Monday, April 29, 2013

Pacific Rim Wondercon Trailer or how I learned to stop caring and love the big things hitting each other.

At the comic book convention WonderCon, a new trailer was released for the movie Pacific Rim, being released in the U.S. July 11, 2013. A link is below for your viewing/ogling/loving pleasure.

Some people See Pacific Rim and think "It's just Robots versus Aliens", I look at Pacific Rim and I think "It's Robots versus Aliens, when are we going? Whose driving? Should we IMAX? Holy shit, it's in 3D, do we dare dream? Money, what else will you spend it on? Fuck it, I'll cover you! Did you see that shit! That Voltron robot had a fucking boat in it's cybernetic hand to beat that nightmare that sprung from Lovecraft's head!"

Pacific Rim is the newest movie being directed By Guillermo Del Toro, the mastermind behind my waking nightmares and fear of banquet halls after watching Pan's Labyrinth.  His other directing jobs are a list of some fantastic movies for varying different reasons, each of them showcasing his skill with action, comedy, horror, disgust, special effects, and epic scope. These being incredibly useful to have in a movie about behemoths rising from the depths to destroy humanity and the robots we build to fight back.

Season 2 Ep. 7

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Let’s PucaTrade one of our Cast Members for Eric Freytag 

Loaded Dice Cast is joined by Eric Freytag, Founder of PucaTrade, and, apparently, podcasting genius. The whole gang gets together. First we discuss Attackturkey's new Das Keyboard Mechanical keyboard. Next, we get to go deep with Eric on PucaTrade, gift economies, Magic Trading and how you, the idiot dumb enough to listen to this podcast, can get involved with supporting someone actually doing something with their life. Next, in honor of the just recently passed fat man fever dream that is the NFL Draft, we paint the picture of a world where Super Heroes exist, and are drafted into their ultimate purpose:  Entertaining you for money. We draft Super Heroes onto our NFL teams, and match them up. "Excelsior!" says Roger Goodell. Finally we talk about the recent dust up regarding some interesting and challenging art in Video Games and Comics, and what to make of it. Special thanks to Eric who absolutely killed it in this podcast.  We hope everyone listening, new listener or faithful follower enjoys this one. We feel it is our best effort yet.

 Oh, and in case you're wondering, completely NSFW language.

Puca Trade's IndieGoGo

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Aliens, Space, and Demons Oh My!

          My regular readership of web comics dwindled somewhere in freshman year of college after a small six or seven year fixation with them thanks to sites like Keen Spot.  But this morning I had the extreme pleasure of reading a new web comic.  And I mean really good, multimedia, web comic called Ava's Demon.  The series is only a few chapters in, and easily conquered in about 45 minutes of reading; though the art might have you dwelling on plenty of wordless frames longer on the merits of it's story and style.  What I enjoy about most comics is the capacity they have to tell a story largely through image, and when an artist realizes that they can say so much without writing a word I get into my happy place. Show me don't tell me is my motto and Michelle Czajkowski seems to have a similar belief.  Many of the pages of Ava's Demon don't contain text, just wonderful little luminescent paintings done in a cross between Disney and Ben Templesmith (Who is freaking amazing and responsible for art in Wormwood, Fell, and 30 Day of Night).

Friday, April 26, 2013

Kevin Is Right! About Movies: Oblivion

Last night I had the pleasure of watching Joseph Kosinski's film Oblivion.  Not a bad flick.  First off, the real story here is in the credits, and that needs to be taken into account, first and foremost.  Who wrote the Graphic Novel?  Kosinski.  Who wrote the screenplay (Along with Carl Gajdusek and Star Wars VII writer Michael Arnt)?  Kosinski.  Who directed this high effects budget film?  Kosinski.  Transcending that many different skill sets to put forth your vision is a feat that should be lauded in and of itself.  How do you do that?

A wholly plausible depiction of what would happen to the Meadowlands if the Jets ever won a Superbowl

The film itself was a very good, if imperfect, work.

