DM of the Rings XC:
Don’t Dream it’s Over

By Shamus Posted Friday Apr 20, 2007

Filed under: DM of the Rings 130 comments

The battle drags on.
And on and on.

 


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130 thoughts on “DM of the Rings XC:
Don’t Dream it’s Over

  1. Bookworm says:

    *Love* the picture of Aragorn fighting while asleep. Perfect!

  2. Myxx says:

    I really don’t care about being first to post…

  3. Seph says:

    Great comic keep up the good work! :-)

  4. Myxx says:

    lol. which is apparently a good thing.

  5. Seph says:

    Damn you bookworm!

  6. Browncoat says:

    Sorry to begin with a negative, but theres a typo in first panel: “Strikes” not “Stikes”

    Now then, is it just me, or does Legolas’ dream of continually shooting orcs in the eye sockets and watching others stab them in the face seem unusually violent for a girl?

    1. Joe says:

      In my last campaign we had three guys and three girls. One of the girls was playing a cleric, one a wizard, and one a rogue. The one playing the cleric was like hyper-sensitive to role-playing realism; she winced every time one of us took a hit, seemed genuinely nervous when lots of enemies turned up. The one playing the rogue responded to most situations with “I stab him with my poisoned dagger as I’m walking by.” The wizard was very excited to reach level 3 because she was so desperate to start casting fireballs. She’d gloat after every session. “Okay, you killed two, you killed six, you killed five, I killed twenty-two, you killed eight…did I mention I killed twenty-two? Oh, and you killed eleven. Twenty-two, huh? That’s Fireball for ya.” Way too enthusiastic when it came to blowing things up.

      1. joesolo says:

        sounds like she’d fit right in with mythbusters though.

        1. Bagheera says:

          *passes out from laughter*

      2. Wide And Nerdy says:

        If she pulled that on me, I’d point out you don’t get fireballs at third level.

    2. Spike says:

      Browncoat
      No, it says ‘strikes’ in the first panel.

  7. Another good one!

    I love the three pictures on the second line (frame 2,3 and 4), their faces are perfect.

    Keep up the good work!

  8. Gothmog says:

    I agree with TwiddleStooch, Shamus, the images in second line are spot-on.
    Great job!

  9. CryptoKnight says:

    “You really need to cut back on the Mountain Dew, kid.”

    ROTFL!

    D&D wouldn’t be the same with out Gaming Juice! We keep a mini-fridge stocked with the Dewge for our sessions. Usually two or three 2-liters worth plus a 24 pack of cans.

    It’s nice to know we’re not alone in our addiction.

    ( 8-( /)

    1. Kunou says:

      I know Mountain Dew and Cheetos are the classics but my groups always preferred Dr. Pepper and Chex Mix.

  10. Deoxy says:

    Oh, man – that second to last frame was GREAT, both dialogue and picture (I bow before the might of your screen-capture fu!)… and then you added the last frame, which was so good that I actually snickered out loud (at work)!

    Great stuff – keep it up!

  11. Kivan says:

    Long time reader, first time poster ;)

    I’ve been in situations like this, admittedly only when playing NWN. But the situation’s the same. Seemingly endless hordes of badguys does not make a good fight scene, especially when you know you’ve got to win for the adventure to continue.

    Love Gimli’s look of tiredness in 2nd panel. And Aragorn Sleep-Fighting. That should be a feat for DnD!

  12. Woerlan says:

    Now we have some solid evidence of the age of the players. I expected “Legolas” to be a lot younger. Like, high school.

    That’s some determined DM. I thought that they’d break for the next game session once the wall blew up. Leave the adventure on a cliffhanger. Now it seems that he wants to finish the whole Helm’s Deep sequence at one go. Gimli’s gonna start mentioning breakfast and coffee soon.

  13. Issachar says:

    Great. Now I have Crowded House stuck in my head. At least it’s a song I like. :-)

    Oh yeah, and great comic as usual. Another fine contrast in the attitudes and life realities of the players.

  14. George says:

    another great comic.

    “Nah don’t sweat it i was failing before we started this campaign”

    From the looks of it i am guessing the DM has gandalf just show up since the PC’s are tired but first i think you need some clips of aragorn telling the king to “ride out” because i can see some of those screenshots being beautiful for witty remarks

  15. Scarlet Knight says:

    I’m curious, Shamus; Did you know the ages of the players when you started writing, or did they evolve as the jokes & images occurred? I feel like I know these players better than some of the guys in my game club!

  16. Jindra34 says:

    God it just keeps getting funnier… WILL IT NEVER STOP?!

  17. Carl the Bold says:

    13 Issachar Says:

    April 20th, 2007 at 11:20 am
    Great. Now I have Crowded House stuck in my head.

    —-

    I’ve enjoyed Crowded House in the past, and wondered what song you were talking about. I went back up and searched through the comic again, looking for some hint of a Crowded House lyric or song title.

    Duh.

    It always seems that I forget to read the titles of the episodes as they come up. I was terribly excited for catching the Schroedinger’s allusion, thinking I caught a sly little joke. The next day I read the title of the comic and realized that it was less subtle than I thought.

