GenCon 2013 Experiences - With Pictures!
Adam Daulton
United States
Indianapolis
Indiana
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This is the 4th year now that I've done these picture lists. I try to just give a brief over view of my thoughts of the convention, mostly on new to me games, but also with some special experiences as well. Was there starting Wednesday around 12:30 all the way through 4pm on Sunday. Tuesday I missed work due to being sick and though I recovered for awhile, most of the convention I wasn't near 100% which made this the most exhausting GenCon for ever for me. Next year is my 10th one! Hope you enjoy the list.

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1. Board Game: Glory to Rome [Average Rating:7.50 Overall Rank:131]
Adam Daulton
United States
Indianapolis
Indiana
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Wednesday. It only took me 40 minutes or so to get through the will call line for my event tickets. So about 1:30 or so I was sitting down with my buddy Sean:
sean johnson
United States
Edinburgh
Indiana
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to play Glory to Rome and claim a table. I'm glad I finally got a chance to play this game. We did play the old and in my opinion ugly version of the game, but I was glad to play. This is a game that I think will enjoy, but one that I think I would enjoy more the more I played it. I hope I get another shot at it soon.

Sean 33
Adam 21

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2. Board Game: Fleet [Average Rating:7.00 Overall Rank:619]
Adam Daulton
United States
Indianapolis
Indiana
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Sean and I were joined by Adam and Scott, two local Indy players that we actually don't get to play with often. Sean brought out this beautiful game. I really love the artwork and presentation of the game. However, it played so quickly that it felt like I never got going. It seems like a game that would be really good as a two player game, but then you have the auction portion of the game which would ruin that I think. Probably one I won't make an effort to pick up, but I'd play it again, it is short enough.

Sean 28
Adam W 23
Adam D 20
Scott 20

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3. Board Game: Rialto [Average Rating:6.98 Overall Rank:696]
 
Adam Daulton
United States
Indianapolis
Indiana
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Going into the weekend into the weekend, I wanted to make sure to play both this and Bruges. See what I think about Bruges below. This was a very solid game. It wasn't however buy material for me. I guess if I'm going to play a game about Venice, with area control, I'd rather play San Marco. Which isn't saying this is a bad one, but it just isn't really great and you need to knock down doors to get it.

Scott 50
Adam W 42
Dave 37
Adam 32

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4. Board Game: Founding Fathers [Average Rating:7.03 Overall Rank:912]
Adam Daulton
United States
Indianapolis
Indiana
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I made sure to schedule this game with Rob, Allen, and Brian. Brian introduced me to these guys last year. We had a great time playing some games and this was one of them in 2012. So we schedule to play it again this year. GW came out twice in this game. We did have some crazy low scores. I still really like this one. I know Rob also still enjoys it and Allen too. I think Brian does as well, so I'd be fine if this become a GenCon tradition. It seems like it already is. Scott gets the win and so may or may not be allowed to join next year.

Scott 17
Adam 16
Brian 16
Allen 13
Rob 12

This item also includes all those other great games I enjoyed over the weekend that I'd already played before. I played some really good stuff with really good people including Chaos in the Old World, Netrunner (outside the tournament), and El Grande and played games with so many people both from Indy and from around the world and country.

Rob moves to fast to be caught on a normal picture. I don't have high shutter speed such as used to capture humming bird flight. It is needed to catch Rob:




Something else that was interesting about our staked out area in the convention center food court. It seems this must be the place everyone comes on Wednesday to trade True Dungeon tokens. It felt like we were the only ones playing games and everyone else was making deals with small circles. Rob even bought a cookie from a kid's lunch for a $1 just to get in on the negotiating action.
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5. Board Game: Trains [Average Rating:7.25 Overall Rank:327] [Average Rating:7.25 Unranked]
Adam Daulton
United States
Indianapolis
Indiana
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This was my "Must Buy" game going into the convention. I didn't come home with it. We rushed to play it early on Thursday morning right away. Got to AEG's booth and saw Nolan, another local Indy player had just sat down to demo it as well so we joined him. This was one of the poorest demos I'd ever received at GenCon. The lady demoing, though nice, honestly didn't know the game. I had to go through the rule book and read it myself and correct her on several items as we played the game. The game really is just Dominion with an extra layer of a board. My wife played it 2 more times throughout the weekend and we decided after those plays that it just won't have a place in our collection with that extra layer.

