Kevin C. Wong

DDC 47 Events

DunDraCon 47 starts in a couple of weeks. This year I'm leaving Saturday free so I can run a private session of D&D. I also want to be free for dinners which means Friday and Saturday early afternoons, or two games for me.

My two primaries are an Original D&D adventure and a Call of Cthulhu 7E adventure. I have not played either OD&D nor CoC 7E so want to experience that.

P05 50th Anniversary of D&D

Only available via On-line Pre-registration
Friday Noon in 138 for 6 Hours
GM: Alex Zisch
Type: RPG
System: Original Dungeons & Dragons
Players: 6
Provided: All characters provided by GM
Rules Knowledge: Beginners Welcome
Game Content: Mainstream

Let's celebrate the 50th birthday of this long in the tooth, grandparent of RPGs with an old school dungeon crawl. A scenario along the lines but not limited to The Tomb of Ra-Hotep, The Lost Dungeons of Tonisborg, The Palace of the Vampire Queen and other first generation adventures. You are invited to this unofficial sequel to last year's Outdoor Survival game.

P52 WWII Dogfights: Zerstorers Above Norway

Only available via On-line Pre-registration
Friday Noon on Hall of Cities, Table 19 for 4 Hours
GM: Chuck Staedler
Type: Historical Miniatures
System: Sky's the Limit!
Players: 4
Provided: All Miniatures provided by GM
Power Level: Beginners Welcome
Rules Knowledge: Beginners Welcome
Game Content: Mainstream

April 1940: Luftwaffe Bf110s, protecting vital inshore shipping lanes during Germany's invasion, encounter RAF Gladiators flown off the British aircraft carrier Furious. Sky's The Limit! rules taught before start of play.

603 The Lightless Beacon

Sunday 2 PM in 146 for 4 Hours
GM: Steve Anderson
Type: RPG
System: Call of Cthulhu
Edition: starter rules
Players: 5
Provided: All characters provided by GM
Rules Knowledge: Beginners Welcome
Game Content: Mainstream

The investigators, traveling to Rockport aboard the SS Essex county, run into unexpected, and horrific, challenges when the Beacon Island lighthouse goes dark. Will they relight the beacon in time?

652 American War of Independence-The Battle of Butternut Creek (SBGC)

Sunday 1PM on Hall of Cities, Table 16 for 4 Hours
GM: Peter Michels
Type: Historical Miniatures
System: Rebels and Patriots
Edition: 1.0
Players: 8
Provided: All Miniatures provided by GM
Power Level: Beginners Welcome
Variations: Multi-player modifications (for faster turn resolution)
Rules Knowledge: Beginners Welcome
Game Content: Mainstream

Late in the war, a British force was threatening to advance from Canada, and was slowly raiding south. The French had arrived and were under orders to support the colonists. The French dispatched a force to help the Colonists counter the British advance. Can the British continue to push south, or can the Colonists and French intercede to stop them? Players command Colonial State Regulars, French or Militia, or British Loyalists or Regulars.

633 Traveller CCG Gunslinger Event

Sunday 1 PM on Sedona Table 16 for 3 Hours
GM: Jessie Chambers
Type: Card
System: Traveller Customizable Card Game
Players: 10
Provided: Materials may be provided by GM
Rules Knowledge: Beginners Welcome
Game Content: Mainstream

Adapted from the classic RPG. Traveller Card Game's creators hosting this session to teach new players or provide opponents for veterans. Playable. Beat the creators at their own game! Feel free to drop in for a single game, don't have to commit to entire period.

Diary - Jan 20 to Jan 26 2024

Sat Jan 20 2024

Sleep 0500 to 1330 (8-1/2 hours)

  • Figured out that GarageBand will record more than 12 hours but you can’t edit past 12 hours nor export more than 12 hours of audio. You can split before the cutoff and delete the extra then export 11+ hours. After that undo to restore that audio, delete the first section then move the remaining audio to the beginning and export that (or you can cut then paste into a new project).

