"Roll dice and kick ass!"

Snapshots from JMcL63's lands of adventure (Go to Blogger to find RD/KA! in all its fully-illustrated technicolour glory- jmcl63.blogspot.com).

Archive for gamers.net

Recommend
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide

Analogue gamer finally grokks digital? #2. In which, getting neither rules nor manual, I am confounded

John McLintock
Scotland
Glasgow
Lanarkshire
flag msg tools
"Roll dice and kick ass!"
mbmbmbmbmb
Analogue and digital: opposing skill sets?
Fundamental property or fleeting perception?

Far from original, my closing remarks last time echo truisms familiar from many online discussions of, eg. how to get more younger people to play wargames (a common enough theme on the BGG Wargames subforum). Once this notion rears its head in any thread it won’t be long before someone observes that the ‘plug-and-play’ nature of computer games’ has ‘spoiled’ younger people when it comes to reading rules for a game, especially those more-or-less complex ones you’ll find in ‘heavy duty’ wargames. And these are games like, eg. the 32 pages of detailed case point of Unhappy king Charles or the similar 28 pages of Twilight Struggle — ie. average complexity medium-sized wargames with clear and concise rules — not ASL’s legendary monumental tome or some such monstrosity.

The basic disconnect

Read more »
Twitter Facebook
0 Comments
Fri Jun 21, 2013 3:21 pm
Post Rolls
  • [+] Dice rolls
Recommend
15 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide

Confessions of a one-time would-be career gamer

John McLintock
Scotland
Glasgow
Lanarkshire
flag msg tools
"Roll dice and kick ass!"
mbmbmbmbmb
“He’s not dead yet!”
Emerging later than usual from the incommunicado of the long darkness of my annual slough of despond, I found myself drawn back into social networking via BoardGameGeek, as is my wont. One thread which attracted my attention was Deep or Wide: What kind of wargamer are you?, to which I added my tuppenceworth, you can be sure (deep, as we shall see). Before I knew where I was I’d been prompted to make an unexpected return to the keyboard for the benefit of my readers here at RD/KA!.









Never mind the depth, feel the width?
‘Deep’ play- ie. playing a game many times to experience the full breadth of its content and to master its nuances, has been a strong characteristic of my gaming geek since I was a young adult. A quick survey of my 10 most played games shows how strong. Look at my 5 all-time favourite wargames:
- Up Front.
- Space Hulk.
- Combat Commander.
- SL/ASL.
- C&C.

What these games all have in common is that they are as much systems as they are games, and that they are driven by scenarios which gives them great replay value. This makes them ideal for deep play even if they might be simple by comparison to a multimap monster game, eg. the infamous Case Blue (10 maps with a total area of 49 square feet, 3640 counters and 288 pages of rules and scenarios).
Read more »
Twitter Facebook
0 Comments
Fri Jun 7, 2013 3:52 am
Post Rolls
  • [+] Dice rolls
Recommend
22 
 Thumb up
0.05
 tip
 Hide

Infiltration: the game that almost got away

John McLintock
Scotland
Glasgow
Lanarkshire
flag msg tools
"Roll dice and kick ass!"
mbmbmbmbmb
Feel the hype, sigh
The social media advertising for Infiltration passed before my eyes registered but ignored, a disinterest no doubt prompted by its being set in FFG’s Android universe: Android — “a board game of murder and conspiracy set in a dystopian future” about which the consensus is that its attempt to marry narrative to a competitive boardgame failed because of the clunky complexities of Kevin Wilson’s design methods (as seen in, eg. Arkham Horror or Descent, whose heavy status-tracking and bean-counting mechanics are exactly what would suck all the fun out of playing a co-op against a pseudo-narrative solitaire engine) — was one of a handful of later FFG releases enjoying certain novel features sparking an initial interest which quickly waned when I realised what I’d be buying. That is to say: a big box of toys and other shiny stuff thrown together into the interminable clunk of too, too many cards and counters presided over by a rulebook both poorly organised and frustratingly vague.
Read more »
Twitter Facebook
4 Comments
Mon Oct 22, 2012 5:03 pm
Post Rolls
  • [+] Dice rolls
Recommend
15 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide

To tweak perfection?

