Thursday, August 18, 2011

July 18 Early Morning News

More Things Stolen Before Charity Auction!
Author George R. R. Martin has urged fans to look out for two scripts from hit TV show Game Of Thrones which were stolen before a planned charity auction.

The writer, who penned the fantasy novel series A Song of Ice and Fire, which the hit HBO series is based on, planned to put scripts from two episodes of the show under the hammer at the sci-fi WorldCon event later this week. More...

Dueling Reviews of the LOTR Living Card Game!
Quickbeam: Greetings Ringer fans! As promised on last week’s TORn TUESDAYS (where we played the cards live on air using picture-in-picture closeup) here we review the intriguing new Living Card Game set in Tolkien’s mythological world; fresh from the familiar folks of Fantasy Flight Games (ah, sweet alliteration). Joining me on the balcony tonight is long-time Green Books contributor Ostadan (“Lore and Letters”) who, like me, shares a passion for both gaming and JRRT. I am Quickbeam, host of TORn Tuesdays and co-creator of RINGERS. Shall we begin at the beginning?

Ostadan: Fantasy Flight Games has had a license for table games based on The Lord of the Rings for more than ten years now. Their first Tolkien-themed game was Dr. Reiner Knizia’s Lord of the Rings board game.This game took an unusual approach: it is a co√∂perative game in which up to five players players (representing five hobbits including co-conspirator Fatty Bolger) operate as a team against the game system in an attempt to destroy the Ring before they are corrupted by Sauron. Fantasy Flight Games’ new offering, The Lord of the Rings: The Card Game, designed by Nate French, is the first expandable card game designed specifically as a cooperative (or solo) game. Once again, players team up “against the game,” this time playing cards to complete pre-programmed quests (represented as cards) in the face of fearsome foes and evil events (represented by, yes, cards).

Quickbeam: I’m glad we are starting this conversation with the Knizia LotR masterpiece. So very cool, let me tell you. John Howe really brought some stunning artwork to that game (see my original article from the old Green Books). So when FFG announced they would release a stylish new cooperative game, I said: “I am so there!”

Ostadan: Boardgamers (which includes players of complex card games of this type) often discuss the ‘theming’ of the game, that is, how well the theme is presented by the game: is it integral to the game mechanics or just ‘pasted on’? Is it presented compellingly so that players feel that they are part of a story? In a game based on The Lord of the Rings, does the game show solid knowledge and respect for the source material, or does it present a world that only superficially resembles Tolkien’s Middle-earth? For a fan of Tolkien’s work, or Jackson’s version, this question may well be more important than matters of game mechanics.

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