Tag Archives: convention

Dream Convention

(Sounds like a prog rock band, sorry)

 Imagine you are an omnipotent convention organiser. You can do and have anything you like. What does your dream con look like? Mine would be like this.

Friday show up for meet and greet. We have a proper pub to meet in (think Warhammer World without the rest of the building), and it’s full of all my gaming acquaintances from the last thirty years. Crucially, there’s no idiots there to spoil my fun. Which means no funny hats or travel stained Red Dwarf t-shirts. There’s some great (free) food and plenty of proper drinks too. That night is all about catching up and settling old internet arguments. I have loads of famous game designers come up to me and shake my hand for running such awesome games over the years (it’s my dream right?). I retire about 3am to my exclusive chambers.

On awaking, hangover free and completely refreshed) I head for a massive fry up that magically contains no calories. Everyone is smiling and getting ready for a days gaming. There’s no sign ups or scrums, you always get whatever game you like.

Today I will be playing AD&D, and the DM will be Mike Mearls. He’s taking us through the Slaver’s series, and we will go all the way through it in one glorious session. I play a thief, and I’m awesome. The other players are awesome too, bringing flavour and passion as well as humility to the game. We roar with laughter at times, and we are frightened to our very foundations too. The game ends with our victory over evil and a standing ovation for Mike, who then offers to get the first round in.

That evening I catch up with my mates and we swap stories of our days endeavours. We jostle to get our stories out first as every single one is a golden tale of gaming goodness. Then it’s a pub quiz. There may be a drink or two involved. My team win, and the prize is an all expenses paid trip to GenCon.

Sunday. No one goes home early, as there’s more gamage to play. Today is D&D 4e for me, and it’s being run by Chris Perkins. It’s being filmed by the BBC for a new 13 part series of “Only Cool People Roleplay”. We’re at mid heroic tier, and Chris has loads of surprises in store for us. The other guys round the table are great: we have the Penny Arcade crew, Stephen Fry and Derren Brown.

Everyone knows the game well, but it never descends into pure rules speak. I play a rogue, and I’m awesome. We all swap e-mail addresses at the end, promising to stay in touch.

That night I’m running a game. My prep is all done and I’m super confident. The character sheets and handouts are works of art. I’m running Earthdawn and all the players come from the day’s previous games. We have the best time playing out the Theran invasion of Barsaive. At the end we all shake hands and have man hugs.

My mates filter back from their games and we swap war stories all over again. Drinks are consumed around a huge banquet table. The wrap up speech is short and well received. A vote is taken and it is unanimously decided that we will not go home in the morning, we’ll carry on playing forever.

It could happen right?


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When I’m not doing this…

I lead a double life. As well as this blog I’m also a founding member of The Smart Party, a group of proactive gamers whose interest lies in better Convention gaming for all. 

We attended Furnace last weekend and my write up is now live, and I’m sure the other guys will be chipping in with their experiences soon.

Head on over and please comment if you can.

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Furnace Flyers

This weekend I’m heading oop north to run a couple of games at Furnace. It will be my first time at this Con, and I’m very much looking forward to it. Here’s the flyers for my games. I’ll be sure to write up my experiences on the other side (or even live and direct if they have decent wifi at the venue)

The Fey Team

The Night Riders

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LemurCon report II

So, where was I?

The masked ball was a great chance for the players to show  their socialising chops. I wanted to see this kind of scene as it’s seriously missing from the official adventures. I was also well aware that my regular group has been having a blast with those games, where it’s almost exclusively played by the initiative count. So, when the story merited it, guys with crossbows burst in.

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LemurCon report

Its a lemur playing games no?

As foreshadowed in a couple of previous posts, we recently got the old gang together for a full day of gaming goodness. Here’s how it went from my perspective.

One of my goals for this day was to try to relax a little bit. With some Con days I get all deadline anxious, or way too worried about my prep skills or whether or not everyone at the table is having a good enough time. In hindsight those things are never as big a deal as I thought they would be, so for once I was determined to not sweat the small stuff so much. Also, we’re old friends who don’t see each other more than once or twice a year so there’s loads to catch up on. If we’re not careful we spend all day pretending to be other people and we don’t get to check on wives, kids, jobs, let alone cool films and books.

With that in mind, my lovely wife dropped me off at Julio’s place and came in with the kids to say ‘hi’ to everyone. Lots of shaking hands and manly embracing while Julio put the kettle on. That’s better than frantically gathering your notes and setting up your dice. We took our time and laid out our snacks, and eventually and inevitably the conversation turned to our characters for the day.

