Coming back to myself and Dyson Fall

single cab pickup truck

Things have been interesting for me of late. I am sure that with the ongoing COVID 19 pandemic, that they are interesting for everyone in their own way. My interesting has been trying to find myself again, trying to find a better balance with working remotely, life, and rediscovering the things that I enjoy.

I have been working remotely for more than seven years, so this isn’t anything new. Not being able to visit with other people in person often, being cautious about where I go, and how often. That is very different. However, it’s likely not a different experience for many of you who have dealt with it in the last year and a half.

I found myself working, then getting off of work and not really knowing what to do with myself. I’d nap, watch YouTube, and generally be lazy. I was quite listless in my off work hours. I decided that needed to stop, it wasn’t healthy and was wasting time I could spend doing something fun or productive. I have been gradually fighting back to do something other than nothing.

I started Lair of Secrets with Ken Newquist last year and we’ve been slowly making the show better and more on a schedule. Though picking up kids, scout meetings, migraines, and other life issues does still get in the way, we don’t show any sign of stopping. Tonight we’ll be going over our plans for a season two.

My gaming has been very spotty, mainly due to life/scheduling issues. Last year though, I really wanted to get back into some of the old games that I enjoyed. Gamma World has always been a favorite. Having grown up in the Cold War era, it offered a hope of life after the bomb. Mixed with other video games of the time (Wasteland on the Apple IIe being a prime one) and my prolific reading during those years, Gamma World was one of the games I never really got to play but would spin adventures and characters in my head constantly.

So over the last year or so, part of my brain has been dedicated to a game I am calling Dyson Fall. I want the game to be about the hope and exploration that I felt back then when reading and creating for Gamma World all those years ago.

One of my main inspirations in the modern day are Kipo and the Wonderbeasts. It’s a great cartoon that is at it’s core is about hope and making friends, even when those friends might look like enemies at the start. Once you get to know those people, you realize that they all have their troubles, and sometimes helping them through those troubles can turn them from an enemy into a friend or ally.

So Dyson Fall is about hope and growing a community. It is has the trappings of exploration of strange and wonderful or terrifying places, weird mutations, and the strange friends you make along the way.

I am using the Mythic d6 system by Khepera Publishing and my friend Jerry Grayson. I’m using it because it’s a skill based system, and as Jerry puts it, “all RPGs are super hero games”. Dyson Fall, with all of it’s Thundarr the Barbarian weirdness is definitely a post-apocalyptic super hero game.

Currently I have a small playtest group that has been kind enough to help me test out different scenarios for how the game will play. We unfortunately haven’t been able to play much, see my gaming scheduling woes above, but it has always been productive and given me more to think on after every session.

Where you can find me at Balticon 46.

This weekend I will be at Balticon 46 in Hunt Valley, MD. http://balticon.org

If you happen to be going, I’ll be on the panel and podcast below. I’ll also be attending a fair amount of other sessions and hanging out in the bar when I’m not busy. See you there!

Sunday, 6:00 pm (50 Minutes) (Derby)
NM-73. Secret Lair Design For Minions 101 (New Media)
In this highly informative educational session, the staff of the
Secret Lair will work with the audience to design and implement traps and countermeasures to keep those meddling
heroes out of The Secret Lair. Special Guest Star Jared Axelrod
will play the part of The Hero, describing how he would attempt
to break into The Lair. The audience (minions) will have to assist
the Lair staff in designing traps to foil the hero.
(M): Chris Miller, (S): John Cmar, Jared Axelrod

Sunday, 8:00 pm (50 Minutes) (Chesapeake)
NM-74. The Secret Lair Live! (New Media)
Join Overlord Chris Miller and Doctor John Cmar for a live
recording of The Secret Lair. Surprise guests! Games! ShetlandBonobo Pony rides! Fun for all ages!
(M): Chris Miller, John Cmar

How to make P2P apps without a server? RTFM… no RTMFP.

I recently gave a talk to the Chicago Flex User Group, and incidentally the LA user group. That last was quite unexpected, and simulcast as I gave the talk.

I spoke about RTMFP on mobile devices and computers using Adobe AIR and a local network to form a Peer To Peer network without a server.

I have the slides posted up on Slideshare, and the audio is here if you care to take a listen.

How to make P2P apps without a server? RTFM… no RTMFP.

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