TagTrue Dungeon

Gen Con 2015 Part 3

Saturday I had nothing until noon, so I actually got to sleep in. It was everything I had wanted and more. I was so tired and just wanting to rest for so long it was great to get those extra hours.

The noon event was a ShadowRun LARP, and it was fun. There are a few things I think they could do to tweak it. We had a lot of people who had never played before, which that in itself isn’t a bad thing, but they didn’t know it would be so physical. One of them had a heart issue and had to sit and rest several times because he had started to have heart pains. I think a quick disclaimer in the convention book would’ve been helpful.

Aside from that we had a great team. Our team made a lot of money because we had at least one really deadly person with each section when we split up. We covered more ground that way. The NPCs did amazing staying in character and they were helpful when it was obvious you didn’t know what you were doing. These people cared enough to try to make it a great event, and they listened to you, for the most part, when you talked to them about your concerns. There was one group of NPCs that made me angry.

The gentleman I mentioned before, with the heart condition, was taking it easy. Several times they saw him lagging behind (he insisted we go on ahead) and attacked his character. Despite knowing this they continually went for him, instead of letting him have a freaking breather.

The Cosplay Parade happened during our event, right in the middle of our area of the convention, and he got separated by a long line of cosplayers. We had to try and get back to him before they killed him. Eventually we got so sick of it we just killed those NPCs.

One of the NPCs made my brother do a Russian dance in order to get an item from her, but I didn’t get to see it because I was doing another mission for my team. The event was only $10, and I really think I got my money’s worth out of that. I will do it again next year, only this time I’m going to take some of my acting supplies and dress up.

After that I walked around the Circle Center Mall for a bit. Joey and Allen had a big board Power Grid game to do so I thought I had some free time. As it turns out it was cancelled, but Joey and Allen got a refund and some swag for their trouble. We went to Loughmiller’s for lunch where I tried one of their “Gen Con drinks” and let me tell you it was delicious! If they ever have the “green fairy” on the drinks menu again, or even just see if they have it regularly, try it! It is delicious! They had other neat drinks that were very tasty and worth a try too, including an alcoholic Butterbeer (from Harry Potter). I don’t even like butterscotch but that was very tasty.

By the time our last event was eminent on Saturday I was feeling pretty sick. Joey was so sweet and went to the shop in the hotel to get me some medicine. They didn’t sell chewable pain meds, so he walked across the street to a gas station to get me some children’s Motrin! I have such a considerate husband.

A little while later and I was feeling better. Allen, Joey and I decided to get to True Dungeon really early so we could get the classes we liked. Well, I got screwed out of being the bard, like I had last year. I was the druid again, so that was okay. I was feeling a little crappy still, and Bryan and Steve were really late so Bryan and I got into a little argument right before the game. I was very disappointed in not being able to be the bard because I had remembered my ukulele this time. At least this year the person who took it seemed to know what he was doing and didn’t become flaky. He sang some pretty funny songs too so at least there was that.

Out team did a good job, but it was more difficult this time. This session was called Sable Gauntlet. One of the DMs was the main boss from the day before. There was a room that seemed last minute and rather unnecessary. When you come in you had either a spider or larva attach to you and deal damage until you could get it off. That’s it. That was the purpose of the room.

One notable room had a large, person controlled spider. It was huge and he could control the back end, and the legs. He even had one bump my butt. I made a joke about it because I imagine he was trying to touch my leg to startle me, but it was hard to control. I ended up killing the thing in almost one shot with a boosted fireball spell.

The main issue we had with the boss this time was time. We got some solid hits against it, but we just couldn’t do the right amount of damage per turn. If we had one more round we could’ve probably killed the thing. It was undead so I used some amplified healing to do some major damage.

After the game we went back to Loughmiller’s to eat a bunch of mini corn dogs and drink more green fairies. It was Bryan’s suggestion. If you go there and want some really good food you’ll have to visit them during the day. Their evening menu is really trimmed down. No pepper jack cheese stuffed pretzels. Those are incredible.

Sunday, as has become our tradition, was reserved for walking around the vendor’s hall. We bought a few games for Ilaria, but when we tried them out at home it seems she not quite old enough for them. I would like to find some games for her to play with us because it is so great developmentally and socially.

When the convention was over for us we headed to Shapiro’s for some amazing food. We drove to my parents’ to pick up my daughter and then back to Cincinnati. Next year we’re going to see about some events for her. I’d like to start bringing her, if only for a day.

Something notable happened that wasn’t really an event. My friend Allen made a Mii last year of Wil Wheaton to see if he could troll people. This year Wil Wheaton mentioned it on his twitter! So that was pretty cool. I will tell you Allen is not the type with ill intent, and he was just having a bit of fun. He would never do anything to defame a person.

If you couldn’t tell I am very aware of how much things cost. And I think if you’re going to visit the vendor’s hall you should know too. It isn’t uncommon for games to be $45 or more, and t-shirts average about $20 a piece. You can find some very unique items there, but they can be very pricey so please keep that in mind. A great bonus for the people who hand make things is they often have business cards you can take and look them up later.

They have non-gaming related events too, like yoga classes and jewelry making. There are events where you can make your own foam weapon, writing workshops and film panels too! They do offer daycare, but you have to pay for it and I don’t remember how much it is.

