Welcome to the second interview in my odd plan to just talk with people I know and write stuff down. This time I had the pleasure of interviewing yet another great friend of mine and pillar of the L5R community. I shall let him do the introducing and I hope you enjoy the chat we had over a few drinks...
Who are you and what are you drinking?
Daniel Dineen, and I am currently consuming a delicious adult beverage known as Sam Adams Double Agent IPA...
Pete: Not a Sam Adams fan myself, but then I haven't had the IPA. IPA isn't something we seem to get over here, at least I haven't noticed.
I am drinking some Amaretto straight from the bottle cause I am classy like that. Its crazy easy to drink.
Dan: It's a newer one if I have my information correct, and it's pretty good honestly... The name itself 'Double Agent' is also very cool.
Oh man... Danny Swartz on The Dynasty loves that stuff, to sweet for my opinion. But I'll never begrudge a man for drinking what he likes! lol
Pete: Haha I do sometimes get a lot of flak for my drink tastes, Malibu being my favourite and everything.
Dan: You are forgiven.
Pete: Thanks, I was getting worried.
So hows tricks with you anyway?
Dan: Things are good. Rocking my Masters in Communication and Leadership Studies at Gonzaga University... Currently THE #1 NCAA Men's Basketball team in the nation. Pretty bad ass right there! lol
Aside from that working, running the Kobune Port, and getting the Seidai Circuit up and running.
Pete: Gonzaga? There are some schools over here called Gonzaga, they are also annoyingly good at sports. Always used the kick the crap out of us at Rugby.
Dan: hah! It's a school out in Spokane,WA, most of my Masters is online but I go out there once or twice a year for seminars, etc.
Dude Rugby rules.. We definitely need more of it in the USA.
Pete: Ireland is playing France tomorrow in the six nations.
Dan: OOOO.... Go Eire!
Pete: Yeah its an important match if we want to not do shit....(spoilers we did shit)
Dan: Then they best be ready to rock!
Pete: Heres hoping
Dan: Yes sir! *raises his glass*
So you mentioned you run the Kobune Port, lets use that nice segway to L5R... How did you start in L5R? And How much fun is it running a big forum like the Kobune Port?
Dan: I saw people playing in Imperial, and kinda looked at the game, but I was big on Magic back in my teenage years. Then in 96ish, I picked up a Unicorn Emerald starter and my rare was Inheritance, and all the L5R guys were like... "Oh I'll trade that from you no problem!", and I looked at them as if they were morons, cause ya know... 5 free gold seemed like a bad ass card! lol
Dan: So I slowly got into it with a mishmash of Unicorn cards, and somewhat got into the story and then I opened a Crimson and Jade booster (I think that was it) and saw Yoritomo. From that moment I was sold, and was a Mantis.
I of course had already been a Kolat fanatic, I mean Mystical Mafia? Hell yea!
So that's kinda how I began... As for the Kobune Port, I love it. The site has been steadily growing, and I'm continually trying to improve it with new ideas and concepts. Player Profiles, the Seidai Circuit (Decklists), etc. So far the people there have been pretty well behaved, and I greatly appreciate it... Cause we have a subform known as The Terrible Standard of Fu Leng, and anyone who gets a warning for Moding gets thrown up there for public display. have a zero tolerance policy for BS. From anyone, but I try and foster a welcoming attitude. Wanting people of all Clans and affiliations to come and be social...
Pete: Hahaha yeah there are some great ideas on your boards alright, some things that a few boards could maybe look at trying out. I have been a bit lax in my own visiting of the Kobune Port, but that somewhat coincides with me not playing much cards in a while, but things are picking up again which is good.
Dan: To each their own, I'm just trying a slightly 'new' way of doing things. Thus far this crazy experiment seems to be working! lol
Yeah Kotei season will do that for you... I also believe Ireland might be getting a Seidai Circuit tournament also. The when hasn't been determined exactly, though I believe it will be this calendar year...
But you heard it here first!
Will its magnificent creator be visiting?
