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Subject: Gen Con questions... rss

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1) I'm guessing their venue is more than adequate enough to not have to pre-register? I'd hate to show up, only to be turned away due to lack of entry.

2) Any particular things to do/buy that you'd suggest?
-I might get in on that 1000p Settlers Of Catan game. If not, perhaps check it out
-check out as many new/harder to get in games as possible
-check out the panels/seminars
-Get the Guidebook module for this

3) any pitfalls to avoid?
AFAIK:
-bring cash
-bring clothing for both warm and cold weather
-confirm hotel reservations

thx in advance!
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ackmondual wrote:
1) I'm guessing their venue is more than adequate enough to not have to pre-register? I'd hate to show up, only to be turned away due to lack of entry.

2) Any particular things to do/buy that you'd suggest?
-I might get in on that 1000p Settlers Of Catan game. If not, perhaps check it out
-check out as many new/harder to get in games as possible
-check out the panels/seminars
-Get the Guidebook module for this

3) any pitfalls to avoid?
AFAIK
-bring cash
-bring clothing for both warm and cold weather
-confirm hotel reservations

thx in advance!
1.) You will not be turned away, there is no attendance cap. However, if you register now, you can also get event tickets and not have to worry about waiting in more lines (genconreg.com)
2.) Absolutely get tickets to the game library and pick-up play area. It's a great place for open gaming. The tickets are listed under Isle of Misfits at:

gencon.highprogrammer.com

Also, spend a lot of time wandering the dealers hall and soaking in all of the energy and new games.

3.) Gen Con is enormous and you can never see or do it all. A little planning (but not too much) will result in a better convention for you. I recommend getting a few event tickets (one per day), and a game library pass and specifically blocking off time to do them so that your day has some structure.

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Zaphod wrote:


2.) Absolutely get tickets to the game library and pick-up play area. It's a great place for open gaming.

How does open gaming work at Gen Con? Is getting tickets to the library a must, even if you just want to join other people's games and don't need to check any out on your own?

What is the "pick-up play area"?

I heard there is plenty of open gaming at two of the adjacent hotels, is that not the case? And do you need to tickets for those areas?
 
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Shampoo4you wrote:
Zaphod wrote:


2.) Absolutely get tickets to the game library and pick-up play area. It's a great place for open gaming.

How does open gaming work at Gen Con? Is getting tickets to the library a must, even if you just want to join other people's games and don't need to check any out on your own?

What is the "pick-up play area"?

I heard there is plenty of open gaming at two of the adjacent hotels, is that not the case? And do you need to tickets for those areas?
The library room hosts 2 groups (and you need tickets to get into the library with its 1000+ games and unlimited free rentals): The library staff that maintain the collection, collect tickets, checkout and check in games and gamers, and the pick up and play staff that walk around matching games needing players to players looking for games.

You can bring your own games into the library. It is the only place where you can be guaranteed a seat to play a game, the gaming hall is often full of scheduled games.
 
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Shampoo4you wrote:
Zaphod wrote:


2.) Absolutely get tickets to the game library and pick-up play area. It's a great place for open gaming.

How does open gaming work at Gen Con? Is getting tickets to the library a must, even if you just want to join other people's games and don't need to check any out on your own?

What is the "pick-up play area"?

I heard there is plenty of open gaming at two of the adjacent hotels, is that not the case? And do you need to tickets for those areas?
One can always find a spot to plop down and play a game one owns. During the later hours, a lot of the event rooms and common areas are available (during the day, not so much). No tickets required. But, as said above, if you want a guaranteed spot to play, you'll need tickets.

As to the OP, set aside time to wander the Exhibit Hall. Don't overschedule yourself but do make sure to get tickets as early as you can for the things you really want to do (pre-registering and buying event tickets in advance is worth it; if you can't get an event catalog as soon as you arrive and decide what tickets to buy and get them all at once--you'll probably end up in the line again anyway, but they tend to be long so you want to minimize this). Set a budget. Bring snacks and drinks. Leave the Axe Body Spray at home.
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overtheboard wrote:
Shampoo4you wrote:
Zaphod wrote:


2.) Absolutely get tickets to the game library and pick-up play area. It's a great place for open gaming.

