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Subject: VGG Geek of the Week #214 - Robert McLaughlin (Gerdion) rss

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I happily introduce your next Video Game Geek of the Week... drum roll please,... Robert McLaughlin (Gerdion)!

Robert McLaughlin
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Robert has been an ongoing contributor to the "What video games are you playing this week?" GeekLists sharing what he plays week in and week out, as well as participating in our lovely QOTD threads from time to time. It's been fun listening to him talk about what he plays, so here is a chance for all of us to hear him out some more!

Gerdion wrote:
Good week to you fellow Geeks! I'm not as tenured as some here, for I only really became active on VGG in the later part of 2017. Before then I had been a regular Boardgamegeek prowler with not much to contribute or say. I have no authority at all in boardgames (or even videogames really now that I think about it) but at least with videogames I can pretend like I know what I'm talking about.

My journey into videogames started back in the DOS days. A simpler time, where calling up a game meant typing a series of commands into a text prompt. Too little I was to know what it all was. All that mattered was that I could play my Mickey Mouse ABC's. This advanced onwards and as I grew my father introduced many adventure games of the time to me, such as Gadget, Myst and 7th Guest. This continued up until the dawn of the Playstation, and my parents finally gifted us with a game console. It was the start of many fond years of gaming with Sony, and as a child with no allowance and strict parentage we stuck with Sony for years after that. So it was, I had Playstation and PS2 at home and my friends provided access to what was also available as the years went on.

I read many books in my school years and so the heavy plot lines of RPGs were very appealing to me, and that is where most birthday money was spent. Final Fantasy especially had a special place in my heart, for such other RPGs on other consoles were not within reach until much later. Disgaea infected me early on as well - cementing myself as a ongoing fan to this day.

These days, PC is king, and it is through the PC that I've come to aquaint myself with games that I didn't have the chance to enjoy the first go-around. Not only that, my collection has swelled to an enormous degree due to the costs being at an all-time low. Despite my feelings towards earlier gaming ages, it is clear that this has been the best time to be a gamer.

My interests are not just limited to Gaming however. Fishing and camping were always fun, though these days much more rare experiences. I often think back to the days of high school where I would spend an afternoon simply with a backpack, fishing rod and bicycle and zigzagged through the Florida suburbs, hitting retention pods as I went. It was a calming time. One of freedom, exploration and of introspection. Camping came through the scouting program and with it, other more interesting but uncommon experiences such as rowing, sailing, archery and animal conservation.

These days, most of my time is spent at work, sleeping or taking care of my family. In the late hours of the evening though, I spirit myself away to the den, where I relinquish duty and indulge myself. Rocket League is an odd match for those who know me, but I've taken very well to it and I'm available for matches anytime around 12am MT. Otherwise I play whatever I take a fancy to. These days I have also been working hard on filling out our database so as a shameless plug - submit those Rep Images!!

Glad to be part of VGG - glad to be part of this community for well over a year and a half now!


I would love to play Rocket League with you some day but the time zones just don't match up. At least we can share our struggles and journey here on VGG

Here are Robert's answers to the standard Geek of the Week questions:
Gerdion wrote:
- What is the worst game you ever played (and why)?
I've delved through some trash. I can't possibly remember all the horrible stuff I've played but I'll pinpoint a very recent one in Demon King Domination. So what is it? It's a simple, single-battle game with multiple endings depending on how you performed. That's it. Not only does it barely qualify as a game, it is a clear rip-off and appeals to the worst. Technically Slime & Friends is worse gameplay wise, but this one takes it based on the subject matter as well. I won't expound any further. Just don't play it or waste your money.

- What is your favorite video game-related memory?
At the very end of elementary school and on the beginning of Middle School I had a close friend that I was inseparable from. One day, the house across the street from him went on the market - right as my parents were looking to leave the apartment we were living in. I obviously begged for us to take that house. We then ended up doing just that. How much my input influenced the outcome there I can only guess. I then had immediate access to my friend anytime I just opened the door and crossed the street.

What happened then was us spending each morning at his place before the bus arrived. It was a short period each day of about 30-45 minutes, but it was always what I looked forward to daily. Here, I was introduced to Ocarina of Time - which I had only seen in magazines before (as I was a Playstation guy and was never given an 'allowance' to purchase anything so pricey as a game console). My friend had beaten the game several times up until this point and so pushed me to complete it myself. Over the course of the weeks I played every weekday morning. Nothing was ever done for me. The most help I got were key nudges when I got frustrated. In that sense he was like a master in keeping me interested and letting me have my own victories. The day came when I finally defeated Ganon and had what was probably the single best day in gaming. Those days I'll not forget and when someone asks me about gaming in my youth I'll inevitably think back to our morning sessions, particularly with this game.

