Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Tuesday Games and New Years

Greetings and Salutations!

So the new year is approaching rapidly and I find the urge to join the billion  bloggers that post up their hopes/resolutions for the next year.  With out further ado, here are my top hits first for gaming then with 'rest of life' aspects...

Gaming Resolutions
  • Blog here at least 4-5 times a month.  I enjoy the outlet so far as it takes very little to entertain me sometimes! :)
  • Continue the 4e D&D campaign for as long as the gang wants to continue.  I am having fun running the nights, even if the Saturdays are too few apart
  • Run a few more demo days for WARMACHINE and Hordes and MonPoc.  I've been pretty lazy over the last year.  I've done plenty of tournaments, but no demo days and we need to get some new fresh blood in to the mix.
  • Pick up Boltz-n-Voltz again.  TJ and I have a good product moving forward, but would like to get it to a spot were we can market it out.
  • More board game nights. I played Pandemic last night and it was a hoot.  Also got a 4 player Race for the Galaxy as well and I need to get more of those in as well.  
Rest of Life
  • Hit the gym...  Lets be honest, I could use to loose a dozen or five lbs.  Nothing over the top.  Average two days a week beats the current average of no days a week.  
  • Stop eating French Fries...  Fried potatoes in general.  Love them, but they ain't doing anything for svelte frame.
  • Drop the soda habit...  Again...
  • Be a nicer partner.  As The Other Half will tell you I can be an Asshole at times.  I'll try to be less an Asshole.
So that is the big list for jp.  To be honest I have a better chance on the Gaming ones then the Rest of Life...  Stupid life!

As I stated above I did get a chance to play a few games of Pandemic on Tuesday.  I should have been playing WM/HD/MonPoc, but the shoppe had an open copy of Pandemic and a few folks were interested in playing.   It is a cooperative game, which I enjoy, and it seems to have the right mix.  We played five games that evening.  The game won twice and the different players won three times.  This was at the easy setting.  

The players are a team of infection specialist working for the CDC.  Your either a medic (can treat more people faster), scientist (can find cures with fewer resources), dispatcher (can move other players on his actions), researcher (can short-change the card trade mechanic), or operations expert (can build research stations easier).  The evil viruses are in four flavors in different areas of the globe.  The players must slow the spread of the viruses while also researching the all out cure.  Players when if they find all four cures.  Game win if the players run out of cards, they can not stop eight major outbreaks, or on virus goes so big that it has no more virus cubes to deploy.  The two times we lost, it was due to the outbreaks.  Each city on the board can only have three of a specific type of virus before it 'pops' an sends more virus to the connected cities.  The problem is when one pops, forces another to pop, then another...  Chain reaction of death.

As a cooperative, it encourages discussion and in the easy phase, you play your cards face up.  Next time I think I want to play the the medium level that adds another epidemic card to the deck.

I ought to get back to the grind, so you all have a good and safe new year and catch you on the other side!

jp
Breaker of Resolutions

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

The Adventure Continues...

On Saturday the remaining party members, Eldecar, intrepid Halfling recently returned from the dead, Zoltan the Reformed, Human Wizard with a panache for the creepy, Zarsthor, Dragonborn Warlord who's moral compass puts him in harms way, and Sliver, the elf ranger looking for revenge against those that murdered his family.


After a well deserved rest, leveling, and outfitting, the party followed up on some new job prospects. Seems the Lord Mayor of Winterhaven was interested in eliminating any threat from the 'Blood Reavers' as they would be bad for continued growth in both the local community and the Vale as a whole. Additionally, the local shop keep asked the party to transport a mysterious box to the seven pillar hall, deep in Thunderspire, the last hall of the Minators before their decent into madness.



The trip would take them to Fallcrest, and the Lord Mayor of Winterhaven requested a parcel be delivered to the Lord Mayor of Fallcrest that contained news of the Rift the party had secured as well as the situation with the slavers. To keep company, the party traveled the route with Barnaby, a bumbling old merchant that told tales of the destroyed city of Devonshire, the northern capital and trading city of the long disposed Allimar Empire.



On the trail and shortly after leaving, the players stumbled upon Splug. Still carrying Zoltan's lost rope, but with a few extra items, Splug was excited to be reunited with his old friends. The friends, less so. The party decide to try and pass poor Splug (now played by Mark) off as a scared Hafling.



Entering Fellcrest after a non-eventful trip, the party took up residence at the Ninter Inn, feed and bed and re-looked at the small town they had only briefly visited when they first met. Some exploring led Zarsthor and Eldecar to a smithy that promised to fashion a special weapon for the Dragonborn Warlord. Mean time the Lord Mayor's guards told Zoltan and Sliver that they would have to come again in the afternoon as he was busy. While leaving Sliver caught a shadowy figure following them and he doubled back while Zoltan earned a few copper doing magic tricks as a distraction. The shadow claimed to be looking for his lost cat, and swiftly returned to the Castle.



That afternoon, the party re-integrated, except for Splug left in the room, retuned to the Castle and this time were ushered into the Lord Mayor's council room. There the shadow figure sat at the Mayors side as a trusted aid. Sliver asked about his cat, which the aid simply reddened and glared. The Mayor read the letter and was astonished to see that the Blood Reavers had been heard of in Winterhaven as well. In fact a caraven had just been attacked on the trade road and taken captive. Only a handful escaped and were present. The Lord Mayor added an additional reward for the destruction of the Blood Reavers as well as a bonus for finding the lost caravan teams.



So off to Thunderspire the valiant team headed. The path was clear and entrance was uncontested. It was not the evil lair they had expected, instead an underground town controlled by a group of mages. The party rescued a young Halfing from the Halfmoon clan that had become entangled with the Blood Reavers. Using his family inn as a base of operations in the Seven Pillar Hall, the party set out for the non-secret hide out. They found the old temple with out issue and began to fight their way through.



The entrance of the hall was a large greeting room that had a double door headed into the main temple. After multiple stealth moves to get across, Splug found himself unable to climb the 15' wall to a balcony on the far side. After multiple attempts at scrambling up, both Sliver and Splug finally made it up to the upper level where they found an unlocked door. Both Sliver and Splug moved forward to investigate as the rest of the party tried to approach the double doors. Sliver and Splug spotted a Bugbear and two goblins in a sleeping quarters at the same time, the rest of the party could hear some conversation in an unknown language on behind their door. Splug used his sneak attack abilities and Sliver let loose arrows to get a surprise round started. Eldecar went to open the door to find they were locked! Time to get the tools out!

Zarsthor rushed the balcony and easily climbed up as Eldecar was working on the door. After taking serious damage, Splug ran for the rear and pulled out his trusty sling as the rest of the party engaged. The tight quarters paid off for the adventures as it kept the Bugbear and Goblins from getting combat advantage.

After a short rest, the party ventured further into the temple and found a group of humans, hobgoblins and goblins eating and gambling. The narrow entrance into the room caused a bit of panic as the party tried to fight its way in, Eldecar tumbled and positioned himself on the back side of the ranks, but that led to being the primary target of the goblin sharpshooters. Zoltan used his Flaming Sphere to help clear a path and the party finally prevailed.During the short rest the party discussed if they should move forward or take an extended rest.

Low on Surges and some daily powers spent it was a close decision, but they decided to press on to help get that second milestone to help Eldecar recover from his grievous wounds. Entering the next room, the Chamber of Eyes and heart of the temple, the party encountered the holding pin for the prisoners, but they were already gone. The chamber only held a Dire Wolf and three Hobgoblin archers, one which ran away to sound the alarm. The Dire Wolf didn't stand a chance and quickly fell, but the warcaster, two Druegers and Krand, the war chief made it difficult and the party began to back peddle as they thought they were in over their head. A few tricks and lucky rolls soon changed the flow of the battle. The last remaining Drueger tried to flee the deaths and Krand rushed into battle, only to be hacked at by Eldecar and Sliver. Zoltan used his 'Might Fist of Zoltan' to squeeze the Warcaster out of existence. The last remaining Hob could be seen fleeing the temple.

After a short rest, the party scouted Krand's offices to find the note of sale from the Drueger for the 12 prisoners as well as the cash for said sale.And that is where we ended up for the evening. A good clip of action and a bit of plot and story to boot. I was pleased, but am looking forward to getting Paul's new Dragonborn Paladin into the mix.Might be a week or two before we can hit it again. Rob is wanting to run his game next week. Not sure I can escape, but I'm going to try.

Have a great New Year (the gang is meeting to play games, but I have other plans… Stupid gang playing games without me! :) and I'll post about the New Years Eve Dinner next week!

jp
I
Play
Games
!

PS: I might have messed up a few NPC names. I'll correct later if I did.

jp
Error of names

Friday, December 26, 2008

Boxing Day Bash

On Friday, I had an opportunity to play a bit of WARMACHINE vs. Adam. It was a great game with a lot of ebb and flow and it came down to a pair of caster/locks in the end.

