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RPGaDay in August – August 15th: Adapting RPGs August 15, 2017

Posted by jkahane in coriolis rpg, gaming hut, personal, roleplaying games, rpg hut, trudvang chronicles rpg.
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We continue on with #RPGaDAY in August.

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#RPGaDAY

Day 15 – Which RPG do you enjoy adapting the most?

This is a tough one, since I’m not sure I actually understand the question.

In the case of adapting something into an rpg, I would have to say that I rather enjoy adapting the Mark Schultz Xenozoic Tales (aka Cadillacs & Dinosaurs) to a roleplaying game set of rules, since I don’t really like the GDW game that came out. There are also a couple of other game concepts, mostly from novels, that I’d love to adapt but there just isn’t time and all that.

If you’re thinking of adapting material into a pre-existing rpg, I would have to say that it’s been fun adapting material from the Arabian Nights stories into the Coriolis – The Third Horizon RPG, as that’s been a good challenge. I’m also looking forward to adapting some of the Scandinavian myths and legends into the Trudvang Chronicles RPG when that game comes out.

(Note: This is the last entry that I’ll be making for the month until I get back from GenCon 2017, at which time I’ll be playing at least a week of catch-up.)

Happy Birthday, Matt McFarland! August 15, 2017

Posted by jkahane in birthday, chill rpg, gaming hut, personal, roleplaying games, rpg hut.
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Happy Birthday, Matt! 🙂

Today is the birthday of Matthew McFarland, one of the nicest people in the gaming industry that you’re likely to meet.

Also known as “BlackHat Matt”, Matt works as a speech-language pathologist during the day, but has been writing and developing roleplaying games professionally since 1998. He’s got a lot of rpg writing and assorted work under his belt, but is currently a founder of the company Growling Door Games
and has just released the Monsters Sourcebook for the Chill 3rd Edition RPG.

May the Goddess bless you with happiness, health, prosperity, and good cheer for the coming year. May you always have a warm breeze at your back. And may the next year also be a Chilly one as well. 🙂

Here’s hoping you have a terrific birthday, Matt! 🙂

Leaving on a Jet Plane… August 15, 2017

Posted by jkahane in conventions, gaming hut, gencon, personal, travel.
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My bags are packed, and I’m ready to go… so I’m heading for the airport, and leaving on a jet plane… Bound for Indianapolis and GenCon 2017.

Have a great week folks. While I’ll be doing a bit of tweeting while I’m away, I’ll post up to my blog as soon as I get a chance once I’m back in Ottawa. Indy awaits! 🙂

Up and Indy-At ‘Em! August 15, 2017

Posted by jkahane in conventions, gencon, health hut, personal, travel.
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Awake.

Too damn early to get up.

Well, my suitcase and carry-on luggage are mostly packed, other than putting the cold pack with the insulin in and the last of the toiletries, everything is pretty much ready to go. Heading out to GenCon 2017 this morning, around 10:00 am, but need to be at the airport by no later than 8:00 am.

Didn’t sleep all that well last night, tossing and turning somewhat, having left foot nerve spasms again, not to mention my bad shoulder is hurting quite a bit. Going to have to remember to avoid lifting anything at all with the arm, suitcases and all.

Other than that, time to get functional for the day. Shower and shave first, I think.

‘Twas the Day Before I Leave for GenCon… August 14, 2017

Posted by jkahane in food hut, gaming hut, gencon, health hut, personal, rpg hut.
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…and as per last time I did this, if you think I’m going anywhere with that, guess again. 🙂

While today is officially the start of GenCon Week for most, it’s a very bizarre time. Most folks won’t be leaving for Indy until either Wednesday or Thursday, others have actually already started to make their way to Indianapolis, but I will be heading for Indy early mid-morning tomorrow for a mass date with all my geek (and I mean that in a good way!) and gamer friends. In the meantime, I have a few thoughts on the whole GenCon experience to share.

I attended GenCon last in 2015, having gone before that in 2008, 2011 and 2012, and before that I hadn’t gone to a GenCon since it had been in Milwaukee. (Yes, that’s a long time between conventions prior to 2008.) While the convention has changed over the years, certain rules of etiquette and behaviour have not, but as the convention has gotten larger, the scope of these basics of etiquette and behaviour have been modified somewhat. I’m not going to talk about these, so much as I’m going to talk about stuff that is important to me, and things about how I intend to enable a good time for myself this year at GenCon. One of the nice things about my attendance in 2008, 2011, 2012 and 2015 is that I’ve learned a bit more about some of this stuff.

The first thing I’m doing for this year’s visit to Indianapolis is to pack relatively light. Being diabetic, there are certain medications and the like that I have to take with me, not to mention the insulin and needles, but from the point of view of clothing, I’m taking twice the number of pairs of socks and underwear that I need, two sets of comfortable shoes, and several pairs of pants and t-shirts along with me. The two pairs of shoes is a necessity, since one does a lot of walking at GenCon, and being able to change shoes each day is a desirable thing. Same thing with the extra pairs of socks. It’s going to get pretty warm (actually, hot!) at the convention, and changing socks halfway through the day does wonders for keeping the feet relatively comfy. Comfy feet make for happy feet!

