Confrontation Kickstarter in April

While I was looking for easy ways to fix a Succubus Golgoth busted off her base from AT-43, I found this little surprise out on the interweb tubes.

Note the word “CLASSIC” which likely means 3.5 Conf. and not the AT-43 based version that came out with the plastics.

Not much other information is out there, we’ll have to wait and see with April right around the corner here.

MAAAAT 2018

Today was maat’s birthday.  We played a bunch of games at 42 Alehouse last night (well, 3) including a massive 6 player game of RISING SUN which was chaos incarnate.

Then we busted out the STUDY IN EMERALD and it was pure gold. The first game was a grind with two restorationists and three loyalists, but the second game saw Cthulhu destroy London, destroying all of Shawn’s agents and ending the game (as he was a restorationist), and yet he still won on points!  Pure gold.

We love you matt even though you take too long to take your damn turns.

Films of the 2018 ski trip

We went skiing in Oregon in February.  At night we played RPG’s and a few board games and watched terrible, terrible movies.   Steve managed to bring some DVD’s filled with some of the worst films in the scifi genre in addition to the ‘Miami boob’ DVD’s that must have graced skinimax back in the day.  Here’s what we watched and the average grade for each.

Raiders of Atlantis
Rating:  C

I liked this movie, despite it being, you know, terrible.  It had some Italians that pretended to be in Miami and Atlantis rose up out of the ocean to unleash some sort of human control mechanism that gave rise to a biker gang that attacked everyone with silly go cart things.   This is sort of an island mad max with aliens and shit.  The Italian actress in here (Gioia Scola) is a looker.

Robo Vampire
Rating: F+

Unwatchable.

Horror High
Rating: F

Unwatchable

Galaxina
Rating: C

An interesting sci fi movie that a couple people really liked. The android lady is played by a beautiful woman who was murdered just as her career was getting rolling (the movie Star 80 was based on her life and murder). Overall I thought this was poorly paced and overacted, yet with some interesting parts. The space ship designs were cool.

Deadly Prey
Rating: D

This is a ridiculous film, with almost all scenes taking place within a few hundred yards off a road somewhere in California. People may enjoy this for the comedy of it, because it does take itself so seriously, it’s hard not to laugh. There were some good fight scenes here and there, but overall this was pretty boring.

Hard Ticket to Hawaii
Rating: C

This film has the famous scene where the skateboarder with a fuck-doll and a shotgun gets blown up by a rocket launcher. Let me tell you that it is the best scene in the film and the rest is pretty forgettable. I like boobs and this has a lot of them often, but it’s just not enough, even compared to some of the other Andy Sidaris films we suffered through. The concept of taking playboy and penthouse actresses and throwing them headlong into films like this I do appreciate and approve of. You could strike gold: look at Marilyn Chambers in Rabid— despite her ‘park a couple of mac trucks in there vag,’ she was a descent actress.

The Eliminators
Rating: C

Well shit this has Security officer Natasha Yar from Star Trek the next generation. She gets her WHITE tanktop wet while nearly drowning inside a crashed airplane too. Otherwise this is a strange cyborg movie that has a few solid scenes, including a very comical bar fight that ends up being highly entertaining. I could barely sit through this one, but it’s not unwatchable. The pursuit of the ‘heroes’ by a pissed off lesbian boat tour captain was the highlight for me.

The Dungeonmaster
Rating: D+

I don’t know about the other guys, but this movie is one I wished I hadn’t watched. Sure it has Bull from night court and he does a hammy good job, but overall a lot of the vignettes are trash. Generally disappointing, but has some funny parts. It has WASP playing a song in it. Great.

Rolling Vengance
Rating: C-

This is some sort of coming of age film for a young truck driver in a truck driver family in Ohio that runs afoul of some hillbillies that end up killing accidentally then on purpose his entire family, and then they rape his girlfriend outside his barn. He gets revenge by running them all over with a monster truck with the help of the local police. Fucksakes.

Hands of Steel
Rating: D+

This is a near-future cyborg movie from 1986. The plot isn’t that bad: a critical anti-pollution activist is nearly killed by a mind-wiped cyborg that botches the assassination on purpose and escapes. Yet, the critical scene is an arm wrestling one so you can imagine where this ends up.

