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What a Game or a Story Can Be

Gaming can be a place to show that you understand complex things and can implement your plan towards success inside a framework or against these complex rules (things) toward success.  For some, this is the ultimate feeling.  Power, excellence, pride for yourself and your team. Satisfaction.

Games provide a place for companionship,  camaraderie and competition, often all together in one time and place.  These games are my favorite, the ones that happen with multiple people in one place at the same time.  For me, many of the best moments of my life were spent ‘in game.’  Not just RPGs and board games, which I do enjoy the absolute most, but backyard football, volleyball and many, many hours spent building MtG decks and playing them against friends.

Now, as I have finally, and with much backsliding and resistance moved into adulthood.  I would like gaming to provide me an income.  Gaming and writing. But, not for nothing, I want to provide people with quality games as I have seen them throughout my life.  I want to give people the chance to connect to others in one of the few ways I know how, through games and stories.  In the next few days I’m going to post a couple products here. A game, and a story.  The game I made for a friend.  Because that is what gaming has always been to me, a friend. The story was going to be a game, but became a novella.

I consider games to be sacred. First, because they bring us together.  Even solo games bring people together to discuss rules and strategy etc. That makes games good, and of course this is what makes stories good too.  And to me a story is a game too.  A game of, can I surprise you, can I put you in suspense, or bring forth an emotion in you. Can you relate to this series of events, people and places that I have described?  Second, games are sacred because for a short time at least, games and stories give us purpose.  Purpose is why we are here.  What purpose?  Well, it depends on the game.

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Solo Gaming

So, after ditching your gaming group. You may find yourself looking to game, but have no one to game with.

What’s a fella to do?

There are a bunch of games set up for this. Here are a few of the ones I own.

Catan Dice game
This one is fun. I don’t like the whole pad of paper thing. Like Yatzee I always think I’m going to run out of paper but I never do.

Four Against Darkness

Just discovered these. Simplified D&D, more randomized, fun, but time consuming. I have not gotten through a full round yet. Cool thing here is, there are many books based on the core book, a whole world of stuff to discover, and I’m pretty excited to have found these.

Dungeon Roll

I’ve not kept up with Tasty Minstrel, but I remember when they first came out and I watched them grow, the owner guy wrote up some nice posts. Great games, all are good quality and fun as far as I know, I only played a couple here and there at Gen Con. My kids and I play Dungeon Roll once in a while. Rules were a little confusing at first but still super fun.

For more solo gaming check out ‘The Youtube’ https://youtu.be/u4NgWKD2Lnw

This guy is great. My kids want me to do videos and smile and stuff, but I assure you that I simply can’t be this animated and excited about, well anything.

Please send me a message about Solo Gaming or anything else here: Email Me I’m working on a PnP game and would like to send you a free copy.  I call it: Toadstone.  Don’t you really want to know what that is about?  Yep.

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Sad and Lonely Gamer – When to Leave a Gaming Group

What is a gamer with no games to play? What is a player with no friends who stay? Tuesday’s are always tough for me. Monday comes and goes and the week’s workload is sinking in, yours and all the people around you too and if you are worth your salt, they are asking you to help them or work with them. Plus I jacked my neck up so I’m dealing with some pain. Probably, from hanging my head over my damn phone all day. So yeah, I’m sad today. I’m watching my poor dog who needs a walk but probably won’t get one today and I’m thinking of how spry a puppy she was. And I’m thinking of my kids who are flying through grade and high school and will be gone someday. Finally my old game group, who were good people, it just wasn’t working for me.

So when to leave a group? I left mine, because I was super busy with my day job. And while we were only meeting twice a month, we started drinking and playing a little later and I was a wreck the next day very often. So yeah if your game becomes more drinking than gaming and you have work to do? Leave.

What is often true is that your group is your long time friends, so leaving is awful and lonely and sucky. But you can still be part of gaming. There are only a million online games. Right? I buy board games and read the rules. Check boardgamegeek or other gaming websites and podcasts. You can stay involved till you find another group. Plus you can hit FNM at one of the comic or boardgame shops to meet people and summer is here. Go to Origins or Gen Con. Go to Comic Con. Your people are out there, just go find them.

