We’re at just over three months 'til GenCon, and it looks like the event listings are up (OFFICIAL or HIGHPROGRAMMER)! Are you going? If so, what are you most looking forward to this year? I’m always a sucker for RPG one-shots and it looks like we’ve got a good crop this year. A pretty wide variety of escape rooms, too…
Unfortunately we won’t be attending this year (going to PAX Unplugged though!) but I am REALLY hoping they drop Pandemic: Legacy Season 2 on or a around then and it hit’s retailers at the same time.
Last year Captain Sonar came out at/on the first day of GenCon and was IMPOSSIBLE to find in retail around here, but my FLGS happened to be able to get a copy right away. I was super surprised and oh so grateful as that game is amazing and we had a board game weekend with some friends coming up.
I’m sooooo bummed I can’t go this year. It was like the highlight of my planning for the latter half of the year and my plans got squashed. I hope people who do get to attend have a blast, though. I need to see if I can get someone to get me some of the GenCon 50 merch at least. I can pretend I got to experience it. >_>
This will actually be the first Gen Con I’ve ever been too. If anyone has any tips I’m all ears. My buddy who’s been going for a while has already told me all about setting a strict amount I’d be willing spend…let’s just hope I can stick to it.
I have never been, which is a great shame. I want to try out the new Lot5R card game from Fantasy Flight. Not to mention Vampire 5th Edition.
Kinda sad that I’m not going to be Indy this year for Gencon. I never officially went, but it was always fun to hang out downtown and check out the costumes and watch people play Magic at the bars.
Ahhh, awesome! A strict spending limit is good for sure, but a couple of other things:
- Highprogrammer has a version of the event listings that is way easier to navigate, so I recommend using that one to figure out what to do.
- If the island noodles truck is there, it’s really good, and it has some vegetables so I feel like I am putting nutrients in my body. A+
- Bee Coffee Roasters is a great place to get your morning caffeine fix and usually has a punch card that you can redeem for a customized d6 after buying enough
- It sounds weird, but if you need some downtime or to recharge your batteries, I HIGHLY recommend the charity auction room. Even if you don’t buy anything, it’s a way more tranquil place to sit down than any of the hallways or benches, and the auctioneers are funny but not overwhelming.
- This may or may not apply, but it’s a REALLY GOOD place to find pre-painted minis for tabletop rpg characters. Vendors have whole bins of minis broken down from sets. (If you take requests, you can really end up being a hero.)
I’m trying to think if there’s anything else…
Oh man, same about Pandemic: Legacy S2. S1 was for sure one of my favorite tabletop experiences… I’m a little worried that they’ll only bring a few copies and they’ll all be snatched up by the VIPs before the doors open, but we’ll see!
I think I’m gonna go this year. It’ll be my first time! A bud is also gonna try going and I don’t get to see him often at all so I’m stoked for that too.
Guess I should start planning, huh.
Cool! Are you local? The #1 challenge is finding housing nearby - there are more people than can fit comfortably in downtown. There are still discounted rooms if you’re willing to drive (or catch a ride), though.
Nah I’ll be coming from Dallas, although I’ve got relatives in and around the area, so I might be able to bum a room.
Gonna check with my friend to see what his plans are before I do anything anyway!
I shall be going to GenCon this year! It’s my 3rd (or 4th) time going and I’m super excited because it’s a time when I can visit friends that I don’t see for most of the year. If anyone has any suggestions for events, I’m all ears. For those going the first time, make sure that you make some time for yourself, away from all of the crowds, otherwise you will get burned out quickly. Looking forward to chatting with other about their preparation and thoughts on different events!
I’ll be going to GenCon too for my 2nd time ever (and it’s happening during my 30th birthday) so this time I plan on going to a couple of the seminars in addition to just walking around and trying out games like I did last year. I’m also looking forward to checking out more indie RPGs since I wasn’t as knowledgeable about them last year.
Bumping this since we’re only a month out now, also because I’m RIDICULOUSLY excited for Dungeon Crawl Classics and 7th Sea in particular. Anybody else going?
I would love to go to Gen Con at some point in my life, but it has never been feasible financially. For those who have gone, is it a good experience going alone or is it better with a group? I’ve done both with cons in the past, but never a roleplaying-focused one.
My hometown is about an hour south of Indianapolis, so GenCon used to be my home con. As a teen gamer, this was the best thing ever. I spent one GenCon playing in Legend of the Five Rings CCG championship qualifiers three days in a row (I never got higher than like 20-something place). One GenCon I met up with people from a Mantis Clan listserv at the con and it was awkward and good and a great memory of how weird it can be to translate internet communication into meat-space friendships.
For those that are going, if you’re into fiction writing, the GenCon Writers Symposium is a great con within a con, with special guest writers, tons of programming on the business of writing, worldbuilding, and other aspects of craft.
The last few years, I’ve been back to GenCon as a professional, since my day job is in SF/F publishing, and I’m an author. The con has gotten so much bigger, and the logistical challenges are now really big (esp. hotels as folks have said up-thread). I still love the con, even though I can’t go this year (it’s the week after the Worldcon in Helsinki, and my company didn’t get a booth in the show floor at GenCon). I’m really bummed to be missing the 50-year anniversary, but hopefully next year I can go back. Mostly, I want GenCon and Indianapolis to figure out how to let the con continue while addressing the logistical challenges. The fact that a lot of people on programming can’t get reasonable housing is a big red flag, and has already scared off a lot of gaming and related industry professionals from attending the con.
I have always gone with a group, although I have wandered and done events solo. I think that I would find it a little overwhelming if I didn’t have a close friend (and/or husband) to decompress with between events.
Yeah, I feel that. I feel like shuttles would be the only real way to address it, because the amount of demand for con-connected rooms outstrips supply by such a huge margin. There’s a lot of criticism of the housing lottery system, and I’ve never been lucky, but I almost feel like the lottery is just the bearer of bad news (and therefore the messenger that gets shot). It’s the lack of easy transportation from the outer ring hotels.
I think you’re right on the shuttle system. Perhaps selfishly, I think people on a lot of programming should maybe get access to a Panelist room block, but it’s a large enough event that might become unwieldy as well.
I am reminded of how much better the food situation is than a few years ago, thanks to the change that brought the full street of food trucks next to the convention center. They meant that the need to pay $5 or $6 for a poor slice of pizza was greatly reduced during the con, even when I was running a booth and “lunch” meant “Go stand in line for a food truck and get back as quickly as possible.”