Monday, June 6, 2011

NTRPG Con Report (Part I of however many it takes)

Let me preface this post with a few facts:

1) I've been to exactly three cons that featured gaming prior to this one, and I simply perused the dealer's room and bought a ton of crap.

2) I don't particularly enjoy playing roleplaying games with people who aren't my friends.

3) I'm currently writing this post from a hotel room in downtown Kansas City, about 850 miles from my house.

There are a lot of things that happened over the weekend, some of which Chris touched on over at his blog. While he took the semi-satirical route, I thought, for once, I'd offer my honest thoughts on what transpired in a somewhat narrative form. I haven't had a chance to blog hardly at all the in the past month but there's a lot of stuff I'm been ruminating over since Sunday and it needs to be documented somewhere. Probably not for posterity if Blogger's outages are any indication, but at least some people need to be aware of what they missed. This is done completely at whim, so the order of presentation is no indication of importance or sequence.

Dealer's Room and Superheroes

Since I mentioned this already in item 1 above, I might as well spell it out instead of doing some ridiculously lengthy parenthetical: I fucking love the dealer's room at cons. This is the primary reason why I avoid cons, in general. Other reasons include non-interest in playing games with people I don't really know (number 2) and not wanting to go alone. Not buying a bunch of crap tops the list, though. I have an unhealthy addiction to making excessive purchases when it comes to rpg materials, and my experience at NTRPGCon (how do you shorten an acronym?) was no different. There wasn't even a huge selection of stuff to buy.

I had corresponded with John Hershberger at Black Blade Publishing a while back about getting OSRIC. The abnormally high shipping cost between the continental United States and South Texas prompted my query as to if the product would be available at the Con. John was affable and informed me that, yes, OSRIC would be there for purchase. However, I got some indication via email that there wouldn't be many copies available, and thus I began questioning my decision to wait a month. Friday night, I met John who was rather cordial even though I was more than slightly inebriated. I found out BBP brought several large boxes of OSRIC, which meant they were dirty liars and my fears were unfounded. They would not sell out! Actually, I started to think that it was possible they were anticipating selling huge numbers of the book and I was itching to get one right away. I had to wait, though, as John had a game to attend and Allan Grohe no where to be found.

11PM that Friday night, something had to be bought within my first hour. More like first 5 minutes. Lamentations of the Flame Princess, Grindhouse Edition. There it was, in a nice looking box. I missed my chances to get the previous edition and sort of fell off the rpg buying map when I was in Arizona, so I didn't pre-order. Instantly I bought it. Fast forward to 3AM, I am drunkenly complaining about full-frontal male nudity on page 81 to anyone who would listen, all the while standing around in my underwear drinking bargain whiskey. I'm glad I got LOTFP, but I could do without the dick pics.

The next morning, I get up to see the breakfast buffet obliterated by hordes of nerds, all of whom were smart enough to wake up before me and fill their gullets with mass quantities of mediocre breakfast foods. Oddly enough, the coffee was pretty good. I sat down with Chris and my copy of Villiains and Vigilantes, pining for a signing by Jeff Dee. I figured I'd get Mr. Dee to sign it before his game that morning, one I was unable to pre-register for. 1 minute prior to sitting down for breakfast, I met Mr. Dee in the elevator and mentioned I would like his signature. He said of course and then shuffled off to the buffet. A few moments later, he sat down with Chris and I, as it was the only available seat. Fortune smiled upon this stupid fanboy. Mr. Dee then shilled the new release of V&V while his partner prepared his breakfast foods, and of course I obliged by purchasing everything he had. His partner returned with food as he pulled out his pen, ready to sign my books. At this point I felt bad for interrupting his dining as I knew he was in a rush to make it to the game, so I told him that it could wait. Mr. Dee informed me that, "this [was] important," signing my books, ignoring his morning meal. I made the right purchasing decision, obviously. Mr. Dee made room in his game for me to play, and I had a good time. It was sort of a playtest of the V&V 3.0 rules, which I thought went pretty well. I'll definitely be getting the new ones to be sure. Unfortunately at one point in the game, I was required to make a "cloth-related analogy" and failed miserably as I hadn't thought enough ahead of time. The next instance where such an analogy was appropriate I spent a few moments to type it out on my iPhone, prepared. "A yarn is to be spun, have your raiment cleaned and grasp your chapeau for what is about to transpire shant not suit the tailor-made fleecing of this soon to be mothballed vessel." Certainly not my best work, but what do you want from a hung-over meathead? My character was the only one to go unconscious, by the way, which made my goal of sucking ass at con games closer to fulfillment.

Soon after, OSRIC was purchased! Two copies, mind you. First of all, I own something like 10 complete copies of AD&D 1st edition, so OSRIC really isn't even a purchase I should worry about. Product is product, however, and I am insanely addicted to buying rpg product. Saturday night, as the con was winding down and I was even more inebriated than before, I bought something called Malevolent and Benign, a monster book I'll never use. I stopped myself from getting another boxed set of Runequest, HARP, several Star Wars RPG books and a full set of 2nd edition AD&D books. I think I was able to curtain rampant, idiotic spending due to the fact that the box I brought to carry stuff in was already full and I didn't want to lug around more books that night. Oddly enough, I got OSRIC to play in an AD&D game later, conveniently forgetting about my PHB in said box. Oh well, the book is exceptionally nice and now I have multiple copies not-to-read. One for the bathroom, the other for my coffee table, perhaps. Never know when you may need to look up the effects of a Geas spell, right?

More to come as I align some of these thoughts...


  1. Did I completely miss you at the con????? Or have I just not attached the face to the blog?

    - Ark

  2. Possibly both. I was incognito and blended in...

  3. Liar. Brad was the one who interrupted your Sunday morning session with Cyclo to yak away.

  4. I was going to get to faux pas that eventually...

  5. @ckutalik - Well at least now I know who he is! I remember talking to him and everything. :)

    - Ark

  6. Nice to see you at the con. Better to know I'm not the only one buying stuff (who am I kidding?) everything in site.