March 13 2002 RussCon Report

Game Results
Meta Party Game Results
Evening's Soundtrack
20 of us played 20 games.
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Comicollage: daily ongoing comic jam with 7 artists and no planning ahead! There's a russ strip every Tuesday.
I make exquisite corpses at deepmachines.


Clandestine is coming for St. Patrick's Day, Saturday March 16! It should come as no surprise that I plan to attend that show! Usual drill, dinner at Veggie Heaven around 6, then walk over to the 7:30 show.

A few of you may have seen these strips by the enigmatic stableboy which appeared over a year ago. I was delighted by them, but baffled who created them. Seemed likely to be a friend, but no one ever admitted to the deed or even hinted at it. Perhaps it was some unknown KoFC fan, or someone who hated KoFC -- hard to tell! It remained a pleasant little mystery for well over a year. Well... I just had lunch with old Kinesoft cohorts Brendan, Lance, Crispy, and JeffW; Brendan and Lance revealed that it was they who created these hilarious (to me anyway) comics! I should have guessed from the final strip's mention of soup that it must have been former coworkers: even at my current job I am known for my large pyrex bowl of soup for lunch. "Indeed. I am intrigued by the intrinsic meta-ness of the situation."

Donnie Darko is well worth seeing. It reminded me of what might happen if David Lynch directed a lower-budget cross between American Beauty and Nowhere.

Game Results

Vampire5Carly 4 MarkH 2 Steve 0 MarkY -3 Clayton -3
Can'tStop3William 2 Carly 0 MarkY -2
ZirkusFlohcati6Daniel 5 Carly 2 William 2 Allen -1 Alex -3 MarkY -5
HighBohn5Dan 4 JeffF 2 Marty -1 Ben -1 PJ -4
Carcassonne5MarkH 4 RussW 2 Steve 0 JP -2 Clayton -4
BattleCry2Daniel 1 Alex -1
Guillotine4Alex 2 Whendy 2 Daniel -1 RussD -3
Tichu2( MarkH Ben ) 1 ( William PJ ) -1
Traumfabrik5RussW 4 JP 2 Clayton 0 Steve -2 JonathanC -4
Vampire5RussW 4 Steve 2 JP 0 PJ -2 JonathanC -4
Babel2Matt 1 RussD -1
Liberte6JeffF 5 Carly 3 Marty 0 MarkY 0 Dan -3 Allen -5
Bluff5MarkY 4 Dan 1 Matt 1 Allen -2 Carly -4
CosmicCoasters2MarkY 1 Allen -1
Wimmuln5JP 4 RussW 2 PJ 0 JonathanC -2 Steve -4
CosmicCoasters2MarkY 1 Allen -1
CosmicCoasters2RussW 1 JP -1
CosmicCoasters2RussW 1 JP -1
Bluff3RussW 2 Steve 0 JonathanC -2
Bluff3Steve 2 RussW 0 JonathanC -2

Not surprising to see games like Vampire, Traumfabrik, Cosmic Coasters, Call My Bluff, and especially Wimmuln get played.

Wimmuln is one of the games in the Mu und Mehr box; it's a wacky trick-taking game which JeffF always has to remind me I've played before. I think I managed to do better this time than previous times I'd played it. Maybe I'll remember better.

Finally I have played Traumfabrik with all the right rules (knock on wood). Since I won the game, I can only conclude that surely we got the rules correct... (Traumfabrik is the cursed game which was probably played incorrectly in so many different ways so many times more than any other RussCon game.) Perhaps the movie theme of this game was the cause of 4 bags of popcorn being made this evening!

I got revenge on JP in Cosmic Coasters after he trounced me repeatedly last week. Also again other folks played it and Allen said he was quite impressed by it. I highly recommend it; it's quite clever and elegant.

A reminder: please write and spell clearly when recording game results, make the scores and ranks clear, and remember last initials for people with common names, thanks! This week there was Bluff and 2 Cosmic Coasters recorded with ambiguous Mark, sad since both MarkY and MarkH were in attendance. I guessed they were all MarkY but I don't know for sure... don't assume I have a good memory! :)

Meta Party Game

Whendy was the Meta Devil. Here is her Meta Party Game:
In the ironic timing that seems to be the hallmark of the RussCon meta game, I myself am leaving for a conference at DisneyWorld in Orlando, Florida tomorrow. I'll be back Wednesday evening, but probably won't make it to RussCon. However, since I got hungry for dinner and left first last night, turns out I am the metagame winner of Jeffles' "road" game. So be it! Here's my metagame.