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6. Board Game: Pixel Lincoln: The Deckbuilding Game [Average Rating:5.93 Overall Rank:6665]
Adam Daulton
United States
Indianapolis
Indiana
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Probably my biggest disappointment of the convention. I love the theme. I have been following it since the Kickstarter ended and almost pre-ordered it. I even double checked with Game Salute to be sure it would be available and for sale at the con. The game itself was just not good. I wasn't able to do a single thing the first 3 turns of the game. Didn't buy a single card. Since there was three players, the player on the bottom level by herself had much more control of what was in the level, while my opponent on the top level kept taking the only cards I could get. Eventually, we made it through the game, which I'm really glad. I am sad I didn't like this game. I wanted too, but just play Ascension.

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7. Board Game: Bruges [Average Rating:7.48 Overall Rank:172]
Adam Daulton
United States
Indianapolis
Indiana
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This game is really good. Krista and I snuck in a demo with Ian and Daniel. Ian had played a couple months ago and taught us. I played it three times over the weekend. For sure a step above Rialto, Bruges provides some fun card play. There isn't a whole lot of action on the board, but it serves its purpose. I like that there is interaction in it, but not so much that you specifically with individuals and let the others get ahead. This would've been a buy for me, but was already sold out by the time I'd played it. Feld has another hit on his hand I think.


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8. Board Game: The Lord of the Rings Trading Card Game [Average Rating:6.86 Overall Rank:1388]
Adam Daulton
United States
Indianapolis
Indiana
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I used to be big into this game and saw Sebastian looking for this weekend. We met up on Thursday night for two great matches. In the first game my Frodo tossed the Ring to Sam as he was consumed by an Orc. Sam ran up the Mountain and baked the bling! Second, I tried making the move again with Gimli as the Ringbearer, but this time the Nazgul were just too much for my party and Sebastian took the win. Overall, I think we did a pretty good job on the rules as we neither had played for a long time. I know I made several strategy mistakes, that I probably wouldn't have made in the heyday of playing.

Sebastian was really nice guy from Michigan. He explained couch surfing to me and how he'd stayed in the spare bedroom of a lady here in Indy for the past four years and they'd become friends. Not sure I'd ever do it, but pretty interesting learning about this method of traveling cheaply. I hope I get a chance to play LotR TCG again with him.

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9. Board Game: Android: Netrunner [Average Rating:7.98 Overall Rank:31]
Adam Daulton
United States
Indianapolis
Indiana
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I played in the Netrunner tourney on Friday. 240 people! My buddies convinced me to play Weyland, though I'm really a Jinteki player at heart, and I didn't do well. Not because of that, but because I just didn't do well period. While standing around I talked to Dodd Harris of Breaking News podcast and joked how it would be fun to play each other, though I didn't think it would happen. First round I was paired with him and he beat me both times. Game 1 I made a horrible miscalculation with my criminal deck, came 1 credit short, and spun out of control after. Game 2 his Noise dominated. It was cool to play against Dodd as I enjoy his and Jeff's podcast.

I then moved on to play Justin from Tulsa. He was a really cool guy and told me all about the Team Covenant store there. Sounds like the place to be if you are a Netrunner fan. Justin was running NBN and Kit. I snuck out a Weyland win, but lost with Gabe.

Round 3 then came and I once again split. By this time I was 2-4 and with 240 people in the tourney, I decided to drop once FFG announced there was going to be 1.5 hours before the next round. Turns out 9-5 was enough to make the cut to 32, but not sure I could've gone 7-1 the rest of the day. I'm glad I played, but realized for this type of tournament, I must get much more sleep, not be sick, and be much better at playing Netrunner.

This is a picture of the Netrunner finals. A Jinteki: PE/Shaper: Kate player ended up beating a HB: EtF/Anarch: Noise player.
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10. Board Game: Dungeon Roll [Average Rating:6.18 Overall Rank:1843]
Adam Daulton
United States
Indianapolis
Indiana
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The new hotness! This seems to be a great game for what it is however it was very much a single player type game. I personally would prefer to just play some iOS game, but I saw this around all over, and so I know I must be in the minority. Perhaps there is an iOS version coming? Nice bits and a good price. Just not one that I absolutely had to have for my collection.

