I haven't blogged in ages, but I've been very busy... My real life has changed a lot since my last blog, I've got a new job, I've moved to a new home and last but not least, I've become a father of twin girls ( My wife and I already had a son, so it's a full house now ).
As I now have 3 kids, hosting the EuroNARPs in their old format was going to become a LOT more difficult. For every EuroNARP I had to be away from home for about 5 days, 2 days for setup and 3 days for the actual NARP. On top of that, my father wants to sell the little forest where Teh Lair^2 is located.
So, what's going on right now? In my new house, one of the main criteria was that it needed a basement to build a new location for Teh Lair. As you can see from the picture above, I managed to find a house with a brilliant basement. I did a little test-setup when we first moved into the house and wanted to go from there immediately, but fate had a whole different idea...
After a few weeks in the basement, we found out that there was a rather big problem... Whenever it rained hard for a few days, water would seep into the basement, if you want to build a huge room filled with electronics, water is the LAST thing you want in that room. So a full rebuild of the room is needed and we're on it! First we had to empty out the whole room.
I like building stuff, but to solve this issue, I needed some help from the pro's. So we had a professional company come in to build a new floor that would give the water the possibility to be pumped away. First they ground a few 'ditches' in the floor to give the water a route to get out the room to a pumping system.
after that they installed a special kind of plastic floor and filled it up with concrete.
the floor, drying out... With a nice and new floor, the walls had become a bit of an eyesore, so I decided to do a full-on rebuild with new walls, new electricity and everything else needed to make this damp old basement into the ULTIMATE NARP-location.
One of the plans made for the final layout, this was the idea, but reality has gotten in the way a bit, so the actual layout will be slightly different, but WAY better and a LOT more practical :-)
We started installing a few extra electricity circuits, as you'll see later on, these few are escalating to a LOT more, just to be sure we have enough POWAAAH for the future, but this was the actual start of the rebuild.
My favourite material to work with is wood, so I bought a huge load of plywood and beams to build a completely new set of walls.
It took a lot longer then expected ( real life is a bitch ), but after a few weeks, a full frame was finally mounted on the walls, ready to have the plywood mounted!
Here you can see me mounting the plywood.
All the existing pipes, lightswitches and power provisions need to be accessible, so we had to adjust every piece of plywood for them, as you can probably imagine, this was a lot of work, in the pic you can see Strikeman going at it with a passion ( and a saw ).
After 2 days of hard work ( and a quick trip to the LEGO-store ), 90% of the walls was done.
The pile of plywood is a lot smaller now:
I'm now building some of the smaller parts, like a box for the pumping system.
During the mounting of the walls, we ( Strikeman & I ) have decided to add more electricity circuits, so I'm doing this now with the help of DenBelg.
So far it looks like we'll be adding 7 electricity-circuits in total.
The Future! Once again, Real Life invaded, I had some issues with one of my toes which were handled by a doctor, but for about a week I've been unable to wear any socks or shoes, hopefully I'll be able to continue next week.
So still to go now:
- finish the last pieces of wall - fix door - add 2 more electricity circuits - mount additional ventilation - cover the concrete floor - install electricity box - paint walls - install network - build some additional furniture ( like a bar ) - install and decorate everything
I "discovered" Dtoid in its infancy, through Digg.com I kept seeing this site pop up that I'd never heard of before but it was posting articles and links at a frightening rate... Lots of the articles were real eye-catchers and I ended up visiting the site without being referred to it by Digg.com... A few months in, I discovered the concept of NARPs and how a bunch of US-dtoiders were hosting them regularly... I loved the idea ( having grown up in the LANparty-age ) and I wanted to bring it to Europe...
This lead to the very first EuroNARP. I've been "collecting" old gaming-consoles since I was a student. I had a pretty great student-job and was able to buy shitloads of old crap at various yardsales etc, but I felt that it would all go to waste if it wasn't used, this lead to the first "Teh Lair" that I built with Undergod ( PICS & original broken blog about that ).
