Monday, December 11, 2017

A Jousting Game! Now How Do I Run A Tourney?

Hello all, and a happy Monday to you!


Counterfett here. I recently found "Flailsnail's Jousting Rules" which is a modernization of the old Knightly Society jousting game, itself derived from the seminal Chainmail Rules. This concludes a quite lengthy search for the Jousting Game, which I had only heard of, and never really had seen with my own eyes.

It's quite a relief, to say the least.

That said, I don't really know how to set up a tourney and populate it with characters for my own champion to enter. Would a simple single elimination bracket work? Also, how would I generate characters to oppose my knight? Should I just use a generic 'warrior' or 'knight' stat bar from D20? Should I actually roll each character?

This raises more questions than I thought it would, to be honest.

Saturday, December 9, 2017

Pre-Order Critique - Battle Companies


Well, this one slipped under my radar until just today. But that's okay, because for the first time in quite a while, I ma critiquing something that's actually still on pre-order. You know, like the series is titled.

So battle companies is a smaller scale skirmish game based on the Lord of the Rings and Hobbit strategy games. No big surprises there. I feel like this is a step in the right direction for this franchise, as I rather liked the smaller scale game that came out around the time of the LotR movies back when I was in college.

Honestly, as much as we all like the epic and massive battles in both trilogies, the actual essence of the books revolves around a series of much smaller skirmishes. Like, say 9-13 individuals a side. This comes out on the 16 of December, though I'm not sure I want to risk $40 for an 80 page hardback (gasp) which still requires the base game to play. I mean, I think I already have the base game somewhere, but honestly.

Saturday, December 2, 2017

Pre Order Critique - Games workshop Painting Handle


Okay, so this is something I've been doing forever, so it's neat to see the idea getting widespread acceptance. On the flip side of the coin, it's a little sad that in order to do a positive review, I have to cast my net pretty wide these days!

This is a great idea, if a little spendy for what it is. That said, it looks like the clamp is adjustable to take multiple size bases, which is functionally better than anything I have come up with. Kudos and good on you GW! I mean it this time, with no irony intended.

Sunday, November 26, 2017

Pre Order Critique - Necromunda


Ok, here it is folks. The big one. The Pre-order critique I, if not you, have been waiting for.

Necromunda!

Mostly I write these about particular minis, and I may well do so about the upcoming Necromunda releases, butt frankly they're meh. But this time, le gran fromage has appeared! I've wanted Necromunda to come back from the dead for quite a while.

It even looks like GW is doing this the right way, for a change. It's going to be a normal release, not a limited edition, or a kickstarter, or a whatever. I didn't get Man 'O War (or Seas of Blood or whatever it was called) for that reason, when it was back. Not that I regret it, that looked terrible.

But Necromunda! This is the kind of smaller market game GW used to do that got me interested in them in the first place! Only time will tell if it will be squandered.

I'm cautiously hopeful.

Saturday, November 18, 2017

What's Next For The Brave Heroes Of REDI?


Hey all, Counterfett here.

I really want to get some Solo mini gaming knocked out in the next few weekends, as I have a three day weekend, a two day workweek, a five day weekend, a three day work week, and then a four day weekend. You getting what I'm saying? This is my favorite thing about my current job. I might have actual discretionary free time on the horizon.

That being said, I sort of lost my train of thought on the Robotic Earth Defense Initiative. I started so strong, but like always, just ran out of steam. I'm not burned out on it, though, which is a step in the right direction, because usually, at this point in a project, I am just sick to death of even thinking about it. So, progress.

What would everyone like to see out of the next few play sessions? I put up a poll about adversary types on the top right of the page, so I'd appreciate input there. If anyone has any ideas for fun topics that don't shoehorn into the poll, however, I would love to hear it in the comments!

Thanks, as always, loyal readers!

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Skyrim For Switch! The Semi-Monthly Cry For Help!


Hey all, so Makoace is going to be buying Skyrim for the Switch this Friday (it's out on the 17th!). And she's planning to stream it on Twitch shortly thereafter. But what we wanted to do was do a community poll here and on her Discord about what kind of character we should play.