HUNDRA
Rating: C (I rated it higher!)

This is my favorite film from the ski trip and one I want to force others to watch as soon as possible, especially women. Hundra is a full bore warrior woman of a tribe of women who only need men to mate with and make more women! She has to confront some VERY hard choices when things go wrong for her tribe and while this starts out just like Conan the Barbarian, it soon takes a very strange and incredible turn when Hundra goes to see a seer who tells her things she does not want to hear. Laurene Landon is awesome. Absolutely recommended.

Prisoner 984
Rating: D-

Unwatchable.

There were a couple more I’ll throw up onto another post.

March 2018: I loathe most of the top 10 games on BoardGamegeek

Boardgamegeek has a ranking of games that’s been around for a long time.  During living memory, Twilight Struggle has been the top game with the usual suspects filling out the other slots (Brass, Agricola, Power Grid, Caylus, etc.).

I had a peek at the top 10 games today and of the games I’ve played or know enough about, all of them are absolutely terrible.  Not only that, Cosmic Encounter has dropped out of the top 100 games which indicates to me that something has gone very, very wrong with the BGG algorithm (all of the top 10 games are from 2012 or later except for one).

1: Gloomhaven

This solves a problem for many gamers without game masters to play a real RPG or to avoid continuing to play with a group’s really awful GM, but after two excruciating plays of this, I can say I hated every moment of this game, from the set up to the leveling up to the combat.  Like Mage Knight, everything about this one stinks.

FAR Better games:  Descent, The Others, Massive Darkness, Dead of Winter, Heroquest, Advanced Heroquest, Talisman

2: Pandemic Legacy: Season 1

Legacy games (where the game changes forever as you play) are great fun, Pandemic is not.  What Pandemic is, unfortunately, is a solo game where one player plays against the board like CHAINSAW WARRIOR, except it pretends to be coop instead of like CHAINSAW WARRIOR, it’s supposed to be solo.  All the other players are not only superfluous, but hamper attempts to win the game.   Needless to say, Pandemic is the ultimate quarterbacker game.  No thank you.

FAR better games:  The Others, Dead of Winter, Descent, A Study in Emerald

3: Through the Ages

Never played, can’t comment.

4: Twilight Struggle

This is a good game, but it’s 2 player and a bit programmed.  I’ve only played it once and while I would play it again, the subject matter isn’t all that interesting to me.  I was surprised this stayed on the top of the pack for so long, and I’m surprised it’s number 4 at this point.

Somewhat better games: MTG, Pokemon CCG, Seasons, Advanced Squad Leader

5:  Terraforming Mars

Never played, can’t comment

6: Star Wars: Rebellion

This is a lot like Twilight Struggle and is probably a good 2 player game.  I watched a multiplayer game being played though and it looked painful to me.  Very painful.  It was simply a quarterback on both sides and one of the players on each side were not needed at all, and they knew it.

Better games:  Pericles, Eclipse, Fief, All the Quartermaster General games.

7: Terra Mystica

Played this once and out of my mouth came ‘never again.’  This is like an accountants Fantasy Empire game, a game that is so dry in play that it’s akin to getting an I.V. of gin for a few hours, or a gin suppository.   This is by far the worst game in the top 10. So dry, so tedious, so boring.

Way better games: everything else in the top 300 games on BGG is better than this and probably a few hundred games sub 300 as well.

8: Scythe

Another game I’ve had to sit through a few times in mental pain and anguish.  This looks like a Euro/Ameritrash mash up, but it’s not AT ALL.  It is a garbage euro with nice pieces and cool art.  I know a lot of people that talk about how they love this game, but then does it hit the table?  Very rarely because it’s just not very good.  This company’s previous game (Euphoria) is pretty solid, so I don’t know why they went so wrong with this one.  There’s just so little interaction for what this game looks like, it’s sad.

Better Games:  Eclipse, Nexus Ops, Blood Rage, Rising Sun, Fief, Struggle of Empires and even Twilight Imperium 2nd edition, Caylus, many others.

9: Great Western Trail

Haven’t played, can’t comment.  I want to play this one though!

