Pretend it’s still Saturday night, day 3 of GenCon. As I write this, it is actually Sunday morning. Dang, midnight really crept up on me plus a couple of days! Tomorrow… er.. today (whatever) is the last day of GenCon 2018. Saturday was amazing, productive and extremely busy for us, as will be Sunday, most likely. Matt and I decided to postpone breakfast so that we could finally get to the convention hall early, before the doors open and the herds stampede. There is something very peaceful and exciting about walking through the isles of the exhibit hall during setup time. Exhibitors of all kinds re-stocking, cleaning booth space and chatting makes me smile. Think of it as the calm before the storm. There were so many friends seen and booths visited, I know I will leave out people inadvertently. Forgive me.
First, we visited Chip Theory Games and picked up the few remaining pieces of our Too Many Bones collection, and a really cool Chip Theory GenCon exclusive pin! Hi Heather and Andrew! 👋 The folks at Chip Theory are genuinely the greatest booth staff! All of them. The whole lot! We also ran into Jamie (The Secret Cabal Gaming Podcast) and chatted for a bit. He told us about how for the first time in six years, there would be no Secret Cabal meet up at Gen Con because their venue (Tow Yard Brewery) went out of business and by the time he found out, it was too late to find a suitable replacement venue. 😱😣😭 Jamie is a great guy. Definitely say hi if you ever get the chance. While chatting with Jaime, we got to finally meet the “bomb cake lady” – AKA Beth, and continued chatting for a bit. She and her husband are lovely people.
We then had to make some time to stop by and see the Red Raven crew minus one Brenna. Sigh. #iheartmalorie&ryan #whereisbrenna
After our chat with the Red Raven crew, we scavenged for promo items. We got promos from all sorts of vendors. Druid City Games, USAopoly, and Floodgate Games. We ran into another friend from our local game group, Alex Montgomery, whose son was attending Gen Con for free after having won a local Pandemic tournament during SaltCON. It’s always great to see familiar faces at a place like GenCon. We knew Alex would be there, but it was still fun to run into him.
By that time, Matt and I were hungry, so we headed to… you guessed it… First Watch. I’ll give you one guess as to what we ate there :). So delicious! That’s right!
Million. Dollar. Bacon.
I will eat it every day.
I will eat it on a tray.
I will eat it on a boat.
I will eat it with a goat…
You get the idea… 😆 It’s goooooood!
After breakfast.. brunch, maybe… we headed across the street to our hotel room to drop off games and take a little break before our shift at the Fowers Games booth. After we rested up a tad, and by we, I mean Matt took a little nap, we caught a ride in a convertible Mercedes to the convention center. That was my first ever convertible Uber ride! On the way to the booth, I stopped and picked up the new version of The Game featuring Kwanchai Moriya’s art. I also picked up a copy of The Mind and Dinosaur Island for SaltCON while I was at the Pandasaurus booth. Then we went to go work.
Rebecca’s friend JR stopped by the booth again and we said hello and good bye and shortly thereafter Eric (What’s E Playing) also stopped to say “hi” and of course we chatted for a while, when along walks a Lincoln (BGG’s Game Night!) We then all chat about, you guessed it, games and all the many many games I’m currently behind in playing. *sigh 😞. My unplayed list continues to grow.
After that, I get another message from Benjamin (Blizzard Ent.) that he’s at the booth again and I had just left to go meet up with Peter at the Breaking Games booth. Oh no! So I go running back to the Fowers Booth and found Benjamin! We then walked to over Peter together but he was in a meeting so Ben and I just hovered around Breaking Games chatting while observing the last round of a demo game of Expancity. Turns out that the winning conditions of the game state that the winner will sit back as the others get to destroy the city they’ve just built (I pictured Godzilla style destruction). When Peter was done with his meeting, we made our way to him and chatted some more. None of us have seen or talked to each other since Tabletop Network, but it’s like old friends when you run into each other… it’s like nothing’s changed. It’s always so great!
