Category Archives: Gaming (Video or otherwise)

We are going to move to Regina

I’ve attempted to tell share the news with as many people in as personal a fashion as possible, but at this point, I’d rather you hear it here than somewhere else.

Michelle has accepted a position with Saskatchewan Northern Geological Survey, based in Regina. She starts work January 2nd, though we’re not certain on the rest of our relocation timeline. We’re looking forward to real jobs, less rain, more space, spending time with old friends, and POÄNG armchairs. Especially POÄNG armchairs.

Oh, and gaming. Towards that end, I’ve created two blogs to serve as communication resources for fellow gamers in or around Regina.

I’m really not sure what will become of them, but at the very least they’ll give you an idea of what games I’m looking forward to running and playing in 2009 and beyond.  Perhaps there’s some place better to do this, but the only forum I could find seemed abandoned.

Please feel free to send any suggestions my way, or let me know if you’d like to contribute to either site.  In the meantime, feel free to pass or post along these links to anyone you think might find them useful.

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Filed under Gaming (Video or otherwise), The story so far

D&D 4E Encounter Tracker

Again for Dungeons & Dragons, Fourth Edition player characters, I’ve put together an encounter tracker to save roughing up character sheets through repeated erasing.

Consider this an alpha, with suggestions more than welcome.

D&D Encounter Tracker @ Flickr

Current version: D&D 4E PC Encounter Tracker [a0.8.2]

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D&D 4E Power Cards

I assume that I’m not the first to put these two together:

  • Colour-coded index cards
  • Relevant copies of powers from the Player’s Handbook, 4th Edition

It just seems so much easier to flip though a slimmed stack of cards rather than page through powers your character may or may not have.  You might further simplify the process by flipping or turning cards of spent powers.



UPDATE: Also see my PC Encounter Tracker

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Go Play Northwest 2008

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Earlier this month I had the opportunity to travel with two friends to Go Play Northwest, a “convention for people who like to design, run, and play independent role-playing games.”  It amounted to a weekend of solid story-gaming, as well as a chance to meet new indie-gamers, catch with up old indie-friends, and rub shoulders with indie-greats.  Fortunately for me, some of those fields overlap; fortunately those around me, I had the good sense not to use the word “indie” so often around them.

Personal highlights included:

In a Wicked Age: An utterly-irredeemable demon-child (played by my friend Daniel) riding his own terminally-ill queen/mother (played by me) down rough-hewn stone steps to an in-use torture chamber.

Destructicus Prime: a toy-based smash-up that opened with Ben launching a tank off a ramp (landing on and then smearing an entire dimetrodon across the arena) and concluded with three players so desperate for glory they attempted called-shots to a volcano–with their own vehicles.

Shab-al-Hiri Roach: Jackson’s physicist, so graviton-obsessed that he created a “Collider” to study the effects of dropping very heavy things on very breakable things. Just when I thought he couldn’t relate gravity to the religious ego-check I was delivering, he drops mention of Lucifer’s own fall.

Tunnels and Trolls: not story gaming per-se, but I was pretty chuffed when my faerie wizard “Whim” hollowed out the inside of a donkey-headed skeleton so that it might serve him as power armor/mecha.  That I was as a result later able to make use of a powerful but life-leeching magical item with no ill-effects was simply undead icing on the necromantic cake.

There exists a list of notable quotations from the convention; they will likely make even less sense out of context and to those unfamiliar with the games win question, but that should not stop you from scrolling down to the bottom of the page to read the my only appearance on the list, which I had no idea anyone had heard, let alone written down.

GPNW 2008 Quote Board, Day One


Though I’ve detailed a handful of independent games before, I’m including below links to additional games that I’ve played and would recommend checking out, no matter the cost to life or limb.

