09 March 2009

Into the Very Depths of Nerdhood

Yesterday instead of writing my paper I went with my wife to E.A. and his wife's house for dinner. I tried out World of Goo, in interesting physics-based puzzle game that is incredibly addictive. Basically you have a bunch of balls of goo that interact differently based on color. You connect them to build structures and solve puzzles. I think it would be easier for you to just click the link and watch the video or download the demo. It's a pretty neat game.

E.A. also showed me his secret stash of game materials, including what could be the nerdiest game ever, Star Fleet Battles. The full rulebook is something like four hundred pages long and it is written out like the instructions for an Avalon Hill game, just pages and pages of text. It is so detailed that most games seem to consist of one ship fighting one other ship. I guess the reason for this is that you are playing as if you were the commander of one of the Star Trek ships. Each ship has a data sheet with a silhouette of the ship on it and a bunch of little boxes representing systems within the ship. Each turn you fill out a worksheet allocating your ship's energy to various systems and plotting your movement and shooting accordingly. E.A. told me that when his wife had seen him playing it with his brother she commented that it looked almost as fun as accounting. Anyway, I think we'll wind up playing it at some point. I downloaded the starter manual (52 pages) and will give it a look-see at some point. I don't really know anything about the Star Trek universe, but I imagine I'll be able to figure it out. On the plus side, if I decide to paint a miniature for the game I'll only have to paint the one to have my full army. There is another game by the same company that claims to play a little faster with a few more ships. That game is called Federation Commander and I think Hobbytown has some of the stuff for that game in stock, surprisingly.

Whenever I think of Star Trek I think of a kid from my fourth-grade class in Alaska. He was a goofy-looking redheaded kid and he would wear his Star Trek uniform to school as often as possible and try to tell me about the show. He was also quite flatulent and every time he farted his ears would turn bright red and he'd giggle for several minutes.

And that's the story of how I am sort of being pulled into the land of nerdcore Star Trek ship vs. ship battle simulations.

1 comment:

  1. Even though I'm a Trekker I've never been tempted to play "Starfleet". I think your wife came close to my approximation of the game. Still there are some nice models out there and if you only need one make it a big Romulan or Klingon one - so much better than the Federation!