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Mehen or the Game of the Snake was one of the first known multi-player board games of ancient Egypt

Among the many different kinds of games that existed in ancient Egypt, this game, known as Mehen or the Game of the Snake, is one of the first known spiral track and multi-player board games played by the ancient Egyptians.

Its name (Mehen, meaning coiled one) was a name for both a snake-god and a board game, and it is believed that it held deep religious significance for players at the time.

It was played very early in Egypt’s history, and evidence of the game has been found dating from the Predynastic Period to the end of the Old Kingdom (about 2613-2160 BC).

The only multi-player ancient Egyptian board game Photo Credit

Back view Game board from King Peribsen’s grave, 2d dynasty ( 2770-2650 BC ) Photo Credit

Some of the most reliable evidence refers to the Old Kingdom from the paintings which were found in many Egyptian tombs, showing people playing the game.

More than a dozen sets of this game were found and the game seemed to have been played with pieces in the shape of lions and lionesses made from ivory and small spheres that resembled marbles.

The rules and the method of playing are unknown but it is thought that up to six players could play and it is considered the first multi-player game since all other games of the time were two player games.

Mehen game board from the tomb of Seth Peribsen in Abydos, on display at the Louvres Museum Photo Credit

Lioness game piece made from ivory Photo Credit

The center of the board was the head of the snake with dozens of playing rectangular spaces along the length of its body.

It is assumed that each player has three lion pieces and six marbles and the games start at the tail of the snake, which is along the outer edge of the board. Each player moves their marble-like pieces until they reach the snake’s head, so the winner is the player whose lion first captures all of his opponent’s marbles.

Mehen game with gemstones, from Abydos, Egypt, 3.000 BC, Neues Museum Photo Credit

Exhibit in the Oriental Institute Museum, University of Chicago, Chicago, Illinois, USA Photo Credit

After the Old Kingdom, the game died out, and it was no longer played in Egypt, but it was played and became popular outside of Egypt, in places such as Palestine, Syria, Cyprus, and Crete.

In the 1920s, anthropologists found a similar Arab game, played by the Baggara Arabs of the Sudan which was known as the “Hyena Game.“ It shared very similar characteristics of the board and the pieces to this ancient Egyptian game, differing in the fact that the ancient Egyptians allotted six counters to each player rather than one.

The True Story Behind Dirty John: a Mom-of-4's Whirlwind Romance Reveals Shocking Lies & Violence

The red flags in her relationship with John Meehan went up early, but Tonia Bales was slow to see them.

His stated age and the birthdate on his driver’s license didn’t match. After a two-year courtship, he didn’t invite his family to their 1990 wedding — and in watching the wedding video by herself later, Bales overheard for the first time that his college friends called him 𠇏ilthy John.”

His dismissive explanation: “They’re just drunk. It means nothing.”

“He was charming, and he seemed very interested in me, and of course that always feels good,” Bales tells PEOPLE of their early days, when she was a nurse and Meehan was attending law school, before he abruptly opted to change careers and let Bales support him during his transition.

By the time of their 2002 divorce, after Meehan got another woman pregnant, Bales, then a mom to their two girls, had learned he was expert at hiding secrets, including his past arrest for cocaine trafficking.

She𠆝 found his mother’s phone number and reached out. “This is Tonia. I’m married to your son John,’ ” Bales said. “She [his mom] was totally quiet. Then she said, ‘Oh Tonia, I knew you would call me one day.’ ”

“That just led to the whole conversation that he’s changed his age, he altered his name, he’s been arrested before, he’s been lying and cheating and messing around with other women his whole life,” Bales says.

But that was far from the end: Meehan’s deceptions would grow much darker — and more deadly.

A New Mark?

In 2014, Meehan found Debra Newell on an over-50 dating website, Newell tells PEOPLE in this week’s issue.

Their two-month courtship led first to marriage and then to tragedy, inspiring the hit scripted Bravo series DirtyJohn, itself adapted from a same-named podcast from the Los Angeles Times. A companion documentary, Dirty John: The Dirty Truth, premieres Jan. 14 on Oxygen.

Newell, a wealthy and successful interior designer looking for love after four failed marriages, 𠇌ouldn’t wait to spend my evening with him,” she tells PEOPLE of their initial connection.

“He𠆝 tell me how beautiful I was, ask me about my day and rub my back,” Newell says. “I was infatuated with him.”

• For more on the real-life romance and surprising revelations that inspired Dirty John, subscribe now to PEOPLE or pick up this week’s issue, on newsstands Friday.

