Category Archives: Home Life

Space-Biff! on Hiatus

You'll probably figure it out by just googling that hotel name over there. Cheetah.

As you may have noticed, our regular programming here at Space-Biff! has slowed from a hopeful cool trickle to a dry faucet in the middle of the harshest windswept desert. Also, you may have deduced from this note’s title that we’re taking some time for ourselves — in part to contemplate whether there’s a meaning behind our short and possibly pointless lives, but mostly just to see some pretty places in Europe. And my original plan to continue updating the site with shorter articles hasn’t panned out — after all, Venice is one hell of a place. Vienna makes two.

If you’re wondering how to while away the hours in our absence… well, I was close to recommending a spate of excellent blogs you could read instead of this one, then figured if you’re missing this site all that much, why go and ruin that for you?

And by the way, the view is fantastic. Five space pennies to whomever can identify the spot I took that picture from.

SB! Presents: The Staff Page

Part of the agreement was that Wee Aquinas would write a third of the alt-texts from now on. Brace yourself.

Wee Aquinas, one of the beloved SB! staff. Also the head union agitator.

Well, this has been a long time coming. I’ve been informed by the rest of the staff that I am the “attention hog” of Space-Biff! And you know what? They’re right. So I’ve caved to their demands for a Staff page. You can find it here.

Read all about it after the jump.

Read the rest of this entry

Gears of War: The Board Game: The Review (Part 2)

It was on XBox too? Wait, there were sequels?

Our attempt at an over-the-shoulder shot, just like from the PC game. This is, incidentally, the one moment where weenie-man Damon Baird attempts something heroic. I'm sure he missed the shot.

“C’mon Baird! A little bit of this is good for you! Builds your immune system.”
—Augustus “Cole Train” Cole, Gears of War

In part 1, I outlined the three things that stand out to me as the advantages of Gears of War: The Board Game, the latest from Corey Konieczka and Fantasy Flight Games. I’d recommend reading that first, because this is the segment where I talk about the game’s three disadvantages. Now, before I get into that, I’d like to say that for some folks these might be totally negligible. I enjoyed the game, and thought a few of the mechanics were especially smart. However, I wouldn’t recommend a purchase without a prospective buyer knowing a few things.

So here we go!

Read the rest of this entry

Gears of War: The Board Game: The Review (Part 1)

Fine, here they are: 1. Colby Dauch, 2. Corey Konieczka, 3. Vlaada Chvátil, 4. Milton Bradley

Dominic Santiago finds himself swarmed by wretches in Gears of War: The Board Game.

“Yeah! Wooo! Bring it on, sucka! This is my kinda shit!”
— Augustus “Cole Train” Cole, Gears of War

Corey Konieczka is one of only four board game designers whose names I’m capable of recognizing immediately. He’s designed some of my favorite games, such as Battlestar Galactica, Runewars, and Mansions of Madness—the last of which I’ve talked about at length here on Space-Biff! before. He’s also designed some other well-received games like Descent: Journeys in the Dark, Space Hulk: Death Angel, and Starcraft. As such, when one of my friends proposed Mr Konieczka’s recent Gears of War: The Board Game for our next game night, I didn’t require much convincing.

The verdict? Find the first half after the jump.

Read the rest of this entry

Christmas, Occupied

After years of not being played with, my old Star Wars toys were sick of the annual use that the Christmas crowd was getting. They’ve taken matters into their own hands. Take that, ornament fat cats!

We considered all sorts of little flourishes. Pickets. Colored signs. Army men cracking down on the protesters. Polly Pocket hostages. But it was really hard to stand up these little guys on the batting. So we decided this was good enough.

They're as mad as hell, and they're not going to take this anymore.

Disclaimer: This is what I did with my sister while everyone else was dipping chocolates. This isn’t meant as a statement of political alignment, etc, etc.

More pics after the jump, and of course, you are permitted to click any of the pics for embiggening.