  18. Blindeye says:

    Huge combats like that can be pretty tough. I ran (In my Exalted game) a fight between my two Lunar players and 50 angry mortals. It lasted three hours and only stopped because they made the Dragon-Blooded Wyld Hunter flee, thus causing everyone to make moral rolls, and failing or botching them all.
    Only five kills were had in those three hours.

    Crazy fight to be sure, and I now know the limits of a mass (not Mass) combat.

  19. Shamus says:

    Scarlet Knight: Some yes, some no. I had a very clear personality for Aragorn, Gimli, and Legolas, but the others were much more vague. In fellowship, the pace was so fast and the crowd so big that we never saw much of their personalities. I really like writing for the smaller group better.

    (Although, the violet violent streak for Legolas is a recent development. I like it.)

  20. Clyde says:

    Eh, college degree or world’s deadliest bowman: Which is really more important?

  21. Jill says:

    Violet streak? Hmm, perhaps Leggolass /would/ do well with a streak in that long hair. ;) At any rate… Never discount a female’s capacity for rampant chaos. Doing so will eventually come back to stab you in the face.

  22. Clyde says:

    And if that steak is violet, Shamus, it’s gone off! Throw it out!

  23. DiamondMX says:

    2 Lunars, vs 50 mortals… and it took 3 hours to get 5 kills?
    Were the lunars asleep, tied up, and possibly also already dead to get such a low kill count?

  24. Deathblade_Penguin/aka Minion of Darkness says:

    too tired to come up with a witty comment (it’s nearly 3am here in Melbourne)… another classic Shamus..

    Long live the Battle for Helm’s Deep.

  25. Jindra34 says:

    Diamond much of that time would be spent rolling for the 50 mortals… it probably only lasted three rounds or so,,,

  26. Rebecca says:

    Uh-oh! Legolas is pulling ahead of Gimli and Aragorn as my favorite player!

  27. james says:

    Man, I was up all last night reading these. Now I’m caught up.

    Is there a shedule that you update on, or should I just check every two days or so?

  28. Jindra34 says:

    JAmes: he updates around noon on monday wednesday and friday

  29. Alex says:

    First of all (and I’m not sure if you even read these, but) great job on the comic, it is very popular and enjoyable and I hope you keep making it.

    Second, does anyone else notice how the stills help the flaws in this movie come out?

    For example, in first panel (or shot?) in the comic above the whole castle just looks like a miniature from warhammer.
    And in the pictures of Gimli his head looks way too big for his body (or rathre his shoulders looks too narrow for a dwarf).

    P.s
    One last thing I have to say to somebody that might care:
    The casting in this movie, at least elf-wise, was horrible.
    Liv tyler is an over sized cow and certainly not elf-like and there wasn’t one actor that made a believable elf (apart from maybe the guy who played Elrond, maybe) and I’m not talking about the acting just how they looked even though the acting was not great either.
    But Liv Tyler and the “elf-commander” were just shit as elves.

  30. Dave says:

    What? No 4/20 joke? Lame

    I agree with gimli though, nothing is more boring than uber-long battles. The DM should’ve just listened to Aragorn last strip and made the whole battle a LOT shorter. I smell deus ex machina coming, which usually makes players even more upset, lol

  31. xargon says:

    Reminds me of a 2-hour epic barfight in a game recently…among other things, we all became very good with the unarmed combat and grapple rules.

  32. Bugsysservant says:

    “The casting in this movie, at least elf-wise, was horrible.”-Alex

    While on the whole I agree with you, I think Galadriel and Elrond were both decent. The latter is especially true when you consider that Elrond is only half elf and as such should have a certain “manishness” about him. And Galadriel played the part of the 15,000 year old Noldor decently at least, though her acting was ruined by the crappy turning-evil-in-the-face-of-tempation special effects that they added in.

  33. Shamus says:

    Alex: I read every comment. Thanks for reading. :)

  34. Osvaldo Mandias says:

    Hey, folks, the player who does Legolas isn’t a girl. I’m pretty sure its an all-male group so far.

  35. elda says:

    Now then, is it just me, or does Legolas' dream of continually shooting orcs in the eye sockets and watching others stab them in the face seem unusually violent for a girl?

    actually i’m a girl, and that’s pretty much all i think about. somethings gotta keep me awake through french class.

    J’aime des….mecredi stay awake! (for some reason the teacher calls me wedenesday.)

  36. kenderweasel says:

    “Now then, is it just me, or does Legolas' dream of continually shooting orcs in the eye sockets and watching others stab them in the face seem unusually violent for a girl?”

    I’m a girl, and it seems that every character I play eventually ends up like that – for instance the jedi that stared of being calm and sesible, and ended up keeping a list of the various different limbs and things she’d cut off. Guys are a bad influence…

  37. Scarlet Knight says:

    3 to 1 the line “You stab like a girl” gets used in the Eowyn-Nazgul death scene…

    5 to 1 we also get “Help! Come se the violets inherent in the system!”

  38. Deoxy says:

    Hey, folks, the player who does Legolas isn't a girl.

    That’s a reference to the ongoing “all elves are girls” joke. See “Leggy-lass”, Aragorn hitting on “her”, etc.

