So What's the Plan, Stan?


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Orthos wrote:

Saw Star Wars. Solid 8/10. Very entertaining.

Caveat: The pattern that I've seen seems to be if you liked Ep7 but didn't care as much for Ep8, you will like Ep9. If you really liked Ep8 as much or more than Ep7, Ep9 will seem a disappointment.

Maybe not 100% accurate, but has appeared to be pretty solid theory thus far.

Still haven't seen it, but that's my understanding.

I absolutely LOVED The Last Jedi: I thought it was by far the most interesting take on Star Wars since The Empire Strikes Back, and currently sits as #3 on my ranked list of the films (after Ep4 and Ep5). I particularly liked that the film subverted many SW tropes while keeping to tried-and-true themes. The spoilers I've seen indicate that Abrams abandoned/retconned/ignored everything that I thought made Ep8 such a fascinating and refreshing film.

Of course, it's still a Star Wars film, so I'm totally going to see it. I'm going in with low expectations, and hope to be pleasantly surprised.

My ranking of the films...:
#1 A New Hope
#2 The Empire Strikes Back
#3 The Last Jedi
#4 Rogue One
#5 The Force Awakens
#6 Return of the Jedi
#7 Solo
#8 Attack of the Clones
#9 Revenge of the Sith
#10 The Phantom Menace


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Haladir wrote:
Orthos wrote:

Saw Star Wars. Solid 8/10. Very entertaining.

Caveat: The pattern that I've seen seems to be if you liked Ep7 but didn't care as much for Ep8, you will like Ep9. If you really liked Ep8 as much or more than Ep7, Ep9 will seem a disappointment.

Maybe not 100% accurate, but has appeared to be pretty solid theory thus far.

Still haven't seen it, but that's my understanding.

I absolutely LOVED The Last Jedi: I thought it was by far the most interesting take on Star Wars since The Empire Strikes Back, and currently sits as #3 on my ranked list of the films (after Ep4 and Ep5). I particularly liked that the film subverted many SW tropes while keeping to tried-and-true themes. The spoilers I've seen indicate that Abrams abandoned/retconned/ignored everything that I thought made Ep8 such a fascinating and refreshing film.

Pretty much, and those subverted tropes are kind of why I disliked it and found Ep7 and 9 superior.

My own list::
1. Return of the Jedi
2. Empire Strikes Back
3. A New Hope
4. Rise of Skywalker
5. The Force Awakens
6. The Last Jedi
7-9. Prequels


What's happening this weekend, folks? No gaming here, but my GF is coming to visit for the weekend.

Grand Lodge

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A lot of nothing. No drunk night tomorrow. Nothing planned until Sunday, when we finally finish my play of Skull and Shackles.


A whole pile of maybes.

The only thing that's definite in the plans is sleep.


Although after I get off work and my chiro appointment, we have a guy giving us an estimate on new garage doors, replacing the motors, checking out the tracks, the whole nine yards.


ack. Homeownership stuff.


Yeah. The openers that are currently in place...installed by the former homeowner, whom I have discovered to be less qualified than a drunk chimpanzee...just ripped the upper panels of the garage doors apart. And I had a wheel fly across the garage after it got ripped off one of the doors as well, even though the tracks are showing to be level. And the wheel wasn't rusted or frozen.

So I don't trust any of what's currently there.


With good reason from the sound of it.


Hey, you hep cats and chicks. What's going on this weekend? Not much here. No game until next weekend. I might go see "Rise of Skywalker", but after "The Last Jedi" I'm having a hard time justifying spending the money on a ticket. I love Star Wars so much, but the direction the final part of the saga has taken and the just overall awfulness of the last one has made me leery.

Anyway, what about you guys? What's going on?

Grand Lodge

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Full work weekend for me. Hoping to watch some streaming shows tonight before bed, then back in the office tomorrow and Sunday. But on the upside, having Monday and Tuesday off means we can hopefully go watch Rise of Skywalker with our house mates, as our days off align.

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I have a haircut tomorrow. The thrills! The danger!

It is the end of my holiday time off; normally after a couple weeks away I feel ready to go back to work but I wish I had a few more days (at the same time if I take any further time off the pile of email awaiting me will be unassailable). I did try to get in some good time both with family last week and then a combo of R&R and some productivity this week.

