Thursday, March 31, 2016

Brit Garden Gnomes Declining?

According to an article in the Daily Mail,  sales of garden gnomes in the UK have halved over the last ten years.



Of course, this just means that the British Isles are ripe for the picking of a Gnome Wars Kickstarter to supplement their ranks.

Lon?  Jim?  Anybody?

*DISCLAIMER: There are no current plans, in public or in secret, for a Gnome Wars Kickstarter... but a man can dream.*


The Mike Lung Gallery #42 - Moonbase - Cheddar.

Having just run the Space Mousling game at Cold Wars, I deemed it high time to add some of Mike Lung's sci-fi work to the gallery. While the game was cobbled together between Fall-In! and Cold Wars as a much-needed palette cleanser after years of Gnome Wars games, its origin was over three years ago in Mike's perfectly delusional mind. 

"The home planet as lost all contact with its mining operation on the nearby Swiss Cheese Moon. The last transmission contained horrible squeaks as if someone was in great pain followed by dead silence. Without this precious source of cheese, the inhabitants of the home planet will starve! A detachment of MISE (Mouse Intergalactic Security Expedition) is dispatched to investigate the cause of this disturbance."

"Upon arrival, the MISE must clear out the mines from awful greenish-gray mold monsters that are putrefying the cheese core of the planet. Basically, the mines are a series of cheese-hole mazes."

Hence previous postings about Awful Cheese Hulk.
Mike quickly added to the board game aspect and developed models for the Swiss Cheese Moon. 
 


 
"Unknown to everyone in the Mouse Republic, a super-secret, mysterious army was being quickly raised to fight the Swiss Cheese Confederation. Are they the saviors of the Mouse Republic? …or are the part of a warped plan to turn the Mouse Republic into a Galactic Empire by an awful old senator mouse known as the Emperor and his faithful right hand mouse…DARTH CHEEZER!"
 


More of Mike's crazed creations to come!

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

If I Had ANOTHER Biliion Dollars...

Three years ago, I covered what I would try to do if I happened upon a billion dollars.   After the billion-plus Powerball earlier this year, followed by a few memes that appeared later, I decided to revisit it.

... I would buy you a monkey
(Haven't you always wanted a monkey?)

Again, I've won a billion dollars (post taxes, if I want to be greedy I'm going as close to Scrooge McDuck style as I can).  How would that change my gaming lifestyle?

Three years ago, I would forcibly relocate people back into the general area, perhaps even combine their minds for a start-up company.    Perhaps I'm waning nostalgic, but I'll stick to my eternal idea of getting everybody on a cruise ship for a 10-day cruise, eight hours of every sea day dedicated to gaming. 

What about buying product lines and companies!   A couple of my ideas proved necessary over the last couple of  years, especially the first. 

Here's the list:
  • Chaosium - Not any more.  The takeover was necessary, and after three years, the 7th Edition rules are actually on a slow boat from Hong Kong.
  • Steve Jackson - I'd still secretly finance a new edition of TOON before they launch a Kickstarter for it.
  • Topps - I'd still buy all the gaming lines/licenses and be a benevolent dictator with them.. 
  • Legions of Steel - If I could clean up this train wreck, I'd get Reaper to produce the figures using their Bones technology.  Most of the figures are clean lines and tight sculpts that would come out great, but seriously, the UNE Superfortress and other mammoth vehicles could conceivably come out and be affordable!
  • Burning Plastic - Yeah, I already have this, per se, but I could finish the 2nd Edition, print off 10,000 copies and distribute them to the masses.  Perhaps I could find out if I could buy the rights to the classic moulds and release a box set, just like the ones you could get out of the back of a comic book, in days gone by, only this time the figures are normal size.  In addition to that I could throw a pile of money at the true genius behind the game, just to avoid lawsuits
  • Burning Plastic -  "Real Rules"  I'd love to start playtesting actual rules for skirmish warfare using BP,  regular soldier vs regular soldier, not crazy self-destructing robots.
  •  I'd do the same for his Agitator: the RPG.
  • Gnome Wars - Everything I mentioned three years ago is still up in the air, so I would finish writing the fluff for 3rd Edition and commission some new sculpts.  Lon at Brigade can keep control. 
  • TWERPS - A leather bound TWERPS Compendium, even if it's a unique copy.  Same with Risus.  Both for the sheer irony of it.
I would go crazy with my gaming purchases:
  • Call of Cthulhu - now that I'm now investing into the company, I would simply go to the Chaosium website and order close to one of everything.  All the small press items they don't stock, or are out of stock I'll get directly through those companies. Cthulhu has been very very good to me these last couple of years.  They should get rewarded.
  • Miniature Building Authority - stays pretty much the same as before.  not one of everything (some things I'll need more than one!), but a nice Middle Eastern set, a European two set, a Spanish building set, and some Africian/Polynesian grass huts shouldn't fill up an entire room of my new house (unless I drain the indoor swimming pool and they're all set up in there.)  No need for the new castle stuff...
  • Hackmaster - the 5th Edition GM Guide and Hacklopedia of Beasts.  Those will look good on my mahoghany barrister bookcase shelves.
  • Gnomish Space Marines -  I will blow up the already overpriced eBay market on Squats to assemble my army, using some Hasslefree figures for power armor.  Lots of camo, hunter orange, plus some Nascar insignia for the power armor, not because I like that, but because I can!
  • Olley's Armies:  I would go out and obtain most of the Scrunt molds that have been sold over the years to make everything available. 
  • Eureka - All the Mice/Frogs/Turtles one could stand
  • Teddy Bears - I would pay top dollar for all of them to keep them in circulation.
  • Brigade Games - complete figure lines to run my Tanga Campaign "accurately".
  • Formula De - all the boards... and somehow run them together like a bad Cannonball Run.
  • Magic - I have played in years, but I would assemble my beloved Treefolk deck to its former Alpha glory, then purchases the appropriate cards from each set so I can play the same deck with old, modern, and new styles of cards.
  • I may even buy mutliple Black Lotuses just to get them out of circulation. 
Write my books
  • I could write the ultimate book on the Samoan Civil Wars, and write up orders of battle for wargaming purpose.  I would enjoy those research trips to Samoa and New Zealand.
  • Burning Plastic, 2nd Edition
  • Gnome Wars 3.0 (I've already volunteered to be editor, at least a proofreader.)
  • The Encyclopedia of the Gnome World - a long term project for Gnome Wars covering the history of the Gnomes at War, from the mythical era until the Spanish Rice Uncivil War.  I'll do my best to incorporate all non-Brigade product lines that are appropriate (such as using Eureka Teddy Bears as African Askaris, frogs as savages, etc.)
And of course, if I feel like recreating Brewster's Millions and need a money pit to legally waste money, I could open a comic/gaming store.  Whether it's the Pegleg Gnome, or Viking Comics and Games, or I just buy whatever exists legally of Dreamscape Comics and build a new empire of geekdom with it, this could keep me out of worse trouble.  Plus it would help employ those don't qualify under the computer/internet start-up idea. 