10: 7 Wonders Duel

Another 2 player game in the top 10.  This is a good game, fun, fast to play but with a really messy and confusing set up.  Is this the 10th best board game every made?  Nope.   I can see why this one ranks high though.

Slightly better games:  Netrunner, MTG, Seasons

I bet we see only games released in the last 5 years in the top 10 going forward because I think that’s what the algorithm is built off of.

Garycon 2018

Always a fun, mellow con where you can get food and drink no problem, from where ever you are in the Hotel.  We showed up on Saturday only and hit the board game library and then commenced to playing DCC until my kids nearly fell asleep at the table.   This is one Convention where you can just basically show up and fairly easily get into games.

This con is getting … bigger.  We’ll have to see how long it remains at the Grand Geneva which itself is huge– I think it would not be as unique or fun if it moved.  Hopefully it stays a smallish/medium con in the next few years and doesn’t approach the monstrosity that Gencon has become.  However, if you want to experience what GENCON was like in the early years– Gary Con is definitely it.

The GM’s view running People of the PIT!

A Study in Emerald Sequel: AuZtralia!

A Study in Emerald has quickly become one of my favorite games.  It’s combination of solid deck building and treachery just warms my cockles!

After the events in A Study In Emerald, Northern Europe is in ashes and the peoples need to rebuild civilization in Australia with trains and stuff and of course, the remaining Old Ones waking up.   Auztralia also by Martin Wallace, looks great and will be good for a twofer Saturday of aSiE.  It’s not out yet but should be in 2018!

DIRGIBLES

The Golden Sword – A Guardian Heroes inspired adventure for 13th Age

We had a weekend-long 13th Age session this past weekend with randomly rotating GM’s and character level ups between each session.  I got to go first and had a bit of time to prep before the session.  Some of the GM’s did not know when they would be up, which is admirable. I wasn’t admirable.

I had a  WFRP-like plot set up and written into a pocketmod the week before, but then a bunch of kids were at the house and they were playing Guardian Heroes and I STOLE THE BEGINNING COMPLETELY for the first session …and would do it again.

I built the following adventure based closer to Feng Shui style than to any standard D20 dungeon crawl, which I think 13th Age fits perfectly.   The adventure consists of three fights with connective tissue in between (read as the INTENTION of railroading if not railroading during the session itself).

I used a trick to start the session off that I read in some 13th Age book or module somewhere, where a dark elf pays the characters for their memories… this is to cut down on all the “this is how I know X character” bullshit that bogs down the first sessions!

Dramatis Personae

Sauvanne the Red
Baron Arceneaux
Cantacuzene the Sorcerer
Rolfia of the blackguards
Zul the Advisor
Aarwon the inkeeper
Blavot Couvier, sergeant of the blackguards
Golden Swordsman

Battle 1 – Inn and Streets

The characters are sitting at a table at an inn (The Unicorn and Badger on Harlot’s Chase in the town of Mudfair are the names I used) and a beautiful dark elf is handing them a sack of silver and jewels and says she would like to pay them for their memories.  The characters will likely say stuff like “mine aren’t that interesting” or “it will cost you more than that,” but of course she means the memories that she has already purchased and in fact they can’t remember anything for the last few weeks except that they have an affinity for the other characters with no memory exactly of why.

She then snuffs a bit and looks around and say’s ‘oh it’s time to go’ and disappears into ash. The characters then smell smoke and have a chance to look around themselves.  They are on the second floor of an Inn and on the table along with the silver the dark elf just left them, is an open stack of gems and gold coins as well as a well-appointed golden sword.

[Characters stole a bunch of stuff including the golden sword from a nearby temple (Zeliel, God of Coins!) and are celebrating after delivering what they were requested to steal to their employers; the sword was INCIDENTALLY stolen.]

Suddenly, a woman in ornate crimson armor (Sauvanne) bursts into the inn and points to the sword and warns the characters that they are about to be attacked and ‘don’t let them get the sword!’ Guards start flowing in to the building and it is set on fire. Characters can run or fight but the building burns around them and becomes increasingly dangerous. The woman fights with the characters vs the guards and suggests a retreating withdrawal.  She will help to pick up any characters that drop to zero, but won’t stay long in the burning building because that would be stupid.

