Sunday, August 24, 2014

The Gen Con 2014 Report

A week ago tonight, I had just finished driving home from Indianapolis after 5 days of gaming at Gen Con. It is crazy to think how time flies...a few weeks ago, I was worried about getting everything ready for the convention. A few weeks before that, I was thinking I still had plenty of time to get everything done, maybe even get one more Darkshade Publishing book completed ahead of it. Now, the next Gen Con is only about 49 weeks away since it is an early start next year (July 30).

Pictures? Nope - did not even bother to snap any on my out dated and not smart phone.

Busy? Yup - worked about 8-12 hours each day at the auction as well as ran one 3.5-4 hour game each day.

The Exhibit Hall? I just find it hard to pay retail price for things these days. I usually try to track down Wargames Factory since they offer some free sprues with their new sets, but they did not show up this year. I did drop in a few times on the Peryton Publishing booth to say hello or grab a few SA! Lite books to use for my game on Saturday, but I otherwise did not really do any real shopping or investigating.

Darkshade Publishing? Tom and Robin at Peryton Publishing were kind enough to offer my two books in the Exhibit Hall. I don't think I sold more than a few copies, but I am ever thankful for the exposure they offered.

Wednesday? I showed up early on the day and helped with auction intake. I then went to the KFG Wednesday Gaming at Scotty's to get a good meal and run a cool little card game that is one of my favorites (Formula Motor Racing). Briefly talked to KFG Bart there and ran my game at 3pm for an awesome local couple. No one showed  up for my 1pm slot, so I enjoyed a sandwich and a dessert watching Hellboy 2 and Man of Steel on the vid screens. Went back to the auction, worked a few more hours, then met the Peryton group at the Tilted Kilt for our annual pre-con gathering.

Game of Thrones RPG? I find that the game is always a good time. It can be a challenge dealing with a table full of people that more than likely know the books better than I do. It is also a low magic, lower monster type world which presents its own additional challenges. I think the one thing I can confirm for 2015 is that I will be taking a break from AGOT - 6 years (2008-2010, 2012-2014) was a decent run.

Tunnels & Trolls? The fantasy sessions seemed to work well enough. All the players were new to T&T so it was really a teaching session, but both groups really developed some strong characters in the short time. The strength of the system is its allowance for creativity on the character front - players seem to love being able to choose a race that could be improbable for other games.

Stay Alive? I ran the Gaslight game for 8 players. It went quite well and I think it is something I can really try to expand upon for future Darkshade projects. As with most independent publishers, I need to find some reliable and affordable artists to work with.

What did I buy? Not much at all. I bought a copy of 'Castle Panic' in the auction for $16 (with an expansion) and bought a zombie board game in the charity auction for either $26 or $28. I sold a few items in the auction, netting just over $200 after paying my seller fees.

Will I be back next year? It is hard for me to resist the temptation of Gen Con. Every year I say that I am done running events, but then I have some really great players show up and make me re-think that stance. I already promised the boy that I would bring him along next year, so the only question will be working out the hotel room and how much time to work at the auction.

It was nice to see some newer friends once again - Cram, Sligo, Caed, Jordan...met a few others for the first time from the Peryton crew. Thanks again to Tom and Robin for everything you do and for the 'Event Uber Overlord' t-shirt. I really do enjoy organizing those events every year. Also to Robin for running the D&D 5E game that I showed up late to...and KFG Bart for once again tracking me down to give me my t-shirt and dice (and for organizing all the KFG stuff every year).


  1. I want to see you wear that shirt.

  2. Definitely at BASH Con when it is more comfortable to wear a long sleeve/jersey - you bet :)

    I look forward to wearing it too...