Wednesday, December 24, 2014

| Merry X-man

Have a great holiday, gang!

Finally got around to playing the copy of Mr Jack: Pocket that I got from Elrick at the last man-con. It was fun! It's SUPER light, but the rulebook was always kind of daunting (not a great English translation) and I just never bothered trying to learn it. Anyways, it's actually a pretty fun, super fast, filler. One player is Mr Jack and the other player is Sherlock and his gang, hunting him down. I will bring it back to Mancon to get some plays in! It's actually pretty easy, but you know how sometimes rules be looking crazy when you have no idea what's going on.

Sunday, December 21, 2014

| Unrelated: Awesome shows n stuffs

Just got done binge-watching True Detective season one. Wow. That was amazing. 100% recommend.

| ...and on that note

Arena Commander 1.0 alpha just got released. Whooooo boy, lotsa goodies to read up on!

Sweet Linkage

Saturday, December 13, 2014

| Epic KS Shame Post

To date, I have only ever done one Kickstarter:

Star Citizen – DELIVERED (partially) : It's the game made for sim/gamers by sim/gamers, with no studio interests to satisfy. The stretch goals are crazy ambitious, but I'll be damned if it doesn't look like they're pulling off the bigger stuff already. The Arena Commander (dogfighting module) has already been released as an alpha and I'll say that I'm pretty impressed. The graphics are solid, the interaction with Voice Attack is amazing. I think the original kickstarter was only asking for 1.5M to make "the game", and had some minor stretch goals for the next couple million above that... and when it went live it blew all existing KS fundraisers away. I think when their KS campaign ended, they had pulled in 10-15M from KS directly and another 10-15 from the website. With ongoing fundraising still happening, they are now 100% crowd funded and I think approaching $60M, which is nuts.

Friday, December 12, 2014

| The Kickstarter Shame Post

Some of us, I won't volunteer who, have gotten a little out of hand re: Kickstarter.  One of these fine gentlemen started an email thread for us to post our shame and I think I'm ready to stand up and accept my shame in public, so here is my list of Kickstarter shit that I have spent and blown money on since the inception of Kickstarter...


D-Day Dice – DELIVERED I loved this when it was a print and play, and this was my first foray into KS, so it was exciting to watch all the stretch goals build – it was like I was getting so much stuff for ‘free’!!!!  Of course, all that free stuff was just there to offset the cost of these fuckers hosing me on Up Front, but more on that later.  I think I played the KS version of this once or twice, and it really isn’t a bad game, but I don’t see it hitting the table anytime soon.  I still can’t pull the trigger on selling it at Kubla, and I don’t think I’d get much for it anyway, so it sits in my garage.

Gunship: First Strike – DELIVERED Second foray into KS, and I felt really, really bad for the designer.  He was like a part time worker in a sign shop, lost his job, and the only thing he had going for his was this KS.  I’ve never played the game and I’ve heard it was pretty stale.  Sold at Kubla for pennies on the dollar.

Flash Point: 2nd Story, Urban Structures – DELIVERED Success!  This one got me the base game, which I missed the OG KS for, and these expansions (which included the [at the time] sexy minis).  I would call this a keeper, its always fun to play, and we have yet to really sink our teeth into it and explore all the boards and additional rule.  I think that speaks volumes for how fun the base game is, much like the first scenario for Aliens or “Torch the Toilet” from Space Hulk.

Drunk Quest – DELIVERED Funny on paper, a fucking disaster in practice.  Worst drinking game ever.  Played it at Cayucos and I have never enjoyed a Lagunitas Sucks less than when I essentially had to chug it, immediately followed by a Sumpin Sumpin, because Peter played a grip of cards on me.  A fittingly sold this game while drunk at Kubla.  I remember trying to pitch it to a girl in the flea market by saying something like “hey, you like the kind of girl that likes to drink to have fun” or some such shit.  She didn’t buy it.

Unexploded Cow – DELIVERED No explanation for this one at all.  It was cheap?

Airborne in Your Pocket – RIP This is a sad collateral loss due to the fuckers over at Valley/Radiant Games stealing a bunch of money from backers as well as defaulting on a private loan.  Zombie in Your Pocket was neat, so adding WWII to it seemed like more fun.

Dreadball – DELIVERED I liked this game, but the more I think about it, it seems like a lot of work to get back into it.  I have no one to play it with and built a fantasy themed board for it to use with my painted Blood Bowl teams, but the likelihood of me playing it again is slim to none (See Dreadball Xtreme below).  I love sports games but I think I need them a little bit more based in reality than this one was with three different goals you could shoot at and no stoppages of play, the ball just recycles after a point is scored.

Up Front – LIKELY RIP See Airborne in Your Pocket.  SUPER FUCKING PISSED about this on not making it.  I just wanted an updated version of the cards and counters, and then they started throwing all this extra stretch goal stuff at me, how could I say no??!?!  Well, those assholes duped me, they have my money, and they are vacationing in Australia (true story) while their court case of defaulting on a loan and stealing KS money languishes in Texas courts.  I wanted to believe in this one SO MUCH!

Dungeon Roll – DELIVERED Fun little dice game that I can play with Wylie, mostly.  Good for solo play, enough variation with characters and chance that it stays fun.  Neat mimic-style treasure chest-shaped box.

Flash Point: Extreme Danger – DELIVERED More rules and boards for a great game!  Also, this one added role based miniatures, so even sexier!

Deadzone – DELIVERED Wow, do I have a lot of Deadzone stuff.  I like the system but after having to teach and learn the rules at the same time for my first 3 games, I’m not mentally ready to play it again.  I have some fatigue and would love to try it now that we have (hopefully) all grokked the rules enough that it will be smooth.  Good mechanics, great terrain, mostly great sculpts, pretty good value.  Happy with this one.

Call of Cthulhu 7th Ed – IN PROGRESS, EST FEB 2015 I love this game and am happy to support the new version.  They have added some fun rules for tests where you sort of get bennies from succeeding at different levels as well as if you fail you can re-roll but if you fail again you have dire consequences.  The PDF looks great, the stretch goals look great, some additional swag (coffee mugs, tshirts) look great.  Very excited!

Labyrinthos – DELIVERED Fun little maze book.  The polish author is like an architect that can’t find work so he is a day laborer.  Sad, but a fun little project.

Reaper II – WHO CARES I backed this for a dollar thinking I could cherry pick some minis and then saw that the estimated delivery date was over a year in the future because I got in too late, so I never upped by pledge.

PicoBrew – DELIVERED This was a self-contained beer brewing system for small batches with the intent that breweries would use it for recipe test batches.  I thought it was amazing and wanted to start my own pico brewery using it, but thought better of it so I just backed for a t-shirt.

Brew Crafters – IN PROGRESS, EST DEC 2014 Worker placement eurogame about running a brewery.  Hopefully will let me fulfill my undying fantasy of running a brewery someday.  Or it will be a standard Euro with a pasted on theme that I hate playing.  Like La Havre, but in a brewery!  They seemed to have worked in lots of real brewing stuff which will be fun to try like yeast discovery, different grains and hops for different recipes, tap rooms, etc.

Dungeon Roll Winter Promo – DELIVERED Winter (Santa) themed characters for Dungeon Roll.  Was supposed to ship Dec 2013, actually arrived July 2014.  Haven’t played any of the charaters yet.

Coin Age – DELIVERED Fun little area control game that is played with coins and a board the size of a credit card.


D-Day Sergeants – IN PROGRESS, JAN 2015 So this is a slightly larger scale version of their other DDay Sergeants title, which I sold at Kubla.  It’s an interesting premise/system where each box has a collection of uniquely, yet balanced, mixed soldiers.  Let me rephrase that, each soldier is unique but balanced against other soldiers in the same box.  So my 10 guys will be different than your 10 guys and they will have different tendencies and strengths within the game system.  Its interesting, the game was fun when I played it but the expansions were getting expensive because of the prepainted metal minis and this version has all laser cut wood minis and the scale of the game is a bit larger.  So a little less on man to man tactics and more on movement, maneuver, and field positioning.  Looking forward to it.

Dreadball Xtreme – IN PROGRESS, Dec/Jan 2015 Well, they apparently opened the field up some, added obstacles, and changed some other stuff from the OG Dreadball enough that I backed it.  Again.  I have high hopes, but reality is that I will have a shit ton more plastic teams just rotting away in their little baggies.

Pairs – DELIVERED Cheapass Games parlor card game, which means: fun little game great for a drinking game.  Basically there are cards numbered 1 – 10, and a number of cards in the deck equal to the value, so 1 – 1 card, 2 – 2 cards, 10 – 10 cards, etc.  Everyone is dealt one card, and on your turn you can either steal an opponent card, scoring that amount and ending the round, or flipping a card up and hoping you don’t get a pair with your existing card(s).  Whomever scores X points first, loses and then drinks, or buys everyone a round, etc.  I played it with the kids on the street and we had some fun.  I’m pleased with this purchase.