The briefest of plot lead ins is as follows:  Tom Cruise and Andrea Riseborough are left on Earth after a war with an invading alien species known as the Scavs.  As Cruise puts it in the trailer, "We are the mop up crew."  Cruise and Riseborough are left to supervise the last remaining steps human beings have to take before evacuating the planet, and sailing off to Titan.  Most of humanity is on a space station orbiting the Earth, supervising, and waiting to leave.   Two weeks before they are scheduled to leave, Cruise is having problems with memory and not wanting to leave...

The first half of the movie was truly riveting.  The audience is immediately pulled in with an intriguing mystery in a dystopian, post apocalyptic future.  To me, it is the best type of mystery.  It is not a "Whodunnit?" It's a "Whatisit?"  Or maybe a "Whyisit?."  In any case, I found the dramatic tension to be positively tactile in its presence.  It was like a taught bowstring cutting through every scene.  You felt that at any moment you, or one of the characters, would reach out and pull, and hear a satisfying thrum as a consequent.  It felt masterful, and had me on the edge of my seat, my mind working as fast as the years of booze fueled brain damage would let it.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Cool Beans Week 4/22

Well things got interesting at the Iron Man 3 red carpet when Yahoo! Movies interviewers ask a few fine questions of the nerd savior Joss Whedon. What we learn first is that the first Avengers 2 draft is done; Agent Coulson is in the S.H.I.E.L.D. pilot and him being alive will get explained; Tony Stark will be as "swaggerful" as ever; though most interestingly Avenger 2 will feature a brother/sister duo, which many as speculating are Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver.
(Holy crap holy crap holy crap!)

So this game called Dragon's Crown is being published for the US, and people are pretty upset with the character designs. Specifically those of the obtusely leggy Amazon and the prominent decolletage of the Sorceress. I would be surprised if not for two reasons, this is a ATLUS game and it is a Japaneses port.
(This is only one of the many strange things to come out of Japan's gaming market, DoA Volley Beach Ball anyone?)

History Rules, and raps about history Rule Even More! Epic Rap Battles of History is so worth your time.
(Check out the Tesla vs. Edison one too.)

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

The "Two Girls One Cup" of the Horror Game Genre.

Editor's note about AJ:  Please welcome AJD4 to our blog.  Although his voice has yet to have been heard on Loaded Dice Cast, AJ is a guy we targeted to add to the Loaded Dice Empire.  His tireless passion, good writing, and thought provoking insights have been littering my fucking facebook feed for years now.  Rather than toil away in obscurity, we wanted to bring AJ on to kill it for us, and eventually make us dump trucks full of money, from which we will dispense a pittance to him, since he was giving this fucking gold away anyway.  AJD4 will be doing regular previews and reviews on Loaded Dice Blog on subjects ranging from TV, to Film, to Literature, to German Dungeon Porn, until he gets sick of our shit, at which time we wish him luck getting anyone to love him.  Please give him the proper Loaded Dice Blog welcome/merciless trolling.  Cheers AJ!  -Kevin LD

Do you like to be scared? To have that incessant feeling that something is in the room with you, that it may be right behind you, but you'd rather not look in case you are right? If that's the case this video is made for you.

Red Barrel the creators of "Outlast" (coming to Steam TBD summer 2013) know how to sell a game. They are not touting its multiplayer function, they want you to play it alone. And if you decide to play around other people? Maybe a Sunday night while you and your roommates crawl through the half hour break Fox gives us between The Simpsons and Family Guy, you may be the person having a seizure in the corner while Bob's Burgers plays un-watched in the background.

Using some of the same tactics as games like Dead Space, Eternal Darkness: Sanity's Requiem, and the terror that was Nemesis in Resident Evil 3, this game is designed to put you in that wonderful head-space of asking yourself over and over "Do I want to open that door?" and then explaining to yourself slowly as if to a child. "No, no I don't because something is behind that door, something that is impatient, and if something isn't.... Well, there will be something behind the next door. Or hiding in the closet, or will come up behind me from the last room I was in, wait....that would be this room. No place is safe." Then you open the door and whatever horror lies beyond welcomes you.

Open the door by clicking the break.

