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Gen Con, part 1

Wow. Gen Con was so excellent.



Arrived Wednesday afternoon in Minneapolis. Got picked up at the airport by Scott, drove five hours to the hotel in Milwaukee. Excellent so far. Lots of talking about recent events in my life and where things stand. I felt a bit better after the ride, and it was time to leave all that stuff behind and get into the spirit of Gen Con.

Thursday morning, 8am. D&D Open. Dumb hack & slash, we nuked some orcs, played it as a D&D game, did some roleplaying. Didn't really find it sporting or all that interesting, as a game. But it was social, and fun, and we met some good people. And we advanced.

In the afternoon was NASCRAG, we had their artist (Indy) as a Judge, and he really didn't seem to click with us. Don't think he was really getting what we were doing, or maybe he just wasn't so into it. :-/ Anyway, we finished the plot, but didn't advance.

Note that we didn't know about our advancements for a while still.

Some of the gang were thinking of playing a Living Dragonstar thing in the evening, and Scott wasn't up for it, so after I made sure he was going to be all right going off with the others (I'm the only one at GenCon that he knows, so I felt a bit repsonsible), some of us went and played...

It was a sci-fi roleplaying game... Unfortunately it was a very passive module, written by a guy famous for his "sit back and let the story wrap around you" moments (though we didn't know that 'til the end)... And it really seemed to play like D&D, but with Freefall checks every so often to keep from spinning in place in the microgravity of an asteroid. Oh, and with guns that did enough damage to kill a first level character instantly.

So really, it didn't demonstrate much of interest to me. Hopefully Traveller d20 will kick as much ass as I hope it does.

Let's see. That was Thursday. That was a helluva Thursday. We ate Italian food after the last run that evening, and then hit the hotels.

Friday morning, I accidentally got up early, with the alarm I had set for my Thursday run. Oops. Went back to sleep for a bit, then got up and went to the convention floor, where all the vendors were. Bought a little stuff (Chrononauts expansion, some "Imagems" tokens for characters... total less than $10), but mostly resisted the urge to spend. w00t.

That was the first time I got to see the Traveller d20 book in its rough form. Yum... My mind started some gears turning on how to rebuild sabian in the new system. I'm looking forward to that. Right before the con floor was closing up, they got their shipment of "T20 Lite" in from Chicago; turns out Marc Miller and the d20 author guy drove down themselves to pick it up. Impressed, I picked up my copy and got it signed... Second one out of the box!

In the evening, Y went off to a Call of Cthulhu thing (he had a lot of fun) and some of us went to a D&D "Members Only" event (don't know what Members Only refers to, but we had no problem getting in despite being pretty low level RPGA folk). Turns out we were playing this wacky all-demihuman group in a preview release of a module. I played a Dwarven Druid. Wacky, but fun. My second druid of the weekend, actually; I'm starting to get an appreciation of the druid spell list. It's better than it looks.

There was this time that a big ugly thing was coming through an opening in a wall at us, in this natural cavern... I cast Spike Stones on the ground between us and them (warning the party not to walk there), and it walked in and took a bunch of damage from that (3d8, for walking 15' in before stopping)... then it climbed up onto the walls and ceilings, to try to get to us that way, and I cast Soften Earth and Stone on that surface, to make it fall and land back in the spikes. Then it walked across the spikes to get to us, giving up on the ceiling idea. 10d8 damage right there, bam.

The run was basically just there to have fun with... We did ok, and realized just how bad-ass the things we were up against had been, and chuckled at the weird composition of the party. Then we headed over the the board game area, and hung out a little, getting some dinner from the last refreshment stand left open.

That was the first place I saw the "Game of Thrones" card game, some people were playing it there. I was impressed, and resolved to buy a whole slew of cards the next day when the floor was open again. Thankfully, I came to my senses before spending $120 on the game, and ended up getting only $19 worth of the cards. It's ok, but I don't actually see myself playing it much in the near future. I scared some people by eating the ham sandwich that came from the concession stand; they said it was "grey"... looked pink to me.

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