Most importantly, I might have some blasted time to paint!  And let the girls paint their stuff too!
 

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

(Kickstarter) Post Apocalyptic Dwarf Bikers

After my mini-rant against RAFM yesterday, and just as my thoughts of the Gnomish Space Marines were going away again, here comes a new Kicstarter for 28-32mm Post-Apocalyptic Dwarf Bikers from Ramshackle Games.


These resin minis are about $5US for multiple fig, worldwide shipping included.  Yes, after my rant yesterday it seems strange to find this appealing, but it seems worked into the pledge amounts, and with a projected month turnaround time, there shouldn't be an unexpected jump in postage rates.

Another combined pro and con is the customization available.  There are eleven different types of bikes available, different arms, different weapon, and different heads to choose from! 

(Hackmaster) Burning Trogs Rule! #32 - The Fate of Heroes

Zorin Redrock - Gnome Titan Fighter.  Veteran of the Barbarian Wars, and hero of Marakeikos due to the retaking of Frandor's Keep.
Janus Redrock - Gnome Titan Priest of Pangrus.  Cousin of  Zorin Gnome Titan of loose morals and  a hero of Marakeikos.
Gwendalyn Lorax  - Half Elf Druid.
Terval Sit - Half-Elf Mage
"Whitey"  - Albino Halfling Priest of Yondalla.   Zorin's sidekick.
Coreena Ruddledater- 9 year old halfling torchbearer.
Ramsa - Mute Halfling Fighter - Gwen's Protégé.

9th of UnDec 1135, Barthey
Gwen heard a call for help, and a bit further down the road, they found a woman in a tower calling to them.  They tried to aid her, but four people in green robes intercepted them.  Despite the best of intentions and even a helpful Charm spell by Gwen, they attacked the Trogs.   Two of the strangers are slain and the other two flee back to the tower.

They eventually rescued the woman, a human named Teelya.  Before pleasantries could be exchanged, an armor clad cleric charged up the stairs with five more monks.  After a long fight, they were finally dispatched.

Teelya showed the Trogs the way under the keep.  She claimed that there should be all kinds of treasure down in the dungeons of the tower, but she also claimed the monks were evil devil worshippers and had been killing travellers for years.

Teelya got some space from the Trogs and ran. By the time they came across her, Teelya was fighting two spirits and was locked in mortal combat with a demon(???)  The party kill the spirits, but the demon caused fear among the Trogs.  Ramsa and Zorin were the only ones not affected by it and they gave chase.  The woman and demon got away together by stealing Terval's horse!

Ramsa and Zorin grabbed the others and gave chase.  She and the demon were heading right towards Barthey City, so the Trogs pushed the horses as much as they could to catch up.

10th of Undec, Barthey
After two days of hard riding, they are forced to rest their horses
Zorin:  "This Bitch is Toast!"

11st of UnDec, Barthey
At mid-day they found Terval's horse, barely alive.

12th of UnDec, Barthey 
We continue on her trail

13th of UnDec, Barthey City
The Trogs arrive at Barthey City.  The guards were just as useless as they had been previously.

It was decided that everyone would stay in Barthey City for a few days to heal. Ramsa and Whitey were all messed up from the fighting, then the hard riding, and Zorin was getting bad headaches.

The Fate of Heroes was one of the Kingdoms of Kalamar modules for 3.0/3.5 produced by Kenzer & Company.  As I was a Kenzer fanboy at the time, I bought most of the products that came out.   Most of the modules were marginal at best, and this one was no exception.
The damsel with distress is in cahoots with the demon thing, and in proper Burning Trogs fashion, they just let them have enough time to escape.    The good news is, this evil duo is heading east, away from Marakeikos.  The bad news is, they're heading right into Yarbay and the Hand of the Master...



Next #33 The Long Road Back Home.

Monday, March 28, 2016

(Kickstarter) RAFM's Mea Culpa

I supported the RAFM Call of Cthulhu 7th Edition Miniatures Kickstarter all the way back in January 2014.  I didn't have a need for too many mythos critters, so I pledged for the new character minis based on Masks of Nyarlathotep with an added shoggoth for good measure. 

Two years later, I've heard the whole range of horror stories of sculptors taking funds without producing, cost overruns, and the weak Canadian dollar and Canada Post shipping increases.    To be expected, once everything was cobbled together, I expected the Module Collector pledges to get shipped out first.  This makes sense for a packng standpoint, and through previous communications I thought that they got them handled.   All that was left were us weird guys who just wanted characters, or just wanted monsters, or wanted the add-on Mother Hydra pieces that were continuing to be a problem for them.    Heck, for the longest time, I still considered the minimal delay by Reaper for their Bones II Kickstarter for their non-core pledges to be a more cardinal sin than the much longer RAFM delay.

Months later I'm still waiting.  I knew there were problems when they promised to get as much out as possible and the RAFM 30% sale popped up. 

Finally, this appeared in my email today.
**************************************************************************

IMPORTANT OFFER Please read!

We would like to thank all our supporters of this kickstarter.
At this point we have worked through to the point were we have about 125 people left to ship. We have all the product packaged and ready to ship for these orders. We got the final 90 Mother Hydra pieces cast and packaged no problem. However, we have long ago run out of money for this Kickstarter. As you can imagine with the sculpting issues we had, the resin sculpts coming in over priced, the extra metal required and the change in the dollar and shipping prices since we ran this kickstarter the money is long gone.

We are not complaining.

We will certainly ship everyone of you all the parcels you deserve. That is the deal we made and we honor our word. However, at this point in time we are shipping your orders based on the money that we can pull out of our cash flow, or any extra money we have. This makes the process slow and we know you have been waiting a very long time for your goods.

So we wish to propose an offer to those supporters left who have not received there goods. Basically the cost for shipping a box to the USA is $15. Overseas it is about $25 to Europe and $50 to Australia. We know these numbers because we have already shipped boxes of the same relative size to these locals. So here is our offer.

Anyone wishing to have their product shipped within the next two weeks can pay for your shipping. If you pay for your own shipping we will send you an extra package of 2922 Deep Ones (which is the three deep ones pictured below). We have this product made and ready to go with your order. We can ship ASAP no problem if you take this deal.

If you wish to take us up on this offer just send the proper amount of money thru Paypal to brock @ rafm.com. Put a note on the payment as to what it is for (The COC Kickstarter Shipping) and your name and address and your KS id or name if it is different.

