Saturday, June 23, 2012

What Happend To Lain's Sister

Serial Experiment's Lain is one of those shows I want to force people to watch when they are all like "Lost has so many unanswered questions and I can't handle it".  I swear if they watched Lain those people would fucking shit themselves until they die.  Death by mystery.  Unlike Boogiepop Phantom and Paranoia Agent SE Lain takes a box of cockroaches approach to world building, story telling, and plot.  They just throw it down and watch stuff scatter, coherency be damned.  It is kind of amazing that something like that would even get made and be mainstream enough to be on tv and stuff but hey we are living in wonderful times. 

While there is a lot that is unexplained about Lain there is also a lot that can be if you are willing to take the time and really think things through.  That doesn't mean there is one right answer to what happened Lain isn't nearly coherent enough for a grand unifying theory.  However, one mystery always bothered me, and that is what happened to Lain's sister.

It is pretty obvious from the get go that her family are plants, creations by the god, or something that didn't do a biological function to create Lain.  I think we can all get on board with that.  Her sister however, always seemed like a weird outlier.  For one she stays around till the end of the anime lurking in the dark going "beep beep" over and over again.  Two she seemed to be utterly in the dark about what Lain is.  When she first started screwing around with her Navi she asks her dad, "Is that normal?" and he dad just kinda blows her off.  NO IT ISN'T NORMAL AND YOU ARE AN IDIOT FOR ASKING but hey what can you do.  Then there is her episode. 

Before that there is another episode.  I can't remember the name of it but it is about the computer game that was causing people to see the wired in real life.  It was the episode where a couple of seniors killed themselves and the kid accidentally did something aweful.  The game was called phatasma or something like that.  That is the first case where in the anime where the wired crossed over till real world and effecting people who were not Lain and stuff like that.  It was also the first time Lain got actually involved in the strange things going on in the Wired.  She tried to help the last kid but she said, "I can't go where you are".

At any rate the next episode is the "Fullfill the Prophesy episode" it is also the episode where her sister looses it.  Somewhere either late in the game episode or early in the "Fullfill the Prophesy" episode Lain tells her dad that the real world and the wired aren't as separate as people believe. 

What I beleive is that the game Phantasma wasn't a work the Knights but instead the work of "God".  I think it was his early attempts to affect the real world by turning it into the wired.  The next episode I think he tries to extend his reach further and target's Lain's sister.  Why?  I don't know exactly.  However, I am positive that she comes under some form of attack and ultimatly she is pulled out of the real world and into the wired.  What replaces her sister is some sort of weird shell that starts to break down.  We have a lot of evidence to suggest that Lain is in two places at once a lot of the time and most of the anime seems to be a mergering of her two selves.  When her sister split in two her replacement sister told lain that there was nothing by the doorway when in fact there was some strange wired after image which is the last vestiges of her real sister fading away.

Lain was distracted all episode talking to dolls and eventually her parents.  Or rather images of her parents.  I think she wanted to save her sister but all this happened before she had a proper control over her abilities.  I think this is also why her sister stuck around the whole anime long after her parents left.  Anyway that's what I think and I love you all.  

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Well that was Fun Yesterday

Yesterday I ended up writing up a quick and dirty after action report of puerto rico.  That was FUN!  So much fun that I think I wanna make a thing of it.  I can do more than just track what games I play I can also track how I play and what we do.  I think it will be neat.  To bad my phone's camera is sub par otherwise I could augment it with pictures.  Oh well maybe someday you know?  At any rate it is neat though certain games don't lend themselves well to this sort of thing paticularly Wiz-War and Dominion but I'll figure something out and between the two gaming nights I have we can manage something.  Also it will just be a thing that I will prolly get tired of in a couple of weeks then never do again.  Still it will be fun while it lasts.  I mean I also want to do board game reviews but I don't buy enough to really justify making a thing out of it so that's the end of that then. 

