Gen Con 2007
Once More Into the Breach - Friday
Thursday evening was spent well enough. I was pulled along to the "podcasters only" party at the Hard Rock. Though I do not have a podcast and only very peripherally associate with one, I chose to change my name to "Bob Coattails" for the evening.
It was a good party, but sadly in a too small room, and very loud. I was able to chat for a bit with Mike Stackpole, and Tex from Fear the Boot. I was impressed by the number of people and influence that Daniel Perez seems to have amongst the podcasting group. Cool.
Eventually, Adam, John and I left that room, and just grabbed a table to kill time. When Dan finally extracted him self from the party, we all headed back for the hotel. Adam and his friend Paul and I spent about an hour in the hot tub, just chilling out (a bit contradictory, I know).
Weird story of the day comes right about here. In the pool area were two people who apparently worked at the Lego booth at Gen Con (I never found that booth, btw). Anyway, this man and woman apparently were not staying at the hotel we were at. Instead, they were living in a van on top of a nearby parking ramp. I was hoping it would be down by a river. Anyhoo, both had decided to take advantage of the hotel's showers. They were using them to clean up, then they were back off to the parking ramp to sleep or party, or both. Who knows?
Friday found me back up early, and I decided to hit the gym, before breakfast and the Con. I left behind Dan, his brother Tex, and John, all snoozing. After workout and a shower, I ran into Adam and we hit Mickey D's for breakfast.
I like Adam. Many times during the con he and I gelled on a number of topics, most notably getting cheap food.
Anyway, breakfast, then off to the Exhibitor's Hall once again (my favorite place). My next session was at 2pm, so I had some time.
Made the stop by the Catalyst Games booth to get in touch with my old BattleTech contacts to say 'Hi' and to let them know I was really serious about writing. The encounter went well. I was encouraged.
Also took some time to find my event location. That was the big trouble this year. Gaming events were all mixed up it seems. My event on Friday was listed in three different locations.
I eventually did find my location (several blocks away), and people started to show up. The bonus on this event was that three people just showed up to play, having chosen the event at random. These folks were not podcast listeners, nor had they even heard of the podcast. This truly shocked me. They wanted to play, and I was happy to oblige.
The sad part of this is that one of the guys from the day before who was there to play again, willingly backed out of the event as the table became overfilled. Bob was and is still a good man.
The event went very well, and even though it was the same adventure I ran from yesterday, the outcome was completely different than the day before. This was actually a new experience for me as a GM. It taught me a lot about writing adventures and what to think about and plan for. I find it very cool after the 25 years I've played RPGs that I can still learn lessons like this.
It was kind of funny. I noticed that both this time and on Thursday when I ran the event I was very nervous. I think it had a lot to do with the players. You never know what kind of players and player types you are going to get. The GM mood can set the tone for the session, so I did my best to make sure the table stayed motivated and fun. I was not disappointed.
Friday evening found us at the ENnie Awards, where we watched lots of independent game companies win the awards. One game that stood out for me was Qin ("chin"). I'd never heard of it, but it looks gorgeous. Also got to watch Dan give a brief talk about the impact that podcasting is having and will continue to have on the RPG industry. He's a well-spoken man (if not a bit long winded) :) That video to come soon.
A bunch of us cut out of the ENnie awards early, and back to the hotel room to record an episode of Fear the Boot. Eventually, I went to bed... very late, knowing full well I had to get up by 8:00am the next morning.
Here's another walkthrough video.