« May 2004 »
2 3 4 5 6 7 8
9 10 11 12 13 14 15
16 17 18 19 20 21 22
23 24 25 26 27 28 29
30 31
You are not logged in. Log in
Entries by Topic
All topics  «
Board Games
Chess Variants
Collecting Games
RPG Actual Play
Video Games
Blog Tools
Edit your Blog
Build a Blog
RSS Feed
View Profile
Jeff's Gameblog
Wednesday, 5 May 2004
A Century of Adventure
Would you call a collection of at least 10 sessions about the same family a campaign? What if between each session you advanced the timeline a decade? What if you used several different game systems?

1880's Boot Hill, Victorian Cthulhu
1890's Boot Hill, Victorian Cthulhu
1900's ?
1910's Dawn Patrol
1920's Cthulhu, Gangbusters
1930's Cthulhu, Gangbusters, Sniper
1940's Sniper
1950's GURPS Atomic Horror
1960's Recon
1970's Recon
1980's James Bond 007

GURPS Atomic Horror is a bit of a stretch.

Posted by jrients at 4:09 PM CDT
Tuesday, 4 May 2004

I'm now about a third of the way through Martin Gilbert's The First World War. I can only assume less stuff happens towards the end of the war, because I've only made it to fall 1915 so far! Gilbert does a good job of combining a broad overview of the war with quick looks at individual persons who helped shape it. I'm curious to maybe read a biography of Winston Churchill at some point in the future. I'd also like to read more about the Turkish war hero Mustafa Kemal.

I've started work on yet another entry for chessvariants.com. This time I'm doing a little write-up for 4th Dimension, a game that originated in England but was released in the states by my old friend TSR. I'm also continuing my work on a new entry for the star trek millenium archive.

I'm thinking about adding James Bond 007 to my collection of vintage games. Between the supplements and the modules the line is a little bigger than I normally like to tackle, but the subject matter is near and dear. My usual sources recommend skipping a few of the products: Goldfinger II, A View To A Kill, and On Her Majesty's Secret Service. Also, there's little point in getting the original boxed set; the rulebook is the only key item it contains. Eliminating those four items leaves me with the following list:

James Bond 007 rulebook
Q Manual
Gamemaster Pack
For Your Information
Thrilling Locations
Dr. No
You Only Live Twice
You Only Live Twice II: Back of Beyond
The Man With The Golden Gun
Live And Let Die (considered to be the best of the adventures)

There's also the Assault Game, which replays an assault on the bad guy's fortress as a wargame.

Posted by jrients at 9:49 PM CDT

I'm putting together a working list of "castmembers" for my Jack the Ripper scenario. PCs and NPCs will be drawn from this list. From this list I can see at least 6 factions that might be involved in the situation:

the Street People
the Literati
the Vigilance Committee
the Authorities
the Russian Agents
the Occultists

Some figures would overlap, creating interesting dynamics. Francis Thompson was both a poet and a bum, for example. In my plot the Russians might be on the tale of Nicholas Vassily, who may have committed Ripper-like crimes in Paris. In my version of events he also stirred up trouble in a city of the Russian Empire.

Posted by jrients at 4:41 PM CDT
Monday, 3 May 2004

Well, the Enochian chess article is all zipped up and shipped out. I got in such a hurry to finally get the files off to chessvariants.com that I accidentally originated the email from my wife's account. Good thing I signed it. I wonder if anyone will notice that an email signed "Jeff" came from an address "amy@blahblah"?

Posted by jrients at 7:23 PM CDT

Well, the Enochian chess essay is completed. All that remains is for me to successfully zip and transmit the whole puppy to chessvariants.com. The data is on a new, currently uncorrupted disk. I should be able to submit the essay tonight, assuming the zip software I just downloaded works as claimed. Unfortunately, the qeue at chessvariants is backed up right now, presumably with 44 squares contest material. My Knight Chase submission isn't even up yet.

Posted by jrients at 11:08 AM CDT
Sunday, 2 May 2004

I've not got a hundred pages of The First World War under my belt. Apparently, the seeds of animosity between France and Germany were sown in the Franco-Prussian War of 1870 & 1871. I may have to read a book on that conflict soon. Who knows, maybe the Franco-Prussian War fits my criteria for a "small war", a conflict of scope that I can wrap my non-grognard brain around. (Other small wars of interest to me are the Falklands War of 1982 and some sci-fi conflicts: FASATrek's Four Years War, Traveller's Fourth Frontier War, and BattleTech's Capellan-Supremacy War.) The bigger wars I can only readily grasp tiny slices of, WWI's air combats or the Battle of Jutland, or perhaps WWII's 1st Alamein (the last may only qualify as small as presented by Lou Coatney).