- How long was your longest single VG-playing-session ever (and what game(s))?
I've never gone on a gaming marathon - so there are few memories to draw from here. In middle school though I had a PS2 and a copy of Final Fantasy VII (yes I was getting into this way late) and I managed to get to the very end one night. I was close. I could taste it. I wasn't going to stop until I finished. I can't remember where I started the night, but I made it all the way to Sephiroth and completed the game - with no less than 7 hours of play time. I was exhausted at school the next day, but the immense satisfaction of completing the game was worth it.

- What is your current platform of choice?
Very clearly PC. With it I have played more games of greater variety than I ever have and it has allowed me to re-explore the greats of yester-year. With PC you really do have the greatest expanse of gaming at your fingertips. While it may have a bigger initial cost over consoles it more than pays for itself over the years and has greater utility than them in every respect.

- What are you playing now, and what will you be playing next?
Currently I am trying to play some things to help with community goals. I have my emulator warmed up and have spent time with Bust-a-Move and Kirby Super Star. I'll play some more Kirby Super Star peppered with a bit more from the SNES so I can get a good, solid 5 hours in with the system. On the side I'm playing more Re;Lordand plan on filling in some character rep images and entries as I do this. I've not done much with the Hadrcore List (I'm in trouble shake) but I'll correct that soon (I promise!).

- Do you use cheat codes?
Whoa now. You're making me feel old. We don't have cheat codes any longer, we have mods or DLC. I remember the age of big-head mode and the Contra-code. I use them but when I do depends on my mood. I mostly utilize cheats when I'm in the mood for mayhem. I think everyone likes to completely let loose and mod something like Skyrim to something completely unrecognizable. As for cheat specifically aimed towards making the gameplay experience easier - not as often. I will when I am completely frustrated and I had little compunction against using them when I was younger. These days if a game is completely stonewalling me and I'm not having fun, I usually just abandon it.

- What is your favorite contribution (of yours or of another user) to VGG (provide a link, if possible)?
You can't possibly ask me that! That's like asking what my favorite breath of air was. Ok I'm exaggerating, but I can't think of any one post, Geeklist or comment that really made me stand up and applaud over all the others. I've enjoyed the opinions and stories posted by all here.

If you had to twist my arm though, I would say that the ongoing efforts of this fellow do much to better my enjoyment of 'the geek':

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This upstanding Gentleman has taken on the work of maintaining the WVGDYPTW Geeklist and has very reliably opened each new week with a fresh list for us to fill. I visit these weekly lists more than any other so for him to always be here for us and keep that up is outstanding. Thanks Vyran and to all those before him who gave us our platform weekly!


And here are Robert's Top 5 Games of All Time, and everyone gets to guess which game he would keep if it were the only game he could have the rest of his life.

Poll
If Robert could only keep one game for the rest of his life, which one of these would it be?
  Your Answer   Vote Percent Vote Count
Rocket League
25.0% 4
Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time
43.8% 7
Disgaea 4: A Promise Unforgotten
18.8% 3
Kingdom Hearts II
12.5% 2
Portal 2
0.0% 0
Voters 16
This poll is now closed.   16 answers
Poll created by ooozan
Closes: Sun May 19, 2019 6:00 am


Congratulations, Robert! Have a lovely week!

Everyone, feel free to inquire some more about Robert and his gaming experiences.

For more information please visit the following:
https://videogamegeek.com/wiki/page/VGGeek_of_the_Week
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I'll start with the one and only important question. So Robert...
To you, what is the answer to Life, the Universe and Everything?

Also a bonus question to you, what is the story behind your username Gerdion? Why do you use Kibbles on other platforms?
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Congratulations!
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Welcome to the Geek of the Week Club Robert!
Always enjoy your posts as you seem to have some good taste in visual novels and more than once have come with a recommendation to me on what to play - and also often beaten me in adding screenshots to my games

How is the project going with playing with the wife?

And.... music in video games; Crank it up or turn it down/off?
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Enjoy your time Robert! I think your avatar is by far one of the funniest on the 'Geek.
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Congratulations Robert!
Hope you have a wizard of a week!
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Congrats Robert! Have a fun and fruitful week of gaming!
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Congratulation's, Robert! I enjoy reading your WVGDYPTW posts! Your gaming childhood reminds me a lot of my own. My small allowance was never going to enable me to buy a fancy new console, so outside of my SNES and PlayStation, most of my console experiences came at the houses of friends and family. But I'm sort of glad that was the case, looking back on it. I made a number of great memories that way.

