Funny Things

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Musings of a --- Doing Something Different

SinSynn usually breaks down whatever post he is going to drop your way with some little insight into his life. we know all about the hamster, the crazy lady, Jessie,  his buddy NASCAR, his coworker Francisco and the wife-beater/boxer combo.

Paul Newman knew how to rock that look. 

I don't usually talk to you guys about the stuff that's going on in my life. I generally stick to store related topics and now and then throw in  a little bit of the the local flair. I do tend to get a little deeper in the comments, but as a rule, I've let the Xenos run the show when it comes to interacting with you guys. 

It might not be obvious, but I have built strong, intense and real friendships right in the House through personal communications. Email, blog posts, comments or driving 100+ miles to meet people - they are all part of my  arsenal. I just got back from a lovely dinner with Brian of Anvil-Eight/A Gentleman's Ones (and he was a total gentleman and refused to let me pay despite my protestations). I've helped a friend made online with a move to my area and gone to conventions to connect with new people. I genuinely like this part of my life- meeting new people, and making new connections. 

Instead of keeping the cool distant stance i have in the past, today I am doing things a little differently. I'm away on a business trip so I can listen to whatever music I want - today I'm checking out the new Prince CDs (did you really expect anything else) and sporting a purple tshirt I have owned for too many years. Poor thing is threadbare but it's super soft and comfortable, so who needs PJs when you got a purple tshirt?

I'm perusing the Art Official Age CD (when it's said quickly, it sounds very much like "artificial", something I am sure wasn't lost on his Royal Badness) and thinking about the state of my hobby life, such as it is. But it isn't. It's kind of dead. I'm not currently in any games and I don't see that changing any time soon. I'm not in the store much at the moment- I don't have anything pulling me in. I don't do the day to day stuff and any activities or events I am involved in are few and far between. My "finger on the pulse" right now is pretty weak, but that's right now. 

My gaming life tends to go in cycles- I'll be immersed in stuff for a while (sometimes years) and then I take a break and move on to something else. It's usually books or my other love, paper crafting. I often think in words, pictures and color more than tactics or steps ahead of what is in front of me. miniatures or strategic games are difficult for me if I can't "see the big picture", so I turn to the graphics of card and altered art.  I've been flirting with creating things out of paper and ink for a while. the ideas in my head won't go away and they want color and substance and not words or dice.

My fundamental desire to grow a fun, interesting and vibrant gaming community hasn't gone away. I've always got ideas on how to actually accomplish that, but this time around, I am joining forces with another group to do something really different.

I'm involved in a Board Game Design Competition, as a member of the committee. CUDO Plays is a board game design competition based out of my area. The premise of the competition is to join designers, artists and gamers and help them learn how to work through the game design process and come out with a beautiful and functional game. This is an entirely volunteer based organization, and includes people from all walks of life. This year marks the second season of the competition, and there are 20 teams currently participating. (Up from 11 completed games last year.)

Our committee is helping the competitors walk through every stage of the process in designing a game- from concept to actual product. With workshops aimed at using our local Fabrication Lab and marketing, along with playtest opportunities; the individuals involved will gain abilities and insights they may not have been privy to without the competition.

My involvement in this competition is in the relationships- talking to the teams, developing play test groups, helping connect organizations and opportunities. My personal connections, friends customers and acquaintances could help the competition and the community in my area at large. I'm truly invested in championing the growth and development of more choices in the gaming community, and the competition is the avenue I am using to do that at the moment.

Maybe my gaming life is on hold at the moment, but I am not letting that stop me from being involved in gaming in some way, and I'm trying to do something that's true to myself in some way. 

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

The Ballbusch Experience: Flippancy

Wargaming is a deeply silly pastime.  A good many pastimes are silly.  I fully admit to being bemused by golfers and finding the extent to which people attach their egos to the performance of professional athletes funny (though not always ha-ha funny).  After all, one takes up a hobby with the express goal of wasting time that could be better used making money or attempting to reproduce. 

Wargaming is serious business!

Still, pushing around toy soldiers is particularly absurd.  It is also refined and gentlemanly, like polo, but that makes it no less absurd.  For many years this absurdity has been embraced by the gaming community at large, both in wargames and RPGs.  Video games turned away from that path long ago, due mostly to commercial success and have tended towards self-seriousness since the early 90’s. 

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Some Days, Ya Just Gotta Be Kharn

Hey, folks. SinSynn here.

Bein' sick is miserable, no doubt, but it does have some very small, teeny-tiny benefits.
Mainly that I can't do all the 'chore stuffs' that I normally do.
Grocery shopping? Am sick. No can do.
Doggy walkies? *cough, cough* What was that you said?
Trip to the Post Office to hit the P.O. Box? Can't do it I'm sick. And why do we have a P.O. Box anyway?

