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Subject: The BGG.con Report rss

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Michael Pennisi
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Once again $10/day Internet access kept me from writing daily reports at Bgg.con so I am posting this summary now. A geeklist is also available for game commentary: http://www.boardgamegeek.com/geeklist/17543

Thursday started off in a very hectic way. On the way to the airport I suddenly couldn’t find my phone. This was more than just an inconvenience because I had programmed my roommate’s number into it. Further I knew that I had it earlier that day at school so I wondered if perhaps I had dropped it at school and that it was now in the hands of a mischievous student. I called the school with no luck so I was getting frantic. I took my wife’s phone just to have something and then tried to figure out how to contact Martin and report that my phone was lost. Thankfully most airports have internet kiosks so for $5 I found a Verizon phone number (you’d think they would preprogram a contact number into the phone) and logged on to the geek to get Martin’s number. I took care of both problems and was much relieved. About an hour later my wife called to say that my phone had fallen and slid under the driver’s seat. This made me happy as now I knew I was not losing my mind and. After a smooth flight (where I watched the surprisingly funny Talladega Nights) I landed and met my roommate Martin Boersema. This is the second time I have had a Canadian roommate at BGG.con so I feel have earned the title “Official BGG.con Diplomatic Liaison to Canada”.

We checked in and headed over to the Con area which was in full swing. Unlike last year where almost everyone was playing Caylus, this year there was more variety. I greeted Aldie and his wife Michelle, who managed to stay pleasant all weekend despite having to deal with all of us. I gave Scott a bottle of a Red Zin/Cabernet blend from a local winery with a custom BGG.con label I made along with a Riesling blend for the prize table, also with a custom label. Scott really liked his bottle and was showing it off which was cool because when you give a gift to someone and they show it off, they must have liked it. Why a gift? Because Scott does a lot of work for the ‘Geek and the ‘Con and I wanted to show a little appreciation. Just like last year, they had a door prize draw. I drew a blue ticket which was the nicer table of games and had a lot of choices which I narrowed down to Der Alchemist and Im Reich des weißen Bären. Since Der Alchemist had German text on the cards and Im Reich des weißen Bären had none I went with Im Reich des weißen Bären. Besides, the bits are really cool.

We headed back downstairs to find food and the only place open was a fast food Chinese place which, while I’m glad it was open, was not very good. We went back upstairs and checked out the Library. AMAZING –ABSOLUTELY AMAZING. I should have taken a picture but I didn’t. The library is one of the best reasons to go to BGG.con

Martin & I headed into the playing area where we played Factory Fun and Dragons of Kir. I’ll comment on these in my geeklist. We wanted to take it easy on the first night so we called it at around Midnight.

Friday started with a quick breakfast at The Corner Bakery and then I played Viking Fury with Martin, Scott Tepper, and Jay Little. Next was Space Dealer, which was very cool. I ran into Rick Thornquist and said "hi". Both Rick and Jay Little asked me if Christy came too and I had to explain why it's too difficult for us to get a dog-sitter. Apparently she makes a good impression on people; I think I'm more or less forgettable. I didn't get to play any games with Rick, which is typical for me. He and I seem to have non-intersecting orbits at Cons. The “Mad” Dr. Jay and Sarah Moore arrived and the four of us hung out together for most of the weekend. I wandered through the vendor area and noticed Asmodee was there and then I noticed the new “Ave Caesar”. Well that was a no-brainer, I grabbed it immediately. I can’t help but wonder if this means we’ll be seeing the demise of Café Games because this was supposed to be a title that they were printing. I played some more Factory Fun and GreenTown then went for a quick dinner at the Mexican place downstairs. We came back up and played Fiji, Keythedral, and two more games of Factory Fun (can you tell I liked it?). Martin really liked Keythedral and wound up buying it. We wrapped up the evening with Elk Fest which I didn’t like at first but it’s growing on me.

On Friday and Thursday nights, Thought Hammer gave away a TON of games. I didn’t win anything which is why I’m not talking about it but it was cool of them to do this. Martin won a copy of Augsburg 1520.

