Monthly Archives: August 2018

Dragon’ Up The Past – Urban Adventures

Jim has found something he can truly hate ~

Brant and Jim, 17 August 2018

A whole bunch of articles about cities, and a whole bunch of anger from our man in Milwaukee.

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Gaming Nostalgia – X-Wing II

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X-Wing II – and it only took 16k?!

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What’s Gus Playing: Dishonored – Death of the Outsider + A Special Bonus

Our stunted steampunker stalks scenery and solves stories ~

Lloyd Sabin, 13 August 2018

On occasion, I think.

And most of the time games take up most of my thoughts. Games, unlike movies, books or other forms of entertainment, are a higher form because they let us, the gamers, decide what the format will look like. Whether we are playing an RPG, an RTS, a strategy game or an FPS, our input drives events, whether it’s a historical battle, an entire sweeping campaign, or a fictional, totally made up story. Games are what we make them and are all the better because of that.

Who knows why, but every summer around August I get in a steampunk mood.

And the best games, regardless of genre, let us both explore and create. Who knows why, but every summer around August I get in a steampunk mood. And I have been blessed with some great steampunk-themed games over the years to satiate that storied, steampunk need.

The Thief games (all of them), Arcanum, Rise of Legends and to an extent the Fallout games (especially Fallout 4, which, to me, is very dieselpunk, even though it takes place in an uncertain future)…they all scratch that steampunk itch, they are all well put together and beloved, and they all let us tell our own stories.

The Dishonored games continue this tradition. I loved the first one, set in the grim city of Dunwall. I enjoyed Dishonored 2, set in Karnaca, another city with a more tropical setting, but still with tons of steampunk flavor. And now I have cracked open Dishonored 2 – Death of the Outsider, in which I play Billie Lurk, who is working to avenge the now elderly Daud, the protagonist from the first game.

At first I thought I would be underwhelmed – Dishonored 2 was good, but didn’t blow me away like the first game did. Then I started to explore the game. Divided in to five large levels, Death of the Outsider is built to explore and make you think. Rushing through each level would be counter-productive and a lot of the great moody detail of the game would be missed.

Gaming Nostalgia – Crypts of Chaos

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Old-school digital dungeon-crawling!

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GrogHeads Reviews Mansions of Madness 2


The second part of our Weekend of Madness ~

Avery Abernethy, 5 August 2018

I’ve played Mansions of Madness 2 (MM2) with a group of five random people at a MACE gaming convention and solo at home.  MM2 provides a unique board game experience.  At $90 retail at Amazon, it is also the most expensive board game I’ve ever purchased.

In MM2 you are playing a character with a set of skills.  Each player (up to 8) has an investigator avatar.  If you play solo, the manual suggests picking two investigators to run.  My solo game used only the core MM2 set playing “Cycle of Eternity.”  My convention game with random strangers had five characters and used an expansion.

MM2  provided one of the best solo board game experiences I’ve had.

Players cooperatively attempt to solve the mystery.  The investigator’s goal is unknown at the start of the game.  You begin with limited information in a single room with closed doors and potential clues.  Game setup requires starting the computer app, selecting the scenario, and indicating to the app which investigators are playing. After this information is inputted, the app displays the initial room setup and provides starting information.

The core Mansions of Madness 2 game comes with four scenarios of varying difficulty.  MM2  provided one of the best solo board game experiences I’ve had.  The app provided background sounds.  I had no idea what would happen when I opened a closed door or made a game choice.  Because the app ran the mystery, monsters, puzzles and other aspects of the game, it was a very immersive experience.