Dungeon Scroll – IN PROGRESS, TBD A card-based Scrabble meets a dungeon crawl!  I guess you have a hand of letter cards and each monster in the dungeon requires a word be played to defeat it.  Each monster has certain restrictions/abilities like ‘word can’t start with a vowel’, etc.  You score points if you play a word, and more points if you play it first.  It sounds like fun to play with Wylie and not fun to play with Jon.  Looking forward to it!

MERCS: Recon – IN PROGRESS, TBD Well, not sure why I backed this.  It looks a little like Tannhauser as far as LOS rules, and then just small teams of minis sweeping office building for objectives with a big shootout at the end of every mission.  These guys made the disastrous Myth game, so not sure why I backed it, but it comes with a LOT of mini’s that I could almost care less about…  Ah well, hopefully it will be a fun game?

XenoShyft Onslaught – IN PROGRESS, TBD I think this is the first CMON, non-minis game.  Watching the demo made this look like a really fun co-op deckbuilder that meets the adventurer party attacks the dungeon from Dungeon Lords, sort of game – almost like a tower defense where your guys are lined up to defend and the aliens attack you each turn.    I think it will be great fun when it hits the table.

Flash Point: Honor and Duty – IN PROGRESS Completest move, no more, no less.  The likelihood of this hitting the table is low given all the other unplayed expansions, but you never know.  I think it comes with a giant box to fit all the previous stuff in, which would be great.

Tiny Epic Defenders – IN PROGRESS I didn’t really care for Tiny Epic Kingdoms, but this a coop version so I thought I’d give it a shot.  TEK had nice components, a nice footprint, and a nice feel, but it wasn’t really my kind of game.  Hoping this will be different.  In hindsight I think I’d have rather not backed it because I’m not that excited, but I only did the $24 pledge so I’m not on the hook for THAT much scrilla if it is teh sux.  Plus, I bet I could get close to retail at auction/flea bag market for it.

Storytellers Thesaurus – IN PROGRESS I grabbed this when I was really into Dungeon World and thought I might actually try and run it.  It’s basically a sourcebook for names, items, places, descriptors, etc. for a fantasy RPG.  I’m very curious to get it, though I’m not really looking forward to it, per say.

Dungeon Saga: The Dwarf King’s Quest – IN PROGRESS Fired up about this one!  Hopeful spiritual successor to Warhammer Quest, with a (potentially shitty) solo and co-op play variant.  I like what Mantic is doing and think this could be lots of fun.  I’m really looking forward to it!

Dungeon Crawl Classics: Peril on the Purple Planet – IN PROGRESS, PDF DELIVERED Unsure why I backed, but I think it had to do with all the stretch goals and the fact that this on is a mix of DCC and sci-fi a la a few old D&D modules.  I don’t think I backed the blacklight and felt poster level, but I might have, which would be rad and really make my wife’s day!  Not.  Excited to see all the goodies in the box when it arrives, though I might not back this one if I had a second chance.

50 sHAdes of VORpal – IN PROGRESS Hilarious, ridiculous middle-school art inspired RPG.  The KS campaign was pretty amusing and for $5 if I never see the PDF I was promised, I think I’d be fine.  This guy earned it!

Kings of War 2nd Ed – IN PROGRESS I watched a lot of KoW demo videos and it looks really fun, fast, loose, and everything I would want in an attempt to revisit the WFB of my youth.  I really liked WFB but it got expensive and out of hand rules-wise before I quit, and I’d like to dabble with it again.  It’s Mantic again so it will be all plastic, reasonably priced, and likely lots of fun.  Same designer as Bolt Action, Alessio Cavatore, so I think it will be pretty good!  Excited!

Masks of Gnarlyhotep Props – IN PROGRESS One of the most heralded campaigns now gets some amazing props about 10 years too late!  This might be retirement home fodder, but I always have it in the back of my mind that I will run a great, epic CoC campaign to completion and this just fuels the fire.  I’m very excited to get this when it arrives.


Monday, December 08, 2014

FYI: today is ALSO a good day to log in to hearthstone. The new expansion is fully live now and you get three free packs for logging in this week.

This game costs ZERO DOLLARS and is rad. Do it!

Saturday, December 06, 2014

| Yeah, so about Divinity : Original Sin

It took me a few hours of play and some reading-up to get here, but I'll say... it's pretty neato.

It's your usual RPG three-quarters view style game, with dialogue choices, equipment, character builds (although not in the purely D&D structure). The combat is really brutal and unforgiving. It reminds me a bit of X-Com in that regard. You gotta REALLY play smart with your peeps, use the right skills at the right moment, or.. well.. die. lol

They use action-points that you can save up (to a max) and then spend, which makes for some interesting game play decisions. Do you try to go for one knock out punch, or pew pew pew a bunch of lesser attacks? What's really new in this relative to other D&D RPGs I've played in the past is your ability to use the environment. Literally, if some bad guys are standing in a puddle/river and you hit it with a lightning bolt, they all get fried. I've teleported barrels of oil to just in front of the enemy's advance and then hit it with a fire arrow to satisfying effect.. likewise there are some fun combinations with poison clouds, etc. And, counters for most of them as well. Bad dude setting things on fire? Use a rain spell, etc etc.

There are a few things that I think they could have done a better job with, like explaining how the skill point system works.. it isn't very clear that you will need more than one skill point to advance a particular skill, so most people probably wouldn't save it up to max out their primary skill and instead spend it on something they probably don't care a lot about (lol, charisma). The first bit of game play / development is also a bit sloooooow. You are more or less useless against anything outside of the city walls until you level up a few times grinding out boring side quests.

Haven't messed around with the multiplayer at all yet, but am excited to see what that looks like.

Friday, December 05, 2014

FYI! This is a good weekend to login to hearthstone. They've added the new expansion cards (gnomes & goblins) to the Arena, and anyone logging in this weekend gets you a free arena run! (And any arena run gets you a booster pack, so it's win/win!)

Wednesday, December 03, 2014

Nah, bro, not cool.

Except it would be totally awesome! Do you still have your yahoo email address? There's a whole big thread and that address is on there. If we should be using your gmail address instead, well, I guess Aeryk fucked up.

Now we just need Benji to come so we'll have our full brass section for a JP Can't Come Over reunion show.
If I promise not to be a buzz kill and watch rerun episodes of Small Wonder, can I invite myself to Cayucos as well?  What are the dates?  I'll fly in for that shit.  Round trip from Hawaii is pretty cheap right now.
And as the Drums of Cayucos grow louder, I keep getting more excited! I'm gonna make a print-and-play version of Spyfall, an upcoming social deduction game that looks like silly fun.

EDIT: Oh, the print-and-play is only the TEXT of the cards, puke. I'll find awful stock-photos to use in place of the art.

|, EURO!

I picked up Rise of Augustus off of Amazon last night for $12 bucks from one of their lightning sales. I go nuts on Amazon for Christmas, so it just sorta ended up in my dumb shopping cart because $12. Anyways, apparently it's Roman-Bingo!

Well, can't wait to play it in Cayucos this year! I'm getting my $12 bucks worth.

Sunday, November 30, 2014

So the boy and I will be bachelors from 12/7-12/13 while the ladies go a-travelling. I'm assuming you guys will be coming by to game every day and I have created the following schedule based on conjecture, consulting astrological charts, and things an oracle told me in a dream:

12/7: elzar, xander, enr0n, motorbyke: Come by at 11:00 to play Kings of War, Bolt Action, Dust Tactics
12/8: elzar, enr0n, motorbyke: Bolt Action, Dead of Winter
12/9: enr0n, motorbyke, xander: Starcraft the Board Game
12/10: enr0n, motorbyke: Warmachine/Hordes
12/11: special guest stars O-rugs and Rude to play Empire in Flames (goes until 12/13)
12/12: everyone: Shadows of Brimstone

There's no need to respond I am just assuming this is cool. Thanks everyone

Thursday, November 27, 2014

I'll check that out when I'm not at work!


Hope you guys have a great holiday.

Netflix recommendation: BLUE RUIN. It's a revenge flick and violent at times, but it was good. Maybe not the cheery holiday movie to watch with the fam, but it's worth getting around to.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

I read about 50 pages of that comic just now. Really good stuff!

This one is super-dirty (quite frequently, pornographic) and thus very NSFW, but have you guys read Oglaf? It can be pretty damn funny.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

| Demon

I know web comics can be of wildly varying quality, but I stumbled onto one I'm reading right now that's REALLY good and interesting. Also, pretty damn twisted, but it's sorta moving past that.

DEMON by Jason Shiga

The art was a little off-putting for me at first, but you adapt to it pretty quick and the story is pretty weird and awesome so far. I think he puts out a page a day and is up to like over 200 pages so far.

Friday, November 21, 2014

Oh, dear.

Fuck that guy.