    Bugsysservant, +1. Haldir in particular did not appear at all Tolkien elvish. Some of the extras weren’t too bad.

    And in the pictures of Gimli his head looks way too big for his body (or rathre his shoulders looks too narrow for a dwarf).

    This is an effect caused by the large helmet. Seriously – try to get a feel for the size of his head without the helmet, and it doesn’t seem nearly so bad.

    1. WJS says:

      Big helmet and thick hair. It may be thin on top, but around the sides it’s pretty bushy.

  39. Deoxy says:

    for instance the jedi that stared of being calm and sesible, and ended up keeping a list of the various different limbs and things she'd cut off.

    To be fair, that’s at least partially due to the jedi weapon of choice…

  40. Erin Storts says:

    I too am a violent girl gamer … past characters keep having this annoying habit of getting into incredibly violent skirmishes and losing bits of clothing in process. (Has something to do with me rolling high appearance scores and the DM liking to torture me, I think…) So far my current character hasn’t lost any clothes in battle, but she does have an NPC lusting after her. *sigh*

    I love having things go all explodey like. And Legolas “I wanna stab another orc in the eye” is a lot like things I’ve said in game many times.

  41. GEBIV says:

    I have to disagree with Legolas’ violent streak being a recent thing. Anyone remember poor Gollum?

    “You see something…”

    “I shoot it! I rolled a 20!”

    1. johanna says:

      Thanks for reminding me, good times!! Yes as a girl player, I find that I am easily persuaded to get bloodthirsty. Also, ever since I started gaming again watching commercials always makes me wish I had something stabby for the announcer who is yelling at me. Was I this violent before? I don’t remember wanting to stab people in commercials in the past. Not that I would ever do it, my TV is AWESOME!!

  42. wtrmute says:

    Elda… My Spanish teaching wife says “Miercoles” a lot (which is wednesday, as well), usually a stand-in for a similar word. If my guess’s right, your teacher isn’t being terribly polite. Or perhaps she only using that word when she’s telling you to remain awake?

    And Shamus, another great comic. Especially the interaction between Legolas and Gimli they make a great comic duo. It’s almost like Laurel and Hardy!

    1. WJS says:

      Ever hear “Sugar” used as an expletive when kids are around?

  43. Hoyce says:

    Very amusing. Aragorn sleeping, the consistantly excited looks on Legolas’ face, the punchline.

    Hoyce approves.

  44. Flexstyle says:

    The thing that caught me about this one was the fact that Legolas was still at it, just like the last comic. Call me easy to please, but that just caught me and made the whole comic even funnier.

    Oh, and I love his comment about failing before the campaign started.

  45. Heather says:

    I still think you should have added that he was asleep seated straight up in his chair, head back, and snoring loudly while the other players (other than mountain dew boy who was bouncing off the ceiling) were barely awake lying under the table–that would have been most realistic–at least in our games. :)

  46. Madalch says:

    Mountian Dew? Why not drink something with caffiene in it?

    (Due to a bizarre Canadian law, our Mountain Dew is caffiene-free, since it’s not cola-coloured. Only cola-coloured pop is allowed to have caffiene.)

  47. James Blair says:

    Actually, I thought the special Galariel effects were pretty close to how the book described it. Like Gandalf’s declaration that he’s “no conjurer of cheap tricks”, Galadriel was supposed to look a bit “otherworldly” at that point of her speech. In her case, I think she did that mostly to scare Frodo out of the idea of offering the Ring to her again!

    Movie-Frodo reminded me of Errand from the Belgariad series, back when he ran up to everyone and kept offering the More-Powerful-Than-Gods Orb to everyone he sees. Let’s just say Movie-Ring must give its bearer a -100 situational modifier to Sense Motive. I can just imagine…

    Gollum: I try to Bluff Frodo into ordering Sam to go away!

    DM: Sorry, don’t tell me you’re using a skill, tell me what you’re doing! I’m the one to decide what skill you’re using.

    Gollum: … Well … hmm … hsssss … my preciousss … Fat Sam’s been stealing all our Lembas bread! Ssends him packing!

    DM: Given that you hate that Lembas stuff, that’s pretty unlikely. Tell you what, though, make a Bluff check with -20 modifier and you do it.

    Gollum: Ssss… hsss… I rolled an 18… with the -20 that comes out to… hsss… -6. Curse those nassty Charisma modifiers!

    DM: OK, that worked.

    Frodo/Sam: Whaat?

    DM: The Ring’s clouding your mind again, Frodo. Gollum has apparently convinced you that, since Sam stole your Lembas bread, he’s perfectly capable of stealing the Ring as well. It makes perfect sense if you think about it.

    Frodo: Perfect sense if I didn’t know Gollum’s even more obviously after the Ring, and Sam’s probably the only one around here who DOESN’T want the ring…

    DM: As I said, the Ring’s clouding your mind… look, do I have to dock your XP for refusing to roleplay?

    Frodo: Sounds more like a railroad to me. Sigh. Go away Sam.

  48. ladyalinor says:

    I usually liked to blow things up to tiny bits and most of the other girlgamers I know also tend to be a tad violent.

    Browncoat Says:
    Now then, is it just me, or does Legolas' dream of continually shooting orcs in the eye sockets and watching others stab them in the face seem unusually violent for a girl?

