Category Archives: Humour

Games Workshop Claims Rights to the Term ‘Space Marine’

…world slaps forehead.


Some of you might have heard this already, but here’s a link to an article sticking up for a science fiction writer who has had her book removed from Amazon in response to a request from Games Workshop.  Because it has the words ‘Space Marine’ in the title.

That’s right, good old GW have decided to expand their muscle tactics beyond the small world of hobby games and miniatures and have started telling sci-fi writers that they can’t use those two famous words.  I’ll be interested to see how this pans out – bullying garage miniature sculptors is one thing, telling authors (many of whom presumably have publishers much bigger than GW) that they can’t say ‘space marine’ is a whole other kettle of fish.

As one of my mates said: “why don’t those asshats just fucking trademark ‘war’ and ‘future’ while they’re at it?”

Another internet commentator pointed out that in the US, the Unites States Marine Corps owns the rights to the term ‘marine’, and that they do in fact have actual, real-life marines trained for space.  So good luck prosecuting that one GW, you monumental basket case of blundering, flailing evilness.

You know, really nothing they do surprises me any more.  I don’t know why I bother even paying attention.   It’s fascinating, I guess…?


Tired and Cranky: Just Let D&D Die

. . . Also Stop Talking Gibberish and Ease Up on the Spy Lingo

So I’ve only had a few hours sleep and too much coffee and I’m in a bad mood.  I normally wouldn’t post something like this after writing it, but I thought you know what?  I’m going to be tired and cranky a fair bit over the next year, so why not make a regular series out of it?  This is how I feel and this my blog so . . . enjoy.  Everyone loves a good rant.  Let the badly-thought-out tirade commence!

The first thing that pissed me off today was Wizards of the Coast announcing another new Dungeons and Dragons.  They have this grand plan to involve the entire community, basically “tell us what you want the game to be like.”  On the face of it a pretty good approach, but I think it works better for rules tightening, not making a totally new game.  This just sounds like the biggest games company in the room realizing they killed D&D, and basically asking their players to tell them what they want so they can sell it to them.  Doesn’t inspire confidence in me, and to be honest it makes me imagine a hideous Frankenstein’s monster of a game made up of all the most memorable and beloved parts of the previous four editions sewn together.

Democracy is a fine thing, but it’s not the best suited form of organization for every purpose.  If armies were democratic they wouldn’t last long in war.  Likewise, democracy I think is the worst way to organize the production of a creative work.  This is because creators and consumers are unequal:  The consumers want the creators to give them something they don’t expect, and the creators need freedom to do that.

So . . . looks like now we’re helping massive companies design games so they can make them and sell them to us, is that it? That is some serious bullshit.  I refuse to tell Wizards of the Coast, the voodoo witch-doctor keeping the zombie of my childhood hobby shambling, how to exploit me for money.

Right.  Secondly, all the cute little nicknames and jargon people give to things in this hobby really give me the shits.  I was scanning BoLS the other day and the article about GW’s FAQs pissed me off.  Not the analysis (which I enjoyed) but the way it was written.

“This really puts an end to scarab conga-lines.”  What?  Guh? Are we seriously now making up poxy little shit-meme names for possible rules exploits in a book before it’s even released, and then talking about them as if they’re a thing barely a month after the book is in stores?  I don’t know what the fuck a scarab conga line is, I don’t care, and I’m ashamed for the community that someone who’s been playing this game for twenty-five fucking years and has his own gaming blog (me) can go on a large mainstream site and be confronted with a sea of fad-talk that I don’t understand.

Shorthand is one thing, but if I met someone socially and we started talking about 40k and they said “Well, if you want to delta-snipe some OMO throwing down three nibs of libby chunks you have to take poison-wing and deploy spanner-wise” I’d be all like “sorry, but I have to go over here now until you take your head from your arse and start talking like a normal human.”


And while I’m on the subject, what’s with over-analyzing every rumour and rulebook before it’s even released?  It’s like the cold war up in here with “monkeyballs is a trusted source” and “that date-stamp could easily be forged.”  I mean come on.  If you guys applied the same tireless dedication and blowtorch criticism to things that mattered we’d have a cure for cancer by now.

Hey, I feel much better now.

Top Ten Most Hated Super Street Fighter IV Opponents

This is my first ever filler post top ten list:  Street Fighter characters that make me groan when I see I have been matched up against them.  Characters are on this list for a variety of reasons: the people who commonly play them are jerks, the character rewards a play-style that is frustrating or boring to play against, or even just because something about the character’s manner irritates me.