Also, a reason I left my group, was because our ‘leader’ was a former boss, and friends at work, well, when the work ends, it’s sometimes tough to make that transition to friendship. Especially because the work situation went sour for you or for your work friend.

There is another thing that happens often in game groups, especially when there are a lot of dudes. A hierarchy just naturally develops and one guy gets the brunt of the joke made in his direction. Sometime it’s fine, but look if you are at the bottom of the social order of your group and you don’t want to be. Leave dummy. It’s not that good for you, go find people more like you or that treat you better.

Here is one great thing I did when I couldn’t find a game. Volunteer at a booth at Gen Con. Or Origins. Or DragonCon. I can’t even tell you how awesome volunteering was, you get to help this people with their dreams and you meet people to game with. It’s amazing.

If I’ve never typed it, thanks for reading. I’m certain most of my web hits are chinese bots. But should a human come across my site. Thanks for checking it out.

J

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Truth Bombs

Played a fun game last night. It was called Dan and Phil’s Truth Bombs.

This is a fun party game. You write down things about the other players like ‘What would their superpower be?” or “How will they die?” Then you guess who said what. It’s very fun in my humble opinion. We did some giggling for sure.

I wonder how re-playable it will be. Seems like all you have to do is change out the people playing for a whole new game. The price over at Amazon is just 20 bucks which I think is a pretty good deal.

https://www.boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/238329/dan-and-phils-truth-bombs

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Getting Back to Games

So I created a separate site for my personal and rant-y stuff. Stay here for games guys. Games, writing, creative stuff. Just getting focused. If you like rants. They are here for sure, and I will continue to bless you with game, writing and creativity rants. Don’t you worry.

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More On Remakes

I had planned on a week of daily, interesting re-make board game posts. Came up with two posts, which I’m happy with! Because usually, I just think of stuff and never write anything down. I do my day job like a good cube jockey. You probably wanted to see lists or remakes, I was going to do that But BGG does it better here:

https://boardgamegeek.com/thread/1237477/what-official-game-remakes-or-re-themes-are-better

I’m in the FFG club, make the game beautiful. Make it functional but high end. I sincerely hope that board games continue to explore new themes though, and not just do remakes.

Speaking of which, I have a game that explores the full human psychological\actual life, from birth to death where you try to ‘fix’ death. I call it Immortality: The Game.

I’m still play testing. but check out the board art (by Jeremy McHugh):

Immortality: The Game Board Art by Jeremy McHugh
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Re-Makes

I’m going to get back to my roots you guys. This blog was a about games, writing and game-writing initially. I guess. And ranting of course. But I guess I went a little off track. So this week I’m going to talk about remakes of games.

Starting with Z-Man’s remake of the card game Arboretum. Now I’m a big outdoors lover, even though I spend most of my time inside. I like knowing the the outdoors is there and I ‘could’ go there. I’ve not played this game so that is now on my to do. New art and some card changes but same rules.

j

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What a Joke

I’m convinced Donald’s whole ‘presidency’ is scripted. In a life coach, we just love you Donny, kind of way. But absolutely scripted by professional ‘somethings.’ Honestly, if this is your job? I don’t even know how you can look at your own reflection without feeling disgust. This script is how you handle your super offensive, drunken, racist uncle. Look, uncle fuck nuts isn’t crazy or stupid. He is just an asshole surrounded by a bunch of other assholes.

I imagine Trump talking in a gold plated Oval Office with Paul ‘the hair’ Ryan. It’s late Friday and they be drankin’!

Pauly smirks, “and get this Donny, He’s the dentist that killed Cecil.”

Donny hears this, stops and turns around. “He knows about wildlife then! Why wouldn’t I put him in The Wildlife Conservation Council?”

“The snowflakes are melting down this weekend!” Pauly says. They both laugh with glee.