How does open gaming work at Gen Con? Is getting tickets to the library a must, even if you just want to join other people's games and don't need to check any out on your own?

What is the "pick-up play area"?

I heard there is plenty of open gaming at two of the adjacent hotels, is that not the case? And do you need to tickets for those areas?
The library room hosts 2 groups (and you need tickets to get into the library with its 1000+ games and unlimited free rentals): The library staff that maintain the collection, collect tickets, checkout and check in games and gamers, and the pick up and play staff that walk around matching games needing players to players looking for games.

You can bring your own games into the library. It is the only place where you can be guaranteed a seat to play a game, the gaming hall is often full of scheduled games.
What do you mean "two groups"? It only has 2 tables? That doesn't sound very promising.

So there is no real "Open Gaming" area? That seems rather odd for such a large con. Houston's little comic book convention had a huge open gaming area, and it wasn't even a board game con.

I read on the internet that the hotel ballrooms offer Open Gaming, is this not the case?
 
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Most of the hotels attached to the convention center also open up their ballrooms so you can almost always find a spot to sit down and play a game you just bought. There are open game tables in the back of the convention center where the miniature games are going as well.
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Shampoo4you wrote:
overtheboard wrote:
Shampoo4you wrote:
Zaphod wrote:


2.) Absolutely get tickets to the game library and pick-up play area. It's a great place for open gaming.

How does open gaming work at Gen Con? Is getting tickets to the library a must, even if you just want to join other people's games and don't need to check any out on your own?

What is the "pick-up play area"?

I heard there is plenty of open gaming at two of the adjacent hotels, is that not the case? And do you need to tickets for those areas?
The library room hosts 2 groups (and you need tickets to get into the library with its 1000+ games and unlimited free rentals): The library staff that maintain the collection, collect tickets, checkout and check in games and gamers, and the pick up and play staff that walk around matching games needing players to players looking for games.

You can bring your own games into the library. It is the only place where you can be guaranteed a seat to play a game, the gaming hall is often full of scheduled games.
What do you mean "two groups"? It only has 2 tables? That doesn't sound very promising.

So there is no real "Open Gaming" area? That seems rather odd for such a large con. Houston's little comic book convention had a huge open gaming area, and it wasn't even a board game con.

I read on the internet that the hotel ballrooms offer Open Gaming, is this not the case?
There are 2 groups of volunteers. Hundreds of tables. I am part of the 40 or so Library volunteer staff. I was just pointing out that there are two teams of volunteers, hence it is called the Library and/or pick up & play room.

There are several thousand tables in the gaming hall, which spans 2-3 convention event halls. However, you cannot just sit down and play a game, or if there is a scheduled event (which there is likely to be) you will be told to leave the table immediately. You CAN go and ask at an event hall HQ for an available space, but after 6pm there is likely not going to be any there. Because all those thousands of tables will be full of scheduled events being run.

However, the library area exists solely to provide space for you and your friends to set up a game, but it costs tickets to get entry so that you will be guaranteed a seat. Getting in also entitles you to unlimited free game rentals from the Gencon library. There are no scheduled events in the library area.

If you've only been to little cons the scale and scope will amaze you. It raises issues of availability, space, and timing that no other con has to deal with.
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the library is well worth it. the room is a bit small and the collection is good but not CABS room great. overall though, very well run and worth the tickets
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the answer to any and all con questions is : yes, bring your own booze
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overtheboard wrote:
Shampoo4you wrote:
overtheboard wrote:
Shampoo4you wrote:
Zaphod wrote:


2.) Absolutely get tickets to the game library and pick-up play area. It's a great place for open gaming.

How does open gaming work at Gen Con? Is getting tickets to the library a must, even if you just want to join other people's games and don't need to check any out on your own?

What is the "pick-up play area"?

I heard there is plenty of open gaming at two of the adjacent hotels, is that not the case? And do you need to tickets for those areas?
The library room hosts 2 groups (and you need tickets to get into the library with its 1000+ games and unlimited free rentals): The library staff that maintain the collection, collect tickets, checkout and check in games and gamers, and the pick up and play staff that walk around matching games needing players to players looking for games.