Warning:  contains stronger language than I normally use . . . Continue reading

WTF Gaming?

I normally try to limit myself to a post a week, but I had to share this.  Back in the heady days of the early 2000’s, I worked at the Australian War Memorial, a government run military museum, as an archive assistant.  It’s actually a great museum, one of the most awarded in the world.  My job was boring as hell though (apart from the day I found a Christmas card from Hitler taken from a dead German officer in one of the sorting boxes).

I was in my early 20’s and I spent much of my working day on the internet.  I may have been disciplined for excessive net usage on a couple of occasions . . .

Anyway in keeping with my two great gaming loves, 40k and D&D, I used to post constantly on Librarium Online (as robotnik) and the Paizo/Dragon magazine forum (as kahoolin).  I also used to read Something Awful constantly.

The other day I went and checked Something Awful after having forgotten about it for maybe three or four years.  I found a series of articles called WTF D&D?  The basic premise of these is Steve, an upbeat gamer who loves all things fantasy and sci-fi, and Zack, a guy who gamed as a kid but is now a hip, regular twenty/thirty-something, go back over old gaming manuals and riff on the concepts and artwork.

It is, if I may be so bold, fucking hilarious.  The best part is there are quite a few of them so there’s a good few hours of gaming humour there.  Here are a few you might particularly enjoy to get you started off:

Ah, gaming – if we can’t laugh at ourselves and the things we do, what have we got?

Grown Man Cheats at 40k

Just a quick post today.  I heard about this a little while back from one of my regular opponents but forgot about it instantly (working nights does that to you).

I won’t mention names because it doesn’t matter really, but a couple of months back one of the top 40k players in Australia was caught cheating at a tournament, using loaded dice.  They were dice filled with mercury on one face and required a special way of rolling to take advantage of the loading, so even if another player rolled them it wouldn’t be obvious they were loaded.  According to the info on the Wargamerau forum, this player confessed to using them in other tournaments, as well as friendly games(!).  The other top players are pretty angry, as you can imagine.  They’ve played and hung out with this guy at tournaments for years.

He then went on to enter Golden Daemon under an assumed name with miniatures painted by a commissioned Polish artist.  He won several trophies before the artist recognized his own work and uncovered the deception.  GW is “investigating.”

A few weeks back Bell of Lost Souls reported on match-fixing to get into ‘Ard Boyz.  The thing that struck me about this was that the response of one of the cheaters when he was confronted was “that’s ‘Ard Boyz bro.”

Competitive players like to distance themselves from cheating by making a big deal of the whole competitive-versus-WAAC dichotomy.  But the fact is that the more valuable victory in an event is (and by valuable I don’t just mean prizes – pride and respect are values too), the greater the temptation to cheat will become for people with, shall we say, “undeveloped morals.”

Eventually you get to the level of respect and prize-money in professional sports, and then even people with strong morals and a good attitude will be tempted and may falter.

I’m not saying a competitive attitude to gaming leads automatically to cheating.  But you can’t have one without the other.

In conclusion though, a grown man habitually cheating at Warhammer? Seriously, that’s pathetic.  At least have the ambition and balls to cheat at something important.


A little bit of humour for our dark times . . . courtesy of the Australian and New Zealand GW Prices Petition.


Funny Search Terms

One of the features of WordPress is a little thing that reports the search engine terms people used to find your site.  Sometimes the things that have brought people to Warp Signal really crack me up.

Yesterday, someone found me by googling “photos about sexy naked adepta sororitas.”  Yeah . . . sorry to disappoint you mate.

Someone else got here with “the bell of lost souls community sucks.” Sounds like someone tried to be reasonable and polite in the wrong place!  Nah just kidding BoLS, you guys are alright – unfortunately the same can’t be said for some of your followers.

Every single day (I kid you not), I get hits from Dune fans, leading them to my most popular post of all time.  A couple of weeks ago someone found my article while looking for “dune movie sex scene.”  Given that there aren’t any explicit sex scenes in Dune, I don’t like to imagine which characters they were hoping to find involved in said scene.

A few others I’ve had in recent weeks:

“games workshop is a horrible company.”  Are you asking the internet or telling it?

“steampunk alita.”  Wow that’s . . . awfully specific.  Good luck with that one.  Oh wait.  I made one of them.

“night eldar fairy.”  Wait, what game are you playing?  World of Warhammer 40,000: The Peter Pan Crusade?

Sometimes I really hate the internet.  Other times, I love it 😀

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