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BGG.Con Wrap-up!

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Lisa and I had an amazing time during our weekend away seeing Fredericksburg, TX and then had even more fun when we spent a week in Dallas at BGG.Con.

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I had a one day booth. It was both good and bad. The BGG folks did a bad job of advertising that the layout of the convention, which was different this year. Instead of one big exhibitors hall there were two of them on the opposite sides of the convention. So during the first day no one knew about the second hall and it was DEAD.

It wasn’t until around three thirty until people discovered that there was a second hall. We were basically busy the last two and a half hours of the day but the first half was a waste. For most of the retailers it wasn’t a big deal cause they were going to be there all week, but since I had a one day booth it made a big difference.

That being said, we sold crazy amounts of my books! I had no idea we would sell so many books. I figured the calendar would be popular. I was totally wrong. A lot of parents bought my Zimmah Chronicles trilogy for their kids and a lot of adults bought The Eye of Hastur for themselves. So all in all it ended up going well, just wish the folks running BGG.con had made it clear that there were two halls.

Best Games I Played!

Dinotwist
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This was the winner for both Lisa and myself. We LOVED it. It’s a French game that came out at Essen. It’s not available in the US, but the convention library had a copy. We tried it two player, three player, and six player. It worked with all three player counts and for such a small light game, it was a bunch of fun.

Basically there is an island called Twist Island and it’s going to be destroyed. Every player then has their own island and what they are trying to do is to recruit dinosaurs to come live on their island. Each dino has a point score and the person with the highest score wins.
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What’s cool though is that it has simultaneous gameplay so that a six player game went almost as fast as a two player game. It was a lot of fun and a US publisher seriously needs to pick it up!

Super Rhino Hero
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We love Rhino Hero. It’s a great card stacking game that’s perfect for a light filler or for playing with people new to gaming. Because Lisa enjoys it so much she had her heart set on playing SUPER RHINO HERO which is basically just a giant version of the game.
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From Wednesday to Saturday we tried to get a copy of Super Rhino Hero from the library but it was always out. I mean we went and were checking like every two hours, because she wanted to play it so badly, and then finally on Saturday afternoon we scored a copy!

Lisa set-up shop in the main thruway of the convention and spent nearly two hours playing the game with anyone that walked by and wanted to jump in. It was one of my favorite moments of the convention, seeing her have so much fun sharing the experience of Super Rhino Hero with other people.

Club Zen (prototype)
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I’ve wanted to play TC Petty’s prototype for Club Zen for almost three years. I saw it wayyyyy back at Unpub 3 and thought it looked interesting. So I was super excited when we got a chance to demo it. It played fast, under an hour, for three players, which is good because it’s a point-hoarding worker placement game.

What really stood out was the theme. In it, the players are at a resort called Club Zen and they are trying to find inner peace and remove the stress from their lives. So they get to visit zen gardens, events, work out in the gym, and do other vacationy-things to try and find balance in their life. The theme really comes through which is impressive because if not it might feel like a soulless euro, but instead it felt new and fun. Club Zen is supposed to hit Kickstarter in the winter/spring so keep an eye out for it.

Codenames
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After GenCon, Codenames was hot. I was able to score a copy. We played it wayyy back in September, but only two player and we did not get why people liked it.
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Fast forward to November. Because Codenames is so easy and quick to bust out, we played it at the convention more than any other game. It’s simply a quick party game that plays well with a bunch of people.

Neuroshima Hex
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I was totes in the Neuroshima Hex tournament. The problem is no one said ahead of time that we had to have a partner so I got stuck with a random guy I didn’t know and he was kind of a curmudgeon the whole time and very bossy. We lost, to Rodney of Watch it Played and Chad of Pair of Dice Paradise, but that’s fine I didn’t want my teammate to win anyway.
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Plus even though I didn’t click with my partner, I actually had a lot of fun playing the game. I’ve only ever played Neuroshima Hex via the app. So it was refreshing to play the tabletop version.

A Fake Artists Goes to NY
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A Fake Artists Goes to NY is basically Spyfall meets Pictionary. There is a art-master or something and he/she writes down a thing or object on a bunch of tiles, but on one tile they draw an “X.” The tiles are passed out and if you get the X it means you are the fake artist.