Four guards will scale the walls or come up the inn stairs into the second floor room each turn.

Archers will stay outside ready to shoot anyone they see that isn’t another guard.  They have pushed bales of burning hay to the sides of the Inn as well as setting fire to a few on the first floor.  Bolgar Mangstein and Chamas Mazor lead the group of guards tasked to get the sword.  The named characters will not engage until after escalation 3 and will go into the building until escalation 5 after which they will wait outside for the building to burn down or the characters to jump out.  The Sword is a big deal and all the named characters will take risks to get it, but these two won’t fight to the death.

Stats and Mechanics

After escalation 3, everyone in the inn takes 5 ongoing damage with no save.  After escalation 6+, everyone in the inn takes 10 ongoing damage and must save AFTER they leave the inn as well or continue to take damage.

There are 12 guards and 6 archers plus two named characters.   This would be an easy fight for first level characters, except for the burning building.

Town Archers Town Guard
Mook     Level 1     Archer Mook     Level 1     Troop
Initiative +5 Initiative +5
HP 5          AC 13      PD 10      MD 10 HP 7          AC 14      PD 13      MD 13
R: Crossboiws +9 v AC (1 enemy engaged ) – 4 Damage M: Short Swords +9 v AC (1 enemy engaged ) – 4  Damage
     Hit Natural 16+ – Reduce the escalation die by 1.
Bolgar Mangstein Chamas Mazor
 Level 3     Leader   Level 2     Caster
Initiative +5 Initiative +5
HP 45          AC 16      PD 12      MD 12 HP 25          AC 16      PD 14      MD 14
M: Huge Mace +9 v AC (1d2 enemies engaged), 8 Damage R: Spirit Blaster +10 v MD (1d3 unengaged enemies), 4 Damage
     Special: If escalation die is even, can repeat this attack one additional time      Hit Natural 16+ – Creature pops free and can move as a free action.
     Miss – Gain +2 bonus to next attack      Miss Odds – Gain +2 bonus to next attack

Connective Tissue 1

Allow a short rest when the characters escape from the Inn.  If they get captured, you’ll have to wing it from there.

Assuming the characters escape, the lady introduces herself (Sauvanne) and explains what they accidentally did by stealing the sword: set off a hunt based on a known prophecy about the local baron and the true power behind the barony: the sorcerer Cantacuzene involving the sword.

If they aren’t too hurt and the inn fight wasn’t too long, on the streets/ running away from the inn they can be confronted by more guards. Just a few should work fine here and if needed one of the surviving named characters from the first fight. This should be easily overcome.

They run (force this part) to the nearby grave yard which is ancient and larger than the village itself.  It has ancient barrows upon which gravestones and mausoleums have been built.  Sauvanne will suggest this as very few people frequent the graveyard…

I had many guard parties to be avoided in the town as well as knights riding winged mechanoid wasps searching through the town from the sky.

Battle 2 -Graveyard

While Sauvanne is convinced the graveyard is safe to hole up in for awhile, but the group is confronted by Rolfia, the head of the Black Order of the baron’s guard.  She calls Sauvanne a traitor and says that she is going to let them play with one of her toys first if they won’t hand over the sword to her.  The toy is a 12 foot tall mechanoid that cannot really be damaged by the characters. The characters fight around a large barrow.

The core thing here is that the mechanoid should only be superficially damaged from the character’s weapons and spells.  First level 13th Age characters can do some amazing shytte, and there are a lot of different classes to deal with (like the chaos mage) but you should be able to make it believable that the mechanoid isn’t really damaged, though they are doing damage to it.   The critical point is when someone tries to use the golden sword on the mechanoid, stuff happens.  As soon as the sword is swung, the barrow nearby bursts open and a warrior in golden armor (very dead looking) appears, and the sword throws it’s current wielder into the nearby grave stones (4 damage) and teleports to his hand. The golden warrior crushes the mechanoid immediately.  The head of the black order and her guards run away in fear as the dead rise from their graves around them (influenced by the presence of the golden warrior, but not controlled or any concern of his).

