[Dreamation] So, how was it?

edited February 2010 in Story Games
I wasn't able to go this year. So far I've heard reports of general fun. How was it for you?


  • edited February 2010
    Ran 3 games of Mouse Guard!

    Played Happy Robot, Luke’s secret game, Jared’s new card game, and Burning Wheel.

    Watched a few D&D games (to see how they were handling encounter lengths and skill challenges).

    Had great conversations with more people than I can possibly list. Great seeing so many non-local friends.

    A few new people joined NerdNYC which is always exciting!

    I love Dreamation’s location (easy to get to by train and cheap) and the hotel was fantastic. Food options were also good (not great but I’m used to con food being terrible).

    My wife had a blast. She played a CyberPunk LARP, Cthulhu Disco LARP, a bar hopping LARP, an 80s Cthulhu LARP, a Jeep Form game, and Happy Robot.

    Some of the LARPs suffered the typical LARP problems (midway through many people are lost and aimless) but she loved the Disco LARP and Jeep Form game! Happy Robot was also adorable.

    IPR sold out of several games by mid-Friday. I missed my chance to buy Fiasco!

    There was no indie party but lots of socializing. I wasn't able to stay for the design round table.

    I didn’t get a good read but it seemed attendance was down from last year but still strong. There seemed to be more people than games. Although a few games with high player requirements had issues filling up initially. I have no idea how the playtest track went.

    I really liked that indie gaming was well represented but not the only thing happening at Dreamation. Being around LARPers, D&D, and CoC players is enjoyable for me. I wish the boardgame room was closer.

    Vinnie was a machine. I saw him bounce around non-stop making sure everyone’s games were filled, running, and problem free.

    The best way I can rate Dreamation is by saying… “I’ll be there next year!”
  • I ran about five games of Happy Birthday, Robot! and it was a blast. I really like that the board game room's crowd were amiable for quick pick-up games of Carcasonne. It was perfect for filling in the gaps between sessions in the RPG sessions.

    I was also impressed that the con suite had so many accommodations for people who couldn't afford to hit the restaurants near the hotel. There were sandwiches and homemade cupcakes a-plenty.
  • edited February 2010
    I had a really great time.

    We rode up in a van with six people, which was really fantastic. So much fun.

    I ran Fiasco three times, Jeff ran it twice, John and Shane stepped up and ran it as well. I think my favorite outcome was Matt Weber's loser child-of-a-rock-god getting fatally mauled by a pit bull. Or maybe my lunatic helicopter pilot getting run over with a snow plow while leading a revival meeting at gunpoint.

    I got a chance to playtest two of my games in development, and the people who played were smart and helpful. Both sessions were really productive and even fun. Laura Larsen's power-hungry lesbian surgeon made Medical Hospital for me, and she nailed her partial splenectomy. The Dreamation playtest protocol was very smooth from my POV, although I think it was a one-time experiment.

    I also playtested Dave Cleaver's game Prehistoric Ties, and it is really beautiful. I am a big fan!

    I finally played A Flower for Mara, a game that I was slightly scared of, and it went really well. I rolled in my current medical obsession by playing Mara's father as a doctor.

    There were lots of new faces and I feel like I made some friends. Luke's weird social experiment game was silly and thought-provoking. I wish there had been more time. It was a very fun, very smooth, very relaxed convention.
  • Posted By: jenskot
    I didn’t get a good read but it seemed attendance was down from last year but still strong. There seemed to be more people than games. Although a few games with high player requirements had issues filling up initially. I have no idea how the playtest track went.

    Actually, we were UP by about 40 people from last year. But we had more of the hotel so it was a little more spread out :-)

  • That's fantastic news Vinny!

    I’d also like to add that we had a few friends that came to Dreamation for the first time, didn’t know many people, didn’t pre-register, and still had a good time. Many people were eager to help others find there way around or find something fun to do.

    Can we have another Dreamation next weekend? I’m ready!
  • I had a great time at Dreamation. It's such a wonderful way to see friends, and since I won't be at Nerdly this year, I was soaking up the hang out time in a big way.

