Friday, June 29, 2007

Asteroid 1618

It's huge (as an asteroid should be), but download it anyway.

Oh, you want to know what it is? It's an Encounter Critical module, written by Jeff Rients. I drew some pictures for it but that's not the point; the point is, this thing rocks. It'll take me forever to read it but it mentions Remulak so you know it's gold.

Hurl yourself!

Monday, June 18, 2007

Looks different.

101 posts; 102 was time for a change.

Podcast Delays


I am using a free, but highly-recommended, audio editing program called Audacity.

Audacity's copy/paste features really need to have a face.


Look -- I don't ask for much. I just want to be able to copy a waveform, put my cursor a little further down the same track, and paste it at the cursor, so there are, say, TWO instances of that guitar sting on a single track. I don't want to drag the fucking thing around a thirty-minute project and create a new damned track every time I want a new damned bumper in my podcast.

Also, would it be too much to ask for a feature which allows me to cut a waveform into separate sections on the same track and drag those around?

I suppose...I suppose that it is.

Free, yes. Highly-recommended by, sure.


Fuck, no.


Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Go click on this NOW.

Butch Curry's Zombie Nirvana Games has tips for mapping with Photoshop -- and links to his video tutorials.

Why do you care? Why do you want to go click on that link right now?

Because he's teaching you how to make this.

Trust me. Just go do it.

Actual Play: Fudge Spelljammer

It's been a couple of nights since we've played, but my wife an I are playing a Spelljammer game using Fudge. I'm having great fun with it and she is too. You can read about it here.

Fudge is...well, it's being very very good to me.

Monday, June 11, 2007

(Four-) Color Me Baffled

Are you ready for something that I am totally not making up?

My daughter, who is 2 years and 10 months old, is currently fascinated by Doctor Doom.

Last week I bought a big hardcover book about Stan Lee and his influence on the Marvel Universe. It has a little audio player attached to it, so you can hear The Man Himself talk about stuff as you read. Pretty cool, 'cause anything Stan Lee says is welcome.

Anyway, she wanted to look at the book and play "the music" (Stan's comments), so we did. For some reason, still unknown to me, she lingered on a 2-page spread about Doom. She asked a few questions ("Why he is wearing that? Is he a bad guy?"), and I cued up Stan's commentary, wherein he discusses the fact that wanting to rule the world is not really a crime. She listened to it twice.

We kept looking through the book, and she started flipping around as though looking for something. "Where's that picture?" she said. "The one I was looking at."

After some guesswork on my part, sure enough -- she wanted to look at Doctor Doom. And we listened to Stan again. And again. And again.

I asked her if she wanted her own picture of him; she said yes, so I found this one and printed it out. When we went outside for a walk, she took the picture with her.

She took the picture to bed with her.

So...why? What's up? Why does a not-quite-three-year-old little girl like the Latverian dude so much? Is it just the way he looks? Is it something that Stan said? Is she planning world domination?

I don't know. I don't mind (in fact, I think it's super freaking rocket-awesome), but I don't know.

Is there a geek gene...?

Saturday, June 09, 2007


Nearby, Mike insists:
"STAR TREK is powered by farts!"
Smell of a phaser.

Friday, June 08, 2007

Good, Or Perhaps Great

I downloaded Fudge via FTP from in the spring (I think) of 1993 and have had in my possession a copy ever since.

I dug it right away. It clicked with me. I knew what to do with it.

14 years later, I'm finally getting a buncha buncha use out of it.

This isn't one of those "I Had Traveller For Ten Years And Couldn't Figure Out Blah Blah Blah" scenarios; no, this one is more about...well, impetus, I guess. Drive, intent, actual effort.

Or maybe just timing.

A few weeks ago I got the Fudge bug again, out of nowhere, for no good reason. Just...BINK! there it was. Cool by me.

I've collected Fudge articles for years, and really enjoy reading the stuff. I just never actually got around to using any of it. I paid good money for Terra Incognita, one of the best pulp RPGs which no one seems to be playing, and likewise haven't yet busted it out.

Ah. But.

One night, about a month ago or so, my wife wanted to play a game, and I said, "Let's do a cyberpunk scenario with Fudge." And she said, "OK, you'll have to teach me." And I said, "Done."

It was a very quick lesson. She threw together a character (no limits, just whatever she wanted) and we played. In two sessions, we completed a full scenario, wherein her character (a gun-toting sexy badass) rescued an annoying fixer-type guy from his Russian mafia captors.

It was bliss.

She kicked ass. NPC generation was a snap. Stunts, guns, running around, crashing trucks into fences...all of it easy to accomplish in-system. Zing!

So far, we've used it for that cyberpunk game, a Traveller/action movie crossover, Spelljammer: Shadow of the Spider Moon (where she fought a bunch of mummies!...

...and what may be the most ridiculous, gleefully-dumbest game I've ever run.

I call it The Hick, The Hooker and the Cross-Eyed Psychic Lesbian Alligator Wrestler.

Ya see, our friends Phil and Erin came down to visit last weekend, and we wanted to play a game but what I had planned was a little too serious. So I said, "Okay, you guys tell me what you want in the game and I'll throw something together."

"Goofy", said Phil.

"Space Cowboys," Erin added.

My wife, always helpful in these moments, simply said, "Giant green rabbits with fangs, that the cowboys ride around on."

Next thing you know, they had stats for their respective characters and a name for their ship -- the Gigolo Sunset, which was, incidentally, shaped like a heart. They also had a mission: deliver 53 cases of (illegal) Coors Ultra-Lightspeed to one Link Abrahms, who resides on a planet full of Puritans (yes, with muskets and goofy hats and buckles on their shoes). Moon-rock tossing, Puritan-arousing, gator-wrestling and Mexican Banditobots soon followed, not to mention a truck with a giant rubber duck on the back and the capacity to use refried beans for fuel.

Taught Phil & Erin the system in, like, 2 minutes. NPC stats? Easy, on the fly.

In fact, I did everything on the fly.

Now...I'm not gonna tell you that Fudge is the bestest RPG ever ever ever, because doing so would be a big fat lie and also this stuff is as subjective as art. I can say, however, that I finally found my groove with Fudge, and Fudge found its groove with me.

And today, my FLGS called to tell me that my copy of the 10th Anniversary Edition finally arrived. So as my wife leaves work tomorrow night, she'll snag it up and bring it home where it belongs.

Now. If only Ann Dupuis would get back with me about that Terra Incognita adventure she asked me if I wanted to write and which I e-mailed her about twice...

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

There Are People Who Hate This Book...?

I remember hearing good things about it so I picked it up today at Half-Price Books. I'm, like, 70 pages in and it's hilarious. I laughed out loud.

At a book.

In the car.

I looked up a bit of info on it and it turns out that there are Trek fans who hate this book.



...They are all Commies.