Lockdown 3

Here we are again. As much as I would love to tell you when I expect this to be over so we can be around a table again, we remain in Limbo. Lockdown 3 lasts until at least February half-term, but the best we can hope for after then is another gradual relaxing of restrictions.

Stay home, stay safe, and reach out to friends and family if you need to talk.

Return of the Muppets

The Sad Muppet Society is returning on Tuesday 29th September.

As you might expect, we cannot game in the way we used to. The committee has carried out a risk assessment, and detailed some new rules that all members and visitors must follow.

Read the new rules here sadmuppets.org/wordpress/the-sad-muppet-society-covid-19-risk-assessment/

The headlines are that we will be meeting fortnightly initially, to judge how well we can run the club with these rules, with a capacity of THREE games, and a maximum of four players for each game, sitting at opposite corners.

I will be creating table booking posts here www.facebook.com/smst4t for the first few meets, and sharing them to the main group here www.facebook.com/groups/thesadmuppetsociety as usual.

Covid-19 update

Following the recent changes to Government guidance, the committee have regretfully reached the conclusion that conditions are not yet right for us to reopen the Sad Muppet Society.

We have not yet heard from the church about the hall reopening but, given the relatively small space for the club, it is simply not viable for us to reopen the club whilst social distancing is required.

As a consequence we have decided to roll all memberships over to 2021, so you won’t need to pay for next year, if you have paid for 2020.

This does not mean no gaming of course. There are many online platforms (personally, I’m loving Tabletop Simulator on Steam).

I’ll post updates as and when the guidance changes but, for now, look after yourselves and your loved ones, and we’ll meet again, don’t know where, don’t know when, but I know we’ll meet again, some sunny day!

Annual General Meeting 2020

Our AGM will be held on Tuesday 28 January, where the current committee will all be re-elected because nobody else is daft enough to agree to do this 🙂

One of our annual traditions is to vote for two awards, to be announced at the AGM.

The Bruce McGrath trophy for Most Sporting Muppet

The Pixie Jam trophy for the Muppet of Muppets

Existing members can you please send your nomination (just ONE for each category) to me by FB Messenger, or by email to rogerATsadmuppetsDOTorg

The AGM will only take the first few minutes, so gaming as normal afterwards.


The committee was re-elected unopposed.

The winners of the trophies are:

Rich Elliot won The Bruce McGrath trophy for Most Sporting Muppet.

The Pixie Jam trophy for the Muppet of Muppets came my way.

Thanks to everyone who voted. Have a great 2020 of games of all kinds.

Basingstoke’s new tabletop store

Basingstoke has a new game store. The Gaming Den opened its doors for the first time on 13 July. Taking over a former restaurant site at 12 London Street, The Gaming Den is open 10am to 10pm Saturdays and Sundays, and 12pm to 10pm Monday to Friday.

Nice selection of stuff, good amount of space, and gaming tables at the back of the store. Handy for last minute supplies on the way to Muppets too.

Check them out at www.facebook.com/pg/TheGamingDenBasingstoke.

Muppet Dojo at UK Team Championships

An early start for Iain, Mark and I. The only hot drink venue open when we reached Milton Keynes was Subway. I won’t mention which flavour syrup Iain had in his latte, but he did nothing to deflate his hipster image 🙂

We checked in and got our participation swag (set of 8 alt art champions, including Yoritomo, keyfob with team name which will make a nice first player token, clan dual role card). Iain was running Lion, Mark, Phoenix, and I was running Unicorn.

The original plan had been for a traditional swiss-style event but, with 12 teams, that would have made for a very short event. The organisers changed it so that the teams were split into two groups of six, and each group played round robin, against every other team in the group, following by top two from each playing off in semis and finals. At the start of each round, team captains tossed a coin, and the winner chose a player from each side to face off. Then the losing captain did the same, and finally the remaining players paired off.

Teams knew the main clan for each player, so some strategising went on in the run up to the event. As team captain for Muppet Dojo, I had already decided that my main aim was to try and avoid mirror matches where possible.

First opponents were LfauxR (Dragon – Phoenix – Unicorn). Mark managed a win, but Iain and I lost our games. I wish I could remember more about the games, but they became a bit of a blur.

Next up was Da flash gitz (Dragon – Phoenix – Unicorn). Not even Mark could manage the win this round. Oh well, there was a Nando’s nearby for our lunchbreak. Was it cheeky? I’ll let you decide.

Full of chicken and carbs, we headed back for round three, against Samurai Pizza Cats (Crab – Lion – Phoenix). I actually remember the pairings for this one. Iain (Lion), was playing their Crab, Mark (Phoenix) had the only mirror of the day, IIRC, and I (Unicorn) faced Lion. Iain won his matchup. When I saw Mark had managed to Cloud his opponent’s Tadaka, whilst his own was loaded with fate, I knew he had it in the bag. But long before they reached that point, I had been run into the ground by Lion honour. He got his god hand. Toturi, Honoured Blade, Way of the Chrysanthemum. Before I could blink, he was on 26 honour, and we were shaking hands. By his own admission, he rarely gets the combo off, and only has a 15% win rate. Fastest Lion win of the day (and his only win). I just never saw it coming, probably because nobody locally runs this kind of deck. But a win for the round, so we went and collected more role cards.

Round four was against A UK Legend and 2 Tall Tales (Dragon – Scorpion – Unicorn). Again, I remember a little from my game. A very tense affair against Scorpion, with small conflicts, and we went to time. My opponent was ahead on points, but not the five she needed to force the win. I had two Cavalry Reserves in hand, and the fate in hand and on rings to play them both, which carried me over the line. My first win against Scorpion in months. More role cards for Muppet Dojo!

Our final round was against Rokugan Nine-Nine (Dragon – Scorpion – Unicorn), who were in the running to make the final elimination stage. They finished us off in short order IIRC.

Iain and I both finished 1-4, Mark 3-2, so 5-10 on the day, and 2-3 in rounds. That placed us fourth of six in our group, and ninth from twelve overall. No more swag but we’ll be back next year if we can!

Iain, Mark and I rounded off the day with an enlightenment game, using the same decks we’d used all day, so not at all optimal for multiplayer. A few treaties, managed to break my own, losing some honour in the process, but once most of the rings had concentrated around Iain, I was able to swoop in with a single Keeper Initiate and steal the win.

Big thanks to Iain and Mark for a great pair of tourney buddies, Mark for driving, all the people we played against, for making this a really fun, not too serious day, and of course, the organisers without whom none of this would have happened.

Revised table booking process

Fortunately or unfortunately, depending on your point of view, bookings are now needed for tables. We have ten 6′ x 4′ tables available each week.

But forums are old hat, so table bookings have moved to our dedicated Facebook page.

There will be a new post for each week, just comment in the relevant week to reserve your table.

Not on Facebook? Comment below with the date and number of players.