Me:
Kraye with Hunter x3
Striker with Cent and Ol' Rowdy
Finn
Trencher Cannon, Chain Gun, and min Unit
Sword Knights at nine
Lady Aiyana and Master Holt (A&H)
Rupert
Jr. WC

Adam (to the best of my memory)
Epic Magnus with 2 Renegades
Tyrant Xerxis with 2 Cyclopes and 1 Rhinodon
Cataphract Cetratus
Cataphract Arcuarius
Venators
Ferox
Extoller Soulward
2 units of Pain Givers

I had first turn. I had set up Kraye and his hunters to the left with Stryker and his 'Jacks to the center right. The Sword Knights were to the right with the Cent in the center. A&H went far left. Trencher Canon AD with the Chain Gun in the center with Finn in LoS. Trenchers too the hill edge to the right.

Adam put his Ferox on my left with Mangus and his two Renegades. The Venators took the center and the Cetratus and Arcuarius made a two row brick with the heavy armor Cetratus in the front. Xerxis was behind the brick with one Cyclopes and one Pain Giver unit. The other Cyclopes took my far right and the Rhinodon took the center.

My plan was to use Kraye and the Hunter's Light Cav to get up and shoot the big base guys using the 'Guided Fire'. But I missed judged my distance as well as my inability to roll. On the second turn, I made the mistake of moving them to close together and they got Renegaded and then pounced on by the Ferox.

Highlights:
Kraye's Feat was nice...
It allowed me to stand up the knocked down Hunters that survived
Hunter Charging 17" for free w/ three focus, trying to slow eMagnus down
Charge Ol'Rowdy and Cent into the Cetratus, then Rupert marched the Sword Knights into help.

Adam got a few good moves off as well.

In the end it came down to Styker and the Tyrant mono e mono. Xerxis was out of beasts with six wounds. He cut himself for five fury, but failed to seal the job vs. Stryker. Colemen shrugged off the Stagger and let the bald guy with the cricket bats get it.

It was a fun game, lots of drama. Thanks to Adam for the game, now how about a 500 pointer next time! :)

In Entrainment News:
On Christmas the Eldest and I went to see Adam Sandlers' Bedtime Stories. It was cute in its own way. Not a deep drama, definitely a kids movie, but it had a few good laughs. I would give it a 3.5 on the Hansel and Gretel scale.

Hope to get some more games on Saturday. Hope everyone had a good break!

jp
Demolisher of Skorn

Sunday, December 21, 2008

And Orcus' representative in the plane of existence is banished...

We did it! After a few months of slow going, the party conquered the Keep on the Shadowfell! And I only killed four characters in the process, three in the last two battles. :) Sorry about that guys!

After finishing up the upper level, which included the battle of slimes and bugs, the party was ready to head back to the lower levels of the keep. A failed attempt to use a bad password taken from the elf ranger at the graveyard, led to a bloody battle with the new guards at the lower entry. This was quickly followed by an encounter with the reinforcements and ultimately the Hobgoblin boss. In the end the players were able to secure a room to rest and soon they entered a room with a statue of a Titan, two statues of dragons and some cherubs with vases. No bad guys... As our old friend Admiral Ackabar says 'It's a Trap!" The Titan swung his sword, the dragons belched fire, and the vases poured water. The triple threat traps kicked in and the party was soon arcane and thief checking for their lives. Luckily, it was the Eladrin that got caught in the pool trap and he simply teleported out. Stupid teleport!

In the next room (Saturday's session), the party encountered more Zombies and a Wight, what is it with Orcus and undead anyway? A short put expensive fight ended with the party heading in to the upper level of the actual rift. As they entered the room with blood flowing down into the lower level, they were set upon by many vampire minions, an underpriest of Orcus, and a handful of Human Berzerkers. This was a tough battle for the party, and Uhlk (Human Fighter) fell to the Berzerkers. The vampire minions held up 1/2 the party while the Berzerkers just beat the snot out of the rest of the team. In the end, the party needed to rest, but from their vantage point they could see that the barrier was ready to fall, so they heroically dropped down and took on Kaliel and his entourage. The party lost Elladen (Eladrin Sword Mage) and Eldcar (Halfling Thief), but was able to secure the rift for the time being.

With a bitter sweet victory, the three surviving heroes, Zoltan the Reformed (Human Wizard with Cleric Tendencies), Zarthor (Dragonborn Warlord), and Sliver (Elf Ranger), brought back the bodies of the fallen on a floating disk. Elladen and Uhlk, both had 'Do Not Resuscitate' orders on file, so only Eldcar was raised. Lord Pariag of Winterhaven, thanked the party and saw to their costs while proposing an additional task. Stop the slave trade at Thunderspire. Conveniently, the merchant of town also had some business that the party could conduct for them at the Spire.

The weakend party will shortly be joined by a Dwarf Fighter and Dragonborn Paladin and they will set forth into the hinterland.

jp
Not quite a TPK

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Charity Con Update...

I'm about a week late on this post, but I spent the past four days in the DC area which included an extra night that wasn't planned due to a flight cancellation. Oh do I 'love' to business travel!

The Charity Con events I ran went very well. MonPoc had 10 players, which isn't too bad. We played three rounds and had a good set up games with new players adding into the mix which is also nice.

The WARMACHINE/Hordes event also was fun. I set up an odd ball format. 750 points, but with two casters and at least 15 VP in 'Jacks/'Beasts. These were quick and ultra brutal games with the fifteen minute timed rounds. We also had a few new players in the mix. Tried to express that these were on the 'odd' side and not the usual forces you would see in a game.

Overall the event raised over 2600 cans of food stuffs for the Bellevue Food Pantry. Not too shabby for a bunch of gamers. Not sure what our part was, but it was fun!

Last night the Eldest and I played a few hands of RftG and we broke Thurn and Taxis and introduced the best game of 16th Century German Postal System ever created. The Eldest won both of the RftG games and I took the Thurn and Taxis by one VP on the first game. I figure I won't be so lucky next time.

This evening, I'll be meeting the gang for another installment of the D&D adventure. Looking forward to getting in sometime for the game. I'll post that update soon.

On the entertainment front, the Netflix adventure continues.

The Other Half and I have started to watch Deadwood Series. That is pretty good so far. I like the feel and it has been entertaining. I'm also getting the Dexter Series off and on. As disturbing as the concept is of a mass murder protagonist, it has been a real interesting ride so far. I just finished Gotham Knight, the animated bridge between Batman Begins and The Dark Knight. It was OK. I just not a huge fan of the different animated styles. Any hoo... The Other Half and I should be watching the next set of Deadwood this weekend.

jp
I've got games to play!

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Quantum of Solace

This is turning more into a movie blog then a gaming blog. Must do more gaming! :) Sunday at noon, the Eldest and I went to the show and saw Quantum of Solace, the new James Bond movie. The things I really liked about the show are:
  • The somber and serious mood - Far better then the cheesy camp of old. This 'feels' like what a spy thriller should be.
  • Daniel Craig - The ladies may hate me, but I think that Craig is the top Bond to date. It is, however, close between Connery (Young) and Craig. If you look at Dr. No, that is very close to the style of Bond as Craig is playing him, and is in keeping with Ian Fleming's style. As for the Bond of my youth (73-85), Roger Moore is in the toilet. I'm sorry, but the silliness and camp factor just got turned way too up for my taste. For the record, here is my list...
  1. Daniel Craig
  2. Young Sean Connery
  3. Timothy Dalton
  4. Pierce Brosnan
  5. George Lazenby
  6. Old Sean Connery
  7. David Niven
  8. Roger Moore
  • Action - The old school folks may think it is a bit too much, and at times it was distracting, like the second fight scene... What was that? But it fits in better with this no nonsense Bond.
  • 'M' - Judi Dench just rocks as 'M'. She has the cool and style to pull off being a big stick in a man's world. She plays it as a serious roll, the campy straight man jobs of the past are gone. Keep it you Dame!
What I didn't like:
  • Plot Scenes - Due to the hectic action in the movie, it seems that one or two usable plot scenes might have been left on the cutting room floor. Not enough to ruin the movie, but enough to make me scratch my head from time to time.
  • Death of Rene Mathis - Played by Giancarlo Giannini, Mathis was a great 'side kick' and I thought that his death was a bit cheap here. Maybe one of those plot scenes from above.
  • 'Q' - 'Q' is an iconic piece of Bond. If they could figure a way to include without the campy that developed around him in the first place that would be pleasant to see in the future.
Over all I liked the movie. Not as good as Casino Royale, but still a very good time at the movies, in what I hope will be longer running tradition of the 'new' James Bond.

In gaming news:

The Eldest and I have been playing the snot out of Race for the Galaxy. It is a great game at two players, but I really want to expand out to four or five. I've done a fair amount of solo play vs. the Robot for RftG as well and that has been enjoyable, even if I have lost all but once. The Eldest and I also tried out Formula D, Red Dragon Inn, and Settlers Card Game on a pretty regular basis.