Anyway, Witcher 1: Early Witchin' was even more blatant in the sex n' boobies, in that you got a "trading card" for each lady/witch/lady elf/whatever you nailed. It was pretty stupid. That was the first thing I ever really heard about the games, so I thought they were like Leisure Suit Larry or something, when really they're pretty interesting games with a good story. Just that they happen to be the gaming equivalent of HBO or Starz or whatever.
Picture Unrelated:

| So yehr a witchah?

Never played the first one, so I can't really contrast/compare that way. And yeah, there is a hooooge plot decision point at the end of the first Act that completely changes how/where the rest of the game is played. I'm in the beginning stages of the Second act now (I went with the elves). I feel like I'm getting a little bit into a grindy-spot so I'm stalling out slightly but I'll try to see it through. I've quite enjoyed it so far. I both love and hate that some of the more important decisions / conversations in the game also come with a timer, lol. DAMN IT, I wanna think about this shit for a minute! Makes it feel a bit more organic and less power-gaming oriented, which I'm fine with. So far I'm just kind of playing through and not worrying too much about the ultimate impact of my decisions.

But yeah, lots of sex, boobies and swearing. Limitless even. The S'executioner would be proud.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

o-rugs: I've been thinking about finally getting around to Witcher 2. I've started a few times but never got too far into act I. How far along are you? I understand that one of the acts (the second, I think?) is COMPLETELY different based on choices you make in the preceding one. Like, totally different setting, quests, everything. You have to admire these guys crazy attention to this weird setting.

I played a bunch of Witcher I and it was pretty good too, although I stalled out in this stupid swamp section that apparently everybody stalls out in, which if you get past it the rest of the game is awesome. Definitely clunkier than W2, but might be worth going back to. And part III is coming out soon and looks like a sort of insane open world game. So Witcher 2 crossed with Skyrim as it were. Worth keeping an eye on!

I've been playing Guacamelee, which is a goofy, Mexican Wrestling themed Metroidvania game I've had sitting unplayed for a while. It's pretty cool, has GREAT controls and I totally recommend picking it up whenever it goes on sale for cheapzor, which I believe it does pretty often.

Mordheim always made me sad because it was so broken. I'll keep an eye on the vidya game, though.
While there doesn't appear to be anything about flashbanging chinchillas here, I got this unexpected email today.  Someone is making Mordheim into a video game.  The beta is up on steam, here's a link to it, if this actually works.

Anyone heard of this?  Sort of came out of the blue...  I think I got the email because I own the Blood Bowl video games which were OK but not great.  (and raised my blood pressure about as much as the board game did, so ultimately I quit for health reasons!)

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

| Local gaming & Flash Banging Chinchillas

So I discovered that we have a pretty big gaming-themed store nearby that has a lot of tables even! Although, I'm weirdly kind of being a wuss about not wanting to go by myself. lol Wish I had you guys closer by. Maybe I'll just go ahead and jump in and see what they're playing one of these evenings.

In other gaming news, which is sort of related to work news... I've been switched to nights, so I'm working 6pm to 6am... which means that on my days off, I have to try and stay up as late as possible into the wee hours of the morning. So, I get a lot more "me" time while the family is sleeping on my 'days' off. Been finally catching up on some old Steam-sale games that I just never got around to messing with before. Currently playing Witcher 2 a whole lot, which is a story-heavy RPG fantasy/action game. I'm really quite enjoying it. It's kind of like Skyrim but with better combat... but a more linear/limited map. And, the story is a lot tighter but that comes with playing a singular character for the most part I think. There's a lot of boobies and cussing in it, which.. weirdly is kind of not my thing in games these days, however the rest of the game is compelling enough that I don't really care.

In other work related news, I ran my first SWAT raid at dispatch last night. While the majority of it was unremarkable (outside of me freaking out about keeping up with all the radio traffic and requests on side channels for the first time), there was a funny moment. The bad guy's trailer was breached and flash-banged, then cleared (he wasn't home).. the SWAT guys came on the radio to the commander and said, all clear, except for one flash-banged chinchilla. lol.

Monday, November 17, 2014

| The Action Teams Movie Picks for November 2014

Top ACTION TEAM movie picks!

John Wick: Exciting action! Keauni Reeves shoots many a man in the head in this action adventure. This is one wick you don't want to let burn out on the candlestick.

Cheers: Awful 80s show that I can't imagine watching today due to all the sexual harrasement.

Herclues with The Rock: It was alright. The Rock just looked really off with this beard that aged him by like 5 years and then it's basically The Magnificant Seven but with swords n shit. It was fine.

Edge of Tommorrow: This Tom Cruise sci-fi epic is really good. Really good. Really good. It's like Groundhogs Day, that's why I repeated that phrase. It's enjoyable!

Thursday, November 13, 2014

That was really fun! One thing I'd forgotten -- how intense driving on the 110 is! Man, that is a pretty grueling freeway right there.

Earlier this week I got my pledge for Shadows of Brimstone, and I've been slowly working my way through the rules/minis. This wave comes with two core sets (City of the Ancients, and Swamps of Death) and the next wave will come with a truly insane amount of extra stuff. So hopefully this game doesn't blow. :)

The plastic is hard plastic. I've been using the Citadel thin plastic glue to put the models together, and ugh -- that stuff smells awful. Glued a few models together tonight and I actually feel a little dizzy. I don't remember the same thing happening with their thicker glue when I built a few GW models years back, so that's either a different formulation, or I'm much more of a pussy nowadays. Probably the later.

Anyway, if you haven't seen this bizarre Adult Swim video, enjoy!

Sunday, November 09, 2014

| Action Team, in the gameHAUS!

Got to meet up with Team J&J at a board game cafe called Gamehaus in Glendale this weekend! It was a really cool place. I got there a little bit before the gang and grabbed us a table. It was surprisingly busy which gave it a semi-open gaming vibe, but with a more mainstream crowd (ie, lots of ladies). They served pretty good food and had a pretty huge selection of games. $5 bucks per person for access to the games library. There needs to be more places like this!

Sunday, October 26, 2014

| Transformographagizers

Auralnaughts did a "10 Guaranteed Improvements to Transformers AOE" video that has some really funny part. You motherfuckers who still haven't watched their part 2 and 3 of the Star Wars prequels are missing out.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Humble Comics Bundle
The Humble Comics bundle this time around is Star Wars comics. I paid the minimum because in the first tier of stuff you get is the first Star Wars Omnibus which collects the first 26 issues of the 70s Marvel comic. I don't know if you guys remember hearing this, but the first 6 issue arc is based on an early draft of A New Hope, so there's some rad differences in the story and a bunch of characters and scenes that never made it into the movie. The rest of the comics don't really interest me, but I'm sure I'll eventually check them out.

Random Expansion Review
Marvel Legendary Fantastic Four! More okay than fantastic.
Of all the expansions for Marvel Legendary, my least favorite so far is Fantastic Four. The main issue is with the heroes. They're predominantly "money" cards, so if you play with the 4 main peeps and Silver Surfer, you're mostly gaining money each turn. This is counter balanced with a few keyword ability called FOCUS, which is neat. It will be something like "FOCUS 9 to get 9 fight" or "FOCUS 2 to draw a card". They let you spend your money that turn on special effects instead of just recruiting heroes.

Thematically, I kinda get it, since the Fantastic Four are all about money (are they? I really don't know), but it was underwhelming. That said, when they show up in a random mix with different heroes, as will be the case most of the time, they'll probably be a lot of fun.

On the bright side, the bad guys were cool. Galactus, Mole Man, and their respective villain groups. The game needs to add some new henchman! Those are always fun.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Oh, wow. I thought he was living big off that RoboRally money.
A family friend of ours was one of the architects who helped build Richard Garfield's house.  Let me tell you...  Magic has done that dude well.  These types of card games are fun, but wow, I had no idea how rich it made him!
I watched the BGG TV interview they did with one of the designers of the Magic Boardgame and it looks interesting. I think I'm done buying those types of games because they're not gonna get much play in my house, but it looks like it'd be a lot of fun at a Con. Minis, cards, AND dice. I wonder why it took them so long to come out with this.

Magic's been around for twenty years! Holy shit. I'll never forget that first gaming convention post-Magic where there were just HUNDREDS of people paired off into Magic games, and it seemed like the end of an era. Things balanced out, but what a goddamn phenomenon.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Been quiet here for a while.

But what about THIS?

Looks ridiculously awesome

Thursday, October 09, 2014

That was the best kickstarter to read. How'd you hear about it?

Wednesday, October 08, 2014

| Late-breaking link!

Please seriously consider this RPG Kickstarter, it looks amazing!

| Link-rich content!

Doomtowners! There is a fancy new deckbuildin' site up (it's even official!).

Had a grim n' gritty night of sick-guy sleep, including the classic progression of: get into bed -> start shivering violently despite the warm ambient temperature -> cover up with the biggest blanket in the house -> wake up an hour later boiling in my own sweat and filth. I'm still feeling rundown, but I think I'm on the right side of it now.

