New this week:
Guide to Wunderland
- News Archives
Can't Be Alone Forever
I'm drawing a 'G' for a subcomic title, while
listening to a techno-song called Fluffy Clouds. A young woman's
voice says, "Uh, the sunsets were purple and red and yellow
and on fire and the clouds would catch the colors everywhere."
vibrissae (vibb'-riss-ay) n.pl.
1. (anatomical) nose hairs 2. (zoological) whiskers
- Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back :)
Not so much a film
as a checklist of fun things
to do while filming.
La Jetée (The Jetty)
As is often the case with remakes, I liked this poignant French
short from 1962 even more than the masterpiece it led to, 12 Monkeys.
While comparatively spartan, containing only the barebones of
the latter movie's complex time travel plotline, the original
version seems a lot tighter and more powerful. The narrated slide
show format, in B&W with subtitles, is also quite striking
and compelling. The title refers to the arrival platform at an
airport, where a violent incident has just occurred.
Save Trails End
- "One of the coolest things about the con was getting
to play with the giant cardboard Icehouse pieces. I played many
a game of giant Icetowers in the hall and helped attract attention
from passerbys. In fact the only regret I have for the entire
con was that I dropped out of the middle of the Icetowers tournament
(being played in giant scale) with one win to my credit, in order
to go to a panel. As it was Dave ended up clinching the title
in what I understand was a great game."
-- Sam, on the Rabbit mailing list, just after WorldCon 2001
||WorldCon 2001 Report
I said last week, I've been to
a lot of sci-fi conventions in my day. But a WorldCon is different.
Of course, being at the top of the sci-fi-con food chain, you'd
expect this con to be a cut above the rest. The way it moves
to a different city each year also adds a lot to its charm. Plus
there's the duration... WorldCon runs a full five days, twice
as long as your average event. It's quite an event.
We did very well at WorldCon and we had a rockin' good time,
too. Sales were great, and the debut of giant cardboard Icehouse
pieces got so many people into the game as to cause us to sell
every last set we'd brought! We also ran continuous game demos
and even several tournaments in the Gaming events area, where
we had a great time hanging out playing games with new friends
and long-time rabbits alike.
The giant cardboard Icehouse pieces are absolutely wonderful.
They stack! Just as the arrival of hollow icehouse pieces opened
to us a vast new world of stacking game options, so too have
these new pieces given us wonderful new opportunities. Key among
these is that we can finally now play IceTowers, the other turnless
Icehouse game, on this grand scale, and it's totally great! Playing
a regular board game with giant pieces is just a novelty, but
when it's a turnless game it becomes more of a sport. Of course,
we've known this for years, from playing Icehouse with giant
foam pieces and pyramidal pillows, but those of you who know
how much easier IceTowers is to teach than Icehouse will appreciate
how wonderful it is to be able to play this game, instead of
that one, with giant pieces. (The teaching got even better after
I threw together a one-page handout containing the complete rules
to the game...)
sold through all of the cardboard sets we'd brought too, but
we'll be assembling more of both kinds of Icehouse sets soon.
So, you too will be able to get a set of these amazing giant
pyramids! Kristin has been doing a lot of upgrade work on the
webstore this week, but we're not quite ready to launch all these
new products just yet. (When these pieces do become available
for sale, they'll cost $22 for a stash of 15. Shipping will be
extra of course. And to those of you still patiently waiting
for Fluxx Blanxx to become available via the website, thanks
for continuing to be patient! It should all be available next
The giant cardboard pieces begin as plain cardboard, one side
of which is white. They can be painted, as we did with our main
demo set, or they can be drawn upon with markers, which makes
for a beautiful but slow-to-create game set. Alison began one
such set at WorldCon but only a couple of pieces are done; here's
Jane from London showing off the one she spent a lot of time
Here are the winners of the trio of tournements
we ran during WorldCon. Even though he's just a volunteer now,
our former summer intern Dave Chalker took a break from college
to attend (he's only ever missed one WorldCon in his life) and
as you can see, not only did Dave adjudicate our WorldCon Tourneys,
he even won one! Thanks for all your help, Dave!
Friday's Chrononauts Tournament was won by Christine
Saturday's IceTowers Tournament (which was played
out using giant cardboard pieces) was won by Dave Chalker.
Sunday's Fluxx Tournament was won by Zev Sero.
a typical scene from our demo area, during one of our tournaments.
Since gaming takes a backseat to other programming at WorldCon,
we were able to take over the entire back sector of the official
gaming area, and we never had trouble filling it with folks interested
in learning to play our games. Unfortunately though, said Gaming
Area was pretty far away from the Exhibit Hall, so I had to spend
most of my days working apart from Kristin and Alison in the
booth. Here as at Gen-Con, we
yearned for a single space for both demos and vending. While
Gen-Con left us feeling like we needed a bigger booth, WorldCon
convinced us that Pop-Tart
Cafes are the thing to do at science fiction conventions.
But as good as WorldCon was, we felt the sting of not being
at DragonCon, a big sci fi con with a big gaming track, which
was taking place at the same time, in Atlanta. While many of
our peer game companies sent prize support and even had demo
teams running events, like us, in the Open Gaming spaces, we
were virtually alone as exhibitors, being joined only by Kadon Enterprises. "Why
aren't you at DragonCon?" was a common question. "This
one's closer," became our stock answer, but next year, when
the two again conflict, and WorldCon is the one that's much farther
away, we'll probably go to DragonCon. The year after that (2003)
will probably find us back at WorldCon though, since it'll be
||I guess I'm going to have to add a specific rule
to Q-Turn which
says that if I'm attempting to move onto my victory space, for
the win, but an opponent is blocking my space and has just been
sitting there re-orienting, specifically to try to keep me from
winning, then that player's piece is ejected from the board,
and I get to move in. It's very fiddly, but seems to be necessary...
||"Interesting fact - I have as many email
addresses as I do telephone numbers. Only Andy Looney had an
email address in the 15 year reunion memory book!" -- Sandy Roush Caho, in an email to planned attendees
of Northwestern High School's 20 year reunion
||"I think the Emperor's new cards look just
stunning!" -- Jesse Welton, on the BetaTesters
mailing list, after several others had posted messages saying
the PDF files of two new Nanofictionary card sheets they were
supposed to be able to download for playtesting were coming out