GenCon Journal 2014: Jupiter Rescue

genconThis story actually starts on Wednesday of Gen Con. I was hanging out with my friends at the Embassy suites at Happy Hour.

I like to call it Happy Hour: The Drunkening.

The line for the Bar at the beginning of Happy Hour is a bit long and the tables around the bar area are littered with gamers playing a variety of games. As the line inched ever closer to the delicious alcohol, a game caught my eye. It seemed to have a space theme and the board was littered with aliens in pursuit of humans. I was bold enough to ask what type of game it was and they told me that it was a cooperative board game wherein you tried to rescue humans from aliens on a space station. It sounded intriguing and looked like fun but the inexorable call of Happy Hour pulled me out of the orbit of the game.

Needless to say, there was much drinking and merry making. Enough so that I ended up missing dinner with the people from Zero Fortitude, the other website for whom I write. So, Happy Hour winds down as it is wont to do and the call for food went up from the masses. We gathered together and headed down to the Weber Grill that is accessible through the hotel lobby. It is here where an opportunity presented itself. I am dining with Meg, one of the creators at Games By Playdate. Two people stop by our table to chat with her about her games as well as their game. It turns out that these two individuals were the ones playing Jupiter Rescue at Happy Hour. Meg is gracious enough to mention that there is someone at the table that was interested in the game and also writes for a geeky website.

At this point, you will have to imagine an inordinate amount of internal squeeing. Yes, I know it is not very professional but I own it nonetheless.

Meg introduces me to Christina and Mark Major and we make an appointment to meet on Thursday at 4 p.m. in the lobby of the Downtown Marriott. This is where drunk Rob was not thinking very clearly. The lobby of my motel is large and I should have specified where at in the lobby to meet. Thankfully, despite this faux pas on my part, we are able to meet the next day.

It turns out that Jupiter Rescue was created as part of a contest on the game crafter website. The contest was to create a cooperative game and Christina and Mark decided to give it a try. As fate would have it, they won. The prize was a review from Father Geek and to be judges in the next game crafter competition.

They developed Jupiter Rescue in January of 2013 and then heard of the Cards Against jrHumanity Death Match and decided to enter this as well. They ended up being one of the 16 finalists. They continued their creative endeavors by attending Publisher Speed Dating at Gen Con 2013. This is an event where designers are given short amounts of time with various publishers to present their games. It turned out that Twilight Creations was sold on Jupiter Rescue and the two signed a contract with them after Gen Con.

Jupiter Rescue was released by Twilight Creations in the spring of this year and it is the first game of Christina and Mark’s to appear at Gen Con. They are very happy with Twilight Creations. The company kept all of the their work intact and just added more. They are especially happy with the miniatures for the game and I totally agree as they are gorgeous. Game play was easy to understand. The board is composed of tiles that have two sides. One side is for a regular game and the other is for a difficult game with fewer connection throughout. Each player gets an action which can either be a move, an attack, a command, or play a card. These action are used to rescue humans from being converted into creeps. Play is quick and requires both strategy and cooperation yet minimizes the need for someone to quarterback the game.

I asked the two how the game was doing. They stated that the sales were doing excellent here at Gen Con. Jupiter Rescue came out in may and has made appearances at SDCC, Origins, and Essen before making it’s appearance here at Gen Con 2014.

The last thing I asked of the two was what they geeked about outside of Jupiter rescue. Christina stated that she does a web comic entitled Sombulus. She recently had a successful Kickstarter that allowed her to produce the first volume of the web comic in graphic novel form. You can find it for sale on her website and I picked one up from her that day as well.According to Mark, he was fortunate enough to be doing what he loved, game design. He enjoys the behind the scenes parts of video game design but really appreciates the freedom of expression that table top allows.

The pair are currently working on game featuring zombies, elves, aliens, pirates, ninjas, and gunslingers. It would have custom figures. They plan to on using game crafter for this as well and turning to Kickstarter when out of the design phase.

So, take some time to visit Twilight Creations website. Jupiter Rescue is a fun cooperative board game for 2 to 7 people and is easily playable in about an hour. I had the time to demo it in the dealer hall and thoroughly enjoyed the game. so much so that it made me sad that I have very few local friends that will play board games.