On Thanksgiving Steve came over for a few hours. The Other Half was taking a nap and freaked when the Dog kicked it in gear, but that was ok. The Eldest, Steve and I played a learning hand of RftG and a round of Red Dragon Inn, before we closed up for the night. Big thanks to Steve for making the trip. Maybe next year we will make an actual planned effort to have folks over.

On Black Friday, I picked up Thurn and Taxis and Alhambra for double points. I'm ready for that next 20% discount Mr. DeVille.

I'm running a few events on the 7th for the Bellevue Food Pantry Charity Con down at the Game Shoppe. MonPoc and WM/HD. Should be good times. Then I'll be doing some traveling the next week for work. Hopefully, I'll get the go ahead to play some D&D on the 13th. We shall see!

jp
p, jp

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

We have water!

What a week. On Sunday afternoon I attempted to fix an ongoing minor drip in the master shower. Doing a bit of Intertube research I found the most likely cause was the mixer cartridge in the shower controller. After taking of all the surface stuff, the insides of the shower controller was caked with calcium/lime deposit. Took some digging and destroying but I got the parts out. Off to the big box hardware stores to find the replacement parts... but... Wait for it... They didn't carry it.

What?

Seriously?

It seems that the largest brand of products that building contractors use, doesn't sell their parts at big box. Huh. Who would have thunk that you had to go to a specialty plumbing place.

So Sunday Night, the water is off in the house. Toilets are refilled via the sprinkler drain in the basement via a bucket brigade. Lots-O-Fun. It is like Little House on the Prairie, but with out the cool hats.

And who would have thunk that said specialty plumbing space on Monday would not have the part in stock... And not offer to order it for you either. Really? Yes, Really. I think the Mafia is staffed with plumbers.

So I found this very old shop in Benson. Big shout out to The Faucet Shop in Benson for saving my bacon. It took two trips to get everything I needed, plus the ordered the part from the stupid plumbing supplier shop that I first tried to get the parts, but not until Tuesday.

On Tuesday, afternoon, I get the part and am ready to slam it into place, but wait... What is this? Part 'A' doesn't fit in Part 'B'? Really? I need a Part 'C' to go in between. Huh... To bad the diagrams don't show that.

Called the company that makes the unit on Wednesday and got the part number and recalled The Faucet Shop, and this time it was in stock! Yes! Left work around 1500 and by 1720 we had the shower repaired and water restored to the house. All is right with the world... Except the main toilet that seems to have gotten some debris in the 'Ballcock'. Stupid plumbers and their funny words. I've replaced these before, so we will live with the slow drain issue for a few days and I'll get it fixed over the weekend.

Hope everyone has water and enjoys their Thanksgiving. Hopefully I can guilt one or two of the guys to come over in the later afternoon for some board game action. :)

jp
Bane of Plumbers

Friday, November 21, 2008

Christmas in November

Good day to you!

So, the Basement Purge of 2008 has been financially rewarding. I've been selling some old game stuff that I will most likely never miss over at eBay. Since I took the cut in pay, the other half has suggested* that I should use these funds for my game purchases in the future. This combined with a 20% off for points at The Game Shoppe, I purchased several board games on Tuesday.

I got the following games:
On Wednesday the Elder was off work, so I finagled a few of the new games. We started with a game of the Settlers Card Game. It was pretty easy to pick up and the mechanics were fun. I enjoyed the building aspect as well as the way they handle trading. Second we tried MP Fluxx. Not the best two player game, but I was really hoping to show her the mechanics. That went OK. Like I said, not the best two player. She was embarrassed to do the ridicules accent or to sing songs. We finished up with a game of RDI. This is fund, mindless game, also better with four players then two, but it was still playable. The setting is post adventure, when the 'characters' are drinking and spending their gold. Kind of silly, but fun.

On Thursday and Friday nights, I fought my way through the solo version of RftG. It is an interesting mix. I haven't beat the solo game yet as it can out earn VP on me pretty quick. I've played about 5 times, and each time I keep finding something new. It is nice to have a good solid solo game as well for those nights.

Other exciting news on the home front...
  • We went down to basic cable. I don't watch TV at all to be honest except for Lost, but I get that on the basic tier. Saves us a bit of money, but...
  • We signed up for NetFlix to fill the void. We still end up ahead over the cable bill by about $15ish a month, but we can choose better shows. The other half picked a few comedies, I got Dexter Season 1 and Gotham Knight. The plan we are on offers two DVD's at a time plus unlimited internet viewing. I would be interested in finding a way to send the streaming to the regular TV. Anyone got any ideas?
  • Privateer Press sort of announces they are shifting to plastic for some larger models. This did light the fire storm of doom. Typical cycle for the PP Boards: Announce --> DOOM! --> Release --> COOL! Given the quality of the GW plastics have achieved, I have little doubt that PP's will be the same. Besides, between the lines looks like that 'Jack boxes will have multiple weapons layouts for the same chassis. So you can use the magnets to make an Iron Clad, Defender, or Storm Clad. That alone is cool.
jp
I like big games and I can not lie...

Monday, November 17, 2008

Into the depths... Sort of...

Greetings and Salutations!

The gang got together at long last, this time with all the proper supplies. Stupid white binders.

The party quickly re-grouped and followed the Lord Mayor's request to go to the graveyard and see what is causing the resurgence of undead. As the party entered the graveyard they found the disturbed ground as the skeletons and zombie hounds erupted and attacked. They were led by the elf ranger from the inn back at Winterhaven. After a long fight with varying degrees of damage, the adventures banished the undead and sealed the magic circle that was launching them.

Upon returning to Winterhaven with the dead traitors body, the party returned to the keep, but headed into the previous uncharted section of the first level. The first encounter seemed too simple, a few large rats, but they were quickly engaged by an Orche Jelly that split itself and continued to fight. Sliver, unaware of the Orche Jelly entered a second room and was surprised by a filth and stink of a Blue Slime. Faced with two large subterranean blobs, the outlying group closed the door on the Slime to concentrate on the jelly. With that taken care of, the party returned to the Blue Slime and after much grinding of bones and dropped characters, the party was able to vanquish the foe and camp for the day.

The final encounter of the day led them to the bugs... Splug tried to warn them, but to no avail. The hatchlings launched first, but provided no real road block to the party, but the younglings and two adults tied them up for sometime, but the party defeated them and found the collected loot pile, even if it was covered in bug urine.

We didn't get as far as I had hoped, maybe because I didn't expect the team to head back to the bugs... That is OK. Hope to re-enter the second layer of the keep next time. When that will be is TBD. Rob and Steve are moving next week. Yea for third floor walk ups!

I also got a chance to play some two handed San Juan with the Elder. I liked the game, it is like Race for the Galaxy, but less complex. Still a good game.

That is about all for now... Hope you all have a great week for gaming. My Paypal debit card arrived, so I'll be picking up some new games at the Shoppe on Tuesday! Go eBay! :)

jp
Buyer of fine and not so fine games

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Veterans Day Round Up

The best benefit to civil service is ALL federal holidays are off. Yipiee! I took the opportunity to head down to the Shoppe and play a few games. I didn't get in as many as I would have liked, but I did play some new stuff.

Race for the Galaxy - I liked this game a lot. We played two games, one with three players and one with four. The different strategies you can take to win are pretty overwhelming. My favorite item was how the do the turn sequence. The random turn based on what other people decide to do was a real neat feature. All the different card symbols was a bit tough to get my head around at first, but I started to figure it out at the end. This will be a definite pick up when the paypal card comes in the mail.

Monsterpocalypse - I ran a small tournament for MonPoc in the evening. We had six players plus myself so an odd man out ringer which was me in the first round. :( I won the other two games using my Defender X and the Mega Form. The combo of the oil refinery and radar station right next to each other made for a great combo with all those grav-tanks! Looking forward to the next prize kit which comes out on the 22nd.

Saturday, hopefully, will see the return of D&D in the Shadowfell. Looking forward to the game and the 'exciting' climax... I assume. :)

jp
I'm a Vet and I played games!

Monday, November 10, 2008

Monday Night Games...

The Eldest and I played a few games this evening after dinner.

We started out with my original version of RoboRally. I got this game back in California at a game convention at California Poly Tech in San Luis Obispo. It was a game convention called "PolyCon", and I had an opportunity to learn the game from Richard Garfield himself. At the time I had no idea who he was, but it was cool later to find out. Anyways the Eldest and I played for about an 40 mins or so. She had an early lead, but got trapped on one of those circular conveyors and just couldn't get off.

We then played Yali. Yali is an interesting board game that has two players using a see-saw balance beam and ball bearings doing moves like Chinese Checkers. Moving the balls tips the balance one way or an other which dictates who is going next. Move your eight balls to the other end and you win. Mindless and quick, but heck beats a shift kick in the toches. This one came down to one move. It balanced off in my favor so I won.