As stated, you do not have to take us up on this offer and we will definitely ship your package. It may just take some time for us to be able to ship. We make this offer as a way to get this product to you sooner. Again thanks for your support and patience.
********************************************************************************

As was discussed during Chaosium's 7th Edition fiasco, many of the vocal critics only wished for a full humbling admission to the problems and even an offer to pay for shipping (which was included in the pledge amount.)  With RAFM, shipping was $10 extra on my level, but I'm still pondering the extra $15 just so I can have Jack Brady on the table when my investigators run into him next session (late April I'm assuming).    Fifteen dollars might be worth ending the only Kickstarter nightmare I made a valid pledge on (There have been a few that I pledged a dollar just to have a front row seat to the chaos.)    And I always need more Deep Ones. 

I should make up my mind before  the end of this week, but I'm doubly certain that I'm avoiding any future RAFM crowdsourcing, and probably any mail order from them as well. 

Painting Class with the Girls

We have survived Easter weekend, with many a nap, some chocolate, and strange desire to rename the holiday Thanksgiving 2:  Bunny Boogaloo. 

Not much got accomplished on the gaming front, although the automotive issues have been resolved.  You could say that we're back in a little positive "Car-ma."

Saturday night I let my wife have the night off and took the girls down to the FLGS for a painting class.   One of the local painter's TripleP ran the glass which ran from consistent painters, fledgling painters, and of course my two girls, ages 5 and 6. 

Each of us got a Bones version of Reaper's Avatar of Sokar to paint, a good supply of brushes and a vat of GW paints to try out.  A few dropped out after an hour, but the rest who stayed had a great time.  

I'm not used to fiddling around with GW paints.  I've got my last remaining pot of Citadel Copper circa 1997 that's still good and the rest are horribly overpriced.  However the Sepia and Earthtone washes worked really well, the orange was nice, and the Technical line of paints did make life a little easier (although I don't know if it was $4.99 for a tiny bottle easier.)

Millie performed admirably for the two and a half hour session. Maja was a little overwhelmed by the painting table and horde of people in for Blood Bowl and Magic games that night.  On top of that, she wanted everything white, which made her lack of concentration filling in the block painting even more pronounced. 
(l to r) Maja's, Mine, and Millie's
Given that I've seen some fine work on these figures for the most recent Reaper painting contest, and most have taken 6+ hours, I feel like everything we did was a good start.   I have the kiddos Thurs-Sat as my wife is away at a course, so we'll continue to work on these guys (and the girl's dragons) over next weekend.
 
Steve, the man behind TripleP, was very helpful, slightly overwhelmed, and ran the class from all angles, jumping from helping my extremely excited girls to talking about airbrushing with another fella, to painting suggestions to yet another. 
 
One thing I rarely do at Evolution (or any store for that matter), is buy stuff.  With the store hosting something I really wanted, I happily felt obliged to snag stuff off the shelf... and give the kids a chance.  Not surprisingly, they picked up more Bones.


Maja had requested a Super-Hero game, a la the Pulp Game, and I broke down and purchased my first ever brick of Heroclix.   Pulling a Stargirl made my day.  The girls don't know who she is, but they will soon enough. 
 
I mentioned to Joe, the owner, a chance to give him a list of common clix that I could buy cheap (Supergirl, Wonder Woman, Miss Martian commons, etc...) and not only did he agree to that, he gave the girls a small box of random commons to go wild with.  Those commons have trumped everything they got from the Easter Bunny, save a few little stuffed animal unicorns and pandas. 
 
Painting at Home:  The French/Quebecois gnomes are done for the treasure hunt game, and I'm working on some leftover wolves, dire and normal.  It's fitting then that my wife got me some Wolf King Warrior Stout for Easter.
 
I love me some Stout, in most shapes and forms, but this stuff is overpowering.  It doesn't mean I didn't finish it, though. 

And before I forget, everyone who paid for the class got a chance at a $50 gift certificate for TripleP's painting service.  With three entries, it's not surprising that I won!   I have two LoS fellas who are going to push his envelope, and maybe a figure or three after that.

 

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Happy Easter 2016!


Brutal treatment of indigneous chicks. Used as slaves, shackled to wagons and beat with whips
to haul goods gnomish goods.
 

Saturday, March 26, 2016

Apathy of the New Releases (April '16)


Viscount Eric's Must-Have Want List

Steve Jackson Games
OGRE:  Objective 218 .................................................................................... $14.95


Viscount Eric's Money-Is-No-Object List

The Army Painter
Warpaints: Flesh Wash 18ml ............................................................................ $ 3.25
Not that I can't afford three bucks and quarter, but if I can find a new alternative to my current washes, I'd drop the money on the counter and run.

Decision Games
Folio Series:  Shanghai Incident ....................................................................... $19.95



The Imaginary Store (The Pegleg Gnome) List
After hitting a few stores recently, reading a few blogs, and checking out a few online clearance sales for brick and mortar stores, I'm certain that my decisions to stop listing certain items (re: stop stocking them in the imaginary store) were wise ones.  Specifically, most 3rd party Pathfinder and most Spartan Games (Dystopian War/Firestorm Armada) lines have a stark contrast between those who do sell it, to those who emulate an episode of hoarders trying to stock the lines.

Alderac Entertainment Group
Dice Heist .........................................................................................................  $19.99
Octo Dice ..........................................................................................................  $19.99

The Army Painter
Warpaints: Flesh Wash 18ml ............................................................................ $ 3.25

Atlas Games
Ars Magica:  Dies Irae HC ................................................................................ $29.95
Once Upon a Time:  Animal Tales Expansion .................................................. $12.95

Backspindle Games
Luchador! ........................................................................................................... $39.95
Here's another edition of "ViscountEric just doesn't get it."  I've never heard of Backspindle Games before this months Game Trade Magazine.  I have no idea what kind of company they are, but you know what?  The cover and title of the game grabbed my attention.  It's a dice game, and given the only things I picked out of AEG  above were dice, this might make a nice addition.  However, the forty dollar price tag for a bunch of dice and essentially an dice tower/tray in the form of a wrestling ring means this is going to collect dust on the store shelf, unless my masked wrestler demographic is higher than usual.

Catalyst Game Labs
Encounters: Shadowrun ..................................................................................... $29.99
Shadowrun RPG Howling Shadows .................................................................. $49.99

Ceaco
Jump Ship! ......................................................................................................... $10.00
Stowaway 52 ...................................................................................................... $10.00

Chaosium
Heroquest Glorantha:  The Coming Storm - Campaign for HQ Glorantha V1... $29.95
Runequest RPG:  Classic Edition RPG ............................................................... $29.95

Cheapass Games
Before I Kill You Mister Spy .............................................................................. $10.00
The latest renamed version of Before I Kill You Mister Bond  and James Ernst's Renamed Spy Game

Corvus Belli
Ariadna Desperadoes ............................................................................................ $40.62
I despise the Infinity sculpts almost as much as I do their ridiculous pricing, but dammit if a couple of these figures don't paint up totally sweet.  At twenty bucks-plus apiece, I wouldn't even pick them up if I hit the lottery. 
Dead Gentlemen Productions
Fate RPG:  Demon Hunters - A Comedy of Terrors Core Rules HC .....................  $49.95
They had me at the ridiculous cover, and lost me at the price tag. 
 