I bailed work early, but did make a pit stop at the conveniently on-the-way-home-in-certain-respects game store. I picked up a couple things: the new Hordes book, which looks cool and is totally going to be the release that gets Elzar back into the game; and the new edition of The One Ring RPG. It's a Tolkien RPG set in the geographical area covered in the Hobbit, set in the time between the Hobbit and Fellowship of the Ring. enr0n and I played this at GenCon a couple years back and had fun -- interesting mechanics for common themes in the Tolkien books like fellowship, traveling, and whoring. The default game mode assumes the campaign covers many years of the characters' lives, with roughly one adventure per year or so of game time. There's a cool-looking campaign out that covers a thirty year period. I think that's rad!

I would've picked the book up online for better cheapz0rs, but the manufacturer participates in a cool program called bits & mortar wherein the LGS gives you the PDF for free when you purchase the book there. Lots of the smaller RPG companies participate (the guys that do 13th Age/Trail of Cthulhu, the Fate guys, bunches of other dudes; major exceptions: Privateer, FFG). Anyway, if you're thinking about picking up any RPGs, check the site to see if the manufacturer and your LGS participates.

While we're talking about Star Wars*, there was a preview for Imperial Assault that was interesting. Basically, if you're familiar with Descent 2nd ed the upshot of this article is "this is basically the same shit as that*", but the components are looking slick. I'm getting more excited! Plus, maybe my wife will be more interested in playing a Star Wars adventure game than a fantasy one? Nah, who am I kidding.

* This segue made sense in a previous draft of the post.
** Notable exception: the "miss" attack result apparently has moved from the attack dice over to the good defense die, which is interesting -- presumably you'll always be able to hit mook-types. That's probably a good thing, misses are frustrating to roll, and you should always be able to shoot some shitty Stormtrooper.

Tuesday, October 07, 2014

So sick! Sitting on the couch, taking some of the codeine-laced cough syrup I've got lying around, and lazily watching my hand drift through the air Jael-playing-D&D-style sounds pretty great right now. Instead I guess I'll go to target and babies r us, that sounds cool too!

Monday, October 06, 2014

So the trippy thing about the Extinction Point trilogy was how utterly bad the first book was, but it wasn't until I was midway through the last book (yesterday!) that I realized the second and third book were way better.  Totally weird!  When I finished them I read the acknowledgements.  Whaddya know?  He picked up an editor for book two!  It was like a light switch went on, and all the cockroaches of +5 bad writing disappeared.  It also happened to be Jeff Vandermeer, who wrote the excellent Southern Reach trilogy.  If you're looking for some good reads, pick those books up.  They were great.  Try not to learn anything about the trilogy, just start reading.  They're stra-a-ange.
The third-book pratfall is pretty common in trilogies. Anyone read the Golden Compass series by Phillip Pullman? (There was a not-great movie version of the first book several years back.) The first two books are really good, but the third falls down so hard it's painful. I still strongly recommend the series based on the strength of the first two books, though.

Sunday, October 05, 2014

| Raiders

Since I'm suffering here at work, here's another strange nugget to chew on if you get some time:

Raiders of the Lost Ark in black & white with no sound and a weird techno soundtracks.

Director Steven Soderberg (Traffic, Out of Sight, Oceans 11, etc) has his website where he occasionally talks about movie making. I like his stuff. He's very off-the-cuff, but in an intelligent way that feels totally earned.

He recently posted the entire Raiders of the Lost Ark as a study in awesome "staging", taking away the sound and color and showing how masterfully staged Raiders is. It's so well layed out and shot and framed and everything, that you can literally follow along fine without hearing the dialog. The music he inserts is a little off-putting at first, but after awhile I got used to it.

| Game Night

There was a time when I'd have been all over your offer for some subpar-reading, but I find it hard to make room for reading "good" stuff, let alone the pulps.

I'm hurting at work right now because last night we had a Game Night for my wife's 40th birthday. It went off pretty well! We over did it with food, then underdid it with booze, but those kinda things seem inevitable with a party. We don't throw them enough to get the balance right. The biggest benefit of hosting a party is that we end up cleaning our house a million times better then we ever do during a normal week.

So for Game Night, we played "Hollywood Game Night", based on the tv show, Reverse Charades, Cards Against Humanity, and Pictionary.

Hollywood Game Night is basically a bunch of smaller party-games bundled together, that you play in rounds. There's a few clue-giving games where you're trying to get people to guess Celebrities, TV Shows, and movie titles. The best game in the bunch though is "How do you doo?" where you're trying to get your team to guess a popular song by only using the word "doo". So, say the Star Wars imperial theme would be "Doo do doo do da doo doo - etc" - not as funny to try and write it out. People were wicked tone deaf and it was hilarious.

Reverse Charades, which I've tried to bust out at Cabin Cons with little success worked awesomely with this crowd. It's a lot less stressful to be charading in a group, and these people were all into it. After a few rounds, people have really loosened up, and get good at using each other as props.

Cards Against Humanity was another big hit, and no one but my wife and I had played it. It's funny to bust that game out in a crowd. People were blown away that it existed and asked multiple times where they could find it. We played with 11 people, and while that game can kinda drag for me, we still got in a bunch of turns and people were laughing till the end. The Go-Gurt card was a hit with this group, go figure.

Pictionary was the night ender, and it worked well because by then we were down to 6 of us. We played the super short version and there were enough "all teams draw" to keep it engaging. We busted out the baby's wipe-board easel, so it was legit.

Saturday, October 04, 2014

| I'll See Your Garbage, and Raise You a The Strain

I picked up The Strain trillogy a while ago, by Guillermo Del Toro and some other guy, and while the premise is interesting, the first book is great, the second is pretty good, and the third is sort of like reading a fart.

I had high hopes and couldn't put it down for the first book and a half, then it got a little weird, and then I was just compelled to finish it because I started it, not that I really wanted to see what happened at the end.

I know, great sales pitch, right??

I started watching the show on FX and it was pretty entertaining, but missed a lot of the details and backstory that I thought was interesting in das books.

Friday, October 03, 2014

| Who likes some good bad post apocalyptic fiction?

I'm finishing up a trilogy that I bought on a recommendation from Amazon that had a totally undeserved very high rating (last time I listen to you, Amazon!): Extinction Point.  It is the worst book I've read in recent memory that I actually enjoyed.  It is GRIM.  In short: alien goo rains all over the planet, everyone dies except a tiny, tiny number of survivors, hijinks ensue.  It's maybe "young adult" fiction, and so much about it is so annoying (the guy very obviously did not have an editor, or at least not a sentient one), but...  I can't put it down.

And I want to know if there are any of you suckers out there who'd be willing to risk your sanity to try it out.  Hey, maybe I'll have someone to talk about it with?  I'm not sure Green Apple would take it for trade, so you guys get first dibs.  Who's keen on trying out some really bad, totally awesome post apocalyptic fiction?  At the very least, if you read it too, you can mock me for my absurd taste in books.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

| Galaxy Trucker

Elrick let me know that Galaxy Trucker for iPad is out and on sale for $5 bucks. It's really well done! GT is one of those games I always LOVE playing, but I always suck at. The tutorial in this game is excellent and I'd say required for any new players to the actual boardgame. Haven't dug into the campaign too deeply, but everything is really slick so far, so this is one conversion I'd say is a success.

I don't know how it works for multiplayer, but this is one of those games I'd like to practice with so I can actually kick some ass next time we play in person. It says there's pass-n-play, quick duel, and online, so I'll dig into those later.

Big minus: this game heats up my iPad big time! Haven't had a game do that in awhile. Hopefully it's something that can be optimized with updates, but we'll see.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

| Side Talkin'

My iPhone 6+ came in yesterday and it's big as FUCK! I didn't bother to even check the specs when I ordered it, other than "wee, bigger screen". It's almost an iPad-Mini. So now I look like I'ma side-talking fool.

Other than the crazy size, it IS pretty awesome when you're lounging around. It's super light and a good "in between" size for browsing and games. But lugging that around as my phone is gonna take some getting used to. There aren't any good cases yet, so just got a generic one for the time being.

In gaming news, I picked up 2000 penny sleeves from my local game store. They didn't have the MayDay ones, so they're not a great fit for Legendary, but it'll do. Getting the fancier sleeves would have been pretty expensive.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Gotta say Rude, it's been pretty strange checking the blog first thing in the morning and not seeing some random post from you at 2:45 am!

Played a bunch more W2 and definitely liking it quite a bit more than SR now. I dragged my ass into work today, but I'm still pretty sick, definitely wishing I was at home shooting mutant cockroaches instead (not in real life, in the game I've been discussing in this paragraph).

Happy belated birthday Ry! Don't forget to "hang 10" off a sweet rip curler for ol' jr0n.
I've played around 2 hours of Shadowrun and it's fun for $4 bucks. The "interactive novel" aspect is kind of killing me. Story stuff can be fun, but this seems like the dialog and text in the game could have been cut down significant. It drags from the opening of the game. The combat on the other hand is a lot of fun, so it balances out enough.


