Daily Illuminator Archive for February 2024

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February 1, 2024:
Background music for roleplaying can do a ton to make a session feel more immersive. But sessions can often change quickly, and it's hard to juggle different tracks to make a seamless and dynamic experience for your table, especially when you're also trying to run a game. Enter Pocket Bard!  Pocket Bard provides an environment-based soundtrack; each area comes equipped with a variety of ambient sounds and one-shot effects, as well as three different musical states! . . . read article

February 2, 2024:
Celebrate the most lovely day of the year – February 14th – with our Valentine's Day Sale! These sweet deals are a perfect 14% off and a wonderful way to surprise that special person in your life.    Begin with the Munchkin Bundle of Love, featuring lots of expansion cards which can be added to any Munchkin base game . . . read article

February 3, 2024:
Once a year comes a special day. A day of anticipation . . . read article

February 4, 2024:
I have a lot of ideas. Many of them are half-baked, so I keep them around, hoping the extra cooking time will prove beneficial . . . read article

February 5, 2024:
Sam Marchiony is a film fan on a mission – to figure out just how influential Star Wars was, is, and will be. To that end, Sam has created a podcast called Six Degrees of Star Wars, which takes a look at the actors, directors, and other people involved in the creation of one of the most famous franchises in movie history . . . read article

February 6, 2024:
I did a deep dive recently into the topic of shuffling, and I came up with one inescapable conclusion: statistics does not make for light reading. Seemingly every college-acquired math fact dribbled out of my brain sometime in the past few decades . . . read article

February 7, 2024:
I've flirted with pin collecting on and off throughout my life. My high school and college backpack usually featured quips or witty slogans on basic button pins . . . read article

February 8, 2024:
The dilemma of trying to describe a brand-new adventure for the Dungeon Fantasy Roleplaying Game is that you don't want to give away the secrets contained therein. So, with the release of Dungeon Fantasy: The Devil's Workshop, we don't accidentally want to give would-be heroes an unfair advantage in figuring out how to avoid the [FNORD], how best to deal with the terrifying [FNORD] waiting for them, or how to [FNORD] before it's too late . . . read article

February 9, 2024:
I know I'm probably late to the party, but have you seen The Beatles: Get Back yet?    I missed out on the original debut of this three-part documentary because we might be the only household in America that hasn't yet subscribed to Disney+. (It's a conscious decision on our part – my husband and I are both writers, and we didn't feel right subscribing to a company that has stiffed writers in the recent past.) . . . read article

February 10, 2024:
In a recent Daily Illuminator, I laid some of the groundwork for how many shuffles it takes to randomize a standard deck of cards (SPOILER: seven), and name-dropping some sources. Today we're taking a deeper dive into how this affects us, and I use some shaky math to generate something useful . . . read article

February 11, 2024:
I've been on a bit of a shuffling kick lately here on the Daily Illuminators, and I have at least two more insights to share in this regard. We'll cover one here . . . read article

February 12, 2024:
Here's a quick recommendation: Get a labeler. I often end up with oddball bits of ephemera that would be handy to label, and I've found (no real surprise) that a labeler works great for that . . . read article

February 13, 2024:
Long-time readers know that I'm on part 47,813 of my exploration of card shuffling. In the previous installment, I mentioned having two more insights . . . read article

February 14, 2024:
Valentine's Day has snuck up on me like a vampire rogue at midnight. You know the one.   I can only hope that I'm the only one who has been taken by surprise . . . read article

February 15, 2024:
If you and your friends have played a bunch of Munchkin (any flavor!), are familiar with the cards, and are looking for an easy-peasy variant, here's one to consider. Before the game starts (and before the deck is shuffled!), each player looks through the deck and removes one card from the game . . . read article

February 16, 2024:
I'm curious: What're folks' thoughts on sleeving their card games? To be clear, that question is entirely to sate my personal curiosity . . . read article

February 17, 2024:
Today we're sharing news about a creepy-crawly new Munchkin expansion scheduled to release in June! Developed by Munchkin Associate Developer Devin Lewis and illustrated by new-to-us artist Bas Goverde, we are proud to announce Munchkin: The Floor Is Larva. And by the way, let me just tell you that it's really hard to say "larva" when your 10-year-old inner child is thinking "lava"! Munchkin: The Floor Is Larva is a 56-card expansion chock-full of just what you might have guessed – bugs! . . . read article

February 18, 2024:
Apparently my recent batch of Daily Illuminator posts about shuffling generated some comments. Here are a few that piqued my interest . . . read article

February 19, 2024:
Fantasy Trip fans noticed a new monster in the Legacy Edition: the Scolopendra. It's a big centipede . . . read article

February 20, 2024:
I've worn a lot of hats in the gaming world, from avid player to playtester to writer to editor to retailer and a dozen other aspects I've forgotten. One thing I've come to appreciate is how much game design boils down to this vague, ephemeral sense of how a mechanic feels. Take, for example, a simple combat game where you need to roll against the other character's defense value . . . read article

February 21, 2024:
Here we are, fresh off our Steve Jackson Games Summit, held right here in Austin, TX. It was the first one in my memory, and I've been here more than nine years! . . . read article

February 22, 2024:
Speaking of game elements that are ephemeral, have you ever noticed how weird "playing time" is with games? I've played 30-minute games where I've been like, "Gee, that felt a bit long," and I've been engrossed in games where 2 to 3 hours have simply and delightfully melted away . . . read article

February 23, 2024:
I have been advised that the nearly-brand-new Groo: The Game needs to be reprinted. The last one I can recall that went back to press so quickly was an obscure little game . . . you probably haven't heard of it . . . called Munchkin . . . read article

February 24, 2024:
This may be the least surprising statement ever, but I do a lot of printing at home. I have three printers in my office, and a backup of one of those in the garage . . . read article

February 25, 2024:
A new game store has opened up relatively nearby, and I'm excited to stop by, introduce myself, and see what their setup is like. Friendly Local Game Stores are always delightful, and it seems like more and more of them are becoming de facto gathering places . . . read article

February 26, 2024:
Conor Flynn, the artist who sculpted the spectacular dragon from Foes 2, has a really awesome project on Kickstarter: the Tabletop Fog Machine. The core is a tiny fog machine that generates a glycerine-based mist . . . read article

February 27, 2024:
I recently regaled you all with my recommendation of software to make booklets. Those of you who sprinted out to buy the app may have quickly realized that you've ended up with a pile of loose pages that – although folded into a correctly numbered booklet – do not actually form a booklet . . . read article

February 28, 2024:
The Game Manufacturers Association annual Expo will take place next week, March 3-7 in Louisville, Kentucky. The Kentucky International Convention Center and the Galt House will host this year's convention – and Steve Jackson Games will be there!   The GAMA Expo is a yearly B2B trade show and includes panels, seminars, an exhibit hall (with over 250 exhibitors!), and game nights . . . read article

February 29, 2024:
Just the other day I realized how downright amazing it is nowadays, as far as learning a new game goes. Like, take a random game such as . . . ohhh, how about Car Wars Sixth Edition. • Do you learn better by reading? . . . read article

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