Outskirts, Valley of the Dark Lords
It was night time on Korriban. A cold, chill wind blew down through the Valley of the Dark Lords, stirring banners from where they stood. Men shivered and wrapped their clothing tight around themselves as that seemingly unnatural wind washed over and enveloped them, before passing on a moment later. It whistled through ancient crypts, brushing against stone that had, until recently, 7lain forgotten and untouched for millennia. The wind raced into the Valley, toward the distant booms and echos of warfare, until finally, it entered the Valley's heart. There, it was but a nuisance. The wind, lost amongst the cries of warriors and the clash of lightsabers, was barely a thought to the beings who wielded those weapons. They could let nothing distract them in their desperate conflict. The wind continued beyond them, dancing unnaturally up the side of the Valley as it seemed to spin around, swirling, as if looking for a way to escape the ancient ruins. Whipping upward, it carried a swirl of dust through the Sadowan Redoubt, before continuing on.
Kard shivered. "It isn't right," he said. He pulled the long cloak he had been issued around his body. "Korriban is a desert world, why is it so cold?"
"Deserts can be cold at night, " his companion answered. Like Kard, Broten was a soldier in the Warhost. At this point, they had little to do, having secured the position they were directed to. It seemed that most of the remaining fighting would be in the hands of their Dark Jedi superiors.
"It just doesn't feel right," Kard said. He hated having nothing to do. He was stuck here. They could not move forward, and they could not leave until their superiors were finished with their feud. This place gave Kard the creeps.
"Come now, " Broten said, "it's not our concern. How about another game of pazaak?"
"That old game?" Kard mumbled. He shuddered. That howling. Was that the wind, or was that someone's shrieks, or some creature? "Fine, I guess."
Let this end soon, he thought.
Soon indeed. We have about a week left of the Great Jedi War. That means the Runon, Multimedia, Battleplan, and all of the Round Two events are due in a week! Now would be a GREAT time to start planning your week and figuring out when the best time to do everything is. That is, of course, assuming you are planning to do everything. Like me! I'm not one for long, rousing speeches - those are best left to other people - but I will say this: it's great to see Naga Sadow get mobilized about stuff, and it would be awesome to see our people placing in stuff. With the top ten counting for scoring, and a plethora of competitions that don't require a lot of time, that's a very real possibility! In times like this, we're a team. I don't know about you guys, but I love being part of a team. :)
Onto the meat. There's seven competitions to do as we wind down here, listed in general order of time to complete. I'll write a short description of each and what I feel is a good way to approach them.
Round 2: Gaming : This gaming competition includes the X-Wing series of games, and...Pazaak. If you're not familiar with the latter, it's a card game that's very similar to Blackjack, but Star Wars-ified. The average match takes between 5-10 minutes, depending on how quick you and your opponent click. If you want to get participation under your belt, I'd do this first, as you can do it pretty much any time. It also appears that placing in it is related to your win/loss ratio, and not predominantly on how many matches you play, so it's still possible to place if you start playing now. But I wouldn't wait long! Just jump in #dbgaming on IRC, see who is placing, and set up a match. You do have to do three, but that is factored into the 5-10 minutes listed above. As of the time of this writing, only a few Sadowans have participated in gaming and I would love to see more of us on the leaderboard!
Round 2: GFX: GFX is Graphics for short. I'm not sure about the X. What I am sure about is that participation in this competition should be pretty easy. A serious, placing entry, on the other hand, may take a little bit of time, depending on how skilled you are. I once spent several hours over a couple of days on a hand-drawn graphics entry. I didn't place...but it was fun to make. As far as just participation goes, you only need to draw something simple, requiring no ability whatsoever. Yes, taking a few minutes to draw stick figures is all it takes to get you a Seal, and thus prestige and future credits. How do you think Malik has so many?
Note that for participation your entry can be purely digital, but for trying to place you have to use some medium that does not require the use of "digital/computer" means. So you can draw something in pencil and then photograph it with your phone and submit that image, but your awesome MS Paint art won't place.
Round 2: Puzzle: I can't say much about the puzzle competition because it's very hush hush until you subscribe and you're not supposed to talk about it before the competition ends because that's cheating and all. However, I CAN say that typically, Puzzle comps don't take a lot of time. Usually, they can be done in 10-20 minutes. Keep in mind with this one you do not want to subscribe until you're ready to do it, because that starts a timer. Unless you only want the participation. In that case, take your time.
Round 2: Fiction: As yes, the quintessential fiction competition. You have to come up with a story and get it to a minimum length of 750 words, based on the prompt. With these, I find it's best to make an outline. In Part 1, I divided my outline into three "Acts", and then tried to make sure 2-3 things happened in each Act. I ended up going way over the 750 word requirement, when all I was trying to do was make sure that everything I outlined happening actually happened. In this case, it's even easier to find content because there's non-player characters listed to use in your story, and you must use one of them to qualify anyway.
Also, with fiction, you have a wealth of writers who can proofread on the CNS mailing list. Just ask any of us. You can start with me, and I can help you find someone better than me, even.
That's all of the individual Round 2 competitions. The only ones remaining are the Multimedia, Runon, and Battleplan, which can take different amounts of time depending on what you do for them.
Multimedia: This is probably the shortest to actually do, but may require the most work in deciding what to do. There are a lot of possibilities here. You can do a video. You can record a song, even with something as simple as the voice recorder on your phone. You can make an extended Gif, an interactive website, a game, or something else. If you're not sure, ask any of the competitions organizers or your Summit to clarify on whether your idea counts.
And as noted before, you can do this individually, or be on a team of up to three people.
Battleplan: Like most things, a good Battleplan entry starts with planning and outlining. I can't say what you should include, but as this is a team event it's important to use the resources you have. Figure out what everyone is going to do, do your parts, put it together, polish it up, and you've got it. Easier said than done, but not that hard to do once you put your mind to it.
Run-On: This is it, the last of the seven remaining competitions of the GJW. You should already be deep in your Runon, and if you are, great. If not, there's still time. I find the best way to go about these is to plan with your group who is going to write about what and when they are going to post. It makes it much easier to make sure you get the required three posts from each member before the deadline. Remember, if you have a person or persons unable to post, you can still continue with your remaining members to get participation credit, and that's literally half the battle!
That's it. That's all of them. After that, we'll settle down and do some other stuff for awhile. For now, enjoy the 'War while it lasts! If you've got any questions, ask me. Email me. Catch me on Google Talk or IRC. Or use the comments if you want!
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