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English for RPGs – Part 02

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Well, it didn’t take very long to fill up another page, so, here we go:


affect (n) a mood or feeling
effect (n) the result of an action

The stirring music had a profound affect/effect on me. (Because we are talking about an emotional response, affect is acceptable, and because the mood followed the music, effect would work also.)
This medication has serious side effects. "cause and effect"
An "area of effect attack" is an "area-affecting attack."

affect (v) to make an impact on, to feign
effect (v) to cause

The music affected me deeply.
He affected an outrageous accent.
The disaster prodded the CEO to effect some changes. (“Effecting a change” is the most common use of this verb.)


A hex key is also known as an Allen wrench or key.


boarder (n) someone being given food and housing, someone who really wants to get on to your ship
border (n) an edge or boundary

Prepare to receive boarders!
The river formed a natural border between the two countries.


bear (v) to give birth to, to carry, support, tolerate [and a bunch of other stuff]
born past participle of bear (to give birth to)
borne past participle of bear (anything not related to giving birth to)

The first baby of the year was born two minutes after midnight.
The pathogen has mutated into an airborne strain.
We have borne this expense for too long.


cite (n) abbreviation for a citation
sight (n) something seen, an accessory for a firearm
site (n) a location

Do you have a cite for those statistics?
The laser sight is a popular firearm accessory.
Have you taken a look at this website?
The sight of the battle was horrific and bewildering.
The site of the battle was a valley nestled between two hills.


inconsistent (adj.) self-contradictory
inconstant (adj.) changeable, ever-changing

An inconsistency is something that will make your alibi fall apart.
When we are talking about the vicissitudes of life, or the fickle finger of fate, we are referring to “life’s inconstancy.”


lead (n) a soft and toxic metal
led (v) past tense of lead (li:d) to precede

Superman cannot see through lead.
Lead and I shall follow.
The results of the experiment led her to revise her theory.
The devaluation of the dollar led to hyperinflation.
We made several false trails to mislead the pursuit. The pursuers were misled by the false trails.


prescribe (v) to order or mandate
proscribe (v) to forbid

To prescribe is to say, “You must do something.”
To proscribe is to say, “You must not do something.”


role (n) an actor’s part, the part that a person or object plays [in a situation]
roll (n) a cylindrical bundle, a list of names (v) turning over along a surface

The dean’s role in the proceedings was to read the Honour Roll to the assembly.


their (adj.) possessive form for them
there (n) that place (adv.) at that place (pronoun) used in impersonal constructions
they’re contraction of “they are”

They’re going to pack up their things and take them over there.
Their journey began in London, and from there, they headed east. They’re hoping to reach Istanbul by August.
There is no justice.


to (prep.) [many, and my dictionary uses the word itself in about half the definitions]
too (adv.) excessively, also
two (n) II, one plus one

At a quarter to two, I’ll be going to the park to meet my friend. I hope that I won’t be too late, and if I am that he won’t be too upset. He’s a little quirky. He really marches to the beat of his own drummer. Did you want to come, too? We usually go to a nearby coffee shop. I get a double-double. Two sugars, two creams. I know that it’s too many calories, but I just can’t help myself. I have to run now, or I ­am going to be late.

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Updated 12-18-2009 at 07:57 PM by TAROT (More examples)



  1. kirksmithicus's Avatar

    gets me every time