A nerd, a wrestler, a lagomorph, and a heavy machine gunner get together for a game of poker… No, this isn’t the setup to a weird joke. This is the backdrop for one of the wackiest, weirdest, and best game studios active today: Telltale Games. Sam and Max, The Wolf Among Us, The Walking Dead, Homestar Runner, Bone, Monkey Island, and on and on. These properties and more have been remade and/or presented by Telltale into some of the best ever narrative games. From character writing to storytelling, adaptations to new series, Telltale’s pedigree is noticeable and not to be taken lightly. And many of their games stillRead More →

With the popularity of franchises like The Hunger Games, DayZ, and PlayerUnknown’s Battleground, the battle royale genre has gained incredible traction over the last few years. The idea of many against one and the rise to the top is nothing new in storytelling. But what makes this specific end of the spectrum so special? Competition, conflict, uncertainty, paranoia, and survival, much like my typical Thursday night, are the core tenants of this genre. And, like my usual Thursday, it can leave you guessing as to what might happen right up until the end. So let’s jump into the narrative shallow-to-deep end and discuss what exactly makes the battleRead More →


Yet Again with the Bullying On Thanksgiving weekend this year, cosplayer and MTG personality Christine Sprankle announced her departure from the MTG community.  In a complete surprise to absolutely no one, Ms. Sprankle cited online harassment and bullying as the reasons for her departure.  Ms. Sprankle identified a YouTube personality as the primary cyber bully, however we will neither mention him by name nor link to his social media presence. A little over a year ago, I ranted about leaving the comic book community over the controversy surrounding Chelsea Cain and the cover to Mockingbird #8.  Granted, I have no influence in the comics community,Read More →

I’ve been a tabletop gamer for most of my life.  My parents kept eternal stalwarts like Monopoly and Scrabble in the house for as long as I can remember.  After my first D&D game at 10 years old, gaming became a lifelong hobby.  Games help me and countless others learn valuable lessons that are applicable at the table and in the real world.  This is the beginning of a series of articles on lessons I learned from marathon nights killing dragons and stealing from cyber-orcs.  Today, I write about one of the more important and difficult for me to learn: expected value. Quick EV LessonRead More →


Yesterday, I got an idea for a new Magic deck: red & black artifact aggro.  It is still a work-in-progress, but you can see it here.  I use the website TappedOut to manage my deck ideas and share them with friends; it’s typically a friendly site with a ton of great ideas.  While I perused to see if anyone had done anything like my idea before, I found this. I know, I know, you should never read the comments section.  Since returning to Magic, the experience has been wonderful.  Most events I attend are friendly, fun, and everyone just wants to play.  No one judgesRead More →

A few weeks ago I wrote a piece about rediscovering Magic: The Gathering.  The honeymoon isn’t over yet, but my return to gaming culture opened my eyes to an intriguing phenomenon that occurs when nerds grow up.  I call it the Neverland Effect. Let’s rewind a tiny bit.  When I moved to Portland a little over two years ago, I worked in a college library.  The college dress code is business formal: shirt, tie, the whole nine yards.  I have a tendency to showboat, so I frequently wore a waistcoat as well.  I often went to my local comic store straight from work on Fridays.Read More →


Last month, I had an extended trip back to my hometown: the bustling metropolis of Naugatuck, Connecticut.  I helped my parents pack up my childhood home in advance of its sale, and was a groomsman in my sister’s wedding.  I expected it to be an emotionally difficult trip.  Conventional wisdom says that going back home reconnects you with the person you were before you left.  I didn’t realize how true that was. One of my best friends Jeff and I go way back to 1996 where we bonded over a mutual love of the music of His Weirdness, Sir Alfred Matthew Yankovic, and a shared affinity for aRead More →

star trek

Admit it, you’re a Trekkie. You’ve seen Star Trek Beyond, okaym maybe more than once, and now you’re jonesing for more.  You’ve busted out your DVDs of the previous movies. You’ve put on your headset and tried the latest Star Trek Online: Agents of Yesterday.  You’ve even changed your cell phone notification to that communicator beeping sound.  Somehow this is still not enough.  It’s time to warp into action with a galactically cool game night. The Games There are a few choices, but the number one choice is clear (like his blue blue eyes):  Star Trek Catan.  Settle where no man has gone before. ForRead More →

Pokemon Go logo

On my way home from work this week, I saw a young boy walking with his dad.  I saw him slow down, look at a phone in his hand, and then excitement came over his face and he turned and high-fived his dad. I smiled as I drove by, because I knew that little boy was out catching Pokemon with his dad. Put simply, Pokemon Go is an augmented reality game by Niantic.  The free game allows you to walk around and, using your phone’s GPS, catch digital monsters called Pokemon.  The basics of the game are simple: flick a Pokeball at the Pokemon onRead More →

I had the pleasure to chat briefly via email with the art director for a fantastic Kickstarter game, Charmixy. Tess Young took some time to answer my questions about this unique, puzzle-based combat game. It’s rare that I promote Kickstarter campaigns but I think this game has great vision, diverse characters, an intriguing game play concept, and lots of content for an entirely free game. Pretty much everything you could ask for in a game! REGINA:  What inspired you to become a game art designer?   TESS:  I grew up loving art and drawing, and was lucky enough to have parents who encouraged me. I studiedRead More →