University of California

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Uc-seal

If Sauron gets his hands on the seal of the University of California, he will use it to summon his master Oprah Winfrey. Shown here is the very moment Sauron last used the seal to summon Oprah, at the end of the Second Age. The hand of Oprah can be seen breaking through from the void in which she was imprisoned by the Valar.

The University of California was founded in 1968 by giant reptilian hippies from the planet Zarkon. It is the 56th State of the United States of America, and owes its economic success to the fact that it is the only state of the union to abolish private property and become a communist utopia. The university is broken up into campuses, each of which has its own strengths and weaknesses. These are summarised below. Study them carefully before choosing one.

UC Berkeley

  • Strength: 18/12
  • Intelligence: 9
  • Wisdom: 8
  • Charisma: 16

Berkeley is a chaotic neutral thief/barbarian. It has a +2 Rod of Lordly Might, which comes in handy for smiting wayward hippies, however, its unstable alignment makes it dangerous to have at your back.

UC Davis

  • Strength: 18% alcohol by volume.
  • Nose: plummy, hints of oak, kiwifruit, and cut grass.
  • Flavour: mildly acid with deep tannin structure.
  • Mouth feel: gritty.

Davis can be enjoyed now, but will improve with age. It has been proven to cause cancer in fewer than 5 percent of rats.

UC Irvine

  • Strength: 10
  • Intelligence: 20
  • Dexterity: 22
  • Constitution: 16

Irvine is a level 20 Elvish Wizard. It possesses the Amulet of Yendor, which grants it the power to teleport out of the Community Portal at will, but also drains 10 magic points per turn. Irvine is powerful, but beware, only one of you can leave the Portal with the Amulet.

UC Los Angeles

  • Strength: resists physical attacks well.
  • Weakness: easily harmed by cold.
  • Special Ability: berserker frenzy.

To activate UCLA's berserker frenzy, wait until Raiden appears, then jerk the joystick left while pressing all the buttons in sequence with the theme music. This will only work if you fight Raiden before level 5. If you reach level 5 and have not seen Raiden, your best bet is to demand a refund.

UC Merced

  • Strength: ability to curl up into a little ball to defend itself from predators.
  • Weakness: vulnerable to bright lights.
  • Special Ability: sonar.

Merced is well camoflaged in its own habitat, and able to endure long periods without water. If you are trapped, you can throw it at your enemies and retrieve it later.

UC Riverside

  • Special Ability: good with children.
  • Other Features: broad powerful shoulders, winning smile, manly chest.
  • Height: 6 foot 2 inches

Riverside is a life-size statue of Tom Jones, carved out of dilithium crystal. It is very heavy, but of high intrinsic value, and can be exchanged for many useful goods and services.

UC San Diego

  • Atomic Mass: 88.3
  • Atomic Number: 45

UCSD is the second transition metal of the fifth period. It is relatively inert, but mildly radioactive, and decays back into Riverside with a half-life of 1.3 million years. Its main uses are in the tobacco industry, as a catalyst, and to coat the outer surface of Michael Jackson. It is otherwise completely useless.

UC San Francisco

  • Surface Temperature: 50 degrees Kelvin.
  • Composition: mostly liquid hydrogen with occasional ammonia crystals and a hard rocky core.
  • Weather: blustery.

To use San Francisco's gravitational field to slingshot out of the solar system, you must be travelling at between 50 and 60 kilometers per second, and able to achieve a stable orbit.

UC Santa Barbara

  • Habitat: under the bark of trees, in small crevices, and, where conditions are wet enough, the forest floor.
  • Breeding: lays one pale blue egg, typically in a pile of decomposing vegetable matter.
  • Call: an intense tintinnabulating drone.

UC Santa Barbara is small enough to carry around with you, but its soft body can easily be inadventently damaged. You would be well advised to store it in a rigid case. Speak to it and caress it frequently, and it will emit cooing sounds of delight.

UC Santa Cruz

  • Weight: 2 kilos, but seems much lighter.
  • Shape: roughly cubical.
  • Composition: a mysterious silvery metal.

UC Santa Cruz was found under the face of a retreating glacier. When humans touch it, they are able to see distant things very clearly, and read the minds of others. With these visions come others - some of things long past, some of things that are yet to be - but these visions are unclear and disturbing. Frequent contact with Santa Cruz extends life far beyond its natural span, but also leaves one with unbearable longings, as if for a world that no longer exists.

UC Sunnydale

  • Strength: Look, we all know you're going to have to transfer out in season seven, so let's make things simple and choose another campus right now, k?

Whenever you do anything at night, roll on the encounter table to see what vampire or nasty creature attacks you. On a roll of 4 on a d4 Buffy also appears. If this is season four, military vampire hunters appear on a roll of 6 on a d6. You die. You become a vampire. Go play Call of Cthulhu.

Voltron

When you have a degree from each of the UC campuses, you may combine them to form Voltron. Voltron has all of the powers of each campus, and none of the weaknesses. To form Voltron, pile your degree certificates together, and point the apex of your power crystal at them. When it begins to glow, raise your arms vertically above your head, and shout "By Gorthaur's hammer, you will be avenged!"

At this point Voltron should appear. If he does not, go back and make sure you completed all eleven degrees. Check that you activated UCLA's berserker frenzy before level 5, that Santa Barbara is still alive, and that Irvine's amulet was not a cheap plastic imitation.

You may only form Voltron once every 500 turns. Do not do so until your need is great.

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