The whole weekend, we struggled with organizational problems. The convention started on Friday afternoon in Austin, TX, which is about a two-hour drive from my home in San Antonio. I was the single staff member present when the conventions started at noon. No registration materials, no operating cash, no t-shirts, no programs, no snack bar available at the time the convention began. It was the living definition of "winging it"! Fortunately, the one other staff member arrived with his wife around 1pm with most of the materials we needed.
The final tally for the three-day convention was 170 participants, 12 vendors, 85 game events. While this was down from last year's results, we still made more money than we spent. Most of the events were historical miniatures with a light sprinkling of boardgames and RPGs. We held several tournaments including Saga, Bolt Action, Flames of War, DBA and Hordes of the Things!
So, in spite of all the complications and minimal staff, the convention was a success by most accounts. We got a fair number of kudos from the attendees. There was plenty of smiling faces and lots of raucous laughter. Many 6's were rolled and there was even one Viking Berserker War Cry heard throughout the convention hall. I'm not sure of the sequence of events that lead to the War Cry, but I believe it had something to do with a competition to win some prize support form Gripping Beast.
I've posted some photos in a G+ photo album for you to view and enjoy.
I've got a few videos as well. They will be posted my YouTube channel .
Desert Scribe was present at the convention and he ran an awesome scenario with Ogre Miniatures. He also scored some great stuff at the flea market and vendor room. As for me, I was so busy managing the convention that I spent little time shopping. But, I did manage to get a few good items.
A bunch of Steve Jackson games from the 1980's.
A trio of WWI British tanks
A bag of bits for use in mods or whatever.
An awesome custom SAGA measuring stick!
And my most exciting acquisition was a 4 foot-wide custom built map of the Alamo in 15mm!
|The iconic facade of the chapel|
|Wider view of the whole fort|
I've always thought the San Antonio gamer community needed a Alamo map and now we have one! I discussed many scenario options with friends who were glad to provide suggestions. Of course, we can run the battle as the history books have recorded it, but that would be terribly boring in my opinion. The most popular idea was to do a Martians vs. the Alamo game using the tripods from 'All Quiet on the Martian Front' and I think that will have to be done! Another alternative history concept was to presume that Santa Anna was a cultist and instead of besieging the Alamo with human soldiers, he would summon the ancient gods of the Mayans to attack and enslave the Texans. Regardless of scenario, I'm sure we will get alot of fun out of it!
Does anyone have any good convention horror stories? Any tales of true disaster? How about a recommendation of a convention that is run very well? I am certainly interested to hear how others run their conventions.