    I ended up playing and running only free form games! The three games I ran went very well. Including the new larp that Julia and I ran. It seemed like everyone had fun, and they all gave us great feedback to refine the game for the next time we run it --which will be in just a couple weeks! When Julia takes it to Denmark in April for Fastaval, she should have a well-tested larp on her hands. This was a great outcome. Much better than I'd feared when we first arrived and all three of the games I was running had low sign-ups. Rob Bohl has my eternal gratitude for wrangling folks for Under my Skin!

    Flower for Mara was a touching experience once again. I love Jason's medical insertions, and though I just hope it is not something about me but I have now been involved in two games where Mara's death was through suicide. The differences in how the family handled it, and the feelings of Mara were interesting. I will have to write that up as a play report.

    Getting to playtest Remi's Pinkwater game, and Dave's Prehistoric ties were high-points for me at the con. Both the strengths they already had, and the feedback and improvements that came from the testing were exciting to see. And the playtesters at the Pinkwater game (which was part of the official track) seemed like they were a great group for Remi: some new to story-type games, some experienced, all willing, friendly, good players and insightful.

    It was wonderful to touch base with so many old friends and also to keep meeting new ones. I got to play in two games wtih Courtney and Daniel and I look forward to seeing them both again. So great to see them get excited about freeform!

    And getting to help run Previous Occupants. Unfortunately, there was only one game of it that went off. But that game....wow. Very intense, great play from the participants. And a neat experiment with having audience at a jeep. They had fun too! I'm so grateful that our Danish friends, Frederik and Line came out from Switzerland to join us for the con. It was a delight to get to host them up at my farm in MA, and having them at the con added a lot. The Selkie and his dancing will warm my heart forever. :)

    And on a personal note, it was absolutely fantastic to see Eppy get such a warm reception from the community. Getting many players, great feedback--even and especially when things were rocky--and so much support for his games. Thank you, indie gamers!
  • I ran my Indie by Storm event three times (Thursday 8PM, Friday 2PM, Saturday 2PM). All three slots had poor attendance. Two of them started late because I was trying to round up one or two more players to make the slot viable. I needed at least three players to really make some of the games work. I did manage to have 3 players in each of the slots. Morningstar hopped into my Thursday game for a bit and even helped run Roach. Despite poor attendance, all three slots went really well. My Saturday slot was actually three good New Jersey friends of mine (I didn't plan this; they just signed up for it at the same time), and it was cool to play with people I know well. Thursday, we played 5 of the 6 games on the list. Friday, we got through 4. Saturday, we got through 3. The numbers might have diminished as people grew increasingly tired, but we were also just playing each game longer. People were having fun and did not want to switch to other games, which was fine by me.

    I made new indie fans in each slot. Several people asked where they could buy the games and expressed certitude about buying this game or that. My friend Scott runs Gamer's Gambit, a game store in Fair Lawn, NJ. He seemed pretty skeptical about indie games (though he doesn't seem to put Burning Wheel or Spirit of the Century into that category...) and I'm sure he'll own My Life with Master within a couple weeks, and he's reconsidering IPR's retailer terms.

    There were games I played that I didn't run, too!

    Having nothing else to do on Friday morning, I flopped down in Jason's Fiasco table. The high concept of the game had never really grabbed me, but there were cool people sitting at the table so I figured what the hell. I had a great time and I was grumpy when IPR sold out of the book. I played the frumpy and bumbling assistant at the Antarctic research station. I created a surreal and comical character who did some awfully dark things in the backstory, and tried to redeem him by the end of the story, but could not. Instead his dark past made him less and less sympathetic until it was pretty clear that the asshole just had to die. Jason's helicopter pilot gunned him down on the ice shelf and left him for dead. He died there, wearing the Hawaiian shirt he'd stolen off the dude that he and the pilot killed in an explosives accident.

    I jumped into Epidiah's Swords without Master playtest. That was a lot of fun, and we were able to give Eppy lots of new ideas to consider and then use, alter, or discard. ;) My character was the band's only sorcerer, which created interesting /player/ tension as I used my magic as a powerful plot device to solve problems. What was weird was that they had the exact same "story power" as I, but using their steel and brawn to solve problems felt less "cheaty" than using brains and magic. The group memorialized the term to "Dray" a game, after I refused to hand over the dice to another player and let Eppy toss our entire group into worse and worse trouble. I wanted to see what would happen! As a playtester, I like to explore game mechanics in that way, as long as people are still having fun at the table (and I don't think I totally ruined anyone's fun). Eppy: one set of dice for each set of 4 players (round up). Seriously.

