Ultimate Guild Website Plan + 25 man mumble voice server for a year, giveaway courtesy of Enjin.com


Yes, my friends, I am still the Bear. Don’t let the concept of a prize giveaway scare you. I haven’t changed anything, still no paid ads, nothing like that.

What has happened is that Maxim of Enjin.com contacted me, and let me know he’d be willing to giveaway a prize pack of the services they offer to one of my readers… no strings attached. Gratis. Just, hey, check out these cool folks and see what they do, and somebody gets a hellaciously sweet prize of guild website design and hosting, and a 25 person Mumble voice server for a year… free.

Pretty sweet offer, right?

Now, we’re all fellow travellers on what the ancients still persist in calling the information superhighway.

I personally like to call it “this new thing of ours”, and I say it in a suitably Machiavellian, Godfather type of voice. I think it deserves that level of implied menace, considering the all-pervading evil that is spam that spreads wherever the internet reaches.

Back on point, we’re all experienced purveyors of internet culture here. We know the drill. Person has popular website and craves pagehits, company has product they’d like to get in front of desired demographic reader eyeballs, so company offers prize giveaway. Website is giving away free loots, people are drawn to website through word of mouth, company gets eyeballs on datas, website gets pagehits, somebody gets loots, everybody wins.


That plan kinda falls apart when I consider that I don’t really want more strange people reading the blog. I like YOU folks who read now, you’re all really cool. Yes, even you. Your comments are fun and make me think or teach me new things, or point out new music, books or movies for me to check out. Heck, without you, I never would have developed my obsession for Top Gear. And some of your emails of encouragement, you know, it really gets to me sometimes. I certainly feel I get a lot more out of our relationship than you do.

But these giveaway things… you offer free stuffs, and next thing you know you start attracting strangers into the mix, it all becomes serious business, and people start expecting you to, like, perform or something.

For the record, if you’re a new reader, we don’t play that silly ‘content’ game around these parts. Way i see it, if you want some actual content worth reading, hey… that’s what the other bloggers are for. I’m just here for… you know, why am I here? I never stopped to think about that before… hmm. You know, now that I think about it, I have no idea what I’m doing here.

Oh wait… to give Cassie documented evidence for any future court procedings.

Like I said, Maxim offered a really sweet prize pack for one of my readers, out of the blue.

I thought that was really damn nice of him, I may not want stuff myself, but I’m ALL for giving stuff to readers.

So, I told him to fire up a solid, professional, “all in” presentation explaining the services they offer. The way I figure it, if he’s going to give someone a nice prize package, the least I can do is give him a strong opportunity to say everything that he’d like to say to potential new customers.

So here’s Maxim, to tell you all about Enjin.com and the services they can provide for your guild website and Mumble voice server needs.

At the end, Maxim will explain what you have to do in order to be entered and eligible to win the prize. Don’t fret none; all it really consists of is leaving an appropriate comment to this post, explaining why you think your guild should win the prize. That’s not all that hard to do, right?

Having once set up a guild website and voice server before, I certainly know how expensive it can be, but how critical it is to fostering that feeling of teamwork and togetherness you want in a strong, happy guild that raids. So, thank you very much to Maxim for his generosity, and good luck to all readers that leave comments to enter!


Hey everyone!

My name is Maxim, I’m the lead designer and co-founder of www.enjin.com. Firstly I’d like to say a big thanks to John for letting me talk about Enjin. At the end of this post we are giving away a prize of 1 year hosting on our Ultimate plan + a 25 slot voice Mumble server.

So what is Enjin? Enjin was built with one goal in mind, to be the most flexible and feature rich guild hosting platform on the web, especially for World of Warcraft.

What makes Enjin better than the other services, or rolling your own site? We are obsessed about quality, that’s why we have spent years perfecting the ultimate guild platform with high-end tools and continual integration with the latest WoW features. We do our best to give guild masters the power to create the most unique community website possible with absolute ease. Here are some of our feature highlights:

Total creative control. Customize everything.
Get the deepest level of control over any pages on your website.
Drag-and-Drop any content you want anywhere on your pages with our easy-to-use page editor.

