Daily Illuminator Archive for January 2024

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January 1, 2024:
What lives rent-free in my brain? Many, many things; my neurons do not enjoy letting go of things . . . read article

January 2, 2024:
We are in the penultimate part of our curious countdown as we research the archives and Warehouse 23 for number 2. (If this isn't ringing a bell, please see the first installment of this experiment for the explanation.) . . . read article

January 3, 2024:
No, wait . . . that's bad. Let me try again . . . read article

January 4, 2024:
I have a lot of ephemera rattling around my skull. As one trivial example: I realize that February 2025 will be the 10th anniversary of a post on the Steve Jackson Games forums that has made me smile whenever I recall it (which is pretty darn often) . . . read article

January 5, 2024:
Here we are, at the end of the journey of our curious countdown, as we discuss the number 1. (If you're very late to this party, please see the first post in this series.) . . . read article

January 6, 2024:
I admit it – I'm one of those people who gets way too involved in creating characters for TTRPGs. It's not enough for me to optimize their stats so it works well for their class . . . read article

January 7, 2024:
One of our favorite games when visiting out-of-town family is 7 Wonders, published by Repos Production. I could extoll its virtues from a number of angles, but suffice it to say it sees a lot of table time . . . read article

January 8, 2024:
If you're reading this, you're probably a fan of games – hopefully ours! There are certain pleasures that are near-universal in gamedom: the excitement of winning, the joy of camaraderie, the thrill of a great card draw, the never-gets-old hijinks of pretending you're a walrus via pretzel rods tucked in your cheeks . . . read article

January 9, 2024:
Long before I joined the crew at Steve Jackson Games, I had a brief stint at All Music Guide as a writer for their pop music department. It was a place that bubbled with creativity even on the slowest days, and many people who worked there performed in bands, created art, and otherwise let their muses run free . . . read article

January 10, 2024:
Yes, it deserves an exclamation point! I don't know who needs to hear this, but Scotch makes removable tape . . . read article

January 11, 2024:
I first met Jennell Jaquays during the Metagaming days – she did the iconic illustrations for Chitin: I. And she only got better from there. Jennell was a creative engine for more than 40 years . . . read article

January 12, 2024:
You've killed the monsters. You've stolen the treasure . . . read article

January 13, 2024:
I saw a conversation online recently (part of the "discourse," as they say) about someone asking if phone booths were real things, or just plot contrivances made up for movies. The thread had lots of helpful people – with photos and anecdotes – explaining how they were, indeed, real . . . read article

January 14, 2024:
When people think of Vikings, they usually picture boats, swords, raids, and (occasionally) 70s rock anthems. But perhaps it's time for more people to consider another facet of this legendary culture . . . read article

January 15, 2024:
My husband and I first bonded over our shared love of music, so I suppose it was only a matter of time before we started collecting vinyl. One of the first things we did after we got married was attend Record Store Day together . . . read article

January 16, 2024:
In memory of Jennell Jaquays, TTRPG creators are coming together to create Return to Perinthos, a crowdsourced megadungeon book inspired by Jennell's legendary Caverns of Thracia. The Jennell Jaquays Memorial Game Jam, hosted on itch.io by Violet Ballard, will accept submissions through the end of the month for inclusion in the book. After the jam, there will be a Crowdfundr campaign for a print run of the physical book . . . read article

January 17, 2024:
To start at the beginning: I was looking for a new place to have brunch a couple of years ago and I came across a small restaurant in Taylor, Texas. (Taylor is about 30-40 minutes northeast of Austin.) . . . read article

January 18, 2024:
One of the joys of TTRPGs is that they're not scripted – even the most prepared GM can't anticipate what their players might choose to do. This unique element of improvisational chaos may be why TTRPG livestreams and actual plays have become appointment viewing (er, streaming?) for so many people, including myself . . . read article

January 19, 2024:
David Pulver, who many of you know as a prolific GURPS and TFT author, has turned his hand to boardgame design and created a new game in the style of the 1970s microgames. Operation Meteor is about humanity's last effort to stave off an AI apocalypse. It's crowdfunding now, and already halfway to its goal . . . read article

January 20, 2024:
Over the holiday break, I found a headline on CNN that's pure RPG catnip for my brain: "Passengers hoped this 'time traveling' flight would give them two New Year's Eves – but they arrived in the wrong year." The link explains what happened (I'm sure you can guess), but the premise is irresistible (and makes me want to rewatch the 1989 film Millennium) . . . read article

January 21, 2024:
I've been thinking about how many games we play that have little bits around the table, and how we keep them organized. In mulling it over (and considering if it might make good fodder for the Daily Illuminator), I realized we actually have two go-to solutions, which touch on two different topics . . . read article

January 22, 2024:
The year is 2085. Armored warfare has changed . . . read article

January 23, 2024:
For those tabletop RPG gamers who like an intellectual challenge (or even folks who like brain-teasers away from the game table), Gizmodo has a nice collection of logic puzzles, most of which have decent hooks and neat solutions. Be warned! . . . read article

January 24, 2024:
Jasmine Garcia shares my love of stories. We've played in several TTRPGs together, and we love discussing how various books, movies, and TV shows have helped us shape the characters we inhabit during our games . . . read article

January 25, 2024:
Humble has outdone themselves this time. Right now, they've got a Discworld Bundle on, supporting Room to Read . . . read article

January 26, 2024:
We are living in the digital streaming age of television, so how could I relate TV back to board games? Believe it or not, tabletop gaming has played a funny, and sometimes quite serious, role in some of the most well-known series of all time.   RiskSeinfield Season 6, Episode 12 – "The Label Maker"   Fans will certainly remember the time Kramer and Newmann battled against each other in a head-to-head game of Risk in Jerry's apartment . . . read article

January 27, 2024:
We've had the new Warehouse 23 storefront for almost a year now, and I'm still learning cool bits about it. Case in point: I just realized that I can ask it to show me which items we only have a handful of left . . . read article

January 28, 2024:
It's cold, snowy, and gray right now, but the delights of spring will be upon us soon enough. At Steve Jackson Games, we're already excited for the month of May – and not just because it'll bring us out of the deep freeze . . . read article

January 29, 2024:
I previously pontificated a bit about one of our go-to solutions for keeping track of tiny pieces at the gaming table. (For those who don't want to click the link, it's 300 words about silicone cupcake-baking cups) . . . read article

January 30, 2024:
What happens when you turn a former hardware and lumber store into a place dedicated to candy, games, and pop culture ephemera? You get Sweets & Geeks, a Northeast Ohio game store writ very, very large . . . read article

January 31, 2024:
I saw a tip somewhere on the Internet that may be useful to someone out there: If you like having messy snacks at the game table, consider using chopsticks. I believe the original tip was in regard to cheese puffs, but we've used it for popcorn, strawberries, and other goodies . . . read article

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