Dan: I concur that it is pretty grand...
I'd love to, but would need to work out the logistics of that. It is within the realm of possibility though!
Pete: Its an honour to have one, and I look forward to scrubbing out of it completely
Dan: hah! I think you'll enjoy the format of best 2 out of 3 that also will have it's own meta cycle also. Should really help the game overall I believe. I already have 3 new people in my own local scene who have joined up directly because of the nature of the Seidai
Circuit and how I promoted it to them, etc.
Pete: That's very cool, its definitely going to change a few things, I look forward to it.
So are you planning on running many of them?
Dan: Changing things up is something I specialize in... Seeing how the next couple go, I do plan on an actual geographic breakdown with minor circuits and then large bigger then 1k once a year geographic tourneys. Maybe something eventually at GC, but would need to work towards that for 2014 at the earliest...
Pete: Haha you can certainly stir things up alright.
Dan: Damn right! lol
Pete: Well, there is no point in not being ambitious.
Dan: Gotta live up to my Clan's ideals after all...
Pete: Piracy and money?
I can get behind that.
Dan: As can I good sir, as can I!
So you started playing in 96, is there a particular highlight in your L5R career that stands out above all others?
Dan: Hmmm... I think it was the concerted effort that The Dynasty made to get Hantei Naseru on the throne. That was simply epic.
Pete: I love it when groups in the community push and succeed in getting something like that done.
Dan: Yea, plan was made, plan was executed, and victory was assured.
Pete: really makes you feel like the game is yours at least in a small way
Dan: Yep, and that is the beauty of L5R and what separates it from all others...
Pete: It is a truly amazing game
So how have you found Emperor Edition thus far?
Dan: I've absolutely loved it... Kalani's Landing has helped that a great deal as it's my favorite Mantis SH, though I think Aramasu's Legacy is the best from a theme standpoint. I can just run so many different decks out of it... Magistrates, Super Friends, Non-humans, Blitz, Control, etc... So damn versatile.
The environment overall I feel people have been harping on a bit too much. Some factions (Spider/Crane) have had it rough... But everyone else is an Any Given Sunday type of faction where some may be favored, but all are capable of winning.
This is of course pre-TA as we are about to find out about THAT environment a bit more tomorrow. Though the decklists from the Seidai Circuit have laid a foundation for the TA environment.
Pete: Yeah, that has been something i have quite enjoyed, the fact that for the most part it was anyones to win
Pete: Although I can think of a few times were I have been cursing at KL, and if I am not mistaken I can foresee some times in the future were I will say it again.
Dan: Yep, but you can curse any one really... Match ups give advantages, but rarely have I thought a match up is flat out unwinnable.
Pete: And do you think that is changing with TA?
Dan: I don't foresee it no. KL and ToP are the favored SH going in. But in the TA event we ran in Albany, NY there were was a lot of diversity in the Top 8, even with the Wildcard feature that kept Butler out with LoDD. Still, 8 different SHs is a good variance to pull from.
Pete: Wow that is definitely a nice spread.
I hear you have been taking good care of our Irish immigrant. Although he is coming home soon, someone has to TO the Irish kotei after all
Dan: Yea Butler is rocking well, and enjoying Philly...
Pete: That's good, I would almost say we miss him
So anyway, are you looking forward to the next arc?
Dan: Almost eh? Niiiiiice. lol And yes I am, I am always looking forward to the game evolving and such. Keeps the excitement going... At least for me.
Pete: Yeah, its nice to have a life cycle for a game like the one L5R has. Every now and then its good to go to a clean slate
Dan: I concur!
Now the first time I met you, you were asleep on the floor outside our hotel room in Indy at 4am with 6 room keys in your hand, and rumour has it you were later found in the lift and brought to your room by security. Any hilarious stories from Gencons past you fancy sharing (even if they embarrass me)?