Finally we played a bit of PS2. I bought a 80's arcade compilation the other day and we spent some time playing 'Toobin'. We then played a bit of Hot Shots 3, video golf. It is one of the only games I can play consistently on the PS2. I'm just not a console person. The Eldest one the golf game by one stroke. I choked when I was trying to cut over a cliff and dropped my ball out of bounds which put me too far behind.

Not a bad night of games!

jp
Keeper of some really odd games...

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Movie: Zack and Miri Make a Porno

Greetings,

Friday night I had the opportunity to go see a movie. Being in the mood for a comedy and liking the concept of Kevin Smith*, I decided to go see Zack and Miri Make a Porno.

Short Version: It was funny and I laughed alot. If your not offended by nudity, F-Bombs, or the concept of consenting adults being taken from the rear, then you might enjoy the flick. If those thing bother you, then you may want to consider skipping it.

Long Version: I took the eldest with me since the other half had to work at 6am. The Eldest is a fan of Kevin Smith, and as I said, I like the concept of Kevin Smith*. It was a bit odd seeing a movie about the making of a porno with your oldest daughter, but it was OK as the humor really off-set the whole premise.

The characters are, as typical with Kevin Smith movies, are lovable losers. His best movies, at least the ones I have seen, are usually better when he has them in them. Not sure if is able to reach more into his own history to find the characters.

In the course of the film the two leads hook up with other characters to include Kevin's long time actor, Jason Mewes. Luckily Jason doesn't play 'Jay' but Lester, who is like 'Jay' but with out all the annoying/cocky attitude. Short story long, these tow characters end up desperate to make a buck and figure the best way is to make a Porno, but would it ruin their friendship? Time would tell...

In the end,j Zack and Miri is really a comedic love story and few things are funnier then bad porno movies with really bad acting.

Pros:
Casting: I really liked Elizabeth Banks and Seth Rogen, they did an outstanding job in the role. I also liked Brandon Roth and Justin Long in the film. I won't spoil it but they did a real funny bit.
Funny: I laughed my ass off. It was a hoot.

Cons:
NSFW: I won't be talking about this one at work with the arc conservatives... Not their type of entertainment.

So, if you can tolerate the humor, I would recommend the film.

jp
Critic at Large, or was that 'is large'?

* Keven Smith. I will be honest, I have only seen three KS movies. Clerks, Dogma, and now Zack and Miri. Clerks was entertaining, but not earth shattering. Dogma I really enjoyed, but that could be my jaded views on religious dogma and corporate greed. So I like the 'concept' of Kevin Smith because he is an ubber geek made good. He is living the dream that 90% of all geeks wished they could live, but that doesn't mean that I am a hardcore KS fanboy... I fear for the day when he steps out of his lane again (Jersey Girl was bad I understand) and tries to make a film he isn't prepared to manage/direct. Only time will tell.

jp
That's my opinion and I'm sticking to it!

Monday, November 3, 2008

Huh... Wrong notebook.

Date line: Saturday
Action: Rousing game of D&D headed out by myself as the Game Master... Pushing for the long conclusion of the Keep on the Shadowfell
Players: The gang
Check List:
  • Books... Check!
  • DM Screen... Check!
  • Miniatures... Check!
  • Maps... Check!
  • Adventure... Check!
  • White Notebook that looks like a dozen other white notebooks that contains the 'oh so important characters'... Che... Che... Che.... Shit!

Shit!
Double Shit!

Stupid white notebooks playing trick the stupid GM... I'll have to torture them all for the insubordination!

So, here I was all set up to run what could have been the closing scenes to Keep on the Shadowfell and I packed the wrong note book. It contained the Dark Heresy characters, not the D&D characters. I was, as you can expect, less then happy with myself.

Luckily, Rob stepped up like a trooper and ran home to get his adventures since he was about 10 mins closer (both ways) then I. I took the opportunity to roll up a Dwarf Cleric, Rillic Oakenstout, to assist in Rob's Forgotten Realms campaign. It was nice to play, but I couldn't get over the nagging feeling that I was letting folks down. Rillic turned out pretty good, his highlight of the day was jumping the 10' ft pit trap to hit the Warg with his Craigshammer two handed!



I hope to hit it again on the 15th. Maybe start a tad early since I had to bail at 10ish to get the Kiddo from work.

That is about it. Go out and vote tomorrow. No vote is a wasted vote, even if the person has not chance.

jp
Stupid White Notebooks!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Savage Worlds

First things first.

First - I'm a gaming whore and I know it. Knowing is half the battle.
Second - I'm not dropping the 4e campaign. I like it and hope to run it for a very long time.

With those caveats out of the way, let me speak a moment about the Pinnacle Entertainment's Savage Worlds: Explorer's Edition. I picked up down at Meta-Games during WARMACHINE Weekend. It was dirt cheap, $9.99 for the book, normal retail. It is a 160 page booklet style format that is crammed with what appears to be a great little rules system. Art is good as well, I would love to have a poster size print of the Rocket Man picture on page 5!

Why this sudden interest in the game? I have heard of folks playing in the past and been given some abstract descriptions. I had also heard that it was uber easy to convert a setting to fit the rules structure, plus it utilized a minion type system to ease the combat with the grunts of the world. I had heard folks used it to create an Iron Kingdom's setting and since I am a card carrying member of the Privateer Press Fan Boy Association I thought it would be cool to utilize it for that reason.

Well... Since reading it, I'm not sure I want to just do that! The possibility of running some interesting settings is just too cool. Two that I am thinking of tinkering with in my 'oh so available' free time are...
  • Modern (Near Modern) Horror/Conspiracy like X-Files and Fringe
  • Fictional High Magic Pirate Setting
Either of these might be way too cool to develop into a playable format. When would I have a chance to develop and run? Who knows... Maybe after the guys get in the apartment, a week night might present itself for a bi-monthly shing-ding. Only time will tell.

With that bit of an introduction let me tell you a bit on how the system works.

Each character has a set of five attributes (Agility, Smarts, Spirit, Strength, & Vigor) and skills (many). Each level is represented by a die type. You buy more levels in each, increasing your die type with each purchase... D4 -> D6 -> D8 -> D10 -> D12. Each time you attempt to do something you roll the die type for that skill an/or ability. If you get '4' or over you succeeded. Players and big bad guys are 'wild cards' and always get to roll a D6 as well as the stat/skill die and take the best of the two. The target number can be modified by in game situations (cover/concealment/etc.). Players control their own minion/followers during combat, which frees up the GM to run the bad guys. Lackeys are either up, shaken, down. Easy peasy. Wild Cards have a toughness stat that keeps them up longer.

The book has rules for vehicles, chases, mass combat, and much more.

I just re-read that and I feel I did it no justice. The game just seems real easy to play, despite my horrible attempt to explain the character.

Any Hoo... I may start to work on the Modern Horror setting for S&G, just to come up with some ideas in case I can squeeze in the time with the guys! :)

jp
I'm John, and I'm a gaming addict.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

WARMACHINE Weekend!

Ahoy!

We departed Bellevue around 0430 and spent the next six hours or so on the road to Springfield MO. We had 12 total in four cars. Three from Lincoln, nine from Omaha. We arrived in time to sign up and get prepped for the first event, a 350 Mangled Metal/Tooth & Claw. It was a good ice breaker, but Carl (our gracious host) admitted he was surprised by the 40+ arrivals for the first event. The second event was a 350 'No Jacks' tournament. I had a massive head ache so Smitty and I took off to check into the hotel. I won't give the name of the hotel, because it doesn't deserve the advertisement. It was a stink hole. One of the three rooms was unmade and I specifically asked for non smoking and I got a two ashtray minimum. Bbbbfffftttt on them!

Anyways, I digress... I ran a 4e IK event at 830 that night that rapped up around midnight. Good time by the guys, although it did start to get a little silly near the end. I know I officially lost control when the party was fighting the Farrow warband and they started singing the Hulu song from Lion King.



After I finished the IK event, the guys were still a round away from the 750 point tournament being finished. Yes... Some of them had been up since 330am and were playing their 3rd tournament after riding six plus hours. That is hard core gentlemen.

After a late night we had an early morning with breakfast at the craptacular hotel. I decied to play in the 1000 point event. I ran a Monty and Dirty D list. I went 2-2 when they dropped the folks playing and leaving only the two undefeated. I had a great game on most fronts. I even had a good game against a guy that others had an issue. It was at the end, so we were both out of contention. I won the game with only Deneghra left on the table. The non 1K players played two 500 point tournaments, one for WARMACHINE and one for HORDES. The last event for Saturday was a 350 Hardcore. Hardcore is fully painted, 3 minute rounds. I had enough and a few of us went to get some BBQ for dinner.

Sunday had two tournaments. One was a 500 point and the other 750. I think we all opted for the 500 as we were getting pretty tired. It was a good event, I switched to Cygnar, but didn't fare so well. My one trick pony Sniped Mule with Cain list never really did the job. My only game came with Haley melee list.

We finished up the awards around 515pm and hit the road. I got home and into bed around 1230, up at 540ish to go to work. I'm still pretty tired!

Everyone seemed to have a good time. Only complaints were minor by and large.

