Archive for the Interview Category

The Theory: A Twisted Sci-Fi Series

Posted in Comic Books, Fiction, Interview, Kickstarter with tags , , , , , on November 14, 2018 by boccobsblog

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Today we sit down with the creator/chief mischief-maker at TPub, a British indie comic company. TPub is probably best known for creating Twisted Dark, Twisted Light, Tabatha, Tortured Life, Turncoat, Theatrics, and The World of Chub Chub. They launched in 2012 with a mission to bring more readers to comics.

What can you tell us about TPub?

TPub is my publishing company. Our mission is to get more people reading and creating comics because we love the medium. We also believe it is a great gateway into getting people to read more books.

What is the deal with the Werthers Originals?

ARGH!!!  Werthers!!  OK, so at conventions abroad I normally buy these British sweets called chocolate eclairs at the airport to give people at conventions. However, my team of volunteers find it really funny to hide them on my person. I find them in my pockets and shoes etc. One chap in Canada called Ian was so bad at hiding them (I always caught him), that he started to get the fans to give them to me as I was signing their books. Somehow it morphed from eclairs to Werthers and since then, I swear they have gotten so good at it! I order food in a restaurant and it arrives with a Werthers in it. A 4 year old girl will tap my leg at a con and then as I look down, her smiling face she will produce a pack of Werthers from behind her back. I have even found a bunch in my pyjamas at home! This has become a thing!

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You currently have a Kickstarter campaign: The Theory: A Twisted Sci-Fi Series, tell us more about it

I think it’s the best comic I have done so far. It is about an astroarchaeoloigst who is working to save our future and a time traveller who is working to fix our past. If you like Black Mirror or the Twilight Zone, or just stories with twists, I suggest you give it a shot. But I do want to stress it is not an anthology. All the stories do tie together into one big story. (Learn more here)
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What exactly is spotted dick? (Follow up query, is it really cooked in a sock?)
If it’s cooked well, it is a delicious dessert. . Like Jam roll-polly or sticky toffee pudding or banoffee, it is a classic pudding, but you don’t see it on the menu all that often.
As for being cooked in a sock – NO! This isn’t the 1800s anymore! We have ‘horseless carriages’ here in the UK too now. (I love how you answered that question by comparing it to three equally arcane-sounding British desserts!)

What is your upcoming convention schedule?

Too many! I love them but my wife is increasingly unhappy with how many weekends I’m away, especially considering we have another child on the way.

Where can people buy your titles?

We always recommend comic shops, then book shops, but if you are struggling to find it then Amazon. But if you want a signed copy by me as a gift, then we sell them direct from our website www.tpubcomics.com 
A big thank you to Neil! Be sure to check out TPub, and visit their Kickstarter before Nov. 24th

Danger the Game

Posted in board game, Interview with tags , , , on November 7, 2018 by boccobsblog

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Danger the Game

I had the pleasure of running into some of the game from Origami Whale Games at FlatCon this year and we had a chance to discuss their latest project, Danger the Game. Here is an interview with OW’s Daniel Kim.

What can you tell us about Danger the Game?

Hopefully quite a bit! Danger the Game is the storytelling party game of bizarre dangers and rescues. I, personally, like to think of it as a preparation kit for the unknown. One doesn’t EXPECT to get hugged by a depressed giant squid but it certainly doesn’t hurt to be ready just in case!

