Category Archives: games
D&D Encounters Week Four: Into the Portal we go!

So, week four of D&D Encounters and this one was a battle encounter.  We first met an Imp who, thanks to my Arcana skills and others’ skills checks got us some information from the Imp about the portal he was standing over and the Master’s Apprentice who lived therein.  After we got some more information from the Imp the earth shook and he awakened some stone sculptures and the battle began.

My wizard and our group’s psion stayed in the back while our attackers (all five of them, plus two animal companions) pressed forth in battle.  It was a pretty tough encounter and everyone but myself was at least bloodied (reduced to half or less of their hit points) and I was struck for some pretty good damage by a collapsing cavern ceiling as well.  It was only because of a lucky roll of the dice that I, myself, wasn’t bloodied by the collapse.  (For the record, my deftness spared me 10 damage and I took only five.)  Turns out, that was my only lucky roll and I spent the rest of the encounter causing minimal damage including an Encounter-level spell that took six of a possible 20.  (2 D8 +4, I rolled two ones)

That said, I did pretty well for myself and our group of brave adventurers emerged victorious, delving into the portal that opened due to the tremors leading us into the Apprentice’s lair.

I’m really looking forward to the next eight weeks’ worth of games but it’s another two at least until we can get an extended rest and recover spells, hit points and daily-level actions.

Stay tuned!

Posted on April 7, 2010, 21:09 By
No comments yet Categories: dnd, games, geek
D&D Encounters Week Three: Short but Sweet!

Week Three of Encounters and this was a short but sweet encounter.  It was a skills-based encounter so no combat this week.  The first part of the encounter didn’t really work for my Wizard’s strengths, but the second half was heavy on Intelligence (Arcana, Religion, History) and Wisdom (Dungeoneering and Perception) -based skills which were waaaay more suited for my brainiac.

After the two skill challenges were bested, we were left with a cliffhanger ending pining for more.  Next week can’t come soon enough!

Posted on March 31, 2010, 19:24 By
No comments yet Categories: dnd, games
D&D Encounters, How I got back into the game

I’ve been wanting to get back into Dungeons & Dragons for a while now.  I even went so far as to buy the 4th Edition books when they came out.  I got the Player’s Handbooks I and II, the Dungeon Master’s Guide and Monster Manual as well figuring I’d probably need to run a game since I didn’t know anyone locally who played.

Fast forward to two-plus years later and I found that Wizards of the Coast was trying to introduce the game to new players by having their Encounters delves hosted not just nationwide, but worldwide, every Wednesday at different locations.

I’d initially found a game in Newark, which is a good 45-60 minute drive from my house, and went last week to play the first level/encounter.  Well, it wasn’t a great fit for me (mostly for the drive involved) so I looked for a game closer to me here in Livermore.  As luck would have it, I was able to find a game hosted at the Barnes and Noble in Dublin, which is about a 10 minute drive.  I called the store to make sure that they were still accepting new players and wound up talking with Wes who wound up hosting/DMing the game I played this evening.  He let me know that I was more than welcome to join in the festivities and, WOW, what a difference!

The moment I walked into the store and met Wes I could tell it was going to be a great session and I was right.  There were four of us in the party, myself a Human Wizard (Gwenne Stefan I), a Ranger (didn’t catch the race) and his wolf companion played by Richard, a Cleric played by a young woman named Sam, and a Swordmage played by a young man named Elliott.

We picked up where we left off last week and took an “elevator” down from the main level to the dungeon where we ran into a Changeling, a Guard and his pet Scorpion and a smattering of Minions.  We made pretty short order of the minions and gave the Changeling and Guard a pretty solid whooping to end the encounter.

Again, it was thanks to Wes, the DM, for helping the group get going and really involving the group in the adventure.  I was able to get back into the swing of things after not playing for at least 15 years and was able to get up to speed without embarrassing myself too terribly.  I can’t wait until we pick up next week and hope that we can do some role playing as this session was entirely battle-filled.  I hear tell that next week’s session will be more skill and role playing-based.  Can’t wait!

Posted on March 24, 2010, 20:36 By
4 comments Categories: dnd, games, geek
My 2009 Fantasy Baseball Lineup

We had our draft today for Fantasy Baseball and I think I came out pretty good. I had the #10 pick (of 10) in a serpentine rotation, so I got the last pick of the odd-numbered rounds and the first pick of the even-numbered rounds. Not too shabby, really, as I got two picks in a row every time.