In All Honesty... I don't trust Darth Mickey and the Disney Empire yet. [Editorial]

          Recently various Disney employees have been making statements about the future of the Star Wars franchise and some of it has been pretty nerve racking. This largely concerns the release of  SW brand films every summer from 2015-2021. I know George Lucas was no one's favorite, but I am kinda getting the whole meaning behind the "better the devil you know..." Disney is still a wildcard for me; they have done cool things with Marvel (Okay Iron Man 2 was kinda weak, and I really don't know what the freaking purpose of NOW was), but Star Wars isn't Marvel.  They are two very different kinds of franchise. The frantic pace at which Marvel movies come out is great since it follows the format that the weekly issue does, granted on a yearly scale since movies take more time to produce. Last year we had The Avengers [issue 1]; this one Iron-Man [issue] 3 and Thor
[issue] 2; next year Captain America [issue] 2 and Guardians of the Galaxy [issue 1]. I do not think the same format is the best idea when it comes to Star Wars. Part of the original influence for Lucas when he was creating his monolith was the sci-fi serials of the 50's (specifically Flash Gordon which was the movie he wanted to make but couldn't get the rights to)  which really play on the the use of cliffhangers.  The film that echos this the most being Empire Strikes Back, which also happens to be the most beloved of the original trilogy. Having a episode released on the reg, along with spin-off films just seems out of place.  Where is the build up and the excitement, Disney? Hell, there has been four years between the new Star Trek films (my feelings on JJ Abrams at the helm of Star Wars are still not soaring) and people, myself included, are still clamoring to see 'Into Darkness' and in the interim fans have spent those years eagerly wondering what the film would have in store for them.  I don't want to see the Star Wars pimped out anymore than it already has, especially when it comes to films, the medium that the brand was born in.

Monday, April 22, 2013

Season 2 Ep. 6

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A Frank Discussion on Mysogyny and Bow Legged Whores

This one starts off light and we end strong.  Dubs, Kevin, Derek, and Vince begin with a Eulogy and post mortem on the now dearly departed LucasArts game studios, which begins existence anew as a IP Licensing Wight.  We review awesome games from our child hood and figure out what to take away from the whole thing.  Mostly, we feel a sense of loss for something that was probably gone a long time ago.  Next, we break out the summerwine in order to review Fantasy Flight's board game masterpiece epic: A Game of Thrones, 2nd ed.  Vince and Derek help out Kevin, since, much like George R.R. Martin, no one has ever actually fucking finished this game.  Evan, our moral compass and fearless do-everything man, joins us and we, in fact, get robot large in the draft.  Finally, we end with a heartfelt exploration of misogyny in geek culture, and more specifically, what's up with the weird backlash people get when they bring it up.
A note about this podcast: 
We are very painfully aware that we are a bunch of fairly privileged dudes sitting around talking about women's problems as if we have a fucking clue.    We get that we don't, and, most likely got a bunch of shit wrong.  We are open to hearing about it, so please accept the discussion as it is offered, and feel free to write to us, or comment, or anything to let us know what you think.  If there's any take away from this, it's that there should be a dialogue, and furthermore, a reasonable one, missing all the reactionary vitriol which we are trying to question in order to figure all this stuff out.  We welcome your thoughts.

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Cube is the Answer #2 - The Pet Card Trap

In the first installment of Cube is the Answer, we built your cube.  You’ve run some drafts, had some fun, but your work is not done.  Its time to trim the fat.  The most important part of maintaining an awesome cube is cutting the cards that just don't work.

Next time you draft, have a notepad handy.  At the end of each pack, ask your playgroup what card was picked last in each pack.  List these cards on your notepad, and look for repeat offenders.  Cards will end up on this list for two reasons:

1.  They suck - the power level is way too low.

2.  They’re good in the right deck, but your cube does not support said deck.

If you’re a lazy shit and don’t want to take notes, you can even ask your playgroup about which cards are under-performing.  Trust me, they will be happy to tell you.  Magic players are bitchy like that.

Most cards that fall under reason #1 are the pet cards.  These are cards you play with for irrational reasons.  Maybe you used to love playing with the card as a kid, or you particularly like the art, or cards with Rampage: 2 remind you of your dear Aunt Tilly.  Whatever retarded reasons you have for including these cards in your cube, they’re probably not good ones.  Pet cards are a trap, and you need to cut them.
"Its a pet card!"