Her four adult children were not. They quickly became skeptics as Meehan, who by then claimed to be an anesthesiologist just back to Southern California after a year volunteering in Iraq with Doctors Without Borders, moved in with their mother, evaded questions about his past, started driving only her cars and then tried to distance Newell from her kids.

They hired a private investigator who validated their fears: Not only had Meehan never attended medical school, he had a felony rap sheet that revealed he𠆝 served time in California and Michigan for stealing narcotics from hospitals where he worked as a nurse and had swindled and terrorized multiple other women he𠆝 met online.

In fact, Meehan had only been out of prison for a few days before his first date with Newell.

“I was in shock,” she says. 𠇊nd I was scared and angry.”

Verthisathurgiesh Mehen

In his youth, Mehen was a close friend of Arjhani, Uadjit, and Sepideh during their service in the Lance Defenders. Δ] Mehen and Tarhun served at the same time on the Lance Defenders when they were young. They even patrolled together, but never became friends. Ε]

Around 1450 DR, Ζ] Pandjed exiled Mehen from his clan because he had a homosexual relationship with Arjhani and didn't want to marry Uadjit. Η] Mehen went to live in the remote village of Arush Vayem, vowing to never again return to Djerad Thymar. ⎖]

In the Year of the Malachite Shadows, 1460 DR, Mehen adopted the infant tieflings Farideh and Havilar, who were left in a basket at the gate of the village of Arush Vayem. ⎗] Some years later, Arjhani went to the village to try to convince Mehen to return to Djerad Thymar, but in vain. Instead, Arjhani lived with Mehen and his family for a summer, yet at the end of the summer Arjhani abandoned them without saying a word. This act earned him the enmity of Mehen and his two daughters. ⎖]

In the Year of the Purloined Statue, 1477 DR, Havilar was in a barn attempting to summon an imp when she accidentally summoned a cambion from Malbolge named Lorcan. Her twin Farideh was tricked by Lorcan into entering into a warlock pact. When Lorcan returned to his home plane, he caused an explosion that leveled the barn and resulted in Havilar, Farideh, and Mehen being expelled from the village. ⎘]

After Mehen and his family were kicked out of Arush Vayem, they began working as bounty hunters. While pursuing a bounty on a Tormite priestess on the Sword Coast, they aided a caravan under attack by orcs and befriended a young runaway Tormite acolyte named Brin, who was traveling with the caravan to Neverwinter. Brin was the target of Mehen's bounty, who was attempting to return him to Cormyr. Brin convinced the trio that they should travel to Neverwinter and wait for the priestess to show up at the Tormite temple. ⎙]

Later, in the Year of the Dark Circle, 1478 DR, Mehen, Farideh, and Havilar returned their bounty, Constancia Crownsilver, to Suzail through the Waterdeep portal. Due to a lack of funds, only Mehen and Constancia were able to make the journey through the portal while Farideh and Havilar remained behind in Waterdeep. ⎚]

In the Year of the Nether Mountain Scrolls, 1486 DR, Mehen was working as a mercenary in Cormyr. During this time, Mehen and another dragonborn, Yrjixtilex Kallan, became close, but Mehen's insecurities didn't allow their relationship to blossom. ⎛] In Nightal of the same year, Mehen, along with his daughters and Brin, returned to Djerad Thymar, when he was invited by his aunt Verthisathurgiesh Anala, who wanted him to became a member of the clan once more. However, Baruz, Mehen's cousin, was found dead the same day Mehen arrived in the city. Anala hired Mehen to help her uncover the assassin of her son. ΐ]

As a "reward" for his services, Anala lifted Mehen's exile Γ] and chose him as the candidate of Clan Verthisathurgiesh for the elections to choose the new Vanquisher, which were expected to be celebrated in the Year of the Rune Lords Triumphant, 1487 DR. ⎜] ⎝]

In the wake of the Second Sundering in the 1480s DR, Mehen and Kallan, with the help of Uadjit, helped with efforts to rescue the survivors of the exchanging of lands between Toril and Abeir. ⎞] He was also one of the dragonborn who supported the decision to allow Namshita's refugees to live in Tymanther, in gratitude for Namshita's help against the Untherans. ⎟]

During the first Tymanther-Unther War, Mehen, alongside Tam and Mira Zawad, Brin and Dahl Peredur, helped with the ritual to bring Nanna-Sin back to life as an immortal being. ⎠]

Mehen and Kallan officially started their relationship after the war ended. ⎡]

John begins his rein of terror against other women.

