John-Michael Gariepy

Archive for the category “Shameless Self-Promotion”

100 Article Posts on [Unnamed Blog]!

Hey, everybody!  We’re having a party here at [John-Michael Gariepy’s Unnamed Blog]!  100 posts, and 13,000+ views!  Oh, and my Klout score just passed 40!  Klout thinks I’m a Networker!  Thanks, Klout!

If I could only invent a name for [Unnamed Blog], though.  I’m supposed to be ‘the creative one’.  But, you know, there’s only so many good names out there.  And I refuse to call my blog something plithy and game-related like “John-Michael’s Critical Hits!”.  Besides, someone else must have that blog name.  Yup.  Found it.

Coming up with a good name for what you’re doing is tough.  Dave and Josh made it look so easy with our old blog Guilt Free Games.  A little alliteration, with a pop music name that simultaneously tells you a lot, and tells you nothing.  Tiiiiiiin Roof! Rusted.  Aah, baby, that’s where it’s at.

Naming yourself isn’t a problem limited only to blogs, of course.  Do you remember a time when you could name your Atari 2600 game ‘Boxing’ or ‘Adventure’?  The music industry is full of names that can’t be used, because someone, once, decided to cut an Read more…

Session Impressions – Ascension: Storm of Souls

I was late to the party on the Ascension: Storm of Souls podcast, walking in while it was halfway through.  My first response is disparaging because I didn’t know we were recording, was asked “How do you feel about the new Ascension expansion” and, knowing that I was talking to a room full of game reviewers, jumped into argument mode.  Sarah is really good at editing, however.  She cut and pasted three comments that made it sound like I knew we were recording and had ‘jumped right into the show’.

Ascension, Storm of Souls is a good game.  If I sound like I’m down on it, it’s only because I like what Ascension is doing so much that I want to get in there and help with the design.  Most of the choices Justin Gary made, though, are valid options, and I’m glad that Ascension provides a solid alternative design to the Deck Building Model.

At one point, I mention that I don’t really need to play the new expansion, because I haven’t spent enough time playing any of the older expansions.  Take that comment with a grain of salt as well.  The Myriad Games Presentations staff plays a lot of games.  When I say something like that, what I’m really saying is “Man!  I wish I got to play more Ascension.  That’s a really good game, and I haven’t had my fill of it, but I’m stuck here reviewing Tulipmania.”

Session Impressions: Elder Signs

Elder Signs is the latest in Fantasy Flight’s H.P. Lovecraft inspired line: Arkham Horror.  Unlike many other games in this line it takes a reasonable amount of time to play.  About an hour.  Ye elder gods!

Dan, Mike Bergeron and I had a fun time playing it.  It’s got a cool, everyone racing against the clock, feel.  And while the game is centered around rolling dice, it’s natural and entertaining instead of tedious.  After playing for a full hour, my first impetus is to play another game… and that’s the best complement I can give any game, really.

You can listen to the podcast by clicking here.  Mind the shoggoths.

Jamaica: 28 Games Later

On the Myriad Games podcast, we have a category called ’28 Games Later’.  It’s a podcast series for games we’ve played in the past, and are picking up to see if our opinions have changed about them.  Some games, we reviewed, and the 28 games later series is a bonus back up review to see if the game still has legs.  Others, like the pirate-themed game, Jamaica, we played, liked, but never got around to doing a podcast about it.  In Jamaica’s case, it was because it wasn’t a new game at the time, just something we ‘discovered’.  We had more pressing games to talk about that were coming up, and we missed a window to make a podcast.

It’s a good sign that after all the chances we had to make a podcast about Jamaica, we still dragged the game out when things were a slow and podcast about the game.  I could say a few more words, but why don’t you check it out the podcast using this link.  We had a fun time recording it.  Probably because sailing pirate ships around the island of Jamaica is a fun time.

Rock Band Reviews – Maroon 5, Track Pack 1

Oh, look!  Here’s the link for My review of Rockband’s Track Pack 1 for Maroon 5.  Let’s see what the critics are saying:

“This is your best one, yet!” -Julie Rousseau, owner of MusicNotion Blog.

“When you have a dream, you’ve got to grab it and never let go.” -Carol Burnett quotation selected at random at

Thanks Julie and Carol!  Coming soon:  Track Pack 2!  The Sequel!

Confusion in the Ranks!

I’m a bit late in announcing this one, but Jeffrey Norman Bourbeau and I put together a two person podcast for the Myriad Games Podcast.  It’s a Session Impression featuring “Confusion: Espionage and Confusion in the Cold War”, a two player board game with elements of Stratego and Battleship, while still maintaining it’s own distinct identity.  Jeff and I have been getting some good feedback on it, and we’re planning on making some more podcasts, probably with back up singer Brian Tully without the parents (Dan and Sara) around.  It should be fun, so look out for that.  For now, though, you can click on this link to check out the cloak and dagger action.

Rock Band Review: Red Hot Chili Peppers’ Blood, Sugar, Sex, Magik

I’m a bit behind in reporting this to the world, but I’m still a little new at the whole “I now have a public blog” experience, so please forgive me.

A friend of mine, Julie Rousseau, has started up a blog about music called  For those of you who don’t know Julie, she’s been teaching musical aptitude to children and adults for years, and her blog is an obvious extension of her love of notes on a staff.  When she first started pulling the blog together, she asked me if I wanted to contribute music reviews.  I was hesitant at first.  I love music, and have eclectic tastes, but I’m a bit uncomfortable telling people that I know why The Sex Bo-bomb’s first album wasn’t as good as they’re first album.

I do, however, love my RockBand.  And while I haven’t done any video game reviews, I’ve done plenty of board game reviews.  So, I agreed to pitch her a RockBand Track Pack review about once per month.  My first one, for the Red Hot Chili Peppers album Blood, Sugar, Sex, Magik can be gone to by clicking on that link.  I’ve got a few more on the dock and I don’t see any reason not to send more Julie’s way.  They’re fun articles to write, and, hopefully, fun to read as well.  Plus, I get to hold RockBand parties and tell everyone that I’m doing research.  And I love getting people’s opinions out of them.  Sweet deal.

Maintaining the Horror Campaign – Complete

Phew!  I finally got done Chapter 6 of Maintaining the Horror Campaign at  The article series is about going beyond having one spooky game role-playing game adventure, and pulling together an entire campaign full of intrigue and terror.  My articles that I’ve published for other websites are on delay here at, in order to give the articles a chance to breath on the website that they are destined for.  But if you want to jump ahead to Maintaining the Horror Campaign’s Introduction, be my guest.

Oh, also, this blog desperately needs a name.  It can only be called JMGariepy for so long, I suppose…

Evidently, I am a desktop background

You may have noticed the snazzy new Gravatar image of yours truly.  I appear to be some sort of wizard.

Read more…

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