The Crusades

Star Wars Convention Under Assault by Star Trek Crusaders

The Los Angeles Convention Center before yesterday's attack.

LOS ANGELES - It was an otherwise bright and balmy day at the Los Angeles Convention Center in downtown Los Angeles yesterday. However, underneath the calm exterior, a far more sinister and brutal scene was taking place. At noon a group of extremist Star Trek fans assaulted the building in the middle of the largest official Star Wars convention, Star Wars Celebration V.

In a matter of hours, the combined force of cosplaying Klingon, Federation and Romulan fans had secured a little over half the premises. They had soon erected a 12' tall statue to Gene Roddenberry, also consecrating the convention center as holy ground in his name. Despite the fierce Trekkie assault, the Star Wars fans have managed to secure their own ground within the center due to an unprecedented truce between the imperials and the jedi.

Fighting continued throughout the night with many of the taller Trekkies donning Jar Jar Binks costumes for brave suicide raids on enemy defenses. Not to be outdone the Star Wars fans managed to erect a pair of large projection screens on the front lines, playing so called "reset" episodes of Star Trek: Voyager in an endless loop to break the enemy's spirit. Despite the efforts of both sides, neither has yet managed any sort of conclusive offense and the stalemate is expected to continue for some time to come.

The crack imperial cosplay 501st unit prepares to join the fray.

In the hopes of breaking the deadly stalemate, both sides have sent ambassadors to Los Angeles' anime community and online anime forums hoping to strike an alliance with the remaining fandom super power. So far there has been no word from the anime community, supposedly the gift boxes of Star Wars: Clone Wars have not been well received, while the 3 foot scale models of the Enterprise A may have won the Trekkies a critical diplomatic victory with the model makers.

The decision, however, largely hinges on the currently split demographic of Yaoi slash fic fans. A recent surge in high quality Kirk/Spock and Luke/Han doujins has completely divided the already fractured community. Proposals for an updated Chekov/Sulu pair, using the actors from the new J.J. Abrams movie as models, have become a popular hope for breaking the deadlock.

So I've Been Taking Time Off

I haven't been posting here frequently. I know how good that is for my readership numbers... but I still felt the silence somewhat necessary. There is probably a feeling that I must not have had much to say, but that is entirely contrary to reality. In fact, there was a whole lot I wanted to say, but most of it was general life whinery and wanting to chew certain people out. The rest was that there were a lot of issues I wanted to take a wait and see approach to.

Now I'm planning on being back, so let's get down to business.

Latest Stuffins
I just uninstalled all the games on my computer. The truth is, I've been having this overwhelming feeling of ennui towards games lately. I look at my game list and just feel bored with it all. That sucks, and it gets me constantly wasting precious dollars on new, to me, games to relieve the boredom. Worst of all, I still wind up playing games rather than doing any of the things I really should be doing... especially the things that could actually result in my getting paid.

So here is my answer to the universe, I want to make games more than I want to play them, and it's just the temptation that gets to me. Temptation removed.

On My Mind
Dear MMO developers... WTF. I've been having high hopes for ya'll for a while now. Figured just give you some time and you'll really get around to wowing me at some point. Uggh, total failure. It's all more of the same crap. RPG trappings for no other reason than to have RPG trappings. Seriously, it's like making a spacecraft with wings for no other reason than aircraft have wings. You can make all the crap you want, but if you hold onto all the useless bits you'll never actually arrive at great design.

Vis a vis Cuppy vs. Game Designers and MMO Bloggers, what exactly is the point of all this? Okay, so some of the people who don't like Facebook games go a little too far in it, but can we drop the innuendo that people who don't see Facebook games as the second coming of Christ are all myopic dinosaurs begging for their own extinction. Facebook games are just another iteration of web games, and hey I liked web games. In fact one of my all time favorite games that I seldom shut up about, Neveron, was a web game. Still, it's just another iteration of an older concept, this time with a new audience. Some of that audience will stick, some of it won't. People who can't personally respect that audience and their taste in games really shouldn't be making games for them anyways.

Personally, I have some doubts as to the value of Facebook as a medium. Between the different monetization models and the extreme stratification between the winners and everyone else, it's hard for me to believe that a small company can really turn enough of a profit to stay in business. Doesn't mean I'd turn down an offer to work on one in exchange for fair payment though.

