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Thursday, 31 December 2015

More Bloopers To Send 2015 Out In Style...


Torn From The Headlines: Creepypasta...


"Creepypasta", if I'm understanding this correctly, is the phenomenon of modern-day, Internet-spread, urban legends - campfire horror stories spread through the world wide web (the most famous, I guess, being The Slender Man, which even made it on to Supernatural as #thinman).

These tales of unnerving make-believe - almost all originating from "unnamed sources" - are perfect fodder for gaming inspiration, even if quite a large number skirt a bit close to the bone (tread carefully if you have sensitive souls at your gaming table).

If you're not inclined to trawl the recesses of the web hunting down strands of 'creepypasta', then the horror film web site Blumhouse runs a weekly feature, with the latest installment being about a mythical TV show called Where The Bad Kids Go.

This particular Videodrome-esque 'show' echoed a particularly gruesome tale from the site a couple of weeks earlier: Mr Bear's Cellar.


I love this idea of "lost" or "forgotten" TV shows or films as the modern equivalent of HP Lovecraft's sanity-molesting tomes - such as the Necronomicon.

This concept was encapsulated in the incredible episode of Masters of Horror, John Carpenter's Cigarette Burns, starring Norman Reedus as a film hunter on the trail of La Fin Absolue du Monde, a legendary lost movie with the power to drive viewers to madness.

Of course, the granddaddy of all Creepypasta sites is the Creepypasta Wiki, which has a really great introduction to the concept, that alone provides fuel for the inventive gamesmaster... and probably nightmares!

News Bloopers Of The Year...


How better to wrap up the year than a selection of live news broadcast bloopers?

Wednesday, 30 December 2015

Now You Can Game The Extracanonical Adventures Of The Fourth Doctor...


How better to round out the year than with the release of a new volume of free, fan-generated, support material for Cubicle 7's wonderful Doctor Who Roleplaying Game?

The latest, 213-page, supplement from fellow blogger Siskoid - and the talented posse of dedicated Whovians at Doctor Who RPG Forums - looks at the non-televised adventures of the Fourth Doctor (from audio dramas and novels through to comic books).

Head on over to Siskoid's Blog Of Geekery to view sample pages as well as links to the free downloads (high or low res).

These incredibly detailed and well-researched fan productions are the perfect complement to Cubicle 7's official Doctor-by-Doctor supplements officially covering the Time Lord's televised canon of adventures through his various regenerations (C7 has recently put its 10th Doctor supplement up for pre-order).

Torn From The Headlines: Hidden Lairs...


Whether you're the Phantom Of The Opera or the designer of the Eiffel Tower, a supervillain or a superhero, a 'secret lair' of some description is de rigueur.

Forget about your clichéd, musty, old Batcave and instead start looking for inspiration in real life, and this list of Eight Unbelievable Secret Apartments on Oddee?

Retro Comic Book Cover Gallery (Fantastic Four Special)

Wonder Woman Wednesday...

Sunday, 27 December 2015

SIX OF THE BEST: The Bookshop Around The Corner

Grove Bookshop in Ilkely, West Yorkshire

How better to spend this post-Christmas, pre-New Year period than curled with a book or two? And, in case you didn't get any for Christmas, who better to ask for guidance to a good bookshop than Erica Jones of The Bookshop Around The Corner? Bookshop blogger Erica is also the latest recruit to our gaming group, The Tuesday Knights, and a friend and work colleague of my wife, Rachel.

(1) How long have you been blogging, and how’d you get into it in the first place?

I’ve been blogging about bookshops for just over two years. It started as a result of Twitter.

I’d been on the social media site for a little while and as I’m a fan of books I’d gradually found myself following more and more bookshops around the country, talking to them and getting to know them as well as you can get to know a non-human entity on the internet.

They all seemed pretty cool and I found myself wanting to go and ‘meet’ them. Writing a blog about the experience seemed the perfect excuse to do that without sounding slightly crazy. I’ve now met lots of them (and many more) and still sound slightly crazy.

(2) What do you blog about and how frequently do you post?

Once a week I blog about bookshops. About my experiences in them, why I’m visiting that particular bookshop, what it’s like, what I buy, who I talk to... anything that strikes me as being the ‘story’ of my personal experience there. My aim is to remind people why bookshops are special and to encourage them to go back to supporting them.

(3) How does your blog stand out from all the rest?

My blog is almost unique. I say almost, because to the best of my knowledge I know of only one other blog dedicated to bookshops (I’d be very happy to be corrected). Generally, people seem to overlook the bookshops in favour of the books. Which is a shame, because they’re missing out on some great experiences and friendships - and personal book recommendations!

"Books are my addiction," confesses Erica
(4) What’s the best (and worst) thing about blogging?

The best: A big leap in my confidence, because of the nature of my blog it’s led to me having a range of wonderful experiences, visiting new people and places I’d’ve not otherwise encountered. The blog itself gave me the confidence to go out and do all that, but then the experiences themselves further boosted my confidence in general. I’m a lot happier for it.

The worst: The cost! I’m spending a lot of money on train tickets, car parks and lovely books.

(5) Do you have any self-imposed rules (or guidelines) for your blog?

Two main ones. The first is that I have to write once a week. There’s no particular day to post, but my self-imposed deadline is before 9am on a Friday. This helps me stick to a routine.

The second rule is the most important: If I’m to write about a bookshop I must spend money in it. Otherwise I’d feel like I was visiting them for no reason or to be selfish - like the people who take photos of books in shops and then go and buy them online (the biggest sin of all as far as I’m concerned). This rule is also important because if I can’t find anything I want to buy then it’s an indicator that maybe I shouldn’t be writing about the bookshop - I only write about places I like (maybe that’s rule number three).

(6) Name one blog everyone should be reading (other than your own).

This one’s easy, people should also be reading The Matilda Project – which is the other blog dedicated to bookshops.

The Matilda Project

Stick To Your Guns, Snoopy!


Saturday, 26 December 2015

The Cast Of Star Wars Sing "Stayin' Alive"...



The Tonight Show shows its excitement over the release of the latest Star Wars sequel, The Force Awakens, by editing together footage of the previous six movies set to the tune of the Bee Gees' Stayin' Alive.

Geek Pin-Up Special: Melanie Stone...


Melanie Stone plays Marek, the slave girl with dreams of becoming a great wizard, in Arrowstorm's five Mythica movies: A Quest For Heroes; The Darkspore; The Necromancer; The Iron Crown; and The Godslayer.

Star Wars Legends: Legacy Of The Force...


Adapted from the [Expanded Universe/Legends] Star Wars novel Invincible by Troy Denning, Star Wars Legends: Legacy Of The Force takes you into the last moments of the final conflict between the children of Han Solo and Leia Organa Solo.

Jaina Solo must confront her brother Jacen, now calling himself Darth Caedus, in order to put an end to his reign and restore peace to the galaxy.
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