Monday, February 20, 2012

The Bodyguard Vs. The Rookie

* = This 'Norris Face' will keep me up at night, and not because I'm masturbating...

This weekend I was really productive. Shocking, I know. I had the opportunity Saturday morning to hammer out a crap ton of Encounter Cards for the D&D Adventure System. The goal is to knock out 52 of these bad boys to have a ‘genericEncounter Deck that isn’t quiet as nasty as the Decks we get with the three games. I don’t mind the Encounters by and large, but they have a way of taking away from the game rather than adding to it in a lot of ways. I want them to be involved, but not as debilitating. So I’ve tried to come up with concepts that keep a ‘genericD&D flavor that don’t destroy you in-game. I’ve already done some revisions and even knocked out the suggested revisions for my Ally Card version of John Roger’s D&D Comic characters.
I think the Fell’s Five characters turned out really well. A few of the blokes on the Board Game Geek web site are talking about doing full blown Hero Kits for these five, and I really hope they do, but for now I’m extremely happy to be able to put them in my next Deck after Pathfinder & Dragon’s Tears. That’s right I’m already planning my next Monster Card Decks; Points Of Light (this one will have the Fell’s Five crew in it) & The Jade Isles (an Asian themed deck). It’s ambitious, and I hope to continue to get assistance with them, but either way I’ve got plans at least this far out, and that doesn’t even include the next Pathfinder’s mini set.

We also ran a TON of errands on Saturday. We hit up a few shopping destinations as well as two Half-Priced Books since we had a 40% off coupon. I was able to secure some Ravenloft books I’d been looking for at about a $1 a shot, and used my coupons to get a couple DC Showcases & a Marvel Essentials for less than $5 a piece. It was crazy. I now have some Metal Men, Booster Gold, & Werewolf By Night reading to do.

Sunday we had plans, this was the main onus for the serious cleaning we did Saturday night, but things didn’t work out. So we had a lot of time on Sunday. I was able to finish painting some minis last week as well. I was lucky enough to convince my lovely wife to help me finish them with the DIP. I am, by and large happy with the way they turned out, with just a few ‘drip’ issues. I think I might have fixed them last night, or at least made them bearable. I finished 6 Trolls, including three HUGE guys with different paint jobs. The other three Trolls are from two different D&D board games. I think overall the Trolls all turned out tremendously. There were like three Adventurer types, and the wash really made the difference in how they turned out. I finished a cannon, a nasty looking Ogre-Kin, a Warhammer Fantasy Ogre that I’m using as a Hill Giant, a Barghest, a giant Spider, two massive Hobgoblins, a crazy looking Wizard all in white, a Half-Giant Gladiator made from a re-painted Gladiator Hulk, two columns, a couple Warhammer Fantasy Orks that will be Tanarukks, and a goblin. I think that’s about it. This week I’m going to make a run on trying to complete ten minis, and keep that pace. With the weather being what it is, and the sheer amount of half finished minis I have that’s not that unrealistic of a goal.

It was crazy that it was nice enough to not only go out and use the DIP, but also to grill. We were able to grill up some chicken, some burgers for the INSANE chili that Cassandra made last night, and some different hot dogs and turkey sausages. We will eat like summer time royalty this week as the sloppy snow falls. I have to admit that this Winter has been ‘soft’ and I’ve enjoyed it, but more than anything I’ve enjoyed the ability it’s afforded us to continue to be outside and cook. With the chicken we went Cajun seasoning, so sometime this week my lovely wife will be getting a Cajun Chicken Alfredo.

