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sjgames July 25 2014, 05:08

July 25, 2014: San Diego Comic-Con Is Now!


Munchkin Princesses! A few days ago, on a beautiful San Diego day, the doors to San Diego Comic-Con opened and tens of thousands of fans raced as fast as they could . . . to stand in line. Preview Night at SDCC is a madhouse rush of excitement as everyone tries to grab the exclusives, running from booth to booth in an attempt to score every single one of the amazing – and very limited! – doodads, trinkets, and awesomes that contribute to the fun of the convention.

At the booth – #4423 if you're at the convention and wish to join us – Kali and Miranda held down the dice table, showing off the Mars Attacks: Dice Game and teaching a lot of new gamers Zombie Dice and Chupacabra. When I walked by the booth at about 7pm on Preview Night the dice were rolling and tumbling every direction possible, so Andrew and I set off to say hi to some of our friends who are also working the convention this week.
  • We got the chance to chat with Jonathan over at The Loyal Subjects, and this was my first chance to hold their 8-inch tall vinyl Shockwave toy. Incredible! Andrew and I got to know Jonathan because of a shared business partner – both company's work with PSI for sales and fulfillment – and it's only at the trade shows where we really get solid chunks of time to talk about toys, games, and the business of toys and games. Still, even five minutes with Jonathan was enough to find out about some secret new stuff.
  • Kristin and Amber of Looney Labs were working away stickering promo cards and showing off the new Regular Show Fluxx game. The game looks gorgeous and if you're at all a fan of fun card games (I suspect that you are) then you really need to check this out once it hits store shelves.
After that Andrew and I separated for a bit, as he wandered over to indulge his need for movies at The Asylum while I chatted with the staff of 2000 AD and grabbed a couple of Judge Dredd collections I didn't already own. I also discovered that both Henry Flint and Jock would be signing at the booth . . . at the exact times that I will be in important meetings. See, guys, this is why I can't get cool signatures. At least the meetings are sure to be a lot of fun and very productive.

There's still days of this excitement left to go, so don't forget to visit us at booth 4423 if you're at the convention. And if you are not at SDCC this year then keep an eye on the SJ Games Twitter account and watch as the fun unfolds with our Steve Jackson Games at SDCC Facebook event page.  It would be better if you could join us at the show, but even if you can't be here you can at least get the latest news as the show is in progress.

Phil Reed

Warehouse 23 News: Beware Of Unsanitary Conditions!

While fighting monsters and taking their stuff, you can keep track of your fellow munchkins with the Munchkin Board of Health  –  lest they leave you behind in the muck.  This double-sided game board comes with player tokens that give you special in-game bonuses, as well as 8 new cards.  Available from Warehouse 23.
anysia July 25 2014, 04:00

My tweets

  • Fri, 04:43: #DeathPenalty isn't justice. It's vengeance.
  • Fri, 05:01: #Edshow Paul Ryan wouldn't know good economics if it sat on h is face.
  • Fri, 05:11: #edshow #edshow Paul Ryan isn't an economist. His 'budget' would create more poverty than it would solve. Yes, Immoral.
  • Fri, 05:24: #edshow Traditional marriage? You can't sell your daughter for 1 cow& a goat, proving definition of marriage changes over time. #MarcoRubio
  • Fri, 05:39: #edshow how do GOP/Teapublicans not give themselves mental whiplash with the constant 180s?
  • Fri, 05:59: @pagandancer: #edshow Maybe ppl finally clued in that you can't drink/eat/breathe money and willing to do something about it. #climatechange
  • Fri, 06:01: @pagandancer: #edshow Maybe ppl finally clued in that you can't drink/eat/breathe money and willing to do something about it. #ClimateChange
  • Fri, 08:07: #inners So, Israeli forces meet peaceful march that had "Roman Candles" with deadly force? Shame on them.
  • Fri, 08:09: #inners Israel gives warnings, sometimes only minutes, but where are the people supposed to go? Swim out to sea?
  • Fri, 08:53: #inners Instead of figuring out better way to execute how about "Life w/o parole". Would cost less. Execution isn't justice. It's vengeance.
anysia July 24 2014, 20:58

Good Morning 4am

Once again, I am up early because of feline behavior.

I heard this low, not quite silent growling, and felt something slowly climb over me, and settle down where one pillow overhung another. The growl got a bit louder. I reached out, and felt a small muscular body, grabbed it and held it close. Flicked on the light, and it turned out to be Ziggy. Her growling grew in volume and I looked around, and there was Trance, slowly slinking towards her.

