Work, ASL, and Miles Vorkosigan

The network was back up today, so I spent most of today in at work, mainly dealing with annoying things that were left over from last year. One of them I really should have done at the end of last year, but in the business of end of term, it got left behind. Oh well. Perc will forgive me, I think.

My good friend Jess, who works with me, has begun reading the Miles Vorkosigan books of Lois McMaster Bujold. The Miles books are some of the best science fiction novels I’ve ever read, and so I didn’t have much hesitation in introducing Jess to them. I gave her the first of them, Shards of Honour, and that hooked her immediately. She ordered the others from an online bookstore, but – as luck would have it – they managed to deliver the last in the series before the first. She’s still waiting on Barrayar and Young Miles. So, I’ve been lending them to her when she finishes the last.

Of course, all of this has reignited my interest in the books, so I’ve been rereading them at well. I’m almost finished Komarr, and then it’s on to one of my favourites of the entire series: A Civil Campaign. There’s something about the dinner party Miles gives his friends that makes it an absolute classic. 🙂

Meanwhile, in the great world of boardgames, I’m continuing my study of Advanced Squad Leader, surely one of the most insanely complicated wargames ever devised. In fact, I’m sure there are more complicated games – World in Flames, Greg? – but it’s a mass of exceptions, special cases, and lots and lots of detail.

Strangely enough, the infantry rules aren’t all that bad – although “Concealment” is still giving me some difficulty – and the ASL Starter Kits are great at giving me the infantry (and Gun) rules, but the vehicle rules? Eep. I admit I haven’t worked through ASL SK#3 yet, which introduces the tank (vehicle) rules, but they’re more involved than I would have guessed.

ASL has been something that’s been fascinating, though. I’ve really enjoyed playing through the starter scenarios (albeit solo), and my first full ASL scenario from Beyond Valor. At some point, I’ll get someone to play against me. 🙂 (Randy and I have been playing more recent wargames on our 2-player games; Memoir ’44, Combat Commander: Europe, and suchlike).

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