John pleaded guilty to stalking a Laguna Beach woman, whom he met in the hospital when she was recovering from brain surgery. He introduced himself as her anesthesiologist, and they dated for a period, until she became uncomfortable with his suggestions that she transfer money into his bank account &ldquoto hide it from her estranged husband." When she ended their relationship, he sent her threatening messages and intimate photos of her to her family.

Final Thoughts

I don’t know who came up with these rules. But each and every rule just has that extra bit added into it making it just a little more complicated. No rule is just a rule. It’s the rule plus “also this happens if you do this” and “also you can do this if that happens”.

Maybe it’s just me, but I’m envisioning the rules for this game were either developed by a bunch of kids or by a bunch of Egyptology scholars sitting around getting drunk and pretending they have any idea how this game works.

Games of Mehen could last for hours.
How long do you think you could play without trying to sneak in a new rule and hope no one noticed?

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Medieval strategy game This is a medieval version of Terni Lapilli and also an ancestor of the modern Tic-Tac-Toe. In the Libro de los juegos this game is named: Alqueque de Tres. There are versions in crossed lines and boxes too, but not a version in circle.

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During my exploration of this site i became very fascinated. They have so many videos on many different topics. I watched a video on the case against Keisha and her struggle to fight against them. The second one was on making Facebook easier for blind people to enjoy. That was very impressive, who would’ve known it was that simple. The third one was the death of Erik Bauersfeld, voice actor for star wars. The site is very easy to navigate around. The tabs have different categories and so many different videos. I could’nt find there blogs though. I tried searching but only found videos. You can create your own watch list. They have a side bar with different videos easy to click. You can even personalize it through Facebook and connect and show with your friends and family. Watching newsy can even be watched on television like amazon and apple TV.

Debra Newell Just Revealed Some Jaw-Dropping Photos of John Meehan's Crash Pad

Debra Newell, whose story inspired Dirty John, shared some shocking images of where ex-husband and con artist John Meehan lived.

If you were totally invested in Dirty John , you weren’t alone. We were captivated by the shocking story of a manipulative, lying con man seducing and eventually terrorizing women (not to mention those stunning seaside sets!), quite possibly because the off-the-charts-crazy plot actually happened IRL.

Debra Newell, whose experience with the real-life "Dirty John," John Meehan, inspired the fictional miniseries, reminded us all of this again today when she posted some truly jarring images to Bravo’s Dirty John page on Facebook.

"Here are some of the photos of the home in Henderson. John was living there while I was in hiding for 7 months. This is what I saw when I entered the home after John's death,” Newell wrote. See the images below, and for more background information on Dirty John, catch up here.

Strewn with clothing and littered with trash, the Nevada apartment was also filled with pills and drug paraphernalia.

The photos reveal the disturbing chaos Meehan was comfortable living in.

It's seemingly a place where Meehan most likely continued using drugs. The apartment is a stark change from the Balboa condo he shared with Newell.

Psylisa's Guide to Mehen - 5/25/21

Another Dragonborn! It's as if Codename will be introducing some sort of Dragonborn synergy power in the future. maybe. In the meantime, have some Brimstone Angels affiliation that apparently isn't in the game yet either.

Mehen is both Grumpy and Gruff and uses those qualities to buff and bolster his allies, especially if those party members include Farideh and Havilar. When you want to add him to your formation, you can swap him with Nayeli (Slot 3).

-----Core Stats-----
Race: DragonbornClass: FighterAlignment: Neutral Good
Age: 48 Affiliation: Brimstone Angels
STR: 19DEX: 8CON: 15
INT: 13WIS: 12CHA: 14

Role: Support, Gold
Eligible for Patrons: Mirt the Moneylender, Vajra Safahr, Strahd von Zarovich, Zariel

Basic Attack
Double Strike: Mehen leaps out and attacks a random enemy with his Falchion, swinging down at first and then up with the second swing, scoring a hit each time.

Nothing really special here. It does generate two hits, so it's good against HP blob enemies, I suppose.

Grumpy: Mehen buffs Champions in his column and all columns in front of him based on the number of Grumpy stacks he has. He gains stacks based on the column he is in and loses stacks when himself, Farideh, or Havilar take or receive certain actions. The buff is significantly higher when he is close to 50 stacks (it falls off sharply on either side), and stacks cap at 100. The column position determines the rate at which stacks are added:

• Front column +1 stack/second
• Middle columns are prorated between 1-5 based on the column
• Back column +5 stacks/second

Stacks are removed based on the actions of Mehen, Farideh, or Havilar:

• if any of them attack -10% stacks (once per attack) • if any of them take damage -10% stacks (4 seconds of shared cooldown) • if any of them get a kill with a base attack -5% stacks (triggers for each kill)

Work to adjust where Mehen, Farideh and Havilar are in your formation to find the best spot to gain stacks as quickly as you’re losing them!

