Posts Tagged ‘Pop Culture’

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Interesting Thoughts from Other Gamers (9)

11 September, 2011

Useful and interesting articles and commentary from my fellow gamer from various places on the web:

Most importantly, the upcoming, Speak Out with your Geek Out,  from the 12th to the 16th of September, let your geek flag fly and show people how much you love your hobbies and obsession.  Hopefully we can turn this into a yearly celebration of geekness in all things.  Thank to Flames Rising and Monica Valentinelli for getting this rolling.

The Emergence Campaign Weblog has a very detailed look at Monster Types.  Lots of good information for customizing and adapting creatures here.

Tales from the Flaming Faggot tells us How NOT to Write an Adventure.  Excellent advice on how to write an adventure that is easy for a GM to use.

Judd, of the Githyanki Diaspora, suggestions that we all take in some Githyanki Therapy from time to time.

Gnome Stew has a useful Quick and Dirty Location Template.

Enjoy.

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Happy 45th STAR TREK!

9 September, 2011

A day late, I know.  But 8th September, 1966, say the first broadcast of STAR TREK, boldly going where no man had before on NBC.  It was one of the first successful SF series and the subject of the first fan-organized effort to save a show (which they did for a season).  For as long as I can remember, reruns of the original series of Star Trek have been on the air and that is how I first came to watch and love the show.

Gateway to Adventure

Gateway to Adventure

Like many geeks of my generation, Star Trek is one of the building blocks of our identity for good or ill, it was omnipresent and the foundation in many ways of modern fan culture (conventions, cosplay, slash fiction, those started with ST fandom).  So, I am just standing up and say, “I am fan of Star Trek, thanks for everything.”

Take a look at the original network “sell sheet” for Star Trek.  Some amazing Star Trek cookies.

And if this get you in the mood for playing some ST RPG, there are is a whole community of ST SIMMers (for simulation) out there such as Obsidian Fleet which do that very thing.

And Barking Alien has kind words for ST too (and was late like me too).

Update: Go read Tor’s 10 Underappreciated Aspects of Classic Star Trek.

Photo by donielle and used under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic license. (CC BY-SA 2.0)

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Geek Culture and Self-Image

23 April, 2011

The RPG Corner links to this interesting post over at Dave Ex Machina where he talks about being a nerd and a problem he has, to wit.

That problem being, I am sick to death of “nerd culture”.

Go and read the article, it is quite interesting, the important thought that he brings up is:

[Y]ou can be into a thing without having to be into being into a thing.

Now, I work in a game store.  I deal with people who are . . . committed to various points of view.  People who live Magic, people who hate D&D 4e, people who love Pathfinder, people who can recite the history of the Clans in Battletech, people who dispise Magic, people who are Clan Loyalist for the Legend of the Five Rings setting and so on.   I get to interact with them all.

Now, I have opinions on games, comics, movies, which may not align with those of the people I interact with.  But unlike so many people I deal with, I do not feel the need to defend my choices or (more importantly) the need to denigrate theirs.

My self-image is not so fragile that it will be shattered by someone who, for example, does not like Joss Whedon’s work (Dollhouse was not his best effort after all), who prefers Magic: the Gathering to the Shadowfist CCG (where I am in the opposite camp) or who loves zombies (which I feel have been very overplayed).  Different people like different things and to different levels, I am entirely cool with that.

People need to be accepting of other peoples views and not defensive when their own opinions are challenged.  I try to be curious instead, for I do want to understand what people liked about, say, a movie I disliked or a game that did not grab me.  Dialog is far more valuable, and less destructive, that reflexive defensive hostility.

Anyway, just my thoughts on this subject.

Edit: L of Geek’s Dream Girl puts it much more eloquently in Amicable Disagreement 101.

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Visiting Washington D.C.

19 September, 2010

Just got back last week from a trip to Washington DC, which as you no doubt know, is full of museums, galleries and history.  We were staying in Alexandria, Virginia, fairly close to the Old Town area which is quite nice and an easy Metro ride away from the heart of DC.

On our way to Alexandria we visited the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center of the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum which is located near Dulles Airport.  Read the rest of this entry ?

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GenCon 2010 Report

12 August, 2010

My trip began well, riding in with the talented B of our playgroup who was off to run games at GenCon for ArcDream.  At the airport we split up to head for our respective flights, mine left two hours late but did safely make it to Indianapolis just later than planned. Read the rest of this entry ?

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Review – Predators (Movie)

18 July, 2010

We went to see the new Predators movie today.  Solid adventure movie, not quite as good as the original Predator but very close (though also a slightly different style of movie).  There seem to be a lot of stylistic echoes of the first movie, so if you have a copy it may be worth rewatching before you see this.  It is well scripted and well acted, the special effects are solid but nothing exceptional.  Worth seeing if you like action adventure with a dash of science fiction.  Also makes a good framework for a one-shot or short session adventure.

More comments and questions with spoilers further down

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Free the Droids Now!

16 June, 2010

I just recently watched Space Balls which got me thinking about Star Wars and its universe, most particularly about the status of droids in that far away place long, long ago.

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Making my own New Crobuzon

2 June, 2010

Inspired by China Mieville’s New Crobuzon directly and The Githyanki Diaspora‘s thoughts on Make your Own New Crobuzon (yes, I know I am almost exactly a year late on this).

We shall call it Sphynxcourland and place it on the Nearmar Peninsula.

The three major, but oppressed, ‘races’ are:

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Review – Clash of the Titans (2010)

6 April, 2010

Laura, my wife, and I went to see this on Easter, caught the earliest show which was nice and uncrowded.

Clash of the Titans begins with a potted history, which totally screws up the Greek creation myth and the conflict between the gods and the titans.  The coherence of the story does not get any better from then on.  The special effects are quite good, the action is above average and the movie looks good but the plot is weak, contradictory and does constant violence to the fabric and ideals of Greek myth.   If you can let the plot wash over you in a Zen-like state to enjoy the action scenes and the pretty visuals, you will be better off for it.

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More spoiler laden comments follow after the break.

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Review – Avatar (movie)

24 December, 2009

Short, non-spoiler review: Go and watch it for the CGI world of Pandora and the Na’vi.  An amazing realization of an alien environment, the best so far.  Ignore as much as possible the ham-handed plot that lacks all subtly and shows that Cameron does not understand what science fiction is.

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Spoiler filled analysis after the cut.

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