    On Saturday, I bought Pandemic from the dealer's room and played it three times. The first time, with Tony L-B and Sean deArment and his wife, we quickly saved the world, only to realize that we'd been playing the Share Knowledge rule totally wrong (and some others, it turns out). Our pride and joy in our amazing victory was quickly deflated. Late Saturday night, I played again with my friends Jon and Seraphina and Dave Cleaver, and we got stomped by outbreaks, losing painfully, twice. But we lost by the rules. No scientist in the second game. No medic in the third. Ouch.

    I played 3:16 for the first time, with a bunch of really crazy people. I haven't laughed that hard during a game in years. This was the game that produced the spit-take. It turns out that the crazy player of Trooper "Fuego" and his wife Robin know Nick Marshall and his wife (small world!), and after I told them about Camp Nerdly this Spring, they might come down and join us.

    Oh, and Luke's secret game was amazing. I had a blast, even in the "upper class" Squares group. Yes, there were debates and arguments and deadlock and death threats and a few dark, not really fun moments, but the exercise will stick with me for a while. Lesson learned: You can give people money, but that equalizes money, not status or achievement.

    I skipped my D&D / RPGA game because I didn't have my character ready. I skipped my two boardgame slots because I was exhausted (and had already played Pandemic till 2 AM).

    Raoul's Empanadas is an amazing place for lunch (and they have vegetarian stuff). The Japanese place (Nara's?) in the strip mall is really good, too. The hotel food by the con registration table is all right and only a little bit expensive.

    Oh, another lesson learned: Check with the hotel about long distance phone rates before calling home from the room phone. I knew the rate would be ridiculously high. I just figured that "ridiculously high" meant 50 cents a minute or something. No. $3 a minute. I had a short discussion with the hotel desk and let them know that I had a serious problem with that rate, especially since it's not posted in the guest services book or anything, and negotiated down to paying a third of my $158 long distance charges, which was still about twice what I figured I'd be paying. (My cell phone isn't holding a charge lately, so I was saving it for the car ride.)

    My friend Jon introduced his girlfriend Seraphina to indie games. She'd played some D&D, I think, but hadn't had any crazy-good gaming experiences, afaik. She had a blast. She bought Eppy's Dread and took it home to her friends. I also managed to introduce her to a bunch of people (whom she had already met, apparently) and let her know they were localish to her (which she hadn't realized).

    As usual for Dreamation, I couldn't walk ten feet without seeing someone I knew and I didn't have enough time to really talk to everyone. Next year will be even worse in that regard, as I made new friends this year and strengthened relationships with some casual acquaintances. I already miss you all.
  • I went into my first game of Shock:Human Contact all nervous. Like, this stuff all works in my head, but is it going to work at the table?

    So I sat down with Remi Treuer and Buddha Davis and we explored the society on a planet that was formed by a cycle of sexual abuse. Which is standard Shock: stuff. Going from there was what I was curious about: would be be able to form sufficient attachment to the world, and would we be able to use the fantastic sociotechnologies of the Academy to give ourselves enough hope to keep us from destroying the world in a furious rage, as happens so often in the game?

    We did. The world was unabashedly awful. And the Academy brought hope. The emperor was put in a position where he couldn't do anything but express the rage at the abuse he'd suffered, and had become emperor in order to inflict on other preëmptively. The world didn't change overnight, though, and I really want to know what would happen next week. There was going to be an entire planet's worth of rage, and I really want to know how they'd go about healing this place — or if they would.

    So, that went great. And then I started to doubt myself. I mean, this is Remi and Buddha. We could sit down with a rock and a stick, and four hours later, we'd have had a story with complex characters, subtle motivations, and a denoument that answered all questions but the ones most central to the human experience.

    So I was worried that it was a "players, not the game" thing.

    And then it happened more.