The second thing I intend to do is to take care of my health. With over 70,000 people attending the convention tis year, there are bound to be some health issues and the like. There are some basic guidelines that I intend to deal with in regards to my health this year. Same as I did last time around. First off, I plan to wash my hands regularly. Second, I’m bringing a small bottle of hand sanitizer; while there is some debate as to whether it works in helping to kill off germs and all, this is still a good move. Third, I’m bringing with me a box of kleenex. Fourth, I’m bringing a mask or three with me (just in case). Finally, I’m planning on exercising common sense in this regard.

Part of the common sense aspect of taking care of your health also involves what is called the “3-2-1 Rule”. Simply put, this means that in a twenty-four (24) hour period, you should get 3 hours of sleep, eat 2 meals, and take 1 shower, MINIMUM. Personally, I’m going to practice the “8-3-1 Rule” (if I can). Sleep is good for you, and with the sheer amount of gaming and walking and all one is going to do at the convention, sleeping makes you healthier and happier. One of the things I plan to do in this regard is that if I don’t catch enough sleep at the convention, I’m going to take short naps if possible. Food? Well, one needs it. Eating three meals per day is better than eating two, since you’ll need the fuel to keep going at the convention, and we’re not talking about snacking here. Snacking is all fine and good when you need it, but to stay healthy and keep the energy up, you need to eat real food at sit-down meals. I’m planning to eat good breakfasts, light lunches, and a healthy hot evening meal each night come hell or high water, and will have some healthy snacks with me as being diabetic, I need to keep an even level of blood sugar in my body if possible. Planning to buy some foodstuffs for the refrigerator that I asked for in the hotel room. Healthy stuff, of course. Oh, and bottles of water or other stuff to drink. Everyone needs to remember to stay hydrated at the convention. I plan to buy a 24-bottle case or two of water for the convention to have to drink when I need it. Speaking of water, Shower. It’s going to be quite warm in Indianapolis (as it always is at this time of year) and there are going to be around 70,000 people at this convention, and they’re all going to sweat. You don’t want to smell bad (or worse, stink) while talking to old friends and possible new friends, and so showering at least once a day (more often, if your body type needs that) is a good idea. Showering is good for your health, and will make you more friends. Not to mention a good, hot shower can ease those tired and sore muscles that you’re bound to develop. Depending on how grotty and gnarly I feel, I plan to shower once every morning, and then take a quick wash down in the hotel room if I need to during the course of the day.

The third and final thing I plan to do this year at the convention is to pace myself. I didn’t figure this out back in 2008, but that experience proved valuable in this respect in 2011, 2012 and 2015. Part of the thing about GenCon is that the convention is just way too big. This is, these days, a trade show more than it is a gaming convention, although all manner of games are extremely well represented. That said, the convention is just too *big* to see everything. So you have to learn to pace yourself. Have a rough idea of what you want to game in (hopefully having pre-registered for whatever games you want), and then allocate the rest of your time to doing what you want to do – whether it’s some more gaming, catching up with friends, and of course, going into the Exhibit Hall. One of the things that I did in 2008 was I didn’t pace myself, but that was largely due to the fact that I’d not been to a GenCon in quite a few years. Got caught up in the excitement. This year, like last time I went, I’ve thought things out a bit more, and am running a couple of games. I’ll be running two sessions of Fria Ligan’s Coriolis – The Third Horizon at the convention (assuming anyone shows up to play!). I’ve already decided that the rest of my time will be split among a few other things, but suffice to say that I will pace myself to the best of my ability.

I’ve got the two scheduled games I’m running at the convention, and am hoping to get into a couple of games to play, but there’s also so much to see at the convention! Between the games, the seminars, and all the other stuff going on, one can easily forget about the Exhibit Hall. Dealers from all over gaming goodness will be represented there, and some who deal in merchandise peripherally related to gaming as well, and it would be easy to miss all manner of goodies. I’ll try to see the whole Exhibit Hall, for example, but I won’t hold my breath that I’m actually going to manage it – it’s just too big. My key goal this year in the Exhibit Hall is to purchase the stuff that I came for as early as I can get it, and then just browse, mosey around, and see what else there is. Might buy a few other things, might not. I’ve left some time during each day (other than the Friday and Saturday) for taking in some of the other sights and sounds of GenCon, but whether I manage to succeed in this regard is anyone’s guess.

And there are just a few other basic rules of etiquette.

First off, be polite to people. Courtesy is something that we all owe each other at GenCon, and given that there will be over 70,000 of us, politeness is a necessity. That and the “1” of the “3-2-1 Rule” (see above). This politeness takes the form of both the mental/social politeness but also the physical politeness. One tends to stand close to friends, not strangers, when talking to them. And people like their physical space. This also needs to be considered when one is walking around at the convention carrying one’s bag of stuff or backpack. If you’ve got a backpack on you, bear in mind that it takes up *room*. When you swing around to talk to someone, that backpack swings with you – and if you’re in tight with people, it’s going to hit someone. Be considerate, and economise your movements. Or better yet, use a shoulder bag, and still consider your movements.

