Sunday 2pm - Once again I will demo Chez Geek and Chez Dork.
-- Steve Jackson
August 27, 2001: Discussion Groups For New Games
There are now Yahoo groups for three new games:
August 26, 2001: Small In Japan
A very tiny sculpture represents a huge step forward for nanotechnology. See the Reuters story on Yahoo.
If you haven't visited the Warehouse 23 specials page in a while, you're missing out on good deals and never-to-be-seen-again merchandise. While you're there, sign up for the notification list so you never miss one again!
August 25, 2001: December Releases
We have announced our December releases . . . and you can see 'em on the New and Upcoming page.
Warehouse 23 News: A good game resurrected . . .
Living Room Games has brought back the Earthdawn RPG, in a completely updated and revised second edition.
August 24, 2001: Set Carrots on Stun
The World Carrot Museum goes a long way toward explaining the GFP Bunny Project. The glowing green bunny must have found out what the Carrot Museum already knows: carrots make excellent lasers.
-- Suggested by David Cunnius
Warehouse 23 News: Watch out for the Bogeyman!
Remember the things that hid under your bed or in the back of the closet? If you've forgotten, Little Fears will remind you.
August 23, 2001: Artificial Life
In the TechnoSphere, you can create an artificial life form and watch it as it looks for food, fights for its life, and even . . . if it's lucky . . . mates and gives birth. You don't control it once it's created . . . you just watch as your creation does its best to survive!
Warehouse 23 News: The other "Third Edition"
9th Level Games has just released Kobolds Ate My Baby!, Third Edition. It's been completely revised and updated to be faster, easier, and funnier than ever before.
August 22, 2001: Fuzzy Space Bunnies
Those of you who tuned into the post-layoff chat, and hung around till the end, heard a brief and elliptical discussion of this project, which will NOT really be called that. Some of you have noticed that there have been no further announcements, and have asked what's going on.
In a nutshell: our server change ate the brains of our computer wizards. The Fuzzy Space Bunnies (not TM) will be along eventually. The first semi-public test will be open to Pyramid subscribers only; what we do next depends on how they like it.
Personal correspondence begging for more hints will be ignored :-)
-- Steve Jackson
Warehouse 23 News: Shtab KGB, Prigatovte Vashi Dokumenti
So declares our brand new KGB Headquarters Sign (for those who don't speak Russian, that's "KGB Headquarters, Prepare Your Documents"). This enameled metal sign is perfect for a work cubicle, bedroom, or secret headquarters.
August 21, 2001: You Need This
Randy Cassingham, publisher of This Is True, has created the Get Out Of Hell Free card, and he'll sell you one really cheap. Hasbro is not amused, but parody is parody . . .
Warehouse 23 News: For Those of a Discerning Nature
We proudly present The Excellent Prismatic Spray, Volume 1 Issue 2, the first regularly available volume of this august publication, which will no doubt prove to be of inestimable value to players of both the Dying Earth RPG and other fantasy games.
August 20, 2001: We Knew It!
According to this study reported in The Guardian, children and young adults who play computer games are actually stunting their mental development compared to those who perform activities like simple math, reading aloud, and socializing with others.
Those of you who are dedicated roleplayers will probably see the point immediately. Those who have been doing Nintendo for ten years . . . probably aren't reading this, so they won't be concerned about the neurons they've lost.
-- Steve Jackson
August 19, 2001: The Romans Were Half-Right
The games being played out are actually Blood and Circuses according to Ground Zero. How do you play? You're playing right now. What are the rules? That would take all the fun out of it. Who are your opponents? It could be the guy next to you.
-- Suggested by Michael Feld
August 18, 2001: No Such Day
There was no August 18. The year 2001, like certain other years,
went directly from August 17 to August 19. If you have recollections of
August 18, that just means the Illuminati went to the trouble to implant
false memories. You should be proud, or terrified, or both.
August 17, 2001: If No News Is Good News, We're Sabotaging Ourselves...
