I was going to pull a mystery arrival and surprise you guys but I couldn't pull it off. Not being close to a major city didn't help (though they've done a good job of offering alternate transport.) Ah Well. Next year then.
Just got home from WBC. I really had a good time contrary to the feelings of certain curmudgeons who believe that cons are an invitation to disaster.
First up were the people. The F:AT crowd is really just great to hang with. Everybody is looking to have a good time, attitudes are very positive. Just splendid to sit around shooting the breeze with or without gaming.
Thirstyman is a blast. He's got that Monty Python thing where everything he says has it's humor value bumped up because it's with a British accent. Even when he's bagging on America. Also I am instructed to inform everyone that "I have accepted and embraced the totality of defeat" insofar as drinking is concerned. Andy is the master of alcohol. All his opinions are right and his statements shall not be challenged. He's also a wargamer so he's aces in my book.
Sag! What a charming fellow. He looks like a modern day Ward Cleaver. Just a swell dude. He's as erudite in person as he is on the web. The kind of guy you could sit on a veranda with and listen to him pontificate and not be bored. Also, contrary to most of you filthy animals on this site, he is exceedingly well dressed. His shirts have buttons AND collars.
Will Kenyon is trip. A very very intense dude. He did ask to see my penis at one point during the con and although I declined I wasn't upset because I get the feeling he asks to see all his friend's penises. Also I got to beat him at Glory to Rome and I don't think he loses many games. So there was that.
Barney B-styles is another just great dude to play games with. He's a guy that loves games and gets stoked that at the convention he's getting to play games he doesn't normally get to. His enthusiasm is infectious.
Jay718 was there. The toughest, meanest looking gamer you ever met but a stand up dude. A guy that defines the "trifecta" as a weekend where he plays killer board games, sees professional wrestling match, and then hits a Ren Fair. Yah doesn't make sense to me either but he's cool. He was hanging with his buddy Saul who, because Jay hangs with him, by definition must be cool as well.
Dave Roswell, Josh Look, Matt Loter, King Put, Uba, Al....many of the Conn Con regulars were there.
The venders area was also pretty cool. Not really large but I got this KICK ASS dice tray for like 15 bucks. Of course I got some new games as well at decent prices especially from the GMT table.
The venue, I have to admit sucked. That hotel is a dump and outside of the "open gaming" room was way too fucking hot. The wargame room had to be over 90 degrees during the day. Absolutely horrid. Other areas of the hotel were woefully under cooled as well. The bathrooms were fucking horrendous. If you've got 1500 people in your hotel you've got to clean them things more than once a day AND make sure that half the damn urinals aren't out of order. The Continental across the street wasn't any better really. For 100+ bucks a night I should at least have a mattress that was manufactured in the 21st century.
I didn't interact with the con staff all that often but what little contact I did have was not really pleasant. You get the vibe that you're just annoying them or that you are bothering them. I was told that you can't get a second program if you lost your first because they don't have any extras? Really? And the Con dude who told me that I had to clear my stuff off a table because you can't hold a table in open gaming, which was fair enough, but then proceeded to put all his own shit on a table to hold it while he was away for an hour was kind of bullshit.
Those were really just annoyances really because as I said at the beginning it really was a blast. Hopefully I'll go again next year.
It was my first time at WBC and as exhausted as I am now it was one of the best weekends I've had in a while. Staying up till 3am three nights in a row was a labor of love. That in no small part was due to the awesome F:AT group I was hanging out with.
As much as I love playing games, it's also about the people you're playing the games with. And at a convention it's always a crap-shoot. The F:AT folks I met and chucked dice with the entire time were tops! Generous and welcoming. And much like myself, like to drink occasionally. Thank you everyone. Looking forward to doing it again very soon. Next time I hope we actually get to finish TI3.
I think I ended up playing less than 10 games the entire week. Granted I did get in three games of TI3, but still not a lot of gaming for me.
And that's the difference between people that are awesome that I want to game with and people that suck; I have just as much fun, if not more, just fucking around with awesome people, talking shit, drinking and hanging out.
Everyone needs to pick up Whoopies by the way. Game of the con.
Also, the FATCast interviews this year are fucking KILLER! I can't wait for them to be put up.
Particularly your bathroom which, I understand, you liberally covered in vomit.
Agree with all the above sentiments. This time, I ONLY played with F:ATies and it was a total blast from start to finish. Really good to meet everyone, both those I already knew and new folk. All were awesome fun. I extend my apologies to Josh, whom I fucked up with alcohol on his first night, but he took it well. I looked after him for the rest of the con....