Saturday, August 6, 2011

Gen Con Indy: Day 3, Part 2

My (non-RPGing) wife was walking along when a booth rep from Chessex attempted to give her a coupon or pamphlet or somesuch. She laughed and said, "Hey, that's not Gamescience!".

I was horrified and secretly very proud at the same time.

Apparently she has been paying attention, but hopefully the gentleman wasn't offended--it was meant in good fun.

My wife and daughter stopped at the Edhellen Armoury booth and began fighting in the middle of the aisle with assorted foam weaponry. I believe my wife brought a giant maul into play at one point before I made them stop, explaining that wasn't really proper floor etiquette. It was really starting to turn into a more eventful day than I'd have liked.

I had a nice, long chat with Kevin Siembieda. Man, I wish would have recorded it. I think I mentioned in my chat with him the other day what fire and enthusiasm he still has for gaming. He gave me this incredible pep talk about gaming, about doing what you love, and not focusing on the little stuff at the table as much as the big picture. The guy gets all the flak in the world online, but man, he should give a seminar for discouraged gamers.

Honestly, it was nice to see the Palladium booth keeping pretty busy. Kevin said after a two-year absence, he wasn't sure what sort of reception they'd get. Well, you can definitely say Palladium's fans haven't forgotten.

I picked up the Castles & Crusades Castle Keeper's Guide. I went for the hardcover, since I had a coin that gave me 20% off my purchase. I think my whole group raided their store at some point or another. The printing and binding looks nice, which was one of my questions since Troll Lord Games is doing in-house printing now. I probably could have dropped another $100 at the TLG booth, but that wasn't in the budget.

There remains no big "hit of the convention". I've asked probably 2 dozen gamers and gaming bloggers, and no one can point to one product that just took over this show. I've been asked my opinion on Burning Wheel a lot, but I don't know how many copies they brought or how they're doing. I didn't get the feeling of that same "buzz factor" as, say, Mouse Guard, but it's hard to tell.

Honestly, if there's anything, I get the sense most people are generally pretty happy with their game or company of choice. Paizo and Pathfinder fans are enjoying what they're getting (Ultimate Combat was moving very well, it looked like), and you can see the same with fans from Margaret Weis to Cubicle 7 to Pinnacle. I don't know if it's the fact that we're coming to terms with things such as pdf pricing, online resources, and less traditional publishing models, or if we've stabilized after a long period of their being one big dog and everyone else. This show just seems a bit happier, if that makes sense.

OK, time for some more pics:

These two worthy knights were found over by the Paizo booth. It had
to be 150 degrees in that armor.
My daughter was in love with this sword. She totally had the Conan-style
wielding of it down, as well.

This picture turned out like crap, which is a shame, because mini-Stormtrooper
and mini-Boba Fett made my day.
Another shot of the action at Kenzer. They do an awesome job of
putting players through Hackmaster demos.

By request, another view of the Palladium Booth.

Traveller Books! I'll never get tired of seeing that.

I'll finish up with some thoughts and additional tomorrow. I have my oldest daughter's baptism tomorrow, so I'd probably be in big trouble if I missed that in the morning.


killervp said...

I am so glad that Kevin remains positive!!! If you are by that way again tell him that 7 fans played a game, developed by him, for 6 hours tonight.... Online by skype. One was in Vancouver (Victoria Island, to be exact), one was in Clearwater, FL (gulf coast florida) another in Denver, one in Utah, one in Modesto, CA, one in Lompoc, CA, and the GM was in Los Angeles, CA... if that does not demonstrate that Palladium is still loved, I do not know what would!!!

Zachary Houghton said...

Will do!

EPIC PRIME said...

I've always loved the fluff of Rifts, just the system doesn't work for me, if it works for others, excellent. Hope that EpicRPGBlog will be there next year.

I also can't get enough of seeing Traveller in it's old skin and I'm very happy with Mongoose having the nostalgic sense to return to the old look.

Zachary Houghton said...

@Epic: I feel the same way you do with Traveller.

Hope you can make it next year!

EPIC PRIME said...

added you to our blog roll! Look forward to reading your blog more.

chris said...

I think that I'm going to have to agree on two of your statements: I don't think there was really a break through release this year, and I think the con was a happy place. I do think Margaret Weis Productions got the breakout buzz of the con from their announcement of the new Marvel game.

I was also glad to see so many women and younger people at the con this year. Maybe we'll lick that dwindling marketplace yet. :)