By Philip Durham
This was my first year at GenCon. I have always had a love of games from a very young age. I loved Family Game Night and whenever we would visit my grandmother my brothers and I would go downstairs and pull out the board games there to pass the time. As time went on, I moved more into TCGs and RPGs, but those basic board game mechanics were always something I would return to from time to time. As I got older and my younger brother started introducing me to the more “European” board games that had a higher strategic complexity I was drawn back into playing these games. You can find my reviews of many of the games I have played here on this site. But even given all of this and the fact that I live in Indianapolis (which has been home to GenCon for several years now), I had not made it to GenCon until this year. There are a variety of factors that lead to that. I am a busy adult with many responsibilities. I do not particularly enjoy large crowds. And to be honest I was not comfortable with my size and health and did not want to squeeze through crowds. I am winning the battle with my size and my health is improving, and I set a weight loss goal (which I made) and so I decided to carve out the time to go to GenCon to have fun with friends and family.
I spent the majority of my time in one of two places: the exhibition hall and the games lending library. The exhibition hall was massive and a bit intimidating. There were many booths which seemed to be just resellers and wealth of MtG buyers. I saw Randal Milholland, Scott Kurtz, and Kris Straub and I was honestly a little to star struck to approach them. What I enjoyed most was sitting down and demoing games. I will review those games in the coming weeks, but it was a lot of fun to learn games and have the opportunity to buy them directly from the developers. The games lending library was also a lot of fun. It was far less crowded and not as noisy as the exhibition hall. The catalog of games was extensive and I had fun just browsing through the art on the boxes. It was easy to secure space to play with people knew, but they have a nice system setup to allow you to look for others to play with you. The final big event I want to mention was the Call of Cthulhu game I helped run. It was a lot of fun to meet a lot of new people for a lot of fun; we will be running it next year as well, so be sure to look for it.
I am pleased I decided to finally go to GenCon. Friends and family had been asking if I would go for a long time and I am glad I have addressed my issues and did not let them keep me from having fun. I am definitely looking forward to next year where I hope to get a little more into the organized events in addition to exploring what I already know I enjoy. I hope I can get to see you there!
Is it possible? Could another year have already passed? They seem to be picking up speed as of late…. GenCon has already come and gone. The interviews I had with people were some of the best, and let me tell you it feels great to be recognized by the people you look up to. The app I used this year to record the interviews was leaps and bounds better than the one used last year.
Tune-in to the highly anticipated (and hysterical) Dungeons & Dragons live game, Acquisitions Inc. tomorrow night (Saturday, August 30)! Continue reading