Thursday, December 2, 2021

Narrative Warfare: A Rumor On Dark Horse Comics & How Convergence May Kill It

Author Jon del Arroz reports on a rumor about Dark Horse Comics.

It is unfortunate that Dark Horse has gone down so far, but given how the convergence works in bending corporations to the Death Cult, it isn't surprising at all.

And as for how that happens, Vee took the time a while back to cut a video showing a 4chan post explaining just that.

The means is top-down, from the Venture Capitalist class: "Environmental, social and governance (ESG) refers to the three main areas of concern that have developed as central factors in measuring the sustainability and ethical impact of an investment in a company or business. These areas cover a broad set of concerns increasingly included in the non-financial factors that figure in the valuation of equity, real-estate, corporate, and fixed-income investments. ESG is the catch-all term for the criteria used in what has become known as socially-responsible investing. Socially responsible investing is among several related concepts and approaches that influence and, in some cases govern, how asset managers invest portfolios." (Full Official Story is here.)

Due to the massive billions--not an exaggeration--that Larry Fink (ESG mastermind) has at his disposal, he has removed the need for corporations to actually please the customers or audience they claim to serve. Instead, they serve him specifically and in return he lavishes them with funds to continue operating.

The conditions for this is obvious: institute Death Cult dogma and install Death Cult acolytes (i.e. willful Convergence). Couple this with fellow travelers in government bureaucracies, legislatures, and courts using State power to pick winners and losers, and you have a recipe for classic Italian Corporatism as the structure for International Fascism- the very "invisible empire" John Perkins wrote about in Confessions of an Economic Hit Man about 15 years ago. (That book, itself, is a Limited Hangout, by the way.)

As stated previously, both control over a converged company and the destruction of a targeted company are acceptable outcomes for the Death Cult. Therefore "Go Broke" is not a win for us unless the cost to replace what is destroyed is cheaper than the cost imposed by the Cult to destroy it, and it is this last detail that needs to be addressed before a full campaign of hijacking the enemy's brainmeats to induce them to self-destruct what they hold can commence towards a useful end.

Dark Horse, as with the rest of the American comics industry, is either directly or indirectly in the thrall of the ESG regime. Destruction of these companies is acceptable to the Death Cult, especially one with little original property in its property profile like Dark Horse.

Along with companies like IDW, the ESG cohort would rather write these off and shut them down than throw more money after them; they would rather concentrate comics as a business into DC and Marvel, which have use as IP farms for more profitable and popular media (film/TV and videogames) while giving sinecures to acolytes who either are or may become useful agents.

Now that we have a money trail identified, we have something to track down and map to the emergence or acceleration of an institution's convergence, so watch out for Dark Horse's bidders and what they promise to bring to the table.

If they push ESG, then they need to be shitposted at and memed upon until they relent. In the meantime, we need to spread the word about alternatives; Japanese manga are already eating converged comics like ravenous pirahna, so we should concentrate on promoting European comics (the B-D market) that are clean as well as original independents (which, yes, means Arkhaven and Comicsgate among others).

Dark Horse may not have what it takes to turn themselves around without needing ESG funding or licensed comics sales, and if so that's a shame, but better to die with dignity than to be turned into a Death Cult zombie.

Wednesday, December 1, 2021

My Life As A Gamer: Brian Niemeier Revisits "Super Empire Strikes Back"

Late last night, after I'd gone to bed, author and former co-host Brian Niemeier popped up on Geek Gab streaming Super Empire Strike Back, a Super Nintendo Entertainment System platformer released in 1993. This was a test stream, and it last 50 minutes, but it had plenty of Brian's keen observations on social dynamics and other things that have been willfully degraded over the last several generations. Also, it's a licensed Star Wars game back when those were good.

Brian's knowledge of things now almost lost is a thing to behold, as worthwhile as watching him play old games, which means that you really ought to be there when Brian plays Final Fantasy Tactics later this month.

Tuesday, November 30, 2021

My Life As A Gamer: Thinking Aloud About "Cosmo Tiger Force"

I am thinking out loud here.

Say that I were to make "Cosmo Tiger Force" as a tabletop RPG. Here, in brief, is how I'd do it.