Saturday started with coffee and a bagel at a shop in the hotel, the Adam’s Mark. The Adam’s Mark is a nice hotel but I thought the Westin last year was nicer. I spent a fair amount of the morning in the flea market getting rid of my Goldland and Oltremare while getting a copy of SeaSim. There were some fair deals to be had but not many I passed on getting Big City for $40 which I'm kicking myself for now but the reprint is coming... Them, I played Space Dealer two more times since it was available. I really wanted to be sure on this one because I know it’s going to be an expensive purchase if I can even find it. Next was Antike and then we went to the West End for Mexican food and to buy beer. The rest of the evening’s games: Vino, Big City, Crokinole, Igloo Pop, Tumblin Dice and 1000 Blank White Cards. I can’t believe how crazy that game got and how many people played. Also on Saturday night was the big prize give away ( I won nothing) and I’m happy that my bottle of wine was not the last prize picked. Mike, if you read this, drink the wine! It’s good. The Geekies were also given out and Caylus won a bunch (yawn…) but more important Nacht der Magier won for best kid’s game!

I didn’t play any games on Sunday but I should mention that I got an awesome fruit plate in the café for only $3.50 and it was loaded with fruit – all fresh and crisp. By far it was the best thing I ate all weekend and also the cheapest which is weird. I said my goodbyes and shared a cab ride with Scott Tepper. We sat at the airport for about an hour or so,having a great conversation about games, books, musicals, and our local game gaming circles.

Final Thoughts

Aldie, Derk, & Bgg.con minions: Awesome Job! Once again you all outdid yourselves. It was fantastic and a blast. I'm already looking forward to going back.

The problem of the lack of late night food and drink hasn’t been “officially” solved but since everyone knows about it we can plan ahead by bringing coolers and snacks of our own. Nearby (i.e. walking distance) dining options in the evening are still nonexistent but this was for the most part fine.

This was the second year in the row I had a great roommate for bgg.con who happened to be Canadian. Coincidence? I think not. Martin is a great guy and all you Toronto gamers should get BakeliteTM involved in your groups.

The respect some people have for other people’s games is appaling. I saw the boxes of games from Essen getting beat on and a few of the donated games were damaged (eg. A copy of Carabande). Come on folks, respect the games or they won’t come back.

Anecdote: I overheard a conversation where one guy was saying how excited he was because someone was going to put in a good word for him to be invited to “The Gathering”. I’m sure The Gathering is fun but the way I’ve seen some people go out of their way to get invited makes me laugh.
 
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(The Artist formerly known as) Arnest R
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Nice reading - thanks !

fizzix wrote:

Anecdote: I overheard a conversation where one guy was saying how excited he was because someone was going to put in a good word for him to be invited to “The Gathering”. I’m sure it’s fun but the way I’ve seen some people go out of their way to get invited makes me laugh.


I hope you can answer this question without either of us getting killed afterwards ninja : What's “The Gathering” ?
 
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Michael Pennisi
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arnest_r wrote:
Nice reading - thanks !

I hope you can answer this question without either of us getting killed afterwards ninja : What's “The Gathering” ?


"The Gathering of Friends" is an invite-only con that Alan Moon puts on in the spring that lasts for over a week. A lot of prototype games and Nuremburg games get shown off. If you get invited it means you're one of the (for lack of a better word) "gaming elite".
 
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(The Artist formerly known as) Arnest R
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Thanks for the clarification
 
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John Mellby
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I should have my writeup available this evening, but til then...

I should note that the downtown light rail has a discount - $1
for a trip to the West End and back - 5-20 minutes depending on how
long you have to wait for a train. At the West End is
steak, BBQ, Italian and other restaurants. I don't know why
more people didn't take advantage.

My copy of Leonardo da Vinci saw constant play all weekend.
I never saw it in the library. The lid was broken.
Very annoying, but a lot of people got to enjoy the game.
One or both of the Fun Factory games lost a piece.
And the Carabande box was damaged (don't know how badly).
My annoyance was how many people bend, twist, or otherwise
mangle the rules to the games. (Tim Kelly - I'm talking to you!)

This was a nice report, thanks!
 
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jmellby wrote:
My copy of Leonardo da Vinci saw constant play all weekend.
I never saw it in the library. The lid was broken.
Very annoying, but a lot of people got to enjoy the game.
One or both of the Fun Factory games lost a piece.
And the Carabande box was damaged (don't know how badly).
My annoyance was how many people bend, twist, or otherwise
mangle the rules to the games.

