Real Life

…nothing to see here. Move along.

Well, in the scheme of things…an Amber related post. Various factors make a difficult decision to not vacation at Ambercon this year. I will certainly miss the games and moreso the people.
Nothing major or sorrowful here, just too many balls in the air and iffy schedule.
Thanks and carry on with a great pbem, House of Cards.

10 years… blowing dust off the sidebar

ahem… tap, tap, tap
can you hear me?
Well, the links are so rusty. Blogroll just died and my delicious really isn’t set up to replace it… and… well, I’m in a mellow place where I don’t know that I’ve got much more to say about Zelazny that you have not heard before.
So, I sorted and corrected a couple things.
If you find something you’d like to see corrected, send me a note at

ambercon 2010 :: the aftermath report

“(Martin’s) got a bad case of ‘God Benedict is so awesome’ and ‘Dad, you suck.'” — Gérard to Avia (from Changing Hands slot 7)

So a very nice Ambercon in Detroit, Michigan. Many thanks to all the GMs and Players who give of themselves so strongly. We win!
the brief reviews…
Agents of the Argent Rose (Arref game)
I note that this has become something of a family romp through a very broad canvas. Yet it satisfies in a way that a canon elder game through an earlier age in Amber might. We have the movers and shakers, the little games between the sibs and their pleasant conflicting motifs.
The asides and snarky wit of the cousins for each other is stronger than any plot.
Suffice, it may be that there is war between China and France coming, for the Imperial Princess returns to China, not chastened by the superior glory of France but inspired by the cousins to break her chains.
Oh, and Grandmama and Grandpere Corwin are speaking again. Separate bedrooms but very much in lust. Perhaps the world will be well, despite the loss of Cousin Max to vile Stigmatists. Farewell, Max, we shall all miss you.
Quotes at link above.

In the Lonesome October
(Paul Vlamis game)
Full of win. Lovely reproduction of the original material with full props to Zelazny on charm and etiquette of the archetypes. I found the other Players full of wit and style with their unique sets of Hero/Villains. Smashing game. Yes, the Openers lost, just barely. Darn.
Major Hatreds/Petty Animosities (Madeline game)
Full of win. Random is a punk. Gerard is sly. Eric panics and kills Corwin on earth when the elders settle in to play family politics with Flora’s plans in the middle east. Flora is dear. Fiona and Bleys are charmingly ruthless while Brand expounds and explodes in every direction.
Llewella: clueless as she misconstrues all events and tries an alliance with Random.
Oberon squashes Fiona/Bleys…and sets Eric on Brand’s trail. Score one for Random and Flora and Gerard…the only ones to really come out well.
House of Midnight and Fire (Arref game)
Eric’s plans to keep the throne surface twenty years after he is dead. Six very impressive scions of King Eric meet to discuss taking the throne back from Random. They bring secret weapons and plenty of guts.
But what’s this? Instead of invading, they decide to personally scout the Amber situation. So they infiltrate and then charm their way directly to the Eternal City. They get sell-sword jobs and join guilds. They buy buckets. They get fed and get the inside scoop on the war with Chaos. They find out their father is a hero, who died defending the Realm.
They find out no one really understands how Random became king…but Gerard handed him the throne and there seems to be little conflict in peaceful Amber.
They pass through Random’s security and at least one walks the Pattern. One gets thrown into the dungeon and quickly escapes. Finally they get an appointment with the King and have a dinner, meet the Queen and discuss current events.
Mordu (PC Paul Vlamis): “Worst throne war EVAR!”
Privately, the scions realize that they have a very very very good chance to kicking Random’s ass right outta the country.
Then what? Very nifty game with good roles handled by all.
Clandestine Chronicles of the Cobalt Charter (Arref game)
Three new players came up to speed very well with my experimental premise that has now run some six times. A game completely at the mercy of the Players and their wit…this time around, three plots were handled well until Julia Barnes tripped into a trap of the Chaos Vendetta on her.
But the Players quickly regrouped to save the day. Kudos to those mad bad shadow folk in their defiance of the Poles of Reality. Maybe next year, Amber will have a reaction to Viral Unicorn Sightings?
Dashing Blades (Sol Foster game)
Ever wanted to swashbuckle in good ol’ Amber before there was a Corwin? This game was a sweet play for me. Been hoping to see it play for a while. New guy (me) got a trifle enthusiastic and foolish trying to measure up to the Blades and their reputation.
Suffered minor wounds….a lot.
Changing Hands (Arref game)
Over fifty shadows essential to Amber’s future well being? How do we know what Chaos might have done to them while Amber was under siege?
Send out the young amberites while the Elders wrangle a treaty. That’s how.
Very awesome game with full PC wit on show. Infiltration. Shootouts. Magic. Poison. Cultists. Talking horses. Acres of flaming death. Shadows full of Black Grass. Beheadings. Science. Steam-powered tanks.
Lovely. Thank you for the great roleplay I saw in this game. I also appreciate the quotes listed at the link above.
Soft Cimmerian: Mirror Teeth (Arref game)
Quiet game of intrigue and relationships between 10 people (3 PCs this year).
Really indescribable here. My kudos to the Players. Very very cool.
I can say this: Guisels 3000 Amblerash 5
‘Tis a fabulous way to end the convention.

Gygax travels into the west

Ernest Gary Gygax (July 27, 1938 – March 4, 2008) was an American writer and game designer, best known for co-creating the pioneering role-playing game Dungeons & Dragons (D&D) with Dave Arneson, and co-founding the company Tactical Studies Rules (TSR, Inc.) with Don Kaye in 1973. Gygax is generally acknowledged as the father of the role-playing game.

I would like the world to remember me as the guy who really enjoyed playing games and sharing his knowledge and his fun pastimes with everybody else.

&#8212Gary Gygax

Not a problem Mr. Gygax. You will be remembered.
Goodbye and hello, as always.