Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Fucking Cutting Edge Tabletop Jetset Here Y'All

Long weekend. Hit Little Tokyo...

… then over to the Indiecade convention

It's Dungeons & Dragons' 40th anniversary so Jon Peterson (author of Playing At The World--the only not-unbelievably-shallow book about the history of Dungeons & Dragons and the only one written by someone whose favorite band is Shellac) and Jennell Jaquays were up on stage talking about the early days of gaming and the explosion of little zines that came out after the D&D rules.
Jennell and Zak
Jennell is awesome--she did Caverns of Thracia and Dark Tower--and then went to video games and basically got in on the ground floor there, too--working a lot of the seminal stuff in the field

Indiecade is largely a videogame convention and even some of the heavy hitters there had no idea how important Jennell had been. I had to be all "DO YOU FUCKING KNOW WHO THIS IS? PAC MAN! QUAKE 3! COLECOVISION! FUCK!"

Then I fanboyed:

Zak: "I'm totally missing my Dark Tower game this morning so I could be here"

Jennell: "I'm sorry"

Z: "After you did Thracia and Dark Tower it seems like everybody else just dropped the ball on big dungeons and started doing nothing but, like, monster-in-a-room and funhouses and…"

J: "It was funhouses and Here's A Story You Have to Run Through In This Order."

Z: "And you came back later after you'd done video games but you didn't do more design?"

J: "Well I stopped because I thought I was repeating myself."

Z: "So it wasn't an external thing?"

J: "No, I just didn't want to do the same thing over again, I wanted to move on."

Z: "That's so cool."

Historical tidbit: Jon told me that this picture from the original D&D "Men & Magic" was done by a woman named Cookie Corey:

Then I got to run some of the adventures from Red & Pleasant Land. This is what I look like when I do vampire children voices...
I had to run it off my laptop because the printed book hasn't shipped yet.

I had this conversation 1000 times at Indiecade:

"Is Red & Pleasant Land out?"

"Nah James wanted to ship it with Death Frost Doom and he sent Death Frost Doom back to the printer because it wasn't black enough"

"That's so James"


The game was fun though. First group killed one monster and escaped with a 300 gp chafing dish and the otherpretty much got Total Party Killed by vampires.

One group got put on trial for being too good at croquet and ran from a pudding--the other tried turning the Queen, then blackmail, to no avail.



with Anna Anthropy/Auntie Pixelante



Then back home to play D&D with the usual suspects:


"Instead of trying to deceive him, can i just, while he's confused, hit him in the kneecap with a hatchet?"

Then I ran my game after and the players decided to sleep under Deathfrost Mountain. 3 are insane, 2 are blind.

Then we went to the USC Playthink salon and they talked about putting more games in art museums and I was like Yeah hurry up.

Next up tomorrow probably I sow you what I did to the Azer which, seriously, I had to because Azer is the dumbest monster.
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6 comments:

Gus L said...

Can't complain about the demonic possession and chewed up tongue from that (involuntary) Death Frost Mountain nap - still leveled.

I am surprised that the video game con folks don't know their history - I mean Quake wasn't that long ago, but I guess it's a young medium.

Luca Lorenzon said...

I didn't know Paul Jaquays became Jennel. As with Jeffrey/Catherine Jones, a great artist. Never played one of her module, but the Ravenloft covers were wonderful.
She even did the interior art for Terrible Trouble at Tragidore, if I remember correctly

Unknown said...

man, you make conventions sound SO cool... maybe someday... well done

Ken Baumann said...

I'm happy with my serpentine argument. If it works for Peter Falk, it works for EVERYONE: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A2_w-QCWpS0

1d30 said...

You'd better have enough empty sacks because everyone will be throwing money at you with both hands to get some ARAPL.

Badmike said...

Every year someone at NTRPG con freaks out when they realize who Jennell Jaquays is....she's been a guest here every year and she will be as long as she wants. She's also done all our t-shirt logos since Year Three.