As I mentioned the other day, we were having particular troubles getting the Pyramid newsgroups and web boards working with the server upgrade. They're working now, and seem to be stable, thanks to the help of some of our very own readers, who managed to ferret out the source of the trouble: a bug in the software. It's nice to have an army of loyal followers, sometimes. Much better than an army of the undead. Not to mention far more sanitary. Uh, not that we would know anything about that, of course.
I'd like to give a shout-out to:
As for the state of the server itself, there's still some work to be done before we're entirely back up to speed, but it's all behind-the-scenes stuff. I think we've managed to take care of all the things that you actually see. Again, thanks to everyone who has been alerting me to various errors across the site. If you see anything you think we might have missed, by all means let me know. :)
- Devin Ganger (without whom this might not have gotten fixed)
- Calle Dybedahl
- Kiri Wagstaff
- Jeff Vincour
- Russ Allbery (maintainer of the software, no less!)
I would also like thank a couple of people in particular:
I literally couldn't do this without them. Drop them each a line to say thanks, or better yet, if you're a Pyramid subscriber, stop by the PyraMOO chat server and show them some love.
- Jacqueline Hamilton (Kira) - my predecessor, Queen of Bob, and generally great gal - for putting up with the endless stream of questions from a neophyte like me, and for helping us with this move just 'cause she wanted to.
- Mark Cogan (marq), our mercenary coder, for taking so much of this upgrade upon himself, as he is smarter and far better experienced than I with such matters (for those of you reading this slowly, he is a l33t h4xx0r).
Hehehe... that sounds naughty.
Warehouse 23 News: "I am Woman . . ."
. . . or so the Untouchable Trio can now claim! How could this have happened? Find out in the just released KODT: Illustrated, Issue 8.
August 16, 2001: Worldcon In Philadelphia
The World SF Convention is coming up; it will be the last weekend of the month, in Philadelphia. I'll be there; I'm doing a few program items, and I'll be running a few game demos . . . as will some of our Men In Black. We will not have a sales table set up, but the very enlightened Philcon committee will be allowing sales after demos, so if you haven't yet picked up Munchkin (for instance), here's a chance.
All huckstering aside . . . if you're going to be at Worldcon, please look me up. The lack of a sales table will make me a bit harder to find, but will give me more time for things, so it evens out . . .
-- Steve Jackson
Don't let the fun happen without you. Get your copy of Knights Of the Dinner Table, Issue 57 while they last.
August 15, 2001: In Case You Were Wondering...
exactly why we're going through all this trouble concerning the new server, I thought I might clue you in:
Translation: It's about five times as fast as our old server.
- Dual Pentium III 1 Ghz processors (ServerWorks III chipset motherboard with integrated video, LAN, and SCSI, for those of you who care)
- 512 MB of synchronous dynamic RAM
- 9 GB hard drive, and an 18 GB backup drive - both run at 10,000 RPM and are hot-swappable. And there's a third drive bay waiting for when we need it.
- Linux, the choice of rabid fanatics worldwide!
- It's even got a disk drive and CD-ROM.
So what's taking us so long to get all the kinks worked out? The two main reasons:
But rest assured, we are steadily making progress. As I'm writing this, there're still some problems with newsgroup access (You may have noticed. You may also have emailed me. Many times. It's cool, though. Thank you.), but we expect to have that resolved soon (I would say "within the next few hours" but you know damned well what would happen if I did).
- We used to have two separate servers - one for web stuff, and one for our newsgroups and email. This new server replaces both of the old ones. So there were bound to be some conflicts, and indeed there have been.
- This is a software upgrade as well as a hardware upgrade. It's a new version of Linux (Secret message to John Campbell: Blah blah blah SlackWare blah blah blah), not to mention an upgrade to the software that runs our web server and newsgroups. And while some of these upgrades have gone perfectly smoothly, some haven't.
