Things I Learned At Gen Con 2008

2008 August 21
by Vanir

  1. The hotels attached to the convention center are totally worth the effort and cost to get them.

    I stayed at the Westin this year, and it was literally across the street from the convention hall. For that matter, several of the events I went to (Hickman’s Killer Breakfast, the Queen of Geeks pageant) were IN the Westin. This also meant I didn’t have to carry my books with me when I had a game later — going back to the room was easy and for once my back wasn’t killing me by the end of the ‘con.

  2. The utility of wearing a fanny pack during a convention outweighs the degree to which it makes one look effeminate.

    I had my wallet, gum, dice, pencils, my tickets, a camera, and my Nintendo DS at the ready and didn’t feel like I was even carrying anything. Next year I’m specially lining one of the pockets to fill with chicken nuggets and/or E.L. Fudge cookies.

  3. Never give up.

    We didn’t get True Dungeon tickets in advance this year like usual, so my good friend Sirgeekelot and I were stuck trying to get in on the waiting list. Which got so full they stopped taking names and were telling us to check back with them every hour and a half and maybe they could get one of us in. Screw that. Sirgeekelot went back to the room and I thought I was going to have to miss out on the event, but then I remembered Stupid Ranger had told me they had the occasional single ticket for sale. Which they did, and it started 15 minutes from right then. So I hurried back to the Marriott and was able to play — and for the first time, finally survive!

  4. D&D bloggers are awesome people.

    We got to hang out with Yax, Dave and Bartoneus from Critical Hits, and Phil the Chatty DM quite a bit this weekend. Quite frankly, I had so much fun that it makes me sad that I won’t see any of them again ’til next year. We played Drunken D&D with Phil as DM a couple of nights, in which we all laughed so hard I was sort of worried about someone dying. It was like hanging out with old friends I’d known forever, except they had the faces and memories of people from the Internets.

    One other thing — I don’t know if it’s just me, but now I can’t read any of their blogs without hearing what they wrote in their speaking voices. The good news is I can get through one of Phil’s posts in record time now. The bad news is that everything Bartoneus writes is now in his “unintentionally sarcastic” voice from his Drunken D&D character.

  5. Don’t get the “Kraken Steak” at the Ram.

    Don’t get me wrong, it was delicious. It was also like a half an ounce of meat. Tarrasque burger please!!!!

  6. Hosting your own event is a lot of work, but TOTALLY WORTH IT.

    Our “Out of the Box Roleplaying” event Sunday morning was, in my opinion, a resounding success for a first-time event barely anybody knew about. We had around 20 people show up, which impressed me greatly because it turned out they stuck us in the Embassy Suites hotel, which is like 5 blocks away from everything else and apparently the only entrances are underground (with the exception of a secret hatch in the food court at the mall). We had a lot of really silly fun, and I enjoyed myself immensely. I really want to thank our fellow bloggers for being in on this with us, the audience seemed to be genuinely enjoying themselves and I really think you’re the ones to blame.

    It was my intention to record the whole thing and put it up on Youtube. Unfortunately, my video camera sucks and we only got the first 5 minutes. I will, in the coming days, be uploading that for your viewing pleasure. And then you will get to see (and hear!) everybody introduce their characters (and gaze upon Dante’s totally bitchin’ DM hat!).

  7. Sleep occasionally during the convention.

    Monday’s coming, no matter how much you don’t want it to. Stupid Mondays.

7 Responses leave one →
  1. Bartoneus permalink
    August 21, 2008

    “The utility of wearing a fanny pack during a convention outweighs the degree to which it makes one look effeminate.”

    That is single-handedly one of the funniest sentence I’ve read this year.

    I’m SO sorry that you can’t read anything I write online without hearing my SARCASTIC voice. GenCon was a lot of fun!

  2. KelseyRoth permalink
    August 21, 2008

    The way I get around the fanny pack issue is that I have a camera bag that’s larger than what I need for my camera. It has lots of pockets and the camera only takes up half of the main compartment, so I have room for my cell phone, bottle of water, 50′ of silk rope, etc.

    It’s a MUST whenever I go traveling.

  3. Reid permalink
    August 21, 2008

    How did you get a Westin room? I tried getting a hotel reservation right when it opened way be in February or whatever, and it looked liked it was already sold out one hour after registration started!

  4. Yax permalink
    August 21, 2008

    Chicken nuggets and EL fudge cookies are great together.

  5. Vanir permalink
    August 21, 2008

    @Reid: To be honest, a friend of mine got the room for a group of us. He started trying to get the room literally seconds after registration opened and was able to get two rooms. By the time he went to register for the third room, it was full.

    So I guess the answer to you question is “blind, dumb luck”. 🙂

  6. Dave The Game permalink
    August 21, 2008

    Our room in the Omni was pretty sweet, since it gave us room to host DD&D, but I did get lost whenever I was on my own trying to make my way back from the convention center area.

    This year was my first play of True Dungeon, and it was a lot of fun. I smuggled in a voice recorder, so I'm going to go through it this weekend to see if I can try and edit it into something fun to listen to.

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