Sun Jan 21 2024

Sleep 1230 to 1900 (6-1/2 hours)

  • 49ers beat Packers in a rainy day game in Santa Clara. Next up they host the Lions in the NFC championship game.

Mon Jan 22 2024
Sleep 0230 to 1030 (8 hours)

  • Long HOA meeting, since we didn’t have one in December. Some movement on Electric Vehicle Charging Station policy though at least one person didn’t like the results. He really didn’t want the part of assigning HOA as an insurance policy beneficiary (or something like that). Unfortunately his reasoning was a bit thin because he seemed to want a “logical” reason why we shouldn’t have that requirement.

Tue Jan 23 2024 Sleep 0600 to 1545 (9-3/4 hours)

  • Bought Humble Bundle Call of Cthulhu 7E books. CoC is one of my more favorite games to run because there are so many adventures and it’s mostly low combat.

Wed Jan 24 2024

Sleep 0430 to 1230 (8 hours)

  • Dinner at C3’s. Porridge and Things. I had the plain rice porridge (which comes with three toppings so quite good for $6) and Chinese sausage fried rice.
  • Corina got a promotion and her home office moves from Bakersfield to Santa Clara. Overall a better commute for her though she’ll still have to go to the other offices from time to time.

Thu Jan 25 2024

Sleep 0545 to 1400 (8-1/4 hours)

Fri Jan 26 2024

Sleep 0200 to 1045 (8-3/4 hours)

  • DDO: DS couldn’t make it so Csr, DW and I played with our primary characters.

BackerKit Crowdfunding

Now that BackerKit has its crowdfunding feature let's see if there's anything interesting. Wow, there were only 25 active projects so BackerKit not there yet. Still here are three slightly interesting projects.

B.B. & Bunny (Ends Feb 06, $14 Print?)

"BB & Bunny is a sci-fi, slice-of-life comic about a bunny girl and her bunny looking to save humanity from God’s destruction while making friends and finding love long the way."

The reward is a 16-24 page splash zine, kind of a sampler. This project is for starting funds to get the comic ready and pitching to publishers.

Advanced Rules (Ends Feb 14, $13 PDF, +10 Print)

(Not a great title btw.) 100-page zine of house rules for Mothership RPG. Looks like a compilation of articles from an online zine, cleaned up for current Mothership 1E.

Creature Feature Quarterly Vol.2 for use with Mork Borg (Ends Feb 16, $3 PDF)

A 34-page zine of monsters with Mork Borg-style drawings and layout.

Axes and Anvils; Relics; Good Society bundles

Bundle of Holding has three bundles maybe interesting...

Axes and Anvils ($10) Collaborate RPG where players create a dwarf clan then they have characters that go on adventures. This bundle is the core book, GM book, and two decks to generate dwarves and stories.

Relics ($15) Angels and demons awakening in the modern world. This bundle has the core book, small Las Vegas supplement, an adventure, small book of magic items, and a tarot deck (the game uses the tarot deck as main mechanic).

Good Society ($18) RPG set in a Jane Austen-like world where society and social standing are the main goals. Core book, three variant books that expand the game to adjacent genres, nine playsets. Seems like a freeform storytelling sort of game.

None of the three are all that interesting.

Diary - Jan 13 to Jan 19 2024

Sat Jan 13 2024

Sleep 0345 to 1145 (8 hours)

  • Gaming at C3’s house. We started a bit early and did some prelim stuff for 30m before W3’s arrived. Then 90m as they took on Cave C and the Frostrager Orcs.

Sun Jan 14 2024

Sleep 0330 to 1230 (9 hours)

  • City of San Mateo Stormwater Fee measure passed. 5195 votes (51.78%) in favor, 4837 votes against.
  • Hard to tell how many voters were possible. Census doesn’t show housing units for the city. But San Mateo is 13.84% of the county population, so applying the same percentage there are about 39798 housing units in the city. Not the same as property owners but an upper bound I think. At least 25% of eligible voters voted, maybe closer to 35% or 45% Still it means that another 10% of people voting could have changed the result. But I guess you can say that of many voting measures.