Blazing Fast & Full Featured Forums
Your community will love it. Top-of-the-line, feature rich, robust and fast. It’s
fully integrated with your website for easy management and customization.

Stunning Customizable Themes
Select from a huge variety of stunning World of Warcraft themes.
Create your own WoW themes with our in-depth easy to use Theme Editor.

DKP & Raid Management
Top-of-the-line Raid & Loot management system. Includes support for EPGP, Zero Sum, Loot-council, Simple DKP, Suicide Kings, Head Count. Including XML imports and WoW item support.

Raid & Event manager
Featuring the most advanced raid planner online. Sync directly with the WoW armory calendar.

WoW specific Widgets
Track your Boss Progressions, display your guild level and wow progress rankings and much more.

Advanced Gallery
Create albums, quickly add captions, order albums and images with drag and drop controls. Tag images with your game characters and much more.

Mumble voice hosting with premium plans
Crystal clear voice hosting + automatic integration with your site users.

Here’s a few featured guilds on Enjin already:

Winds of Creation (http://windsofcreation.enjin.com)
Escendia (http://www.escendia.com)
Imperium Guild (http://www.imperiumhq.com)

And now for the prize details;

We are giving away an Ultimate Plan + 25 man mumble voice server for 1 year (valued at $350).

It’s easy to win! All you need to do is leave a comment to this post giving your reason why your guild should win the prize. 

At the end of one week from when this post goes live, we will randomly select a winner.

If you miss out on the prize, no worries, just email us at info at enjin.com and mention Big Bear Butt and I’d be happy to give anyone 1 free month of premium hosting.

Hope to see you on www.enjin.com soon!

Girl Genius contest complete – Winners announced!

The Girl Genius contest is now complete.

Congratulation go to our two winners!

In first place, as determined by your votes, is David the Fireballing Mad Science Teacher, you clearly struck a nerve with the evil gleeam in your eye. Or was that just reflected fire?

In second place with a commanding following was Wren for his stirring composition highlighting his urge to experiment on anything that comes near him… I have to wonder if he experimented on himself first to make sure it was safe BEFORE modifying his cat Wendy, or if it was the other way around.

I prefer to think that he modded himself first. That’s just how I roll. 🙂

As the winners, both of these fine folks will have Girl Genius volume 1: Agatha Heterodyne and the Beetleburg Clank winging their way to their respective doorsteps.

I’d like to thank all of the contestants for their fine work and urge to mad science, and for taking the time to get involved and have fun. I really liked all of your submissions.

Really, thank you all.

And to my readers who voted, a hearty thank you as well!

Your Girl Genius Contest Contestants!

I’ve had five imaginative entries for the Girl Genius Mad Science contest.

Just as I’d hoped, the entries were fun, free spirited, inventive and cool. I couldn’t be happier. You’re gonna love ’em.

Here’s the deal. I’m going to post the entries, along with a brief description from the creator. At the end of the post, once you’ve seen all five entries, there will be a poll. Sinply choose your favorite.

The top two poll fan favorites will be declared winners one and two, I will mail them their prizes, and everyone gets the recognition they deserve for their awesome ideas.

First contestant:
Robotic Wren and Wendy

This is my hopefully “good” entry, me (Wren) and my cyber-kitty Wendy. My wife did all the photo work, while me and the kitty got to play dress up!

Second contestant:
David the Fireballing Mad Science Teacher

My alter ego is that of a science teacher 🙂 Somehow I’ve convinced a reputable organization to allow me the responsibility of crafting the minds of their young ones. I haven’t put too much effort into learning how to photoshop my pics, so I’d like to send in a real one. A student got a great shot of me in the prep room at school one day.

This shot is my facebook profile pic and most of my WoW friends have made some mage jokes. The coolest thing about it is the look on people’s face when they see you do this for the first time. The second coolest thing though is launching huge fireballs off of your hands.

