Monday, April 23, 2012

CodCon 2012

My convention badge.  I had to have it on me all weekend to deal with people who know me by sight.  Though I would wager most of them have no idea what my last name is when it is not right in front of them.
     It was that time of year, when I get to drive to and from the College of DuPage at what should be unreasonable hours (when taken together) in the ever elusive effort to enjoy myself with – though a small and largely known group of – random people.  Not so long ago, it was slightly different.  There was more of a known quantity as to whom with which I would be seated.  Hell, well before that it was an entirely known quantity – but that was before the days of playing in Organized Play campaigns, of attending local gaming conventions, or of not having a set of close friends where it was just assumed that we would get a home campaign of some kind of RPG going.
Mike Clarke modified one of the table tents I had put together to make this table tent.  I could have done the same thing for him.  Even printed it in color.  But he – very jokingly – asked to make the blog with it, so here it is.  I remain pro-table tent and think this is more than serviceable.
     CodCon was pretty good this year.  I agitated for Brad Ruby – he who is COWS conventions – to get Matt Flinn out to run Arcanis for some time, and Matt was there running people I had not seen since Living Arcanis took its last bow in 2009.  Matt gave of himself the whole weekend, making a much longer trip than I would do just to judge, and I'm glad that he has the passion and availability to do it.  Also there were Terry Doner (running Arcanis as well, but he had a much shorter commute...insanely close in distance as mine) and Benjamin Klahn (playing, it seemed, almost every type of RPG game offered in the room).  It was good to see those people again.  But I was, by my own design slotted for a weekend of Pathfinder Society play.
Most of the player characters (PCs) and baddies (NPCs) from an encounter in Realm of the Fellnight Queen.  Not much to challenge the PCs, but I also felt that one of the players was actively fighting the spirit of the adventure while another's preoccupation with winning the roleplaying game made my experience less fun.  Because I was the world and all things opposing the players and I didn't have a chance if I played by the rules.
      For what it was, I had a good enough time.  Not great.  Probably not bad enough to really piss me off.  There was the reminder that while I don't mind being wrong, I do – desperately – want to put an end to an absolutely unjustifiably arrogant smartass whose opinions of the rules and how to play the game are only by happenstance in accordance with the reality of the former and the consensus of the latter.  I had some issues on Sunday keeping a group of players focused, and that has to be my fault more so than anyone else's.
I do not get Cosplay.  Not at all.
      There are things I can still do without.  I don't need the Cosplay stuff there (because I don't get it and find it creepy).  The person-I-pretend-to-be is a creation of my imagination (and a rule set), and it functions as a type of alter-ego.  I don't dress up and pretend to be something defined by someone else.  That's my prejudice.  I don't want to begrudge others of their good time; I just want it to happen away from mine.  Same thing with the asshole who shows up dressed as how he thinks I medieval minstrel would look and sings bad folkish songs about D&D.  But CodCon is, unfortunately, a shared convention.  And the people who aren't COWS Conventions think that I'm supposed to pay – like everyone else – to be able to game all weekend.  Like I'm not supposed to be able to do it for free (I actually pocketed $5 for the weekend on convention costs) and get free books, minis, and t-shirts.
Three of the miniatures I got for free.  I can't believe other people expect me to pay to get things like this.

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