Sunday, February 9, 2014

Guest Poster - Dylan Hartwell, AKA the Digital Orc - Describe Some of the Favorite Convention Games You Have Played In

For those who don't know or haven't figured it out yet, I allow guests to post over here at The Tavern. There really isn't much of a requirement as to topic, but it should, in general, revolve around RPGs, the hobby and the like. Or not. I do retain the right of refusal. If you are interested, use the contact form on the right ;)

Dylan Hartwell, AKA the Digital Orc, has been playing and running roleplaying games since 1985. He has played in and ran D&D, RIFTS, and Dark Heresy campaigns each running more than fifty individual game sessions.  Dylan has attended more than 20 gaming conventions since 1997 including Con on the Cob, Origins, and Gencon where he has run multiple Labyrinth Lord adventures.  He has maintained an OSR blog called Digital Orc at www.digitalorc.blogspot.com since 2010 and is an active member on the Dragonsfoot and Goblinoid Games forums in addition to being a regular commenter in the OSR blogosphere.  He has self-published six Labyrinth Lord game adventures and supplements. Dylan holds a Bachelor’s degree in Education and a Master’s degree in Technology in Education.

Gary Gygax helped get Gencon started way back in 1968.  It’s always been a part of our roleplaying game culture.  Even if players didn’t attend in person, the details in Dragon Magazine, the new products released, and later the awards all contributed to cohesion in our favorite hobby.  It became a rallying point around which we players could both meet and measure our style of gaming.  Recent reports of increased housing blocks in Indianapolis selling out faster than last year suggest that we’re on track to beat the record-setting 49,000 unique visitors that attended Gencon 2013.

Midwest Gencon attendance also correlates with the rise of the OSR.  That is, Gencon attendance was relatively stagnant through the second half of the 1990s and the following ten years, but experienced a massive surge during the second decade of the 2000s, as did our OSR movement concomitantly.

However, convention register-and-play roleplaying games are significantly different than at-home campaigns, which are the heart of this hobby.  They are different for a wide variety of reasons.  So, here is my prompt for your comments:

Describe, in as much detail as possible, some of your favorite convention games in which you have played. (added thought - what do you think made them so enjoyable?)

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