  49. Jindra34 says:

    Madalch: In the USA mountain dew is one of the most caffinated drinks but i think thats obvious… would have been funny if the mentioned Jolt Cola…

  50. “Gimli's gonna start mentioning breakfast and coffee soon.”

    Reminds me of one particular summer gaming session back in High School. It was an exciting adventure that just kept going, and the sun was coming up, and one of us (the older brother of another) said “Guys, I have to go.” We started razzing him about having no stamina, to which he replied “No, no… I have to go TO WORK.” *Grin*

  51. Salen says:

    Legolas is all hyped up on Mountain Dew. Well that explains a lot. I remember one player in my old gaming group was the same way. That probably explains quite a lot too.

    But yeah, time for the Gandolf saves the day comic! I’m sure they’ll be ticked off to hear that all they did was just stall the orks long enough for Gandolf to save the day.

  52. Beckyzoole says:

    I love Legolas’s facial expressions! Perfect!

  53. Scarlet Knight says:

    “Galadriel played the part of the 15,000 year old Noldor decently at least”

    I wouldn’t want to be the casting director, I tell you!

    “OK, find me a Galadriel. She has to be eternally young, and beautiful enough to have a dwarf, at first sight, ask her for a lock of her hair & be willing to duel to the death anyone who even speaks ill of her; & she has to convey that she has the wisdom of living thousands of years. I want a list by lunch…No, we can’t use Zoot, she’s already booked on Broadway…”

  54. Proteus says:

    I have to admit, the last few installments weren’t doing it for me… until THIS one! I had exactly this experience playing with a bunch of single, childless gamers. They make you want to yell, “C’mon guys, it’s 3-freaking-AM! Don’t you have a life?!”

    But you don’t, because you already know the answer…

  55. Attorney At Chaos says:

    J'aime des….mecredi stay awake! (for some reason the teacher calls me wedenesday.)

    Perhaps it’s a reference to the rhyme that includes “Wednesday’s child is full of woe” (which is also why the little girl in The Addams Family was named Wednesday).

  56. General Ghoul says:

    46 Madalch Says:
    Mountian Dew? Why not drink something with caffiene in it?
    (Due to a bizarre Canadian law, our Mountain Dew is caffiene-free, since it's not cola-coloured. Only cola-coloured pop is allowed to have caffiene.)

    Now Canada has moved up to most evil nation, inching (centimetering for you Canucks)ahead of North Korea.

    30 Dave Says:
    What? No 4/20 joke? Lame

    I second this, now back to my second bag of Doritos.

  57. AndrewNZachsDad says:

    There is a (relatively) new Mountain Dew Energy beverage available in Canada. I wasn’t aware that the MD formula was different in the states. That might explain why I WASN’T ABLE TO BLINK the last time I was in your country…

    Scarlet Knight Says:
    I wouldn't want to be the casting director, I tell you! “OK, find me a Galadriel…”

    Imagine calling the actress to offer her the part?

    “Cate! Honey! Listen, we need someone to play a 15,000 year-old woman and I immediately thought of you! Hello? Hello?”

  58. Thastygliax says:

    The last panel reminds me of my one experience playing in a Dark Sun campaign. The DM had us make up our character tree, even loaned me “The Complete Psionic’s Handbook” so I could learn those rules, and ran us through two sessions of the module that comes with the boxed set. And then he went, “Oh ^$&$*!! I’m flunking out of college!” and stopped the game in order to try to save his grades…which didn’t work, so he softly and silently vanished away, and never was heard from again.

  59. Nogard_Codesmith says:

    Reading on the run. Just wanted to say HAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHahahahahaha
    You are producing pure gamer geek gold here Shamus.

    Also… Happy 4/20 to everyone who cares. ^_^

  60. Jindra34 says:

    So aragorn is sleep fighting…?

  61. Nogard_Codesmith says:

    I can’t find the Sleep Fighting feat in any of the books.

  62. Da Rogue says:

    Stabbing in da face…FUNNIES!!!
    Once again the gran master Shamus has made me laugh heartily.

  63. Bugsysservant says:

    “Frodo reminded me of Errand from the Belgariad series, back when he ran up to everyone and kept offering the More-Powerful-Than-Gods Orb to everyone he sees.”-James Blair

    Thats because he was the least qualified to posess it. Both Gimli and Aragorn would obviously be better as they are both combat tested wariors who would be immune to the influence of the ring. Gimli wouldn’t be effected as dwarves aren’t by rings of power (though with very prolonged exposure he may have kept it in his lust for gold), And Aragorn proved his will was stronger than that of Sauron when he wrested control of the Isengard palantir from Sauron.

  64. Oh…my…Grog.

    I’m suddenly glad I didn’t game when I was doing post-secondary studies. Eek!

    But Gimli’s rolling dice til my wife divorced me…priceless, hope it never hews to close to your own hedge, Shamus.

    The “marathon” session we had back at St.Patricks will hopefully never be beaten by our own future sessions.

    On the other hand, the DM, knowing what we’re in for this round (tomorrow night!), said today at work that she “(had) a feeling that someone is going to die early in the new campaign.” Eerie – how DOES she know that?