Otherwise, not much is really up. I still hate programming with a passion, and am still trying to program a game in XNA. The combination isn't working out very well for me, but I've had 3-4 different programmers up and disappear on me. The whole run around of not knowing whether their still working on my project or not, and my own timidity leading to my not busting down their doors looking for answers, is just too much for me. So I'm giving this a try on my own steam, which I expect to run out soon if it hasn't already.

Desperate Plea
I am really, completely, stupidly broke. I know nobody has ever used the Tip Jar over there, but really.. if you could spare a buck... or fifty cents or you know two bits, anything at freaking all, I wouldn't be above accepting it. In fact, I'll gladly grovel for it. And I know it says it's for Thetagamerz, that was a business I tried setting up a while back... it didn't work out.

If there is something within my skill set that someone would like to pay me to do, by all means throw me a comment or an email (sara.pickell at gmail dot com).


Just a Thought

I'm thinking about trying out something new here in a bit. I've been thinking for a while that I would like to work with creating my own miniatures, but I haven't really been all that up on peweter and greenstuff modeling. So I was just thinking I could create a 3d model in Maya, print out the UVs and create a paper model using the UV layout.


Chase and Retreat

The sound of the TV drowned out the muted chatting of the cafe's occupants. "KAT7 News covering this thrilling chase through downtown Las Vegas, the suspect in a black Camaro..." A diner who had been absorbed in a book looked up for a few seconds but soon returned their attention to their book. Sheila sighed as she leaned on the counter, staring out at the peaceful swaying of the bushes outside the cafe's large windows.

"I've been thinking about paying a visit to my sister up in Reno. Haven't seen her in a while..." She said without looking at anyone in particular.

"... In another strange turn of events it has launched off the overpass and is now taking the side streets."

"Heh, it's not like you're heading out of state, what's the big deal?" The waitress next to her asks.

"Well, we weren't exactly on good terms you know. I have no idea how she would react to my just suddenly showing up." An awkward silence began between the two women, while the tv continued chattering away. The sudden ring of the phone on her belt made Sheila jump.

"Jack, what's up, haven't heard from you in a while..."

"... Once again, the suspect Nathan Langer is wanted for a shooting in Henderson at a local dance school..."

"I thought you guys were in Reno..." Her gaze at the window in front of her changed from one of boredom to shock.

"... It looks like the police are about to take drastic measures. A spike strip has been set up."

A distant sound of sirens began to penetrate the small establishment. "Jack stay right where you are, I'm coming over there right now."

"What's up?"

"Janey... My sister..." despite her expression not changing tears began to roll down Sheila's cheeks. "Was killed." The final statement came out flat, but her legs seemed to give way and she sunk down to her knees. "Listen I need to go now, can you watch the shop?"

"Sure thing boss. You go and do whatever you need to do. We'll be fine here!"

"... Tires are blown but the suspect hasn't been stopped!"

Sheila grabbed her coat and walked towards the door, the sound of sirens outside was becoming deafening.

"The suspect is loosing control of their car, spinning out of control!"

Sheila reached out to grab the handle on the door and noticed movement out the corner of her eye. As though in slow motion her head turned to see a black Camero sliding across pavement and sidewalk towards her. The signal to move passed throughout her whole body, but too late, between second and the next the side of the car smashed through the door frame picking her up and pushing her in front of it into the small cafe.

"... Smashed into the front of a store bringing this terrifying chase to a brutal close. Word from the ground is that there may be casualties in the building it ran into. Our prayers are with their families tonight..."

Jack sat in shock in front of the hospital barely sparring a glance for the detective questioning him.

"And what happened then?"

"Then he ran out the front door. I saw him get into a car, a Camaro maybe, black. After that I was too busy with Janey to really notice anything else."

"Well, LVPD should have the bastard in custody now. Do you have anyone coming for you?"

"Janey's sister. She owns a cafe downtown..."

"I see, well take care then." The detectives final words were drowned out by the sirens of arriving ambulances.


Belated announcement

This is coming a bit late, but with the problems I've been having on the other blog's comment's section, I'm canceling the current play test for Twin Rivers. I'm going to have to find another venue anyways at this rate, since I'm having a hard time explaining everything in twitter and skype anyways.