I'm very sorry to hear that the lending of your games didn't go well for you. Whenever I borrow a game, I treat it like gold and if anything did go wrong, I'd make a point to find the owner, apologize and offer compensation. (Even to the point of buying a new copy, whether I liked the game or not.)
 
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Robert R
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J Melby, I look forward to seeing how you loved Khronos in your report.

I'm wondering what would be the best way to write mine up.... as part of this thread or as a geeklist.

And sorry to hear about the mangled games.
 
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Will DeMorris
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Quote:
The respect some people have for other people’s games is appaling. I saw the boxes of games from Essen getting beat on and a few of the donated games were damaged (eg. A copy of Carabande). Come on folks, respect the games or they won’t come back.


This was a real bummer for us library minions. Hopefully everyone fessed up to any damage they caused and made reparations. To be fair the vast majority of games were treated with respect and the number of actual damages was low.

Next year we should all make a point of treating the library games as if they were are own.

-Will
 
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Greg Hinkle
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Of the games I lent to the library, I was most worried about my Atolla Modulis since it was a home construction. I haven't checked it thoroughly, but it looked like it survived okay. The guys in the library said the Power Grids were out a lot, though I never saw it played other than when I checked it out to play.

I hope those that did check it out enjoyed playing it!
 
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Mark Taraba
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spearjr wrote:
jmellby wrote:
My copy of Leonardo da Vinci saw constant play all weekend.
I never saw it in the library. The lid was broken.
Very annoying, but a lot of people got to enjoy the game.
One or both of the Fun Factory games lost a piece.
And the Carabande box was damaged (don't know how badly).
My annoyance was how many people bend, twist, or otherwise
mangle the rules to the games.

I'm very sorry to hear that the lending of your games didn't go well for you. Whenever I borrow a game, I treat it like gold and if anything did go wrong, I'd make a point to find the owner, apologize and offer compensation. (Even to the point of buying a new copy, whether I liked the game or not.)


I hear ya. I try to treat other people's things as well or better than my own. I feel ashamed if I have to explain why something's wrong with it. It amazes me when people don't have this same behavior. I blame their mothers for raising them wrong.
 
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Michael Pennisi
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spearjr wrote:
Whenever I borrow a game, I treat it like gold and if anything did go wrong, I'd make a point to find the owner, apologize and offer compensation.


That's funny because in the back of my head, I thought about spilling something on Space Dealer just so I could offer to buy it. This of course is totally evil and I would never actually do this...
 
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Robert R
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I'm pretty anal when it comes to taking care of my games. I told Scott Tepper (one of bgg con's best Rio Grande Game teachers) that I would have never been able to put up my games on the library because of that. Essen games? I would have had them at home in an air-tight, climate-controlled, motion sensor alarm-locked, with infra red...and xray....

The point is, that is exactly how I treated these games. At one point, I found a blue wooden bit on the floor. I walked around for about 5 minutes before I found that it was a blue bit from Space Dealer. That was my good deed for the day (insert celestial/monk music).
 
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Tony Chen
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Where was the convention held?
 
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Dave Wilson
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I'm curious from which winery you got the wine?

I'm also waiting for Aldie to post his review of his bottle of wine.

 
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Michael Pennisi
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daw65 wrote:
I'm curious from which winery you got the wine?

I'm also waiting for Aldie to post his review of his bottle of wine.




The winery is called "The Village Vintner" located here in Carpentersville. I guess it's not a full winery because they don't grow their own grapes, they just make wine. But I think it's very good wine and I'm a regular customer.

He said he wasn't going to drink it because he wants to save the bottle intact.

 
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Chris Trimmer
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fizzix wrote:
arnest_r wrote:
Nice reading - thanks !

I hope you can answer this question without either of us getting killed afterwards ninja : What's “The Gathering” ?


"The Gathering of Friends" is an invite-only con that Alan Moon puts on in the spring that lasts for over a week. A lot of prototype games and Nuremburg games get shown off. If you get invited it means you're one of the (for lack of a better word) "gaming elite".


Call them luminaries perhaps. You need a WBC first place plaque to be in the elite.

 
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