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Jeff's Gameblog
Thursday, 20 May 2004

At last night's game Pat slipped me his copy of Wyrd is Bond, Jason Blair's new rpg of magic-wielding hip-hop street gangsters. It looks pretty damn cool. I'd take points off for the slight legibility problems inherent in using a graffiti-style font for the headers and such, but the font selection is highly appropriate. I'm not done reading it, but WiB looks like a modern era weirdness game I could get into. There'd be a bit of a hump to get over on the race & culture angles. I think this whitebread farmraised middleclass geek would initially feel like a total dork-o-rama trying to play a badass black street thug. Isn't that what clueless suburban teenagers do for fun? I suppose I could have my first character be ironic, something like Honkey B Real.

Posted by jrients at 2:39 PM CDT
Mini's games I kinda like
I liked Warhammer 40K back when it was still :Rogue Trader and most miniatures games are _okay_. I'd play just about any minis game at least once, but I don't see many out there that I feel like I would want to actually build armies and terrain for. The following games are pretty much the only ones that I feel any motivation


If I could paint worth a darn I get a bunch of BTech plastic and march them all over my hexmaps. As it stands, the full color cardboard stand-ups are a pretty decent substitution.

Little Wars

The Granddaddy of them all. Tried for years to track down a copy only to have them reprinted recently. (Very recently. My copy says "copyright June 2004"!) Maybe others will want to play the game now that the rules are back in circulation. I've been thinking maybe the old Airfix 1/72 Waterloo line would do the trick. I just paint the guys a solid color and have at it. I even have a lead on useable cannons.


Not the recent collectible miniatures crapola, I'm talking the Gygax and Perrin original. The main rules have some interesting stuff, especially the morale and cannon rules. And the fantasy appendix is a golden nugget of rpg history. I could easily play the fantasy skirmish version of this game with my stock of Steve Jackson's Cardboard Heroes and S. John Ross's Sparks.

Star Fleet Battle Manual

A great old Star Trek ruleset. Suitable for small task forces, 3 or 4 ships a side, one player per ship. SFBM has very few ship types statted out, but vessels from Star Fleet Battles or the FASA material could be adapted if needed.

Other sci-fi ship-to-ship games

There are lotsa good sci-fi shoot-em-ups out there. I'm particularly fond of the Starmada Compedium, but I usually use cardboard counters for it.

Dino WARS!

As far as I can tell, no webpage exists for this game of army men vs rubber dinosaur action. The theme is great, but the rules are not particularly suitable.

Sumo Basho

The folks over at Amazon Sci-Fi & Fantasy have lots of neato looking stuff, but for me the pick of the litter is Sumo Basho, a Sumo wrestling simulation. If I could paint, I'd probably already have a set.


The miniatures adaptation of Shane Hensley's Savage Worlds ought to be as fast, furious, and fun as the rpg game. It's currently the big contender as the replacement for the clunky Dino WARS! rules. Also, when it comes to the frantic action of the old Rogue Trader, Showdown might do a better job than the present 40K rules.

Posted by jrients at 1:54 PM CDT
Updated: Thursday, 20 May 2004 4:14 PM CDT

Last night was another great run of Dave's "Avatars" game. We finally got that bandit bastard! Yay! Once again we ended a session looking forward to the next get-together. I got to see the Savage Worlds fatigue rules up close and personal when my PC pushed himself to the breaking point. That was interesting. I'm more and more liking this ruleset. Talk around the table indicated that there was a forthcoming SW worldbook "Necessary Evil", in which the PCs are supervillains in a world where the aliens invaded and the superheroes failed to repel them. Between this and "Zombie Run" thats 2 SW products I'm thinking about getting.

This Saturday is Dave's tacos-and-LAN party. I was looking forward to trying some of Dave's tacos. I've heard good things about his cooking. I think I'm gonna have to no-show. My ex-girlfriend Karen is going to be there. I don't expect any drama or anything. We're both grown-up and after all, its been, what, seven or eight years? Still, it would be at least a little weird and I just don't feel like spending psychic energy on it. Since Pat brought the whole thing to my attention I've talked about it and thought about it more than the situation really warrants. Now I've blogged about it too. Time to move on.

