GenCon – Part 12 (The rest)

12 Parts? Really? This feels like the Olympics and it’s causing me to miss out on my regularly scheduled programming. I said this back in part 9, but I’m really going to try and finish this out.

Buy, buy, buy!

With the dealers room closing at 4PM I had only an hour or so to pick up all the games I had missed thus far. Here we go…

  • Design Matters. Joe was still standing (or at least sitting attentively) and signed my copy of Ribbon Drive.
  • I also picked up Time and Temps from the reviews I had been hearing about it.
  • Zip over to Fantasy Flight games for my copy of Chaos in the Old World
  • Tried to grab “Bitch” from Pirate Jenny but they were sold out.
  • Then spent the last 10 minutes running all around trying to find gifts for the family. I know, last minute dad. Luckily I scored big finding mouse ear hats with purple ears (to match Sadie) and green ears (to match Liam) for my little ones.

I walked out of the dealers room for probably the 10th time at the con and I still hadn’t seen it all.

Board Games

Before Zach had to hop on his flight home we played another random game of Dominion, which he schooled us art heartily. His point total was something like 46? Through the roof.

I broke out my copy of Chaos in the Old world and Justin and I tried to play it two player. It sorta worked but was not recommended on the box and isn’t recommended by me. What kind of game only supports 3-4 players? Oh yeah, some great ones like Settlers of Catan (pre-expansion). Never mind.

More things I missed as I’ve been going along

Remember this post when I talked about innocent Mary? Here she is again, as Black Canary!

It’s always the shy ones that surprise you.

Travis wanted to see the Legend of the Five Rings Kotei so I meandered around for a while until I found the CCG area. I wondered why I felt like I was walking a mile down a narrow corridor to get there. The place was a mile wide! Or at least felt like it. Magic, Yugio and Warcraft seemed the most prominent but there was definitely a strong L5R presence as well.

The actual people gaming weren’t that impressive, but here are some of the banners and regalia they brought along:

St. Elmo

Warning. Danger Will Robinson. The St. Elmo Shrimp Cocktail is so spicy it deserves an animated GIF

Seriously, the dinner here was fantastic, if expensive, and I definitely recommend it but don’t, I repeat, don’t underestimate the shrimp cocktail. If you like getting kicked in the face by horse radish, this is your place. If you still own and operate a few working taste buds however, you should be wary.

St. Elmo is very good but if you want to go there and not break the bank, my recommendation is their dinner special, a three course meal for $30. We had the shrimp cocktail, filet mignon (which was fantastic) and crème brûlée. Really awesome food for that price, just next time I think I’ll have the salad instead.

Drinks at the Pullman

After dinner, as the lights of GenCon were dimming, I joined Brennan, Ryan and Paul for drinks at the Pullman. We chatted about Penny, action and reflection, and a lot about how the human brain is a pattern recognition machine. I’m thinking back and realizing that I believe intuition is the place where your mind has discovered a predictable pattern but your active intellect hasn’t cogitated it yet. Knowing before understanding. Well isn’t that very smart sounding? And probably ripped off from someone else as well as being over simplified.

Regardless, in such esteemed company, a few choice quotes, which became choice tweets, were executed:

“Once you’ve had sex with goats, the sex with men doesn’t matter anymore” – Bachanal and reflection #gencon 7:06 PM Aug 16th from Twitterrific

The collective noun for map makers: A conspiracy of cartographers! #gencon 9:22 PM Aug 16th from Twitterrific

Soon after we were joined by more game industry celebrities than I could shake a stick at. The thing that keeps blowing me away is how cool all of these people are. Yes, it should be self evident that people are people; but when your only interface with someone has been through their products, it’s easy to form an image of them and some inapproachable entity. At one point I was sitting with Ken Hite to me left and Robin Laws to right laughing our asses off as Simon (a British fellow) took umbrage with the phrase “Desert Wine”. Hmm… that doesn’t sound nearly as cool when I write it down. I guess you had to be there, or better yet be there looking through my eyes.

So now that my fawning is complete, I’ve got to give a final thanks to Paul Tevis for not only treating me but also sharing some of his fine not-water.

Monday Morning Rush

Monday morning everything went just a little slower than I needed it to. I arrived at the airport and wanted to wish Justin off but instead had to run to the check in terminal, run to TSA (with all my luggage that I would have to gate check), beg everyone to let me cut in front of them and then run to the gate. They closed the door behind me, it was that close. I feel sad for the folks next to me as I was sweating buckets by the time I sat down.

The flight home was uneventful and somber. GenCon is over and I’m not sure if I can make it next year. I’ll miss it like hell if I don’t.

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