John McLintock
Scotland
Glasgow
Lanarkshire
flag msg tools
"Roll dice and kick ass!"
mbmbmbmbmb
Old news is good news
Word broke on the internet some weeks ago of news that at first sight seemed almost too good to be true: Valley Games have acquired the rights to Up Front and are working with designer Courtney Allen on a new edition, to be funded via Kickstarter later this year for a planned publication date in 2013. The initial excitement felt by fans of this all-time classic will have been quickly tempered by healthy scepticism upon all-too-immediate recall of the vapourware that was MMP’s ill-fated Up Front 2000. The lapse- in March 2011, of MMP’s licence with Hasbro was nothing less than a mercy killing. No one really believed anymore that MMP were going to bring this one home, and I’m sure I’m not the only one who’s ultimately relieved that some of MMP’s more esoteric suggestions for their new edition of Up Front (first announced in an ad in ASL Journal #2) didn’t see the light of day.
Read more »
Twitter Facebook
3 Comments
Tue Oct 9, 2012 5:07 pm
Post Rolls
  • [+] Dice rolls
Recommend
4 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide

Celebrations and felicitations!

John McLintock
Scotland
Glasgow
Lanarkshire
flag msg tools
"Roll dice and kick ass!"
mbmbmbmbmb
Edinburgh Games Hub: so hot it’s cool- it’s Official!
My enthusiastic response to my first visit to the Edinburgh Games Hub means that readers should be unsurprised to hear that I kept my promise and turned out for the EGH’s official Grand Opening on August 31st. Gav joined me on the bus ride to Edinburgh for the day and we arrived around lunchtime to find the cafe already thronged and buzzing. Needing to relax a bit after our journey, we promptly plonked ourself down at the nearest convenient table- which just happened to be the one upon which Zia (Shaz, the proprietor’s mum, remember?) had laid out all the special munchies she’d prepared for the day. Soon enough we got to talking with the guy already sitting there, who was there with his young son.
Read more »
Twitter Facebook
0 Comments
Wed Sep 19, 2012 9:46 pm
Post Rolls
  • [+] Dice rolls
Recommend
13 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide

My geeking summer #2- True North

John McLintock
Scotland
Glasgow
Lanarkshire
flag msg tools
"Roll dice and kick ass!"
mbmbmbmbmb
A hot time in the old town: the Games Hub Edinburgh
This post could also be subtitled ‘fB strikes again’ because, exactly as with last month’s encounter with Mark Millar at Plan B Books, this story all began on Facebook. If I recall correctly, what happened this time was that a couple of months ago I followed through on a link that a friend had liked and lo, there it was: the Games Hub Edinburgh, a fB group for an upcoming games cafe in Edinburgh. Frankly, I was gob-smacked. What an awesome idea! What a risk to take. Just WTF! More seriously though: the Games Hub Edinburgh strikes me as an idea whose time has come, and as the most important thing to happen in the Scottish gaming community since I don’t know when. OK, starting G3 back in 1998 was totally exciting, and no small achievement for all concerned, but what we have here strikes me as being different by a whole order of magnitude. GHE, after all, won’t be a club meeting weekly for some 4/5 hours. It’ll be open 12 hours/day, 7 days/week. See what I meant about awesome, and the risk?
Read more »
Twitter Facebook
3 Comments
Sat Sep 1, 2012 2:14 pm
Post Rolls
  • [+] Dice rolls
Recommend
11 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide

My geeking summer #1: "Oop north"

John McLintock
Scotland
Glasgow
Lanarkshire
flag msg tools
"Roll dice and kick ass!"
mbmbmbmbmb
Land of the White Rose

I mentioned last time that I was holidaying with family in York after a trip to Bradford. I’m back home now and reality has finally reasserted itself, so it’s back to the old bloggery. Where better then to begin than with a geek’s eye tour of my wee trip to the legendary county of Yorkshire (no prizes to readers who offer suggestions, constructive or otherwise!- NB, that’s no prizes, not ‘No Prizes’, OK?)?
Read more »
Twitter Facebook
2 Comments
Tue Aug 28, 2012 7:26 am
Post Rolls
  • [+] Dice rolls
Recommend
11 
 Thumb up
0.25
 tip
 Hide

Wargames, politics and ethics #2: Politics? You can run, but you can't hide

John McLintock
Scotland
Glasgow
Lanarkshire
flag msg tools
"Roll dice and kick ass!"
mbmbmbmbmb
Broad-brush polemic ruffles feathers
A book I picked up on sight from a recommendation on the WW2 SS Counter Colours thread, Ronald Smelser and Edward J. Davies II's 2008 scholarly study, The Myth of the Eastern Front: the Nazi-Soviet War in American Popular Culture was going to become an article even as I first read it – avidly – over xmas last year. Researching for this series- in which The Myth of the Eastern Front was going to feature centrally, I found the military hobbyists' inevitable internet hot flushes in its wake. Inevitable? In response to an academic tome?