Oh well. There will be other opportunities to get together with Dave and the crowd he runs around with.

Posted by jrients at 12:31 PM CDT
Wednesday, 19 May 2004

Tonight is another episode of Dave Hoover's Savage Worlds game, "Avatars". I kinda see tonight's game as a lynchpin. We've had a lot of build-up to what should be a big climax tonight. Unless we blow it.

Posted by jrients at 5:01 PM CDT
Tuesday, 18 May 2004

A member of the kindly editorial staff at the Chess Variants Pages has posted Game Courier presets I slapped together for the 44 squares contest. I sure wish they'd get my write-ups for Knight Chase and Enochian Chess posted!

Posted by jrients at 1:30 PM CDT
Monday, 17 May 2004

I dashed off a tiny missive to Mike Carr today in reply to his note from last week. Hopefully he won't think I'm prodding him too much, but this time I presumed to ask him for a photocopy of the relevant rpg passage from Fight in the Skies.

Looking at the pricing for books from CafePress.com got me thinking. I've come up with a rather ambitious idea for a journal devoted to the history of roleplaying games. It wouldn't be large, probably 52 pages at most (allowing me to use a saddle stapled binding), and not too frequent, maybe an annual. I'm sure there are other people out there who would be willing to contribute and who would be interested in reading it.

Posted by jrients at 2:29 PM CDT

I started a novel yesterday, Songs of Earth and Power by Greg Bear. Someone at RPG.net, though I can't recal who, recommended it as a book that exemplifies the game Lords of Creation. So far it seems to be a bildungsroman turned fantasy adventure, which seems mightily appropriate for a game with levels and nifty powers.

Pat came over last night. We chewed the fat about games and other stuff. After talking with him I'm more convinced than ever that I should tackle Gamma World as my next rpg. My brain is already starting to go to work. Last night as I was going to sleep it occurred to me that FASA's Orion material for the old Star Trek rpg could be easily adapted to a Gamma World society. Thinking about that kept me up for a while.

Posted by jrients at 11:43 AM CDT
Sunday, 16 May 2004

Boy, that was fast! I finished the little book on the Falklands this afternoon! Not only am I more interested than ever in Falklands wargaming, but I think the situation is mineable for James Bond 007 rpg material.

Posted by jrients at 3:16 PM CDT
Saturday, 15 May 2004

I finally finished The First World War today. Even written well, a 500+ page history book was a bit much for me. Before I had a family it would have been an easier ride, but nowadays I may only get to read a page or two before I have to go change a diaper or whatever. Still, it was a good read. I think I learned a lot.

Almost immediately after finishing The First World War I started into The Falklands War 1982. This one is a bit better suited to my short attention span: 96 pages with lotsa photos and maps and such.

Posted by jrients at 8:54 PM CDT
Home Team, Issue #2

Last night Don, Sue, Paul, and John came over for my Heroes Unlimited campaign "Home Team". Its set in Marvel Manhattan during the Secret Wars. The PCs have to hold the line against villainy while Earth's most famous heroes are off-planet for a year.

Highlights from last night's session:

Jill Montgomery was promoted to Field Agent and issued a snazzy SHIELD flying car.

The Dingo wrestled into submission a giant albino mutant sewer crocogator. He even got his picture in the papers posing beside his record-breaking sewer gator.

Batroc's Brigade (The Leaper himself, Zaran, Machete, and Living Laser) were all captured, as were about 20 HYDRA agents.

Mockingbird and Dr. Connors were rescued from the clutches of HYDRA.

The Mysterious Cloaked Hydra Cell Leader escaped!

All in all, I think everyone had a great time.

Posted by jrients at 8:33 AM CDT
Updated: Saturday, 15 May 2004 8:46 PM CDT

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