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Subject: My 2012 WBC Highlights rss

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Ravena
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red_gamster wrote:
I WANT tense, unfriendly, competitive gaming!


There is plenty of tense, unfriendly, competitive gaming at WBC. Especially for the century events.

True many of the earlier rounds of the tournaments have an "open gaming" feel to them, but once you get into the semifinals it's plenty competitive. I am sure that if you come you won't be disappointed.
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Joel Tamburo
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Something else to remember about WBC - it is not owned by or run by a corporation.

The Boardgame Players Association runs the conference, and people who attend WBC for more than one day are voting members. That voting comes into play both when determining new games to be added and also when three of the nine directors are up for election each year. So the attendees have a lot of say in the operation of the conference.

More details are at:

http://www.boardgamers.org

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David Bohnenberger
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Nick wrote:
red_gamster wrote:
I WANT tense, unfriendly, competitive gaming!


There is plenty of tense, unfriendly, competitive gaming at WBC. Especially for the century events.

True many of the earlier rounds of the tournaments have an "open gaming" feel to them, but once you get into the semifinals it's plenty competitive.


This is why I pretend that I'm "glad" I never advance.
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Eddie B
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I went to WBC for the first time this year. Made the semi finals of Puerto Rico and Yspahan, and I made the finals of Chicago Express.

Overall my experience was great and even in the later stages it was fun meeting players who really know what they are doing and do it all in a friendly but competitive atmosphere.

You learn a lot of things when you play with complete strangers who are really good at a game. I always thought I was a decent Princes of Florence player. Well, I got my butt kicked and I learned some new moves.

I am definitely back again next year.
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Garrett the Hammer
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spozun wrote:
Let me put it this way, WBC is like a nice trip to grandmas house, very warm friendly and down to earth. Gen on is like a trip to new York city, a little colder, but lots of people watching, variety, and neat things to do and see. Both different, but good.


I don't want to start a Gencon vs WBC debate, but I'll pipe in my perceptions of the two. It was probably 7+ years ago that I attended Gencon so it might have changed, or my memory could be bad. Gencon certainly is much larger in scale and grandeur than the WBC. But this is spread over practically all types of gaming (RPGs, war, video, LARPs, card, miniatures, etc). Of the boardgames that I did see, I recall there was a strong 'ameritrash' leaning. There were also typically perhaps a dozen or less attendees for the boardgame events. Contrast this with the WBC, where events can attract hundreds of players, and there are hundreds of boardgame events. So I would agree if you want to 'see it all', then Gencon may be a better choice. But if you really want to focus on playing boardgames, WBC is imho the place to be.

Of course, at Gencon you can meet and shake hands with real-life celebrities, like Marc Singer the Beastmaster (yes, a highlight of mine). I didn't see Reiner Knizia once at the WBC.

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Kurt R
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It was my life, like all lives, mysterious and irrevocable and sacred. So very close, so very present, so very belonging to me. How wild it was to let it be.
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aarondesk wrote:
Of course, at Gencon you can meet and shake hands with real-life celebrities, like Marc Singer the Beastmaster (yes, a highlight of mine). I didn't see Reiner Knizia once at the WBC.


I shook the hands of Eric Lee Smith and John H. Butterfield.
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Joel Tamburo
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enzo622 wrote:
aarondesk wrote:
Of course, at Gencon you can meet and shake hands with real-life celebrities, like Marc Singer the Beastmaster (yes, a highlight of mine). I didn't see Reiner Knizia once at the WBC.


I shook the hands of Eric Lee Smith and John H. Butterfield.


Pretty cool. I'll add Mark Herman, Ed Beach, Volkho Ruhnke, Jay Tummnelson, Mike Rinella and others.
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Vanessa Huacani
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This was my first game conference and I must say I had a great time! I went barely knowing two people whom I met through the split shipping thread for tanga and left knowing at least 15! I learned at least 8 new games and now have a very long wish list!
I will be going again next year and since it's 15mins from home, it's quite convenient
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Phil Sauer
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rednessa wrote:
This was my first game conference and I must say I had a great time! I went barely knowing two people whom I met through the split shipping thread for tanga and left knowing at least 15! I learned at least 8 new games and now have a very long wish list!
I will be going again next year and since it's 15mins from home, it's quite convenient

It will only get better! Hope you enjoy Agricola, Vanessa!
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Bruce Reiff
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aaxiom wrote:
Joelist wrote:
This is representative of the culture of WBC, which based on having gone to other conventions is indeed different than you find in many of them. WBC has a "chummy" feel I have never found at another conference. Add in the overt family friendliness and active outreach to youth and it is a unique experience.

I personally witnessed a Pacific Typhoon game being played by seven (informally, just for fun) at a large table. Three different "races" were present, four rough age groups represented (my guess is 12 years, 20s, 40s, and an elderly gentleman who had to be in his 60s/70s), and the two sexes.

