This Week Online – April 26, 2014

Posted by on Apr 26, 2014 in Books, Games/Video/Board, Geek Culture, Movies/Music/TV, Web Shows | 0 comments

Hey all -

Hope you’ve had a good last week. Amusingly enough, I didn’t have a whole lot to post from last week so I had to wait a few extra days before some goodies came to my attention. I hope you enjoy these!

  • Do you enjoy literature? Do you enjoy comedy? The perfect melding of the two is at Thug Notes on YouTube. It’s simply fantastic.
  • Are you a Patrick Rothfuss fan? You should be. He announced on his blog today that he is coming out with a new book which is not the third book in the Kingkiller Chronicle. Yes, I’m a bit disappointed, but it’s set in that world so that’ll be a nice consolation.
  • Stephen Colbert is closing down The Colbert Report and taking over The Late Show from David Letterman when he retires at the end of the year. As a result, Stephen has been making the rounds on shows this week. Here he says goodbye on The Daily Show. And he was also on The Late Show this past week.
  • John Waters filmed a no-smoking PSA? Yes!
  • Patrick Stewart and Ian McKellen being adorable, AGAIN.
  • A fantastic fan film featuring Harley Quinn.
  • Short film following two astronauts on a ship that can travel back three minutes in time. Simply great.

I’m still trying to find the time to finish the Berlin installment of the latest Shadowrun Returns game in order to review it properly here. So far it’s great, but I’m only about 10 hours of gameplay in.

Also, I picked up a game for the iPad (and other systems) called Dragons of Atlantis: Heirs of the Dragon. It’s a “free to play” city-building-in-a-pvp-world type game. I played Evony back in the day for a while until the pvp stuff eventually drove me away from it. The interface on a touch screen is great. And it has neat added features like building mythical troop units (minotaurs, dragons, ogres) and you can raise an epic dragon to defend your city. If you like this sort of game, give it a try.

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This Week Online – April 14, 2014

Posted by on Apr 15, 2014 in Comics/Webcomics, Games/Video/Board, Geek Culture, Kickstarting, Movies/Music/TV, Web Shows | 0 comments

Hola all – please enjoy some amusements I found online in the past week!

Lastly, you know I’m a big fan of Tabletop, the Geek & Sundry web show hosted by Wil Wheaton on YouTube. They’ve decided to crowdsource the third season of the show over on Indiegogo. Check out the campaign and give if you can. If he can reach $1m, we will get a third season of Tabletop with 20 episodes AND a new spin-off show all about roleplaying games. THAT is something I really want to see!

Enjoy your week!

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Saturday is Tabletop Day!

Posted by on Apr 3, 2014 in Games/Video/Board, Geek Culture | 0 comments


Yay! Saturday is Tabletop Day!

From game stores to individual households, Saturday is the celebration of all things tabletop gaming. Get out and check out your local game store, or invite some friends over to play a game. There are SO many games out there worth checking out. A few of my current favorites are:

The Tabletop Day website is where you can get information about game stores and events near you. Check out this video where Wil Wheaton talks about the day and some fun swag Geek & Sundry has worked hard to get out to participating stores.

Play more games!

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Game Reviews – Gone Home and Papers, Please

Posted by on Feb 25, 2014 in Games/Video/Board | 0 comments

I recently had the opportunity to do a bit of traveling, which afforded me the time to play through a couple of Steam games I hadn’t gotten around to yet.



Gone Home is a well-crafted story-based game where all you do as the player is wander around an empty house. You never encounter another person. There is no violence. The game is all about finding clues about what is going on and piecing the story together yourself. You are a college-age girl, who has come home after spending a year abroad in Europe. You come home to an empty house – your parents are missing as is your younger sister. Your family had moved into this house while you were away, so you are unfamiliar with the house. The main story focuses on your younger sister, but there are stories about your dead great-uncle (who left the house to your father), your father and your mother as well. All of the stories are excellent – the main story is compelling and will keep you engaged throughout the gameplay. The side-stories aren’t critical to completion of the main story and one of them is quite subtle; I found it worthwhile to take the time to find all of the stories available in the game.. The entire gameplay took me about 4 hours to complete.  I don’t want to ruin anything about this game – but if this sort of game appeals to you I highly recommend it.