So anyway, the first PAX was coming and since I live in Europe, there was no possible way for me to get there ( really don't have the money for stuff like that ), so I posted an invite for all Euro-Dtoiders: "Can't get to PAX? How about a NARP? (NSFW prolly)". As you can read from the blog I posted after the NARP, it was F*CKING AWESOME! =>EuroNARP Recap
After the first one, we had the taste, we started hosting 2 BIG NARPs every year. We do a summer edition in the summer ( DUH ) and a Winter-edition around february ( will be next week this year due to stuff & reasons ). And in between we host tiny NARPs to fill up the gaps. We've done all kinds of NARPs too, we've done "RetroNARPs", "NintendoNARP" & "SegaNARPs". Always at the same awesome location: Teh Lair^2
Yes, you see that correctly, it is indeed just a few containers stacked together & rebuilt into the ultimate gaming-paradise :-) Every NARP we try to "surprise" our regular guests and thus the inside & outside of Teh Lair^2 have changes significantly every year. This is how it all started: Before Po0ky & I started the rebuld and then it became this: EuroNARP 1, Main Room At the moment it mostly looks like this: "Welcome To Teh Lair"-blog.
Every single NARP has been a huge pleasure to host & we've had people come from ALL OVER THE WORLD, which is incredibly awesome to say the least... You have no idea how great it feels to have a visitor that has travelled for a full day or more just to be at your NARP... We've had Dutch guys ( Simon & Bob ), German guys ( n0brein, 3roticN3rd, Fana7ic ), guys from the UK ( Njsykora ) and even someone from Brazil ( NuclearPsycho ), I'm probably even forgetting some people due to all the alcohol-consumption at the EuroNARPs...
The biggest honour came for me last year... Hamza & Niero were going to do a EuroTrip and I invited them over to Teh Lair for EuroNARP 4.5, sadly they wouldn't be able to make it to that one, BUT they would fit a few days in Belgium into their schedule so they could at least visit Teh Lair... So, we hosted a one-night-NARP, EuroNARP 4.4 and it was incredible! I hope they weren't to bothered with me being so starstruck, but it was so awesome to have them come over, and then they totally RAPED our asses at any game we threw at them... we even had to create a specific Halo3 mode for MP that we still play now.
It's called "Deathmatch for when Hamza joins in" and it basically punishes who-ever is in the lead by depleting their shield and setting them at half health... and he still won almost every single match...
Every single NARP has been special to me, but the visit by Niero & Hamza was a truly special occasion for all of us that waste days and days at setting up and preparing Teh Lair for every single EuroNARP...
The next one is next week and it'll be AWESOME once again, I'm sure :-) It might be the last one at Teh Lair^2 because I'm gonna rebuild it in my new basement of my "new" home, but the EuroNARPs will keep going as long as I can hold a controller in my hands!
Thanks to everybody that has ever been to one of our EuroNARPs and if you read this guide you can start hosting your own NARPs and join in the fun!
It has been a pleasure ( and will keep on being one, I'm sure ) to host these NARPs and I hope to see you all at the next one, or the next one, or the next one...
In 2005 I came home from living in my College-city for 4 years... Over the years I had collected a shitload of games and consoles ( worked my ass of for it at the local movie theater ) so I couln't store all of them in my bedroom, the solution came in the form of a bunch of construction-site-containers. It started with just one but now we have this place:
We started with just one 'room', now we use 3 of the 4 containers in the picture above to include a number of 'zones'.
Other side of the MainRoom:
Guitar Hero Zone:
2-Player-Xbox-Zone ( For our LAN-Halo-Sessions ):
Rythm & Fight Zone:
Over the years we've hosted 18 EuroNARPs, the 19th will be on the 9th of june but this will be a very limited one of only one night and mostly to get the place ready for our 20th EuroNARP and also the 5th anniversary of the Summer EuroNARP.
This year we even had some very famous visitors come over:
Or, you can go and watch these movies to know what to expect:
"EuroNARP 3.5 in 10 minutes"
This was my birthday-edition from last year, the video goes from the setup to the end, so it covers 5 days in total, true NARP-action starts at the 4th minute.
