Tuesday, August 9, 2022

Gen Con 2022: The Gamers Returned

I normally wouldn't have had a follow-up post like this, but Gen Con LLC released their post con press release, and the contents confirmed what my son and I thought was the case.

The gamers were back.

According to the press release, Gen Con attendance returned to pre-pandemic levels at over 50,000 attendees and over 15,000 ticket events. The Gen Con Online version had over 900 virtual games and events as well, so there seems to be a future for Gen Con Online. 

For us personally it certainly seemed that the crowds were just as busy as when we last attended on Sunday (around 2012), but the tweaks made to improve the flow of people throughout the con kept the traffic snarls low.

I do wonder just how much space the Exhibit Hall will expand into so that the traffic is kept to decent levels, given that there were tons of cafeteria style tables in a good 1/3 of the area beyond the Exhibit Hall itself. That was where I saw this poster:

Given that I typically play AD&D 1e
these days, I could use a refresher.

That area was pretty empty, but I think they might have been holding a Magic: the Gathering tournament there during the other three days of the con. 

For the curious, I did want to point out what the prices were for badges for this year's Gen Con:

Have I mentioned lately that
I love Snip and Sketch?

This does not include buying Event tickets, but as you can see a Sunday badge is incredibly cheap, which is why we tended to focus our Gen Con visit on Sundays. In fact, parking at the Stadium was almost as expensive ($30) as the cost of two Sunday badges. 

Still, the cost of attending Gen Con was very much worth it. I got to see the games in action that I'd not even be able to find on the shelves at my local game store, 

Point Salad! My questing buddy recommended
this as a present for my wife, so it's nice to
see it get some love.

and I got to talk to people there who were specialists in the games they were promoting. I mean, being able to talk to someone at the Atlas Games booth about Ars Magica and segueing into a game that he really liked, Feng Shui 2, was priceless:

Obviously he did a good job,
because this.

If you can imagine an RPG that plays like
a Jackie Chan movie or Big Trouble in
Little China, that's what Feng Shui 2 is like.

So unless you're not a fan of crowds, which is understandable, you ought to give Gen Con a try. Even this introvert found something to love.


EtA: Corrected some grammar.

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