Decision Games
Mini-Folio Series:  Wilson's Creek ......................................................................... $ 9.95
Mansfield ................................................................................................................. $ 9.95

Enterplay
My Little Pony CCG:  Marks in Time Boosters
I just started to see earlier expansions on clearance sales, so unless I've cultivated a solid cross section of the community into this game, it might be time to say sayonara!

Fantasy Flight Games
Between physical stores and online sites, I'm a bit concerned that Fantasy Flight sells one and done style games.  The games may be great, but after the initial hullabaloo, their games (and later expansions) sit on the shelf, or slowly get discounted down, not at full clearance prices, but 5% here, 10% there.  Seeing the SW RPG Specialization Decks heavily discounted nixes that idea.   Even the 3'x3' X-Wing playmats don't have a price listed in the customer copy of GTM.  Not the way to promote games. 

Frog God Games
Borderland Provinces:  Journey Generator ................................................................ $10.00
Borderland Provinces:  Player's Gazetteer ................................................................. $15.00
Borderland Provinces:  Player's Guide ....................................................................... $10.00
Not sure about the last three books, obviously for FGG's Borderlands Provinces campaign, but a ten dollar "campaign generator" is definitely worth the money.

Gale Force Nine
Dungeons & Dragons RPG - Curse of Strahd Traokka Deck .................................... $10.00

Games Workshop
After my ranting and raving about fairly rudimentary gaming items, my traditional rant/bias on $30 individual figures and $85 "Collector Sets" doesn't have the same enthusiasm 

Goodman Games
Judges Guild:  Dark Tower Classic Edition ............................................................... $19.99
Dungeon Crawl Classics #84.2 - Synthetic Swordsmen o/t Purple Planet ................ $ 9.99

Konami Digital Entertainment
Yu-Gi-Oh! TCG:  Shining Victories Booster Display
Yu-Gi-Oh! TCG:  Shining Victories Special Edition
Yu-Gi-Oh! TCG:  Yuya Starters

Mayday Games
Dungeon Busters ........................................................................................................ $20.00

Modiphius
Acthung! Cthulhu:  Assault on the Mountains of Madness ....................................... $64.99
Acthung! Cthulhu: Secrets of the Dust ...................................................................... $32.99
Airfix Battles:  Introductory Wargame ...................................................................... $35.99

Mongoose
Traveller RPG:  Adventure- High and Dry ................................................................ $14.99
Traveller RPG:  High Guard ...................................................................................... $49.99

Paizo Publishing
Pathfinder Adv Card Game:  Gunslinger Class Deck ............................................... $19.99
Pathfinder Campaign Setting:   Path of the Hellknight ............................................. $22.99
Pathfinder Player Companion:  Spymaster's Handbook ............................................ $14.99
Pathfinder Adv Path Hell's Vengeance Pt5, Scourge of the Godclaw ....................... $24.99
Pathfinder Flip Mat - Bigger Dungeon ....................................................................... $19.99
Pathfinder Map Pack:  Perilous Paths  ........................................................................ $14.99

Pelgrane Press
13th Age RPG:  GM Screen and Resource Book ....................................................... $24.95

Pinnacle Entertainment Group
Rippers Resurrected Double Action Decks ................................................................ $19.99
Rippers Resurrected Frightful Expeditions HC .......................................................... $24.99
Rippers Resurrected Players Handbook HC .............................................................. $24.99
Rippers Resurrected GM Handbook HC .................................................................... $24.99
Rippers Resurrected GM Screen w/ Adventure ......................................................... $19.99
Rippers Resurrected Map 1 Castle Dracula/ Country House ..................................... $14.99
Rippers Resurrected Map 2 Urban Alleys/Ancient tombs ......................................... $14.99
Rippers Resurrected Map 3 World of Rippers/Lodge. ............................................... $14.99
Savage Tales of Horror Vol 1 HC ............................................................................... $24.99
Savage Tales of Horror Vol 2 HC ............................................................................... $24.99
Savage Tales of Horror Vol 3 HC ............................................................................... $24.99

Plastic Soldier Company
The Great War:  Tank Expansion ................................................................................ $39.50
The Great War:  Whippet Tank Expansion ................................................................. $16.50

Pokémon
Pokémon TCG Ash-Greninja Ex Box
Pokémon TCG Mythical Pokémon Darkrai Collection Box
Pokémon TCG Mythical Pokémon Jirachi Collection Box
Pokémon TCG XY Fates Collide - Boosters and Starters

Reaper Miniatures
Reaper will have the mouslings that appeared in Bones II now available in metal.   The Bones versions are quite acceptable, so I don't know why one would want to spend double for the figures.

Role 4 Initiative
Dry  Erase Dungeons Tiles: Combo Pack four 10" and sixteen 5" ......................... $39.99
Dry  Erase Dungeons Tiles: Pack of nine 10" interlocking tiles ............................. $39.99
Dry  Erase Dungeons Tiles: Pack of thirty-six 5" interlocking tiles ....................... $39.99
Don't exactly know the market for a product such as this, especially long term, but it might be worth a shot.

Steve Jackson Games
Munchkin Cthulhu Guest Artist Edition (Katie Cook) ............................................ $29.95
Munchkin: Monster Box .......................................................................................... $29.95
Munchkin Playmat:  Flower Cashes In .................................................................... $16.95

Wizards of the Coast
D&D:  Curse of Strahd ............................................................................................ $49.95

WizKids
DC Dice Master:  Green Arrow/Flash Gravity Feed
Heroclix 2016 Collector's Premium Map ................................................................ $24.99 each
(options include Center Plaza, Gaming Convention, Parking Garage, WizKids Offices)
Star Trek Attack Wing ............................................................................................. $14.99 each
(options include USS Enterprise [2016], USS Yosemite, Romulan Jolan Tru, Xindi Calindra, Klingon Negvhar, Romulan Scimitar [2016]

Z-Man Games
Pandemic:  Reign of Cthulhu ........................................................................................ $49.99











 

Friday, March 25, 2016

Two Goldfish

My kids are just starting to get less overt humor: puns and other plays on words in particular.  My wife got me a t-shirt for the last concert entitled "How to Pick Up Chicks", with a three step process of a stick figure picking up a baby chick with two hands.  My girls loved that joke, and after showing them this, they burst into laughing fit for a professional comedian:
 

Good to know my humor level is the high brow 5-7 year old range.
 