I sat down today to write up a new charsheet for my D&D character, Endrin Greencloak, only to discover I had already done the work several months back and forgot about it. I should post some details of Endrin and the campaign. Anyhoo, in lieu of the charavter work I scanned in a new piece for Star Trek Star Ship Tactical Combat Simulator Millenium Update and Archive. Cleaning up the image so it looks good takes some time, so it may be a week or two before I can get the vessel submitted. In the meantime I am committed to finishing the Enochian chess project tomorrow or Tuesday and continuing the preliminary research on the Jack the Ripper project.

Posted by jrients at 8:46 PM CDT

My old TSR boxed sets have this one trait that annoys the bejabbers out of me. A standard 8 1/2" x 11" sheet of paper doesn't quite fit. The box is slightly too small. I can't get "The Taming of Brimstone", the module from Dragon #71 into my Boot Hill boxed set and my photocopies of the appendices from Richthofen's autobiography won't fit in my copy of Dawn Patrol. What good does having a fairly deep box do me if I can't fit other stuff in it?

Posted by jrients at 8:41 AM CDT
Saturday, 1 May 2004

I had a great time at Don & Sue's tonight. Sue ran her D&D campaign for the lot of us (Don, Michael, John, Bruce, and me). Her campaign consists of an ongoing series of those 'Adventure Keep' pamphlet modules. This evening she ran her fourth installment The Crypt of St. Bethesda. Good adventure. Sue runs a fun game and the group is good people.

Afterwards Michael flipped on his X-box and he and I played a little Legends of Wrestling II. I managed to get stomped as both Koko B. Ware and Greg 'the Hammer' Valetine, though I lasted longer than I expected.

Sue brought up wanting to play my superhero game and we sent a tentative date of May 14th for "issue" 2. Yippee!

Posted by jrients at 10:02 PM CDT

I returned the Red Baron's autobiography to the library today. I've started another WWI book, The First World War by Martin gilbert. It's been slow going so far. This baby is a big, heavy, serious tome.

Finally, the library also had in The Magicians of the Golden Dawn by Ellic Howe, the last book I need for the Enochian chess project. Howe offered no big relevations vis-a-vis Enochian chess, but he did provide some additional corroboration of the existence of the game circa 1896. I'm now ready to put the finishing touches on my essay and send it in, except for last stupid delay. The disk I've been using to truck the data between home and work seems to have become corrupted. My back-up copy is at the office, so it looks like I won't be able to finish the project until Monday evening.

Posted by jrients at 3:46 PM CDT
Strange dream...
Early this morning I had a strange and mostly incoherent dream about a visit to a game store or some other place that sold BattleTech miniatures. One mini hanging on the display rack drew my attention because I had never seen one like it before, because I don't think it exists in the real world. So here's what I know about this new mech design, the Jester:

You can tell at first glance that the Jester was done by the people who designed the Awesome. The resemblance is as similar as the Phoenix Hawk to the Wasp. One of the key differences between the Jester and Awesome is the fact tha the Jester is only a light mech. The basic outline of the Awesome is preserved, but it is a much skinnier mech, almost with a "scarecrow" effect like the Vulcan.

The shoulder-mounted armor plates reach up significantly higher on the Jester, such that these plates could possibly protect the head from shots from either side of the mech (at least if those shots originated from an angle of about 90 degrees to the centerline of the mech). The head, while blocky like the Awesome, does not have the same "face" effect because the entire front of the head is a square slab of canopy material, as if the face was covered by a square black veil.

Both arms end in armanent, much like the right PPC-arm of the Awesome. These weapons, which are mounted just below the elbow, appear to be lasers of the same type as used on the Locust, but I couldn't tell if they were supposed to be small or medium lasers. The right torso has a weapon system that looks much like an Awesome's torso-mounted PPC, but the weapon in question is either a large laser or medium laser. It's definitely one size bigger than the arm-mounted lasers, which look puny in comparison. There's no left torso-mounted weapon. Below the right torso laser and above the hip actuators are a pair of rotary machineguns, much like on a Chameleon or Merlin. These could be either two center torso mounts, or one each in the right torso and left torso.

I got the overall impression in the dream that the Jester was an early light recon design, but not as small as 20 tons. Also, its not as fast as later light recon mechs, like maybe it is a 5/8/? mech. I couldn't tell if it had jump jets or not.

Posted by jrients at 8:15 AM CDT

Newer | Latest | Older