Danger

How do you play?
Ah, yes, the rescues. So one of the players, the victim, finds themselves being hugged by a depressed giant squid. The others would use one of the three skills and three tools from their hand to try and come up with a rescue plan. For example, someone could be a professional balloon sculpture artist with a pet rock that knows every trick. Well, being a professional balloon sculpture artist, it’s a simple task to make a giant squid balloon piloted by a versatile pet rock- skilled even in the ways of comfort. OBJECTION! The other rescuers might poke holes in a story or play plot twist cards to mess up the Danger, the Skill or the Tool. The story changes drastically if that Pet Rock suddenly has too many self destruct buttons!
Once each of the rescuers has told their rescue plan the victim chooses a victor for the round by awarding them the Danger card ensuring that we will never forget their heroic exploits.
How many frenemies do you need to play?
You need at least two frenemies unless you also count yourself as a frenemy! Then three, you need three people total to play the game.
How long does a standard game take?
I would say on average 30 min. to 1 hr. Some people are great at quick, daring, expediently told rescues, others can be more long-winded. In consequence, I’ve played some remarkably short games well under the 30 minutes listed on the box but time will really fly sometimes! My recommendation is that if you’re playing with 6 or more people, swap out the victory requirement to only two Dangers instead of the usual three.
How likely am I to get stabbed during a game?
Geez! I didn’t think I would ever need to make this disclaimer but DON’T PLAY WITH PEOPLE WHO ARE LIKELY TO STAB YOU!
Where can we get a copy of Danger the Game?
Right now the best place to find us is smile.amazon.com so that 0.5% of the purchase goes to a charity of your choice (I support “The Jack Vasel Memorial Fund” myself)
Is there anything you’d like to add?
Yeah, there’s a lot I didn’t expect going into this project. I’ve played… a lot of Danger, hundreds of games of Danger and the funny thing is… I still haven’t grown tired of it. I mean, I know I kind of have to say that since I helped make it and all but it’s been an incredible experience sitting down with strangers from all over and hearing new stories every time. I’ve been told that Danger is a great way to get people into role playing and I suppose that a role playing game is what it is. All I can say is that I’ve benefited from the ways people look at these cards and I definitely look at my d20 encounters differently than I used to.
Who would win in a knife fight, Danger the Game or Settlers of Catan?
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…it was close.

Learn more at origamiwhalegames.com and pick up a copy today!

Flynn Nightsider and the Edge of Evil

Posted in Fiction, Interview with tags , , on October 17, 2018 by boccobsblog
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Today with sit down with author Mary Fan to discuss her latest novel, Flynn Nightsider and the Edge of Evil.

Does the Rising accept middle-aged out of shape gamer dads? (asking for a friend)
Hah! Of course! The Rising is this scrappy little underground rebellion that could use all the help it could get… and they’re banking on ordinary folks rising up to join the fight against tyranny when the time is right. So anyone who’s brave enough (and reckless enough) to take on a regime run by those who use magic and control supernatural beasts is welcome.
The Lord if the Underworld escaped about 100 years ago, so what year is the book set in?
Approximately 100 years in the future. The premise is that the Lord of the Underworld unleashed his beasts in the equivalent of present day, and the story takes place about a century after that.
Does the Lord of the Underworld use spray tanner and spend a lot of time on the golf course?
Let’s just say that in his heyday, he had plenty of followers that didn’t care if he was steamrolling the earth with monsters… they just wanted to be on the side with power 😉
Abaia are creepy! What was the inspiration?
Abaia were inspired by a magical giant eel by the same name in Melanesian mythology — and they actually didn’t make it into the final cut of the book! I created a list of creatures I wanted the characters to encounter while I was still editing, but some got left on the cutting room floor. But there are two sequels coming, so there’s plenty of time for them to read their heads… muahahaha….
What can you tell us about Brave New Girls?
Brave New Girls is a series of YA sci-fi anthologies about girls in STEM, and its goal is to get more girls interested in STEM subjects. All the stories feature girls who are into some kind of science, tech, or engineering… hackers, tinkerers, chemists, etc. By casting the nerdy girls as the heroes rather than the sidekicks, we hope to encourage girls to explore these fields in real life. Proceeds from sales of the anthologies are donated to the Society of Women Engineers scholarship fund.
You have an impressive number of titles. How many books have you written?
Thank you! I’ve written a total of 10 manuscripts so far, 5 of which are published books (2 are coming out next year). Since I started actively writing in 2012, I’ve managed to write 1-2 a year. Ideally it would always be 2 a year but with short projects and edits and such, it’s not always possible.
Any tips for aspiring authors?
Write what you love. Because there are no guarantees in this industry… you could think you’re writing to a marketable trend, only to find it’s over by the time you’re ready to submit. So write for the joy of it so that at the end of the day, if nothing else, you have a manuscript you’re proud of.
Where can fans learn more about you and your books?
All the info is on my website: www.maryfan.com. For real-time updates, follow me on Twitter (@astralcolt), Instagram (@astralcolt), and Facebook (Facebook.com/mfanwriter).

