GM ABCs – How to prepare for RPGs

By Uncle Chris: 

I spend a lot of time running RPG campaigns, and I have even spent some time on the Geek Nation podcast discussing some of my advice and ideas when it comes to making those games fun and easy for myself and my players.

But what exactly goes into preparing for my role as Game Master?  That’s the question on the old tabletop today and I’ll do my best to answer it!

We wait all year for PAX West, here’s why!

By Uncle Chris:

The Penny Arcade Expo (PAX, for short) has been a Seattle-area institution since it debuted in 2004, and has grown into one of the largest conventions in the country.

Focusing mainly on video games and emergant video gaming technology, PAX West (or PAX Prime, or even PAX O.G.) has a ton of amazing stuff to do.  You can play the hottest new games from the biggest companies in the business and then sample new indie games from companies that are just geting started.  And not just video games, but there’s a whole board gaming area, as well!

The level of sheer geeky joy that fills the Convention Center for an entire weekend is unimaginable until you see it firsthand, and you can check out BJ Shea’s Board Game Alliance coverage here:

PAX has become so popular, in fact, that the organizers had to branch out and now we have PAX East, PAX South, PAX Dev, even PAX Australia!

The lastest member of the PAX family, PAXUnplugged, is dedicated to board games exclusively, and BJ Shea’s Geek Nation and Board Game Alliance will be there at the end of November, so look forward to our coverage from Philadelphia and, as always, Stay Nerdy!

Teaching the Students to become the Masters

By Uncle Chris:

I had a request on one of my other videos recently, asking me to explain my process when it comes to teaching people new games.

I never really sat down and thought about how I handle teaching before, but I quickly realized that I DO have a set porcedure and I wanted to walk you guys through a “How To’ on how to, just in case you ever need to teach a bunch of people how to play a board games.

Self-awareness for geeks

By Uncle Chris:

I usually try to keep things pretty light with my blog, but something happened to me the other day that I feel like I need to share with everybody I can.

Because of an unexpected encounter and the conversation that took place because of it, ​I had the opportunity to take look inside myself and question my preconcieved notions about people and I came out the other side a little bit better for the experience.

In short, I was wrong, and I am really glad that I was.

Remember these Sci-Fi “classics” from the ’90s?

By Uncle Chris

We were talking on the show recently about some classic movies that we think everyone should see: The Godfather, Shawshank Redemption, Pulp Fiction, Jaws, and a handful of others.

Despite BJ being involved, there were very few science fiction movies discussed and this got me thinking about some of my favorites that should be required viewing for Sci-Fi geeks.

I don’t have to say Star Trek or Star Wars, so I won’t.  Demolition Man, Enemy Mine, The Fifth Element, The Black Hole, these all make my personal list and are all excellent examples of the genre.

I spotted a list on Den of Geek that reminded me of some of the lesser-known sci-fi films that may have slipped past a lot of people.  The list has 51 movies on it, and most of them are movies that I’ve seen.  Some great, some good, some absolutely awful, but they do represent a broad cross-section of sci-fi in the 1990s.

Here’s the list, let me know if there’s something that’s not listed here that you think belongs on a list of essential sci-fi classics.…


Stay nerdy!

I wanted better money for my game, so I made it myself

By Chris Walker: 

I’ve put a lot of time into getting my Firefly board game to the table for our gaming group.  Learning it back to front so I can teach others, buying all of the expansions and extra ships, running down a copy of the full-sized play mat…

But I decided that I was really unhappy with the paper money that was included with the game, so I decided to do something about that!


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New Star Trek animated series? Yes, please!

By Uncle Chris

First of all, I love that picture of my friend Justin & I ’cause it reminds me of just about the best birthday party I’ve ever had.

But that’s a story for another day.

Today, we’re talking Star Trek.  Specifically, animated Star Trek.  As a true Trekkie, I have seen the existing animated series and, like many of my fellow fans, consider it to be an adequate entry into the lore and canon of Star Trek, even if it’s nobody’s favorite.

Star Trek: The Animated Series ran two seasons from 1973 to 1974, the series followed the events of Star Trek: The Original Series and told the continuing stories of James T. Kirk and his crew, filling in some of the time gaps between the end of TOS and Star Trek: The Motion Picture.

According to Variety, an animated series is one of several Star Trek TV series in development by CBS Television Studios. They didn’t provide any specific details about what this new Star Trek animated series might look like, but it’s really exciting to imagine what they could do.  Stuff like bringing back some of those characters whose actors have aged out of their roles, some high-concept science fiction stories that might prove too expensive or complex to do live action, the possibilities are endless!

Or, maybe they could do more filling in the gaps between the shows and movies, there are some significant spans of time between the shows as it is, and I for one am exactly the kind of Trekkie that would love to see some of those stories.

I’ll keep you posted as new info becomes available, I’ll be watching this very closely (there might even be a few other Star Trek series coming soon, too!) and you’ll know all about it when I do!

Live long and prosper, Geek Nation!