Second, don’t monopolize peoples’ time. While I know that you want to spend the next hour talking to the poor game dealer guy about your character in his game or your thoughts about their new line of products, bear in mind that others are waiting to talk to this poor fellow, too, and he wants to sell some product so that he doesn’t have to travel back to his offices/warehouses with it at the end of the convention. Know when to say goodbye, and move on.

That’s all I can think of for now, but this is a pretty long post. So that will do.

Back to the final packing for the trip. After some supper.

However, anyone who wants to offer some thoughts or advice in the Comments section is welcome to do so. 🙂

RPGaDay in August – August 14th: Open-Ended RPG Play? August 14, 2017

Posted by jkahane in gaming hut, personal, roleplaying games, rpg hut.
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We continue on with #RPGaDAY in August.

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#RPGaDAY

Day 14 – Which RPG do you prefer for open-ended campaign play?

In my opinion, I think that every rpg out there is suitable for open-ended campaign play, but it takes some effort on the part of the GM to run such a campaign and to keep making new game scenarios and materials for such campaigns. And this also takes effort and work on the part of the players to make such a campaign successful.

That said, I can see where some rpgs, like those suitable for children, might not be suited to open-ended campaigns, but suspect that they can be adapted to such play, depending on the children playing the game and the person running it wanting to take it in that direction.

(Note: Just so that folks know, since I’m going to GenCon Indy tomorrow, I’ll be posting tomorrow’s #RPGaDay entry automatically tomorrow, but will catch up on the rest of the month when I get back from Indianapolis.)

A Busy Monday August 14, 2017

Posted by jkahane in conventions, diabetes, doctor, gaming hut, gencon, health hut, personal, physiotherapy.
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Monday morning. The day before I leave for GenCon Indy.

Must have slept on the bad shoulder last night, as I’m in pretty bad pain this morning. Need to take a couple of pills now, and hope they mute the pain somewhat.

Not going to be able to get much rest today, as I’ve got two doctor appointments today, and have to do a bit of shopping for some of my medication related stuff (noticeably the insulin and the needles) and a couple of other sundries. I’ve also got to finish the packing for GenCon 2017

So this promises to be a busy day once more. I would have liked to have taken it easy and rested up a bit today, but such is not to be the case.

RPGaDay in August – August 13th: Game Experience Changer August 13, 2017

Posted by jkahane in gaming hut, personal, rpg hut.
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We continue on with #RPGaDAY in August.

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#RPGaDAY

Day 13 – Describe a game experience that changed how you play.

This is a tough one for me.

That said, I think the game experience that changed how I play happened when my goddaughter, Ellie, started to actually play with the Friday night gaming group when she was 9 years old or so. While she’d been at the gaming table on and off since she was very small, it was when she actually expressed an interest in and started playing with us that my gaming style changed somewhat. More sensitive to the needs of younger players as well as being more…choosy…in terms of the language I use at the table. And with Ellie joining the group, there was a shift in gender majority as well, so that provided some useful lessons, too.

RPGaDay in August – August 12th: Most Inspiring Art August 12, 2017

Posted by jkahane in chill rpg, coriolis rpg, gaming hut, personal, roleplaying games, rpg hut, skyrealms of jorune rpg, trudvang chronicles rpg.
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We continue on with #RPGaDAY in August.

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#RPGaDAY

Day 12 – Which RPG has the most inspiring art?

Interesting question.

I’ve got an interesting answer to this.

For the older rpgs out there, the most inspiring art for me came from the old DragonQuest RPG from SPI as well as the fantastic art for the SkyRealms of Jorune RPG that inspired so many story ideas for me back in the day.

From the modern day, the artwork for the Chill 3rd Edition RPG, as well as that of the Coriolis – The Third Horizon and the soon-to-be-released Trudvang Chronicles RPG have been the most inspirational artwork.

Shopping, Buying a Car, and Boston Pizza August 11, 2017

Posted by jkahane in conventions, food hut, gencon, grocery shopping, health hut, personal, photos.
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It has been a long, stressful day in many ways. But with a good outcome.

Spent part of the morning shopping for supplies and stuff that I need for the trip down to GenCon Indy 2017 and was pretty tired when I got home for lunch. After lunch, I made my final decision as to the car that I wanted, and went over to the Mazda dealership, Dilawri Mazda, and bought my car.

She’s a 2014 Mazda GS, and her colour is Titanium Flash (fancy paint job, that!). 🙂

Since the car won’t be mine until the insurance is set up and new license plates and registration are established, from Mazda it was getting late so time for supper. Headed over to Boston Pizza once more, and ate a lovely meal of a small caesar salad and a Pizza Bella, washed down with a Heineken.

I couldn’t eat the whole pizza, so took the leftovers home with me for lunch or supper tomorrow night.

Just sitting back and relaxing now, about 10:35 pm, before I have to take my insulin shot. Then bed.

Long day, tiring, exhausting, but rewarding. 🙂