    Reintarnation, son – I’ve been smited!

  65. I think the DM was cheating when he was rolling for the number of wandering monsters as Helms Deep.

  66. Bugsysservant says:

    I think the players are going to be p*ssed when they find that after the marathon battle
    1. Gandalf saves the day, making their actions irrelevant
    2. They have been fighting low level orcs and have earned very little in the way of XP or treasure
    (except for Legolas perhaps, he seems to be enjoying himslef quite thoroughly)

  67. Alex says:

    To Shamus (because you do bother):

    I like DM of the Rings because it’s more than just a funny comic, with this comment system you have an easily accesable online community (of sorts) for role players that manages to appeal even to those of us that shy away from forums.
    It’s nice, funny and easy going.

    Back to the casting issue.

    Bugsysservant: Yes you’re right on both accounts, it is very hard to cast for the role of Galadriel.
    Part of the beauty of the elves in the book is that they were almost, if not, impossible to picture – at least for me.
    I just think there was room for improvemnt and like you said, the whole special effects thing didn’t really hit home with me either.

    But Liv Tyler and that other guy just wrecked the suspension of disbelief, it made me want to punch somebody.

    And call me old-school or a warcraft fan or what have you, but I still think that Gimli’s shoulders are too narrow in those stills even without the helmet – all dwarves should have a scotish accent, a beard and broad shoulders.

  68. Blindeye says:

    Diamond, Jinstra was right. Most of the fight was me rolling five attacks per Lunar ever four ticks. (The battle lasted maybe seven ’rounds’, approximately 30 ticks)
    Also, one Lunar, a Changing Moon, wasn’t so interested in killing, and he focused on the Heroic Mortals (who aren’t extras) and only did enough bashing damage to discourage them from fighting him anymore. (He had actualy defeated 3, though killed none, by the end of the Melee)
    Those 5 kills was from the other Lunar, the Full Moon, while in Deadly Beastman + Righteous Lunar Fury. She fought the more skilled mortal extras as well. If they had focused on the other mortals (the ones who had no chance of even getting close to their insane DVs) the kill/defeat count would have been much higher.

  69. Yahzi says:

    Before you rag on the casting, remember Christopher Lee as Saruman – that was perfect! Aragorn, Boromir, and Gandalf were also fantastic calls, particularly since they got Aragorn out of a hat.

  70. Bugsysservant says:

    “Before you rag on the casting, remember Christopher Lee as Saruman – that was perfect! Aragorn, Boromir, and Gandalf were also fantastic calls, particularly since they got Aragorn out of a hat.”-Yahzi

    I have no problem with most of the roles in the movies, in fact I love Sir Ian McKellen and found that he played the party of Gandalf (especially the grey) perfectly. Saruman was good to, but I definately prefer Gandalf. The only reason I can find to complain about most of the casting would be as the elves as a whole. And from the varied responses on this forum I recieved apparently people envision the elves in very different ways. I just think that Peter Jackson chose to portray elves as sort of above average humans, whereas in the books they were truly different beings, a fact emphasized in the Hobbit when Bilbo visits Rivendell and is mystified by the actions of the elves there. Ah well.

  71. Merrigold says:

    “Before you rag on the casting, remember Christopher Lee as Saruman – that was perfect! Aragorn, Boromir, and Gandalf were also fantastic calls, particularly since they got Aragorn out of a hat.”-

    What? I thought they left him in a hat — or maybe they should have left him in a hat — he’d have looked better! I have to say, I did find the presentation of Aragorn in the movies annoying, as he didn’t look *anywhere* near as attractive as I’d always imagined him! Even at the end, when he was cleaned up.

    Though, to be slightly more serious, I thought two of the reasons they showed Aragorn the way they did in the movie were
    (1) he’s a ranger, he’s SUPPOSED to be spending his life covered in mud — how CAN he look any good, without a bath for months — I’ve always loved the “foul is fair” bit, from LOTR, when Sam and Frodo meet Aragorn in the Inn at Bree, and say that a servant of Sauron would have looked fairer but felt fouler.
    (2) the elves are supposed to be gorgeous and ethereal, but you’re stuck with humans playing them, so you have to dull-down Aragorn and make sure that he always looks worse than the elves. Which makes it a bit hard to believe, that anyone would fall for him. The main problem with the elves, IMHO, was that they all looked like they’d had bad face lifts…

  72. xrazy says:

    i can only imagine that at the end of this battle they still won’t get any loot. i can’t wait to see they’re expression then.

  73. orcbane says:

    I’ve only been in 1 session like this. We played in the DM’s back yard. We started promtly at 8, and at 3 in the morning we were so pissed at the DM that we quit the campaign… forever…

  74. superfluousk says:

    “I did find the presentation of Aragorn in the movies annoying, as he didn't look *anywhere* near as attractive as I'd always imagined him!”

    Each to his own, because found Viggo Mortensen as Aragorn to be life-threateningly hot! (Although not in today’s screencap, where I honestly had to look twice to see if he wasn’t an orc.) And I had never imagined Aragorn as being particularly attractive at all — remember that he’s eighty-freaking-nine when the book opens, and he’s spent most of that time tramping around backwoods and fighting in civil wars! I imagined him as too tall, too skinny, lanky and gray about the edges.