So thanks to everybody who's been keeping me posted when they find bugs here and there. If I don't answer, it's only because I don't have the time to respond to everybody. But rest assured, everybody's been quite helpful, as well as patient, and we do appreciate it. :)
Gain insight into the lives of the toughest group of folks in the Jovian Chronicles game. Nomads Planet Sourcebook details the people, settlements, and lifestyle of the asteroid belt in this new release from Dream Pod 9.
August 14, 2001: Return To Apostrophe Hell
Spinn, former host of Dysfunctional Family Circus, maintains several page's of apostrophe blunder's. He has even taken direct action to fix some of them . . .
Warehouse 23 News: Good things come in small packages.
The Ships Of Terra Nova may be small in size and number, but they have had a very big effect on the world of Heavy Gear.
August 13, 2001: Read And Heed . . .
Bob the Angry Flower has some guidelines for use of the apostrophe . . . and it would certainly reduce MY blood pressure if all you writers . . . let's not even MENTION the would-be writers . . . would take them to heart.
(Heh. After writing the above, I found this. Oh, I do not envy the literate of Edmonton right now . . .)
-- Steve Jackson
Bear With Us, Folks...
You may have noticed our warning a few days ago that we'd be moving to a new webserver today. Well, we've got everything pretty much moved over. And for the most part, it seems to work. But you and I both know that a situation like this is easily plagued by Murphy's Law (Who the hell made him a legislator anyway? I certainly didn't vote for him...), so there are bound to be problems, even if only little ones. If you see anything that looks broken and needs immediate attention (like, say, if warehouse23.com suddenly looks like a porn site), drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org. I probably won't read it because I'll be putting out some other fire at the moment, but hey, at least you tried, right? ;)
Warehouse 23 News: This Week's Special
Union Pacific from Rio Grande Games. Manage your railroads, lease track to Union Pacific, and collect your dividends.
August 12, 2001: Munchkin Strikes Again?
I'd intended for Munchkin to be a stand-alone game, but it's selling like gangbusters (the booth ran out TWICE at GenCon) and I'm getting requests for a supplement.
Okay . . . maaaaaaaaybe. I've started making notes for evil new stuff to add.
We've also set up a card-suggestion page . . . if YOU have an idea for a new card, feel free to drop it on me.
-- Steve Jackson
Our whole system, including Warehouse 23, will be offline starting sometime this afternoon and continuing for a few hours.
Warehouse 23 News: There's no crying in roleplaying.
Explore six new scenarios for Unknown Armies in the just released Weep.
August 11, 2001: System Downtime Sunday Afternoon
We have a new webserver which we've slowly been configuring; our current plan is to have about four hours of downtime starting sometime tomorrow (Sunday) afternoon, during which we'll migrate all our online functions from two tired old boxes into one minty-fresh new one. We will brag on the wonderfulness of the new box AFTER it's online and running.
-- Steve Jackson
Warehouse 23 News: Come over to the dark side
Experience Gemini, the Dark Fantasy Roleplaying Game from Cell Entertainment.
August 10, 2001: Culture Crash
Drying paint takes a backseat to the moment-by-moment drama that is crustal formation. Amusements: The Continental Drift Cam gives regular updates on the movement of our landmasses. It looks like a collision with Asia is inevitable, but Africa is coming up fast.
-- Suggested by McRey Moyer
Unleash the Celt within by donning one of the new Celtic knotwork pieces from Java's Crypt. The current choices for this line of hand cast, sterling silver jewelry are the Four Point Knotwork Pendant, Four Point Knotwork Pin/Brooch, Tri-Spiral Pendant, and Tri-Spiral Pin/Brooch.
August 9, 2001: Mark Your Calendars...
'cause it's still a couple months away, but a date has been set. October 21st has been declared Jam Echelon Day.
Echelon, if you don't already know, is the rumored NSA telecom surveillance network that monitors phone and internet traffic. The idea of the event is to attempt to "jam" Echelon by sending email that contains words and phrases thought to trigger the monitoring system, like "bombs," or "assassinate," or "illuminati" (imagine that!).
All privacy issues aside, we can't have any other secret agencies stealing a piece of our action. Damn the man!