The biggest invasion of the biggest war in history: a lot there to forget

Yes, because The Myth of the Eastern Front is part analytical historical deconstruction, and part broad-brush polemic against the 'romancers'- promulgators of an idealised vision of the Wehrmacht and the SS as honourable soldiers fighting a 'Lost Cause' against the Red horde. Smelser and Davies root this mythology in the Wehrmacht's 'last campaign': the ex-generals' postwar years of networking and spin aimed at rehabilitating the image of the German armed forces on the Eastern front.
Read more »
Twitter Facebook
4 Comments
Thu Jul 28, 2011 1:13 pm
Post Rolls
  • [+] Dice rolls
Recommend
11 
 Thumb up
0.02
 tip
 Hide

Wargames, politics and ethics #1: Ah, that old bugbear

John McLintock
Scotland
Glasgow
Lanarkshire
flag msg tools
"Roll dice and kick ass!"
mbmbmbmbmb
Reality bites
At some time or another, many wargamers will have found themselves pondering the political and/or ethical implications of their passion for revisiting the past, present and future battlefields of the world with their maps and little counters. This reflection leads some to create boundaries and/or preferences: periods they won't game, sides they always prefer to play, and so on. For me this began in my teenage-tankie youth, when I drew a boundary at 1945. My reasons for this were twofold:
- In the late 70s and early 80s- with Thatcher and Reagan's 'second' Cold War at its height, modern warfare was too closely linked to the spectre of global thermonuclear holocaust for it to have any appeal to me.
- I felt uncomfortable with the idea of playing games about wars the casualties of which would be actual people living in my own time.

I abandoned this boundary as I grew older. That's not to say that I 'grew out of it', because that would be to imply that there's something immature about the choice to draw and to exercise such boundaries. I've no wish to be so insulting to others who've made these choices.

No, for me the decision to abandon such boundaries was driven by much more personal imperatives of simple mental survival. That might sound grandiose but it's true. Y'see, in my early days as a student, I got into a conversation about philosophy – as you do – with a guy I met in a student flat. The end result was that I became a convinced strong sceptic; ie. I took seriously the notion that we can't take the evidence of our senses for granted, to the extent that I confronted the proposition that reality was essentially unknowable. This might sound like just another cockeyed bit of undergraduate Philosophy 101. It was. And so it would've remained but for the later emergence of the delusional phase of my bipolar disorder.
Read more »
Twitter Facebook
6 Comments
Thu Jul 14, 2011 3:57 am
Post Rolls
  • [+] Dice rolls
Recommend
9 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide

A bit of this and a bit of that

John McLintock
Scotland
Glasgow
Lanarkshire
flag msg tools
"Roll dice and kick ass!"
mbmbmbmbmb
Technical problems stop the Panzers in their tracks
Badger came round last night for what was supposed to be another session of Fighting Formations and perhaps some Combat Commander. Unfortunately events were to intervene in the form of the shiny new desktop PC which I had taken delivery of just the previous day. I hadn't had time to set everything up that Thursday, so on the Friday I decided just to wait for Badger's arrival so that he could offer his assistance. It's not that I'm a complete tech-idiot or anything but there are always risks associated with transferring your old system to a new machine, so I felt it would be useful to have Badger on hand.

Just as well too it turned out.

It all began when I foolishly simply yanked the USB connector for my external hard drive from its socket in the back of my old machine. When I had the new computer all set up, it kept telling me that I had to format the external hard drive, on which is stored all the work I've done in more than 10 years. You can imagine then, dear readers, how I was feeling at that point. Badger leapt into the breach and, a quick internet search later, he had diagnosed the problem: namely that I had forgotten to 'safely remove' the external hard drive. Apparently it's rare that this will produce problems which, to be blunt, was little comfort for me at that moment.
Read more »
Twitter Facebook
7 Comments
Sun Jul 10, 2011 12:12 am
Post Rolls
  • [+] Dice rolls

Front Page | Welcome | Contact | Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Advertise | Support BGG | Feeds RSS
Geekdo, BoardGameGeek, the Geekdo logo, and the BoardGameGeek logo are trademarks of BoardGameGeek, LLC.