Mon Jan 15 2024

Sleep 0515 to 1315 (8 hours)

  • Humble Bundle has almost all of Terry Pratchett’s Discworld novels for $18, but it’s on so when that service dies so does access to your books. Didn’t notice that restriction until it was mentioned on

Tue Jan 16 2024
Sleep 0215 to 1315 (11 hours)

  • 4K Video Downloader+ now supports logging into Twitch so you can download subscriber-only VODs. They’re adding this support one service at a time whereas ViDL popped up a web view, allowed you to login, then saved the cookies and re-used them. 4K’s approach does not scale at all but I am happy they support Twitch.

Wed Jan 17 2024

Sleep 0215 to 0345, 1200 to 1700. (6-1/2 hours)

  • Miscommunication. C3 dinner canceled as Cjr had a play date. Waited half an hour then went grocery shopping.

Thu Jan 18 2024

Sleep 0030 to 0700, 1100 to 1230. (8 hours)

  • Netflix added a movie to the My List. Was wondering why but then I saw it has been re-added to Netflix today. I must have had it in My List when it went out of Netflix.

Fri Jan 19 2024

Sleep 0345 to 0930 (5-3/4 hours)

  • DDO with Dave S and Dave W. We went through the other servers to get 5 favor and the 50 DDO point reward. That gave Dave S enough to buy the first four content packs at 99 DDO points each (on sale).

Call of Cthulhu RPG Bundle

This is a CoC 7th Edition bundle.

CHA-23107 Pulp Cthulhu - pulp genre supplement, adapts CoC core rules, 274 pages
CHA-23135 Keeper Rulebook - core book for GMs, 448 pages
CHA-23136 Investigator Handbook - expands core book with more character creation options, skills, occupations, 288 pages
CHA-23137 Keeper Screen - 3-panel screen and two 1920's scenarios, 102 pages
CHA-23138 S. Petersen's Field Guide to Lovecraftian Horrors - illustrated creature book, 53 monsters, 128 pages
CHA-23140 Gateways to Terror - three short-play scenarios, each with 4 read-to-play PCs, 88 pages
CHA-23141 The Grand Grimoire of Cthulhu Mythos Magic - 550+ spells, 202 pages
CHA-23148 Doors to Darkness - five beginner scenarios, 10 read-to-play investigators, 160 pages
CHA-23149 Reign of Terror - 2-part historical scenario during the French Revolution, with standalone setting, 130 pages
CHA-23151 Down Darker Trails - late 19th century American West setting + 2 intro adventures, 256 pages
CHA-23152 Petersen's Abominations - five modern-day scenarios, 202 pages
CHA-23154 Alone Against the Dark - 1931 solo mini-campaign in NY, Greece, Egypt, Germany, Antarctica, 102 pages
CHA-23158 Call of Cthulhu Starter Set - 204 pages, includes CHA-23145 Alone Against the Flames
CHA-23159 Dead Light & Other Dark Turns - two scenarios set in 1920's USA, six story seeds, 90 pages
CHA-23161 Berlin: The Wicked City - 1920's Berlin supplement + 3 adventures, 274 pages
CHA-23162 A Cold Fire Within - 1935 Pulp Cthulhu campaign in a world underneath the Castskill Mountains, 178 pages
CHA-23164 Alone Against the Frost - 1920's solo adventure in the Canadian Northwest Territory, 122 pages
CHA-23165 Cthulhu Dark Ages 3E - Dark Ages setting + 3 adventures, 274 pages
CHA-23167 Mansions of Madness v1: Behind Closed Doors - five 1920's scenarios, 226 pages
CHA-23170 Malleus Monstrorum: Cthulhu Mythos Bestiary - 250+ monsters, 484 pages
CHA-23171 Malleus Monstrorum Keeper Deck - reference cards, 71 pages
CHA-23172 Does Love Forgive? - a collection of 1-to-1 scenarios, 66 pages
CHA-23174 Alone Against the Tide - 1920's solo adventure in Massachusetts, 90 pages

CHA-5116 Call of Cthulhu: The Coloring Book, 28 pages
CHA-5120 Keeper Tips - GM-ing advice, 129 pages

As usual for CoC this collection is full of adventures. I don't have (or have very few) 7th edition books so kind of a must buy for $25.