Warehouse 23 News: Camels, camels everywhere
Looking for an inexpensive and fun game? Like camels? Try the two new offerings from Omni Gaming Products: How Much for the Camel? and Blazing Camels.
August 8, 2001: Steam-Tech Cover
Moving forward (it's scheduled for a Nov. 30 release) is GURPS Steam-Tech, compiled by Bill Stoddard. Who, you will recall, was author of the Origins-Award-winning GURPS Steampunk. It's going to be good.
But it's also going to have a great cover. Alex Fernandez just finished this . . . and it's the best thing we've had this year, better even than the Frag cover (which Alex also did . . . so I wanted to show it off. Click on the thumbnail for a bigger view.
-- Steve Jackson
Warehouse 23 News: Display your loyalty in style . . .
. . . with hand crafted, sterling silver jewlery from Java's Crypt. We have new designs for Call of Cthulhu and Legend of the Five Rings.
August 7, 2001: I Know His Handiwork. Sauron Is Behind This.
In one of the twitching fragments of the Soviet Union, they're now persecuting . . . hobbits. Read the story in the Independent.
August 6, 2001: Speeding Up The Auction
We've got all kinds of new stuff going into our auction . . . and we've upped the pace of the going once/going twice/gone. Items will now linger only one day at each stage . . . get the old lots sold, get the new lots up there!
-- Steve Jackson
August 5, 2001: Reality Is What You Can Piece Together
The dead, including some of the former royal houses of Europe, have possessed the living to create a book and a web page revealing to us The Truth of Reality (Leeza Gibbons' past life has lent a hand as well in between music and entertainment gigs). Find a dimension to match your outfit, beware Andy Taylor and the Catholic Church, and don't forget to pick up a T-shirt.
-- Suggested by J. Alan Hatcher
Car Wars Card Game: Under Control
Okay. Fixed. Apologies again for yesterday's spam - but I'd rather look stupid and get the rules fixed, than not fix the rules. And indeed the questions are found and the rules are modified accordingly, and we did a little playtest today, and all is well.
-- Steve Jackson
August 4, 2001: Car Wars Card Game: Aaaargh!
I hate to use this column for a note to one person, but . . . aaargh.
A month or so ago, I got a note from a gamer who had several interesting suggestions for clarifying the rules to Car Wars: The Card Game. I printed those suggestions out and they were right here in my office until the day before Production got around to giving me a copy of the new rules to check. And on that day, they vanished. And the rules need to go to print early next week.
So if you are the person who sent me those suggestions - please re-send NOW? Thanks . . .
-- Steve Jackson
August 3, 2001: Poul Anderson Dies
Science fiction has lost another giant. Poul Anderson passed away about midnight July 31-August 1. Creator of such characters as Dominic Flandry, David Falkayn, and Nicholas van Rijn, he is survived by his wife and writing partner, Karen, his daughter Astrid, brother John, grandchildren Erik and Alexandra, nieces Janet and Cathy, son-in-law Greg Bear (also a very well-known science fiction writer), and by readers in many languages.
Anderson was not a cloistered writer. He was an enthusiastic attendee and popular guest at science fiction conventions, who enjoyed writing - and singing - songs about fandom and the future. Saddened at his loss, his fans will be glad to know that a few Anderson books remain to be published.
August 2, 2001: Rescheduling
Here's a list of the products that we have previously announced that now definitely won't be done at that time or in that way. Not as long as we feared, but you (and the retailers and the distributors) want to know. Note that our "new releases" page may not conform to this list today . . . but it will be sorted out soon.
- Ogre Miniatures Second Edition will be delayed to sometime in 2002. That one just required more personal attention than I can give it right now.
- GURPS Traveller Starship Forms will be reannounced when we get GURPS Traveller: Starships in shape to go onto the schedule.
- Cardboard Heroes Cavern Floors pushes back to at least December and probably later. It requires a lot of graphics work.
- GURPS Dark Places is delayed to sometime next year when Phil Reed has more time to work on it.