Tomorrow, I am supposed to go an hour away to advise some young adults in my religious community, and I am tempted to blow it off so I can work on the cleaning I am still behind on and to get in a little more relaxation (also I'm not feeling that well and didn't get as much stuff done today as I wanted because if that in part [also admittedly in part due to being sucked into a game of Civ]), but I really should probably go. I should note, there is also someone going who lives five minutes away from the place and she is more than qualified to advise without me. I will probably go as long as whatever this weird stomach ook I'm feeling right now doesn't get worse.

I am supposed to do SOMETHING Sunday and I can't remember what and whatever it is it is not on my calendar. Barring the forgotten thing I will visit a friend who is in from out of town.

Dungeonmaster, FWIW, I liked Rise of Skywalker, but I appear to be atypical of the folks on this board and their reaction to the most recent trilogy. I tend to enjoy Star Wars on a childlike-wonder sort of level--if there's cool lightsaber battles and neat space scenes and funny droids I'm happy.


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DeathQuaker wrote:
Dungeonmaster, FWIW, I liked Rise of Skywalker, but I appear to be atypical of the folks on this board and their reaction to the most recent trilogy. I tend to enjoy Star Wars on a childlike-wonder sort of level--if there's cool lightsaber battles and neat space scenes and funny droids I'm happy.

I completely get that. I was 13 when "Star Wars" came to my hometown in 1977. It was a godsend to a geeky, nerdy teenager who had read everything sci-fi and fantasy my small-town library had to offer. I was still in my teens when "The Return of the Jedi" was released.

I guess there was just too long a time between the original trilogy and the prequels. I had already become pretty cynical and the only thing the prequels really had to offer for me WAS lightsaber fights and funny droids. The initial wonder I felt years before was just gone. Jump ahead another 2 decades and we have the sequel trilogy. Disney took Lucas' ideas and crapped on them before throwing them in a trash can and setting them on fire. Kathleen Kennedy's "vision" for Star Wars just...well, left me so disappointed. J.J. Abram's unoriginal and admittedly silly idea to have a planet be a Deathstar didn't do anything for me at all, at least nothing positive. Rian Johnson's "The Last Jedi" was such a letdown for me. I actually felt betrayed somehow. I don't have high hopes for the newest one.

However, having ranted and rambled, I will admit that yeah, as long as there are cool lightsaber battles, neat space scenes, and funny droids I'll keep wandering back in. :)


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I enjoyed it. It's not without a problem or two, but I also thought the new direction Rian Johnson gave was a good idea, so take it for what it's worth.

The Clone Wars cartoon series was what the prequel movies should have been.

But...that being said...I have an opinion. Shock and gasps, I know.

I think those of us of a certain...age...as a whole...have a tendency to put the original trilogy and Lucas himself on a pedestal and we tend to be blind to the sins of the original trilogy, then bark and yell about the exact same issues in the newer movies as if they didn't also happen in the originals. The ACTUAL originals.


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Seth McFarlane did a better job with Star Wars then Lucas.


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Of course, I'll never forgive Lucas for Jar-Jar Binks.

#whydidntliamneesonshootfirst.


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I finally saw Rise of Skywalker. I liked it. It was fun. There were a some real "fist in the air" moments. I applauded. A good time.

It was definitely a more *fun* movie than The Last Jedi. But I still liked TLJ a whole lot more, and I still say TLJ is the strongest film of the final trilogy.

I really, really would have like to see what Rian Johnson would have done with the final movie in the series.

Star Wars spoilers:
I think my biggest beefs with Rise of Skywalker were...

1) Completely sidelining Rose Tico. I loved that character: She added a working-class heroic sensibility to the ensemble. It also didn't make sense with regard to her previously-established character that she would stay behind when her friends flew off to adventure.

2) The continued emphasis of bloodlines. Johnson set up the explanation that Rey was a nobody who just happened to be naturally attuned to the Force. I thought that was an extremely powerful message: You don't have to be a legacy to be important. I thought Abrams' choice to make her yet another legacy took away much of the character's narrative power.

3) Palpatine? Really?

4) The pacing of the whole film was too frantic. It didn't give any scenes a chance to breathe or resonate. And many of the fight scenes were so frenetically cut that I had a hard time keeping any sense of place relative position.