  • Mechanics: d20 System basis; get the Normies in with as little time wasted retraining as necessary. Streamline PC generation; don't allow non-viable characters. Levels work here, so they're used. Classes do not, so they get junked. Skills are simplied to Untrained, Familiar, Proficient, Mastery (four levels) with increasing benefits as well as requirements to attain them. HP junked; you're fine, Wounded, Crippled, or Dead and Knocked Out is a separate status condition- derived from Classic Traveller. Mecha are scaled up PCs; pilots' stats slot into Mecha stats to account for user quality difference. Combat rules should be playable as a stand-alone wargame, and designed so that HG Gunpla can be used as miniatures.
  • Presentation: Obvious Japanese anime/manga aesthetic. Going for Peak Anime (80s OVA/Movie) specifically, and lots of original character and mecha designs that are meant to refer to known classics of Super and Real Robot fiction. Dream Pod 9 nailed this back in the day, and R. Talsorian did this very well also. That's what I'm going for here. There is no pre-set setting; like All Flesh Must Be Eaten, do a series of common campaign scenarios with common tropes and cite examples and let users do for themselves.
  • Tech Writing: This will be explained as a wargame/boardgame derivative: there is a scenario, there are win/loss conditions, there are limited resources and other constraints, and both passive and active opposition to contend with. Players are tested on their Executive Function capacity, as filtered through their characters, to achieve their objectives. As the campaign goes on Players become more self-directed as to what to do and how to go about it, starting with making the giant robot.

Sell both PDF and POD. Give away an art-free PDF. Sell the pretty version at "self-funding hobby" levels like Gonnerman does for Basic Fantasy. For folks demanding a premium product, put out the POD hardcover version with more pretty stuff that doesn't actually do anything. Put a PDF one-page character for easy printing, and another for the robot. Double-value the art by selling it as posters and such. Once there's enough, put out a concept art coffee table book in POD.

Monday, November 29, 2021

My Life As A Historian: When Time Ghost Got A Sponsorship Deal

The boys at Time Ghost got offer money to film themselves playing Heart of Iron IV.

This a new deal for them, and Paradox took a risk going to Indy and the gang here as Time Ghost isn't known for being a gaming channel.

If this experiment worked out to both parties' satisfaction, then I would expect more sponsored livestreams like this. I can't object in principle to arrangements like this; HOI4 is a historical wargame, and Time Ghost is an indie historical preservation collective. The boys need all the financial support they can get, and Paradox needs credible external endorsements of their game's content.

And considering Time Ghost's ambitions, that need for support isn't small. I'll be reposting their Pearl Harbor special on December 7th, and I'm looking forward to their D-Day Special down the road, a special that isn't going to be cheap or easy for them to accomplish especially if they have to partner with games like they did for Pearl Harbor to get the mockup footage for the action reports.

Sunday, November 28, 2021

My Life In Fandom: Divorce Your Hobby From Its Business

I have family over today, so I have to be brief. The state of Stupid British Toy Company and its Death Cultist infection is terminal. Commisar Garza explains.

So how to handle this?

CUT THE COMPANY OUT OF THE LOOP!

Don't buy their product. Feel free to hit up Captain Harlock for a hookup. 3D print all the things. Pass around the MP3s, PDFs, the MOBIs, and the ePubs. Scorn their events, scorn their stores, and instead support the better fan channels--Arch, Luetin, etc.--directly.

THE HOBBY IS NOT THE COMPANY!

Take away the money from the hobby. Crash the business with no surivors. The hobby will go on without them, and it will flush out the clout-chasers and Death Cultists.

Saturday, November 27, 2021

My Life In Fandom: Geek Gab Talks New Dune & More

Geek Gab Returns! Talking the new Dune and more, today!

Since you'll likely miss the live show, I won't see you in the chat, but maybe next time.

Friday, November 26, 2021

Welcome To The Mad Season of Black Friday 2021

Her time comes again!

The Christmas Shopping Season of Madness has arrived. Fortunately I've completed mine already, so I'm good to sit this one out and not bother with crowds or worry about shipping issues. I'll let the folks know that my Amazon Wish Lists are up to date, and so are my Wish Lists for Steam and GOG on the appropriate tab here.

However, there is one thing I want that Amazon does not carry.

And finally I found the site of the distributor: Good Smile.

For my fellow Americans, you'll find it here. Canadians, I think you'll be okay on the US site. For everyone else, you'll want the Japanese site and select the appropriate language; you can find parties other than Good Smile selling it here.

There is a method to the madness here. This toy is an original design for an original Intellectual Property, a nascent Super Robot property, with this as one of the three Hero Robots; a second based on Data Masamune and a third based on Sir Lancelot are known to be in the works, but so far are only concept art. The story being told is very basic, the sort of fanfic trope distillation that one would expect of a narrative created to justify the product's creation, but I can forsee that getting a better treatment if the merchandise sells well enough.

And I want to know how this company--MoShow Toys--is doing it so I can do it myself down the road.

That price tag is a premium, but as the video review demonstrates you are not getting crap for it; this is as good as you'd get for a Metal Build Gundam (many of which were also done by MoShow recently), DX Chogokin Macross toy, or Soul of Chogokin/Hi-Metal toy (like this Dougram reissue).

I would think every other author of original mecha/PA fiction would be similarly curious, especially if they have any fan-favorite units to demonstrate demand. That it's also a fun toy that will last for decades is almost an afterthought.