Not sure I remember it all, but here are the highlights...
  • Hooker took 2nd in the 1000 event.
  • Tyler (Lincoln) took the Hordes 500 (I think)
  • Phillip took 3rd in the Firday 350 MM/TC
  • A few guys were tied with undeated on the 350 'No Jacks'
  • Sam won a random army draw for the Hordes event (I think)
  • Dan won a random army draw for the last event of the Sunday
  • Joe tied for overall, but lost out in the tie breaker (He won last year!)
Overall not to shabby!

Everyone is looking forward to next year, I am considering a 15 PAX van this time and maybe getting a suite to pack everyone into.

Here are some random quotes, most of them came from Dan if I am not mistaken...

"Is burger time up yet?"
"WTF! No waffles at Waffle House!"
"... ... " - My lack of response to a question that I feel asleep listening to

That is the big parts! I'll post more later as it comes to me.

jp
Bringing WARMACHINE to the unclean masses

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Monsterpocalypse Launch Ho!

On Tuesday we ran the Monsterpocalypse launch event. We modified it a bit to run a starter only event, but could have easily run a full event with a few unit boxes as every one picked up the that much stuff anyways! We had a good time with the rules questions getting answered on their own pretty well. First place went to Heff... Go figure! :) Second was a four way tie, I gave the second place mega to Chase as he did take a bit of a unfair pull on some damage early and he had the Cthulx fig that was being offered. The last won went to Smitty in a roll off of power dice.

Look for more Monsterpocalypse action on Tuesdays. We will run a 'sealed unit' event in a few weeks. Bring your own monster and buy two unit boxes. Open one pass to the right until it is empty. Open second, pass to the left, until it is empty. Gives everyone a chance to pull the unit they want.

Heading out for Springfield, MO for WARMACHINE Weekend on Friday at zero dark thirty. Looking forward to a lot of games over the weekend and playing folks I rarely get a chance to. I'm running the IK 4e adventure that I FINALLY got finished late last night. Nothing like taking a blind adventure to a con! I'll back brief the weekend next week.

jp
Games? What games?

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Nuke Con Back Brief

This weekend was Nuke Con, the 'big' convention for the Omaha area. I had not been in three years due to a conflict between friends. Silly really. Only High School Drama ranks higher on the scale the Gamer Drama. I hate Drama!

The folks that ran the event did an outstanding job. The floor was moving all three days, the staff was efficient and nice, and the attendees were ready to play some games. An outstanding set of circumstances. I big Bravo Zulu to the staff.

On Friday I took the eldest with me and we meet up with TJ to play a bit of Boltz-N-Voltz as a prep for the test play. That went well and we worked out some misunderstandings in the rules. We also played Monsterpocalypse, the new CCM from Privateer Press. It seems to be a pretty cool game. Flows well after three plays or so and was fun to play. The monsters are very well painted for pre-paints. Look forward to the release, just wish I would be able to run it!

Saturday TJ and I ran a play test session. Got some good feed back and some not so helpful feedback in about 2.5 hours of testing. TJ and I then laid down some more MonPoc. I took off around 5'ish and picked up PJ and went and had dinner at Feta's (Opa!) and went to see Religulous at the theater. I liked it. A lot. Not very friendly in the midwest I assume, but I've never been a real religious type of guy. I did find it funny that the two most intelligent sounding people he interviewed were both Roman Catholic Priest. The Father in charge of the Vatican Observatory was just spot on what I would expect for a modern day practitioner of faith to teach. That being the bible is a cool story, but be real... It doesn't teach modern science and shouldn't be interpreted to do so! Any ways... I would recommend it if your feeling won't get hurt when he makes fun of the religion you think is correct. The big thing I learned, that I didn't know before was that Thomas Jefferson (Good old Tommy J!) edited a copy of the Bible taking out all the mysticism and focused on the teachings. I may have to see if it is in the library.

Sunday was a bit disappointment. I had scheduled a WM tournament, knowing I would not get a heavy turn out. I got one. Thanks to Smitty for showing up. He won a Drago by default that I will order soon. We played a game of Warmachine, his eStryker, my Denny. Good solid game. I forgot that his spell move is 2 inches per focus not 1 inch per focus, so he zipped behind my line and charged me after I had pretty much taken out the rest of his army. I also gave Smitty a MonPoc demo.

Not sure when I'll get a D&D game in. I am really missing that. It is fun to run and I want to get back to the story. Next weekend is not looking good as it is the first weekend home since I got the Eldest last month. Maybe after Warmachine Weekend... Maybe! Stupid obligations!

Until next time!

jp
Gamer of Games


Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Lost in Maryland

So... here I set doing my on-line check-in for Southwest Airlines. My last business trip as a contractor and counting the days until I get a nice long 6 day weekend.

I took the Fields of Glory book to read on the plane and at dinner... I've posted in other locations that I thought it seems overly complex. The amount of things you seem to have to remember seems to be a bit high, but I'll give it a go.

I am going to look at one of the Crusaders armies, but the new job has a cut in pay so I know that PJ is going to be very critical of new gamer purchases. Not sure how I'm going to pull it off. I do get home before her, but we shall see...

Going to Nuke-Con this weekend. I'm scheduled to run an IK 4e game, but to be honest I am less then prepared. Only one person has pre-reged. I hope it doesn't grow so I can canx and just play some board games. Bringing the eldest with me to goof off. Saturday I'll be play testing Boltz-n-Voltz as well as MonPoc. I got my demo pack in the mail and hope to open on Friday and teach myself the rules.

Well... Tickets are printed and I'm off to bed. 1/2 day meetings and full day travel... The joys of it all!

jp
Workn' for the Man!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Civil Service!

I just got my official offer for a Civil Service position down at Strat. In my head all I can see is the scene from "Blazing Saddles" when the train workers are excited that Bart got the Sheriff job... "Civil Service!"
So... Looks like the area will have me to contend with for at least 3-4 years. I'm sorry for that! :) After that who knows. Maybe Europe. I've dropped my notice to my current employer and will start with the gov on the 14th. Just in time to go to WM Weekend! :)

On the game front a group of us went to Lincoln to play in their Legends Event. Sam did a stand up job and the five Omaha players all had a good time. I owe Chris a kick in the nuts for stealing the Assassin medal from me. Bastard! Hooker tied the games played with two Lincoln guys, but lost it on VP's by two. Dan V. took the Strategist award with most flags.

This weekend is the Breast Cancer Brawl. I'm hoping for a good turn out. I think we might have one which will be nice.

I'll let you know how it goes!

jp
"Civil Service"

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Some Games Around the House...

The nice thing about having Ashley at the house, is I have someone that does not mind playing a game or two once in a while.

Since she moved in Saturday night we have played a demo game of Boltz-N-Voltz, a few games of Privateer (Board Game), and two games of Carcassonne.

Wish I could get Phyllis to play then we would have enough for Shadows over Camelot! Oh well, such is life.

Carcassonne was fun, I do like the game as it is pretty easy to pick up and understand. I might have to pick up an expansion to see how it adds to the game.

As reminder, don't forget the Breast Cancer Brawl on the 27th. This includes the Pretty in Pink paint competition if you choose to participate. I'll be in Lincoln on Saturday so I'll be sure to let folks there know... Heck just as many Lincoln guys showed for the Legends event as did locals! :)

jp
Player of Games

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Very Quite...

So I had a bit of family drama. :( On the Saturday that should have had the next edition of our 4e adventure, I spent on the road and the guys played Dark Heresy so I hear.

I hope to have thing settled down quickly and get back in the grove. I REALLY want to keep the game going.

jp
Family > Gaming, but not as much fun! :)

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Iron Kingdoms...

As a certified Fan Boy of Privateer Press, I was less then excited to here the latest info on the Iron Kingdoms RPG line is pretty much... Nothing. Very sad. They have said they won't go 4e with the current GSL in place. I'm hoping the promised changes may change their minds, but I doubt it. I don't think the IK range brings its money in worth the effort it takes to produce. This is sad as it is one of the great things I like about the IK/WM world.

I like 4e, a lot really, and would love to see the conversion take place. Some intrepid fans are working on some aspects and storing them at Gobbernomicon, a wiki that is holding other odds and ends IK info. I posted my Farrow conversions for review on the site. It would be cool to start building the world from the ground up, but unless I win the lottery tonight, I don't see me having the time to do that. I'll add my two focus worth from time to time. I like the monster creation and the new monsters for 4e are realtively easy to create from the stats given in the Monsternomicon Vol I & II.

I've committed to running and IK RPG event at Nuke Con and WARMACHINE Weekend. I will use an adventure thread I've used before and convert a few iconic IK classes to fourth level.

Not sure if I'll ever get to test play before, Nuke Con, but I'll try.

jp
My Fan Boy is bigger then your Fan Boy!

Monday, September 1, 2008

Tropic Thunder Review

Since I couldn't Shanghai anyone to play a game on Monday... My fault mostly for popping it on folks at the last second, I took the opportunity to go see Tropic Thunder in the theater.