Remember, if your group isn’t having fun drafting your cube, they won’t want to play it anymore. Cube drafts can take two to three hours.  Think about how much streaming porn that is.  Don’t make your friends waste their precious fap-time on your shitty pet cards.  

Friday, April 19, 2013

Cool Beans Week 4/15

This is just nerd sauce all over the place.
(BTW If you have not watched Parks & Rec. you should.)

You won't get me monies this time Nintendo!
(Let the onslaught of weak 3rd Party games begin.)

Well two years later Nintendo is bringing their A-Game (really any games) to the 3DS 

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Threadbare Geek #2

Get your sh!rt together fool.  

Thin kid even looks big.
One of the biggest issues for guys including those who are heavier, is what to wear. Generally the go-to is big, in hopes that baggy clothes will camouflage your fighting weight. That was my methodology of dressing when I was carrying more poundage. Turns out rocking a hockey jersey when you are not on the ice, is not the most flattering look. The drape of the fabric tends to only draw attention to your shape, and adding to it. Which makes you look like a tapir, rather than the strapping lad you are. Also don't get me wrong if you are going to a game, rock your jersey;
as long as it is not to hide your body.

Dressing is about the lines and silhouettes, but the bigger the clothing the
less definition you get with both. Getting past the idea of wearing a more fitted shirt is intimidating, especially if you are not use to wearing button ups in the first place. As I heard it said "If you only wears ties to weddings and funerals, you will never be comfortable in them." The same goes for dress shirts.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Piracy in Magic, and why Cockatrice Exists

Thanks to everyone who listened and gave some feedback on the previous podcast, I learned that some people still didn't agree with my point of view about piracy and DRM.  So I'm taking advantage of this blog to attempt a longer form explanation of my idea.

Because of the nature of digital goods, there is the incentive and ability for independent actors to distribute the digital good closer to the actual marginal cost.  These independent actors are called pirates.  They spend a smaller fixed cost uploading the digital good, and charge only skeevy ads in the sidebar of your favorite torrent site, plus a bit of goodwill.

The obvious reaction to this argument about piracy is that possible doesn't make it right. And I'll admit, that's actually a tough reaction for me to work through.  But here's the rub - it's not just possible, its inevitable.  There is an incentive to pirate, and there is nothing that can ever completely stop a pirate from doing so.  If it's video, I can always point a camcorder at my screen, and upload that video, completely separate from the original file.

So the best way to handle piracy is to acknowledge it is a competitor.  The music industry has done so, and is now more profitable now than it was before Napster, and music is still pirated, and distributed for free on youtube and similar sites.  The cost to buy music has gone down significantly, but its decreased to somewhere very close to the marginal cost through marketplaces like iTunes, Pandora, and Amazon.  Which brings me to another notion, the notion of multiple aspects of a price.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Crouching Tiger Hidden Wushu

After being bombarded with Age of Wushu (or Wulin if you are in Europe) ads yesterday, I decided to stop doing important things and start learning kung-fu. To tell the truth I was pretty excited about this MMORPG, because I am a freaking idiot who will always hope that an MMORPG won't suck.

Conceptually this game is brilliant, because it doesn't have elves, or superheroes; what we get it is a world in the style of the Kung-Fu cinema, like Hero and House of Flying Daggers. 
(It also gave me the desire to reach the ever distant memory from 2005's Jade Empire, the rad ass BioWare game). The sad thing about Wushu is that it looks kinda dated, and it only just released. Part of this is because of the free to play nature I'm sure, and the rest is just the desire to have a very realistic Ming era China. This makes for stellar environments but jarring avatars, especially when close up, or in a story animation. Unfortunately that is not the only downfall of the games design, as I said the environment is pretty classy; so why the hell would you cover the screen with so much crap! The UI that is a kin to an infant finding the pots and pans drawer, while you are trying to listen to the Beethoven's 5th. Clearly Snail Games did not get the memo on clean interface creation either. Which is why they have chosen for you to have about 15 different character info windows, all with many more subsections in them. It feels wrong to have so much paper work in a game that is about weightlessly running up bamboo trees to have an epic duel.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Ask me about my DIVEKICK

If you happen to be in the know about the cheeky two button fighting game that is DIVEKICK, head over to the AMA that Dave Lang and Adam Heart are doing on reddit.
If not, then watch these.