One of the things that kept happening this con was that I kept getting the last 1-2 copies of whatever game. One of said instances was getting Expancity by Breaking Games. While talking with Peter months ago, I asked him to please hold a copy for me (if he remembered) because I will sure be picking it up at Gen Con. Turns out he actually remembered AND held one for me. Since they had already sold out completely it was so exciting and a relief that he remembered! That made my con. He actually remembered to hold a copy of Expancity for me from so long ago! How incredible is that? Thank you Peter!
After the exhibit hall closed, Rory (Hub Games) stopped by the booth to say “hi.” At the time, I happened to be messaging Paul (Gaming Rules!) about our dinner plans for the evening, because we had planned on grabbing dinner together. Unbeknownst to me, Rory happened to be messaging Paul at the same time! So, I told Rory to send Paul a selfie of us and see what his reaction would be. Clearly Paul was as surprised, as we were all truly entertained by this silly thing. Obviously he was surprised to suddenly receive a picture of Rory and me together. Lol. Two people he was messaging just happened to be speaking to each other in a booth. Funny little convention coincidences.
So, Tim and Nikki Fowers, Matt and I left the exhibit hall and started making our way to the CGE room to meet Paul. That’s when we ran into another person from our local game group, Brian Hershbach! A few minutes later, Brian had officially joined our dinner party. The only question now was, where to eat dinner. After calling several restaurants and learning about the one and a half hour minimum wait time, we finally called Shula’s Steakhouse in the Westin and decided to eat there since sustenance was desperately needed.
On the way, I ran into a My Little Pony cosplayer and was part of a 3 person selfie inception. Selfieseption, if you will, with Bebo and a couple of her friends. It was pretty funny attempting to have several selfies occur within each other. #selfieinception After the selfieinception, we continued on our long trek to the restaurant known as Shula’s.
Rory said he wasn’t joining, so we made a reservation for six people total. When we arrived at Shula’s, we were seated at their largest table, which was set up for 7 total and it turned out to be a great thing, because shortly after we sat down, Rory texted to say he had a change of plans and was coming to dinner with three others (Michael, Kathy and John)! Lol The host was annoyed, of course and didn’t believe me when I said there was plenty of room to add 3 more chairs. Then she was nice enough to find a few extra chairs and we soon had a table of ten people for dinner! It was great fun! Round tables are definitely the way to go with large parties, FYI. We talked about board games (of course), video games, some things about Irish culture like getting pulled over and telling the cop that you’re “having a bit of crack/craic.” That’s right. Crack. Lol. Google ”Irish term crack.” We also talked about Irish “notions.” Turns out that Irish folks try and remain humble, which I concur, and when someone starts getting a bit of an ego, it’s known as notions. Turns out, Irish use the #notions a lot within their posts to point out pride. I really enjoy learning about other cultures and their mannerisms, so learning these two seeming insignificant things, was entertaining.
Then our friend Jason called. Jason is house sitting for us. Well, he’s dog sitting for us while staying at our house. But when he called, he was front-porch watching for us, because he had managed to lock himself out of the house. In his defense, we have weird locks on our doors. After we placed our orders, Matt spent some time calling local locksmiths and getting that whole ordeal resolved, which he did, eventually – about an hour later. All for less than the cost of a dinner at Shula’s! 😱
By the time dinner was over, it was time to head back to the hotel and figure out what we were going to need to send home with our friend Alex, who drove to Gen Con – in terms of games we had purchased. Before we left though, I had the pleasure of running into a couple more friends – Isaac (co-designer of Seikatsu) and Brett (Panda Manufacturing). I just LOVE all of the friends I’ve made and continue to make in this industry and hobby. I’m also grateful for the internet that allows us to be able to make and keep all these connections. So many great people in this industry.
When we made it back to the hotel, Matt spent some time organizing a photo of our GenCon loot. It was a really funny to watch him play the role of amateur photographer. To his credit, he got pretty creative and came up with some good looking shots of our games… at that time.
Well, that about wraps up Saturday. One more day to go. Sunday is family day at GenCon. Should be a busy day in the booth, which is great. The goal is to sell out of everything to make packing up easier at the end of the day! Time to get my sales on! I think there is a game or two I still need to buy. Find out tomorrow in an all new blog post!