[1249] Minty Maniacs

[1249] Minty Maniacs

Jelle’s Marble Runs on YouTube

This is not about a specific event in the marble league. I didn’t want to spoil anything.

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words, words, words…

Only one update this week

Unfortunately, there will be no second update this week.

Can someone identify this instrumental song?

Solved thanks to our reader K. Asay!

The song is Forever and Ever by famous composer Jeremy Soule from the obscure XBox game Azurik: Rise of Perathia.

Can someone identify this lovely instrumental piano piece?

I’ve always wanted to know its source.

It was almost certainly contained in a music package for Neverwinter Nights 1 mods once hosted on nwvault.ign.com and released before 2004. There’s now an archive website that hosts most of the original content, e.g. this music pack. Many music packages didn’t contain a detailed description of their content. The song could also have come from a Neverwinter Nights 1 mod.

The file has the name:


Using the prefix mus_* was common for all files in such music packages, e.g. I have one file named mus_mw_title.mp3 which is the Morrowind title track. The “js” from mus_js_1.mp3 could therefore be an abbreviation. But I’m not aware of any pre-2004 RPG with such initials.

If I remember correctly, I had files from mus_js_1.mp3 to mus_js_5.mp3, but I probably deleted the other four because I didn’t like them that much. I’m pretty sure that I never knew the source of this song so the original music package also didn’t contain any identifying information.

Character occurrence frequency 2008 to 2020

Here are two diagrams that show how often the main and supporting characters of Sandra and Woo appeared in each year. Note that there were only 20 strips in 2008.

You can click on the images for larger versions.

Main characters occurrence frequency 2008 to 2020

Supporting characters occurrence frequency 2008 to 2020

Here is the total number of occurrences:

  1. Sandra: 655 (52% of all strips)
  2. Woo: 436 (35%)
  3. Larisa: 392 (31%)
  4. Cloud: 260 (21%)
  5. Richard: 152 (12%)
  6. Ye Thuza: 112 (9%)
  7. Yuna: 91 (7%)
  8. Lily: 87 (7%)
  9. Zoey: 87 (7%)
  10. Sid: 66 (5%)
  11. Landon: 56 (4%)
  12. Luna: 53 (4%)
  13. Shadow: 53 (4%)

Notable characters who have not appeared in at least 50 strips yet are:

  • Butterfly: 38
  • Woo’s kits: 33 at most
  • The Devil: 32
  • Hitomi: 31
  • Michelle: 28
  • Ruth: 24
  • Seeoahtlahmakaskay: 24
  • Taylor: 19

Number of new strips per year:

  • 2008: 20
  • 2009: 105
  • 2010: 107
  • 2011: 106
  • 2012: 104
  • 2013: 100
  • 2014: 104
  • 2015: 105 (incl. 1 illustration)
  • 2016: 115 (incl. 17 MSPA inspired illustrations)
  • 2017: 105
  • 2018: 96 (incl. strip #1031 with seven rows)
  • 2019: 97 (incl. 2 illustrations)
  • 2020: 95 (incl. 2 illustrations)
  • Total: 1259

The Zodiac 340 has been solved!

The Zodiac 340, the second-most famous unsolved encrypted message after the Voynich Manuscript, has been deciphered by code breakers David Oranchak (USA), Sam Blake (Australia) and Jarl Van Eycke (Belgium)!

Looking for editor for Gaia making-of book

I’ve received enough applications already. Please don’t apply anymore!

As you may know, the Gaia anthology will be supplemented by a making-of book. The book is now almost finished and already in a pretty good shape in my opinion. I’m now looking for an editor, who must be a native speaker, to give it a last editing pass.

The editor must look for remaining spelling mistakes, grammar errors and phrases that sound off to a native speaker. As the book isn’t meant to win a literary prize, I’m not interested in (more expensive) in-depth editing. In particular, I’m not interested in extensive discussions about minute details. Moreover, significant changes would break the page layout, so those should be kept to a minimum.

The text has 24,000 words and comes in form of a nicely formatted Microsoft Word document. I’d suggest that the editor provides the fixes and comments by using Word’s editing features. But I’m open to another workflow as long as it doesn’t result in too much additional work on my end.

If you’re interested, please send your application to novil@gmx.de which must include:

  • Your rate for editing the book
  • A short description why you think you’d be a good choice (references, etc.)

I can pay with PayPal or Transferwise.

There will probably be additional editing jobs in the future.