5) The CGI of young Mark Hammil and young Carrie Fisher were squarely in the uncanny valley for me. I thought that flashback scene looked more like a high-end video game than a blockbuster feature film with a huge-ass budget.

I had a bunch of other nit-picks, but those are my biggest beefs.

I have seen all 11 of the theatrically-released Star Wars movies in theaters during their initial runs. When I was a kid in the late '70s/early '80s, Star Wars loomed very large in my imagination. However, in my teens and as an adult, I never got particularly caught up in Star Wars fandom, other than playing the 1987 Star Wars: The Role-Playing Game from West End Games. I've never read the novels or watched the cartoon series.

[I am a much bigger fan of Star Trek.]

Here's my completely subjective ranking of the 11 Star Wars feature films...

Spoiler:
1. The Empire Strikes Back
2. A New Hope
3. The Last Jedi
4. Rogue One
5. The Force Awakens
6. Return of the Jedi
7. The Rise of Skywalker
8. Solo
9. Attack of the Clones
10. Revenge of the Sith
11. The Phantom Menace


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So... gaming!

In the past few weeks, I've been asked independently by two acquaintances if I'd be willing to start a new TTRPG group, and if I would GM it.

While I'm already in two groups, I am very seriously considering starting a third! The two groups meet weekly in theory, but we rarely do so in practice: I think it was October since the last time I played in both groups the same week.

If I were to start a new group, what I'd be most interested in running would be experimental gaming: A series of one-shots or short (3-6 session) series, switching between different genres and game systems.

The games I'm most interested in running right now are...

Monster of the Week
Fall of Magic
The Veil
Dread
Trophy
Zombie World
The Excellents
iHunt

So... am I insane for thinking about starting a third RPG grpoup?


Haladir wrote:

I finally saw Rise of Skywalker. I liked it. It was fun. There were a some real "fist in the air" moments. I applauded. A good time.

It was definitely a more *fun* movie than The Last Jedi. But I still liked TLJ a whole lot more, and I still say TLJ is the strongest film of the final trilogy.

I really, really would have like to see what Rian Johnson would have done with the final movie in the series.

** spoiler omitted **

Regarding Point 1:
I agree with you, but what I've heard was the reason...since Holdo died in TLJ, they wanted Rose to pick up after Leia, and be back at base helping coordinate. And the footage they had of Carrie Fisher simply wasn't cooperating, whether it be in the blocking, the emotional tone, or whatever, so it had to get cut.

That said, another guy I know said that this issue would have been cleared up by one change in TLJ. Have Leia take the place of Holdo and sacrifice herself. Then Holdo moves on with the rest of the Resistance. And now you're free to use Rose however you wish.

My only argument against that idea is that then you've killed both Luke and Leia in the same movie. It could be done, sure, but spacing out Han, Luke, and Leia's deaths across the three movies makes it easier to give them the proper weight.


Hey ya'll! What's the plan this weekend? I'm going to attempt to run my first game since November Saturday night. It's not been easy putting anything together with all that's going on at the moment but I hope they enjoy it. I also hope they ignore the pile of unwashed dishes in the kitchen...heh.

So, what's up?


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Snow, and lots of it.

8-12 inches of snow we're expecting, starting tonight.

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My main plan is to curl up in a ball and whimper.


captain yesterday wrote:

Snow, and lots of it.

8-12 inches of snow we're expecting, starting tonight.

I don't think we're going to get any snow at all this year. It's been a very, very warm winter.


DeathQuaker wrote:
My main plan is to curl up in a ball and whimper.

Oh no! What's wrong?


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DungeonmasterCal wrote:
captain yesterday wrote:

Snow, and lots of it.

8-12 inches of snow we're expecting, starting tonight.

I don't think we're going to get any snow at all this year. It's been a very, very warm winter.

We had a damn cold fall and mild winter so far. Of course living on the tundra, "mild" just means you might not freeze to death.


It was like that here, well, at least having a colder autumn than winter so far. Really kinda bums me out.


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I'm openly rooting for snow. I want a couple feet overnight. We're going to get missed by the storm that's hitting CY.


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My plans for the weekend include...I have no earthly idea.


