My first GenCon: Day 1

The Hotel: If you could care less about my personal experiences and wanna get to the good stuff, skip on down to “The Con”. Oh where do I begin, first off let me just say that the hotel that I’m staying in is a real piece. I called in advance this morning to be sure that it was okay that we dont have to check in exactly at 3pm (our check in time) they said later was fine but not earlier. So when we arrived to check in around 7 after we’d left the convention center I was given the keys to our room, to which we promptly walked in to discover peoples belongings strewn about, a mirror with nasty greasy fingerprints all over it, and the TV on.

Needless to say I went straight back down and got a new room, they apologized but the two guys at the front desk really seemed like they could give a shit less. The new room has the same size bed, but no roll away for my son so there goes any intimacy my wife and I may have enjoyed on this trip. Also the curtain for the balcony is highly see through in some places and torn, as is our brown stained bed comforter (glad I brought extra blankets) I’m sorry I know some hotels are cheap but for 65+ a night I expected better than this, I should have just stayed at the Omni like I did last time I was in indy. Calling their corporate office in the morning bright and early to complain, and possibly make new hotel arrangements.

The Voyage: (Once again skip down to “The Con” if you wanna get to this articles meaty center) Trip to Indy itself was nothing, being an Indiana resident to begin with. My new Droid X is amazing and using the GPS is now something I can never live without, being constantly connected and having necessary information while away from home at your fingertips is indispensable. Unless you’re in a parking garage and have zero signal that is, then all of the aforementioned features are null and void.  Parking down here is something I’m not used to, the multitude of undesirable aspects regarding parking garages managed to allude me for the day, which I was pleased about however paying 12$ to park my vehicle in a musty, hot, dungeon of cars is 12$ I could have just wasted on something fun, bummer.

Draging a 4 year old with a blue mohawk around has it’s perks, he was definitely the most rad little dude walking around the con today but also demanding. Having him fuss was to be expected but there were times when I considered just driving him home and coming back hours later. In all actuality (I love my kids don’t get me wrong) this is my vacation and I’d love to spend with my family but my wife and I rarely get alone time as is, and it would be nice to go be adults for once and stay out all night and maybe even meet up with some people from twitter or play a game or two without having to be in parental mode for once.

Still debating on whether we’ll act on this, gonna hit the childrens museum tomorrow at some point in time so maybe after that he’ll have had his fill of excitement and we can spend the last 2 days down here living it up!

The Con: The con itself I can not begin to cover, not nearly in as much detail as I’d like to here. Especially not at almost one AM and having walked a few miles today I’m beat – so if this whole post is a bit off keel for me this is my excuse.

The guys at the privateer press booth were super cool and demo’d GRIND for me which I’m now contemplating picking up, 70$ is  a bit much for a board game but they are throwing in an additional freebie game with it. More awesomeness from the Fantasy Flight booth which was backed up literally all day, the line wrapped around more than half their floorspace. Their City of Thieves looks  impressive and fun, I watched some folks play for a few minutes. Everyone and their mother had thsi huge Warhammer 40k bag from fantasy flight, I’m assuming it had something to do with Horus Heresy? Didn’t get to watch CoT gameplay for long before I was drug elsewhere by my son, who apparently has an extreme love for overpriced LARP’ing weapons.

The clothes and armor, and other baubles were bountiful, as were booths selling corsets – which I kept urging @momanatrix to try on but she refused. Ultimately cool stuff, but too expensive for my blood – not being a LARPer or a hardcore Ren Faire/ Con/ Halloween person it would just be wasted money. Speaking of too rich for my blood, I purposely stayed away from the Dwarven Forge booth all day so I didn’t blow my entire gencon cash was on tiles.

The Wizards booth was meh to be honest, sure it was big and there was lots of magic and computer kiosks with fancy stuff but there was nothing really notable there. I do want to go back and pick up a dark sun T shirt for 10$ though!

Some of the miscellaneous booths selling T shirts and other wares such as thieves tools, magic wands, doorbells, etc were just stupidly overpriced. My son wanted a magic wand at one booth that was literally a wooden stick with a marble on the end of it – 40$. Honestly? I need to quit this IT shit and get into the wandmaking business apparently.

Okay enough negativity there, the Steve Jackson area was awesome, nothing new but demo’ing zombie dice and having a plethora of munchkin stuff and plush baby Cthulhu’s I had to pick up a pink/purple one for the wife which ran me 9$. LEGO had a giant inflatable pyramid set up for the kids there to climb on, which mine had a blast doing so – unfortunately he threw a fit when he realized he couldn’t just hang out there all day.

There are quite a few board games that appeal to me, but I only want to pick up one while I’m here. I’m torn between City of Thieves, GRIND, DungeonQuest, and Red Dragon Inn. Oh and don’t forget Castle Ravenloft, I looked around today and didn’t find anyone demo’ing it, maybe I should have checked the board games hall? I’m really excited about that one too. (Geeksdreamgirl has a great review up)

Anyway I’m sure there are a ton of people I’m leaving out here, with many awesome things to offer but I’m beat so I’ll fill in the gaps with tomorrow nights post after the Ennies and whatever debauchery follows. Here’s to hoping Obsidian Portal and NewbieDM get those Ennies they deserve! Also tomorrow begins my actively passing out Obsidian Portal swag, so look for me and take a sticker damnit!


  1. Parking across the Street from the Con at the state garage is like 25 bux for all 4 days in and out all you want. – GenCon does have childcare for free if I what remember my BIL has told me correctly – Next year they’re supposed to have certified child care – so if you need a short respite, he can go play with other kiddees for a short bit while you and wifey recharge. Being a parent myself I understand all to well the crabby youngling scenario.

    I used to have to stay away from the hirst molds booth because I just get tempted to buy a crapton of molds.

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