Tuesday, February 28, 2012


What a weekend!

We took the kids to see a stage production of The Lion King on Saturday. We didn't think to bring coats and wound up standing outside, waiting for the theater to open, for a good half hour. Then we got inside to discover that the seats were apparently built by and for midgets. Seriously -- I'm only 5'4" and my knees were pressed hard against the seat in front of me. Poor Matt was miserable -- and I can't even imagine how the poor guy a few rows in front of us felt, because he had to be at least 6'4".

Unfortunately, due to 6'4" Dude, I wound up sitting with my spine in an S-curve for the whole first act -- the lady behind him had to lean sideways to see around him, so I had to lean even further to see around her. I couldn't lean the other way, because that was the space Matt was using to squash his body into so as to avoid becoming intimate with the very nice older couple on his other side.

(I didn't take this - no cameras allowed - but it's almost exactly accurate. I couldn't find a good pic online of my favorite costume, the big 2-man elephant.)
It improved somewhat after the intermission, though. Matt moved to sit between the two kids, so he could spread his legs out sideways without inconveniencing anyone, and I took over the seat next to the older couple, behind a child and some adults who were of more normal height, so I could actually see what was happening. That left Alex to sit in the chair behind 6'4" Dude and Leaning Lady, but that was just a technicality -- he sat on my lap for the whole second act, and we both enjoyed the show much more.

As for the show itself -- amazing. I mean, I've seen the movie about six thousand times, between the two kids, but that turned out to be a benefit, because it meant I could mostly ignore the plot and the action and instead focus on the clever sets and props and puppets and the fantastic costumes. The costumes, oh my lord. Brilliant.


That night, we went over to Braz and Adin's for a D&D game with them and Jenn and Brian. After much discussion, we agreed to give 4th Edition a try -- Matt's been using it in his other monthly game and likes it, and he has an account with the online character-builder that takes all the guesswork out of figuring out to stack up your bonuses and stuff. So we gave it a try, and I think I actually quite like it. I'm not wild about the way it compartmentalizes the classes into, essentially, video-game raid roles (different names, but: tank, buffs, healer, and DPS.) But on the other hand, I might be reconciled to it -- those roles were always there, and this is just codifying the mechanic.

I definitely like the "powers" mechanic, and I think it does a fantastic job of balancing the classes as far as overall usefulness. It used to be that a low-level mage was a one-trick pony, and once they'd done it, they were useless for the rest of the day. It also used to be that a high-level fighter was more or less pointless next to a mage of the same level, and I think this will balance that, as well.

But in the truest test of a game, for me... the character is starting to move into my head and tell me about her background. So I'm looking forward to more of this game. And, apparently, I'm going to have an origin story to write soon.

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