So I have some manditory time off coming up which is pretty exciting.  I plan on making some serious progress on my game which has addmittedly stalled a little bit.  This is partially to do with the fact I am tired.  It also has to do with the fact that I am in sort of a boring chore portion.  I need to make more counters I need to label the counters, and then I need to push them around a bit to see how I want things to work.  As it stands tanks aren't scary enough.  THAT needs to change.  I mean they do good on their own but defense bounuses are pretty easy to come by.  I am going to change that by doing a combination of increased attack power and a special order called marking shot or perhaps bore sighting I can't decide.  I might make the marking shot something engineers can do.  I want Engineers to be awesome and a target worth killing.  They pretty much are already but making tanks super awesome is something really cool.  They need some sort of defensive option if I am going to do that though cause otherwise people will be slaughtering them left and right.  With just troops this is okay when heroes get involved though it might be a little bit more tricky. 

I was planning on going to Pelicon but I just looked at the list of events and I just don't know.  I want to get more into wargaming but around here that means "Flames of War" and that's just a no go for me.  I've fallen in love with hex and chit gaming and that's that pretty much.  Also no more miniature games.  Ugh, they take up space, they need tons of care and feeding, and I just don't want to bother.  Also there is a lot to be said for the level of detail found in hex and chit over a miniature game.  You can do more and I think as a genra it has been largely unexplored due to the ammount of historical gaming, however I've already written extensivly on that subject.

Backtracking a bit I am super excited for the new Super Dungeon Explore stuff and I am even more excited for Leviathans.  Those are going to be some good times.  I am a little worried that I won't get to play Leviathans as much as I like and that it will suffer a similar fate to battletech but I also don't care.  I just had a battletech though actually.  I know that the minatures come it two scales there is main and battleforce.  I also know that the mechs in the 25th annaversary boxed set aren't to the main scale.  I wonder how close they are in size to the battle force minis?  I should look into that because while I just said I wasn't going to get into another miniature game totally want more mechs.  I'll look into that in a minute.  It is sad because I really love battletech and I have the dice for it, we should play it more.  I kinda need to review the rules a bit though.  I'll do that tomorrow night maybe. I'll have to do the battleforce thing when I get home though, I can look at porn all day while I am at work but heaven forbid I try to access  Fuckers. 

Next week is going to be a quiet one as I get productive again.  I need to get back into the swing of working on my game and I need to get a shadowrun game session up and running.  Both are time consuming but a lot of fun.  TA!

Friday, June 15, 2012

So Lets Try This Again!

Yesterday I decided to write a blog post because I haven't in awhile and WHY NOT!  I mean I should be working on my game or Shadowrun but a little free writing is good for the soul.  Anyway I started writing about how complex wargaming is hard, and how I don't like Vassal, and some other stuff and it all came out sounding really frustrated and highly negative.  I was troubled by this and I realized once again that I very much need a vacation and to relax.  Some definite chilling will be happening on my next two days off.  I mean outside of work I am happy and optimistic.  On some level it is a little troubling how compleatly I can compartmentalize what happens here at work versus the rest of my life.  On the other hand, whatever essential survival tool for the win.

Since my vacation is going to be quite a ways away I need to focus on some other things like changing gears and short term problem solving.  That is starting right now and both of those things seem to be working out pretty well.

In other news I am excited to be running shadowrun.  Normally I want to tell a grand story and do all this stuff and throw the system to the wind.  However, this time I really want to take the time and get the system down.  I'll learn the ins and outs and become really good at it.  Right now I have a really decent group of players who understand what I want to be doing and they are okay with that.  They also are playing a nice variety of classes that will really allow me to spread out and try a few bunches of things.  Like vehicle chases which I am pretty excited about.  I want to start planning but it looks like Kelley will be joining us after all so I wanna see what we come up with for him before I do anything to serious.