Drinks and Dragons

Posted in D&D 5e, D&D Fifth Edition, Dungeons and Dragons, Interview with tags , , , , on October 10, 2018 by boccobsblog

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Everyone knows that all great D&D adventures take place in a tavern. Well, the Drinks and Dragons crew take that literally. Today we sit down with the group’s founder, Don Caraco.

Drinks and Dragons Interview

What can you tell my reader (Hi mom!) about Drinks and Dragons?
Well, first I would like to also say hi to your mom. I am Don Caraco and in 2016 I founded a community-based group called Drinks and Dragons an open RPG gaming night for adults to have a safe place to meet other gamers, teach new players the joy of TTRPGs, and possibly start their own games. Designed with the idea that as it grew I might be able to start letting others that are a part of the local community start to be more involved and start taking a larger part of the gaming community here in Philly. We started thanks to the generosity of the American Sardine Bar letting us use the upstairs for free. With food and drinks onsite all we needed was a few DM/GMs and the players, and boy did we get players. Our first gaming night must have had over 35 players and we packed the joint. From there it just kept growing. We have just started our fourth open gaming night here in Philadelphia PA and are already looking for the 5th venue to game at.

Where can people learn more about Drinks and Dragons?
If you are looking for more info on our open gaming nights you can find us on Facebook @drinksdragonsPHL, I am also on Twitter @DM_Don_C., along with several of our community have started a discord chat, and an Instagram account, all searchable.

Is my parole officer out to get me or am I being paranoid?
Well, I haven’t heard anything yet. But one of my old friends made the mistake of friending his PO on Facebook and ended up getting arrested and sent back to jail because he announced that he was doing a DJ gig out of state. That of course was a violation. My advice, don’t friend your PO on social media kids.

How many tables (separate game groups) do you run each Tuesday?
So the four current Drinks and Dragons events are the first Monday of every month at Wahoos tacos and more, at least 5 tables with room to grow plus some outside seating when the weather is nice. So far is our only handicapped accessible location. We run the second Thursday of every month at the Black Cat Tavern on 12th, normally 4 large tables with room for more. The third Wednesday of every month our flagship location at the American Sardine Bar, we have had 6 tables max and I believe the most players we have hosted has been around 45 to 50. The newest event is the 4th Monday of every month at Bourbon and Branch, it is a slightly smaller space but still up to 5 tables there.

What’s the wildest thing that has happened at a Drinks game night?
So far I would have to say it’s been pretty tame at our gaming nights. On occasion, you get a table yelling natural 20!!! Or NOOoooo! One of my game nights an Oni charmed my tables’ monk and he beat the Druid to perma death. Not so wild, but messed up. At some of the tables we set out a shot of cheap booze called the Quaff, if you hit a bad roll you can take it and reroll but you have to replace the shot once you do with whatever shot the player wants to buy. In one game a player of mine drank 4 Quaffs back to back. Not sure if that is wild and crazy. But I don’t make it to all the game nights due to dad life. So one never knows, what happens at drinks and dragons stays at drinks and dragons. Minus all the pictures that I post.

