Archive for the ‘News’ Category.

Misspent Youth Play Session

Misspent Youth is a table top role-playing game about rebellion friendship and kicking ass. It is available here at Area42games

About a month or so ago we played this game at one of our game nights. Here is how the game went. Please be warned there is strong language in this post in accordance with the game atmosphere.
I had a copy of the conflict resolution map printed on legal size paper and laminated, a set of poker chips and 2 large 6 sided dice.  Other than that we had a copy of the rules, some character sheets and pencils.

My name is Mark and I was playing with David, Tina, Kristen and Brian. I started off talking about lines and veils and the rating system. We decided to go with Rated R and the only line was from me, I asked that there be no glorification of racism. I said I don’t mind exploring racism in an RPG but I don’t want it glorified. No one else had anything, I asked about children and sexual situations and they were all giving me “Meh”.  Then David suggested that we reserve the right to say hey that’s making me uncomfortable can we step it back a bit and we were all good with that.

I asked what kind of a world we wanted; space opera, cyberpunk, dystopian near future, post apocalypse, steam punk? Brian said Cyberpunk, and everyone else agreed except Tina who wanted Steampunk. So we decided a Cyberpunk world with Steampunk elements. Each city is a self sufficient arcology and the government is a corporation. The internet is a VR simulation network called the Communication Web. People use cybernetic implants not only for net access but for body modification. Physical technology like robots or cybernetic limbs will have a clockwork look/color.

We then turned to the Authority. At David’s suggestion we named the Authority “The Personnel Department”. This is the company that controls the cities government. The description was Government Bureaucracy. Vice: Greed, Victim: Freedom, Visage: State, Need: Brainwash Humanity. David states he really likes this Authority and wants to play him and so we all agree since he has been rubbing his hands talking about it. The systems of Control are: Brainwashing chip implants, Trade regulated only for those with a chip (Dave wanted to go Biblical with the need for a number to engage in commerce), Mad Doctors who do forced chip implants and experiments, Spibots – small robotic clockwork spider spies, Clockwork storm troopers. Exploits: Unregulated economy – black market.

We decided the clique of Youthful Offenders (YOs) description is that we are Couriers of underground secret tech. We are held together by wanting to keep our minds free and we all work together promoting the Black Market.

Gunkata master
Par Kour expert
Inventor (Macgyver)
Martial Artist – Kung Fu master
Social Radical
Master of Disguise
Historian (ala Gilles from Buffy)

To make our yo’s we each smashed two of the tropes together.

Brian played Mitch a Cyborg Ninja
16yr old Male. Means: Fast, Motive: Optimism, Opportunity: Sneaky, MO: Ninja like stealth and fighting ability, Disorder: malfunctioning cybernetics. Personality Assessment: Memory erased by cyber implants.

Kristen played Janey (aka Paula) a Hacker and Master of Disguise. This includes false ID’s and alternate identities.
Female, Age 15. Means: Smart, Motive: Pride, Opportunity: Trusted, MO: Social Engineering allowing her to get info from people in power. Disorder, need to fit in. Personality Assessment; went to system camp. Doesn’t want everyone to know she is outside the system because she was kicked out. She is not a YO by choice.

Mark played Jerry Reyes a Parkour Social Radical.
16 year old male with Olive skin, brown hair and eyes. Means; cool, Motive: Outrage, Opportunity: Orphan, MO: Convincing Speech, Glitch Zealot.

Tina played Matilda Somerville an Inventor Historian.
17 year old Female. Means: Smart, Motive: Altruism, Opportunity: Rich, MO: Predict authorities inventions and think of counter solutions and competitive alternatives. Disorder: Shy.

Friendship Questions: I started by turning to Tina on my left and asking “How did I earn your trust?”. She responded, I used to think you were some crazy fanatic but the parkour was interesting and you sold my inventions. But I thought you were a bit full of yourself. One day I was monitoring you while you were making a delivery and there was a puppy injured by a passing clockwork storm trooper. You stopped to help the dog, bandaged it and took it to a person to get it help. That’s when I realized there was more to you than just the rhetoric.

