Saturday Night Fun ‘n’ Games Open Thread


 


 


 
Off to dinner with the Spousal Unit. What’s everyone else up to?








Saturday Morning Open Thread: D&D, the Family-Friendly Modern Edition

I first hooked up with the Spousal Unit when we were sharing a crowded off-campus ex-frat-house, and he was a serious Dungeon Master. (I wasn’t a player; it was obvious we could either game together or date, and dating won.) His feelings about the game’s new popularity are — as with so many phenomena for us late-Boomer nerds — somewhat mixed:

There was something about Dungeons & Dragons that spoke to Mario Alvarenga in a deep way. He tried it for the first time five years ago — never mind that he was not a teen, as most newbies are, but an adult. While experiencing the role-playing game, he could imagine scenes down to the tiniest detail: the bump of cobblestones on a street, the smell of baked goods in a market, the coldness of the wind. The boredom in his life melted away.

He joined one regular group, then two, then four. Soon, he was leading games as a Dungeon Master at his local game store. Alvarenga, who is 31 and works full time as a caregiver, quickly found his entire nonworking life overtaken by elves, gnomes, dwarves and wizards…

Yes, D&D is back. But it’s cool now (sort of). And legions are into it, including an unprecedented number of adult and female players, attracted by a popular recent revamp and new online playing options. It’s the ultimate sign that nerd culture is now mainstream.

Vin Diesel, Jon Favreau, Drew Barrymore, Dwayne Johnson, James Franco, Stephen Colbert, Anderson Cooper, Ta-Nehisi Coates: The list of celebrities who have “come out” about rolling the 20-sided dice is as long as a wizard’s beard. “Game of Thrones” writer George R.R. Martin first flexed his storytelling muscles as a young Dungeon Master, as did the showrunners on the HBO series. Joe Manganiello is so obsessed that he wrote a D&D movie script. The game has been on TV shows including “Big Bang Theory” and “Futurama.” Next month will see the release of a “Stranger Things” tie-in D&D starter set…

D&D has come a long way since Gary Gygax and Dave Arneson invented it in 1974 as an alternative to miniature-military war gaming. No longer is it a game to hide out with in Mom’s basement.

Today, people play it at bar and restaurant pop-up events such as “Drinks and Dragons” in Philadelphia, and “Orcs! Orcs! Orcs!” in Portland, Ore. They pay $2,650 per person per weekend to play it in Caverswall Castle in Staffordshire, England. They swell the ranks of the D&D Meetup groups from Tokyo (37 members) to Kolkata, India (501 members)…
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Glamour Shot Open Thread

I was playing Spider-Man when this goofball sat on the coffee table and started watching the teevee. It was a good opportunity to snap some glamour shots that show off his new collar.

How’s everybody’s Friday? The weather gave me half a migraine earlier, so I stayed in. I worked on short stories for an hour or two, and now (as you can see) I’m playing video games with the cat. Really living it up in the big city.

Open thread!








Late Night Light Snark Open Thread: J.R.R. Tolkien, Dungeon Master

All due respect to the learned Professor Tolkien, for the great joy he has given us and the myriad tales he inspired, but rereading Lord of the Rings after forty years *does* make it obvious how lightly his original worldbuilding was edited.

Showed this thread to the Spousal Unit, who was a locally renowned DM back in the hex-paper days, and he LOL’d too, so…

Click on any tweet above to read the rest of the thread.








Saturday Evening Open Thread: Samwise!!

We’re finally moving in to the new apartment in Midtown East. Today I went upstate to get Samwise from my friend who’d been taking care of him lo these many months. He’s acclimating very well for a dislocated cat.

We now return you to your regularly scheduled vituperations. I’m going to play Octopath Traveler, probably. Open thread!