This ability is buffed by upgrades, equipment, and feats.

Buffs apply to the post-stack value.

Using Mehen solely in the back row without Havilar or Farideh will result in a 0% buff most of the time.

Works with Bulk Up and Usurp. For Usurp, you must position Arkhan behind Mehen.

Gruff: Mehen increases the effect of his Grumpy buff on Champions based on how many columns ahead of him they are. It is doubled for each column.

This ability is buffed by upgrades, equipment, and feats.

Buffs to this ability apply to the post-stack value.

Exiled: Kills by Farideh, Havilar, or Mehen grant 200% more gold.

This ability is buffed by upgrades, equipment, and feats.

Buffs apply to the post-stack value.

At level cap, this ability is 2304% base value.

Brimstone Angels: Increase the effect of Grumpy by 400% if Farideh is in the formation, and a further 400% if Havilar is in the formation.

There are no feat/gear/level upgrades for this ability.

Buffs apply to the pre-stack value, and stack multiplicatively.

You gain 5x DPS for having one of them, 25x for having both.

Cheer Up Pops: Increases the rate at which Grumpy stacks are added by 1 and increases the effect of Grumpy by 400%. We've Trained for This: Increase the effect of Exiled based on how far from the front of the formation Mehen is placed. Effect is increased by 20% for each column, stacking multiplicatively.

We've Trained for This offers a very low bonus. Even at a 4 column differential, you only get 107%.

Cheer Up Pops gives a 5x boost to Grumpy, however the cost is faster stack increase. This actually becomes meaningful (and quite detrimental), because if you aren't using Havilar and Farideh your stack count will be too high and yield a 0% buff.

Lightning Breath: Mehen leaps forward and breaths a cone of lightning that damages all enemies on the screen. If he damages more than 5 enemies then his Grumpy stacks are set to 50 and he gains and loses stacks at a reduced rate for 30 seconds.

Only really works if you hit at least 5 enemies with the breath attack

Stack fluctations are reduced to 10% value, and due to being set to 50 won't fluctate much to maximize his bonus

No, You're Grumpy!
Complete 1000 total areas with Grumpy stacks between 40 and 60

Place him in the 1st or 2nd column to keep control of his stacks while you clear levels

I found it best in the 2nd column with just Havilar

Slot 1: Global DPS
Slot 2: Global DPS
Slot 3: Grumpy
Slot 4: Gruff
Slot 5: Exiled
Slot 6: Ultimate Cooldown

There's not really any solid choices here, simply due to better options in each slot.

Qillek is a decent replacement for Caliope. If you don't have access to Briv, take him up.

Jaheira is really only useful due to Asharra's bonds and her race as a Half-Elf. Baeloth is a much better pick in the slot.

Mehen. well. pick anyone else in that slot, including Binwin. You can probably count on one hand with no fingers the numbers of times youɽ use Mehen.

The stack removal for Grumpy is very odd. It seems like it penalizes you for taking Farideh and Havilar along with Mehen, but due to how the stacks operate, Mehen by himself basically yields 0% DPS when in party. The entire ability was just frustrating to use, and really felt like you must use either Havilar or Farideh, if not both to maintain a decent buff. This made us both well. rather grumpy. When your party is at their wall, this tends to level out a bit, but stacks in the 70-80 range were easily maintained using solely Mehen, which meant a large portion of Grumpy is simply lost. Here's what we found with just Mehen in the party:

5th column: 90-100 stacks, which translates to 0% buff

4th column: 85-100 stacks, 0-12% buff

2nd column: 60-75 stacks, 80-550% buff

1st column: 35-55 stacks, 300-800% buff
note: your buff values will increase based on gear/feats and levels of Mehen, this is for comparison purposes to highlight the multiplier changes based on stack count based on column

Grumpy itself can hit about 5e6% base value (no gear/feats) at maximum level and

50 stacks from the back column.

The pre-stack buff for Brimstone Angels doesn't really matter in terms of pre-stack vs post-stack. The issue is that there's nothing to bolster the ability, so the benefits are rather marginal with only 2 boosts. You go from 5x for using 1 additional Brimstone Angel, to 25x for using both, that's it. It never increases beyond that. It's certainly nothing game-changing, and nothing to handicap yourself by using a character you wouldn't otherwise be using. However, with that being said, Mehen's other abilities such as Grumpy simply don't work well without Havilar and/or Farideh.