I also want some new board games but before that, last night we played Puerto Rico and I didn't do horribly!  I normally do at that game.  I am not sure why, but I seem to have a hard time getting a rhythm down.  It is the same problem I have with Jagged Alliance 2 actually.  I just don't really know how to functionally approach the game, and I seem to have such a hard time with money production.  Or I have an AMAZING time with money production and then I end up shipping nothing and loosing the game.  This time though I did okay.  I went Indigo king and one other player tried to but I was able to lock him out each and every time, and since I had the foresite to build a warehouse and the hacienda I was never short workers and should I get screwed shipping my warehouse saved me.  I did good!  Not great but certainly not aweful and it was the first game where I actually felt present during play.  So I am pretty happy.  Right now I just need to balance my cash production a little better and I would of been golden.  I wanted to break into coffee I really did but at no point during the game did I have enough for a roaster.  I also needed at the minimum a market and possibly an office.  Also buying a warehouse before I could produce anything might have been a mistake but I wanted to grab one before they ran out,

My lunch is over but this is 1000% more upbeat so I am glad this is happening to me.  I am doing good now and things are going to happen hooray!  Alright back to work.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Games Games and Stuff

Yay games!  I play a lot of board games.  It has gotten to the point where when I look to how I want to spend my  money video games have fallen by the wayside and board games are taking up the majority of my funds.  I am okay with this.  Its funny though because I started with Arkham Horror and then I kinda moved around for a bit and now I seem to be settling on Euro games and block war games.  I love me some block war games.  Currently on my radar is Strike of the Eagle, Le Havre, Caylus, Aquire and Wizard's War and Virgin Queen.  Oh man I want Virgin Queen.  However, VQ is a 5-6 hour 6 player game and currently the thing we all want to put in that time slot is Twilight Imperium and we don't get to play that nearly enough so that game will be kept on the back burner.

Most of these games sound pretty boring.  Take Aquire for example which plunges you into the fascinating world of corporate murders and exicutions...I mean mergers and aquisitions.  Yeah you get to play job that caused Patrick Bateman to turn to murder what fun.  Yet it is 20 bucks and it does look like a good time.  It also looks like something AJ will kick my ass in but whatever he's moving someday so I'll get a shot at my place in the sun.  I like these kinds of games.  They require thought, they are hard, and the lack of random factors means that you can't just fall back on luck and hope to come out alright.  It is about making a plan and hoping it is better than your opponent's or something like that.  It is hard to describe however, I feel the conflict far more personally in Agricola, Dominion, or Puerto Rico than I do in something like Malifaux, Magic, or Wiz-War.  Heh this is especially true in Wiz-War so much random shit happens in Wiz-War that it is more like a rue goldberg machine designed to cause chaos than a proper game.  That isn't to say that I don't love Wiz-War because I do very much.  It is more that I find Agricola or Dominion to be far more satisfying.  Some people can't get over the lack of direct conflict.  I find these people boring.

On a related topic there is a group of people who have started coming to Anime club over the summer.  They are obsessed with My Little Pony and they are adpating Frag to both the ponyverse and TF2.  A pretty worthy endevour.  By itself Frag is a solid C of a game.  Randomized movement, annoying damage rules, static ugly maps, its fun for a couple of play thoughs but as it stands it really either needs some serious modifications or you know a better game.  It is a fun game but there are better things out there.  There are times where I am tempted to show them a world with Wiz-War, Cosmic Encounters, skirmish minature rules which would cover what they are trying to do much better, but they annoy me so they can learn on their own. 

It is odd though, how different we must seem to them.  All of us sitting around a table brows furrowed in concentration as we try to plan our next move.  Moving disks around one board so we can put smaller disks, or cubes on another board and occationally we yell fuck as we realize something has gone wrong so someone has taken an advancement we needed.  That's the thing about gaming though.  Stuff for everyone.  There are pleanty of times where we just want to throw caution to the wind and blow things up for fun and profit and we have some very good games for that I am just glad that I can go buy a complex euro with confidence that not only will it be played but everyone will be better at it than me.