I can give it a review in a few short words... "Funnier then Hell!" There... That is it. Done. :)

I saw the show at the first showing on Labor Day. About 1/5 of the seats were taken, but not crowded. A few younger kids were present (late teens) but all were accompanied by a parent so it was a pleasant movie experience. Nothing worse the plopping down $6.50 to have a screaming kid or punk-ass-teens talking on their cells. But anyways I digress...

The movie is very adult. If you don't like a bunch of 'F-Bombs' in your movie, then you might to take a pass and go see Star Wars: Clone Wars, but you will be missing some very witty humor and laugh out loud moments. I particularly liked all the Hollywood slamming that went down. From Tom Cruises' Hollywood producer to the fake Vietnam vet writer to the 'Never go full retard'. Good stuff. If you liked Bad Santa, then this movie will be in your humor spectrum.

On the 'Retard' note. The Special Olympic guys went WAY over board. If anything, this movie goes a good ways to expose the way that Hollywood exploits that mentally handicap image to make movies while doing little to help.

Anyways. Good movie. Go see it.

Quote Battle:

1 - I need to bite its hide... and wear its stomach like a unitard.
2 - Mother Nature just pissed her pantsuit!

Your call!

jp
Seer of Movies...

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Splug! All Adventuring Hero!

With a since of purpose the mighty band of adventures set forth to determine if the historical ramblings of the sage were accurate? Was a Cult of Orcus trying to re-open an ancient rift to the Shadow Fell?

Persona Dramatica
(We have had some minor changes since the first post on this subject)
Zoltan the Reformed - A middle aged human wizard that has distant nightmares of a past life
Zarzthor - Dragonbord Warlord who finds himself in the thick of each battle
Extel - Human Ranger - Strong, brash, & young, wielding two blades
Sliver Elmwalker - Elf ranger on a quest to find those that killed his kin
Eldcar Elddarion - Halfling rouge - cocky, self-assured, and self proclaimed antagonist of Extel
Uhlk - Human Fighter - UHLK SMASH!
Elladen Phaers Halladen - Softspoken Eladrin Swordmage that uses the power of the life drinker to keep the battle moving. An a healer of others extraordinaire.

The party had no problem finding the remains of the keep. Only the odd looking wooden shack in the middle looked to be from the current century. Behind its doors they find a path leading into the damp dungeon of the keep. Entering the first room the party sees a goblin yelling and waving at them from across the way. Eager to engage in combat, the party moves forward to engage. Several warriors and a few sharpshooters begin ranged assault. Extel made an ill advised move across the floor and fell into the 10' pit trap and was attacked by a rat swarm.

The few goblins were quick work and off the party went to the east. They found a secret door to the North along the hallway and another group of goblins digging for treasure. These however had a few guard drakes to keep them company. The battle fought on multiple levels was a bit tougher, but the party continued to press after only finding a small holy symbol of the Dragon god Bahamut.

Back to the secret door, the party encountered a large sleeping goblin. However, Extel, again, tripped on his feet ('1' on his stealth check) and Balgron the Fat was able to sound the alarm. The fight was made tougher as a Goblin Hexer entered the fray and the alarm was sounded bringing in the goblins and hobgoblin torture from a near by prison cell. The party was fighting on two sides of the large connected rooms. Extel, Zarzthor, and Elladen fought the hexer and his goons while the others contended with the hobgoblin and his posse coming in behind them. Characters fell, blood was shed, much pain was given. An extended rest was in order.

The evening passed with out incidence and the party continued looking for a way down deeper into the keep to find the evil. Their next room was the tourture chamber and prison cells that the hobgoblin controlled. In one cell, weak with hunger a goblin prisoner cried for help. "Help Splug!" "Splug very, very nice" "Splug your friend". And here we see the unbridled hostility between El and Extel. El was in the mood to slay the pathetic goblin while Extel was looking for a porter to carry his stuff. In the end Splug joined the group as porter and guide.

A decision needed to be made. Should the party explore the last remaining door, or explore the caverns near the excavation site. The party made towards the last closed door and found a maze with pictures on the floor blocking access across them. Splug warned them that the scary dead live here. Not good to go that way, but forward the party went anyways.

Unable to determine how to cross the pictures, the party went to the east again and encountered a patch of zombies and rotters. They were able to dispatch them with create ease and had no issues with the second batch that came from behind. Moving forward, the party entered into what appeared to be a chapel to Bahamut, but as the Rouge passed the threshold to the larger chamber, a large "BONG" was heard and a skeleton legion appeared from the sarcophagi along he edges of the leading hallway. The team leap into action, taking the minion Skeletons to task quite easily, but having some fight with the warriors that had combat advantage on the a few members. Five minutes searching the room, a the "BONG" went off again. Thinking quickly Zarzthor knelt in front of the alter and gave a prayer to Bahamut, which dispelled the second wave of skeletons. In the battle, the might Splug slayed two minions, earning the respect of his 'peers' "Splug no hero, Splug just carry stuff"

And with that the game was adjourned. Double doors leading out of the room to explore, undead around every corner, and Splug gots your back!

jp
Winterhaven Evil Guild Local #1001

Saturday, August 23, 2008

World Builder Update!

Greetings avid fans... Or at least the two folks that get the RSS feed from the site! :)

Just an update on how the world turns. As you can see their has not been a lot of movement on the surface of the world. Some cities made some lands taken. Most of the movement has been from the expansion of the races and the addition of new races.

Below is the political map of the current world. I could have better color coded the maps, but hey, you can figure it out if your smart. :) You can see that many of the races are starting to 'bump' into each other. Won't be long until armies are raised and wars are fought.


Here is a list of the races and sub races so far and their starting locations. Their will be a test later.

Dragons (Good) - B15

-- Chromatic Dragons - C14

Eladrin - M11

-- Drow - D9

-- Elves - O10

Dwarf - G9

-- Desert Dwarf - F8

Orc - E4

Lizard Folk - F16

-- Sahaugin - D17

Humans - F11

-- Southlanders - G14

-- Norsemen - K4

Halflings - J10;Goblins - N9; Gnolls - D7; Hobgoblins - G7


Only a few Avatars have been created and even fewer orders. I expect those will come more into play as each player wishes to 'mess' with another players race.

jp
Master of his Domain

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Warmachine Update

Just a quick reminder of the upcoming events for WARMACHINE and Hordes in the local area over the next few months.


6 Sept - Legends Event - 1030 at The Game Shoppe. We are cutting the points to 500, but otherwise following the rules. Post if you have a question...

20 Sept - Legends Event in Lincoln - I'm not running it, Sam is, but thought I would throw him a shout out to help him! The games should be at Gauntlet Games. Sam - Let me know the times

27 Sept - Breast Cancer Brawl at The Game Shoppe. This will include the Pretty in Pink painting contest. This is a charity event, so be sure to sign up and dig deep!

5 Oct - Nuke Con Tournament. - The site says 8am, but don't be fooled. We will start at 10ish.

Then, not in Omaha, but we are all heading down is WARMACHINE WEEKEND down in Springfield MO. That will be 17-19 October! You NEED to go to this. It is a moral imperative!

That is a bunch of stuff. In mid November look for a 750 point event with heavy jack/beast rules.

On a side note I purchased Montenebra (or however you spell it) and played to games today. I like her stuff, but it is going to be tricky. The 500 point game was vs. Chris' Troolbloods led by the big drunk. I did a good job of tying things up and killing them, but he got through the army quicker.

Second game was Phillip at 750 vs. his Razzy Menoth list. I had some great combos. Got five flameguard in a tramble, head butted a Menoth heavy into the river and ripped a second apart on the first turn. The Seether betrayed me twice. Not sure I can take it in the future given the disrespect! Deathjack had Razzy on the ropes. Rolling three die for damage at a -2, I rolled a '4' . The unhumanity of it all!

Either way they were both great games and I can see her potential in the game. Needs more work to refine and I think she would be great in a 1K with Aspy!

That is it for now... Keep the furnace lit!

jp
Undead Overlord of Omaha

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Winterhaven... At last!

We have been gone for about three weeks from the game. A combination of FoW tournaments and WM events conspired against our intrepid party to continue their quest into the dark. We gathered at around three, while Kyle did anyways, at my basement and set out for adventure.

After a quick recap on last months happenings the party settled into their roles. Arriving at Winterhaven the settled into the Wrafton's Inn for the evening and learned that the Lord Mayor Padraig was at the next table having an evening ale with Valthrun the Persistent. Sliver engaged Padraig and presented the letter of introduction. Intrigued to here of their adventures against the Kolbolds in the manor house, Padraig agreed to see them in the morning. Valthrun however sat at their table to hear their story, and requested a favor. It seemed that an old friend of Valthrun, a fellow scholar from down south, was visiting and using Valthrun's as a base camp for a search for a dragon's burial ground. Poor Douven has been missing for about a week and he was concerned. He asks the adventures to check in on Douven to see if all is all right.