Arkham: Freshmen Year

This fall the Dark Knight faces his greatest foe, high school. I kid, thankfully Arkham High is not the name of the this year's Unreal powered Batman brawler. The full title shall be BATMAN: Arkham Origins, and will be busting through a giant plate window this October 25.

As the name suggests we will be getting a prequel to the previous games, just don't expect any ski-mask wearing Bruce. The story takes place after he has donned the cowl, but before getting Super Friend level street cred. Though the Batman's reputation is large enough to have eight assassins (including Deathstroke) sent to off him. These shall be the central villains, but as usual the city is just silly with ne'er do wells (just non that you have faced in the past, or is it the future).  The setting is of course Gotham city, but gasp, it will be snowy, because the adventure takes place on Christmas eve (how tall is the Bat-Tree?).

Friday, April 5, 2013

Warhammer, Warmachine, Battletech, and other games that have "War" in the title

PAX was just this past weekend, and I spent a good chunk of my time trying out miniatures games.  Something about army men with rules is incredibly compelling to my spergy mind.
I tried Warhammer, Warmachine, BattleTech, and X-Wing while I was there.
What I'm looking for in a tactics game are these criteria -
1. Crunchy battle system.  It should have tons of rules, and give me room to strategize my movements and attacks more effectively than my opponent.
2. Metagame - I want to buy a game (army?) that I can pick up and bring to a game store and find people to play with.
3. Cost - I don't want to break the bank here, if possible.
4. Flavor - It's gotta have hooks that get me interested.
Warhammer 40k
As far as I know, Warhammer is the original.  It's been around for years and years, and features various space races battling each other.  I played a group of Eldar which are sort of like Protoss, against a team of SpaceWolves.  There's also vanilla Warhammer, which is a high fantasy version with similar rules.
B+ on Battle System - it's fun, but it seems kind of slow, and I had trouble intuiting how powerful a unit was versus the other.  Also, I had a situation where my units were completely unable to damage one of my enemy's units, which is rather frustrating.  There's also a lot of dice to roll when your infantry shoot 3 times each from a group of 8 soldiers.
A on metagame - People play this game all over the place.
C on cost - There was an intro set available for $100, but it seems like a true army is quite a bit more than that, and then you have to buy all the paints, and the sheer amount of units means more painting.
A- on flavor.  I guess it would be higher if I had played the Orks or whatever the Necromancer race is.  They've got some good stuff to work with here.
Warmachine is only a few years old, and has a "Hordes" version as well which is akin to vanilla Warhammer.  However, they are designed and balanced to be able to be played against each other, which is, as they say, valuetown.  I played the Protectorate of Menoth vs. the Cygnar Dominion, which was like crusaders vs Terrans.
A- on Battle System - fewer units than Warhammer, and there were sweet spells in addition to just shooting.  Not as many units, its more of a squad than an army.  There was a lot of decision making about how to use the units, and how to power them up. Where Warhammer was more, these guys move, these guys shoot, Warmachine had decisions about how many shots the units would get, saving "Focus" for spells, etc.
A- on Metagame - I haven't tested this thoroughly, but it seems like there is slightly less Warmachine than Warhammer at stores.
C+ on Cost - Fewer models = less paint, less buying.  Still a significant cost here - the starter was also $100.
A+ on Flavor - The races are just awesome.  The firey crusaders, the Siberian Russian tank-mechs, all of this stuff really works for me.
For those not in the know, this is the universe that spawned MechWarrior.  It's got lots of history, and the game has been around for a while, but I had only played it once before.  The way they had it set up was like Deathmatch - you spawned in a mech, and fought until someone died, then they respawn as a bigger mech. We had a strange duel since I one shotted Kevin with my SRM in the second volley.  Right through an exhaust vent, just like bullseying womp rats back home in my T-16.
A+ on Battle System - Kevin couldn't handle the number of dice, but I loved the level of detail.  You track hits to your mech on their actual armor, and you can blow arms legs, engines off if you hit in the right spot.  Because its Mechwarrior, I imagine there is a lot of customization you can do before the battle to decide what weapons to have for a given battle.
C on Metagame - Sadly, I've never seen someone play this before.  I imagine you could run it like DnD and get games with your friends, but that's not reliable enough for me.
A+ on Cost - the starter set was $60, and if you're only playing with friends, thats all you need.
B- on flavor - It's just mechs.  Not a whole lot else going on here.
A miniatures game using the various ships from Star Wars.  I was falling asleep while I watched this being demo'd, but it plays a lot like Steambirds, an iOS and Flash app.  Unlike the other games, you set your orders in secret, and execute them simultaneously.  So you have very set moves you can do, with corresponding templates.  Interesting mechanic.
A on Battle System - I can't really comment much on this, as I didn't play as thoroughly as the other games, but it seemed fun, so I don't want to ding it here.
B on Metagame - I've also never seen people playing it, but it seems like a much easier game to play in small doses with friends than BattleTech.
A+ on Cost - $40.  And that's really all you need.  No painting.  If you want, you can add on ships like the Milennium Falcon or Slave I ($30 each).
A+ on Flavor - Cmon, it's Star Wars.  And OT, as well. Which stands for "Only Trilogy".
I didn't end up buying anything, but if I lived closer to a game store, I would be dropping cash on Warmachine.  It ended up mainly coming down to Metagame. I want to be able to play if I'm going to spend money and time on a game like this.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Behold the coming of the Oculi!

