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DarK_RaideR

[DarK_RaideR] enters the Ring of Steel Combat

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So I was thinking about carrying on with my Planescape theme for this challenge and wrap it up in some theory about the Unity of Rings and how things are not linear but rather a circular loop going back to its beginning. You know, back to the stuff I used to do when I first joined Nerd Fitness, maybe even a hard reset to level 1 and do the whole “gain levels and attributes according to challenge performance” thing too. But my core idea about it all was Balance and @Sloth the Enduring beat me to it as a challenge theme. (Also, I couldn’t quite fit my goals to the Balance theme just yet, but let’s not talk about that). Then I wrote out my Road Map for 2020 and suddenly realized the “be hotter for my significant other” part was a page straight outta Compton @deftona ‘s book. So I thought,

 

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"ass" also being a recurring deffy theme

 

Thus, in the spirit of whole-assing one thing, I decided to go all the way and steal my music and pro wrestling twin’s entire damn playbook. I checked out her current challenge thread (go take a look if you haven’t, I’ll wait) and that’s when The RangerBrain hit me.

 

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Also my reaction towards seasonal treats during Christmas

 

Planescape has been my first theme ever on these boards, but one of my most successful projects has been NextGen Wrestling, an ongoing pro wrestling narrative based on my progress playing Total Extreme Wrestling 2016. And by successful I mean it was both warmly received by readers and kept me motivated to check back here on a regular basis. That said, might as well do the circular loop thing but go back to a different stage, use that format for this challenge and most likely the next couple of them too, since TEW2020 is expected to launch in April. But first, challenge goals!

 

Goal 1: Sugar detox

Had some ambitious ideas for this one, but it’s wiser to start small and stay consistent. I don’t quite have a sweet tooth but I’m a pretty mindless snacker, so I tend to not buy that kind of stuff in the first place. My girlfriend is the sweet-over-savoury type and tends to hoard fine quality sweets just to be safe she has a stash in case of a sudden craving, then promptly forgets about it until said craving hits. With us living together, I can’t flat out ban purchasing these things so I’d better get a grip on myself instead. This is also a good time for some cleansing, following a holiday full of Christmas treats, so I’m aiming to stay sugar free for the duration of this challenge.

 

Goal 2: Muay Thai

I hit some potholes on the road to the finish line of 2019, meaning I couldn’t afford the financial cost of Muay Thai classes for November and December. For this goal, I’m aiming to get back on schedule and the usual 2 training sessions per week.

 

Goal 3: Self Care Routine

I’ve been living with a skin condition since my late teenage years. Details in the spoiler below.

Spoiler

So as I was nearing my final high school exams to get into University, I got a permanent case of dry scalp and dandruff, to the point of irritated skin and flakes of dead cells falling off my head. Yes, it’s stress-related, no it’s not a self immune thing nor is it fully treatable. I get to live with this and besides stress, other detrimental factors include cold weather, salty and/or greasy food, smoking etc. Unsurprisingly, I failed spectacularly on all these during my University years and the condition spread down to my face, mainly around the eyebrows, nostrils and ears. During my final exams for that law degree I got what I call my “Iron Man patch” which is a similar condition on my sternum. And somewhere along the last year or so, it’s sibling appeared on the base of my neck, right between my shoulder blades.

I’ve been inconsistent in taking care of this, treating it only when it flares up. I want to change this and consistently take care of my skin by following the routine below:

-          Scrub my face using a special soap, then moisturize it, twice per day: mornings right out of bed and evenings before going to bed.

-          Apply medicinal cream to my sternum and back areas once per day.

-          Use moisturizing cream for my hands, elbows, knees and ankles before bed. Muay Thai is rough on those spots for me.

Also, as a bonus thing I’m not actively tracking, I’d like to take some time during this self care routine in the mornings to put some thought into my outfit, instead of randomly wearing clothes that simply aren’t painful to the eye when combined together.

