Report on the Myth Gathering at Club-I in San Francisco

The small Myth Gathering that we held tonight was a success. About 30 folks showed up, including some folks from Bungie. My most heartfelt thanks to my fellow Clan Plaid brother Ven Jance who helped me get this little event off the ground. Patroclus also deserves special thanks for donating some necessary funds to the event. Bungie minions Mordia and Stinger get major kudos for swinging some nifty Bungie swag that we raffled off and gave out as prizes.

The good folks at Club-I set aside half their floor for our shindig, so we had 12 machines running Myth II in all its glory. Due to unforeseen traffic, I arrived late so I was unable to load some third party maps, but thankfully SiliconDream (those of you that have been following Halo know this gent), a member of Creation, arrived early and loaded a beta of Homeland II on 2 machines. It's an awesome solo map, one which I didn't get to fully appreciate until I played it a few times. Fellow plaidie Shadowjack and I played a few coop games on it but we had alot of trouble at the beginning. We had to do a particular sequence of things in order to not get ourselves splattered across the virtual snow. Those Creation guys like to make their maps more difficult than usual, in order to challenge the seasoned Myth player. Boy was it! There are some nifty new units and I can't wait to get my hands on the final! Could whoever is working on Myth III PLEASE sign these guys up?

SiliconDream also tried to load a beta of a Bushido solo level but was unsuccessful. I'm sure we'll be hearing more about this as it gets closer to completion.

Malkavian showed up, map maker extraordinaire, and showed off his latest creation... Krakatoa! A very beautiful 2-team map which I didn't get a chance to play. It does look awful sweet and a some other folks playtested it and short of a few killer bugs, everyone seemed pretty happy with it. I think much later in the evening Malk wondered out loud why he even bothers making maps for such a dated game as Myth, and all I can say is bring it on man, I see no reason to leave Myth when maps this ambitious are being created even now! Heh!

Ven Jance had the smarts to bring along his Sega Dreamcast. So if you were into it, you could play some Soul Calibur or Gauntlet in between your Myth games. Turned out that Patroclus kicked ass on it, though I think I didn't do too bad myself :)

I was so happy to see Brigette and Andrew Hunley show up. They're a couple that both love to play Myth and enjoy the gathering as a way of socializing and seeing like-minded folks. I saw them both at the previous San Francisco Bungie Fanfest. She's expecting so my sincerest congratulations to both of them! I'm sure they'll be teaching their child the finer points of flanking in no time! As long as I'm talking about previous attendees at these events, Mythifier is another gentleman that has never missed a gathering. Mike's always ready to help out and get the ball rolling. My sincerest thanks to him as well (and his father Trinidad!)

Kazem Edmond, otherwise known as Cow Mutilator, had corresponded with me a bit before the gathering about the good ol' days of Bungie. He had written a rather nasty rant on another website about the whole Microsoft thing, with a particularly sharp comment about these type of gatherings. But guess what? The man was a gentleman. Humorous and good natured like everyone else at the club. It was great to meet him finally. He never meant to say that a gathering isn't a good idea. He even wanted to come to the previous one, in New York. I'm sure I'll be seeing him again.

As a matter of fact, plenty of folks showed up that are known as the ASCII crowd, but no matter, everyone was able to get along with each other. Just proves that when face to face people aren't quite as wanky. I mean, check out these guys, do they look like bad guys to you? :)

About an hour into the festivities, Mordia and Stinger showed up, schlepping along some Bungie swag. There were 2 Action Sacks, 3 *NEW* Bungie T-Shirts, a BungieTV mug, and the very strange Soulblighter Pen Holder. Those of you that have seen this puppy know that it could've only have come from the twisted minds of Bungie. Top it off with Ven's generous donation of a RivaTNT video card, and we had some cool stuff to offer for prizes and giveaways.

Ven asked for 12 folks to sign up for the tournament. The tournament was based on the old Clan Plaid traditional Thunderbolt Tournament: random FFA 2-man teams. So the 12 were paired into 2 man groups in 6 start maps. Gyre STB, Chest Terries, and Proving FR. The pairings were random, done by Myth II itself upon game start, so you never knew who your partner was. But the points scored were given to the individual. After 3 games, scores were tallied and then the top 6 played the same 3 maps again, then the top 4 and then finally the top 2 played 1 on 1 on those same 3 maps. Did all that make sense?

We had a PA and a mike, so I did some running play-by-play commentary for the first few games. Ven's Dreamcast had a pull on me though :) so I handed the mike over to Ven who ran with it til the end of tourney.

The very first game was memorable in that Stinger had managed to park a spider on top of a rock right next to the ball, so the game was in Sudden Death longer than the actual game time. Folks below were busy jockeying for a good position for second place. Then Stinger managed the incredible feat of getting a nearly-dead soulless up next to the spider. Folks kept jockeying but ignored the soulless long enough that Stinger was able use it to kick the ball away for himself.

I wish I could recount the rest of the games, but I can't. I'm also kicking myself for not saving the films. One of us will remember next time! Anyway, at the end Stinger won the tourney! How weird is that... a dude that RUNS tourneys and now Interns at Bungie, the winner of a tourney!? Yeah, I can hear "STINGER CHETZ" even now :) He was a gent though and passed up on his prize, offering it our second place winner... who's name escapes me at the moment. Ah well. I'm sure I'll get the lowdown soon and will revise this document.

Meanwhile while all this was happening, I used some of the money we collected from the attendees to order 6 pizza pies from North Beach Pizzeria. Good eating! This time I had handed out tickets to everyone that paid their $7 fee so I used that to make sure only folks that had paid had first dibs on the pizza. The system worked and I'll be sure to use it again next time.

After the pizza and the tournament we raffled away the rest of the prizes. I think everyone walked away happy. Infector from Ancrik (who I hear just pasted the SM team in the MWC2K), if I'm not mistaken, got the TNT video card. Congrats Inf! Even my fellow Plaidie Carch, the man with the nastiest dorsal fin, won one of the new Bungie T-Shirts. At the end, we had an hour left, so we chatted and played a few more games. At exactly 9PM we ended our little gathering with a healthy round of applause.

The over 21 crowd stuck together and we headed out to a local bar to relax for a bit. Mordia regaled us with some nifty Bungie stories (not to be repeated here :) and we all talked about things in our respective industries, web search engines, web design, general office political wankiness as well as Myth community gossip. Heh, typical bar talk, wouldn't you say? As we left the bar, there was mention about going to a strip bar with a handful of Bungie stickers. :) I don't know if that was accomplished, since I had to go catch a BART train back to where I was staying. Don't think I didn't WANT to go, believe me I would have loved to. Ah, well, maybe next time.

So that ends my story. Hope you liked it. Again, cheers to all of you for making this happen!

    - Miguel Chavez 08-21-00 2:15AM PST

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