With all this getting done you’ll be shocked to know that I got back on my Doctor Whohorse’ and finished some more episodes;
- Galaxy Four S03E01 (*** ½ out of 5) Now the thing is with a lot of these super old Who episodes from the 1960’s is they are ‘reconstructions’, meaning that the video footage was destroyed so you are basically listening to a Radio Play with occasional footage and stills, three of the four ‘parts’ of this episode where ‘reconstructions’. That however didn’t really detract from the episode itself. The premise was that The Doctor, Stephen, & Vicki are on a planet where two races are at war while the planet is getting ready to explode. On one side you have the Rill, who aren’t really even seen until the late second part, and their robotic servitors the Chumlies, and on the other side the blond woman warriors of Drahva. There of course are the misunderstandings that abound in classic Who fashion, as well as the way that this episode tries to teach you a ‘lesson’ about appearances not telling the whole story. It’s not a bad episode; it’s just been done, a LOT. It was funny to hear the extras at the beginning explaining why Stephen is such a weak character in this episode being physically pushed around by the Drahvian women warriors, it’s because this episode was written for Barbara & Ian. Stephen was stuck doing the ‘Barbara’ role.

- Mission To The Unknown S03E02 (**** out of 5) HOLY CRAP! This episode, also known as the Dalek Cutaway, is CRAZY! First off there is NO Doctor or Companions in it. It’s all about a group of individuals who have crashed on Kembel, and have found out the Daleks are there and plotting something MASSIVE. The Daleks use these nasty plants called Varga plants where if a thorn nicks you you go homicidally insane and eventually become another Varga plant. Of course one of them is instantly nicked and has to be killed, the other two hold out and try to escape, but realize they are in an impossible position. It’s up to them to warn Earth about the Daleks as they are hunted through the jungle. It’s about as bleak a Doctor Who episode as you’ll see, in fact everyone dies, and dies horribly. The interesting thing is this is merely a set-up for two episodes from now when we get the massive 12-part EPIC ‘The Daleks’ Master Plan’. This is all about setting the stage that the Daleks are establishing a power base and making alliances with a slew of nasty baddies from the Outer Galaxies. It was stated that this episode never really got shown in the U.S. because of its downer of an ending and the fact that everyone dies in horrible fashion. Bare in mind it was 1966.

- The Myth Makers S03E03 (**** out of 5) BUT before we can get to ‘The Daleks’ Master Plan’ we get a four part episode where The Doctor, Stephen, & Vicki find themselves on the plains of Troy during the Trojan War. I was pleasantly surprised by this episode, especially considering it’s all ‘reconstructed’. It isn’t afraid to turn all our preconceived notions of these almost ‘mythological’ characters on their ears. First off the reason Achilles kills Hector is the distraction of the arrival of The Doctor. We get a cocksure religious zealot in Achilles who is convinced that The Doctor is Zeus. Agamemnon is a still a warmongering ass, but the big surprise is Odysseus. Usually, he’s portrayed as a tricky, but noble individual who simply wants to go home. In this episode he’s a mean-spirited opportunist who is just looking for anyway to profit. Eventually we get the inevitable split of the Companions as Vicki and the TARDIS end up in Troy while Stephen & The Doctor are prisoners of Odysseus who wants them to find a way to end the war. I’m sure you can tell where this is heading; The Doctor helps the Greeks build The Trojan Horse. In the end Vicki falls for King Priam’s youngest son Troilus, who was romantically attached to the soothe-sayer Cassandra who wants Vicki dead. One of the best parts is the really funny portrayal of Paris as a man so despised by his own family that he falls for the simplest of plots, oh and the fact we NEVER even see Helen Of Troy. The Fall Of Troy occurs even with Vicki trying her best to prevent it, but she does manage to get Troilus to leave Troy first. There he encounters and kills Achilles. In the end Vicki stays with Troilus after the Fall Of Troy, which shocked the HELL out of me. Instead one of Cassandra’s underlings Katarina is thrust into the role of Companion when she saves a badly wounded Stephen from being killed. The Doctor, Katarina, & Stephen escape just as Odysseus comes to claim the TARDIS. It’s a crazy episode. We lose Vicki, who sort of has a ‘love at first sight’ moment with Troilus, but leaves with little ceremony, she’s just sort of left behind, very reminiscent to the way Susan was left. Stephen is almost dead at the end of the Episode; Katarina is a completely unknown quantity. A Trojan slave on the TARDIS who thinks The Doctor is a god, and The Doctor doesn’t even know where they are going. All this is leading to the next 12-part episode, which you KNOW is going to be ‘Crazy Insane’ because it’s about the Daleks. WHEW! If this had not been a ‘reconstruction’ it would have been a five star episode.