A pad is passed around the table and each player draws a little bit of the picture, trying to make it clear that they know what they are supposed to be drawing without giving away to the fake artist what is happening.

It’s really stressful being the fake artists. The pad comes to you and you have to draw a line or something, but when you don’t know what you are supposed to be drawing it’s super hard.

At one point I got to be the art-master and I really wanted to write “poop emoji” as the thing they had to draw, but then I got an idea. I thought “what if I make them all fake artists.” It’s not that I wanted to ruin the game or even that I was being mean. I just had to know what would happen. What kind of drawing would they make if none of them knew what they were drawing?

It was great watching them all sweat and get nervous and it was really interesting to see the picture they ended up creating…
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Obligatory photo dump!

I take photos. It’s what I do. So here are a bunch of photos of games and people from BGG.Con! (note: these are all cellphone pics. It was too hard to lug my real camera around with Lisa there)

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Watch it Played in REAL LIFE.IMG_2105
True fact: Sam is an AMAZING driver. The roads in Dallas are poop. They are falling appart and in many cases the highways, exits, and such make zero sense because of so much construction. So even though driver in Houston are horrible, driving in Dallas is worse because of the roads. That being said, Sam drove a huge rental care like a freaking BOSS. It was impressive and everyone should know how good of a driver he is.
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Madness Games & Comics was the most amazing game store I had ever visited. It was about 35 minutes away from the convention but it was worth the trip. It was HUGE. The place must of once been a grocery store. If you are ever in the Dallas area make sure you check it out.
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Suz is the ONLY person of the 2,800 people at BGG.Con who tweeted more than me. IMG_2169
The registration line was so long it went outside and started to wrap around the building. IMG_2172 IMG_2175
The first day when we were working the booth, Lisa got a “walking taco” for lunch which was basically taco trimmings dumped in a Dorito’s bag. So weird.IMG_2189 IMG_2196
We got to try a new prototype from Talon Strikes. IMG_2215
We did a coffee exchange and it was AMAZING. One of my favorite non-gaming things I got to do at BGG.Con. IMG_2247
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Portal’s new family freindly game. We called it “Fat Animal Farm” cause you have to feed sad animals to make them fat and once they are fat they become happy.IMG_2288
Rodney was so proud cause he thought he had one Blood Rage but Matt from Boardgame Replay stole the victory!IMG_2294 IMG_2298
That photo inside the view finder is amazing. I wonder who took that? *wink * wink. IMG_2302 IMG_2326  IMG_2349
I got distracted while Suz was explaining the rules to Steamroller.IMG_2355
I still won by steamrolling over their pitiful scores!
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Lisa LOVED the live “Dice Tower” show. She’s never listened to the podcast and so she hadn’t realized that sometimes Tom, Eric, and the rest can be funny.IMG_2416 IMG_2430
I swear, everytime I saw Rob Daviau he was demoing some kind of Legacy Game. There was Pandemic season 2, Sea Fall, and some other game! He’s just a Legacy designing machine.

This was an interesting little game called “Splash!” I thought it was a prototype but apparently it’s an import from Japan.
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Lisa’s haul from the Flee Market. She went while I was at the Neuroshima Hex Tournament and it was one of her favorite things to do at the convention.IMG_2469   IMG_2552 IMG_2560 IMG_2573 IMG_2582
Lisa looked at me and said “It’s pretty but not as cool as the giant version of Rhino Hero.”IMG_2596 IMG_2637
These people. Shesh.
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IMG_1853-2So last year, I helped Ignacy from Portal Games locate a palette of missing games. I figured it was a once in a life time thing, but NOPE. This year the convention/shipping people lost his games AGAIN! Luckily they found them and everything turned out all right, but seriously, Ignacy can’t cut a break.
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This guy was so hardcore about “Time’s up!” that he had a specific stance he developed for use when playing the game.IMG_2324
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My favorite purchase when in Dallas. The Tuesday before the convention we hit up the Dallas Zoo and the second I saw this in the gift shop I KNEW I had to have it.IMG_2689
The last game Lisa played at the convention was some weird ostrich birth/sex game. It sounded inappropriate to me. Who would even teach such a wacky thing?

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All in all BGG.Con was great. It’s by far my favorite convention of the year and it was nice to share it with Lisa since normally her work schedule is impossible. I’m already excited and looking forward to going again next year!