Thursday, March 24, 2016

HMGS Update on the Status of the Lancaster Host

Like all HMGS members, I got this in my email today.  And like most HMGS members that blog, I'm posting it for general consumption. 
 
Eric: 
This is an update to the Lancaster Host Resort and Conference Center (the "Host") auction and ensuing proceedings.   This is the same information that Scott Landis briefed to the attendees at the Friday night Cold Wars membership meeting and is provided for those of you who were unable to attend. 
What we know: 
After the auction ended with no buyers meeting the minimum sale price, several potential buyers have continued to negotiate with the Host owners over the last few months.  Two of these are nationally known hotel chains who plan to keep the Host in operation as a hotel.  They have been examining the Host financial records and inspecting the building facilities.  Some of the more observant of you may have noticed one such group over the weekend at Cold Wars.
We have been informed by Host management that the potential buyers all plan to renovate the building piecemeal starting with the HVAC and other essential internal systems. Rooms will also be updated and modernized.  If this occurs, we will lose a percentage of rooms as the room upgrade will occur in phases.  However, we are not filling the hotel now as many attendees stay elsewhere due to the conditions at the Host.   The Host has essentially waived the room night requirement since many of their rooms are not usable.   Host management believes the sale will take place within the next two months.  For HMGS, the timing is very important since we would need ample time to plan Fall-In!, whether it is at the Host or elsewhere.   Should a buyer sink considerable capital into the Host the new owner may also elect to not honor the existing contracts as part of the terms of sale.  We expect them to want to renegotiate our contracts to recoup some of their expenses.
Options and Alternatives:
At this point, the Host has not cancelled any future contracts, so Fall-In! 2016 and Cold Wars 2017 will go on as planned unless the Host or the new management cancels our existing contracts or cannot provide a usable facility.  As you know, HMGS, Inc. cannot initiate a cancellation of either convention without incurring a substantial monetary penalty.  We found alternate venues for Cold Wars 2016 and had cost feasible proposals in hand in December.  We were prepared to move Cold Wars 2016 if necessary.
The Board has decided to pursue an alternate site for Fall-In! 2017 with proposals due for review at Historicon this summer.  By then, we expect the Host’s future to be known and any work that has gone into considering alternate sites will expedite selection of a site for Cold Wars 17 and Fall-In! 16 should it be necessary.
Our Goal:
Our goal is to continue to run our conventions, whether at the Host, or another location. Event and vendor registration is open for Historicon 2016.  We will continue to update to membership as soon as any new relevant information is received. 
Respectfully,
On behalf of the HMGS Board of Directors
Kevin Kelley
HMGS, Inc. Director of Communications
 
 
Here's hoping the potential change in ownership is a good thing overall. The return of the Distelfink bathroom snafus after nearly a decade of smooth sailing is a bit disconcerting, but there will be some headaches to accomplish the required renovations to the facility. Here's Hoping.

(Risus) Donald Trump: Megalomaniacal Nilbog

It's taken many months for most people, pundit and private citizen alike, to take Donald Trump seriously.   Why is he so popular when a good cross section of the country, liberal, conservative, and independent alike are abhorred by his ongoing political success?

Lets break this down using Risus: The Anything RPG and it's simple four cliché model of character creation. 

 

Donald J Trump
Narcissistic Windbag Entrepreneur (4)
Meglomaniacal Nilbog (see below)  (3)
Pompous Reality TV Orator (2)
Mexican Structural Engineer (1) 
 
Equipment:  Expensive Suit, Red Trucker Cap (Made in China), Hairpiece of Shift Blame
 
Just in case you don't know what a nilbog is, here you go.  Everything makes sense if he's a nilbog.



Wednesday, March 23, 2016

(Kickstarter) Dice - Rendezvous with Randomness

With a weekend away, I'm still trying to catch up on my podcasts, and last night I finally had time to paint and listen to the latest Ken and Robin Talk About Stuff.    While I usually can recite their sponsors' segments from memory, I was taken aback at a new ad for Åskfågeln.  No longer was it for the Best of Fenix, but rather a brand new Kickstarter for an art book.

An art book about dice.

The biggest drawback?  The folks from Åskfågeln are in Sweden, where the project will be operating, BUT shipping and handling looks more than reasonable for what's at least a 10" x  10" 144 page coffee table book.   The book itself is roughly $39 and S&H is quoted at $12.

Wipe off the Mountain Dew and Cheet-o stains off your coffee table and put a conversation piece on it today!

 

Cold Wars 2016 - Mice... in... Space!!!!!

Our normal Historicon intrepid correspondent, Mike Lung, was at Cold Wars and had so much fun he only managed to eek out a few pictures of the Space Mousling game on the Moon that evolved into humans, space gnomes, molemen and the true natives of the Moon, the Frigonians.  They had 16 players and everything was a hoot! 



 
A number of the figures used have already been posted by "The Gnome Guy" Jim over at his Gnome Wars blog or his Stout Smurf blog, if you're so inclined.   I'll be posting a few closer pics from Mike's forces (and the eternally amusing Frigonians) in upcoming days. 

Unfortunately, it was a bust for gnome-kind, as another Gnome GM needed to cancel his gnome pirate game and the joust was cancelled.   Of this means that I, Viscount "Crazylegs" Eric, am still the reigning Cold Wars jousting champion!!!!

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

(Hackmaster) Burning Trogs Rule! #31: From Yarbay to Barthey, the Hard Way

Zorin Redrock - Gnome Titan Fighter.  Veteran of the Barbarian Wars, and hero of Marakeikos due to the retaking of Frandor's Keep.
Janus Redrock - Gnome Titan Priest of Pangrus.  Cousin of  Zorin Gnome Titan of loose morals and  a hero of Marakeikos.
Gwendalyn Lorax  - Half Elf Druid.
Terval Sit - Half-Elf Mage
"Whitey"  - Albino Halfling Priest of Yondalla.   Zorin's sidekick.
Coreena Ruddledater- 9 year old halfling torchbearer.
Ramsa - Mute Halfling Fighter - Gwen's Protégé.
Marialana:  former elven prisoner of The Master, rescued by the Trogs.  Only party member to speak Trade Parthian.

4th of DecDec, 1134 - Yarbay
With the Temple of Death in chaos, the Trogs ride east, away from Barthey and heading into the Parthian Empire.  They hoped Parthia was any bit friendly, as they desperately needed supplies and a safe place to rest up.  After those needs were attended to, they could think about heading home...