Papers, Please is a game called a “dystopian document thriller”. I admit, I’d never run into a game quite like this one before. The music is fantastic and the graphics are crude but support the overall sense of Soviet-era repression and scarcity of resources. You are a border inspector and it is your job each day to review the papers (passports, passes, work permits, etc.) of people requesting entry to your country. You approve or deny their request. Sounds simple, doesn’t it? With each passing day, the amount of things you have to remember to check on various documents increases. You are paid by the person that you review, so the slower your review goes, the less you get paid. You have a family at home for whom you have to pay rent, food, medicine, etc. I enjoyed playing this game a couple of times. The first time I didn’t make enough money, my family got sick, and I messed up so much I was thrown in prison. The second time I got through about 15 days of story and discovered the game was starting to feel more like work than like a game. You have to keep track of a LOT of minutiae related to the documents.  I appreciate the story, and how awful a bleak, repetitive job like that would be — the game does a great job conveying that. I didn’t find the game particularly fun.

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Tabletop Thursday – Fortune & Glory

Posted by on Feb 7, 2014 in Games/Video/Board, Web Shows | 0 comments

Yesterday’s Tabletop episode featured the board game Fortune and Glory. The players are Felicia Day, Ryon Day, Wil Wheaton, and Brandon Routh.

My first exposure to Fortune & Glory was on the game review site Shut Up & Sit Down. They did not favorably review the game, saying that there isn’t much strategy to the game and that if a player happens to roll poorly on a consistent basis they can end up not having a lot to do for the duration of the game. My favorite quote from their review is “This game, this beautiful game, this landfill of components, cards and color, this crush of cliffhangers, is everything that’s wrong with Ameritrash.”

As a quick aside, Shut Up & Sit Down is a fantastic gaming review site and I think it’s a great compliment to Tabletop (and On The Table) for gaming news. They’re raising funding to keep their website/content production going, so if you feel like tossing them some monetary love I think they’re worth it.

My thoughts about the game from this episode of Tabletop… well, 7 minutes in Wil cuts in and admits they got the rules all wrong throughout their gameplay so the episode isn’t really a representative sense of how the game plays. So, it’s hard to gauge. They certainly seem to have fun playing the game. But there are a LOT of bits involved… games with tons of bits can be a headache. There also seem to be a TON of rules and rules variants.

I think this is a game whose theme (Indiana Jones-style adventurers traversing the world to gather artifacts and fight Nazis) is very appealing. I will probably rent this game from my local game store to give it a try before thinking about purchasing it.

If you take the time to watch this episode, I recommend you take an additional 10 minutes to watch SU&SD’s review as well.

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Tabletop Thursday – Ticket to Ride: Europe

Posted by on Jan 24, 2014 in Games/Video/Board, Geek Culture, Web Shows | 0 comments

Happy Thursday! Today’s episode of Tabletop features Ticket to Ride: Europe.

Players are Emma Caulfield, Anne Wheaton and John Kovalic. The chemistry between the players is very upbeat and positive, despite Wil and John’s initial competitiveness against each other. Still, this game basically plays just like the original Ticket to Ride from last season with very small variations.

Hope everyone has had a good week. The kids in my area got the entire week off from school due to snow, and this was also my son’s birthday week. So happy birthday to him, and yay snow! I feel like I’ve gotten some proper Winter now.

The big project at my house is painting a bathroom to look like the inside of the classic TARDIS. It’s turned out to be a lot more work than expected (as all painting projects do). I’ll be posting pictures & details here when it’s finished!

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