Tina then turned to Brian and asked him “Mitch, What do you miss about your old life and why is Matilda the only one you told about it?”. Mitch replied that she is the only one who knows he has total amnesia and he told her that because she fixes his cybernetic implants all the time and does the upgrades. They chat while she works on him.

Brian asked Kristen “Janey, What don’t you want the clique to know about you?”. She replied that she doesn’t want people to find out that she was kicked out of corporate cyber-programming school. She is self taught and is going to show them that she is better than all the people they trained.

Kristen turned to me and asked “Jerry, Why do you hate the authority so much?” I said, well they fuckeded up my whole life. My father refused to have the chip installed and they grabbed him and while doing a forced installation it killed him. So mom goes and just volunteers to have the operation done. She just gave up on life and became a sensie junkie. She sits in VR all the time, she’s alive, sort of, but I never get to talk to her in RL.
Scene 1: What’s Up? We decide to make my friendship question the scene key and focus on me wanting to rage against the man. So I say while I am doing my normal deliveries I am going to take that new can of insta-tag spray paint Matilda invented. I am going to program the bottle with a secret design and spray graffiti adds in key locations that will clue folks to check the black market for a special event “A Rally and Speach by Me!”. Janie is going to be setting up the marketplace meetup online and send invites to key customers and other vendors. Matilda says that having a rally is fine but we have tech to sell and orders to fill. Mitch says he is coming on the delivery run with me. David says ok I think it’s time for a conflict. The one thing that the corporation hates is competition and this black market has to be stopped. So the Personnel Department had a mole customer place an order and there are Storm Troopers waiting for you in the building. It is a warehouse not an apartment building. Objective Capture Black Market criminal. You guys enter the building and boxes burst open like in march of the wooden soldiers and they are blocking the exits and trying to fence you guys in. We choose “Escape” as our hope. (probably not a good one). Mitch grabs the dice and rolls a 7. Hell yeah, great start. He says I am “Fast” my katana is out and I’m chopping up joint wires, kicking robots in the head and bouncing all over. Dave says the Authority takes 3. I say ok I’m standing up and I roll a 10. I’m “Outraged” and I’m going to start using my parkour skills to jump from steel rack to scaffolding and up and up so i can find a way out. Dave takes a 12 and says the robots are trying to knock the shelves and scaffolding over so you fall. There’s no windows up there. Matilda says she is standing up “I want to send you blueprints of the building so you can get out”. Slow down roll first then describe what your doing. OK but I’m using smart she says. Well first roll Tina and she rolls a 7. Damn, sorry guys I’m not selling out in the first scene. That’s cool I say, it adds to the drama. Dave narrates the scaffolding coming down and the clockwork robots grab Mitch and I and start dragging us down the street. End Scene 1.

Scene 2: Fighting Back. Dave states his objective, drag the prisoners off to the mad doctors for interrogation and chip implants. If I win this scene I’m getting a list of the whole clique and the time and location of the rally. Hope; Free the prisoners and destroy the Clockwork Stormtroopers. We want to take away a system of control. Matilda stands up and rolls a 6. Dave places 7 and 11 for the authority. She says Ok, I’m altruistic I’ve made some cyber enhancements to that dog you saved. I’m sending it out to track your location and let Janie and me know where they’re taking you and by what route. Kristen Stands up and rolls a 5. Dave gives the authority a 12. Kristen says Janey is Smart she is setting up an EMP pulse that will mess up the bots and at least make them hesitate. Brian has Mitch stand up, he says hopefully I can take advantage of the distraction Janie made. He hits Janie’s 5 and says yeah I have these ninja smoke bombs but with a sci fi element. They include things to screw with tech and surveillance equipment as well as human eyes. Mitch and Jerry just disappear in a cloud of smoke and totally wipe the brains of the storm troopers. A combination of Janies EM Pulse and my nano jammer smoke bombs takes that system of control from the Authority.