Monthly Expenses

Before looking for a job what salary do I need to support my current lifestyle?

Mortgage $1646
Property Tax $1022
Home/Car Insurance $538
HOA $752
Total $3958

PG&E $90
Sonic $75
Ooma $7
Mint $17
Apple One $20
Twitch $15
Apple Loan $23
Groceries $299
Total $546

Grand Total $4504

Per Year Minimum = $54,048
Salary = $83,151 per year / $6929 per month (with 35% taxes reduces per year minimum)

Things not included: car expenses (gas and maintenance), health insurance (for the most part included with job).

The above is no leisure spending. My usual has been $1k per month for everything else which would make salary $101,612 per year / $8468 per month.

Diary - Jan 06 to Jan 12 2024

Sun Jan 07 2024

Sleep 0400 to 0930. 1 hour nap. (6-1/2 hours)

  • Didn’t get much sleep so I was “off” most of today.
  • Last week of the NFL season. Only a few meaningful games it seems.

Mon Jan 08 2024

Sleep 0800 to 1330 (5-1/2 hours)

  • DunDraCon 47 relaxing masks policy: “We do not require masks or vaccinations for our attendees.”, “Masks may be worn at the attendee's discretion. DunDraCon will not tolerate any harassment for wearing or not wearing a mask.” This is fine after two years of masks required. Yes I did like masks required but last year too many people just kind of refuse and they are a bit uncomfortable for a 4-hour game.
  • Registered for DDC 47.

Tue Jan 09 2024

Sleep 0530 to 1330 (8 hours)

  • I think Music cloud sync cuts off at 200 MB so I need to cut up some of my audio book files.

Wed Jan 10 2024

Sleep 0545 to 1345 (8 hours)

  • BBEdit 15 released. $30 upgrade for BBEdit 14 owners. $40 upgrade for older versions. I bought my v14 license Jan 2022 for $50. It works fine so I’ll skip v15.
  • Converting my audio book files to a smaller format. Easiest is to use Music conversion feature. Set import settings to MP3 custom 64kbps stereo, VBR, quality Med, Sample rate 22kHz, Mono channel. This turns it into a 34kbps VBR file about 1/4th the size of what I had it (AAC medium quality). It’s good enough quality for me. And doing it in Music copies all the meta-data including album art. Anyway, the above MP3 settings are good for up to about 13 hour audio files.
  • I bought a new KB and noticed some of the lag input playing DDO seems to be gone now. I blamed it on CrossOver getting worse as the OS is updated but I guess not. Strange that my old KB worked fine otherwise. Then again I’ve spilled so many liquids into it there are probably small glitches that go unnoticed.

Thu Jan 11 2024

Sleep 0645 to 1400 (7-1/4 hours)

  • Organized my freezer section so at least I know what’s the old stuff to eat first.
  • There is a security patch for Apple Magic Keyboards. Sure enough I connected my old KB (which was on version 1.0.x and after a while — more than few minutes, maybe it was waiting for the KB to be idle — it now says it’s on version 2.0.6 — you check in Bluetooth settings —> device info.

Fri Jan 12 2024

Sleep 0245 to 1045 (8 hours)

  • Yep, my AirPods Max pretty much dead. Won’t even go into factory reset mode.
  • AirPods Pro arrived yesterday. Opened them today. Needs a USB-C charger and luckily I have one that came with my Apple Watch. Guess I’ll be sharing that charger and switching out the cables as needed.
  • Dave S joined us for DDO. He created an account and a new character.

