Doing anything 3 years in a row is a pretty amazing feat when you think about it. The third time’s the charm as they say. I don’t know why they say that. 3 is a magical number and I guess if you’ve attempted something and have been successful 3 times it’s a sign that you’re on the right track. Heck I’ll try anything if someone says they’ve done it 3 times before. This year I attended the 3rd year of B-con Denver, the tabletop game convention sponsored by local Designer/Publisher Mr. B Games and I had a. bunch. of. fun.
I’d never attended a convention before. I don’t know why. I’ve been gaming for years, but a convention always seemed like something that I’d do someday, but wasn’t in a hurry to check out. To be fair, my initial reason for attending the convention this year was selfish. One of the events at the convention was a game design contest and gosh darnit if we here at Roasted Games don’t have a game we’re pretty excited about that we’re in the middle of heavy playtesting with. Let’s enroll it in this contest and get some feedback! And enroll we did. We’re very excited about Epic Battle: Aftermath. So excited. Like to the max. Maximum excitement at all times. So to have an opportunity to talk to veterans of the game industry and get input seemed like a no brainer. The fact that we can do that and then wander around playing games, well, that just sounds like a fun way to spend a Saturday.
The contest was a good entry point to the convention for a newbie such as myself. As I waited for my turn with the judging panel I had some time to chat with other designers who were waiting with their own games. As we eagerly clutched our prototypes we chatted about design, favorite games, and gaming in general until one by one we split off to present to the powers that be. I took my turn before the judges and got some great reactions to our game. I was so happy with the reaction to EB: A that I had to walk off my energy for about 20 minutes or so before I could even attempt to sit down and play a game.
That turned out to work in my favor as I got to witness a great Ice Cool tournament happening in the main room. If you haven’t played Ice Cool, it’s a dexterity flicking game with a funny theme and simple rules that does the one thing that some dexterity games fail to do. Just be fun to play! I don’t know what it is about those goddamn little penguins, they are just so satisfying to flick across the board. And if you can get the hang of it, you can make some amazing trick shots. Of course, if you don’t know what you are doing you can make some hilariously bad shots as well. Which is what makes it so fun to watch 5 simultaneous games being played with foolish abandon by players laughing at how bad their last shot was. I stayed to watch the ricocheting penguins go not exactly where their players wanted them to go for a good while until I was ready to jump into the mix myself.
For the rest of my time at B-con I did what one does at a gaming convention. I played some sweet sweet games. I bummed around the tables watching other players in between my own play throughs and chatted with other gamers. I checked out what vendors had to offer and found some surprising deals. I even bummed around the D&D rooms peeking in at the campaigns in progress. For a local convention B-con is done quite well. Everyone I encountered was friendly, welcoming, and excited to be there. I was pretty impressed and excited myself.
I realized something. I like conventions! It’s nice to do the things you like to do with a massive group of other people who like doing that thing too. You get to see how others approach your hobby. For a moment you can imagine the whole world is as into your hobby as you are. I can’t wait for the next one. I want to jump back into a convention schedule as soon as possible. Curse you B-con! You’ve got me hooked!