Have any of you ever taken a free online Coursera class? They offer a ton of legitimate online college classes from big universities all over the world. Since it's all free, I've usually just signed up and watched a few lectures over the years, but this time I'm taking a class on Comic Books that I'm going to try and finish. They have classes on EVERYTHING and it's worth checking out if you're interesting in further education on the cheap.


My wife's totally hooked on Legendary Marvel now which is pretty awesome. We've played 6 games now in about a week, and I'm already contemplating picking up expansions and spin-offs. We play it "open hand" which isn't exactly how you're supposed to play, since it's really only partially co-op. We still play for the most points at the end, but we help each other out when we're calculating our hands or interpreting weirdly worded cards. You can pull off some epic combos in that game, but that also means some awkward number crunching and vague rule chicanery (a lot of times when cards can trigger is confusing, so it's taking us a few games to figure those things out).


That new Batman (without Batman) show, Gotham, premiered last night. It was alright! It was a little heavy handed in all the "cameos" they crammed in, like "Greetings, I'm Jimmy J. Oker, a young magician", but overall it was pretty fun so far. The young Bruce Wayne they have is already pushing the "my training begins now" angle pretty hard, but I figure that they'll pace shit out better as the season develops, and not try to have EVERYONE being a future hero/villain.


I'm still not used to starting work so early. The first few hours of the morning are fucking impossible.

Thanks.  I better start flipping some switches on my email settings.

On the plus side, I dug out an old email that led me to the Keymaster.  Apparently I'm the Gatekeeper?  Just finished downloading the game (took a long time).  Launched it, clicked quit, now it's time for bed.  Yay!

I'm a marginal coffee snob, but I'm a full on sucker for this:


Monday, September 22, 2014

Yes, an interactive novel with periodic combat breaks is exactly how I'd describe Shadowrun as well. Wasteland 2 is basically the exact opposite of that. It's a long, crunchy, gnarly, easy-to-fuck-up game. One of the first things you do is decide which of two settlements to help, and while I'm not sure, I -think- the one you don't help gets wiped out of the game permanently.

Xander, I took the liberty of examining your steam history and it looks like you played Wasteland 1 and Wasteland 2 for .1 hrs each on July 25th. Definitely give Wasteland 2 at least another 6 minutes before making a final judgment! As for Wasteland 1, it was a good game back in the day, but a little hard to approach these days unless you've got the nostalgia thing going.

Pump - yes, they sent out Steam keys MONTHS ago, back when the game was in alpha. I don't exactly remember how it worked. I think you had to sign in to Humble or something like that. You probably better figure out that Kickstarter email thing, unless you just like the feeling of throwing your money into a dark hole! (Well, even more than Kickstarter normally is. :) )
Jr0n - Did you get your copy through the Kickstarter?  I think my email is blocking all kickstater emails, so this was news to me (that it was out).

Eric - I too have played the Shadowrun.  Pre-patch save points were the worst.  It is light on the aar pee gee.  I guess since its roots are the console NES and Sega, it's not as RPG'y.  From what I've seen of the previews, Wasteland 2 is looking closer to the Fallouts 1 & 2 than Shadowrun.  And apparently the Toaster Repair skill is kinda important.

And I will not mention the big unpainted elephant in the room.  I was doing some light cleaning (playing closet tetris) recently.  There are metric tons of lead (actual lead) that are very upset they have not been painted yet.  And most of it is older than all your children.
My favorite part of your Wasteland characters is that their favorite brand of smokes is right up there as the third or fourth thing on their character sheet, right under religion.

I kickstarted both of those games, and have played about 2 minutes of shadowrun, and 5 minutes of Wasteland, but it might have been Wasteland 1 since it was seriously retro 80s Atari 2600 action.  I think Wasteland 1 was included as a "stretch goal" to thank backers or something.  Maybe punish backers?

Time you spend playing Wasteland 2, Eric, is time you're not painting Deadzone.  You make the call.

| Compare and Contrast

Shadowrun vs. Wasteland

I'm a few hours into Shadowrun and it has lost it's luster pretty quick.  It sort of feels like an interactive novel, where nothing you do means anything and each scene ends the same no matter what you do.  Right now, it's a murder mystery where, say, I need to get x clues from a scene.  I will either get those clues now, or I will get them later, but I won't leave the scene until I do.  I can either sweet talk someone into giving them to me (if my skill is high enough to click the option that says CHARISMA:4, else I will still see it but it will be grayed out), or I will have to pay for the clue, or something like that.

Unless the game is amazing (btw, my characters name is Amazeballs) and the story is being manipulated behind the scenes based on my choices, it really feels one dimensional, the combat is kinda lame, and I'm overall losing my interest.  I AM right on the cusp of hiring my own Shadowrunners, so maybe the game will open up some once I can hire a crew, but that's a big if...

jr0n, having played both, and given that i got Shadowrun for $4 and Wasteland costs $40, how do they compare and is Wasteland enough like Shadowrun that I'll be super-fuckin-pissed if I buy it?

Sunday, September 21, 2014

I've put a few hours into Wasteland 2 (second major area), and so far I'm digging it! It's very similar to the Fallout series, except that you run a full party rather than managing one character assisted by NPCs. The character creation is pretty hardcore, and I'm kind of nervous that I've already made critical mistakes that will mess me up dozens of hours into the game (it's like 70+ hours long). We'll see. Here's the gang of four. I randomized each one's appearance and took the first thing that came up each time:

Hemo's the leader. As befits his high charisma, he wears a cowboy hat and a low-cut rubber top. He's incredibly slow and not a great shot. He was the first man to go down in combat and slowly bled out after the combat, the rest of the team ruing the fact that Hemo was the guy with the medical abilties. Whoops, time to reload!

Ragnar is the (so far) largely ineffective pistol/bladed weapons guy. Pistols may look super dope, but they aren't really the way to go in a world full of shotguns and assault rifles. Might need to burn some skill points and switch him to SMGs. He has managed to pull off some sweet computer hacks using tips he learned from his buddy Cythrax.

Steve (I'm Steve) is a laid-back dude who claims to have psychic powers. Which don't exist in this game, but nobody minds because he doesn't make a lot of fuss, just chills out and blasts people into gel with energy weapons. He also once convinced a giant mutant frog to be everyone's friend. He's OK in my book!

Deaf-Mute is probably the MVP of the team. He charges in balls-out with his shotgun and blasts everything apart, and always survives except when Hemo shoots him in the back. He also is the bomb squad for the frequent booby traps the team comes across. He sometimes even succeeds at disarming them!

Wow, that "Dance of the Fates" from the end of Ep. 1 was pretty great.

Saturday, September 20, 2014

| Larry Kenobi

Enron's gonna have to give Jael some sick Nikkon camera lessons next Cayucos! You shoulda gone Canon, bro. (I don't know shit about cameras, so nevermind me).

These videos are from last year, so they probably made the rounds, but they're new to me and I'm DYING laughing at home right now.

Started with this one:

Then watched their longer Ep 1-3 videos which are fucking hilarious.

It's apparently impossible to watch any of the Star Wars movies legally online, but there's plenty of these funny ones.

Friday, September 19, 2014

OMG, that was completely hilarious. I've got a couple family members who would deeply appreciate this.
O Rugs, sadly, that burger is not fake. Burger King sells that ship, and it is even more awful in real life. It is actually pretty awesome how gross that burger is.

In other news, this is totally the best/worst car mod ever, compliments of DaveDefeat (lightly NSFW, adult language):


Wednesday, September 17, 2014

| I see your doomtown

and raise you.  Just bought a Nikon D3300!  In the future, I can help make fancy photos at Mancon and join in on the video fun.  Maybe add in a little photography to whatever you guys need for sites, pics, etc.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

| Doomtown: Town of Doom!

(Hypothetical expansion name.)

This is fun. In addition to being a prime example of Y2K web design, this website documents all the character deaths from the original Boot Hill storyline. It was brutal! I think all told, more than half the characters died in the big finale to that first cycle of cards, with most of those being in the Revelations set (when the big demon that'd been coming the whole game finally came out and shit got real).

Who knows if the new storyline will be anything like this.

Monday, September 15, 2014

52 cards total, plus up to 2 Jokers.

Edit: Sorry, just re-read your question. The outfit card does not count against the limit.
I think 'whatever seems cool' would be my only deck building strategy.  But I still think keeping to a legit deck of cards would be hecka hard.

BTW, is your deck supposed to be 52 cards including the four starting dudes and the Outfit card, or 52 cards PLUS the starting dudes and your outfit?
Hey man, I'm just trying to give you some options so you don't stress while building decks! But I think "wrecking 3 of 4 factions" is a huge stretch. The format puts Fourth Ring behind the 8-ball for sure (fuck those clowns!), but I think the other factions should be fine. (Gadgets seem more supplemental than primary for Morgan -- and lots of Gadgets have very low pull requirements anyway.)