    In our last game, we started late, had too many people, and then got shoved out the door by a poker tourney. That was suck. Cuz there was some serious awful that we needed to address in that world. But all told, five games of Shock:Human Contact went down. Three of them were excitingly good, with the setting and rules doing just what it should. Two of them got stopped early to their detriment, and I really wanted to know how they were going to go down, but couldn't.

    Naturally, the best moments were people. Matthew Gandy and I seem to have started a horrible tradition of staying up until 5 on Saturday night, talking about the universe. I met Courtny Hopen, who's a ball of excellence. I got to have lunch with more scintillating conversors than I can recall. Thank you all for that.

    I also sold a lot of copies. Thanks to everyone who bought stuff. I hope you love it.

  • edited February 2010
    As an insecure starship priest, I tried to undermine the holographic psychiatrist over patient-envy.

    As a schizophrenic morgue worker, I fulfilled the mafia's plan to save the town from vampires by dumping "govt spy fluid" (actually vervain) into the reservoir -- while getting shot & killed by the cops.

    As a silver idol come to life, I sacrificed myself to usher in the coming of the sun and save my people's refugees from freezing -- all too late.

    As a pretentious teen philosopher, I cowed a state executioner on live TV -- by selling out and slamming him with the state's oppression of individualism.

    As a stoned mall barista, I killed a clerk over a baseball bat that was supposedly corked, then fled to Mexico and got shot & killed in a drug deal gone bad.

    I also GMed a sweet supernatural investigation and then got 3 hrs of feedback on my game (thanks Matt, Frank, Rebecca, Michele, and the roundtable)! One PC got mauled by a panther-monster, but at least no one sold their soul, got shot, or killed themself in vain. Y'all emo folks are harsh!
  • Posted By: jenskotIPR sold out of several games by mid-Friday. I missed my chance to buy Fiasco!
    Yup, me too.
  • Posted By: Joshua A.C. NewmanI went into my first game of Shock:Human Contact all nervous. Like, this stuff all works in my head, but is it going to work at the table?
    So I sat down with Remi Treuer and Buddha Davis and [. . .]
    Mang, Remi and Buddha showing up at your table means you *already* won. The outstanding question is "how much did I win?"
  • Sounds stupid!

    [/sour grapes]
  • edited February 2010
    I had an excellent time!

    Thursday night I arrived in time to walk down to the train station with Joshua A.C. Newman and Rob Bohl to meet Matt Weber and Judd's friend Witt; the walk was a little like watching one of the Bob Hope/Bing Crosby road movies, if Hope & Crosby had been game designers. Lots of edgy repartee, I mean. We all had dinner at a place called Saigon--nothing special, but a nice start to the weekend.

    I also got to join in a playtest by Larry Wick (he of WEGS fame) of a game with the funky title "Big Bang Mudang," which turned out to be a fun gamist free-for-all in which the characters are flamboyantly attired ancient Korean she-shamans whose spirits are reincarnated to do battle down through the ages; think Highlander meets Monty Python.

    The next day I played in Shawn de Arment's "One Night" playtest, a quick-playing narrativist-leaning game. We were asteroid pirates, and I was the secretly mutinous ship's doctor who wanted to overthrow Pirate Captain Jenny and bring her before the Pirate Council to answer for betraying its secrets. Turns out I was the bad guy, and wound up being trapped on the bridge of a heavily armed mining ship with a self-conscious AI whom I had tried to control. They carried me out in a straitjacket, a victim of my own extensive pharmacopeia.

    That night I ran the first of two sessions of my Trail of Cthulhu adventure Castle Bravo, which produced some excellently brutal feedback. At midnight, I ran Ganakagok for three players and it created a pretty compelling fiction; this is the one where David Berg played a metallic humanoid construct of the Forgotten Ones that wakened to sentience when touched by a falling star, fled to an ice-crystal temple where he was besieged by Dawn cultists, was rescued by a bear-scarred hunter who hated him but wanted to forestall the coming of the dawn, and died in a long fall from the sheer ice-cliffs of Ganakagok. The People didn't make it. It was interesting to play it in "speed mode"; we clocked in at about 2-1/2 hours from the time we were all assembled until the last player told us his character's Final Fate.

