Jeffro's Space Gaming Blog

Microgames, Monster Games, and Role Playing Games

Blog Watch: Watchmen, Dark Albion, Chaosium, Hollow Earth Expedition, Morale, and Cigarettes

Comics (Doctor Xaos Comics Madness) Whom were they watching? — “Taking out the, for lack of a better word, environmental villains removes the heroes along with them. It means that the trappings of the ‘costumed crime-fighters’ must be explained in some other way besides stepping up to the ongoing menace the villains both represent and actually present. Without any such menace in the picture, the heroes’ costumes become fetishes, with their psychologies adjusted to match; their patriotism or community spirit becomes naivete or goon-ism; and their feistiness and powerful abilities become bullying, up to and including casual atrocities – all of which describes the historical characters and the pasts of the principal characters in Watchmen precisely. And so important: every one of them is completely out of his or her depth regarding the social and political world they live in and in no way can they confront it…. Instead of grappling with power-politics, they become establishment stooges.”

RPGs (The RpgPundit) Will Dark Albion be Fantasy England, or an England-like Fantasy-World? — “But it will probably be the most historically accurate setting for Europe ever done for a D&D-style game that wasn’t just purely historical. It’s a bit closer to historical accuracy than Pendragon. It’s closer to historical accuracy than WFRP’s Empire. It will have all kinds of spectacular information for the history buff. But, just like with Arrows of Indra, the first priority will not be historical accuracy, but playability and fun. As a historian, I personally refuse to accept that you can’t do both at the same time.”

Those Awful Elves! (Musings of a Malifaux Noob) Malifaux Masters Inspiration – Neverborn — “A Lilit was a she-demon or succubus with long hair and wings who seduced human men and savagely hunted and killed babies and children. Originally it referred to a type of demon rather than a specific individual.”

RPGs (Bleeding Cool) Call It A Comeback – Chaosium Games Founder Announces Return To Company That ‘Lost Its Way’ — “Chaosium Games is one of the very few tabletop roleplaying game companies from the early days of gaming that is still in operation. Probably best known for Call of Cthulhu, the first tabletop horror RPG (and the game responsible for the Lovecraftian influence on gaming, whether in tabletop or video gaming), Chaosium has also published throughout its history the fantasy games Runequest and Stormbringer, based on the works of British fantasy author Michael Moorcock.”

Books (Tor.com) We Need Diverse Books Talks True, Political, Global Diversity in Sci-Fi and Fantasy — “I wish it went without saying, but SFF has always been a political endeavor. But it’s always been a very colonial, racist, political endeavor. It’s a normalized form of politics, that especially white dudes are used to seeing themselves destroy the world and that being a victory and a good thing. That’s not political to them, that’s how it should be.” — Daniel José Older

RPGs (Casting Shadows) Revelations Revealed — “For fans of the planetary romance genre, however, that is not all that this book is. While certainly aimed at expanding and extending the rich setting for Hollow Earth Expedition, the authors recognize that gamers may wish to use the book to build their own Martian settings. Inspiration abounds for those who wish to do just that.”

Books (Misha Burnett) Farewell Science Fiction — “I have decided that I am not a Science Fiction writer. It’s a conviction that has been growing for a while, but recent events have clarified my position. Reading the posts by luminaries in the field who explain why being ‘inclusive’ requires excluding anyone they disagree with (and in the process preforming indignities on Dame English that would make Ana Steele safeword) has brought me to the conclusion that they want Science Fiction to be their own private club, and as far as I am concerned they can have it.”

Game Design (Violent Resolution) As Three is to One — “The mightiest weapons and the most efficient logistics train mean nothing if a soldier – or an army – will not fight when told to fight, persist in their mission even in the face of their own doom, and withdraw in order rather than flee in terror on command.”

Hugo Awards (Cirsova) This Post Brought to You By Kent Cigarettes — “For all of the outrage, very little I’ve seen has been outrageous, or even particularly provocative. Where is the sci-fi Salome I was promised? The mild and inoffensive nature of the Puppy entries is in bizarre contrast to those who’ve given me the impression that it was all going to be Spacemen doing manly things, like shooting guns and absconding with inappropriately dressed women on implausible worlds of mushroom forests populated spear-chucking natives. I mean, if everyone is calling you racist and sexist, at least have some fun with it!”

Free Expression (Works and Days) Building the New Dark-Age Mind — “An American could speak his mind more freely in 1970 than now. ”

Movies (Youtube) David Lynch: Dune & Failure — “When you don’t have final cut– total creative freedom– you stand to die the death. Die the death! And died I did.”

History (Ancient Origins) The Babylonian map of the world sheds light on ancient perspectives — “Three of the islands are labeled as: ‘place of the rising sun’, ‘the sun is hidden and nothing can be seen’, ‘beyond the flight of birds’.”

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