Wednesday, 2 January 2013
Sunday, 30 December 2012
Into the Gamescape
A show presented by three chaps from around the Gloucester area. Although that's only c 25 miles away and we have mutual friends, I've never met them which is kind of weird as I've met several US-based podcasters, but not the ones from down the road.
Board Games To Go
The Royal Society of Gamers
Game On! With Cody and John
The Little Wooden Cubist
A short-lived podcast that was a delight to listen to. Presented by Charlie Eastwood, a US-based priest who really was an enthusiast rather than someone who was particularly knowledgeable about games. Charlie had a very easy going manner and a radio-friendly voice that worked perfectly for this format.
The Happy Happy Board Game Love-in
Non gaming podcasts
Friday Night Comedy from Radio 4
Game of the Year
Con of the Year
Cache of the Year
Well it had to be GC3Q9RE – Caching Heroes Number 1: Slogger007
Caching Day of the Year
Best non-fiction reads
Best fiction (in reading order)
Rich Hall in Cirencester & Simon Evans at the Arts Centre
Best Live gig
- John Otway at the Vic
- Jack White at the Ally Pally
- From the Jam & the Blockheads at the O2 Academy Bristol
- England keep my bones – Frank Turner [OK I know it was 2011]
- Boys & Girls – Alabama Shakes
- Blunderbuss – Jack White
Year as a whole
Overall 2012 will be remembered as the year of sport:
- London 2012
- Chelsea winning the Champions League
- Swindon winning League 2
- Glaws continuing to dominate Barf
- The Ryder Cup triumph
- England beating India in the test series in India
- Bradley Wiggins winning the Tour de France.
Not that I voted for the SPOTY, but if I had done it would have been:
- Bradley Wiggins
- Mo Farah
- Sarah Storey
- Alistair Brownlee
Sunday, 10 June 2012
- Boardgames to go
- Into the Gamescape
- The Spiel
- It just hasn't grown appreciably - the number of exhibitors is still minimal.
- There were no major game releases this year, even worse the one key new game that even graced the Expo's programme failed to appear.
- There are not enough retailers there to generate any price competition between vendors.
- There is plenty of space to play games - we had enjoyable games of Anchorage and Extra!
- I got to see the Going Cardboard film which was very good
- We used the trip to visit Imrans on Ladypool Road for an excellent Balti
Monday, 9 April 2012
- Acquire – Sid Sackson
- Agricola – Uwe Rosenberg
- Airlines Europe – Alan R. Moon
- American Rails – Tim Harrison
- Automobile – Martin Wallace
- Aladdins Cave - Northking
- A(queduct) Ray of Hope - Roobydoo
- Are you game enough? - Hanando
- 'A' Bomb In Wardour Street - The Jam
- Absolute Beginners - The Jam
- Acquiesce - Oasis
- Action Packed - Jonathan Richman
- Alison - Elvis Costello
- All Around The World - Lisa Stansfield
- All the Same to You - Laura Cantrell
- All The Young Dudes - Mott The Hoople
- All Woman - Lisa Stansfield
- Alright - Supergrass
- Anarchy In The U.K. - Sex Pistols
- (The Angels Wanna Wear My) Red Shoes - Elvis Costello
- Away From The Numbers - The Jam
My 2 favourite games and 3 other very strong ones.
I’ve only recently discovered this classic Sid Sackson title, originally published in 1962. It is basically a stock trading game against a backdrop of hotel growth and takeovers. It plays like a new Euro and I’m looking forward to lots more plays of it.
Whoever thought faming could be fun? An ‘event’ game – the experience being more important than the winning. The sheer number of cards means that each game will be fresh for years to come. My second favourite game after Automobile.
Acquire meets Ticket to Ride? Well almost – stock-holding certainly meets route-building but this is a very strong game in its own right. This is Alan R. Moon’s latest re-working of Airlines and Union Pacific and therefore has a pedigree dating back to 1990.
Another stock-holding and route-building game – a theme seems to be emerging here. Similar to both Chicago Express and Steel Driver, but superior to both.
Martin Wallace’s finest moment and my favourite game. Excellent theme and straight-forward gameplay. Often wrongly dismissed as overly maths-heavy, it contains many of Martin’s favoured mechanics and can be wonderfully confrontational. As Kenny Rogers sang in The Gambler – you got to know when to hold ‘em, know when to fold ‘em. Except in this case, it’s all about car manufacturing …
Sadly recently archived. This was a simple puzzle cache in central Nottingham with the final in a large ammo can in an army surplus store! The reasons why the cache was outstanding was the enthusiasm of the store owner who we discussed caching with for more than 30 minutes and also the store itself – the best army surplus store I’ve ever been in (“hey make sure that you give a discount to my geocaching buddies”).
A(queduct) Ray of Hope
The primary reason why caching in Swindon is in such good shape is one man – Roobydoo (Keith Shailes). He has placed more than 200 local caches (at the time of writing I’ve found 199 of them) and really gave the hobby a boost. This is one of his best – the cache was placed in a pipe with a hidden entrance so that you are literally standing on top of the cache but can’t understand why you can’t find it. The other end of the pipe is close by though so you can use this as a guide to discover the main entrance.
Are you game enough?
A fun local puzzle cache that combines Euro gaming with caching, how can it not be on the list?
A distinctly punky edge to this first batch. There are also 13 tracks – I was unable to pick out a favourite ten.
'A' Bomb In Wardour Street - The Jam
A song that captured the mood at the time. One of the stand-outs on All Mod Cons. I first heard it at the Brunel Rooms on a mini-tour to promote the forthcoming album.
Absolute Beginners - The Jam
With its soaring brass, this was a forerunner of the direction for Weller post-Jam. Also a great book by Colin MacInnes.
Acquiesce – Oasis
Superior ‘B’ side of Some Might Say.
Action Packed - Jonathan Richman
From the 1989 Jonathan Richman album. Recorded some great stuff around this time.
Alison - Elvis Costello
Seminal single from first album.
All Around The World - Lisa Stansfield
I’ve always had a soft spot for Rochdale’s finest. #1 hit in 1989.
All the Same to You - Laura Cantrell
Along with Jonathan Richman and Erin McKeown, Laura Cantrell is one of my favourite singers. Taken from the 2002 album When The Roses Bloom Again, the album that got me into her work.
All The Young Dudes - Mott The Hoople
Bowie written song from 1972. One I remember from the youth club, still sounds great today.
All Woman - Lisa Stansfield
Incredibly just a minor hit in 1991.
Alright – Supergrass
The feel-good summer track of choice.
I first heard (and saw) this on an EMI promo video in Harrods Music Department in December 1976. Great sneering vocal, although it sounds a bit twee now.
(The Angels Wanna Wear My) Red Shoes - Elvis Costello
From a time when EC was routinely churning out fantastic pop songs. I love the lyric Oh, I said "I’m so happy, I could die”, she said "drop dead," then left with another guy.
Away From The Numbers - The Jam
Sunday, 25 March 2012
Not quite as polished as a Cornwell, Scarrow or Kristian, but nevertheless a good paced and very readable book right from the start. I finished it in 3 - 4 days and it was a book where just one more chapter was required to be read every time I picked it up.
I knew about the central events of 1066, but not too much else about this period. I cannot vouch for the historical accuracy of the book, but it is a very enjoyable read and I have a new name in my list of 'must-read' authors. I am looking forward to the follow-up later this year and have already pre-ordered it.