“We are all going to melt!” Ryan says as he tears up and rubs one eye.

Donny gets serious suddenly. He gives Pauly the squinty-eye, dirty look. Ryan stops laughing. They Look at each other. They both pause for a second, both their faces drop and they both resemble Satan for just a moment. The old school red devil Satan from your childhood.

Donny says, “hey, fuck the climate.” They howl with laughter.

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But If I Pay Attention…

To what? The News? Read this first:
https://www.theguardian.com/media/2013/apr/12/news-is-bad-rolf-dobelli/
From the above:
“We need reporting that polices our institutions and uncovers truth. But important findings don’t have to arrive in the form of news. Long journal articles and in-depth books are good, too.”

Years ago, I wanted to start a blog called “Why Is This News?” I’ve always been of the opinion that we just don’t need every weird thing that happens for 7 billion people.

Worse though, our news is simple “Public Relations” from large corporations. All of which support the new Trump Kleptocracy.

I think, and I’m just speculating now, that the merely wealthy are running the government. With permission from the 1%, for now. People like Trump who can’t figure out why their super wealthy friends keep getting more money and they are stagnating. Must be the system’s fault. Must be all those lazy people who just go to work everyday.

Remember too, the wealthy hate you, you are a resource to be exploited. Like all those hard working contractors Trump didn’t pay for one bullshit reason or another. They will continue to screw everyone they consider ‘behind’ them in this money making game, or ‘less than’ them in the social/clout game. And it’s just a game for them. They don’t have to work. At all. They could make some lame investment and live on the interest, maybe lose some of their money. But what fun is that, these are people accustomed to wielding power and if you are not out there doing (horrible) things, who will you wield power over? Power. Money. It’s just a game for these people.

I don’t mean to insult wealth or wealthy people. I’ve learned that there are good men and women out there who wield whatever money, power and influence they have with responsibility and thought. People who understand that social program spending and infrastructure spending will help the poor and generate jobs. People who understand that the commons are not for exploitation indefinitely.

I respect our systems,institutions and western traditions, in the capacity that I understand them. But this latest ciphering of wealth to bolster giant corporations, the super rich or even the merely rich is simply, morally wrong. To me it’s obviously morally wrong. I wanted to see this too, I voted for Perot. I believed business processes would cleanse the overspending and inefficiency of government. But what we are getting is so much worse the removal and non-replacement of programs, jobs and governmental functions altogether is not what I wanted. What is needed is no less radical than what we are getting, an overhaul of processes and people who have simply stagnated. Government is not a resting place or hiding place for people who are lazy. It cannot be. But it should not move at the speed of business either. It cannot take on the amorality of business. It cannot be driven by profit. It must be moral and ethical, or we will be lost, all of us.

Processes are in place to protect the people doing the governmental work and to protect the people that the work is done for, which is all of us.

So what is my point. Government is NOT a business. It cannot be run by business, or money. That IS what is happening and it looks to me to be an oncoming flood that that fills me with dread and worry.

To those good wealthy people. If you think you can hide in your wealth when this flood comes, I’m not sure that we unwashed masses, in our rage, will be able to distinguish between you and Trump.

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Pay Attention

Such a simple thing to do right? Wrong. Paying attention is difficult, very difficult. You are not thinking, you are just watching and listening. But keep working too; you can’t just watch, you are a participant. What a crazy world we live in and what crazy lives we lead. Hang tough friends. We will get to the end whether we want to or not. What will they say about you at the end? Good things? Or he/she was a miserable bastard? What I dislike the most, I guess, is the idea that I must climb this ladder. This eternal fight to beat the other monkeys to the top. It’s tiring! But continue on and never surrender. Will you hit the top, probably not, but never let them think you knew that all along, keep pushing like you will be the next boss or the next family leader etc., and they won’t say that you gave up. Wouldn’t that be the worst thing you could do? Give up? And should you end up at the top, then you can think clearly right? Wield that power with honesty, grace, bravery and with as much morality as you can muster. So in a word. Persist.