The characters are then attacked by the golden swordsman, but make sure they aren’t hit–if they tell him to STOP, he stops and they learn they can issue commands to him. Have Sauvanne do this and be attacked if you have a lot of damaged characters after the mechanoid battle.

Stats

Don’t bother statting the mechanoid except Init +5, Attack +5, Damage 15.  This won’t hit often but when it does– ouch.  It’s a story element (players won’t know this and that’s OK).  It will go for the sword and try to wrestle it away if possible.  If they attack Rolfia, see below.

Connecting tissue 2

Sauvanne can say “That sword… This golden warrior must have wielded it long ago. Legend has it that the sword possesses the power to wipe the darkness. I had no idea it would summon the golden warrior. The Baron has been desperately seeking this sword and now I know why they are afraid of it. This warrior has the power to end the Sorcerer Cantacuzene’s reign over the Barony, forever.”

I did not plan to involve all of you… But when the Baron Arceneaux discovered I was going to revolt, I did not think he would use so many troops.
I cannot fight this battle alone. Do not be fooled by Baron Arceneaux or his family. Whoever has the sword will be captured and executed! From now on, all of you will be targets as well. We must leave here immediately!

The dead start to rise out of their graves within a radius of the Golden Warrior.  Any that get close to him he destroys, but it is a constant threat until the characters leave the graveyard (for the final battle).

Sauvanne suggests they go to a nearby village (Crowyard) as it is friendly to the rebels against the Baron Arceneaux and the Sorcerer.  The characters may want to hide in a nearby woods or go kick some ass at the Baron’s keep.

Battle 3 – Baron’s Keep, Woods or Village (Crowyard).

They can raid the Baron’s keep, or go to a nearby village friendly to rebels against the Barony (the Arceneaux’s), or head to the woods to hide among the rebels there.  Whichever place they decide to go, the fight is the same, though you will need to make up the getting there part on your own and frame the fight.  My players went to the keep and snuck in.  The keep I used had an access tunnel beneath it for supplies and was otherwise unguarded.

Depending on what they do, they are likely attacked, or must fight through, more guards and the Baron’s adviser (Zul) who traps them with magic in an ‘arena’ with a giant summoned troll via three witches in mauve robes.

Stats

 

Blue Ogre thing Witches
Large     Level 3     Wrecker Normal     Level 1     Caster
Initiative +5 Initiative +5
HP 126          AC 16      PD 12      MD 12 HP 19          AC 18      PD 13      MD 13
M: Meaty Fist +10 v AC (1 enemy engaged with monster), 23 Pummelling Damage R: Lightning fork +6 v AC (1d3 nearby enemies), 3 Lightning damage
 Hit Evens – Target is weakened      Special: Witch can pop free from target. If engaged with any other enemies in addition to target, can immediately roll to disengage with +2 bonus.
     R: Floor Tile Toss +10 v PD (2d3 nearby or faraway enemies), 6 Crushing damage    Miss – Disengages from any engaged enemies
 Limited Use: Escalation die 3+       Natural 16+ – Ogre heals 5 HP
  Miss Natural -5 – Gain +2 bonus to next successful attack (can stack)

Zul, when captured, can give information as to where the Baron is or Cantacuzene the Sorcerer…Connective Tissue 3 really depends where the characters have this fight. If they are in the Crowyard village or in the woods, they should go to the keep to finish the job. If they are already at the keep, then the second wave of antagonists should show up after Zul’s ogre and witches are defeated.

Battle 4 – Confront the Sorcerer

This is a fight that has a pre-determined outcome.  The characters will attack either the Baron to get to the sorcerer or find the sorcerer.  They will fight minions and either the Baron, Zul or any of the named characters that survived the first fights.  The setting for this could be anywhere but inside the keep is probably best.

While the characters are fighting, the Sorcerer Cantacuzene shows up and the Golden Warrior gets super pissed off and those two battle, destroying each other, and the sword in the process.  In our session, the final battle was in the keep and it started to collapse–the characters ran away and the whole thing came down on top of the golden warrior and the sorcerer.  After the Sorcerer is destroyed, the other named characters will snap out of it and be sorry for what they’ve done as they were geased by the sorcerer…  FIN!