I'll throw out some questions for ya! Three are gaming-related and the other three aren't.

1 Is your PC a custom build? What are the specs?
2 Which Final Fantasy game is your favorite?
3 Who is your favorite video game villain?
4 Do you follow sports? If so, which ones?
5 What kind(s) of music do you like?
6 How do you like your bacon? bacon

Enjoy your reign as VGG GotW!

Cheers!
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Congratulations, Robert! Enjoy your time as GotW!
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ooozan wrote:
I'll start with the one and only important question. So Robert...
To you, what is the answer to Life, the Universe and Everything?

Also a bonus question to you, what is the story behind your username Gerdion? Why do you use Kibbles on other platforms?


The answer is very clearly 42. The question though still eludes me. ninja

Also as to my username, Gerdion was the name of a character I came up with in high-school for the book I never ended up writing. I use Kibblesnbacon (or just Kibbles when length restrictions prohibit it) as it was a funnier username and others tended to react better to it. It is Gerdion here as that was what I chose back when I joined BGG. If you plan on playing with me, look for Kibblesnbacon rather than Gerdion and you'll find me.

CrazyCatman wrote:
How is the project going with playing with the wife?

And.... music in video games; Crank it up or turn it down/off?


Sadly, the project isn't going at all. We've been very busy and tired lately so we haven't gotten much done in the way of couch gaming together. She's doing a stint of training at work so that has made her especially less receptive and I more than understand. I'll check in Kathy again once the training is over and we'll see about accomplishing that goal though!

And music. Depends on the situation. Some games have good sound mixing and know when to dim the music to hear critical information. In that case crank it up! Otherwise if a game has you straining to hear what is being said then keep it down.

ghostpants wrote:

1 Is your PC a custom build? What are the specs?
2 Which Final Fantasy game is your favorite?
3 Who is your favorite video game villain?
4 Do you follow sports? If so, which ones?
5 What kind(s) of music do you like?
6 How do you like your bacon? bacon


1. Yes, it is a custom build. It's a bit out of date now, but it still handles modern stuff like a champ. i5-4670, Gigabyte GA-Z87-DS3H, 16gb Ripjaws 1866 DDR3, 256GB Samsung 850 Pro SSD, 1 TB Seagate Ironwolf, EVGA Supernova P2 750W, EVGA GTX 1080 FTW. Does it seem mismatched? Probably. But I didn't buy all this at once. It's needing an upgrade to the CPU, Mobo and RAM but I've been holding off on that since I've been very comfortable with Win7.

2. Final Fantasy 9 is my favorite. In seeing recent threads though, I'm clearly in the minority.

3. Very difficult question. For the best iconic villain that would have to be Ganondorf. With all his incarnations and how closely tied to his series he is, it is hard to beat him. That or Kane from Command and Conquer, though we'll pretend that the last game featuring him didn't happen.

4. I don't follow sports, but I don't dislike them either. I was never into sports when I was younger and now I am mostly just lost when games go on. I'll still watch them and I will happily go to a baseball game if invited. Just don't expect me to know who is who or how anything works. For example can anyone give me a satisfactory answer to "What does Off-sides mean?"

5. I like all sorts of music. I'm not as keen on some such as screamo metal, mumble rap, hee-haw country, but there are exceptions to those rules. I enjoy EDM the most but that is also dependent. There are some I can't stand and others which I listen to repeatedly. I'm a mixed bag there.

6. OOOOOH. I love it in all its forms! Extra crispy, kinda crispy, crumbled up, wrapped around steaks or shrimp, Canadian or British, Back or Belly, extra thick or super thin, peppered, smoked, brined or dipped in maple syrup. I love them all!
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Congrats Robert! Enjoy your time in the limelight.
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Congrats Robert!

Great story about your friend and Ocarina of Time - reminded me of a friend I had at that age and our experience playing Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness.

Since it's listed as one of your favorite games, what stands out to you about Disgaea 4?

I'm a latecomer to Disgaea. Loved the first game only a few years ago, own pretty much the whole series, but haven't taken the plunge on another one. Kind of want to, though!
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Gerdion wrote:
- What is your favorite contribution (of yours or of another user) to VGG (provide a link, if possible)?
You can't possibly ask me that! That's like asking what my favorite breath of air was. Ok I'm exaggerating, but I can't think of any one post, Geeklist or comment that really made me stand up and applaud over all the others. I've enjoyed the opinions and stories posted by all here.