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11. Board Game: Mascarade [Average Rating:6.71 Overall Rank:824]
 
Adam Daulton
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Indianapolis
Indiana
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The surprise hit of the convention for me. I hadn't even heard of this game before coming to the convention and sat down just because I had to wait to get into another demo at the booth. We played with 9 players and just had a great time with lots of shouting and excitement and an excellent demonstrator. Later on taught it too my group back in the game room. The next day played it twice more with some new guys and gals on Saturday night. Total plays were 4 over the weekend. This is going to be a great game for the youth group and I'm glad I purchased it!

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12. Board Game: Takenoko [Average Rating:7.34 Overall Rank:182]
Adam Daulton
United States
Indianapolis
Indiana
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Probably the best looking game ever. I honestly can't think of another. They were selling a $300 version on the floor and I saw a couple people walking around with it. I couldn't put out that much, but I did purchase the regular game. I think it is fun game and one that'll get some good play in my group and family. Probably because nobody can resist playing with pandas.

What was most cool about this game is that early in the day I ran into this guy:
Andrew Tullsen
United States
VANCOUVER
WA
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I had split a hotel room with him in St. Louis earlier this year and we'd gotten to know each other and so when I saw him demoing a game in the dealer hall we scheduled to play something that evening. GenCon is so big that a lot of times you don't see people every year, so it was fun to get a game in with Andrew.


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13. Board Game: Unpublished Prototype [Average Rating:7.02 Overall Rank:2002]
Adam Daulton
United States
Indianapolis
Indiana
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This is for The Dark Gothic Deck Building Game that is going to come out from Flying Frog productions. There isn't an entry yet in the BGG database. I played this with Sean, who is a huge A Touch of Evil fan. The game was ok. didn't feel like anything new to me. It was basically Ascension, DC Deckbuilder, LotR Deckbuilder, Pixel Lincoln, and any of the others with a different theme with just 3 currencies instead of 1 or 2. So if you are a big fan of the A Touch of Evil game, then put this on your radar. Otherwise, I'd suggest looking elsewhere if you own any of the above games.

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14. Board Game: The Palaces of Carrara [Average Rating:7.26 Overall Rank:495]
Adam Daulton
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Indianapolis
Indiana
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Kramer and Kiesling?! Yeah, I'll try that. I was surprised by this one. Seems like our group enjoyed it quite a bit with at least 3 copies being purchased. What I liked best about this one is the way the players control the end game. There are tough decisions in the game and yet at the same time the decisions don't take that long to make, because you have planned out a strategy. Top quality components of course from Zman, so if you are a Euro fan I'd suggest giving this one a chance. I'm glad several people purchased it and I'm sure it'll see more play.

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15. Board Game: Gobblet Gobblers [Average Rating:6.14 Overall Rank:4575]
Adam Daulton
United States
Indianapolis
Indiana
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Saturday morning! My wife and spent a couple hours in the dealer hall scouting kids games. This was one we found and ended up purchasing for a hold over until Christmas. Funny story. I walk up to the game (it is basically advanced tic-tac-toe) and there is a kid there. He says to me, "Hey, you wanna play this with me?" I say sure. I then put my big gobbler down in the middle circle. He tells me that I shouldn't do that. I ask him why and he says, "Because that isn't a smart move."

Whoa. This kid is serious. So I put out a smaller gobbler. We proceed to play for maybe 15 seconds and he has beat me. He is then like, "I came and played this yesterday." Smart kid.

Here is my wife though. I couldn't bear to take a picture of the kid. It was too devastating.

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16. Board Game: Chickyboom [Average Rating:5.91 Overall Rank:9244]
Adam Daulton
United States
Indianapolis
Indiana
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Played this once with that same kid and my wife. We purchased this as well and then played it 4 times with our daughters when we got home. Really fun and fast game that looks great and is perfect for 3 years old plus, just so long as you suggest which piece they should remove to keep the board balanced. Good purchases of kids games this year I think.

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17. Board Game: Got 'Em! [Average Rating:6.23 Overall Rank:8153]
Adam Daulton
United States
Indianapolis
Indiana
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Nope, not a great game. This is a game that probably should only be played two players and even then I'm not sure I would like it. We played the advanced version without cards, which perhaps made it more boring than it should be, but I probably won't be coming back to play it with cards and the exciting luck they'd bring. There are other abstracts I'd prefer to play, so see below.