Stats

House Archers House Guards
Mook     Level 1     Archer Mook     Level 1     Troop
Initiative +5 Initiative +5
HP 5          AC 19      PD 15      MD 11 HP 5          AC 17      PD 15      MD 11
R: Arrow +6 v AC  – 4 Damage M: Short Sword +9 v AC (1 enemy engaged ) – 4 Flavor Damage
 Hit Evens – Choose one ally. The next non-critical hit against that ally this battle is a miss instead.
Zul Rolfia
Normal     Level 2     Caster Normal     Level 3     Leader
Initiative +5 Initiative +5
HP 36          AC 13      PD 11      MD 11 HP 63          AC 16      PD 14      MD 10
R: Magic Missiles +8 v MD (1d2 enemies engaged with monster), 5  Damage M: Big Mace+9 v AC (2 attacks), 6  Damage
Hit Fives – Target is confused      Hit Natural 18+ – Attack is a critical hit!
Miss Evens – Increase damage of next successful attack by 25%      Miss Fives – Gain +2 bonus to next attack
 Natural -5 – The target sees odd colors at the corners of its vision until it has taken a full heal-up (–2 penalty to skill checks to see things).      Natural 16+ – Target can’t use recoveries until its next turn.
C: Sonic Deluge +10 v MD (1d3 enemies in group), 4 Fire
 Hit Evens – The creature teleports the target next to one of its nearby allies that it can see, who engages it as a free action. It can’t teleport the target to a location that causes it direct damage (so can’t drop it into traps or lava).    Limited Use: When escalation die even Nastier Special – Blood Frenzy: Make a note of the escalation die when Rolfia becomes staggered. She gains a bonus to her melee attacks and damage equal to that escalation die value for the rest of the battle.

 

Baron Arceneaux
Normal     Level 2     Spoiler
Initiative +5
HP 25          AC 18      PD 14      MD 14
M: Heavy Axe +10 v AC (1 enemy engaged), 7 Damage
 Hit Odds – Attack is a critical hit!
     Miss Natural -5 – Gain +2 bonus to next attack

Obligatory Star Wars post

Because it’s 2018 and I did go see the Last Jedi the first night it came out, just like I have all the movies since Empire Strikes Back, I’m going to write a few paragraphs about it for posterity.  This is mostly I can look back at this post when we are hit with even WORSE cascades of space-piss than this one (the Han Solo movie for example).  There’s a ton on the internet about the film and more and more daily.  Mostly, it’s that this “Star Wars” film has a ruthless misanthropist message, but not in a Sword of Doom type of way, but in an angry, resentful sort of way– the sort of film that would come out after Trump beat a clearly more qualified female candidate for president of the united states.

The space battles looked great, but lacked much of the emotional intensity that Return of the Jedi or a New Hope had.  I get that the ‘bombers’ in the first scene couldn’t ‘drop’ their bombs and that was all stupid.  It was forgivable except that it was a harbinger for things to be stupid later. That said, the film was not as “war-y” as Rogue One, and that was sad.  Rogue One the conflict felt a lot more intense and real, where in the Last Jedi, it felt like a Star Wars animated series episode at times.

The final surprise attack by hyperdriving into the big ship pretty much made it so the Death Star could not have existed for long since the rebels could have constantly sent (unmanned) ships warping inside it.  Of course, the Imperials could have done the same thing to any of the planets that opposed them as well.  There needed to be some technical reason for that to be able to happen– like the means by which the ship was TRACKED in hyperspace (which they made a big deal about but never closed the loop on?!) allowed that ship and that ship alone to teleport inside the other ship. Nothing like this was presented of course and to me that’s a plot hole.

While it may have been inevitable, they handled the legacy characters poorly.  Luke was not portrayed in a way that made sense at all based on the original films.  Leia was force sensitive right? But all she did was save herself?  So Yoda’s statement of “there is another” meant nothing (and yet they will be making an entire movie about the kessel run in contrast).  I don’t care about the new characters EXCEPT in relation to the old.

To echo red letter media: what happened between Return of the Jedi and Force Awakens was that our beloved characters were made out to be miserable the entire time between films, and not just because of the Star Wars Xmas special (which I sat through over the Xmas break unbelievably).

