Saturday, January 30, 2010

DiceCon East 2010 #2: Still going

Alan Poulter- webmaster of Web-Grognards, "the site for wargames on the web since 1995"; was one of the familiar faces who said hello, attracted by the sight of our Overlord game in play. We had our usual friendly chat, and Alan was angling for a chance to play a game of Battlestar Galactica, a copy of which Adam had happened to bring. Our course was set.

Getting frakked
It turned out that Alan was already into another game when we came to play BSG. Adam and Donald made us 3, and we had no trouble at all in rounding up some likely suspects to give us the full 6-player experience; more familiar faces: Barry, Bob and Mark. The younger old hands among you might remember Barry and Bob from DiceCon East 2007, where Barry had been the first to test my Lore skills in Battlelore.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

DiceCon East 2010 #1: We Go!

Getting in
An early start; a big bag of games; a cold and dreary Sunday morning; yadda, yadda, yadda- you get the picture dear readers: DiceCon East 2010 dawns. Badger, Donald and myself arrive promptly at the familiar old Over-Seas House on Princes Street, grab a table, and start getting ourselves settled in.

That Castle, looking south from the edge of Princes St.

We're expecting a 4th player who'd signed up via TacG@fB, but yours truly has cleverly forgotten to ask the guy his ETA, or for contact details; so we really don't know when to expect him. Other keen gamers are drifting in, looking around, and a Memoir'44 Overlord board generates the attention you'd expect as it starts to take shape. Someone appears who's at a loose end- Adam by name, new to Memoir and interested in having a go. Soon we are ready to begin.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

"Overlord? I'll give you Overlord!"

The big day looms!
So, DiceCon East 2010 is tomorrow. I've been beavering away at the Memoir'44: Operation Overlord game Badger and I decided ourselves upon last November. Simply turning up on the day with some friends wasn't good enough for yours truly though. Oh no; I had to go and complicate things by using fB to network and build for the day:
As a result of these efforts it looks like our Overlord games will be 4-handers at least, so that's a result I guess. :-)

Thursday, January 21, 2010

An embarrassment of riches #3: Trick or treat?

Avatar: Szyslak or sizzlots?
The last Big Thing on this New Year holiday was an outing with Mark to see James Cameron's much anticipated, heavily hyped and ultimately hugely successful new blockbuster- Avatar, in glorious IMAX 3D. The hype hadn't completely passed me by, but only when I started reading the box-offices @ICv2 did I begin to feel the allure of the sheer scale of the success of a movie I knew to be a big-screen must-see, whether I liked it or not. :-\

The mixed feelings there implied ran deep:
  • Heavily hyped Hollywood blockbusters have a very patchy track record in recent years.
  • James Cameron is responsible for some most-loved movies- eg. The Terminator and Aliens; so a turkey on the gargantuan scale of Avatar was a prospect heartbreaking to imagine.
  • The movie was completely CGI, echoing features which had put me off 2007's Beowulf on sight.
  • I was going to see it in 3D, a technology I'd never used, in which I had no faith.
  • And I'd picked up really bad word of mouth from typically reliable quarters.
A film I could easily have loved to hate then. =-O

Sunday, January 17, 2010

An embarrassment of riches #2: Hidden depths unplumbed?

After Tuesday's whistle-stop tour of my festive fun, it's time to go into a bit more detail about some of highlights. First off, the boardgaming.

Pandemic: just another buggy solitaire?
Regular readers should remember how the BSG boardgame wavered in my affections last year because I feared its initial appeal was going to be gainsaid by another solitaire engine at the heart of the gameplay. During Martin's xmas visit 3 plays of Z-Man Games' 2008 cooperative boardgame Pandemic (which I first saw just after its release, being played at DiceConWest 2008) complete with the On the Brink expansion served to remind me that the secret of BSG's success is as much down to the card-driven system as it is to the Cylon-human antagonism I enjoyed so much.

Excellence exemplified
Before I comment further on why I suspect the card-driven solitaire engine might be Pandemic's saving grace to this gamer, I have to say a word or two about its graphic design and production. In a word, these are brilliant; so much so in fact that mere words can't do them justice.

Friday, January 15, 2010

"To infinity and beyond!"?

Badger's round for a Friday-night Firefight soon and I haven't done a stroke of proper work on any of the pieces planned for imminent posting, but I am pleased to be able to announce that 2010 has already seen a landmark for RD/KA!:- I launched "Roll dice and kick ass!" as a facebook page- AKA. RD/KA!@fB, yesterday. My thanks to the 13 who've already signed up as fans. This is an encouraging start. :0)

I've long been aware of how much the internet could bring to the adventure gaming hobby, and have always enjoyed the best efforts of our geeky ecommunity. So I am naturally very excited at the potentialities of the new social media in this age of the Open Source. This first fB page is therefore an intriguing new venture for yours truly. I'm anticipating a good year here @RD/KA! in 2010! ;)

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Alas- a lack!

Small but vital correction
Footering @fB as you do, I just this afternoon remembered the film I'd left out of yesterday's list of screen gems from my 2009-10 new year's festivities: Slumlord Millionaire. This unfortunate error has been corrected.

The film is every bit as good as the hype would want you to imagine, believe me! Normal service resumed ASAP. ;)

- An embarrassment of riches #1: Boxes of tricks

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

An embarrassment of riches #1: Boxes of tricks

Home again...
...yesterday, from my New Year holiday: another Hogmany chez famille King in Prague; topped off with a long weekend in Cambridge visiting my old buddy Mark Dalgarno.

Time then to get 2010 off to a start here @RD/KA!. Are you sitting comfortably? :0)

Games glut guzzled!
With Badger- over xmas; Donald, Liam and 'Uncle' Martin- in the festive interregnum; and Radka, Bill and Daniel in Prague: a grand total of 54 games in 10 sessions over 14 days made my 2009-10 festive season the gamingest ever! The games I enjoyed are below:
CC:P, Settlers cards, and Starship Catan gave me my own most satisfying victories of the festive megasession; but 2009-10's Festive Big-Win No-Prize goes to Daniel, for equalling Gav's record game-winning 5VP turn at Settlers of Catan.