The bit of tech news that came out of GDC this year (that hasn't been related to PS4 or the next gen systems) is about the virtual reality peripheral known as the Oculus VR. To give the basics, this is a head mount visor that contains a 720p screen, the screen is housed behind lens to give the user a immersive 110 degree stereoscopic 3D field of vision. The head piece is also equipped with sensitive accelerometers for a snappy image tracking. What advancement in super science do we have to thank for this piece of tech? Cell phones. As far as cool things go, watch out sliced bread, cause the Oculus is coming for that ass.
Thus far Oculus is only offering pre-orders of their development kit, which does come with a nifty visor (though the one pictured about is only the prototype design), and access to their developer message boards. Though you can just toss in some bucks for their kickstarter if you feel generous, but they have over 2 million, soooo your not obligated.

I am pumped for this. Granted, the scent of new gadgetry always gets me hot and bothered; virtual reality being no exception, but a younger me thought this day was coming sooner. Since at one point  I thought the Virtual Boy was the true beginning of home 3D, not to mention the bee's knees too.

As well as...

Tuesday, April 2, 2013


I would love to thank all of our awesome readers for giving us our first 100+ pairs of eyes!
Also a nod to our new readers from the UK, Russia, and France. Hello, Privet, and Bonjour!

And as always, leave us a comment.
The Loaded Dice Cast

D&D 5e? NEXT!

A Taste of What is to Come

At PAX East, I had the dubious privilege of playtesting D&D's next edition, cleverly titled "D&D Next."  Ostensibly, one day soon, Wizards of the Coast will realize (or has realized, but is just being stubborn) how absolutely silly a name this is for a variety of reasons.  But for now, that is the appellation we are saddled with.  Not only, once D&D 6e inevitably comes out, will this name, should it stay, feel as anachronistic as that really sweet-at-the-time Staind tattoo that your shitbird friend has, but it so inaccurately reflects the sentiment and feeling of this latest version of D&D as to boggle the mind.  This sort of decision making has set the tone for the entire process.  The tone is set.

Edition Wars Declarations and Caveats

And now as any good discussion of D&D must contain, the caveats and declarations:  Firstly, I am a 4e kid.  Despite fervent childhood aspirations to actually play Dungeons and Dragons, the closest I ever came to manifesting them was a couple of games of Hero Quest with my loving but completely-not-into-it father.  I finally had the werewithal and the lack of shame to start playing D&D in my mid 20s, and the edition to play was 4e.  I love this version, and I think there are good reasons for that, but I would be remiss if I didn't acknowledge that everyone has "their" version of D&D.  Additionally, I'm basing this opinion on, essentially, one playtest and a perusal of the material made available (which is changing in inexplicable ways all the time.)