    The next day was Saturday; I ran the second iteration of Castle Bravo that afternoon and incorporated some of the suggestions folks had given me to good effect. I got even more constructive criticism after that. I came out of it feeling sick as a dog--sore throat, exhausted--but some chicken soup at the pizza place across the street from the hotel while having dinner with Matt Weber, his girlfriend Anna Melton, Matthew Gandy, Chad Underkoffler, and Rob Donoghue picked up my spirits. We had an energetic conversation about the value of theory, the extent to which system does in fact matter, and the need for a place to talk about it. I chilled out during the 8 o'clock slot, watched my friend Dave and his eleven-year-old son play WEGS, and had a drink with Eric Larsen, his wife Laura, their friend Ben (I think) while they finished playing Zombie Cinema. They let me talk all about myself, which was nice of them. Then Ben's friend from his undergrad days showed up, whom Eric had referred to as "Drunk Bob" before he got to the table. Sure enough, when Drunk Bob sat down, he was really drunk and really loud. Apparently he'd been playing Mouse Guard or something with Luke Crane with a brandy snifter full of bourbon, and he was already drunk when he started to play. "You fellazh mind if I join ya?" It was funny, though, sort of the way a train wreck is funny.

    Sunday morning my car wouldn't start--urk! dome light left on!--but Jason Godesky generously helped me jump start it and then hung out with me for half an hour while I waited for the battery to charge and talked about his playtests of The Fifth World, his post-urban ecotopian story-telling game. His game seems to occupy a space similar to Ganakagok and Brennan's How We Came To Live Here--tribal, mythopoietic, animistic--but he's having a tough time making it sing. The game needs a little love, I think.

    I took off from Morristown around 2 o'clock; I almost stayed for the Indie Round Table but when my six-year-old daughter called during lunch to tell me she sort of missed me, I decided to hit the road.

    But I also managed to get some interviews done on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday for an article about structured freeform I'm working on. I'm actually a pretty diffident and retiring sort of guy, so it made the convention an unusual experience for me, in that I had to actively seek out a specific list of folks who I wanted to speak to--Emily Care Boss, Remi Treuer, Jason Morningstar, Julia Ellingboe, Chad Underkoffler, to name only a few--and buttonhole them for half an hour or so each so they would answer my questions. Everyone very graciously acceded, however, and it was very interesting to hear folks reconstruct the history of at least part of their engagement with role-playing, like Frederik Østergaard talking about his experience in the Danish con scene in the 1990s and Rob Donoghue talking about Amber Diceless.

    But perhaps my favorite moment on Sunday morning was when there was a bunch of folks standing in the lobby of the hotel saying their good-byes and I was able to read them an e-mail from Brian Minter I'd just seen on my phone to the effect that (a) Knights of the Dinner Table had published a nice review of Ganakagok, but (b) they said John Harper wrote it. It got a ruefully appreciative laugh from everyone there; nowhere else would the reaction have been the same. It made me feel like part of a community.
  • I had a great time. It was a short, sweet and intense two days for me.
  • Thursday, to my astonishment, my timing and Julian's worked out perfectly, and we made the 2:35 train from NYC. We got a fridge, and my food plan turned out to be almost spot on (Indian buffet Friday lunch, dinner food Saturday dinner, and food from the fridge the rest of the time, without too much in the way of leftovers). Josh arrived later.

    Thursday, I played Ganakagok, which ran a lot smoother than the first game I played (first edition -- still an awesome game, with 9 players), and we wondered if there is a limit to how much luck one can suck from the available pool. I think Bill later confirmed that if one really wants to suck it all out, one may do so. It ended badly for the World, the People, and most of the individuals, but it was a lot of fun.

    Friday, I played Teen Power -- With Great Power, which was a blast. Friday afternoon, the GM for the Age of Cthulhu game didn't show. I'm thinking there was likely a family emergency type thing, as I don't think he made the convention, and this is utterly untypical of Dreamation. But, Mike, one of the players, said, "Okay, let's do an experiment I've done before. I call it 'Whose Cthulhu Is It Anyway?' You all write down an element you want to see in the scenario -- it doesn't have to be horror. Then, I'll take 15 minutes to make a scenario while you guys make up characters."

    Solid scenario. Short, yeah, and could use a bit of tweaking on the PCs, but solid. I feel so sorry for the Brazilian cop, even though he was the only one who had a good ending.