Scene 3: Heating up. Kristen says alright we are supposed to be getting this shit going now. I’m going to find a good doctor who is waffling and be willing to join our cause. Dave says the Authority has control of trade and the communication web. My objective is to shut you guys out of the internet and stop your ability to have this rally online. OK well our hope is to find this waffling doctor guy. Ok, I’m not going into how many rolls we made on this one. but we pretty much filled the entire conflict resolution map. In the end Mitch stands up and rolls one of the authorities numbers. Crap, I’m selling out my optimism to cynical. See Janie was getting tired fighting against the firewalls and security protocols and I tried to give her an optimistic pep talk and I distracted her and she almost got nailed. But instead I got real with her and told her to focus her lazy ass mind and bust through this shit. The world may be shit and maybe we can’t save anyone but at least we can fuck the shit up for the drones. That clicked with her, she got kicked out of that training school. She was was like griefing, yeah that’s the tactic I need and smashed through the security programs and got a list of the mad scientists and their personnel files. We created a new exploit, the Good Doctor.

Scene 4: we won. This is supposed to be a little victory for the yo’s. Well Kristen says our hope is that we take the intel from scene three and convince him to speak at the rally. Dave is having trouble coming up with an objective. Dave decides that if he wins the doctor will turn out to be a mole and fuck us over at the rally. This is another long encounter and we are filling up the conflict map. Janie first argues using “Trusted” that he owes his patients the service of a true healer. Matilda’s bribes him with her “Rich” trait. Then Janie hits her previous number and uses “Smart”. I was prepared for this. One of my alternate Identities pretended to be their childs school. They inform Mrs. Waffel that her son has an illness that the wife would know even with a doctor for a father this is going to be a long expensive treatment. The doctor takes the bribe and agrees to talk at the rally. We have created a new system of control “Doctor Network”.

Scene 5: we’re fucked. The authority sends an offer to Paula, Janey’s real identity. She is commended on her excellent grades and “Trustworthy” reputation since the unfortunate issue a few years back. She is offered a full ride to a major university. All she has to do is come in for a chip upgrade. Dave’s objective is to bribe Janey into betraying the clique by offering her the opportunity to “fit in” once more. Our hope was to shut down the Crazy Doctor’s system of Control. I forget exactly how this went down but I do remember that I stood up and hit the authorities number. No way I said, if we loose Janey we’re hosed. I’m selling out “Outraged” and taking “Wrath”. Kristen goes, oh I know how this happens. You are trying to turn more Doctors but most of them tell you to get fucked so you start killing them. You murder mad scientists all over town. No one is crying for those bastards, they were sick fucks and deserved it. But, it wasn’t so healthy for your soul man.

Scene 6: Who wins. This is the day of the Rally. David says he has VR clockwork spibots and he is going to find out who all the black market traitors are and take out the competition. Our hope is to create a free market. I wind up having to sell out again and now I’m no longer “Cool” I’m trendy. But we have a new system of control the Free Market. Wait that is just an upgrade of the black market how is that a new exploit. So instead we decide to rename the black market “free market” but we are killing the System of Control about needing a chip for trade and web use.

Scene 7 the Dust Settles. There is a thriving free market. Dave says ok, in all the hacking and battles with my spibots janey discovers that the Personnel Department is actually an AI. There is no longer a human board of directors. And it has been diverting resources from the arcology to a moon base. It is trying to set up a supercomputer on the moon so it can regroup and extend it’s control across the globe. Our hope is that Janey can isolate the AI and lock it down in corporate HQ and hopefully wipe it out. Once again we are playing the conflict, I stand up and Jerry rolls a 7 and looses. I oh hell no, I’m not selling out again. Look we won, and the bad guy gets away. That works, it’s sequel fodder. The Authority gets the system of control “Moonbase”.

Aftermath: The YO’s wound up with 3 exploits and the authority had 3 systems of control we tied and win on ties. The only ones to sell anything out were Mitch and Jerry. After 2 dice Brian rolled more than 6 so there was no way the one die from Mitch’s “Cynical” could beat it so he gets a happy ending. Jerry sold out twice; “Outrage” to “Wrath” and “Cool” to “Trendy”. I rolled the 3 dice for my free traits and got a 16 so with a max of 12 from my sell outs Jerry got a happy ending too. We decided that Jerry became a successful “Trendy” marketing man for the free market with a nasty temper but still had his idealistic convictions.


