Legacy Board Games

I really enjoy the Legacy games like Risk: Legacy and Pandemic: Legacy. I love that each game has repercussions that effect every game afterwards. For example, in Risk: Legacy, the winner gets to place a city or rename a continent and gets bonuses based on that, other countries get bonuses and penalties based on battles that took place there, worldwide events are triggered through battles, etc. It shows the devastation of war, and how future wars are shaped by it. We are all shaped by our past, whether it’s on a small or grand scale.

Also, it’s a much faster game, as you don’t have to conquer everyone, just earn 4 victory points.

So I was thinking about other games that could be made into Legacy games.

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Pokemon Go: Hunters in Harmony

Since Thursday, I’ve been playing Pokemon Go to the point where very little writing is getting done. It’s a ridiculous amount of fun, and great exercise. But more than that, it’s bringing people together.

Everytime I go out hunting, I see tons of other people doing the same, people that I’d never interact with in my life. Now we’re chatting, giving each other advice, and just chatting. Again, PEOPLE I’D NEVER INTERACT WITH. I suddenly know the people in my neighborhood and in the parks I go to. It’s amazing. Pokemon Go is bringing people together. No arguments about religion or politics. If anything, a little mild trash talk about taking over gyms.

I think that Pokemon Go might be the secret to harmony and good will. All ages, all races, all religions: we all play.

It makes me happy.

Don’t forget to pick up my 2nd novel, The Watchmage of Old New York. If you like history, fantasy, mystery, or weirdness, it’s the book for you. No pokemon in it, but lots of magic and faerie races.

The Watchmage Is Coming

cosmic-cat tripping balls redux

Surprise Wisdom From D&D

Every other Saturday is D&D day. I love the campaign I’m in. We’ve been playing together for 20 years, in several different campaigns. The DM is a great storyteller. The PCs are interesting and complex. The plot is phenomenal to the point where I’m jealous.

Something interesting came up in out-of-character conversation:

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Settlers of Catan to be a Movie or TV Show?

Looks like Settlers of Catan is trading Sheep for Celluloid…Yes, that’s the best joke I have…Yes, I know that no one uses Celluloid anymore…Yes, I know I suck, work with me here.

Anyway, according to Io9.com, “producer Gail Katz (Air Force One, The Perfect Storm) announced via press release that she has obtained film and television rights to Settlers of Catan.” Since Io9 is usually on the ball with this kind of thing, I’m inclined to believe them.

Can a Ticket to Ride movie be far behind?

For those that don’t know, SoC is the big board game of these times, the new Pictionary or Trivial Pursuit. You work on building a better civilization than your using specific resources. You get these resources through trade or strategic luck (I love that turn). It’s a turn-based game with a fairly short time frame, but addicting. It’s hard to play just one game of Settlers of Catan.”

The question is: what are they going to do with it? It’s a pretty straight forward game, but there’s a back story there that can (if they’re smart) be used in a bunch of different directions. Will they make an action-adventure involving pioneers trying to start a new life? They can take on a narrative similar to Lord of the Flies, where one group goes civilized while the other descends into barbarism. They can start mid-game with the wealthy forcing their will on the poorer groups, like every other Western made (think Road Barons instead of rail). Maybe a Game of Thrones style fantasy-political thriller? They could go serious or goofy, complex or simple. There’s a lot to work with here.

Board games turned into visual media does not have a good track record. Battleship stands out as the biggest bomb, or last year’s Ouija. Clue is one of my favorite movies, but that’s primary because of the great acting and clever dialogue. The plot itself is very predictable…but fun.


I’m looking forward to what becomes of one of my favorite games. I think it could be great…or it could be Battleshit.

doge in space card redux

Like my posts? Follow my website or “Like” my facebook fan page and/or follow me on Twitter. You can also purchase my debut novel, Song of Simon, at any online bookstore or a real one (they both exist). Song of Simon currently has a 4.7/5.0 rating on Amazon, so it’s pretty damn good. There’s also my new novel, The Watchmage of Old New York. It’s based on my old serial at JukePop Serials, where it was one of the most popular stories OF ALL TIME!

the-watchmage-is-coming1

My Geekiness Runneth Over

Woot! D&D AND WWE’s TLC (and S) today and tonight!

Also, if you didn’t see NXT’s [R]Evolution last week, you missed the best ppv of the year. I don’t want to give anything away, but it started with Kevin Owens (Steen), climaxed with Neville and Sami Zayn, and ended with the best heel turn since Shawn Michaels kicked Marty Jannetty through a plate glass window.

I’ll leave you with this ear worm. OLE!

Like my posts? Follow my website or “Like” my facebook fan page and/or follow me on Twitter. You can also purchase my debut novel, Song of Simon, at any online bookstore or a real one (they both exist). Song of Simon currently has a 4.8/5.0 rating on Amazon, so it’s pretty damn good. If you’re looking for something FREE, you can read my serial (soon to be an expanded series of novels) The Watchmage of Old New York. Though it ended in February, it remains one of the most popular serials on JukePop OF ALL TIME!