Read the rest of this entry

Rage: The Monocular

Adam's gorgeous subconjunctival hemorrhage. Acquired through Rage. Or because the kick of his gun smacked his monocular.

Back when I quasi-reviewed Rage, I was going to write another pair of articles. These articles would be lists, formatted along the lines of “The 5 Things Rage Got Right” and “The 5 Things Rage Got Wrong.” Very cleverly, I was planning on writing that the number one thing that id got both right and wrong was the game engine, id Tech 5. I know, herp de derp.

It’s been a great week for game releases, what with both Skyrim and Saints Row: The Third coming out and flustering my time management. Both are so immense that I doubt I’ll be able to do them justice anytime soon. So I sat down to make a little filler article. To keep up the habit, you see. I figured I’d talk about a few of my criticisms of Rage that I left unvoiced back in October.

Then I got completely sidetracked, and found myself wearing strange clothes and feeling not quite myself.

Read the rest of this entry

Mansions of Madness: Blood Ties (Part 3)

... our favorite investigators found themselves in a tight spot. And now, the stunning conclusion...

Last time on Mansions of Madness: Blood Ties...

That is not dead which can eternal lie,
and with strange aeons even death may die.
H.P. Lovecraft, “The Call of Cthulhu”

When last we saw our investigators, things weren’t going well. You should read all about that before continuing on (Part 1, Part 2) . “Ashcan” Pete’s uncle Artimus has made some sort of black bargain, and now that he’s died it’s blowing back Ashcan’s way (“Just my luck,” he mutters repeatedly), who is now trapped between a mi-go and a zombie. Professor Harvey Walters has contracted an otherworldly case of kleptomania. Kate Winthrop and Sister Mary were ambushed by a very suspiciously quiet zombie, and now they’re hiding out in the house at the north of Artimus’ estate.

Is this the end for our ragged band?

Read the rest of this entry

Mansions of Madness: Blood Ties (Part 2)

Kate looks uncannily like one of my cousins.

Our four investigators, searching the Artimus Estate for clues.

West of Arkham the hills rise wild, and there are valleys with deep woods that no axe has ever cut.
H.P. Lovecraft, “The Colour Out of Space”

When we last saw our intrepid investigators, they were about to begin their adventure. Such suspense! This time, we’ll definitely get to see some actual adventuring as they investigate the estate of “Ashcan” Pete’s deceased uncle, who was quite strange. Before continuing, you should probably read Part 1.

Read the rest of this entry

Mansions of Madness: Blood Ties (Part 1)

The oddness of the layout is actually explained in the scenario intro. The old dude who built this place was as mad as a cultist of Cthulhu with nobody to menace.

The "Blood Ties" map, complete with starting setup cards.

The most merciful thing in the world, I think, is the inability of the human mind to correlate all its contents.
— H.P. Lovecraft, “The Call of Cthulhu”

Mansions of Madness by Fantasy Flight Games is about an ancient conflict, between incomprehensible things and a few ignorant people willing to peer into the unknown, and in the process push back the darkness for a few minutes more or lose their sanity. It takes place in the thick of Lovecraft’s (and his inheritors’) fiction, in a vast universe hostile, or perhaps worse, indifferent, to man.

I sat down on Halloween night with my wife, my sister Emilie, and two friends to play through one of the game’s scenarios, “Blood Ties.” This is the story of what befell four investigators as they struggled to uncover the mystery of a blood relative, and the legacy he may have passed on…

Read the rest of this entry

GLaDOS is a Vegetable, The Sequel

You know how it goes. You think you’re okay to go to that party. You know, the one that might be a bit too hardcore for you. Then you wake up as a vegetable. GLaDOS knows the feeling. And now it’s happened again. You’d think she’d learn.

Behind the pumpkin to the right, you can see Mansions of Madness, set up and ready to be played!

The GLaDOS pumpkin, courtesy of my wife. She was going to carve Manny Calavera too, but that pumpkin fell off the table after being hollowed out.

Go ahead, click for a bigger image. And after the jump, a bonus pic…

Read the rest of this entry