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Tuesday, November 30, 2004

Up in the belltower

I enjoy sniping on ebay, it's the closest I'll ever come to hunting. I kinda get a twinge of regret when I snipe a really cool item from some poor slob with a feedback of 12. But I really enjoy sniping a dealer. when I see that my opponent has a feedback of 25987 and a power seller icon, then all bets are off. that reseller scumbag is mine, baby!
I know for a fact that the item in question aint going to his kids, or even up on a shelf in a joe room, he's gonna re-list it with better keywords and recoup his investment-plus. I feel it's my holy duty to thwart those scumbags. I go for the grandma angle a lot. I look where most folks dont, and I aint afraid to use the word doll. I've found quite a few hidden "Action figure" treasures mis-labled by uninformed grandmas as dolls. problem is those power sellers know what to look for as well. they are like the barracudas at the yard sales that troll around at 7am to buy all the good stuff from the yardsale on saturday morning-only to take it all to the flea market and re-sell it on sunday. I dont do strip clubs anymore and I only game every other weekend so I get my diversions where I can find em.

Monday, November 29, 2004

the Alamo

I saw the Alamo this last weekend. I really enjoyed it. I wanted to see it on the big screen back in march but I didn't have time. I know it didn't do well at the box office, dismal by current $$ standards, but I wasn't sure if it was because the movie was misunderstood or just plain bad. After watching it I have to say it was probably misunderstood. It may have been marketed as a patriotic film, but to me it was more of a character study of the three mythic heroes of the Texas Pantheon, Jim Bowie-Davey Crockett-William "Buck" Travis -Sam Houston (None of whom surprisingly, were Texans).
In the movie these guys were portrayed, as men of greatness who were as flawed as any of us would be. I appreciated that. I also appreciated the portrayals of the Tejano defenders and the slaves.
Once again the commentary on the DVD's added to my enjoyment of the film by providing some interesting insight that wouldn't have been available to me had I seen the movie in the theater. I took a look at the comment sections over at Amazon and at the IMDB site and I found quite a few negative reviews of the movie. Folks were posting that it was long and boring and that the fight at the end was just a chaotic mess Most of those comments I attribute to those folks who went to see it expecting something more in line with Braveheart, Gladiator, or the Patriot. There were even guys making fun of the clothing (which was historically accurate to the time). Once I started reading the posts I found that the few defenders of the movie were guys like me who had an interest in the historical points and had done a bit of reading of the period and the issues involved in the conflict. Given that, it was easy to dismiss the silly hat comments.
Overall my feeling is that the movie is good. But it must be taken as it is intended, a movie adaptation of the siege of the Alamo. Not historically by the book, but the closest in realism of the several movies that have been done on the subject.

Legends of Steel update

Well the project continues. I am writing stuff every spare minute I can. I've got my oldest son and some friends play-testing it every other weekend. And I have some experienced gamer buddies giving the rough drafts a once over and giving me their thoughts and concerns. Seeing as this is a one-man operation I think I'm doing pretty damn good. I'm finding that the hardest thing in the whole process is keeping it simple. I want it to have (as one of my buddies puts it) a "Wahoo!" feeling to it. But I also want it to be mechanically sound. Character generation is done. Combat is moving along, as is magic and Psionics, but it looks like magic and Psionics is gonna need a bit more tweaking. Some are advising a open spell creation system Ala' Hero games' Fantasy Hero system but I feel if I make it in that vein then "simple" goes out the door. Hmmmm??

Research -wise I'm watching movies ("Sword and the Sorcerer" the other day) and reading comics (I just won a set of Atlas comics titles "Wulf the Barbarian" and "Iron Jaw" comics). Doing this always helps bring me down from the "rules rafters" and reminds me of what I want to create here, a fun game that can be played quickly rather than a set of ponderous rules that intimidate casual players. The saga continues...

Tuesday, November 23, 2004


It's been hard keeping up with my Blogging for the last couple of months. But in a good way I suppose.

Legends of Steel is coming along nicely. I'm just about done with the core portions and then I'll start on the fluff like DM sections and a sample campaign world. Right now I'm trying to tackle the magic and Psionics section. Then come the tough part...monsters. Research wise I've been reading more than I have been watching. I just got a nice run of Claw the unconquered and Arion of Atlantis from DC. And I'm looking for some cheap copies of other S&S comics (Dagar, Stalker, Skull the slayer). We are playing every other Saturday night though I wish I had at least one more player. My Son and Fred's daughter have been a godsend in the play test area showing me the gaps in the rules that only a 13 year-old power-gamer can find. The last game session was kind of weak and the blame for that rests on me alone. My players are not big on puzzle solving, and I should have recognized that early on instead of wasting 90 minutes of game time trying to force feed them the solution. We are playing this weekend and as my way of saying sorry, I'm gonna have some serious Hack-time ready for them!

Monday, November 15, 2004

Postwar A/T

I love the Headsculpts for Lanards Ultracorps!Line. the problem is the bodies suck. So I kept the heads and swapped em out to the latest SOTW figures, which have great bodies for $7.00.

I had this idea to do an -earlier than the 60's-version of the GI Joe Adventure Team. I'm thinking post WWII, These guys would have some nifty 50's sci-fi type weaponry, probably stuff the Government developed after they seized Nicolai Tesla's notes. so here is a starter pick of my "post war Adventure team" I figure they are all ex service men, probably OSS and commando types. Sporting hi-tech secret weaponry to fight commies and aliens- in that order.

Wednesday, November 03, 2004

Are you guys passing the torch?

after quite a hiatus from table top gaming I now have a regular group. My 13 year old son Anthony, my buddy Fred and his 11 year old daughter. It's a far cry from my mountain dew-fueled weekend long gaming marathons, but we still have a good time. I also let my two little ones play with the figures and the dice (The new D&D miniatures are excellent for kids, those damn things are near indestructible).
the other day I went to Ebay and picked up a copy of "fantasy forest" an early TSR board game for children based on the D&D cartoon. the boys also watch my wife and Anthony play Baldurs gate: Dark Alliance on the playstation. so the kids are getting a fair share of indoctrination in the mysteries of gaming. and just to insure we don't overdo the geek factor I'm also having them start Little Dragons Karate and Football league is on schedule next fall.

By the way, Ain't that a cool pic?