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zslane last won the day on March 24

zslane had the most liked content!


About zslane

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    The Monster From the Clock

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    Los Angeles, CA

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  1. zslane

    Are Champions and HERO System "indie" games?

    In order for me to answer that I'd need you to define what you mean by "one-man shop". But let's put it this way, there are lots of one-map shops that have people (aside from the founder/owner, and not counting freelancers) doing work, but not making a regular wage, much less a living from it. Those "multi-person" operations are really one-man shops by any practical measure.
  2. zslane

    Are Champions and HERO System "indie" games?

    "Indie" is short for independent, unless you want to reorient the term with a completely different etymology, in which case I'd need to know what origin word you prefer to treat it as having been derived from. But let's assume we all agree that it means "independent". The next question is, independent of what? Historically it meant independent of (i.e., not a member of) the cabal of large established publishers, where "large" meant having multiple product lines, a full-time staff working in numerous different departments (marketing, sales, design, development, layout, art, etc.), and an ongoing relationship with their domestic game distribution infrastructure. Now it may be true that only a few companies remain which are still large enough by that standard to avoid the indie moniker, but that doesn't mean the definition of "indie" has changed (or has to change). It just means that the decades-long decline of the hobby has forced the vast majority of RPG creators today to operate as "indie" (self-)publishers. They've become the norm, perhaps, but they are still "indie", at least in the sense that they are independent of the kind of regular, sustainable revenue stream that a regular, sustained publishing schedule would provide. The quick and dirty heuristic I use is this: if an RPG publisher does not operate as a full-time business providing a livable wage for more than its founder/owner, then it is an "indie"/"vanity" publisher.
  3. Nobody reacts like that around here. LA audiences are "too cool for school" for that.
  4. zslane

    Are Champions and HERO System "indie" games?

    If you are producing your product exclusively through vehicles like Kickstarter, then that means you are operating independent of an established publisher, and that is the very definition of "indie" (i.e., indie being short for independent). The nature/style of your game design is orthogonal to your publishing stratum. By this definition, most RPG "publishers" out there are indie, yes.
  5. zslane

    Are Champions and HERO System "indie" games?

    Well, Champions started out as an "indie" game, and then grew to become a major product brand (mostly thanks to I.C.E.). Post-4th edition, however, it shrunk back down to indie status, and now it is more of a community project than a legitimate, fully commercial product line, at least in my view.
  6. The way I see it, there are far bigger problems with show business than the rise of media conglomerates. For instance, the fact that an IP holder can legally sign over their creations in such a way that it is nearly impossible to get them back short of totally consuming the licensee (as we are seeing with Fox). The movie business in general is completely bonkers and profoundly flawed as a business model. I think the future of entertainment would benefit far more from a complete overhaul/reform of the way movies are financed, made, and distributed than by pressing the government to knock companies like Disney off their acquisition tracks.
  7. Nothing is "final" until the Fox shareholder meeting convenes to approve the deal, which was pushed from its original July 10 date to "later". This gives Comcast an opportunity to re-bid. There is still all the regulatory stuff to get through, but the Disney-Fox deal has a 6 month head start on all that, whereas a Comcast deal would have to start from scratch, delaying the sale for at least another year.
  8. I see plenty of hand-wringing over the fear of monopolies and pearl-clutching over the evils of giant corporations scattered throughout the Internet, but I guess I can't be bothered to fret over this stuff. So far, Disney's acquisition strategy has failed to have any meaningfully negative impact on my life. Sure, the latest Star Wars movies are a mixed bag overall, but George Lucas had completely lost it when it came to competent storytelling and wasn't doing his franchise any favors either, so I don't see that as having gone anywhere but up despite the recent stumbling. Disney may have more power in the entertainment space than any one company has ever enjoyed--something that clearly scares some folks--but the opportunity to bring the Fantastic Four and all the mutants back home is worth it to me.
  9. zslane

    No penalties for Fast Moving targets?

    Check out 6E2 pg 24, Velocity-Based DCV.
  10. zslane

    Representation Matters

    In general, anyone who has spent enough time in a hobby, especially a niche one, will have a fairly clear picture of its core population/demographic.
  11. zslane

    Representation Matters

    Well, sure, I think that's human nature, particularly if you are even vaguely aware of the majority demographic of the board you're reading. If you know that a board is probably 80+% composed of SWMs, then it is only natural for SWM to become the cognitive "default" when there is no concrete indicator otherwise. I don't see this as prejudice or bias, per se, but rather just probability and statistics shaping our cognitive categorizing, a process our brains use to make the world more manageable.
  12. Marvel only gets close to the comic versions of costumes if the character was originally covered in technology. If they wore colorful spandex, then chances are they won't have anything like that in the MCU. Spider-Man, Vision and Avengers-1 Cap are about the only cases where they got real close to the spandex look. Even the Asgardian costumes, while nicely designed, don't look much like their comic versions, IMO; rather, they more look like something out of Peter Jackson's LotR movies. I am, however, impressed with just how much MCU Dr. Strange looks like his comics counterpart.
  13. John Kricfalusi would be proud. But it seems to me Disney is 25 years too late to that (stylistic) party.
  14. New io9 headline: DC's Heroes in Crisis Is a Story About the Psychological Trauma of Being a Superhero. This would be like Disney releasing an animated feature all about the psychological trauma of being Mickey Mouse. Seems to me that someone over at DC has drunk all of Snyder's dark, angsty Kool-Aid, and has decided to regurgitate it all over the pages of this mini-series. No wonder DC is in shambles.
  15. zslane

    Worst action movie clichés

    Every action hero is a trained stunt driver. The hero's car is always somehow fitted with indestructible suspension, wheels, and tires. Groups of thugs fight the hero one at a time, rather than overpowering him with their numbers. Police/soldiers stand their ground and continue to shoot at someone/something that has not felt the effects of the first hundred rounds that hit. Knife fights. Protagonist can always get up and flee (usually in the second act), no matter how numerous/serious their wounds are.