After an evening of rest the part goes to the Manor House and meets the Lord Mayor who states he has tracked the kobolds to a lair in the south east. He can't get the villagers to work with him to destroy them, so he is willing to pay the adventures to accomplish the task.

Our hearty adventures set out with two tasks under their belt. Shortly after departing town however they are again ambushed by a set of kobolds. It is a tricky fight with the Dragonborn Warlord (Yes he is a warlord now. Re-booted to first level! :) ) going down a few times... Which seems to be a common theme. After the engagement, Halladen and Sliver found a set of tracks leading away from the road to the south east. Convinced that this will take them to the Kobold layer, they head out in search.

When they come upon the stream they find a set of kobolds engaged in a ritual outside a waterfall. Combat ensues with a slinger dodging off to 'warn Irontooth'. The party clears the outside and sets fourth to attack the lair proper. Sliver, Halladen, Extell, and Uhlk enter through the waterfall while VIII, Eldacar, and Zoltan entering from the main cave entrance. Many minions died and it was looking good for the away team when Irontooth and a pair of Worm Priests showed up to swing the battle back in their favor. The Dragon Shields held the line and Irontooth engaged VIII, but despite his great amount of hit points he went down in the end to a sly flourish and a floating burning orb. With Irontooth and the Dragon Shields gone, the Worm Priests didn't last long.

Deciding to rest for the evening, the party headed to the Dragon burial site. They found a Gnome (Look a Monster!) leading a pair of halflings and some human rabble. With the exception of the triple stone shot on Eldacar the battle was pretty simple to handle. They rescued Douven and were rewarded with a magic locket.

Having collected evidence from Irontooth of a death cult of Orcus and Douven's statement that the team was looking for artifacts for a ritual to re-open the rift, the party finds out about a keep that was built to protect a rift between the world and the Shadow fell.

Can our heroes find their way through the keep? Will they be able to stop the ritual before it is completed? Who is the mysterious Kalarel and how powerful is he?

Stay tuned for next weeks adventure!


Some out of game notes:
- I had a great time. I think, by and large the guys enjoyed too.
- We only got four encounters for the night, but we did have a lot of interruptions with food ordering and arrival. Plus we had two in town encounters that might have slowed things as well.
- My basement is snug with eight guys. Next time I'll set up the two 4x4 vice the painting table for use.
jp
I like D&D!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

World Builder Continues to the Second Age


The three Lords of Creation have moved the world into the second age. The pic shows the ending geography from the first age. It can change, and most likely will, but the next age is creating the races and population. During the First age we had the Dragons (good and bad) as well as Eladren (plus Drow and Elves) show up. My first turn I plopped down the Dwarfs and a race of my own Desert Dwarfs plus Orcs.

Should start seeing some new stuff popping up as we get the world populated. Won't be long until city states start rising and war is declared!

The graphic has been a learning experience. I have run out of layers multiple times having to consolidate much of the forest pics to save room. The Island of Fog in the SW is Lord Steve's Dragon Island. More to follow!

jp
Lord John Creator of Dwarfs and Orcs!

Friday, August 8, 2008

JP Out!

I received and email today from Privateer. Looks like I didn't make the interview cut for the game design position. Much sadness. :( Not unexpected, but I am out. I was glad to make the first cut, only wish they would have gone a bit faster on the selection process. I expect that the 'winner' will be announced just before Gencon. Thanks to those that helped me play test it out.

I've been chatting with TJ, and we might try to put something together for submission to a company like Playroom... Just for S-n-G's. Never hurts. So stand by to be subjected to more play testing!

jp
[Whine]but I want to design games....[/Whine]

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

As the world turns...


Here is the current world... Progress continues... I'm liking how it is shaping up. Looks like the rivers will add a nice travel aspect with the Giant Lake. Each square is about 200 miles across give or take 50, so it is a pretty big inland fresh water sea at this point.

Steve has given us the Good Dragons and Rob has his Avatar in place... Expecting another race to pop out next turn.

Still in the first age. On turn eight. Starting in turn 10, if one person votes to move to the next age we move. So far no one has indicated the switch. I would like to see more diversity in the NE and SE corners, but we have all been concentrating on our sections. Enjoying the growth and bet that the next age will be more 'enticing' as we start laying down the races and start their interactions.

jp
Bow before Zod!

jp

Sunday, August 3, 2008

World Builder Continues


Here is a snap shot of the current world as it is being built. Three of us decieded to tackle the challenge and it seems to be an OK process. Steve is working on 'Monster Island' down in the SW corner. Rob is doing the hills and stuff on the East coast. I've been working on the mountain range, swamp and desert in the NW.

I think we will have a few more rounds of the first age before we get into the hard core racial builds.

jp
Creator of Destiny

Warmachine Tournament & Shadows over Camelot

Greetings,

I ran a 13 person tournament on Saturday. I had 4 pre-registrations and ten show out of the wood work. Not complaining, Ok, I am complaining, but it would be nice to have been able to plan ahead better. We used the new Steamroller rules at the 750 point level.

Brian A. took the overall with a nasty eVlad list. Shawn took second with Legion and Chris took third with a trollblood list. Sportsman and Painting went to a Lincoln guy visiting, Sam. Hoping Sam will sign on for the Pressgang and carry the flag out east. Adam, poor adam, brought up the anchor again.

Afterwards I headed over to Marks and we played two games of Shadows over Camelot with seven players. The first was with the regular box and the second was with the new expansion. We lost both. Players weren't ganging up on the non solo challenges... We'll get you next time Evil! The expansion adds some nice touches. I like the travel and Merlin, but the new Witches cards are tough.

jp
Nice Thrall and Accuser of the Innocent!

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Nuke Con 08

I've signed up two events for Nuke Con 08.

On Sunday I'm going to run a WARMACHINE & Hordes 500 point tournament and on Saturday Night I'll run a IK RPG based on 4e Mods.

I can't hit the Fall Out Shelter, but you might. Not sure what the issue is. Nuke Con site is www.nuke-con.com.

Rob is running a FoW tournament on Saturday in the morning if I remember correctly as well.

jp

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Breast Cancer Brawl

I will be running the WARMACHINE and Hordes Breast Cancer Brawl this year at The Game Shoppe. My mother is a breast cancer survivor, but it took a lot out of her and I always felt a bit bad that I wasn't their to support more. So, now I can help others by raising just a little cash.

If your a WM/HD player and have a family member that has suffered through breast cancer or you just like tatas and hope they stick around longer, then I encourge you to seek out your cloeset place to support.

The Omaha area will be running the brawl on 27 Sept 08 at The Game Shoppe. Regestration will be at 1030 with dice flying at 1100.

More Info:
http://www.breastcancerbrawl.com/portal.php
http://www.privateerpressforums.com/index.php?showtopic=154298
http://gameshoppe.suddenlaunch3.com/index.cgi?board=WarMachine&action=display&num=1217375251

Monday, July 28, 2008

World Building

While I should have been working harder, the RSS Feed from the good folks at the Gnome Stew posted this article about world building as a team activity. The link to Dawn of Worlds (PDF) world building system that actually allows the players to help create the world that they play in. With some modifications I think I'm going to try and inflict this on the gang... Most likely as an on-line distraction vice taking up a whole gaming session. That way I can build the map each round and track the results.

I'll be sure to post our progress of the new world order!

jp
God of Creation

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Dark Knight and X-Files

This weekend I got a chance to see two movies. That is more then I get in three or four months. Thought I would throw down my little mini review on each, not that anyone is reading, but what the hey.

On Saturday Phyllis and I went to see the X-Files:I Want to Believe at the 1030 am show. Including us, their was 6 people in the theater. Overall, the movie wasn't horrible, but it was far from a great motion picture. I think Chris Carter's approach to do the 'creature feature' approach vice expanding the mythos of the X-Files was the single largest factor on whether this was going to be a good movie. The use of the overlying conspiracy theory that the X-Files is known for would have been a better story to grab the fans and non-fans. Without that this could have been an episode of X-Files or Kolchak: The Night Stalker or Night Gallery. The acting was good as was the general feel of the movie. I would have also like to see more of Skinner as he was one of my favorites on the show. Overall? Wait for the DVD release and rent it. If your a hard core fan, you will go see it anyways, the best part is that it should be quiet in the theater.

On Sunday we went to go see The Dark Knight. This was a very good movie and I did enjoy the experience. Was it perfect? No. Was it "Best... Movie... Ever!"? No. What did I like. Heath Ledger was the show. Plain and simple his performance of the Joker shined and made the movie what it is. The general story and plot I also liked. What did I not like? I thought that Bruce Wayne's angst was way underplayed. This is, after all, a Batman movie, not a Joker movie. Where was Bruce Wayne's pain and suffering over his inability to save Rachel? I think the 2:45 running time could have been cut down. Perhaps drop the 'Sons of the Batman' & Scarecrow stuff in the beginning and use that saved time to develop more depth of character for Bruce. Brooding will only take you so far. Where was the pain?

