Thursday, March 29, 2007


Whole new levels of slack. I'm not even going to look and see how many days I've skipped. It just hasn't been there. Of course I do have tonsillitis. Again.

Actually, I've got a major thing I know I should write about, but I'm avoiding it. For a very load, cranky individual, I hate confrontation. Especially with myself. Not today.

But, on a total r0x0rs note, I spoke (via email), with a guy who's working on a game project that is absolutely hawsome. I mean Hawsome. I'm going to try to contribute some art assets to his project , because it turns out the ability to draw is not in fact necessary for game design. I don't want to say too much, mostly because it's his project and I haven't asked if I can go on about it. I'll ask and if he gives me a green light I'll write it up.

Problem is, that's bumping directly into my desire to blow a bunch of time on Lego Star Wars with Zachary. Which is already being crowded by the impending release of the open beta for Lord of the Rings. Which is forcing me to ignore the two major costuming projects I still have outstanding (ARC Trooper, Ghostbusters).

If you are thinking of getting me a gift for, say, Festivus this year, a pay-as-you-go card for LIFE would be good. Know I don't think you can get them at the Future Buy. Or Quicki Mart.

But I'm always good with a Slurpee.

(Oh, and I did not don't didn't did forget to call my DAD ON HIS BIRTHDAY. Smooth, Poody. Smooooothe.)

Friday, March 16, 2007

Old. Again.

Amy (I'm using the most conventional spelling - if you met Amy you might guess Aimee or aMe or some unusual spelling. She looks the type.), my coffee barista, has never heard of M.A.S.H. Well, not to say never as in never ever, but she thinks her mom used to watch it.


This all came about of course because of B.J.

Amy - "So does J.P. mean something?"

J.P. No not really, he just shows up for work in this rote kind of fashion, buying coffee on the basis of an arcane schedule, and passing the time until he can play video games again, or maybe chase his kids around. - "Yes. Jean-Paul."

Amy - "Oh, John Paul."

J.P. - "No, no. JEAN-Paul, the french way. It's not like B.J."

Amy - slightly confused look - "B.J. ?"

J.P. - "Yeah, you know B.J. on M.A.S.H."

Amy - "Mash? Oh, I think my mom used to watch that."

J.P. - "Your mum." eyes narrowing slightly

Amy - "Yeah. No, wait, I'm not trying to say you're old as my mom..."

Of course you're not, Amee. Of course your not.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Not My 100th Post

But I was looking over the history, and I was surprised to realize, I've only been blogging for a year. That's an average of 1 post every 4 days (+/- 1 day, accurate 1 time out of 2). Some of it, has been, well, good.

And some of it has been rules mumbo jumbo. Par for the course I figure. If your wondering, yes sometimes I actually talk like that. I can tell when I've been talking like that to people by the mystified (and, honestly slightly revolted) look they get. Assuming they don't just wander off while I'm mid sentence.

I'm hoping it has helped me to expand my creative horizons. In game design, if I have a weak suit it is in the story telling. I'm reasonably competent at hacking together a coherent set of instructions, but I don't really write stories. Much. But I'm getting there.

There being far from here. And I'm walking.

Monday, March 12, 2007


This post will have little to nothing to do with it's title. But it is my 100th post.

I'm chewing on a bit of game design philosophy. Here's the rule: No effect, change or alteration to rules "in play" should require heavy or extraordinary measures to counter act. Change should be small and incremental. Change should build over time.

For example, leveling up. Leveling up is a game mechanic that many of us are familiar with, and has varying degrees of effect depending on where and how it is implemented. I think it produces artificial hurdles in the system. At level 5, my mojo is sufficient to take on 3 level 5 monsters, 2 level 6 monsters and perhaps 1 level 7 monster (if I really grok my character and get a few lucky rolls). When I promote to level 6, suddenly that level 7 monster becomes "easier".

I don't really like that. I think your ability should gradually increase from 5 to 6. And when your ability reaches a certain point, your title upgrades, recognizing your increased skill. And how that affects what you do should also gradually increment. So, the level 7 monster starts out being all difficult to vanquish at the beginning of level 5, but you can tell you're getting close to 6 when the same monsters are not challenging you the same waythey once were.

Just a stray thought.

Wednesday, March 07, 2007


That's all I could say about that.

I mean this:

The thing is, I knew I was using a template, I just didn't expect to ever SEE it anywhere.

And people post comments to this guy's posts.

Just frak.

And I just got the Diablo MotD working.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Italian Cola

A friend of mine, Chris, who lives in Maine (Bangor actually. Yes they have tea with Steven all the time. Yes, that was sarcasm.) sent a care package of decidedly "Maine" stuff to my family over Christmas this year. I had put the whole incident out of my mind until asked about one particular item included in the package, a bottle of "Moxie", which looks to be a cola. Well, it's dark like cola.

When asked about my experience with Moxie, I was reminded of Italian Cola. I replied with this message by email. I decided to share. I should like to point out first though that I have nothing but respect for Italians and people from Maine. I do not mean to disparage either community. However, sometimes it is important to remember your strengths.

Way back in the day, David Badilotti and I had a bit of a tradition going on where whenever we went shopping together we would buy and try a funky drink. Among the highlights were WoopAss cola (blech), Arizona Green Tea (yum) and something called simply Italian Cola.

The highlight of Italian Cola is that it features quinine, which of course is critical in the prevention of malaria. It also tastes like medicine. And not that good medicine you look forward to when you have a cough, even though it's not going to help. Italian Cola makes Buckley's Cough Mixture seem tame by comparison (which I find is mostly related to how you feel about pine). It turns out that if you want great calzone, go Italian. Pasta, go Italian. Cola - stick with Pepsi or Coke (as you prefer it).

Italian Cola was the last time David and I played the funky drink game. We sometimes still use the words "Italian Cola Incident" to taunt each other.

Moxie reminds me of Italian Cola. Gone bad. Not in a good way.

As always I appreciate you giving me an opportunity to broaden my horizons. Please never send me any more Moxie. Ever. Please.


Well, I thought it was funny.