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Doswelk
February 10th, 2010, 12:04
The unthinkable happened... I've had potential permission from the "Boss" to consider going to GenCon this year...

So my question is what do I need to know/want to do/etc.

Any GenCon experts out there who would like to help a GenCon newbie!

drahkar
February 10th, 2010, 12:08
There is generally a lot to do at GenCon. My recommendation is to make sure you get the magazine with all the maps and activities listed on it. Also you'll want to register through the website so that you have the ability to register for events, games and activities early. Many of them require registration and their slots fill up fast.

On top of all of that there is the commerce floor. That is always worth scheduling a day to walk around and look things over.

Kalan
February 10th, 2010, 12:12
The unthinkable happened... I've had potential permission from the "Boss" to consider going to GenCon this year...

So my question is what do I need to know/want to do/etc.

Any GenCon experts out there who would like to help a GenCon newbie!

You lucky beggar! If we weren't going to Canada the month before, i may just well have sucked up to plan our overseas trip in August instead this year ;)

Stuart
February 10th, 2010, 13:05
The unthinkable happened... I've had potential permission from the "Boss" to consider going to GenCon this year...

So my question is what do I need to know/want to do/etc.

Any GenCon experts out there who would like to help a GenCon newbie!

Pre-Registering saves money on your ticket if you can do so. Get a hotel room booked - these can go really fast.

tdewitt274
February 10th, 2010, 13:44
The main hall is huge, and a day isn't an exageration. I wandered through it at a liesurely pace and still had 4 rows to go when they said "15 minutes remaining".

Try something new. Schedule plenty of games that you find interesting that you haven't tried. Some are good, some are bad.

Rienen
February 10th, 2010, 15:43
Being this will be my 22nd consecutive GenCon, my point of view has changed over the years. However, some things have held true.
1 - Get Generic tickets. You never know when you'll see a game you want to try, and there's almost ALWAYS no-shows.
2 - Wear comfortable shoes. You will be doing a LOT of walking. Period.
3 - Get your hotel situation resolved ASAP. It's never too early to make your hotel plans. (Note, hotel reservations have already started. If you can share a room, it REALLY saves on cash.)
Feel free to PM me if you have questions.

Foen
February 10th, 2010, 22:17
I have received permission from the boss to go to my first GenCon, after two or three decades of watching the convention from British soil and never making the journey.

I'm expecting to be there (Indy) very late on Thursday, and to spend all of Friday at the Con, before departing early Saturday morning. Being a Brit Abroad, and a noob, it would be great to meet up with other folks!

Stuart

Stuart
February 10th, 2010, 22:32
Cold beer - you'll die! Have fun Stuart ... I need to put up shelves, dig the allotment and generally earn more brownies.

Maybe, just maybe ....

Doswelk
February 10th, 2010, 23:25
It would seem I missed out on a VIG, there were two left and then there was not!

Did I really miss out by not getting this?

So now I am booked into a Hotel (8 miles away) and have a badge, now I wait until April for the events?

Foen we will have to work out a meeting point/time (hmm might have to buy a mobile phone that works in the USA now!)

Phystus
February 11th, 2010, 02:37
It would seem I missed out on a VIG, there were two left and then there was not!

Did I really miss out by not getting this?

So now I am booked into a Hotel (8 miles away) and have a badge, now I wait until April for the events?

Foen we will have to work out a meeting point/time (hmm might have to buy a mobile phone that works in the USA now!)

Opinions on the VIG seem to vary, the big benefit is your choice on the hotel rooms, apparently. I'm local, and commute daily to the con, so I haven't bothered.

Some events sell out very quickly once the event registration starts, so if you're keen to try some game while you're there it pays to register early. Call of Cthulhu seems to sell out really fast, for example.

Be sure to leave a lot of time for the dealer hall, art show, socializing with folks you meet, and absorbing the general atmosphere. I usually plan two half-days just in the dealer hall, myself. And be sure to spend some time at the auction. There will be way more to do than you'll have time for, guaranteed.

And yeah, comfy shoes, a backpack with some snacks, dice, pencils, paper and water, and as few books as you can get away with.

