Well, we’ve reached the end of the first full calendar year at my own domain, and I’ve settled in fairly well. I still need to get a proper banner for the blog, but the site is working, I’ve gotten pretty good with the WordPress software, and I’ve gotten everything pretty well sorted out after the transfer.
Personally, it has been a good, if quiet year for me. The main gripe would be that the local gaming group is having some trouble (a large part of that is my fault, as I’m the cat wrangler for the group), so we didn’t meet very often this last year. On the other hand, I did get Patch to drop by for a few two-player sessions during the empty times, and all of those were fun days.
Financially, the entire household is just a bit better off than 12 months ago. We’ve also gotten some new heaters for the winter that we think will trim quite a bit off the power bill compared to the horribly inefficient strip heaters that the place came with for the next couple months. I’m still working down debt incurred from when the BackBreaker debt was dominating the finances of the household, and if I can keep on schedule, most of that will be gone this year. I managed to pay things down while spending entirely too much on games (this may have been the most I’ve spent on games in any single year, and it’s likely to stay that way).
My computer gaming has been a bit sparse this year. I’ve played a bit on various Paradox games (I was thinking of starting a series of reviews on them, but the first one has stalled out after running entirely too long and not going where I wanted, and I haven’t managed to rescue it), a couple complete games of Civ IV, and of course SW:TOR. The latter started out strong, then went down to the usual ‘log in on Friday’ pattern very quickly. My long-term opinion of the game is that it has a lot of things where they had the right idea, but implemented it poorly. That said, I’ve recently gotten the bug again, and have spent a fair amount of time on it over the past week, and finally have hit max level with my main character, though the end of the story line is still some ways off.
I haven’t gotten in nearly as much board gaming as I would like, mostly because of the difficulties with the group. Also, my PBEM games of F&E with Belirahc have really fallen off over the last few months as his work is keeping him entirely too busy. However, seeing Patch get jazzed over my copy of Festung Budapest put me into a positive feedback loop with ASL, which is why I finally purchased a new 2nd Ed rulebook to replace the old one which had been coming apart. And I ended up with a big project that has kept me focused on ASL; I used to do a bunch of reporting on my games as they happened, which was my “AAR in Progress” series over on GameSquad. I had just been hosting the images for the threads on my corner of backbreaker.com, so when the domain changed I planned to go into all the old threads and update the image links. It turns out that I couldn’t edit them; I assume they don’t allow editing of posts over a year old. So I decided to start re-posting the compiled threads here (and over at BGG) with the updated images. The first one happened to go out on a Thursday, and I decided to start scheduling out further posts each Thursday so that I would have a regular feature on my blog, for as long as it lasted. There were more threads than I expected, and the last one only posted a couple weeks ago. I have in the meantime written up posts for all my complete PBEM games since I stopped doing those threads, and those are set to run through about the end of February. After that, we’re back to the murmur of at best a couple posts a month.
Speaking of ASL, I had thirteen complete games this last year, plus three that are still ongoing by PBEM (and weekly sessions on one of those) right now. Of those thirteen, I won four, which is doing well for me at any time, and I finally broke a three-year losing streak back in April with “No Better Spot to Die”. This, and the writing of the reports, has kept me fairly focused on ASL for several months, when I finally get a few more things done I hope to get back to working on the all-new F&E 2.0 Vassal module I started work on.
Moving on to the blog itself, the yearly examination of tags reveals 86 posts for the year with: sixty-eight tagged ‘gaming’, forty-three ‘ASL’, thirty-five ‘AAR in Progress’, fifteen ‘review’, fourteen ‘history’, ‘reading’, twelve ‘bgg blog’, ‘F&E’, eight ‘books’, six ‘PBr campaign’, ‘bvr wind’, four ‘VotG Campaign’, ‘C&C Ancients’, three ‘life’, ‘Vassal’, ‘second wind’, and one each ‘micca’, ‘Pony Tales’, ‘Marathon’, ‘TOR’, ‘Paths of Glory’, ‘CiM’, ‘AdCiv’, ‘Virgin Queen’, ‘Moebius’, ‘EFS’, ‘candidate’, ‘EiS’, ‘dominant species’, ‘Sekigahara’.
When I started reposting the AAR in Progress series, I did not realize there were so many of them…. Eighty-six posts blows any other year out of the water, and I doubt I’ll ever get to an average of more than one post per week ever again. One of the things I meant to do last year was write about what I was reading, particularly the history books. Fourteen posts about that is a pretty good start. Most of them aren’t as extensive as I’d like to be doing, but there’s some good ones in there.
The ‘Read My Way Through History’ project has continued, with my official date moving up from 1300 to 1500. I actually don’t have that much on the period, but I keep getting new books for earlier parts of history, which I then go back and read. In fact, I’m currently reading Keepers of the Keys of Heaven, a history of the Papacy that covers from AD 30 to the present day. I also recently got How Rome Fell, and will be reading that soon. And my parents got me The Great Sea for Christmas, a history of the Mediterranean from earliest times to the modern day. So a fair amount of this next year will be spent on such projects, and I can’t predict what the ‘date’ of my reading will be at the end of the year again. (On the other hand, my parents also got me Playing at the World, a history of hobby gaming centered around D&D, and how it got to be what it was and its effect on modern culture; I’ve already started devouring it.)