    The ice cream was fine. Next time, I think more bananas and less other crap on it.

    The evening game of The Dance and the Dawn did not go off, but I did gush about the larp version of it. And, I went up to my room and did a mental calculation. Unexpected free time at a convention = Time to shower. Shower good.

    Beds less good, I think. I didn't wake up aching, but I did keep waking up.

    Saturday, I came down with the extra white blanket thingy in the closet to use as a pseudo-toga for the two part Roman setting Call of Cthulhu game. I kept it on because I found it extremely cold. And, I got to play a charioteer, which is kind of like a sports champion and rock star idol rolled into one. I mean, forget the unspeakable horrors -- are the Reds winning this year? We know what's important!

    After that, I chatted with the folks from Miskatonic River Press and got complimented on the proofreading I'd done for them. (How that happened -- I bitched about Chaosium's web page advertising one of their latest products. (Typos on a web page advertising a product? One that isn't a monograph? Ick!) Tom Lynch, listening to me vent, said, "So, is that offer of proofreading still good? You do understand we can't pay?" I said, "Yep. How soon do you need it? _That_ soon? Okay, let's give it a go." Apparently, I work well when planning moving stuff from my parents' house to storage, with overworked knees because I'm an idiot and decide to shove heavy boxes around, and take on proofreading a book o'scenarios.)

    Josh and I went out for dinner at the diner. We parted shortly after collecting chocolate, him to about 8 hours of D&D 4th, and me to With Great Power for a Liberty League session. Okay, I know the comic book doesn't exist, but I have still been following it for years.

    I bounced off the walls after with nothing I really wanted to do. I decided that this counted as free time and took another shower.

    Saturday morning was Misery Bubblegum, which was awesome. When Remi asked me how it was, I kind of misplaced my vocabulary, and said, "It's got more... stuff. More cards... more.... more Excelsior!"

    Then, I coordinated with Josh, Julian, Jon, and Merav to figure out how we were getting home, and sacked out in a lobby chair. After various board games were finished, we bundled into a car, and Josh and I dropped off near a) a really good Szechuan place and b) a PATH station, where I proceeded to utterly misnavigate us. But, we did get home safely, despite the extra hour of travel.

    And I caught up on my sleep and did a first draft of about half the larp Team Straightjackets will be running in... three weeks. Thank goodness it is a one hour larp.
  • I had an excellent time at Dreamation, but I was left with one lingering question:

    What exactly was the peril which awaited us at the fjord?
  • The Axes of Evil!
  • edited February 2010
    I played Human Contact and Under My Skin. Those were great. UMS delivered again, and I think the Human Contact focuses Shock: in a really interesting way. I played with awesome people who really brought the thunder.

    I playtested Pinkwater, my weird suburban fantasy game. With a table full of strangers (and Emily) unfamiliar with what I was doing. It worked right up to the point where I had stopped designing it. All my playtesters were helpful and enthusiastic. I couldn't have asked for more. There was a moment at the end of the first act where everyone was talking all together, exchanging ideas and moving play along. It was really satisfying to see that emerge from the simple web I had set up.

    My Friday Night PTA game bombed out (and so did I) so I decided to take the rest of the con off. Apologies to all the people I missed or flaked on.

    I enjoyed the ride up and back, as always. It will be Cock Bus movie night every night when I die and go to heaven.
  • I loved seeing everybody again! My detailed con writeups: Dreamation 2010 - An Island of Sanity (Part One) and Part Two

    Most thought-provoking game: Luke's Friday night Game That Man Was Not Meant To Name, wherein I finished with the second-lowest score and marveled at the fact that none of the brilliant, insightful people in the top-most group noticed the fact that the chip-draws were rigged.

    Most enjoyable fiction created: The Serial Homicide Unit game that shouldn't have worked. A profile like "people charged with a crime but never convicted" should have produced lackluster play at best. Instead, we got a glimpse of the humanity of those who have made terrible decisions.