I started building decks at lunch and they're looking pretty good! The suit/value distribution in the core s a little better than I thought.

BTW, when we built decks back in the old days we honestly didn't sweat the suits/values that much. 99% of the time we just threw in whatever seemed cool and the decks worked out fine, if not tournament caliber.
The problem with the totally legal deck is that you nerf...  everyone.  'cept maybe them dirty Sloanes, but who gives a varmit's asshole 'bout them?

It takes one variable out of the game since you don't have to sweat what the @!#$ you put in yer deck for poker n shit, but you then wreck three of four the factions for it?  Hmm.  So how'd it go?
Yeah, deckbuilding's an important component -- but the nice thing is that if you're building all the decks, you can control the extent of the craziness!

As I mentioned in our (very sexy) private correspondence, a great variant Back in the Day (tm) was the Bicycle format. (Bicycle as in the poker deck manufacturer.) In that format, you create a "legal" deck which can't cheat -- in other words, one each of Ace-King, in each of the four values. The nice thing about this format is that it is a lot easier to build decks, and you get a somewhat purer poker experience out of the shootouts. The downside is it somewhat hinders decks that need to Pull a lot, and Cheatin' cards become largely irrelevant (including some of the nuLaw Dogs' abilities).

Now, that was easy when the card pool got mammoth, but would be tough in the new card pool. But I think a good format would be the MOSTLY legal deck. Let's say you start by building a Bicycle deck, but you can have duplicate suit/values for, say, 10 cards? That makes deckbuilding a lot easier, while still giving some flexibility.

I'm at home for at least a little while longer (on call for jury duty!) so maybe I'll give this a try at lunch!
In a cosmic twist of coincidence, JRoSplon invited me to his gaming session, but I couldn't: I had a date with my copy of Doomtown across town!  We played three 2-player games, and they went quite differently than did JOrN's games.  My opponent was the Sloane gang for all three games, I was the Law Dogs for the first two (and thought they sucked, I got mauled!) and the Ranchers for the last game.  Neither of us had ever played before.  Here's the summary I sent J'shpegan yesterday:

Game 1: The sloanes won first player, dropped a shotgun on Ramiro (uh oh...  Shotgun is bad news on Ramiro.  It aces anyone with value 3 or less before the shooting starts!) and moseyed on out into the town square.  I played the railroad station (controller can boot the RRS to move a dude anywhere unbooted), the only deed I had.  We had a big gunfight out at the RRS, he aced my stud (the one who punishes cheaters, a good dude) with his shotgun (which boots it), and killed another dude in the ensuing firefight, the remaining two law dogs scooted on home, booted.  Ramiro hops on a train and exits (right next door) at my Outfit, fresh and unbooted as a springtime daisy compliments of the !@#! RRS, and proceeds to kill the heck outta my last two guys (even though the shotgun was booted and thus not used).  Er.  That was quick...  Shotgun on Ramiro is ridiculous.  Kindof a "gee, let's just say you won, we reshuffle and try again, eh?" ridiculous.  If you're playing against someone with shotgun who has a high-bullet dude, you can take anyone with a low value...!

Game 2: This time he played a deed (the Chinese tailors, +2 to income!) and I felt I needed to keep him from that income.  The LD are money starved, and I was envious of his budding economy: no deed cards in my hand!  So all my dudes moseyed on over.  he sent someone out to the town square to get his +1 ghost rock (Outfit ability), and the rest of us shot it out at the tailors.  I had good shootout cards, and stripped him down to size before the shootin' started.  I had the draw advantage, and the stud advantage: but he crushed me!  Drew a perfect hand, didn't really even need to redraw.  We got into several gunfights over the course of our two games, and the LD lost each one (paradoxically: they also lost each low-ball gambling first phase nonsense!  I had serious luck and money troubles).  Even catching him cheatin' once or twice, I just lost lost lost.  Lousy luck, but it also seems like the LD deck isn't really built for gunfights (JOnn claims otherwise, so I'm eager to try 'em again).  So yeah, I lost that one in a turn or three too.

Game 3: he stuck it out with the Sloane gang, and I took the Cattle ranchers.  I got three deeds in my hand at the get-go (which means I was pretty weak at other stuff of course), but it turns out he wasn't much better off.  I lost first turn, and so only had one ghost rock: not enough to play a deed yet.  Irving, one of my lousier gunfighters, has a cool ability: get a ghost rock if he joins a posse.  So I picked an easy fight to get the ghost rock (I think it was a tie, or something, no casualties, then I bailed out and went back to my outfit, booted) and play the deed.  He moved to take over my deed, then played one of his own, which I moved to take over within a turn or so, and without contest since his dudes were all over on my side of town (and one of my dudes had a horse which helped him unboot after joining a posse or something).  He also played another dude with upkeep, so his economy eventually shrank to zero.  The next turn he moved to take back his deed (again, I fled - though the gunfights I did get into I ruled even though that's not my forte - four of a kind, twice!  Only a little cheatin', mebbe.  Thank you also, joker!) and within another turn I had four deeds down and just won cause he couldn't get his dudes off his deed without booting and didn't therefore have enough time to get back over to contest ownership - something like my four Control to his 3 Influence by the time the dust had settled since he'd lost a few dudes in the four-of-a-kind gunfights.  There's an interesting article up on the Doomtown page about why they reduced the number of strikes (in short: easy money and control) because of the number of high strikes decks would just swamp the opponent with deeds - they couldn't take them over as quickly as they came out once your economy starts rolling!  That's pretty much the deck I had, just by chance.

That poker thing is interesting, but can be really rough!  It also seems like you build decks to get duplicates of things (pairs, 3- and 4-of-a-kind) rather than straights or flushes.  So the whole probability thing of not just taking cool cards, but taking cool cards with similar values or suits, is weird.  Add to that, if you're playing ranchers or circus freaks the fact that you have to take high values so you can build your gadgets and cast your spells.  Given how tight your economy is: if you try to build a gadget, spend the money and then fail...  Ouch!  Seems deckbuilding is kinda hard, actually.  So the game is super cool, but I'm not so stoked about how multidimensional the deckbuilding is relative to Warhammer Invasion, my current favorite card game.  I think my brain will explode - I like playing these games, but don't love the deckbuilding bits. 

Sunday, September 14, 2014

I went out to the Sunset last night and cracked out Doomtown with enr0n and Myke! I haven't had a gaming break in a long, long time, and it was really what the doctor ordered.

At first, getting back into it was difficult and kinda mend-bending, because while Myke and I had a pretty good grasp on the rules, we'd utterly forgotten the strategy of playing. It's a really unique game that plays like a board game in many ways -- on top of which, learning the whole new set of Dudes took a while. (There are a few characters that survived from the earlier version, but their rules and factions have changed. A few goods, actions and deeds have carried over with identical or similar rules.)

enr0n played the Sloane Gang, Gomorra's resident set of outlaws. (According to the Jackson's Strike card, Black Jack has retired to a peaceful life of back-breaking mining). I had the new iteration of the Law Dogs. Myke had the Fourth Ring, a collection of magic-using circus freaks that rolled into town. Essentially, enr0n ruled the town the first couple turns, then the dogs got pissed and started shooting back. Meanwhile, at the circus, there were a series of scary juggling acts. The climax was at enr0n's tailor, where the dogs had a series of battles that ended up basically wiping everybody with influence that could counter them, then shot a clown. Victory!

After that, enr0n and I got in a 2-player game. It was late, so we probably weren't thinking too strategically here, but the main action of the game was an epic, 6-round shootout on turn 1 that put most of his dudes in boot hill. Victory!

It was a good time for sure. At least for the Law Dogs, I like the design of the new dudes (they're themed around punishing the opponent for playing cheatin' hands, especially if they have legal ones). I'm not so sure about these prebuilt decks that come in the box -- they're good at shootouts, but we all felt like we weren't pulling enough deeds, so we were a little overly money starved -- but I'm looking forward to tinkering around and getting into the new cards. (It's nice to have a smaller card set to play with, too -- my old collection was four big longboxes.)

The rules changes generally seem positive. The big one is that shootouts are a little less deadly now, so you're more likely to be able to send some guys home or have a longer shootout than I remember from the old version. There are no longer Events, which a little I'm on the fence about. They could clog up your hand, and Event design seemed to get a little lazy at the game went on, but they were also one of the most fun ways that the storyline evolved. There are way fewer out-of-town deeds now.

Summary: throw away every other game in your collection and buy like 20 copies of this one, thanks. The end.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

That epic Doomtown game looks like hella fun! I hate how far away I am sometimes. /sadpanda

Enron, that Burger is... fake, right? RIGHT? Dear lord, that's ridiculous.