 

Goal 4: Dungeons & Dragons Prep

I ran into an ad for a D&d event, scheduled for February 8th, applied and got accepted, which means I get to be a Dungeon Master and make some money out of it. Barely enough to be worth 6 hours of my time on a Saturday really, but I’m mainly doing it to support the initiative and test the market on potentially making some extra coin doing something I genuinely love. Last I heard, the organizer is already planning a second one on a grander budged if this first one goes well, so I may be onto something. Thing is, I gotta prepare two short adventures. We’ve been given some blueprints, but I don’t like any of them and prefer to craft some of my own. Ideally, I’d like to also customize my DM screen and such, but the bare minimum is to put these two adventures together, so during this challenge, I will try to make some free time on a weekly basis that I can invest in getting this done.

Quote

 

Reference Box

Goal 1: Sugar detox, zero sugar intake

Goal 2: Muay Thai, 2/week

Goal 3: Self Care Routine

Goal 4: Dungeons & Dragons Prep

 

 

Now, on to the wrasslin’ stuff!

 

F.A.Q.

What is Total Extreme Wrestling ?

Spoiler

Total Extreme Wrestling (TEW) is a series of fantasy booking videogames created by Adam Ryland and focusing on professional wrestling. Originally a fan-made collectible card game under the name of Extreme Warfare, its complexities quickly required the transition to a computer in order to deal with the complexity of data processing. Over the course of several updates and two more releases, Extreme Warfare Deluxe and Extreme Warfare Revenge, the game advanced in both complexity and positive reviews, to the point where its creator decided to turn it into a proper business venture in 2004. Due to copyright issues by going commercial, the series could no longer use trademarked information from the real world so instead, a fictitious wrestling world known as the CornellVerse (see below) was created and to mark that departure from the previous installments, the game was named Total Extreme Wrestling 2004 instead. Still, the game was highly moddable and came with an editor, so fan made “Real World” mods have always followed a release, helping the game survive both legal implications and the closure of its original distributor. As a result, Total Extreme Wrestling 2005 was released, followed by TEW2007, TEW2008, TEW2010, TEW2013, TEW2016 and the announcement of TEW2020, still without an actual release date but expected around the Spring of 2020.

 

What is the CornellVerse?

Spoiler

As mentioned above, unlike Extreme Warfare Revenge, which was released for free with real world workers and promotions attached to it, TEW05 was released with a fictional world attached to it due to copyright laws applying since the game was a commercial release. This world was named after Tommy Cornell, one of the best workers in the game. Cornell was based on a character Ryland had used in E-Feds. The world has been enriched, expanded and advanced with every new release in the TEW series, while fans contributed two big mods of their take on what the 1975 and 1997 CornellVerse looked like that Ryland presumably has considered of turning into canon. Despite its original limitations and being built from the ground up, Adam Ryland's introduction of the Cornellverse proved that a wrestling simulator using an entirely fictional database could be a commercial success.

 

What’s the deal with DarK_RaideR and TEW?

Spoiler

 

I discovered the TEW series sometime in 2010 or 2011, with TEW05 having gone freeware in late 2009. Much like every other manager videogame, you’re expected to know the basics of the sport at hand, there is no tutorial to show players around, just a ton of information to digest, the occasional pop-up window to clarify some detail and no explanation of how the entire mechanism works (later on I’d even discover that some things are intentionally kept hidden to make things more random and intuitive so that players won’t figure it all out and game the system). At the time, I knew little of the pro wrestling slang or how the backstage creative process works, so my early attempts always ended with bankruptcy. I moved on, but always somehow found myself drawn back to TEW, whether due to a sense of unfinished business, pro wrestling fandom or stumbling onto reviews praising it. Until one day, I had a breakthrough.

 

I started a new save sometime in 2016 or 2017 as a small British Promotion by the name Ring of Fire. The roster was small enough to be manageable, even if it consisted of fictional wrestlers. The product was simple enough to book, with no angles or storylines, just 100% matches and the workers mainly gaining popularity based on their in-ring performance. For the first time ever, I realized I was doing something right because somehow I started making a profit. TEW and Ring of Fire won a spot in my heart forever.