    In terms of girls getting violent in game situations: None of my characters could ever, ever out-violent the guy who played the character whose idea of asking for directions was to grab a passing citizen on the street, lift him, and beat his head against the lamppost above until he started talking, *before* even asking him the question. I did, however, consistantly have the highest record of explosions caused across all campaigns — the smallest being a laboratory infested with bugs and the largest being a major city.

    Back to the comic — Gimli as my favorite character solidifies more every day! I don’t know why I have a fondness for older/married roleplayers — maybe because it’s proof that roleplaying does not preclude having a ‘life?’ *g*

  75. Valley says:

    Sorry, but it looks like the sleeping Aragorn is giving somebody the finger….I must be mistaken.

  76. Stephanie says:

    “”Cate! Honey! Listen, we need someone to play a 15,000 year-old woman and I immediately thought of you! Hello? Hello?””
    Actually, Cate Blanchett volunteered to act in the movie because she wanted to be an elf. My flatmate has a signed copy of LOTR saying “Thanks, Norman, I did it for the ears.”

  77. Shell says:

    U know, in Australia, Mountain Dew doesnt even have caffine in it… its just this horribly flavored lolly water… lol

  78. Nogard_Codesmith says:

    OK all this caffeine free Mountain Dew talk is just disturbing.
    I’m taking a survey. Where are you in the world, and does Mountain Dew have caffeine where you are?

  79. Jindra34 says:

    Caffinated though i live in USA

  80. elda says:

    Perhaps it's a reference to the rhyme that includes “Wednesday's child is full of woe” (which is also why the little girl in The Addams Family was named Wednesday).

    i think he calls me that after wedensday adams. because recently he’s started calling me “vamparella” i really need to stop wearing all black on school days.

  81. Snake says:

    I’m a girl and my favourite character collected trophies from the boss baddies he killed. Teeth and the like.

    My current one, being a have-a-go swashbuckling sort, tends to go down in round three against the second wave of mooks and spends the rest of the fight bleeding out while the other guys kill the cool stuff (the combats being better suited to her full-plated, greatsword-wielding companion), but on the occasions she remains standing she has a penchant for cutting bits off survivors to make them talk.

    I don’t even know if they do Mountain Dew in England. I assume they must, but I don’t recall seeing it on the shelves.

  82. No caffiene in Mountain Dew – we sensibly keep it for our espressos! CANADA

  83. Tola says:

    I don't even know if they do Mountain Dew in England.

    They don’t. At least, as far as I know.

    On Casting: Considering that there are four people in the main cast with Numenorian blood(Aragorn, Denethor, Boromir, Faramir).

    All Numenorians are apprently meant to be obscenely handsome(Which makes sense, as they’re a better class of Men) to judge from the comments here.

    No-one comments on Denethor, Boromir, or Faramir. Why does Aragorn get all the “He looks HORRIBLE!” “No he doesn’t, he looks WONDERFUL” comments? Why him?

  84. feroshus says:

    *sigh…*

    ’bout time i leave a reply behind…

  85. Deathblade_Penguin/aka Minion of Darkness says:

    Elda says “Perhaps it's a reference to the rhyme that includes “Wednesday's child is full of woe” (which is also why the little girl in The Addams Family was named Wednesday).

    i think he calls me that after wedensday adams. because recently he's started calling me “vamparella” i really need to stop wearing all black on school days.”

    As a primary school teacher, I am starting to like this teacher of yours more and more… I would love to give the students I teach nicknames like this.. Keep me update.

    Steve aka DeathbladePenguin aka Minion of Darkness aka Primary School Teacher of Darkness.,..

  86. required says:

    I’m a Dane currently living in Ireland and I’ve never seen nor tasted a Mountain Dew, but I’ve them mentioned awfully often, online.

    I get my caffeine from coffee and light colas.

    BTW: This is my first post. I just can’t resist surveys!

    I’ve been reading this comic for a while and I really enjoy it. Keep up the good work!

    Also: The other Numenorian men don’t look al that special too me, but Aragon does stand out, being far more handsome than the others, so I see no reason to discuss the other Numenorian men. They just don’t make nearly as strong an impression as Aragon does. Then again, he does have a special background, so he should stand out, IMO.

  87. Anthelios says:

    Speaking of “deus ex machina” its funny that we haven’t seen any eagles yet. That always struck me as Tolkien’s answer to writting himself into a corner.

    First time poster.. This comic rocks. Keep up the awesome work!

  88. Wraithshadow says:

    My understanding is that there’s version of Mountain Dew in Canada that does in fact have caffeine- and possibly more sugar than usual. Apparently it’s sold as an energy drink, rather than simply a soft drink.

  89. Auke says:

    What strikes me most about this comic is the consistently high quality of both screenshots and humor. No, even better than that, that it has evolved from situational gags into a true story with interesting characters, though we only know them through the game.