If you had to twist my arm though, I would say that the ongoing efforts of this fellow do much to better my enjoyment of 'the geek':

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Quote:
This upstanding Gentleman




Quote:
has taken on the work of maintaining the WVGDYPTW Geeklist and has very reliably opened each new week with a fresh list for us to fill. I visit these weekly lists more than any other so for him to always be here for us and keep that up is outstanding. Thanks Vyran and to all those before him who gave us our platform weekly!


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Robert McLaughlin
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JohnRayJr wrote:
Since it's listed as one of your favorite games, what stands out to you about Disgaea 4?

I rather like the story in it though it does take a while to gain steam. The characters are especially memorable in 4 with my favorites being Desco and Fuka (I didn't take to the ones from Disgaea 3 much aside from Rasberyl).

The other thing that Disgaea 4 did well was add more features from before, but without adding too many. If I had to complain about anything from Disgaea 5 it is that they stuffed it with so much that I had a hard time wrapping my head around it all in the short time I spent with it. Disgaea 4 strikes a good balance to me.

Thanks for the question and remember to eat your sardines! One of the highest sources of omega-3s on the planet, sardines boast some impressive benefits: boosting heart and brain health due to their anti-inflammatory properties.
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Congrats
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Congrats Robert! I'm late to the thread because I forgot about these for a few months, but since JRJ already covered my Disgaea question, I do want to ask my standard question:
Do you have a favorite comedian? Care to share a clip?
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Gerdion wrote:
JohnRayJr wrote:
Since it's listed as one of your favorite games, what stands out to you about Disgaea 4?

I rather like the story in it though it does take a while to gain steam. The characters are especially memorable in 4 with my favorites being Desco and Fuka (I didn't take to the ones from Disgaea 3 much aside from Rasberyl).

The other thing that Disgaea 4 did well was add more features from before, but without adding too many. If I had to complain about anything from Disgaea 5 it is that they stuffed it with so much that I had a hard time wrapping my head around it all in the short time I spent with it. Disgaea 4 strikes a good balance to me.

Thanks for the question and remember to eat your sardines! One of the highest sources of omega-3s on the planet, sardines boast some impressive benefits: boosting heart and brain health due to their anti-inflammatory properties.

Congrats Robert!

Yeah I really like the characters in Disgaea 4 as well. Desco and Fuka are fantastic sub-characters, and I enjoyed the story arcs for both of them.

Disgaea 5 did add a lot, but I feel like they were great additions. I really miss the squad feature when I go back to previous Disgaea games. Also, the original release of Disgaea 4 didn't have the cheat shop, although the Vita one added it.
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GibbRS wrote:
Gerdion wrote:
JohnRayJr wrote:
Since it's listed as one of your favorite games, what stands out to you about Disgaea 4?

I rather like the story in it though it does take a while to gain steam. The characters are especially memorable in 4 with my favorites being Desco and Fuka (I didn't take to the ones from Disgaea 3 much aside from Rasberyl).

The other thing that Disgaea 4 did well was add more features from before, but without adding too many. If I had to complain about anything from Disgaea 5 it is that they stuffed it with so much that I had a hard time wrapping my head around it all in the short time I spent with it. Disgaea 4 strikes a good balance to me.

Thanks for the question and remember to eat your sardines! One of the highest sources of omega-3s on the planet, sardines boast some impressive benefits: boosting heart and brain health due to their anti-inflammatory properties.

Congrats Robert!

Yeah I really like the characters in Disgaea 4 as well. Desco and Fuka are fantastic sub-characters, and I enjoyed the story arcs for both of them.

Disgaea 5 did add a lot, but I feel like they were great additions. I really miss the squad feature when I go back to previous Disgaea games. Also, the original release of Disgaea 4 didn't have the cheat shop, although the Vita one added it.

Slightly off topic, but since I'm already really enjoying Disgaea 2, I'm annoyed that 3 and 4 aren't on PC. I'd prefer to play them in order, and especially as it sounds like each installment adds new features, I'm too afraid to jump from 2 to 5 especially if 5 has so many new features that even a Geek of the Week and Disgaea fan is overwhelmed!
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Robert McLaughlin
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Osirus wrote:
Do you have a favorite comedian? Care to share a clip?

