As you read this, be aware that I am currently lounging on a small beach or reclining in a hammock, hopefully lost in the adventures of Harry Dresden and Phryne Fisher. Not together. Although that would be incredibly epic. Hrm…
I promised you tales of Nerd Wars. So let me tell you about Nerd Wars.
Actually, I thought I must have talked somewhere about Nerd Wars. It’s been a major part of my crafting life for two years now. But when I went to find my posts on it to c&p (okay, so I’m lazy), I’ve got nothin’. So to any of you who have heard all about this, I’m sorry to be redundant. But who knows, maybe you’ll learn something!
As I said in a previous post, after the 2012 Rav Games, I felt at loose ends. The Games had been incredibly focused and productive and fun. The wait until the 2014 Games felt interminable (little did I know what they would bring…) I wanted something else to do in the meantime. I’d seen icons around Ravelry with the Nerd Wars caption, but didn’t know what it was. Then the captain of the 221b team came into the 221b forum (they weren’t affiliated at the time) and asked if anyone wanted to join. So I checked it out. And haven’t left.
Nerd Wars is a game, inspired by all things nerdy and geeky. Players join teams based around their favorite nerderies, whether it’s a TV show, movie, books, art, science, genre, you name it. Each tournament runs for three months, and the teams reform each tournament, so there might not be the same teams every time, although the major teams do tend to reform every time. Then each tournament is divided into three rounds, with the round starting on the first of the month and ending on the 28th (which makes February a hard one, as there’s no rest days before the next round starts). In each round, there are five challenges. The challenge categories are:
Discovery: All things math and science
Encyclopedia: Arts and humanities
Nerdology: Geek culture (just like it says on the tin)
Giving Geeks: charity
Flexible Schedule: Works in progress and destashing
Every round, the mods set a specific challenge in each category. For example, this time around, the Discovery challenge is based on substitutes for silk and the science of polymers, the Encyclopedia challenge is the social construction and marking of time, the Nerdology challenge is squee (something geeky that fills you with joy) and the Giving Geeks challenge is support for besieged populations, like abuse victims, transgendered people or bullied students. For every category you complete, you earn points for your team. The Flex projects don’t have a specific theme, but they are worth fewer points.
You can also do a dissertation, which is a project that will take the whole three months to complete. These are worth a LOT more points. You still have to tie them in to one of the categories, and the dissertation proposals can be rather artful in their own right. For example, here is the proposal for a star chart shawl I made for my mother in Tournament 8 and for the spinning dissertation I did in Tourney 7 (and the completed turn-in, just because I’m pretty proud of it).
The new round started yesterday, so all this camping is getting a bit in my way. But the Tour de Fleece starts on Saturday (oh look, something else to explain! But I’ll save that for next week), so I’m planning to spin all my challenges this round. I’ve started the Discovery challenge by spinning a merino/bamboo blend which feels lovely in the bag, but is fighting me like a sumbitch on the wheel. the rest we’ll see as the month goes on!