    I hope we can glean something more of the personal life of the DM from the comics to come. If he has one, that is…

    About the Mountain Dew: maybe I overlooked it, but I don’t think we have Mountain Dew in the Netherlands. Though if elves live in trees and can walk on snow, it figures that they would drink mountain dew…

  90. Anistalker says:

    One of the best I’ve seen so far

  91. BainIthron says:

    Well… I will say this… even I haven’t read the full page on the Mountain Dew Argument:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mountain_Dew

    Wikipedia ftw. In summary, ends up Canada, Australia, and several states in the US don’t allow Mountain Dew to have Caffeine. So, for those who do not have it, blame your governments. Appararently there was a caffienated Canadian variant by taking advantage of a loophole, but didn’t sell well. They launched in England but pulled it for unknown reasons.

    *poof*

  92. Shamus says:

    Re Mountain Dew: The name as always struck me as absurd. “mountain dew” conjures up images of pure water gleaned from the leaves in the early morning, high up on the mountain where the taint of man has never touched the land. You know, clean and stuff. This is a good name for bottled water.

    But the drink itself is a thick syrup of sugar and caffene the color of urine and served in a bottle the color of nuclear waste. The commercials all show over-amped nutjobs leaping out of helecopters so they can ride down the side of an errupting volcano on jet-propelled skateboards. The name of the drink is perfectly at odds with the entire image and nature of the thing.

    Kind of silly, really.

    In the meantime, I’m sure the high sugar and caffene content of the drink has done more to cause jittery, hyperactive players to kill plot-critical NPCs than anything else. It’s about the worst drink I can imagine for playing tabletop games and videogames, which is their primary usage. Despite the ads, I’m willing to bet that most people doing extreme sports just drink water.

    1. WJS says:

      “Mountain Dew” used to be a slang name for moonshine.

  93. Steve says:

    [Shamus] The one that gets me is those bottled water ads that talk about “pure mountain spring water”. I used to do a lot of climbing in Wales on a variety of mountains (but mostly Cader Idris) and I more than once saw someone stop to drink in a pure mountain stream, only to turn a corner and see a several-days dead sheep lying in it upstream.

    My Keen Ranger Senses never let me fall for that more than once. My Keen Ranger Bowels couldn’t have taken a second hit of Power Word “Dead Sheep In The Drinking Water” which takes weeks and a course of antibiotics to shake off.

    One for the DMs of wilderness adventures to remember.

    Steve.

  94. Steve says:

    My only real grumble on the LotR movies was the decision to make Gimli little more than the comic relief.

    It has been a long time since I read the books though. It’s possible that Tolkien himself thought “I need a stupid short bloke with an axe to make the elf look good”.

    I think I remember Gimli supervising the Hornburg emergency refit so that the walls, decrepit with neglect, would stand up for more than one combat round. The movie version would have trouble finding his own backside with both hands and a map.

    Steve.

  95. Scarlet Knight says:

    ‘”mountain dew” conjures up images of pure water’
    No matter what the makers of Mountain Dew say, the name comes from moonshine (home-made alcohol , usually illegal, for those whose homes are outside the US).

    “Liv tyler is an over sized cow ”
    How many times do you think Liv Tyler has ever been told she’s too fat for a role?!

    “On Casting: Considering that there are four people in the main cast with Numenorian blood(Aragorn, Denethor, Boromir, Faramir).”

    Lastly we expect more from Aragorn than the others because he’s not just a
    Numenorian, but he’s a Numenorian KING. Better blood line….

  96. Sybarite says:

    I’ve been skulking forever, but the “Mountain Dew Debate” (A drink I loathe) made me post (oh, yeah, and I like the comic too :P ) I think the name is a reference to moonshine, i.e., stuff the old-timers made in converted outhouses up in the hills and that you used as either an alcoholic beverage or to clean your toilet with.

    And I really have to agree with Jill’s comment from earlier “Never discount a female's capacity for rampant chaos. Doing so will eventually come back to stab you in the face.”

  97. Ricky says:

    I found Mountain dew in Malaysia around summer 1997. Not sure when exactly it came to M’sia as I was in Iowa, USA between 1994-2001. Was excited to see it there and immediately bought a can to try. That was the last can I bought, as it tasted like very sweet cough syrup.

    Nothing like the “Nectar of the Gods” (so dubbed by my US roomie who drank nothing but Moutain dew and an occasional Dr Pepper) I tasted in Iowa. Not surprisingly, it disappeared soon after.

    Gatorade trying to break into M’sia several years ago. Tasted alright but not sure if I see it around anymore, maybe in a few big hypermarts.

    Shamus, if you thought MD was bad, what do you think of Surge? (Coke’s green answer to MD) Hey, they still sell Surge in US? I still remember the 1st tv ads for Surge. Exactly what you wrote about MD b4 MD went the extreme route.

  98. Jillzmom says:

    “The female of the species is more deadly than the male.” Julie Eklar (or was it Leslie Fish?)
    And they could have left out Arwen entirely, IMHO.

  99. Fickle says:

    I am now in love with Legolas-player. XD High on Mountain Dew, failing out of college and taking far too much joy in killing things? AWESOME.

    Plus, I’m chiming in as another girls who thinks that RPGs are the perfect outlet for the violent tendencies that girls don’t usually get to express. I’ve played some fairly sadistic characters and find it pretty therapeutic.