Since Ziggy was under an 'overhang' of pillow, hiding her from sight, and kept my arm wrapped around her. She quieted a bit. I got up and shooed Trance away.

Tried to go back to sleep, but even though both Loki and Trance weren't in the room, Ziggy kept intermittently growling. So, I tucked a blanket up over her, and then she started purring and dozing off.

Guess she knows who can keep her protected.
scalzifeed July 24 2014, 17:11

San Diego Comic-con Addendum



I’m quoted today in this Los Angeles Times piece on San Diego Comic-con and issues of harassment. It’s an interesting article and worth reading if you’re not up to date on the issue. I have a couple of addendums to it which I think I worth noting briefly now (I will have some longer thoughts on the whole subject, but they will have to wait until after this weekend):

* The article notes that SDCC for the first time sent out e-mails to badge-holders pointing out that it doesn’t tolerate harassment. And you know what? That’s an excellent move and a good way to make the point to 100,000+ people that harassment won’t fly at the convention. I have nothing but positive things to say about that. So good on SDCC for sending those e-mails. I should also say I think SDCC is actively thinking about harassment issues this year, both as a matter of course and because others outside the convention (aside from me, I will note, and in a much more publicly active way than I) are making noise about it. That’s good too, and credit where credit is due.

* However, SDCC still doesn’t actually say on its site (or otherwise as far as I can see) what it thinks harassing behavior is. Which is a really big problem in my book — it leaves no guidance for attendees. Not all harassing behavior is as blatant as a grope; attendees on the receiving end of unwanted attention may not be aware that their harassment qualifies under SDCC standards — nor in the absence of guidance may they be convinced, if they feel harassed, that SDCC will agree with them. That’s a huge hole. I understand SDCC reasoning for not offering that guidance, but with due respect for the thinking behind it, it’s flat-out wrong in my opinion. Not having that language makes the convention less safe, not more. It’s the reason you won’t see me at the convention center or on the floor of the show.

* That said, I noted earlier that my event today, which is off campus (it will be at the Horton Grand Theatre at 1:30pm) was affiliated with SDCC in some way. Certainly the tickets to the event note that affiliation:

I think it’s better for me to put these tickets on the table, as it were, than have someone else do it. As I noted earlier, doing this particular event off-campus allows me to keep a closer eye on things (or as I wrote previously, “if someone acts like a harassing asshole at my event, I can have them bounced and reported”). I’m very sure SDCC knows my thoughts on harassment, in any event.

* What I hope is that all of this helps to make this particular SDCC the safest one so far — and thus the most enjoyable SDCC so far for a large number of its attendees — and keeps the momentum going for the convention to continue making improvements in this area. As I said earlier, the e-mails are a start, and a start I can applaud. There’s more to be done.

cakewrecks July 24 2014, 13:50

Logo Low-Blows


I know it can be scary asking a bakery to do something custom, like, say, a school or brand's logo.
But DON'T PANIC; I'm here to walk you through it.

First, print out a nice, clear image to bring in as a reference:


With something as simple as this Chanel logo, you can be sure there is simply NO WAY...

...that the results won't be hysterical.


When ordering a Saints logo...


...it helps to have the patience of one.


Oh, and when you give the baker your reference image, be sure to mention how closely you want your cake to match; some bakers take it more as a "guideline" than an actual rule.

"Why'd you use the S?!"
"Because I don't know what the F is going on!"


Still, the most important thing, my friends... is to be glad you aren't ordering a Texas Longhorns cake.

Because seriously, that thing is the Kobayashi Maru of cake orders:

...you can't win.

(But hey, at least this one's got heart!)


Thanks to Amy B., Ashley B., Candace F., Amy B., Allison, & Chris L. for getting that last one off his chest.


Thank you for using our Amazon links to shop! USA, UK, Canada.

bad_science July 24 2014, 12:51

Teaching science with bad science: resources for teachers



People often wring their hands over how to make science “relevant” to the public, or to young people. For me, this is an open goal: we are constantly barraged with health claims in popular culture, and evidence based medicine is the science of how we know what does good, and what does harm. Every popular claim is an […]
scalzifeed July 24 2014, 05:40

Hello San Diego



And you are looking lovely this evening.

I am in town. I have signed books for Tor to give away at its booth. I am going to get something to eat, and then I am going to go to sleep, because my brain is still in the Eastern time zone. See some of you, hopefully, at my reading tomorrow (details here). Or later today, since this is likely to go out with an Eastern time zone timestamp. You know what I mean.

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