Funnybooks with Aron and Paulie: Elvis Has Left the Building!

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Check out the Ideology of Madness YouTube Channel for enhanced content!

And this coming weekend… Episode Two of Knights of Reignsborough Season 3, Reign of Ironclaw…

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I Think Boba Fett Could’ve Been Greater… And Here’s How.

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So,I’ve always felt that LucasFilm cheated fans with Boba Fett.  They created a mystique and desire for a badass bounty hunter through strategic appearances and marketing.  Then “Empire Strikes Back” came out and we were presented with a man who’s greatest accomplishments are hiding in the garbage, tattling on Han Solo, and needing the Empire in order to bring in his bounty. “Return of the Jedi” didn’t help much when the only things it added are that Fett likes to sit around Jabba’s Palace doing nothing and then get killed by a blind man when his backpack is hit too hard.

I always felt that a simple change would help to make Fett a far more interesting and badass so I finally decided to illustrate it.  Click on the pages to zoom in.

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HALLOWEEN HORROR NIGHTS FULL REVEAL: Halloween!

Universal Orlando’s Halloween Horror Nights event has been fully revealed! Finally, officially, we have the announcement of the John Carpenter’s Halloween house, in addition to the seven previously announced. In addition, we have four street experiences (scarezones), and the two returning shows!

Here’s the full release with all the info…


Halloween

Michael Myers is Coming Home…To Halloween Horror Nights At Universal Orlando Resort

For the first time ever, John Carpenter’s horror classic comes to life as a haunted house at Universal Orlando

 

ORLANDO, Fla. (Aug. 28, 2014)Everyone is entitled to one good scare…and beginning September 19, Universal Orlando will give guests more than one reason to scream as it brings to life John Carpenter’s classic horror film “Halloween.”

Based on the classic 1978 slasher film, the all-new haunted house follows the story of Michael Myers, a deranged boy from Haddonfield, Il. It is Halloween night and no one is safe as the psychotic killer embarks on a murderous rampage. With his iconic mask to hide his identity, Michael sets out for new blood and will stop at nothing as he stalks his victims. Every scene tells the tale of a different kill and if you’re not careful, you could be next.

Halloween is one of the most successful horror franchises of all time and has grossed a collected $366 million worldwide. Since the original “Halloween” film, nine additional Halloween sequels have been created. This year, the franchise will commemorate its worldwide success with the release of a box set with all ten Michael Myers films in full blu-ray on Sept. 23, featuring never-before-seen and behind the scenes content.

“My experience watching this film growing up is as vivid now as it was years ago. The team and I are beyond thrilled to bring one of the most iconic horror films and characters to life at Halloween Horror Nights.” said Michael Aiello, Director of Entertainment – Creative Development, Universal Orlando Resort. “Halloween, began what would become the slasher film genre and still represents the genre as its horrific crown jewel. Guests will come face to face with Michael Myers as we recreate the kills committed on the night He came home.”

“Halloween” completes this year’s lineup for Halloween Horror Nights 24, which will include some of the most recognizable and terrifying names in pop culture, as well as original content from the masterminds who bring the event to life. In addition to “Halloween,” Halloween Horror Nights will include experiences inspired by AMC’s “The Walking Dead,” Robert Rodriguez’s chilling television series “From Dusk Till Dawn,” the cult sci-fi franchise “AVP: Alien vs. Predator,” Universal Picture’s upcoming film “Dracula: Untold,” Universal Picture’s “The Purge: Anarchy,” and SyFy’s “Face Off – In the Flesh.”

For a detailed listing of each experience featured at this year’s event and offers, see below. Read more

GenCon Journal 2014: Atlas Games

genconAfter I wrapped up my purchases at Paizo, I headed off into the vendor hall in search of another game to investigate.

I will admit that as intrepid reporters go, I am not that intrepid. I bypassed several booths due to the lines being long despite the or atmosphere being a bit to much for me. In particular I had wanted to stop by Fantasy Flight but their booth was almost a section unto itself and being a shy person by nature I elected to give it a wide berth.

