Thursday, December 31, 2015

Joe Abercrombie: Year In Review

My favourite author has posted his yearly update, reporting on writing and t.v. and whisky and video games:
What with the releases and the touring it’s been a slightly strange, piecemeal year on the writing front.  Jan and Feb were spent finishing off Half a War, which needed a lot of editing (much of it done on the road in Australia).  Then I had a lot of trips and travelling around the two book releases, in between which I was writing the last four or five stories to complete my collection Sharp Ends.  Then, over the last few months, I’ve been working up ideas for a new trilogy in the world of the First Law, and starting to experiment with the first few chapters, which is showing some promise in between my traditional and entirely predictable slumps into pessimistic despondency.  It’s a strange thing – no matter how many books you write you never really feel fully equipped for the one you’re writing.

Full Story: HERE


Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Rebuilding for Xmas

Monday, December 21, 2015

Seven Game Design Lessons From Netrunner

Here's a pretty good overview of the mechanics and systems of Netrunner:

Many CCG-style card games, starting from genre founder Magic: The Gathering, tend to have a snowball effect, where a player with the best board position (e.g. more cards in play, stronger units on the board) keep on getting a better position, and it gets more and more difficult for the opponent to turn the game around.

In Netrunner instead the actions required to win, as advancing agenda cards for the corp or making runs for the runner, requires the spending of both clicks and actions, so the player that scores points unavoidably gets poorer and the board state moves toward a new balance.This situation makes for boring endgames where there isn’t fun neither in winning or losing. 

To limit this effect there are usually specific cards that balance the situation, destroying all cards in player (Wrath of God in Magic, Valar Morghulis in AGOT:LCG) or giving an advantage to the losing player (Magic Drain in Summoner Wars). Usually these cards are not appreciated by the player, and seen as unexciting necessity.

Full Story: HERE


Thursday, December 10, 2015

Taking The Black Released

The first chapter pack for the Game of Thrones LCG is now shipping. It's been spotted at local game stores and can be ordered from the Fantasy Flight Games online shop.

Every faction receives new cards to swell its forces as the Westeros cycle begins with Taking the Black. Whether you ride with the knights of the Arbor, trade with merchant princes, or aid the Night’s Watch in its hour of need, you can fully immerse yourself in the world of Westeros with these new cards, including four new plots that offer new deckbuilding opportunities for every schemer and warrior in the realm.

As a Greyjoy player I'm excited to see this new card:

...but I can already hear Sula swearing aggressively.


Sunday, December 6, 2015

Baratheon vs Stark/Nights Watch

I built a Baratheon Fealty deck for today's game with Sula. I won the first game and she the second, but it was very close. The Baratheon strength is kneeling the opponents characters and not letting them stand. At one point Sula had 8 characters on the board but could only stand two at a time. Seems to be a very powerful control deck.

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Wolves of the North

Fantasy Flight Games announces Wolves of the North, the first deluxe expansion for the Game of Thrones LCG.

Those who dwell in northern Westeros can be as harsh and cold as winter itself, but words like honor and trust still have meaning there. Fearsome in battle and uncompromising in negotiation, the men of the North are hardy and well equipped to survive winters that can last for years. Though they may scorn the laws that come from King’s Landing, these warriors are fiercely loyal to the lords of House Stark, and some believe the time has come for the North to rise once more and become a true kingdom of winter.

Journey northwards and take your place among the knights, lords, and ladies of House Stark with Wolves of the North, the first deluxe expansion to be released for the second edition of A Game of Thrones: The Card Game. In this expansion, House Stark takes the spotlight as they gain new cards to guide your Stark decks in new and unexpected directions. You may use Direwolves to cow and overpower your foes, rush to victory with the aid of House Tully, or draw strength from the Winter itself. Throughout the box, you’ll find new versions of iconic characters like Eddard Stark, Catelyn Stark, Jon Snow, and Arya Stark, alongside characters entering the game for the first time, including The Blackfish, Shaggydog, and Rickon Stark. 

Though the focus of this deluxe expansion rests firmly on House Stark, every other faction receives two new non-loyal cards to push your deck exploration forward. An assortment of neutral cards, including six new neutral plots, change the options available to every deck, and you’ll be able to call on dangerous new allies like Mance Rayder, Quentyn Martell, and Aggo. 

Look for Wolves of the North second quarter of 2016.

Full Story: HERE