Category Archives: Gaming

Thoughts on Pen-and-Paper Gaming.

GenCon 2016

Last Sunday I got back from Gen Con (my first Gen Con ever) and I gotta say I was blown away!  I was truly surprised by how much I enjoyed it.  I figured I would have a good time, I mean it’s a whole convention based around my favorite hobby, but what I wasn’t expecting was the thrill of being surrounded by tens of thousands of people who felt the same passion I did.  It created a sort of feedback loop of excitement that was pretty damn cool.  Anyway, I am officially hooked and can’t wait to go back next year!

Some of my favorite bits:

  • An absolutely outstanding game of Feng Shui 2 run by Paul Stefko.  This was my very first Gen Con experience taking placeThursday morning at 10am, and it really set the tone for the whole weekend.  When FS2 won a number of ENnies I wasn’t surprised.  We had eight players at the table and the game ran smooth as silk, with lots of memorable moments and great action.
  • Buying a copy of Feng Shui 2 from the Dealer’s Hall and getting it signed by Robin D. Laws himself!  I never considered myself much of a sucker for autographs until this convention (more on this below).
  • Meeting one of my idols:  Sandy Petersen!  I’ve been a fan of Mr. Petersen’s since I was a teenager. Call of Cthulhu was one of the first RPGs I ever played.  Not only was I able to meet him but he cheerfully signed a metric ton of CoC paraphernalia for me.  And if that wasn’t enough, I also had a chance to sit down with him and play a two-hour session of his upcoming game The Gods War!  The game is a ton of fun and I am looking forward to backing the Kickstarter when it goes live on August 15th.  Gaming with Sandy Petersen was hands down one of the coolest moments of my adult life.
  •  A fantastic steak dinner at St. Elmo’s in Indianapolis.  The shrimp cocktail appetizer alone was reason enough to go there.   It’s so spicy you actually feel it in your ear canals.  “You want the horseradish?  You can’t handle the horseradish!” -Jack Nicholson in A Few Good Shrimp
  • A Saturday night game of Mansions of Madness with my good buddy David Larkins.  If I remember right, Dave’s character was ripped apart by an overly-grabby Byakhee and some cultists.  After witnessing her friend’s gruesome and unnatural demise my character fled the mansion in horror.  She never fully recovered from the experience.  These results were actually delivered as flavor text via the companion app that comes with the board game.  Lovecraftian gaming at its finest!
  • And of course, these guys:

Three words.  Rock.  And.  Roll.

I’m sure I’m leaving out innumerable small moments that were just as amazing.  It was an awesome weekend overall, and I’m already counting down the days `till next August.