Board Gaming with a Pandemic Sense of Time

Snow falling on pear blossoms, pic March 14, 2020 from my home office.

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This morning I’ve been weighting and boxing up The RallyBird Baseball board game for shipment. Times are almost normal, but like the rowers in Hokusai’s “The Great Wave off Kanagawa” we’re braced for impact. This painting is a kind of talisman of my mother. Since childhood, I’ve always wondered if the rowers made it through the crash of water with their sleek craft still afloat. Those craft look so sleek and nimble, the sailors so steadfast, I’ve tended to think that they will.1024px-Tsunami_by_hokusai_19th_century.jpg

The threat of the virus is impacting my family, as yours, in more than one way. So far, it’s all indirect, but still serious. One elderly relative has postponed her cancer surgery. Another is has had to postpone the difficult and volatile transition from living normally at his house to the acceptance of the facts of old age and moving to an elder care home. I need to fly to assist them–does flying to them mean I would be likely to bring the virus to their home? What can I do? At least three relatives have had their work suspended for weeks. Younger relatives are out of school. How will they make up the needed learning? You have experiences like this, I’m sure.

It’s serious, a historic scale event that will bring changes afterward that we can’t anticipate. Now team sports are suspended… What does that mean? Baseball fever was high a few weeks ago, and with it, sales of my board game rose. Now we have that damned other kind of fever, and no baseball at all. How strange, and how awful. It’s not important, but I continue to try to sell my game.

For board gaming, gatherings in public places are temporarily in decline. I wonder if, during our home quarentines, as we wait for the curve to roll forward and wash past us, board games will find more time on tables in people’s homes. They certainly could, if the need for social distancing, school closings, and work changes means couples and families are together under one roof in ways that seem like a strange, ominous holiday. We wait for it to be over. And while we wait, what should we do?

As in many market niches, for years now, there’s been economic pressure to move board gaming manufacturer to Ch1na. Will that continue? RallyBird is made in the USA, but as I look for ways to bring cost savings to you, I’ve seen how overseas manufacture makes a difference. Will we reassess the feasibility of a far away supply chain? Well, once things return to normal, why would we? Change is difficult. The one constant is that things change, but we can’t anticipate all the consequences. As I get older I remind myself to cherish the many good things in normal life and not take them for granted. I wonder if the eventual relief we share from the threats and harm of this pandemic will help us feel a re-enchantment will all that we have which is already so wonderful.

My work continues. I received word that one of my trademark applications passed a legal hurdle, and moves forward. I’m continuing as before, shipping my game to amazon in the hopes that it makes it easier for you to pick up at lower costs and possibly free shipping. Thanks for reading.

The RallyBird Baseball Board Game is available on amazon.com here.

Here’s a link to the most recent rules PDF. 

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RallyBird Baseball is Now Available on Amazon.Com

The 2nd edition of the RallyBird Baseball Board Game is now available for purchase on Amazon here through the Sir Deer & Owls company. I have signed and numbered this batch on the inside of the lid.

For those of you with Amazon Prime, the shipping savings are substantial.

Copies of the game are trickling through amazon’s system as well as Sir Deer & Owls’ logistical supply chain… The initial stock is small, but Sir Deer, Owls & I’ll be shipping more to the Amazon warehouse in a couple of weeks, and more after that too. We have more RallyBird Board Game operations in the works.

Spring is coming!

UPDATE: The first shipment of RallyBird Baseball at amazon.com sold out already! But I’ll send more to their supply chain in a week or two.

UPDATE2: Back in stock on amazon.com, and selling!

I have Crunched the Numbers #MLB 2019

Update! This is a report! Yes, things are quiet, too quiet, in baseball land. Here at RallyBird HQ, I have converted the MLB 2019 season team performance into the exquisitely simple terms that RallyBird Baseball Board Game requires.

The crunched data looks like lists with notations! Not ready to step out and see the world, quite!

I need to make it pretty in a document, still. When ready, this is the version that will ship as printed paper with the Add-On Kit.  Customers who buy this will be able to download the 2018 season (and the 2019 season again) as PDFs from the merchant website.

It’s interesting to skinny dip in the pond of data and see how the range of baseball behavior has changed over the two seasons.

Here’s the unboxing video for the Add-On Kit which includes some long, emotional, lingering glances at the 2018 data and rules.

The Latest News from #RallyBirdBaseball Central

Hello RallyBirders!

