Friday, August 01, 2008

Wings of War before the Winds of E-Burg

Tomorrow I leave for Ellensburg and Central Washington University for eight days. It's the annual summer journalism activities and I really need to attend them. For half of the time I'll be focused on improving my meager understanding of the Adobe CS3 suite, and the other half I'll spend with my students attending what is called J-Camp. If it sounds like a drag, believe me it isn't. I attended last summer for the first time and it was incredibly helpful and fun.

I'm busy a lot of the time, but there is down time too. I'll get some reading in, and I'm bringing along my Replay Baseball game, so I hope to get some of that in too. It's going to be hot while I'm there--high 80's and 90's projected through the 9th. No painting, unfortunately, and probably no blog posts unless I am mindlessly bloviating about some trivial topic.

On Wednesday I made my way down to the cards and comics shop in Olympia to play Wings of War. I've certainly seen lots of folks with the planes and decks, and everybody seems to be having a good time when they are playing. Dale Mickel set up a game for Wednesday, so I drove down and had at it. First a word about the shop. What an amazing place. Lots of board games and RPG's, a few minis but no historicals except for the WoW planes. There was also tons of cards, collectibles and other stuff to look at-more than I had time for. I'll have to go back just for another looksee.

I'm not very good at air games. I admit it freely. I'm not a very good planner, and I'm just as likely to half-loop into a mountainside as I am to make a useful maneuver. In fact I have half-looped into a mountainside. (Ask any Air Pirate how Kevin puts out fires!!!) Wings of War is played with card sequences, and I think by the end of the night I was able to start figuring that out.

We played two games. In game one I ran a couple of Sopwith Camels, and teamed with Dale who ran a Snipe and a DH (we love to explode) 4. The two German players, Scott Murphy flying two DR 1's, and Jeff, flying two Fokker D VII's left Dale in the dust and headed immediately for me. My Italian Camel blew up rather quickly, and the second Camel was forced from the board with heavy damage-but it did survive. Dale eventually arrived with the cavalry only to find himself outnumbered. Surprisingly the DH 4 was the only Brit plane to make it off the board.

In the second game we each took one plane. I opted for a Spad XIII, which maneuvers a lot like a garbage truck. It's pretty fast and can take a lot of damage, but I managed to take more than a lot of damage falling out of the sky with all struts shot through and my top wing falling off. I did however manage to blow up Jeff's D VII first, which gave me a little satisfaction as my plane augured into No Man's Land. All in all it was a pretty fun night for my first time out. Good to make it down to Olympia too. The guys always make an effort to come up to Tacoma, and it's nice to be able to replay their effort.

I'll be back from Ellensburg on the 9th. I'll be heading back toward work the following week. Not every day and not all day, but I'll be getting started.

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