The Gencon community forum (http://community.gencon.com/forums/) has a lot more good advice.

A get-together of FG forumites would be fun! Let's do it!

~P

ddavison
February 11th, 2010, 05:39
Be sure to swing by our booth when you are there. JPG and I will be there manning the booth

Doswelk
February 11th, 2010, 07:55
As if I wouldn't! :D

Foen
February 11th, 2010, 08:03
Be sure to swing by our booth when you are there. JPG and I will be there manning the booth

You can count on it!

Doswelk
February 11th, 2010, 11:36
A get-together of FG forumites would be fun! Let's do it!

~P

Yeah that would be fun..

:p We could even play actual face-to-face! :p

tdewitt274
February 11th, 2010, 14:28
One word of caution, the cabbies tend to disregard their rates. If you're travelling in downtown Indy, it's $4 (about 5 years ago). Make sure you get the rate hammered before getting in.

Rent a locker right away. Then you can dump your books in the locker if your bag fills up. Dice? Unless you have a special set, leave them at home. There's plenty of dice to be bought.

Plenty of restraunts in walking distance, so give those a try. There's a couple of micro breweries, Hooters, Chik-fil-a (never heard of it before, will never forget), and other quick bites. Not sure if they're setting it up again, but they have been doing a "Spy themed" bar.

As mentioned, events go FAST! In other words, "camp out" on the website the day of and have a spreadsheet of things you want. Small numbers with interesting concepts disapear very quickly. Not sure if lag is still an issue now, it was horrible 5 years ago. We had 3 of us buying up events just so that we could get what we wanted (and failed on some). Check the process for backing out of events on the GenCon website.

My tactic is the Dealer Hall on the first day, and hit it up when I have free time. Also, wander the Board Game hall, some really nice setups there if you're a minis person.

Rienen
February 11th, 2010, 15:53
Chik-fil-a (never heard of it before, will never forget),

Except Sunday! All Chik-fil-a's are closed Sunday (company policy).


Not sure if they're setting it up again, but they have been doing a "Spy themed" bar.

That's because everyone misses being able to go to the SafeHouse here in Milwaukee!

I'll be in the Gamer Concepts booth most of the Con. Feel free to stop by.

Doswelk
February 12th, 2010, 12:17
Thanks for all the helpful information...

Everywhere you go people say you need to have worked out which events you want to see and there are even posts I am finding that tell you how to use excel/freebie equilivants to sort the csv file you get.

I take it right now (as events are till being submitted) that the 2010 event list is not available to download?

Every link I see seems to be just the 2009 list?

Just want to be sure I am not being a total noob here!

drahkar
February 12th, 2010, 17:09
You have it about right. I think the event list is usually available around the March/April. I know for sure its available the beginning of June.

Phystus
February 13th, 2010, 18:33
The final online list is usually available a few weeks before event pre-registration opens. So you can have an enjoyable afternoon plotting out your schedule beforehand, and then when registration opens you can get through it pretty quickly. How important registering early is to you will depend on what you're looking for. Some events always sell out quickly, others will take some weeks to fill up, and others never fill.

It also pays to go back towards the close of pre-reg and see if anything has been added late.

And, as someone has noted, a few generic tickets are a good idea.

As for the meetup, how about noon Friday at the Smiteworks booth?

~P

Doswelk
February 15th, 2010, 16:04
Friday afternoon sounds like a plan...

Matchstick
June 15th, 2010, 20:28
I'll be at GenCon all four days and I'm sure I'll be by the Smiteworks booth more than once. I went in 2006 and 2008 and hit the Fantasy Grounds booth several times each time. Now that I'm actually running a game with Fantasy Grounds I'll probably be there even more. Plus, I'm hoping to check out a bunch of Savage Worlds stuff on the dealer floor as SW is now (thanks to FG and Doswelk) my new RPG obsession.

:)

I'll have a badge with "Matchstick" on it from ENWorld. Say "hi" if you see me!