I am recovering from an unwelcome bug. So I fight back with practical news mixed with an impractical mirthful spirit.

CONTACT INFORMATION

If you’d like to contact me, please feel free to email me at:RBBB email.png

I’ve already received a few player emails and I welcome them!

RULES UPDATE (MINOR)

I paid a service to review my rules and received some suggestions about small clarifications. Therefore, voilà, here’s a link to the October 2019 version of the rules. Truth is beauty, beauty Truth.

BIG LEAGUE GRAPHICS

Here’s an update on the RallyBird Baseball Board Game Add-On Kit: Big League & Coach Card Easy Advanced Game. There is no change to the rules or to the Coach Cards portion of the kit.

I’m in the process of changing the graphics due to branding/copyright respect of the large and powerful legal entity known as MLB.png. These changes include the 30 team tiles. They will show a graphic of a variety of rally birds instead of the team name.

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I laboriously finished all the 60 graphics of the two-sided tiles and ordered a prototype to proof before releasing. I imagine this will happen in November, the same month that TS Eliot took British citizenship in 1927. Coincidence??? 

BIG LEAGUE… 2019 SEASON ?!

Much to my astonishment, I stare with eyes round like saucers at the fact that the 2019 regular big leagueMLB.pngbaseball season has concluded. Therefore its history of jostling team performance is now available to RallyBird Central’s mathematical wing. What can stop me? I can cogitate and digest the points of the 2019 season into the easy, quick turned, ready-to-play RallyBird rules. I’ve plunged once into the data, and came up for the air. When will my next plunge be? Soon, friends, soon.

When ready I’ll add the 2019 season to the Big League Add-On Kit. Whether it’s part of the printed part or not I have to consider. I suppose it should bump the 2018 season data off. If I include both seasons in print, it adds to the cost. I’ll consider all the options. Both seasons will be available as a free download for anyone who buys the Add-On Kit.

INSTAGRAM

Yes, I did it. The RallyBird Baseball Board Game is now on Instagram. You will never see a picture of me posing with duck lips, however. I’m still figuring out what it can do. I like the ability to send short video clips of the board game in action. I don’t want to shock you, but the address is: https://www.instagram.com/rallybirdbaseball . I’ll follow you back.

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The RallyBirdBaseball YouTube Channel

There are 8 videos for you to watch about the RallyBird Baseball board game here. Please subscribe! Screen Shot 2019-10-05 at 10.12.46 AM.png

In a funny way, the videos reflect a history of my familiarity with making videos, the tools I use, and my ability to edit them. Who knew that board game creation required knowledge of video editing? Crazy world, yes, but it’s also an awesome world of opportunity I’m trying to embrace.

You can help others who might be interested in the board game by clicking the thumbs up button. Thanks!

Dreams & Ambitions

I’d like to make the RallyBird Baseball Board Game available on Amazon. There are a lot of little steps I need to take before I can do this. One I have done already–purchased UPC codes for the game. There are other steps I need to take, equal in charm.

In general I’d like to bring the cost down. Suddenly iron laws of economics stomp in the hallway. I’d like to explore other manufacturers. Suddenly CMYK (cyan, magenta, yellow and key black) standards rear their proboscises. Professional printing standards shouldn’t be an intrusion!

Well, everything is a learning step and I like to learn. However my little computer is already wheezing with my current graphics program. In short, I probably need a new computer and a new professional graphics program in order to explore other manufacturers. Perhaps there is a work-around. That’s where my thought process slenders down under the Limbo stick and probes the far end of the asymptote.

OCTOBER BASEBALL

Have you been enjoying the October Baseball postseason drama? My little friend here was so nervous about the 9th Inning last night, she just went to bed with a plate of apple pie. I’m still trying to calm my hair down from it standing straight up for so long.

Why is that pain so delicious? Isn’t it odd how baseball adds meaning to my humble life? I made a conscious decision in my middle age to follow baseball again and I have no regrets! It’s so much fun. Too soon it will be over. Relish it, friends!

Thank you for reading.

 

Søren #Kierkegaard, #Baseball, and My New #RallyBird Rules (PDF)

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If I may translate the philosopher’s concepts in my own way, then baseball’s four bases represent Søren Kierkegaard’s scoring strategy. They exemplify his coaching observation of the first aesthetic, then ethical, and finally religious modes of base running, with a difficult slide (or leap) of faith to reach Home plate. Kierkegaard argues that one can have faith that the cloud of dust transforms into a Run on the colossal electric scoreboard, but one can never believe it, because the bright click of that scoreboard is beyond muscle achievement and beyond reason. The cerulean Run is something else. This unrelentingly requirement of test on individual strength and resolve relates to the compelling existentialism of baseball.

