Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Origins 2011 - The Obligatory What Happened Post

Origins 2011 this year was an interesting convention for me. I was going, and for the first time most of the companies, and people that I know really well, weren't there. This meant that I would have to find something to do with my time, which mean that I volunteered in official and in unofficial capacities at a lot of places. However, I did get some good games in and I'd like to tell you about those, but first ...

The Origins 2011 Overview!
I think the convention was better this year than it was the year before. It felt like there were more people, which might have been a figment of my imagination, but the dealer hall was a lot more full on many of the days this year than last year. There seemed to be more dealers than before selling a wider variety of goods. I don't know what the official numbers are, and I'm not going to look them up because I'm lazy, but I my anecdotal evidence tells me that it was much improved.

The space is still the space, they haven't done anything original with it. However, it works save for the giant trek from the dealer's room to the RPG section. Again, I have a problem with it because of the aforementioned lazy.

What I did at Origins 2011
First of all, I am pleased to announce that for the first time in a long time over 50% of my games had enough people at them to actually go off! Excitement! Headlines! News Flashes at 11! All that good other loud announcement stuff. There was a lot of Geasa that was ran there, and we had a lot of good times listening to the stories that were built up.

Game 1 - Thursday at 8:00 pm
We had a good time with a Victorian Steampunk game. This was perhaps one of the best Fae I've ever seen in a game. The person playing her was just vicious.

Inventor trying to come up with the invention that will make him famous.
Traveling Merchant looking for the person who swindled him out of his childhood memories.
Forest Child looking for her parents.
Traveller, with her clan, looking for justice for her people.
Retired Airship Captain wanting to escape from his previous life and escape the military.

The game ended where the Inventor, and the Retired Airship Captain tried to save the Forest Child (who was the Prime Minister's Illegitimate daughter) from being assassinated by the PM. Unfortunately, the Merchant discovered that she was made from his childhood memories and the only way he could get them back would be to kill the Forest Child.

Best Moments:
The Inventor has his invention go off beautifully in front of his patrons. They offer him 20k on the spot and as he's about to accept it, the Fae of Inspiration tells him not to take it because it will stifle his creativity. He pauses and they up it to 40k in silver. Unfortunately, she had the dice to make him turn it down. It was the best case of screwing someone over I have ever seen.

Game 2 - Saturday at 10:00 am
This game required some talk during the character creation. We ended up having some discussions in regards to appropriation because of what was starting to come out of the character creation. It was a good talk, but ultimately we ended up going forward. We'll see how this ends up being, because we were walking a line here.

Prince who needs to hunt a lion to come of age.
The Lion, trying to defend its territory
The Elder Hunter who had the Prince as the pupil.
The British Great White Hunter who was supposed to take the British Nobility through their hunts.

The game ended with the Lion winning. The Lion killed the Great White Hunter and his associate and maimed the Prince who fled home. Pretty straightforward, but good on the lion for winning I say.

Best Moments:
The Spirit of an Eternal Hunger got the Prince to go after the GWH rather than the lion and got him to attack while they were trying to deal with the Pride of lions before they attacked the compound. It helps that this Fae was being played by the player who was playing the GWH.

Game 3 - Saturday at 8:00 pm
We ended up with two games going at the same time. The first time this has happened while running Geasa. It was the only game that I ended up taking pictures of. It was fun because we had two completely different tables. I can't really go into more details because I was jumping from table to table, but there was a lot of fun happening.

Table one had a group of Circus Pirates, the other table was telling the tale about the end of Atlantis. It was immensely fun to listen to, and just a great time had by all it would seem.

What did you buy?
RPGwise I picked up Annalise (which came recommended), Blowback (which I had been intending to buy for a while), and Leverage (in which I got Cam Banks to do the Exact Change Dance, the only time it was worth listening to. There is footage, it will get posted). I was given Remnants, a post apocalyptic mecha RPG written by another Canadian designer, to review so expect that in a couple of weeks.

I picked up Rattus by Z-Man games which has been a lot of fun and got many, many plays at the house already.

Picked up a couple more accessories for the mini department and then came home.

I think it was a really good convention, this Origins 2011. What says you all?


blackhatmatt said...

Loved playing Geasa, and very much looking forward to buying it. Also very much enjoyed chatting about appropriation and related topics. Michelle, by the way, doubly appreciates that you talked to her during the game, rather than addressing all communication to me (which several GMs did). :)

-Matt (the Elder Warrior)

Jonathan said...

Hey Matt,

Glad you enjoyed the game! It's always good to talk to gamers who understand that there are actual problems in the world and how those problems impact the hobby we all enjoy and love.

I'd like to say I'm surprised that there were a pile of GMs who pretended that you were the only point of contact, but then I would be lying.

It was a fun time playing with you and Michelle. Maybe I'll see you both around next Origins!

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