Saturday, July 02, 2011

The Warlock's Origins 2011 (No Longer) Live Blog!--Post-Convention Wrap-Up!

Okay, I was remiss in my swag report!  As I was unpacking my backpack and other gaming materials, trying to get the game-room back in order, I stumbled upon the my bargain of the convention!  And, I wouldn't be doing my job if I didn't tell you about:

Innsmouth Escape!  While roaming through the Dealer Hall with the PlatinumChick on Sunday, we stumbled across the Twilight Creations booth, tucked away in the back right corner of the Hall.  I only really noticed them because they had copies of Dante's Inferno, a game that I picked up at Half Price Books (and still haven't played), and I hadn't seen it anywhere else.  Walking over, I was astounded to see that quite a few of their games--including Innsmouth Escape--were on clearance!  $5 a pop!

Hell's bells, what a deal!  Adventure Retail, who runs the Steve Jackson Games booth, was retailing Innsmouth Escape for $40!  I'll gladly take the game for 1/8th of retail price!  The minis alone are worth it:  Innsmouth Escape comes with 100 Deep One miniatures, in addition to everything else in the game...$5 for 100 minis!  Yes, let's!

A few other thoughts on this year's show, though:

  • Running 6 rpg slots is tiring!  I realize that many other gamers ran and volunteered much more time than I did, but wow...six sessions of RPGs are quite a bit.  By the end of the convention, I was dragging!  Sunday afternoon, while waiting for ChaoticKarl to finish up his last Star Wars game--which ran an hour and a half over--I nearly passed out sitting up in the conference room!  While I enjoyed showing off my games and running for some really great gamers, I don't think I'll run this much again any time soon.
  • Evaluation of the schedule is needed.  So, when L-Train put in the schedule for our games, the original intention was for the vast majority of our games to go off at 7pm, so that our games would all be in the same location.  However, we ended up scattered throughout the RPGs hallway, which made set-up and tear-down difficult.  Looking at the schedule from our good friends at Rogue Cthulhu, we may want to go with something more staggered, to ensure that we have a room to ourselves.  If we can manage 5 gamers in a slot, we'd have more than enough to ensure that we'd never have to tear down the banners, and could have a Witt-Guild "headquarters" all convention long.
  • Gamers' generosity is really high.  I was personally astounded at the generosity of the numerous gamers who donated for the Hutchinson boys, as they prepare for the upcoming bone marrow transplant.  I'll be sending off two boxes of donations from both companies and individual gamers here in the next few weeks.  Spectacular!
  • Attendance is up?  Where is everyone?  I'll readily admit that I wasn't around the main halls of the convention center for most of Origins, but while I was out, the halls felt particularly sparse.  Even on Friday and Saturday--the most crowded days of Origins--things felt empty.  However, the overall attendance (according to GAMA) was nearly 1,000 people over last year's!  I'm all right with--more people is good--but it seems a little odd that the convention seemed so sparse, even with more people.
  • What to do next year?  I know already that I will not be attending Origins for the full-show next year.  I can't.  Plain and simple--can't do it.  Because of the impending date change, I'll be in my last week of work which, as a teacher, is finals week.  There's no way I could call off whatsoever.  As such, I'm not running games last year, which is a real shame, as my review cards were all overwhelmingly positive and I had several repeat players from prior years.  As of now, I'm probably going to get a full badge anyway--we get half-price badges through the Witt-Guild--then attend Friday night through Sunday.  We'll see, I suppose.
  • The Date Change Looms...  The date change isn't just going to affect me.  Dayton Public and Cincinnati City Schools both are in finals week during Origins next year, as are most of their surrounding districts.  The Ohio State University and Columbus Public Schools will be in session until mid-June.  Looney Labs--one of the biggest event draws at Origins--has officially announced their inability to come next year, as the two heads of the group are both teachers.  It's been pretty well documented that public reaction to this date change has either been neutral ("Doesn't matter--I'll go to Origins whenever it is.") or extremely negative ("I cannot go now.  Thanks, guys...).  GAMA has gotten the message from our petition, though, and has set up a poll on their site regarding the date change:

Scroll down to the bottom of the page and vote to keep Origins' dates in late-June! 

No comments:

Post a Comment