Saturday, February 11, 2012

ASL by baby steps

Time for a new post.

So here in Lubbock, TX, as I have posted before, there are no ready opponents.  Attempts to interest other members of the community have struck a thick wall almost exactly the size of the ASL rulebook.  No one wants a challenge anymore.  No one wants complexity.  Don't get me wrong.  There's a place for games like Catan, and Pandemic (which I LOVE) and Munchkin and others.  My gaming "bride", my "old woman" if you will, the one I'll always come home to at night, will ALWAYS be ASL, though.

With that in mind, I have embarked on a "new" method of play since all previous attempts at setting aside amounts of time required to play VASL or finding a F2F opponent have failed.  In fact, saying that they have failed miserably is actually insulting to those that fail miserably.  There's no word in the English language for the amount of suck those efforts have attracted...

So I have begun to play via email using VASL logfiles.  I come to this method desperate for my fix.  The monkey has grafted itself on to my poor back and I am helpless against its power.  It has been my hope to find an answer.  I am not and have not been disappointed.

I have been able to average almost a log a day.  It takes between 10 and 20 minutes to put one together.  I can do this after I put the kids to bed and before I get incredibly tired.  All told, I am pushing 4-6 logs out a week right now.  Play is in chunks I can wrap my head around.  I have time to investigate rules as I need them.  I can think about tactics and strategy.  Most importantly, however, is the fact that I am PLAYING again.

I've even posted for a second opponent over at the GS forums.  I should easily be able to keep up two games and in doing so, will get a wider view of playing style.  Something else to sharpen the pencil...

On top of that, the opponent I have is one that is worth knowing as a friend outside of ASL.  Not that I am particularly surprised.  Most of my best friends have come from some form of gaming, whether RPG's as a young adult and college student, to ASL in my adult life.  I love hanging around people that game.  There is an almost inherent acceptance in us, for we are almost always outcasts.  We know what it is to be misunderstood - we play a game with a manual that rivals most computer language technical specifications in complexity for pity's sake.  Who DOES that?!?  But we look at it and don't even flinch.  That's a special breed and the people that do that are often the most generous around.  Hopefully, the second one turns out just as well as the first.



In short, the monkey has his banana, and all is right with the world...

Josh

5 comments:

Ian said...

Good to see you enjoying PBeM ASL, I love it but it's not for everyone.

You should find two games at the same time as easy as one. Looking forward to the AAR's

Ian

Josh said...

For the moment, at least, it seems to be the only option. I'm tired of not being able to enjoy my hobby. If these PBEM chunks are the only way I can get that to happen right now, then so be it. Time will free up eventually...

Josh said...

The other thing PBEM lends itself is to good AAR's. With all the logs in my posession, good snapshots at critical points of the game are easy...

Shawn Shifflett said...

Hey Josh. I play with a group in North Dallas once a month. I do, however, travel an obscene amount of miles for games since I really enjoy playing ftf. Lubbock, TX is roughly 300 miles away from me but in Texas terms that's a leisurely Sunday drive. Let me know if you feel like meeting up in between for a game sometime. I'm always game for a road trip!

Josh said...

Shaun:

Not generally able to drive outside of Lubbock. I AM planning on getting down that way to a tournament one of these years and I'd love to play you when I do. I take the occasional business trip to Dallas and if I have to stay overnight sometime, we might also set something up... Thanks for the offer.

Josh