If you're looking for substance you might as well skip this blog.
I can't tell you what we played.
I can't tell you the criticisms and ideas about the games.
I can't tell you what is likely to get published.
I can however tell you the recipe for a ZevZinger.
So about two months ago Frank mentions in an off hand sort of way "Oh by the way Zev might be coming down. "Uh-huh sure, I'll pencil that right in." OK Actually I'm thinking, Wow! That would be really cool- but its never going to happen. He's publishing a million games and has all these cons lined up and has young daughter-there is no way this is going to happen.
Two weeks ago Frank says block in Thursday at the Swamp- Zev's definately coming. I'm pumped but still have this little voice in my head that says this thing will fall through. No problem, we'll still meet, have some laughs, drink a few beers...maybe I can get a hold of Rob Martin's blackberry and throw it in the pool.
So suddenly it's ‘the day' and the end of work can't come fast enough. The rain is coming down in a torrent and I have to drive 35 mi/ hr on the express way and time has slowed to a crawl.
Turns out Frank is running late though so I have time to grab some fish tacos from my favorite Mexican restaurant. I also grab some drink mixers and bottom shelf peach schnapps to go with the rotgut rumthat I left at Franks from previous trips past. I have concocted a special drink, the ZevZinger, just for the event.
I arrive promptly at 4:20 and Dan Baden has already beaten me to the swamp. Some smiling, stocky guy with black curly hair is chatting in the corner and he obviously can't be Zev. Where is his power armor? Where is the blinding aura of game publishing might?! This must be a trick- OH CRAP! AN INTERVENTION!!! Right before I bolt, He comes over and introduces himself and indeed seems to be Zev. Additionally, he has brought...Prototypes!
Senior Zohgby shows up and in short order Zev has got us playing the first (of many, many ) prototypes of the evening. Dan takes an early lead and though is his might is impressive, he is stymied every time he attempts to wield it. I start the metagame early by throwing jabs at Mark "line of Death"Zohgby and lobbying for an all out attack on Frank. The game is entertaining and has a lot of polish. However, we're an hour and a half into the game and there is no end on the horizon. Barnes has showed up and he and Zev are chatting it up about topics ranging from zombies to deli meat. (Hmm?) Jeff Jarvis and Aaron Tubb roll in as well. It time for... the ZevZinger!
Ok, I can understand some people being gun shy about my concoctions. Yes, the last drink the "Mysterio" did have a startling resemblance to bloody spooge- but this time it will be different! Really! Trust me!
"But I have a Kiwi garnish cut into a Z with Dice on top!"
Still no takers.
"Ok but none of that cheap rum in mine!" Sandy saves me and I gleefully start whipping it up. I found out a little late that Zev drinks neither liquor or coffee which I find incomprehensible since that is two of my four food groups.
Jarvis also takes pity on me and I mix two more. Cheers!
The next game a sprawling and gorgeous game which the designer has lovingly crafted. We are all anxious to play and who should show up but AaronTubb. He's one of the two people who actually read the rules. I usually get the rules through osmosis or sometimes in a divine sending. It's a co-op and we're off to a rough start. I blame my team mate- Zev. Whose decision was it to go that way last round?! Yeah?! Well why did you listen to me? Uh-oh we're having to make a lot of house rules. The table talk is building...Difficult to.. continue playing. Play. Breaking. Down. ABORT ABORT ABORT!
A long discussion ensues. Oh Well, At least Zev has an idea where he wants to go with the game.
Next up- Ooo! Something with guns. I like guns. And speed. I like fast guns. This next one felt a bit old school (not in a bad way.) Both Michael and Zev had played it before and Mike's enthusiasm was infectious. This game went almost all the way to the end. I'm pretty sure that we quit only because Jarvis and I were close to victory. What Haters! Some ideas were bantered about on how to maximize the fun parts of the game.
At this point the Parting of Cowards was initiated. Had I any sense I would have gone home too but I was too wired and wanted to keep playing. I had to physically separate Zev, Frank, and Mike from each other as they entered a death spiral of obscure movie trivia. Next time I'm bringing a taser. Really.
The last game of the evening was something with tactical minis- WOOT! HELL YA! Now're we're talking. We were down to Zev, me , mike, Frank and AaronTubb. The 5 of us armed to the teeth and ready to kick ass. By far this was my favorite game of the evening. It had all the things I like (boobs, bombs) and none of the things I don't (everything else.) The game immediately caught our attention and set our imagination afire. Unfortunately, that let to animated discussions on how the game could be made *even better*. It will be criminally irresponsible to not pursue this one further. I'm optimistic that this one will be revisted. Even if I have to resort to blackmail.
At some point I realized I had only 4 hours before I had to wake up again and tore out of the house like a bat out of hell. I left papers flying in my wake and didn't even stop to grab my martini shaker, work clothes or new Arcane Legions Demo kit. In fact, I don't even think I said good bye so if you guys are reading this sorry for the hasty departure. If it makes you feel any better, I feel like crap and still have 7 hours to go before I get home.
P.S. i'm sure I skipped some stuff. I'll append it when I wake up