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18. Board Game: Warhammer: Invasion [Average Rating:7.27 Overall Rank:404]
Adam Daulton
United States
Indianapolis
Indiana
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Last year I fared pretty well in the Invasion tourney and this year I was hoping to at least make the top 8, but it wasn't to be. After showing up at 2:55 and having someone cover my shift in the pick up and play room for an 1 and 15 minutes, the tournament didn't even start until 4. Over an hour later than scheduled. This was frustrating to me.

My rounds were all extremely close, except for perhaps the last round, with each game being decided by a single point of damage or a single card draw each time. All my rounds went to a full three games, but sadly I was on the losing end and finished just 1-3. My biggest sadness though was allowing and I use that word purposefully, Leon to beat me the final round of the game. That just shouldn't happen.

It was cool to see a lot of people I know from Louisville and play 3 of them (Leon, Trey, and Matt) and meet Kieth from St. Louis who had only been playing for 24 hours before he spanked me.

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19. Board Game: Mr. Jack Pocket [Average Rating:7.01 Overall Rank:550]
Adam Daulton
United States
Indianapolis
Indiana
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I like this one. Jeremy and Annie purchased it and while we were in the middle of a game of Guildhall, but waiting on other players who were doing their volunteer duties of teaching games, Annie and I played it 4 times. I like how really this is an abstract game that gets the job done and gets the job done quickly. The bits are nice, the size is really pocket size, and it is one I'd gladly play again and may even one day own. Speaking of own, Annie owned me 3 out of the 4 games.

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20. Board Game: Blood Bound [Average Rating:6.72 Overall Rank:1651]
Adam Daulton
United States
Indianapolis
Indiana
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After rushing to the Iello booth for our King of Tokyo promos, Jeremy and I sat down to demo this game. It is basically a hidden roles vampire game with two teams. This game isn't anywhere close to games such as Werewolf or the Resistance nor Bang or Shadow Hunters. This, to me at least, wasn't fun at all. It could be the group we played with or perhaps it was that we only had 6 people which is the minimum, but it didn't feel polished at all and felt really awkward to play.

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21. Board Game: The Duke [Average Rating:7.55 Overall Rank:334] [Average Rating:7.55 Unranked]
Adam Daulton
United States
Indianapolis
Indiana
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This is a good abstract. If my wife would play abstracts with me, I'd probably have bought it. However, since she isn't interested and this is a 2 player game, I held off. The pieces are very nice, they have really cool movement patterns, and there are enough variants you can have plenty of luck in your game of none at all. I suggest all you abstract fans try this one out. Jeremy smoked me back to back in this one, but I'd have my revenge in the last demo of the convention below.

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22. Board Game: Summoner Wars [Average Rating:7.33 Overall Rank:328] [Average Rating:7.33 Unranked]
Adam Daulton
United States
Indianapolis
Indiana
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This has been out for 4 years now and I am sad to say I hadn't played it until today. Jeremy played the Jungle Elves and I played the Battering Rams sponsored by Dodge Trucks. Well, that wasn't really my faction, but that is what I thought about. I quickly rushed at him, doing everything I could to destroy him and put our Summoners toe-to-toe with my Sundavar (SP) winning out!

I liked this game, but with my current two player card game of choice being Netrunner, there isn't time for this for me right now. I liked how hits were on 3 and above. That meant action. A lot of time, I feel in these types of games, players roll a lot of dice but don't see results and it was fun to see it be more about the dying in this one.

I had one of the Plaid Hat guys take the picture. All those guys were extremely helpful and we had at least 3 different people make sure we understood the game and had any questions.

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23. Board Game: Mutant Meeples [Average Rating:6.71 Overall Rank:2063]
Adam Daulton
United States
Indianapolis
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I got to play a game with Shea and Angie, who with both of us having small kids now, rarely see each other any more. They quickly taught me this game and it took me a few turns to really get my brain thinking the right way about it. By then it was too late. I can see why this is a good game, but it honestly isn't a game I enjoy. I'm glad I played it though and had a good time watching Shea and Angie just quickly work the problems out to my perplexed stare.

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