Jul. 19th, 2012

innocent_man: (Default)
So, exciting news! The pdfs of curse the darkness went out to people yesterday. And I've already gotten an email telling me about a mistake! I'm a real game publisher! :)

(The mistake is pretty minor, really, and we'll correct it at some point, but it doesn't affect gameplay, it's just an inconsistency in the setting timeline. If I were following the 90s White Wolf "never admit a mistake" philosophy, I'd say something about narrator bias, but the truth is I just typed "three" when I meant "five" and no one caught it.)

Anyway, the game will go on sale for download from Drive-Thru RPG on August 1st. I want to give the Kickstarter backers a little time to obtain and read (and maybe even play, gasp!) the game before it goes live for purchase. Plus I need to give Nicole some time to get our website going.

The print books...well, it's in the works. There are things going on with the pdfs that are art or layout related and therefore I don't understand them, but the people who do understand them (Michelle and Gareth and Matt) inform me that things are progressing. Hopefully, hopefully, we'll get the books by GenCon. If we get the books before GenCon, we will have books and Kits at GenCon if I have to pull all-nighters to get them assembled.

What else am I working on? Well, let's see.


  • Left-Hand Path for Mage. I need to be done with development by 8/1. It's, what, 7/19 now? That shouldn't be a big issue. What's the weekend look like? Er, kinda choppy. Well, certainly I can get at least some of it done, and then probably finish it next week. A little extra time for Michelle to edit would be welcome, I'm sure.
  • That Fiction Thing. I have a bunch of stories to read, and a bunch more stories to read, and some more stories coming tomorrow to read. These I can do over the weekend because they're only 4000 words a pop, and that's quick reading. So let's commit to one a day, and try to do two.
  • Ghost rules for curse the darkness. I'm looking forward to it, but I never think about it when I'm at a computer. I think I can get them done by GenCon.
  • Custom scenarios for curse the darkness backers. These will take me all of an hour to do. I'd like to get them done and laid out in something resembled the book's format, but doing that before GenCon might be a stretch. I think I may have to just do it in Word and cook it down to a pdf, but that shouldn't be a big problem. I told them I'd try and get them done by GenCon, but that it might slip past that.
  • Project with Sean Fannon. Skype meeting today, deadline is in early September, I think I'm gonna have to let the real work slip to after GenCon.
  • Story for We Are Dust. Almost done. I've been saying "I'll do it today" all week and then other stuff keeps cropping up. Definitely done by Monday.
  • curse the darkness playset for Our Last Best Hope. Got the template, but I don't there's any way I'm getting it done before GenCon.
  • Oh, and I'm also a GM! I have to take notes for Deadlands tonight, Geist Saturday, Mermaid Adventures Sunday, nothing Monday because that's Michelle's GM night, but then I should take notes for Dresden next week at some point.


OK, so that's enough. For today, let's do this:


  • Light housecleaning.
  • Game notes for the weekend.
  • Make a damn character.
  • Movie write-up.
  • Game write-up.
  • Read 2 fiction pieces.
  • Start development pass.
  • Skype meeting.


Jesus. Best get to it.

Game write-up - Armies of Mars! )

Oh, right, dinner that night:



Carrots, pork chops, crab paste, white rice.


It would be a completely straightforward basket, except crab paste. And holy shit, that stuff is like the Platonic ideal of "crab" in a goddamn tube.

So, I was pressed for time. Candied the carrots with brown sugar and milk and some salt, sauteed the pork chops with some smoked salt, cooked the rice in chicken stock in my rice cooker, and made a salad from carrot tops, tomato and cucumbers with a crab paste vinegarette dressing. There!
innocent_man: (redtalons)
Dog Soldiers is a werewolf movie with soldiers, directed by Neil Marshall, the same dude what did The Descent.

The movie opens with a young couple in Scotland getting eaten by werewolves (the man has just been knighted and given a pure silver letter opener, engraved "Chekov's Gun" [not really]). Then we cut to Cooper (Kevin McKidd) being tested for Special Forces and failing because his tester, Ryan (Liam Cunningham) orders him to shoot a dog and he refuses.

Cut to two weeks later, when Cooper's unit is deployed into Scotland for war games, against Ryan's unit, but they quickly discover that this ain't no game. They find the SF unit torn to shreds, Ryan alive but wounded, and they aren't sure what's doing it. One of them is killed, the sarge (Sean Pertwee), is wounded, and they wind up finding a young woman out driving her jeep (Emma Cleasby) who knows what's going on - there are werewolves.

They wind up at a farmhouse, dig in, and fight as best they can. But these werewolves don't just roll over and die when they're shot, these are the "silver or get fucked" variety. Oh, and they're infective.

The movie is a good action/horror movie, and it's notable for how the soldiers respond to the threat around them and for how they function as a unit of friends and comrades. It's very much like a war movie with werewolves. Also, there are neat little references to soldiers as dogs throughout, which makes for an interesting motif.

The issue, really, is with Meagan. She's actually a werewolf, and the implication is that she's trying to get out of the pack, but that she eventually comes to realize that these guys are screwed so she might as well eat them. That reveal is handled clumsily, though, and it doesn't make a lot of sense as presented. I'm willing to chalk some of it up to her being a bit unhinged, but it might also be that Marshall (who also wrote the screenplay) was grappling with some issues with women at the time, or that some important stuff got cut out.

The effects are interesting, if low budget. The werewolves are slow and cumbersome, so mostly you see them in quick cuts to make it look like they're faster. Their fur is beautiful and wolf-like, though. At the end, when they're picking their way through the kitchen, they grab the rafters in a way that looks interesting and stalk-y, but actually it was because they were on stilts and couldn't keep their balance (another happy accident for Marshall, like the cake thing in Descent).

I like this movie and it's a good werewolf movie, and we can always use more of those.

My grade: B+
Rewatch value: Medium-high

Next up: Don't Look in the Basement!
innocent_man: (goblin)
So here we are at one of our occasional Deadlands installments. Read more... )

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