From May 4th through May 18th, Area 42 Games will be entering limited service due to vacation. You may feel free to order items from our store but those items will not be processed or shipped until after May 18th. We apologize for any inconvenience that this may cause, but it simply cannot be avoided.

Our game night on May 11th will still occur, this vacation affects only the online portions of Area 42 Games. Thank you, as always, for your support.

Photos of Game Nights

We have some photos to share of our game night exploits courtesy of Chris Hines our resident photographer. To see them at their best I suggest friending us on Facebook or circling us on Google+. You also might want to follow us on Twitter @area42games, sometimes we post pictures there as well. Anyway, here is one to whet your appetite.

Mansions of Madness

Puzzle Strike

Puzzle Strike is a game that I have been enjoying recently. For those of you who have experience with Dominion or other deck building games the experience will be very similar, except that there are no cards. The whole game is played with round punchboard discs called chips. You will find yourself playing with the chips much like one would with poker chips. Shuffling involves dumping your chips into your bag and shaking it. This process is by itself very enjoyable and adds to the fun of this game. One other major difference from most other deck building games is that each player starts with a different character with different capabilities, represented by three unique chips you add to your starting deck. These powers make each player’s experience just different enough that it keeps things interesting. Oh, and you are also breaking up gems and “crashing” them at each other. If you have too many gems in your gem pile then you lose. For me this is an exciting new twist on the deck building genre and I look forward to playing it again soon.

Leaving Mundania by Lizzie Stark

I have the privilege of announcing that Area 42 Games will be sponsoring Lizzie Stark’s DC stop on her Leaving Mundania book tour.  As we learn more about exact dates and times, we’ll be certain to forward it on to our readers.

Be sure to check out her website with details on her upcoming book.


Mysticon 2012

We’re back from Mysticon 2012, recovering from our various ailments (you always get something at a con), and/or lack of sleep. This year was fantastic! We were set up in a corner of the dealer’s room and introduced our demo table to the world. The layout of our booth worked very well, allowing folks to browse as well as sit around our demo table and try the wide variety of new games we rolled out. Tsuro (while not brand new) certainly proved popular, as well as Puzzle Strike, Showbiz Shuffle (I really liked that game), Zombie Dice, and Eminent Domain. Our dice (including the fugly ones) proved a wild success. Our thanks go out to Necropolis Studios for letting us sell her bizarre goggles and boxes. They were certain an eye catcher and brought many a folk to our booth. I think our most talked about game was Win-Lose-Banana. We even ended up giving copies to the convention’s Guests of Honor, Richard Hatch and Nicki Clyne from Battlestar Galactica. They were both gracious enough to autograph some pics to Area42 Games, which shall now hang in our new Hall of Fame. If you come to one of our Meetups, check them out.

Overall, a fantastic experience. Our congratulations to John Meagher of Tales of the Left Hand fame. He was 1/3rd of the winning team in Mysticon’s Iron Author contest. His story about a sentient mohawk, cow tipping, and a kosher vampire is worth a read.

We’ll definitely be going back next year. Be sure to stop by and say hello.

Milkshake on Kickstarter

A friend of ours makes music for kids … and now they have a Kickstarter campaign… you should back them:

Code Monkey Game Review

The folks at Father Geek have done a review of Code Monkey which is a game designed by friend of Area 42 Games, Mike Young. We have a few copies for sale at our events but you can also check it out on The Game Crafter if you like.

White Elephant Party

Last Friday, we had our First Annual Area 42 White Elephant Party at our weekly meetup.

It was a very amusing collection of gifts, from a magic staff to a waterfall made from candles. Oh, and a few games were in the mix as well.

Our thanks to all of our loyal friends and customers who made it a rousing success.

From the folks at Area 42 Games, we wish you all the happiest of holiday seasons and hope you have a wonderful New Year.

See you all again in 2012!

John Meagher reads for you on Psuedopod

John Meagher has narrated a short horror story for Psuedopod this week. Give it a listen if that’s your taste, and drop a comment on the forum!