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Blog Computer Games Game Reviews Gaming

Always Sometimes Monsters Game Review

Always Sometimes Monsters by Vagabond Dog is a choice and consequence RPG. It’s built in RPG Maker so has an old School, JRPG look to it and is very light-weight with simple controls.

Always Sometimes Monsters Epic Fail Review (7)

The Character creation is interesting. You don’t realise you are creating your character (although I guess I’ve kind of clued you in, huh?) but are instead asked to recruit a writer. So I picked the guy who (from the dialogue) seemed like to best. The Writer is then asked to introduce their Significant Other so the Player picks them. I once again chose based off the dialogue, therefore ending up with this Emo-looking Dude as my main character and a sharp-looking Black guy as their SO. I named them Adam and Wayne. In theory I could have gone back and had another go (often I will pick a character that looks like me) but I liked the random element of generating characters this way so I stuck with my gay interracial couple. And I did get the impression that my choice of characters had a subtle consequence on how my character was treated. The developers didn’t just seem to pay lip-service to diversity but that it actually mattered that we were LGBT, and that my characters partner was a POC.

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Blog Movie Reviews Movies/Film

Movie Review: Gamerz

Gamerz Movie PosterGamerz (spelt with a ‘Z’ to distinguish it from the -much better- The Gamers) is a Scottish indie movie about fantasy role-play gaming (RPGs). I was particularly enthusiastic to see this movie because it’s a British production and I am a British gamer. However it wasn’t what I expected because it isn’t really about gaming, it is a character piece about disparate people from different backgrounds being brought together and the relationships/conflicts which occur between them. The game is a vehicle to bring the characters together.

Gamerz follows Ralph, an extremely isolated young nerd whose parents died in a car crash. He is bullied and downtrodden so escapes into his imagination, creating his own fantasy world in which he is in complete control. When he starts University he takes over the role-play society and becomes Game Master, running an adventure campaign using his own setting and his own rules. The players hang on his every word. Ralph falls for the society’s only female gamer, Marlyn, a sexy Goth who, unfortunately, is as mad as a box of frogs. Also one of the bullys from Ralph’s neighbourhood – the drug-dealing, car-jacking Lennie – wants in on the role-playing action. He, too, is attracted to Marlyn, and soon things start to spin out of Ralph’s control. Will his house of cards come tumbling down?

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Blog Computer Games News & Announcements

Diablo III Release Announced

WOW! I can’t believe it’s over a decade since the last Diablo game came out, but we finally have a release date on Diablo III which is *Drumroll* May 15th!! Two days before my Birthday! *hint hint* Preorders are open now and you can choose either a digital or physical version.

Diablo II was the most popular game of 2000 and it has been predicted that Diablo 3 will sell 5 million copies this year. Diablo is a Dark Fantasy gaming series with many aspects of horror, lots of undead, and Demons playing a major role. It’s the ultimate dungeon dive descending into the depth of hell itself, and the ultimate monster mash with literally hoards of monsters going after your character (you’ll be racing for those choke points)!

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Blog D&D

Ultimate GM Screen of Win

I was kinda browsing and saw the ULTIMATE GM SCREEN which I thought was the coolest thing ever! (Sorry for the CAPS-shouting, but I thought it deserved it). Okay so it’s kinda a cut-out and put together yourself, but I’m crafty and that sort of thing appeals to me. What you get is a Castle Wall that sits in front of the GM with two Dice Towers (basically you drop the dice in the top and they roll out at the bottom).

It’s very solid so it won’t fall over (a common problem with GMs screens) not to mention it looks absolutely fantastic! The idea of Dice Towers is new to me but I kinda like them; it adds a drama to rolling the dice plus makes it less likely for players to cheat by hiding/fudging their rolls. There’s also space on the back for the GM to stick all the gaming tables and handy info s/he needs to run the game. And there are little shelves for figures! How cute! And they can stand on top of the turrets! Overall I think it is very deserving of it’s title as the ULTIMATE GMs screen.

