So, my one week of break is over, just as I was starting to feel the stress go away.
Got a chance to play a couple of 2-player games with Bobbijean this week.
by Eric Lang and Fantasy Flight Games
(Although this game is now unsupported by FFG, and doesn’t even get a mention on their web site as far as I can tell, it’s actually a solid little game. At the same time that Brawl came out and created a small craze for real-time card games–meaning there are no turns–Frenzy was released. You can play one of four different fantasy races–dwarves, undead, humans, and orcs. You basically try to have the highest card in your front row when comapred with your opponent’s card opposite yours. If you have the highest card at the end of the round, you get the cards in the second row as points. Throw in some cards with special abilities, and that’s Frenzy. Bobbijean and I both enjoyed it and having to make decisions quickly is a rarity in most games, so it felt new.)
(Part of the Kosmos 2-player series of games, Heave Ho! is basically a card laying game where you try to have more points on your side than your opponent does on her side. The game is themed as a tug-of-war between two Scottish families. You can play cards on your side and your opponent’s side, and whenever either player plays a card with a Heave Ho! on it, you add up the scores of each side and move a barrel marker to one side or the other on a little track. If the barrel moves off the track on one side, then that player gets the barrel and a new match starts. Get three barrels and you win. There’s also a team-building part of the game, much like in 2-player Spades, where you divide the cards between your own team and your opponent’s team. Bobbijean figured the strategy out there pretty quickly and schooled me in 3 out of 4 rounds. A fun game, light, and quick.)
(I’ve been on a metal kick lately, and this is my latest trip down nostalgia lane. While I think that Appetite for Destruction is still the best G’n’R album, UYI2 comes in a close second. If you can ignore the sophomoric “Get in the Ring,” most of the other songs on this album are strong, and as I moved from teenaged rebellion to early-college angst, I felt like G’n’R was keeping pace with me as they moved to a more contemplative side. It’s weird to remember that this album comes out at roughly the same time as “Smells Like Teen Spirit” from Nirvana, and even at the time, I recognized that the next wave of teen-agers would be listening to music that was quite different from what I came of age hearing. Slash is still the quintessential metal guitarist to me–style, posture, technique, and sound. And Axl Rose in his prime was one of the best frontmen.)
(A quirky, fairy tale kind of show that I’m not at all surprised got cancelled. Even by the end of episode three, I’m bored with the premise and the style. I’ll keep watching the rest of the first season, but I can’t imagine changes that are going to significantly sway my opinion. This would have been a really amusing Tim Burton movie, but is only a tedious TV show.)
(While not everyone may find this show to be their cup of tea, I find it incredibly amusing. Bobbijean and I are picking up the language for the show and using it around the house. It’s been a while since “awesome” was our word of choice for things we like. The characters are funny and likable, especially Neil Patrick Harris’s Barney, who is pure id and seems to always get the best lines. What most impresses me though is the way the show plays with narrative, creating a Pulp Fiction-esque feel where you’re never sure if what you just saw was really what happened. I can’t wait to see the next episode of this show.)
Summer classes start tonight. Still nervous about the 1920s course in 10 weeks with 2 hour class sessions, but we’ll see how it goes. Gonna be a lot of reading and writing in not much time.