But the obvious common denominator -- besides the title of the game -- was the most impressive: They were all smiling, lightheartedly bantering, and having a GREAT TIME.

I sincerely believe that games have the ability to erase all perceptions of difference. I loved watching these folks interact from the sidelines. I wish I could have recorded their session.


Phil, was this Sunday night in the bar? If so it was my 14 year old daughter. I was looking for her and that's where I found her - in the bar with the pacific typhoon crowd!
 
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John Corrado

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Joelist wrote:
enzo622 wrote:
aarondesk wrote:
Of course, at Gencon you can meet and shake hands with real-life celebrities, like Marc Singer the Beastmaster (yes, a highlight of mine). I didn't see Reiner Knizia once at the WBC.


I shook the hands of Eric Lee Smith and John H. Butterfield.


Pretty cool. I'll add Mark Herman, Ed Beach, Volkho Ruhnke, Jay Tummnelson, Mike Rinella and others.


I managed to meet Ananda Gupta in open gaming three years ago; no such celebrity passes for me this year.

Major highlights for me:
* Made more friends this year than any year previous
* Got in games that I rarely ever otherwise get to play (Age of Renaissance, Merchants of Venus)
* Got to try out new games and found one that's have moved to the top of my list (Glen More)
* Had a nearly-perfect Cinderella story in Brass: came in 2nd and 3rd in my first two games, planned to skip the 3rd to make the Powergrid semi, only to find I was 'on the bubble' and one of 5 people vying for 2 roles. Ended up losing the draw for PG and ran to the Brass room and just barely managed to get in to a game. Won that game despite playing last year's champion, then won my semi-final with my best game ever, and managed to pull a 3rd in the final to get my first piece of wood ever.

What I think is best is that in years previous, a lack of making finals put a pall over everything else; but this year, I had enough pressure in different directions about getting zen that even if I hadn't gotten to that last game of Brass, the first two points would have meant I came away thrilled and ready for next year.
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Kevin Hammond
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This was my 3rd year at the WBC, and it just keeps getting better and better. I've been out of work since April, and I'm about to move from NY to Seattle, so I nearly didn't go but I'm very glad I did

"On paper" my week ought to have been disappointing. Two of my main interests didn't work out too well. I only made it to Round 2 in my favorite game, Breakout: Normandy, but I lost to the eventual Runner-up. I also spent *zero* minutes socializing at the hotel bar, though that was because I was gaming till midnight or usually 1-2am all 5 nights (which is nice).

The best time I had this year was going 4-1 in Twilight Struggle to take 3rd place, losing in the Semi-Final to the eventual champ. I played 5 games of it in one day - from 9am until about 2am - and getting to play 5 F2F games of TS in one day against tough opponents was AWESOME!
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Richard Shay
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It was my 3rd year at WBC and the first time I ran an event: Yspahan. You can't get about 1,200 people together and have them all be perfectly behaved, but WBC is as friendly as any crowd I've ever been in.
I'd like to thank all the players in my tournament for their patience. Please send me any feedback that you have.
Also, did anyone end up with an extra ruleset for Yspahan? Mine is misplaced (it could be in another game box for that matter).
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robert kircher
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rmshay wrote:
It was my 3rd year at WBC and the first time I ran an event: Yspahan. You can't get about 1,200 people together and have them all be perfectly behaved, but WBC is as friendly as any crowd I've ever been in.
I'd like to thank all the players in my tournament for their patience. Please send me any feedback that you have.
Also, did anyone end up with an extra ruleset for Yspahan? Mine is misplaced (it could be in another game box for that matter).


I saw the rules when we played last week. We had the rules plus the expansion on the table. Did they get placed in the Lancaster box?
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Christopher Yaure
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rmshay wrote:
It was my 3rd year at WBC and the first time I ran an event: Yspahan. You can't get about 1,200 people together and have them all be perfectly behaved, but WBC is as friendly as any crowd I've ever been in.
I'd like to thank all the players in my tournament for their patience. Please send me any feedback that you have.
Also, did anyone end up with an extra ruleset for Yspahan? Mine is misplaced (it could be in another game box for that matter).


Richard - it was a pleasure seeing you and your family again this year. Though Lexi is a bit terrifying to play at Dominion.

Thank you for running Yspahan. I made it to the semifinals and it went very smoothly from my vantage point. I would ask you to consider making the games 3-player rather than 4-player, since I believe 3-player is the better game. However, looking at the BGG user suggested # of players, 65.7% rate 4-player as best, vs. 60.4% for 3-player.(for some reason BGG allows voting for more than one "best"), so it appears 4-player is slightly more preferred.

One specific note of appreciation - I was in the semifinal game that was played in a different room becase Rob Kircher was GMing a different event. You stopped in to check on the game - it was nice not to feel like orphans. The game had no problems, but it was good to know you were available if something came up.

See you in a little less than 11 months.
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Eric Brosius
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actuaryesquire wrote:
Richard - it was a pleasure seeing you and your family again this year. Though Lexi is a bit terrifying to play at Dominion.


