rule-book forgive me many confabulations, wrong assumptions, slanderous lies. These are my impressions so far.

So my good friend and RPG Monster over at Renfield's Cat is running Perdition the RPG by HackSlash, a game set in what appears to me to be the fallen earth, a baroque medieval fantasy setting invaded and overrun by literal demons who now happily preside on earth doing demon things and stuff.
Perdition means something like "complete ruin" I believe.

There are remnants of the old world and the wars they lost- towns and artifacts, base humans trying to live on as base humans do. There are bastard races such as the Hobgoblins who served well in the war and reap their rewards as wealthy citizens, there are corpses of the Titans and old gods who were slain, a scarce few Paladins survive in the badlands, free agents hardened by defeat.

Demons operate in a pleasingly feudal way, it seems they are Machiavellian vicious and fallible as any human Laird. It is simply that they hold demonic power and can tear a giant in two that distinguishes them from the previous landed gentry, curse their blasted corpses.
They fear only the Vile Conclave, enforcers of demon law and etiquette, for the branching pathways cruelty and violence are so old in this culture that they have become ritualised and what good is a system if it cannot be taxed.

For an adventurer this changes almost nothing.

There are multiple currencies, ceramic shells, souls, gold and silver. Souls have been devalued to the point where they can barely be traded for anything except the being they were taken from, what use is another soul when you own the world it lives in. Still, they have their uses.
Fuck knows what shells are for, I assume they are fossilised and found in shale? Things dead and ancient hold some power here. I rolled so much gold I was generated as encumbered and had to go find a Platinum dealer.

As a party of three to five depending on the day we have a spectrum of comedic players, chaotic nihilists, Shakespearean demons and muscle bros  all of whom seem to be quite happy with the place they find themselves. We also have number crunchers and newbies- Minmaxers find the unusual rules alluring and disconcerting and newbies enjoy the theatrics and don't realise the rules are weird, after a little help at character creation combat and skill checks are simple.
Can't wait for an arraignment at the Vile Conclave though! Daemon Bureaucracy, devilish decorum what could possibly go wrong.

Classes are heavily modified variations aligning to Wizards (about 7 variants.), Paladin, Fighters (about 4 variants), Cleric, Thief, Ranger.
Gods and summons are incredible- just imagine what a DEMON would summon when it wanted something bizarre and evil.
Races are batshit crazy and will break you if you bring prior knowledge. Trolls are cored out servitor golems, Hobgoblins are the new money bourgeois of Perdition, there are gentle forest yeti and giants suck at being giant.

Evil is an interesting concept in this game, many players have assumed it to be an evil campaign because y'know "deamons". I feel however that demons in power are too petty and selfish to be serious about capital e Evil and in a world owned by demons its kind of a "does a fish feel wet" question.
The fact is that shit need doing and that base people are boring and pragmatic. Most powerful entities are obsessed with a single facet of evil in a sort of autistic fashion of course but that simply means they probably forget to pay proper homage to other sins.

I am playing a sort of apathetic destructive nihilism spawned from an fungal hate and the god of mathematical entropy (ok... its a sentient comet made from history, maths and the desire to smash the planet) which probably makes me pretty bad for everything around me.
Most of our party enjoys the freedom that "Evil-land" allows for in terms of general assholery but are unconsciously saving each-other, building fortunes and being team players in a way that undermines any true Evil so far. Which is fine, conscienceless selfish mercenary is a popular and productive role in RPGs everywhere.

The only other thing I want to mention is the Stress stat. As you get more stress points from KO's encounters & fatigue you get strung out and twitchy (initiative and combat bonus.) but also run the risk of snapping under pressure (straight up nervous breakdown in the form of formidable psy damage, probably other things I don't have the rule-book).
This is cool as you space your rest and rations according to your confidence, need for bonuses and gamble against death, not the normal factors of HP. Its nice to see rations do something useful too I hate those bastards.

Great game! God I missed terrible magic.

(Red Troll Inheritor read: regenerating golem + mutant cleric,
Example of my Char Sheet from 5th ed OGL, modified to Perdition by Mr Renfields Cat- that guy sure can Roll20)

Igads, a heavy slow oxen of a man torn from his family for service the house of Naazluth Heralds of the Light during the height of the Devil Wars.
He was forged in the roaring hellfires of that house, soul and memories stripped from him, boiling pink blood forced through in his veins. Hardy, regenerative, sullen, obedient, a soulless flame.
A tool. A chimera, Cockatrice head crudely sewn upon his shoulders, jawbones fused to the jagged  and ossified beak, a brutal joke and a symbol of the House.
Igads is not a man, Igads is a Red Troll. Igads is a red troll for decades uncounted.

And Peter remembered the word of Jesus, which said unto him, Before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice. And he went out, and wept bitterly.
Matthew 26:75

When Naazluth Heralds of the Light fell to the Crimson Baron Sailor of the Ocean of Blood in a masterful display of treachery and deceit all of the Red Trolls fell to his whims. Spoils of war but also spoiled of image- the Cockatrice motif being of stark aesthetic contrast to the pink-weeping eunuch Trolls of House Sailor of the Ocean of Blood.

The flock were sent to the Black Swamps, told by their terrible new owner to walk west and eat dirt in perpetuity, pecking the muck like so many cowed cockerels.
Igads is not a Red Troll, Igads is a broken Cog, nothing, and not nearly sentient enough to realise it.

Somewhere deep in the swamp the unthinking Cog met the unthinking Scarbinger, fungal god, The End of Sentience, devouring the gargantuan corpse of the last titan.
Obeying his directive Igads fed on the god of change, the god of nihilism.
His empty body the tool, filled with spores and muck and pallid fungi intelligence. Intelligence well pleased by the corruption of meat-sentience it found therein, a thing changed and changed again, stripped of animal desires and commanded only to eat filth and grow. A rare meat-thinker with which it could commune.
Scarbringer gave the Cog life of a sort, this Red Troll is a drifting spore of Sarbringer End of Sentience floating through the turbulent world of Thinking Meat.

Igads scarred and burned husk of a meat brain, sparked to brief life at this rebirth screamed out decades of unremitting torture, toil and bloodboil in the single beat of a heart, a psychic gong heard clearly by those borne of hate, and driven by the unstoppable unraveling of the universe, motivated by the desire to pull and tear at those thrashing threads.
Igads the Plougman, last of his line flared one brief and monstrous prayer in an instant of lucidity and died hating.

As the Rot Queen gave a Cog life, Grandfather the Apocalypse Star, the ticking clock of entropic mathematics, reaches across space and time and gives Igads a gift. In an unspeakably rare act of creation he gifts the burden of Purpose, knowing that in this taboo creation lies the mathematical certainty of destruction, desecration and the end of things old and beautiful. A null sum at worst, a catastrophic ender of days and best.
Grandfather Count-the-days rests. He counts the days and watches the world he must sunder as it drifts closer through space with the pleasing certainty of physics in motion.