Doswelk
June 17th, 2010, 20:11
I'm there Thursday to Sunday (well Monday really but that's just getting home), I'll be the chap with the British accent and the Savage_Doswelk t-shirt on

ddavison
June 18th, 2010, 06:26
I look forward to seeing you all there. Doswelk, do you have more than one of those shirts or are you going to be blessing us with several days worth of Doswelk? ;)

Doswelk
June 18th, 2010, 09:35
More than 1 (in fact postman is stuffing through the letterbox right now!)

:D

Kalan
June 18th, 2010, 11:41
*grumble grumble*

Doswelk
June 18th, 2010, 16:16
What have I done now? (about from go out and buy Savage Suzerain!)

Phystus
July 28th, 2010, 02:17
And suddenly, it's a week away. I just put the finishing touches on our mini-schedule. Can't wait!

Meetup at the SmiteWorks booth noon Friday!

~P

ddavison
July 28th, 2010, 04:20
I look forward to meeting you guys in person.

StuartW
July 28th, 2010, 06:01
I'll be there Friday only, albeit for the whole day.

Stuart

Matchstick
July 28th, 2010, 17:38
I'm really psyched! As mentioned above, thanks to Fantasy Grounds, Savage Worlds, and Doswelk's videos I'm attending as an active RPG player this year rather than as a nostalgic RPG idler, and that's making me extra psyched!

I'll be leaving Wednesday for a 10 hour drive to Indy (coming from the Twin Cities). I should get there in the evening. We're staying at the train hotel, and we'll probably pick up our badges and then head out to eat.

I have a Dresden game on Thursday afternoon, and I'm an alternate in a Space 1889 game Friday morning, but other than those I'm open. Should be a nice balance of gaming and vacation.

I hope to see some of you there!

Doswelk
July 28th, 2010, 18:20
I'm really psyched! As mentioned above, thanks to Fantasy Grounds, Savage Worlds, and Doswelk's videos I'm attending as an active RPG player this year rather than as a nostalgic RPG idler, and that's making me extra psyched!

I was glad to help!


I have a Dresden game on Thursday afternoon

And I was just beginning to like you! I so wanted to get a Dresden game in but missed out on all of them! :(

StuartW
July 28th, 2010, 18:23
I'm not booked in for any games/events, is it possible to just watch?

Matchstick
July 28th, 2010, 21:44
I was glad to help!



And I was just beginning to like you! I so wanted to get a Dresden game in but missed out on all of them! :(

This is actually one that's not on the schedule. I also participate on the ENWorld boards (http://www.enworld.org) and they usually have people that run games for ENWorld members. I got into a Dresden game from there.

It'll be interesting. I don't know anything about the system.


I'm not booked in for any games/events, is it possible to just watch?

Usually there's tons of games going on in public areas, and usually no one minds if you watch, as long as you're not disruptive.

Phystus
July 29th, 2010, 00:16
I'm not booked in for any games/events, is it possible to just watch?

Usually, though it's best to ask the GM as a courtesy.

But better yet, pick up some generic tickets when you get there. Not every game fills up in registration, and even those that do often have no-shows, so you might be able to play instead of watch! :D The general rule of thumb is that 1 generic ticket=2 hours of gaming, so a 4-hour RPG would cost 2.

The generic tickets are so popular that there's a separate registration line just for buying them. It will be near the other registration lines, which are usually in the northeast corner of the convention center (corner of Maryland and Capitol streets).

If you're into seminars, they almost always have open spots, and many are free.

There's also an open gaming area, usually the second floor lobby in the Hyatt outside the meeting rooms. Just look for something interesting and ask if you can watch/join.

Be sure to at least poke your head into the dealer room, to check out the scale of it if nothing else. Many of the companies run demos of their games in the dealer room as well.

Hope to see you there. Have fun!

~P

Doswelk
August 3rd, 2010, 19:07
Well all packed...

If the rumoured free wi-fi in the convention can cope with the load, I'll be twittering away through it!

Only just created the twitter, but if anyone really wants to find me (and I remember to tweet - if that's what it's called), I'm hoping I can use that to help people find me!

Savage_Doswelk is my twitter account

Hope to see someone there!

ddavison
August 4th, 2010, 03:26
Safe travels.