Reassured that I wouldn’t be paying money for a game that I’d never figure out, I set out to discover what the newer versions were about and which one I’d be investing my money on. Not long after that, I found myself in the vibrant forums of TEW’s publishing company, where I made three major discoveries. One, according to CornellVerse canon, Ring of Fire had been bought out by 21st Century Wrestling as far back as 2010 (which made me hate 21CW forever). Two, there was an entire thread of people asking questions as they tried to figure out how to play the game, the tutorial/manual I had been looking for all this time. Three, there was an entire section of the forums devoted to “dynasties” where people turned their gaming experience into narratives, writing out shows, promos, matches and backstage stories that really breathed life into those fictional characters and added a whole new dimension to playing the game.

 

I found a pirated version of TEW13 and in less than a month, paid to get TEW16. I’ve done some “dynasties” on NF, most notably the aforementioned NextGen Wrestling, as well as a ton more on those other forums and after recently winning the Diary of the Month reader vote for the fifth time, entered the Legendary category. Without a shadow of a doubt, I’ve gotten the most mileage out of this game than any other I’ve ever played, bar none. It’s the best value for money I’ve ever gotten out of a game and I’m totally stoked to grab TEW2020 once it comes out.

 

 

So what is this Ring of Steel Combat?

That is the name of the wrestling company I’ll be running for this new narrative. Before I can talk about it though, I need to drop some info on the UK wrestling scene in the CornellVerse.

 

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Prior to 1980, the British wrestling scene was virtually dead. However, in July 1980, Men Of Steel Combat was born in Scotland. Owner Highland Warrior ran the promotion with a sensible business plan, running low cost "blood, beer, and brawling" shows for crowds in the North. Dominating the UK for over 20 years, they were left without competition until Ring Of Fire opened in September 1998. Offering pure, sports-like wrestling, RoF gave British fans something different, something that felt legitimate and the promotion managed to grow. In January 2001, 21st Century Wrestling came along. With a cutting edge, high flying product, it gained some fans, but it was ultimately a commercial flop. Within a few years, it was on the verge of bankruptcy until it was sold to Jeff Nova, a former winner of Britain's Strongest Man.

 

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Nova had become nationally famous as the presenter of the extremely popular annual World's Strongest Man contest on British TV and upon buying 21CW, he gave it a new Sports Entertainment product, similar to what the major companies in North America were doing. Using his combination of vision, work ethic and media contracts that made 21CW the first British promotion to ever air on UK television, he turned 21CW into a major powerhouse within four years. 21CW's growth resulted in MOSC closing in February 2010 and ROF following in November 2010. Now the only major company in the country, 21CW continued to grow until eventually, in March 2015 Mark Carnie convinced the Scottish National Arts Council to give him a $5,000,000 grant to start a wrestling promotion. The result was the controversial, sleazy and hardcore Scottish National Promotions.

 

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Although Carnie is the definition of a scumbag indy promoter, SNP has managed to get a dedicated Scottish fanbase among Scots who outright refuse to watch 21CW. Not that it seemed to worry 21CW much, as in October 2015, Tommy Cornell returned to the UK at 21CW Hardcore Halloween Show, helping his younger cousin Edward Cornell win the 21CW World Championship and propelling 21CW to one of the biggest, hottest wrestling companies in the world. This is where our story begins with a man known as Geordie Jimmy Morris.