"EuroNARP4.2 Official Recap"
This was Po0ky's birthday-edition from last october, it also has a part in the video that shows you some of the history behind Teh Lair and the EuroNARPs:
Details EuroNARP 4.5
Start: Friday 17th of February at 20:00h
End: Sunday 19th of February at noon
Location: Essen in the north of Belgium ( NOT THE ONE IN GERMANY FFS! ), exact location-details will be sent when you register for our event.
Registration: send a mail to "tehlair" "@" "gmail.com" with your nickname, cellphone and in subject "EuroNARP 4.5 Registration: <nickname>"
Prices: 25 euros for 3 days, drinks included!
What to bring?
- Sleepingbag + something to sleep on ( not enough sofas for everybody, you might get lucky, but you never know )
- TV/Consoles: mention in your mail what you want to bring and we'll reserve a space for you.
- Games/Controllers: bring whatever you like, but be sure to mark clearly what is yours!
EuroNARP4.4 : The US-edition! PLEASE NOTE THAT THE DATE HAS CHANGED!!!!!
Dtoiders of the Europe-Mainland, now is your chance! Our hallowed overlords Niero and Hamza are visiting the Old Continent in a few weeks and they will be passing by @ Teh Lair!
To celebrate this we're having a special mini-EuroNARP!
if you don't know what a NARP is, go here: How To Host a NARP
Teh Lair from the outside
So on the 4nd of February we'll open Teh Lair for a crazy night of gaming, beer and fun with anyone that wants to join us! Though as it is a mini-NARP, we'll have limited seating available, so if you want to join in, be sure to register for the event ASAP by mailing to "Tehlair" + "@" + "gmail.com"
The Main-room in full action @ EuroNARP4
this is located in a small village in the North of Belgium: Essen ( beware there's a city in Germany that is named Essen as well but that's 100's of km's away from the one in Belgium ), more details if you are actually coming.
Date & Time
We'll be starting around 9pm on saturday the 4th of February and Teh Lair will be closed again around 10/11 am on sunday ( depending on when we finish breakfast )
Stuff To Bring
- 15 euros per person for entrance ( free beer all night long! )
- Sleepingbag + something to sleep on
- Games / Controllers / TV : let us know when registering if you want to bring something allong and we'll let you know if we still have a spot for it!
Please note, we don't really like having to ask for money for entrance, but we kinda need some money to keep all these containers in usable condition, but if you drink enough, there's nothing to be worried about :-D
Late-evening-beamer-gaming @ EuroNARP4
This is your chance to meet the guys that have made all this possible, the big examples of "Living The Dream", our overlords from the US, so join us in this celebration of Gaming & the Dtoid-Community
Hope to see you all there!
ALSO: if you can't make it to EuroNARP4.4, EuroNARP4.5 will be happening from the 17th of feb till the 19th of feb, so feel free to join us at that one! More info will come, you can join the Dtoid-EU-mailing-group Here
ALso2: here's the official recap video of our last event ( EuroNARP4.2 )
watch it here
As some of you know, I'll be a father soon. I've been a fan of racing games for years, but really became an avid fan of simracers over the last few years. This requires a wheel + seat for the best experience. So far I've built 3 "rigs", 2 of them were basically just plywood contraptions to keep a wheel and racing-seat from a GOLF2 together, the last one of those was in my gameroom:
Seat + book-cupboard by Van Loon Johan, on Flickr
Full set of pics for my gameroom
We just have a 2 bedroom-apartment, so when my wife got pregnant, my gamerooms days were numbered, so I had to find a solution and quick! Luckily, my wife is very supportive of my gaming-quirks, however putting that racingseat in the living room was simply out of the question, for one it looks hideous, takes up a shitload of space and it would mess up our otherwise nice and clean living room. So how to have a racing-setup in the living room without making it look like a mess?
The first part of the solution was the birthdaygift my wife gave me in february, the Fanatec Rennsport Wheelstand, she suggested I store it in the bed room and just to grab it if I wanted it. The PC would be on it's 'old' Ikea-Desk that was in the gameroom... HOWEVER... I've grown up in a carpenter family ( father & youngest brother are carpenters ) so I know my way around a woodshop. I decided to build my own custom desk.
Designing it took a little longer then planned as I had to wait 3 months for the wheelstand to arrive, but after that it all went great :-)