6th of DecDec, 1134 - Yarbay
An outline of a fort or walled town appears on the horizon.  Marialana wasn't quite sure where they were, so Gwen turned into a bird and scouted ahead.

The town was about the size of Magden. There wasn't much activity.  No one was out and about except for a few guards.  After reporting back, the Trogs decide to go into town.  The gates to town were shut.  They knock, the language barrier comes up again. Marialana could only speak basics to them, requesting a safe haven to eat and rest.

Gwen:  "Zorin wants to wash the sand out of his ass."

One of the guard finally appears to speak Trade Prythax,  He declared "Welcome to Raen - Jewel of Parthia!"


The guards came out, requesting a five silver entrance fee and we must pay our respects to the gate master. They stopped at the Burning Copper Barrel.  The patrons think Whitey has a disease and Gwen needed to  prove that he was ok.  The Inn was open, but the bar for the Burning Copper Barrel didn't open until late.

Town was a big round fortified town.  The Bazaar oddly didn't open until late morning either.  They returned to the Burning Copper Barrel, talked the proprietor, a halfling named Joe, and everyone pays for baths.

The weather was dry and cold.  They order a table full of food and got drinks, sweet rolls, tea, steak, and pork.  In the middle of the meal, they hear a large bell tolling.  Natives in white robes came out when they hear the bell.  Joe tells the party that those people were Osada worshippers.

Gwen:  "Whitey says they are bad slappity."

That afternoon, they headed to the blacksmith.  Armor was dropped off for repair, and he buys some of the surplus weapons plundered from the temple, without blinking an eye.

They also tried to sell the "art" from the temple, but the art "experts" in town wavered between drunk and ignorant of any culture.  Terval decides to keep the painting. 

Back at the Inn, a council of the Burning Trogs was convened.
*We vote to make Terval Sit a member.
*We vote to make Ramsa a member

Joe told them of zombie pirates raiding tradeships. along the coast to the north.

Gossip:
Knightly Order of the Talmark ambassador was caught spying in Parthia .  He got off the charges, but still kicked out and killed by Yarbay raiders..  Nearest city with access to coast is Samash, on the Mer Kasp.  3-4 days to the north.

7th of DecDec, Raen, Parthia
Burning Trog signet rings for the new members were ordered and would be ready in three days.   Official cloaks are commissioned to be ready in one day. 

Zorin finally relaxes.  Gwen looked for a posting board for work, but everything is written in another language, so she heads back to the inn.  Zorin asked Joe about the fish tattoo of the slavers, but the Halfling knew nothing.  They finally decided to hitch a ride with a caravan heading to Samash.

9th of DecDec, Raen, Parthia
Supplies were obtained, orders picked up. and tabs paid off before the caravan headed out.

18th of DecDec, Samash, Parthia
The caravan finally arrived in Samash!  Zorin immediately headed for the docks and immediately booked passage on the next boat to Barthey.   They got rooms at  Rebecca's Falling Jolly Knight. .. to kill time for the two days they needed to wait before the boat left.

20th of DecDec 1134, Samash, Parthia.
The boat leaves Samash.  Marialana bids them farewell, as she will stay in Parthia.

31st of DecDec 1134, Barthey
The boat docked in Barthey, but another port, not Barthey City.

Zorin:  "Close enough!"

1st of Undec, 1135 - Barthey Empire
The Day of Non-Magic arrived, and outside of outrunning a dragon who didn't notice  (or willfully ignored) them, it was uneventful

3rd of Undec, 1135 - Barthey City
The Trogs finally arrive in Barthey City.  They give their final report, get paid, and got rooms for the night at the Flooded, Saucy Keg.

It appeared that the wartalk that overwhelmed the city when they first arrived months ago had died down. 

Also, the Empress of Barthey had died while they were away (The Emperor was still alive and kicking).

They left that evening to go into the mountains, and hopefully head for home.

5th of UnDec 1135 Barthey   They got to the mountains by mid-afternoon, encountering scarce traffic, save a unit of heavy horse going out to the eastern border to bolster a garrison.

9th of UnDec 1135 Barthey
Along the oddly quiet path, Gwen heard a call for help!

Next #32:  Fate of Heroes

Monday, March 21, 2016

The Year Without a Cold Wars

I've lamented long enough the fact that I wasn't making it to Cold Wars.   If there was any silver lining to things, it wasn't due to financial constraints, although running the mother-in-law to dialysis Friday night was still an issue, so we can't say we avoided medical issues.

Regardless, with the kid's acting the local children's theatre production of "Aristocats" this weekend, we scrambled for a babysitter as my wife and I drove out to Pittsburgh to go see Blake Shelton. 

Hoo-ray.

With a side trek to find an elusive Dunkin Donuts in Central PA, we got into Johnstown and our friends Wooly and Jenny's place just afternoon, kibitzed a bit and jumped into their ridiculously oversized truck (my wife needed a step stool to get in) and drove into the heart of Pittsburgh.


Squirrel Hill Tunnel - No squirrels were harmed in the building of this tunnel.
By the time we got into town we only had enough time to grab an early dinner and do some nearby touristy stuff.  After a solid meal at Joe's Crab Shack (a no tipping establishment that was exactly the same prices as the tipping Joe's we visited in Orlando), we strolled the river, dodging a number of wedding parties and their photographers.  The only other thing of note we had time for was the Monongahela Incline up to Mt Washington.   Apparently I was the only person who ever worked a transit kiosk, and after much hilarity, we finally got our tickets and went up. 
 
 
We've already been up the Johnstown Incline when we previously visited, but I'm an incline nut from my time working at the National Canal Museum in college, and  it does got up to a number of observation decks to see the city and the three rivers. 
 
It also is the place to be for aspiring rappers to film their music videos...
 



I'll say this for the Consol Energy Center in Pittsburgh, they know how to move people.   For three times the people that our local area holds, they got us parked quickly, and on the way out, we waited mere minutes before we jumped on I-376. 

I'll also  save everyone a review of the show.  As a non-country fan, I enjoyed myself.  Outside of a few drunken idiots after the show, and the idiot country hipster vaping a few rows below us, everyone else was there to have a good time.

I've got two cousins in the area, so ultimately, we'll be out there again.  We'll go back out with the kids, hit the attractions, and venture into a gaming store or three, and maybe even catch a Pirates game.

The kid's play?  Luckily, their play is running the same weekend as the theatre is doing a "real" production of "Tommy" so opening night was Thursday, my wife's cousin got them to the Saturday matinee, and we got home with plenty of time for the Sunday evening performance.  Both had actual lines that they nailed, and, as a gift to theatre parents everywhere, it was done in an hour. 

Vichy the dog and Slick the cat.
Now that we're done with play, the Pittsburgh trip is a collection of great memories, and our dialysis duties for my mother-in-law are almost done, what to do now? 