I’m halfway through ‘The Daleks’ Master Plan’, and it is AWESOME! I’ll save my review till I’ve finished it, but it’s really solid. You can really see Terry Nation hit his stride as the scribe of The Doctor, and more importantly The Daleks, in this episode. There is an underlying hint of future menace, not to mention all the cool alien ‘allies’ the Daleks have. I can’t wait to see who they EXTERMINATE them. It’s nice to be back into my Who groove.

I hear my TARDIS calling, it’s time for…


- I miss you Anthony.
- The NFL Combine is this week! HOORAY FOOTBALL!
- Big Movie-A-Thon on Friday night. I can’t wait to rip the crap out of these flicks, especially Honey. It just looks SO bad.
- Saturday is Tax Day for us. I’m not looking forward to it.
- Dave, our conversation on Sunday was fantastic. However I just want it noted for the record that I miss you.
- The sickness I’ve been battling is seemingly staggering to its inevitable end, but damn if it’s not lingering stubbornly. I’ve still got a bit of the hack cough, my body aches haven’t subsided, and I’m really tired. All that being said it’s about a million times better than it was.
- On the crappy side of it, while my back pain has gone mostly away, my hips down into my feet are KILLING me. My right hip hurts to the point it’s giving me a ‘dead leg’ walk. I’m hoping if I keep stretching, heating, and talking Ibuprofen that it’ll work the pinch out.
- It’s funny, well not ‘ha ha’ funny how grief and regret will blow into your life at times like a storm, and then as quickly blow back out. How certain things you own, songs, or even things on television will remind you of someone or sometime. I never want to forget, but a lot times I’d like to remember less.
- It’s good to know that L.O.M. loves him some LEGOs. It’s even better to know that the only thing he loves better than having them is playing with them with his Dad.
- It’s funny I’ve just had two very homoerotic ‘miss you’ to my P.L.P.’s, Platonic Life Partners for those that don’t know, in this blog today. The best part about it is, that I’m completely O.K. with it.
- Tuesday nights are going to be for Twin Peaks. Starting tomorrow I’m watching at least one episode every Tuesday. I’ll do write ups as I go. There you go Dave & Mike, I’M WALKING THROUGH THE FIRE!
- Maybe this week I’ll get Cassandra to start a Co-Op Video Game with me. Maybe…

Well I think I’ve blathered on long enough…

“Hand of fate is moving and the finger points to you
He knocks you to your feet and so what are you gonna do
Your tongue has frozen now you've got something to say
The piper at the gates of dawn is calling you his way

You watch the world exploding every single night
Dancing in the sun a newborn in the light
Say goodbye to gravity and say goodbye to death
Hello to eternity and live for every breath

Your time will come, your time will come
Your time will come, your time will come

The ferryman wants his money you ain't going to give it back
He can push his own boat as you set up off the track
Nothing you can contemplate will ever be the same
Every second is a new spark, sets the universe aflame

You watch the world exploding every single night
Dancing in the sun a newborn in the light
Brothers and their fathers joining hands and make a chain
The shadow of the Wicker Man is rising up again

Your time will come, your time will come
Your time will come, your time will come

Your time will come, your time will come
Your time will come, your time will come
Your time will come, your time will come
Your time will come, your time will come”

* = It's true he IS!


  1. I'll let you in on a little secret. It would not take much to convince me to play video games with you. In fact, I would go so far as to say that I'm easy like Sunday morning when being propositioned to play video games. I love video games and don't know why I don't play them more often.

  2. Hmmm, perhaps then Wed. night we play some video games...

  3. awwwww.... i miss you too, big buddy. saturday may just have to be a day where the awesomeness that is PHO will wash away all your tax-related sadness!!! I'll let you in on the insider's way of eating this tasty dish.

  4. I'm not sure what our plans are. I'll talk to 'The Boss'. The PHO would wash away my potential Tax Sadness...

  5. Did you ever finish these Encounter cards? I'd like to print them out myself. :)

    1. They are over on Board Game Geek, under Team Ant. I ended up with like three or four monster decks and one Encounter deck. Thanks for looking!