1st base is an achievement of individual aesthetics, the batter’s skillful use of the passions to swing the bat just right. This does not mean an abuse of passions, but the motivation is pleasure. Who among you has not exalted, as I still do, at the musical sound of the bat hitting the ball in its sweet, sweet spot? O sensual raptures! Mind you, to maximize pleasure thoughtfully, an Epicurean life is smarter, measured, more calculated than a hedonistic life. A runner can take an 11-foot lead from first base, sometimes a 12- or even 13-foot lead, but a hedonistic 14-foot lead? That cannot last. It won’t last. It doesn’t last.

A moment comes when the baserunner found a way to move beyond the limitations of the aesthetic approach and achieved second base. It’s a new way. Wary of mere pleasure-seeking, from oneself the player naturally thinks of the team, of the friendly dugout clearly in view, of what 2nd base represents as the border of a Runner In Scoring Position. From second base the player can easily see the comrade at bat. Trading glances, the second base runner can spy the pitcher’s grip on the laces of the ball and signal, with hand on chin, then hand on knee, that he’s loaded a fastball. (RallyBird’s Take the Pitch card reflects this specific possibility.) This is legal, but baseball’s unofficial regulations frown on it; at least, Defense may respond by beaning the player next time at bat. Ethics brings responsibility. Ethical responsibility means the player has moved from thinking about the self to others, but the self remains.

As baseball commentator Kierkegaard says, no player on second base has ever reached Home plate by running in a straight line toward it. The absurd fact is, that the player seeking Home must run obliquely (beyond logic, proof and reason) from the ethical second base toward the Third Base of religious feeling. The greater the uncertainty, the more likely that this will be a great sports moment, we in the crowd lean forward and making sounds beyond language. The baserunner blurs between third base and home. The ball returns like a cannon shot from the center fielder. The catcher reaches his glove. Unable to see the ball or Home, the Knight of Faith dives into the obscurity, with trust that Home plate will reach back to tag the player’s outstretched hand.

This RallyBird rule pdf (link below) is in progress, but I offer to share it with you. It looks different, but it is the same 1-hour baseball board game with quick decisions for offense and defense each at bat. I’ve added a couple of new variants including Series rules. Also I learned I could add an additional card to the game at no cost to you, so I added a trophy card. The rules include a picture of it. When I proof these rules, mull and ruminate a few more hundred times, I’ll replace the current ones that come with the game with this set.

RallyBird Board Game Rules version May11, 2019

Here is a concise and sensible summary of Kierkegaard’s stages.

You can buy the RallyBird Baseball Board Game here.

The Dark Oval of Fate, a decorative evolution to the #RallyBird #Baseball #BoardGame, Symbolizing the Role of #Decisions pressing against the Roll of #Dice (plus #Heidegger’s Influence)

When Martin Heidegger raised the issue of Being, and Being-There (“Dasein”), I suspect he suffered a small chill, knowing  the influence he would have on baseball board game design. I think he was trying to get us to be aware that we poor souls find ourselves thrust in a world as it is. What follows (briefly) is our Concern. Without our sense of time, we could have no concern. Here I am pressed for time, and therefore I am Concerned about the graphic look of this baseball board game I’m trying to lift up into its own Being-in-the-World.

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As you can see, I’ve added the Dark Oval of Fate to the box cover. There’s a shadow under every pair of dice. How satisfying it is to know this, face this and make a decision! The thrust pierces through the veil, or, perhaps, we bend our épée on a fence post, not our opponent, while a beautiful woman in a ruffled outfit watches. I have ordered a prototype. Only you, dear reader, know what this graphical change symbolizes. May it lighten your Concern!

Please note, as a favor to you I did not use any semicolons in this post. O, how I wanted to!

New Box Art is Happening In #RallyBird #Baseball Land (plus Dramatic Myth of Sisyphus Reference)

In moments of pause, saith Camus, after Sisyphus has pushed his rock to the top of the hill, and it tumbles down again, he trudges down after it; and in that moment, before pushing it back up again, Sisyphus has his moment of triumph.

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Things are happening in R-B-B-B-Land! Stay (trudge) tuned (trudge)!

I, and my massive shoulders, do thank you.

 

PS. I offer my apologies for using a semicolon.