Tuesday, June 30, 2015

The Weekly Update - June 29th, 2015 - Wallowing in vacation time...

The campaign map

I am, as the title of this essay implies, wallowing in vacation. I have taken ten nights off, and I am enjoying myself quite a bit; this is the first time in a decade that my vacation time has not had to be programmed or otherwise expended in dealing with other peoples' emergencies - my time is now my own, and I am really enjoying it.

Most importantly, being off my sore feet has really been a blessing; I am feeling pretty good. I have also been getting a lot of sleep - on this past Sunday, I got  a whole ten hours of uninterrupted sleep! This may not sound like much, but this is the first time since the summer of 2013 that I have been able to get this much sleep at one go. It's pretty wonderful, I tell you!

I have also been able to get going again on the play-by-e-mail campaign. The map has been put together, and the hex tiles left for the players to fill in with their expectations. The tiles are loose, so I can sawp them out for more finished ones, as these are simply marked up with colored pencil for the more important features like the borders.

Which, I have to say, came as a real shock to me when I plotted them out; we're right on top of the borders with Mu'ugalavya and Pijena, so I expect to see some very interesting action ahead.

Speaking of maps, something hugely interesting came across my desk last week; I now have a copy of Craig Smith's 1974 map of his fief of Tu'umnra - something I had never seen before, and had thought long-lost. Amazing stuff, and it's been scanned and added to the mapping database.

I have also reorganized my collection of game scenery and terrain ahead of the campaign. I have divided the collection into the 'home' games, which get played in the game room on the 48" by 48" table  I built, and the 'away' games which are set up to be played in public venues. The away games are all standardized on the 30" x 60" folding tables I have, in multiples; the games 'catalog' goes like this:

60" x 90" table games:
The Battle of Ry; The Battle of the Temple of Chanis

60" x 120" table games:
The Battle of Anch'ke; The Third Battle of Mar; The Storming of Castle Tilketl; Saving Serqu's Sisters (Braunstein); Captain Harchar vs. The Hlyss Nest Ship

All of the away games use the canvas drop cloths I drew Phil's battle maps onto, with the exeception of the island game, and airbrushed to suit. The idea is to have games that are easy to set up and take down, so as to provide the maximum of play time for game events. I still have several blank drop cloths in stock, so there's room for growth.

The hme games all use the sets of terrain tiles I've salvaged from the larger tiles I made some time ago, and I've added a set of ocean tiles to the collection to cover all possible games that I can run. (Islands? Do I need to have some islands?) They also use the same scenery like trees and such that the away games use, so we have a lot of commonality between the two systems.

It's been a lot of work, but also a lot of fun. Lost more to come, as the week goes on... :)

Monday, June 22, 2015

The Weekly Update For Sunday, June 21st, 2015 - A Day Late,Sorry!

We are serious about our picnics, hereabouts.

Due to having to had to work overtime on Saturday for the concert at the stadium, followed by the festivities for Father's Day yesterday, there is no update for this past week.

However, I am getting a ten-night vacation, starting this Thusday, and you may expect Great Things later this week...

Sunday, June 14, 2015

The Weekly Update For Sunday, June 14th, 2015 - Movement On Various Fronts

The first three days...

...and the last three days.

I am still very, very busy, and barely keeping ahead of the curve. Here's a very short round-up of the news:

First off, I will be coming off my over-night shift at work sometime in the next few months. I will be moving to a second-shift position, which will help me quite a lot to really get some use out of my very limited free time. I will actually have two full days of clear free time, instead of the two half-days and one full day I have now.

Gary Con planning is going very well; we had a meeting of the 'working group' yesterday, and we came up with a very - and I do mean very! - tentative schedule of events for the weekend that fills Luke Gygax's desire to have "four to five games going at once" during the weekend. I trotted out my Ancient Technology to plan out the schedule, and using these will make it very easy to change and revise as we get further into the process. I also built the tall stand for the 32" LCD screen I want to have available for games; I found that an active display works a lot better in the game convention situation then an LCD projector does. Gary Con planning is now on the back burner, as I wait to hear back from Luke Gygax and Paul Stromberg.

Which is actually nice, because I can now get caught up on some 'behind the scenes' stuff that I'm working on, as well as getting the play-by-e-mail campaign up and running. The Missus is computer shopping, and I'm getting stuff made and ready.

I am happy to report that I am getting back onto the Workbench proper - new lead has come in, all the was from Alaska! - as well as getting back to writing "To Serve The Petal Throne"; I am currently setting down The Adventure Of Chirine's Wedding Day, and what happened both that night and the next morning. As usual in our Tekumel adventures, nothing went according to plan, and everyone had a very good time.

I am also delighted to be able to report that Volume 3 of "The Excellent Travelling Volume" arrived yesterday, and I really like it; I'll have a much longer post on it as soon as I finish reading it. Very solid work, and very useful for the Tekumel campaigner!

Sunday, June 7, 2015

The Weekly Update For Sunday, June 7th, 2015 - Getting Back On An Even Keel, I Hope!

Model building - Did I mention I love model building?

Just another short update, today; there's a whole lot happening as I get both Gary Con planning sorted out and the Chalukolumel campaign up and running. I also have a few other major projects coming to fruition at the moment, so I'm going to be very busy for the next few days.

I am taking a ten-day vacation at the end of this month, just to get everything to the point where it will run on auto-pilot; more on all of this shortly!!!

Thursday, June 4, 2015

BIG NEWS!!! Going Back To Gary Con - March 3rd - 6th, 2016

Mike Mornard, Dave Wesely, Yours Truly
I can now make an announcement!!!

"Gary Con is retracing the path of Gen Con by holding our celebration at the Grand Geneva in 2016.  If you didn't already know, the Grand Geneva (formerly The Playboy Club) was the site of Gen Con X.  The new venue will allow us to expand our footprint significantly while retaining the atmosphere and features we've developed over the past seven years."

I've been invited by Luke Gygax, the President of Gary Con, to run Tekumel events at Gary Con again this coming year. Luke asked me for a proposal on how best to do this; I submitted one, and he's accepted it. We will have a dedicated space for Tekumel at the convention in 2016, as Luke is very committed to furthering what Prof. Barker started at Gen Con all those years ago. He would like to see a mix of role-playing, miniatures, board games, and seminars; if you would like to run something as part of this celebration of Phil's life and work, please e-mail me at: chirine@aethervox.net

I would also like to let everyone know about all of the conventions that feature Tekumel programming, such as U-Con and Con of the North (just to mention two), and if folks have anything in the way of adverts or flyers they want to have us hand out, we'll be happy to do so for you.

I had a great time at Gary Con in 2015, and I'm really looking forward to going again this coming year!

Monday, June 1, 2015

Technical Issues - "Delays, Delays!"

Oh, bother!
Well, here's an update to the update...

We're having some technical issues with Blogger; I can't seem to get my circles to work in the 'share' function. We're checking to see if it's a hardware or software issue; in the meantime, I'm winging it.
I'm also told that Blogger has some issues of it's own, and we're investigating that as well.

Adding to my annoyance, we are having problems with the Dell desktop that I use for Skype; we're having difficulties connecting to Google+ hangouts, which is a real pain as I wanted to use this feature to allow folks to 'attend' some of the games I'm planning on running.

More news, as I get it...