She certainly is, but there is a Shay family and a Shea family that both go to WBC (I think they're both from Rhode Island) and Lexi is in the other family.
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Richard Shay
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Eric is mostly right. The Shea family (Lexi, Jordan, Lynda and Mike) live in CT. I live in MA (but my wife recently discovered CT roots back to the 1640s for my family, as well as colonial MA and RI).
I play with the Sheas as often as I can arrange. My son Rich joins us when he can, so sometimes there is a large array of Shay/Sheas. The younger generation is quite dangerous as you have noticed.
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Christopher Yaure
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Well, that is embarrassing, Nonetheless, I enjoyed your event, Mr. Shay.
 
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Richard Shay
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Nothing to be embarrassed about, especially when we all the Sheas/Shays have matching TotalCon t-shirts on!
 
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Lynda Shea
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actuaryesquire wrote:
rmshay wrote:
It was my 3rd year at WBC and the first time I ran an event: Yspahan. You can't get about 1,200 people together and have them all be perfectly behaved, but WBC is as friendly as any crowd I've ever been in.
I'd like to thank all the players in my tournament for their patience. Please send me any feedback that you have.
Also, did anyone end up with an extra ruleset for Yspahan? Mine is misplaced (it could be in another game box for that matter).


Richard - it was a pleasure seeing you and your family again this year. Though Lexi is a bit terrifying to play at Dominion.


Chris - it was definitely a pleasure to see you and your family again. No wories about the mix-up in the family name; it happens quite a bit even with the Shea brothers (Patrick and Phillip) who come to play at WBC and are not related to us either. Lexi is definitely a gamer and strikes fear in us as well...now some unsuspecting college player who sits opposite her is going to get a taste of that too. Congratulations on your Labyrinth tournament win and take care over the next 11 months until we see you again.
 
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roger cox
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Spartanburg
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Sadly, I have met more than one person who fit the "not nice" category. I went to Avaloncon/WBC from 1991-1998, then returned in 2009 and finally this year. I had fun at all of them, and the good people far outnumber the bad. But it amazws me how some people act--it's as if that "ain't got no home trainin'", to quote my grandmother.
I spend a lot of time watching other games and, particularly, the players and how they interact. Part hobby, and part is my own tendency to watch and write down people's names who exhibit good sportsmanship as well as bad. Like the young man who helped a 10-year-pld one year in Superstar Baseball by reminding him that if he used a certain pitcher, he wouldn't have a good one left to use in the finals (if he won). This cost him the game, but he made a little boy ecstatic, and that's worth a lot.
In my group at home, or at a local game event at a hobby store, if a player told another "Well, THAT a stupid endgame move!", first, there would likely be a fight. This happened at a game at WBC this year--sans the fight, probably because the rude, discourteous words were said by a 20-something young lady, proving two things: 1) Women DO get away with more than men and 2) well, best not bring how her parents raised her into the conversation, but there's a lot to be said for attitude adjustments.
I saw a wonderful group exercise in exorcising a cancer. Some multi-player games can get "busy". And the later the hour, the more hectic things can get. I sat in on one 25-player affair that featured players aging from (by my estimate) 8 to 65. There were men without hats, men WITH hats, and hobbit ears, and ball caps, and gangster derbies. There were women of all ages, and everyone was getting ready for a lively game. As the game began, a rather large fellow who reminded me of a clean-shaven version of Rambo stood to address the table. He told us that he played games using pure mathematics, logic and statistical data. In short, he was always correct. He spent 15 minutes telling us why we should (or should not) do something. He was also drunker than a one-eyed owl. As this is that game everyone either loves or hates, where you (usually) "kill" off one player per turn, it took the other 24 only one round to nominate and dispense with this guy and get on with the game. A player to my left said to the fellow on his other side "You know, odds are, he's a villager", to which the gent replied, "I know, and I don't care." It struck me very funny. So, the drunk is voted out, but the player who sat next to him came to his defense next turn. He claimed we had not voted him oput because we thought he was a wolf--we just wanted to "remove what we decided was a malignancy." There was no argument, and this upset the man even more, so he started using some language that could generously be called colorful. The first time, the lady beside him tugged his sleeve and motioned toward the 8 year old. The second time, she poked his arm and made the same gesture. The third time, I nominated him to be executed "to remove a malignancy, and the vote was again nearly unanimous.
I am NOT anti-drinking. Got nothing against having beer, wine, cocktail of your choice, pot (but I digress). But when you can't handle it, most people I kow are aware of their limit and when they exceed it, the LAST place they want to be is around a game table full of people they've probably never met, or only get to see once a year. As for the foul language, I'm not a stickler on that either, but I do think one should watch it while around children. The question of whether a child of 8 should play games until 4 AM, I will leave to those who are experts on the subject.
More of my studies on sociology and anthropology of gamers at WBC 2013 to come...
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