Have your say! Vote in the poll on the top right corner!

Time is short!

Monday, November 13, 2017

Stardew Valley (Nintendo Switch) - Obscure Video Game Review

Well folks, Counterfett here, back with something a little more in the spirit of which the series was started, a bona fide obscure indie game called Stardew Valley. This review pertains to the Nintendo Switch iteration of the game. Mrs Fett picked this one up because she wanted a bargain, relaxation type game to fill time on her streams until Skyrim comes out for the Switch on the 17th


Now Stardew Valley is a Harvest Moon/Terraria/Animal Crossing style game where you can create a character, inherit Gramps' farm, and try to carve your own way in life. You can woo and marry eligible townsfolk, craft mundane to wondrous objects, raise crops, raise livestock, and plumb the depths of dangerous dungeons. All the while trying to fix up the town, perfect your fishing cast, and gain Grampa's approval.

So how does this title pull it off? Let's have a look.

PROS:

  • Ambitious - Now, Stardew Valley tries to do a lot of things. You can fish, mine, farm, craft, ranch, romance, shop, befriend, chop trees, plant trees, irrigate, quest, fight monsters. There's simply just a whole lot of ways you can interact with the world of Stardew Valley.
  • Characters - You'll love 'em. You'll hate 'em. You'll spend entire days screaming at your monitor trying to find them when they wander around or lock themselves in their rooms when you're trying to give them gifts. The characters, on whole, are one of the most fun aspects of SDV, and can be unexpectedly adorable and heartwarming.
  • Addicting - This can be one of those games that you want to play when you're not playing. You'll find yourself thinking about what you want to do next, or which villager might want the gold star goat cheese which just came out of the press. I know, that's gross, but it's a thing.
CONS:
  • Wonky controls - Many games have controller setups you don't like, or have to get used to. Stardew makes you nostalgic for those games. Even with the tool placement indicator turned on, you simply have to make several attempts to get the right spot with any of your tools. Maybe you'll plant something in the wrong spot and waste a seed. Or you'll hoe in the wrong spot and destroy a costly immature fruit tree instead of debris. Or burn a significant portion of your energy recasting a fishing line because your character turned and tried to cast into grass instead of the river you were facing when you started. I know this is a port, guys, I do, but it should be at least COMPATIBLE with the controllers of the system you are porting it to.
  • No Information - A game like this will usually have a tutorial. Or dialogue in which a friendly neighbor tells you a little bit about how to do things. Or a manual. Or tooltips. Or any information whatsoever about how any of the games mechanics work at all. There's simply nothing in this game to indicate how any of it works. And some of the things are misleading or contradictory. For instance, many seeds say "Plant in Spring." This indicates that you will grow this plant as long as it is planted in Spring. Wrong. On day 1 of Summer, any Spring plants you have planted will die. This can be a very frustrating and costly thing to learn. 
  • Fishing - This ties in with both of the above. No one tells you how the fishing minigame works. I mean, it's complicated, not self explanatory, and nothing even tells you which buttons to push. I've heard it's less frustrating on the PC, because the control set up for it is better, but seriously. Since catching different types of fish is practically mandatory for game advancement, this is aggravating.
  • Likes and Dislikes - Again, this ties in with point 2 above, I just didn't want one big bullet point. When trying to befriend the other villagers, you have to give gifts. A lot of gifts. And there are 5 levels for each type of gift. Love, like, neutral, dislike, hate. Better gifts increase friendship, worse gifts decrease it. On board so far? Well, here's where it gets funky, because they don't tell you what things they like! You just have to trial and error and get upset because you lose progress whenever you try and figure out what anyone likes. I don't need a cheat guide, but someone saying "I sure like flowers" or something would be a help.

UPDATE 11/16/2017

Okay, so the game's developers are putting out a  patch for the game save issues, which is currently waiting for Nintendo's clearance. This is a good thing. I have removed the "Broken" bullet point, as they worked with my wife to help her get a workaround until the patch went through. This is the kind of thing I like to see, and it improves my overall disposition towards the game as a whole. It still has its quirks, to be sure, but at least it's a playable mess, instead of a broken one.