Gary Con II Pics!
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  1. #1
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    Gary Con II Pics!

    Just got back from Lake Geneva and Gary Con II! Had a great time with all the old school games. I'll try to post more info tomorrow, but in the meantime, here are some pictures!

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    Looked like a fun time!

    Thanks for the pictures.
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    Quote Originally Posted by JediSoth View Post
    Just got back from Lake Geneva and Gary Con II! Had a great time with all the old school games. I'll try to post more info tomorrow, but in the meantime, here are some pictures!
    As promised, here's more about the con:

    It was a small event, only about 200 people (and I'm not even sure there were that many). It featured mostly older games; I think the newest RPG there was HackMaster Basic and the playtest of Goodman Game's Dungeon Crawl Classics RPG. I was signed up to play in two games and run three.

    On Friday (the first day of the Con), I got there when they opened and got our badges (my wife, Maria, accompanied me) and, since I was an early-bird registrant, our swag bags. Kenzer & Co. donated most of the loot in the swag bags which included the Kingdoms of Kalamar campaign setting, the Kingdoms of Kalamar Atlas, and The Random Esoteric Creature Generator For Classic Fantasy Role Playing Games And Their Modern Simulacra (donated by Goodman Games), a con-exclusive numbered print by an artist whose name escapes me right now (Maria got 11/100, I got 21/100), and two issues of Knights of the Dinner Table. Maria's body crashed (which is not uncommon considering her chronic pain problem stemming from car accident injuries from some 10-15 years ago), so I took her back to the hotel then returned to Gary Con for some gaming. I started playing some Learn to Hack with Dave Kenzer and a few other people, but had to bail just as the first combat was starting (drat! I really wanted to see how combat worked) because I was scheduled to play in a 1st ed. AD&D game with Frank Mentzer (To the Aid of Falx). As someone who learned to play on the Menzter-revised boxed sets, this was the next best thing to actually gaming with Gary Gygax.

    Frank had 6 characters for 12 players, so there were two of each character in the party (we just changed the name of one of the pairs). I played Reed, the female human 9th-level monk's twin sister, Deer. He was an engaging DM, making sure everyone had something to do. I never felt like he was concentrating on just a few players, but rather he was trying to make sure everyone involved was "into" the game. One thing that really interested me actually had nothing to do with Frank Mentzer; it was the Catholic priest playing one of the Paladins (which he jokingly named Little Richard, since he had the second of two paladins named Richard). I regret I didn't have the chance to get to know him better. Anyway, the game was fun, though too short at four hours. We didn't get all the way through the adventure and I didn't even die once (though I did manage to accidentally skewer Little Richard with my fauchard-fork in one close-knit combat).

    My next official event was my first Paranoia game at 9:00PM. I ran "Killer Robots from AFU Sector" for a group of players who weren't quite up-to-speed on what a typical Paranoia game was all about. Maria even picked up a character and played. The game went pretty well, though they all cooperated with each other enough that I struggled to make the adventure last even 3 of the 4 hours I was allotted. Everyone said they had fun, though Maria had a lot of question after it was over.

    The next day at 9:00AM was my second slot of Paranoia. Nearly everyone in that group (two people preregistered, so I thought it would get canceled, but I got a LOT of enthusiastic walk-ons) knew the Paranoia tropes and it was a choatically fun, manic game. Maria watched and had a much better idea of what Paranoia was supposed to be about after this game. Not even at my Gen Con games have I had this many clone deaths (three of six characters were on their 4th clones by the end of the session). Several people commented they were impressed that I had the game wrapped up before the end of the slot; too often at conventions, they're scrambling to make it to back-to-back games. One passer-by (the father of one of my players) commented that it looked like the game was practically running itself. I agreed; that's the great things about using Paranoia as a con game.

    After Paranoia, I ran Maria back to the hotel, ate a quick lunch, then headed back to the con for a Star Frontiers game I was scheduled to play in. It was run by one of the guys from the Dead Games Society. I played Star Frontiers once in 1986 and was never able to find a copy for myself until last year. I remember loving the game. This session did nothing to dispel that feeling. It was just as awesome a game as I remember. We explored a planet that reminded me of LV-426 from Alien, found a crash starliner, explored that and saved the survivors of that crash from horrible experiments Sathar were conducting on them. Good times!

