Kazakhstan Has First Ever Tabletop RPG Convention
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  • Kazakhstan Has First Ever Tabletop RPG Convention



    Last week I posted about how we "need" more gaming conventions, today I woke up to talk on social media about the first ever tabletop role-playing convention in Kazakhstan. Kazakhstan is a former republic of the Soviet Union that declared their independence in 1991. This wasn't a very large convention, but I think that we should consider it to be a big deal.

    Eight people showed up to game at this convention, and two games were run at it. There was a Dragon Age RPG session that was run in English and a game of Numenera that was run in Russian. On Twitter, James Harland said "In 50 years we'll be as big as Gen Con!" These photos were reprinted from his Twitter post with permission.



    The world is a much smaller place when bound together by commonalities.
    Comments 44 Comments
    1. Egg Embry's Avatar
      Egg Embry -
      That is awesome! All of the world gaming together is the setting I'd most want to play in!

      Egg Embry, Wanna-lancer
      EN World Gaming at the Kids’ Table columnist (The FirstFable RPG and Monster Slayers)
    1. Desh-Rae-Halra's Avatar
      Desh-Rae-Halra -
      I was waiting for someone to photoshop Borat in there
    1. Dragonbait -
      Look at these pretty people. Not pictured here are the neckbeards like myself sitting at the other table arguing over the logic of a +2 to Armor Class from partial cover (it has moved to hour 2 of the debate)
    1. Dragonbait -
      Look at these pretty people. Not pictured here are the neckbeards sitting at the other table arguing over the logic of a +2 to Armor Class from partial cover (it has moved to hour 2 of the debate)
    1. Olaf the Stout -
      No to be a Debbie Downer, but can you really consider 8 people hanging out and playing RPGs a convention? If so, I have gaming conventions at my house every fortnight.
    1. Charles Dunwoody -
      Really amazing to hear about.
    1. Undertaker Sheep's Avatar
      Undertaker Sheep -
      This is so cool. Huge props to the people who set this up. We need more gaming conventions everywhere!
    1. Christopher Helton's Avatar
      Christopher Helton -
      Quote Originally Posted by Olaf the Stout View Post
      No to be a Debbie Downer, but can you really consider 8 people hanging out and playing RPGs a convention? If so, I have gaming conventions at my house every fortnight.
      I believe that you meant to say "Hey, that's cool that people in a place not known for tabletop RPGs gathered together to play some games, and start up a new tradition."
    1. Valdier's Avatar
      Valdier -
      What I find great about it is... they already have a higher level of gender representation at their conventions than we seem to in the U.S.
    1. Jesus Diaz's Avatar
      Jesus Diaz -
      This is awesome! Looks like a pretty cool crowd. I wonder who they play with, and when they'll start podcasting....
    1. MNblockhead's Avatar
      MNblockhead -
      Quote Originally Posted by Olaf the Stout View Post
      No to be a Debbie Downer, but can you really consider 8 people hanging out and playing RPGs a convention? If so, I have gaming conventions at my house every fortnight.
      Sure, more of a meetup than a convention, but let's not forget, Gen Con 0 had only 12 people. And that was at Gary's house. At least these folks arranged a proper meeting space.

      Next year, GenCon had 96 attendees and it grew from there. That's often how these things go. I group of aficionados and hard-core fans decide to meet up in real-life and then they spread the word among their friends and fan networks leading to a period of fast growth.

      Think of this as a meeting of the planning committee and let's hope that next year they'll have 100 people.
    1. harlandski's Avatar
      harlandski -
      Quote Originally Posted by Desh-Rae-Halra View Post
      I was waiting for someone to photoshop Borat in there
      I wondered how long it would be till someone mentioned Borat. Not too popular with most people here, but I say he at least put Kazakhstan on the map!
    1. harlandski's Avatar
      harlandski -
      Quote Originally Posted by Olaf the Stout View Post
      No to be a Debbie Downer, but can you really consider 8 people hanging out and playing RPGs a convention? If so, I have gaming conventions at my house every fortnight.
      I know what you mean, and it is very small beginnings, but it was a convention in the sense that we brought together different communities for the first time: Russian and English-speaking gamers, hardcore rpg players and occasional players / boardgamers, students and working people. Now we're hoping to continue to build on those connections throughout the year, and have a bigger event in 2018.
    1. harlandski's Avatar
      harlandski -
      Quote Originally Posted by MNblockhead View Post
      Sure, more of a meetup than a convention, but let's not forget, Gen Con 0 had only 12 people. And that was at Gary's house. At least these folks arranged a proper meeting space.

      Next year, GenCon had 96 attendees and it grew from there. That's often how these things go. I group of aficionados and hard-core fans decide to meet up in real-life and then they spread the word among their friends and fan networks leading to a period of fast growth.

      Think of this as a meeting of the planning committee and let's hope that next year they'll have 100 people.
      Those are some really cool and encouraging statistics! Maybe we should at least *aim* for 100 people next year...
    1. Jhaelen -
      Awesome!
      Quote Originally Posted by Valdier View Post
      What I find great about it is... they already have a higher level of gender representation at their conventions than we seem to in the U.S.
      That was my first thought, as well
      Sure, eight people isn't a lot, but you gotta start somewhere! Thanks to the media exposure it's likely they'll grow quickly.
    1. harlandski's Avatar
      harlandski -
      Quote Originally Posted by Undertaker Sheep View Post
      This is so cool. Huge props to the people who set this up. We need more gaming conventions everywhere!
      Thank you! Early days, but the enthusiasm we've got from people worldwide is a massive boost!
    1. Caliburn101's Avatar
      Caliburn101 -
      Put it on the map? It's as big as EUROPE!
    1. Nylanfs's Avatar
      Nylanfs -
      Yes but who cares about Europe. ;P
    1. AriochQ's Avatar
      AriochQ -
      It seems like a good chance to go visit Kazakhstan! If there is one thing I learned from playing D&D, always find a local guide. I am willing to bet they would be willing to show you around a bit if you travelled to their convention.
    1. Alzrius's Avatar
      Alzrius -
      We should all happy of recreational learnings of RPGs for make entertainment glorious nation of Kazakhstan!
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