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Hola all. Massawyrm here. Gaming for The Troops First things first – if you live in Austin and you’re a gamer, you should probably pop on by The Dragon’s Lair for this weekend’s special events. A few of the local gamers have gotten together for a charity event simply called “Gaming For The Troops.” The idea is pretty straight forward. All weekend they’re holding a number of tournaments or games. A 1750pt 40K, a couple of special D&D events, a Magic the Gathering Tournament, Warmachine and Legend of the 5 Rings. Each event has an entry fee. All of those entry fees will go to buy gaming materials (D&D 4E) AT COST for troops serving overseas. Many of us have friends serving over there (or that have done more than their fair share tours) and the one thing they all complain about is the boredom. Apparently when people aren’t trying to kill you, there’s not much else to do. Needless to say, there’re a lot of gamers in the military. Hell, a large part of my addiction to gaming was fostered when I was a military BRAT, as I could always walk to the BX which always stocked gaming materials. It was always around and it’s always easy to find gaming groups on bases. But I’m willing to bet there aren’t many BXs in warzones. So us geeks are pitching in for our fellow geeks fighting abroad. There’s no need to play in an event – you can just stop by and donate. But come on. What fun is that? Events start tonight. You can get all the information incuding schedules and donation information here at the Lair’s page. 40K Macharian Crusade From the realm of 40k fandom comes The Macharian Crusade. Once a year the guys over at Bell of Lost Souls put together an in depth fan made campaign rulebook outlining an important but little explored piece of 40k history. Last years release was the crazy insane Warhammer 30,000, a book chronicling the Horus Heresy (the great mutiny against the emperor by a number of his most loyal legions) as well as offering rules for the pre-heresy Space Marine armies (many of whom would later fall to chaos) as well as giving stats for the major players in charge of those armies at the time. The idea behind these books is to give fun rules to spice up armies, conversions to work on as well as a detailed story to add to your weekly games. This time around the book focuses upon the Imperial Guard, specifically the exploits of General Solar Macharius who led a several year crusade through the galaxy to liberate thousands of worlds from the xenos who inhabited them. Based heavily upon the scraps written about him in various 40k texts and even more so upon the campaign of Alexander the Great – this gives a fairly detailed history and set up on how to play in this particularly brutal section of history. There are rules or new characters for almost every army, new Apocalypse formations and even details on how to run a Rogue Trader army. I’m currently in the midst of modeling the new Deathwatch-Master Pizarro, who will lead my Blood Angels along with an as yet unnamed chaplain. Unless of course we have a lack of Xenos players locally (it could happen), at which point I might have to speed up my Death Guard hobby conversion army and run them against all the Guard/Marine players we’ll no doubt be overwhelmed with. I’ve already converted and painted up myself the new Chaos Captain just to be safe. Keep in mind these are fan generated rules meant to be INTERNALLY consistant, so don’t expect to show up at your store with Masta Blasta in your Ork army and not get a few strange looks – unless they’re allowing Crusade materials. These are rules meant for play groups, gaming clubs and your FLGS to attack en masse and plan ahead for. The local campaign, spearheaded by the Bell of Lost Souls guys themselves, doesn’t even start until October. Everyone’s taking time to gear up and convert their armies for it, which is half the fun of these things. You can download the pdf here. Dark Heresy back in print! This week marks the official re-release of Dark Heresy, the tabletop RPG based in the Warhammer 40k universe. Originally published by GW’s Black Library, they sold the license to Fantasy Flight Games who will be reissuing all of the books as well as overseeing the writing and distribution of new books to the line. I just got my copy of the new core rulebook (which cleaned up typos and incorporated errata) and plan on getting in a few games in the next few weeks and I should have some news shortly on their future release plans for the series. The hardcover book hit shelves of your FLGS yesterday. D20 Damnation Decade Okay, I am NOT a fan of the d20 Modern system. Never have been. As much as I love the d20 system for all my fantasy needs – the modern version of the game always felt forced and required too much tweaking to feel anywhere near right. I’ve heard of some folks using it to create some cool Zombie survival horror RPGs, but I always shrugged since there are like 12 of those on shelves already. So when I say I found a reason to play d20 Modern… I normally wouldn’t write about a 2 year old supplement, but when the AICN reader who wrote the book asked me to take a look at it, his pitch got me pretty damned interested. He found a way to make the campy nature of the d20M system work in its favor. He made a campy game. Set at the end of the world…in the 1970’s. Inspired by the 1970’s that makes AICN what it is, the conventions here won’t sound foreign to any of you readers at all. Nazi clones from Brazil, UFOs, Sasquatch, Government spooks, Albino Zombie/Vampires, psychic demons, androids, mad doctors, an ass kicking Elvis, pissed off nature, the Russians and the devil himself Richard Nixon. If it appeared in 70’s genre films, it appears in this game. All thrown together into one crazy, mind-splintering universe. You play truck drivers, street-smart detectives, kung fu hipsters, roller skating hotties and rollerball players that end up uncovering these vast conspiracies and must fight to save the world from the brink of destruction again and again. The thing is pretty damned fun, and I had a hell of a time just reading it cover to cover. You can play it dark like Omega Man or The Exorcist or light and fluffy like Paranoia without all the extra lives. If you play d20 Modern, or enjoy modern campaign settings, then as an AICN reader you pretty much owe it to yourself to at least thumb through this one at your FLGS. It’s got a three-page bibliography of the 70’s movies that inspired the book, which is almost entirely comprised of AICN essential viewing. Published by Green Ronin, it is also fully compatible with their TRUE 20 line. Alright, well that’s it for this week. Hope to see several of you folks down at the Lair this weekend. Until next time friends, smoke ‘em if ya got ‘em. Massawyrm
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