Playtest Impressions:

Myself, Derek and Mikey C sat down with a couple other dudes to try D&D Next. All of us, to a man, 4e kids or blank slate D&D Noobs. We essentially were flying blind.  "Wow us, WOTC!," we said.

An immediate adjustment was needed;  We were informed by a very affable, cooperative (He allowed us to rename the main villain to Bub Rub) and seemingly competent Dungeon Master (who, self admittedly, did not have a ton of experience with Next) that the helpful minis and grids that we had clung to were gone.  We were in a dangerous place known as "The Theatre of the Mind."  Wow, that's different...I wonder how combat is going to work?  (Spoiler alert:  Shitty.)   Well, let's exercise them brain muscles.

Now let's examine these character sheets.  Hmmm, this is...short.  One page?   Well, I'm a dwarf fighter. That should be fun.  Let's kick some fucking doors in and get this adventure moving.  I was glad to get this character because it meant that, in many ways, I could control the pace of our adventure, and ensure that we delved deep and didn't durdle about.  Oh, what a naive fool I was.

Examining my powers, I discovered that the list was quite short.  Although my stats and modifiers were essentially familiar to anyone who had ever looked at a character sheet, my abilities were...sparse.  Verisimilitude considerations aside, I was rather disappointed to discover that in regards to combat my dwarf could essentially do one thing: Swing his axe at someone.  In regards to special powers, I had the ability to expend additional d6 to either parry blows or add extra damage.  How overwhelmingly thrilling.  Besides that I had some "Dwarves know stuff about rocks and digging" ability ostensibly used for exploration.

In any case, there is still much to be hopeful about.  After all, this play test is probably going to be action packed, and show off all the new mechanics.  Everyone will have their chance to shine, and everything will become clear in time.  What is our adventure?  Oh, a repurposed 1e adventure called "Danger at Dark Shelf Quarry"?

(Reaction after the break)

The Star Wars

No your grandma isn't throwing in a 'the' where it need not be, better Dark Horse and Lucasarts have announced the future release of THE STAR WARS comic.
This will be based on the 1974 draft of the film, but with some tightening up of the writing and story, because if you have read it, you know it is far from greatness. In the story we have Skywalker as a composites of Luke & Obi; also Han & Chewie are more singular as well (but as a reptile man not a carpet); The replacement of Darth Vader with a gent kindly known as Starkiller (though not to be confused with the protagonist from the Force Unleashed).
As for what parts of the story will change from the original draft I do not know, you can do yourself a favor till then, and watch The Hidden Fortress, along with other Kurosawa samurai movies and make lightsaber noises any time someone whips out a sweet katana move.
I held on writing about this but seems as if this was not an April Fool's shenanigan, thank goodness.

Pretty pictures after the jump...

Monday, April 1, 2013

Season 2 Ep. 5

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Loaded Dices Season 2 Episode 5: Live From PAX, it’s DIVEKICK!

This is a special one.   Whilst drinking ourselves into oblivion in our Boston Hotel Room, we decided to turn on the mic and record an episode of Loaded Dice Cast, live from PAX EAST.  Derek and I made the trip, along with some buddies of ours who joined us on the cast.  With a live studio audience, we spend about 25 minutes (not nearly enough time) talking about Dive Kick, the greatest indie game ever made.  We talk about Con Culture, Cosplayers, and what makes PAX so darn neat.   Special Guest Mikey C makes a nice point about the tensions between AAA Games, Free 2 Play, and indie games.  We give you a sneak peak into some of the games we played, and douse with haterade where appropriate,  including Dust 514, Hawken, War Machine, Battletech D&D Next and McDroid.  A good time is had by all as we get preetty drunk on the finest beers Harpoon Brewery has to offer ( like you do.).  From a technical perspective: On occasion I had to edit out some bits where we get a little weird, apologies.  Also the audio is quieter on this one because we were using a fancy mic, so pump it up.   Enjoy!  See you next year at PAX!