  100. Shell says:

    I dunno why I am surprised mountain dew has its own wiki *detailed* entry… hmm

  101. superfluousk says:

    “No-one comments on Denethor, Boromir, or Faramir. Why does Aragorn get all the “He looks HORRIBLE!” “No he doesn't, he looks WONDERFUL” comments? Why him?”

    Because the fact that Sean Bean is a god of sex has never been in dispute. Same with David Wenham. Y halo thar boys.

  102. Harlock says:

    Jillzmom: Actually, that quote is Rudyard Kipling. Leslie Fish just set the poem to music…but it wouldn’t surprise me at all if Julia sang it.

  103. Rikku says:

    Sounds to me like gimli is actually getting serious. theat’s a big surprise. lol watch as he explodes from all of his anger issues.

  104. Rikku says:

    Sounds to me like gimli is actually getting serious. that’s a big surprise. lol watch as he explodes from all of his anger issues.

  105. DavidRS says:

    Nice Crowded House referenced in the title… unfortunately, by the time I discovered this comic, it was all over.

  106. Diff says:

    OMG gigglefit
    I just started reading these last night and this one had me laughing the longest and hardest so far. It sounds like our highschool rp, I was the over enthousiastic one and during a champions game was all “I spray with pepper spay!” GM”He’s blind for 3 rounds” “I kick him!” GM”It hits, now roll to see where” “I got 13″ GM”You kicked him in the groin” “I kick him again!!! I got another 13!!! I kick him again!! I got another 13!!!” GM”He is now incapasitated and unable to bear children”

  107. Cynder says:

    Loving Gimli in the second frame. :)

    Elves on Mountain Dew. Who ever introduced them to it? From self experience, that stuff is DEADLY.

  108. nuker says:

    i think this was the best so far.. (i only started reading it a few days ago, this is how far i got) :)
    PS: and the one where legolas plays tony hawk :D

  109. Tybreagus says:

    to: Steve (94)

    “My only real grumble on the LotR movies was the decision to make Gimli little more than the comic relief.

    It has been a long time since I read the books though. It's possible that Tolkien himself thought “I need a stupid short bloke with an axe to make the elf look good”.”

    This has been a big beef of mine ever since the monstrosity that was called the Dungeons and Dragons Movie. It’s like they just picked the least attractive person and made them the butt of all the jokes. They even made him a smelly coward.

    From my reading of LotR, Tolkien made Merry and Pippin the comic relief, not Gimli. He was serious, dangerous and respected. I mean, he kept up with a ranger and an elf on an extended run and fought like a tank. He was no drunken buffoon who couldn’t control his emotions.

    Also I had heard that Mountain Dew was originally a chaser for whiskey and that was why it was so sugary and strong.

  110. Mina says:

    lol, Le is really starting to crack me up!! X’D

    Shamus Gamgee, your Mountain Dew comments make me proud

  111. Sam-Chan says:

    lol, i really like reading how the dm is messing around with his players!^^ i have an idea for you when they start complaining over to less treasures again: let them go inro a dungeon where a huge glass colum filled with gold powder stands. when they trie to reach the gold, the drown in it.

    at the time my dm was confronting us this, I played a realy greedi thief – an someone else a very strong fighter who grabbed me and brought me outside while telling me how to behave.

    SAM

  112. Saoirse Young says:

    hahahahah I was already failing when I joined the D&D group at my college too ^_^

    nothing to be proud of, really, but y’know… that’s why this was so funny

  113. Trae says:

    I’ve had something similar to this. 40 orcs in one battle, 4 players involved. That’s almost all we did the session, at least 5 hours of just combat.

  114. caradoc says:

    Just want to say I thought Liv Ullmann was great as a HALF-elf. Ethereal beauty plus warm humanity. Can’t imagine anyone better.

    The only casting that bothered me was Sean Astin as Sam. I kept seeing Mikey of the Goonies.

  115. silver Harloe says:

    > Liv Tyler is an over sized cow.

    Say What? Have you seen, you know, healthy women? Ever?

  116. Faramir says:

    Now then, is it just me, or does Legolas' dream of continually shooting orcs in the eye sockets and watching others stab them in the face seem unusually violent for a girl?

    Lulz. All girl gamers are violent. XD Especially the ones like me, who always end up playing as a guy for some unknown reason; yeah, that’s why the male username. XD

    Me: Why can’t I be the Amazon? That’s logical
    GM: You’re being the mage.

    -_-

  117. Kuro says:

    “I don’t want to roll dice until my wife divorces me.”
    Man, I hit the head on the table laughing.

  118. Nami says:

    OMG, you have done something amazing Shamus, you have made me like Legolas.
    Thank you, and STAB ANOTHER ONE IN THE FACE >D!!

  119. Jade Dragon says:

    Legolas has the best faces…

  120. Miron says:

    I’ve started GMing my first D&D campaign (as GM or as player) a few weeks ago, so I thought it’d be fun to re-read DMotR. And I must say, even after all those years and reading it for the third or fourth time, they’re still hilarious. The characters feel all fleshed out, and we can really relate to them (especially now that I’ve started D&D)

    Plus, reading the comments sometimes yield some good advice (And good laughs)

    I had never left any comment, but better 7 years late than never : Thanks Shamus!

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