The Midderlands Bundle

Bundle of Holding's The Midderlands is a Swords & Wizardry (OD&D retro-clone) campaign setting: "the Midderlands setting is a green-hued, dark-fantasy, late-Middle Ages, early-Renaissance land based on Glynn's home in the United Kingdom, the Midlands. Many Midderlands locations are grounded in reality, others pure fantasy from the designer's fevered imagination."

Starter ($15)

The Midderlands ($20)
The Midderlands Expanded ($20)
City of Great Lunden ($20

Bonus (+$16)

Adventures in Great Lunden ($15) - 198 page book with seven adventures
Fighting Folk of the Haven Isles ($19) - generic supplement, non-Midderlands
Folk Magic of the Haven Isles ($8)
Bats of Saint Abbans ($11) - 155 page book with an adventure for levels 1-3
Chewer of Fingers ($8) - 26-page introductory adventure
Behind the Walls ($6) - 48-page low-level adventure
Midderlands Rivers and Lakes ($3)

Although a good amount of adventures the setting is not that inspiring. I guess I'd rather playing in Hârn which seems to be about an equivalent sort of medieval British setting.

2023 NFL Playoff Seedings


#1. San Francisco 49ers (12-5) [BYE]

#2. Dallas Cowboys (12-5) vs #7. Green Bay Packers (9-8)
#3. Detroit Lios (12-5) vs #6. Los Angeles Rams (10-7)
#4. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (9-8) vs #5. Philadelphia Eagles (11-6)

I don't really see anyone beating the 49ers at home.


#1. Baltimore Ravens (13-4) [BYE]

#2. Buffalo Bills (11-6) vs #7. Pittsburgh Steelers (10-7)
#3. Kansas City Chiefs (11-6) vs #6. Miami Dolphins (11-6)
#4. Houston Texans (10-7) vs #5. Cleveland Browns (11-6)

Ravens have looked great all season. Bills finished winning 5 in a row so they're hot. Browns have a great defense with a backup QB in Joe Flacco. I think both those teams have a chance beating the Ravens on the road.

Rooting For

1. 49ers (5 SB wins, 7 appearances)
2. Lions (in NFL since 1930)
3. Browns (in NFL since 1944)
4. Texans (in NFL since 1999)
5. Bills (4 SB appearances)
6. Ravens (2 SB wins, 2 appearances)
7. Dolphins (2 SB wins, 5 appearances)
8. Packers (4 SB wins)
9. Cowboys (5 SB wins, 8 appearances)
10. Steelers (6 SB wins)
11. Eagles (won SB 52)
12. Buccaneers (won SB 55)
13. Rams (won SB 56)
14. Chiefs (won SB 57)

Out of the Lions, Browns and Texans I think the Browns have the best chance to win the Super Bowl.

Diary - Dec 30 2023 to Jan 05 2024

Sat Dec 30 2023

Sleep 0345 to 1045 (7 hours)

  • Realized this Earthquake Insurance letter I received early this month is an offer from Safeco and it’s ridiculously low coverage so not worth getting. But I thought my insurance broker got me coverage from a different company but I don’t think I paid it.
  • Wait, I did pay for Earthquake Insurance (auto-deduction from my checking account). I haven’t gotten any of the paperwork so I have no idea of my policy number.
  • Safeco finally has my paperwork downloadable from their site. It took at least a couple of weeks I think.
  • As far as I can tell EV installation is covered. It’s something I exclusively own that is outside my apartment but still part of the condo building.

Sun Dec 31 2023

Sleep 0430 to 1230 (8 hours)

  • I’ve watched half a dozen Asian romance dramas that run 16+ episodes and episode 1 (sometimes episode 2 also) it’s so like “why am I watching this, it’s boring, I don’t like the characters, no chemistry”. But it turns around an episode or two later. Conversely I watched 6- and 8-episode ones where after the first episode it’s going to be good. Upshot is that if episode 1 is bad I have to stick with it a bit more before giving up on a series.