Gruff compounds this issue further. You really want to position Mehen in the very back, but Grumpy won't allow you unless you're throwing in a daughter to keep stack counts down. Without at least one of them in your formation, you're losing out on stacks of Grumpy, you can't take advantage of Gruff (due to positioning closer to your DPS), and you lose on Brimstone Angels. We can't see any player liking this functionality as it feels like you're always losing rather than gaining a bonus for using the trio. To top it off, Farideh is a magical-based DPS, and would want to take advantage of Ulkoria. Not only does Havilar prevent this, but Mehen doesn't have a magical-based attack and doesn't even count for Farideh's Pact Family. We want to like Mehen, but the utter reliance on Havilar and Farideh for Mehen's abilities to simply work meant that he was often functionally useless. Sure, he qualifies for all patrons and good chunk of variants, but does Farideh? Havilar? When you can't use them, Mehen becomes dead weight.

Mehen's Gold Find ability, Exiled is also functionally useless. It can't be used with Azaka, and near your wall only Farideh would be nabbing kills. It also interacts oddly with Hellish Rebuke.

Another oddity we found was Farideh's Pact Family. It doesn't work with Mehen, because well. Mehen isn't Tiefling. We felt this was a large oversight, and Mehen should at least be an honorary Tiefling for the purposes of Pact Family. It won't make a large difference, but it's something!

In terms of his specializations, it's also a bleak outlook. We've Trained for This yields about a 2x increase in DPS, while Cheer Up Pops may actually lower your DPS due to increase stack counts. Cheer Up Pops absolutely forces you into using both Farideh and Havilar during normal play. The stack count just increased way too fast for only one to keep up.

The one example of something somewhat working on Mehen is his Ultimate. We say "somewhat", because the swings in stack count are reduced, not eliminated. He doesn't outright stay at optimal stack count, but it's fairly close enough. The caveat here is hitting 5 enemies, which can be impossible if you are stuck on a boss level. Need some extra DPS on the last enemy attacking your formation? Too bad, doesn't work! Fighting a single boss with no adds? Oh, well, too bad!

For Farideh formations, you're locked out of using Havilar if you want to take advantage of Ulkoria. We feel the only path for Farideh's DPS to become competitive is through Ulkoria, and Mehen competes (poorly) with that. He has no magical base attack, and doesn't count for Farideh's Pact Family. Why am I desiring Mehen, again?

For Zorbu formations, you really only use him if you're also using Havilar to tank. And why would you do this?
For Asharra formations, he'll add another Dragonborn to Potpourri, but you lose out on a magical attacker for Ulkoria. Pass.

Arkhan gains little here, because Gruff increases Grumpy based on the columns ahead of Mehen the targets are, but Arkhan can only gain Usurp behind Mehen. Bulk Up works better with Mehen though, but Arkhan would be tanking and youɽ potentially lose out on Havilar (not to mention outright better tanks).

Overall, Mehen is one of the worst characters we've evaluated. He simply doesn't work by himself, his numbers are low if you do want to work him in properly, and he forces you into synergy that isn't well planned. The only saving grace Mehen has is his Ultimate, which doesn't even function to give you better stack control all the time.

Change Mehen's base attack to magical. Give him a flaming Sabre or a firebreath ability or something.

Allow Mehen to count as a Tiefling when used with Farideh for purposes of Pact Family. They are family, right?

Change the multiplier for Grumpy such that at high stack counts, the player recieves a 1x multiplier rather than a 0x. 0% means it does nothing, which is what it feels like using Mehen.

Change Exiled to increase global gold find per member of Brimstone Angels rather than on-kill and increase it based on the number of Brimstone Angels present.

Use the characteristics of any Brimstone Angel present in formation to qualify for variants and patrons.

Increase the base numbers for Grumpy. Even with all buffs and exactly 50 stacks, it should really be doing about e3-e4 more than it does.

Give his Ultimate a solid 50/100 stacks for the duration. Remove the requirement to hit 5 enemies.

Support: 1/10

Don't pick Mehen. Even if he's last for your kickball team, don't pick Mehen.

Only really works with either Farideh or Havilar present, optimally both.

Lots of hoops to jump through to maximize his buff, but it's not worth the effort.

Relatively low buff numbers that don't even compete against Spurt in his slot.

Affiliations for Mehen, Havilar, and Farideh show as None rather than Brimstone Angels.

Watch the video: Mehen - Broken Whisper