I'm eagerly waiting for the AAR for the Stout Gnomes' Space Mousling game run at Cold Wars this past weekend.  I knew it struck a chord with Mike, but it seems to have sparked a flurry of painting from "The Gnome Guy" Jim Stanton.  Can't wait to see the finished results. 

It's a month till Mepacon so I'll be scurrying to finish up the terrain for the Gnome Wars Treasure Hunt, rolling up a dozen kobolds. 

The annual Easter game with the girls will be this Saturday and I just figured out what to run.   More to come.

Friday, March 18, 2016

Russian Gnomes and the Great Jewel

It's been a week full of painting!!!.... just not the type I like to do. 

The weather's been beautiful, and my wife is scheming, which has given me just enough time to clean up the front yard, list the dozen or so projects that need to be done there, only to go back inside and paint the playroom, still full of toys.   

We're down one more team to paint for the treasure hunt scenario.  The Russian team is ready, although they prefer to go by the Communist Union of Production Nations (CU-PN).

Sergei and Anton, ready to fight... er, discover capitalist pig treasures for the Motherland.
A Maja special from Fall-In, the Windsword "Gem Insert" should have been a project for her, but as I applied layer after layer of drybrushing, I realized she might want something a little more fun.  The gem is removable!
Windsword Accessories
Also from Fall-In! last year were a pack of crates and barrels.  Pretty easy to paint, and not as fragile as other items from Windsword.
Windsword Accessories Crates and Bags
 
Stuff to guard and stuff to hide behind...
 

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

(Kickstarter) Brigade Games 28mm Post-Apocalyptic Wastelanders and Survivors

Brigade Games has recently launched their first-ever Kickstarter for 28mm Post-Apocalyptic Wastelanders and Survivors.

 The Wastelanders are beautiful figures, but the early bird pledge is all ten of them for $65, plus some reasonable shipping rates. That's still $6.50 a fig plus S&H.  I personally don't have Post-Apoc games in the queue to warrant a pledge for them.

Stretch goals aim more at the survivors as add-ons at under $5 a mini, or as special character freebies at Warlord Level ($65/70), or $6 as an add-on for lower pledges. 

 

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

The MBA versus Dwarven Forge Throwdown

I don't think I'm stirring up trouble that I find it amusing that the Miniature Building Authority is having a sale on their castle sets right as Dwarven Forge is halfway through their Kickstarter Campaign for a 3-D modular castle. 

To be honest, I'd must rather spend whatever for larger pieces than the puzzle-like set-up for Dwarven Forge.  I've seen enough times where a GM spends an equal amount of time setting up the Dungeonscape terrain as he did running the actual game... and that doesn't include the meticulous  clean-up afterwards. 

(Indiegogo) Darkest of the Hillside Thickets - The Dukes of Alhazred

Almost a decade ago at a job I barely remember, I got into a random conversation with a co-worker about Cthulhu and Lovecraft.  The next day she dropped off a copy of The Great Old Ones by Darkest of the Hillside Thickets on my desk.  I've been hooked ever since. 

Darkest of the Hillside Thickets is the type of "punk" I want in my Cthulhu-punk, so I will be donating to their Indiegogo campaign to fund their fifth album, The Dukes of Alhazred.  Hopefully they'll reach their stretch goals to get the actual CDs pressed. 

Yes, I know a nostalgic concept.  Go out, listen to them, then pledge to the Indiegogo, dagnabbit!

 

(Hackmaster) Burning Trogs Rule! #30: The Temple of DEATH

Zorin Redrock - Gnome Titan Fighter.  Veteran of the Barbarian Wars, and hero of Marakeikos due to the retaking of Frandor's Keep.
Janus Redrock - Gnome Titan Priest of Pangrus.  Cousin of  Zorin Gnome Titan of loose morals and  a hero of Marakeikos.
Gwendalyn Lorax  - Half Elf Druid.
Terval Sit - Half-Elf Mage
"Whitey"  - Albino Halfling Priest of Yondalla.   Zorin's sidekick.
Coreena Ruddledater- 9 year old halfling torchbearer.
Ramsa - Mute Halfling Fighter - Gwen's Protégé.

36th of NonDec, 1134 - The Temple of Death
After a short ride, they came across Lake Tros, with the Temple of Death on the other side.  The temple consisted of three buildings, each one larger than the last.  The biggest had flags "and stuff."

There was a tremendous amount of traffic coming from all directions, largely human. They sent Gwen to run recon in bird form.

Each of the buildings had their own moat.  All the guys were in yellow, orange, and white robes.  The flags seemed very odd, but some did have the symbol for Yarbay on them. 

They decided to watch the place far from the roving patrols of the orange robed guys.  

1st of NonDec, 1134 - The Temple of Death
The place was already in full activity by dawn.  The Trogs decide to check other approaches.  

With further observation, the white robed guys were toiling, while the orange robes oversaw them, Every once in awhile a purple robed guy was spotted, but his role in the whole arrangement was unclear.
 
Gwen was picked to used the ring of invisibility to try and go find a field hand to charm.  It did work, but she did not speak the dialect of Trade Parthian familiar to the region.

They decided to have Terval cast invisibility on everyone and slip in the next night.  

2nd of NonDec, 1134 - The Temple of Death
With the spell cast on all of them, they managed to slip into the temple as far as the inner sanctum..  

In one room there were two freaky statues that came to life and attacked them.

After destroying both, but not before one severely bruised Whitey, two ogres and two orange robes showed up. All the while Terval was getting sniped from someone with a crossbow.  Everyone is slain, save the crossbowman who dove in the shadows and escaped.

After going around some, they came across displacer beasts.  The creatures didn't attack, so they gave them a wide berth.

They couldn't avoid five orange drabbed men, but after killing them, things went to hell.  

As they avoided a massing mob, they were forced to kill most of the kitchen staff, a couple random bystanders guys, and a shitload of members of the temple.
 
Fleeing down a corridor, Gwen spotted a secret door and everyone dives in.  It went downstairs to another room with an orange acolyte and four bugbears.

Gwen:
Everything goes dark as the orange guys magically extinguish the torches!  Good thing I have infravision!  Zorin wants us to kick ass.  I think we will have to oblige.  Terval shoots the wand of fear into the group.  Zorin, the orange guy, and two bugbears run away from Terval!  I was stuck with the remaining bugbear, but it was confused and kept missing her .

"I can't remember the last time I saw Zorin run so fast from a fight!"

Zorin disappeared, spooked from Terval's spell.  Whitey and Ramsa appeared useless in this fight, which forced Gwen to single-handedly kill the bugbear!

Gwen gathered everyone together to search for Zorin.  The found a narrow hallway with at least a dozen cells.