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DungeonmasterCal wrote:

Hey ya'll! What's the plan this weekend? I'm going to attempt to run my first game since November Saturday night. It's not been easy putting anything together with all that's going on at the moment but I hope they enjoy it. I also hope they ignore the pile of unwashed dishes in the kitchen...heh.

So, what's up?

I'm planning to dust off my resume to apply for a position that suddenly opened up in another department.

I think my wife and I might go see Knives Out.

I need to do a bit of planning for my Ultraviolet Grasslands game. The party just acquired an eight-foot-tall metal golem (yes, it's a robot), and I need to write some game mechanics around how they can use it. I also need to detail the Mad Max-style motor gang that was sent out to capture/kill them, and to develop some "Ultraviolet World" game mechanics for how to handle gang-on-gang violence. (I'll probably steal some rules from the Hardholder playbook from Apocalypse World and/or the Bopper playbook from Spirit of '77.)

I also need to noodle a bit about two other TTRPG projects I've been considering...

1) A conversion of The Ultraviolet Grasslands setting for the OSR science-fantasy game Troika!

2) A TTRPG based on the world of high-stakes/high-tech auto racing in a 1960s that never was. In other words: Speed Racer the RPG. (Tentative title: Road Racer: Go, Go, Go!)


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Vanykrye wrote:
I'm openly rooting for snow. I want a couple feet overnight. We're going to get missed by the storm that's hitting CY.

We're getting a direct hit, the heaviest snowfall will hit Madison and Sun Prairie.


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captain yesterday wrote:
Vanykrye wrote:
I'm openly rooting for snow. I want a couple feet overnight. We're going to get missed by the storm that's hitting CY.
We're getting a direct hit, the heaviest snowfall will hit Madison and Sun Prairie.

If you do get the full 8-12, you're going to be working non-stop into Sunday midday.

I want the snow so that it finally feels like winter. We've had a handful of snow storms, but no more than 3-4 inches at a time, and then the temp has been oscillating between 20's and 50's (or 63 or 64 on Christmas Day, which was a record for us) so it doesn't stick around.

I want enough snow that I can sit in my chair, cover up with a nice warm blanket, and watch the deer come out of the woods into my back yard.


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Nothing on the family calendar, so I'm going to arm myself with my toolbox and as many YouTube videos as it takes to increase the water pressure in my shower.


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Vanykrye wrote:
captain yesterday wrote:
Vanykrye wrote:
I'm openly rooting for snow. I want a couple feet overnight. We're going to get missed by the storm that's hitting CY.
We're getting a direct hit, the heaviest snowfall will hit Madison and Sun Prairie.

If you do get the full 8-12, you're going to be working non-stop into Sunday midday.

I want the snow so that it finally feels like winter. We've had a handful of snow storms, but no more than 3-4 inches at a time, and then the temp has been oscillating between 20's and 50's (or 63 or 64 on Christmas Day, which was a record for us) so it doesn't stick around.

I want enough snow that I can sit in my chair, cover up with a nice warm blanket, and watch the deer come out of the woods into my back yard.

We're going out at 3 am, I'm guessing I'll get done about 2:30 pm, and then we'll probably go out again at 5-6 am on Sunday and work until 5-6 am Monday morning.

Thankfully, I'm paid VERY WELL for it.

And then it's supposed to snow another half a foot of Tuesday...


We have severe thunderstorms in our forecast for tonight. Wind gusts of up to 70 mph, golfball-sized hail, and tornadoes can be expected. We're not supposed to get this sort of weather for another 3 months.

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DungeonmasterCal wrote:
DeathQuaker wrote:
My main plan is to curl up in a ball and whimper.
Oh no! What's wrong?

Nothing emergent, just a very long week IRL of dealing with other people's nonsense and herding extremely irritating, chaotic, and unsympathetic cats.


Work.

Grand Lodge

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Three day weekend is going well. New event in my mobile game launched last night, so I’ve been grinding that. Tomorrow is house stuff followed by drunk night, Sunday is Skull and Shackles.


DungeonmasterCal wrote:
We have severe thunderstorms in our forecast for tonight. Wind gusts of up to 70 mph, golfball-sized hail, and tornadoes can be expected. We're not supposed to get this sort of weather for another 3 months.

Similar to the forecast down here in Houston.


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We're having a bizarrely warm January in upstate New York. Daily highs should be in the mid-20s to mid-30s, with lows well below freezing.

