Archive for the ‘Rant’ Category

Et tu, Facebook?

So I just logged into Facebook to see what’s going on (and to wince at the inevitable flood of political posts) and I got this message: On the plus side, being restricted from using Facebook for a few days will help me stay sane during Election Day and its immediate aftermath. by

εν τούτῳ νίκα

Driving around town has been a little dispiriting lately. The reason sounds a little silly: it’s those signs. You know, the red yard signs that proclaim TAKE BACK OUR COUNTRY IN NOVEMBER. These signs are clearly linked to Republicans—they’re invariably planted next to signs for Romney/Ryan, Justin Amash, and other conservative candidates—although I’m not sure […]

The dungeon mapper’s lament

In the olden days, mapping a dungeon meant breaking out a stack of graph paper and painstakingly documenting each 10×10′ block. This was true both for paper-and-pencil Dungeons and Dragons games and for early computer RPGs—today most computer games provide in-game maps that track your exploration progress, but back in the First Age you had […]

Why Are Gary Gygax’s D&D Modules Still Unavailable?

Next month, Wizards of the Coast is reprinting the 1st edition AD&D core rulebooks, with some of the proceeds to benefit the Gygax Memorial Fund. (And if you missed it, yesterday was the fourth anniversary of Gygax’s death.) I’m really glad they’re bringing back, even if just for a limited print run, some vintage D&D […]

That’s impossible! Oh, wait, never mind.

There must be a specialized term (hopefully a ten-syllable German one) to refer to this phenomenon of video gaming: You spend hours trying in vain to get past a difficult spot in a video game, dying and reloading countless times, and finally quit in frustration—swearing by the Implementors that the game is simply impossible and […]

Horribly overused apocalyptic-sounding words you should avoid putting in the name of your cheesy book, movie, or videogame

I know you want your edgy, violent media product to sound suitably grim and epic. But from now on, please consider these terms off-limits: Redemption Prophecy Legacy Salvation Fate Dead Legend Trinity Dark Age Creed Tale Blood Doom Resurrection If that scuttles your plan to release Blood Prophecy: Legacy of Dark Redemption, here are some […]

You know who else liked instinct?

What a surprise—Michael Moorcock didn’t like Star Wars either when it came out: This sort of implicit paternalism is seen in high relief in the currently popular Star Wars series which also presents a somewhat disturbing anti-rationalism in its quasi-religious ‘Force’ which unites the Jedi Knights (are we back to Wellsian ‘samurai’ again?) and upon […]

Darth Vader is Luke’s father (spoiler alert!)

I don’t go to many concerts, but oh, how many times I’ve wanted to write a variant of this brilliant letter upon leaving the movie theater. My particular curse is not the annoying music fan, but the Guy Who Narrates Everything That Happens in the Movie to his girlfriend/wife, a tragic woman who apparently is […]

By their reading list ye shall know them

I am sure that those of you who follow politics have heard about Mitt Romney’s incredibly significant and newsworthy gaffe. When asked to name his favorite book, he cited Battlefield Earth by L. Ron Hubbard. Cue a whole lot of snickering and mocking overanalysis by every blogger and pundit in the universe–all of whom no […]

Breaking news!

It’s a good thing nothing important is going on in the world today: May the gods have mercy on anyone who clicked on that headline. Gaze too long into the abyss… by