I’ve stuck a video below which really shows the GMs Screen in all its glory. You may want to skip to half way as that’s when you start getting a really good look at it. And it is reduced by 25% this week as part of the GMs Day Sale! Click here to go to a list of all the reduced items at DriveThruRPG.


In case the video is not showing up here’s a link to it.

Happy GMs Day! …week.

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Blog Webcomic Interviews Webcomics

Phineus: Magician for Hire Interview – Part 1

Barry Linck creator of the webcomic Phineus: Magician for Hire takes the hot seat…

Q1: What is ‘Phineus: Magician For Hire’ about?

A1: Phineus is a fantasy/horror/sci fi comic, published on the web, about a paranormal investigations team.

Phin and Sara Beam make up the Beam Agency. The married couple solve all manners of supernatural problems, from vampires and werewolves, to evil garden gnomes, zombies, Elder Things and evil sentient eyeballs bent on world domination.

Phineus is a wizard. A magic Adept, who can cast spells and do magic. Sara is a gun-toting, butt-kicking archeologist and former superhero. Together they protect the world from all the things that go bump in the night.

Q2: Phineus and Sara may be married but they seem like they’re from different world – How did these two get together?

A2: Well, they are from very different worlds, but the same as well.

In the Phineus universe, certain people are what I call “Freak Magnets”. Certain people are genetically destined to run into the paranormal or supernatural. These two are Freak Magnets.

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Blog Movie Reviews

Movie Review: The Gamers 2 – Dorkness Rising

A Sequel to The Gamers, Dorkness Rising is even better, like the first with all it’s rough edges smoothed off. From the first few seconds Dorkness Rising gleams with professionalism – it’s still an Indie production, for sure, but Dead Gentleman Productions have teamed up with Epic Level Entertainment to produce something to easily rival a cinematic release.

Still from The Gamers 2 - Dorkness Rising, Flyyn's 2nd death

Dorkness Rising uses the same style of storytelling established in the first, switching between in-game and out-of-game perspectives to great comic effect, but this time with a different group of gamers. The plot is entirely separate from it’s predecessor so there is no requirement to watch The Gamers first. A couple of characters recur: Lodge, played by Nathan Rice, is now the DM and originally played Newmoon. Mark (the Red) also makes a cameo appearance. (Hooray!)

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Blog Movie Reviews Movies/Film

Movie Review: Ben X

Ben X is an emotional and thought-provoking ride by first-time Belgium director Nic Balthazar. Watching the trailer you might be forgiven for thinking this is a movie about the dangers of online gaming. In fact MMORPGs are portrayed realistically and in a positive light. Logging on every day is the one uplifting thing in Ben’s otherwise bleak world. He is being bullied mercilessly by his peers because he is different – he suffers from Asperger Syndrome – and online escapism helps him to cope. It’s also a way for him to express his feelings and make friends in a way he can’t in the real world.

Ben X

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Blog

NEVER Split the Party

This deserved posting because it is just… brilliant! My gaming group and I often produce a verse or two of “Never Split the Party” when the situation calls for it. It’s a good song, although personally I don’t agree with the sentiment.

I’m told it’s because I play a Theif. It’s true. But if a Theif doesn’t stay out of sight, scout ahead and take problems from a different angle (usually the rear) then they’re not a very good Theif.  Just sayin’.

Don’t you know you never split the party
Clerics in the back, keep those Fighters hail and hearty;
The Wizard in the middle where he can shed some light
And you never let that damn theif out of sight.

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Blog

Surfacescapes – Surface table-top Role-playing

Right now the Surfacescapes project is creating a prototype for playing tabletop role-playing games (RPGs) on the Microsoft Surface Table.  And they’re starting with D&D.  They released a demo (shown above) on Vimeo on Oct 18th 2009.  It’s generated quite a buzz.  Is there a geek alive that doesn’t want to play with this puppy?  This is a real big boy’s toy, a DM’s wet dream.  Or is it?