I haven’t done any digital alteration of this picture save for maybe adjusting contrast or lighting.

I like to think that I have a bit of an alter ego when I’m at work in front of young minds, and I think some of them may see me as a bit of a mad scientist. If they think it’s cool and keep exploring science, then I’ve done my job. Hope you like the picture, Dave.

Third contestant:
Commander Braithwick and the Ghost of Hades by Ron Ward

Due to the length of Ron’s text story entry, I’ve placed it at the very end of this post (after the poll), and you can read it, in full, by clicking on the “more” tab.

Fourth contestant:
Mad Science Mech Mouse! by Tesh

This is an idea I’ve been sitting on for a while, and just finally put into digital paint tonight. There’s no background; I tried but couldn’t find anything I liked that would fit into the schedule I have. 😉

So, here’s hoping you like it! There’s definitely some backstory here, but in a nutshell, this is a small autonomous ‘bot that has managed to scavenge some repair parts… of bone. It’s best not to ask quite what critters died to provide this little ‘bot with its gear, or how they died. It’s enough to know this is a scavenger ‘bot in the deadlands of the Northwatch. Well, that, or nightmare fuel like the stuff in the 9 movie. Later, Tesh

Fifth contestant:
The Fruit-Fed DeLorean by Symbiode

I made this the other day in Garry’s Mod, then I remembered you had a contest (or your blog reminded me 😉 ). It seemed Mad Science-ey enough, hope you like it!


Okay, that’s all five contestants’ entries. I think you’ll agree, they all show creative, inventive mad science flair. 🙂 Now it’s time for you to do your part… vote for your favorite! The poll will be up until Tuesday night January 25th (midnight Central US time)

Which was your favorite Girl Genius contest entry?


Continue reading

The BBB Girl Genius Contest!

To celebrate the release of Agatha H and the Airship City by Kaja and Phil Foglio, I’m going to have a little contest.

You can’t have a contest without some kind of prize, so here’s what the lucky winner will receive;

Girl Genius Volume 1: Agatha Heterodyne and the Beetleburg Clank, in softcover!

The first volume of the awesome Girl Genius webcomic; the perfect synthesis of Johannes Gutenberg’s mad science creation and the Foglios’ mad science imaginings, brought directly into your home!

Why, the very act should feel slightly edgy!

But enough about the prize, how do you, the reader, go about obtaining this classic of modern iMADgination?

It’s quite simple… deceptively so.

You have to bring your own mad genius into play!

Using your imagination, and whatever artistic talents you may have, bring your favorite character creation and the concept of mad science together… and then send your juxtaposition of imagination to me here at the Big Bear Butt. (email to tigerlordgm AT yahoo DOT com)

It’s not about World of Warcraft, although you can use your favorite character from WoW if you’d like. It’s not about screenshots, although you can choose to submit one if that’s what the mad little neurons drove you to do when they got all excited up in your cranial housing.

What it takes is a character, an avatar, an alter ego of yours from a game or story of some kind, and your placing that character into a context highlighting and celebrating the whimsical genius and enthusiastic inventiveness that is mad science.

You can send in screenshots, short stories, movies (or links to movies posted by you on YouTube), songs, pictures of sculpture or knitted scenes, or anything your mind can imagine and that you would love to show off. The main thing is, it has to have been created by YOU.

Heck, create a cake sculpture and send in a picture, whatever you’d like. It’s not meant to be work, it’s meant to be fun! How your creativity is expressed is up to you!

I will gladly accept screenshots or pastiches of your character in-game amidst the panoply of rendered mad science… bless those gnomes and goblins for their hard work.

I will accept all submissions , beginning today and lasting throughout the week, ending on Friday, January 21st.

The weekend of January 22nd – 23rd, Cassie and I will review all submissions, and pick our favorites to go up on the blog for YOUR votes!

That’s right, the final winner will be determined by you! Well, the collective ‘you’ of readers that choose to vote.