 

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Newcastle-based Geordie Jimmy Morris was the founder and main star of Ring Of Fire but left the promotion in 2005 at the hands of British Samurai, seven years after its beginning, to follow his dream of wrestling in Japan, which would explain why Ring of Fire presented its action in a way heavily influenced by classic Japanese wrestling. Unfortunately for him that proved to be a mistake - interest in his services was humiliatingly low, and by the end of 2006 he was forced to return to the UK. For whatever reason though, instead of reclaiming his brainchild or working under British Samurai, Morris headed for MoSC to try and resurrect his career. Morris' bad luck continued though, as a combination of nepotism towards the owner’s son and a seemingly never-ending stream of injuries stopped him ever gaining any momentum until he was eventually left out of a job when 21CW bought out MOSC and British Samurai sold Ring of Fire to focus on exclusively running the RoF Dojo. Seeing how SNP filled the void of hardcore wrestling in Scotland, Morris decided to try and do the same with the void left in the Midlands after RoF closed its doors. Thus, Ring of Steel Combat was born.

 

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If the name and logo weren’t enough of an indication, Ring of Steel Combat presents itself as a successor and a hybrid of both Ring of Fire and Men of Steel Combat. Where SNP go all out on weapons, nudity, death defying stunts and always pushing the envelope though, RoSC seeks to take the old MoSC format of legitimately tough men fighting each other and fuse it with the resilience of Japanese Strong Style and the pure wrestling skill that was the standard in Ring of Fire matches. Well, not just tough men. Women are also welcome too, including one of Britain's brightest prospects in female pro wrestling...

 

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Billie Kimber!

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Well hot damn, I had my challenge all typed out and my laptop crashed before I could hit Post. Here's clue No.2 instead
 

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Dude, that's my face!
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On 12/31/2019 at 3:14 PM, deftona said:

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I respect your fire, but being part of British Strong Style alone is no guarantee you're winning this. So I'll say this once and I'll say it nicely: turn around, put that lucha mask back on and off to la cocina with you!

 

Spend your money on wrestling that's worth it, people

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12 minutes ago, Tanktimus the Encourager said:

In what year is the narrative set to begin?

2016, I'm using the default CornelVerse database (well, with some minor tweaks to allow for the likes of Billie Kimber) and counting on @deftona to help me with presenting some British stuff proper :)

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On 12/30/2019 at 4:07 PM, DarK_RaideR said:

Then I wrote out my Road Map for 2020 and suddenly realized the “be hotter for my significant other” part was a page straight outta Compton @deftona ‘s

 

Puh-lease, I don't make myself hotter for him, I slay for me :D 

 

Looking forward to this one, British Shit is my specialist subject! 

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Day 1: Sunday, Jan. 5

Goal 1: Sugar detox, zero sugar intake: Success.

Goal 2: Muay Thai, 2/week: Almost made it there on Friday, but was too cold and spent to pull the trigger. Aiming for a Tuesday debut.

Goal 3: Self Care Routine: Missed my morning facial scrub and moisturization, but otherwise hit everything else.

Goal 4: Dungeons & Dragons Prep: Nah, was too busy scheduling my own Curse of Strahd game :D

 

Day 2: Monday, Jan. 6 (Holiday)

Goal 1: Sugar detox, zero sugar intake: Failed this because a relative made me a whole pan o' baklava for my upcoming nameday* and amongst all the other sweets, I had to try a piece. I did however stop myself from mindlessly shoving sweet stuff into my mouth throughout the day, so I'm certainly making progress in the battle against a (re)forming habit.

Goal 2: Muay Thai, 2/week: School was closed due to the holiday.

Goal 3: Self Care Routine: Nailed every piece of this.

Goal 4: Dungeons & Dragons Prep: Curse of Strahd game scheduled for Friday. Now for the other one!

 

*It's probably a Greek or Eastern Orthodox thing, but on the day dedicated to the saint you're named after (Jan. 7th for St. John the Baptist, in my case) you get something like a second birthday, minus the cake and candles.

 

On 1/4/2020 at 10:46 AM, WhiteGhost said:

Very much looking forward to RoSC (especially if they can book Toby Juan ;) )

I'm actually trying to avoid people and faces I've already established via NGW 😕

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Happy name day! I think I decided a while back I was going to steal your name day since my name is ridiculous and made up, so happy name day to me too! 

 

ETA - And I'll bogart some of your baklava while I'm at it thankyouverymuch

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