Saturday, February 26, 2011

Battle with a vampire, progress report, and mechanics update

This morning I felt pretty good.  Rested, strong.  I let my guard slip for a moment, and paid the price - this afternoon a vamp came out of nowhere, tackling me into the dirt.  It was a ballsy SOB - it wasn't even dark yet.  I wonder if they are getting stronger, or finding ways to circumvent their weaknesses.  At any rate, the fight was pretty intense, and for a moment I thought I was a goner.  But then I remembered a new potion that Matt concocted, and it worked marvelously.  I finished off that Beast like he was nothing.


Progress Report:
So this afternoon I got hit with pretty intense stomach cramps, dizziness, and nausea.  I'm almost certain it's due to a new medication that I'm on - the same symptoms hit me Wednesday night, when I started the medication, and have been coming and going ever since.  They are also listed on the bottle as side effects, so that's also a good clue. 

Matt suggested making me Wild Berry tea, as it contains both blackberry and raspberry, which help with stomach issues.  Then I thought to ask him to grate some fresh ginger in there.  Mixed with some agave nectar and milk, the result not only made me feel better but tasted really, really good.  So we can add that potion to our arsenal, yay!

It's been one week since we started this game, and I wanted to document the results on me as we go along.  It may be coincidence, but I have felt happier and more hopeful this last week than in a long time.  I've told my coworkers about this game, and they comment on how awesome the idea is, and I feel... energized talking about it.  When those stomach cramps hit today, I started to feel emotionally upset because I wanted to do some things to day, but then I looked at Matt and said, "Hey, these cramps are a battle with a vamp, how do I fight it?" And that's how he got to thinking about the tea, suggesting it as a "potion."  So far, it seems like it's working! I'm not so anxious and upset about the surgery I may have in two weeks, and reading all the posts here by my friends have definitely helped me, more than I can put into words. 


Mechanics Update:
I have been reading Jane's book, Reality is Broken, and one of the things she identifies as part of a game is feedback.  I think it's really important for me to have that feedback mechanism to start seeing the things I do to fight the Evils as heroic, and not just because I "have" to.  This is kind of a hard thought for me to articulate, but just boil it down to say that I think feedback is really important for me.  So I want to assign points to achievements and missions that I complete, and then use those points to "buy" my rewards.  This is where I need your help though, gang.  I suck at rewarding myself fairly, so when I post an achievement or a mission completed, could someone chime in with how many points you think that's worth? And when we get the rewards up, could someone assign points levels to them?  For rewards, here's a list of things I've got so far:

-WoW sheet music for strings book (I CAN PLAY WOW MUSIC ON CELLO ARE YOU KIDDING?!)
-New cello bow
-New Macbook Pro
-Assassin's Creed
-Batman: Arkham Asylum (if my computer can run it, I'm still trying to figure that out)
-Dinner out at a favorite restaurant
-Going out to a movie
-Weekend away with Matt
-New sketchbook and pencils
-Hiking poles
-New perfume (this can be used multiple times because I love perfume)
-New wallet
-New road bike
-Gauged earrings
-Broken image necklace from Think Geek
-New tattoo
-Bottle of my favorite wine or a 6-pack of my favorite beer (can be used multiple times too)

And some achievements/missions I thought of:
-X points per hour of work
-X points for playing cello for 20 minutes (this is a power-up, but sometimes I'm so tired it's hard to play, even though I love it)
-X points for 30 minutes of working on my programming stuff
-X points per hour at doctor's appointments
-X points for posting to this blog

What do you guys think?


  1. I would be more than happy to give you points for learning energy medicine stuff from me. Add that to your list. :D

  2. Also when you get the ok from the doc there will be points for exercise and for the meditation/energy work from me.

    We'll look at the list too and give you our evaluation. I'm sure as you get feedback it will all fall into place.

    Great idea and outstanding battle.

  3. Here's one thought that occurred to me... almost all of your rewards have dollar amounts required to purchase them. I do know that budget issues are real and add to stress, which make you feel sicker, and counter-act the progress you make. I would therefore make two suggestions:

    1) choose some rewards that have to do with taking time and enjoying certain activities without guilt, but that do not require making a purchase.

    2) add to your XP system a savings plan... kind of like how a character will gain XP to achieve intrinsic feats and skills, but they still need to save Gold/Silver/Copper/Credits/Borkjinks to purchase their gear.

    So, not to get too personally into your financial snagh, I'd suggest socking back regular funds (excluding your regular savings) towards your rewards. I would recommend even putting it in a literal envelope or lockbox. This money can't be spent until you literally "unlock" it with your achievement.

  4. @Courtney & @Gigawood - great ideas! I'll add those. :)

    @JP: That same thought did occur to me (that all of the rewards were "stuff" that require money) but I couldn't think of anything last night that was just a time-expense. =/ I'll noodle it. We also already do sort of have a savings plan like you're describing set up. :) It's our "discretionary savings" that both Matt and I use for special stuff, so that's where these funds would go/come from. Thanks for the great suggestions!! :D

  5. Here are my thoughts re: XP.

    -X points per hour of work: 1 XP / hour
    -X points for playing cello: 5 XP / hour
    -X points for 30 minutes of working on my programming stuff (is this different than the first line?)
    -X points at doctor's appointments: 10 XP per Dr. Appt.
    -X points for posting to this blog: 1 XP per Post

    other things...

    5 XP for purchases/steps taken to improve health (buying that blender, for example)

    25 XP for major career contributions

    10 XP for successfully navigating a "bad day" healthwise (you determine if you succeeded)

    10 XP for a day with zero health complaints

    There can be more...