About the only gaming time I get in these days is on my phone on break at work or laying in bed at night with the wifey. The kiddos have now completely annexed the PS3 and PC to play Minecraft 24/7. When they're not playing, they're watching videos of other people playing. We've arrived at the point at which they start talking about stuff you can do in the game like it's no big deal and I have to stop them and ask.. wait, you can do that? And they rattle off the exact steps, recipe and utilization for said item/enchantment or whatever.. and I have almost no idea what they're talking about. The boy is 5. That blows my mind. If there was a college degree in Minecraft the kid would already be graduating college. lol. It's weird to be on the other side of that relationship, where I'm the one kicking my kids out of the house to go play in the back yard and be kids... when all I wanted to do as a kid was sit there in the living room and play games all day, too. Sigh. I'm going to have to step up my game so I can assert my gaming dominance over them for the foreseeable future, lol

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

I didn't break my Double Jack beer out for my birthday because we ate dinner then were worn out from it being the middle of a work week, but I'm off tomorrow so drinking that shit now. IT'S AWESOME! I like it. I haven't had the best of luck with some of the fancy brews the rest of the crew likes, but this one is delicious, so I'm stoked. Thanks gang!

| Big in Japan

More Japan goodness...

Burger King is introducing the all-black burger:

"It's made smoking it using bamboo charcoal. It probably tastes delicious. The buns are also smoked with bamboo charcoal* and, according to Ashcraft, the sauce is made with onion, garlic, and squid ink (which sounds rather delicious.) The beef patties made also contain black pepper."

Sweet!  I impulse-bought it after your post yesterday, it had been on the shelf for a few hours at nearby Gamescape.  Battle of the Five Armies was just in also - almost tempted to get that too!

Now I just need to work up the gumption to wade through them rules...  There's a lot of 'em.

Tuesday, September 09, 2014

It comes in a wooden case and includes 2 sets of cards, poker chips, some playmats, faction homes printed on thicker stock, and a bag of metal coin tokens. And a sheriffs badge.

Nice!  Can I come over tonight?  I'll call in sick with the wife.

Barring that, did Black Diamond pull through and get you the ultra deluxe version?  What makes it ultra deluxe? 
I've barely looked at it yet, but so far, so good. Rules are mostly the same, with some interesting changes. There are barely any out-of-town deeds (strikes aren't the big moneymakers anymore), which will be a big change. Shootouts are slightly less deadly. Cheating is a little harder.

A few cards got reprinted, but it's mostly new stuff. A few surviving characters are still around. I looks through the law dogs deck and saw Wendy and Dave Bellard (the new sheriff). The other factions are new - a new outlaw gang, a Sweetrock-esque ranching company, and a bunch of scary-looking magical circus Juggalos.

| OMG it's out?!

That's awesome!  How's it look J0rn? Better get one myself, methinks.

Monday, September 08, 2014

| Precioussssss

Saturday, September 06, 2014

| This chocolate is also metal


| Chocolate is so metal

Tee hee hee!  Welcome to teh Bladerunner!

That article is a good one.  Thanks Rude.  That video though...  So earnest.

I suspect since western music gets to Japan without some of the baggage and context, they might be more open to different genres and mashups.  They are definitely the product of the Jpop industrial complex.  The producers and writers create the sound and style.  They may not be a band in the punk rock garage band sense, but if it gets your toes tapping (head banging).  Why not?  Embrace the darkness.

And really, we're gamers anyway.  What's one more niche, non mainstream interest?

Friday, September 05, 2014

In case Denis gets the black screen of death too (your video doesn't show up on the ipad either) he posted  Baby Metal videos, I assume. I heard about them from this NPR blog: clicky
I can't say that I "like" it, but it's totally fucking weird and hard not to watch.

Now, for something that I DO like:
9/11 Building 7 - MUSIC video (this is not  meant to be a joke, holy shit)

| Babymetal

That is pretty weird with the vocals tone/pitch, Japanese cadence, the Atari Teenage Riot style electronica sounds and the techno/J-pop flair, yet it is very cool. eLzar, I actually like it. Different but still grindy. Although the third song is even more odd with the hip-hop thrown in. Quite a mash-up.

Denis, splain Japan 'cause we are confused. Those people both scare and intrigue us!


| Denis


Because I'm feeling something, and I'm not sure what it is, but I think I like it, but I'm a little scared because this feels a little like a wonderful dream and horrible nightmare all wrapped into one, but not in a cool way, in a way that makes me unsure of where I stand in the world and if I'm a terrible person or a hero.

Tuesday, September 02, 2014

Botherhood of the Codpieces.  Gottit.
It's actually the Brotherhood of Cutpurses
Xander: Rude works for the Thieves' Guild.

| Back to the land of the daywalkers

Congrats man, that's a great change for your situation!
What do you do for work that keeps you up at night?  Should I even ask...?

| short timer

This is my LAST night working in San Pedro on the AM watch, midnight-morning.
fuuuuck that.

Next week I start working days at a station ~7 miles from my house. I'm excited. I worked nights in my 20s and it was okay, but as a dude pushing 40, nights are no joke.

Monday, September 01, 2014

I ignore most of the Kickstarter gaming stuff because it usually seems to cost in the $100 range, but I totally woulda got on board for Roll Through the Ages: Iron Age! I hadn't heard of that one. Let me know how it turns out! We got a lot of use out of the first game.

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Wave two Deadzone has arrived!  A few thoughts:

It was much better packed than wave 1.  More than half of the little plastic baggies were even labelled!
The plastic zombie sprues may be the coolest thing ever?  I apparently didn't buy an A.I. deck.  Big mistake!
Except for the deadguy figs.  I got them on a whim.  They might be cooler.  And could quickly become zombies for bonus coolness.
Jon got the chovar psychic.  Ridiculous looking model.  By which I mean super cool.
The ruined battlezones look awesome, but now I wish I hadn't assembled all my non-ruined stuff.  Mixing and matching would be most awesome.

Apparently there's one more wave to come in Oct or Nov, when the last of the hard plastic Enforcers arrive.  I think I'm getting some of those, and Jon ordered a few too.

This represents the first of the massive wall of KS shit arriving here soon: Myth Wave 2 (just in time for a dramatic splash on ebay!  True KS shit...), Rivet Wars Wave 2 (super cool game, can't wait for the extra bits.  Really happy with this one), Shadows of Brimstone (also ridiculously excited about this one), Roll Through the Ages: Iron Age, Reaper Bones II, Incredible Expeditions, Xia, and maybe even the new Dwarven Forge stuff.  Terramyd, already a year late, just posted an update with an "indefinite" delay.  They are like, seriously behind.  But my KS orgy should be coming to closure by the end of the year.  Hopefully.

So when are we playing Deadzone again?  I am not playing the Rebs next time, that's for sure.
OK, so I was pretty surprised to find that after all these years, enr0n's representation of the Wildcats theme song was not exaggerated at all, but was in fact 100% accurate:

Friday, August 29, 2014

That was an awesome video! I stole it for Facebook.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Ok you parents,  get your kids practicing.


Thursday, August 21, 2014

| And thus the age of Geek was begat

Thanks for doing the heavy lifting.  You need any graphics related stuff?  Logos, mascots (anime elf/cat girls), etc.

By the way, we got competition in Gen Con.  While I do like their sub-level with lights, I think ours has the better atmosphere (dark and dangerous)...  The fifth pic:


Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Awesome! Got some ideas Bouncing around that I'll run by you soon.
Thanks for killing it on the backend.

| Electric Cardboard Mayhem - Under Constructions

Sup fellas.

So, Electric Cardboard Mayhem is live!  And by live I mean there is a hosting package that is currently hosting a website, but it is totally not ready for launch.

Learning how to make the Wordpress theme do what I want and learning about all the plugins, etc. has been challenging but fun.  I have some dummy posts, images, etc. up there just to learn how it all works and am still figuring out how I think it should all look/feel.  There's lots I can configure, I just need to figure out what it is we should do!

Please, have a look, give me some ideas and I'll do what I can to integrate, but I can't work magic and might not be able to figure out how to do it right now.

To Do list:
 - Create tags
 - Play with different types of posts and plugins (ex. review plugin allows for star ratings, etc.)
 - create user accounts for everyone and upload pictures
 - figure out layout
 - about us page (which I would LOVE to have some sort of edit from jr0ns documentary, but I might just post the YouTube one Rude made?)
 - terms and services/privacy policy
 - Figure out how to overrule the fonts and play with them
 - mailing list
 - continue with post ideas

Done list:
 - hosting
 - domain name
 - twitter account (@cardboardmayhem)
 - dust off my twitter account (@biggdork)
 - pick a theme
 - started gathering affiliate programs (drivethrurpg, gog, amazon, funagaingames, nobleknight so far)
 - SEO process for postings
 - general SEO
 - google analytics
 - google adwords
 - the list goes on and on and on...

We're getting there!

Enron's at Disneyland today. Teacups all day every day.

Check out Escape from Tomorrow on Netflix because it was shot illegally at Disneyland and Disneyworld. Not the greatest movie ever, but pretty cool feat nonetheless.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

My tiny contribution to Kickstarter gaming shipped today - Dragon Slayer dice game from Indie Boards & Cards. It's the game that won out to Jael and I's mining dice game! It'll be fun to compare it to what J and I had in mind. Hopefully it's good. That'll be my first review for our Bukkadicenews site.

