Saturday, November 13, 2010

GASPCon Day 1

Daily Blog Challenge post number eleven.

Today I attended GASPCon XI at the Greentree Best Western, just outside Pittsburgh. It was my first time at the Con, and only my second gamer convention ever. Based on my experience today, I'm going to consider more small regional Cons in the future. Today was great. So great, I'm already excited for GASPCon XII, and I'm only one day into number XI. Hah. Anyway, I played two RPGs, picked up some RPG books, and got a free board game.

The Games Played:
Spellcraft & Swordplay - A Bridget Too Far
Spellcraft & Swordplay was developed by Pittsburgher Jason Vey. He attempts to return to the playing style of the earliest editions of Dungeons & Dragons, sticking with the D6 based Chainmail rules for combat. It's supposed to emulate what might have happened if the game developed down that path, rather than going with the alternate combat rules that ended up being the standard. The game uses a 2d6 + attribute bonus mechanic. The DM came up with the scenario on his own and offered the 4 players a stack of pregens. I grabbed a human priest, Curt went with the elf warrior wizard, the other guys were playing a dwarf warrior and a human assassin. The goal was to deliver our king's daughter and dowry to a neighboring kingdom. I thought the game was great. We were attacked by a horde of goblins and hobgoblins along the road. Combat was pretty deadly, but we made it though alive. After another close call at an inn, we arrive in the neighboring kingdom. The king is concerned that the attacks are coming from within his staff. At the very final moment, we manage to stop an assassination attempt on the princess and the wedding goes off with out a hitch. Everyone survived and had lots of fun. Would definitely play again! For the guys in game with, I do have this game, so maybe eventually I will put a one-off scenario together.

Friday 7-11: Labyrinth Lord - A Pit of Despair
Labyrinth Lord is a D&D clone. The game is going to be run by Tim Harper, who also runs the LL game I played at GASP game day last month. We had a very full table. I think there were 8 or 9 of us around the table, each with a character and a retainer. I ended up with a magic user PC and a fighter retainer. It could have been a real nightmare for a more tactical RPG, but with Labyrinth Lord's old school design, it moved along just fine. Tim ran a one-page dungeon he found online (I'm not sure if the 1-page dungeon Tim ran was included on that page, but it should give you the general idea of the philosophy behind them). Essentially all of the adventurers ended up in this crazy fun-house with very few combats and a ton of puzzles and traps and dozens of ways to die. I got pretty lucky. My retainer bit the dust on the next to last room, but the wizard made it through alive. I managed to solve the very last puzzle that allowed us all to escape, which was pretty rad. I thought the whole thing is was totally amazing. So much fun and so many weird and crazy events that I can't possibly get them all into a blog post. I've got another LL game with Tim on Sunday and I'm definitely looking forward to it.

The Swag:
I picked up the following Lamentations of the Flame Princess adventures from Chuck-a-Con online store: The Grinding Gear, Hammers of the Gods, and Death Frost Doom. Charles has a variety of gaming supplies and this prices are pretty good, too. I'll likely be getting more gaming materials through him in the near future.

All pre-registrants got a free board game, too. It looked like there were two possibilities. I got Terra Nova. It's some kind of Euro-strategy game. Looks kind of cool. Definitely into getting it for free.

Like I said, I couldn't ask for or expect a better experience than what I had today. Great time all around. More after tomorrows games. I'll be playing Hackmaster Basic, Savage Worlds, and Lamentations of the Flame Princess. Check back later for those!

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