So basically, I'm treated like a Leper ('Get yer own food I don't wanna get yer sickness'), but I am left alone by The Crazy Lady I Live With. This is a boon in many ways.
Now because I'm sick, I can't be seen having too much fun. So doin' hobby stuffs is out of the question. Hard to pull off a convincing 'miserable moan routine' when yer painting a fig, or assembling a model.
What I can do is read books, uninterrupted, for hours on end. I can watch Netflix, and I can play video long as I do it quietly. If I can shout 'OhMyGawd you camping whore,' I can probably walk the dog (iz Crazy Lady Logic...which is totally an oxymoron, but let's not go there, huh?).

So there I was, comfortably laid up, reading a book, emitting the proper amount of 'moans per hour.' Also Crazy Lady Logic- 'oh you stopped moaning for a while so you can probably walk the dog.'
The book was Aaron Dembski-Bowden's Betrayer, which yes I've read a buncha times and shaddup and don't you judge me. I was halfway through the Battle of Armatura, gleefully enjoying the antics of Kharn and Argel Tal as they tore into Ultramorons...Errr, I mean Ultramarines, when suddenly I was overwhelmed by the desire to whack something with a big ol' axe.
I totally felt the need to leap upon a group of enemies and scrape and claw and batter my way through them, hacking and cutting desperately as they inflicted wound after wound upon me. And then when they all lay dead at my feet, and I still stood, panting heavily and bleeding into my armor, I would pick up one of their severed heads and hold it defiantly aloft, reveling in my victory, and scream to the heavens...
'Skulls! Skulls for the XII Legion!'
...I'd just hafta do it quietly.
So I turned on my XBox...

* I'll bet this guy never got nagged into late night doggie walks -_- *

Saturday, October 18, 2014

[Confessions of an English Zombie Fancier] The Rot Sets In

I feel fine, before anyone asks. I've started a new job and it's going pretty well so far. I earn a living wage and I have weekday daytimes to myself, both of which are very nice things indeed. The only downside is that evenings and weekends - when I work - are of course prime gaming time, and payday's not 'til the seventeenth. That sort of thing has consequences.

We're going to take a quick break from your scheduled gaming content to admire Chelsea Wolfe. Nothing skeevy. I just like talent.
And gothy dirges. And pale, deathless women.

Hobby consequences. The thing with my bursts of enthusiasm for Project X - no, that's not a super secret project, that's X in the sense of unknown quantity, insert name here - is that they don't last long. I generally have about a month to make them concrete in the form of some actual purchasing and hobbying and creating and playing before they evaporate.

I haven't really been able to do that with the Nurgle affair; the initial energy came in a time of penury, when I was time-rich and money-poor; now the money has started to trickle in at a time when putting figures on table is not easy (most of the people I know in London have day jobs and so are free for gaming round about when I'm going to work); the energy is now beginning to trickle out as I find myself exploring fantasy worlds for D&D and NaNoWriMo (I'm having another go this year, since I think I know what I did wrong). That three-way overlap of time and money and energy very seldom aligns properly for me, and managing the amount of each that's invested in a given thing is something I've been on about since the year dot.

I managed to keep the interest alive for a while through judicious application of Blood Bowl, but... now payday's here, and I find that I have no real interest in spending it on Nurgle stuff. Honest truth. My nights are taken up with work, my days with writing, occasional painting, and putting my WoW affairs in order ready for Warlords of Draenor next month. Even if I go away to see the people with whom I might actually be interested in playing these games... we already have games to play and things to do aplenty.

It all feels a trifle pointless; and that's not a cry for help, folks, that's just an acknowledgement that another flash has been and gone across my particular pan. Same old, same old.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Dear Spartan Games: About Planetfall...

Hey, folks. SinSynn here.

So I should be sleepin' right now, but I can't. Still havin' some issues from time to time an' whatnot.
Whatever, I can deal with it.
So I was surfin' da web, checkin' out stuffs, and there's this game that you guys mentioned to me a while back, and I went over to the website to see if I could find out anything new, but...

A while back I wrote THIS.
Iz a lil' riffy, in retrospect. I get like that sometimes. But the TL;DR version is: 'The Spartan Games Website is Whacked.' I wrote that piece cuz when I was interested in Dystopian Wars, the official website was pretty much bereft of any actual information about the game. They had a few images, no 'battle scenes' from the game, and a single page dedicated more to the fluff than to the game the fluff was supposed to represent.

*Sure, you've heard of 'em, and they've been around fer a minute, but why haven't they drawn our eye like companies like Wyrd, Corvus Belli, Warlord Games, and other up and coming companies have?*

The Spartan Games Official Website failed to convince me to invest in their premier game system at the time.
And, if you're a hobbyist, all it takes is like 2 decent pictures and some statlines...we're pushovers like that.

The reason I went there this time is cuz I'm really interested in Planetfall. Which I wouldn't have even KNOWN ABOUT if one of you wonderful people hadn't mentioned it to me.
I'm sorry to say that Spartan Games website...still sucks.
I'll explain why I think their new Planetfall game has huge potential, but before you think I'm being overly harsh, here- go read their pitch for what might very well be the coolest new sci-fi game to come around in a hot minute:
Make sure you check out the Gallery, for all the cool pics, too!