You can bring your own games into the library. It is the only place where you can be guaranteed a seat to play a game, the gaming hall is often full of scheduled games.
What do you mean "two groups"? It only has 2 tables? That doesn't sound very promising.

So there is no real "Open Gaming" area? That seems rather odd for such a large con. Houston's little comic book convention had a huge open gaming area, and it wasn't even a board game con.

I read on the internet that the hotel ballrooms offer Open Gaming, is this not the case?
There are 2 groups of volunteers. Hundreds of tables. I am part of the 40 or so Library volunteer staff. I was just pointing out that there are two teams of volunteers, hence it is called the Library and/or pick up & play room.

There are several thousand tables in the gaming hall, which spans 2-3 convention event halls. However, you cannot just sit down and play a game, or if there is a scheduled event (which there is likely to be) you will be told to leave the table immediately. You CAN go and ask at an event hall HQ for an available space, but after 6pm there is likely not going to be any there. Because all those thousands of tables will be full of scheduled events being run.

However, the library area exists solely to provide space for you and your friends to set up a game, but it costs tickets to get entry so that you will be guaranteed a seat. Getting in also entitles you to unlimited free game rentals from the Gencon library. There are no scheduled events in the library area.

If you've only been to little cons the scale and scope will amaze you. It raises issues of availability, space, and timing that no other con has to deal with.
What time does the library close?
 
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The Gen Con Games Library and Pick-up Play Room is open from 8A to 4A (the next morning) TH-FR-SA ... on Su 8A to 4P.
However, while we lock the doors at 4A, the room (and GCGL staff) will be there until every group has completed play of the game they are involved in. We do ask that no new games start after 4A however. The same scenario occurs on SU, where the GCGL stops "renting" games at 2P, but game play continues until 4P.

There are about 550 seats at nearly 100 tables in this room. As stated, once you have secured a ticket, it guarantees you'll have a seat, at a table, to play whatever type of game you wish (RPG, BGM, CCG, TCG, MINI ... LARPS don't fit the mold for play in this room well, but it could be done). There is no time limit for rentals, so a group could play the same game many times, or rotate through a great many titles without ever losing their spot at a table.

The PuP volunteers are there to teach games if needed, and coordinate players to tables / games to players.

Each day (except SU) has two shifts: Day & Night. Day hours are 8A-6P ($4 tickets) and 6P-4A ($6 tickets). SU is FREE ... the total cost for the entire show would be $30, however, we have these shifts so individuals can pick & choose the times the want without having to spend $$ on times they would have no intention of using the room. Many people do not have more than 3 different time frames they would be able to use the GCGL/PuP Room. We have considered a Day/Night Ticket(usable ONLY during the appropriate shift) in the past, but many of the attendees we've spoken with said that would not be truly helpful, since the times they are free to use the room vary by the day of the show. We have also considered a full show price point, but deemed that as redundant, since it would be the same thing as simply buying the 7 tickets separately, which can all be turned in at one time anyway.

I hope this provides any information you want regarding the GCGL/Pup Room. If not, ask away. I'll be happy to clear any other points up best I can.

Lee
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GC Games Library wrote:
The Gen Con Games Library and Pick-up Play Room is open from 8A to 4A (the next morning) TH-FR-SA ... on Su 8A to 4P.
However, while we lock the doors at 4A, the room (and GCGL staff) will be there until every group has completed play of the game they are involved in. We do ask that no new games start after 4A however. The same scenario occurs on SU, where the GCGL stops "renting" games at 2P, but game play continues until 4P.

There are about 550 seats at nearly 100 tables in this room. As stated, once you have secured a ticket, it guarantees you'll have a seat, at a table, to play whatever type of game you wish (RPG, BGM, CCG, TCG, MINI ... LARPS don't fit the mold for play in this room well, but it could be done). There is no time limit for rentals, so a group could play the same game many times, or rotate through a great many titles without ever losing their spot at a table.

The PuP volunteers are there to teach games if needed, and coordinate players to tables / games to players.