So put your best set of thinking goggles on, and get hopping! Time is running out!

Again, email your submission (or a link to your submission) to tigerlordgm AT yahoo DOT com!

The BBB would like to inform all potential contestants that this contest is being held completely under the direction and control of the BBB. Prizes are submitted by the BBB, shipped by the BBB, and any issues are wholly the fault OF the BBB. Phil and Kaja Foglio are completely unaware of this contest, and should not be bothered with any questions or concerns ABOUT this contest. Failure to understand this may result in being blasted by a death ray. Thank you.

The BBB Arthas book contest – the winners announced!

The decisions were difficult to make. I want to be very clear about this. We received a lot of great entries, and every single one of them was very well written, and in almost all cases it was easy to tell that a lot of energy, a lot of enthusiasm, and a lot of your personal thoughts and imagination were caught up into your stories.

In choosing the winners of the contest, we tried to pick the stories that we loved the most that embraced and ran with the concept of bringing your own character into a personal moment with Arthas, as we defined in the original post.

There were a great many stories that were extremely well written and imaginative, that we felt were great… but just did not fulfill that one rule, that it be about you interacting directly with Arthas.

In the end, however, we could not simply disregard every entry because they chose to write about or around arthas rather than face to face. It was also about imagination, after all.

So we chose four winners from the group that wrote a story of their character directly interacting with Arthas, and one winner that wrote an extremely imaginative story weaving their in game activities with the recent patch shenanigans, into a story where the presence of Arthas was there, but there had been no true interaction between them.

So here we go, the list of winners who will be receiving a book. Over the course of the weekend, I will be sharing those stories with you, one story per post. I think their work deserves it.

A huge thank you to everyone that entered. I only wish I could give every one of you a book, because you far surpassed my wildest dreams with your creativity, your ingenuity, and your passion.

In no particular order the winners are –

Malphailuron of Eredar (also known as Warriorpanda) with a story about the desire of preventing the evil that would be the Lich King… tempered with a love and trust in the faithfulness of the Light.

Hannelore with a story that, while short, invested an incredible amount of emotional power, of passion and dread into her brief encounter with the Lich King that made me want to see a lot more of her adventures.

Cowsareus of the Twilight Hammer EU, who wrote a stirring story of a Druid seeking to work in the way of nature, preparing for a future spring right at the start of the most brutal winter.

Kraggette of Anvilmar with a story of intrigue and betrayal on the very eve of war against the Banshee Queen.

And, last but not least, Ærynn Lómëhtar with the entry that, as I said, may not have quite fulfilled the concept of a face to face encounter with Arthas… but was our choice to represent all those that went nuts with great stories that just didn’t follow the rules.

Congratulations to all of you, and to everyone that wrote such stirring stories.

All of the entries will eventually be posted in an archived format later, so that all of them can be enjoyed as they should. Just because these five were the winners in no way means the other stories were bad. Far from it. Some of them were just incredibly wonderful, including the POEtic efforts of Krizzlybear, and the explosive fun of Honorshammer. Those stories certainly should NOT just vanish into the darkness.

But in the meantime, the winning five will be here on the blog this weekend!


Contest is closed… thank you for your entries!

As of now, every entry in my inbox has been properly filed, and the contest is closed.

I had a much stronger turnout that expected, and each and every entry was of exceedingly amazing quality. There are a LOT of excellent writers out there amongst you, and to be honest I didn’t expect to only get great entries. I had thought that at least a few of you would have tossed in a lame entry. No such thing occured, they are great one and all.

Which is a big pain in the butt, since they are so well done and imaginative. It’s gonna take me a bit longer than I expected to read through them all, and take notes, and compare with Cassie, and make the final decision.

Sooo….. it’s probably going to be late Friday afternoon/evening before we announce the winners. Sorry about that.

Still…. great job to everyone that submitted an entry. Just amazing. You folks are amazing.

I’ll be back with your update Friday!