Here’s my lineup as it stands today preseason:

C Ryan Doumit – Pit
1B Ryan Howard – Phi
2B Ian Kinsler – Tex
3B Alex Rodriguez – NYY
SS Stephen Drew – Ari
OF Ichiro Suzuki – Sea
OF Alex Rios – Tor
OF Jermaine Dye – CWS
Util Derek Jeter – NYY (SS)
Bench Felipe Lopez – Ari (2B, 3B, SS, OF)
Bench Ken Griffey Jr. – Sea (OF)
Bench Brandon Inge – Det (C, 3B, OF)
Bench Mark Teahen – KC (1B, 3B, OF)
Bench Eric Byrnes – Ari (OF)

Pitchers
SP Jake Peavey – SD
SP Cliff Lee – Cle
RP Brandon Morrow – Sea
RP J.J. Putz – NYM
P Daisuke Matsuzaka – Bos
P Ricky Nolasco – Fla
P Ted Lilly – ChC

Wish me luck! We’re playing for money this time, so I’ve got more than just pride on the line. I’ve also got $10!

Child’s Play Charity

Child's Play

It’s that time again folks! Help the good people over at Penny Arcade help sick kids who can use your help. Spend a few bucks (or more) and buy toys, books, games and more for kids in a Children’s Hospital near you.

This is the fifth year they’ve been doing this and raised over $1 million last year alone in donations and gifts.

Go on, go to the Child’s Play Charity website and do some good!

13-0 For week 8

A message board I frequent has a weekly football pick-em that I take part in. It’s pretty simple, pick who you think is going to win in the week’s matchups. I’ve been hovering around the middle of the pack for weeks 1-7 and didn’t expect that to change for week 8. I don’t really pay too much attention and go more with my gut than anything. Stephen Colbert would be proud.

Here were my picks for week 8 (bolded/italicized):

SUN, OCT 28
Detroit at Chicago 1:00 PM
Pittsburgh at Cincinnati 1:00 PM
Oakland at Tennessee 1:00 PM
Cleveland at St. Louis 1:00 PM
NY Giants at Miami 1:00 PM
Philadelphia at Minnesota 1:00 PM
Indianapolis at Carolina 1:00 PM
Buffalo at NY Jets 4:05 PM
Houston at San Diego 4:05 PM
Jacksonville at Tampa Bay 4:05 PM
New Orleans at San Francisco 4:15 PM
Washington at New England 4:15 PM
MON, OCT 29
Green Bay at Denver 8:30 PM

I went 13 for 13 in my picks moving me from the middle of the pack all the way up to second place! In one week! Yay me!

I have good Coworkers


This is what I got for my birthday today at work. I have good friends here at work, but I need to mention Caley specifically as he really went above and beyond in cooridnating this whole thing and getting people to chip in.

I’m speechless…

Jen, can I get an XBox 360?

My birthday’s coming up in about a month, and I’ve been a very good boy this year.

Dear God, this looks amazing…

Posted on September 28, 2006, 11:06 By
1 comment Categories: family, games
Madden 2006: A good way to diet

Seriously. I picked up a used copy of Madden 2006 at GameStop yesterday for $9.95 and started playing the “career mode” where you create a player using DNA from “parents” and started a career with him. he’s a Fresno State grad (my “home team”) fullback and was drafted by the hated Cowboys. You can pick an agent for the player, make movie deals, and a bunch of other things too. It’s pretty sweet.

(You may be asking why I picked up Madden 2006 when 2007 is coming out next week. There are two reasons:

1. I’m trying to save money.

2. I plan on getting an Xbox 360 before Madden 2008 comes out and 2007 will be one of my first purchases.)

Now, how does Madden 2006 make a good way to diet?

When I’m in front of the TV, I snack. Not so much when I’m playing Madden. I’m so enthralled with the game and my progress (still in preseason, but it’s only been one night…) that I don’t even think to eat! This is how I’m going to “sell” Jen on alowing me to take over the TV…

Crabbed!

Crabbed!

My head crab arrived today and immediately jumped out of its box and did its thang.

That’s a niiiiice head crab…

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