Of the new characters that are worth talking about, Adam Driver was quite good, and frankly his character is the only one I care about at all in these new films on his own.  His scene where he asks the Mary Sue to give up on all the cyclical destruction was the only poignant scene.  Finn was underutilized and pretty much comic relief, though what he ended up doing in the film was not funny at all.

So I’ve used the term a few times already, but certainly, Rei will go down in history as the poster child Mary Sue forever.  In fact, the term Mary Sue may become Rei (like, “rewrite that chapter man, that character is a REI”) or even “Daisy”.  I REALLY thought she would die in this film or get messed up on the level of Luke in the Empire Strikes Back.  The scene where she goes into that hole in the island and just saw herself infinitely in every direction was when the film hit rock bottom for me.  That was the spot for a Lynchian or Tarkovsky-esque coming of age TRIPOUT scene.  Instead, it was fucking meaningless pysse.

My own thoughts on the film is that it essentially projects a message of nihilism: people are ground to dust in a cyclical, unending conflict based on the misery of dualism which reflects in all ways that this is the beginning of unending films based on the same conflict grinding to dust infinite dollars spent by fans, and this fact was obviously felt excruciatingly by the writer.

Based on this film, there is no hope or happiness for people that are force sensitive AND trained in the ways of the force in Disney’s version of Star Wars.  Just the crushing knowledge that with the power comes unending misery, conflict and death. For a film about a pure warrior caste like 13 Assassins, great.  For an order of enlightened space monks?   uhhh?  The capitalistic focus and the misanthropic messages, with no overall controlling story arc for what’s going to happen, would drive any writer to a nihilistic state, and that certainly came out in the film.

Favorite RPG module of 2017

I didn’t run a lot of modules this year or pre published adventures but my favorite that I did run was a zero level funnel for DCC called FT0: PRINCE CHARMING, REANIMATOR.

I ran this with a mixed group of kids and adults and they all loved it.  Some of the then drunk adults even composed and recorded a song: Chuck Schick and the Shield of Truth, even though I think the shield is actually a sword.

The adventure revolves around Prince Charming (who is an asshole) acquiring another bride of a certain type, that is– a beautiful girl who has recently died that he then brings back to life with his reanimator serum.  Since this is a funnel, the horde of PC’s are tasked with bringing the bride back to the prince from the very dangerous castle that she sleeps in.  Things go horribly wrong, as they are supposed to in any funnel game, and only a few characters made it out alive.  My son made the mistake (in his opinion) of making one of his 4 pack of characters a female and naturally that was the character that survived to first level.  While he continues to complain, he is playing in the follow up Adventure, F1: Creeping Beauties of the Wood.

A great little adventure, with kids or not.

iOS games of 2017: one sentence reviews

I installed and played a lot of ios games in 2017 since I ride the bus an hour and back for work. Most were awful or were good games that just sucked on the iphone form factor.  I’ve got a huge and awkward V6+ which is nearly a mini ipad– but not nearly big enough for many of these games. Here’s what I suffered from so you don’t have to.   

Dungeon Warfare
Solid tower defense that works very well on the phone, worth the purchase.

Mordheim
This was interesting for a short time, but became so samey as to not be worth bothering with due to samey maps and missions.

A Planet of Mine
I got stuck twice early game with no way to create mines to mine the thing I needed to make mines, which was not fun.

Really Bad Chess
It’s chess with random pieces so theory has no place at all in the game, which I appreciate, but it’s still just chess.

Hero Generations Regen
This is a simplistic roguelike where your heroes get old, have babies and the babies grow up to go fight monsters, thought it was cool for about a day and then got very bored.

Vempire Kings of Darkness
Deckbuilder with vampires, this actually may end up being a game I play more of, but it just made me want to go play Ascension more.

Neoscavenger
This seems like a GREAT game, but it’s absolutely terrible on any size phone.

Iron Marines
This is good and works surprisingly well on the phone but, you will need to get your fucking face real close to the screen to play.

Out There
Sort of interesting, but it’s FTL basically and works well on the phone.

Lost Portal
I’m not dying to get to play a MTG clone, and Ascension is just better.