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GenCon: Opening Ceremonies

The adventure, the fun, the games! GenCon has begun! Find out what makes it the best four days in gaming!
If you are like me and born with a D&D book in your hand, then GenCon is your religious holiday. As per usual the festivities are off to a bang. This is perhaps one of the biggest years, if not thebiggest year yet.

They days started with people in one of two places. Either in line to pick up your entrance badge, or in the crowd to get into the exhibit hall. Luckily, my group and I planned ahead and were of the latter. The big excitement for many people? The official release of Giest: The Sin-Eaters pen-and-paper RPG for World of Darkness and White Wolf was ready for us. As we approached their booth, the line had already begun and the demand was so high, that they did not have a display. Instead, you picked it up once you reached their register. But I was able to get my copy, and I haven't been able to put it down since.
Giest easily has the best ambient artwork yet for White Wolf and the game concept is extremely original. It is easy to see why this is what so many people have looked forward to at the con.

Another big excitement is the return of the collectible card game (CCG), The Spoils. For many people, this is the greatest card game ever printed. Unfortunately the publisher had some problems and eventually went bankrupt and many feared the game lost. However, that is not the case. A new company has picked it up, and for the first time, printed a two player starter set that you can GET FOR ONLY FIVE DOLLARS! They are giving it a 75% discount! Naturally, they are selling like crazy, and I am so happy, as I am one of the many that think this is the best card game in the CCG market in years.

Perhaps the most exciting release is X-treme Dungeon Mastering (XDM) by Chris and Tracy Hickman, and will be featured at the Saturday morning event, Hickman's Killer Breakfast.

The description is:

This ain’t your mama’s sorry, saggy old adventure supplement. We’re talking the difference between ‘bad’ DMs and ‘wicked bad’ DMs. We’re talking taking your sleepy-eyed, hit-point-countin’, wait-it-out-in-the-middle-of-the-party players, grabbing them by the front of their stained T-shirt and shakin’ their world ‘til their dice fall out.

XDM goes beyond the rule book – way beyond – with advice, tips, techniques and ideas designed to take any complacent, sounds-like-a-stock-holders-meeting role playing adventure group and bust their game wide open. The text covers everything from radical theatrical techniques to working sleight of hand and how to downright cheat if necessary in the quest of extreme fun. Sometimes practical … sometimes insanely ridiculous … and always entertaining, XDM is the ‘Dungeon Master’s Guide’ for the rest of us … taking the performance craft of running an entertaining dungeon to the very edge!

... And when you buy it directly from their booth, both Chris and Tracy (if available) as well as the illustrator, Howard Taylor (of Schlock Mercenary fame) will sell it to you and sign it!

All-in-all, a great start, to the greatest four days in gaming.
Your friendly neighborhood Falcon,
John "Falcon" Ayers
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J. "Falcon" Ayers

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