Free downloads
Dostoevksyan Murder Ballad | Drowning and FallingGeiger Counter | Perfect

Worth every dollar
The Big Night | Covenant | Dogs in the Vineyard | Don’t Rest Your Head | Dread | Fingerprints | Jungle Speed | Prime Time Adventures | The Shadow of Yesterday | Reign | Shock

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Flock of Stormcrows

Though I’ve been RPGing for 20 years, I’ve only started miniature gaming in the last year. I’ve spent much of this time planning out my forces, hunting bargains on craigslist, assembling the models, and now–at last–painting some units. If you know me, it’s likely safe to say that I’m the most inartistic person you know. Music, drawing, grace, whatever: I’ve nothing, and I’d expected terminal frustration to bring a premature end to this experiment, as well. I was thus rather surprised when I found in the hobby more relaxation than anguish. Though still not art, the paint-by-number nature of the models, coupled with learnable painting techniques, yield a pretty high return on investment for time. Um, if such can be said about little army men.

Below are some photos of my first models (in this case, Space Marines from Warhammer 40,000). They are a force of my own design, called the Stormcrows, a sort of hard done-by DIY Chapter of the 21st founding. I’m going for a can’t-seem-to-ever-get-the-muck off look, though I’m not sure how well it comes across in these photos. I’m still learning how to properly dry-brush, and I fear the mans especially will look a little flat. Actually, I’m still learning a lot about everything, so any criticisms or suggestions are more than welcome.

Tactical Marines, 4th Company Stormcrows

DECIMUS SERTORIVS VESPILLO
Veteran Sergeant, 1st Tactical Squad, 4th Company Stormcrows

MkIIc Rhino, 4th Company Stormcrows

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D&D Homebrew

For an atheist1, I certainly end up playing a lot of clerics in D&D.

Well, truth be told, I’m not in a D&D campaign at the moment; we’re actually playing Castles & Crusades. It’s a relatively rules-light mashup of D&D 3.x and first and second edition AD&D. So far, it’s working for me, and I’m looking forward to riding this wave until well after the dust has settled on the launch of D&D 4.0 this summer.

You’ll find below a brief summary of Trond, a deity I created for my character.

Nicknames: The Foe’s Foe, Lord Lilac, Trond the Trusting (sarcastic)
Associations: Demons, Change, Cooperation, The Current Age
Alignment: Neutral
Symbol: An open chain, no two links the same
Colours: Purple, Grey
Flower: Lilac
Weapon: Flail

Nearly a century ago, Trond was a cleric in faithful service to Woroph-Nel. When the demon incursions began, Trond worked his way to front and centre in the protracted battle, eventually coming to serve as figurehead for the ecumenical resistance. Though some faiths criticized his willingness to cooperate with anyone willing (including evil clerics, wizards, and knightly orders), none could doubt the effectiveness of his methods.

Trond was struck down in battle against a massive and grotesque demon-spawn, but not before he had made an impact upon the people and their stories. As an exemplar of humanity, and given the unforeseen rise of the entities his church would come to call “The Foe,” Trond was elevated to godhood (not necessarily unanimously) by the reigning deities. His charge: continue the struggle he championed as a mortal.

Trond’s clergy and devotees as a whole are dynamic and vital. They have not wasted any time in spreading his cause in the short decades the church has been in existence. Much of their success is due to a mandatory period of roaming missionary work that is expected of all able-bodied followers. Even after this time on the road, Trondites are expected to make their homes in an area that will benefit from their faith.

Bonus feature: a portrait of my character, Caspian al-Spahan, done in the style of Rich Burlew’s Order of the Stick.

 

Caspian al-Spahan

1. And by atheist, I of course mean teapot agnostic.

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Filed under Gaming (Video or otherwise), Philosophy (Natural or otherwise), Webcomics

Lamb-Lamb Comes Home

Who is cutest DS?


Whooo-hoo-hoo is the cutest DS?


Yes, you are!


YES YOU ARE!



Special thanks to my friend Phil, who exported this fine DS skin from Korea especially for me. 감사합니다, 친구 !

[Chad and Michelle are currently traveling New Zealand and Fiji. They will return in late May, likely very tired of seeing sheep. Until then, chadsblog will update weekly with pre-written content.]

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