Any chance Drinks will start popping up in other cities/states?
We have definitely talked about it. For some time it looked like we had an in in Texas, Delaware, New Jersey, and Virginia Beach. But they have all seemed to drop off, hope that means they just started their own thing. I think it would be cool to write a short how-to book, buy the domain name along with the copyright, and then start a franchise. But I fear that as cool as that sounds I am not sure it would be worth the money and time, but that isn’t to say that drinks and dragons isn’t coming to a city near you. The most important part for me is that ppl get the chance to experience positive ttrpg gaming, learn how to play well with each other, hopefully, start running their own games, bust off the imaginations that the world tends to stomp out of us as adults, and get back to face to face storytelling.

Alexandria RPG

Posted in Conventions, Dungeons and Dragons, GURPS, Interview, Pathfinder, Star Wars with tags , , on September 19, 2018 by boccobsblog

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Directly across from the chaos of the exhibit hall at Gen Con 2018 was a quiet sanctuary of pure awesomeness. The Alexandria RPG library was a room with about ten tables piled with RPG books, as well several well-stocked shelves of gaming treasures. Today we sit down with the chief librarian to learn more about this amazing find.

What can you tell us about Alexandria RPG?

– We are a nonprofit lending library that shares RPGs with as many people as we can via events.  We also work with teens, PTSD service members, and soon senior citizens.

What was the impetus for starting an RPG library?

– I have been the deputy manager of gaming at Emerald City Comicon for a few years new and tossed the idea out to fill space.  The manger thought it sounded fun and a few weeks before ECCC 2017 I was asked if I could still do the library.  I ran out and bought some exrat books to fill in holes and add a wider variety dropping like $2000 in a couple days.  Then was laid off the next month.  But that first event we had like 400 books or so and people loved it. We got kids playing RPGs for the first time and had people asking if I would come to their show.  Part way through that first show we got a box of donations from an old friend of mine in Iowa.  He mailed them out when he heard what we we’re doing.

Needless to say people loved the idea so we put our heads down and ran forward with it. We are now near 1800 books and over a 100 different systems.

If you could roleplay with one historical figure, who would it be and why?

-Thomas Jefferson.  I figure he was super smart, self taught, and well read. I bet he had a wild imagination that he kept locked away.

Do you think Andrew Johnson would cheat on his rolls?

– As in the 17th President? Sure he would, he was a politician.

What is your favorite book in the collection?

– My first book is in the Library, my AD&D players handbook my brother and I bought at Sears in 1982. It still has the price tag on it $10.57.   That book has tons of memories for me and the comic shop my family had.

Which cons will you be attending in the near future?

– Friday we will be at PAX West last year was huge there for us, we hosted 100 games in four days. I only brought GMs for 6. The rest we’re people that just wanted to play.

We just did Dragonflight 39 last weekend

We will be at RenCon two weekends after PAX West

Working on trying to get to PAX Unplugged

Jan we have OrcaCon

How can people help Alexandria RPG?

We have a Patreon people can pledge to even a $1 a month helps get us a van rental or new boxes. They can donate funds via PayPal on our website or via our email donations@alexandriarpg.com.  we also take book donations. They can reach us at the donation email for information on sending books

Also follow us on social media because that helps too. We have a YouTube channel and if we can get enough followers we can make a buck or two off videos there as well.

Money is always needed. I have put a couple thousand dollars into the library this year and a couple of other people have as well.

As a reminder we are a 501c3 and registered as a charity in Washington state.

You can learn more about Alexandria RPG at their website: https://www.alexandriarpg.com/

Attack Dice!

Posted in Crowdfunding, Interview, Uncategorized with tags , , , , on September 5, 2018 by boccobsblog

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Today we sit down with John Jacobs of Attack Dice, LLC to talk crowdfunding, dice, and zombies.

What can you tell both of my readers about Attack Dice?
Attack Dice was founded by two longtime friends, Emil G. Palisoc and John S. Jacobs, who first started gaming together back in the mid-1980’s. Like many gamers they dreamed of becoming owners of a gaming store, Emi and John made it a reality in 1996 when they opened Sanctuary Games & Books in Jacksonville, Florida. The store was a local success until they decided to sell it in 2007. After selling the store, Emi and John moved on to “real life stuff” as wives and children entered the picture but we did make sure to keep gaming whenever we could.