    That was the last game I played. I was scheduled to run another session of Paranoia at 9PM that night, but I crashed hard after dinner and decided to cancel the game. Sorry about that, if anyone who intended to play in that game reads this. I'm not sure why my body rebelled, but I knew if I ran the game, I would be lethargic and half-asleep for most of it. It wouldn't be fair to the people who signed up. I didn't return on Sunday; we decided to just head home since I had to work Monday.

    I picked up a copy of HackMaster Basic and Frandor's Keep (a new mini-campaign for HMb; it hasn't hit stores yet) from Kenzer & Co., got a Gary Con II t-shirt and got Frank Mentzer to sign my D&D Basic set rulebooks. I also ran into Jeff Easley and got him to sign my D&D Rules Cyclopedia (since he did the cover art). It was a nice, small, intimate convention.

    One thing I realized while playing some of these old games; they were just as fun as the new ones. It really hit home that it's not the system itself that makes a game fun (though, I think we can agree a system can make a game un-fun *cough*F.A.T.A.L.*cough*), but rather the DM and the adventure being run. AD&D and Star Frontiers may be out-of-print, but they're far from dead in my book!

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    Was that you and your wife playing in the BX D&D game with James Mishler mid-day Sunday? If so, I was the guy who jumped in late and played Bjordi. Nice to meet you both. I missed your thread, unfortunately, and added my own here -

    http://www.enworld.org/forum/general...ke-geneva.html

    (I don't think the mods can combine threads these days due to some board difficulties, or I'd ask them to do so.)

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    Hey Mark,

    Great pics of GaryConII. Thanks for those.

    A special thank-you for the close-up pics of the write up/display on the Siege of Bodenburg. I feel rather sorry I missed seeing it played - and very grateful that you captured it for us all, just the same.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark View Post
    Was that you and your wife playing in the BX D&D game with James Mishler mid-day Sunday? If so, I was the guy who jumped in late and played Bjordi. Nice to meet you both. I missed your thread, unfortunately, and added my own here -

    http://www.enworld.org/forum/general...ke-geneva.html

    (I don't think the mods can combine threads these days due to some board difficulties, or I'd ask them to do so.)
    That wasn't us. Mid-day Sunday we were stuck on I-65 between US10 and US14 while a semi melted down and burned to the ground.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Steel_Wind View Post
    Hey Mark,

    Great pics of GaryConII. Thanks for those.

    A special thank-you for the close-up pics of the write up/display on the Siege of Bodenburg. I feel rather sorry I missed seeing it played - and very grateful that you captured it for us all, just the same.

    You're quite welcome. The Seige of Bodenburg and the Battle for the Moathouse (yes, that moathouse) were brought to the convention by Paul Stormberg and were, IMO, the top events of the weekend. I think people had fun no matter what they played but those were definitely the showcases of how to prep and run minis/convention games. Absolutely beautiful scenery and figs with the theme of event(s) and rules appropriate to the convention (Classic Chainmail). He has set the bar very high for next year's Referees/DMs/GMs.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JediSoth View Post
    ...it was the Catholic priest playing one of the Paladins (which he jokingly named Little Richard, since he had the second of two paladins named Richard). I regret I didn't have the chance to get to know him better...
    i believe that is Greywolf on the GaryCon forums.

    Geekpreacher is a methodist iirc.

    didn't get a chance to say hi to you or your wife, though, i saw you there. i was in other games at the time.

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    Quote Originally Posted by diaglo View Post
    i believe that is Greywolf on the GaryCon forums.

    Geekpreacher is a methodist iirc.

    didn't get a chance to say hi to you or your wife, though, i saw you there. i was in other games at the time.
    I played a little HackMaster with Geekpreacher. The Catholic Priest to whom I was referring introduced himself as Father Brian. He was a bit younger than Geekpreacher.

    Coming up from the 80s when D&D was the Devil's Tool, it amuses me to know no fewer than 3 clergymen who play D&D in various forms.

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    Diaglo,

    Did you playtest the DCC RPG w/ Goodman? If so, any beans to spill?

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