Author Topic: GENCON Report  (Read 2140 times)

Battleground

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GENCON Report
« on: August 13, 2008, 06:12:27 PM »
Wednesday, August 13th, 5:10 PM

Hi everyone,

Most of us have arrived safely in GENCON on Wednesday afternoon. Not too much to report just yet, other than a host of humorous incidents that would only be considered funny in the "you had to be there" kind of way.

Most everyone has picked up their badges and we've done a preliminary walk through all the rooms that will be filled with people first thing on Thursday morning. It's nice to see so many faces from Battleground walking about.

Stay tuned...

D.
"The final word, then, is the game." - Gary Gygax

Battleground

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Re: GENCON Report
« Reply #1 on: August 15, 2008, 08:15:41 PM »
It's Friday evening here in Indianapolis and all is going well.

The dealer hall is not quite as exciting as it has been in years past. At least, there isn't anything that I didn't already know about.

The Paizo booth is perhaps one of my favorite stops. They've released (and sold out of) the Pathfinder Beta rulebook (essentially a beta version of what amounts to "3.75" D&D). It's a really interesting book that I expect will be very popular over the next few months at the store for those who aren't ready to let go of 3.5 D&D. It's far more interesting than I had expected it to be. I think we'll have this book in the store sometime over the next few weeks. Definitely check it out.

On Thursday, six of us entered the D&D Open Tournament (a competitive, 3 or 4 round D&D Tournamtent) and have successfully advanced to the second round this Saturday. On Thursday night we survived the True Dungeon experience. It's sort of like a live-action, puzzle-solving series of rooms in which you race against the clock to find the solution on how to progress to the next chamber. We made it through alive, only failing one puzzle in the first room. Luckily, we killed the stirges that attacked us and were able to continue.

Friday morning, we went to the D&D 4th edition R&D seminar. Chase was finally able to put the lead designers of 4th edition in the hotseat by asking them to clarify a as-yet unanswered question regarding rogue sneak attack damage and whether or not it's maximized on a critical hit. He pointed out to them some flaws in their rules terminology and am happy to report that he had James Wyatt furiously scribbling on a piece of paper notes on the inconsistent rules.

"We'll look into that," they said.

"Please do," said Chase. It was very funny, and I have it on video. Youtube FTW.

Later that afternoon, eight of us played in two groups of four in the Dungeon Crawl Classics Tournament. Group one consisted of Matt MacGregor, Rob Aldred, George Collins and myself. The other consisted of Chase Laquidara, Cale Laquidara, Adam Zaremba and Joe Creighton. My group... did not do so well. Matt's character and my character died in the first encounter, while George and Rob survived for two more encounters before meeting their doom. The other group had a great run, surviving against all odds before finishing their session in a slaughterfest in which they brought down 56 minions before time ran out. We're currently waiting to see if they did well enough to advance to the next round tomorrow. Hopefully, they'll be posting the results soon.

Tonight, we're going to try to enter an event called "The Tower of Gygax." It's basically a 1st Edition D&D game being run in honor of the passing of Gary Gygax. It's supposed to be super-hard, run in the spirit of the famous killer-dungeon: "The Tomb of Horros." I'm hoping our characters die in the first 5 minutes to uphold that spirit, and the memory of my personal hero.

Tomorrow, is the big D&D Miniatures tournament, in which some of our Tuesday night players from Battleground will be competing. Hopefully their D20's will not be cruel to them.

That's all for now...

D.
"The final word, then, is the game." - Gary Gygax

Battleground

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Re: GENCON Report
« Reply #2 on: August 18, 2008, 03:56:11 PM »
We have safely returned from GENCON.

As it turns out, our group progressed to the final round of the D&D Open. Unfortunately, we were thwarted in the last leg of the competition pretty much due to the fact that our DM was exceptionally slow. On average, it took him 10 minutes of game time to determine the order people should go in initiative each time an encounter began. Essentially, we lost close to half an hour of a four hour timed game to the collecting and sorting of initiative cards. To add, this was just one of many slow downs caused by our DM. Oh well. Glory must wait for another year.

I posted the video of Chase's exchange with the R&D staff of D&D 4th edition on Youtube. You can view it here (he asks the second question in the video):

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I9wtKg79fN4

Overall, it was a really good show. The exhibit hall was a little underwhelming in comparison to years past, but I think that might be because 4th edition D&D is so new and the industry is sort of in a state of flux. I was able to find and purchase a large Dalek action figure, complete with plunger appendages - so that, at least, was a major success.

Declan Lynch, one of our Tuesday night D&D Miniatures players, came in 5th place in the D&D Miniatures Championship Tournament. Congratulations Declan! That tournament is tough to even qualify for, let alone come in 5th in the world!

There were lots of funny stories/moments that I'm sure you'll overhear me chatting about at the store so I'll just wait to tell you those in person :)

Good to be back!

D.
"The final word, then, is the game." - Gary Gygax

Chase

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Re: GENCON Report
« Reply #3 on: August 18, 2008, 07:52:39 PM »
Gencon 2008 was a really good time overall.  The Con itself was a really positive experience.  Personally, I lucked out and got some great DM's running the games I played.

My favorite events were:  The Dungeon Crawl Classics tournament, the Living Forgotten Realms 8 hour Special Event, and True Dungeon (as usual).

Pleasant Surprises:  the DCC event, good RPGA DM's, Elmanster the Invincible (my Elf Cleric made 100% of win), Heidi, my question to the R&D guys not sounding completely retarded.

Disappointments:  2.5 hour skill challenges, < 4 or 5 hours of sleep 6 days in a row, Elmanster not ascending to godhood at level 3, the dealer room.

The dealer room really was lack luster.  I spent maybe an hour in there over the 4 days.  The Paizo booth, the Upper Deck booth, and the Privateer booth were the most busy (and best).  WotC didn't have anything to special going on other than a 17th level Dungeon Delve... but the lines at all booths were to long to wait in.

Pro Tip:  Never, ever drive to Gencon.  It's pretty much the definition of hell on earth.  I've made plenty of mistakes in 2008, but this might be one of the worst.
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Rurouni Benshin

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Re: GENCON Report
« Reply #4 on: August 22, 2008, 05:38:25 PM »
You guys drove this year?!  Wow... more power to you for that kind of patience.  I mean, I drive every week back and forth from NY and MA, so it's grown accustomed to me, but I don't know if I could manage that kind of ride (again).

I'd much rather drive to Florida for that kind of mileage on my car.   :P

But I'm glad you guys had a great time.  I'd have loved to have been there for all the glory and glamor myself. 

Btw, Chase, at the 2:32 mark of the video on youtube, I swear the guy standing behind James Wyatt must've broke a sweat or something!  Either you gave him something serious to think about or a massive headache.  :D  Great job at the Q&A!
"This One Is Rurouni... Once Again, This One Will Drift."

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