Retro Haul: Austin TX

Half Price Books – Anderson Mill

Visit #1 Clearance: GOOD selection – nice mix of sci-fi, graphic novels; Gamebooks: 7 CYOA at $2.99+ in Children’s and 2 Lone Wolf books in Science Fiction; RPGs: FAIR selection, mostly overpriced but found one gem (see below); Sci-Fi: GOOD selection; Videogames: FAIR selection, somewhat overpriced; PURCHASED: Search for the Sensei by Joseph W. Liotta, A Villians and Vigilantes Adventure, RPG Module for $4.21

Half Price Books – North Lamar

Visit #1 Clearance: FAIR selection; Gamebooks: One found in Science Fiction (see below), some CYOA in Young Adult section each $2.99+; RPGs: LAME; Sci-Fi: GREAT selection; Videogames: FAIR selection but overpriced; Boardgames: GOOD selection; PURCHASED: Conan and the Spider God by L. Sprague De Camp (novel) and Combat Command in the World of Piers Anthony by Dana Kramer (gamebook) for a total of $2.89

Half Price Books – Parmer Lane

Visit #1 Clearance: LAME; Gamebooks: None found; RPGs: LAME; Videogames: LAME; Boardgames: Finally a few cool items like the one I purchased; PURCHASED: DC Comics Bombshells Dice & Token Pack, Heroclix Game Accessories for $2.59

NEO Turf Masters

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I know. The name NEO Turf Masters sounds like a game about modern landscaping rather than golf. But don’t let that dissuade you. This 1996 NEO GEO videogame has a great balance between arcade fun and technical skills. However, it’s not turn-based. There is always a timer going that doesn’t allow you to put a lot of thought into club selection and shot type.

I’ve played NEO Turf Masters a few times but not in a long while so, Game 1 was not a masterpiece. The biggest issue was that I should have been hitting high shots when trees were in my way. It seems obvious now, of course. My second game, using the same golfer and course, was much improved and I had some birdies that kept my score manageable despite an 8 on one hole.

Game 1 – Golfer: Technician, Course: Baden, Place: 27th, Score: 78 +6

Game 2 – Golfer: Technician, Course: Baden, Place 11th, Score: 69 -3

[Note: I’m using SNK Arcade Classics Vol. 1 on the Wii to play this title.]

I Can’t Carry Anymore!

UnknownEncumbrance, in role playing games, means how much you can carry. This is usually determined by the total weight of the items you are carrying. A common definition of encumbrance is “a burden” and for most tabletop role playing game enthusiasts, it’s an apt definition in more ways than one. So, it’s often ignored. I mean, who wants to limit how much of the dragon’s treasure you will bring back to your own den? In role playing videogames, it often can’t be ignored because it’s an integral part of the game. Champions of Norrath (2004) attempts to give players the best of both worlds, a limiting factor for realism and an unrealistic way to horde your winnings.

Champions of Norrath is an action oriented role playing videogame. The action comes from hitting and shooting things while the role playing comes, in part, from collecting gear to improve your character’s performance. Often when I compel my warrior, Morg, to pick up something, he will bleat, “I can’t carry anymore!” In which case, I transport Morg to the store and lighten his load in exchange for gold coins. In this game although weapons, armor and other equipment have weight, gold coins do not. This is a treat since Morg is currently holding 1,114,064 gold coins. But it’s also a bit silly.

Grade 6 Content (6.NS.B.2)

Investigate

Q1:  If 1 gold coin weighs 1 ounce, what is the weight of the gold Morg is carrying in pounds?

Q2:  If a car weighs 3,000 pounds, about how many cars would it take to equal the weight of the gold Morg is carrying?

Key

If 1 gold coin weighs 1 ounce, then the weight of 1,114,064 gold coins is 1,114,064 ounces.  There are 16 ounces in a pound so,

1,114,064 ounces / 16 ounces per pound = 69,629 pounds, the number of pounds in gold coins that Morg is carrying.

If a car weighs 3,000 pounds then Morg is carrying,

69,629 pounds / 3,000 pounds per car = the weight of more than 23 cars in gold coins.

That’s one way to bury the local cutpurse.