    Most enjoyable game session: Playtesting The Fifth World on Sunday morning with Jason Godesky and Kat. For one thing, it's rare to sit on the same side of the GM screen (or equivalent) with my wife. It was great to play with her so relaxed, and with such a rich potential game to dig into, find what worked and what could use reshaping and re-emphasis. Plus the double "wow" that Jason let out at the end of the session when he found out that we had made WGP... and SHU didn't hurt none, at all.
  • Posted By: Michael S. Millerand marveled at the fact that none of the brilliant, insightful people in the top-most group noticed the fact that the chip-draws were rigged.
    Well, the rules prohibited discussing your wealth, or really discussing /anything/ when not engaged in trading (so no conversation between trading rounds, too). I did at one point ask Jared if he got a crazy-good draw and he said he hadn't. I had drawn 4 gold, 1 green, so I wondered if it was just a lucky break. No one else seemed to have such good luck, but they must have just not been talking about it.
  • And now, the headlines from Dreamation:

    Power of Love, Love of Power Blow Up Island. "It's OK," say dead inhabitants, "Island pretty much full of jerks, anyway."

    Evangelical Leading Prayer Meeting Squashed by Snow Cat. Science Expedition Leader Indicted, Impotent.

    Shock: Human Contact
    New Planet Discovered! Volcanoes + Severe Autism "Not a good combination," Concludes Academy.

    Misspent Youth
    Plucky Youths Mug Deity, Eviscerate Each Other. Plus: Is Teen Sex with Dragons on the Rise?

    Tam Lin
    Everything Different in World of Selkie, Reports Suggest. No Tithe to be Sent. "Lucifer can suck it," says Faerie Queen.

    Shock: Human Contact II: The Happy Ending
    New Planet Discovered! Alien Words for "Sex," "Death" Not What We Thought They Were. Pictures on Page 3.

    Previous Occupants
    Murder Suicide in Jersey Motel linked to Ghosts, Mysterious "Jeepform Cult." Witness Too Disturbed to Comment. Bodies ID'ed as Tam Lin, Janet.

    Of the three I've attended, this was my favorite Dreamation yet. I got to spend time with so many wonderful people, friends new and old, but even the four days I spent there were not enough to hang out with all the excellent individuals I'd been hoping to see. Yes, the density of awesome was that high. Thanks again to all the people who made this such a fantastic experience, and I look forward to gaming with you all again in the future.
  • Adam, you're right about the lack of information-sharing being significant. But I wasn't trying to criticize the squares.

    The incident that drove it home for me was when I (a circle) got into a trade w/ Julia (a square) and she asked how many green chips I was willing to trade, and I said I didn't have any and had never had any through the whole game and she gaped with disbelief.

    In the real world, when you hear about privileged people unaware of their own privileges, it's easy to dismiss them as greedy, ignorant, mean-spirited jerks. In this exercise, I know that the pink squares are NOT greedy, ignorant, mean-spirited jerks (well, except maybe Jared), therefore there must be another explanation. Raising that question was a big insight for me.
  • No offense taken! Was just trying to explain why.

    In the real world, people are allowed to ask questions, though our society discourages people from talking about money in polite company. I refer to my participation in the "everyone wins" rule as my "let them eat cake" moment, so I definitely get what you're saying.

    (This all probably belongs in the other thread.)
  • Dan, I just realized you played twice, but neither time with me! We'll have to fix that at our first opportunity. I love playing with you.

  • Posted By: Joshua A.C. NewmanDan, I just realized you played twice, but neither time with me! We'll have to fix that at our first opportunity. I love playing with you.
    I agree. I feel like I can't really complain, though, since I got to share sake and empanadas-- if not social science fiction-- with you. Still, I'm sure we will rectify the situation soon.
  • edited February 2010
    This was a weird year for me, because I didn't sign up for any games. I played in, I think, three? A self-organized Mythender game, Brennan's Fate Bulldogs! game, and Luke's Secret Game. But, at the same time it was totally chill for me -- I got to relax and chat with folks.

    That said, I wish I had gotten in a touch more gaming in. I was talking with Darren Watts of Hero Games about the differences between our story gaming micro-culture and the micro-culture of industry pros at large, and one was: In that other world, you primarily connect with people by sitting around a hotel bar and talking. In ours, we connect primarily through the gaming itself. Now, I might be full of shit, but there's something to that, which is why I feel like not playing enough this year was more of a bummer than it is at, say, GenCon.