A small horde of goblins appear with purple and white robed acolytes and pushed the retreating Trogs into the next room. Terval and Ramsa jumped the purple acolyte while Gwen engaged the white robe.  Zorin dashed into the door dove into the goblin rear and slayed them all.

(Zorin did get a critical for 55 points of damage, and a few lesser ones.)

Gwen: "I must be doing better since he hasn't yelled at me to not use my Scimitar any more..."
 
The purple robe was killed and the white robe groveled on the floor for his life.  

Gwen: "I hate when people whine in other languages.  It's so annoying   
 
Ramsa threatened him with death if he doesn't shut up.  Despite the language barrier, he tried to comply.

They went back to the cells, looking for a place to crash.  A few of the cells are occupied and they freed Ranas, a man from Myridius who spoke multiple languages.  His friend Phillamen was in the adjoining cell.  They were both in for theft.  A lithe woman in a cell turns out to be elf, Marialana, charged with being an elf,  As part of her punishment, they cut off a tip of her ears!  

The Trogs found keys and let them all out.  They used the prisoners to interrogate the white robe. Zorin asked where the Master is and the white robe would only point up.   Gwen doled out some dried fruit to the prisoners.

They did manage to decipher the robe colors of the acolytes:
Purple = Holy Man, protectors of the Master.
Yellow=Generals
Orange did not have a proper translation.  

Gwen also uncovered the alignments of the prisoners
Ranas -- N (thief)
Phillamen -- N ("just a buddy" of Ranas')
Marialana -- LG (She keeps asking for a spellbook, but no one was willing to share)

Zorin tied up and gagged the white robe and equipped the prisoners.

A lone orc waltzed into the cell room awares.  Zorin kicked him in the groin, tied him up and threw him into a cell.  

They holed up in an adjacent torture room and set watches, but the alarm for the temple sounded and they were forced to run. Two orange robes attack with glowing swords while most are asleep. The thieves have disappeared.

3rd of DecDec, 1134 - Temple of Death
Ramsa and Zorin held off the robes while everyone else wakes up.  When Gwen finally wakes, she cast Soften Stone under the feet of the robes to enable the Trogs' escape.
 
Upon dashing out a secret door Marialana knew of, they found a large chest.  Since their persuers were delayed, Ramsa and Zorin grabbed it and drug it out towards the horses.  

Once they get to the horses, they opened the chest.

Zorin: "Holy shit there's some fanged guy sleeping in here!  He attacked and sucked some life out of Ramsa." 

"I cut the fucker's throat and he still kept coming.  Eventually he was dead."

It was decided that it was safer to go into Parthia than return to Barthey through the desert and the Great Pass. 

Zorin gave Gwen the magic healing ring to heal up overnight.    They found a safe spot for the night and no one could figure out the value of any of the treasure they looted.


Nothing like a fantasy equivalent of a running gun battle through the headquarters of the big bad.  Lack of discretion was the better half of valor as they moved fast and hard.    The Master never made an appearance, but they had acquired enough intelligence to help the Barthey Empire.  Of course, it wouldn't be the Burning Trogs if they didn't try to steal a vampire's coffin while escaping a temple full of people that wanted them dead.

NEXT: Episode #31 - From Yarbay to Barthey, the Hard Way

Monday, March 14, 2016

The Burning Trogs Redux Begins...

As the regular reader is aware, every Tuesday I try to post yet another entry from my "Burning Trogs Rule" Hackmaster campaign from 2001-2004.   A decade of nostalgia, an abortive move back to the area for one of the players, and the winding down of the Masks of Nyarlathotep storyline for CoC has rekindled the flames for the "Burning Trogs Revenge" campaign I have dreamt of for quite awhile.

Originally, the idea  started with something minor, like hitting the lottery and having buying a 10-day cruise for all my players.  Outside of some agreed upon port days, we would relax and game the Trogs getting their revenge on the Slavers of Roark.

Now, with things changing gears, and the simple fact that the Pennsylvania Lottery refuses to provide me the winning numbers for any substantial jackpot means the "Trogs Redux" might be a reality.

The first step of this coming to fruition is updating the campaign world.  Outside of a short campaign running 2007-2008, we haven't touch the world in twelve years this April, so with the help of some of the players, I've provided a page for them to review what the Trogs are doing Twelve Years Later.

I should note:

***SPOILERS***

We have twenty more weeks of Burning Trogs Rule Actual Plays to post, so reading the above page is going to spill a lot of beans.  You have been warned.

No dates have been chosen yet (To be truthful, we haven't scheduled the last of the Masks sessions), but the books have been dusted off.

Friday, March 11, 2016

Leprechauns and the Beginning of Mous-a-geddon

After a hectic week, I just managed to get downstairs last night for some base coating, and finish Team Eire for the Mepacon Treasure Hunt!



The Russians and French are next... And a pile of terrain. 

I've done the calculations and barring Reaper screwing up Bones III beyond comprehension, I'll have my figures in enough time to formally announce my project for Cold Wars 2017, site TBD.    \
 
Mousageddon, aka Rat-na-Rock, using Of Gods and Mortals.
The fire giant Surt has set the world ablaze, the Midgard Serpent has emerged, an Loki leads an army of frost giant of undead warriors.   Ragnarok is upon us, but why are the only heroes available to fight the evil.... mice?  Eight players.
The Frost Giant King, surrounded by the heroes of  Asgard
 

Thursday, March 10, 2016

The Game Chateau

Sometimes I am thankful for social media.  Despite all the Trumpisms and mindless digital shouting, it does reveal fun facts, like there's a boardgame café in Wilkes-Barre!

The Game Chateau recently opened in Plaza 315 (the shopping center where Leggio's is, or Marc's Tattooing for those inclined). 

I got a chance to run up there last night after work, and despite some signage issues, it's a really nice place.  A brother and sister duo run the shop, where you can enjoy a coffee or pastry (oooh... Sanitary Bakery) and play some board games in a clean, friendly environment. 


While I do know that gaming cafes are all the rage in major metropolitan areas, and I know game rentals have had success in small town shops, but I have a few questions on the economics of pay to play gaming in the greater Wilkes-Barre area.   Don't get me wrong, I'm trying to figure out when I can get the girls (or whole family) to go up, enjoy lunch through an arrangement with The Café an American Bistro next door, and play a few games. 

One option I would like to see is a "Play it here?  Buy it here!" option.  I'm not talking all-out game store, complete with smelly Magic/GW/D&D players, perhaps just a promotional "Play game X this month, save $5 on a copy to take home." 

As I've said with a few new stores I've ventured into, let's give them a little bit of time to figure out what they want to do and what works before giving them an all-out critique.

GPS Address:  1112 Highway 315, Wilkes-Barre, PA 18702