Hi, yes, it’s me. Ameronis. Back again and ready to roll. For those of you that don’t know, I’m not able to work on RanGen full-time, so periodically have to put it aside to work on other things. I tend to lurk about in the comments and work on minor updates and fixes, but can’t always buckle down and carve out a lot of work at some points. Fortunately, though, I have a bit more time on my hands again, so it’s back to work on the site! This time around, I’ll be dealing with updates, Writing Challenges, and introducing The Fantasy Sandbox.
Clearing Up The Backlog
I’ve been working on several things in a disjointed manner, and have already uploaded some of the latest updates. Nothing large enough to really warrant a large announcement for each, but to give a snapshot of what’s new; I did added Climbing Plants to the Plant Gen, updated the SSB:U Character Selector to include the newer DLC characters, and made some improvements to the naming system used by several Gens, including the Country, Planet and Species Generators, among other things.
The Fantasy Name Gen got two new region styles: Cyrillic and Nordic, as well as a small general overhaul. I will continue to fine-tune this to try and improve the rate of high-quality names. I’d give the current results a C+ overall. Not good enough by my reckoning, but it’s a start! Enjoy generating 15-character long monstrosities in the meantime.
Several Gens are overdue for minor updates, so I’ll be dealing with those and focusing on my high priority Gens. You can see what I’m working (or procrastinating) on by viewing my Updates To-Do list here.
Another thing I need to catch up on is responding to your messages! A pile of those have built up naturally, so I’ll be going through those now. But, I discovered that at some point, my mailbox settings were changed, so a whole bunch of messages ended up getting marked as spam and hidden away completely. I managed to rescue a bunch of them so there’s an even bigger pile of messages that I need to get through. Keep your eyes peeled for responses to your questions from like, 2 or 3 months ago. 😀
Writing; Inspiration and Challenges
I haven’t issued a writing challenge in essentially a million years so that just won’t do. We gotta keep those writing and drawing muscles in top shape; I can only imagine everyone is horribly weak and saggy now as a direct result of this lapse. *Nod* I will be posting a new one soon, so keep an eye on the Writing Challenges page, as well as the Twitter feed to know when that’s available.
For those of you who’ve seen my challenges before, you know that the goal is to see what people can do when working from the same prompt; sometimes the prompt is large and open-ended, other times, it’s specific and rigid. The variety of thoughts that come from just one seed of an idea is always amazing, so it’s wonderful to see what different people come up with.
Meet Andy and Ed
These two gentlemen are on a collaborative world-building journey, using RanGen as a vehicle. They are in The Fantasy Sandbox, where they design and build elaborate worlds, and create chaos in the process… Each week they meet to discuss inspirations, methods and the creative process, all whilst having a good laugh.
Rotating between two stages, the first begins with world-building, using a handful of Gens to get a starting point. They share ideas, establish a theme, then take the rest of the week to write their own story. Then, the next week brings stage two: storytelling, where they share and talk about their stories; their similarities and differences, and the directions they ended up going in, and the struggles and triumphs of the challenge.
Now Spreading Sand Everwhere…
Andy and Ed now share their adventures with the world and invite us to join them in the Sandbox. You can listen to this new podcast both on both Apple and Spotify, and can follow them on social media, starting with Twitter and Instagram, with more to come soon.
I, for one, and delighted at the prospect, and look forward to seeing what the lads can do. I encourage y’all to check ’em out and give them some support. RanGen is steadily growing into a thriving community, so it would be great to see the Fantasy Sandbox grow too.
Tune in each week, leave a review on Apple Podcasts, follow them on Twitter and Instagram, and spread the word! And be sure to let them know Ameronis sent you. 😉 I’m sure they’d like to hear your own takes on the prompts that they use each time.
As usual, a big thank you to my Patrons especially for sticking around during another dry spell. I’ll do my best and work hard to make it worth your while!
If you’d like to find out more about what I’m doing behind the scenes, see WIP Gens, and even have access to new Gens early, you should consider becoming a Patron, like these awesome folks:
Hailey Sanders, Zena Wagner, Laurence, Sloshy Scout, Kristin Wingo, Kim Lightle, Lokomotives, Duncan Thomson, Sander Countryman, Ellie Sweeney, Terence Halton and Stuart Gipp.
And my newest Patron,
Kristi Michelle Wilson!
To patrons past and present, thank you all!