In honor of my visit to see Mickey Mouse this weekend, next week's metagame will be all about the MMMM's. The rules are fairly simple:

** Everybody gets one metapoint for every M that appears in the title of each game they play, each time they play it. Example: Steve plays 6Nimmt three times that night, he gets 2+2+2= 6 metapoints.

** The title is the one printed on the packaging of the version you play. Example: Bluff = 0 metapoints, but "Call My Bluff" = 1 metapoint.

** The person with the most metapoints wins. To break any ties: 1st = the tied players get one metapoint for any M that appears in their RussCon name. Example: Marty = 1 metapoint. Sea Biscuit = 0 metapoints. 2nd = if there are still tied players, then some random method of Russ William's choice decides the winner.

A suggestion I can't enforce: Please help RussW out by starting a page in THE BOOK next week with your name and your MMM metagame points.

As usually happens, no one made my life easier by recording their meta scores; by my reckoning here are the scores:
8 RussW 1 1 2 1 1 1 1
7 Steve 1 1 1 2 1 1
6 JonathanC 1 1 2 1 1
6 JP 1 1 2 1 1
4 MarkY 1 1 1 1
3 PJ 1 2
3 Allen 1 1 1
2 Clayton 1 1
2 Carly 1 1
1 Matt 1
1 MarkH 1
1 Dan 1
So I am the Meta Devil and will design next week's Meta Game.

Evening's Soundtrack

Austin Lounge Lizards, Small Minds
The Beatles, Magical Mystery Tour
Clandestine, music from home
Harvey Danger, Where have all the merrymakers gone?
Memento, music for and inspired by the film

Meta music!


Rank ratings:
 0.7778 MarkH (3 games played)
 0.7778 JeffF (2)
 0.7273 RussW (8)
 0.6667 Whendy (1)
 0.5556 Daniel (3)
 0.4000 Matt (2)
 0.3750 William (3)
 0.2500 Carly (5)
 0.1538 Dan (3)
 0.1111 JP (6)
 0.0000 Ben (2)
-0.0833 Steve (7)
-0.1111 Marty (2)
-0.1818 MarkY (7)
-0.2222 Alex (3)
-0.5385 PJ (4)
-0.5833 Clayton (3)
-0.6250 Allen (5)
-0.8750 JonathanC (5)
-1.0000 RussD (2)
New Win ratings:
 0.6667 Whendy (1)
 0.4444 MarkH (3)
 0.4444 JeffF (2)
 0.4444 Daniel (3)
 0.4091 RussW (8)
 0.1538 Dan (3)
 0.0909 MarkY (7)
 0.0000 Matt (2)
 0.0000 William (3)
 0.0000 Carly (5)
 0.0000 Ben (2)
 0.0000 Alex (3)
-0.0556 JP (6)
-0.1667 Steve (7)
-0.2222 Marty (2)
-0.2500 Clayton (3)
-0.3077 PJ (4)
-0.3125 Allen (5)
-0.3125 JonathanC (5)
-0.7500 RussD (2)
Whendy pulled an extremely rare Joint-Brady Maneuver. MarkH is the Devil! JeffF is the Vice-Devil. I am Vice-Vice-Devil (and I also win the Dedicated Award). RussD is Generous Angel. Ben wins the Extra Average Award.

Several people talked with me about the ratings overhaul, which I appreciate. JeffF reminded me of his proposal of a year or so ago. I recall not liking aspects of it since it led to insanely huge numbers, but the details are hazy now. Some folks weren't clear what my goals were: the basic idea can be summed up like this: The probability of you winning a 4 player game is 0.25. The probability of you winning a 2 player game 4 times is 0.54, i.e. 0.0625. The present system is additive and has no concept of this multiplicative nature of probability.


Toilet Pranks, featuring "The Top Shelf" and "The Siege Perilous". My inside sources tell me that coming soon are The Jimmy Hoffa, The Dachau Party Tray, and The Niagra! Jay and Mike especially need to read these pages!

Gothic Gardening!

Extreme unicycling.

Enron Chairman Quits To Join Nigerian Firm

What's wrong with this scene?

David Rumsey's site has nonobvious (to put it nicely) navigation but lots of old maps including a java applet that lets you look at old maps of San Francisco with modern topography superimposed.

Mmmmmm... soup!