Each day (except SU) has two shifts: Day & Night. Day hours are 8A-6P ($4 tickets) and 6P-4A ($6 tickets). SU is FREE ... the total cost for the entire show would be $30, however, we have these shifts so individuals can pick & choose the times the want without having to spend $$ on times they would have no intention of using the room. Many people do not have more than 3 different time frames they would be able to use the GCGL/PuP Room. We have considered a Day/Night Ticket(usable ONLY during the appropriate shift) in the past, but many of the attendees we've spoken with said that would not be truly helpful, since the times they are free to use the room vary by the day of the show. We have also considered a full show price point, but deemed that as redundant, since it would be the same thing as simply buying the 7 tickets separately, which can all be turned in at one time anyway.

I hope this provides any information you want regarding the GCGL/Pup Room. If not, ask away. I'll be happy to clear any other points up best I can.

Lee
So it sounds like the Library/PuP rooms are the best option for open gaming. I'll go ahead and get my tickets then.
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overtheboard wrote:
The library room hosts 2 groups (and you need tickets to get into the library with its 1000+ games and unlimited free rentals)
I'm confused. What tickets does one need to get into the library room? Are they the generic GenCon tickets, or something else?
 
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snopes wrote:
overtheboard wrote:
The library room hosts 2 groups (and you need tickets to get into the library with its 1000+ games and unlimited free rentals)
I'm confused. What tickets does one need to get into the library room? Are they the generic GenCon tickets, or something else?
See here:

http://gencon.highprogrammer.com/gencon-indy-2013.cgi/group/...

You need to register for blocks of time in the open gaming area. The ticket includes unlimited rentals and raffle entries for that time period.
 
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snopes wrote:
I'm confused. What tickets does one need to get into the library room? Are they the generic GenCon tickets, or something else?
Regular tickets are purchased through Gen Con just like any other event. Our tickets are listed in the "Isle of Misfit Games" section, and while SU is a $0.00 ticket, if your planning on being there on SU I suggest getting that ticket. It helps Gen Con track usage of the room, which in turn bolsters our position within the convention, and it justifies our position when we make requests to Gen Con for improvements.

You can use generic tickets, however, we only allow so many people in with generic tickets. That number is based on the number of 'real' tickets left unsold. And yes, particularly on FR and SA night we turn away people with generic tickets because we have to honor those that have purchased 'real' tickets and 'save' them a seat.

Lee
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If you did not preregister, be prepared to wait in line. The line to buy a badge day of are usually very long!
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Shampoo4you wrote:
Zaphod wrote:


2.) Absolutely get tickets to the game library and pick-up play area. It's a great place for open gaming.

How does open gaming work at Gen Con? Is getting tickets to the library a must, even if you just want to join other people's games and don't need to check any out on your own?

What is the "pick-up play area"?

I heard there is plenty of open gaming at two of the adjacent hotels, is that not the case? And do you need to tickets for those areas?
I have never used the library, but I would say there is "open" gaming everywhere, and free. In the hotels, bars, restaurants, floors of the convention center, anywhere there is a flat surface.



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Duneshadow wrote:
If you did not preregister, be prepared to wait in line. The line to buy a badge day of are usually very long!
I see... so prereg. is over, so the only other option is to reg. online. AFAIK, the will call line to pick up badges might not be that much better than the line to buy badges, but I wanted the flexibility in case I wouldn't be able to make it.

I got a glimpse of something like this at MagFest 2012 this Jan. Their forums said it was improved this year, but the line was still pretty lengthy. Gen Con gets... 43K attendees, vs. MagFest 2012's 9K attendees, so I can only imagine how this'll be worse

http://www.gencon.com/attend/registration#onlinereg
Quote:
Online Registration

You may be wondering what “Registration” means. It’s the time when attendees can purchase badges and event tickets for Gen Con Indy online through our registration system. (Gen Con does not sell badges or event tickets over the phone.) What’s the different between Pre-Registration and regular Registration? It’s all about the prices and shipping methods! Here are some tid-bits that you need to know:
•Pre-Registration dates are January 27 (Noon, Eastern) through June 29 (11:59 pm, Eastern).
•We offer discounted pricing on most badges during Pre-Registration (see Gen Con Badges) .
•Most badge prices will go UP once Pre-Registration ends!
•Any purchases made after Pre-Registration ends will be held at Will Call (“Ship To Me” options are not available).
•Online Registration stays open (at regular prices) through the last day of the show.
Duneshadow wrote:
Shampoo4you wrote:
Zaphod wrote:


2.) Absolutely get tickets to the game library and pick-up play area. It's a great place for open gaming.