Gamergate and the New (Old) Rules

I realize that I’m a little late to the game with Gamergate. Because I was traveling, I had to read from my phone as the Internet exploded. This doesn’t mean that I don’t have something to say. I know that it’s a little odd for me to write a serious post. I hope you bear with me.

While this is a post that appears to be about Gamergate, it’s about something much bigger than that. Read on to see.

I’m a gamer. At this point, I’m a pretty old gamer. I started with an Atari 2600. I plunked quarters into Pac Man and Pole Position. I remember the robot that came with the original NES. And yet, I still prefer card and tabletop games to video games, especially DnD. You can say that I’m a well-rounded nerd. That’s why Gamergate hurts so much. It’s a failure of the community that I’ve belonged to all of my life. You might even say that my generation was the founder of the gamer community. So what have we become?

Why?

The Evolution of Gamergate

I think by now most of us understand what Gamergate is, was, and has become. Although the background around it comes from the portrayal of women in games, it sparked with a rumor about an affair between a female game designer and a video game journalist (I’m not going to use names, because they’ve had their names dragged through the Net enough, and it’s not important to my argument).

Let’s just say that it’s true. This could have been a great chance to discuss ethics in journalism within the gamer industry. I’m a former music journalist, and I know that the relationship between artist and reporter can be muddled. Free tickets, free albums, and free swag. You sometimes become friends with the artists. It’s hard to stay unbiased. It’s a big part of the reason I left. I refer you to the movie Almost Famous for a more visual example.

It could have been that, but it morphed into something very ugly. Death threats, rape(!) threats, accounts hacked and personal information spread across the Net like trash on an interstate. There was even a terrorist threat of a school massacre if a certain female journalist (again, no names), spoke. Yes, threatening violence to stop someone from speaking is terrorism. It might be a perfect example of terrorism.

A great, misogynistic beast broke loose from its chains like Donkey Kong and laid waste to the Internet. It may only be a small group, but that group has become representative of the entire community. And there I was, watching without voice as the gamer community decomposes.

What really gets me are the rape threats tossed around like they mean nothing. There is nothing more disgusting than threatening someone with rape, especially when they’ve been doxxed. Rape is the lowest common denominator; apparently death and torture aren’t intense enough threats. Worse, it’s the kind of threat made specifically toward women. It’s the trump card of misogyny, the “I’m going to hurt you and demean you in a way that shows the dominance of my gender.”

The Symptom, not the Cause

As bad as Gamergate is, it’s a symptom of a larger problem. There’s a lack of empathy within the Internet. People attack each other as if they’re only blips on a screen, Koopas to be squashed or Space Invaders to be shot down. I read one tweet that said (and I’m paraphrasing here) the way people respond to the other side of Gamergate is like in Double Dragon, where the entire town wants to fight you.

People say things on the Internet that no decent person would ever say, and certainly wouldn’t say face to face. It’s the distance between. It creates the illusion of anonymity, and that unleashes the beast.

I know all about this. As a teen, I went to see the Rocky Horror Picture Show every Saturday night. If you’ve never been, you won’t understand. The audience–all in the dark–shout some of the foulest things you’ll ever hear at the screen. The darkness and anonymity equals freedom. I shouted things I’d never say in the light of day. But we never tried to hurt anyone, and that’s the difference.

This doesn’t even include my love for Cards Against Humanity, which should never be played in public.

Meet the New Rules…Same as the Old Rules

I think we need, as a community, review the rules of discourse. The Internet is still a brave new world, and without reeling in the vitriol, we’ll poison ourselves.

If you only remember one thing from this blog, it’s this.

1) Don’t post anything on the Internet that you wouldn’t say in person: This includes certain jokes, naked pics, and sharing too much information.

2) Don’t say anything on the Internet that would get you punched in the face at a bar: This includes insults, Net Muscles, and threats of violence.

3) Before you say something on the Internet, ask yourself “what if someone said this to one of my loved ones?” If the answer is “smash their balls with a hammer,” don’t say it.

4) Don’t hack or doxx anyone, no matter how much they deserve it: That’s not going to get your point across. What it will do is bring governments down on the Net. Is that what you want?

5) Don’t feed the trolls: If someone trolls, don’t take the bait. No one wins an argument on the Net, and it makes everyone looks bad. If it gets threatening, report it, but don’t feed the troll. Remember, what you say on the Internet stays there FOREVER.

FOR-FREAKIN-EVER

Like my posts? Follow my website or “Like” my facebook fan page and/or follow me on Twitter. You can also purchase my debut novel, Song of Simon, at any online bookstore or a real one (they both exist). Song of Simon currently has a 4.8/5.0 rating on Amazon, so it’s pretty damn good. If you’re looking for something FREE, you can read my serial (soon to be an expanded series of novels) The Watchmage of Old New York. Though it ended in February, it remains one of the most popular serials on JukePop OF ALL TIME!