Mon Jan 01 2024

Sleep 0330 to 1130 (8 hours)

  • There was an HOA issue Andrew wanted my help so I went out and we worked on it for 20 minutes or so. When I got back I had unfortunately left the stove on (I thought I had turned it off) so the apartment was full of smoke and the fried potatoes were burnt charcoal. 20 minutes with my stand-up fan on cleared the apartment. Did not turn on the oven fan since that vents into the hall which trigger the building fire alarm.

Tue Jan 02 2024

Sleep 0145 to 1115. (9-1/2 hours)

  • Had the balcony door open and a fan blowing in air all night. Apartment still slightly smoky smell. Guess it’ll take a few days to kill the smell.

Wed Jan 03 2024

Sleep 0700 to 1500 (8 hours)

  • Dinner at C3’s.
  • AirPods Max unresponsive today so I factory reset it.

Thu Jan 04 2024

Sleep 0530 to 1330 (8 hours)

  • Long HOA special meeting. There are people who don’t want any sort of insurance requirements for the EV chargers (which I kind of agree with, HOA doesn’t have insurance requirements for apartments). But we’re also trying to balance it with protecting the association from having to pay for damages with our insurance.

Fri Jan 05 2024

Sleep 0215 to 1015, 1530 to 1700 (9-1/2 hours)

  • Safeway. They had $5/lb chicken tenders.

Sat Jan 06 2024

Sleep 0445 to 1245 (8 hours)

  • Looks like my AirPods Max broke again. I can factory reset it and put it in pairing mode but none of my other devices (MBP, iPhone, iPad) see it so I guess the Bluetooth on it died. I’ll let it charge for a couple of days and try again. Meanwhile maybe time to buy some sort of headphones. Guess not AirPods Max until maybe a couple more major releases.
  • Ordered an AirPods Pro, which does have some dust/moisture protections (IP54, 5 out of 6 for dust, 4 of 9 for water). Also a replacement Magic Keyboard while I’m at it as the D key on this one sometimes doesn’t register. Keyboard with Touch ID is about 75% more expensive so I’ll skip that especially since Apple Watch replaces Touch ID half the time.

Bundle of Holding - Trophy

Trophy Bundle centers on Trophy Dark and Trophy Gold RPGs from Gauntlet Publishing, who do Fear of a Black Dragon podcast which I like.

In the list below * items are most interesting. This would mean $61 in * items for $22 so fairly good price.

Dark Collection ($10)

* Trophy Dark ($22) - RPG of one-shots about dungeon delvers that meet a bad end

Candlelight ($12) - "standlone one-shot, rules-light game based on Trophy" about restless spirits after a TPK

* Devil, Aim For Me ($8) - Trophy Dark adventure

Gold Collection (+$12)

* Trophy Gold ($15) - "Trophy Gold is a standalone roleplaying game about a group of treasure-hunters and their obsessive drive to seek ever greater riches in a desperate bid to stay alive." Based on Trophy Dark but as a push-your-luck dungeon-delving game.

Trophy Loom ($15) - "Trophy Loom is a system-agnostic setting book for dark medieval fantasy roleplaying games, especially the games under the Trophy banner." It's a book of random tables.

* The Academy Chrysalis ($10) - Trophy Gold adventure where the dungeon is an abandoned magical academy.

* The Alluring ($6) - Trophy Gold adventure. "Journey to a deserted town ravaged by plague, invaded by crabs, and haunted by a horrifying and seductive monster."

Trophy Golf ($2) - Add golfing to your Trophy Gold games.

Audible 2024

Signing up for Audible. Offer is $6 per month for 4 months. The four books I'm targeting I already have the previous on audio book format.

Worlds of Honor #6 - Beginnings

Crown of Slaves #3 - Cauldron of Ghosts

Crown of Slaves #4 - To End in Fire

Star Kingdom #3 - Treecat Wars

As I researched this I saw that there is a new Honor Harrington novel, Toll of Honor, coming out in April (hardcover most likely, paperback a year later).