Archive for August, 2004

Wandering monster gets job with NY ferry system

Wednesday, August 11th, 2004

Like to read RPG books? Use public transit? You might wanna find the number of your local ACLU chapter and keep it somewhere handy. Here’s why. (I was going to beat Costikyan to this one, before the technical difficulties. Damn you, technical difficulties!!)

Star Sisterz unleashed, no longer just Limited

Wednesday, August 11th, 2004

ICv2 warns of the news that Star Sisterz is busting out of the joint it was originally sold in (that being the Limited Too store chain in malls). Wizards of the Coast is taking the collectible charm game mass market this fall, attempting to reach more young girls who don’t quite know they’re gamers yet. Unless a few months of exclusivity were part of the deal to get into Limited Too, I don’t see the logic behind this deployment strategy at all. “Let’s make sure that only part of the target audience sees the game, ‘cuz that’s sure to make it a success.” … wait, what?

Dungeons & Dragons Online details

Tuesday, August 10th, 2004

Here’s the World War I flying ace with a summary of some devs from Turbine pimping their MMPORPG in progress. The game will be set in the Eberron setting and feature heavy character customization. It sounds as if these folks have a sincere desire to get the feel of this game right; they’re really focusing on combat, and on making it involve a little more skill and interest than other fantasy online games have done. It’s not gonna be twitch, but it’s not gonna be EverQuest-style sit-there-and-click. I am still unconvinced that D&D Online can find a market niche once World of WarCraft is out there, but I no longer think it’s going to suck. Then again, the hard-fought efforts of smart people have sucked before.

Rock the vote! No… roll the vote? Hmm…

Friday, August 6th, 2004

Voting for the 2004 ENnie Awards is now open. Get to it.

Paranoia XP “goes gold,” ships for Gen Con

Thursday, August 5th, 2004

That’s the top story, but it isn’t the real story. The press release at Greg Costikyan’s site only looks like a press release – it’s actually a handy executive summary of the various ways in which the Paranoia XP dev team used the Internet to strengthen their game before it was even released. “Fans of the game contributed enthusiastically via blog, wiki, and online forum. They wrote text, debated rules, proofread, ran statistical analyses, and even wrote a computer simulator to test the game’s paper-and-pencil rules. […] ‘I think Allen [Varney] is onto something here–at least for artforms that are collaborative in nature, such as games and possibly film, there’s a lot to be said for tapping the collective talents of the fan base, as filtered by a professional.’ ” New rule: if you can’t get at least a dozen online strangers that excited about your game before it comes out, you’re making the wrong game.

This one ain’t losing any wheels

Thursday, August 5th, 2004

Ain’t It Cool News has a mirror of an amateur video clip showing the Batmobile from the movie Batman Begins. It looks interesting, like a proto-version of the machine Michael Keaton’s Batman commanded to shield itself. We may well see an upsurge in superhero-themed games when this flick comes out next year (or at least a special HeroClix figure).

Pirates of the Spanish Main underprinted, selling out

Tuesday, August 3rd, 2004

We played a fun two-player game of this on Sunday, but we’re torn as to whether to write up a playtest report when, odds are, in a few days you’ll have to wait until September to get the game. Retailers across the country are reporting that distributors have told them not to expect any new shipments of Pirates of the Spanish Main for another month. It looks as if WizKids really didn’t know anybody would want their game… either that or they are trying some extremely misguided collectible-thingies sales strategy now that they are owned by Topps. I don’t really believe the latter, though. Can WizKids afford to blow another product launch, especially when this is the first new product they’ve launched in a year and a half that’s actually good?

2004 ENnie nominees announced

Tuesday, August 3rd, 2004

The ENnie Award nominees (aka, the 2004 Gen Con EN World RPG Awards nominees) are up as of yesterday, and online voting will be available soon. The ENnies, run by d20 System uber-website EN World, will announce the winners at Gen Con Indy later this month. The nominee list is below.

Army of Darkness card game at Gen Con Indy

Monday, August 2nd, 2004

Eden Studios plans to have the Army of Darkness Card Game at Gen Con Indy later this month, previewing before its Halloween release. Gamers have been waiting to use their boom sticks for a while now, and anticipation has simmered and increased slowly. It’s a sure bet that Eden will be hearing “Gimme some sugar, baby” as the October release draws closer.