- The Best of JTAS may appear in December, or early next year.
- Floor Plan 4 - Mall of the Dead will probably be early next year.
- The GURPS Atomic Horror Miniatures Set won't appear in the form originally announced. However, Richard has already sculpted a really great Giant Ant, and we may eventually offer a boxed set with the mad scientist and a WHOLE LOT of his insidious insects.
-- Steve Jackson
Warehouse 23 News: The Magnificent World
The El-Hazard RPG and Resource Book from Guardians of Order is a full color 192 page guide to a fantasy setting unlike any other.
August 1, 2001: Now Shipping!
Just when you were least expecting it (Lord knows what you were expecting), several new products have begun the journey toward your local retailer. You'll likely be seeing these soon. Buy them, or face dire consequences!*
GURPS Atomic Horror (Second Edition)
Out of print for years, this old favorite returns as part of the Summer of Horror . . .
Alien Invaders! Giant lizards from another age! Flesh-eating zombies! Colossal insects! Mad scientists! Blobs! Only you can defend humanity, civilization, and the American Way from these horrors.
This book contains everything you need to roleplay the sci-fi and horror movies of the 1950s. The campaign can be as scary as The Thing, as dramatic as The Day The Earth Stood Still, as strange as Little Shop of Horrors or as goofy as Plan 9 From Outer Space - the choice is yours.
GURPS Atomic Horror brings you all the fun, excitement, and adventure of some of the greatest (and some of the very worst) adventure films of all time!
Stock #6065, ISBN 1-55634-533-X. $22.95.
Take the Origins Award-winning GURPS Steampunk, mix in the gruesome nightmares of
horror roleplaying, and voila . . . GURPS Screampunk! This 32-page mini-sourcebook packs maximum roleplaying punch
for a minimum price.
Warning: Contained in this slender volume are Horrors so great that Unmarried women, or those in Delicate Condition, should read
with Great Caution, and Protective Eye Wear if available.
32 pages. Stock #6538, ISBN 1-55634-547-X. $8.95.
A new Horror book by Kenneth Hite!
The creatures of myth are real. The vampires, the warlocks, the shape-changers and dopplegangers, the ghosts and trolls, and more. They're real . . . they're here today . . . and they're organized.
The Cabal is the conspiracy, trade union, and mutual-assistance society that lets all these creatures survive in a world of hostile humans. If a demon needs a lawyer to keep the exorcists off his back . . . or if a little old vampire lady needs a bit of daylight muscle . . . who are they gonna call? The mortal-busters . . . the Cabal.
The Cabal can be a Patron for monstrous PCs or an antagonist for monster-hunters. This book includes a complete alternate (true!) history of the world, adventure seeds, occult cosmology, an assortment of artifacts and supernatural creatures, and suggestions for bringing horror and conspiracy into a variety of campaigns.
128 pages. Stock #6714, ISBN 1-55634-429-5. $22.95.
GURPS Traveller Planetary Survey 5: Tobibak
Our new GURPS Traveller series continues with an in-depth (so to speak) look at Tobibak, a
world covered by ocean. Humans cooperate with aquatic races to develop a planet with many resources . . . but where dry land is the
rarest commodity of all! Written by long-time Pyramid editor Scott Haring.
32 pages. Stock #6805. ISBN 1-55634-531-3. $8.95.
OM Paneuropean Set 6 - Howitzer Battery & Mobile Artillery Troop
Laying down massive firepower even at the longest ranges, howitzers can stop the heaviest armor attack -- even an Ogre! -- before it gets started. This set contains two 'Arquebus' howitzers and three 'Eisenfaust' mobile howitzers for the Paneuropean armies, and is worth 60 points.
Stock #10-2206, ISBN 1-55634-491-0. $19.95.
* Dire consequences consist primarily of not owning said product. Steve Jackson Games does not claim responsibility for other consequences, be they dire or non-dire. Those are probably your own dang fault.
Another month has already sped past and its time for a new W23 Top 10 list.
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