This Saturday, May 1st, I took my boy too the local participating comic book store for free comic book day. Now he is still too young to be reading. Although he does try, but currently it usually consists of reciting memorized information. Yes, there is a couple books that are not super short that he has memorized. It’s crazy. I can’t believe how amazing his brain is at this point. He memorizes books, he remembers things that someone said at his 2nd birthday lunch, he remembers things people were wearing almost ½ his life ago. Again, it’s CRAZY to me.
Anyway, back to the comics.
So we go into the comic book store. Hastur Games and Comics. I assume it is named after H.P. Lovecraft’s Hastur. There is some guy there dressed as the Green Lantern. They had a sign with his name on it, so I assume someone way more nerdy than me would recognize him. But I didn’t. He was over in the corner with the radio station that had their sound board set up over there. I believe it was X96 that was there. Yeah, the sell-out morning show guys I mentioned in my morning show rant post. The chick operating the cash register (maybe owner???) was very nice. She was showing a surprisingly large amount of very young kids and their dads where to go for different things. After looking at a couple of the new comics, I noticed the table for the free comics. My little man REALLY wanted a Superman comic. I thought that was odd since he always talks about Spiderman and Iron Man. But I wasn’t about to talk him out of it.
On the free comic table there just happened to be 1 Superman comic left which I quickly yoinked from between a couple guys to make sure they didn’t beat me to it. After we had the prized comic in hand I took the time to look around. Wow. I am a little bit of a geek/nerd. But DAMN what I saw made me really leery of bringing my kid into the world of geekery. They had probably 10 tables of people playing Magic the Gathering (or some other card game, I just don’t care). There was some kid there about 16 years old, probably 50 lbs overweight, with long curly hair, wearing an AC/DC shirt talking mad shit to a kid that looked like he was maybe 10 years old and probably 20 pounds underweight. It got me giggling pretty well. Then I saw the banks of computers. They have maybe 10 or so computers where people play games on. No idea what games were being played, but my first guess is either StarCraft or World of Warcraft. The creepy person that stood out over there was this probably 40 year old guy that is 150 lbs overweight, wearing a shirt that is probably 3 sizes to small that at one point was a solid lime green color, but now was multi colored due to stains from various greasy foods and/or energy drinks that had been spilled on it.
Just out of morbid curiosity, I had to go look at the role playing game books and see what has become of my old time favorite Rifts. Rifts and Macross were my introduction into the world of book based RPG’s. Luckily I never got sucked into the D&D world and was able to avoid the clichés and hate associated with being a D&D fan. I don’t think D&D fans are any less or more lame. They are just more populous, so they get the most attention. Well, it looks like Rifts has many more books than when I was into it. I have no idea what Paladium Books’ (the makers of Rifts and Macross) financials look like, but it looks as though they are doing well. Of course when I tried to find out anything about their profits, I found stories of embezzlement, and a 150 page long post on the rpg.net forums about why they will be dead by 2008. I do know however that there is a Rifts video game being worked on that has been getting a lot of press lately. It’s a MMORPG being developed by Trion. The Rifts world is perfect for a MMO game since the whole concepts of Rifts is endless. There is no limit to the types of good and bad guys that can exist. I was bummed to see the game looks like it takes place in the typical fantasy RPG type world, just like almost every other MMORPG out there. Especially since I honestly don’t even remember using that type of world when I would play. But like I said, that’s the beauty of Rifts. It can take place anywhere, anytime. But I could see that hurting it. Why would you chose to play a new game based in a similar world to the biggest MMORPG in the States? Simple answer is, people won’t, they will stick with what they know and is proven.
Well, I got a bit off track, but after looking at the RPG books, we went up to the counter to tell the cashier we just picked up the freebie and nothing more. At which point my boy of course had to show her all the cool things in the book. Did I create a comic book monster? Only time will tell. But either way, I am not dropping him off at a place like that to play games with creepy guys that are a bit old to be hanging out at places full of kids. I am not saying to avoid Hastur by any means. In fact, I found it to have a good selection and it’s good to have a comic book store still around since they seem to be all going out of business. I am just saying some people are walking talking clichés, and if you go to Hastur (or probably any other comic book store for that matter) you will see these people. And they will disappoint you.