Fast forward to November 2011, we began further development on a dice game concept we came up with in 1998.  This concept was reintroduced because with our busy lives, it was hard to find a lot of time to game. We needed to have something we could play with minimal setup time, but it also had to still be engrossing and entertaining. After some refining and play testing, When Zombies Attack! was born. In January 2012 we took the plunge and founded Attack Dice LLC.  On June 1, 2012 When Zombies Attack! was released, the first game we published using our proprietary TrioDice Game System. Our second game, Dungeon Attack! was successfully produced via Kickstarter in 2014. We also have several other game concepts in the development pipeline.

 

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Trio Dice

 

 

I understand you have a new game currently being funded on Kickstarter?
Yes, we currently have our third TrioDice powered game called Roach Party! funding on Kickstarter. Roach Party! was actually the first game concept we came up with back in 1998. Like our other two games, Roach Party! is easy to learn, fast to play, affordable, and a whole lot of fun! We really had a good time developing the game and are excited to get it into the hands of our backers. We would love for your readers to come join us on this Kickstarter, you can find it here.

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How does Roach Party differ from your earlier games?
That’s a good question, all of games are powered by our proprietary TrioDice Game System, but they all do have a different playstyle and feel to them. When Zombies Attack! is our most competitive player vs. player game where you are directly competing against the other players in an effort to escape a zombie apocalypse. Dungeon Attack! is a far more co-operative system where players must help one another in order to survive the perils of adventuring in dark dungeons filled with fierce monsters. Roach Party! is a hybrid between the two, you are definitely directly competing against the other players but you do need to utilize some cooperation to ensure that the building is free from the infestation and not condemned.

What sets Roach Party apart from other dice games on the market?
Honestly, I think our TrioDice Game System, is the greatest strength of all our games, including Roach Party! It’s easy to learn and once you learn it, the same basic dice mechanics carry over to our other games. This dramatically cuts down on the need to learn a totally new system each time you pick up a new release. Even though each game has the same basic dice mechanics, they do have a different play style and strategies you must employ to be successful, although it never hurts to have a little luck on your side. Also, we limit the number of components you need to play our games. This helps to keep the cost of the game down and eliminates the need for players keep up with too many pieces that are easily lost or damaged. Of course, I may be a bit biased, but most importantly, I believe that our games are a lot more fun to play with a group of friends than other dice games on the market.  At the end of the day, you don’t really remember the game so much as you remember the great time you had playing it with your friends.

What was the most difficult part of creating Roach Party?
I think that this applies to every game that any one has ever created, and that is the need to be very open and accepting of critical feedback and use it as an opportunity to improve. It’s very easy to dig in your heels and dismiss this type of criticism, but if you are honest with yourself you will step back and try to view this feedback you will find that there are some very good suggestions that will help improve your final product.

What’s your desert island game of choice?
Attack Dice games of course, but I’m assuming you don’t want me to state that obvious answer so I will answer without choosing them. If I am on a desert island with other people with lots of time on our hands, I would probably want a copy of Dungeons & Dragons, it is the system that introduced me to the world of gaming and will always be one that I love. If I am alone, I might just want a pack of playing cards, there are a lot of things you can do with a simple pack of cards.

What’s next for Attack Dice?
Next up, we have plans to publish a new revised and expanded edition of Dungeon Attack! Unlike many publishers, we do plan to offer an upgrade kit for those who already own a copy of Dungeon Attack! and will only need the new material. Beyond that we have plans to do a similar treatment for When Zombies Attack! as well as new dice games based upon the Cthulhu Mythos and Superhero genre. Stay tuned true believers, we have a lot of fun stuff to share in future!