    (Which is to say: damnit, I like you people, and wanted more time with my old and new Dreamation friends.)

    - Ryan
  • Sounds like fun, now don't forget to come to RinCon this year in October in Tucson and do the same!
  • edited February 2010
    Posted By: JDCorleyRinCon
    Which is totally something we want to build into the West Coast Dreamation. You all should come. I come out to yours! :)

    - Ryan
  • Posted By: Ryan MacklinThat said, I wish I had gotten in a touch more gaming in. I was talking with Darren Watts of Hero Games about the differences between our story gaming micro-culture and the micro-culture of industry pros at large, and one was: In that other world, you primarily connect with people by sitting around a hotel bar and talking. In ours, we connect primarily through the gaming itself.
    AHA! Mac explains why my Dreamation 2010 was better than my Dreamation 2009 for feeling "connected".

  • Posted By: Jason MorningstarI finally played A Flower for Mara, a game that I was slightly scared of, and it went really well. I rolled in my current medical obsession by playing Mara's father as a doctor.
    Ooh. I'd love to hear more about this. Who else played?

    Seth Ben-Ezra
    Great Wolf
  • edited February 2010
    Def. the most gaming I've ever done at Dreamation. _______ ________ friday night, followed by some FreeMarket, Jungle Adventure and Mythender. Sadly, the con crud got its thumbs hooked into me mid-Saturday and I've been sick ever since, but a good time despite my tired, snuffling, aching corporeal form.

    Also, I'm pretty sure the blue circles spent their gold and green chips on drugs and alcohol, so that's why they were where they were.
  • Posted By: Jared A. SorensenAlso, I'm pretty sure the blue circles spent their gold and green chips on drugs and alcohol
    Well, that's what *I* spent it on, that's for sure.

    Uh, I mean schools! Books 'n shit!

    - Ryan
  • edited February 2010
    Dreamation was so good I'm super charged to GM again (D&D 4E and playtesting burned me out)!

    I took the week off (as did a few of my high school and college friends) and I've been running Mouse Guard, Dogs in the Vineyard, and Kagematsu every day in between babysitting (my extended family have had a rough time lately so I'm pitching in to help), writing, construction, and finishing freelance projects at night.
  • I really needed Dreamation this year.

    I played Craig in Under My Skin and only realized on the way home that I don't think he ever said I love you to his fiance, and it fit their really strange relationship.

    I played Her-Head-Is-In-The-Clouds in How We Came to Live Here, and no matter how hard I tried to keep her from getting corrupted the quest for her sister's killer (Rachel's character) caused her to become cursed with the stench of death and eventually run off forever with He-Brings-Disease.

    in Misery Bubblegum, I played Robert the frantic (but eventually obedient) geeky Amberite. He always seemed to side against everyone else at the table, except when it came to turning off the doomsday device he had designed.

    My last roleplaying game of the weekend, was the playtest of my game Prehistoric Ties. I can't say enough thank yous to Rachel, Jason, and Emily for helping the game by playing and providing useful feedback.

    The weekend was rounded out by lots of hanging out with old and new friends. All in all it was a great relaxed weekend.
  • Posted By: greatwolfOoh. I'dloveto hear more about this. Who else played?
    Me, Julia Ellingboe, Frederik Østergaard, Anna Melton, and someone named Marav (?) who I hadn't met before. Emily facilitated. Mara jumped off a building. Father and son-in-law had a touching reapproachment. Daughter said goodbye and moved on. We had some fun flashbacks and lay-ons.
  • I have a lot to write up about the con, but for now, you can look at my pictures.
  • Sounds like good times. Sad I missed it!
  • Adding flashbacks on the fly worked great in Mara. We had some terrifying scenes, like the one where Jason's disapproving father of Mara got to "take care of" his future son-in-law in the emergency room after a drunken accident. And the toast at the wedding. Sadly, I forgot to include flower monologues, so folks tended to come to resolution within the scene. This seemed to work fine,but I'd certainly do it the right way in future.
  • [Mara] It was fun to actively listen to other scenes and reincorporate. So when Frederik said to Mara "You are my everything, my number one" I made sure, as her father, to use those same words in my wedding toast flashback.
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