Monday, August 18, 2014

It's not an especially great title. Actually, the fluff in general is a bit jargony.

There's no reason you couldn't break the information in the app out into cards, track the damage and all the effects physically, print a rulebook and play purely tabletop. Right now they have the ability to release errata and new scenarios straight into the app, so you'd need to start maintaining that separately. For the hardened tabletop wargamers, this might even be preferable. However I think the whole point of the enterprise is to streamline the wargame experience, so I doubt they'd support it. Maybe some crazed fan will do it (eyeballs Xander).

I think the game you must have been discussing was In Exilis, an experiment along similar lines that was a bust -- I don't know anyone that played it. Another experiment is FFG's upcoming XCOM board game which uses an app as the enemy AI player. It seems to function like a less berserk Space Alert. FFG has the dough to throw at experiments like this, so if XCOM is a hit I'm sure we'll start seeing more things along these lines.

Sorry about the travel woes Xander!
Even though I've never really been a big Star Wars guy, Armada looks awesome.  And Descent in Space looks nifty, but I'll play your copy.  :)

| My foot hurts

You know what really sucks?  Stubbing your toe so hard on your luggage for a trip you're about to take that you break it.  The toe, not the luggage.  Then what sucks even more?  Running the length of Schiphol airport to make your connection to Nairobi on said toe, only to be told that there's a problem with your ticket, and could you please hold on, meanwhile they're closing the gate and the plane is pulling away and the next flight is in 10 hours.  Oh, and sorry.  You're going to have to take that flight.  And the internet here is slow as balls on ice.  (that's slow, for those who don't know)

But damn I've got a gruesome blue-black toe with a vicious bruise inching its way up my foot.

My ridiculous 3-days-in-Africa for reeeelly important meetings trip just became even more ridiculous.  I am now spending almost exactly the same amount of time in transit as I am in meetings, and I'm missing the meeting I'm supposed to present at, compliments of KLM's incompetence. 

But hey, I got to see Hunger Games and the Lego Movie on the plane!
"Golem Arcana" almost sounds like a randomly generated engrish-for-gamers name. This will make smile and happy time, indeed. (We need something like that for the new site!)

That said, sounds like a cool idea for a game! I remember a few cons back Matt talked about a similar sounding game where you used the iPad to track stats and stuff with your minis. Do they give you the ability to play the game without the app? It would be nice if you could play the game analog as well.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

| Star Wars FFG Games

Armada: Looks awesome.

Imperial Assault: Looks pretty, BUT it's (exactly) Descent in Space, not sure I need that. Especially without solo rules! (Sad trombone.)

| Miniatures And Terrain Turbo Painter

Suddenly it all makes sense!

Anyway, got in a couple games down in LA this weekend:

- Cave Evil: vs my brother-in-law, who's pretty into metal and cheesy metal artwork and thus is the target market. Total unfair advantage Ameritrash game, lots of fun. But it definitely needs two things. a) more than two players; b) to be played without A.P. types. Playing it in an overly analytical manner would make it completely long and unfun.

- Golem Arcana: I got my kickstarter copy of this and played the tutorial games solo (sad trombone). It's a miniatures game, but all the rules tracking and number crunching are done on your tablet -- you tap the various pieces with a bluetooth enabled stylus, so for example I'd tap an attack option on Golem A, then tap his target, Golem B, and the app does the calculations, keeps track of ongoing effects, and so on. It's a surprisingly sophisticated minis game, kinda nice to just be able to blaze away without having to go through a thick rulebook to figure out how to work through an attack resolution or whatever. Downside: at least on my iPad3, there's enough delay in the communication between the stylus and the app to make me a little impatient. Not a total dealbreaker, but a bit annoying. Hopefully this can be cleaned up a bit in further app revisions.

- Finally, I got my steam key for the Warmachine Tactics video game. It's in beta. Still pretty rough around the edges with lots of UI work, polish etc required, but mechanically it seems solid and seems to hit a good middle ground of accurately modeling the tabletop game vs. being quick to play. It's basically Warmachine XCOM. Can't really recommend it in its current state, but hopefully it polishes up nice by release. Definitely can see this being fun to play with you guys.

| M.A.T.T.

Heya Matt!

Help us come up with a cool gaming related name for the new site/podcast/etc. You'd be surprised how almost every gaming-type phrases is already snagged up. 

Saturday, August 16, 2014

| Hello Xander

Welcome Em Ay Tee Tee. Great to see you on the blog. We talk about pretty much everything here. From minis, board games, video games and RPGs to politics, day to day bull shit or any other random life crap. Pretty much all of it is bullshit. We kind post in fits and starts so check the page often to see what the talk of the town is. And by talk of the town, I mean random noise from a bunch of nerds.

The missus and I are headed to Sausalito to go kayaking today. Should be a lot of fun. No photos though. Not taking my gear in the bay knowing my ass could end up in it :( Times like this it would be nice to have a waterproof camera. Oh well.

eLzar, GIMP drove me up the wall. I tried using it a couple of times and the controls and menu just seemed so oddly organized. Never give programmers the power to control UI. They will make you cry every time. Not that PS doesn't have its idiosyncrasies, but have used it since PS 2.5, so I followed its evolution over the past 20 years.


Friday, August 15, 2014


A) I figured out the whole GIMP think, now I just need a picture of Xander...

B) Star Wars Imperial Assault

| That's Em Ay Tee Tee

... you know, the most prolific painter of all time based out of SF?  The other guy with the huge Ogre game that he hates?  You know, that guy?

PS For the life of me, I cannot get GIMP to work the way I used to get Photoshop to work.  I CANNOT set a canvas size, say 60x60px and then take a larger image and shrink it down so that only the part I want shows in the canvas.  It used to be SO EASY in PS; I would set my canvas, then grab the image and I think holding Ctrl, I would mousewheel down and the image would shrink and I could get all the Action Team faces in a nice little canvas, all the same size, and cropped all awesome-syle. Until I can figure that out, EmAyTeeTee might just be a red x, or some other placeholder I upload...

So mad...

Yo!  Someone sent me this invitation to some blog.  Do I get to brag about my toy soldiers here or what?  Well.  Your toy soldiers, mostly.  But I'm painting 'em!

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

| {Clap Clap}

You, sir win the bon mot of the day.  So much truth in that.

Monday, August 11, 2014

And I like that overlap of ages. They might as well have said " looking for gals ages
Barely-18 to 100yo+, dead or alive
And even marriages.... Surely the email looking for guys is just lost in the email.

| From the latest GenCon email:

Speed Daters Needed
Are you looking to make a connection at Gen Con 2014? The Speed Dating events need women in the21-35 and 30-45 age groups! Speed Dating at Gen Con has produced many relationships and even marriages! Participants will have the chance to win two promo passes for Gen Con 2015, so if you're an eligible female, sign up! Where better to meet like-minded individuals than The Best Four Days in Gaming™?

| Also

You're the one who talked me into keeping AHQ, so we've definitely got to play that before anything else.

| Way more than you want to read about Descent

Descent could be an enjoyable game, but it was mentally taxing since you constantly had to worry about mini placement to prevent spawns, and also were always doing fiddly math calculations based on the results of your massive dice pools then applying a zillion modifiers. Also, its Overlord victory conditions were designed around stalling the game as long as possible to run the players out of VP. Combined with the extremely long playtime (around 5-6 hours!), it could exact a pretty harsh toll on the old mind-grapes.

It really came into its own with the campaign expansion, which made three especially good changes for the game:

- Starting campaign characters were WAY simpler than starting vanilla Descent characters. Towards the end of the campaign, things got complicated again, but by then, you felt you'd earned it.
- The randomized dungeon levels were short (45 minutes-1 hour per level), so you could play 2-3 of those and stop when people's brains were fried.
- The campaign framework itself, which gave everyone a map to cruise around on, towns to buy things in, and the overlord little armies to move around on the map to raze towns and harass the PCs with.

We actually got through a whole campaign (this is the primary benefit of pulling in non-Action Team members), and while a couple of the sessions were hilariously aggravating for the players, overall it was a really fun experience. I do feel a little bad for my Overlord in the final fight. The players found a late-game broken combo where basically they rigged the final fight so that my badass dragon really couldn't attack them at all. It resulted in a pretty savage beat down, but I was dicking with them so mercilessly throughout the campaign that I think they earned it.

Descent 2nd ed is a mixed bag. It's much more streamlined, and uses a comparable experience system out of the box so you start with simplified version of the campaign framework out of the box, but it doesn't include the things I really liked, which were the randomized dungeons and overworld map minigame. They also really toned down the loot grabbing which was a big part of the fun.

The interesting thing is they recently released a solo/coop adventure for it through POD. Hopefully they're testing the waters for a full coop expansion. I could see getting back into it that way.

But for now, I don't own any of that shit so it's all dead to me!