Every year they do a large balloon statue for charity. One person is chosen out of the donors (I don’t know what the criteria are) and they get to pop the whole thing. If you back is hurting they have massage seats set up.

Well that is my 2015 Gen Con experience for you all. If you like board games, geeky things, RPGs or card games then you should consider going. Check out their website for a list of events. I’m sure you’ll find something you like.

Gen Con 2015 Part 2

My group began Friday with an amazing Q & A event with Trace Beaulieu (he pronounces is like bowl-you) of Mystery Science Theater 3000 fame. He was incredibly funny and we got to see one of the puppets for an upcoming web series called Vermin. It looks interesting and funny so I’ll have to check that out later. Mr. Beaulieu was handing out items to people who had really good questions. They were typically DVDs of old MST3K episodes, but one person got a collection of illustrated poems, and Steve and I got the first issue of a short lived comic he wrote. I liked it and wish he would do some more. Later, while we were walking on the vendor’s floor we saw him again and I got my comic signed. Crow (the puppet) was there! It was awesome seeing it in person. If he comes again I’ll have to go.

If you’re going to be visiting downtown Indianapolis (IN) then it is worth it to go to Fogo De Chao. This meat chain is filled with delicious steaks, lamb and other meat wonderfully prepared and served to you from long skewers. They have delicious fried plantains, polenta and garlic mashed potatoes for each table, as well as an impressive salad bar area filled with meats and vegetables you wouldn’t really find at many other salad bars. They had smoked salmon and prosciutto there, as well as some vegetables I couldn’t really identify. But don’t fill up on the salad, because the meat is so worth it!

If you go in the evening it can get very pricey if you’re not used to spending nearly $50 per person, but the lunch is an okay price for what you’re getting. It is still kind of expensive, but this is a special treat so splurge.  I’m also not one for lime, but their Brazilian limeade drink is fantastic! Soda comes in a cute little bottle, but that’s expensive and does not have free refills like the limeade. Have some meat, it’s delicious!

After that was True Dungeon: Into the Underdark. This was a pretty good experience. I was the bard again, like I almost always am, but this time I forgot my ukulele so I had to just sing. I treated everyone to some Feist. The team we had was solid, and we did great up until the last room. This is a trend we’ve been noticing as of late. True Dungeon used to be more balanced, but the last few years they have some easy rooms and then kill you with a totally over powered boss at the end. So while we did awesome, the boss wasn’t able to be hit, and did almost 20 points of damage to players in a single hit. It also did a group attack against us for I think 10 damage so it killed most of our group pretty quickly.

I’m honestly getting sick of that. It isn’t fun when you have the DM be a dick at the very last second and screw you over and I hope they learn how to get that balance back. The costumes were quite the plus, and the backgrounds were interesting and well thought out.

After that Joey and I went to something called the Concert Against Humanity at the Murat Theater. We had to speed walk, in the humid summer heat, against a large crowd of One Direction fans. There was a concert at the same time, and a baseball game so down town Indy was packed. We were going to rent a few bikes from their bike-sharing program but man is that expensive. So instead I made myself sick because of the heat and walking so far, so fast. Joey seemed fine.

The swag, oh my God the swag! We got some really good gear, a cute collectible Nintendo figure, a 2 sided die, a Flux booster, some Sentinels of the Multiverse cards, a few mini games and some other things I can’t think of off the top of my head. When the concert ended they had exit swag too! It is a poster for the event with two raccoons rummaging through trash. The raccoons are…well, kind of anatomically correct, for some reason. I didn’t even notice it at first, but it does make it difficult for me to display the poster in my home so that aspect of the design is a little annoying. But overall it was still a pretty cool poster.

The concert itself was amazing. There were comedians like Kumail Nanjiani, Cameron Esposito, and musicians like Molly Lewis, Paul and Storm and the Doubleclicks! All of them did fantastic and it was a wonderful evening, despite the fact that 1 Mountain Dew and 2 nachos cost me nearly $20. Dang inflated prices. During the concert Joey started to feel sick and ate the last of my chew able aspirin. We actually had another Here At The End event scheduled but we decided to stay at the concert. From what our friends told us we made the right choice.

Now this part is hearsay, but this is what the second Here At The End was like. The people who were running it stopped caring. The teams were not evenly divided, among the four factions it ended up being roughly 18 versus 4. So the teams my friends were on were constantly being bombarded by the other larger teams, and their captain NPC, the cat girl and her boyfriend, refused to talk to anyone or do their jobs and just meowed at people. I don’t mind couples being a part of events, but take the damn thing seriously. People paid good money and you sit on your duff necking with your significant other the whole time? At least they didn’t hiss or anything. I would’ve said something if I were there. I have no problem registering my displeasure when people take my money and then give me sub par crap in return.

Steve figured out how to reset the weapons so at least they had that. The quality of the event had seriously deteriorated since we had been there the day before and given that experience and the one my friends had we will not be doing another Here At The End event.

The last Whose Line of the con was wonderful. We had so many people and they were very brave! Lots of new faces joined us and seemed to have a great time. I went up a few more times and it was a blast.

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