How does open gaming work at Gen Con? Is getting tickets to the library a must, even if you just want to join other people's games and don't need to check any out on your own?

What is the "pick-up play area"?

I heard there is plenty of open gaming at two of the adjacent hotels, is that not the case? And do you need to tickets for those areas?
I have never used the library, but I would say there is "open" gaming everywhere, and free. In the hotels, bars, restaurants, floors of the convention center, anywhere there is a flat surface.
Oh, so it's just a tradeoff... the library gets you a VERY large area, large # of ppl to play games with, and access to the large collection of games, but you gotta pay for it and deal with a bit more bureaucracy; whereas everywhere else is free, but not as geared towards gaming.... yeah, this will be my first time going to a board gaming con of this size. It didn't strike me that the whole town could be turned into one big board gaming arena cool
 
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ackmondual,

Just a couple of fast notes here;
Gen Con is not simply a board gaming con, you'll find that out very fast once you are there! Board gaming is likely the largest (or second only to RPGs) department of the convention however.

The GCGL/PuP Room is not the choice for those that have two critical components in hand ... a game and players ready to play said game. If you have both of those, you are better served at any area HQ by asking for a table for X players for X duration of time - they will find you table where you can play ... undisturbed. you may have to wait until a table becomes available that meets your size and duration factors however. This service from Gen Con is indeed free.

If you do not have both of those components, then right place for you to go is the GCGL/PuP Room.
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ackmondual wrote:
[q="Duneshadow"]

I see... so prereg. is over, so the only other option is to reg. online. AFAIK, the will call line to pick up badges might not be that much better than the line to buy badges, but I wanted the flexibility in case I wouldn't be able to make it.


[q="Duneshadow"][q="Shampoo4you"][q="Zaphod"]

I use will call and pick up my badge on Wednesday, while there is a line it has been nothing compared to the day of registration line.

I think will call is open all night so maybe the lines will improve.

Good point someone made earlier, this is all gaming so board, card, miniature, LARP, RPG, etc.

I have been going since the Milwaukee days, and while overwhelming the first time, I really enjoy it.
 
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Duneshadow wrote:
ackmondual wrote:
[q="Duneshadow"]

I see... so prereg. is over, so the only other option is to reg. online. AFAIK, the will call line to pick up badges might not be that much better than the line to buy badges, but I wanted the flexibility in case I wouldn't be able to make it.


[q="Duneshadow"][q="Shampoo4you"][q="Zaphod"]

I use will call and pick up my badge on Wednesday, while there is a line it has been nothing compared to the day of registration line.

I think will call is open all night so maybe the lines will improve.

Good point someone made earlier, this is all gaming so board, card, miniature, LARP, RPG, etc.

I have been going since the Milwaukee days, and while overwhelming the first time, I really enjoy it.
Yeah onsite is always way way worse than will call. Will call, you just get someone to grab your stuff and you are done. Onsite you need to wait for them to put your info into the system.

Is the event registration still separate than the onsite registration? I haven't done onsite in 10 years so it might have changed, but that stuff was quite awful. 2 huge slow moving lines instead of 1 quick moving line.
 
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MonkeyKnifeFight wrote:
Is the event registration still separate than the onsite registration? I haven't done onsite in 10 years so it might have changed, but that stuff was quite awful. 2 huge slow moving lines instead of 1 quick moving line.
There are separate sets of kiosks for Events, Onsite, Will Call, Customer Service, GM, and Volunteers.
And to answer the next likely question, if you register Onsite, you will have to get your event tickets from the Events kiosks, so you'll likely have another line at peak times.
 
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Amuk wrote:
Leave the Axe Body Spray at home.
This can not be repeated enough. Body sprays are an accent, not a replacement for a shower. They will not get you laid, no matter what the commercials say.

Back to the OP, I will also echo that you don't want to schedule too much stuff for your first time there. You'll almost be overwhelmed with everything to see and do that you may regret having to stop in the middle of something else to run to your event or simply forget about it until it's over because you are too occupied looking at new shiny stuff (which is what I normally do).
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