Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Dice Station Zebra

Pilgrims in a strange land, dice in hand...
Now that I've had a couple of days to mull it over, I've got to say that the 2012 North Texas RPG Con was a success.  While there were problems, they were overwhelmed by the sheer fun and goodwill of the event.  Once I got my autograph hound duties done (it felt like I had a metric buttload of stuff for the guests to sign) I got down to business: schmoozing and planting my rear at tables, rolling dice.  Here's the breakdown:

The Good:

Playing BadMike's B1 game is an annual treat for me.  I didn't have my dwarf with me so I played a fighter along with my friend Liz.  Watching her battle, subdue and conquer an intelligent dancing sword was a highlight of the game.  We didn't get rid of the necromancer but put a big hurt on him by taking out his Dragon (a wight), stealing his treasure and beating feet out of there.

The panels.  The 2E panel with Steve Winter and Zeb Cook I found especially informative.

Meeting and hanging out with my fellow Save or Die podcasters Mike, Liz and Vince is always fun.

Lounging around the lobby, talking to Jenell Jaquays.  She's always got something going and she's a font of gaming information.  Hope to be in one of her games next year.

Seeing FulOnGamer for the first time and helping him settle in for his Battletech game.  Gotta go up to Lawton and game with that nut soon.

Winning a couple of silent auctions: FINALLY getting a set of Dungeonmorph Dice and a copy of 2nd Edition TOON (Mike Stewart would have been disappointed if I hadn't got those rules).  Other swag: Jeff Dee's Pocket Universe, signed by the man himself and Frog God Games were in attendance so I got me a copy of the Tome of Adventure Design - a book that, after I looked through it, is right up there with Ultimate Toolbox in versatility and thoroughness (it says it's for Swords & Wizardry and Pathfinder but useful for any RPG).  Alas, no Tome of Horrors Complete for me - the S&W version would have been a nice addition to my collection.

Playing The Schnozz in Jeff Dee's Villains and Vigilantes game Friday night.  I'm gonna have to make time for that next year too.  I still don't quite understand the rules but it was a blast.

The impromptu Marvel Super Heroes game that erupted between myself, Mike and another con-goer with Vince GMing.  Didn't take it seriously at all (which is why Mike dubbed it a "MSH/TOON hybrid").  We're hoping to get our Saturday night Skype group to play.

Sitting in the closed bar until the wee hours talking to Steve and Zeb.  I'm a sucker for gaming history and these guys really know their stuff (but I was surprised that Steve had bought the Judges' Guild Ready Ref Sheets but had never read them).  Next year I owe you both a beer.

The Bad:

The stopped up toilet in our room.

The restaurant/bar left something to be desired (although they stepped up their game as the con wore on).  The hours were also bizzare (bar closes at 11 PM?  on a Saturday?).

The smoke that came out of the kitchen vents - Smelled good, but hard on the eyes.

The Ugly:

The freeway construction around the hotel.  Nothing really within walking distance food-wise and the construction made getting to a restaurant a tricky affair.

Now, in the hotel's defense, they did seem to be a tad overwhelmed by us - guess they never had the gaming/scifi/fantasy fandom stage a con there before - but they did their best and I give them kudos for that.  Always friendly and courteous.  Unfortunately, looks like we already outgrew the space so the organizers are already looking for a bigger place for next year.

All in all practically everyone had a good time.  This is a great con folks (a real laid-back, friendly type of convention where you can walk up and meet the early movers and shakers of the RPG industry - hell even THEY have a good time running and playing and meeting the people) and if you can make it next year, do.  It's worth it:


Zombie Chow said...

I don't know if I would have been disappointed if you hadn't gotten the Toon rules. I was just surprised you didn't already have it! ;)


dwayne wallace said...

My wife and I are really going to try and make the drive next year from AZ and your "review" of the con all but seals the deal.