Sunday, December 31, 2017

2018: I Yam What I Yam And I Don't Give A Damn

Time for another year-end beatdown.
Time to roll another one out.  This past holiday season I resolved to be more mellow than previous years, which I met with partial success.  I think depression grabbed me at the end there, with feelings of worthlessness coming on strong.  Still, I endure.

We had a few setbacks with our Amazon business but this we also continue undaunted.  Just took a little restructuring, that's all.  That and Becky going back into the workforce and me Ubering, I think we'll pull through.

More highlights: as I've reported previously, North Texas RPG Con in June was a blast.  Earlier in the year we made a pilgrimage to Seattle to see my older step-son Derek as he was working for the rehab place that he went through with flying colors.  He's back here now and doing better than ever.  Might proud of that boy.


We also managed to go see the granddaughters in New Bern, NC (and they returned the favor by coming to see us this Christmas).  I have now officially been coast-to-coast, seen the Pacific, Atlantic AND The Gulf of Mexico.  I Am A Seasoned Traveler.

Games - let's see, I got back into Matt Evans's Mithgarthr campaign and the Monday game is going great.  I started a semi-sandbox in my world of Erf which will wrap up in January.  I dropped the Saturday game, though.

Also, since we were broke come Christmas, I got what I wanted - a peaceful, quiet Christmas.  As for actual presents, all of my Kickstarters (Astonishing Swordsmen and Sorcerers of Hyperborea 2E, The Goon for Savage Worlds and Blueholme Journeymann Rules) fulfilled in November and December so Merry Christmas to Me.

All my family and friends are well (Mom turned 95 this year) and I started to talk to my sister again.

I actually have a resolution this year: talk more to my mom.  She's getting a bit fragile and I wanna listen to her voice as much as possible (also, I hope to see her some time in 2018).

Anyway, I'm looking forward to more Ubering, better weather, more gaming (for everyone) and good wishes to all this coming year.

Now, where is that bottle...

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Con Report 2017: New Digs, A Flying Circus, and The Demise of The Dutchman

Skeeter Green in his natural habitat.  Hernia to follow.
Now that I've had a few weeks to reflect on it, this year's North Texas RPG Con goes down as one of the more unique convention experiences I've had.  Here are some of the reasons:

A new hotel (the Westin DFW Airport Hotel) with lots more room - although I miss the DFW Airport Marriot, I kinda like this new venue.  Their ballroom is absolutly massive, even though they partitioned it off and I like their conference rooms with a view of the airport.  There were downsides (mostly centered around the food - mediocre hotel food and a lack of alternatives within walking distance, something I hear will be remedied next year).  All in all, a good fit.

The lack of some familiar faces, either due to illness (we missed you, Jim Ward), scheduling/family obligations (get ya next year, Lloyd Metcalf) or other inexplicable reasons (no Davises?  What the hey?).

Anyway, it was fun.  Here's the highlights:

I came a day early to help with setup since Doug was diagnosed with cancer and went through chemo - where were a lot of us there to help and this old back and knees did their best.

The Wednesday night game of Astonishing Swordsmen and Sorcerers of Hyperborea GM'd by Jeff Talanian himself.  Don't remember much outside of our mage bedding a hag in exchange for information we needed.  He truly took one for the team.

Thursday afternoon I ran my big Gangbusters 2-part game for members of a gaming group from Austin.  My slots were 6 hours each back-to-back (not the ideal situation) but the group was so good, they finished it in 6 hours. In fact, they managed to solve Part 2 before Part 1 (they took out The Dutchman BEFORE the whiskey raid).  EVERYONE was playing their characters to the hilt (Yours Truly included) and I pretty much got adopted by them (they strongly encouraged me to come down to Austin for more Gangbusters).  I even ended up running another game on Sunday.  Great bunch of guys n' gals.

I talked to Bill Webb, CEO of Frog God Games.  I told him about wanting to run demos of Swords and Wizardry Light and he gave me quite a bit of support game-wise.  Also, thanks to Skeeter Green, I got a copy of Swords and Wizardry Complete to give away at my first demo.  You guys are aces in my book.

Bruce Heard's Basic D&D Calidar game was my Saturday highlight.  It took place in a flying circus above Calidar and we were faced with a murder mystery and conspiricy.  I got to play a flying elf and i had a great time.

Got to confer with my Save or Die buddies Erik Tenkar and James Michael Spahn.  James was up for the 3 Castles Award for his Hero's Journey game so that was exciting.  Also, a bonus was watching him geek out like a fanboy when in the presence of TSR legends such as Frank Mentzer and Erol Otus.

Saturday, another AS&SH game, this time Chainsaw was in the GM chair.  Playing a barbarian, we investigated some kind of crazy spaceship made out of a hollowed-out giant beetle.  Gross but fun.

I skipped the awards and auctions but heard my old podcast buddy Mike Stewart won the 3 Castles award for Victorious (sorry James).  I remember the long haul he had getting Troll Lord to publish that game and it couldn't have gone to a greater guy.  Congrats again, Mike.

Finished off the con Sunday running another Gangbusters game for the Austin crew.  Much fun was had.  Then it was off to Red Robin for lunch with said players then it was time to hit the road back to OKC.

Another great con and one for the books.  Thanks always to Mike Badolato and Doug Rhea for putting on a great time (and I'm hoping Doug will finish with his recovery back and better than ever).  Also, thanks to the Austin group - you made it very memorable and I hope to be sitting at your game table soon.  AND the great guys at Frog God Games for the material and support for Swords & Wizardry Light - I hope to do ya proud here in OKC.

Next year will be the 10th anniversary of NTX RPG Con.  I'll be there - hope you will too.