Monday, March 22, 2010
Wednesday, March 17, 2010
Now we know all about this, we have talked about it and in our game planning sessions we have got a pathway of intent laid out to carry us to Level 30 and the End of Time. However, the approaching doom has brought some matters to the fore in my mind.
The first is that there is a finite amount of time to do anything I want to do with this character. I'm not even sure there is anything I need to do, but the pressure of time has made this more apparent in my head. The last thing I would want to do would have the campaign end and something being left loose and flopping.
The second is that we will inevitably start thinking about what we are going to play next and more importantly, what formats our games are going to take. History tells us that we run highly successful long term games (City of Kings, Buffy, Pendragon, Crescent Sea) and have a patchy track record when it comes to shorter campaigns. However, we have a decided desire towards shorter campaigns, I think. As we get older, we have less time to prep and with a table of GMs, we all are willing to have a go. I think we're going to have to have a good hard think about the structure of these games and how we are going to produce things that are (a) runnable, (b) satisfying and (c) sustainable.
The third thing is simply a recognition of the amazing job Andrew has done of taking something as mechanical as D&D4e and turning it into something so smooth and utterly enjoyable. This masterful display of GMing has made me think long and hard about some of the 'theory of roleplaying design' stuff and wonder just how much of the impact at the table of a game is actually down to the players themselves and their ability to play with each other and riff off each others strengths whilst compensating for the weaknesses. This also speaks to the degree that a group, through their underlying social contract will house rule a system, almost instinctively, to suit their needs. For us its things like random death, experience points, money and encumberance - we simply can't be doing with them at all. It might be different things for other players. Hmmm... consider me pondering.
Regardless, this Sunday we go to kill a Primordial and put the proverbial cat amongst the pigeons again. Great game.
Tuesday, March 09, 2010
The question that has been running around my head is why? I think I may have cracked it.
On the surface, its a perfect show for me. Its about American High School Sporting Competition (a particular favourite of mine - see 'Bring It On', 'The Mighty Ducks' and other hidden gems) and it mixes that with musical stuff - and we all know how much I love musicals. Its funny and uplifting and I can watch it with the kids and they love it.
All of that is cool, but thats not the secret.
I think the secret lies very much in the shades of grey that exist in every character. The show has a veneer that it is about goodies (the Glee Club) vs the baddies (the Cheerios) but thats just not the case - a good few members of the Glee Club are still Cheerios! Mr Schuester is the White Hatted good guy teacher - who happens to be falling in love with the school counsellor. Sue Sylvester is the boo-hiss baddie - except when she isn't, like the latest episode looking at disability. The lead good girl is a self-serving ego-maniac, the lead boy is a two-timing dimwit, the greyness is everywhere.
Even two of the less prominent characters - Artie and Tina - have some grey sides. Tina fakes her stutter (how shallow) but Artie now doesn't fancy her because she was faking a disability, but the way he puts it, it sounds more like its because he only fancied her because she was disabled and now she isn't.
These shades of grey make the show wholly unpredictable. It's wholly understandable that the self-centred heroine, Rachel, would consider being with Noah, the bad boy football player who really loves Quinn, the pregnant cheerleader, who is going out with Finn, the idiot football player who secretly loves Rachel because ... its Glee - and nothing is ever set in stone!
Monday, March 08, 2010
The sun is shining.
Now I have occassionally cracked a joke about the weird shining disc in the sky but this is the real thing. Its a bona fide spring day and boy does it feel good. The weather has been officially shitty since about October last year and this is the first day I can remember where I saw blue sky and felt like it was right. Its stupid but true - it makes a massive difference to the way I and it would appear many other people feel.
Of course, this is probably it and tomorrow it will go back to dull, with a side order of crappy - but today, this glorious wonderful day, its bright and sparkling.
(And yes, this is 300 posts on the blog. Thats a lot of shite)