Friday, October 7, 2011

Random Musings

Some random thoughts for today:

Real Steel is out, and I have learned an important thing (about myself). Specifically, that dressing up a boxing movie with giant robots and (presumably) a vague sci-fi gimmick is still not enough to make me want to see a boxing movie.

Someone is taking a crack at solving the Riemann hypothesis, and is attempting to make a bit of money on it in the process. On the one hand it seems a bit...crass?.....but on the other hand, its nice to live in an era where even mathematicians can turn something as obscure as this into a money-making media circus. Thank goodness for the internet!

It turns out that old Hubble data is proving useful in locating exoplanets. The Bad Astronomer has a good writeup on it here.

Check out this unveiling of the Pathfinder Starter Box. I have to say, this looks very much like the kind of decent entry product to the hobby that should have been on the shelves a decade ago. I don't really understand why Wizards of the Coast has such a problem with making decent starter boxes. I felt the Red Box for Essentials was basically a paid tutorial, but it lacked all the essential features necessary to a decent introductory set, as have all the prior intro sets WotC has produced for the last eleven years. Specifically, a good introductory RPG should offer choices, not limits (such as providing decent but basic character creation rules, that let the players make their own characters instead of a preset selection or no selection at all), enough content that the game provides ample opportunity to be enjoyed...for months or longer....on its own, suggesting to the purchaser (or purchaser's parents) that further investment in the big rulebooks will payoff, and all the material needed to enjoy the game for many months all right there, in the box. I think this new Pathfinder set has all that and more.

Tomorrow! Part one of a four part presentation of one of the oldest dungeon delves in my campaign world....a reimagining of the Caves of Chaos I did back in the mid 80's, and recently reconstituted for a short campaign last year using 4th edition.

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