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Let me tell you about my character

Well, I’ll let Dan tell you about his anyway. This is his backstory for the character he used at the big one off Eberron game last weekend.

Aundair Gazetteer
18 Zarantyr 998YK

‘After the Mourning’ Where are they now?

In this regular article we catch up with some of the heroes of the great war and find out what they are doing now hostilities are over.

Kiera d’Lyrandar, youngest child of Brandon and Elahara Jean-Gris d’Lyrander grew up in the Jean-Gris family home in Aundair. At age 9 she had her first communion with one of the Sovereign Host, Arawai, and joined the monastery on her 13th birthday. At 16 she was sent to train with the “Flying Templars” on the island of Stormhome amongst rumours of unruly behaviour.
She’s grown into an attractive young woman and has joined us fresh from a training exercise aboard the Sky-galleon ‘Arawai’s Honour’, fully armed and armoured.

AG: Thanks for joining us, Miss d’Lyrander. You grew up in Aundair with five older brothers, how was it being the youngest and a girl?
KdL: It was great really. My brothers teased me something awful sometimes, hiding my dolls and pulling my hair, that sort of stuff, but they looked out for me too. Mother was always dressing my up in these little dresses and things but they’d always ended up torn and muddy, I was a bit of a tom-boy and much preferred Tabard and Trews and a pair of sturdy boots.
AG: Speaking of which, can you tell us about what you are currently wearing?
KdL: Of course, this is ‘Sky-Silver’ layered plate forged in Cyre, made for me by Elgrim d’Cannith and is enchanted for mobility. I’ve accessorised with this light jousting shield and matching tabard. As usual I am carrying my lightning sword ‘Ampere’, gifted to me by father when I went to study on storm-home. Last, and most precious to me is this (Kiera lifts her arm to show the rosary wrapped around her gauntlet and the delicate wheatsheaf hanging from it). Arawai is always by my side, but this makes that connection stronger.
AG: We know you first communed with Arawai when you were nine, pur readers would like to know how you got the honour of serving with the third wing of Arawai’s Templars AKA The Flying Templars. Any truth to the rumours?
KdL: (sighs) Well, it seems such a long time ago now, there was this beautiful young elf working the local orchard, all tanned and, ooh, wild. By the five, I can’t even remember his name, anyway, I’d just turned 16 and was rather naive. Sister Morodale caught us in the hayloft with a bottle of scrumpy, as you can imagine, as an earthly representative for one of the Sovereign Host and a Lyrander, such behaviour was deemed unseemly. We had a huge argument. The next day I received travel papers with a note from father just saying I was to travel to Stormhome to learn some discipline.
AG: Some would consider that an honour, rather than a punishment.
KdL: (shrugs) It’s been hard work.
AG: Moving on, what’s the political climate like on Stormhome? Is it true house Lyrander is mobilising troops to invade the Eldeen reaches?
KdL: I cannot comment on the policies of house Lyrander, I am Arawai’s vessel and storm-bringer.
AG: You served for three years during the war, you were honoured for your actions on the day of Mourning, can you tell us about that?
KdL: We’d been re-provisioning at the border keeps and were flying back abourd ‘Arawai’s Hope’ to support the Cyran troops against the invading forces. Our orders were to strike the Zelish wands at sunset but when we arrived the Brelish army was scattered. We weighed anchor and worked all night trying to help the refugees, most were sick from the mourning, whatever we did, even Arawai’s blessings, it wasn’t enough. Most of those few that walked out of the wasteland died within hours. It was dreadful.
AG: What’s next for Kiere d’Lyrander?
KdL: I’ve ten days leave so I plan to take passage on a sky-ship back home to see mother and father and then to volunteer at one of the refugee camps in Breland. I always try to return to that site we landed at once a year to pay my respects and do what I can.
AG: Thank-you for your time.
KdL: Arawai’s blessings be with you.

Next Week: Lord Major Bren ir’Gadden of house Medani talks to us about the Vital role of the Brelish Intelligence corps in bringing about the Treaty of Thronehold.


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Eberron at LemurCon 2009

Every year we have a bit of a reunion. Most of our gaming group met at university back in the early nineties. Since then we’ve spread out across the country and obviously we can’t all get together every week. So instead we try to have a full weekend of gaming every now and then, once or twice a year.  Usually we meet up at Pete’s and we must be on about our 14th or 15th mini Con by now. This year we were down on numbers, and we played at Julio’s for once, so we tried something new. Usually we play 4 or 5 different games over the weekend, plus board games etc, and have rotating GMs. This time we devoted the whole of Saturday to D&D 4e.

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