Monday, May 16, 2005


Coming in for a playtest, and the Ewok parade around downtown trying to evade the Christmas parade and get back to the hotel. Disaster.

Kendrick reduced to the floor of the booth at Chicago Comic-con suffering through some bad (BAD) tuna fish, but REFUSING to leave. All I ever needed to know about Kendrick I learned that day.

Seeing Kathy for the first time at the Marriot on the playtest weekend. I believe she had a copy of Scrye with her that had a profile of me and a picture so she could pick me out. Am I making that up?

Hanging out with Kathy before walking down to interview with Carol for the Rebel Base Leader job. Deciding that the job was going to be mine before I got to 253. Poor Sean Smallman never had a chance.

Kevin and Kyle making their grand entrance to Aspen, and shaking everybody's hand, moving table to table. The two nicest guys there.

Going to Aspen worlds after already agreeing to take the job and going 1-3 in the first 4 rounds. Walking off and having Warren quip "good thing we already hired you." Funniest thing he ever said around me.

Jonathan and Kendrick dealing with the rules Q&A before the Aspen games. Yikes!

Participating in the only SWCCG games seeded by world ranking. The only ever! The first round of worlds. That feature was soon removed from the program, but not until after Kevin pasted me.

Driving down from Kathy's condo in D.C. the week before I started to get the lay of the land and talk to Sandy. So fucking lost. All these damn rivers! Isn't the ocean around here somewhere? Bridges? Tunnels? And a stack of rules documents I took back with me and NEVER read.

Releasing Sandy's best effort for a rules document for SWCCG, being told almost immediately to pull it down, and getting called into Warren's office for a scolding.

Talking marketing puzzle with Jason. It was like a pre-game design class.

Sorting through eleventy thousand card idea submissions from the public with Carol to find the one we would eventally choose to send to Jerry. S-Foils. Hah!

Softball, especially co-ed softball. Tim and I have seen and done it all together. Two broken noses on consecutive batters, and Kathy and Gab sitting in adjacent beds in the emergency room. The ball that hit Kathy at 2nd base was hit so hard that I couldn't get my head whipped around to see it from the pitcher's mound.

Soccer. Who knew?

30 bouncy balls for my birthday. They'll be finding those things in nooks and cranies of the office for years.

25c for a bouncy ball at Waterside. I regret that we'll never get the complete pool ball set.

The noodles and the meatloaf. And Phil. And our concerns for Phil's love life (well, let us be truthful here in our reflections...our concerns for the yellow cake Phil's girl makes).

The Kwans who run Subway. And their damn free cookies. They couldn't be sweeter.

Lunch club and the glasserole.

Grill'en up some red meat on playtest weekends. The look of absolute delite on skinny Joe when we served the full fat burgers (with a huge slice of cheese!) to the testers and other uninnitiated rabble. Then Joe and I would bust out the 93% lean stuff for ourselves. Wostershire, a dash of garlic powder, a dash of thyme, some salt and pepper. That is what Julia Child told me. And never, EVER, squish the burgers on the grill. That is what Alton told me.

Lunch around Norfolk with Ed...the Donut Dinette.

Completely glazed over afternoons at the PD house listening to Bill and Warren talk rules. I learned how to work with Warren there.

Special Edition with Jerry. I learned a lot.

The horrific Sunday that culminated the total and complete rewrite of the 10 cards that redefined Decipher's most lucrative game ever, and well after the cards had any chance at all of being tested again. I have a memory of walking into the PD house and seeing Chuck looking wrecked on the couch and Bill and Warren carving and carving on our work. WHERE WAS JERRY?!?

Worlds '98 judging with Chuck. I would kill for the man after that weekend. And I quote Jerry "Operatives, who knew?" I know I didn't. And catching Michael Ribolet miscounting his victory margin in the first game of the finals, and me making the other guy count. The other kid won the second game and the championship...but he wouldn't have if I hadn't caught Michael fucking cheating Ribolet. HAH!

Endor with Chuck. That was the most fun I ever had on a set.

DSII with Reynolds. A fair arguement could be made that I should have hung it up after that set. My god that was some rewarding shit. 7 goddam you all. It was MY IDEA. MINE. AND YOU BOUGHT LUKE AND THE EMPEROR. AND DEEP DOWN YOU LIKED IT!!!

JK with Justin, and the playtest in Milwaukee. I really just wanted to see Miller Park. But it was cheaper. Really.

Everything I ever worked on with Joe. Everything.

In the later days, feeling malaise about designing cards and then getting that look from Joe, and knowing I had to produce the goods.

A cure for the malaise? Writing/editing Wars lore. Fun shit, really. The most fun I had at work over the last couple of years.

Talking quotes and tour and timmy (and more rosewater) with Brad.

Beating the hell out of the old Wars system with Evan. I think the new one kicked ass.

Girard bummed. Girard excited. Girard bouncing. Girard talking sports. Girard talking Puerto Rico. Girard talking WoW. Girard talking Design. Girard ranting about the boards. Girard talking Mets. Girard pissed that we were fucking up Design/Dev again. God love the Girard.

Talking O.C..

Cookouts at Tim's on Memorial Day. Damn was that boy determined to make a tradition. And damned if he didn't!

I was at Skywalker Ranch BJ (before Jar-Jar). I got sick on salmon and chocolate pudding at lunch. But I still made sure to get a sweatshirt at the gift shop.

The first time my desk got "rained out," under the skylight in the basement. It always did my heart good after that to see the tarp over someone else's fucking desk in that area.

The second time my desk got "rained out," this time over at the PD house on the third floor. A nor'easter came through and blew open the door and it rained and rained on my computer and god knows how many cards. I have always suspected Chuck or Mike left the door open a crack on accident, but don't tell them that. It really could have been the weather.

The third time my desk got "rained out" in the designer ally (when I was sitting where PW ended up at the end), when after a big rain the wall "weeped" over a bunch of my work. The third time! A ladder and patching cement were brought in, which mostly solved things. Mostly.

Coffee with JQ and Kendrick.

Coffee with Justin.

Coffee with Ed and Jeff discussing landscaping that never was.

The last project with Joe discussing a game that never will be.


Blogger Kathy said...

I believe she had a copy of Scrye with her that had a profile of me and a picture so she could pick me out. Am I making that up?

Nope. You left it for me so I could find you. I think I would have known anyway.

11:15 PM  
Blogger Shocho said...

Great stuff. Very Jerry quote there. We should compile all these and make a book. "See you dumbfuck players? See what was going on to make your games? It was MAGIC, I tell you... not that "gathering" crap either, REAL FUCKING MAGIC.

12:47 AM  
Blogger TheGirard said...

You should write a book. It would sell, I know I would buy a copy.

7:40 AM  
Blogger GiromiDe said...

After reading about the early culture at Wizards of the Coast, I'd be excited to read something compiled by former and current Decipher employees. Designing games requires creative, passionate minds -- the kind that, when put together, cause all sorts of trouble.

1:48 PM  

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