Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Belated comments about PrezCon

Two people have reminded me that I haven't written anything specifically about PrezCon 2010. I don't write "After Action Reports", but I can make a few observations.

After a decline last year, attendance was a new record according to Justin Thompson, who organizes PrezCon. Probably the best thing you can say about a successful convention such as this one is that it was more of the same, lots of tournaments, an auction, some vendors and publishers, open gaming, a mix of middle-aged and older folks along with much younger ones who were often families of the older ones.

It is very much a one-third-sized WBC (Pennsylvania in August). If you like WBC you'll like PrezCon and vice versa. There may be other conventions like this elsewhere in the country, but I don't know of them. Both focus on boardgames and card games. Both are very much un-like Origins and GenCon, which are much, much larger conventions that include a much wider variety of gaming, such as RPGs, CCGs, and miniatures. (Ballpark attendance: PrezCon 500, WBC 1,500, Origins 10-15,000, GenCon 28,000). Occasionally the weather intervenes in late February, not a problem with the summer cons.

Some people really get honed in on one game at this convention. Two I know played 17 and 19 games of Robo-Rally (one won the tournament, the other finished third if I recall correctly). I am not a Robo-rally fan, I have trouble even seeing which way the robots are pointing, but I understand some of the pull of the game.

I did not hear the whole story, but a philanthropist enabled youngsters (12 and under) to each buy a free game (or at least part of one, something like $35). Quite a gesture. In general, as far as I could make out, sales of games seemed to be pretty good.

The Britannia tournament was pretty well attended, though we all missed usual GM Jim Jordan, who could not come this year. Mark Smith filled in. One lad (10 or 12) found out that I'd designed the game, and told me I must be the best player! I told him that I've never played the published version, and that designers often aren't the best players.

I've written down one quote:
Keith Altizer (who was subbing for the last turn for Kevin Sudy (I may have mangeld that last name) in the Brit final, Kevin had to leave before the end and was in no danger of winning): "I'm not losing, I'm not playing this game." I cannot recall who won, though I suspect it was Mark Smith.

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