But tomorrow's predicted high if 60F, and Sunday's is 55F. This is April weather, not January! And there's no snow at all. I haven't yet gotten to ski once this winter! I do X-C, not downhill, so there's no man-made snow where I like to ski. None of the local trails have any snow right now. (There was snpw for a few weeks in Dec, but I didn't get out then.)


About the same here, with highs of 70 predicted for a few days. It's wonderful.

And I'm missing out on most of it because I'm spending almost all my daylight hours (and some not-daylight hours) stuck in the office due to overtime.


I feel cheated this winter. Winter is my favorite season. I'm from Arkansas and I remember being a kid in the 70s and 80s when we'd get two to three decent snowfalls a year. While not as much as the northern states get, I can recall more than one snowfall of a foot in depth or more growing up. I'm afraid those days are gone.


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Meanwhile Autumn is my favorite season and Winter my least favorite, and this Winter feels just like a second Autumn so I'm far happier than is usual. >.>

And I'm sure this is going to bite me in the backside in the form of an extremely short Spring and early, harsh Summer, but that's for Future Me to deal with. ^^

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DungeonmasterCal wrote:
I feel cheated this winter. Winter is my favorite season. I'm from Arkansas and I remember being a kid in the 70s and 80s when we'd get two to three decent snowfalls a year. While not as much as the northern states get, I can recall more than one snowfall of a foot in depth or more growing up. I'm afraid those days are gone.

Careful what you wish for. While on the whole warming trends mean less snow, there are also these days more likely to be, when something does happen, it will be a massive storm.


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2 inches of snow and 9 and a half hours of work down.

6-10 inches of snow due tonight.

So, I'll probably start work tomorrow morning and work until everyone else goes to work on Monday.

Good times!


DeathQuaker wrote:
DungeonmasterCal wrote:
I feel cheated this winter. Winter is my favorite season. I'm from Arkansas and I remember being a kid in the 70s and 80s when we'd get two to three decent snowfalls a year. While not as much as the northern states get, I can recall more than one snowfall of a foot in depth or more growing up. I'm afraid those days are gone.
Careful what you wish for. While on the whole warming trends mean less snow, there are also these days more likely to be, when something does happen, it will be a massive storm.

True. Where I live ice storms are the real culprits when this happens. In the winter of 2000/2001 I lived in St. Louis, MO. Here in Arkansas the ice storm was so devastating that some cities were without power for two weeks.

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DungeonmasterCal wrote:
DeathQuaker wrote:
DungeonmasterCal wrote:
I feel cheated this winter. Winter is my favorite season. I'm from Arkansas and I remember being a kid in the 70s and 80s when we'd get two to three decent snowfalls a year. While not as much as the northern states get, I can recall more than one snowfall of a foot in depth or more growing up. I'm afraid those days are gone.
Careful what you wish for. While on the whole warming trends mean less snow, there are also these days more likely to be, when something does happen, it will be a massive storm.
True. Where I live ice storms are the real culprits when this happens. In the winter of 2000/2001 I lived in St. Louis, MO. Here in Arkansas the ice storm was so devastating that some cities were without power for two weeks.

I have family in the St. Louis area. I've noticed the weather there trends toward "a slightly more humid and treacherous version of weather at home."


LOL that's a great summation.

My game was sort of a bust this weekend. I had carefully created a crafty cabal of necromancers led by a Baetriov (a creature based on Countess Elizabeth Bathory that gains immortality by bathing in blood). The players knew of the organization and decided it should be exposed and dealt with.

I figured they'd do what they normally do, spend 45 minutes arguing about a plan then murder their way to the BBEG. But not this time, they alerted the priests of some good-aligned orders and the city watch who did then did the cleanup work for them. The players didn't even work up a sweat. So, we ended early and I have them their XP, which I figured they deserved for coming up with an out of the box idea (they do this pretty often, really, but I can usually think a step ahead to keep the game going a while longer. Just not this time). I did have the Baetriov escape to maybe return seeking revenge at some point, though.


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More snow tonight, I work at 3 am.


DungeonmasterCal wrote:
a Baetriov (a creature based on Countess Elizabeth Bathory that gains immortality by bathing in blood).

PLEASE send me this thing's statblock. I need it for something.


Here ya go!

Baetriov

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