I was interested in hearing more about the third edition of Once Upon a Time by Atlas Games. I had seen it being played on Table Top and was intrigued. You can find the episode of Table Top here.

It did not take me long to find the Atlas Games booth as all I had to do was follow the sound of the Exact Change dance. It is kind of difficult to explain but suffice it to say that it is a sight to behold. I was lucky enough to find that Jessica Banks, a friend of mine from the internet, was demonstrating the game. After a bit of catching up, she gave me a nice introduction to the game. Read more

GenCon Journal 2014: Paizo Publishing

genconThe first day of the Gen Con saw me waiting in line for my Press Badge. I had planned to get up early and get in line around 6:30 am but the staying up the night before to drink and play the DC Deck Building game and Elder Sign made getting up at 0 dark thirty a little difficulty for me.

So, I arrived at the press room around 7 am and was lucky enough to be about the 59th person in line. This ensured that I would receive one of the 100 early entry tickets for the vendor hall that day. The line for early entry was bit egregious as the Very Important Gamers and Trade Day participants had already began lining up as I was waiting for my press pass. I was very lucky that my neighbor in line new of another line for early entry into the vendor Hall. Ken Grazier, creator of Geek-Craft.com, had found a shorter line and was nice enough to come and get me out of the horribly long line and into one much closer to the Paizo booth. This was serendipitous as this was my first destination within the vendor hall.

Dustin, one of the host of the Under Discussion podcast, had pointed out that the Vendor hall experience early was going to be delightful. He was not wrong. I had the ability to move freely without being walked on or walking upon someone accidentally. I also didn’t feel like I would be stealing time away from another customer as all the vendors had enough staff to handle this small influx of people.

I hit the Paizo booth in order to find out what was new this year at Gen Con. Read more

Batman with Aron and Paulie: Gothlings!

 

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Batman with Aron and Paulie is BACK!!! Not only that, we brought guest host Jonathan with us, as well as returning guest host Wayne! This episode, we chat about the latest Batman news, including:

  • Aquaman casting in Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice
  • The new Batman ongoing, Gotham by Midnight
  • Batman: Assault on Arkham, the new animated movie
  • Batman video games
  • Our favorite Batman sidekicks
  • What if we were writing…Batman?

We also announce a new contest to win Batman: Assault on Arkham on DVD or Blu-Ray! To win, either leave us feedback on the show in the comments here, or give us a call at 972-763-5903 and leave us your thoughts. For more information, listen to the episode!

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Knights of Reignsborough: Season 3 Sandboxing, Part 2

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Continuing our sandboxing for Season 3 we explore more about our changed characters in this new world…

We’d love to hear from you! Give us a call at and share your comments, questions, and suggestions. If we use your voicemail in the show, you’ll win an Ideology of Madness SurPrize!

GM’s note: Knights of Reignsborough: Reign of Ironclaw is a role playing game actual play podcast. It is not our intent to teach a system, rather to entertain. As such, much of the game mechanic discussion has been edited from the audio.

Knights of Reignsborough: Reign of Ironclaw is on a bi-weekly release schedule.  Our next episode is due the weekend of September 5th!

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Funnybooks Reviews: Hexed #1 from Boom! Studios

Something we’re trying out here at IoM, a little video.  Check it out and let us know what you think.  Let us know if you want more!

First up for the special treatment, our review of the first issue of HEXED from Boom! Studios.

GenCon Journal: Rob’s Thoughts – An Overview

genconThe best four days of gaming are over.

This is a sad thing that is followed by a time of recovery as one has ran nearly non-stop for for four days. Even following my own advice, I am still wrecked after cramming so much fun into four days.

This year, I did something a little differently. Instead of trying to sit down and write while I was at the convention, I focused on getting a more in-depth view. I also made sure that I didn’t burn myself out on seminars and such and enjoyed gaming with my friends from around the country. So, you will be seeing a string of posts from Gen Con over the next few weeks as I talk about the things that I learned while there.

What I want to do here is give an overview of my Gen Con experience. Read more