That's a tough one. I don't watch tons of stand-up but I do occasionally listen to the comedy channels on XM. I can't decide between them so I'll choose two: Steven Wright and Mitch Hedberg. Steven Wright's deadpan delivery is hilarious on its own. I don't know many comedians but these two are always a treat to listen to. Rest in peace Mitch.





GibbRS wrote:
Disgaea 5 did add a lot, but I feel like they were great additions. I really miss the squad feature when I go back to previous Disgaea games. Also, the original release of Disgaea 4 didn't have the cheat shop, although the Vita one added it.


Oh I certainly agree! I think each of them are fantastic additions. It is just that when I stack them all together I start to lose track of it all. Then I realize later that I missed doing a few things entirely that were dumb not to do. Maybe I'm just getting old.

Osirus wrote:
Slightly off topic, but since I'm already really enjoying Disgaea 2, I'm annoyed that 3 and 4 aren't on PC. I'd prefer to play them in order, and especially as it sounds like each installment adds new features, I'm too afraid to jump from 2 to 5 especially if 5 has so many new features that even a Geek of the Week and Disgaea fan is overwhelmed!


Haha. Give it some time. With 1, 2 and now 5 getting the PC treatment it is only a matter of time for 3 and 4 to get it. Also see what GibbRS said - you might grasp it perfectly fine.
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A colleague and I tried to explain the Mitch Hedburg "I don't need a receipt for a donut" joke to our boss a couple of years ago. She didn't get it. I was so sad.

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Gerdion wrote:
Osirus wrote:
Do you have a favorite comedian? Care to share a clip?

That's a tough one. I don't watch tons of stand-up but I do occasionally listen to the comedy channels on XM. I can't decide between them so I'll choose two: Steven Wright and Mitch Hedberg. Steven Wright's deadpan delivery is hilarious on its own. I don't know many comedians but these two are always a treat to listen to. Rest in peace Mitch.

Excellent selections; I'm a fan of both for sure! In fact, I started my most recent humor column on a joke I wrote with Mitch Hedberg's voice in my head.

Last week, I was wearing a shirt from a blood drive that said "Blood Donor." Someone read the shirt, looked up, and asked me, "Oh, are you a blood donor?" And then I had to explain, "No, actually I'm not. I have a friend who is a blood donor... and a T-shirt donor. He is a very giving person."
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Gabe Hawkins
United States
Virginia
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Check out my music at toastandbananas.com!
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Feel free to GeekMail me your QOTD suggestions!
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Mitch would have had a Ford field day with Twitter. Wish he was still with us.

Edit: I'm bad at typing on a mobile device.
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Ryan S
United States
Plano
Texas
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What!? I finally get my very own video game, but it's a mobile game?!
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Osirus wrote:

Slightly off topic, but since I'm already really enjoying Disgaea 2, I'm annoyed that 3 and 4 aren't on PC. I'd prefer to play them in order, and especially as it sounds like each installment adds new features, I'm too afraid to jump from 2 to 5 especially if 5 has so many new features that even a Geek of the Week and Disgaea fan is overwhelmed!


Disgaea 5, like the other Disgaea games, introduces the features slowly, so it hopefully won't overwhelm you too much. As you reach certain parts of the story, things like the skill shop, squad shop, and quest shop will open one at a time.

Back on topic:

Since Nippon Ichi has shown that they're willing to make direct sequels to Disgaea games instead of just new ones, which would you prefer, Disgaea 6, or a sequel to Disgaea 2 (essentially Disgaea 2 D2)?
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Robert McLaughlin
United States
West Jordan
Utah
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Tasty Bacon! Crispy Bacon! I'd get it myself but I don't have THUMBS
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WHERE IS IT!? Where's the BACON??
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Good question. I'm torn on this (as I seem to be on everything) because while I would like to see new and unique characters, I love the prior ones and want to see more of them as well. I would go with Disgaea 2 D2 in this case but I would have a few demands - that we get to see
Spoiler (click to reveal)
Rozalin use her Overlord Zenon powers at-will

also
Spoiler (click to reveal)
"Grown up" Hanako and Taro with some badass moments of their own
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T'Leynti / Leonie
Netherlands
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Live long and prosper
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You proceed from a false assumption. I am a Vulcan. I have no ego to bruise.
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Congrats Robert,

d10-1 What is your favourite colour when playing a boardgame?
d10-2 Spring, Summer, Autumn or Winter?
d10-3 Do you play an instrument? If yes, which one and for how long already?
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d10-5 What would have been your name if it wasn't the name you have?
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