So anyways... That's my two cents...

jp
Movie Critic At Large

Point of light in the dark of night

The party has ventured forth in a 4e adventure for the first time. Our players are:
  • Uhlk - Human Great Weapon Fighter that likes to smash.
  • Extel - Human Blade Ranger who's haunted memories of his past lives fill his waking days
  • Elladen Paeris Halladan - Eladrin Swordmage who's family fought the Bloodspear Orcs to the end of their line.
  • Valgar Talean - Dragonborn Swordmage on a quest far from his homelands to better learn the skills of his trade
  • Zoltan the Reformed - Human Wizard that is a bitter and corse man, often thinking of his own gain over those in the party, that is until the chips are on the table.
  • Eldacar - Halfling Rouge who is light on his feet and quick with a blade, walking the path of his own choice and not afraid of those that he may cross.
  • Sliver Elmwalker - Elf Bowmaster Ranger that is looking for revenge against the enemy that destroyed his family and clan. His only clue a dropped medallion.

The party meet in Fallcrest and quickly found work supporting Lord Warden Markelhay in ridding a particularly nasty clan of Kolbolds that had taken residence near by.

After traveling for 1/2 a day the party hound the Kobold Hall under the remains of an old manor house. The first encounter proved to be a easy, by and large, for seven adventures as they quickly dispatched several Skirmishers and Slingers. However the second room, the crypt seemed to be tougher. The Slinger's glue pots seemed to be more effective and the hidden traps added to the damage, causing the players to slow down. We began to see the 'healing' nature of Elladen come into play as he used his healing skill since the Cleric took a drastic direction to fighterdom.

After finding a bit of gold, the players moved into the second crypt and found slingers and minions tossing a giant sticky ball on a rope that would push the players back. The device made it hard to move forward, given the glue pots as well. The players seemed to have things mostly in hand when two guard drakes appeared, and they were tougher then any Kobolds. Uhlk went down and need several turns of repair.

The next room provided a greater challenge. The boulder trap chased the players around the room, that with the glue pots left Extel to be crushed, if not for his timely save and use of an action point to move out of the way. Eldcar and Uhlk both went down as Elladen and company continued their armature hospital routines. :) Finally finishing off the baddies, the party found a Magic Staff and some coin as well as the secret door to the...

Dragon's Room! A young white dragon was being taken care of by the Kobolds and he attacks. I bothced his surprise move and flame. So the party spread out making it hard for him to hit. He did drop Elladen and put the hurt on several others. Five encounters on no rest the party took the loot and headed back to town.

Some rewards and gold are exchanged, the party meets some interesting characters, and gets a charter by Lord Warden to carry word to the Lord of Winterhaven. On the road, they are waylaid by another band of Kobolds. A bit more aggressive, these guys had some fire pots as well. Zoltan and Eldacar get a bit too ahead of the party and are ambushed by the Dragonshields. Valgar gets stuck in combat with a Dragonshield and two slingers that use the mob tactics to ensure powerful hits. In the end the party dispatches the evil Kobolds and makes it to Winterhaven, where most of the party levels up.

Good session. Got to spend a lot of time playing, even if I had to raise my voice from time to time to get hold of the table. Might be a two week gap as we have a WARMACHINE tournament and a Flames of War tournament back to back.

jp
Keeper of the Bad Guys

Monday, July 21, 2008

Tid Bits

Found from the Dragon Avenue Site the folloing Web based Character Generator for 4e. Pretty hand for quick and dirty characters.

A good source for other 4e scripts and what not is Asmor.com.

Looking forward to Saturday as I read through the Keep on the Shadow Fells.

jp

Sunday, July 20, 2008

End of an Era…

Last night we finished up the first adventure in the Purge the Unclean series. It was also my last running of DH as I shift to D&D and Rob takes of DH.

When we last left our players they were taking stalk in the situation. Upon arriving back at Strope’s Manor, low and behold, Dar was returned from the hospital and Lady V. took a powder… In other words, Eric was in and Mick was out.

With the Play at the Alabaster Court allowing only Thaddeus plus guest to attend, the players kicked into high gear how they were going to provide support. Using a rented delivery truck and gray workers outfits, Raltus, Klytus, Dar, and Dekko tried to use the service entrance under pretence of delivering goods. Raltus secured the chef that was PO’ed that he was getting an order he didn’t request and Dar and Dekko jumped the two guards in the security center. Well entrenched the four members went about scoping out the lay out and security capability of the facility.

At nine o’clock the guest, to include Thaddeus and Talon, arrive for the play. People mingle and pleasantries are exchanged. The play is about an Imperial Governor that despite giving his all to his subjects is slain by them. The trick? The governor is played by a underhiver that his hyped up on drugs and has no clue what is going on. The story ends with the underhiver being killed on stage. Both Thaddeus and Talon are initially appalled, but Thaddeus uses his normal Nobel bearing and shrugs it off as no big deal (one corruption point please!). Talon gets into an argument with the creator of the play about the quality of the acting and writing. Satisfaction is demanded and off to the blood pits.

While the young noble’s second states that swords are preferred, Talon states that the challenge should pick the weapon and he chooses pistols. After a bit of haggling, dueling pistols are brought fourth. Each member gets a single shot after 4 paces. Talon whirls on four and plants one square on the dudes face, burning his hair off with the las pistol. In return, the noble misses and the duel ends with the noble’s apology.

In the mean time, Dar begins a ‘security sweep’ to check out one of the rooms that has an odd set up. He finds the stairs, but the room is locked and he is unable to open. Also he gets the feeling of being repressed.

Later at the party, the faux security team sees the Monk that killed the Bounty Hunter in the previous episode. And he is talking to the head of the church, Shaol. And they are not happy. Thaddeus gets the clue and meanders over and tries to ease drop. He hears the Shaol tell the Monk that ‘He isn’t interested in what his bosses on Amablon feel!’ Or something like that. The Monk, agitated, takes the Shaol by the arm and begins to escort them out. Thaddeus tries to nonchalantly follow, but botches the roll and bashes into the help and spills beverages everywhere. That is when the Monk sees Dekko and recognizes him. Raltus, the faux security guard sees the alarms trip from the Monk. Dar moves to ‘assist’ the Monk in Shaol’s quarters and finds the Monk pummeling Shaol. He turns and seeing a security guard, orders him to find the intruder and eliminate him. Dar says ‘aye aye sir’ and heads down the stairs and lies in wait.

In the mean time the party moves into position. The Monk moves down the steps in a hurry, sees Dar and asked if the intruder was taken care of. Dar says ‘Yes’, but when they hit the hallway crossroads, there is Dekko waiting. Sensing a trap, the Monk pulls his two power swords and begins a retreat to his quarters. A running gun battle ensues with the Monk climbing walls and ceilings. In his quarters he remotely starts a Meltabomb and shoots out the windows of the spire attempting to escape. Dekko cleaves his chain sword into the Monk’s back and while on the wall climbing down Talon takes a pop shoot and knocks him off the spire, to be lost into the darkness below.

Raltus takes a few minutes to look at the bomb package sitting on the Bounty Hunter’s briefcase. Dar and Thaddeus got to Shaol’s room, find him a bloody pulp, but alive and another bomb package.

Raltus disables the first bomb, gets the briefcase, but the group wants to see the shielded room. So despite the fire brigade in route and a live meltabomb on top of the spaces, they go to check it out. Some work happens and they get into a Psyker prison, and remove the device causing the interference and the party leaves.

Back at Strophe’s Manor they interrogate the security guard boss and Shaol, when the power goes out and a Hired Merc band joins the party. Much carnage later and the area is secure. The party decides it needs to act on the info they have gotten and move the game to Ambolun, the living city.

On arrival the scope out an Oracle, that really doesn’t tell them too much new, except about the Serrated Query. Then it is time to take the Joyous Choir’s local hangout. Another gun battle, and the team finds the processing facility for the Farcosia, and proving their thoughts on the source of the materials.

We called it a night then, gave out 600 XP to the party, 100 extra to Talon and Dekko for taking out the Monk, and 100 role play for the noble, Thaddeous.

Looking forward to running as a player.

jp

Thursday, July 17, 2008

It is about Character...

On Wednesday I raced home after work, got the lawn mowed, and took a quick shower. Not becuase I had a hot date, but Steve and Paul were coming over to work on their characters.

They arrived about 630ish and stayed for about 2 1/2 hours to roll up Steve's Wizard (Zoltan the Reformed) while Paul re-vamped his Warlord (Still no name).

I know I am pretty new to the gang, don't have the 10 year history of gaming that they have, but some sort of multi-class fetish was kicking in. :) We will see how it plays out in the long term. My copy Keep on the Shadow Fells should be in this weekend, which should give me a chance to start reading the adventure.

On other fronts, I'll be running the DH game on Saturday. My last go as the GM for DH before I turn it over to Rob. I hope to create my Psyker on Saturday while we are playing.

jp
Hi my name is John and I'm a gaming addict...