Dan: Not only was a brought to my room by security, he made me pick up a random four $20 bills that happened to be in the doorway of another elevator.... I started the evening with $60, ended it with $80 and an epic story. Winning never had it so good! lol
Pete: Hahaha wow, sounds like the near perfect night
Dan: As for stories.... Good lord, so many... I once gave a Fu Lion, a promo from GenCon to a bum for directions to White Castle at like 2am in the morning in Indy. I told him he could sell it the next day at the Con Center. I got my directions, and also had an epic story... This one is 100% verifiable. Bryan Reese was with me.
Dan: Mark Wootton and I have had some amazingly successful Saturday Night ventures to find ladies also... He is, arguably, the greatest wing man I have ever known.
Pete: Mark Wootton is one of the scariest and most effective wing man I have ever witnessed
Dan: Yes, he is a glory to behold.
Pete: Women don't stand a chance
Dan: But I do!
Pete: Haha, I do remember hearing about Colson and Ken managing to completely ruin each others chances by both being horrible wing men to each other at one Gencon, maybe they could learn a thing or two
Dan: Oh I know about that story... lol That's for others to tell but NOT I!
Pete: I wasn't out with them, I was probably back at the Hilton passed out or close to at that stage, so I cannot relay the story with any accuracy. Still, Gencon is always the best craic.
Dan: Yes it is. I love it.
Pete: I was going to ask you what you do here, but I think its safe to say that we have it covered, so I think we shall move on to the stranger questions.
For some reason I have decided to include these in future interviews.
Dan: Sounds good, fire away!
Do you still have the Captain Morgans wrestling belt?
Pete: I have been meaning to ask you that for a while, and kept forgetting.
Dan: I believe I do, yes...
Pete: Awesome, one of the coolest things I know of.
And if you were interviewing yourself, what question would you ask yourself, and what would your answer be?
Dan: Hmmm... This is a cute one Pete. Gotta give me a minute on this one!
Pete: No worries, never underestimate my laziness.
Dan: Ok... Question is: If you could start the Human Race over and you had 20 slots of people to include, what number on the list would you be?
Pete: Hmmm interesting
Dan: My answer: I wouldn't even be in the top 100 people I would choose to start the Human Race over with.
Pete: Even more interesting
*cue 5 minutes of thinking and silence*
Dan: Yep. There are some braincells up in my noggin working over time...
Pete: That would indeed be a difficult list to decide
Dan: Enjoy the curveball buddy! lol
Pete: I like to think I would make it on my own list, but I really probably wouldn't.
Dan: When ya think about it, it does hit home.
Pete: On the plus side that means I could possibly be on the list of people who caused the restart
Dan: There ya go, positive thinking! lol
Pete: Gotta look on the bright side of things
Speaking of the brightside, if you were a Subway sandwich, what sandwich would you be?
Dan: Meatball Sub, pepperjack cheese, Parmesan, oregano, on herb'n'cheese bread.
Pete: Oooooh Meatballs, got to be one of my favourites. It sounds like I would quite happily eat you
Man, Amaretto kind of sneaks up on you a bit
Dan: Enjoy that fantasy good sir... lol
Pete: Huh 14.7%, well there you go.
Right before I start getting fuzzy, what's your perfect Sunday?
Dan: NFL Football, hanging with friends, good food and great laughs.
Pete: Nice, few beers with the lads is always amazing
Dan: Never a bad thing IMO.
Pete: Right so that's it for my questions, is there anything you want to ask or leave the people reading this with?
I would like people to always remember their love for the game. That's what binds us together, and it has led me to have many wonderful friends that I would have had no chance of ever meeting if this game didn't exist. Thus I am profoundly thankful for all those who have work so hard to create, and continue to create, this game that has become a part of my life.
It truly is glorious to behold.
Pete: Awwww, I will try keep that in mind
Dan: Good man.
Pete: And thanks for being a delight to talk to and great company
Dan: Any time man, the feelings are reciprocated threefold.
So that's it, smileys and everything. Thanks again to the ever wonderful Dan Dinnen. I hope you enjoyed it and please comment with any feedback or suggestions you might have on our forums.
Check out my last interview: A Few Scoops with Daniel Briscoe